Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - August 10, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD Tuesday, AuguM 10, 1971 Dr. Morris C. Sluimialcher No room for argument Will) reassuring calm, Dr. Glenn Seaborg, retiring chairman of. the U.S. Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) faced interviewers on TV last Sunday. Dr. Seaborg stated categor- ically that there is no possibility ol a leak in nuclear reactors now in use, causing a major atomic disaster. The latter statement comes in direct opposition to Hie view held by four senior American scientists, who be- long to a larger organization in the Boston area known as the Union oi' Concerned Scientists. They maintain that neither the 21 reactors in opera- tion at present, nor the 56 under con- struction have fool proof safety sys- tems. The AliC is to have a new chair- man. Dr. James Schelsinger. It will be his job to assure the public that the growing energy demands of the U.S can be filled most effectively, cleanly and safely by nuclear elec- tric power. The first priority ought to go to the safety factor. The con- cerned scientists and the fearful pub- lic ought lo be given an answer soon. Failure of the emergency core- cooling system built in lo most of these reactors, according lo the sci- entists opposing the AEC's views, would result in release of radioactive material in devastating quantities. The safety question must be an- swered one way or another and soon. There is no room for differing opinion on this one. A game or a warning? War games. Hie kind the Russians like to play, are currently taking place in the eastern section of Hun- gary where Czechoslovakia and Hun- gary border Romania. Russian, and Hungarian forces are in- volved in tactical manoeuvres which are said to be going on also near the Romanian Yugoslav border. The manoeuvres were unexpected, according to reports from Vienna, bul their purpose is quite plain. Although no one really expects an imminent invasion of either Yugoslavia or Ro- mania at Ihis time, the Soviets are serving their usual grim warning. Jusl clon'l go loo far with your pol- icies of independence. As far as the Yugoslavs arc con- cerned, they arc less fearful of Rus- sian military pressure, than the Ro- manians are. Bul, as Marshal Tito vi ell knows, the Russians have their methods. If the military threat doesn't work, sowing the seed of dis- sension among the various ethnic groups in Yugoslavia, can sproul a splendid crop of discontent. The Romanians have served notice that they have adopted an indepen- dent foreign policy and. that they in- tend to continue doing so. The latest Romanian exercise in political nose- thumbing was President Ceausescu's trip to Peking, which was looked upon with extreme disfavor in the Kremlin. But Mr. Ceausescu has not, and says he does not intend, to open up his country to Western cultural influences. He's cracked down hard and suddenly on rock music, unortho- dox movies, and other evidences of Western "decadence" that were for- merly allowed. Also Romanian jour- nalists are finding themselves more Iban usually hamstrung in publishing stories concerning events both in and outside of Ihe country. Maybe all this is a genuine fear of the effecl of the comparatively undisciplined West- ern youth on Communist ideology. On ihe other hand it could very well be that tightening of the chains lhal bind, of insistence on ideologi- cal purity, will go some way towards mollifying Ihe Soviet purists. The Romanians are not attempting to take the lid off two boiling kettles al the same lime as the Czechs did. Arab bad boy Top candidate for the nouveau riche bad boy of the Arab world is undoubtedly 29-year-old Col. Moamer Qadhafi, Libya's chief of state. He is described, as a Moslem Puritan, an Islamic fundamentalist, an ardent be- liever in the superiority of Arabs in general and himself in particular; a nationalist who brooks no disagree- ment from anyone about his personal beliefs. He can put his hands on an immense amount of money. Libyan oil revenues are estimated to be more than two billion dollars every year. Libya has a population, most of whom live in desperate poverty, of under two million and so far Col Qadhafi, whose military regime ousted the Libyan King Idris less lhan two years ago, has shown litlle sign that be intends to spend much of the money on the people. He does a great deal of talking about what he's going to do, but Ihere has been lillle sign so far that his word is synonymous with his intenlions. Recently Col. Qadhafi has been having a field day proving that money counts a lot when it comes lo interfering in other peo- ple's business. He almost backed a successful coup in Morocco, and King Hassan sits less easily on his throne as a result. He has been urging, and maybe bringing Premier Dom Min- loff to squeeze Nalo out of Malta. He gave assistance to President Num- eiry of the Sudan in opposing the aborlive Communisl coup. A devoul follower of Presidenl Nas- ser of Egypt, he sees no reason why he and his