Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - January 21, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta
EDITORIALS * Maurice Western Unemployment crisis Wlien the leader of the opposition, Mr. Robert Stanfield, took off on his cross Canada tour, he called it a publicity trip. Denying accusations that he sought to focus attention on himself, he said he wanted to bring to public notice the desperate situation of the unemployed, and to force the government to acknowledge it and do something about it. If Mr. Stanfield gets some political mileage out of his trip he is entitled to it. He has already achieved his major purpose - bringing the full glare of public attention on an intolerable situation. There are well over half a million unemployed across the land, a condition which can only lead to poverty, uncertainty and disenchantment with "the system." Mr. Benson's latest predictions of a boom in '71 leading to a greatly improved employment situation are going to be taken with a large spoonful of salt by those standing in line outside employment offices now. Dry statistics coupled with the statement that the economy is "not as buoyant as we would like" are not much comfort to the jobless; nor is the optimistic prediction that better days are ahead. Mr. Benson accuses the Opposition of being devoid of sound ideas in respect to current needs, but he has given very little indication about what he intends to do about those needs himself. The fact is that the government, alarmed at continuing inflation, instituted deflationary policies, knowing full well that this would create unemployment. What it did not know, and what it is now faced with, is a much higher unemployment rate than it was prepared for. Mr. Benson is unfairly accused of callous indifference to the unemployment problem. He is simply unprepared for the enormity of it. He finds himself on the defensive, faced with t�.j unpalatable fact that he has no short - term solution, and further that welfare recipients have lost confidence in his ability to produce a long - term one. Mr. Benson has not spelled out in concrete terms what these long - term solutions are. There is a plethora of economic ideas about what should be done. Wage and price controls? Short-term schemes involving huge government expenditure? Tax reduction to restore confidence and drive in private industry? Repegging of the Canadian dollar to give renewed confidence to Canada's export industries? Some form of restriction on organized labor, which stands accused of pricing itself far beyond what the market can take? The finance minister hasn't given a clue about his position. Nor has the government decided what to do about the White Paper on taxation. The uncertainty about what proposals contained in the paper will be implemented and what will not is responsible for discouraging investment and development in the private sector which would have helped alleviate the present situation. Unemployment in Canada has reached the crisis stage. The government is not entirely responsible, but it must take some of the blame and it must come up with some solution which will afford temporary re 1 i e f until the long - term answers start having their effect. Optimistic predictions painting a rosy future may give a temporary lift to the spirit but they don't find a man a job. Arms sales No settlement of the' disputed issue of British sale of arms to South Africa was reached at the Commonwealth meeting in Singapore. The only agreement reached was to set up a special committee to study the matter in the light of defence needs in the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans. Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau has suggested that the committee a!/o study the question of the sale of arms to the Portuguese territories in Africa. This might not fit in with Britain's attempt to have the sale of arms be seen only in terms of protecting maritime trade routes. But it would be of great interest to those African nations who see a relationship between the racist policies of Portugal and South Africa. And despite British insistence that arms sold to South Africa would not. support racism it has not been convincing to black Africa. Former Prime Minister John Dief-enbaker - who has had quite a bit to say about the arms issue-might wonder why Mr. Trudeau didn't propose that French arms sales be studied as well. No doubt the only reason for a limitation is simply that which is provided by membership in the Commonwealth. It is the sale of arms to troubled areas by Commonwealth countries that has to be dealt with first. The fact is Mr. Trudeau urged that the future of the whole African continent needs to be studied. It is tragic that developing countries urgently in need of spending money on social improvements are squandering it on munitions instead. That the developed countries should be party to this in any way is shameful. So arms sales generally needs not just study but curtailment through any pressures that can be applied. The teacher trustee ByLonis Bnrke ''pHE new School Act was put together with the good of education and the student uppermost in mind. It has all kinds of flexibility, possibility and potential, but it needs professionals to make it really work. Therefore, it is time for the laws to be changed so that teachers, who are the professionals, may take their places on school