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Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - April 21, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 'mm ■Mt3S%gS?B 'Sh t Ct4 tint l\upub $#%*¥& Editorial Page Sunday, April 21, 1974 Old sore PURRED by international S considerations which uns-pokenly perhaps included the fact that the American auto business is having hard times, the U.S. state department last week moved an inch toward freer trade with Cuba: It granted export licenses to three domestic automakers so their Argentine subsidiaries could sell some vehicles in Cuba. tainted, puritanical, unhappy hulk of a country heavily dependent on Russia ($2 million a day) and seriously weakened by its middle class’s exodus to other parts. This amounted to a step toward something which a growing body of opinion favors — “normalized” relationships with Cuba — but which White House policy has rigidly rejected through the years. So what about the possibilities for more of this? Some elements of life down there (education and literacy, for example) have improved under Castro. But Cuba clearly is no deadly menace to the hemisphere. Unending isolation clearly will not make it blow away. The only place it has to go is up, and mutually rewarding business with its hemispheric neighbors lights the longrun path to that. After 15 years of Castro-style communism, most of them with Cuba relatively isolated, snubbed and trade-embargoed by its hemispheric neighbors, this much can be accurately said about the place: As an export source of revolution, communism and ferment to the rest of Latin America, Castro’s island is a monumental failure. As a military threat to the United States, it has flopped spectacularly. Cuba is a hungry, ragtag, debt-ridden, conformity-forcing, jail-crowded, terror- Although the state department’s newest loosen-up for trade officially is called no change in policy toward Cuba, ostracism cannot helpfully go on forever. The time is ripening when great improvement in the lot of Cubans can be vividly connected to renewed relationships with free and democratic neighbors — strikingly in contrast to what 15 years of Castro communism have delivered. Time and nature will get rid of Castro in due course. A freer U.S. hand in re-establishing the economic payoffs of a better way can help undo his system, too. Dairy farmers’ plight Dismayed over depressed milk profits, the National Farmers Organization (NFO) has asked dairymen to begin a systematic sell-off of dairy cows for slaughter. NFO President Oren Lee Staley ascribed the decision to the refusal of certain processors to accept milk at cost-of-production prices. He charged that some product manufacturers are closing plants “apparently in an effort to back up fresh milk supplies and rollback prices paid processors.” about 50 percent of a dairyman’s operational expenses. Obviously, if anyone in the dairy business is raking in big money at the excruciating expense of the grocery' shopper, it is not the dairy farmer. Could prices be made lower if government agents were to ferret through the dairy industry in search of villains? Grocery shoppers needn’t apologize for being confused over the sell-off and rollback stratagems among milk producers and processors. Since retail prices of milk, cheese and other indispensable dairy products have hit the ionosophere, it would seem that everyone in the cow-to-con-sumer processing chain should be contented. But the NFO’s call for a sell-off gives a fairly accurate reading the dairyman’s plight: Dairy cows simply aren’t trundled off to slaughter en masse unless dairy farmers are taking a fearsome beating. Not very likely. Granted, certain markups look suspicious. For example, an Eastern Iowa dairy has assigned partial blame for high prices to a 30-percent increase in carton costs. How something as basic as a milk carton could suddenly grow that much costlier is hard to understand. The most probable culprit in the dairy-product cost explosion is ethereal old inflation: increasing costs for farmers (who claim 40 cents from each food dollar) and higher expenses for transportation, processing and distribution as well. Certainly milk prices received by farmers are higher than a year ago, but astronomic feed price increases (some more than 300 percent) have depressed profits sharply. Feed costs comprise The NFO’s decision to methodically liquidate parts of dairy herds makes the price outlook be bleaker still, but in light of the price squeeze, the move does make some sense. No one has expected poultry, beef and pork producers to absorb repeated losses. Neither should dairy farmers have to sacrifice incessantly. Pocketing defense gifts ‘Air’-scheme bared By Rowland Evans and Robert Novak WASHINGTON — Conservatives who have been contributing to a pro-Nixon publicity campaign to counteract liberal bias in the radio-television industry have in fact been helping a venture seeking profits from the President's Impeachment crisis. conservative activist who long has criticized Mr. Nixon for betraying conservative principles. In contrast to the ‘’quality” programming promised, Jones told us all the pro-Nixon material actually prepared consists of merely two written scripts mailed to radio stations. He is simply giving the scripts away, not buying air time. An organization calling itself the Conservative Broadcasting Centre is