AUGUST 18, 1960
HYDE PARK—I note with interest the emphasis the Republican candidate for President is putting on businessmen and bankers as advisors. I have no objection at all to the position of Vice-President Richard Nixon of having advisors in this category, but it seems odd to me that the others on his advisory council should simply be called "academic advisors."
What are their special fields of interest? It is not enough to be merely academic. You must be concerned about some field of government.
Are the three business representatives and the banker interested only in big business, or is there some interest, too, in the troubles of the small businessmen? It is apparent to all of us that most of the problems that will come up in the near future will be joint problems in which labor and industry will have to find solutions together.
I would like to be able, in looking over the fields of interest of the advisors, to learn where the interest of the nominee himself really lies. Simply to have advisors to which one can refer problems and ask for memorandums is not sufficient. One should decide on fields of interest and ask for memorandums from experts in these fields, not only for use in the campaign but in preparation for official action, if elected.
In connection with the release of the transcript of an interview that Premier Nikita Khrushchev gave Joseph Curran, president of the National Maritime Union, last month, one thing should be made clear: The Soviets are not anxious for the existence of a progressive, vital democracy in the United States. A government that meets the need of all the people and gives them hope for a better future is the surest defense against the blandishments of communism.
Khrushchev knows this quite well. That is why he characterized John F. Kennedy as a good man and did not say that he hoped for his election. He knows that an Administration in this country that thinks about the good of the people as a whole would be far more dangerous to his interests than would a continuation of the present situation in which there is prosperity at the top and increasing unhappiness among the unemployed and in depressed areas of the country.
I thought the "Meet the Press" interview clarified Mr. Curran's own feelings as well as those of Premier Khrushchev, but the publication of the full transcript should be educational for the people of this country.
It is the failure of democracy to look forward economically, to think on a broad scale of the improvement of life for the masses, which gives communism a good argument for use in uncommitted countries of the world. Every time we meet successfully a new type of economic situation we set back Communist hopes for control in these areas. The people there watch our domestic situation with the greatest care, and whatever we do has an effect far beyond our own shores.