Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - February 18, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 THE lETHIHIDO! HERALD Thutulay, Februoty Joseph Krutt Nixon and Alsop share similar views Brief ttie people, too At the suggestion of Aid. Jim An- derson, the city manager will hold occasional "briefing sessions" for the aldermen, to make them better ac- quainted with the problems and pro- gress of the civic administration. This is good. The aldermen should know what the city manager and his large staff are doing. After all, they vote their salaries. But wait. Whose money are the ald- ermen using when they vote the sal- aries of the administration? And who pays the aldermen's salaries? Has anyone thought of letting the people in on these briefings? Is it the thought that these sessions will be open to the public, and thus to the press, and if not, why not? And if city council wants to be bet- ter informed about what the city man- agement has done or will do, has it occurred to city council that the peo- ple want to be better informed about what city council plans to do? Council meets Monday nights. Its business is rigidly governed by for- mal agendas, containing all the sup- porting documents for every item to come up. These agendas are prepared in time to give to the aldermen the previous Friday, so they can study them at leisure. But the public can- not see them until Monday morning, and often the people's first intima- tion of business to be settled that night is whatever coverage the press (including radio) can give them that day, after spending an hour or so plowing through the heavy package of papers to find the news, and an- other long period to assimilate and prepare it. All of this was deliberately arrang- ed by city council some years, ago to keep the business hidden from the public over the weekend and to re- duce the people's opportunity to ex- press themselves on their own busi- ness. It is so much easier and neater for the aldermen if the people are kept out of the picture as long as possible The aldermen are to be compli- mentetl for wanting to be better in- formed. Why don't they credit the people with the same aspiration? WASHINGTON President Nixon's recent connection with Joe Alsop goes well be- yond White House circulation of me favorable column on Laos. The president also called Mr. Alsop a couple of hours before the invasion was announced to clue him in on the joyous news in advance. And their associa- tion, it seems to me, says a good deal about Mr. Nixon's true intentions in Southeast Asia. My impression is that Mr. Nixon approached his decision on Laos in precisely the same spirit as he approached the Cambodian operation last year. At that time he called his cri- tics "bums" and announced that he himself was acting to pre- vent the United States from be- ing a "pitiful, helpless giant." This time, instead of blurting out these sentences himself, tw lets Mr. Alsop do it for him. It is the same ego trip-taken DOW by proxy. Since there is a great deal of surmise in this impression, it is important to stress the al- most unique character of Mr. Alsop's view. He is not one of those supporters of the Viet- nam policy who chopped and All progressives Not too long ago, watchers of the political scene in Alberta were of the opinion that two conservative parties were vying for votes. But it is ob- vious that with the opening salvoes in what is very likely to be the last session of the legislature before the next election, that opinion requires revision. The two main contenders now sound like progressives. An erosion of the conservative im- age once belonging to the Social Cred- it party has been under way for some time. It had gone so far, in fact, that a year ago the leader of the Liberal party, Mr. Jack Lovvery, explored the possibility of some sort of liaison with the Social Credit Party. The subsequent repudiation of Mr. Lowery by the Liberals, and the ex- pression of regret by some old guard Social Crediters that their party should be considered to have liberal tendencies, did not change the reality. The leader of the opposition, Mr. Peter Lougheed, showed in his lead- off speech that the progressive part of his party's name is stronger than the conservative. Some of the things he advocated are far removed from the usual associations of 'conserva- tive' and would once have seemed radical. Voters in Alberta apparently have a choice between three parties (four, if the Liberals are not all pro- gressives. Party labels still have emo- tional appeal but not much rational justification. Idealogy generally yields to pragmatism once a party is in power anyway, so who forms the next government probably won't much matter Fair dinkum! By Peter Hunt rpHIS little corner in Thursday's Issue of -1 The Herald is reserved for the latest heresies of blathering teachers. We know that we ought to keep to our job as mere teachers, and have nothing to say to the public at large