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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - February 23, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta 4 THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD Saturday, February 23, 1974 PUMPTKt, WHAT ARE YOU 6UIN6TO DO ABour iHfe Mail and weather Postal service is a great deal like the weather. Everyone talks about it but nobody does anything about it. The latest talk from south of the border is that a summons for President Nixon to testify in a California criminal court was lost eight days in the mail. And here in Canada an eastern newspaper has just proved what everyone has known for some time. The paper mailed four letters to itself. One came within the assured time, two took two days and one was a week late. It is not fair to say that nobody does anything about the mail service. It might even be said that too much is done. In the U S the department was taken over by a private corporation, stamps went up in price and service deteriorated. In Canada, post boxes were painted bright colors (so that people would stop posting letters in telephone zip codes were instituted (to let the general public know that a computer was at and assured delivery was promised (under the assumption that talk is better than And service deteriorated. Why? The answer could be because those in the postal department charged with overseeing its operations (always presuming someone is) have not looked closely enough at the analogy between mail and weather. What the postal service really needs is a daily forecasting system like that of the weather service, letting the public know when it can expect flurries of first class mail and intermittent air mail, alerting people to a high pressure area of junk mail working its way south through the province, and warning that second class mail is circulating counter- clockwise around a Toronto work stoppage and can be expected to reach Southern Alberta sometime during the night. It won't speed up mail delivery but at least with hourly bulletins and a daily TV program complete with map, people will know where the mail is. And that's more than they know now. A public building The fullest imagination and most serious concern should be applied to the question of what to do with the old library building when the new one is occupied. The old building is unique in that it is the only structure in the four-block Gait Gardens, which in turn is one of the largest parks in the heart of any Canadian city. So the building should be utilized in some way in keeping with the WEEKEND MEDITATION gardens. The fact that Gait Gardens is not now fully appreciated or used does not reduce its potential value to the community. To fill the building with offices would not be fitting. It must remain a public building, with maximum benefit to the public. Perhaps this is an opportunity to review the utilization of Gait Gardens, and to fit the old library building into the context of that review. A brave and generous heart Kiphng has a poem to the effect that brave men come from wherever you find them, whether it be from the East or from the West. So Jesus found a brave and generous man among the Samaritans, a despised, racially impure, and segregated people who were not permitted in the inner temple. Jesus told a story of two men coming from church (that is, the temple) down from Jer- usalem to Jericho. "Down" is a correct description, since Jerusalem is feet above sea-level and Jericho, located on the Dead Sea, is feet below sea-level, a drop of feet is 20 miles. The rocky hills were filled with ruffians and thieves and a man had to be an idiot to travel alone. People went in groups or with hired guards. One man, according to Jesus' story, had tried to run the gauntlet and had been beaten and robbed. One can always find excuses for not doing anything. So the two men coming from church, a priest and a Levite, found reasons to avoid the poor fellow. The priest could argue that the man looked dead and for a priest to touch a dead man would make him ceremonially unclean for a week and unable to perform his priestly duties at the Temple. The Levite could argue that the man was probably a decoy whom the brigands used to trap unwary travellers. Morever charity begins at home and both priest and Levite knew of bona fide cases at home in need of their charity. Jesus was aware of the argument, also, that lawyers had advanced (and the man asking the question, "Who is my was a lawyer) that neighbors belonged only to a man's own race. Other races were not his responsibility. So Jesus took a man who did not even have the respectability of a Roman, a wretched foreigner and, worse, a Samaritan, a heretic with nothing to commend him except his intrinsic worth. He was an honest man, for the innkeeper trusted him. He was a brave man, because he did not stop to think of the danger. He was a good man, because he did not find reasons for not acting. He felt only the compulsion and compassion of human need. Many people like discussion, as did this lawyer. Others want to organize something. If the world were coming to an end, some people would say, "Let us have a luncheon meeting and form a committee." The