Letter From thenLower Rightnby John Shelton ReednOdds and Ends FromnHere and TherenThe last couple of years have beennbusy ones, here in the South. Mississippinfinally ratified the 19th Amendmentnto the U.S. Constitution, givingnwomen the vote. At Billy Bob’s, innFort Worth, Merle Haggard stood alln5,095 customers to drinks. And innHardwick, Georgia, Daniel Sargent,n27, a one-legged and legally blindndiabehc armed robber, escaped from anstate prison by climbing over a 12-footnfence. (He was captured, according tonnewspaper reports, “within yards” ofnthe institution.)nIn the course of a single trip, annAmtrak Miami-to-New York train hitnand killed a woman running on thentracks in Georgia, smashed a pickupntruck in South Carolina, and plowedninto a flatbed truck in North Carolina.nMaybe we Southerners ought to movena little faster.nNorth Carolina is celebrating itsn400th anni’ersary, and Princess Annencame to help. A local paper describednthe plans for her visit and announcednthat “In addition, a flotilla of sailingnships from Elizabeth City led by WalternCronkite will sail into Manteo Harbornthat weekend.” Nearby, at NewnBern, freshwater fishermen landed an240-pound bull shark. Some thoughtnthe eight-foot-long person-eater hadnbeen lured up the Neuse River bynincreasing salinity; others speculatednthat he was fleeing Walter Cronkite.nA copy of the Gettysburg Times fornLee’s Birthday 1984 has only nowtricklednin. (My subscription mustnha-e lapsed.) It reports that Mr. JeffreynStouffer of Sharpsburg, Maryland, wasnon trial in Balhmore Federal Court fornreceiving stolen goods in connectionnwith the theft of an 1861 photographnof Stonewall Jackson, valued atnS20,000.nIn Dallas, meanwhile, the Gay andnLesbian Student Support Organizationnat Southern Methodist applied threentimes for formal recognition to thenSMU student senate. Three times, thenstudent senate said no. After the thirdnturndown, the president of SMU wasnfinally heard from: “Organizationalnrecognition,” he said, “is inconsistentnwith the goals, purpose, philosophy,nand religious heritage of a Methodistnuniversity.” Does that mean it’snwrong?nWho’d have thought students wouldnbe the ones to uphold standards inninstitutions of higher education? Butnit’s so. At Washington and Lee, thenstudent government requested that thenfaculty require students to wear coatsnand ties to class. (C’mon guys: make itna “non-negotiable demand.” Didn’tnyou learn anything from the 60’s?)nAnd in Charlottesville, Mr. Jefferson’snuniversity, not to be outdone by W&Lnin the standard-upholding department,nremoved the Muzak from itsntelephone system. Formerly, callersnput on hold were subjected to thenear-wash that we have grown all toonaccustomed to in public placesn—orchestral arrangements of “PennynLane,” that sort of thing. A facultynresolution prompted by embarrassmentnat the thought of long-distancencallers being treated to a hundred violinsnplaying “Feelings” did the trick.nThe assistant vice president in chargenof such affairs said some people toldnhim the music was “the most grievousnproblem to confront the university inn200 years.”nElsewhere in the Atlantic CoastnConference, Clemson got a new basketballncoach. When Cliff Ellis left thenUniversity of South Alabama, thenTampa Tribune’s headline was “ELLISnTO LEAVE USA FOR CLEMSON.”nAnother land-grant school, at thenother end of the South, found a newnuse for cow manure. According to annarticle in the Daily Texan, while restoringnan old building at Texas A&Mnthe Aggies contrived to make newnbricks look old by smearing them withnthe stuff, a process called (the storynsays) “organic patination.”nAs sociologists, street cops, and politicalnbosses know, only carefully controllednlawlessness can keep a system ofnunworkable laws working. Federalncontrols on diesel fuel made even lessnsense in Louisiana than a 55 m.p.h.nspeed limit in Nevada. When theynbegan to be rigidly enforced after somenyears of looking the other way, evenngood Americans were driven to seeknFederal aid. Mr. Tee John Mialjevichnnnof Delcambre, president of the ConcernednShrimpers of Louisiana, appearednbefore the House Subcommitteenon Merchant Marine and Fisheriesnto say: “We need help, now that wencan’t buy hot fuel anymore.” A typicallynout-of-touch Congressman askednhim about “hot fuel”: “Is that a specialnmixture for fishing boats?”nIn other political news, 1984 NorthnCarolina gubernatorial candidatenLauch Faircloth (he lost in the Democraticnprimary) said of his hometownnof Clinton that it has the onlynMcDonald’s in the country that servesn”McChitiins.” About the same time,nFritz Hollings, whose sense of humorndoesn’t entirely’ make up for the disreputablencompany he keeps, suggestednthat Southerners aren’t excited by thenissues that apparentiy vex other Americans.nWhen a reporter for the Yankeenpress asked him how his stand on annuclear freeze would go down in Alabama,nthe senator allowed as hownmost Alabamians thought a nuclearnfreeze was a popsicle. And the authenticnvoice of the South was heard oncenagain from Billy Carter’s filling station.nEddy Rogers of the local seed andnfeed store told the Wall Street Journalnthat he was going to vote for GarynHart in the primary because “he’s thenonly candidate I never heard of untilnFebruary.”nMaybe Jimmy wasn’t so bad afternall. Free-lance smart-mouth John W.nAldridge describes the former Presidentnin a recent book as “a rednecknpeanut farmer from Georgia.” Wouldnthat it were so. ccn]ohn Shelton Reed’s six books on thenSouth are known to dozens of readers.nLetter Fromnthe FourthnInternationalenby Michael WardernThe Ever-Receding Worker’snParadisenThis month the Communist Party ofnthe Soviet Union will adopt anothernParty program. Released as a draft innOctober 1985, this program constitutesna definitive statement of wherenFEBRUARY 1986145n