Cedar Rapids Gazette, October 26, 1974, Page 7

Cedar Rapids Gazette

October 26, 1974

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Issue date: Saturday, October 26, 1974

Pages available: 34

Previous edition: Friday, October 25, 1974

Next edition: Sunday, October 27, 1974

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Publication name: Cedar Rapids Gazette

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All text in the Cedar Rapids Gazette October 26, 1974, Page 7.

Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - October 26, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 4 'Yes, got the yearly raise and at this rate wo won't have to pay the surtax until 1992' Ford's mixed TV bag Editorial Page Solurdoy, October 26, 197.1 More junkers targeted To the satisfaction of all ivurking toward an improved community, 50-plus more dilap- idated structures have bci-n placed under the city of Cedar Rapids' demolition seopesight. The buildings, mostly houses (all bring to nearly 200 the total structures targeted in the city's three-year-old war on ramshackle houses. One needn't live next to one of the unsightly, property-value depressing junkers to appreciate the immensity of the city's un- dertaking and the enhancement resulting from it. In a recent sur- vey of attitudes toward Linn county facilities, services and environment, nine out of every 10 respondents approved of requir- ing owners of dilapidated housing to lake care of the structures or have them removed. With that mandate in mind, the special mayor's committee (composed of police, fire preven- tion, building, planning and health officials) identifies problem houses in all quadrants, then forwards the list to the mayor. If, following public hear- ing, the city council decides to raze individual structures, demo- lition contracts are awarded to the lowest bidders and costs are assessed against property own- ers. Since many of (he owners live out of (own (some are heirs who do not realize what they legal difficulties are plenti- ful. Lest city officials be consi- dered bulldozer happy, it's es- sential to remember that (he houses marked for demolition are beyond saving. Their removal not only improves neighborhoods cslheUcally, it relieves the city of numerous threats (o curious Candidates for public office at the federal level have just completed filing campaign disclosure statements for the Sept. 1-Ocl. M reporting period and that's good. But their final reports must be made by Oct. 31 and cover on- ly the period from Oct. 14-24 and that's bad. This means that conlribnlions received after Oct. 24 will not be reported in time for voters to know about them before they go to the polls Nov. 5. children. Some of the structures have been the siles of illegal ac- tivities. Naturally, Cedar Rapids' ef- fort to remove dreadfully deterio- rated houses has not gone unno- ticed by the U.S. department of housing and urban development As administrator of the new community development (CD) program, I1UD has stressed elimination of slums and blight among the top CD priorities. Since Cedar Rapids seemingly is far ahead of most other like- cities in blight removal, it's obvious lhat CD funds received here (about million annually the next three years) can be channeled posthaste into other efforts to improve the living en- vironment. However, the contin- ued removal of junker houses is urged by CD liaison committees representing the four city quadrants. Not that an easing up is fore- seen. Though tie ultimate dis- posal of some junkers should solve most of the city's blight problem, demolition of several buildings per year doubtless will be. necessary. Importantly, in- terdepartmental machinery al- ready is geared to the clearance process. In essence, the steady demoli- tion of vacant rundown buildings marks continuation of what the city began with its three urban renewal programs. While those federally-backed projects saw blight clearance in certain blocks or contiguous blocks, it remained for the mayor's special com- mittee to zero in on isolated in- stances of nuisance conditions. As the three-year record attests, all involved have maintained the momentum admirably. Better that the (leadline for making contributions be set in mid-October and the final filing deadline set a week later, so there would be ample lime for voters to gel the word before tin- election. After all, lhat is what cam- paign disclosure