Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - February 17, 1972, Lethbridge, Alberta
Balla thuriday, February 17, 1972 THE lETHBRIDGS HERAID J Irrigation projects require updating IN a quest to make its pur- pose In irrigation land de- velopment more uniform, tho federal government has lor nearly 20 years been attempt- ing to get Alberta to take over responsibility for Uie opera- tions of the centra block of the Bow River Devel- opment surrounding Vauxhall. If the federal government's latest unofficial offer for farm- er takeover of the operations of tile BUD is accepted, irri- gation farmers in the Vauxhall district could liave no, or very low, annual water rates to pay. The federal proposal includes a complete rebuilding of the structures on the KRD where problems exist. The project Book Revisws would then lw handed over to the farmers for operations and maintenance tlirougu a hoard of trustees; a manner similar to the way other irrigation dis- tricts are operated in the south at present. There would be z 10-year transition period. For the changeover the federal govern- ment would provide a grant of to the BRD. When this figure was raised at last year's meeting of tho Alberto Irrigation Projects As- sociation, there was imme- diate hostility from the mem- bership of the AIPA. It was argued Ilia BRD water users could invest the and operate the project on the in- vestment's interest. It was also argued that the federal government had for years been subsidizing the wa- ter users in the BRD for opera- tions and maintenance. Other irrigation distncls had been charging their water users the costs ol operations nnd mainte- nance, while the water users in the centre block of the BRT1 had been paying a set sum of 51.50 per acre. By comparison water users on the east block of the St. Mary Irrigation Pro- ject now pay per year per acre for water delivered to the land and ?2.30 per acre for wa- ter users in the west b'ock of the SMTP who pick up the wa- ter at file lateral headgale. Five companies, backed b y English capital, were ir. on the original scheme for the devel- opment of the Bow River pro- ject shortly after the turn of tho century. It became a so- ries of break-downs and some of the precariously located ca- nals had to be watched night and day on foot and horseback in case of sudden washouts. First earth for the BRD was moved in 1909. The smaller de- velopment companies amalga- mated with the larger firms as construction progressed, in an effort to cut costs. The last two remaining were the Southern Alberta Land Co. and the Al- berta Land Co. Between 1910 and 1314 construction moved Travel narrative marred by politics "G a ics lo Asia: a diary from a long journey" by Jan II y r d a I and Gun Kessle (Pantheon, S9.50. distributed Iiy Random 'IIIIS is not a diary in the ordinary sense of the or weekly record- ings of events in sequence. Rather it is a remembered pic- ture of seven years of travel, during which the authors re- turned to their Swedish home several times. They also went to China during this period where they recorded their im- pressions in print and pholo- graph. The story of their wander- lust ventures through Afghani- stan, Northern India, and So- viet Central Asia takes place between 1958 and 1955 in re- mote rugged parts of the world few of us have ever are likely to see. It takes an enduring physical constitu'.ion, a total disregard for creature comforts, plus an eagerness epriroaching missionary zc-al, to accomplish one such pur- ney, let alone to return for more of the same. says Jan Myr- dal, "is like falling in love; the ivorld is made new. You re- cover your naive hunger for reality, so easily abrased by the daily rcuud and a home environment." That's a cir- cuitous way of saying that modern feels (he need to return to nature once in a while- Travelling for the Myrdals, (the photographer of the duo is Gun Kessle, alias Mrs. Myrdal) is an endurance test, thsre can be little doubt about' that. They refresh their spirits in the dusty plains, beside cold mountain streams, in the en- veloping heat of the desert, in native camps and villages. They don't complain. They want the world to kr.ow what it's like, hew the people feel, hoiv they live in the back of beyond The trouble with Uiis account is that it is not objective. Mr. Myrdal's political views keep muddying the picture. The state of the poor of all races and nations arouse his sym- pathy; they are grist to his mill. That may be all to the good, but too often he deals in generalities, the victim of his intense emotions. Almost ev- Another Vietnam book "Aggression: Our Asian Disaster" hy William L. Stan- dard (Random House, ?8.25, 22? ANOTHER book on the Am- e r i c a n involvement in Vietnam to add to tho legion ot book's already published on thai subject! Tin's one. was mitten by a lawyer with 45 years of practice behind him. His most important chapter ar- gues that US. intervention is illegal because it violates the. Geneva Accords of 1954; the SEATO treaty; tile United