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Cedar Rapids Gazette Newspaper Archive: August 21, 1974 - Page 6

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Publication: Cedar Rapids Gazette

Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa

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   Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - August 21, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa                                finpitb A Ford-kind-of-person, but still ambitious Editorial Page Fine choice, Rockefeller WHEN GERALD FORP became President August 9 and a scandal-sickened, inflation- wracked country wondered what now was in store. New York Times sage James Reston offered this highly promising observation: "One of the interesting things about Ford, though he is no in- tellectual, is that, unlike Johnson and Nixon, he does not feel un- comfortable or threatened by ex- ceptional talent." The President's nomination of Nelson A. Rockefeller as the na- tion's forty-first vice-president fortifies the belief that, like the earthy Harry Truman. Mr. Ford will surround himself with resourceful, sophisticated lieu- tenants, never fearing that he will be upstaged. Clearly, Rockefeller is an ex- cellent choice. Assistant secretary of state for Latin America in the Roosevelt administration; under- secretary of health, education and welfare in President Eisenhower's first administration; governor of New York for 15 scandal-free years all these credentials and more Rockefeller offers to the congress, where pending the same exhaustive scrutiny given Mr. Ford last year confirma- tion is a certainty. Since he will be the first-ever vice-president to serve under a President who was not chosen in national election, Rockefeller's place in history should fall among Hannibal Hamlin, Schuyler Colfax and other laughably obscure executive branch second bananas. Realistically, though, Mr. Rockefeller is likely to become a strong assistant President, not by dint of ambition, hut rather, through Mr r'nrd's resolve to off- set his own weaknesses. Among other attributes. Mr. Rockefeller furnishes strong Background in foreign policy ;'.nd, importantly, excellent rapport with Secretary of State Kissinger; support in the liberal East (balanced against Mr. Ford's Midwest conserva- and a voracious appetite for campaigning, which guarantees expertise in the traditional vice- presidential role of major party campaigner. Some critics inevitably will complain that Melvin Laird would have given the office more in- tellect. Others doubtless uill claim that squeaky-clean Elliot Richardson would have cemented the OOP's hopes for strong, charismatic running in the next two presidential sweepstakes. Still others will hold that George Bush's position as GOP national committee chairman made him the best possible pick. And some simply will grouse over Rockefeller's age he's 66 or the fact that he is as rich as Croesus. But few would argue that Nelson Rockefeller is not qualified to step into the presidency tomorrow. And that capability alone, demon- strated executive capacity, has placed him above other potential nominees supposedly considered seriously by the President. Whether his appointment in- deed will "finesse" Rockefeller out of a 1976 run for the White House remains to be seen. Future political intrigues aside, though, Rockefeller's appointment as vice-president shapes up as another welcome tonic for the country. Peace-seeking unwelcome? FUNDAMENTALIST Christian clergymen in Denison have raised objections to the possible sale of the defunct Midwestern college campus there to Mahari- shi Internationa] university on grounds that MIU would advance the teaching of a nonchristian religion. This parallels earlier resistance to a similar proposal in Fairfield concerning the Par- sons college layout. Both cases find the opposition mistakenly concluding that the teaching of transcendental medi- tation (TM) as proposed by MIU is the teaching of a religion. Both also would put the resisters in a strange position of contending in a freedom-of-religion land that someone has no right to further a certain religion, if TM did happen to be one. The causes of confusion as to TM's status are understandable. Elements of transcendental medi- tation do have roots or counter- parts in the Hindu religion. A meditator's "mantra" (a meaningless word repeated silently to help clear the mind in achieving relaxation and mental uplift) is a Hindu adaptation. A handkerchief-, flower- and fruit- gift ceremony for beginners has symbolic parallels there too. But TM learners are told that this is a teachers' tradition com- mitting the initiate to absolutely no belief of any kind. In no sense is anyone's mantra a prayer. Meditation is essentially a private practice (20 minutes twice a Nothing that remotely parallels "Satan as alleged, is part of the process at all. Fears of some dark, hidden, evil