soliciting funds to buy radio and television time so that big-name conservatives can defend Mr. Nixon on the air. In fact, the centre has done nothing more than mail two pro-Nixon scripts to radio stations The clear intent of the promoters is self-profit. “The major news organizations are saying that the American people want President Nixon impeached,” the fundraising appeal begins. “One news organization is not — the Conservative Broadcasting Centre.” The letter, signed by Chairman John L. Jones, claims its programs are “going out to thousands of stations and being heard by millions of people.” To provide stations “a quality program,” the lefter asks for money The centre ‘’enables outstanding conservatives to air their points of view before the public," says the letter. As examples, it then prints the names and photos of conservative “patriots,” including Sens. James Buckley and Barry Coldwater, Reps. John Ashbrook of Ohio and Philip Crane of Illinois, Govs. George Wallace and Ronald Reagan — not one of whom authorized use of his name. Jones informed us, moreover, that the centre is not distributing a single program involving any of them — and certainly not a program discussing Buckley’s demand for Mr. Nixon’s resignation. In truth, the downtown Washington address listed for the centre is a mail-drop for Potomac Arts, Ltd., a direct-mail firm in suburban McLean,Va , owned by Jones. At 31, Jones is a veteran The appeal has raised only $4,700 so far, but that is based on a test mailing of 17,300. Jones intends to plow the money back to solicit some 3 million conservative names available to direct mailers Although his letter calls the centre a “nonprofit organization,” Jones does not deny his profit motive. ‘‘I believe in capitalism,” he told us. ‘Now, I note In your application that your last /ob was coaching tho Michigan Eighth district. . One anchor in unstable world Shaky times, firm path to HK W' By James Reston 'ASHINGTON — A few days ago, Teng Hsiao-ping, the new 70-vear-old deputy premier of China, flew to New York, had a long private conversation with Secretary of State Kissinger and flew back to Peking again as suddenly as he arrived. This was Teng’s first visit to the West in 48 years. It may be that he merely wanted to see the United Nations in operation and show China’s respect for the special session there on the price and distribution of raw materials in the world. But the assumption of most diplomats was that, like most world leaders these days, he wanted to see Kissinger. This is becoming a common occurrence: When in doubt, see Henry. Something very unusual is going on now in the relations between the nations. The political situation is unstable and unpredictable in Washington, Peking, Paris, Lindon, Bonn, Tokyo, Jerusalem, Cairo, Damascus, and in many other capitals. The visit of Teng with Kissinger, which went almost unnoticed, as they hoped it would, merely illustrates the contemporary political confusion Peking wants to know what is happening to President Nixon, and whether it can rely on the agreements reached by the President in Peking and Shanghai. Washington wants to know what is happening meanwhile in the political changes that are taking place in China, and is much more worried than it lets on about the danger of war between Moscow and Peking. The dominant personalities and tone of China’s diplomacy are changing. Chou Kn-lai seemed to be the informing mind and the decisive voice in Peking when Nixon visited there. Chou dealt with the practical details of policy and established a close personal relationship of respect and even admiration with Kissinger. But the messages from Peking to Washington now come directly from Mao Tse-tung through different envoys. On his last visit to Peking, Kissinger found that it was Mao Tse-tung who was defin- People s forumUrgency for schools To the Editor: In regard to the letter by Mr. Manhart April 17, I would like to make known a few facts he overlooked. The proposed bond issue is far from a blank check. The money is desperately needed to renovate the four old junior high buildings in a carefully planned program that would provide adequate, up-to-date facilities for two-thirds of the junior high students in our district. If Mr. Manhart were really concerned about inflation, he would be out urging everyone to vote for the bond issue. If those old buildings are not renovated, they will eventually have to be replaced — at an estimated cost of over $6 million each. They are well-located, well-built buildings which can be renovated for one-third the cost of replacing them. Pupil enrollment is going down or leveling off, but we still must provide an adequate junior high school education for the 900, 800 or 700 students who attend each of the four old buildings every year. Is providing the facilities for that many students every year “still another wild venture”? Hardly. Publisher % Hall Svndr ate The students from Mr. Manhart's neighborhood attend Hiawatha grade school (1958 1965), Harding junior high school (1965), and Kennedy high school (1969). I would personally like to invite him to tour McKinley junior high school ( 1922) so he might be enlightened as to ing, not merely the philosophy of China as before, but the policy of China on Taiwan, Southeast Asia, Europe, Japan and atomic weapons. Chou En-lai remains the premier of China, but he seems to be less prominent