Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - February 15, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta
Thursday, February 15, 1973 - THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD - S Social Credit resurgence in Quebec By Peter Desbarats, Toronto Star commentator One of the Conservative party's senior organizers in Montreal couldn't tear himself away from the television set last weekend as Yvon Dupuis was elected leader of the Social Credit party in Quebec. "I wasn't looking at Dupuis," he said, "but at the faces.in the crowd, thousands of Quebec faces. "And I kept saving to myself-yes, there they are, by God, there they are." The political resurrection of Dupuis, a former member of the Pearson cabinet in Ottawa, at the heed of the Ralltement Creditiste Du Quebec is being treated in Quebec as an event of major importance. Commenting on the outcome of the leadership convention, Claude Ryan of Le Devoir saw the Dupuis victory as "the beginning of an important stage of development in the whole political scene in Quebec." Of immediate interest in Quebec is the question of Dupuis' effect on the urban separatist vote that is the basic source of Parti Quebecois strength. Many opinion polls since the 1970 Quebec election have shown that the PQ vote was as much an expression of social and economic discontent as a vote in favor of an independent Quebec. In the federal election last October, Social Credit attracted enough of this protest vote to become, in effect, the opposition party to the Liberals in the Montreal region. With the following that Dupuis has built up in the past few years as a Mon- 'Crazy Capers* Harry, I want my freedom. treal hot-line broadcaster, and with the good relations that now exist between Dupuis and federal Social Credit leader Real Caouette, the party is ready for a breakthrough assault that could endanger the future of the Parti Quebecois and seriously concern the Liberal government of Premier Bourassa. On the national level, the apparent resurgence of this right-wing protest movement is bound to have an effect on Quebec's political attitude toward the rest of the country. For the past decade, Canadians have become accustomed to the radical leftist-separatist as an arcbtypical Quebecer. The idealistic young separatist has usually been presented to English-speaking Cenadians as the Quebecer of the future. The Social Credit convention in Quebec last weekend did a great deal to demolish that stereotype. The faces that suddenly filled the arena in Quebec, and television screens across the province, were those of Quebec's own "silent majority" of the sixties. There are many indications that they are now about to make themselves heard in a way that could demolish some of the most fashionable assumptions about Quebec that were current during the sixties. After Caouette and his rustic hordes exploded on the national scene in 1962, it was also fashionable to portray Social Credit supporters in Quebec as ancient znd ignorant poverty-stricken farmers vainly trying to stem the tide of progress. The crowds si last weekend's convention gave the lie to this stereotype. And it should be laid to rest permanently at the end of this month when the University of Toronto press will bring out a brilliant history, portrait and analysis of the Social Credit movement in Quebec by Michael B. Stein, an associate professor of political science at McGill University. Stein's work is far from being the first in its field. The Social Credit phenomenon in Quebec in the past decade hps attracted considerable academic interest. �In'particulr, he relies on the work of one of his colleagues at McGill, sociologist Maurice Pi-nard. But Stein's book gathers much of this earlier work into a coherent history of the movement, and also provides more detailed profiles of Social Credit membership and leadership in Quebec than have been available up to now. Election analysis by both Pi-nard and Stein, for example, has produced an unexpected profile of the average Social" Credit voter. He is not old. He is neither as poor nor as badly educated as he is supposed to be. In fact, he resembles in many respects the kind of Quebecer whom the separatists would like to claim as a typical supporter. The voter profile in Stein's book includes these, characteristics: "Creditiste support is strongest among the youngest group of voters. There is a greater likelihood that the Creditiste voter will be male than female. He is probably from an area where very few Anglophones reside. He has a low-median income but he is clearly not among the poorest strata in Quebec." The profile of a typical Social Credit leader in Quebec, drawn by Stein after interviews with 69 party officials, is also revealing: Born and brought up in a small town and today lives outside the metropolitan regions of Montreal and Quebec City . . . joined the movement as a young man during a period of severe economic dislocation . . . exhibits many of the characteristics of the traditional small-town Quebec elite . . . better educated than the average French-Canadian and has a higher - than - average income . . has several social and church group affiliations . . . was motivated to join the move-, ment more for economic and ideological than for political and social reasons" While this type of membership and leadership has given the party a solid foundation, particularly in rural and smalltown Quebec, Stein indicates that it is undergoing change. The party has moved from a "mobilization" phase in the 1930's and 1940's to a "consolidation" phase under Caouette in tne 1950's and 19S9's, and now stands on the brink of an "institutional" phase "engineered by shrewd political pragmatist and skilful negotiators who wish to transform the movement into a conventional political party." As Pinard has pointed out, one of the reasons for the growth of Social Credit in Quebec in recent years has been the dominance of the Liberal party, particularly