reports are for. They do the voter little good when complete information remains unavailable until after the election, as the Watergate affair attests. One flub, one win By James J. Kilpatrick WASHINGTON 1'rcsideul Kunl made Iwci decisions Ibis month that prompt reflection upon tin1 position of tin1 prcsicli'iicy in our public lift'. Oni' was foolish; and one was wise. On Ilii! night of Hie 15th. he foolishly demanded and got prime TV lime for a dull and innocuous speech. Two days later, lie wisely appeared In-fore the house judiciary committee to answer quoslions publicly mi his pardon of Mr. Nixon. In the first instance, he used his presidential power clumsily. In the sec- ond, he downplayed his power adroitly. The Tuesday night Fiasco was a mistake all around. Producers and edi- tors (if TV news programs had deter- mined, in advance, that Mr. Ford had nothing essentially new or different to say about his economic program. Their editorial judgment was lhat the speech did not justify a half hour of live cover- age, lu (ho event itself, that judgment Ferreting-out foibles llstone By James Keston WASHINGTON' The Committee on tile New Political Morality will come to order. Our job is to screen all candi- dates for federal office and we're going to clean up this country even if there is nobody left to run it. The first nominee will state his name. A Nelson Millstone, nominated as head of the Federal Communications Commission. Mv qualifications are A 1 was pinched for speeding in ID-IK going from Covinglon. Ky.. lo Cin- cinnati. Why were yon going lo Cincin- nati.' Q I see. so you're inlerested in girls? A Yes, sir, I Ihink girls are won- derful, I like to explore their minds. I think (J We're not inlerested in what you think but what you do and have done in ihe past. Have yon ever gone out wilh an Argentine firecracker'.' A I never had a chance, but I hear they're very good at ways and means. A I've never had anything rxeep! trouble with my income lax. I have trou- ble making il out and even more trouble paying it. I'd be glad lo (ell Ihe com- mittee whal I really Ihink about Ihe in- come tax. Q Never mind. Are yon now. or have you over been a member of Iho Wuman's Christian Temperance I'liiou? A I like lo drink. Q How often do you indulge in this naslv habit'.' A When I'm tired. When I'm out wilh friends or at football games. When I'm depressed, when I enlerlain and when I watch television. Do you Ihink it's right for a mall I" drink he's watching television, especially if he's chairman of Ihe Fed- eral Coiinnunicalions Commission? A With the kind of TV we have, it's unavoidable. How could you sland it otherwise? Q We will ask the questions. Mr. Millstone. Have you ever been in trouble with women'.' A All my life. Beginning with my molher. Mv molher was A My first wife was a nagging ninny. Caused me all kinds of trouble. If Ihe committee would like to hear about llial. brother. I've got stories! Q The commiltee will hear about that in executive session, and I'm not your brother. I take it you believe in divorce? A I don't advocate it, but in a pinch, il sometimes comes in handy. For example, my second wife Ihinks our divorce was Ihe best thing lhat ever happened lo her. tj Is this committee lo assume from your answers, then, that yon would approve of everything Ihe American people see and hear on radio and TV these days about divorce and all that? A No. I am unalterably opposed lo singing commercials. They are almost as offensive as Howard Cosell, and if you make me chairman of the FCC, I will do everything in my power In ban them. Also, I don't think Presidents should muscle in oil the showing of the World Scries games. (J So yon don't approve of Presi- dent Ford? A No, 1 approve of him, I just don't want him til lose the baseball vole. Q _ Mr. Millstone, I must warn yon thai you are disclosing some disturbing opinions, but this committee is primari- ly concerned not with singing commer- cials but wilh sin. Do you approve of displaying all this violence and sex 1111 television, and giving all these sinful people access to me privacy and sanctity of the American home? A I guess 1 do. What oilier kind of people could wo find? Q Suppose some families liked TV but didn't like singing commercials, or advertisements, or anything else lhat irritated them, what remedies would you suggest? A _ Well, there used to be a little gadget that could shut (iff the sound, or black out