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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - August 15, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta '4 THf UTHSRIOGE HIRAID August 1973 Does Cambodia matter to the What a Earlier this year the House of Commons food prices committee in- formed the government that signi- ficant number of Canadians have in- comes so low that their positions were precarious at best even before the recent period of rapid increases in food prices began. Food price increases have turned some of these precarious situations into near desperate Those observations were made March four and a half months ago. The of rapid increases in food was the late winter and early spring of the increases referred to seemed serious enough at the but have been completely overshadowed by the current mid- summer surge. The committee then urged the gov- ernment in the strongest terms to do whatever was necessary at the fed- eral and to secure any needed co-operation by the get proper food on the tables of people with low incomes to enable food to be made directly available to par- ticular primarily senior shut-ins and the des- That recommendation and the ob- servations on which it was based did not emanate from the Poor People's or come about as the result of a slap-dash survey by some inexper- ienced OFY team. Xor was it a rhe- torical challenge by an opposition party seeking political scoring points. it represented the carefully considered findings of an all-party group selected by the assembly that is supposed to be governing this coun- the House of Commons. So what has happened. judge it for yourselves. the government announc- ed it would control the export not the of course of in- terestingly enough a commodity nor- mally imported by Eastern exported by the West. The government also moved said it to accelerate the remark- ably leisurely staffing of a board it established a month or so ago to prices. It should be noted that even when fully this board is not to be given full power to fix control them or even to require that unwarranted increases be restrained or rolled back. The government announced in ad- dition effective October Old Age Pensions are to be increased so that cheques received at the end of October will be S5.30 higher. While this is only enough to offset about a quarter of this year's increase in the cost of is welcome neverthe- as a step a small one in the right direction. as his special the minister of agriculture has from time to time expressed his great satis- faction that the prices of foodstuffs produced on the farm have come up so while roundly damning the press for its dereliction in having fail- ed to persuade the public that the government to which he belongs has done a marvelous job of controlling prices and ensuring that there is food on the tables of people with low The government in Ottawa won- ders why it has so few friends in the West. The real wonder is that it has any at anywhere. RUSSELL BAKER Those ever-loving shortages To get richer in America what you need te a shortage. The oil people came up with a jim-dandy shortage a few months and right away the price of gasoline went high enough to buy brand new Acapulco villas for every- body in Texas. The electric-power people were impress- ed. got to get us one of them short' they said. And all over the east sure the shortages were de- livered and up went the price of electricity. The electric folks don't like ostentatious Indulgence as much as the oil so instead of laying it out for Mexican sun- tans and Mercedes with the super- heterodyne four-pipe translucent unicellu- lar self-adjusting module the elec- tric people plowed most of the profits back into a big sales campaign to make us all buy new air-conditioners. They are smart. As soon as the next hot weather starts and we try to turn on our brand new they're going to Turn off ywur brand new air-conditioner and save And then they will run up the price of electricity some more on account of the and maybe use the profits to make us buy all-electric dining rooms electric electric electric chairs to set up the next year's big money-making electricity shortage. the meat people started looking around getting sniffing those ever- loving shortages which all the high rollers were coming into and crying about all the way to the Acapulco villas. And pretty what do you Who has a meat shortage on their hands but the good old meat folks. Up goes the price of meat. t Except for beef. The beef people had found a shortage that made the oil people with envy. In the oil people held conferences about it. we had a shortage as good as the beef they told each be able to buy banana republics for everybody in The government took the joy out of it for the beef freezing the but the beef folks just smiled and and with good reason too. all the things we beef folks are not doing to relieve the one of them told the electric soon going to have more beef shortage than there are liars in Pretty soon they were boasting to the oil people how the beef were go- ing to be able to buy Switzerland when the freeze was lifted. At the naturally and not surprising- all these shortages were having a nat- ural and unsurprising result. One morning at the shopping for break- we noticed that the marmalade folks were having themselves a lovely little which had run the price up to 99 and the egg people were well into a really first-class shortage which had run the price of medium larges up to and the wheat-and-bread crowd were in the midst of the ding-dongdest shortage for blocks as a result of which they were charging more for sandwich white than any sensible person would have paid for rich devil's food this time last year. Back home the mail man delivered rafts of envelopes from all kinds of people with shortages. The auto insurance company seemed to be experiencing an especially bad shortage as did the fire insurance the furniture the telephone company and the local tax collector. We were the two of after we had added up all the additional money we would have to find on account of so many people experiencing shortages and consequently caving to buy themselves pieces of Switzerland and new Mercedes and we called in the and all of us