Cedar Rapids Gazette, December 11, 1974, Page 6

Publication: Cedar Rapids Gazette December 11, 1974

Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - December 11, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa ronfflfroroiwiivinjvu^ fUpltl* Editorial Page Wednesday, December 11,1974. Strikers’ food stomps If strikers seem more audacious than usual these days, the brassiness owes mainly to strike funds amassed against the day of union-managemnent standoff. Though none approaches tin* United Auto Workers’ cash reserve, most unions’ strike kitties hold ample insurance for short-term walkouts. A secondary trump card is the availability of publicly-funded food stamps for the families of strikers whose reduced incomes fall within program boundaries. “An astounding raid on the public treasury” is the description given by Charles ll. Smith, jr., of Cleveland, board chairman of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. By all odds, it’s a fair assessment. Here is Smith speaking last month in Chicago. “The consumer winds up paying twice: once through his taxes to subsidize the strikers, and once more through a higher bill for the things he buys in the marketplace ... “The possibility of public assistance to strikers affects both labor and management, but in opposite directions. The union and its members see the strike costing them less; the employer, on the other hand, would realize that while he is losing sales and substantial sums of money, he is getting no closer to settlement because the strikers art' not feeling similar pressure.” Smith noted that during the 1970 strike against General Motors, the state of Michigan alone suffered a $5 million per week loss in sales and income tax revenue, coupled w ith an increase in welfare costs of $15 million for the months workers were on strike. Clearly, congress did not intend for the otherwise worthy food stamp program to help paralyze business and industry. A majority of U S. taxpayers must resent having their funds replenish the pantries of strikers. Revising the food stamp law may be complicated, even politically dangerous for congressmen heavily dependent on big labor Nonetheless, the program should be amended to eliminate those whose low incomes are attributable to voluntarily staving off the job.No-show Now that Judge Sirica has virtually ruled out testimony by Richard Nixon, the only oaths heard from the former President will be those aired in the Watergate tapes. Backhand tax-boosting As a way to increase revenue from Iowa’s state income tax. the senate appropriations committee reportedly is considering 1975 legislation to eliminate the deductibility of federal income taxes on state returns. Even if a need for additional funds from the income tax in Iowa can be established, that would be a poor way to get them. The main flaw in pruning deductibles from any tax system is psychological — a secondary but important quality in any government compulsion where compliance by the public is essential. Federal income taxes are the heaviest burden most earners carn. Removing from that load its customary benefit of helping soften still another tax is bound to call up anger, resentment and resistance needlessly across the board. lf increased revenue from the state income tax becomes an agreed-on objective, a better way to get it would be openly and cleanly: by raising the tax rate and letting it bite where it will. One purpose in erasing the federal taxes’ deductible feature, senate spokesmen say, would be to “add progressive” to Iowa's structure — in other words, to get more taxes out of those who earn more money and can best afford to pay more too. That is both legitimate and fair. But that can happen straighter. more directly, simply by revising basic rates and income categories to put justly bigger burdens on the larger earners, irrespective of the tax deductibles that anybody gets to claim. Hacking off deductibles across the board, in short, is a backdoor approach. It screens the real purpose, takes a little heat off tax-increase enactors, possibly, but invites new resentment toward a system already surrounded by too much of that. When income-tax increasing needs another legislative push in Iowa, it had better come about straightforwardly or not at all. /sn t it the truth? By Coft Riblet, jr No man can escape the punishment that has been laid out for him in the scheme of things Thus. a man is hi-. nun worst enemy, his wife is his sourest critic, and his ta\ collector I' the confiscator of his substance and the crowning cause of his bottomless despair. The immense and ever-increasing sums which the state wrings from the people are never enough for it . , —P A Kropotkin, 1884 Not is he real?’Santa why a man? By Jim Fiebig Asked by a wire sen ice newswoman why she thought Kris Kringle has always been portrayed as a man, a female department store Santa in New York City blamed it on “the illusion that men are powerful. Anyone who holds back 12 reindeer while riding through the air