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Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - January 25, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa ‘Naturally, ze choice cuts are in ie middle!’ '(ch? (it(*tint finpuU I Editorial Page Friday, January 25, 1974 Legislative accessibility NJw 9 aNXsvV' ■ OSvWWtoX\9Wv Legislatures of only five other states rank lower than Iowa’s in “public access to the legislative process,’’ according to a survey made for the Iowa State Association of Counties by its executive secretary, Donald Cleveland. Cleveland said he personally contacted officials in other states to get answers to accessibility questions. Iowa scored only -ll) of a possible IOO points on his scale, compared to 04 for No. I Wisconsin and an average H4.08 for all states. Only Wyoming, New Hampshire, Utah, Georgia and Michigan ranked lower than Iowa. This disclosure came as quite a surprise not only to Iowa legislators, who could hardly be more accessible, but to those familiar with the Iowa legislative process, which hardly could be more open than it is. It was a surprise, too, coming only three years after Iowa’s legislature was rated sixth best in the nation in over-all procedures by the Citizens’ Conference on State Legislatures and only a year after Common Cause found the Iowa legislature to be one of the most open in the nation. Cleveland defines “access to the legislative process’’ as “the ability to inject personal or group attitudes at appropriate times into legislative decision making.’’ Ile believes any person should be permitted to testify at any time on proposed legislation being considered by a committee. This was one of several recommendations based on his survey. But it is not one of the better ones, in our book Iowa legislative rules provide for public hearings (at least two were scheduled for the 1974 session’s second week) at which any person or group interested in the bill under discussion may offer opinions. To permit testimony every time a committee took up a bill would prolong sessions that already last too long. It would also open the way for opponents to stall action on any bill by sending a continuing parade of witnesses to be heard whenever it was being considered by a committee. Mr. Cleveland is correct in his contention that the legislature could improve its posture by publicizing a week in advance the numbers and titles of bills to be discussed at stated periods and times by each of its committees Likewise there should be more and larger committee rooms. But as Lieutenant Governor Neu observed. that “is easier said than done,’’ considering the space problem in the statehouse. If a new department of agriculture building is approved this session, it would eventually open more space for legislative committee rooms in the statehouse. We do not agree that the legislators should hold committee meetings in the evenings — although they do on occasion — after full days of work. It has been suggested that Mr. Cleveland would do well to see to it that the meetings of supervisors in the counties of his association are open and that supervisors are accessible before taking on the legislature. That’s not a bad suggestion for some counties, although generally speaking, most boards of supervisors are accessible and their meetings are open. But in fairness, Iowa’s legislature cannot be criticized for inaccessibility. If anybody is at fault, it’s we, the people, for taking too little advantage of the accessibility that awaits us on our own volition. Fair priorities for fuel Disheartened by the cedar Rapids Symphony’s decision not to book out-of-town concerts this year because of fuel-supply uncertainties, fine arts spokesmen here urged recently that cultural and entertainment needs not draw a blank in any fuel-use priorities that come along. Good point. Requirements for earning livelihoods and staying healthy should come first on any scale, no doubt. But no legitimate activity should bow entirely to others if a hard crunch comes. And it is well to boar in mind that entertainment, arts and countless other seemingly peripheral ac-' tivities do touch on many people’s livelihoods as well as on the whole economy’s well-being. Fuel shortages and allocation systems therefore should not cripple or destroy these elements of life on shaky premises that some are dispensable, others immune. They all deserve consideration and fair-shake priorities: Music, theater, the dance, spectator sports, tourist-vacation-mg, boating, golfing, snowmobiling, skiing, bowling — all the diverse recreational pursuits and businesses that enrich people’s lives while also earning livelihoods for millions Reduce, curtail, budget, ration, scrimp, save, slow down, hold back, compromise, cooperate, take disappointments — yes. But give up — no. We’re all in this together and should count on coming through it that way too. Idea: Maybe what the Symphony should do is book engagements, not decline them, with an understanding