boards throughout this province. Otherwise, education in Alberta over the next few years is going to turn into a swamp. The freedom granted through the new act requires the guidance of professionals, and not amateurs. At present, even with all the good will and intentions in the world, all school boards in the country are composed of educational amateurs. There is not a single classroom teacher sitting on any of them. This represents a most serious situation both for now and the future. Most certainly, school board members, both past and present add up to excellent human beings; selfless, dedicated people who have done and are doing great things for education. They have spent endless hours and serious efforts advancing the cause of the school and the young people. But the new School Act is something altogether different; a delicate plant. If all the new freedoms are to flower, professionals ere needed, and those people are teachers only. Paying proper attention to school business today is a full time job and such attention must be paid or the plant will wither. Problems will snowball and come crashing down on the entire structure to leave the province with nothing, as is happening in many parts of the United States where educational bankruptcy reigns. Let us not forget that in education Alberta follows very closely things American. However, trustees today are not full time workers in the field of education. School board members are usually doctors, lawyers, farmers, or full - time businessmen . . . anything in fact, except teachers. But education is not a part-time business, especially today, and present board members in spite ot all their good eftorts cannot pay full attention to the business of education This is a simple fact. In the past, the common fear of teachers on boards lay in the notion that they would vote themselves big salaries each year. This is next to absurd today, and a simple clause barring teachers from negotiations' committees would fix that. But teachers have a lot to contribute to education at all levels and the top level is no exception. Honesty, at this stage, is vital for education's future. It needs, from top to bottom, men and women who are professional and dedicated to it full time. It is clear that school boards will need the aid of such professionals to guide education into the future, and a new era of progress. It is time that teachers were permitted to serve on school boards and take their rightfu places beside doctors, lawyers, farmers and others in the task of guiding education through a period of rapid change. Society is only as good as its educational system, be that what it may, and such a system is only as good as its teachers. For the occasion By Doug Walker 'T'HE air in the news room at The Her-aid was worse than usual one morning recently. It wasn't because Herb Johnson had found an even more vile brand of pipe tobacco but because all the smokers had cigars. Ron Watmuugh was responsible for the disaster. He had become the father of another son and tradition had taken precedence over his Mormon convictions. Our city editor may not face disciplinary action from his church but he can count himself lucky that Jane Huckvale wasn't around to give him some of the reproof expressed in her latest anti-smoking editorial coming soon. Information Canada: burst of creativity rVTTAWA: Information Can-ada, in another burst of creative activity, has produced, or caused to be procured, a series of posters available at a modest price to citizens interested in covering cracks in the plaster or that vacant space over the basement bar. It is generally understood that Info came into being to close an information gap on which a task force commented adversely last year. Until the appearance of the posters, there was nothing on public record to indicate that Mr. Stanbury's workers had achieved any success in extracting news from reluctant min- isters. Most of them even now seem determined to go on adding to or subtracting from the sum of our knowledge in their own time and in the same old ways. But at last we have something. It may not be much but, by Info's standards, it amounts to a breakthrough. The govern- ment, reluctantly perhaps, has divulged three choice items; all of them "basic truths" of the sort that the media, for obscure reasons, withhold from the public. The message of the first poster, showing Adam and Eve fashionably decked in stylized maple leaves, is that: "Our "Barbra phoned again, the weather's lousy - and oh yes, unemployment reached a new high . . Letters to the editor More understanding needed and less name-calling I never cease to marvel at the sheer stupidity people display when it comes to judging others. I have listened to men and women alike call our prime minister a Communist. I have listened while others will call our young people lazy and useless. I have listened while people have complained about the cost of living today and begged for the good old days. I have listened while people bitch and complain about everything imaginable. I even heard one individual call our pollution problem r. Communist plot to take over our country. I have never heard these people offer constructive ideas for bettering our country. We live in an age of apathy and our friends have forgotten the meaning of the word empathy. Man no longer cares for the other man's problems. He is concerned about keeping