danced around the checkbook. At last the miracle of the American econ- omy had worked for us had a shortage. We want two villas in and three Mercedes with everything. Having come up like the there will be nothing but the best for us. Conserving resources From the Winnipeg Free Press The States today is what Canada be Jn thirty or forty years if proper means are not used now to preserve our natural resources. We shall find the United States capitalists reaching out to make use of our resources for their own purposes after their resources are exhaust- ed. And money and business capacity will be expended without stint to obtain this end. Other countries have suffered also from the disappearance of natural resour- in the the peo- ple of these countries did not awaken in time to grapple with it in a comprehensive and effective manner. Denmark and Swit- little countries that we might feel inclined to jeer have adopted the best of conserving their resources. It is the duty of Canadians to get rid of the old Shibboleths and to learn that new problems have arisen. The great problem in Can- ada today is how to arrive at a system of government whereby laws can be framed to protect resources permanently and to prevent them failing under monopolistic The Not Manitoba's Premier Schreyer. Not British Columbia's Premier Barrett. That paragraph was written by the Hen. Clifford Sifton and appeared in Saturday Night in October 1910. It is re- printed in A Saturday Night excerpts from that magazine since its be- ginning in published by New Press. Bv Joseph syndicated commentator The melting of government authority in Cambodia presents in stark terms a question that should have been pressed years does it really matter whe- ther Cambodia goes Commun- Not very much is the short answer. Certainly not enough to justify the administration's murderous bombing policy with its inevitable erosion of public faith in the integrity of the Am- erican government. By itself Cambodia is unim- portant. The country is almost entirely and its six million the most peaceable in Southeast threaten nobody. By all ac- counts the present regime of President Nol is unloved and incompetent. Even if a Communist regime did take which is by no means it would be div- ided in character. A part of the current insurgency is loyal to the North Vietnamese Commun- ists in Hanoi. Another part is indigenous to and seems to have ties with the former ruler Prince Sihan- who is backed by Commun- ist China. The Russians also have some assets in the coun- try. What happens in does have a bearing on South Vietnam. In the past the North Vietnamese have used the eastern part of Cambodia as a base for their efforts to knock over the Saigon govern- ment. It was to curtail these efforts that the United States began secret bombing of Cam- bodia in 1969 and after the unseating of Prince undertook the Cambodian incur- sion of 1870. The Communists have regain- ed all of eastern Cambodia in subsequent and Hanoi now seems to have no trouble supplying its troops in South Vietnam through the Cambodi- an territory they already con- trol. So gaining all of Cam- bodia would only marginally ma'am that's just the down payment The penalty for ignoring change The economic policy recently announced by the U.S. president has raised many questions not only about the future but about why such a reversal was necessary. Leaving aside the political problems confronting the Unit- ed States why did the North American econ- omy not appear to be working as it In the U.S. federal reserve chairman Arthur F. Burns has been claiming that laws of economics have been Perhaps so. More the laws of econ- omics are working too well in both Canada and the U.S. and the failures are based on the unwillingness of the observers to acknowledge the politically difficult decisions which have become necessary. What has led to our present economic The ex- planation seems to lie in basic changes partly psychological By Brace syndicated commentator in poltidal-econorn- it never approached the sev- and ic. One cannot measure the degree of shift in human atti- tudes but the past decade or so has led many to believe that they are not getting their fair share of the national that nameless are cheat- ing and getting a larger income than they deserve. costly strikes and low labor productivity have become pan- demic. The political climate has been important in the current inflationary spiral here. The government of Canada took far too long in applying the classic medicine from late 1965 to mid 1968 and ignored the reality of inflation. Not only was the govern- ment late in applying the nec- essary restraints to curb infla- tion but it was unwilling or unable to stick with the cure treatment. The recession lasted about a year even though Letter Other side of picture I would like to bring out the other side of what ed saw of the Before I start I would like to inform that I belong to his new class. I have just returned from a vacation that took me through two fruit growing the Kootenay and the Okanagan. Not once did I see a sign. Any place I went if a any type of wanted a picking job he was to go to the Canada Manpower farm labor office. I would be curious to find out if has even tried to pick fruit. A buddy of mine and I did work in an orchard. Hard work never killed a per- son but a person likes to be just- ly rewarded for busting his butt. A little information might be needed. Apricots were being harvested. By filling a bin ap- proximately 5 feet by 5 feet by feei a person can earn the grand total of I wonder if ever considered that some of those haired he saw were actually on a vacation or just going home. This is a thing I know from experience. I pick- ed up three kids who were go- ing home after looking for work and not finding any. One more was just on his way home. Oth- ers I met might have looked like they belonged to the less but they were work- ing during the day. If he had looked into the sit- he wouldn't blame us for feeling the way we do. Does he know how hard it is for sin- gles to get a Since he went through the Okanagan he must have passed through Penticton and Kelowna. Did he notice how many campgrounds wouldn't take They to married couples and Great. In