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Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - February 4, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa Moral buck's end-point: 'Is this Editorial Page Monday, febiuory 4, 1974 Congressmen, cooperate SENATOR Potter of Marion wasn't serious, of course, when he proposed the other day that states should be given the right to set the salaries of the congressmen they elect. Like the farmer who reasoned that to get a mule to work it was necessary first to hit him with a club to get his attention, the good senator's barb was designed to attract the congressmen's notice. If he succeeds in getting it and there is no assurance anyone will notice except the Second dis- trict's John Culver he has a proposition to make. The proposition is one which originated with Culver himself a few years ago and which has been revived by Senator Lamborn of Maquoketa, the senate Republican leader, to wit: The eight-member Iowa congressional delegation should meet in a body periodically with Iowa administrative and legislative leaders right here in Iowa. By periodically, Senators Potter and Lamborn surely mean at least twice a year. This is a good proposition. It has had our support ever since Culver first voiced it several years ago as a novice congressman. There is nothing but good sense in a procedure that would help Iowa's congressional delegation and Iowa's administrative and legislative leaders to keep in tune with each other so far as the state's interests are concerned. There is no sense at all in the congressional delegation's ignor- ing invitations from legislative leaders to arrange liaison meet- ings right here in Iowa. It should not be necessary for state leaders to go to Washington to meet with our congressmen only to have some fail to show when they want to discuss state problems requiring national at- tention. When all is said and done, Mr. and Mrs. John Q. Taxpayer foot the bill for salaries of all these officials. Isn't it time they get well enough acquainted with each other to be on speaking terms when it comes lo dealing with Iowa's problems? Rx for what oils roils HIGHWAY routes and rights- of-way that did the job 40-50 years ago have long since given way to new alignments and designs that meet a new time's different needs. It stands to reason that a rail network vir- tually unchanged from its align- ments more than a half a century ago is handicapped in answering today's requirements for users and itself. Last week's study-summary by the transportation department gave due recognition to that fact of life in concrete terms: Twenty- five percent of the railroad mileage in 17 states of the Mid- west and Northeast is now uneco- nomical or redundant. What to do about it also was spelled out in the report; Abandon now-useless trackage, causing only minor difficulty for shippers or riders. Then rebuild remaining lines into a well-maintained, high-density core system of inter- state rail lines, consolidating traffic from secondary feeders and branches. Also discontinue the unprofitable branch lines or downgrade them into secondary lines. Ordered by congress, the report amounts to a recommendation that will be considered by the new U.S. Railway Assn. in its planning for a system to consolidate seven bankrupt railroads into something viable. The principles make sense for modernizing rail routes and service in some situations not yet quite so critical as well. To bring it home: In Iowa a good strong handful of rail routes touching the state's main centers of population and production (with adequate feeders and branches) could do everyone more good than a dozen strung-out, spread-thin, run-down, long-line relics from the heyday of the train. Redun- dancy and duplication lead to poor service and poorer profits. Better quality on fewer routes could get the job done right for most of those who need to ship or ride today instead of done unsatisfac- torily for almost all the way present multiplicity of systems now performs. The DOT idea naturally has applications that could tie in nicely with the effort to promote an Amtrak route across the cen- tral part of Iowa. If federal sup- port, encouragement and even funding, possibly, contribute to the fewer-better trend as touted now, there might be offshoots that could also lend a hand toward cracking Cedar Rapids' Fourth street impasse after all these years. A state and local push for what the DOT proposes thus belongs on the agenda too as necessary changes start to jell. Isn't it the truth? By Carl Riblet, jr. Love can be described in two ways: one, as a high-priced ticket on a. series of rocket trips between heaven and hell and the other as something like a well a good thing to drink out of, but a bad thing to fall into. is impossible to love and be wise." Francis Bacnn, 1625 By William Safire WASHINGTON At a.m. on Ihe morning of May 10, 1970. as (he nation's capital was besieged by demon- strators after the Cambodian incursion, a 30-year old aide to John Ehrlichman was on duty at a Secret Service command post in the offices used by the I'eace Corps. He