that fulfillment will be subject to the fuel picture as determined bv more time. The people s forum Judging a college To th*- Editor Private colleges provide a needed al tentative to the training programs of our state institutions Some colleges, however, are dominated by professors trying to copy the training programs of their own graduate schools Such colleges lack integrity if they pretend tit In* liberal arts colleges The following questions may help Iowa citizens to recognize a college which is offering a real educational alternative to less expensive university training I Is it a social context where in-rom munlty students regularly learn from their mistakes and failures, or do common mistakes and failures regularly lead to breakdowns in human communication — and so to additional mistakes and failures ? 2. Are educational resources lavished on a few able students, or are educational resources equitably selected and used to serve all students0 3. Are courses purely academic, or do they really liberate students to make informed. wIsl* decisions which will be helpful to others through actions that make appropriate use of scarce resources such as time. imagination, space, minerals, energy? 4. Is the faculty focus almost exclusively on ideas and things, or is there a genuine concern for real human relations, emotional responses and affective communication ? Last chance coming up ‘Don't count Nixon out yet’ By James Reston VU.VSHINC.TON - There is a widely ** held view here that President Nixon is now taped and trapped, that the courts and the congress are closing in on him. and that it is only a question of time before the evidence forces his resignation or impeachment. Maybe so. but this is too simple It probably misjudges the power of the presidency, the weakness of the congress, the patience and compassion of the people, and Nixon's capacity to art faster than the congress, the courts, or the press He has made a life career out of disaster and he could do it again In the next few weeks, he will be in a position to dominate the news. not only with his State of the Union address, but with his budget, his messages to the congress on whatever subject he chooses, and his jxiwer to address the world on trade, energy, monetary reform, arms control and peace in the Middle East He cannot impose his will on the congress, as he did for so long in Vietnam. But even in his present weakened state, he can direct the attention of the nation to his thought, lead the front pages and the TV network news broadcasts with his pronouncements, and thus paradoxically, use what he regards as his “enemies” to dramatize his cause This is still a formidable force Let the pundits say what they like. Franklin Roosevelt once remarked, just let me make the news There is a difference now, of course The people and the congress are tired of the appearance of sincerity and want the real thing. But Nixon still has the power to act, to appoint, to negotiate, to veto, to release facts in his possession, aud even at this late date to demonstrate that he intends to preside over an open and reformist government If the people were determined to get rid of him. none of these powers would save him. Yet as most members of congress discovered over the holidays, the people may long for a new beginning and wish he would merely go away. but they are confused, troubled and divided, and this gives him time for maneuver Also, if what I have heard in the last few weeks on both coasts means anything, a great many people still don't know what “impeachment” means, and might think it too good for him if they did. but they still hold back from putting him rn the dock There is, too, a wide streak of cynicism in this country about the whole democratic process. One hears it said over and over again, and by people who are convinced that the President was deeply involved in the scandals and the cover-up. that after all this is a crooked world that requires crooked ways, secret deals, and bold evasive leadership. This is not by any means a popular or dominant attitude. But there is enough of it around to help explain the paradox that many people don’t trust the President but don’t want to drum him out of office, especially since they don't put much faith in the congress or the press either No wonder then that the legislators came back here almost as confused as they wore when they went home They thought the people, who do not have the power of subpoena and have not read the record, would relieve them of the responsibility they were elected to perforin, but they didn t get a clear answer Accordingly, Nixon has another chance The state of the union is that we have no union, no common vo w of how to get out of the1 pickle, nuclear realization that moral corruption is worse than petty crime, and not even much confidence that any alternative would be* better than the poor outfit we now have Maybe this is wisdom or mental and moral laziness, but anyway, it is Nixon's last < hance