Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - August 19, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta
LETHBRIDGE August New approach needed for inflation fight India space program Prime Minister Indira Gandhi's an- nouncement that India expects to launch its first space vehicle in 1978 raises more questions about that over populated and underfed country's priorities Does India need a space program any more than it needed an atom The U S space program has always been under attack by home critics who main- tain that the billions of dollars could be better spent for other things And the U S is one of the world's richest nations How much more applicable those questions are when asked in a country which depends on the generosity of the world to feed its poor and starving in times of crop failures and other shor- tages9 India the answer is probably af- tirmative A recent poll taken there by a Gallup affiliated organization revealed that 60 per cent of India's elite favor production of a nuclear bomb Presumably they would also favor a space program The problem here is that the poll reflects only the views of India's literate populace, a minority of 25 per cent which can hardly see things from the point of view of the illiterate and desperate poor who might wish to see the resources put to other use There is a sense of unreality about the pursuit of a space program by a country almost innundated by economic problems of inflation, inequitable taxa- tion and totally inadequate distribution of national wealth Under these circum- stances, when Mrs Gandhi speaks of national pride it is apt to be construed abroad as national vanity If the Indian prime minister is concerned about the whole of India's pop- ulation then she should care about the opinion of a world where coming to In- dia's aid is almost a conditioned reflex and she should explain her priorities to that world Possibly there are good reasons for putting money and effort into nuclear and space technology India needs to expand its force of skilled workers and available jobs and it needs to create opportunities which challenge its professionals to stay at home instead of emigrating Possibly in the long run acquiring new technology is the best course to take to solve internal problems But if this is true and if this is the goal, arguments to this effect are not being made very persuasively by Mrs Gandhi or her supporters who tend to lash out at critics as though those critics were stupid fools In assessing the plight of India's pop- ulation, as a total non sequitur an observer can be forgiven for wondering if the vaunted serenity ascribed to Eastern religions isn't just the lethargy of malnutrition Cutting down on traffic deaths Calgary's police chief recently announced a campaign to cut down on the city's traffic toll The mam thrust is a crack-down on speeding and impaired driving To quote the Chief, "It has to be said again and again, it's liquor and speed that's behind a majority of traffic accidents The figures, for Calgary or anywhere else, fully support the chief Virtually every authority agrees at least 50 per cent of all highway fatalities involve a drinking driver Dr Max Cantor, Alberta s chief coroner has been quoted as suggesting it may be as high as 70 per cent As for speed state highway safety officials all across the U S report lower death rates on the highways after the 55 miles per hour speed limit was imposed to conserve gasoline North Dakota, for example, recorded 61 deaths in the first half of 1974 compared to 99 last year for the same period, and the only known change was the lower speed limit Speed and booze kill on all highways One RCMP detachment in rural Alberta has investigated 11 fatal accidents so far this year In 10 of them, the drivers' blood alcohol readings were higher than 08 the level that spells impairment In Calgary, during the first six months of 1974, 23 people were killed in 22 traffic accidents In 13 cases an impaired driver was involved and excessive speed was a direct cause of 14 of the accidents Pointing to liquor and speed as the causes of fatal accidents is not popular, it implies that drivers, not cars, may be at fault Motorists prefer the delusion that accidents are caused by 'unsafe" cars So they spend millions upon millions on more intricate brakes, extra lights energy-absorbing bumpers, specially strengthened bodies, more complicated seat-belts, more elaborate padding, and Heaven knows what additional marvels to come, so they'll have "safer cars in which to drive faster and drink harder As it is in Calgary, so it is all over Alberta, Lethbndge not excepted No one wants to control drivers, they just want "safer" cars THE CASSEROLE Financial analysts have determined that the sluggish performance of the stock market in the period before July 8 was the result of investors adopting a "wait-and-see" attitude on the election outcome One cannot help wondering what alternatives to waiting and seeing were open to investors Or to anyone else for that matter So thorough has been the mixing of water round the world (and so