Samaritan "went to him" (read the story in Luke, chapter 10) and then gave him what he needed. He must have had a first-aid kit with him thinking of some such emergency. Then he made the necessary arrangement with the inn-keeper for his care. Was the victim a worthy man? Did he deserve all this effort? Jesus does not tell us. He was a man in need. A certain family had a brilliant son who became a missionary doctor and died during an epidemic. A friend of the family was quite bitter, but the father of the doctor replied, "Jesus died for them." "Were they worth asked the other. The father asked, "Were How many men dare say they have been worth the sacrifice and love of the countless people who have contributed to their life? Unless a man realizes that he is hopelessly in debt to others, he is something less than a man. Kindness is abused. It can be misinterpreted and met with rebuff. It may be misrepresented as weakness. But it is the only healer of the world's wounds. As Somerset Maugham says in The Summing Up, loving-kindness is the final grace of life. Dr. Karl Menninger described the transformation of the Topeka State Hospital in Kansas as the miracle of loving-kindness. It is the world's greatest mystery and the world's hope. The world badly needs a fall-out of loving- kindness. Everywhere you find examples of the world's cruelty. Victims are on every road. Having just finished a 10-day study on world environment, the needs of the starving millions of Africa fill the eyes and scrape the senses raw. "Go thou and do said Jesus. Every man has his own road to travel. Every man at some time needs a Good Samaritan. Every man should accept the role of Good Samaritan when opportunity comes his way. PRAYER: O God, give me a kind heart, a brave heart, a heart responsive to human need, for in helping others I make the way easier for myself and find the way to heaven. F.S.M. ANNOUNCING THE PRICE. OP BREAD UNJUSTIFIABLY U.K. hopefuls ignore facts By James Res ton, New York Times commentator LONDON The British, election is merely one dramatic symbol of the much deeper crisis now shaking the whole western world. The economic problems are more serious here than in most other advanced industrial nations, but the debates here are bringing to the surface the staggering issues of inflation, prices, unemployment, and scarce raw materials that are also dividing the United States, Western Europe and Japan. What we are seeing and hearing in this election is only one illustration of the disunity and disarray of the capitalist world, and the inability of political parties to find nationalistic solutions to international problems that are beyond their control. No doubt the Communist countries have different and more serious problems, but that is another story. Meanwhile, anyone wondering where we are going in the West can find much to observe here. This election is being fought out on the assumption that an extraordinary upheaval in the economics of the world can be handled by ordinary political methods, that the election of the Conservatives, or the Socialists, or the Liberals can somehow control the price of food or oil, or the problems of money or trade. Even in rich countries like the United States, West Germany and Japan, this is no longer true, and in Britain it is fantasy for the plain fact, which all sides in the British election evade as much as they can, is that this country is broke. Compared to this, none of the specific issues under debate here is vital. The arguments over the miners and railwayman will soon be settled and the charges that Labor is being run by the Communists and the Tories by the industrialists will soon be forgotten. Even Imperial Chemical Industries, whose pretax profits doubled to million last year, and Barclays Bank which reported a million increase in profits in 1973, may be taxed out of their gains, and the three-day work week will come to an end. But after the voting is over, the hard facts will remain. The price of oil has quad- rupled and Britain's bill to import it in 1974 will go up by two billion pounds pounds, not dollars. The estimate now is that the price of coal will double. Over two million British workers are now getting unemployment benefits. And to deal with all this, Britain will have to borrow stupendous sums abroad at high interest rates just to keep going. None of the principals in the British election denied any of this. Harold Wilson blames it on the Tories, and suggests he can deal with it by cutting hundreds of millions out of the defence budget, fixing prices by statute but not wages, and renegotiating Britain's entrance into the Common Market. Prime Minister Heath meanwhile says Britain is entering a new world, which is too serious to be left to irresponsible Socialists backed by Communist labor leaders. The Chancellor of the Exchequer, Anthony Barber, emphasizes the guilty-by- association theme in a slick TV broadcast, and Roy Jenk- ins, the former Labor chancellor, says "Mr. Barber is a dainty disaster, shot through with a streak of viciousness." But the economic problem remains, and both sides sneer at the notion of forming a national government to deal with it. Occasionally, voices of protest