THE PRESIDENCY: A Policy Is Born

On the White House lawn, blanketed by the heaviest Washington snowfall in years, Harry Truman frolicked without topcoat, gleefully tossing snowballs. Then, back in his office, he tossed a snowball with a rock in it at General Motors and U.S. industry in general.

In a conference room at the Labor Department, the heads of General Motors and the striking United Automobile Workers sat facing each other across a horseshoe-shaped table, presided over by Fact Finder Lloyd K. Garrison and his two assistants, North Carolina's Judge Walter P. Stacy, Kansas' Milton Eisenhower (brother of General Ike). Few facts were being found. The...