about the work we are paid to do, but some of us just cannot keep our mouths shut or our itchy type- writer fingers still. Perhaps we are de- luded in thinking that we know anything about education, in which case we need sympathy rather than abuse; for some of us have been misled into believing that, close as we are to the people in schools, and in view of our long and varied prac- tice of the difficult art of teaching, we know something about the subject. But to- day, I want to change the tune somewhat, and write on a matter which may, at first sight, seem out of place here. I want to cast a little light in an antipodean direc- tion. I want to write about Australia; or at least about the local image of Australia. Of course, in a big world, where there is a lot of geography to learn, one cannot expect that the land down under would be too well known here. And one cannot ar- gue that because Australians know much more about Canada than vice-versa, local ignorance is blameworthy. North America looms large on the world stage. But permit me to correct a few false impressions. This is relevant here, for it is educational. First, let me say that the stereotyped and endearing image of a land of kan- garoos, spear throwing aborigines, gum- trees 'choc-a-bloc' with koalas, and of home- steads out in the mulga is somewhat mis- leading. We do have some development there. Indeed, we are amazingly 'progres- sive.' We have the highest road accident rate in the world (and the best the highest degree of urbanization, pollu- tion of a quite high order, and a really galloping technology; it's even faster than Pharlap. But we are backward in some things. We still have many schools run by churches teaching religious knowledge in a dogma- tic way; schools that insist on outmoded standards of behavior, that even prescribe standards of dress. And we make prob- lems for parents there too. We give them too much choice in education. have unnecessary duplication of facilities (a nice bureaucratic phrase) in the form of con- vent schools, grammar schools, schools run by monks (it's quite medieval) dedicated to a hie of prayer and work, schools in every parish, schools for boys, schools for girls. Yes, we have not yet developer) a uni- form system. Moreover, we do not yet have state aid for church schools except in a very limited form. Our drug problem is not yet massive; but never mind, as Mr. Bumble said to the work-house matron: 'It'll grow, ma'am, it'll grow.' We also still adhere to the habit, as people do here, of building churches, concert halls and theatres. And in a world of 'pop' we are just as conservative as folk here. Many Australians claim to enjoy great works of art, symphonies, paintings, poetry snd seri- ous plays, even though all the enlightened ones know that change is so urgent that it is antiquated in this decade to influence the young towards similarly old fashioned interests. Our universities there still insist on high academic standards. The matriculation stu- dents are expected to work hard. In that sense Australia is even more backward than scrne of those who intolerantly reject community college levels of learning as un- fit for a degree-awarding institution. Mod- ern, progressive people know that the young should not have to take an interest in hard intellectual matters or in the heritage of liberal scholarship. Finally, let me add that some Australians share with some Canadians a weird inter- est in their past, in their identity and in the pioneering efforts of their forebears. And everyone knows that the most vocifer- ous champions of the mass youth cult know much more than the traditionalists in both countries. And they know how to ad- just to the tremendous changes occurring today. They know that the answer to prob- lems is to take drugs, the answer to pollu- tion is to rev-up the bikes and leave the motors running, and to fill the air with ear- splitting and mind-dazzling rock. Yes, both countries have their advantages and draw- backs. But I wish that social studies teach- ers would provide a little more access to accurate information about 'Terra Austra- lis.' Some comparative studies of Australia and Canada may prove rewarding to both; that is. before both become mere appen- dages of the United States. The Albatross changed when the going got tough. On the contrary, he is one of the few Americans who have been consistently serious about Vietnam. He has at all times argued that preventing a Commun i s t takeover in South Vietnam was critical to freedom and secur- ity throughout Southeast Asia and the world. He has under- stood that there was small chance for a rapid American withdrawal that would leave the Saigon regime in good position to defend itself successfully. He has been willing to finger those inside the administration, notably Secretary of Defence Melvin Laird, who tried to put over the hoax of a bug-out camouflaged as Victimization. And he has insisted that a good way to keep