lh* still has many options He cannot deal with tfie state of the union without dealing with the state of the President. He could come c lean — if he dared — and give a more candid account of the Nixon men and the Nixon system in the scandals than ever before He could release all documents to the congress bearing on possible criminal action by his associate's. He could come forward with specific proposals for fundamental reforms in the financing of presidential campaigns He could redefine “executive privilege” and “national security,” and suggest much stricter controls on wiretapping and other forms of electronic* snooping and computer listing of private citizens. In short, he might offer to his own people what he offered to the' Soviets and the Chinese: an era of honest negotiations rather than confrontation But even if he doesn’t finally seek reconciliation, lie may still have the power to exploit the* divisions and confusions of the people He could argue for a quick resolution of the' presidential dilemma in his State* of the Union message He could request the congress to order aviational referendum on whether or not he should resign, and agree to abide by the vote of the1 people He is a gambling man. and he* might very well win This would clearly bring the* issue to a head It is not the best way It would c ut across the procedures of the judiciary committee and the* courts But it would get an answer from the* people and give Nixon a mandate to get out or get on with the problems of the future. In any event, his power to call for reform destroys the* illusion that the* President is a “pitiful helpless giant,” the* central figure in a tragedy, peiwe*rle*ss lei influence events and merely waiting for resignation or impeachment. There* is much he* can still do beginning with the* State* <tf the* Union address, and the* question now is whether he* will approach in the* inte*rt*sts of the* nation or of him-self Nr* VOrh Turns Service fi Do adult .students exercise their rights regularly, or are* they passive victims of manipulative tec hniques which program them into "good’’ patterns of thought, behavior, and feeling0 ti Do students regularly and honestly express genuine opinions and feelings in classroom situations, or do they play dishonest games with professors to "('arn” grades and grade-point averages required by employers and graduate* schools? 7 Is evaluation of the educational experience unilateral, reciprocally unilateral, or mutually descriptive of reality through dialogues in which differing perspectives and value* judgments are* honestly shared and recorded for future* reference0 Some private* colleges will survive* the present thinning-out process. They will have been perceived to have integrity. They will have provided fail safe* contexts iii w hich to be'come mature adults, rather than programmed automatons enslaved to static value's and the* alienative ways iii which the*y are* use*d Through Iowa tuition grants, students in Iowa are given the* freedom to vote with their bodies as to which schools should survive It is one of the most democratic ways the* citizens of Iowa can make those* decisions. The state legislature should Im* encouraged by taxpayers to fund it generously so that the* process may work effectively Paul A Smith 11124 Maplewood drive* NE Nuclear fear To the Editor I attended the* public informational hearing Jan. 17 on nuclear fission energy The threats posed by this method of power production frighten me, to say the least. Despite AEC assurances of safety. I am le'ss than convinced that we* are not going to be* exposed to dangerous levels of radiation at one* time* or another Even assuming KHI percent safe operation (impossible) of the*se> nuclear plants, the* very real threats of natural disaster and sabotage remain. These plants are not “tornado-proof” or off limits to would-be maniacs Hijackers in November, 1972, threatened to crash a plane into nuclear facilities at Oak Ridge, Tenn I for one, ani tired of Iowa Electric s TV ads that feature a fish swimming in a clear stream. The nuclear plant near Palo may not have any belching smokestacks but very possibly may have the* invisible pollution <tf radiation Yet we* may all take heart in what the* ad calls this “clean” source of energy out of sight, out of mind. We* must stop pouring millions of dollars into funding those dangerous fission power plants Let’s make it known to our representatives that we want this money spent on the development of the really clean, safe alternatives of power production, especially solar energy In our mad dash for energy, let’s not endanger the future of mankind Frank Parrino ll IS Sec ond avenue* SE (Editor s note The Palo plant was built not with public funds but with private investment capital ) Shuttle method has some weaknesses Kissinger style risks top-dog-or-no-one (demand By Rowland Evans and Robert Novak WASHINGTON - Although basking in the richly-deserved glow of Middle East peacemaker, Henry A