Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - December 28, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD Saturday, December 28, 1974 The public must know The cabinet decision to press ahead with sales of Candu reactors and uranium is disappointing, but the disap- pointment is not so much with the deci- sion itself; that was to be expected. Governments are pragmatic. They are inspired only by a collective conscience. They are persuaded by such arguments as the one which goes: If we don't sell them a reactor, someone else will. Doubts about the wisdom of an energy system which imposes on future generations enormous burdens of storing catastrophically dangerous materials and misgivings about putting nuclear forces at the disposal of unstable, poten- tially fanatical, countries are overcome by the argument that sources of energy are desperately needed by the under developed countries, as well as by the developed countries heavily dependent on imports of oil or other fossil fuels. This may be myopia, but myopia is a common disease. Students in college seminars may find a correlation between geographical locations of existing nuclear power plants, convection currents and the rate of birth defects in downwind areas, thus exposing some of the dangers of nuclear energy. Such an argument seldom prevails in a cabinet meeting; possibly it is never brought up there. It would be interesting to know what went on in the cabinet sessions devoted to this question of whether Canada should promote sales of reactors and uranium. It would be of value to know who produced what arguments for or against the policy and what those arguments were. To those who support the contention that board meetings concerning the operation of public institutions should be open to the public this is an issue worthy of such confrontation. The cabinet, after all, is simply the biggest board of all, concerned with the operation of the public institution known as Canada. And this brings up the major source of disappointment. The cabinet, through Energy Minister Donald Macdonald, still refuses to disclose the details of the safeguards it is imposing as conditions of such sales, or to specify exactly what it means when it says it is attempting to stop the proliferation of nuclear weapons. Since the destiny of mankind (including Canadians) is perforce a collective one, perhaps the cabinet is right in thinking (as it must have) that the problems posed by nuclear technology must be solved collectively and that in the meantime Canada can continue to distribute reactors and uranium. But, having made the decision to sell reactors under conditions which it admits are not foolproof, the Trudeau government must spell out exactly what these conditions are so that the public may make a final judgment in this matter which so intimately concerns it. And having made the decision, the Trudeau government must aiso assume responsibility at the international level for leadership in bringing nuclear technology under control. It should do so in full view of the world public. It must spell out in detail what measures it proposes in order to give the world some kind of assurance that there is a future. This is a matter in which the public has everything at stake and generalizations on the part of cabinet ministers are not enough. Chairs for Castro From The New York Times It is ridiculous for the United States to ex- acerbate its already strained relations with Canada in defence of a bankrupt policy of try- ing to embargo trade with Cuba. Yet, that is what is involved in the instructions sent on Washington's advice by Litton Industries to its Canadian subsidiary to cancel a Cuban order for desks, chairs, and filing cabinets. This kind of nonsense appeared to be at an end last April when Washington decided to allow Argentine subsidiaries of Chrysler, Ford, and General Motors to export cars and trucks to Cuba. If the state depart- ment rationale was valid then that the ex- ception was necessary in the interest of "good relations with Argentina" what about Washington's not so good relations with its most important trading partner, Canada? In fact, the whole hemisphere knows that Washington relented on the automotive deal because the late President Juan Peron warn- ed that otherwise he would nationalize the Argentine plants of the American firms and order them to fulfil the million contract with the Castro regime. Earlier this year, Washington took no formal action when a Canadian firm, 52 per cent owned by Studebaker Worthington, Inc., went ahead WEEKEND MEDITATION with a million contract to supply Cuba with railway locomotives. The attempt to keep Cuba isolated in the hemisphere is "anachronistic, ineffectual, and as 12 member governments of the Organization of American States contend- ed in their abortive effort in Ecuador last month to repeal the 12 year old OAS sanc- tions against the Castro regime. Seven OAS members have already re established relations with Cuba and four others have opened talks with Havana looking to that step. In any event, Canada is not in the OAS and the United States cannot wrap itself in the sanctity either of OAS sanctions or its own laws on the subject when it has already ac- quiesced in two major exceptions this year. Many Canadians suspect that Washington's negative advice to Litton Industries had less to do with Fidel Castro than with resentment against Canada's decision to cut exports of crude oil to this country by barrels a day as of Jan. 1. But the cut in oil shipments is a reminder that there are far more important issues for Americans and Canadians to worry about than those desks and chairs for Mr. Castro. President Ford and Secretary of State Kissinger would do well to take another look at the Litton affair. Packing up Christinas Christmas is over. If you haven't done it already, very soon the lights and tree and all the rest of the Christmas decoration will be put away for another year. For