small is a water molecule) over the two millenia or so since the days of the great Greek civilization any glass of water that you take today will con- tain at least a molecule of the water from the cup of hemlock with which Socrates took his own life World Service Ontario s Chief Justice thinks the English speaking world is heading for divorce by sim- ple assent of the two parties George Bernard Shaw would be pleased His complaint about the marriage vow was, "When two people are under the influence of the most violent, most insane, most delusive, and most transient of passions they are required to swear that they will remain in that excited, abnormal, and ex- hausting condition until death do them part According to a Pulse (medical journal) ar- ticle by an English researcher, Dr Ivor Falstem yawning is not just a sign of being tired It could be a device for gaining atten- tion, a means of shutting someone up, or a signal that the yawner wants to terminate a love affair ERIC NICOL Whelan's asking for trouble Eugene Whelan, the federal minister of agriculture, has qualified for canonization as the patron saint of Canada's peasants He did so by defending the higher prices being paid to sons of the soil for their products, and by saying that we who are habituated to eating can expect to pay even more, as fit reward for Farmer Brown St Eugene's doctrine has shocked the nation, or at least that part of the herd that gets milked in the supermarket A rich farmer9 The concept violates the very fabric of Canadian society For hundreds of years we have depended on the farmer's simple life to nurture the moral values that offset the depravity of the city The term "grass roots" is synonymous with basic virtues While urban poverty begets crime, rural poverty builds character We believe that the land is strong, so long as the farmer leans on it, gaunt and proud, the field dust swirling around his worn but clean integrity A rich farmer' A rich developer, yes A rich lawyer, or rich plumber, or rich professional hockey player, certainly We excuse them their wealth We respect the causes of their corruption, divorced as they are from the chastening discipline of plough and pig pen The country might survive the wages of affluence, so long as the curse spared the farmhouse and the honest souls therein Now, however, there rises above the homely manure pile the plump spectre of the farmer as a moneybags He can afford to pay the hired man with cash instead of with an introduction to the farmer's daughter He has the rash to buy denims, like city folk, and have his hair cut by a hair stylist, rather than by the family goat The farmer's wife leaves off baking the corn bread and fritters that have kept body and soul together, and starts buying Playgirl That the rot has already set in is shown by the divorce actions coming before the court on the prairies, wives claiming the right to half the farm property Only a few years ago, Half of nothing was nothing All of a sudden, the old homestead is worth a bundle And Ma Walton aims to get her slice of Whelan's wonderful melon Let us draw a discreet veil over what happens when the farmer has the money to buy a large luxury automobile and drive it into the city for a holiday We shall not dwell on the speed with which he forgets the courtesies of the country lane, or how readily he adapts to parallel parking as a surrogate for slaughtering swine Mr Whelan believes that the fair return on their industry will persuade farmers to stay down on the farm But will it' Would anyone live in Saskatchewan if he had the money to move to Perdition (B C We need look no farther than the empire that was Rome, to find proof that the moral fibre of a people begins to ravel when a significant percentage of the population no longer use the outdoor privy With indoor plumbing, and the rest of the effete acquisitions that we call a high standard of living, comes the flaccidity of character that abandons plain, honest toil to the dung beetle Have a care, Eugene Whelan It is not only the wrath of the food consumer that you invite upon your head, when you say that the farmer should have it so good If the farmer buys it, next it'll be the clergyman And then you'll be in real trouble By Joseph Kraft, syndicated commentator WASHINGTON The bhock of President Nixon's resignation obliges President Ford to emphasize stability But an effective fight against inflation which the new president has correctly stigmatized as Public Enemy No 1, requires new policies and new men So the political test for Mr Ford is how swiftly and how smoothly he can turn his back on Mr Nixon At the root of all this is inflation of a kind unfamiliar to modern American experience This time the rise in prices is not explained by a sudden burst of consumer demand (as after the Second World War) or a big wage push (as at the end of the 1950s and 1960s) The operative cause now lies in extraordinary developments on the commodity front Oil prices have tripled in the past year thanks to the cartel of producing countries and their handmaidens, the oil companies An extra billion of