Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - June 4, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
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Mideast ‘miracle’ rates K. a new Nobel
Tuesday, June 4, 1974
Bum rap for city hall
OF ALL the misgivings assailing dedicated searchers, none surpass the feat that many hours of exhaustive labor will produce conclusions no more weighty than the thoughts of people sitting in parks tossing popcorn to pigeons.
So it happens that an impressive inspection of Cedar Rapids’ use of revenue-sharing funds may evoke a “so what?” reaction from city hall observers. Pulsetakers in the endeavor were nine League of Women Voters members (committee to monitor revenue sharing) and a member of the local Junior League.
The mission: To provide the National Revenue Sharing Monitoring Project with a 40-interview compilation showing Cedar Rapids’ responsiveness to people-needs. Findings in the survey do not reflect a consensus of the LWV. Respondents included city officials, citizens and community action group spokesmen, news media reporters and members of the business and labor sectors.
Space limitations prohibit a total spreading of the results here, but major conclusions boil down thus:
• Although the city has held the stock, government-required hearings relating to revenue sharing, no significant change in the municipal budgeting process has been noticed. With one exception (founding of the bus trips for elderly service), expenditures have been for capital improvements.
• According to the findings, revenue sharing has had no effect at all on official responsiveness to low-income and minority groups. As the surveyors put it, “City officials say they have always been responsive, and alienated groups still feel ignored.”
• Hence, federal guidelines may be needed to channel revenue-sharing funds to minority groups.
To appreciate the inevitability of those findings, it is necessary first to understand the limitations of the city budget and the jolts that federal-funding-impound-ment has inflicted upon it. As noted here yesterday, the socalled “new money’’ provided through federal revenue sharing falls some $2 million short of the total funds the city received under the old-time setup of categorical grants. Since the lion’s share of the categorical allotments was poured into capital improvements, it follows that the surviving fraction of those yearly amounts would be similarly spent.
Propitiously, it turned out that the improvements decided upon
by the city council were the very projects favored by most people responding to a questionnaire circulated along with city water bills last spring.
Yet the thesis of the revenue-
sharing monitors seems to be that the city is delinquent in its response to grassroots needs. (Suggestions are, of course, based on interviews.) Specifically, representatives of low-income and minority groups seem to have weighed in heavily against the city’s performance. Also chiding city officials were the Citizens Committee on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse and the Linn County Property Taxpayers’ Assn. The former organization deplores the city’s refusal to allocate city funds to fight alcoholism.The latter has tilted repeatedlv with the city over airport expansion.
In sum, the city council is scolded for its alleged failure to meet people-needs.
Degree of guilt depends, of course, on one’s definition of a people-program. By any reasonable test, the council’s revenue-sharing priorities qualify correctly down the line. Anyone who has seen storm water pouring into homes in the Kenwood ditch drainage area, for example, doubtless would agree that storm sewer construction to bail out those neighborhoods is certainly a “people-need.” The surveyors note that storm sewers have claimed 53 percent of revenue-sharing funds.
This is not to give the city straight A’s for people-project action. The Gazette has joined in questioning the council’s judgment in withholding even token sums from abatement of alcoholism. Also, the feeling here is that the city could improve its responsiveness index by re-establishing the old monthly neighborhood-meeting format.
When the revenue-sharing innovation came along in 1972, this newspaper likewise urged the city to consider aiding social mobilization not previously under municipal purview. That was before the impoundment of categorical grants made a mockery of the “new-money’’ ballyhoo.
But clearly, city hall deserves better than it gets in the revenue-sharing survey. By and large, the findings merely recycle the grumblings one has to expect when there is simply not money enough to go around.Isn't it the truth?
By Carl Riblet, |r.
We have become a nation in whic h slow payers are preferred as customers, at a finance rate of 18 percent for deferred and tardy payments, while customers who pay cash with purchase are a nuisance of smaller profit. See what the handy, all-purpose credit card has done for us? It just may be that it has done for us.