months the advertisers anticipated it and the post office warned to get your letters and parcels off before some deadline. For months children planned and picked out their favorite toys to ask Santa to bring them. For months choirs practised and pageants were planned. George Edward Hoffman wrote a poem of eight lines entitled "December 26" on this very theme: "Chants, incense, and the glory pass and die; The festive lights diminish." Then he looks forward to a time when Jesus will be welcome through the year. Whether you want Christmas through the year, however, depends on what Christmas means to you. If it is an event like the Roman Saturnalia, you will be glad that it is gone. One can take only so much of that sort of thing. For most people Christmas is a time of gaiety, parties, trinkets, and shopping, and December 26 is a blessed release from the fatigue of all that. Now to pay the bills! If, however, it has been as it should be a high point of spiritual experience, then you see it go with a sigh, the same sort of regret that the shepherds must have felt when they went back to tending sheep or the Wise Men when they returned to their own country. It was a time when you caught a vision of peace on earth and goodwill to men, a time when it seemed easy to forgive, when animosities withered, when men became less selfish and generosity was the of the day, when your heart went out to all races and people in compassion, and nothing seemed so healthy, clean and good as the laughter of little children. It was a time of music and song, of love and peace and joy. What a pity this has to go! If only the pure exaltation of Christmas did not have to give Way to the harsh realities of man's inhumanity, of conflict and cruelty, of tyranny and oppression, of unemployment, hunger, cold, and the misery of millions about us! Was our high moment just an il- lusion, a beautiful dream divorced from reality? "Revere the heavenly moods, ephemeral though they said an ancient poet. Keep your high moments, for they represent the highest truth into which you have penetrated for a few brief minutes. Be grateful for the vision. To be sure in the rush and bustle of the street it passes and the world derides it. There are many thieves. You must guard your treasure. Keep repeating to yourself what you truly believe in the depths of your heart, your faith in the gladness of life, that love is better than hate, generosity than selfishness, and faith than fear. Friendship and love are the most glorious facts of life and they are eternal. Heaven is near to earth and is a reality which should be open to men continually. God speaks to man if he would but listen. There are stars to guide us, if only man would trust them. Did not the shepherds return "glorify- ing and praising God for all the things they had seen and So too may you. Then Christmas will not have been a day or a season, but a way of life. Not a thing confined in poetry, song, and decorations, but a reality for everyday living. Then Christmas will not have been a time of extravagance and sen- timentality, but a time of decision when you determined life's true values and experienc- ed life's supreme reality. Does not Immanuel mean "God with God is continuously here. High moments are given, not for a moment only, bur that they may be the dominant in- spirations of every day, of all the moments. So the soul looks back and says stubbornly in the assaults of the world's mockery, "I have felt! I have You will also come to realize that your hope lies not in your grip of God first of all or most of all, but in His grip of you. PRAYER: O God who revealed yourself in your incarnate Son, help us to have con- fidence and expectation in your revelations in daily life, so that we may grow into his likeness, straight, strong, and true, simple and sincere, ever willing to follow the star and respond to the heavenly vision. F. S. M. Letters "But of course they're more expensive that's inflation The club is wide open by C. L. Sulzberger, New York Times commentator PARIS Nineteen seventy four may conceivably be known in history less for such political sensations as Presi- dent Nixon's resignation un- der fire, the Portuguese revolution and restoration of democracy to Greece than for the fact that this was the year when the UN Security Council lost all pretensions to control the spread of nuclear arms. Until 1974, by what seems a curious accident, officially acknowledged atomic arsenals were possessed by only five nations, those recognized under the UN's charter as permanent members of the Security Council: the United States, Britain, Russia, France and China in order of their ad- mission to the nuclear club. The United States was, from the start, way ahead. When the Second World War was over, it started squeezing Britain (which had aided American nucleonics) slowly out of the race. Britain's posi- tion was later reaffirmed un- der the MacMahon act which simultaneously forbade help to other aspirants. Russia blasted its way into club membership years earlier than Western authorities had anticipated, and has since been steadily gaining in strength. France, without U.S. assistance, started its own military nucleonics program after the 1956 Suez expedition. Under de Gaulle this was accelerated. The French have now clearly overtaken the British. China was the last one in. Of course, the Peking regime which gained atomic rank is not that envisaged by Franklin Roosevelt when he demanded that China should be a permanent Security Council member. Roosevelt had in mind Chiang Kai shek, but F. D. R. insisted on a basic role for the most pop- ulous nation. Even if the two super- powers are enormously ahead of the three lesser nuclear states, the latter are theoretically far stronger in the ultimate implications of warfare than, for example. West Germany, Japan, Yugoslavia or Brazil, which have no atomic arsenals. From the start the United States sought to discourage other countries