Teenagers from Pakistan, Vietnam, Germany, and Yugoslavia discuss socialism in Yugoslavia and Russian Communism. Questions the definition of the word "freedom." Analyzes the prospects of reunification for Germany and Vietnam. (WOR-TV) Kinescope.
In discussing communism as an internal problem, students from Britain, Norway, India and the Philippines deal in a rather inclusive manner with this difficult issue. In a most lively discussion, the panelists examine the topic from numerous angles, but stress particularly how we can at the same time control communism and protect civil liberties. Whether politicians should deal with internal communism, and whether it would be advisable to outlaw the communist party are also considered. In this connection several related problems are brought to light: Would the party be more difficult to control if it were forced completely underground; would there be danger of confusing liberals and other nonconformists with communists? An attempt is also made to define subversion, and several opinions are presented. Whether or not congressional committees are operating fairly and successfully is also discussed. One student expresses the fear that men may be unnecessarily hurt because of the fact that a committee may publicly suggest that he is guilty of some act, and yet is not empowered actually to establish that guilt or innocence. While much of the discussion centers, around the problem in the United States, several of the students describe what is being done in their own country about the problem, and the point is made that the solution for one country may not necessarily be the answer for another.
This program traces the history of the Communist Party in the United States. The dramatic sequences feature a re-enactment of the Bridgeman Convention in 1921 and show how the Communist Party of the United States was controlled by the Communist International, and directed by it. Benjamin Gitlow, former General Secretary of the Communist Party of America and American representative to the Comintern in the 1920’s, is a special guest on the program. Mr. Gitlow was twice candidate for Vice President of the USA on the Communist Party ticket. Mr. Gitlow was expelled from the Communist Party of America in 1929, as a result of his refusal to accept a directive ordering himto yield leadership of the Party.
Encyclopaedia Britannica Films, Harold D. Lasswell
Contrasts democracy and despotism and explains four conditions in a community essential to democracy. Points out that respect for each other and power in government must be shared by all thepeople. Asserts that shared power and shared respect in turn depend on balanced economic distribution and enlightenment through an uncontrolled, socially responsible information system.
On his PLATFORM programs, Dr. Thomas A. Dooley speaks his mind on the image of America in Southeast Asia. He calls for a renewal of the traditional American approach to under-developed countries --the approach through American individuals and voluntary organizations rather than heavy reliance on government agencies. “The most powerful tool we have is the human personality. Education is the most important thing we have to offer to Asia, and people are the only ones who can bring education. Books and propaganda leaflets cannot do it. The tremendous value that I wish more people in Washington would realize is the value of the individual person. If we would just flood these countries with individual young American men and women we could accomplish a great deal. We need people who will live and work with these people in their villages.” Dr. Dooley points out that the Communists realize that the future of Asia lies in the villages. They are making an intensive effort through local people to identify America with the hated French colonialism. He says the Communists attack the spirit of America and we too often counter with mere boasting about our material achievements. Dr. Dooley also discusses the “Great White Fleet” which he feels is going to cause more harm than good. He believes the term “Great White Fleet” is an unfortunate one since it fails to recognize the Asian distrust of the white man and hatred of colonialism. Fleets were instruments of imperialism in the past and a great aircraft carrier in a harbor of Asia or Africa even if it is loaded with medicine conveys another meaning to the people. His major criticism of the “Great White Fleet” is, however, that it is not a “grass roots” program designed to be an integral long-range part of the underdeveloped countries.
Discusses the early steps in the nominating process. Explains and illustrates the makeup of the national committee, the role of the national chairman, the importance of selecting a favorable convention site, apportionment of delegates, and state, county, and precinct organizations. Discusses a cartoon of the county chairman. (Dynamic Films) Film.
The panel takes up the importance of the national convention in drafting a party platform and important intra-party conflicts which have developed over the drafting of such platforms at recent conventions. Along these same lines, the panel considers the procedure used to draft the platform and the question of whether the platform is drafted to represent the policy position of the candidate or for the candidate to stand on.
A panel here considers the advantages and disadvantages of the convention systems as it now operates. Speakers also discuss suggestions for improving the convention as a nominating device, alternatives methods for nominating a president and vice president, and the problems and advantages of these alternatives.
Traces the history of imperialism from the 15th Century to the present, Explains the reasons which lead to empire building by nation states. Discusses the geographical, economic, and political changes brought about by colonialism.
Mr. Albert Ravenholt, correspondent of the American Universities Field Staff and staff correspondent for the Chicago Daily News, and Dr. George A. Peek, Jr., assistant professor of political science at the University of Michigan and coordinator for the series, focus their first discussion of the "tension areas" in the Far East on Formosa. Mr. Ravenholt, considered one of the nation's best-informed men on the Far East, comments on the important strategic position of Formosa, the complicated internal "police state" condition of the Island, and how the situation affects the United States. He explains that the Chinese communists are building up their forces along the China coastline. They may be planning to attach Formosa directly, to capture the Chinese Nationalist held islands closer to the mainland, or to force a diplomatic settlement concerning the possession of Formosa. The latter would then involve the issues of recognition of Red China and admission of that country into the United Nations. The United States is sending to Formosa economic and military aid totaling three to four million dollars per year, Mr. Ravenholt points out. This aid not only consists of building up the defenses of the Island, but also improving the diet of the Nationalists soldiers, improving their uniforms, constructing air fields and bridges, and making agricultural improvements. Finally, Mr. Ravenholt stresses the need for the U.S. to begin thinking of what kind of support we are willing to extend to the Chinese Nationalists in the event of war, and the need for thinking about the kind of non-communist Chinese leadership which we would like to have evolve in the future.
