Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - December 3, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 - THE IETHBRIDGE HERALD - Friday, December 3, 1971 Anthony Westell Closure on the tax debate The government has announced it will force a vote on the tax bill. On the bill itself there is room for criticism. On the government's right -even duty-to press it to a vote, there can be no valid criticism. It is a huge bill, with hundreds upon hundreds of debatable items, and the right of Parliament to engage in such debate cannot be argued. But that right is not interminable. If debate were allowed to go on to its natural conclusion the measure would never get to a vote and regardless of what merits it might have the country would never get the benefit of a new tax law. Parliamentary critics have two ways of defeat- ing the bill. One is by mustering the votes in the House of Commons, the other is by filibustering it to death. They have been working on the second, within the rules of the House. Now the government has invoked a prior rule and ordered a vote. The voters may rebuke (and perhaps defeat) the government for its tax bill. They should commend it for showing the courage of its convictions and strength in leadership, if it believes its bill is good, as surely it does, then its inescapable duty is to see the filibuster brought to an end and the people's representatives permitted to vote. The bitter choice General reaction by the British press in regard to the proposed settlement on the terms of Rhodesian independence has been that it is about the best deal Britain could possibly get. No one expected that the one-man one-vote principle had a chance, but at the veiy least the agreement provides that there will be less racialism, less discrimination and more power to the Africans. The big question is, will they ever become the majority party, even in 30 years? There are many loopholes which could delay progress to majority rule even by the turn of the century, if the white minority uses the subtle ways of the educated and "superior" to prevent the African march to power. There is some encouragement in the appointment of the commission which will decide whether the terms of independence are acceptable to all the Rhodesian people, black or white. Its decision will be based on observation of the testing of public opinion in Rhodesia. This is a most difficult procedure, but provisions have been made which go a long way to assure that an honest result can be achieved. The personnel of the commission who will assess the results is encouraging. The first three names an- nounced are Lor.d Pearce, a former judge and now president of the British press council, Lord Harlech, former Conservative minister and ambassador to Washington whose father played an important role in examining the land problem in Rhodesia; and finally Sir Maurice Dor-man, former governor-general of Malta and Sierra Leone, who as a young colonial governor held notably radical views during the decolonization era in West Africa. There is still a very long way to go before ratification can be achieved. And even after that, progress will still depend on the good will and integrity of the leaders of the Rhodesian front. There's going to be a lot of water flowing under the Rhodesian bridge before any settlement completely satisfactory to the white Rhodesians, the black Rhodesians or the British can ever be achieved. The fact is, that such a settlement is impossible. Sir Alec Douglas-Home has said, "it is the best I could do." From the point of view of the black Rhodesian, it's progress, but it's only inching forward. The bitter choice for them is "less racialism" or apartheid, as practised in South Africa; Christmas gifting By Betty Meyers pOALALE - I just had to tell you! Our Christmas shopping is ALL DONE! And it was FUN! All done, that is except my husband Ivan's gift for me - but then it seems to be traditional with Mm to buy his gift for me the day before Christmas - maybe that last minute exposure to the hustle bustle of the Christmas crowds does something special for Mm. Dollars just don't seem to go very far these days, and being from the farm there seems to be even less of them, so last year we tried an experiment. We had a family conference, we number 10 now with the children's spouses and one who is still to be added; and we agreed that our gifts to one another should have a limit of one dollar per person. It was a great idea, and no one ended up with a mountain of bills facing them in the month of January. The Christmas tree WAS rather sadly deflated compared to other years, because of the smallness of the gifts, but it was great fun discover-in each package how imaginative each person had been, and how much thought they had given to each other's real needs of the little things. And oh what a blessing to have so much less paper to clean up and the ease we found in finding just the proper place for each gift. So we have done it again, because it was fun, and it is the giving that is so much more important than the gift. My girls reminded me of Christmas past when their Dad used to save his 50-cent pieces in a little Servel refrigerator bank that came with our old coal oil fridge. At Christmas, Ivan always gathered the children around him, took the tiny screws out of the back,of the bank and dumped the big pieces of silver on the table. He would make four equal piles of silver pieces, one for each of the children; and that would be their Christmas spending money for the year. Usually it amounted to $3.50 or $4.00. And they did all their