Na- tions Charter; and the U.S. Constitution. It Is not an espe- cially interesting book. There are no new revelations and few good jabs. Perhaps the best biting remark has Lo do with President Nixon's stated desire to end the war "with honor." The author says, "The acts of aggression which the United States has committed in Viet- nam makes it impossible to end the war 'with honor'." DOUG WALKER eryone and everything other than the simple people living the simple life irritate him so that the end result is not what he intends. Sweeping statements of blame, where he believes the fsult to lie, a one-sided ap- proach to the colonialist he be- lieves is responsible for the sins of Uie world, arouses the defensive in the reader well anyway, it does in me. Nor do I accept his therapy, which could very well turn out to be worse than Uie disease. He believes that human rights will be restored by the Engels method, plus guns in the hands of the oppressed- violent revolution. Winding the whole thing up In a threatening tone he asks "is there no way out of pov- erty, exploitation, oppression, and illness which will allow people lo regain their dignity? The poor man has no friends except his own people and his rifle. Thsre are people and rifles enough in Asia to make it possible for the poor man to make the world a human one." It's a solution that has been tried many times but has yet to effect a cure. JANE HUCKVALE Alberta MALT LIQUOR O'KEEFE BREWING COMPANY LIMITED Brewed longer for extra smoothness, extra strength, extra satisfaction. These are the extras you'll discover every timc you open a bollle ofO'Kcefe's Extra Old Slock Malt Liquor. The result of a unique blending of finest ingredients brewed with extra time. Extra Old Stock is brewed much longer and aged to full maturity to bring you extra strength and unmatched smoothness.Try it. Stork up with Old Stock today and discover extra smoothness, extra strength, extra satisfaction. O'Keefe's Extra Old Stock the malt liquor that takes the time to be better. ahead at a more rapid pace, but the original cost estimate- of was soon surpass- ed ajid another was required to complete (he pro- ject. The two firms united and be- came the Canada Land and Ir- rigation Co. By the outbreak of the First World War there was need for major reconstruction on the project. From 1920 to 1841 the BRD showed a loss on operating revenues every year. From 194.2 to 1949 there was a small operating iurplus each yeir, but the need for recon- struction and updating was ever-present. Structures left in disrepair were soon washed out. By 1949 the Canada Land and Irrigation Co. found itself in possession of a completely worn out project. In an effort to protect the loans it had made to the com- pany in 1925 and 1935, the ori- ginal large investments of the founding firms and the money invested by the settlers, the federal government stepped in. Tt psid Canada Land 000 for its equity and took over the entire project. There was immediate need for reconstruction 2nd general repairs. The question really was: "Wliere to start During the next several years the bulk of the project was rebuilt by the federal gov- ernment's PFRA the con- struction arrn of the depart- ment of agriculture. This in- cluded everything from the di- version en the Bow River, Lake McGregor canals, the diversion on the river by Carseland to the main distribution works in the Vauxhall area. With water supplies unsure and expansion contemplated into the east block of the Bow River Devel- opment around Ronalane north of Medicine Hat, the Travers Darn, 38 miles north of Leth- bridge, became a reality. By 1955 the federal govern- ment had spent on reconstructing and expanding the BRD. The provincial gov- ernment meanwhile had gone ahead with the development of Uie west block of the Bow River Development and was spending vast sums on con- struction, land development and personnel. It is estimated that total expenditures to date by senior levels of government total But, the BRD is only one pro- ject in southern Alberta that has needed, or needs major expenditures on capital struc- tures and distribution works. The west block of the SMIP just east of Lethbridge has ca- nal works and some structures that have been in operation since the turn of the century when it was developed by the Alberta Railway and Irriga- tion Co. A similar situation ap- plies to the Lethbrige Northern Irrigation District north of Lellibri5lge, the Western Irriga- tion District east of Calgary and the Eastern Irrigation Dis- trict centred at Brooks. The federal government has made some overtures that it is prepared (o provide grants to up-date all irrigation districts, provided there is an opera- tional and maintenance agree- ment reached with the prov- ince on a uniform basis once and for all. Total reconstruc- tion figures have varied from to The Alberta Irrigation Pro- jects Association has told Agri- cultural Minister Olson Slat many of the irrigation struc- tures in the south have exceed- ed their maximum life