Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - August 30, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Rn pithAnd we don t have a Mc. Nice Guy in the bunch
‘Stiff upper lip, chaps
Friday, August 30, 1974
Court has problems too
A GROUP OF WATERLOO citizens recently petitioned the Black Hawk county district court urging that judges show greater respect for local police officers and greater concern for crime victims than crime perpetrators.
The petition ended with the statement that the signers believe it time for a thorough investigation and publication of judgeship appointments, salaries and pensions “by a responsible non-political ad hoc committee.”
District Judge Blair Wood of Waterloo responded to the petition, pointing out the differences between the roles of the police and the court. His reply gives an insight into the court’s problems that deserve careful consideration of all citizens.
There “is no lack of respect by the judiciary for the difficult and important role which the police perform in our system of justice,” Judge Wood said in the letter to petitioners.
But a judge and an officer have different responsibilities. The officer, in the judge’s words, usually has a “a stronger obsession with punishment while the chief interest of the judge is in protecting society and the same penalty does not always meet both objectives.”
As an example, Judge Wood told of a young man with no police record who was brought before him for sentencing on an armed robbery conviction. A judge has two choices: Sentence the violator to a long prison term or parole him. That’s because the state’s present criminal code, the judge said, was “inherited almost unchanged from the last century.”
Had the violator been a hardened criminal with a prior record demonstrating he could not be rehabilitated, Judge Wood said, “the only reasonable choice” would have been a prison term. But this man had no prison record, had a job and a family. His term for this crime would have been 25 years and sentencing him to prison probably would have destroyed any chance of rehabilitation. He would have lost his job and, in all probability, his family. In many such cases, the family winds up on welfare.
More important to his home community, according to the judge, the chance that he would revert to crime after being released from prison is 75 percent. Since it costs the state about $7,500 a year to keep an individual in prison, it is understandable why the parole route might be preferable if the judge believes he can be helped, while being permitted to hold his job and keep his family at no cost to the state.
VV ay with words
By Theodore M. Bernstein
T^ONGENTLE stroking. Normally you *■ ' would think of stroking as meaning a gentle, caressing action. As the word has come into use in the political arca in recent months it embraces that sense, but a little more besides It conveys the idea of a kind of caressing of a politician or official to win over him or his vote.
A representative spoke recently, for example, of contacts made with him by the White House that he interpreted to be stroking to gain his vote on the impeachment issue.
Not a very deep idea. W hat is the correct way to write the phrase in depth? That is what Phyllis Riegcr of Philadelphia would like to know She has seen it written as two words, as one word and as a hyphenated word and she is confused
One of those variations may be written off immediately: There is no single word indepth. When the words function as an adjective they are hyphenated; you would whte, for example, "The scientists are
Moreover, statistics show that the percentage of parolees who revert to crime is 15 — 60 percent under the rate of those who have been sent to prison.
“I have been many years on my job,” Judge Wood concluded, “and have learned some things about the law and human behavior and the penitentiaries and rehabilitation and deterrence. I cannot shut my eyes to what I have learned or take any other way than in my own judgment is the best way to keep law and order in this community. Human nature being what it is, I am sure that police or public will not always approve.”
We think the judge makes a case reasonable people can subscribe to — so far as it affects those convicted of less violent crimes.
But, along with many other Iowans, we cannot help but wonder whether good judgment is used in the leniency sometimes shown convicted rapists or murderers or those convicted of other vicious crimes.
We suspect those are the types of cases that were in the backs of the petitioners’ minds even though they used as their immediate peg an incident involving an attack on a police officer who was not in uniform at the time.
TRUE TO their stereotyped image, the unflappable British apparently are jousting the inflation dragon more adroitly than Americans. As Columnist James Reston observes on this page, the common folk in London have found some admirably inventive ways to cope.
That contrasts vividly against the picture here, even though the inflation crunch is only half the intensity of England’s. Not only do American consumers seem disoriented (many are foolishly heeding advertisers’ inflationary spend-now blandishments), but government leaders are in a quandary, too. Observes financial forecaster Albert Sindlinger, “When I talk to politicians about the gravity of the matter, the first thing they want to know is should they sell their stocks. That’s the mentality we have in Washington; they look first to their own welfare.”
