Cedar Rapids Gazette, April 20, 1974, Page 8

Cedar Rapids Gazette

April 20, 1974

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Issue date: Saturday, April 20, 1974

Pages available: 28

Previous edition: Friday, April 19, 1974

Next edition: Sunday, April 21, 1974

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Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - April 20, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa rn (£?t(nr SujntUAffluence fortress? No chance amid hunger Editorial Page Saturday, April 20, 1974 ■    ,v., No crime against belief IN OPPOSITION to the rising tide for public funding of political campaigns to overcome the big-money wrongs that recent history has brought to light, one argument receiving new stress makes a right-sounding point: It is wrong to take money from people to support ideas, principles, beliefs or policies they personally disagree with or find repugnant. Very true. That is not acceptable in a democracy. But this does not invalidate the campaign-funding plan. A closer look shows why. Vermont Royster of the Wall Street Journal elaborated on the matter in his column April IO. “. . . If political liberty means anything at all,” he wrote, “it surely means both the right of a citizen to support what political opinions he pleases and not to be coerced into supporting those he detests.” From Thomas Jefferson came this supporting view: “To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical.” Again, no quarrel. But the reason these contentions miss the campaign-funding mark is this: The taxes everyone would pay would not support specific items of opinion or specific bodies of belief. The money would pay for a process, not a doctrine. Depending on the system’s mechanics, it would go either to the party chosen by the taxpayer or to all parties qualifying for assistance. It would underwrite the party system as a way of handling popular elections. One party’s platform would receive no favor over any others. Each party’s candidates and their own stated views — approved of or detested — would stand on equal footing philosophically. No citizen-con-tributor would be supporting something he hates more than something he likes — unless he hates the Constitution and the country and its w hole approach to government. Besides, when someone voluntarily gives money to a party or a candidate, it doesn't mean that he agrees in full with every dotted i of either one’s positions on all issues. Out-of-pocket taxes for campaigning would be just as flexible and general in what they mean concerning givers’ views and the receivers’. This is not tyrannical or sinful or coercive, not a violation of good conscience and belief. Tax support for the election process would impinge on personal beliefs no more than taxes do when they are spent on governmental policies or programs that a payer doesn’t like. The taxes-for-campaigns idea, as a partial remedy for worse abuses dirtying the record these days, still is one whose time has come. No kid-ball ruckus here TO CASUAL observers Kids league baseball in Cedar Rapids may seem an identical twin of Little League, the enormously popular international organization for boys in the 3rd to 7th grade range. The resemblance, however, is mostly illusory. Not only does the local Kids league function independently, it offers membership for older children and sensibly divides participants into three age groups (10-11. 12-13 and 14-16) Kids league’s status as a happy island unto itself should be all the more apparent this spring as girls aspiring to play hardball meet no other requirement than age and, if making the first team is the goal, ability. As reported in Jack Ogden’s column (Gazette, April 14), girls not only will be welcome in Kids league, they might help boost membership (down about 200 last year). Now consider the contrast between the harmony here and the unsettling Little League controversy elsewhere: If a Cedar Rapids girl ballplayer-to-be were to move to New Jersey or California, her petition to join the fun People s forum Courts blamed To the Editor Concerning your editorial of April IB. “Sitting still for crime”, it isn’t the apathy, contempt arid scorn for law enforcement that pay off in victims and crimes. If you look across the page above your thumb and read the article “Molesting of Child Ruling Appealed” you’ll set4 what is making crime pay off The courts, not the cops What good is accomplished in arresting a criminal, only to have someone sitting in the judge’s seat who doesn t know the meaning of the words “lewd,” “immoral” and “lascivious.” This is a mockery of justice in no uncertain terms Courthouses full of lawyers and judges, legislators, representatives all supposed to be educated people — what have they come up with9 I can’t agree that the public must take the blame for all of the criminals walking might await a U.S. supreme court review. Girls in Little League? One expects the commotion to climax with a