expec- tancy of 50 years. There is im- mediate need to start rebuild- ing. Tire federal government says enough is enough. It is willing to provide additional grants for upgrading projects and to pro- vide drainage in some cases, but there must be a more uni- form arrangement between Ot- tawa and Alberta. Another meeting between the province and Ottawa is slated lor this spring, but it is felt thai little if anything concrete will come out of the meeting willi a federal election in the offing. Another factor pointing at a lack of action at this spring's meeting is that Alberta has a new government after 35 years, and it is highly unlikely it will commit itself to any long-term, major expenditures on the first time out, W. D. Gray, project engineer on l.hc BRD, said in a 1936 re- port that nevertheless: "Some- Ihiiii; hns to be done. An Irri- p.ilion project is never finished nnlil is hns outlived ils useful- ness, or Iwen abandoned." Many farmors on the various irrigation projects state they are once again looking for more politir.il decisions on the future of irrigation in southern Al- berta, rather llian justifications from civil servants. They [col that if Hie Irriga- tion projects are going to con- tinue BS a viable, entity, there's neccl for strong politico] lead- ership. Mr. Nixon's ivorld Tlic International Herald Tribune TOICHABD M. NIXON has already made his mark as one of the relatively few American Presidents to have altered, to an appreciable degi-ee, the course of world history by a dramatic change in Ameri- can foreign policy. It is easy enough to point to the contradictions between tho earlier Nixon and the one in the White House today. One might similarly emphu- size the difference between the Woodrow Wilson whs was "too proud to fight" and the commander in chief of World War I; between the kolationisl Franklin D. Roose- velt of the London Economic Conference and the progenitor of the United Nations; between the cold war warrior John F. Kennedy and his enduring myth. The fact is that Tlichard Nixon has opened up a great number of new possibilities for Am- erican international action and inaction seemed virtually impossible a dec- ade, or even five years ago. This new flexibility, with its promises as well as its dangers, is amply evident in the President's lengthy and detailed mes- sage to Congress on the Stale of the World. It is a record, in Mr. Nixon's own word, of many even though these have yet to be consolidated. It is clouded by one huge, unresolved dilemma: The Vietnamese war, and by one serious error in rhetorical tactics. Mr. Nixon himself has contributed, however moderalcly, to a public atmosphere in which the limits of debate on foreign affairs overshadow tho substance ol that debate. The President made UK point that can- didates to succeed him should not give the other side in Vietnam reason to hold out until after the election. The argument has merit, but only if there is a measure of broad consensus mthin the country on what constitutes an "honorable" peace in Southeast Aiia and this consensus does not exist. For years, the United States has been plagued by the indubitable fact that the otner side hoped it had more to gain (rom the dissolution of tho American will to fight than from izy concessions it might make, or victories it might win in the field. That situation can only be empha- sized by American squabbling over the permissible limits of political debate. And from Mr. Nixon's OUTI standpoint, his genuine accomplishments in the field 3f foreign relations can be obscured h" the same squabbling. To be sure, it can also give him an excuse for any failure of his policies in Vietnam by saying that if he had been backed by the domestic op- position, the foreign opposition would have collapsed. But that would be an exploita- tion of American lives rjniie as repre- hensible as any efforts of Uic Democrats in seeking voles by opposing the White House. Mr. Nixon's world has more elements ol hope than the worlds of Presidents John- son or Kennedy. He would do well to stand on that, rather than dispute the right of the Democrats and dissidents generally to argue the question. Questioning organized fun AN interesting point about organized sport for youngsters aged five to eight has been made by the mayor of Windsor, Frank Wansborough. Mayor Wansborough, himself a former basketball player and coach, says "Over- organization is robbing kids of their child- hood." He explained, in an interview with On- tario Hydro News "From five to 12 years of age, kids should be learning the funda- mentals of all games and having fun not playing in a league where winning is al- most as important as it is in professional sport. We must de-emphasize the sport as- pect of games and place all Uie emphasis on recreational aspects." There's a great deal of truth in thai. Ulan, including boys, is by nature, competitive. But we are forgetting to give them the old secret thai winning a game docs not matter as much as how we play it and how we lose it. Perhaps that's