Are Americans really that far below the British in ability to meet financial crises sensibly? The Anglophiles among us may think so, but the guess here is that Yank ingenuity will heighten apace with the inflationary spiral. Whether resourcefulness would double along with inflation is knowledge we would gladly forego.
conducting an in depth study of the economy.” In all other instances the two words are two words: “The scientists are conducting a study in depth "
Word oddities, lf we take pot (which we shouldn't do) and put you — er, u — into it to get pout, we have two words with a common origin, but no one is quite sure what that origin is. One theory is that the common base is the Indo-European bu-, meaning to swell A rounded pot gives the impression of something swollen and a thrusting out of the lips in a pout gives a similar impression. But all this is a hypothesis. which might easily go to pot.
More oddities A powerful business man is often known as a tycoon, a word that has come a long way — all the way from the Far East. It derived from the Chinese ta, great, and kiun, prince or ruler, and it was picked up in the Occident in the middle of the last century
Staying afloat crazily
By James Reston
LONDON — The British rate of infla-1 tion is now almost double America s, and the chances are that things will get worse before they get desperate, so the people are coming up with some ingenious ways to live through the crisis and even beat it
The Economist magazine suggests, not very helpfully. "Don’t just sit there: build an ark " Don’t count on the politicians, it warns, they are going to fight an election in October "on issues that have no relevance to the problems ahead "
The London Business School, in an economic forecast by Prof. James Ball and Terry Burns, tells the people not to imagine that the present crisis will go away. They foresee consumer prices rising another 20 percent in 1075, and predict that there will be a million unemployed here the winter after next.
Meanwhile, the ordinary people, at the suggestion of the London Sunday Times, have some remedies of their own Richard Dawson of Brighton suggests that friendly neighbors form four-family urban communes. What they couldn't afford separately, at present prices, he thinks, they might be able to afford together
Ford s impact on religion
Deep piety quietly returning
By David Poling, D D.
THE DEPARTURE of Richard M Nixon from the White House will occupy political analysts for the remainder of the year and historians for the rest of the century. Since the matters of church and state still control our society, it is appropriate to consider the impact of President Gerald R Ford — in religion as well as politics.
It is apparent to many Americans that the new President is a man of deep personal convictions, a serious member of the Episcopal Church, and is willing to make prayer and public life a natural experience. His references to the Almighty in his first addresses were not the suggestions of a speech writer but the normal affirmations of a spiritual personality.
His first weekend in office found President Ford not in some entertainment center in Florida or California — but attending his neighborhood church in suburban Maryland. It is the opinion of many who know this man from Michigan that his occupancy of the White House will mark a quiet return of the religious dimension — not only in Washington but across the United States.
Consider these clues. Of all the associations, organizations and groups to which (Jerald Ford has belonged in his 20 years of public life, a congressional prayer group has been his most determined priority. The new President reflects the deep piety that is nourished and sustained in so many Michigan households. Indeed, one of his sons is presently preparing for the ministry at Gordon-Con well Seminary. The concerns of church and Bible and the Christian life are familiar to this family and their friends
With this background, what sort of changes should we anticipate in the affairs of church and state? For a President, by neglect or enthusiasm hostility or cordiality, does affect the religious atmosphere in the United States.
I Look for an end to the formal
worship services in the White House. Nothing was more irritating to the religious community of North America than the Sunday services held for an "invited” audience, a command performance of President Nixon Apologists argued that the Secret Service wanted this, it was easier to handle security. Whatever. President Ford and his family will move out of this religious imprisonment and reinstate the public attendance at church that every other President has followed
2. Just as this administration has declared an open and honest style of leadership in the matters of state, so will the channels be extended to the dozens of churchmen of every denomination and faith to hear their concerns, answer their inquiries, and seek their counsel
The Nixon administration, and the last years of the Johnson, saw an almost complete put down of church leaders and religious issues. Vietnam was the reason, but now a new beginning will do much to restore a balance in these matters
People s forum
To the Editor:
Considering the fate of our unfortunate ex-President, who, after an overwhelming victory at the polls less than two years ago, has fallen from grace and has been forced to resign by the pressure of public opinion, is the topmost prize on our nation’s political ladder worth having?