at the federal level. This has meant that Quebec voters "did not possess completely open avenues of political protest, as would have been the case with a healthy two-party system." The combination of one-party rule, severe economic grievances and stress created by rapid social change created ideal conditions for the emergence of a third party. The significance of this analysis is that the same conditions still exist in Quebec at a time when a ' more "institutionalized" Social Credit party is preparing, under the first urban leader in its history, to make a concerted campaign for the votes of workers and small businessmen in the cities of Quebec. Capital punishment By Bishop W. E. Power, President, The Administrative Board of the Canadian Catholic Conference Canada has still to face a whole complex of questions about reform of corrections, parole and rehabilitation. The bill soon to come before Parliament, to extend the suspension of the death penalty, treats in an isolated way a problem which has connections with these many other problems. We would rather wait until we had time to explore the whole field and take a broadly baaed position. However, in the current debate on the death penalty, many persons have adduced varying understandings o f Christian teaching to support this conclusion or that'. In these circumstances, even though we do not have a final solution for the question, we believe it our duty to mEike some comment. 1. We consider it an illegitimate use of the Bible, especially the Old Testament, to quote texts in order to argue, in our time, for the retention of the death penalty. Each bib-heal text supporting the death penalty must be studied in the light of its historical context, and not 'simply applied to present-day Canada. Furthermore, each such Old Testament text must be weighed against many passages in the New Testament where Jesus constantly rejects the normal human tendency to redress injury by injury and calls instead for generosity. He established the norm that vio- The Lethbridge Herald think Planum PART IV - PICTURE QUIZ 5 POINTS In the Maple Leaf Indoor Games, this Ottawa girl �et a new world record in the 1,000-yard run. Who is she? HOW DO YOU RATE? �1 to 100 point* - TOP SCOREI 81 to 90 polntt - Eieolltnt. 71 to 80 polntt - Good. CI to 70 point* - Fair. 60 or Undir? f 7 - H'mml FAMILY DISCUSSION QUESTION What can be done to Increase the world's food Bupply? YOUR NEWS QUIZ PART I - NATIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL Give yourself 10 points for each correct answer. 1 Former P;*me Minister John Dlefenbaker urged that the Issue of capital punishment be decided "once and f*r all" by . . ? . . a-the House of Commons b-the Supreme Court of Canada c-a referendum 2 Quebec Premier Robert Bourassa has assured Prime Minister Trudeau that the federal government will not be responsible for any deficits Incurred by the 1976 Montreal Summer Olympics. As a result, Mr. Trudeau said Ottawa is prepared to act on a request for .. ?.. a-a $200 million loan to the Montreal Olympics b-direct federal aid for Montreal's Olympic stadium c-special commemorative Olympic stamps and coins 3 Name the Cabinet minister In charge of unveiling the new federal budget. 4 The International peace observers in Viet Nam from Canada. Indonesia, Poland, and Hungary still have not gotten outside Saigon. True or False? 6 Name the European leader who recently visited the United States and told newsmen, "You have your complaints about 6ome of our European trade practices. We, for ourpart, have very real grievances about U.S. trade barriers." PART II - WORDS IN THE NEWS Take 4 points for each word that you can match with its correct meaning. ..premeditate ..procrastinate ..prefabricate ..prevaricate t.....prognosticate a-postpou, repeatedly b-predict c-make in advance d-plan beforehand e-tell lies PART III - NAMES IN THE NEWS Take 5 points for names that you can correctly match with the clues. 1.....Gough Whitlam 2.....Anwar el-Sadat 3.....Richard M. Nixon 4.....Hussein I 6.....Edmond Leburton 212-73 a-A White House visitor b-Rebuff ed on plan to veil Merino rams to China c-New Prime Minister, Belgium d-Nobel Peace Prize nominee e-B lamed extremists for clashes VEC, Inc. STUDENTS Save This Practice Examination! Valuable Reference Material for Exams. ANSWERS ON REVERSE PAGE lence and hostility are not coi rected by counter-measures of violence and hostility. 2. The question of the death penalty, in our opinion, ought not focus on whether a convicted murderer, no matter how wanton, "deserves" to die. The focus should be on us: should Canadians as a community try to break the escalating spiral of violence by refraining from violence even as a deterrent? 3. To a Christian, whose starting, point is reverence for the sanctity of life, the death penalty can surely be only a desperate resort. A Christian must be utterly, convinced of its social necessity before supporting it. Our society, it is true, has traditionally exacted the death penalty. But this ought not mean, as it often seems, that those who favor suspension must bear the burden of proof. On the contrary, those who favor retention should be required to convince a Christian of its necessity. 4. There is also a pragmatic, statistical question whether the death penalty is an effective deterrent. We will not enter this debate. Our question is not whether the death penalty is an effective deterrent; our question is whether it is an absolutely necessary deterrent, required by good order in Canada today. Unless you are convinced that it is, then we feel that the presumption should be for suspension. Furthermore, in our ooinion, the case for retention of the death penalty has not been proven. 