cover-to-cover search of the Bible. Is the heresy condemned there? The avoidance of such a ruckus here reflects well on the people in general and the operators of the flexible Kids league in particular. Isn't It the Truth? By Carl Riblet, Jr Any newspaper reporter can tell you he has never met a political type who could not and would not express a considered opinion on any subject, whether familiar with it or not Even senators talk too much at times. —Everett McKinley Dirksen People these days are minding their own business more than ever. Neighborhoods are no longer very neighborly because hardly anybody wants to bo his brother's keeper, or even his sister's. Everybody plays it safe and nobody wants to stick his neck out, except to wash it You might as well fall flat on your face as lean over too far backward. - -James Thurber Interocean Press Syndicate the street. Examine the courts’ records. Then put the blame where it belongs. Earl J. Wagner 151(1 Eighth avenue SE Oscar-views To the Editor In reference to the Channel Comment in The Gazette of April 7. I should like to make a few comments Not a television enthusiast. I cannot qualify as critic. But as a qualified human tieing I feel most strongly urged to speak out. in this socalled Century of the Humanitarian, for the rights of man, to be humane. My grandfather used to say, “If you can’t say something good, say nothing.” This old-fashioned precept leaves our modern-day critic somewhat in limbo; but does it9 What has become of plain old constructive criticism? The comments from this article to which I take exception are certainly not constructive. . For instance, John Huston s “lecture’’ about the attitude of the audience after the awards had all been made should not be limited necessarily to those present since the propensity to witless criticism appears to be By Anthony Lewis lf the strong attempt to impose their views, they will do so at the cost of justice . . . (improving) the quality of life has become a universal political demand, a technical possibility and a moral imperative. " —Secretary of State Kissinger at the United Nations. TT MUST have been Oscar Wilde—or ■I was it Mao Tse-tung?— who said: "When I hear Henry Kissinger talk about justice and morality, I reach for my Dramamine.” Anyone might suspect cynicism in such talk by a man who helped to waste five years, and numberless lives, trying to impose American views on Indo-China, and who until recently showed not the slightest interest in questions of world poverty, trade, finance and resources. But however cynical Kissinger may be, and however late his discovery of economics, his speech to the special United Nations session on raw materials and development did deal with what is very likely the most important long-term issue we face. That is, putting it broadly: How can the fruits of this earth bt4 shared equitably enough at least to reduce the chances of mass starvation, economic collapse and war? The trouble is that the secretary of state alone cannot begin to deal with all the profound problems of material yearning, psychology and nationalism involved in that issue. Even if he could find time to negotiate with other countries about world economic conflicts as well as arms control and the Middle East, he could not carry the burden of policy arid exhortation at home. And on these questions change in the world depends on change here in America. Consider a homely example. While Americans fretted over waiting in gasoline lines this winter, farmers in India waited in lines for five days to fill a 5-gallon gasoline can. They needed the fuel not for commuting or pleasure driving but to run the pumps that give their farms water. There was not enough gasoline in India for that most urgent necessity, and the direct result of inadequate watering is now apparent. The U. S. department of agriculture estimates that lack of fuel for the water pumps has cost India one million tons of her spring w heat crop. The price of crude oil has risen so sharply that a poor country such as India simply cannot buy what it needs. There is a direct effect on food production through shortfalls of pumped water and even more significantly of fertilizer. What has all that to do with us? Does it matter to Asian peasants how we live and think in America? The answer is that it matters to the point of life and death. We must begin to understand why. In the short run American economic arid aid policies are of vital importance. Insights H :|i -sa* An empty stomach is not a good political adviser. Albert Einstein What must our sense of values be, our grasp of the real problems of humanity, when this year we are spending more than IO times as much on South Vietnam (population 19 million) as on India, Pakistan and Bangladesh combined (population 711 million)? Even to begin talking about world action on food and resources, Henry Kissinger has had to overcome tough opposition from the treasury and agriculture department on the narrowest