national income now goes into the pockets of the countries and the firms According to Charles Schultze of the Brookmgs Institution, the rises in the price of fuel and food account, between them, for about 60 per cent of the increase in the consumer price index during the past year Precisely because the inflation was rooted in supply problems, the measures taken by the Nixon administration have proved ineffective The Nixon administration concentrated its efforts on restricting demand by raising interest rates and damping down government spending But these actions had no impact whatsoever on the international oil cartel or the worldwide drought The old time religion, as the Nixon policy was called, didn't work because the old time devil of excess demand wasn't the demon which needed to be exorcised On the contrary, the Nixon policies only made matters worse Tight money and budget slashes engendered as they were meant to a drop in consumer demand It is now 2 5 per cent lower than a year ago The falloff in "We palavered told them what governments were doing to white man my taxes my food my rent we settled for for me." Quebec culture struggle aided by Bill 22 By Rob Bull, Herald Quebec commentator of the first to refer to the dual nature of the Canadian identity was Lord Durham in his investigation of the causes of the 1837 rebellion in Lower Canada I expected to find a conflict between a government and its people, he wrote "I found two nations warring within the bosom of a single state One of the nations Lord Dur- ham was referring to of course, was the French-Cana- dian one Being an Englishman he naturally felt that the assorted Irish, Welsh, Yankees, Jews, Blacks, Germans and Gaelic-speaking highland Scots here at the time were all English He was not referring to the two founding peoples of Canada, the Indians and the Eskimos Lord Durham felt that the natural solution of the problem was for everybody in Quebec to speak English, a suggestion which French- Quebecers had heard before and did not welcome Indeed much of the history of French-Quebecers has been their effort of survival as a cultural group, the latest chapter in this history beginning last month with the declaration of French as the official language of Quebec If they are not threatened, for the moment, and many Quebecers feel that threat, for a number of reasons, exists, they are still surrounded Looking out at an English speaking continent from their homeland along the St Law- rence Valley, French- speaking Quebecers have also used the two nations theory, the two nations being themselves and everybody else, "les first, then "les or "les anglo-saxons" or even "les orangistes The latter term, by the way, has the same sort of emotional overtones in French applied to English- Canadians as the word "frog" does in English applied to French-Canadians It has been used to describe everything from 19th century anti-French bigots to people who speak English today and happen not to agree that Que- bec should be an officially French-speaking province The two nations theory in federal politics has resulted in the stated desire by the federal government to offer its services in either English or French to all citizens of Canada as much as possible, a program that has not been proceeding, at least as far as some French-Canadians are concerned at a spectacular pace Applied to Quebec the theory has meant that the French-Canadian homeland should strive to protect its French-speaking nature Thus we had Gerard Pelletier telling Quebecers this spring that the federal government had done more to promote the use of French than the provincial government of Quebec and Mr Pierre Trudeau saying that Montreal should be as French as Toronto is English Thus we have had Bill 22, and we will continue to have an argument between the strong men of Ottawa and the strong men of Quebec City as to the role each group must have in promoting and protecting French Generally-speaking most French-Canadian politicians here have felt that some sort of language legislation along the lines of Bill 22 was necessary Many, including the Parti Quebecois, the Creditistes and some Liberals feel it is too vague and does not go far enough The government feels it has been careful not to word the legislation so that it conflicts either with the British North America Act or federal lan- guage legislation LETTER There have been ample pro- tections placed in Bill 22 for the minority, English- speaking, population of the province They are given the right to deal as individuals with the government in their own lan- guage, and have been granted stronger guarantees of such service than exist at present While many of the regulations based on the bill remain to be drafted and parts of it will not come into full effect for another five years, the legislation seems at this date to guarantee better treatment to English- Quebecers than has been granted any other official minority group in any other part of Canada Yet English-Canadians here and increasingly others across Canada have spoken out against the bill Perhaps a large part of the