The Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - January 22, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta
4-THE LETHBRIDQC HERALD Tuwdax. January 22, 1974 The underlying issue While it is the question of an energy policy for the country that is being dis- cussed at the conference of first ministers in Ottawa nobody can be un- aware that the perennial issue of the con- stitution is deeply involved. Never, in fact, has the definition of powers been under such strain as now. The conference under way now is not likely to achieve more than the beginning of an energy policy agreeable to all. It is to be hoped that this much at least will be achieved, otherwise the fate of the country will be under as great a cloud as it was during the days when separatism had its greatest momentum in Quebec. When the energy policy is finally in place, as everyone hopes it will be in due time, a new attempt at settling the con- stitutional issue should be made. The country ought not to be kept on tenterhooks every time a new develop- ment takes place in the affairs of men and nations. It's wonderful, and cold Whenever the problems of the world become overwhelming and it hurts, even without laughing, to contemplate the tates of national economies, provincial resources and city power plants, a calm- ing etlect can be had by thinking about Antarctica On the world's southernmost con- tinent, which is larger than the United States. 17 nations co-operate not only in peace but also in varying degrees of triendship. having unrestricted access to each other's facilities and exchanging in- formation, scientists and even social gatherings. This amicable international communi- ty is based partly on a 1959 treaty which stipulates that "Antarctica shall con- tinue forever to be used exclusively for peaceful purposes and shall not become the scene or object of international dis- and partly on the fact that the very environment makes its residents dependent on each other regardless of national interests. Underlying these influences, however, is the real reason for harmony on the continent it has no known natural resources and there is so far nothing to exploit. When the first drilling rig heads south of the Antarctic Circle, this may change. Until then, life for its residents will re- main what it is today, a cool price to pay tor peace ART BUCHWALD Is there an energy crisis? WASHINGTON The country becomes more and more divided every day on whether there is an energy crisis or not. Those who can't get gas say there is one but those who can get gas say there isn't. Whom are we to believe? The following questions and answers may shed some light on the problem. there is an energy crisis, why can we still get gasoline? people believe there is a crisis, which there is not, at the moment. If people didn't believe there was a crisis there would be one, because then they would avoid conserving fuel. mean in order not to have an energy crisis you have to believe there is one? The people who are angriest about the energy crisis are those who can get all the fuel they want. They believe if they can get oil that means the crisis is a fraud. It's hard to make a man feel humble when he has a full tank of gas. was William Simon picked as Energy Czar? of his name. All of us played Simon Says as children, and the President felt Americans instinctively would obey Simon or be eliminated from the game. Mr. Nixon realized very early in the crisis that no one would obey an energy czar if his name were Love. are the oil companies the only ones who know how much fuel there is available in the country? they are the only ones who have nothing to gain by an oil shortage. If you can't trust an oil company during a crisis, whom can you trust? hear a lot of talk about leakage in the oil industry. What is it? pump in an Arab country leaks a certain amount of oil. This oil is soaked up with a sponge, wrung out in buckets and sold to countries that the Arabs are mad at because of Israel. the .Arab embargo on oil is not working? can't say that. If you did, the Arabs would have to make it work, and they are reluctant to do so. We know that they know that we know where the oil is coming from. But if we admit it, then they know that we know that they would have to do something about it. So everyone says the embargo is working to make certain that it doesn't work. are the bright spots to come out of the energy crisis? are many more things than one can list. Airlines have been able to cut out un- profitable flights to towns they were suppos- ed to service; companies can raise prices and put it all on the fuel shortage; landlords can cut heat and raise the rent, and all the polluters in the country can blame the energy crisis on the ecologists. there be gasoline rationing? depends on which night of the week you watch the news on television. On odd days government officials announce there will be no gas rationing. On even days they say there is a good chance there will be. Sundays they can go either way. much fuel did Mr. Nixon save by flying United Airlines to California? enough to gas up a private Air Force plane to fly back to Washington. much will the oil-producing countries charge for their oil if there is a Mid- dle East settlement of the war? dollars a barrel.