5. We would hope that, during a possible second period of suspension, research committees would study exhaustively all the ramifications of this complex problem and publish their reports within a specified period. We might note the need for study of the effects of violent crime on the families of both the criminal and the victim. Books in brief "T h e Manipulator" by Blanche Howard (McClelland and Stewart Limited, 301 pages, $7.95). Blanche Howard is the wife of Bruce Howard who was elected in 1968 as federal member of parliament for Okana-gan Boundary in British Columbia. She has been active with him in Liberal politics and in expressing "women's" viewpoints on political matters. At the time of her husband's election and the family's subsequent move to Ottawa, Blanche Howard gave up her career as a chartered accountant and returned to an earlier ambition to write. The Manipulator is her first novel. It probably reflects some of the stresses and strains she has observed and experienced in the business and political world. The Manipulator is not a happy book. It may fictionalize aspects of human character we would prefer to ignore. The malicious power wielded by one man over the people who fall under his influence is such as to make one suspect an irrational and ill mind . . . and yet Bill Wentworth's methods are too real and recognizable to be easily dismissed. The reader, feeling very impatient with those who succumb to what seems obvious trickery and smoothness somehow can't quite smother the fear that faced with the same slick operator he would succumb too. The setting is a comfortable, smug little town in western Canada but the story reflects too little Canadian flavor to make the locale quite believable. The old theme of good and evil is the underlying mood of the story. Evil is finally routed but the damage left to personalities, relationships and marriages makes one skeptical about the victory. Blanche Howard should be encouraged to do more writing. BLSPETH WALKER The ivrong target, Mr. Lewis By Jim Fishbonrne, Heraid staff writer Reports from Ottawa say the government may fall on the issue of additional tax concessions to industry. Mr. Lewis, leader of the New Democrats on whom the government's survival depends, has said he won't support what he sees as more benefits for the "corporate welfare bums" he excoriated so roundly in the last election campaign. Perhaps Canada's current tax laws are sufficiently favorable to business and businessmen. But before precipitating another election (either forthwith or after toying for a while with the Conservatives) over this particular bit of legislation, it might be useful for Mr. Lewis and his colleagues to take another look at the corporate beneficiaries. In the election campaign, Mr. Lewis made many headlines (and some political gains) by pointing out that many corporations in this country pay a remarkably small proportion of their profits in taxes. No one effect'veiy refuted his allegations, for the excellent reason that they were generally true. Undoubtedly, many corporations make substantial profits but pay very little in the way of taxes. But while Mr. Lews' statements were factual, and undeniably good po'it'cs, they left unsaid some things it would be helpful for the ordinary taxpayer to understand. First, it must be recognized that corporations aren't people. People may own shares in corporations, work for them, direct their activities, but each corporation in itself is just a concept, something created by legislation and documents. It isn't a person, or even a group of persons. People who own, work for, or manage a corporation may care very much whether it makes money, however, because corporate profits can be transferred to people. The most common and direct ways are salaries, dividends and expense rjayments or allowances. If an employee or a director of a company receives a salary (or a bonus) he pays income tax on it at the prescribed rates. If a shareholder gets a dividend from a company, it is income, and normal tax must be paid. Leaving expenses aside for the moment, whenever and however corporate profits are distributed to peoole, taxes are levied. So even if ABC Ltd, does happen to profit from various tax concessions and loopholes, its employees or owners cannot benefit until the profit is distributed, at which point whoever gets it pays taxes on it. But getting back to expenses. It is here that a loophole exists, and one that makes the corporate rip-offs, as Mr. Lewis styles them, look like the peccadillos of a juvenile. Corporate officials and owners don't like paying taxes, any more than anyone else does. They know that when they raise their salaries or increase their dividends, normal income tax rates apply. So they have worked out other means of sharing in the corporation's profits, by devising a hundred and one expense items and special benefits, most of which aren't taxable at all, and the remainder only at nominal rates. These special items, not available to ordinary taxoayers, include lavish travelling expenses, holidays (often disguised as conferences), use of company-owned and maintained cars, planes and even yachte. housing at nominal or no cost, household servants on the company payroll, enormous pension contributions, memberships in exclusive clubs, tickets to this, that and the other, and with unvouchered expense allowances to take care of everything else. In short, the right to live as the wealthy do, in every respect except the payment of taxes. Admittedly, the new income tax provisions will cut down on some of tin's, and accordingly are to be welcomed - by anyone whose real income is all on his T4 slip, at any rate. But it is ridiculous to contend that the new tax act takes away all the little extras that highly placed executives have always enjoyed. When the firm pays the rent on a house or a car or whatever, the benefit to the user is very substantial. To an executive in the 50 per cent bracket, as many of them are, providing a $500 a month house is worth $1,000 a month in salary, that is what he'd have to earn to cover it himself. He will have to pay some income tax in consideration of housing supplied, but not nearly as much