BRAZIL: Power Play

President Getulio Vargas, in a sharp outburst of nationalism last week, denounced Brazil's foreign-owned utility companies for not providing enough cheap electric power to carry out the country's industrial development. By plain implication, he threatened them with expropriation unless they backed his grandiose plan for electrifying the whole vast country under government direction.

Before an audience including seven governors at the centenary festivities of the coffee-booming state of Paraná, the grand old (70) man of Brazilian politics told how he wanted to set up an Eletrobrás agency comparable to the Petrobrás recently established—under the hemisphere's most nationalistic oil law—to administer and...