commercial grounds. Secretary of Agriculture But/ tours Japan and Taiwan to view good dollar customers for American farm products, but he does not get to South Asia. But we are connected with the needs of the world in a deeper sense. Stability, even survival, will not be possible for hundreds of millions of people if Americans continue relentlessly to pursue super-affluence. If this country eats and uses and burns so much of the world’s resources on an ever-increasing scale, then the supply for others is likely to be shorter and dearer. Certainly in oil, the crucial commodity now, we could have a much more potent influence toward deflating the wild prices by curbing our own huge demand growth prospect than by talking at the United Nations. These are requirements not of charity but of wise self-interest. It would not be much of a future to defend a fortress of affluence in a hungry world. For a while this winter William Simon talked of making permanent changes in the American lifestyle, moving us from a habit of waste to one of conservation. But all that has been forgotten in the pellmell rush for normalcy, meaning exploitation Kissinger's speeches will not count for much while we have a President who tells the Seafarers Union, as Nixon did last November, that America uses 30 percent of the world’s energy and “that isn t bad; that is good. That means we are the richest, strongest people in the world. . . May it always be that way.” New York Times Service Ford s metamorphosis From mere spear-carrier to No. I mahout By Rowland Evans and Robert Novak DETROIT — We ll before Gerald Ford was publicly rebuked by White House press secretary Ronald Ziegler last weekend for being the source of a magazine article discussing a possible Ford cabinet, the outlines of a major speech denouncing arrogance of power bv a President’s White House staff were beginning to take shape in the vice-president's mind. Ford is being pressed by political intimates and party leaders to make such an encore to his assault last month on the “arrogant, elite guard of political adolescents” controlling the Committee for the Re-election of the President (CRP). The CRP speech, Ford’s coming of age as the single most influential Republican politician, attempted to put him on the right side of the Watergate issue without bringing him into direct conflict with President Nixon. As such, it produced only private complaints from the White House staff But Ford, newly aware of his unique position at the pinnacle of Republican influence, would cut much closer to the bone by attacking the old Berlin wall of ll. R. Haldeman and John Ehrlichman Not once since his two trusted aides left last April 30 has the President permitted himself even a suggestion of criticism. Rather, he has integrated his own defense w ith theirs Moreover, even before Ford’s contemplated speech, the W hite House mood changed Whereas resentment had previously been directed strictly against Ford’s staff for insufficient loyalty to Mr Nixon, it is now Ixung aimed at the vice-president himself The White House was outraged by the New Republic magazine article last week that left no doubt Ford was the source. Ziegler’s criticism fully reflected the President’s own position. The vice-president is well aware of all this in planning a new speech As Republican leader in the house, he was systematically excluded by the Berlin wall Hence, a warning bv him against any future President permitting his inner staff to monopolize power in the Haldeman-Ehrlichman mariner is regarded by him as a public duty. But it would also be a political ten-strike. Thus, Ford has come far since that day quite universal. Furthermore the need to alter attitudes throughout all of society today is so obvious that no intelligent arid perceptive lecture would go amiss before any audience, homebound or otherwise. Presumably the writer could have switched off her set were it too groat an impact on her delicate sensibilities. The all too obvious lack of which brings us nicely to the grossly ill-mannered criticism of Katherine Hepburn, one of the all time greats of the theater world. Miss Hepburn needs no champion and one is comforted by the knowledge that it is scarcely possible she will ever read these shamefully tasteless lines. If her great prestige does not warrant more respect from a grateful public, why does not her age or her health demand the common courtesy of polite silence? Such stuff cannot be construed as criticism but rather as personal opinion of no interest to anyone but its unfortunately limited author ... It is high time for critics even in such small-town midwestern backwaters to aspire to some higher goal than personal spite and mediocre venom. Speaking of memories, let us retain that of the well deserved standing ovation accorded the great lady by her colleagues in the theater world as Miss Hepburn I rn \lNOWVE K n - ‘Don’t I have enough trouble without you upsetting Ronny like this?