now and references to him in diplomatic conversation arc politely ignored by Chinese diplomats. Teng, when he was in New York, insisted that China’s cautious policy of accommodation with the United States remained the same and wanted to be assured that Washington felt the same way, but Chou En-lai’s name and role were seldom mentioned. Washington wonders about all this. Kissinger is too shrewd and experienced to make a policy with a man instead of with a country, but he placed great reliance on Chou En-lai’s moderation and historical vision. Chou told President Pompidou of France just before Pompidou died that as James Reston he (Chou) looked to the future, his concern was that China should recognize that her growing power should be tempered by ‘‘modesty.” In another 50 years, Chou said, China would be so powerful that the next generation might be deceived by too much “pride” and might ‘‘lose their heads.” Therefore, Chou remarked, it could be dangerous unless in these last years of the old regime, the rising generation in China did not pay attention to Mao Tse-tung’s teaching to be ‘ modest.” The philosophic and historical sweep of t hou En-lai’s mind obviously impressed Kissinger, but the other No. 2 men in China, Liu Shao-ehi and Lin Piao, disappeared, and now even Chou seems to bo losing his influence and changing his tune. Recently, he mocked President Nixon’s favorite promise of a “genera- why we so very badly need to pass this bond issue Mrs. John Stewart 2421 Fourth avenue SECourt reform To the Editor: Concerning the article in The Gazette April 12, “House Votes Court Changes”, it simply amazes me how stupidity continues to ooze from the legislature. I refer to the inept way some legislators are fumbling with the costly monstrosity called the unified court systemic system Senator Riley ramrodded through the legislature and dumped on the unsuspecting public in a slipstream of a mislabeled ‘‘home rule act.” It gets a little sickening to hear the fathers of this system harp that “as a whole the system is working well.” Nothing could be further from the truth. So far, Mr. Riley’s brainstorm has cost Iowa taxpayers thousands of dollars — all for what? Honest people, for years, have always stepped up and paid their obligations under any court system, with Insights History is the sum total of the things that could have been avoided. Konrad Adenauer tion of peace” and argued that “so long as imperialism exists, revolution and war are inevitable.” So, back of all the domestic political arguments over Watergate and the succession to power in China, France, and Israel, the struggles of the nations and of power, life, poverty and death in other countries go on all over the world. It is a dicey and dangerous time: Internal political weaknesses in nations not only impede progress but encourage foreign adventures and even the risk of disastrous wars This could happen in the Middle East and along the Sino-Soviet border much more easily and suddenly than most people suppose. The burden of avoiding it falls largely on the United States and also, under the present circumstances in Washington, on the judgment and energy of Henry Kissinger. In the last few days, he has not only been seeing Teng from Peking and Gromyko from Moscow, the secretary general of the United Nations, the President of Algeria, General Moshe Dayan of Israel and the intelligence chief of Syria, but the foreign ministers of the Latin American republics, the members of the foreign and military affairs committees of the congress, and the inquisitive reporters of the press. Teng, the old revolutionary, is only the latest symbol of the problem. This week, having talked to all these people, Kissinger will be swing the Soviet foreign minister again in Geneva, before he goes on to the Middle East to try to stop the fighting between Israel and Syria along the Golan heights, and before he arranges Nixon’s forthcoming visit to Moscow. So the importance of tieing Henry has its responsibilities. He doesn’t have the answer to all these problems. Senator Jackson of Washington thinks Kissinger is all wrong on most of them, and even Kissinger’s old colleagues in the universities are fussing at him. But the weaker President Nixon becomes politically, the more the leaders of the world like Teng turn to him for guidance and support Ne* York Time* Service usually only a few dollars in costs, without costing the taxpayer a dime . . . Now I read that another legislator, Donald Doyle (D-Sioux City) is going to jump in and bail out the whole system by correcting a few minor bugs. I trust, in his next interview, he comes up with answers for the BIG bugs. . . . Mr. Doyle proposes to turn the convicted indigent (usually the repeat troublemaker) loose for X number of days while he raises money lor the fine . . . If he doesn’t meet his obligations (and in most cases he doesn’t) the magistrate may hold him in contempt of court. So we fine the “poor fellow” over again and the vicious cycle of deadbeat-ing resumes . . . Meanwhile, “the coddled misfit” is free, running at large, insulting, speeding, threatening, harassing, vandalizing and endangering the peace-abiding citizens. The simplest answer, at least in the traffic area, would be for the magistrate or judge to pick up and hold the conv icted person's driver’s permit until the fine is paid. I am confident our streets would become much