‘ All progress is based upon the universal innate desire on the part of every organism to live beyond its income "
— Samuel Butler
tnterOceort Press Syndic ote
By C.L. Sulzberger
PARIS — If Henry Kissinger hadn t already received the Nobel Peace Prize (or its better half) he would merit it this year as a result of his remarkable Middle East negotiations. In fact, there isn’t any regulation governing that award which should prevent it going twice to the same man if he twice makes peace.
Of course, those who have an automatic tic against anything Kissinger does are probably going to say snide things about him the moment shooting pops off again in the general region of Israel. After all, despite what he did to extricate us from Vietnam, he is still sniped at whenever fresh blood splatters that brutal land
The fact is that perfect peace is almost a forgotten concept nowadays except among friendly nations. Those who detest each other show it by violence, even without formal war. And only disengagement — not peace — has been achieved between Israel and Syria. All one has to do is recall the endless roster of other tense frontiers.
What Kissinger has done, however, is to reduce the level of fighting in Southeast Asia and Southwest Asia to such a degree that neither area now presents the threat of major world war He has arranged truce agreements that set in operation actual or potential peacekeeping machinery. The result is that, in two explosive global areas, a discernible if slow move toward settlement instead of holocaust is now occurring.
The Middle East is infinitely more important than Indo-China. Trouble is not confinable to a peninsula, and it involves tremendous ideological and religious emotions. It is strategically significant to the two superpowers, and it contains a vast proportion of the energy by which contemporary industrial progress is fueled.
Since Israel’s creation in 1948 there have been four formal wars in the general area of Palestine from which the Jewish state was carved. Moreover, in between these formal wars, there has been sporadic violence that often threatened to touch off open conflict.
For a long time Kissinger refrained from active participation in United States efforts to tranquilize the situation, preferring (as a White House adviser) to leave the job to Secretary of State Rogers because he felt his own Jewish origin might be considered prejudicial by certain Arab leaders.
However, Rogers never made much headway in the search for compromise. Kissinger therefore moved actively into behind-the-scenes peacemaking even before he succeeded Rogers as secretary. Right afterward came the Yom Kippur war of last October with its curious result: reassurance to Arab confidence and, at the same time, the verge of an Israeli strategic victory.
The first significant Kissinger success was arrangement of a disengagement formula between Egypt and Israel. This achievement facilitated development of a new friendship between Cairo and Washington, prying Egypt loose from its previous dependence on Moscow. Thus, as a spin-off from an initial Palestine truce came a weakening of Russia’s strategic position in the Mediterranean.
But, while Egyptian President Sadat had always been instinctively pro-
C. I. Sulzberger
Easy, Henry — you’re all we have!'
American and suspicious of communism. no such a priori sentiment existed in the Syrian government, which relies unabashedly on Russia for military and diplomatic aid and is traditionally considered a “radical” Arab land. It had signed no compact with the Israelis since 1949 when armistice ended the first Palestine war.
I wrote on May 2, after a long conversation in Damascus with President As
sad: “Many miracles have been reported in this part of the world, but I somehow doubt if Henry Kissinger, described as a miracle-maker by his new friend Anwar El-Sadat, president of Egypt, is going to pull one out of his hat when he comes here on hts new tour of the Bible lands. To begin with, he doesn’t wear a hat.” Well, I am glad to say I was wrong.
By brilliance, stubbornness and sheer hard work, by assembling every pressure available through the U. S. and, it would
seem, the U.S.S R., Kissinger achieved the unachievable. A dramatic first step toward possible permanent solution was signed last week in Geneva.
Like Hercules with the many-headed Hydra. Kissinger lopped off every new fire-spitting head of trouble as it grew on the Middle Eastern war serpent and thus astonishingly achieved the unexpected miracle.
New York Times Service
Due process not dispensable
Tapes sink ‘best evidence’ rule
By William F. Buckley, jr.
W‘E SHOULD, I think, attempt to put into perspective the quarrel now raging, the resolution of which could itself decide whether Mr. Nixon is going to, be thrown out of office.
