JANUARY 21, 1948
HYDE PARK, Tuesday—The testimony given by Bernard M. Baruch before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee seems to me a document worth reading by every American citizen. It is a blueprint for the future, on both domestic and foreign issues.
It makes clear how we can arrange our economy to meet our needs both at home and abroad. It inspires one with confidence because it has breadth of vision and treats foreign affairs from a truly global viewpoint, so that the people really have before them a picture of the world and how we can begin to repair the ravages caused by war.
The years of life should bring us breadth of vision and the courage to meet difficult situations because we have accumulated experience, but in many people the adventure in life is obscured by fear and caution as the years go by. In the case of Mr. Baruch the adventure has remained an adventure, and the meeting of it is made easier by accumulated knowledge.
The Senate committee will hear no testimony more interesting or clearer than Mr. Baruch's from any of those called before it, be they young or old. And the country is fortunate to have an elder statesman of this caliber to call upon for advice and inspiration.
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Yesterday Alfred G. Vanderbilt, II, and I spent an interesting afternoon at Wiltwyck School. We arrived just as the boys were going out to play. Some of them had sleds. There were a few pairs of skates, which have to be passed around to different boys on different days because there are not enough to go around. And for the whole school there are only two pairs of skis, though there are plenty of slopes where the boys could learn skiing. However, there were no complaints yesterday. Everybody accepted what was handed to them, and they slid downhill with evident enjoyment.
We visited all the buildings. We found that 80 new bedspreads are needed and that all the windows need a second set of curtains. They are the simplest kind of cotton curtains but they do have to be washed occasionally and, when they are taken down, the rooms look bare without a touch of gay color at the windows. A school is like a home—there are always things you need. And where 80 youngsters are using things all the time, they seem to wear out faster than in an individual house!