Roosevelt Myth - John T. Flynn

Harry the Hop and the Hot Dogs

The situation as the 1938 elections looms ahead was not the same as when the second administration began. Neither Congress nor the country were any longer at Roosevelt's feet. His party was profoundly divided and the hatreds within it were deep and poignant. He could not afford to lose any part of the subservient elements in the Congress. He had made up his mind to drive out of the House and Senate those members who had humiliated him in the Court fight and who had been grumbling at his extravagances.

It was now necessary to teach them that they could not oppose his will with impunity. He was angry, resentful, vindictive. The names on the purge list were many, but heading that list were Senators Walter F. George of Georgia, Millard Tydings of Maryland, Guy Gillette of Iowa and, in the House, John O'Connor of New York. Moreover, Roosevelt felt it necessary to put every possible resource back of the renomination of his special pets like Alben Barkley of Kentucky and Joe Guffey of Pennsylvania. In Kentucky, the Governor, "Happy" Chandler, a rollicking, crooning, handshaking executive was a real threat to Barkley's reelection. Indeed it began to look for a while as if Chandler might defeat him.

Roosevelt had decided, too, that spending must be resumed. This was the only rabbit left in the magician's warren. These two projects brought closer to him the man who had done the bulk of his spending and who had accomplished it with the greatest measure of political results. This was Harry Hopkins, whom the President referred to affectionately as Harry the Hop.

Hopkins had started in Washington on the very outer rim of the New Deal, had been gradually working his way toward the center and was at this point one of the small group shouldering their way against everyone to be nearest to the all-high. It was to Hopkins that Roosevelt now turned in the campaign to repair his shattered fortunes.

The career of Hopkins began, with a kind of poetic irony, in the very heart of that horse-and-buggy age which evoked the sneers of the great lawgiver he served. His father was a harness maker in Sioux City, Iowa, where Harry was born. Later the family moved to Grinnell, Iowa, where Harry took his first steps in commercial life selling magazines, newspapers and cigarettes. His mother was a zealous Methodist who taught him to pray, to work and to avoid poverty. He went to Grinnell College, graduated and without delay plunged into the great ocean of social welfare.

He got a job as head of a small summer camp at Boundbrook, New Jersey, which brought him East and planted him close to the fountains of philanthropy and the cocktail lounges of Babylon, upon which he was to flourish. From this point on, he was committed to the many-sided life of a social worker. The social welfare world of New York is a multi-colored world in itself. It consists of the poor who are absolutely essential to the profession and of the rich who give to the poor and of the social welfare workers who are the pipeline through which the bounty of the rich flows into the hands of the poor. It is better, saith the good book, to give than to receive, and Harry Hopkins was never unaware of the pleasant consequences which inure to the profession of giving.

He began with a $45-a-month salary at Christodora House in Avenue B and arrived rapidly at the head of the Association for Improving the Condition of the Poor in New York with a salary of $10,000 a year—in the good old days when $10,000 bought a lot of the good life and one did not have to hand over $2500 in taxes to the Roosevelt-Hopkins government.

The chief function of the secretary or director of a great philanthropic enterprise is to get the money. Fortunately this world of New York poverty is a stamping ground for wealthy widows, rich octogenarians, along with the sons and daughters of the last generation of the "criminal rich" who dedicate themselves to deodorizing the family name by passing out to the poor the millions left by their "predatory" dads. The prime business of the secretary is to stalk this game. The bulk of the hard work is done by the rookie welfarers in the slums, investigating, checking, snooping, reporting, advising and supervising. But the bulk of the work of the secretary is on Park Avenue and its environs, with frequent week-end trips to the blooded cattle farms, golf clubs, hunting lodges and other hideaways of the benevolent rich. This life is apt to do something to the secretary.

He finds himself stretching his legs under the tea and dinner tables of the rich, drinking rare vintage wines, eating costly viands and smoking expensive cigars. It cultivates an appetite for the good life wholly beyond the reach of even a $10,000-a-year general secretary or director. He finds himself after a while consuming the bonded liquors and imported caviar out of other people's pantries and watching others picking up the checks in night clubs.