and gives things to children around the world bad to be powerful.” A cute theory — but dumb As dumb, in fact, as the question It was like asking why Abe Lincoln or Attila the Hun have always been portrayed as men As most of us know, Santa Claus had bis origin in St. Nicholas — a man. of course —■ who was a bishop in Fourth century Asia Minor His generosity not only earned him canonization, but the Dutch began celebrating his feast day with sports and gifts for the children When Dutch settlers came to America they brought “Sinter Klass” along. where be was promptly attacked by lazy tongues and slurred into Santa Claus. We can see. then, that the masculine ability to hold bat k 12 snorting reindeer has absolutely nothing to do with Santa Claus being a man We can also see that ladies shouldn't be allowed to play Santa unless they have unusually deep voices Women needn't feel discriminated against, however The other biggie, the Faster Bunnv, has always and exclusively been portrayed as a female Males, after all, can’t lay eggs And you don t hear anv complaining about that :uvs Centro) FeeTore* Jim Fiebtg ( H I* IWV ",V5 ,VUE* .47 ‘Jose, why don't I take this black stuff off your hands, before it ruins your beanpatch?' People's forum Done unto To the Editor: In 1890 Jacob Rns pointed out in his ‘ How the Other Half Lives” the problems of the poor In spite of two world wars, three other wars, the worldwide depression in the 30s and many recessions since 1890, increases in productivity have provided fantastic improvements in the standard of living. Someone should now write a book on “How the Lowest Quarter Lives”. The families in the lowest 25 percent of incomes have serious economic problems. Their living costs have been increased greatly by the huge increases in wages and salaries of those who were already well paid For example, all of us will have to pay more for electric current and all manufactured goods because of the B4 percent increase that coal miners will get. Low-income families must pay high prices now for the deficit spending of congress during the last dozen years. Political fakers will boast of what they will do for the poor, but they never tell us what they have done TO the poor Even if there were fair and sensible wage and salary policies and congressional honesty, low-income people would still have economic problems. Bad growing weather in this and other countries and the population explosion have driven food prices higher. The oil crisis and the increasing scarcity of raw materials will punish everybody. Those who really have the spirit of brotherhood will oppose some of the things that penalize the less fortunate, Those who let some network reporters wash their brains will think that there are easy answers Ross Young 1052 Daniels street NE Irving school To the Editor: Next Jan 9, a study group's decision will be handed to Supt Clark and the school board, who will then make a final judgment on whether to take over Irving school in Marion Irving parents were told that the school board wants to use the Irving building for administration people. Irving students would have to go to Emerson, which means crossing Tenth street, a busy thoroughfare The board will not consider the matter of busing until it has made a final decision concerning the school Irving is in full use The small classes are true throughout Marion The teachers we talked with feel a greater learning experience results from these smaller classes in all the schools In Marion's recent census the Irving area has 20 children age 4, 25 age 3, and 23 age 2 Is this a dwindling population when our classes are allowed no more than 25 to 27 students0 . . The sc hool hoard is bs ated in Starry school, which needs more space While Starry ends up with a little more needed space in that school, Irving students are supposed to lose their neighborhood school altogether The hoard will not consider the fact that Emerson has four available rooms, all next to each other The board could easily use this space and have a private entrance with one little change of kindergartners using another entrance close by. At our meetings we were constantly warned of things that might happen within the next two years (I) A frozen financial situation that may still be with us in two years (2) A possibility of St Joseph’s school closing and its students filling up Emerson school (3) If Irving students don't get to Emerson first they may have to be bused in all directions to many different schools Irving parents are told we should give up our school in case things go wrong in the future Why should such a rash move be made with ‘possibilities” for reasons? Our 5- to 12-year-olds need the closeness and security of the neighborhood school they have been growing up with Why can’t Irving students stay in their own neighborhood school for these two years that are constantly referred to as the beginning of the end of financial security in the school system? Then if the need actually presents itself, consolidate