shopping with that. I hear you saying, "oh well, that was those days." But that is what I'm trying to tell you! It can still be done today, if you just think, and look around a little bit. Here are some suggestions of what we found: at one garage we found a whole shelf of handy items for 99 cents each. There were hammers, socket seats, small wrench sets, scissors, level and square, nylon rope and many others. All hardware departments have a whole host of kitchen aids, like, wooden spoons, rubber spatulas, meat thermometers, box of J cloths, fancy wailboard push pins for posters or reminders, plastic scoops, rubber jar openers, and spoon drips. A shelf marked 88 cents items disclosed all sorts of little toys the right size for small children, cars and wagons, blocks and balls, games and puzzles. A search in the stationery departments of stores brought out dot books and packages of non toxic felt pens to trace them with, all sorts of coloring books and new boxes of exciting crayons, books of stickers to punch out and find the right place to put them. Little books anywhere from 35 cents to 65 cents to read and to be read to, match box toys for 75 cents, a real delight to any child. What fun they would have collecting them. And did you ever think how much more fun it would be for children, if we gave them gifts any time during the year, just because we love them, rather than have to wait for Christmas or birthdays? The countless bazaars have been a boon to the Christmas shopper. They offer such beautiful items for such reasonable prices - gifts of love made by willing hands for the cause in which they believe the most, be it the church or the hospital or their club. Every year, I personally say my little prayer of thanks for the tender loving care put into all the beautiful items made by Tilda Miller. How about some of your own tender loving care? Bake a batch of buns, or your very best' cake, or a pan of creamy toffee or fudge, or hot muffins for Christmas breakfast for your neighbor. If you don't milk a cow any more, find some industrious neighbor who does, and treat your friends to a jar of rich farm cream, or three dozen farm fresh eggs. Even the grocery store is chuck full of treats for Christmas that your friends might not buy themselves. Try it, you will find it a lot of fun. Remember, it isn't the gift that is important it is the giving; and likewise, it isn't the food that is important, it is just BEING TOGETHER. Ultimate ins By Doug Walker ^ MEETING I attended once was favor ignif icance ed unexpectedly by the presence of i personage of some significance, suppos-xily. The chairman drafted somebody to Introduce the visitor to the assemblage. Without the opportunity to prepare the IntroducUon, the poor fellow fell back on some old cliches one of which got badly mangled. He intended to say that the visitor - as a fine chap, or whatever he was- was second to no one. What he said was that the visitor was second to nothing. The fellow on my left, out of the side of his mouth, remarked, "How low can you get!" Leaking of cabinet secrets is serious QTTAWA - When Hie Gray report to the cabinet on foreign investment leaked to the Canadian Forum, it was merely an unusual incident. The publication of the confidential cabinet decision on the report, which quickly in another paper followed seemed a coincidence. The third leak recently, of a cabinet paper on Indian policy, suggests a conspiracy. We have, it appears, a branchplant Ellsberg, someone who has access to government records and the belief that he is the best judge of what the public has the right to know, and when. In addition to exciting the media, amusing the opposition and annoying the government, the trickle of leaks raises serious long-term issues. Those people who see nothing but good in the publication of cabinet papers should understand that they are really approving a fundamental change in our system of responsible government. I happen to think that we should reform the system to make more information available to the public and to open decision-making to scrutiny. I've been advocating it for years. But I don't think we should be hustled by some self-appointed savior with a copying machine. The cabinet system as we have known it depends on confidentiality. The prime minister asks one of his colleagues to study a particular area of policy and to make recommendations. The minister takes his draft proposals to a committee of cabinet, where they will probably be amended. The committee report goes on to full cabinet for final decision, probably after further debate and amendment. This decision becomes government policy when it is announced in the form of legislation, a cabinet order or a white paper. The cabinet is collectively responsible for the collective decision, and any minister who cannot give his support must resign. When there is a leak in the middle of the policy-making process, the cabinet collectively is imperilled. For example, the publication of Revenue Minister Herb Gray's draft report showed that he was recommending a new agency to screen foreign investment. What happens now if the cabi- net modifies that proposal, or even persuades Gray that it is not the best course? Can he survive in the cabinet, exposed to jeers and criticism that he is knuckling under, or must he resign? This is hypothetical because it seems that the cabinet will accept, in essence, Gray's proposal. But only a couple of years ago, Prime Minister Pierre Trudenu made the mistake of allowing his deputy, Paul I-lellyer, to serve as head of a task force on housing and to identify himself