his own belly full. He does not know anything but that which suits his own purpose and ideas. I foresee a time, in the not too distant future, when men will revert to the principle for showing love, understanding and compassion. I am afraid that time will be too late, however. Why is it that mankind does not see the stupidity he displays? The insensibility of the older generation is amplified by their offspring. Young people of today show a general disrespect for all that their forefathers have built. I find it hard to be- Brontosaurus drumsticks? Man's increasing need for space leaves less for our wild creatures, which reduces their numbers, another way is the senseless slaughter of our big game by the armies of sportsmen with enough firepower to quell another "Hungarian Revolution." And how do our hunters justify this sport, maybe for meat to help out with the grocery bill, or is it man's killer instinct? You often hear the argument that the wildlife need thinning out to keep a balance in nature, balance indeed! One wonders how mother nature ever managed before man developed the weapons plus the sense of duty to help her out. In nature's plan the weak were weeded out by Extent of concern? The recent public meeting in Lethbridge of the Joint Committee of the Senate and House of Commons on the constitution was to me an interesting exercise in "participatory" democracy. Unfortunately, the participatory aspect was not entirely satisfactory. The "young people" of the community seemed to be trying to do their part and attended the meeting in numbers that appeared during most of the evening to exceed those of their elders. I would like to congratulate the students from Winston Churchill and Catholic Central High Schools and the students of political science of the University of Lethbridge for their efforts in presenting their ideas to the meeting. Interest did not seem to be restricted to those with either short hair, long hair, bearded or clean-shaven. Where were all the other people of the community? It was .suggested at the meeting that this type of meeting brings out only the more vocal segment of the population. I would hate to think that there are so few vocal people in a city the size of Letlibridge! Should it not be a responsibility of the more vocal members of aur society to assist in transm i 11 i n g the thoughts of the more reticent members? Perhaps it is the failure of the older and, supposedly more mature, segment of our society to do just this that widens the generation gap with today's activist oriented youth. As a relative newcomer to Letlibridge I have been encouraged by the response of the community to such problems as pollution in the Oldman River, zoning for hotels and automobile agencies and encouragement of industrial development (do we really need it?). Does this response reflect a real concern for society in general or just for what goes on in Lethbridge? After last Wednesday I am really wondering. DAVID M. BOWDEN. Lethbridge. predators, while the strong lived to ensure continuation of a healthy species, by contrast man destroys the strong, for the largest Elk antlers or the biggest cougar or grizzly skin, etc. But now there is a new weapon, pollution, the most deadly of all, since no creature on land, sea or in the air can avoid it. In contrast to killing by design, pollution is unintentional but just as deadly. The hug: and terrible monsters of the Dinosaur age lived for 150 million years, and they were extinct for many millions of years before man's ancestors arrived on the scene. But if some feel a little disappointed for not having had the chance to help exterminate the huge bep-'s, they "an take some consolation by assuming that had man and dinosaur lived during the same era, man would have put them out of their misery in a considerably shorter time. Brontosaurus drumsticks anyone? LES DOROGDI. Lethbridge. lieve that the fathers of Confederation didn't have the same hopes and ambitions that the young of today have.. Progress does not come from destruction of all and starting from nothing. Progress comes from building on firm construction and repairing cracks and damage with good quality material. To the young I would say that only experience and age can prove ideas and actions. To the old I would say that only the young have the freshness of approach that can revitalize life. To all I would say, think and you will find that only after you have participated and tried every possible approach do you have any right to call our government officials Communist, our young lazy, or to beg for the good old days (of typhoid, dysentry, slavery or any one of a thousand other problems). To those who won't listen or change I would say, remember this, when the officers of the army required to keep martial law come to your door to take you or some member of your family away. Only by understanding and co-operation can we ever hope to bring justice and hope to our home, community, country and world. R. K. ORSTEN. Coaldale. country is at the beginning." Now there is an arresting thought. How Info chanced upon it we may never know, but, evidently on checking with government, the news was confirmed and is now official, no longer a mere journalistic rumor. Why have governments1 kept this secret for so long and why have newspapers abetted this concealment? Perhaps the answer is that all things are relative. What, after