Warm-hearted, elderly ladies wonder how the poor fellow gets along on his slender stipend. Extravagant males are similarly puzzled, and so one day the secretary, who is almost certain to have had a slight case of Marxism in his youth, finds himself taking tips from the capitalist exploiters. "Tips" is hardly the word. That has to do with small change. It is not easy to decide at what point a tip becomes a handout or a handout becomes a bonus or a bonus becomes a grant or when a grant rises to the royal eminence of an honorarium. But the honorarium becomes the thing. It is a habit-forming drug but it enables the secretary to live in the manner to which his wealthy companions are accustomed.

It can have another effect on a man, though there are those who resist and survive it. An important feature of his professional function is to find and keep patrons. He must dance attendance on the wealthy ladies and cultivate the art of saying "yes" in a dozen changing accents to the heavy-check men. This was a word which Harry was to find highly useful in the hot political world of the White House. It was in this gay life of giving and gratuities, the life of the survey, the questionnaire, the supervisor and the unsteady budget, that Harry Hopkins got his training for the great role of planetary welfare and global boondoggling, and rose from the modest function of distributing the meager benefits in the small neighborhood of Avenue B to operating as grand almoner of the spendingest Haroun al Raschid in the history of human extravagance.

Hopkins married a fellow welfare worker at Christodora House. As we have seen, he rose rapidly and after serving in the South with the Red Cross during the First World War, went to the 'Society for Improving the Condition of the Poor' as assistant director in 1924 and in that year became director of the New York Tuberculosis Association.

Then in 1928 Fate rolled up her sleeves to see just how far she could toss Harry. Al Smith was running for President and Hopkins was out helping Al when he met Franklin D. Roosevelt, who was running for governor of New York. Hopkins organized a committee of medical men for Roosevelt-for-Governor. Roosevelt liked him at once and with Mrs. Roosevelt it was pals at first sight. Roosevelt was elected governor. Then came the depression, which was to be filled with milk and honey for Harry Hopkins. Jesse I. Straus, head of the Macy store in New York, became head of the Federal Emergency Relief Administration in New York in 1931 and he named Hopkins executive director. Later Hopkins succeeded him to the chairmanship with Mrs. Roosevelt's influence. When Roosevelt became President and wanted a Federal Emergency Relief Administrator he named Harry Hopkins to this post at Mrs. Roosevelt's urging.

This put Harry in a job he understood—giving away money— but now he did not have to worry about where it came from. The NRA act had given Roosevelt $3,300,000,000 to spend. It is difficult to believe, but it is true that Roosevelt was averse to spending this money. However, Mrs. Roosevelt managed to get Hopkins to the President by the direct route, bypassing all the secretarial barriers, and there Hopkins sold the President on the idea of a moderate relief program by means of grants-in-aid to the states. Roosevelt supposed the NRA was going to bring prosperity quickly, but at the end of July the bubble burst and the great champion of the balanced budget turned in desperation to the two things he had denounced—spending and doles. He then put Harold Ickes in charge of the Public Works Administration (PWA) and Harry Hopkins in charge of the Civil Works Administration (CWA). In short order Harry had a vast army pulling weeds and raking leaves. He told the President: "I've got four million at work but for God's sake, don't ask me what they are doing."

When Hopkins began this gaudy mission he found himself in a social worker's paradise—a splendid abundance of unemployed and an endless supply of money. But he and Roosevelt made another discovery. Both profoundly ignorant of finance, they did not dream of the magic that lies wrapped in public debt. When first elected, Roosevelt naturally supposed that to spend he would have to tax, which is very unpopular. The alternative would be to borrow from the people and he knew that was difficult. He did not dream of the incredible miracle of government BANK borrowing. He did not know that the bank lends money which it actually creates in the act of making the loan. When Roosevelt realized this, he saw he had something very handy in his tool kit. He could spend without taxing people or borrowing from them, while at the same time creating billions in bank deposits. Wonderful!

But he and Hopkins discovered something even more important. As soon as Roosevelt got hold of this $3,300,000,000, congressmen, senators, mayors, governors, chambers of commerce, charity organizations from every state and city formed in line. Hopkins saw before Roosevelt did that the President had in his hands on a vast scale what political parties had had in the past on a very small scale. The little local bosses with their pitiful little graft and social welfare benefits from the district clubhouse were pikers. Now all the philanthropy in the country through local politicians flowed from one great boss in Washington. No district leader could satisfy the appetites of his constituents on a scale comparable to the big boss of all the bosses. Roosevelt discovered what the Italian Premier Giolitti had discovered over 50 years before, that it was not necessary to buy the politicians. He bought their constituents with borrowed money and the politicians had to go along.