with public proposals to cabinet. When the cabinet was reluctant to act on some of the recommendations Hellyer had little alternative but to resign. Certainly he could not, stay in the cabinet and support policies different from those with which he bad publicly endorsed in the report of the task force. The Conservatives have called for the resignation of Indian Affairs Minister Jean Chretien on the basis of Indian reaction to a leaked cabinet document. The document shows that on July 29 the cabinet endorsed in principle the decision of its social policy committee to begin a $40 million program to develop native cultural-education centres. The paper called for more detailed studies to be prepared by this fall, and noted that funds for this year would have to be provided in supplementary estimates for the secretary of state's department. I don't know if the cabinet has yet made the final decision scheduled for the fall, but the funds seem to be included in the book of supplementary estimates put before Parliament recently. But Indian leaders are convinced, on the basis of the July document leaked to them that the cabinet is holding back the promised money to pressure them into good behavior. In their anger, they are refusing to accept any help whatsoever from Ottawa, and it is this apparent breakdown in communications which has brought the call for Chretien's resignation. So what has been achieved by the leakage of the cabinet document before a policy decision had been made? Some headlines, TV film and political debating points. But the Indians seem to be worse off. Similarly, what was achieved Letters to the editor Amazed at high salaries of teachers The school authorities association of Lethbridge and Medicine Hat should be commended for presenting such a comprehensive and clear report on contract negotiations between the school boards involved and the ATA (teachers' union). Anyone who reads this report must surely be amazed at the high average salaries teachers are now receiving and it is unthinkable that the 1972 salary scale as per the conciliation award would not be readily acceptable to the ATA. According to federal government statistics, we note that from 1949 to 1969 farmers average income increased by 34 per cent. "All employees" income by 133 per cent and teachers income by 194 per cent. From 1959 to 1969 farmers income increased by 23 per cent, "all employees" by 56 per cent and teachers by 82 per cent. The "all employees" group includes store clerks, auto workers, carpenters, etc. (and also teachers) and the increase in this category would be somewhat less had teachers not been included. From these figures it is apparent that the ATA has been successful in achieving abnormal salary increases and the conciliation award indicates a continuation of this trend at an accelerated rate. Teachers now have to be the group of employees with the highest hourly pay, based on their teaching week of 23'/z hours and this over a nine month period. This work week is evidently still not satisfactory to the ATA however, who want the maximum Long live Chief of Police Michelson teaching time to be 22 hours. It will be difficult for those people on low fixed incomes, and the many thousands on salaries substantially less than those enjoyed by teachers to understand why they should be asked to pay the teachers' Health Care and Blue Cross premiums as well as their own. A local teacher recently stated in The Herald "The ideal edm-ation situation would be to have a tutor for each child," This is not as preposterous as it sounds and this pupil-teacher ratio is no doubt the ultimate aim of the ATA. In reply to Law-Abiding Citizen, who is too cowardly to sign its name, I can only say "Long Live Chief of Police Michel-son." The police are far too busy with genuine crimes to start dealing out false punishment, and if the "youth" hadn't deserved the punishment, he wouldn't have got it. It wasn't simply a matter of "a few ten-cent light bulbs." It wasn't what he destroyed but that he destroyed, which was wrong. If the police let these boys off easy, the boys only snigger and go do something worse. We must stop crime at the beginning, or soon we can't live in a town. If we all brought up our families in the soppy manner that Law-Abiding Citizen sug-gets, we would soon have a whole generation : of . little hoods. No, I am not suggeting we return to the medieval thumb screw and rack, or that we hang people for stealing a loaf of bread, but lately the whole sentiment of the country has been to sympathize with the criminal, dragging in the most improbable examples to support our case. Everyone believes the criminal, for in- stance, when it is known that such people never tell the truth, and never looks at the evidence at all. As for being finger printed, what is so terrible about that? I've been finger printed, and not for a criminal record eith-' er. You can't join the armed services now-a-days without it. Many hospitals routinely finger and footprint new borns, and some places require finger prints for drivers licences, bank books and credit cards. It is simply a form of identification. The police may have my finger prints any time they wish. They won't , ever find them were they shouldn't be. MRS. AMY SPENCER. Cardston. Lethbridge. IRATE CITIZEN. by the publication of the Gray report and the cabinet minute approving it in principle and calling for further studies? The editor of the Forum, Abraham Rotstein, said he understood there was a deadlock in the cabinet over whether to publish the Gray report. He claimed rather piously that in making