* in December when he took the oath of office under President Nixon s gaze. No political figure has shot from obscurity to acknowledged presidential heir-apparent so fast, and none with so few inherent political problems ahead A symbol of Ford’s power position in the Republican party is the way he can speak out even on such forbidden subjects as changes he would make in the Nixon cabinet if he became President tomorrow Only the White House has reprimanded Ford for the New Republic article. Republican leaders have said nothing One Southern party leader who consistently defends Mr. Nixon told us that no matter how embarrassing Ford’s speculation might bi4 to the President, it “probably helps Ford ” Ford has so clearly become tin4 depository of the party’s future hopes that even Nixonite stalwarts (outside the White House) hesitate to rebuke him. made her graceful entrance on the stage that memorable night. Add to this the more recent honor as one of the eight Women of the Year while we in this community whisper a silent apology that such a gaucherie was ever allowed publication iii our midst Rose Mary Barlow 257 Twenty-ninth avenue SU This was apparent when Ford stopped off in the Detroit area last week to campaign for two Republican congressmen running for re-election, including an address to one of the largest dinner meetings ever held by the suburban Oakland County Young Republicans The applause was deafening when a letter from Son. Robert Griffin was read stating that “Jerry Ford s service to the nation has just begun ” It was thunderous when Rep. William Broomfield of Michigan talked about Ford s unique ability to bring people together, and that’s what we need in this country today ” But an amplifier was needed to hear the scattered applause when Ford praised Mr Nixon arid declared him “innocent of any of these charges that have been made against him ” The new Ford formula—defend Mr Nixon himself, while blaming the party’s Proverbs, chapter 22, verse B “Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it”. . . . There are so many people that need help. Gerald B Ding 1243 Belmont Parkway NW Instruct Another l ien To the Editor My interest was stirred by the enthusiasm shown by young Americans on the Gazette editorial page, April 13. I realize this is not the first time good letters from our youth have appeared in the paper, but to me this is special. Just recently I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal saviour, and as I read my Bible every day I find out as parents we too often forget the real important things, which is God and His blessed word If our nation is going to solve its great problems, it will have to get back to God and BE a Christian nation, not just say it I can think of no better place to start than the home. As parents, let’s all start reading our Bibles to our children daily "They re back to wiping windshields and checking the oil, but they re still not giving away coupons or dishes.” crisis on his old praetorian guard—avoids the major political blunder Ford made in his Atlantic City speech early this year Ford attempted then to debunk Watergate Ile has not repeated that mistake The future holds some risks Ile will be the party’s spearpoint in this year’s midterm election, arid could be contaminated to the extent his party lust's seats in a possible Democratic landslide. But a confident Ford, now wearing elegant suits with slant (oat pockets and shirts with detachable soft collars and French t uffs, seems totally unconcerned “That would In4 a problem,” he told us “...lf I were a candidate for President, but I’m not.” Ford s closest political friends don’t believe that disclaimer. Moreover, the feud between his staff and Mr. Nixon’s adds to the disbelief. Ford s lieutenants correctly perceive him not as the President s right-hand man but as what he has become in just five months the single most influential Republican in the country Publisher % Hull Syndicate Late equals punctual in Amtrak scheduling By Don Oakley WITH AN ASSIST from the gasoline shortage. Amtrak, the national railroad passenger system, racked up a 28 percent gain in patronage in January over the same month a year ago. The increase was reflected in all parts of the country as a total of 1,423,000 people took the train Amtrak also rtqxirts a much improved on-time performance record. Unfortunately, as the United Transportation Union points out in a recent newsletter, in this case all that glitters is not exactly what it appears to be. A train is now counted “on time” if it reaches its ultimate destination within five minutes for every IOO miles of operation. For example, a train traveling BIM) miles can come in 30 minutes after scheduled arrival time and still Im* considered “on time.” But better late than never, as they say These days, any train is better than no train at all. And the system does seem to be improving. Newspaper Enterprise Association I » I ;

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