Why do rational persons, sincerely dedicated to the betterment of our nation and its people aspire to the highest political office within the power of our people to bestow upon one, when it can be expected that their inadvertent irregularities and faults shall bt* magnified to the point where they’re made to appear like a common criminal, hauled down from
Almost 2(1 years ago, overlooking the Hudson river at Morningside Heights, a new building was being dedicated. Some two dozen denominations and church groups would inhabit this New York skyscraper The largest tenant was to be the National Council of Churches, with the World Council taking an entire floor.
As the impressive ceremonies came to an end. Dwight David Eisenhower stepped forward and the cornerstone of the Interchurch Center was laid by the 34th President of the United States. For a man of faith and in touch with the spiritual life of the people, it was a normal, natural event to share
With Gerald Ford we will see the quiet but forceful return of the religious dimension
Newsoao*'' E"t®roris<* Ass"
Some people suffer in silence louder than others.
— Detroit Free Press
their high pedestal, and dragged through the mud of disgrace and dishonor?
People being what they are today, a President of the United States, notwithstanding hts best efforts in our behalf, must either die or be assassinated while in office, to be accorded due honor
Milton Smith Oelwein
To the Editor
How many people in the city know that the Wilson's prime bacon that is priced in the supermarket at ti.39 a pound is costing less than 39 cents a pound live weight?
Its a ripoff when the consumer pays SI a pound over live price for a pound of bacon I believe consumers should know this.
George VV Davis Route I, Marion
Government of laws, not men
Nowhere did the system fail
By Roscoe Drummond
WASHINGTON — There is a reassuring answer to one haunting question which remains in the wake of Watergate. The question: Did we have and do vve still retain a government of laws, not of men iii the United States of America?
The answer yes Recent events prove it Events have proved that even the President is not above the law
Events have proved that the President and the President’s aides and high appointees tried to turn the American system into a government of men instead of laws They failed Orderly, inexorable law prevailed at every point.
This is the significant and reassuring proof that the American system did work, that it successfully resisted every attempt to subvert it, and that it remains virile and intact
Here is how it worked
The role of Judge Sirica When defense lawyers for the five who broke into Watergate rested their case on a narrow defense to shield higher-ups, federal U S District Judge John Sirica’s searching questions caused the coverup to Iwgin to crumble at the very start
The role of the congress When it appeared that the President’s agents at the justice department might be too timid in their prosecution, congress required the President to name a special prosecutor; and when the President fired Archibald ( ox liecause he was becoming too insistent, congress required him to appoint another special prosecutor who couldn't be fired without congressional concurrence
The role of the supreme court The three Nixon appointees who participated supported the law, not the man They joined to make possible the 8 to ll decision to yield subpoenaed tapes, and among them were tapes which produced conclusive evidence against the President
The role of the house judiciary committee Some in both parties may have been more interested in prosecuting or protecting Richard Nixon the man than in anything else But in the end. when tin* evidence was clear and conclusive, all reached the same conclusion.
There were no partisan differences, no ideological dissents. They voted unanimously — Republicans and Democrats, liberals* and conservatives — that the facts and the law required them to recommend impeachment They did — and thus it was plainly a government of
2a ti k nit! itf
The role of the Republican leadership They did what they had to do and did it well. After the damaging revelations on the June 23 tapes, they had to tell the President the painful truth. They did not tell him he had to resign: they did not ask him to resign. They informed the President frankly that he had only txo alternatives — to he removed from office by the senate or to resign.
The party leaders were his friends, most of them his admirers and, above all, his candid informants They put law above loyalty.