where many well-meaning coaches fail. The Windsor mayor declared: "Sport Is over-organized at the wrong age group. As The Ottawa Journal pick up the arrest sheets fai Windsor. Most of the youths in trouble are LT the 15, 36 and 17 age bracket. There's nothing for them to do. Having been forced to partici- pate in organized sport from Uie time they're children, they're just fed up witb it." Possibly fed up, or in even more cases perhaps they never got anywhere in sport and were given no encouragement !o learn to make their own fun. Fun is where you find it, and if we develop a taste in it that will help us find fun in later years we're doubly blessed. In stamps or hiking, pets or music, tree huts or carpentry, skiing or kito-f lying, rowing or bird-watching, sketching or dress-makuig. Perhaps the problem Mr. TVansborougn discusses arises less from organization than the philosophy of the organizers and the vigilance of parents. In the right hands, outside organization or family en- couragement can teach confidence, pride, humility, curiosity, skill and the impor- tance of fun. The saddest sight is a man or woman who seems to have had no police commissioner all I have to do is youth. Advice for skaters The KctI Cross W TCE SKATING is a sport witli a Ira- diUon whidi dates back lo the eighth century. Earliest known skates were fash, ioned from animal boncF, cow and rein- deer bones most commonly, but even rus teeth were used. The bone was ground down, shaped to a flat travelling edge, then bound to the feet with leather thongs. Skates once came in a great variety of sizes and shapes. Some were long and ski- like. Others had elaborately curled toes. Still others were made of wood and shod with iron. With the invention of mechanical re- frigeration and the development of re- frigerated ice rinks, ice skating changed from a seasonal pastime to a major sport. The first mechanically refrigerated ice rink designed by John Gamgee, was built in London, England, in 1876. "Gla- as they were Uien called, be- came more and more popular. Today countless Canadians enjoy ice skating, and there's a lot more which can be said about the science of a sport which is fun for some and challenge for others. But perhaps Uie most important thing that can be said about skating and oilier ice sports is, "enjoy the ice, but play it 'alcr Safety Service During winter months the Red Cross Water Safety Service urges you to remem. her to check the condition of the ice be- fore moving out on it. Ice less than four inches thick is not safe to skate or walk on, and ice near open water, over moving currents, on salt water or wind swept lakes is nearly always dangerous. So take care. If you must cross Ice of unknown thick- ness remember to carry a long pole which would straddle the hole should you break through. Skate with friends, especially at night. If you should discover a weak or dangerous spot in the ice mark it clearly. Keep a coil of rope in the car in case of accident. If someone should fall in, lie flat on the ice; and if other rescuers are present, have them hold your ankles or skates while you extend your rope or reach. If the victim is far out on the ice, several rescuers may form a human chain lo reach hur. During the rescue, reassure the victim. Above all, don't panic. Ice skating and ice sports can be fun. The Red Cross urges yon (o help kwp them thai iray hy it Miiiirl and safe. A sound riding The Spokane A U.S. District Court judge in Washing- ton, D.C., ruled recently that Cana- dian environmentalists arc not entitled In enter legal proceedings that will determine whether a trans-Alaska oil pipeline should be built. The ruling by Judge George Hart Jr., wlio has blocked conslniclion of the pipe- line pending outcome of Ihe proceedings, came despite the Canadians' argument that more than 51 billion worth of Canadian in- terests would be affected. Although the proposed pipeline from Alaska's north slope to the state's southern coasts would lie built wholly within Ihe boundaries of the slate, l.hc Canadian group contends that any oil spillage resulting from pipeline construction will havo ils greatest impact on Canadian shores. If the Canadians are allowed to partici- pate, tho judge said, we could anticipate that the Japanese would think they wore Spokesman-Review affccled, and Uicn the Chinese and Ihe Russians. American environmental interests are al- ready well represented, Judge Hart saying, "If the American environment is protected, Ihe Canadian environment is protected." The judge has signaled clearly that the i.ssue is rcln'iivcly simple whether or not such a pipeline would be constructed in a ir.anner lluit will preclude its aeciden. tal damage lo lire cnvirojinienl. No useful purpose would hi served by adding to Ihe numbers of litigants in nr- rier to rehearse expanded versions nf what damage might ensue if spillage does occur. It is not a question of whether the en- vironment will bo half-safe as n result nf pipeline construction njid operation. Full protection Is the Issue.