as if he received additional salary instead of an allowance for housing. The factors are different, but the principle is the same for each of the expense categories mentioned above and dozens of others that are not mentioned. The recipient makes money on all of them, while the rest of the taxpayers take up the slack. So, without suggesting that Mr. Lewis' thesis of corporate tax breaks is altogether wrong, it is respectfully pointed out .that, it isn't the corporation itself that seeks and enjoys the special breaks, but the people who share in its profits. Perhaps it is the latter he should be going after. Giving equal time on evolution By Dong Walker, Herald staff writer Exposing children to a religious as well as scientific interpretation of the origin of species may sound like a fair proposition. It would only be fair, however, if the differing views of religious people were considered and this might not be something that the most recent advocates of equal time would relish. That there is no single religious explanation of the beginning and diffusion of life may not have occurred to fese equal timers. They may think that the peculiarly religious view is to be found in a literal reading of the creation stories in Genesis. But the tact is that among the religious there are many who accept the evolutionary description and posit a creative intelligence initiating and directing the process. Just as much genuine wonder and praise is elicited by this interpretation as the one that sees everything emerging by divine fiat. A curriculum that tried to do justice to the religious outlook, then, would have to include this point of view. Among the resource materials assigned for study might well be Father Raymond J. Nogar's book, The Wisdom of Evolution. Father Nogar, a member of the Dominican order, is equally at home in theology, philosophy and biology. His book bears the Nihil obstat and Impramatur of the Roman Catholic church. But this book would immediately throw the conservatives into a flap because Nogar states flatly that " no informed and reasonable person can easily doubt the validity of the evolutionary theory." In fact he does not even favor talking about 'theory' or 'hypothesis' because he sees evolution as an established fact. In order to permit children to grasn why religious people differ in their attitudes to evolution it would be necessary to explain the historical and critical approach to the Bible as well as some version of the divine dictation theory. They could then see how the recognition of poetic and parabolic forms frees people from the notion that they are dealing with history and science in the early chapters of Genesis. They could see that Adam (the Hebrew word for man and not properly capitalized) is not so much first man as everyman. It would be necessary, in this connection, to discuss the different kinds of truth. For the noh - literal believer of the Bib'e, truth dealt with in the stories at the beginning of Genesis is not of the same order as the truth with which history and geography, astronomy and geology, deal; it is not the literal truth of the observation of things and events; it is the truth that can be grasped only by the imagination and expressed only by image and symbolism. The Genesis stories of creation, to the non-literalist, do not offer information about how life originated but why and for what purpose. The proposition, recently put forth in an article in The Herald, that the stories in Genesis could be buttressed by reference to archaeological findings might better be ignored. Archaeology has not proved the historicity of the flood story; all that has been proved is that a flood story was common to the people of the ancient world. In the excavations throughout most of the Middle East no evidence of a flood has been found. The notable exception is the excavation of Ur where Sir Leonard Wool-ley found a stratum of river mud ten feet thick which had interrupted occupation of the site in the fourth millennium. But read on before concluding that this constitutes overwhelming support for the biblical story of the flood. If archaeological findings were to accompany a survey of attitudes to the Bible the resource material should be more intellectually respectable than the kind of pap frequently published by sectarian outlets for the comfort of the convinced. A series such as The Biblical Archaeologist Readers, published by Doubleday, would be in order. Unfortuately for the literalist, however, in the article on the flood, Sir-Leonard Woolley's failure to tell the whole truth about his excavation of Ur is exposed. Woolley dug five pits but in only two of them did he find evidence of a flood. His floDd thus did not even cover the whole city of Ur let alone the Middle East or the world. Such dissembling in the interest of preserving a particular attitude toward the bibical story might be more damaging to an effective presentation of the religious outlook than simply ignoring the whole thing. There is much to be said for the campaign to get equal time for the religious outlook in biology classes, especially when a broad survey of views of the Bible would become necessary. It would be valuable to have young people know that there is an alternative to the literalist approach. Then they might be saved the embarrassment of being nonplussed by a Gordon Sinclair as was the case recently on the TV program Front Page Challenge. An astronaut who has become religious since visiting the moon was asked how he reconciled the story of God drowning men, women and children with his belief in a good God. Nobody should have to lamely admit to never having faced the question - either as an elementary exercise in biblical interpretation or as a highly troubling and. complex theological question. The equal time protagonists might prefer to let the issue die wh2n they see what it could, and should, involve. If they persist they might find themselves joined by unwelcome allies.