schools and do it equally and citywide, not just in one area Mr and Mrs Jerry Kemp 980 Fourth street, Marion (and five additional couples) Caring people To the Editor: All ten* often we think of American industries as huge. impersonal conglomerates that put pollutants into our air and water. Still others may look at them in terms of the final products they produce (radio components, cranes or electrical equipment) or the* total numtwT of payroll dollars they pump into our society. Our news media present still another image of industry today — the economic chaos caused when union employes of these “impersonal giants" became unhappy and refuse to work What many of us fail to realize is that these industries and their unum employes are people — real honest-to- goodness, hard-working people who recognize and appreciate the problems of their friends and neighbors. These people have problems too, as the rest of us do. but they are not insensitive to the problems of others. This fact was {Hunted up Friday, NOV 29. when the Cedar Valley Chapter of the Kidney Foundation of Iowa received a $2,900 check from the Link-Belt Speeder Employes Cniteci Fund — Loc al '299, Ended Auto Workers The check was accompanied bv a letter directing that the money be used in operating the Kidney Foundation's drug bank (a program which allows kidney dialysis or kidney transplant patients to purchase presc ription drugs arid medications at a greatly rc*duced cost). The contributors have been officially and properly thanked for this new meaning they have given to the word “Thanksgiving." but we of the Cedar Valley Chapter wanted to make all resj-dents of this area aware of the great work of these* 24-carat American union workers. Tom Eggleston 4H17 Pine View drive NE President. Cedar Valley Chapter Kidney Foundation of IowaInsights \ The famous politician was trying to save both his faces. John GuntherPrice-hold To the* Editor Che* cat was finally let out of the bag, and the real culprit in the runaway inflationary spiral exposed to full public view Prices, not wages Two national f'KHi chains — A & P and the Kroger Co., with considerable reluctance and self-restraint, have agreed to freeze the* prices of some* food stuffs for one month and two months, respectively. I nom wages arc* and have tn*en for a long time, rigidly frozen for a full year at a time during the customary three-year life of negotiated latmr contrac ts With from six to 12 and more upward jumps in tile* pricer of some f»MMlstuffs within a period of one* year, the overstretched elasticity pulling on wages can do nothing othe*r than cause wages to jump forward Uh), in limited amount. at the end of their one-year freeze In many cases, these* increases are insufficient to match the advance of prices. In claiming that wages have been the forerunner in this thing, haven't we been barking up the wrong tree? First stop the price-locomotive, and the union-labor wage-train is rendered devoid of all power to move forward Milton Smith OelweinBlock 1-380 To the Editor: A recent Gazette editorial suggested that Hiawatha citizens and officials were out of line in protesting the proposed route of 1-380 and that such objections should have been voiced a few years back when the project was first on the draw ing hoard. Dire predictions were made that litigation could result in a holdup of three or four years and might even lead to the project being abandoned Maybe that wouldn’t be the worst thing that could happen After all, there has been a change in the situation since the original plans for this type of road was unveiled. No one then could envision a fuel shortage. The speed limit hadn’t been reduced to 55 miles per hour and everyone thought gasoline rationing was a thing of the past. There is another factor which should be considered before local Chambers of Commerce charge headlong into approval of such projects. That is the matter of land being spoiled for agricultural purposes With worldwide hunger now prevalent, every acre of productive land covered with concrete means a few more people will go to bed hungry. There is no land being manufactured to replace that swallowed up by highways. Perhaps we should re-examine our priorities. Maybe we don’t need superhighways as bad as we need food and cleaner environment. Citizens groups all over the country are taking a different look at highway projects now and many have decided that they no longer are as important as they once seemed If the citizens of Hiawatha somehow slow down the rush to make a giant concrete skating rink out of the entire state of Iowa. they should be praised instead of condemned Keith Kennedy Center PointProfitless To the Editor I live on a farm About six months ago my dad bought my sister and me each a calf Now they are a lot bigger but we could not get as much money for them if we sold them But now their meat costs more in the store Feed is higher than it was. A farmer can't make money by raising cattle Mike Wilkins Route I, ElyEnclosures To the