are heard from outside British politics. The Bishop of Southwark, Mervyn Stockwood, who has presided over a diocese in south London for 15 years, asked in the Times of London the other day what choice this election gave to the poor in Britain? "The richest seven per cent of British taxpayers own 84 per cent of the nation's he said. "At one end of the scale, there are extravagant riches and comfort; at the other end, poverty, hardship and squalor. Tt In short, the Bishop is suggesting what Disraeli wrote in 1845, that the slogan of both parties "one nation" has still not been achieved and that there are still two British nations "the rich and the poor." Even so, the surprising thing here is that Britain has lost an empire and still keeps raising the standard of living and promising more in a world she no longer dominates. Her problem, like the problem of other countries, lies in a new world order to deal with this torrent of new people, new demands, and new ideas, but very little is heard of this in the British election. Doctor surplus small problem By Maurice Western, Herald Ottawa commentator OTTAWA Governments nowadays worry about prac- tically everything but they worry a great deal more about some subjects than about oth- ers. How priorities are estab- lished is far from clear but it does seem to be generally accepted that nothing is more consoling to the public than an anxious expression of Ministerial concern. U r- T Many citizens will have read, possibly with surprise, that the federal and provincial health Ministers have spent some hours together worrying collectively about a number of things including a threatened surplus of doctors. The same newspapers carried a Canadian Press calculation that the federal civil service alone has expanded by approximately in the past three years. The re- suitant surplus of bureaucrats must also be a source of ang- uish to the their statements at the time of Mr. Trudeau's awesome freeze. But this grief has now gone unshared with the public for years and years. It is uncertain whether the new concern about the doctors is the burden of Marc Lalonde alone (in the federal structure) or whether it is shared by his cabinet colleagues. There is no particular evidence that it weighs on the mind of Robert Stanbury, the Minister who in- spires the nation's friendly neighbourhood tax collectors. According to Mr. Stanbury's annual Green Book of tax statistics, the doctors have been performing admirably for National Revenue. By this measure, they have outpaced all competitors and may soon be in a position to entertain patients in their crowded waiting rooms with literature more enlivening than last year's Australian and South African travel publications. There is a problem of geographical distribution. There may, or may not, be too many doctors in some places but there are certainly too few, if any, in others. This happens also to be the case with miners and with people in various other occupations. But Mr. Lalonde is not wor- ried solely about geography. His projections indicate that by 1981 we may have one doctor for every 488 potential consumers although 600 is considered the optimum figure. We may also have too many specialists and too few general practitioners. Fortunately, from this point of view, we are still well short of the disaster point. The health Ministers may also console themselves with the reflection that Ottawa projections have a high fallibility rating. It was on the basis of projections that the federal Government once before set out to avert disaster with the famous Operation Lift. In fact, we have never had too many doctors, partly be- cause we cannot produce them as readily as we produce wheat. It is for this very reason that Mr. Stanbury inscribes them each year at the top of his honor roll. One can be innocent of logic and be a lawyer (see any copy of Hansard) but it is not possible to be innocent of medicine and to be a physician. It may be a healthy develop- ment that the Government seems ever more willing to share its worries, or some of them, with the citizens it gov- erns. At times, however, it seems to be a rather undis- criminating worrier. Perhaps if Ministers concentrated more on fewer things (such 25 the remorsdess growth of the public we might get better results. Letters UIC function unchanged In The Herald, (Feb. it was indicated in a letter that legislation had not been brought before Parliament which would prevent abuses under the present Unemployment Insurance Act. Bill 125 to which, I am sure, the writer refers was presented to Parliament and is still under review. However, regardless of this fact, the act still states that the claimant must prove for every day that he is filing for unemployment insurance that he is available for immediate, suitable employment. This condition of eligibility has always been a part of unemployment insurance. What does "availability" mean? It means that a claimant must place himself in a position whereby if suitable employment becomes available for him in his locality or within a reasonable distance, he must be in a position to accept it. In other words the claimant cannot place restrictive conditions in accepting employment to the point