Everybody with a halfway appealing tale got money, but on one condition—that he play ball with Roosevelt. Harry Hopkins estimated that 25 million people got their living from WPA alone. It was not the President's widely advertised charm or his golden voice that was the secret of his amazing power. It was his streams of golden billions. This was the rabbit that produced results for the magician—the spending rabbit. Harry Hopkins was the Keeper of the Golden Rabbit and knew precisely the tricks Roosevelt wanted done with it.

The CWA had got in bad very quickly as a leaf-raking agency and so it was reorganized into the Works Progress Administration (WPA). As we have seen, Roosevelt set out to purge the men who had balked him in the Court fight and to support those who had stood behind him. In the 1938 election Senator Alben Barkley was being opposed for the Democratic nomination in the primary in Kentucky by "Happy" Chandler, then governor of the state. During the election grave charges were made in the Scripps-Howard newspapers about the manner in which WPA workers in Kentucky were being forced to support the administration candidate. A special Senate committee investigated the charges. The hearings were printed but not generally circulated. The performances of the WPA in Kentucky and various other places as outlined here are taken from that official report.

In the first WPA district of Kentucky, one WPA official went to work on Governor Chandler. He took his orders from the administration political headquarters in Kentucky. He put nine WPA supervisors and 340 WPA time-keepers on government time to work preparing elaborate forms for checking on all the reliefers in the district. Having done this they then proceeded to check up on the 17,000 poor devils who were drawing relief money to see how they stood on the election. The Senate committee got possession of these forms.

In the second WPA district, another WPA official who was the area engineer, managed a thorough canvass of the workers in Pulaski and Russell counties. The WPA foremen were given sheets upon which they had to report on the standing of the reliefers in the political campaign. It became a part of Mr. Hopkins' WPA organization in Kentucky to learn how many of the down-and-out had enough devotion to Franklin D. Roosevelt to be entitled to eat. It was not sufficient for an indigent Kentuckian to be just down and out and hungry. He had to believe that the President of the United States was his redeemer and had to be ready to register that belief at the polls. The reliefers were asked to sign papers pledging themselves to the election of the senior senator from Kentucky. They were given campaign buttons and told to wear them and there were instances where, if they refused, they were thrown off the WPA rolls.

All this, of course, was in a Democratic primary where only Democrats could vote. But there were a lot of poor Republicans in Kentucky who couldn't vote in the Democratic primary so long as they were Republicans. So they were told to change their registration and become Democrats, or no WPA jobs for them.

A lady employed in the Division of Employment in WPA District 4 in Kentucky got a letter from the project superintendent asking her for a contribution to the Barkley Campaign Committee. A district supervisor of employment in District 4 talked to her, told her that the election was drawing near and that she might be criticized if she did not contribute since she was employed on WPA, that she should be in sympathy with the program and be loyal and he stated also that he was a Republican but he was going to change his registration. Then he told her she would be permitted to contribute if she liked in the amount of two percent of her salary. Letters went out from the superintendent to practically all of the reliefers. The assistant supervisor of the WPA, who got $175 a month, sent a check for $42.50 as a result of this letter and another getting $1800 a year gave $30.

Here is the kind of letter sent out. It was from the project superintendent for whom these people worked:

"We know that you, as a friend of the National Administration, are anxious to see Senator Barkley reelected as he has supported the President in all New Deal legislation . . . If Senator Barkley is nominated and elected by a large majority there is definite possibility of his being the candidate of the Democratic party in 1940. Think what this would mean for Kentucky.

"We know you will appreciate the opportunity of being given a chance to take an active part in reelecting Senator Barkley by making a liberal contribution towards his campaign expenses. Such contribution is actually underwriting a continuance of New Deal policies."

These gentlemen were nice and considerate—they allowed the reliefers to pay on the installment plan. The letter went on:

"As the enclosed subscription blank indicates, you may pay one-half of your contribution now and the balance by July 16."

Worker after worker testified that he received the above letter or one like it and had made contributions in proportion to the pay he was getting, usually about two percent.