youthful entourage should nol take Nasser's place in the Arab world. The fact that the Moroccan coup failed, that Malta wants more work and more money for its dock- yard workers, but doesn't want any- thing lo do wilh a Libyan pay-off, means nothing to him. Nor does Ihe fact that Moscow is incensed at the anti-Communist reprisals going on in Ihe Sudan. He theorizes lhal he will be able lo bring President Sadal around to his view one of these days and that Sadat will throw out the Russians when the vaunted confedera- tion of Arab, Syria and Egypt starts rolling. It's an ambitious start for an under thirty, home loving youth. Election history By Myron Johnson IF Premier Harry Strom is a believer in recurring patterns of history, he may be feeling a little uneasy about the upcoming provincial election. There is no good reason to believe his- tory will repeat itself, but if it does, Mr. Strom will no longer be premier of Al- berta after Aug. Consider the following pattern of events in this province's political history: Alberta has bad nine premiers since its incorporation as a province in 1905. The first three premiers, between 190S 2nd 1921, were Liberals. From I32i to 1935, Ihe Uni- ted Farmers of AJbcrla, under three suc- cessive premiers, formed the government. Mr. Strom is the third Social Credit pre- mier lo rule Alberta since lhat party took power in 1933. The historical parallel docs nol end (here. The third Liberal premier, Charles Slewart, lid his parly to defeat in his first election as Liberal leader. The third UFA premier, Richard Reid, took over (he lead- ership of his party in 19IM, and the UFA was wiped out in Ihe 1935 election. Coincidence, probably, but nonetheless interesting. However, it would nc unwise lo carry Ilio analogy loo far, for in many wnys, Iho situation in 1971 differs considerably from that of either 1921 or 19.15. The economic situation today hears lilllo resemblance lhal of cilher 1921 or 1935. In 1921, Ihe province was experiencing a period of posl-wnr recession, and prairie farmers uere in a militant mood. The sit- uation in 1935 was even worse, wilh the country in the midst of a disastrous de- pression, and the electorate desperate for a change. Today, the average Albertan is relative- ly prosperous, compared, at least, to many other Canadians; and, despite grumbling about taxes, he is probably not terribly unhappy with his economic position. In bolh 1921 and 1935, Die parties in power were challenged by radical reform movements. The challenge lo Social Credit this year comes, if not from the right, at least from an establishment party wilh few if any elements of radicalism. The importance of government scandals lo Ihe outcome of the 1921 and 1935 elec- tions is another factor missing from the 1971 campaign. The Liberals had teen hurt by a num- ber of railway scandals in the years prior lo their defeat in 1921, and Ihe UFA gov- ernment was even more seriously weaken- ed in by a scandal involving a former premier, John Brownlec. On the whole, Ihe Social Credit parly has been relatively free of damaging scan- dals, and has acquired a reputation as an "honest government." Social Credit, then, may lose the elec- tion this year, hill if it docs, it will not bo for Ihe same reasons that brought about Ihe two previous changes of govcrnmcnl in Alberta. Would freedom be destroyed by labor courts? (Second in a series) WEG1NA Those who op- pose the idea of establish- ing labor courts for Ihe settle- ment of labor disputes oflcn take Ihe position lhal a deci- sion of such a body, imposing lerms on employers and em- ployees (through Iheir unions) relating to their contract of em- ployment, lakes away the free- dom of individuals lo make their own bargains as they think fit. There is no doubt that if one par'.y to a dispute has the right to refer ils claim lo a court for its decision, the freedom of both parties is, indeed, restrict- ed Of course it is bellcr that the parlies should never find it necessary lo go lo courl In have their positions adjudi- cated. But if they cannol settle their differences by them- selves, is it a genuine loss of freedom that there should exist a court capable of deciding Ihe merits of the facls that sepa- rate them? No one (except the anarchist) has suggested lhat the exist- ence of the ordinary courls jf law an undue in- fringement upon Ihe freedom of Ihe individual. On the con- trary, we have come lo regard the courts of law as a neces- saiy means to assert our indi- vidual liberties and lo assure that our freedom may continue. Not our freedom lo bludgeon and beat down our neighbors; but our freedom to live at peace with our neiehbors and business associates by treating W'ith them fairly and honor- ably. Most individuals are decent, reasonable human beings who acl rationally and fairly with- out the necessity of going lo a court of law to have a judge or jury tell lliem whal their rights and obligations are. But occasionally, disputes do arise Often these cannot be settled by the parlies Ihem- selves. It is only then