from prying inside Pandora's Box. But it transcended human logic to imagine that all foreign lands would accept continuing inferior status. Nevertheless, such renown- ed peace mongers as the late Bertrand Russell urged Washington to warn other interlopers away. Lord Russell even suggested the U.S. should threaten to blow up the Soviet Union if it ven- tured inside the forbidden domain. Bernard Baruch, the famous unofficial statesman, and Adm. Lewis Strauss, chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission, sought to discourage anyone from joining the club. Strauss ex- pressed a theory that the colt .45 calibre revolver on America's western frontier was called the "equalizer" because it put both strong and weak on the same level. The a-bomb, he argued, was today's equalizer and it would be folly to permit governments less peace lov- ing than ours to share in its disposal. This pleasant folklore has long been a thing of the past. We have become accustomed to a world where Russia and America, scared silly of each other and by no means sure of China, can brandish implicit nuclear weaponry. It goes the other way with China. Britain, of course, still hangs on to its aging a-arms. France has used its stockpile with remarkable success on the theory that a small atomic arsenal may mean little against enemies in war but means everything in gaining ascendancy among friends in peacetime. But now there is no more club at all. Israel's president has openly confirmed that it has been making warheads for some time, even if they haven't been openly tested. And an official report by western European union's scientific committee refers to India's nuclear test this year as "an atomic bomb" (although New Delhi says it ain't The race is on. Argentina has already signed a bilateral accord with India to gain nuclear assistance, thus introducing frightful western hemisphere possibilities. The Arabs are muttering about their own need to counter Israel's proclaimed trump. And Brazil broods about what Argentina is up to. The bursting through exclu- sion rules of history's most select club confuses everyone except those who broke in. NATO's Dutch member is so worried about nuclear ripples that it wants to oust U.S. warheads from Europe in ex- change for Russian withdrawal of tanks like trading brass knuckles against a tommygun. More and more equalizers are being brandished. If one felt safer than five, five felt safer than seven. Now we are in for plethora. The race that busted into the open this year can't be ended by administer- ing salt to its tail. As James Baldwin wrote of another ghastly situation: "the fire next time." A thin case for an inquiry By Anthony Westell, Toronto Star commentator The case for a special in- quiry into the Seafarers Inter- national Union is thin. The On- tario and Toronto Metro police have spent months interviewing union members and, as we know, tapping un- ion phones, and have come up with only enough evidence to lay a few relatively minor charges. The Canadian Labor Congress which is supposed to keep an eye on the union, in view of its history, says it knows of no evidence to warrant an inquiry. There are also suggestions that the charges of violence and terror made by some members of the union against others arc really propaganda in a struggle by one faction to gain control of the union. The Ontario government, in its letter to Ottawa suggesting an inquiry, is reduced to citing public concern expressed by the news media concern which the government helped to create in the first place. Nevertheless, there remains the suspicion in many minds that there is something seriously wrong with the un- ion, some conspiracy which lies behind the visible minor evidence of violence, and perhaps an inquiry is justified merely to clear the air. If so, the terms of reference should deal only with the af- fairs of the union. There is no warrant whatsoever for a fishing expedition in search of some evidence to support what appear to have been out- rageous insinuations of cor- ruption in the cabinet. No doubt some opposition politicians and headline hunters would delight in see-- ing ministers hauled before a judicial commission and questioned about campaign contributions from the union. Whatever they might say, no matter if the commission sub- sequently cleared them, a smear and a scent of scandal would remain. There is not a scrap of evidence at present that politicians have been cor- rupted. Nobody has even made a charge of corruption. There are merely second hand rumors, and no man Failure be blowed! I WANTKI) to be a tramp! should be brought before a commission of inquiry to answer malicious gossip. The RCMP is continuing its investigation to see if there is any evidence to support the rumors. Unless new informa- tion emerges, the government should resist demands that an inquiry into the union should also examine the condition of politicians, although no doubt it will be accused of covering up. A case can be made that ministers were unwise to accept donations from the un- ion. A similar argument would apply to many other types of campaign contributions to ministers and possibly even to opposition MPs. Perhaps there should be a set of rules to guide ministers and others in deciding which campaign funds to accept and which to refuse in future. But that is not a matter for a judicial commission. It is a matter for Parliament itself, and could properly be includ- ed in the terms of reference of the Commons committee which is to explore the ques- tion of conflicts of interest. In the whole sorry story of the Seafarers affair, there is clear evidence of only one offence: Somebody leaked the transcript of a police wiretap. There should certainly be the most rigorous inquiry to find out how it happened and why. Disgusting conduct I've read biased sports reports before but the one in The Herald Dec. 23 describing the WCHL Czechoslovakia game really disappointed me. To start