In Pennsylvania, where Senator Joe Guffey presided over the destinies of the Democratic party, the story was much the same. Men who supplied trucks to WPA were solicited for $100 each in Carbon County. The owners of the trucks were requested by WPA officials to visit representatives of certain political leaders at their homes. Ten or twelve at a time went and many of them contributed.

In Lucerne County it was the same. They were told to call at Democratic headquarters and make their contributions. In Montgomery County, the WPA workers got letters stating that at the direction of the senator from Pennsylvania (Guffey) and the state committeeman, a joint meeting of WPA workers would be held on a certain date and they were told "there will be no excuse accepted for lack of attendance."

The evidence showed that WPA workers in this county, including timekeepers and poor women on sewing projects, were requested and ordered to change their registration from Republican to Democratic and in many cases those who refused were fired. There was testimony that there were a number of Republicans on the WPA project near Wilkes Barre. They lived in Wilkes Barre and they thought they had a right to continue to be Republicans. They soon discovered that that right had vanished when they became wards of the New Deal and as a punishment, 18 were transferred from the project near Wilkes Barre to a project 35 or 40 miles from their homes because they refused to discard their Republican buttons.

In Pennsylvania work-cards were issued by the Party entitling the recipients to employment on the state highways and these were distributed by political groups. Some of these cards entitled the holders to employment "for two to four weeks around election time." In one county, from September, 1935 to September, 1938, the WPA spent more than $27,000,000 on highways. What chance had any man or any party against this? Al Smith had said you can't beat a billion dollars.

Those who, in their poverty and helplessness, refused to surrender their independence, paid for it. A man in Plymouth, Pa., was given a white-collar relief job before election at $60.50 a month. He was told to change his registration from Republican to Democratic. He refused and very soon found himself transferred—transferred from his white-collar job to a pick-axe job on a rock pile in a quarry. There he discovered others on the rock pile who had refused to change their registration. This was in America, the America of the men who were chanting and crooning about liberty and freedom 365 days a year, who were talking about democracy and freedom for all men everywhere.

It was the same in Tennessee where the WPA was lighting a fire under Governor Browning. Reliefers who were for Browning—if it could be proved—were excommunicated from the payroll. They were asked for contributions—two percent. One man was asked to put up $5. He didn't have it. He was summoned next day. The collector had decided to reduce his tribute to $3. He didn't have that. He was told to get it. He had to borrow it. Another, assessed twice before, rebelled. "You don't have to pay," he was told, "but if you don't you'll have a hell of a time getting on the WPA." Negro reliefers were made to put up 25 and 50 cents.

In Cook County, Illinois, where Kelly and Nash carried the New Deal banner, 450 men were employed in one election district and dismissed the day after election. Seventy reported to do highway work and were told to go to their voting precincts and canvass for votes for the Horner-Courtney-Lucas ticket. These 450 men cost $23,268. All of them had their work-cards initialed by the campaign manager in Northern Illinois for the Horner-Courtney-Lucas ticket.

This investigation covered four states. There is not the slightest doubt, however, that what happened in these four states of Kentucky, Tennessee, Pennsylvania and Illinois, happened in greater or lesser degree in most of the states of the Union. Of course these jobs were done by men in the field while Mr. Hopkins sat in Washington and pretended to be quite innocent of it all. Indeed, after the findings of the committee were made public, Hopkins declared he had made his own investigation and denied all the charges. But the committee said: "After still further investigation of its own, it adhered to its own findings." It also called attention to an address made by Aubrey Williams, Mr. Hopkins' chief deputy administrator, at a big WPA conference on June 27, 1938, in which he said: "We've got to stick together; we've got to keep our friends in power."

These primaries of 1938, of course, were the scenes of the great Roosevelt purge, when distinguished Democratic senators and congressmen were marked for annihilation. Raymond Moley pointed out that Harry Hopkins was directing this purge while passing out these hundreds of millions. In fact, on August 31, 1938, in the midst of this campaign, Hopkins complained that the leadership of the Democratic opposition was urging Democrats to register and vote in the primaries to help defeat the aims of President Roosevelt, not in the clear-cut general election "where the divergent views of parties are clearly understood, but stealthily, within the councils of our own party."