While I am not a lawyer, I take modestly the occasion to rejoice in this, because really the issues involved are not those that ought to be adjudicated only by lawyers. Lawyers are there, after all, to interpret the codified sentiments of nonlawyers, and sometimes they tend to run away with their responsibilities to the point of telling us nonlawyers not so much what it is that the law says, as what it is that they think the law ought to say.
On the question whether Mr. Nixon should release the supplementary tapes there is a historical background relating to the boundaries of executive privilege. The Nixon people have been saying that executive privilege takes precedence over the right of congress, and of the special prosecutor, to access to presidential tapes.
The anti-Nixon people — I mean not only those who are anti-Nixon, but who take a different position from his on the legal question at issue — have very clearly won the historical argument. That is to say, they have come up with one after another situation in which past Presidents conceded that the right of congress to bring together the case against the President supersedes the confidentiality of presidential documents.
What none of the arguments has stressed — so far as one can tell — is the difference between conversation and documents The lawyers use what they call the “best evidence” rule. It is required that the President turn over to the prosecution the “best evidence” available against him. The unfurrowed
William F. Buckley, jr.
point surely is the extraneous importance of certain people’s conversation
If, the courts having authorized it, a district attorney bugs the telephone of a Mafia czar in search of evidence that he is the head of a dope ring or whatever, the underworlder’s mode of thought, habit of speech, bis use of the vernacular, his way of canvassing alternatives, are of no general interest save possibly to sociologists interested in kinky human habits.
Where a President of the United States is concerned, there is a terrible imbalance between that which is revealed in the taped conversation, and that which is sought out. I have found much more discussion given over, in the assessment of the tapes revealed by Mr. Nixon, to how he speaks and how he cants moral and ethical issues and what is the “feel” of presidential conversation, than to the raw question: what did he know about Watergate, and when did he know it?
When a conversation is reduced to a document, it has been transmuted into something substantially different from what it once was. Professor John Kenneth Galbraith refuses to preserve even the first draft of his books, a solicitude for posterity one might hope he would extend into the fmal draft of his books. But he makes the point that there is such a great difference between first drafts and completed drafts that he would not endure anyone’s looking over his
shoulder to trace his analytical and stylistic progress.
How much more this would extend into conversations. We are all ready to concede that Presidents Washington and Jefferson and Jackson agreed that any document pertaining to any question of impeachment can be subpoenaed by congress. I do not see it anywhere convincingly shown that the attitude of these gentlemen would have extended to the question of the tape recordings of their private conversations with members of their staff. On the difference between the two my own feeling is that a great deal should hang.
Is it wrong to say that we do not desire above all other questions to know whether Mr. Nixon knew about the cover-up? What is the meaning of due process if the answer to that question is yes, it is wrong?
Even if it were held that Mr. Nixon would not now be acting otherwise if he were in fact guilty, is it stretching a point to concede that guilty or innocent he has a point about the confidentiality of the tapes that nonlawyers can and should thoroughly sympathize with0
Washington Star SyndicateInsights
PEOPLE Uon I that**' then lareerx They are en nu Heil bv I hem.
JOHN DOS PASSOS
People’s forumRethink C.R. goals
To the Editor:
Having been away from Cedar Rapids for several years, and missing it very much, I heard of the controversy concerning the proposed west-side shopping mall with interest and concern
Members of the city council made some good points: The developers could legally proceed to develop the existing 66-acre site unwisely, leading to future regrets that better planning was not initially required. Free enterprise and the right to compete have been major factors in our economy’s development.
But never should the rights guaranteed to individuals override the consideration of the totality of the common good Just as an individual has no right to shout “Fire!” in a crowded theater, so comes there a time when the community must say no part of the environment, public or private, may be used without considering the community’s goals.
Unfortunately, only recently have communities begun to decide that the common good includes environmental considerations and not just goals of progress for its own sake, or for the sake (if the dollar. Because of the lateness of these new feelings, many major cities are barely livable (intolerable for most Iowans) People fleeing the cities have built suburbs which have eaten up valuable land for homes, highways and businesses.
I spent most of my life in Cedar Rapids. On going East to college, and now to live, I was shocked by the crowded, dirty cities, the limited amount of undeveloped land, and the seeming lack of concern lur, or pride in, the community.