the picture, or change the channels from across the room, sort of a freedom button. The advertisers wouldn't like it, but as chairman 1 would insist on one with every set. Q _ if you were chairman or a member nf this committee, would yon vote for a man who gave away a lot of money to people on his staff who were in trouble or went out with go-go girls, or did some other silly thing like pub- lishing nasty books about a political opponent? A It all depends on whether you could find a belter man. Q And if you were a member of Ibis committee, would you vote lo make Nelson Millstone chairman of the Fed- eral Communications Commission knowing all about his blunders and weaknesses? A Well frankly. Mr. Chairman, if this is Ihe test, I wouldn't want lo join a government that would nominate a man like me, or have a chairman like you. (J Thank yon. Mr. Millstone. A Thank you. Mr. Chairman. was abundantly confirmed. Kill when Ihe While House demanded live cover- _ no oilier verb will suffice Ihe networks caved in and gave him the lime. The networks' pusillanimous sur- render was as regrettable as Mr. Ford's magisterial command. Television likes In pretend that it lias the same First Amendment rights of "free press" Unit newspapers have. Plainly that assertion is vain. If Mr. Ford had demanded thai (ho Washington Star-News publish the Icxt of his speech, Ihe editors of the Star-News would have told him, defer- entially, to be sure, to go to hell. With the same deference, thai is what NBC, CBS and ABC should have said lo lion Ncsscn that Tuesday. The power of a President to com- maud TV lime is a power that ought not lo exist. It ought lo be abandoned. No President should be able instantly to dominate Ihe television channels, at his sole discretion, and thus lo impose his views upon the nation as a whole. The other side of lids proposition, of course, is that John Chancellor, Waller Croukile and Howard K. Smith should have the power arbitrarily to deny a President access to the nation as a whole, bill thai is one of the things that freedom of the press is all about. Any James J. Kilpatrick lime a President truly has something newsworthy lo say. In Kansas City or anywhere else, newsmen will cover it. But the editorial judgment should be Iheirs alone. Two days later, back in Washington, Ihe piclure of presidential power was wholly different. Mr. Ford owed the house committee no accounting what- ever for his pardon of Mr. Nixon. The power lo pardon is vested exclusively in the Chief Executive. He does not have lo seek congressional advice or consent. If a President grossly abuses his power to pardon (assuming the absence of brib- he may be answerable to history but he surely is not answerable to a house committee. To his great credit, Mr. Ford cast aside the imperial loga of his predeces- sor. He waived any claim lo "executive privilege." Calmly and courteously, he submitted voluntarily to the commil- lee's questions. It was a heartwarming experience to see a President elevate his sights a little lower; and though his les- timony was anticlimactic, it was won- derfully welcome. From time lo time, as appropriate occasions arise, such question periods should be Iried again. Presidential power is an edged tool. Like an axe or a sealpel or a Bowie knife, il has lo be used with utmost care. Mr. Ford is learning; he is feeling his way. and like most apprentices in a machine shop, he will nick himself now and then. He misused his power as lo the pardon and again in the mailer of the Kansas City speech, bill these were errors of judgment. The President is as fallible as all the rest of us. He demon- strated in his visit to the Hill lhat as a President lie is uncommonly wise as well. People's forum Tis now the season of beautiful smell of burning leaves so nice compared with many of the others thai we tolerate, such as tobacco and stale cigar bulls. It is too bad that some are being so thoughtless as lo burn on flammable street surfaces, which cost much more than many of the floor carpetings. It is also loo bad thai Ihe use of hot asphalt on roofs continues to provide lire haxards, terrible air pollution, and definite disservice in this climate, lie- cause such prudncls are brittle and crack in severe cold. If we'd all learn to Itnnk and reason, it would In- Midi a wonderful life for all. Contribution To the Fdilur. On behalf of the board of directors nl The Olde Hani Players, Inc.. ol Marion. I