heard an amazed voice call out on the police squawk box: "Searchlight is on tin1 This meant that the President of the United Stales had surprised his Secret Service protectors, appeared in the middle of the night on I he White House lawn, and was making a foray out into the darkness to mingle with the demonstrators. The aide hurriedly telephoned his boss, woke him with this information and asked what to do. Sensibly, John Ehrlichman told him to follow the President, introduce himself as a White House aide at an appropriate lime, and make himself generally useful. Smitten That night. Egil "Bud" Krugh met Richard N'ixon for the first time. In the predawn hours at the Lincoln Memorial, Krogh a "straight arrow" by all ac- counts was profoundly impressed by the awkwardly earnest attempt of the President to communicate with and reassure some young people. A year later, it was Krogh, the liaison with the department of justice on narco- tics control and District of Columbia matters, who was given the assignment to stop security leaks. An infuriated President put him in charge of a "special investigations unit" that was In be just about everybody's undoing. Runaway inflation still sensed After his sentencing lust month, an older and differently illusioned Krogb put out a statement that should be required reading for anyone thinking of entering government service. "The invocation of national security stopped me from asking the question. 'Is this the right thing to to invade (citizens' rights) unlawfully is to work a destructive force upon the nation, not to lake protective measures "When contemplating a course of ac- tion." Krogh wrote to young people who may enter government. "1 hope they will never fail to ask, 'Is this The advice is straightforward enough, yet we can see in his statement how hard it must have been for a man working in a grey area in differentiate between black and white. Krogh was shown the parallel between the Hiss case and the Ellsherg case, lie listened to the unchallenged assertions of the CIA that the Soviet embassy had received a complete set of the Pentagon papers, including unpublished secrets. I le was told that further hemorrhaging of national security information would jeopardize Vietnam peace negotiations William Safire EGIL KROGH and set back hopes for an end lo Ihe arms race with the Soviets. All this worked on a young man who had seen with his own eyes an emo- tionally-moved President try and fail lo explain his noble motives of peace with honor to a disbelieving group of youths. Krogh knew that the goal sought by the President was not personal power, but' permanent peace. "Is this never occurred to Krogh because he saw himself involved in a vast effort to combat so many wrongs, with so many lives at stake. Although he received no orders from the President to break any laws, Krogh fell the clutch of circumstance was so extenuating that even burglary could be seen to be in the public interest. The justification for an immoral or an illegal art is often "the big the righteous cause, which seems to trans- form transgressions into necessary and noble disobedience to unjust or uncom- fortable restrictions. On that basis, Daniel Ellsberg look the Pentagon Papers, and Bud Krogh okayed the plumbers' plans to break into the of- fice of Kllsberg's psychiatrist. (The fact that one man is being canonized and the other cannonaded is a twist of irony and not a consequence of logic.) Voice to voice Here enters the crucial need to ask, "Is this out loud. Asked silently of themselves, the question would then have produced a "yes" in both Ellsberg and Krogh, hooked as they were on higher laws and greater goods. But asked aloud of at least one superior or friend, the ethical question might have produced a restraining doubt, or a refusal to join in responsibility that would have engen- dered second thoughts. The lesson Krogh learned, and is anx- ious lo pass along, goes beyond an un- derstanding that the only national security comes from lawful vigilance. It is senseless lo plead "I was only follow- ing orders" or in Krogh's case, "I was only following what I interpreted my orders to mean." That "Eichmann defense" died with Adolph Eichmann. Taking his medicine without complaint and without falsely passing the blame up or down, Bud Krogh is saying that the moral buck ends with each one of us. As he jogs around the prison yard, he can take some comfort from the fact that "Is this will be emblazoned across the forehead of every aide to sign on at the While House. Ne-.v York Times Service Recession? Public gloomy but acquisitive By Louis Harris The Harris Survey THE FIRST time sinc'p W. J> majority of 54 percent of the American people now- say they "feel the country is in a recession." The mood of national pessimism about the economy is reflected by the 61 to 18 percent who also predict that a year from now the country will still be in a recession. The key to this public estimate about the economy is the widespread percep- tion that inflation is. continuing unabated and unemployment is on the increase. The number who say that unemploy- ment