that they need resort lo Ihe courls. And a highly beneficial thing it is lhat 'hey are able to do so. For the court assures lhal there shall be peace between the par- lies; and Ihe comt's decision, hopefully, makes a fair and just dispositon of the rights and the obligations of the dis- puting parlies. Is Ihere any reason why, la- bor and management, a trade union and an employer, having tried but failed to come to a jusl and reasonable result, ought not to have a labor court available to them to act as a King Solomon in their difficul- ties? I think not. Once a collective bargaining agreement has been concluded, questions arising of the in- lerprelalion of the agreement or grievances relating lo the application of its terms are generally made Ihe subject of compulsory arbitration. This has proved to be an effective method of settling disputes. Few trade unions or employers would today claim the right to call a strike or lockout during the life of an agreement if a no-strike clause, coupled wilh a workable arbitration proce- dure were contained in thai agreement It is only in recent years that breaches of such an agreement may now give rise lo an award of damages lhat must be paid by the defaulting parly. When certain employees of the Polymer Corporation, a federal crown coiporation, wen', on a wildcat strike, the employer suffered serious mon- etary loss. II claimed damages against the Chemical Workers International Union since the contract lhal exisled between that union and the company contained a no-strike clause, for its duration. The issue of damages came before ?tlr. Jus- lice Laskin, now a of the Supreme Courl of Canada. At that imc, he was a profes- sor of law at the universily of Toronlo. As sole arbitrator, he heard the claim of the com- pany and Ihe defence of the union precisely as a court of law would hear it. In the end he awarded damages against the union in an amount of something less than The decision was appealed lo the Supreme Court of Canada. There, the award was upheld. In effect, there was litlle or no difference between this proce- dure, agreed upon by both the union and the company in ad- vance, and an assumption of jurisdicton in a similar dispute by a court of law. A labor court, then, would be a natural enough outgrowth of the practices which trade unions and companies have ac- knowledged ought lo bo vested in a third party, namoJy an im- partial arbitrator, where irre- concilable differences arise out ol an agreement already exist- ing. If grievance and interpre- tative disputes can he arbi- trated by legal process, then why not disputes which arise in the course of negotiating new collective agreements? In grievance disputes, the issue is the interpretation and appli- cation of lights already estab- lished. In other disputes, the rights themselves are al stake. While it is one thing to compel two parties lo submit to arbi- tration terms which they have negotiated and agreed upon, it Frustrations of a powerless age JJSED lo thinking of their resourccs in terms of a b u n d ancc, Americans are having to get used to living wilh a chronic shortage in one vital Ever since the great Norlh- easlern blackout of 1966 dem- onstrated h o w limited and breakdown prone generating and distributing facilities are, periodic power mini-crises have cime to be iaken almost as a mailer of course. The East in particular has been plagued by occasional area brownouts and periodic shorl periods when consumers, meaning primarily household- ers, are asked lo curtail elec- tricity usage. And now for the bad news. More of Ihe same is likely this summci. The Federal Power Commission has been forecasl- ing shortages and possibly even major blackouts. It may nol lurn oul as badly as pre- dicted. We have lucked oul in the past and may do .so again. But avoiding il.s worst conse- quences is not the same as re- solving a long-range problem such as this. Whal is to be done'.' The ob- vious response lo a expanding generating facililie.s raises as great a problem as it would answer for tl runs head on into grow- ing public concern over pollu- tion and the preservation of thn environment. ICxislIng practical mclhods of power generation on a large scale, with roal and oil as ba- sic fuels, also mean pollulion on a large scale, Power plants are '.he largest source of sulfur oxide, "probably ihe single most serious pollutant in Iho By Don Graff, NEA service atmosphere according to Russell Train, chairman of the President's Environment Council Heated water dis- charged by some plants into rivers and lakes is also an en- vironmental problem. There has been some effort lo minimize power production's objection able characteristics through m i n e-mouth opera- tions, locating generating plants at fuel sources in Ihe usually thinly populated coal- producing regions. Thus if this reduces the number of people directly affected, and who complain, it does nothing lo re- Lefter to the editor Archives During this cleclion cam- paign we are hearing much about Ihe excellence of govern- ment