with, here are a few of the terms used to describe the play of the Canadians; "easily "near perfect goals." and "beautiful pass" while the Czechs rated such terms as "completely muffed." I agree that the Czechs were outplayed but not to the extent that an 8-2 score might lead one to believe. The conduct of the Canadians was disgusting at times. It seemed that every time an all star received a good solid check, he would retaliate with a high stick, an elbow and once even a punch in the head that sent Jim Minor to the box for roughing. I think the finest individual effort of the whole game, besides the nearly flawless goaltending of Staniowski, was the fine, consistant play of Peter Stanstny, who scored the first Czechoslovakian goal. He didn't rate too many words in the column but that goal made me jump to my feet and yell in appreciation. He outskated one defenceman, left the other sprawling on the ice trying to block a shot that wasn't to come and deked out the goalie for a picture goal. I think Garry Allison was correct in his assessment of the refereeing. It was fair and it puzzled me why the crowd made almost as much of a roar when a Canadian penalty was called as they did when our guys scored. I was happy to see the WCHL all stars win, but in all honesty let's give cedit where credit is due. GEORGE SHAW Lethbridge Give blood faithfully Last week's Red Cross blood donor clinic was the last one of four for 1974. At these clinics I always see a variety of Canadians who donate their blood, time, and effort. This pre-Christmas clinic afforded many citizens, who make up part of the Canadian mosaic, to truly give of themselves for their neighbors. The amazing thing is, that this kind of gift involves no rushing around in crowded stores, chalking up credit on the cards, fancy wrappings, or returning it after Christmas because the recipient was not happy with it! I commend my fellow Canadians for donating their blood freely. It is a marvellous Canadian institu- tion and fine tradition with many people. This kind of "blood-letting" fades our different outlooks, ways of life, philosophical stances, political persuasions, and even religious commitments. I feel more Canadian nationalism at work at such clinics than at the unveiling of plaques or ribbon cuttings. "To give or not to give, is not the question" but to give blood faithfully. As a paper, The Herald deserves a commendation for coverage provided for the clinics. And since I am com- mendating anyway, let me add, though unrelated to the rest of this letter, how much I enjoy the Weekend Meditation and The Voice of One by Dr. Frank S. Morley. Those pieces are assuredly part of my Sun- day reading. Also, I read with pleasure, usually, the articles by Mr. Louis Burke, a very perceptive educator in my mind, and I miss the articles, educationally, by Mr. Peter Hunt. These gentlemen seem to indicate that "to educate or not to educate is not the question" but to do it right! HENRY HEINER Picture Butte. Beyond comprehension I am writing in regard to a statement made by Mayor Sykes of Calgary following the shoot out in that city in which Calgary city police detective Boyd Davidson lost his life. According to the newspaper report, Mayor Sykes felt that a period of mourning for Detective Davidson was "not necessary." How Mayor Sykes could have come to this conclusion is totally beyond my comprehension. Whenever a peace officer loses his life in the perfor- mance of his duties, it is not only his family which has suf- fered a great loss, but society as a whole. Each time an inci- dent such as this occurs, it un- dermines the foundations of law and order and becomes an example (deplorable as it is) which other gun happy lunatics are apt to follow. We should all observe a period of mourning, as we have all. ultimately lost more than a good policeman. MRS. G. GREGORY Lethbridge Unfair impression Having followed the cor- respondence to The Herald regarding the report of Mr. Gruenwald's recent speech, I would like to add a few com- ments that might help to round out to some degree what has become a rather un- fair public impression. Being a new comer to Lethbridge I did not know who Mr. Gruenwald was, nor while listening to the speech in ques- tion could I tell what party he represented. Nor as his talk progressed did I care what party he belonged to, because he came across to me as a sincerely honest man with a serious concern to do his best as a MLA. But now, regarding the contentious mater- ial used by the people whose authorized job it is to give sexual and contraceptive ad- vice to any who seek it, con- tained some matter which appeared to Mr. Gruenwald to have a pornographic taint. He felt this keenly enough that he had the courage to initiate a protest in the House that resulted in a withdrawal of some of the matter in question. To my mind at least, in doing this he showed a greater concern for the moral question involved than for the risk he was taking in losing popularity politically. Sexual instruction and contraceptive advice to our young, despite the rather widespread support of the idea, must surely continue to be a matter of serious concern. There are many who feel that we can never build a healthy society or even begin to solve our problem (perhaps especially those having to do with sexual relationships) without a more basic founda- tion than that based largely on physical and technical knowledge. In view of this, perhaps Mr. Gruenwald should not be too strongly censored for being critical of the present educational policy that puts so much emphasis on this limited approach to a very complex problem. ROY L. ANDERSON (M.D.) Lethbridge The lethbridge Herald 504 7th St S Lethbridge. Alberta LETHBRIDGE HERALD CO LTD. Proprietors and Publishers Second Class Mail Registration No 0012 CLEO MOWERS. Editor and Publisher DON H. PILLING Managing Editor DONALD R DORAM General Manager ROY F. 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