safer in a very short whileGay rights line drawn By William Safire ORDINANCES prohibiting discrimination against homosexuals havt been passed in Minneapolis, Detroit and the District of Columbia recently; the matter now has come before the New York City council. To the reasons why a person cannot be denied employment or housing — “race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, sex or physical handicap” — the proposed amendment to New York’s civil rights law would add “sexual orientation.” Nontraffic misdemeanors also can lie processed in an efficient manner. Iowa law provides, as do most city ordinances, jail sentences up to 30 days for convictions. It is true the indigent must be provided with an attorney. Nonetheless, the cost of an occasional attorney is minute compared to the extravagant cost of this otherwise failing court system. A few jail sentences and there won’t be too many indigents showing up in courtrooms. Ifs time that sympathetic judges and ill informed legislators come down from their ivory towers and quit passing the buck. . . . Harry M. Moorhead, Mayor What Cheer Should homosexuals — “gays,” to use the word they prefer to the dozens of slang derogations used by “straights” — be given a legal means to combat a social stigma? I think so. But not for the reasons advanced in most of the writing on this subject. As homosexuals have gained the courage to come “out of the closets and into the streets,” many have proceeded to overstate their case. No longer do gays say “live and let live”; they suggest that criticism of homosexuality is bigoted and psychologically outdated, and assert that their way of life is fulfilling and morally unassailable. Psychiatrist Robert PL Gould, writing in a recent New York Times magazine, holds that if social taboos were lifted, “most humans would be functioning bisexuals . . . pathology might very well consist of exclusive interest in one sex ...” Flat assertions like that, with no empirical evidence to back it up, go unchallenged. It is one thing for the American Psychiatric Assn. to decree that homosexuality is no longer considered a category of mental illness, but to say that in the future the heterosexuals w ill be considered the dev iates steps over the brink To lie gay is to tie abnormal, whether or not that abnormality extends to one-tenth of the population. To be gay is to lie engaged in an activity that both moral absolutists and moral relativists would label “immoral,” with both scripture and sociological statistics on their side. The majority which considers homosexuality to be a mental problem to he corrected, or a moral decision to lie castigated, is not to tx* dismissed as a bunch of benighted bigots. Homosexuality should tie discouraged; the prospect of universal bisexuality is infinitely depressing. The question then becomes: How can this abnormality lie contained in a way that does not abridge personal freedom? To that fine, philosophical question can be added this practical note: How do we deal with gay militants so as not to make heroes out of them0 The answer is to treat gays as people who are different, who are becoming unashamed of tieing different, and who have every right to lie different. People who are “normal” (the ety mological root of that word is "square”) have every right to disapprove, to discourage, to dissuade, but not to coerce. Does this high-sounding concern for civil liberty mean that we should pass laws allowing gays to teach small children in public schools? I’m afraid so. As long as a teacher does not teach homosexuality, he's entitled to be gay; we can hope that gay leader Ronald Gold is right when he says “it isn’t catching.” That is a painful stretch, but there is a practical side: Better a forthright homosexual teacher than a secret one Certainly there is danger in toleration tieing taken for approval, but the greater danger is the invasion of everybody’s right to privacy. The adult homosexual’s right to be let alone must not tie invaded by a majority seeking to make unlawful what it regards as sinful. lf society does not like what it sees, society should remove its eye from the keyhole; now that gays want to come out of the closets, it is not right for the majority to slam them back in. Is our morality so tepid, or our heterosexuality so enervated, that the majority must find petty ways to discriminate against homosexual men and women? In sexual competition, the male-female connection needs no legal or social edge: Let the straights play it straight. Repression and intolerance (as well as a tone of condescension I cannot comb out of this essay) demean all of us and cloak a psychological problem in the guise of a “cause.” Homosexuality should be neither a cause nor a crime, but as long as we treat it as a crime, we will be giving its practitioners a cause. The New York City councilmen who shy away from offering homosexuals the full protection of anti-discrimination laws worry about backlash on election day (or worse, support from gay liberation groups) but they should worry more about each citizen’s personal freedom. We can treat the gays as people with mental problems, or counter their new presentation with some missionary work of our own, or gratify our consciences by railing at them as sinners. But when we fail to give them the equal protection of the law , then it is the law that is queer. New York Time* Service . ;