Cedar Rapids is a proud city and has every right to be My hope is that its citizens will not ignore the hard lessons that cities of the East have had to learn. Cedar Rapids has the chance to continue to prosper and grow and still avoid the costly mistakes of others. It cannot afford to think that land is plentiful, to lie developed at will,
It is possible that the proposed mall would benefit not only its owners but the community as well. But before it is built I hope that people will have thought carefully about the advantages of a central business district as opposed to a
sprawled arrangement. Esthetic problems, as well as more practical concerns such as transportation and energy supplies, must be considered Contemplate the distant future as well as the immediate future. What does Cedar Rapids want to la* 50 years from now0
Bruce A Harris BostonReverse it
To the Editor:
After the city council’s first affirmative vote on the 22-acre rezoning, Mayor ( annoy was quoted. “Everyone has a right to go broke.”
Isn t he also obligated to think of the taxpayers and businessmen who have established roots and inhabited the city for years and who have built up their businesses to the advantage of Cedar Rapids0 They have done more than make their businesses successful, they have constantly striven to enhance the city while improving their property and businesses
This is the opposite of the way shop ping center developers and tenants think and act. Historic ally these out-of-town
owners contribute nothing individually or financially to the culture or benefit of the city. Their hired managers in shopping centers usually wear blinders when it comes to personal involvement in the city. Their real estate tax contribution is disproportionately low compared to that paid by downtown property owners and merchants. Their contributions to local established charities is small compared to local established business. It’s too easy for an out-of-town owner to say “no” through a local manager
This center will probably make it impossible for downtown property owners and retailers to continue the aggressive, continuous series of improvements and upkeep that has been an absolute financial benefit to every citizen. It will cause long-time vacancies to exist downtown with a deteriorating effect that snowballs It will jeopardize and probably cancel the hoped for downtown community center-hotel complex
Civic minded councilmen can effect a compromise by denying the 22-acre rezoning. This still allows a large center on 66 acres which will contribute to and balance the city rather than destroy We urge the council to reverse its vote on June 5
Herman and Phyllis Ginsberg 2(8) Second avenue SETurnaround
To the Editor:
For reasons I lest known to himself, and Hie Democratic party. Dick Clark has done a complete about-face on tin* subject of President Nixon’s fate.
A few months ago Senator Clark and other Democrats and Republicans were urging President Nixon to resign. He was quoted in the Des Moines Register as follows: “Resignation would be the most painless way, and Mr Nixon should see that it is the patriotic way, if he wants to spare the country more traumatic experience. Ile then expressed doubts about the President’s ability to serve and again suggested that resignation would be the lies! method.
Sunday, May 26, he said he does not favor resignation and expressed astonishment that some of his colleagues are being listed as for or against conviction before they’ve seen the evidence: “Senators are very cautious on prejudging the evidence before even seeing it themselves ” Clark also said he wants to look at the evidence in the “fairest and most judicious way.”
My goodness, I should hope so, aud I was thinking that very thing when Senator (’lark was making all hts unfair and unjudjcioUN statements several mouths ago before he’d even seen the evidence
Others from both parties joined him then in urging resignation, but to my knowledge, none but Senator Clark has been treated to a front-page, sugar-coated, self-serving treatment the way he was May 26 in your paper.
It was a nice try to project Clark as a man of high judicial principle, and ii would have been convincing had not his hypocrisy shown through so glaringly
Well, it’s nice that moralizing has become fashionable with politicians again With it a host of new words are added to the political vernacular Who ever heard of “moral leadership," “coverup.” “integrity” and “bugging” during the LBJ coverups and barnyard-grammar days or of bugging during the I BI and Kennedy years, or of integrity during the Democrat vote-overkill iii elections in Illinois, Missouri and Texas?
Apparently Democrats’ misconduct is rated as typical and not worthy of more than a passing glance, whereas Republicans' misconduct arouses a sleeping press and public to unheard-of demands for a moral housecleaning
I assume then that this history of double standard will continue as long as a compliant press makes such DR efforts for men like Senator ( lark
Mark Truax Monticello