gut reaction against the bill among English-speaking Quebecers and other people across the country stems from two unspoken feelings, that speaking French, even in Quebec, is a hardship, and further, that the official language of Quebec should not be French It seems to indicate a wide spread idea that it is all right for some provinces to offer only English-language services to their French- speaking citizens in French, but that at most Quebec can be only officially bilingual The reaction seems to be based on the idea that the English-Canadians are not a minority in Quebec as much as French Canadians are a minority in Canada and it is rather nice of us to allow them to speak their own language to the extent we do Meanwhile the French should behave as a minority and count their blessings Things would be so much simpler, this reaction seems to be saying if only everybody in Quebec spoke English In other words, Lord Durham was basically right demand had predictably adverse consequences on business Output is now 1 5 per cent below what it was a year ago Sluggish business inevitably affected labor conditions Real hourly wages have declined by three per cent Some industries dependent on relatively cheap credit notably housing and utilities are in very serious trouble, and the danger of a long-term recession is serious The upshot is a truly dangerous conjuncture Business and labor having suffered from inflation during the past year instead of gaming as they often do are moving to get back their own wherever possible Hence the big price rises announced by the steel and auto industries, even in the midst of falling demand Hence also some big wage increases already concluded in local construction contracts, and demand by the mineworkers from the local producers The way out of this bind is to do many things at once Big companies and big unions have to be persuaded to forgo at least for a while, increased wages and prices Oil prices have to be knocked down perhaps by organization of a counter cartel among the consuming countries Food prices ought to be stabilized by developing a policy for stockpiling against drought Demands should be sustained perhaps by a cut in payroll taxes which would tide over low income workers in lieu of a wage increase The unemployed need the cushion of a federal job program Certain industries notably housing, require special help Capital needs to be rationed in ways that do not break utilities and savings and loan associations Doing all these things at once requires a major league team of economic managers at the strategic posts in government The present team at the White House the treasury and the office of budget and management cannot do the job Apart from being believers in the old time religion with a vesteo. interest in vindicating their past, most of them have only the narrowest business experience They are a sandlot team Mr Ford, of course, can get first rate people For the time being, at least, he enjoys a honeymoon with most sectors of the country Good men from business and labor and government and the academic world are keen to pitch in But the longer he waits on making changes, the more he becomes wedded to the Nixon policies, the harder it will be for him to get the kind of talent required to meet the present economic troubles Berry's World Prince of Wales Concerning the recent criticism of the management of the Prince of Wales Hotel at Waterton Lakes Park, I thought The Herald would like to know what one, who has spent over a month each year for the last eight years in Glacier National Park, thinks about the Prince of Wales Hotel During these many years we have visited McDonald Lodge, East Glacier, Many Glaciers and Prince of Wales Each year we spend approximately two weeks in Many Glaciers and two weeks in Waterton Emerald Lake Chalet in Yoho has also been a favorite spot of ours From an overview of these experiences we can say that the Prince of Wales does a very commendable job better food this year than Many Glaciers and excellent dinner music The persona! service is excellent and the lobby is equal to all but East Glacier The lobby, while not luxurious, is very pleasant and the exterior is in good condition As an engineer and busi- nessman I can fully appreciate how difficult it is with such a short season and the rates for service (with the large capital investment) In short I think the management is doing an excellent job and should be commended for doing so We very much appreciate the opportunity of having this facility in Waterton CHARLES W LERCH Denver, Colorado 1974 by NEA Inc "By the way, you might be interested to know to- day's my last day I'm retiring'" The LctHbruUjc Herald 504 7th St S Lethbndge Alberta LETMBRIDGE HERALD CO LTD Proprietors and Publishers Second Class Mall Registration No 0012 CLEO MOWERS, Editor and Publisher DON H PILLING Managing Editor DONALD R DORAM General Manager ROY F MILES Advertising Manager DOUGLAS K WALKER Editorial Page Editor ROBERT M FENTON Circulation Manager KENNETH E 8ARNETT Business Manager "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"