| Joe Steele |
Relevant POD: July, 1932
|Novel or Story?:||Novel only|
|Type of Appearance:||Direct|
|Date of Birth:||Late 19th century|
|Political Party:||Democratic Party|
|Professional Affiliations:||New York Post|
Stan Feldman was Mike Sullivan's editor at the New York Post. He attempted to steer Sullivan away criticism of President Joe Steele during the first years of Steele's reign, but with time, even Feldman came to oppose the Steele Administration's abuses.
Feldman was initially somewhat supportive of Steele, as Steele was getting things done for the country. For example, in 1933, Feldman refused to run a story Sullivan wrote about his investigation into the fire that killed Steele's rival, New York Governor Franklin D. Roosevelt in July 1932. Sullivan accused Steele of being involved, but could provide no concrete proof, which Feldman required.
In Spring 1934, Sullivan received a copy of the arson report for the fire that killed the Roosevelts. The report came anonymously, although Sullivan suspected Jeremiah V. Kincaid had sent it. He brought the report to Stan Feldman, and shared with Feldman Charlie Sullivan's story about Vince Scriabin's long distance phone call. Feldman was nervous about running the story: the report implied that bottles of some flammable liquid may have played a part, but did not say conclusively that the fire had been an arson. Moreover, as Steele had just ordered the arrest of the Supreme Court Four and suspended habeas corpus, Feldman was worried that both he and Sullivan could targets. However, Feldman agreed to Sullivan's plan to write about the report, and then write about the conflict between Roosevelt and Steele, and the fact that Roosevelt appeared to be on the verge of winning the nomination when he died. Sullivan further promised he would make no accusations.
In 1935, Steele introduced legislation that would allow the Federal government to draft prisoners out of local, state, and federal detention facilities and put them to work building infrastructure in the Midwest and Rocky Mountains regions. It cleared the House of Representatives quickly and quietly before anyone took notice. Mike Sullivan became aware of the bill after reading a column in the New York Times. Upon doing his own research, he concluded that the law would allow the Federal government to pull any person from any facility, without regard for why the were incarcerated for in the first place, and without any limit on how long they could be held. After consulting with Feldman, Sullivan wrote a piece entitled "Land of the Free and Home of the Labor Camp".
In 1937, after the newly-created Government Bureau of Investigation announced a series arrests in connection with Roland Laurence South's attempt to assassinate Steele, Sullivan wrote a piece entitled "Where is Our Freedom Going". Despite Stella's concerns, Mike took the piece to Stan Feldman. While Feldman warned Sullivan he could also be taken away for wrecking, Feldman agreed to take it to the Post's owner, J. David Stern. After an agonizing morning, Feldman told Sullivan that Stern had agreed to run the piece. Moreover, Stern was proud that Sullivan was willing to keep hitting Steele, and even gave Sullivan $10-per-week raise.
Unfortunately, as Feldman feared, Sullivan was arrested, found guilty of wrecking, and sent to a camp. Nonetheless, Feldman remained at the Post and saw to it that it continued to criticize Steele in the years that followed. Finally, in 1944, it was Feldman's turn to be arrested by the GBI and sent to a camp. His wife, Thelma begged Mike Sullivan's brother, Charlie Sullivan for help. Charlie had become a speechwriter for Steele in 1939, and had some pull with the administration. However, he had been unable to help his own brother, and in the end could do nothing for Feldman. Even direct appeal to Steele himself ended with Steele's pronouncement that Feldman had been a troublemaker for years, and that only a camp would straighten him out.
Out of remorse, Charlie Sullivan anonymously sent Thelma Feldman $100.00.