in the kind of meditation known as "transcendental" thus are totally unfounded. So are fears that MIU, if it becomes a part of Iowa's in- structional scene somewhere, would be dangerous and bad. In a free, friendly, open, "Christian" community, it should be wel- comed rather than condemned. Ford's inquisition By Rowland Evans and Robert Novak WASHINGTON President Ford is privately using a unique formula sending chills through his inherited ad- ministration lo test the performance and work-stylos of the old Nixon cabinet to sec who he may want to keep and who he will allow to resign. The Ford formula: highly confidenlial interviews by a few presidential in- timates with Democratic chairmen and ranking Republican members of congressional committees and suhcom- mitlecs that work most closely with cabinet officers Questions to be asked include the cabinet member's ability lo work with key congressmen, their adaptability to compromise, the reliability of their staffs arid their performance in office The brainchild of key presidential aide I'hilip litichcn, Mr. Ford's line-time law partner back in pre-congrcss Grand Itapids days, the new technique is spreading alarm through cabinet ranks. At least at the start, Ihe inquisition is strictly a Ford operation. The President's inherited congressional liaison Maff, headed by William Tim- morih, was not brought in. Instead, H is being handled by- confidential aides not in the regular lines of communiciiliori between the White House and Capitol Hill. What makes this cabinet testing so important is that Mr. Ford really intends tu reslore authority to the cabinet, pulling out the management functions of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) set up in the early Nixon While House. A foolnote: One of the first departures from the Ford cabinet is likely to hi' Secretary of Labor I'eler Brennan. a conservative ex-labor leader scorned by Mr. Ford's new friend. President George Meany. and other moguls of the AFI.- CIO. A possible replacement: labor arbi- trator Robben Fleming, a Democrat who is president of the Cniversity of Michigan. By Frank Lynn NK1.MIN" A HOrKFFKl.l.KK >huuld have litllr trouble '.hi- ijiiih 'lurk tu jml. judging In rii-viil record, thoulil hi- tune with President Kurd mi Mil h kc> facing' the nation lmia> Mtur he resigned as tin1 nation's senior last December, the tio'-U'ar-old KockelViifr has devoted full mm' In hi-, mil1 ,i': architect, prune financier, ami chairman ui the t ommission mi Critical Choices for Americans which has provided him with a u-lnclc fur dceph immersing himself not "ill-. MI minimal hut also world problems lle has aKo used tin1 commission as a channel !u national leaders h> including then ice-presideiil Kurd. Secretary iif Stale Henry Kissinger ami the ami minority leaders uf tin- senate and house as evoffielo members Some Rockefeller associates cnnlend that ihr commission work actually represents a returi! Rockefeller's first hue. intcnialionai affairs In that ciin- his as gouTilnr uf York uewed as an overly long rest ship im the uay !u national office. In fact, a strong case can he made that hi1 is mure conversant with international affairs than Kurd and could liecoine a rival to Kissinger, a longtime Rockefeller associate, as the foreign af- fairs expert in the Kurd administration. Rockefeller's complete preoccupation with affairs national and international has also heen evident in his recent speeches, in interviews and his hunds-uff attitude toward New York slate politics and government that he dominated for 15 years. The same speeches and interviews have also provided ample clues to his on various issues and t-iiiicnu' tlia: he. his reputation :itn-r.i! Republican maverick and Kurd, with hi- image of Middle Amrnca consenaJisni. Rockefeller a imu'limc hawk munisii) has. fur example, repeatedly exhibited skepticism about detente with the Soviet I niun "In the enthusiasm enciiurane detente am! I'm for 1 have a fi-i-lmg that ul ;ne ii.iigi-r range security problems are being ig- nored." he said in an mtcmew earlier this >ear Rockefeller oflen cites Ihe plans of (K cidental Oil and Ihe Aluininuin Company of America to huild a huge oil refinery and aluminum plant, respectively in the SuMi't I'nion. Me tunes that '.he aluminum plant would consume the world's supply of bauxite and that the oil refinery, which would process oil for American consumption, could give the Russians another lever in their dealings with this country The former governor has also expressed concern over the '-.'rowing Soviet navy "Freedom of the seas that's hash- to he says Yet. he has insisted that he has "an open mind" on detente and merely raises these issues tu demonstrate the complexities of detente and other sub- jects that are being studied by the Cri- tical Choices Commission. If Rockefeller has been a consistent internationalist in foreign affairs and consistently wary of the Soviet Union, his domestic