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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - December 11, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta Consumers beware byLYNNEGORDOR Wise record buying Records can make a great gift, if you have them in your hands when you want them, but watch out for the record promoters who can lead you on a merry run-a-round. Record clubs and record promotions are among the most frequent complaints received by Consumer Protection agen- cies. The basic problem is pure and simple. Most, if not all of the companies, are swamped with complaints they neglect to answer, complaints about records that are never delivered or delivered late and about bills that don't stop coming. You may have been caught in the record club web because your child decided to fill out a coupon he saw in a magazine advertising records, lets say, for a dollar. He may not have realized that returning the coupon means he's joining a record club and that he's expected to buy another record each month, usually at a higher price than the introcuctory offer. Sometimes the come-on to join is a piece of stereo equipment at a very low price. Many of the clubs operate on "a negative option sales plan." This means that selections arrive automatically every month unless, within a few days, customers send back the notice that they don't want to receive them. If a customer sends back the selections after they arrive, it may take several months to straighten out their account and get a credit. The best kind of record club to join may be the kind of record club that operates on a "positive option sales plan." You pay a few dollars at the beginning and then only order records as you want them. The biggest problem they may have is running out of stock. Record clubs often add insult to injury by continuing to adver- tise the records not in stock. Orders pile up and delivery takes longer. There is another kind of record offer which is different to the record club. It's the special record promotion, normally advertised on radio or television. Many consumers find they have to wait months for these records, if they arrive at all. One of the problems is that a promoter may advertise a special record, wait for all the cheques to come in and then try to buy the necessary records to fill the orders. In one case, the promoter collected ?7.50 for some hot records called "Golden Moments In Music" and "great Hymns Of All Times." He was in Waterloo, Ontario and had no idea of the response he would get. He was planning to order the records from a distributor in the United States. But, by the time he placed his order, the distributor had run out of stock. It seemed about 100 other jobbers had the same idea. In this case, the promoter decided to fly-by-night with all the money. Fortunately this kind of thing doesn't happen too often. The problem is that most consumers blame the radio or television station that carries the commercial and the station has no involvement other than providing air time. Before you jump at the first offer for a special record, or fall for a record club promotion, do a little comparison shop- ping. Take a look at some of the prices in your neighborhood dis- count stores. If you are tempted to respond to an ad or commercial, see if you can order COD, don't send your money before you get the record. Most of all, remember, the coupon you fill out amounts to a binding contract. The key word is prevention put that on record. Copyright 1974, Toronto Sun Syndicate FOURTH SECTION The LetKbttdge Herald Lethbridge, Alberta, Wednesday, December 11, 1974 Pages 37-48 'Street corner sex clinics9 irritate sex therapy pioneer Herald- Family By CHARLES FOLEY London Observer LOS ANGELES Sex therapy has become big business in the United States. Five years ago an American who decided he or she had a sexual problem could go to a doctor or a priest and be given the choice between saying 10 "Hail Marys" and taking a weekend at Miami Beach. It just was not a discussable sub- ject. Today all that has changed: there are some sex "clinics" and "treatment centres" across the U.S. offering an astonishing array of pseudo scientific, pop psychology remedies, and the experts who started the boom are not happy about it at all. "The current field of sexual therapy is dominated by an astounding assortment of in- competents, cultists, mystics, well meaning dabblers and outright says Dr. William Masters who, with his wife, Virginia Johnson, pioneered the concept of the sex therapy clinic in the late 1960s. "The main stimulant to this sexual quackery is money. Whenever you have thousands of people who are willing to spend money, who are begging somebody to take it, somebody will always oblige at a minimum of an hour." Masters, an amiable, balding 58, says he saw the problem coming back in 1969, when he was writing his epic study of Human Sexual Inade- quacy. Having discovered that 70 per cent of married couples suffered from some form of "sexual Masters and Johnson had nightmares about the day when "this new form of medicine" would become a public spectacle, discussed on television talk shows, bandied about at cocktail parties, encouraging thousands of prospective patients to rush out in search The most wanted gift MINK from Canadian Furriers She'll love her favorite fur in one of our magnificent shades of Pastel, Pearl, Jet, Demi Buff, Blue Iris, Sapphire in every con- ceivable styling and in full length, pant coat, jacket or stole. Surprise her Santa! Collectively priced from to A bMutllul Mtatlon of Fur Hats In Minktails, Mink, cox, Muskrat and Raccoon. Prlcvdfrom (IIARGFXc v-r 3' Shop Thursday and Friday Remember: If It's Great Fashion, till 9 p.m. It's At CANADIAN FURRIERS PARAMOUNT THEATRE BLDQ 4TH AVE. S. of an instant cure. The situa- tion today, they write in Health, a publication of the American Medical Association, is even worse than they expected. Not 50 out of those clinics actually do any good Masters believes. The rest offer a little superficial sex education at best, and "dangerous quackery" at worst. Five years ago, he says, 48 per cent of the people coming to him were drop outs from previous therapy, psychoanalysis or what have you; in the past two years that figures has risen to 85 per cent, which means that more people are visiting more therapists and finding more of them to be incompetent, if not downright criminal. Some "therapists" induce "patients" to have sex with them on the ground that this is an essential part of the treatment. Others persuade couples to allow themselves to be filmed in the sex act including homosexual behaviour. By permitting this the patient lays himself open to blackmail. The New York Attorney General's office reports that the list of self appointed therapists in New York state included not only quacks, but "criminals and mentally ill persons." An investigation turned up cases of bad therapy which had resulted in severe mental dis- turbances and even suicide. Masters says that his staff have seen couples who claim that both partners have been seduced by self styled therapists. What especially irritates Masters and Johnson is that many of these "street corner clinics" claim to be employ- ing either M-J techniques or M-J trained therapists. "Usually, this means someone has read one of our complains Masters. "In fact we follow no formula, preach no dogma. We aren't wedded to such fads as nude group encounters. We treat each couple as a uni- que relationship, and the emphasis is on that relationship rather than the individual." It was in 1959 that Masters and Johnson began their first sex therapy programme. He was a gynaecologist with a background in hormone research when, with the back- ing of Washington Univer- sity's medical school in St. Louis, where he was an associate professor, he made his first study of human sex- ual malfunctioning. When one of his women subjects told him in exasperation, that as a man he "couldn't possibly un- Masters joined forces with psychologist Virginia Johnson, a divorcee 10 years younger than himself. Their i ork, which involved the observation under laboratory conditions of some sexual encounters by 694 men and women, outraged some and titillated others; but there is no doubt today that their famous therapeutic programme has helped thousands of couples to find sexual fulfilment, and saved countless marriages. The course is hardly cheap; a two-week consultation costs with the patients paying their own travel expenses to St. Louis, hotel bills, etc. But some couples a year, including some from England, Australia and elsewhere, make the trip. At one stage, Masters and Johnson employed women as paid sex partners in the treatment of male impotence; but four years ago they discontinued that practice after being sued by the husband of an alleged Unlike many voyeuristic quacks, Masters does not ask couples to per- form under observation. Masters and Johnson want the media to publicize the question, and the public to de- mand to know the qualifications of those who are offering sex therapy. They urge prospective clients to checkout their "expert" with four separate sources, per- sonal doctor, local medical scoiety, local social worker and clergyman. They would also like to see the American Medical Association call a national seminar of doctors and other professionals to set clinical standards and work out some kind of licensing law. 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