South Vietnam from going down the drain was to deal a crippling blow to the Communist insurgents. From that point of view, those who disagree are not m e r e 1 y wrong. They are knaves. Similarly, a president who resists the pressure to bug- oiit is pretty special. He is a historical figure doing right against the tide of misguided opinion. Mr. Nixon may not buy, as he might put it, this viewpoint completely. He has a lot of other considerations public opinion, rela t i o n s with Con- gress, the state of the economy balance off against going all out in Vietnam. From time to time, at least, he has to ac- commodate advisers who favor a temperate approach. But the president has obvious yearnings for the clean consis- tency of the all out approach. He too has always been very serious about the importance of Vietnam. He too has wanted to deal the enemy a crushing blow before full American withdraw- al hence the likening of the Cambodian operation last year to the D-Day and Stalingrad victories in the Second World War. When the president on to? of all this underlines his connec- tion with Mr. Alsop and his special views, something impor- tant is being said.-' It seems clear to me anyhow that Mr. Nixon is saying along with Mr. Alsop in the column distributed by the White House that he views the war critics as "down- right eager to be proved right by an American defeat." It seems to me that Mr. Niton sees himself, as Mr. Alsop saw him in the same column, as an historic figure who made a "lonely" decision with "cool courage." If this surmise is correct, the difficulties ahead hardly need underlining. The president is deeply committed in the most personal way to dealing a stag- gering blow to the other side. But the other side is good at absorbing blows and coming back. Progressively more so as American forces So Mr. Nixon is putting himself in the position where he will have to go back into the breach over and over again. That means that the lid is off the list of possible actions com- piled long ago by the Joint Chiefs of Staff as possible ways to win the war in Vietnam. More bombing of North Viet- nam is on that list of course. So is mining Haiphong harbor. So is the invasion of the north talked up in South Vietnam by the vice president. Nguyen Cao Ky. The ominous feature. ef the present moment, in other words is Mr. Nixon's state of mind. He is defining courage as not being afraid to do frightful things. And that means the country is still a long way from being safely out of Vietnam and the nightmare it has brought us abroad and at home. (Field Enterprises, Inc.> Boris Kidel Russians blow hot and cold on treaty ratification Disagreement in- D side the Soviet leadership is now believed here to be the main cause of the hardening Soviet attitude towards West Germany. Not only have the Communists intensified their harassment of Berlin traffic during recent weeks, but So- viet diplomats in several West- ern capitals have been spread- ing stories of Moscow's disil- lusionment with Chancellor Willy Brandt's Socialist led coalition in Bonn. In face of these disconcert- ing tactics, Brandt is maintain- ing a cool posture and is urg- ing his followers to stop behav- ing like "scared chickens" whenever Moscow sounds a dis- cordant note. It was with great glee that the opposition press Letters To The Editor here seized on Washington re- ports about diminishing Soviet interest in the Chancellor's Ost- politik. A diplomatic correspondent of the Hearst group of papers quoted "authoritative" Soviet sources as saying that the So- viet government no longer felt in a hurry to achieve a Berlin settlement. Nor did it attach more than secondary impor- tance to the ratification of the German Soviet treaty by the Bonn Parliament. Brandt accused by these sources of trying to sow dissen- sion between the Commu n i s t countries and of failing to nego- tiate with East Germany di- rectly about access to Berlin, as he was alleged to have prom- ised in Moscow last summer. Parking meters essential As a downtown merchant, I feel I must reply to the letter of Mr. J. L. Hunter in which he expressed his concern for the future of downtown Leth- bridge due to the parking meters. I feel I am qualified to speak with authority as I served on the parking commis- sion for several years and am quite aware of "the problems that exist. There is a beautiful Parkade in the heart of the business area downtown where there is always space available. The cost is minimal and you can shop as long as you wish with- out the worry of a ticket. The walk you will have to your shopping is often not nearly as far as parking in the extreme areas of the shopping centres: Without parking meters you would NEVER find a parking space downtown, they would be full at nine a.m. with office workers and unhurried shop- pers and no one would be ob- liged to move at all. The money from the meters is helping to pay for the park- ade (and eases your tax bur- den) and