all is a beginning? Has Info, slipping into the habits of careless journalism, gone out on a limb? There are various ways of looking at this. Politically, we are approaching 104. That may not be so long - another 104 and perhaps Info will be in full operation, a thought that many taxpayers will find disturbing On the other hand, there are countries, even in Europe, which by this measure must be only on the approach to the beginning - Norway, Belgium and Yugoslavia to mention only three. On the other hand, we could look beyond political institutions, going back three centuries to Champlain at Quebec or almost a millenium to Leif Ericsson in New foundland. What a long pull to the starting line, or to the "first Canadians" crossing the Bering Isthmus and pushing up the valley of the Yukon. Or we might consider the country geologically, in which case the pre-cambrian should guarantee us status as senior world citizens. Has Info reckoned with the possibility that revelations such as these may earn it an unsought reputation as Misinformation Canada A second poster takes liberties with a maple leaf flag, turning it into a valentine, with the right hand bar supporting a hand with two fingers outstretched. It looks like a V for victory sign but the caption is: Canada means love and peace. There is also a quotation from Sir Wilfred Laurier about faith and love, which apparently has now been deemed fit for general release. At least it is a pleasant thought and it should do wonders for FLQ members, who in recent months have upset the whole country by dedicating their special talents to other ends. Finally, ire is a B and B poster. It depicts two figures, one of them walking across the ceiling. This is unusual, even in Ottawa. But love is notoriously unsettling and the gentleman carrying the bouquet is calling on a lady. The message is: "If one knows his neighbour's tongue, he possesses the key of his house." Considering the state of crime in the country (including its bilingual areas), one wonders if this information should not have remained classified. Still, it is not to be denied that Info, after its months of meditation, has at least come through with some stuff. One must start somewhere, why not in the garden of Eden with "basic truths", officially verified? When these have been grasped the public (citizens may enter Eden for a trifling $2 admission charge) and we can move on to more complicated matters. At the current rate of disclosure a time will come, possibly a century or two hence, when ministers will cheerfully disclose information sought by members in the House of Commons. Not in our day, but in that distant future, they will talk- or Info will spill the beans. (Herald Ottawa Bureau) Looking backward True figures requested In (he Lethbridge Herald dated January 14, 1971 an official of the Manpower office stated that Lethbridge has the lowest rate of unemployment in Alberta, also that things look excellent for spring and summer, and no figures available on how many are unemployed here. Why don't they have the figures, that is their job or are they afraid to give the public in Lethbridge this information? How do they know things look excellent for next spring and summer, they told us lhe same story in 1970, and look how many unemployed we had last year. In Calgary there are 16,-000 unemployed, and this information was given by the Unemployment Insurance Commission, so why can't they get this information from the Unemployment Insurance Commission in Lethbridge? I applied for unemployment insurance in the first week of November and waited for six weeks before my claim was processed, asked the official why it takes so long, he told me that I am only one of thousands in this1 area who have claims for unemployment insurance, also that thev are understaffed. So why don't the officials of the Manpower office take their head out of the sand, and give us some figures and a true picture of the situation in Lethbridge and area, and not paint a rosy picture all the time, which it isn't. UNEMPLOYED. Coalhurst. Through the Herald 1921 - The CPR owes Leon Trotsky $40. According to Lord Shaughnessy, who was speaking in New York, Trotsky worked for the railway and was never paid. 1931 - Transient unemployed will be housed in one of the barns at the fairgrounds. Bunks are to be put up and the city has been loaned supplies by the Red Cross Society. Each man will be supplied with two meals a day. 1941 - December air raid casualties in Britain show 3,793 killed and 5,044 injured and hospitalized. This brings the total from June to 23,081 dead and 32,296 injured. 1951 - Due to large Increases in the price of crude rubber, the dealers in the city have raised the prices of most tires by as much as 15 per cent. 1961 - Southern Alberta will have its first full-scale potato processing plant in operation by the end of 1961. Location has not definitely been established, but the Vauxhall-Taber district is being considered. 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. 0012 Member of The Canadian Press and the Canadian Dally Newspaper Publishers' Association and the Audit Bureau ot Circulations CLEO W. MOWERS, Editor and Publisher THOMAS H. ADAMS, General Manager JOE BALLA WILLIAM HAY Managing Editor Associate Editor ROY F. MILES DOUGLAS K. WALKER Advertising Manager Editorial Page Editor "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"