Editor Having seen two recent letters in regard to Heathcliff, I want to add one more vote and a couple proxy votes in favor of that delightful little feline rogue I always clipped him out and enclosed him in letters to either friends in Oregon or Colorado, and return letters always mentioned how much they enjoyed his antics. Sometimes we take for granted things that please us most Heathcliff may be gone, but he is definitely not forgotten If he can In* returned, it would he a welcome Christmas gift Dorothy Lind Iowa City Let new tax hit Arab oil hardest By William F. Buckley, jr. It is true that President Ford has permitted himself to look and act a little hit like Jin* Palooka in recent weeks, and behold, the country is sore afraid People who have experienced Gerald Ford at close quarters know that he is a man of nimble intelligence who quickly understands the dimensions of a problem. Clearly his difficulty lies in having acquired the habit, over the years, of approaching problems with more or less equal consideration given to several factors: How would congress react, how would the folks back home react, how would the special interests react, how would the White House react? Now that the White House IS Ford, it requires readjustment of old habits. That readjustment is not easy. Everyone agrees that he committed a very bad slip when. in opposing a gas tax, he gave as the principal reason for doing so that “81 percent of the people” were against the tax Eighty-one percent of the people are against any tax, except maybe against oil companies Putting entirely aside the question whether there ought to be a gasoline tax, the reason why there should be such a tax or shouldn't be such a tax oughtn't to be decided conclusively by the fleeting unpopularity of it I say fleeting unpopularity because there is already a very heavy federal tax on gasoline, and as a professional injustice collector. I have yet to hear a single complaint against it. Acceptable People get used to things. That is both good and bad. They get used to the heavy, spirit-extinguishmg taxation of omnipotent government. It does not require very much from the leader to persuade a people suffering from inflation and oil blackmail that you need to increase the tax on gasoline. But here is where Mr Ford’s instincts may be doing him a good service To impose a tax upon oneself is hard enough A tax approaches unendurability when the purpose of that tax is not entirely palpable. For emotional reasons, William F. Buckley, jr. the very best taxes are those that art being used to reward people or to punisf them An example is a raise in socia security payments for old people Thert will be a little grumbling, but no! much. The second best is a tax to build bombers and submarines to rip the hell out of the Japanese navy in retaliation foi Pearl Harbor: That kind of tax came close to being a popular tax as any if recent history The blanket tax on gas is missing thai form of discrimination that gives it a moral flavor That is why the President should recommend to congress a differentiated tax: a tax that falls mon heavily on the products of a country thai seeks to do us damage, less heavily or the products of a country that does not seek to do us damage All-embracmg The quadrupling in the price of oil b the Persian Gulf State's had the effect <i raising the price of oil elsewhere, for th very simple reason that economic law go to work to the advantage of all emir tries, or companies, in possession <i goods suddenly grown sc arce If the loci grocer happened to have a huge stock (I sugar on hand when the price of it sud denly went up from IO cents to KO cent* he is going to sell his sugar for the ne) price rather than for the old price Bu! the price set by the Persian Gul states tends to be punitive in its effect a in its intention It is for this reason that discriminatory tax, which would ac complish the objective of dec reasin consumption, would satisfy the nations and altogether wholesome, resolution I hit back at the profiteers Set a tax, at the port of entry designed exactly to double the blae km a factor If Saudi Arabia is charging us $1 for five-dollar fuel, tax Saudi Arabia fuel $5 as it (*om»*s across the border The* price increase is passe*! along t the consumer But always the market i looking for cheaper fuel, and the in dueement is there for oil producin states that need U, s patronage to eas down their prices, to capture a bette share of the market - thus fracturin the cartel Mr. F ord must move scn»n Here is way to pr«K eed Star V**4fltott ;

  • Coft Riblet
  • Dorothy Lind
  • Jim Fiebig
  • Keith Kennedy
  • Kris Kringle
  • Marion Irving
  • Mike Wilkins
  • Milton Smith Oelweinblock
  • Mrs Jerry Kemp
  • Richard Nixon
  • Supt Clark
  • Tom Eggleston
  • William F. Buckley

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Publication: Cedar Rapids Gazette

Location: Cedar Rapids, Iowa

Issue Date: December 11, 1974

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