the money you pay in fines goes to the police de- partment (which also eases your tax Most impor- tant, contributions are made by the out-of-town shopper who does not pay city taxes. city has parking me- ters because to date no one knows the answer to how to let everyone drive up to the store of his choice and park as long as he wants unless, of course, you go by bus or bi- cycle. I question the statement We all realize that the era of the small businessman is ending." On the contrary, more and more people realize that the only place they are getting goo'd services, combined with quality merchandise, is at the independent stores and that is why you are having a hard time finding a parking space in downtown Lethbridge. A DOWNTOWN BUSINESSMAN. Lethbridge. Inspiring evening Galaxie The Christian rpHERrJ was something raarvelously lib- 1 crating in the nous ot Maffei I and Maffei II. t We like to think such reports will be the way the news of the future will go, when all the congestion of earthly tragedies and contentions are done with. Maffei 1 and Maffei II the two newly discovered galaxies, nenr Ihe earth's own mother galaxy, Ihe Milk Way "near" as such astronomical disiances arc mea- Mired, anyway. Tile Iv.n galaxies were lednl a l.y YUUIVJ Kalian astronimn.T I'aiilo Mafin when in Irarei! photos of n "dusty" section of I ho neighbors Science Monitor northern sky. A graduate student in astron- omy at University of California at Berkley saw mention of the Maffei photo objects in a 1968 journal. He brought them to the attention of the astronomy faculty, which then put its resources to studying the phenomenon. Astronomers say there are at least bil- lions of galaxies ir, the universe. Our own Milky Way is not. large as Ralaxics go. And niir MID is rather commonly sized. ihrre i., a buoying, healthful p'tiiuMii of man's heavens, more ex- pansivc even than he has as yet imagined. How elated can cne get over our young people these days! Last evening fl-'eh. good friends dragged us to the LCI- Paterson Schools Band Concert. 1 was tired and wanted to go to but was stimulated to go to enjoy the company of friends and, I thought make the big sacrifice of lime to sup- port the students and director. When we walked into Yates I was impressed. Instead of a smattering of pecple here and there as is often the case, the theatre was filled to capacity. Yes, there was good support from parents and the good citi- zens of I.clhhrifi'.'r. hut the sup- IKirl v.e gave them was noth- ing compared ID Ihe support l.hcy gave to us. We so often hear of all the wrong things our children are doing but last evening this group of fine young people real- ly showed their colors. I was held the entire cveiSng in total rapture and unbelief that these kids could do such a fantastic job. Lethbridge should be very proud and thankful for these wonderful youth and for their inspiring and devoted director ,1. L. Pokarney. Thank God for adults such as this man who take such an interest in the cultural training of our chil- dren. MRS. BRIAN ,IONKS. Lothbridgc. The Soviet government, the Hearst reporter said, was dis- appointed and somewhat disil- lusioned by Brandt's attitude. In a second report about his conversations with Soviet diplo- mats in Washington, he re- tracted the personal attacks against the chancellor but spoke again of growing Soviet reservations about West Ger- man policy. What caused dis- quiet here was tie fact that similar statements were being made by Soviet diplomats in other Western capitals. They appeared to be seeking out journalists to inform them of Moscow's loss of interest in the ratification of the German-So- viet treaty. From a Russian standpoint, they said, Brandt's mere sig- nature was sufficient as it was highly unlikely that West Ger- many would now dare to go back on the commitments em- bodied in the treaty. Since the chancellor has made ratifica- tion dependent on a satisfactory Berlin solution, the Russians seemed to be ruling out any immediate progress in the four- power Berlin negotiations. Inevitably, government offi- cials here began to ask them- selves whether the Soviet lead- ers were changing the course of their German policy. Inquiries through diplomatic channels produced formal reassurances that the Soviet attitude towards Bonn remained unchanged. At the same time the Soviet em- bassy here flatly denied the statements attributed to Soviet diolomats in Washington. The current inclination here is to regard the new line taken by Soviet diplomats as being at least partly the component of a "nerve war" designed to soften up the Brandt govern- ment with the aim of extract- ing maximum concessions in Berlin. But a far more import- ant element, it is thought here, is the recent upheaval in Pol- and which has left Soviet lead- ers hypersensitive about the security of their West flank and the reliability of their Warsaw Pact allies. Today, even the members of the Kremlin leadership most interested in