Now consider the significance of that statement. This man was actually complaining that the Democratic opponents of the President were calling on Democrats to register and vote in a Democratic primary. It had already become a crime for a Democrat to disagree with the administration. Mr. Hopkins was making it a crime for a Democrat who didn't agree with the nominations of the administration in various states to register in his own party and vote against the administration nominee. But while he was objecting to Democrats registering as Democrats and voting in a Democratic primary unless they agreed with Roosevelt, his agents in Kentucky and Tennessee and Pennsylvania and Illinois and practically everywhere else were threatening Republican reliefers with starvation if they didn't quit being Republicans and register as Democrats and actually firing them and in some cases putting them on the rock pile.

Roosevelt was profoundly convinced that all he had to do was to let the Democratic electorate in any state or district know that a senator or congressman was his enemy and that would sound his doom. He had come to the settled conviction that the people were no longer interested in issues, that they were interested only in him, that they were for him or against him. In the 1936 campaign he had told his campaign manager there was only one issue—"myself"—and he told members of his cabinet that the people were for the Court plan because he was for it and that they would be for whatever he was for.

It was therefore a source of unmixed astonishment to him when every Democratic candidate but one whom he had marked for the purge in the Democratic primaries of 1938 was renominated. Barkley and Guffey, of course, had been renominated for the Senate, but they were not involved in the purge—their fights had been local ones. The one instance in which Roosevelt was successful was in defeating Congressman John O'Connor in New York City for renomination. In this case he committed the job to Tommy Corcoran who went to New York and with all the forces of the administration at his command succeeded in defeating O'Connor. Roosevelt regarded this as in some measure proof of his own personal political acumen, since the job of defeating O'Connor had been handled by a White House subaltern. He believed it was in some way due to his own mastery.

The odor of Harry Hopkins' performances in WPA became such that it was advisable to lift him out of that position after the 1938 elections were over. Then this cynical man, who had been living on endowments and tips all his life, who had never been in a business transaction, who despised business and business men and loved to exhibit his scorn, who in the group around the President was the most skilled in needling him against business and whose only contacts with business men had been as a beneficiary of their bounty, was made by the President—of all things—Secretary of Commerce!

He spent much of his time as Secretary in the hospital. When he left the Department of Commerce a little more than a year and a half later it was to enter the White House as the officially installed and publicly proclaimed favorite of the court—not merely a friendly adviser to the President, as many presidents have had, but as a resident of the White House itself, roaming around its halls with access to the President's bedside at all hours of the day and night, a free boarder holding an office that was never created by Congress and does not actually exist, being paid a salary that was never authorized by Congress, discharging functions that were never envisioned by Congress, exercising the highest authority without being appointed in the constitutional manner, that is without senatorial confirmation, outranking cabinet officers and, indeed, sending orders to cabinet officers signed "H.H."

He would become powerful enough to keep one member of the cabinet out of the White House for eleven months—to make it impossible for a cabinet officer, a legally confirmed adviser of the President, to even see the President for nearly a year. This curious figure, operating in the shadows, became, next to the President himself, the most powerful person in the United States.

How did Harry Hopkins worm his way into this position of power? It was not by accident. It was because he had a character well-suited to the functions he was expected to discharge and a special talent for maneuver in the turgid pools of palace politics. He was rich in cunning, always devious in his enterprises and something of his personal history throws much light upon those elements in his character which fitted him for the role of intriguer.

Hopkins inhabited an area of moral and ethical life which does not correspond in its standards of behavior to the area in which most normal Americans move. He was pictured to the popular audience as one whose life was dedicated to the welfare of the under-privileged masses. He had married as a young man a fellow welfare worker. They had three sons. In 1930 his wife filed suit against him for absolute divorce in New York State, the charge being infidelity.

She secured the divorce and, I am informed, an order for the payment of $5000 a year in alimony. Hopkins was making $10,000 a year at the time. This meant that one-half his salary would be retained for himself and the other half for the support of his wife and three children. It does not seem to have been an excessive provision.