where he could not be considered available. Where there is no employment in the claimant's area, he must be willing to accept employment within a reasonable distance from his home The writer also indicates that he was not allowed to specify the type of employment he was looking for. We, at all times, allow the claimant to specify what type of work he is looking for. What the act does indicate, however, is that where a claimant restricts himself to a type of employment in which it is virtually impossible to find employment due to weather conditions, no demand or lack of skills, he would be disqualified as he is restricting himself to the point where he cannot be considered available for employment. It is also a requirement that in order to prove continuing availability, a claimant must register with Canada Manpower Centre and also maintain an active job search The total onus of finding employment for a claimant is not on Canada Manpower Centre We realize there is seasonal unemployment, however, benefits can only be paid during seasonal unemployment if the claimant proves availability during this period. I might also mention that it is a requirement of the commission that medical certificates must be supplied by staff when they are off due to illness. The writer is also of the opinion that there is no liaison between Canada Manpower Centre and the Unemployment Insurance Commission. Not only do we have a close liaison but the commission also works in con- junction with Canada Manpower and employers to assist filling vacancies The Unemployment Insurance Commission was established to administer the unemployment insurance fund, or in other words, to provide benefit to those who become unemployed through no fault of their own, however, are available for immediate employment and have proven this by ensuring that they are ready and able to accept immediate, suitable employment and are carrying out an active job search program. Our function in this has not changed. D. CROFTON District Manager Lethbridge Pincher Creek hospital The problem in Pincher Creek concerning the hospital directly concerns also the residents of Waterton Park, Lundbreck. Cowley, Crowsnest Pass, Hillspring and a large rural population Indirectly it concerns every Alberta taxpayer concerned about hospital construction and supplying adequate medical treatment centres for the sick. The Pincher Creek hospital advisory board possibly feels the replacement of the west wing and renovation of the east wing, which the government plans, is better than no plan, no new facilities. Tney may be hesitant in re- questing and pushing for a new hospital on a new site. The government seems to be offering their second-best plan first. I feel they are quite prepared to provide Pincher Creek with a new hospital on an entirely new site. And the government will do so if we the people demand it Alberta, seemingly, is blessed with too-many hospital beds for its population. Hence, the proposal to reduce beds in the new wing and in any future hospitals built in rural Alberta. This appears to be a rather introverted appraisal of the future health and treatment needs of our province. Pincher Creek is a young growing and progressive community. There are possibilities for industrial development in the area. What will happen in 20 years should our population double (our population tripled in the last 25 What will the government do should we require expanded services and more beds? The present site is already crowded, unable to accommodate the present hospital's activities The old west wing was the Libel House, once a private home. In the 1920s it was converted into a hospital capably managed by the Daughter's of Jesus The government seems fast and free in pulling down and destroying the endeavors of our pioneer citizens. Our town of Pincher Creek is not yet 100 years old and already we are destroying our heritage. This old building is a beautiful and well-preserved brick structure which could be used to mark Pincher Creek's coming centennial A renovated building is full of quirks which cannot be easily overcome by architects waving their pens. The east wing, now 25 years old, has always had a heating problem overheating in one section and freezing in another. This may net be solved in renovation. Then there is the question of what to do with the present building how to economically make use of it should Pincher Creek be blessed with a new site and hospital The people of Pincher Creek and community should consider their own future needs, those of their parents and children and of an expanded population they should voice their opinions, make their thoughts and desires known. The government can be persuaded to change its present proposals if the people want it done. EDNA MacKENZIE Pincher Creek crary a Joujih iifr I'd up. !iul i -irtmil I'm .1 fa The LetMtridge Herald 5W Ttti S1 S Alberta ItTHBRISGE ttFHALD CO 1 TO and f- t SewjmJ Class Mail Registration No 0012 CLEO MOWERS. and Publisher DON W PILLING Managing Editor DONALD 1 DOKAM General Manager ROY f MILES Advertising Manager DOUGLAS K WAI KtR "age Editor "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH' POBERT M ftWCN Circulation Manager KENNETH ;