record, primarily as governor, has been far from consistent. The Nelson Rockefeller of Ihe 1960's assailed any attempts to undo social welfare and civil rights programs: but in the 1970's he proposed residence requirements for New Yorkers on wel- fare and prison sentences for drug ad- dicts. NELSON ROCKEFELLER Pulmcally. the Nelson Rockefeller Ihe 19titl's who frequently and often bit- terly opposed Harry Goldwater and Richard Nixon was in the 19711's to praise Goldwater as a "great man" and to decline to attack Nixon even in the final hours of his presidency hen he had few defenders. Nationally, he worked closely with two Democratic "old pros" President .Johnson and Rep. Wilbur Mills, chair- man of the house ways and means com- mittee and the man to see on a Rockefeller pet project, federal revenue sharing with the states. Rockefeller mounted a national cam- paign for revenue sharing because he contended that the states could no longer cope with inflation and built-in costs that increased state spending at a rale of percent a year vvhile revenues increased at only half that rate. it waslhis arithmetic, rather than any ideological change, that he said impelled him to crack down on welfare and education spending in New York. He contended that without such hard-nosed economies, the state would not have enough money lo support social welfare Critics cmilciiiled Inat Rockefeller's it, tin- m'bl was motivated by a desire I" join national Republican mainslre.ini .'in' lnus advance the presidential "ad been so oficii thwarted by Ins image as an east- ern. lilMTal maverick In anv event pragmatism, whether economic or political, prodded him He is. in Ihe view of many politicians, the complete pragmalisl rather than a liberal or conservative ulealogue Rockefeller describes himself as "a cen- trist with a progressive poult of view." The members of the Critical Choice Commission reflect that centrist point ,if ucw Almost all are politicians, academicians and business men who are not likely to espouse any radical new courses. AH of which would seem to make him a President Kurd kind of person, politically and philosophically. However, those who know Rockefeller see one possible cloud on the the New Yorker's penchant for being his own man, a leader, an activist. Until the last year, he had repeatedly brushed off any talk of the vice-presidency by noting that he was nut the type to be "standby equipment." With Ihe presidency blocked off, at least temporarily, he has decided that politically his best course of action is to be standby equipment. But many poli- ticians wonder whether Rockefeller the person will agree with Rockefeller the politician. NCA- York Times service Relaxable Computer-; may nut he entirely human. hut they share quite a few trails with us, including' an inclination to quit wnrkin-j. Dilemma of the conservatives New political spectrum defies labeling By Roscoe Drummond WASHINGTON" There is little doubt lhat the scandals in the Nixon ad- ministration are strengthening conser- vative forces in the United States. The visible public displeasure with everything connected with the name of Watergate is not primarily aiding the Democratic party, is not appreciably hurting the Republican party; it is aug- menting the voice of conservatism. Today many if not most conservatives are unhappy with both parties. This is one of the most striking and significant political developments in post-Watergate America. It isn't just pervasive distaste for the offenses cited in the articles of impeach- ment. It is the mounting centralization of personal power in the hands of the President and the lack of restraint in using such power which most offends and scares conservatives. It is not only traditional conservatives who are becoming alienated from an ad- ministration they thought was devoted to their cause; there are liberals who are becoming disillusioned with traditional liberalism and who are feeling uncertain and uncomfortable. It is happening on both sides of the political center. Time was when most liberals took certain political facts as given without further questioning. Franklin Roosevelt Going Swimming was their hero. Democrats constituted their party automatically and a strong central government was accepted uncri- tically as the assured means of creating the good society. Many Americans, including traditional liberals, are today changing their minds on these matters for a variety of reasons. Some because they accept the judgment of Daniel Moynihan that the federal government "is good at collecting taxes but bad at dispensing services." Others because they have seen that the big an- tipoverty programs of Lyndon Johnson did not come near In fulfilling their promises. And mosl of all because they see big government and big presidency endangering the liberties of a free societv. The man who has best described this mental and political transformation of many Americans is Haynes