All this, of course, is a matter personal to Hopkins' own life, but it is germane here because of several facets of the incident. Shortly after the divorce, he took a second wife. He became WPA Administrator at a salary of $10,000 a year. Hopkins himself was a man of very expensive tastes. It took a good deal of money to keep him provided with the forms of amusement to which he was addicted and $10,000 was not enough to take care of his two families and his expensive appetites. The matter was arranged in a manner that cannot be overlooked in forming an estimate of Hopkins' character. Mr. Marquis W. Childs, in an article in the Saturday Evening Post of April 19 and 26, 1941, said Hopkins was hard-pressed for funds under the circumstances and was having a difficult time meeting the alimony payments to his first wife. To cure this situation, social workers were brought together to raise a fund of $5000 a year to take care of Hopkins' alimony. A number of small-salaried little social welfare workers were assessed to discharge Hopkins' natural obligation to support his own children in order to enable him to indulge in those expensive tastes to which he was accustomed. In theory the money was collected to pay him for lectures, which he rarely had the time to deliver. It was a subterfuge to mask the real purpose of the levy. And it went on for two years. Then in January, 1936, his salary was raised to $12,000 and the welfare workers were relieved of the burden of Hopkins' alimony.

It is a strange story in view of the further incident related by Mr. Childs in the same articles, that during those WPA days, Hopkins, who was so pressed for funds that the support of his children through alimony was saddled upon a group of low-paid social workers, was, with the men around him, playing poker with losses so stiff they ran to $500 or $600 an evening and that he found the time and the means to run up for week-ends to the homes of some of the malefactors of great wealth he so liked to denounce and to make frequent visits to the race tracks at Saratoga, Pimlico and Warrenton. Life has printed much the same stories about him.

There came then the time when Hopkins had to leave the WPA and later saw fit to end his brief career as Secretary of Commerce. For a while he found himself without any income. Hopkins belongs to that class of person who must be taken care of one way or another. Having no job a job had to be invented for him. About this time the President created a monument to himself—a library building on his estate where future generations may make pilgrimages to honor his memory. According to Mr. Felix Belair in an article in Life, Postmaster-General Walker and John D. Hertz, the taxicab magnate, and other millionaire friends, raised a purse to pay Hopkins $5000 a year as head of Franklin D. Roosevelt's library at Hyde Park. But of course Hopkins could not subsist on this wretched stipend. Hence when the Lend-Lease act was voted the President found a way to arrange a $10,000-a-year salary for Harry under the Lend-Lease program.

In the meantime, he had moved into the White House where he enjoyed the additional privilege of free board and lodging. His second wife had died and his daughter by this marriage lived with him in the White House. It is worth observing that still later, when he had taken a third wife and moved with her to Georgetown, his daughter, after remaining with them a while, went back to the White House. Mrs. Roosevelt tells how she fretted about the lonely life of this child and spoke to Hopkins about it. He said to her: "That's totally unimportant. The only thing that is important is to win the war." He found plenty of time, however, to pursue at intervals his favorite forms of diversions in the night clubs of New York and Washington.

Yet he had found time during this period to pursue his new courtship and marry a third wife, who was brought to the White House to live at government expense. But even with free board and lodging at the White House and free transportation and government expense accounts, $10,000 a year was not enough for Hopkins. As usual, ways had to be found to provide him with more. And so he began to appear in the magazines as a literary light, like so many others in the New Deal. Tom Beck, the head of the Crowell-Collier Publishing Company, a faithful satellite of the White House throughout the New Deal episode, provided Harry with the trimmings for his meal ticket by paying him $5000 a piece for seven or eight articles in the American Magazine over a period of several years—articles written, of course, by someone else and signed by Hopkins. This was one of the favorite rackets of the New Deal "scholars."

When he married for the third time, the charge was made that the new bridal couple spent their honeymoon on a vessel which the government had taken from the owner and converted into a warship and that Lord Beaverbrook gave to the new Mrs. Hopkins a magnificent necklace of emeralds. The Hopkinses denied getting any emeralds. Later Drew Pearson printed the story that while this denial was correct, it was a necklace of diamonds which Beaverbrook had presented and it was worth $4000. Like Jacques in "The Two Orphans," he was charged with stealing a coat and replied: "You lie—it was a cloak." Why should Beaverbrook, then representing the British government, make a present of $4000 to the bride of the man who was arranging Lend-Lease shipments to England—a man he scarcely knew:

Then some time in December, 1942, Mr. Bernard Baruch gave a dinner for Mr. and Mrs. Hopkins. It was during the war, when the President was constantly calling upon the people to make more and more sacrifices as part of the war effort and to learn to do without luxuries and even many necessities. Some enterprising reporter produced the sacrificial menu at the buffet feast tendered to Hopkins and his bride. Here it is:

Bowl of Caviar with trimmings Mousse of chicken
Pate de Foie Gras Gallatine of Capon
Cheese croquettes Cold tongue
Baked Oysters Bonne Femme Beef a la Mode
Celery, Radishes, Olives, Pecans Corned beef in jelly
Tortue Clair (En Terrine) Turkey—Chicken—
Creme au Champignon Frais Virginia Ham
Profitrole Calves head Vinaigrette
Truite en Gelee Russian dressing
Homard en Aspic Mixed green salad
Terrapin (Baltimore style) Assorted cheese and crackers
Chicken a la King Iced black cherries
Steamed Rice Vanilla ice cream
Sliced tomatoes, crisp lettuce Socle of Raspberry Ice
Mayonnaise French dressing Petits Fours
Demi Tasse

A Washington reporter wrote: "Throughout the function the face of Hopkins, who warned his countrymen in a recent magazine article that they will have to forego milk and tea and predicted drastic curtailment of all civilian industries except coffin-making, was wreathed in smiles."

The story of Hopkins is not complete without some reference to that pulling and hauling which went on behind the scenes for control of the great man's coattails. From the beginning of the New Deal, Felix Frankfurter had been pictured as the mysterious being who sat off in the shadows and pulled the strings that operated all the puppets who had cooked up the NRA and invented the AAA, who was the arch Red and was in fact the unseen and unheard culprit behind most of Mr. Roosevelt's dangerous enterprises. The bureaus were supposed to be filled with the satellites of Frankfurter and in good time this exclusive crew of sappers and borers came to be known as the "happy hot dogs."

As a matter of fact, Felix Frankfurter never was a Red—neither a malignant Communist nor a benevolent Socialist. He disapproved of the NRA and looked with dismay on the AAA, and above all, he condemned, though he held his peace publicly, the fight on the Supreme Court. Frankfurter appeared before the larger public less than any of the prominent supporters of the administration. Actually there was perhaps less in common between Frankfurter and Roosevelt than between Roosevelt and any of those who remained so long a part of his intellectual entourage. Frankfurter had been a life-long disciple of the social theories of Justice Brandeis and the legal philosophy of Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes. It was Brandeis who got him appointed to the Harvard Law Faculty after the First World War, where he remained until he went on the Supreme Court. One of Frankfurter's controlling intellectual passions had been for freedom of speech. He might be defined as a reformer, not a Socialist. He defended Sacco and Venzetti not because he was a Communist but because he believed no man charged with a crime tinged with political implications should be convicted and electrocuted without a competent defense.

There was, however, another side to his nature by no means as harmless as his political philosophy. He had a yearning to exercise power from the sidelines. He wished to shape affairs anonymously. Without any ambition to hold political office, he loved to exercise power over the minds of men who did. He wrote little himself but patiently cultivated intimate association with those who did. He was beyond doubt a teacher who inspired his students. He talked to them not only about law but about history and political ideas and thus he attracted to his classes young men with lively interests in public affairs. When they left law school they went into powerful law firms and government offices. In the lean years after 1929 the flow of these energetic spirits into government increased as the demand in private practice shrank. And soon, almost without realizing it, Frankfurter found his students and his disciples in all sorts of places in Washington where they sat close to the centers of power.

As the depression deepened, Frankfurter made a more conscious effort to place his students where their weight would be felt. A Washington bureau may employ a thousand men, but only a handful are important—the administrator, the counsel, the economist, the statistician, the publicity man. These are the men who influence policy and it was policy, not jobs, that interested Frankfurter.

Frankfurter's most important move upon this board was sending Thomas G. Corcoran, one of his ablest pupils, to a place in the Reconstruction Finance Corporation while Hoover was President. Tommy had a flair for public affairs and a passion for political maneuvering.

As the New Deal began to create bureau after bureau and the number of jobs desirable to both Frankfurter and Corcoran multiplied, Corcoran proceeded to fill them with what Hugh Johnson called the "happy hot dogs." Tommy found the places; Frankfurter produced the recommendations and the Frankfurter boys were in. They were everywhere. Most of them, of course, were lawyers, but many had become economists overnight. And soon Tommy Corcoran was in the White House at the elbow of the President, writing or superintending the preparation of his speeches.