is on the rise in their own immediate area has jumped from 22 to 44 percent since last November. During that same period, the number of Americans who feel that the prices of most things they buy are rising faster Another View than a year ago has gone up from 73 to 83 percent. Despite this over-all sense of gloom about the stale of the economy, there are signs that individuals and families are not cutting back on their buying of products and services. The main im- petus to consumer purchasing in this period is the decision, to buy now "because the price may be higher later on." For example, the number of families expressing an intention to buy new furniture has gone from 19 to 26 percent since last September. The number in- tending to take a vacation trip by air travel has risen from 14 to 21 percent over the same time. Tempered? Thus, it is possible that the prevailing down mood about the economy will not find a commensurate decline in actual consumer demand. If this happens, then the current recession could well be shallow rather than deep. A cross-section of families across the nation was recently asked: "Do you feel the country is in a recession today or not' January, 1974 November, 1973 September...... February....... December, 1971 November...... March........ July, 1970 54 32 47 39 39 44 33 51 49 33 56 27 65 21 58 26 14 14 17 16 18 17 14 16 Louis Harris percent high viewing the economy with comparable pessimism in March of 1971. Nonetheless, the public does not ex- pect a quick turnaround. The cross- section was asked: "By this time next year, do you think the country will be in a recession or Will Will Not be not sure January, 1 974 November, 1973 September February December September December, 1971 June November, 1970 "Lost week I got Although a majority feel they are in a recession for the first time since late 1971, the current 54 percent who feel that way still are well below the B5 Sizable pluralities in the past have expected the country to go into a recession. But never before since the Harris Survey regularly began asking about consumer expectations in the fall of 1970 has anything approaching the current 61 percent projected a recession for the year ahead. The public does not feel that the pressures of inflation have eased at all, with S3 percent now estimating prices to be rising more rapidly than a year ago. At the end of 1972, only 49 percent saw up at a faster rate than before. But the most dramatic change has taken place in people's perceptions about unemployment. The cross-section was asked: "Compared to a year ago, do you feel the number of people unemployed around here has increased, decreased, or stayed about the January, 1 974 September, 1 973 December, June March October, August June January Since last September, the number who see a rise in unemployment in their own home area has soared from 22 to 44 percent. However, the current level is still well below the record 70 percent who reported unemployment rising back in June of 1971. Stiff hanker Despite all of these down signs in the mood of the consuming public, demand for buying products and services has not yet dipped. The cross-section was asked: "In the next six months, do you feet certain you will purchase (read that you probably wilt, or that you probably will not purchase New Jan., 1974 Sept., 1973 Vacation trip by Jan., 1974 Sept., 1973 New Jan., Sept., 1973 If consumer demand holds up despite the widespread feeling the country is in a recession, then the chances are that such a recession will not be long-lived. Chicago Tribune-Npw York News Syndicate People's forum Birthright To the Editor: Dr. and Mrs. Galbreath "appreciate concern for potential life in the womb" (Forum, ,lan. It is a documented fact that some abortions have involved the 'problem of very live babies surviving the abortive process. This is not "potential" life: it is life. And if not human, what? The pertinent question very definitely is whether life has begun and whether that life is human. If there is reasonable cause to believe that human life is present, then the possessor of that life is entitled to the protection of our Constitu- tion, especially as it relates to the right of life. This is the issue; everything else is secondary. August A. Ourcno 928 Third street SE Unwanted, worse To the Editor: Mrs. Sharpe's anti-abortion letter Jan. 26 cniii.insizcd what the unborn life might' have turned out to be, including another "Lincoln, Kennedy, or King who would give his life for a great principle that he believes In for the good of others." I feel an unwanted baby may be better off aborted than what it would probably have turned out to be. I think such a baby has a better chance of being a mark against society than one for it. Why bring a child into the world lo suffer or cause others lo suffer for what the parents ac- tually did? 1 don't know if I could ever have an abortion myself, but I feel it should be a personal, private decision, up to (he in- dividual. I hope and pray in years to come there will be another answer for this type of birth control, but I for one am in favor of it for