Johnson, who has gone through the experience himself and who has written about it in an article called "The Odyssey of a New Conserva- Haynes Johnson is a Pulitzer Prize- winning correspondent of the Washington Post, author of such books as "The Bay of "Fulbright: The Dissenter" and "Lyndon" some of which he says he would write differently today and one whom David Ilalberstam might describe as one of "the best and the brightest." Here is Ihe theme of his own political odyssey: "I find myself in a peculiar he wrote a few days ago. "In private conversation with such as George Will and James Buckley (Will, the Washing- ton columnist of conservative National Review, and Buckley, the Conservative New York senator) I discover far more areas of intellectual agreement than disagreement. I want to limit the powers of the state, to preserve the delicate checks and balances so carefully crafted into our Constitution nearly two centuries ago and to protect the individual against the tyranny of the mob. "I am a new' conservative with no place to go politically. I long ago cast off any allegiance to the Democrats as a party. "1 am not sure any more what either they or the Republicans represent. Old liberals have become new conser- vatives, and old conservatives have become what? I say all this because I suspect many Americans today share my disquiet." They du. EVANS NOVAK People's forum 'Give them respect' Tu the Editor It is very disturbing to read all the ad- verse (.'liniments thai have heen printed on the detoxification center in Ihe lasl few weeks. Mr. Kopel's very dramatic "bomb- shell statement doesn't delve very deeply into Ihe true facts. If I'm correct, the county will have lo pay only if Ihe individual does not have insurance lo cover his The 25 percent share paid by Linn county amounts to approximately per day. Mr. Kopel seems lo stress the figure. It would be interesting 10 see statistics on how repeated jail terms for inloxificalion cosl Ihe lax- payer. And who can measure Ihe coil of a human life? We are constantly reading of Ihe number of accidents due to drinking. Now thai there is a unit to try lo help these people overcome their problem, isn't it worthwhile to give il a chance? I also have a question for the unnamed official who joked about a bar across the sired from Mercy hospital so persons could commit themselves after a binge. If he is at all aware lhal alcoholism is a disease, does he realize Ihis is compara- ble to suggesting a candy slore across the street so diabetics could go on a binge and then be admitted for treatment due lo a dv'ibelic coma? Thai's not funny either. The final straw was Mr. Crosier's Id- ler in Sunday's Forum. He is entitled to his opinion on alcoholism, even though it is in direct conflict wilh a reputable source such as the American Medical Assn. But his suggestion lo enlarge Ihe "drunk lank" seems a little unreal. Would he really wish lo throw all ages and both sexes into one big lank? What purpose would it serve? What qualifica- tions does an officer have lo judge whether the "peaceful and harmless" ones will remain that way or later become "ornery and thus earning an evening in the drunk tank? One final plea. Alcoholism is a disease. Sufferers thus deserve as much respect as those who have diabetes, heart disease or cancer. Yd they aren't called by the derogatory terms thai constantly pop up when uninformed persons discuss al- coholics. The dictionary classes the word "drunk" as an adjective. Let's use it thai way instead of as an all inclusive noun. Mrs. Harold L. Timmer Rushmore drive NE LETTERS The Gazette's editorial page welcomes readers' opinions, to fhese length limit: 400 wodi. Ona IfiHftr writer 30 All may tondeoiod and odiled wimoul changing meaning. Nona anonymously. Writtr'i tolophona number (not printed) ihould follow name, oddreit and readable handwritten lignature to help authenticate. Conlenli deal more wilh iuuei and evenli rhan per- lonalitiei. No poerry. Sorrow Cushioned To the Editor: I wish to thank the considerate people who gave assistance lo our little dog who was run over by a car last Tuesday evening on Ml. Vernon road SE. In these times when so many people are too busy to care, or simply do not want to be involved, it is comforting and reassuring that there are still some people who care. These people gol a blanket from their car and placed Muffin on it, and covered' him with it In his pain. Muffin hit one of Ihe ladies. I wish to reassure her that he had had his rabies shots. Another lady phoned us and told us about the accident. Unfortunately, by the time we called our vet and went to get our pel, he was beyond help. Anyone who has ever had a pet knows how deep our sorrow is, but mingled with our tears, there is gratitude lo these people who look Ihe lime to make Muf- fin's hist minutes a little easier. Joan McCord 1112 Twenty-eighth street SE   

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