With the beginning of the second campaign—that is, after Moley had departed and Louis Howe had died—the Frankfurter influence was topmost around the White House, despite Frankfurter's grave concern about Roosevelt's drift toward the planned economy. But little by little Frankfurter's personal influence waned, particularly after the Supreme Court fight.

When Frankfurter started filling the bureaus with his lawyers and economists he didn't quite realize what he was doing. Many had been his protegés but he did not know as well as he supposed what was going on in the minds of these young men. The times, perhaps the smell and color of revolutionary activity which intrigues young minds, the absorption of these gay and truculent youths in the vague yet trenchant philosophy of the New Deal under lawgivers and philosophers who were peddling a far more tasty and intoxicating brand of liquor than had come from their old law professor—all combined to draw these fellows closer to Roosevelt than to Frankfurter. Some, in fact, had drifted into the far more turbulent waters of Communism and near-Communism where the fellow-travelers disport themselves. Probably from 1937 to 1940 Frankfurter became a minor figure so far as his influence on policy was concerned. But he came back with a real bounce when America went into the war.

In the meantime, things were not going too well for his "chief of staff," Tommy Corcoran. Tommy actually lived in the White House for months to be near his chief. But Hopkins had his eye on the spot occupied by Tommy. Hopkins set out deliberately to get possession of Roosevelt's confidence and he worked and wormed and lied wherever necessary to push away everybody and, above all, Corcoran. In this contest Corcoran was no match for Hopkins. Corcoran loves politics with a Gaelic fervor. He has opinions. He is something of a student and had his own collection of political beliefs. He was eager, doubtless, to hold his place near the throne, chiefly to influence Roosevelt's mind on the side of his own philosophy.

Hopkins had no such foolish and impractical objectives. Earlier in his life he had been a mild Socialist but at this time he had no philosophy save insofar as his opinions were influenced by his deep cynicism. His object was to become first man in power next to Roosevelt. He explained his theory about this to more than one. He said that a man must always have a clear idea of the source of his power. Some men get their power from the people. Others get their power indirectly through some other man. He confessed freely that he could not get any power whatever at the hands of the people. He must therefore fasten himself upon the man who had the power to give. The source of that power was the President and so he fastened himself upon the President. To hold that power he must cultivate the President. It was no part of his business to argue with Roosevelt or to cross him or ever to use the word "no" definitively. He must be ever the subservient, compliant yes-man, cultivating the good graces of his master, flattering his vanity, doing his chores, satisfying his desires, cunningly divining those desires and without revealing his discovery, giving him the favors he wished, getting his own way by deviously influencing the master and by all means possible killing off the rivals for the royal favor.

It is one of the characteristics of power long held that it attracts around it men of this stamp. The man with vast powers is sure to find men like Hopkins worming themselves into their confidence if they are willing to use that kind of man. Men of high intellectual and spiritual caliber soon make themselves disagreeable to rulers who want abject subservience in their subalterns. They soon find the atmosphere of the court repulsive. They either depart or are dismissed. In the end, the only ones who remain are men of the type of Hopkins.

There were men close to Roosevelt who were interested in pressing upon him their own ideas of policy. There were men who were not interested in policy but only in discerning Roosevelt's pet mental drifts and promoting them. Hopkins was of the latter breed. As the years passed, one by one the abler men with some sense of personal dignity who were unequal to the role of sycophant drifted away or were dropped. Raymond Moley, Lewis Douglas, John Hanes, Hugh Johnson, George Peek, Tommy Corcoran, Jim Farley, Stanley High and many others departed. The palace guard that survived were such men as Harry Hopkins, Sam Rosenman, General "Pa" Watson, who was a sort of court jester, Admiral (Doctor) Mclntire, the President's physician who could see no wrong in Roosevelt, even in his vascular system, David Niles and Henry Wallace, who hung fast to the tails of whatever coat Roosevelt chose to wear—men who listened attentively for Roosevelt's slightest changes in desire, sensed them with the readiness of faithful animals, and ran obediently to perform whatever tricks the master wanted.

There were others like Hull, who hung on even though it was on the outer fringes of policy, willing to suffer any indignity so long as he might continue to call himself Secretary of State and promote his febrile crusade for commercial reciprocity, while Roosevelt named ambassadors, ministers and minor employees in the State Department without consulting him and carried on our foreign affairs through Sumner Welles behind Hull's back.