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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - December 15, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta Labor feels it's been put in bad light By IAN POHTIiR Canadian Tress Labor Writer OTTAWA (CP) An im- mense sense of grievance pre- vailed wherever public spokesmen of organized labor in Canada met in 1971. Unsympatheite outsiders might suggest there was noth- ing new in this. Labor tradi- tionally has felt on the outs with government, business and other institutions. But if there has been a dif- ference this year, it lay in la- bor's suspicion that its oppo- nents have succeeded par- tially in pressing the move- ment into what it regards as a false and humiliating position. On one hand, unions stood accused of being among the main villains behind inflation, using monopolistic power to wring (insupportable wage gains from a troubled econ- omy. On the other, union mem- bership is threatened by un- employment w h i c h, labor leaders agree, the govern- ment deliberately created hi an effort to bring the economy under control. The argument was put most bluntly by Donald MacDonald, president of the 1.7-million member Canadian Labor Con- gress, in his annual March meeting with Prime Minister Trudeau and the cabinet. TERMED CALLOUS "The brutality, the callous- ness, the studied indifference to the human consequences of this anti-inflationary approach were matched only by its in- he charged. The CLC maintained a hard line throughout the year and resisted in particular any suggestion that Canada follow the United States in adopting wage and price controls. fn this, it has found allies, most recently a Senate com- mittee study which concluded that controls probably would be unworkable. Economic pressures, how- ever, have not been stared down so easily. Just how effective the gov- ernment's policies were in controlling wage demands re- mains unclear. Few major industrial con- tracts were up for renewal during the year and year-to- year comparisons can be mis- leading. As it happened, annual wage increases negotiated during the first nine months of the year averaged between 7.7 per cent and 8.2 per cent, a decline of close to one per cent from the average in- creases negotiated in 1970. LESS TIME LOST There was also less time lost from the job as a result of strikes and lockouts during the first nine months of the year than in any similar pe- riod since 1965. Such statistics do not indi- cate necessarily that union members are taking a second look at the economic situation before going on strike but cer- tainly some unions did agree to accept, only token increases Russia able to intercept satellites WASHINGTON (Reuter) A .Soviet satellite has for the first time destroyed a target below an altitude of 160 miles, indicat- ing the Russians now can inter- cept reconnaisancc satellites, the authoritative Aviation Week magazine says. "Ability to intercept recon- naissance satellites would be a major advantage lo a major power." the magazine says. "The Soviet new appear to pos- sess this capability along with the capability of intercepting; high-flying communication vehi- cles." The United States defence de- partment refused to comment on the report. The magazine, which did not give any source for its report, I said the Russians launched Cos-' mos 459 Nov. 29 at an altitude of 156 miles. Four days later. Cosmos 462 was launched by the Soviet anti-Cosmos defence forces at the same inclination as Cosmos 459 and was knocked down by 459. ''Cosmos exploded during an approach to Cosmos 459, breaking into 13 identifiable ob- Aviation Week says. Two Soviet Cosmos satellites were earlier inlerceplcd nt alti- tudes of MO and 550 miles, the magazine says. The difficulty of intercepting satellites increases as Ihe allitudc of the larget drops and il moves faster in re- lationship to n ground location, the magazine adds. JIA.IOR. 1'noinicKu Canada is second only to the Unilrd Starrs among the pro- ducers of molybdenum. as the alternative to unem- ployment. Even so, they were faced with an increasing number of plant shutdowns and mass layoffs. The Ontario Federa- tion of Labor calculated that in the year ended June, 1971, more than workers in the province had lost their jobs as a result of shutdowns and layoffs. Not surprisingly, many un- ionists responded by showing a much greater interest in po- litical action. Labor's case was presented to the public in the course of election campaigns by the New Democratic Partv in Saskatchewan and Ontario. A considerable outlay of union funds and organizers and con- tingents of volunteers from union nmlcs brought only mixed success. LOST The party swept from power the Liberal government in Saskatchewan in June but in October it lost ground to Ontario's Conservative gov- e r n m c n t and gained only slightly in the popular yotft Union involvement in poli- tics in Quebec took a dis- tinctly more radical bent. Particularly significant was the continued movement of the Quebec Federation of Labor, affiliated with the CLC, the independent Confed- eration of National Trade Un- ions and the Quebec Teachers Federation, towards a com- mon front on certain social and economic issues. Rivals for many years, the QFL and Ihe CNTU were brought together most closely by the imposition in October, 1970, of the War Measures Act. Since then, leaders of both groups have called to- gether for major reforms to the political and economic system. All three union groups were represented at the bloody riot that followed a mass demonstration protest- ing the suspension of publica- tion in October of La Presse, Ihe continent's biggest French-language newspaper. The increased political ac- tion by unions across the country has raised questions that have still to be answered. The principal one concerns the attitudes of the rank-and- file members. Clearly, many of them have refused to follow their lead- ers' advice to support the New Democrats. How else they feel about the activism at the top on a wide number of social issues is uncertain. The year ahead may offer more clues. -Wtdneiday, Docember 15, 1971 THE tETHBRIDGE HERAID New cable system sought TORONTO (CP) A Toronto coble television operator wants to experiment with a new cable system lie describes as "revolu- tionary." E. S'. Rogers, president of Bramalca Telecablc Ltd., told Ihe Canadian Radio-Television Commission Tuesday that he wants to install two 20-clianneI cables which would carry televi- sion programs and additional services such as burglary and fire alarm protection. The twin-cable system would be installed in Bramalea and Brampton, Ont., and in new ter- rifory in Mississauga, Ont.. just west of Toronto. Bramalea Tel- ecable is applying for an exten- sion of its territory in Bramp- ton-Bramalea to include the northern section of Missiaura township. Eleven cable companies arc applying to new territory in Mississauga, with a population of PAY FOR EXTRAS Mr. Rogers said the new cable system would carry a basic service of 15 television stations. Additional services such as movies and medical in- formation would be carried at an extra cost to the subscriber. It would be the first such sys- tem in Canada, though it has been discussed for some time in Ihe cable television industry. Similar U.S. systems are al- ready in operation. Mr. Rogers said he believed cable television will sci'.e the growing portion of the movie audience in the coming decade. He said cable TV and car- tridge tapes attached to televi- sion sets will attract many of the movie-goers who cease to K'> to film theatres. Bramalea Telecablc plans lo use first-run movies on. ils movie channels, Mr. Rogers said. The cable system would compete with movie theatres but not with movies carried by television stations. 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