now. Linda S. lirenneman Tiptitn God's intent To the Editor: The greatest gift and privilege ever given to women is that of intimately sharing with God in the creation of a human life. To assume this responsibility regardless of the cost is one of the most loving, self-sacrificing, kind, courageous deeds a woman could do for herself and for the community of man. To quote Dietrich Bonhoeffcr, a Protestant theologian hanged by the Nazis in the 1940s: "Destruction of the embryo in the mother's womb is a viola- tion of the right to live which Cioii has bestowed upon this nascent life. To raise Hie question whether we are hero con- cerned already with a human being or not is merely to confuse the issue. The simple fact is that God certainly intended to create a human being and that this nascent human being has been deliber- ately deprived of his life." Mick and Mary Kay Mattiace 21121 Hamilton street SVV Fighting if Existence To the Editor: Concerning the letter, by John Ely Jan. 23 on abortion: Head again the L.I.F.E. ad of Jan. 20: II ad- vocates family planning and exposes the danger of euthanasia. This, loo, is a legal medical Issue. Fortunately, these signers, most of whom are doctors, saw fit to alert its to the danger. Cedar Rapids lias few women doctors, but this is not a "battle of the sexes." The issue is life. What an awosomc power to become a political pawn. Who has the right to say, "You, yon and yon must die that I may Upon that is- sue may depend the existence of our civilization. Virginia Richards 1115 Wllev boulevard NW To the Editor: While I was not in the group paying for the L.I.F.E. ad Jan. 20 against abor- tion, I agree with its intent. 1, too, noted the lopsided amount of men's signatures. But I am glad men are willing to fight this menace. If women will not fight, men must fight and make Ihe women open their eyes to this problem square- on How much less filled would our world of literature be if Mr. and Mrs. Shake- speare had decided lo have the babe she was carrying aborted? Can you imagine no William Shakespeare in our libraries? Or can you imagine no "Gone With Ihe So you see Ihe world of literature would be poorer. So would any field. So I protest abortion from the esthetic point of view as well as Ihe moral. If yon could know, how would you feel if your parents had decided to abort you? Could you love them in their selfishness? How can one call murder legal? No climalc is right for that. God alone can control life. When man plays God ha can only cause trouble, jusl as with euthanasia, which is really only abortion to I he old. How would you like someone to tell you that you lind lived long enough and now yon were In diet? When we sink so low as to destroy our offspring and our ancestors, we sink to the level no, below the level of the animals. We break God's law (multiply and fill the carlh) and again interfere with God and His might. Man is not to judge who is to live or who is lo die, for man is man, not God. If I have knocked abortion I must have an alternative method of birth-control, and I do. There arc Ihe pill and other contraceptives. Yet as a good Catholic I am not supposed lo use these, so I am left with the oldest type of birth control: AB- STINENCE. I am, of course, going on the assumption you are married, for premarital sex is a no-no, even if there is marital planned. Even in Ihe cases of incest and rape I (lo not see abortion as an answer. Man should bow to God and allow Him to rule us. I may well sound like a fanatic. I am, bul not where my religions convictions are concerned. I am just sel against murder. Murder is a crime. Abortion is murder. J. Thomas Breslin, jr. 11116 Twenty-ninth street NK Immobilized To the Editor; Keep the kids out of trouble arid off llu> streets famous last words. Our boys have be-on riding their snowmobile on our rented farm only until on nights when weather permits. It's too bad that when we try to find things to entertain our kids at home, someone has to ruin things. Recently our landlord had the nerve lo go out and scrap furrows, making it very dangerous to ride in our hayfield. I feel this snow- mobile is no more annoying than his lawn, tractor was at our place every night and Saturday last summer, mowing fence rows. How are we lo help our kids with in- terference like this? If people gel so .up- set with the youth of today, let them move lo a retirement center where they belong. This is only one of the several incidents, and the whole neighborhood is getting upset. I guess just because the last gencralion has got its families raised, they are try- Ing lo deprive us of this privilege. Mrs. Robert E. Clark Route 2, Central Cit.v LETTERS The Gazette's page comos readers' opinions, lo loncjlh limlti 400 worth. Ono teller por writer ovory 30 dayi. All may bo condomed ond odltod without changing moaning. Mono publiihod anonymously. Willor'i lolophono numbor (nol printed) ihoulil follow name, oddroii and roadobto handwritten ilgnoluia lo linlp milhonllcati. Conlonlt doal moro with Ittuit and ovenlt than rMiionallllot. No pantry.
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