public part of the document, he was seeking to break the deadlock and force the government to issue the whole report. But there was no deadlock. Trudeau had made clear o/i several occasions that he considered the Gray report to be a confidential cabinet paper, and once the prime minister had spoken, the matter was settled. The provisional plan, In fact, was to issue a white paper when the final policy decision had been made. Whether the paper would have been as complete as the Gray report is an open question, but certainly it would have been more readable and more likely to receive broad public attention. The Gray document contains very little new information and consists mostly of explanation and discussion in almost unreadable bureaucratise. What the cabinet will decide now to publish remains to be seen. Fewer people now within the government apparatus will have access to cabinet papers. The machines which shred up confidential papers will be busier than ever. Ministers and public servants will be less ready to talk even privately about matters before the cabinet. This is not a criticism of the Canadian Forum or of any of my journalistic colleagues for publishing the private papers which came into their hands. I'm sure that in the same position I should have done the same thing, partly because of the desire for a scoop and partly because the journalist is not in a position to make final judgments about the public interest. James Reston of the New York Times, for example, thought it was not in the public interest to publish his knowledge about the planned Bay of Pigs adventure and has since lamented that if he had reported what he knew, he might have saved his country from a terrible mistake. The first duty of the journalist is to publish what be knows. When he decides to censor himself he had better be very sure where the public interest really lies, and be ready to accept responsibility for his action. Similarly, the responsibility of the politician and the public servant is to keep official secrets. To breach them is to claim to know the public interest better than the government elected by the public to serve its interests. These cabinet leaks, therefore, are serious matters and not simply political skylarks. Certainly we should have better access to research material which lies behind cabinet decisions. One solution, recommended by the economic council in its recent report, is to follow the British practice of publishing green papers - that is, summaries of information about a problem to encourage public discussion before the cabinet is ready even to state its own policy in a white paper. Another proposal, which was debated in the Commons by backbenchers from all parties, is to further strengthen parliamentary committees, by giving them better research facilities and more independence from cabinet control. These ideas and discussions do not make headlines or scandals on TV, but they are the right and responsible way to go about reforming and open-s ing our system of government. * (Toronto Star Syndicate) Looking backward Complete mental midget Commenting on a letter to the editor in The Herald by "A law-abiding citizen" and in which Law-abiding appears to me to be a strong believer in the right of persons to steal or destroy property without penalty and who suggests that a police chief who warns these nasty vandals, is a "doddering fool." It seems to me that our police forces have a hard enough time to protect the public without persons like Law-abiding giving what amounts to aid and comfort to the vandals. The taxpayers of Lethbridge have suffered thousands of dollars of damage in the last few years from these vandals that Law- abiding seems to believe should be exempt, from any punishment and it is my considered opinion that only a person who is an enemy of society or a complete mental midget could condone criminal vandalism. With citizens like Law-abiding, the saying that "crime does not pay" could be reversed and every citizen would be obliged to guard his property night and day. I have always noticed that those people wo criticize the police forces the most severely, are the type who make police forces necessary. RAY KEITGES. Lethbridge. Through The Herald 1911 - C. W. Cross, MPP for Edmonton, is planning to introduce a bill which will call for the closing of all retail stores and barber shops at 6 p.m. every day. 1921 - Fine weather and good roads brought a crowd to the opening concert of the Canadian Chautaugua Co. appearing in Winnifred for three days. 1931 - The special CPR passenger car to be carried on the northbound train to Okotoks Friday, has been ordered and we hope that a good number of Hockey fans will travel with the Kinsmen hockey team. 1941 - Names of about 100 members of the Canadian armed forces overseas who will broadcast to Canada on Sunday, were made public today. 1951 - Close to 65 oil paintings, water colors, pastels, pen and ink and pencil drawings were seen in the 13th annual exhibition of the Lethbridge Sketch Club. The Lethbridge Herald 504 7tb St. S., Lethbridge, Alberta LETHBRIDGE HERALD CO. LTD., Proprietors and Publishers Published 1905 � 1954, by Hon. W. A. BUCHANAN Second Class Mall Registration No. 0012 Member ot The Canadian Presu ana me Canadian Dally Newspaper Publishers' Association and the Audit Bureau of circulations CLEO W. MOWERS, Editor and Publisher THOMAS H. ADAMS, General Manager JOE BALLA WILLIAM HAY Managing Editor Associate Editor. ROY F. MILES DOUGLAS K. WALKER Advertising Manager Editorial Pag* Editor "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"