Rabi and Viereck join Louis Lyons to discuss the freedom of the individual with their emphasis on the scientist and the artist. They agree there is no great cause for concern over the freedom today of the scientist or artist in terms of the freedoms and that they gain these freedoms through laws which bind them in their own professions. Included in the program is a spirited debate on scientific achievement and the necessity to combat mass determination of taste, particularly in the mass communications. Guests are Isidor I. Rabi, Higgins Professor of Physics, Columbia University; Nobel Prize winner in physics, 1944 and Peter Viereck, poet, professor of history, Mount Holyoke College; Pulitzer poet, 1949.
Mr. HV Kaltenborn, often called “Dean of American Commentators,” begins this program with a discussion of the United States’ role as an important force in world affairs as it came to be recognized at the time of Theodore Roosevelt. With Mrs. Dorothy Daniel, Pittsburgh journalist and broadcaster, Mr. Herb Morrison, Pittsburgh newscaster, and Mr. TFX Higgins, executive director of the Foreign Policy Association of Pittsburgh, he discusses the League of Nations, the Treaty of Versailles, Germany before World War I, dictators, Hitler, Mussolini, and dictatorship in the Western Hemisphere. He goes on to discuss colonialism and the USSR. In general, this program concerns itself with twentieth century history as seen through the eyes of a commentator.
Dr. Henry Steele Commager discusses the political thinking of today. Explains the desirability of the inductive or pragmatic approach to problems of politics and society. Discusses the concepts of majority and minority rule, loyalty, and security in terms of theoretical dangers, fundamental truths, and moral absolutes. Points out the importance of experience, reality, and actuality in judging political action. (WQED) Kinescope.
Dr. Henry Steele Commager and his guests discuss freedom and security in today's society. Defines freedom as a natural right, a practical necessity, and a way of living. Considers the problem of freedom, security, and loyalty on a national as well as local level. (WQED) Kinescope.
Dr. Commager lectures on the subject of nationalism as something Americans take for granted but as something that is actually new in history. He also clarifies nationalism as a blessing rather than a curse to mankind. He discusses his theory that American nationalism differs in important ways from European or even Asiatic. He shows how nationalism came about as suggesting what the US can should do to mitigate the ravages of nationalism generally.
The British colony of Hong Kong is the second "tension area" discussed by Mr. Ravenholt, Professor Peek, and their guest Dr. John W. Hall, director of the Center for Japanese Studies at the University of Michigan. Describing Hong Kong as a "window in the bamboo curtain," Mr. Ravenholt explains that the colony, made up of 76 islands and a peninsula, is the crossroads of the world where there is fairly free travel across the border into Red China. Here we are able to get a picture of what is happening in Communist China. The picture is not complete, he points out, but we are able to determine general trends in that vast country. It is now becoming apparent, according to Dr. Hall, that China is emerging as a major power for the first time in over 150 years. With this accumulation of power there is a natural "spilling over" into other countries such as North Korea. The grassroots level is the source of this new found power. The Communist Government of China has succeeded in organizing the peasantry. Mass organizations have been established with chapters in every village. Here the leaders are trying to change the Chinese society--trying to make it a community-centered society instead of the traditional family-centered society. The country has also been "westernized" and it now has the largest standing army in the world. Concluding the discussion, Mr. Ravenholt predicts that, in time, Red China will pose as a rival to the Soviet Union.
Discussion of Russia's industry and agriculture and what that means for Russia as a country and its potential threat to the United States. This is the second episode in the series and is the second out of three discussing Russia.
The problem of communist aggression is discussed by representatives of India, the Philippines, Korea, and Norway. This discussion concerns itself mostly with the situation in the East, since three of the four panelists come from that region. Much of the discussion involves the recent emergence of strong nationalist tendencies in the far East. The delegate from the Philippines explains how the leaders of these young countries, only recently having gained their independence, are loathe to consider regional federation out of a fear that they will once again sacrifice that independence. Some of the problems facing Korea in her attempts to reunite are also discussed at some length. The problem of admitting Red China into the United Nations is also examined, and the possibility of using that admission as a bargaining point to curtail further aggression, or to obtain some workable solution to the Korean problem. Whether or not Japan should be re-armed, and under whose auspices, is another question the group considers. This raised several interesting viewpoints, particularly the fact that there is still considerable suspicion of Japan by other peoples in that area. There is also much consideration of the role of the United Nations in curtailing aggression, and of whether or not the organization could act more efficiently if more of the Red bloc, such as China, were members.
Mr. Peek suggests that the aspect of French politics most familiar and perplexing to Americans is the quick turnover of premiers. Mr. Wit states that this is less important than it seems, for through the rise and fall of twenty Prime Ministers, there were only four foreign ministers. A film shows French involvement abroad, toughing on French internal problems. It is agreed that France is an essential ally but no longer a first-class power. We should assist in bringing her commitment s into balance with her weakened capacity.