policies. These policies, we are lold, arc strong and fnr-siRlilcd. This is certainly not true in Hie field o' preservation of Ihe piovincc's records of the past, a field I have become familiar wilh in my hobby of collecling and writing local hislory. Archives has Iwen slack, and archive.s legislation is weak, ivilli tlic result that hundreds of school rcgislcrs, school dislrict minute books and municipal minulc hooks remain scaltcrcd throughout the coiinlry in private hands. This is in contrast to Ihe sit- uation in our sister province, .Saskatchewan, where n con- certed effort lias been mndc (o collect and preserve Ihcse precious records of the past. ALLEN TlONAdllAU. Pnradisc Valley, Alberta. duce pollution quantitatively. Nuclear power is a long way from being an answer. II as yel accounts for only some two per cent of electric power out- put and raises its own environ- mental and safety problems. Construction of a huge nuclear plant at Port Clinton on Lake Erie, lo serve the Cleveland and Toledo areas, has run inlo considerable public-inlerest op- position. Environmentalists are fighting nuclear projects at S h o e h a m, N.Y.; Palisades, Mich., and Monlicello, Minn. Whal. should help some is an industry government effort lo bring sorrc order on a national scale inlo the scleclion of silcs for new power planls, until now largely the preserve of private power companies and stale agencies wilh a mini- mum of advance planning and co-ordinalion. Measures now before Con- gress, one an adminislralion bill, differ in details bul gen- erally call for longer-range planning, increased public voice in determining power policies and machinery lo sef- llc conflicts over plant sites. Also general is an emphasis on environmental considerations in selecting silcs. Hopefully, it will lurn oul lo be more lhan lip service. Bul wilh per capila con- suniplion of electricity increas- ing at a rale five times fircalcr Mum the populalion and an es- limaled new -ilank needed lo meet n predicted quadru- pling in demand during the next 20 years alone, wo aren't likely lo be so lucky as lo have our power and be able lo enjoy mi undcfilcd environment, loo. Is obviously a more difficult matter lo impose a settlement containing terms lo which ncilhcr has given its assent and for which no principles have been accepted by either of them. Will the establishment of la- bor courls have Ihe effect of depriving employees of Iheir freedom? Is the right lo slnke lo refuse lo work a right wilh which no agency of Ihe stale ought to interfere? A strong argument can be made for the principle that lo compel an individual to go back to his job is tantamount lo condemn- ing him lo slavery. Of course, whelher there exists a labor court or a board of arbitration or even a union executive that is capable (un- der the appropriate laws of regulations) of ordering an in- dividual lo go to such a law is obviously unenforceable. You can lead the proverbial horse lo waler, but you can't make him drink it especially if he prefers beer. But the question is really not whether a government or a courl can compel a person to work against his will. The question resolves itself into the need lo decide what incentives a government, through its laws and possibly through a court, can provide, to assure, not that individuals go back to their jobs and work, but lhat the puli- lic Iw protected against the perils of a discontinuance of vital supplies or services in Iheir communities. It is nol only Ihe right, it is Ihe duty of government through ils various agencies, to assure the contin- uation of those services that arc necessary for survivial in the face of a breakdown. If the breakdwon should become im- minent as a consequence of a Ilireatened strike or lockout, I hen for the purpose of pre- serving society, mandatory or- ders, even if they relate to the obligations of citizens to work, are justified. As Ihe ancient historian Plutarch, observed, even the gods war not wilh necessity." One of the difficullies arising out of compulsory arbitration or out of a decision made by a labor court is the possibility the very existence of the power of the adjudicating body will remove from both sides the pressures lhat are naturally upon them to settle their dif- ferences. If they realize that, failing settlement, they have a great deal to lose, Ihey are likely to bargain with grealer responsi- bility in bcller faith and short- er time. It is natural that where both sides expect that at the end of the line, a court of law will fix the terms of their agreement should Ihey fail lo conclude a contract them- selves, there will be a tendency to hold back and simply make r-o concessions. Any concession would lend lo be regarded as removing Hie floor upon which Ihe court mighl build its award. There is a real risk that the existence of a labor courl might impede the processes of voluntary collective bargaining. However, this is not ncssar- ily so. who have dis- putes on other issues more often than not succeed in set- tling their differences without Ihe