would like to extend our MiicercM wishes lo Don Tcsclier. retiring diroclur Kapid-- CMinmmnly Theater. We have all spent a great deal of lime i.ver the years working with Don III one capacity or another, and we appreciate Ilic conlribnlion lie has made lo theater .ills in Cedar Rapids, in Iowa and in Ihe Midwest The Cedar Rapids Community Theater has become a well-known institution in the area, due largely lo the time and ef- forts of Mr. Teschcr over the lasl 211-odd years. Best of luck to him in his forth- coming endeavors. Peachie Carey, Secretary The Olde Barn Players 2-T> Del.ong drive, Marion (For .lim DeLong. Terri Dare. Cindi Clark, Jeff McNulty, Kay Odekirk. Nancy Kohl. Marilyn liech, John Dal- eiden) Pardon backed Salt-grain I respect President Ford great Iv for his pardon of Mr. Nixon and for his sland in upholding Unit decision. II reflects strength in any man at the pcd- eslal which the President's office repre- sents. 1 also admire Mr. Nixon lor offer- ing to return the pardon. Both men have shown a high degree of perseverance and iorlilude in standing and doing what Ihcy believe is right. IL reflt-i Is .1 high degree of Ihe American way of life Watergate was becoming a mailer of constant in-'olveincnt for the former President, to the point he could no! real- ly concentrate on matters which de- manded his and Ihe country's attention Now America is faced with a new danger !he Ihrcal of the pardon be- coming aniitlier Waton-alo wild inn- slant involvement by the Presidcul. Are we lo continue spending time and mon- ey in forcing the President lo explain Hie reasons for Ins decision lo panlun Mr Nixon, or, should we. the American people, turn our alleniion to mallei-, winch concern Ihe welfare of our nation and people'' II a niao keeps IMS Irap sliuf, Ihe will a potli to his door. I1. Adorns No mailer who is wrnm; in Watergate and no matter who is guilty, no ;imnntit of punishment or no amount ol aggres- sion via words, etc., will help to correct the present situation. Mr. Fun! must be givi-n the (hailec in uprrate a, i'resi- di iit. He rannul lime if forced lo spend all thai ti..... dolonding !ns ilcciMui; lu Mr sland iiv liie Pi osiiit'iii-, de the millions everything from civic centers lo xoos a lotal of SI! I million. We are also laced vvii'i two revaluations in Hie near future. II will hurl the young home buyer as well a-, Ihe elderly So look ahead, ple.ise. anil don't le! Ibem li II yon that vuiir laxes will be unly MI mncli for sn many years because when Ihe zoo is paid for your laxes will not be lowered. You will be stuck with them, and Ihcy will always find a place to throw your money. I would like to know where the mil- lions of dollars in revenue sharing funds we are to receive in the near future will go. 1 understand they were originally earmarked for tax relief for which brand of Frank Sasek 1912 Hamilton street SW Smokeup To Ihe Fdilnr: Your picture on Ihe back page (28) of the Oct. 21 paper was, I hope tongue-in- cheek. I find Ihe smell of burning leaves the opposite of good and the sight of smoke-pollnled skies Ihe opposite of a pleasant sighl. Your ploy In make leal-burning ao- ceplable is short-sighted Mark (i. l.urenx ISIti Fasiern drive SW Effective this and appointed Tom chairman of the Governor's Advisory Committee on the Aging. Tom's com- mittee wrote Ihe bill creating the Stale Commission on Ihe Aging, and he per- suaded enough Republicans to join wilh Democrats to pass the bill. There are many other examples of his effectiveness in getting Republicans lo join with Democrats to make this a better stale. We need him in congress. Willson K avenue NF Pay-out To the lOditor: Before we all get on our high horse about Ihe Wisconsin farmers' shooting eallle, I have one suggestion: For Ihe next lew weeks, instead of getting a paycheck, give your boss a week just for the privilege .if working. Try il if you like il, go ahead and Mrs Harold Boellike Victor LETTERS Die editorial page welcome? readers' opinions, subject lo them Icnfllli lirnih .100 wni-K Deinoerals will nndonhledly control Ihe nexl congress and by a landslide, perhaps WC need a strong two-party One po, 30 doyl syslem, however, and Ihal is reason All may comiunuHl ond ...dnod wiiimui None published rnonymouvly. follow nnmo, oddiosv ond to ticlp oullipritifolc. proven he can work lu eel llnngs done Comi-nii mo as a member of tin' minui ily p.nl When lie was gmcrnor. llaiold Hughes No ;