National Affairs: Fine Words & Parsnips

There had been warnings of labor troubles. But last week's explosion caught Washington unprepared. Even as Labor Secretary Lewis B. Schwellenbach worked over plans for a labor-management get-together, war burst out.

Giant Ford Motor Co., first manufacturer to get postwar cars rolling off the lines in any quantity, suddenly closed down. Sporadic strikes against Ford suppliers had crippled production, Ford said. The worst strike was at Kelsey-Hayes Wheel Co., where 4,500 workers had been out for three weeks in defiance of their own union leaders. In retaliation, Ford shut virtually all its plants, locked out 50,000 workers.

The powerful C.I.O. United Auto Workers...

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