The role of the President's chief counsel James I) St Clair faithfully argued that there were no limits to presidential confidentiality When the supreme court ruled otherwise, he made it clear that he would have to resign if the President dill not obey the supreme court To disobey meant certain removal To obey meant certain resignation
Though battered arid buffeted arui aid cd by some very lucky breaks in the exposure of the Watergate crimes the American government of laws, not of men, did its work well It emerges stronger than ever
Lot Aoget#* Tim#» X* "die ti**
They don't need four cars and four 1\ sets, he says Sell two of each and share the rest Keep one lawnmower and set of tools, plow up two of the four back yards for vegetables, buy a deep freeze, organize a car pool, and make home brew
Donald Hayfield of Baughurst suggests: Keep your eye on the biggest items: car, housing, food, holidays, clothes and vices He estimates that a 1.200-pound ($2,800) car costs 700 pounds a year "Sell it," he commands, "and buy a sound ‘banger’ for 150 pounds and cut your running costs by buying spares from ‘breakers’ "
On housing, "Buy, don't rent,’ he insists Mortgage interest still lags behind the inflation. Look for something oldfashioned or decrepit in an immigrant or working-class neighborhood of London with wide streets and some trees, or find outside london “a house just vacated by an old lady and 17 eats . . .”
Hayfield is also a home garden and home-brew man. Stay out of restaurants, he warns, grow' dwarf runner beans, alicante tomatoes, raspberries, red and black currants. And as for vices, he says: “Cut out spirits, brew good cheap beer in the washing machine, and turn the black currants into wine. If you gamble, don t place bets, take them If you smoke, grow your own tobacco!"
Church jumble sales and charity shops are the answer to the clothes problem, he insists, particularly if you have children or an unknowing husband, or a frumpy
Harry Alexander of Irvine wrote to the Sunday Times that he spent two afternoons a week knocking on doors and offering to buy anything made of gold, and was surprised at how well he had done, particularly by soliciting undertakers.
C. D. Musson of Babbacombe thought buying second-hand furniture and particularly sturdy antiques was the answer to the inflation problem, and Philip Thomas of London had a more original, if not quite ethical, suggestion
Buy a little John Bull printing outfit. he proposed, and print yourself up some letter-heads. If you need tires for your car. you produce a printed letter-head of your imaginary garage, and get the tires wholesale, or if you need paint or building materials, turn yourself into a bogus builder and save 15 to 20 percent on retail prices.
“If you need to borrow money," he says, "and you're looney if you don't, try to borrow it from your employer Offer him a deal that benefits you both lf
you’re giving him 12 percent this is probably better than he’s getting from the bank and certainly 4 percent cheaper than you’d have to pay."
All this may sound a little frivolous, but it s not quite as nutty as it sounds The "make do and mend" attitudes of the British austerity days are being discussed, if not practiced, and people are talking again about social conflict and the class war.
The Economist’s sample family budgets show that since last March the Labor party came back to power (if that’s the right word), the average factory worker has lost 2Vk percent in real income, a middle-class manager with a wife working part-time has lost t»4 percent in real income, and those with 5.(MMI pounds ($11,960) a year or more, a drop of more than ll) percent.
"As real incomes fall,” the Economist observes, "trade unionists will, understandably. try to insist that the whole burden fall on the non-unionized middle class. They will emphasize this insistence by demanding even bigger wage rises, backed by strikes These wage rises reduce the competitiveness of exports, increase the tax take from inflating incomes and thus increase prices by more than they increase after tax wages. So total demand falls, unemployment and bankruptcies mount ..."
lf the average drop in income reaches IO percent, the Economist concludes, "nobody can tell what social conflict will result There are even a couple of Colonel Blimps loose iii this island trying to mobilize the populace to keep essential services running if a general strike occurs, and getting more publicity than they deserve.
The outlook I* not for violence, but it is for more ausu r,tv, not on the scale of the early post-war years, but hard enough to make people think about crazy schemes to keep afloat
ll the paper (dip was invented today, ii would have six moving parts, two iran sisters aud require a service man twice a year to fix it
Ne* York Times Syndicate
Theodore M. Bernstein