Kissinger may now find himself boxed in by his highly individualistic st vie* of shuttle diplomacy which could turn his brilliant beginnings us secretary of state into Never before has an American foreign hey chief been found so close to such ^ordinarily difficult shuttle negotia-ns as Kissinger since the peak of the in Kippur war. One incident during his st full-fledged mediation tour in early vember dramatizes the problem n that November tour, he delegated Mideast political expe rt, then Assis-it Secretary of State Joseph J Sisco, to to Kuwait for highly personalized talks the oil embargo with Sheikh Al Sabah, ruling Emir. But the Emir of Kuwait use*d to see Sisco 'he reason had nothing whatever to do h Sisco himself. Now elevated to unsecretary of state for political affairs, SECRETARY KISSINGER Sisco had long since* purged himself of earlier Arab fears that he* had a pro-Israel blas No, the Emir refused tee see* Sisco solely for re asons of personal reputation and face: The Emir would do business not with an underling but only with the grand master himself Henry Kissinger "Henry has made* a bed of shuttle* diplomacy.” a high-ranking I s diplomat told us. “and now he* ii.is to lie iii it ” Kissinger fully understands what that may require: His availability hi nu* ti distant climes as Damascus and other Arab capitals ti* button down vital agreements Arab sheikhs and presidents will not entrust to lesser state department officials In short, with Egyptian President Anwar Sadat establishing Botone and flavor for Kissinger-style* per sonal diplomacy, no other Arati leader will accept lessDangerous The settlement stakes in the Middle East liave* the highest price tag of any diplomatic undertaking in the world Nevertheless, the risks of Kissinger teeing worn d<ewii in the process and robbed of time for Europe, arms control and other issues threaten grave results For example, both European and I S diplomats here* are appalled al the con tinuing deterioration of the set-called Western “alliance ” Vet, without Kissinger's personal attention—one of the I**w stamps of legitimacy left in the Nixon administration—disorders in the alliance can only worsen Kissinger 's clear perception of this was one re ason for the* sudden change* in President Nixon’s strong personal ricsin* to bring I ndorsee rotary of State Kenneth Rush into the White House as senior presidential counselor and legal aelviser on Watergate Kush’s long abseiler from Hie* practice of law was one reason that plan was aborted The* more important reason, however, was Kissinger's very private warning tee Mr Nixon lf you take* Rush from State* now you take* my right arni Kissinger weal Rush stayed That was just before Christmas, when Kissinger was winding up a two-week lour eel I he* Mideast Now he* ha > nisi re*-turned freon his thin! long tour, I hi -> eerie* lasting another ten days Yet, the* diplomacy that lies just ahead—to duplicate iii Damascus the* success His singer has had in Tel Aviv ariel Cairo—may lee* far tine re* demanding Then comes Jordan, East Jerusalem ariel the Palestine* nationalists. In shiert. Kissinger's average* of spending eerie day in every three abroad smee* he teeetk office on Sept 22 may be exceeded iii tile next feuir months For American diplomacy elsewhere, that could be* disaslreiwsHenry’s baby Kissinger himself is now held respun si hie for the agreements and unde*rstan dings—!hose not s|M*lled out in the signed documents—that underpin tin* Tel Aviv-Cairo separation of forces They were made with him alone This is why some of Kissinger's strongest admirers in the slate department look on tin* future with apprehensive eye They fool that although last week's dramatic success could not have happened without Kissinger himself dominating every play, he his now con signed himself to a unique shuttle* diplomacy that may gravely undermine his other work as secretary of state f*uOHth#r% Moll SyndM of* All the things I really like to do are either immoral, illegal, or fattening Alexander WoollcottInflation To the* Editor Certain congressmen arid senators from Iowa are showing false concern about the problem of inflation They sa*, they are trying to do something about it I hey are only adding to the problem!, and their voting records prove it The President must be beld equally rcspon sible*. but congress docs have to pass the hills relating to expenditure of our money. Inflation is a very simple* problem to overcome Ninety percent of its cause is the government spending more mone*y than it takes in This is not a new economic theory hut one every junior high student knows These same congressmen and senators repeatedly vote fur every big spending bill they can, proving they have no con cern for the people of iowa They couldn't care less about onr problems These people* are interested only in their own pocket books that they ulwuys seem to fill al our expense Steven J Rhinehurt Dysart Insights ;

Clippings and Obituaries for the Cedar Rapids Gazette