intervention of a courl. There is a natural desire on the part of every reasonable person lo avoid an encounter in a court of law since lawsuits are known lo be slow and ex- pensive and Iheir resulls un- predictable. Voltaire said he twice ruined in his life- lime. The first time was when he became involved in a suit and lost. The second time was when he again became involved in litigation and won. In the ordinary affairs of most individuals, the existence of the courts of law does not constitute a spur to hligalion, bin quite 'he contrary. The very presence of the court is an inhibiting factor that moves individuals lo settle their dis- putes peaceably and without recourse lo Ihe judicial process. Only the pathology of human iclations finds its way into the law reports. Some claim that labor courts or compulsory arbitration may serve as a crutch for weak leadership in union and man- agement organizations. Once a leader finds an easy way out o- his problems and conflicts by casting responsibility upon a court, it is said that he will be- have similarly in other areas and will lose his drive and ini- tiative. These are valuable qualities lhat ought not lo be discouraged on eilher side. But these cannot be said to have resulted from the omnipresent prospect of judicial determina- tion in ordinary business rela- tionships. The prudent execu- tive, whether of a trade union or of a business organization will always wish lo hold in his hands Ihe power to make decisions. He will not willingly surrender Ihem lo any outside authority, and it is only as a laSL resorl, when all other al- ternatives fail, that the matter of settling a dispute will be re- ferred to a court, whether of ordinary civil jurisdiction or specifically established for the settlement of industrial dis- putes. There does exist a real question concerning the pro- priety of placing wages and salaries within the control of a public body such as the court, whilst other economic rewards aie nol similarly regulated. Such a procedure is not easy to accept in a society based upon the principles of the market place. These principles leave it lo Ihe competing forces of sup- ply and demand to settle all prices, including Die price of labor. If labor courls are to fix wages and the conditions of la- bor, a tendency may develop to apply similar principles to oth- er aspects of the economy, and more especially, to prices, ren- tals, interest rales and profits. This practice might tend to spread because there is no easy way of confining control to any particular sector of the eco- nomy. The proliferation of eco- nomic controls would be stifling to the national growth of the economy, and particularly lo on as deeply rooted in foreign export as Canada's. State inter- vention, as a matter of prin- ciple, ought therefore lo be held to a minimum and ap- plied only where the failure ol the parlies lo reach their own agreements make it essential to do so. A. H. Raskin, one of Ameri- ca's most prominent labor eom- menlalors, had strong words fa- voring some method which would abolish strikes and sub- slilule in their slcad, some form of legal process lo render strikes unnecessary: "It is my conviction, that wher, all the people have to suf- fer because of the wilfulness or ineptitude of economic power blocs, it is an affirmation not a denial of democracy lo provide effective government machinery for breaking dead- locks. "The question in my estima- tion is not whether lo do it but simply how. I see no reason why in Ihis institution alone, of all the facets of our society, we should exalt the right to make war as the hallmark of mdusliial civilizalion when we seek to excise it everywhere else, even in the global rela- lions of sovereign powers." Mr. Rankin was unquestion- ably expressing a viewpoint lhat is held by an ever-increas- ing body of citizens who per- sonally identify with neither organized labor nor wilh (he managers of industry. Looking backward Tlirongh Hie Herald Unanimous agree- ment on Armistice Day for the opening of Ihe disarmament conference, was reached today in Ihe informal negotiations among the powers lo be rcpre- senlr-d. IMI resident Herbert Hoover of the United States was 51! years old today. 1911 The colonial office an- nounccd loday lhal the resigna- tion of Ihe Governor of Bermu- da, L.-Gcn. Sir Denis Bernard, has been accepted because "in Ihe present circumstances it is preferable lhal the governor should be a civilian." 1951 E. H. Norman, ac- cused student Communist ac- tivities in 1939 has been given a "clean bill of health" by the Canadian government. H1BI _ Prime Minisler John Dicfcnbakcr announced lhat prairie farmers will receive about in prairie farm assistance payments Ibis year. The Lcthbtridge Herald 504 7lh St. S., Lctbbridgc, Alberta LETHBRIDGE HERALD CO. LTD., Proprietors and Publishers Published by Hon. W. A. BUCHANAN Second Class Mall No. 001! Canadian Press nnd Ihe Canadian Dally Newspar" Clrculilloni mr P MI h J Iho Publishers' AssociBllon and Ida Audll Bureau "THE HfRAlD SERVES THE SOUTH"