improved rela- tions with Bonn, and particu- larly in expanded trade, can- not afford to ignore East Ger- man warnings of potentially disastrous consequences if Iho Communist side lets itself be lured into real reconciliation with Bonn and appears to be giving way on Berlin. More than ever the East Ger- mans seem to be adamantly op- posed to a genuine detente be- tween the two German states. The line taken by Walter Ul- bricht, the veteran East Ger- man party chief, is that Wes- crn socialists are far more dan- porous for the Communist bloc than ordinary capitalists. Social Democratic leaders, he remarked in a recent speech, were out to penetrate Commu- nist countries with the goal of liquidating socialism and re- storing capitalism. Apparently the East German leaders re- main haunted by the fear that the normalization of relations between the two Germanics would undermine their control over East Germany. They need the bogy of West German "re- varichism" to maintain their tight grip over the country. Ra- ther than dismantle the Berlin Wall and remove the electrified fences and minefields along the inter German border, they want to preserve a state of bristling hostility as a safe- guard for their own security. Ulbricht, it is believed here, can count on a powerful lobby in Moscow, largely recr u i t e d among the military, who share his views about the West Ger- man danger. The available evi- dence here suggests, however, that the less dogmatic mem- bers of the Soviet Party Prae- sidium still remain prepared to reach a Berlin settlement and thus facilitate understanding with West Germany. It is noted with interest here how German politicians and businessmen were given VIP treatment on recent visits to Moscow. They were singled out for talks with Premier Alexei Kosygin, who indicated undim- inished Soviet interest in im- proved relations with Bonn. Yet at the same time the men in the Kremlin were allowing the East Germans to use new pre- texts to interlere with Berlin traffic. This contrast between excep- tional friendliness towards West German visitors in Moscow and the increasingly tough line in Berlin is regarded here as a sign of indecision caused by dis- agreements at the top level in Moscow. Brandt, who returned from Moscow last August confident that the Russians were willing to reach a speedy Berlin agree- ment, does not expect now a. clear Soviet policy line to em- erge until after the Soviet party congress next month. Certainly, the Russians would be making a major political blunder if they expect the chan- cellor to yield on Berlin. Now that the survival of his government appears assur- ed despite its mere six vote majority, Brandt can affirm with complete credibiliy that he is under no time pressure to obtain results. Having dem- onstrated his will lor reconcili- ation with the East, he need not fear electoral disaster if a Berlin solution fails to mater- ialize during coming months and the treaties with Russia and Poland remain unratified for the time being. The chancellor knows that Berlin and the future of inter- German relations cannot be viewed in isolation from other developments in the world. The new strain in U.S.-Soviet rela- tions just as much as the events in Poland, make their impact on Berlin. Only when the Sonet leaders are in a posi- tion to decide on their prior- ities will it become clear wheth- er a real relaxation of tension in Central Europe is in sight. (Written for The Herald and The Observer, London) Looking backward Tlirotigh the Herald ]92l Wide extensions of the pwers of the provincial gov- ernment i- control of municipal hospitals are provided for in an amendment to the Alberta hos- pital ordinance to be introduced in the legislature. 1931 A remarkable record for diphtheria is held by the city, as not one case was re- ported during the past year. The treatment for school chil- dren given full credit for the record. A new club has taken root in the city. It. is the "480 Club" and consists of men and w'omen who have pledged them- to buy war savings cer- tificates to the value of a month or per year. 1951 Counter attacking Americans smashed four miles into the heart rf a Korean Red stronghold in east-central Ko- rea. On the central and western front, the badly mauled Chinese withdrew from the battle lines. lOfil _ Canada's unemploy- ment jumped sharply to at mid-January, the highest jcbless figure for any month in the past 15 years. The Lethbridge Herald 504 7th St. S., Lethbridge, Alberta LETHBRIDGE HERALD CO. LTD., Proprietors and Publishers Published 1905 -1954, by Hon. W. A. BUCHANAN Second Class Mall Registration No, 001! Member of The Canadian Press and Ihe Canadiar publishers' Association and Ihe Audit Bureau CLEO W. MOWERS, Editor and Publisher THOMAS H. ADAMS, General Manager JOE BALLA Managing Editor ROY F. MILES Advertising Manager WILLIAM HAY Asfcciflle Editor DOUGLAS K WALKER Ldiloria! Eciilor "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"