Pen- ticton it required calling et five campgrounds before I could find one that would take me. Then the next day his young adult prices went up. Imagine six kids paying just to set up tent when regular couple and family rates were mum of six per Not to me. A person can't be classified as being on the bas- is of the length of cloth' or choice of ways to live. UNEASY TRAVELLER Lethbridge. erity of pre-war business de- unemployment rose sharply and this became an im- portant political and compas- sionate issue. Demand never slackened sufficiently to beat in- faltion. By mid 1970 as the un- employment figures began to the Bank of Canada switched course sharply with its monetary policy. Money sup- ply grew at a 15 per cent to 20 per cent annual rate and gov- ernment policy became expan- sionary again even though in- flation had been knocked down but not out. A significant factor in our present economic mess is the basic structural change in our economy. The foundations have shifted under our feet and this has had a decisive impact on our ability to determine econ- omic policy and manage econ- omic issues. In every develop- ed country there has been a shift away from expansion in producing goods to greater em- phasis on services. Technologi- the established modern chemi- cals and construction may still enjoy long periods of growth and advance. But relative to the service sector they are mature if not stagnant. They have lost increasingly the capacity to contribute their historic share to rising national income. Yet our economic managers seem determined to ignore the change if not to subvert it. Our exist- ing tax laws already put a tre- mendous premium on capital retention and expansion in ex- isting big and old business. Further evidence of this ten- dency is apparent in the Turn- er budget's tax cuts for manu- facturers. While the more effi- rapidly growing service industries were starved for productivity gains in the service sector ihave fallen be- hind what could have been ac- complished. it fe not surprising that the service industry was not able to become as efficient as possible and price increases here surpassed those in the manufacturing industry. What has gone up most in the Cana- dian economy in the last few years has not been the prices of refrigerators or television sets but the costs of house re- medical automo- bile insurance or municipal and the like. The explosion in in the service Bector could very well have taken place even if government bad pursued more intelligent fiscal and monetary policies. the huge in- crease in the service industry was not minimized but maxi- mized by government taxation policy. What is entirely clear is that the current period of inflation would have been less than it has been if society were condi- tioned to somewhat less selfish if government were able to act independently of short-term political considera- tions and if the deep-seated structural changes in our econ- omy were aided not fustrated by government taxing and al- lied policy. A final thought is worth re- cording. Inflation can be con- trolled by a government at- tuned to current realities. How- failure here inevitably will mean that the rest of this decade will be plagued by un- precedented economic prob- lems. Of that we can be sure. improve a supply task the North Vietnamese already seem to J ave well in hand. A. more serious difficulty might be the psychological re- action in South Vietnam. The government and army of Presi- dent Nguyen Van Thieu seeing the Communists take over in begin to come apart in a way that would make it possible for the Hanoi leaders to realize their dream of uniting Vietnam. But this country has already done more than stand by its commitments to Saigon. It has provided President Thieu with an navy and air force fit for a major country. It has presented him with a Commun- ist world that is divided diplo- matically. If the Thieu govern- ment cannot stand on its own two the blame can- not be placed on the United States. To be the personal pres- tige of President Nixon and his two closest foreign policy aides Henry Kissinger and Gen. Alexander Haig is still deeply engaged in Southeast Asia. They have claimed with and ascrib- ed it to their supposed skill in using bombing for diplomatic objectives. In the record does not support these claims. Militar- the bombing has been a fail- ure. It has not stopped the slow collapse of the Cambodian regime. As recent tragedies have made it has brought death to thousands of innocent persons and destruction to what used to be a lovely country. the president and his men had a good chance to settle about two years ago. At that with U.S. forces still in this country could have cut a deal with Prince Sihanouk for the return of a more or less neutral re- gime in Phnom Penh. But the president and his aides elected to hold firm. Because of their inability to they now have to deal with almost no cards in their hand. Worst of Mr. Nixon and his men have based their pol- icy on not to say ly- at home. They misled the Congress and the country about the bombing of 1969 and 1970. They flatly lied in claiming that before the incursion of 1970 this country had faithfully respected Cambodian neutrality. This consistent deception now works in dramatic ways to erode public confidence in the integrity of the American gov- ernment. Because of constant lying in the the Nixon administration now has no pub- lic no for the use of force in Vietnam. It has only diminishing support for the use of force anywhere. So the question what the country wants most. Does it value a friendly government in Phnom Penh more than an hon- est government in My own sense is that the most important single present need is for an government in Washington. If that means let- ting go in Cambodia and the rest of Southeast the price is small. And it is to the good in the we acknow- ledge that the president is nei- ther infallible nor omnipotent. C WJ by tuggest you hops for a food TheLetkbrUlge Herald IM Kb 8L Alberta HHULD 00. PnprMon and Mtf by Son. W. A. BUCHANAN CtaN MM fUgNtrMton No. 0012 tht Citwdiin Dtlly MM Audit ftvrMu ClrcvmtoM CLIO W Nttar Md PuMUMr THOMAS H. Mantgv IWY'F'MILIS WILLIAM HAY idlW DOUGLAS K. WALKM Uflir IME jounr ;