- much will they charge if there is no settlement? dollars a barrel. can I, Mr. Average Citizen, do to avert a gas.shortage this summer? a sheik to lunch. Together again By Doug Walker All summer long, as followers of these fillers will know, one of my most frequent associates was Fern Bouchard. Day after day we toiled around the Henderson Lake Golf Course together. When the -golfing season ended Fern dropped out of my life. Although I feel like it sometimes, I am not old enough to be a client of Fern's he's with Canada Pension. Recently, however, a series of meetings with board members of the United Way and representatives of the agencies funded through the United-Way began and Fern and I found ourselves reunited. We don't know which of our goals will be the toughest this year: breaking 90 on the golf course or finding the secret for getting the United Way campaign over the top. Mideast quiet threatened By C. L. Sulzberger, New York Times commentator PARIS The fact that Henry Kissinger broke the logjam in the Middle East is in itself no mean ac- complishment, but it would be a mistake to confuse this feat in any way with peace. Even in the simplest sense of absence of war, peace is not yet on the horizon. Kissinger did produce by his indefatigable energy what one French newspaper called a demi-success for Egypt (after its demi-defeat on the battlefield) and demi-defeat politically for Israel after what had been, militarily, a demi-victory. President Anwar el-Sadat has managed to dislodge the Israelis from considerable territory seized in 1967 which is in itself a justification for his policies of fighting and negotiating. The United States, for its part, has gone far toward re-establishing at least a partial credibility among the Arabs. Yet, although it played down Kissinger's triumph, the biggest gainer at this date is Russia. Soon it will be possi- ble to start opening the Suez Canal which has vital significance only to Moscow (apart from Inter- national commerce has come to depend on vast ships which cannot negotiate Suez. However the Russians will soon be able easily to support the naval units they maintain in the enormous Indian Ocean. Despite these changes, however, one cannot yet see peace on the horizon. To start with as proven by the crea- tion and vanishing of the Libyan-Tunisian union the area is incredibly volatile. Another requirement to be faced eventually is the need for effective international guarantees. Interposing United Nations forces and buffer zones are a desirable step. But the United Nations isn't always the most reliable instrument and other countries than the United States must be intimately associated in guarantees. This does not mean only the U.S.S.R.; it also means Western Europe. For' years Paris hoped the two super- powers plus Britain and France would be the guaran- tors. This policy was superseded by the dream that the nine-nation European Economic Community could serve as a substitute. However, the Community has yet to achieve a common policy on practically anything. Yet the biggest threat to stability remains the fact that all nations in and around the region of Palestine have been stuffed with arms. So many tanks and missiles stud the Middle East that, if a fuse short-circuits, another terri- ble conflict'could explode. France and Britain recently souped up their own contribu- tion to the arms race in bilateral arrangements with various Arab oil-suppliers. But in fact they have been promising relatively inferior material. The biggest offenders remain Russia and the United States. The British and French have slipped way behind as effective weapons-suppliers. Britain's aircraft industry was weakened under the Wilson government, before Heath, and both Britain and France have been bled white by their unsuccessful Con- corde project to market a viable supersonic commercial aircraft. British efforts to develop joint undertakings with con- tinental partners have, like Concorde, failed: the Airbus, Jaguar and W.G. 13 helicopter. Therefore London cannot long continue as a fac- tor in the Middle East arms mart because tanks, which Britain makes well, are likely, to diminish in importance, as the effectiveness of anti-tank missiles showed in the Oc- tober War. As for France, Concorde ab- sorbed such immense credits which could have been used for other purposes that no new military aircraft has been developed since 1965 and the number of planes in the French Air Force actually decreased by 40 per cent. This decline is not true for Russia and the U.S.A. The former has a new line of high- flying very swift planes. Now a fresh generation of even superior American models (F- 15, YF-16, YF-17, P-530, etc.) is appearing and will surely become available for export to certain nations. Thus one step that will have to be decided jointly by Moscow and Washington is how to define a just level of arms for Middle Eastern states both in quantity and quality. Then the superpowers must put. into effect restric- tions in order to diminish chances of holocaust coming about accidentally in an area which has, after all, only achieved step one on the long road to peace. Complacency about inflation By Bruce Whitestone, syndicated commentator "Fortunately not ovr problem gentlemen they'll get them with Opportunities for Youth grants." More and more, people are beginning to accept continuing inflation as the lesser evil. It is often repeated that the political and social im- plications of a policy of con- taining inflation and increas- ing unemployment are more than a democratic society can bear. Is it possible that the mischief-maker, inflation, is really not all that bad, that a little inflation is like fertilizer in the garden? In this view, the way to get maximum growth with relatively full employment is with wage increases that exceed produc- tivity growth, followed by price rises to maintain business profits, all accom- modated by additions to money supply and credit. The expectation of more nominal income every year has been embedded in nearly all aspects of society anyway. What is wrong with this pic- ture, if anything? We better make up our mind now, if inflation should be curbed or allowed to proceed un- checked. Otherwise, we will have to learn again that the longer a disease goes un- checked, the more difficult it is to cure. The latest economic worry-spot, high interest rates, is by no means the only price that will have to be paid for our inflationary ex- cesses. Almost everyone recognizes that the chief cause of current high interest rates is inflation. Even more importantly, now that infla- tion has been allowed to accelerate so long there is far less chance to bring it under control without a recession. The costs will include now not only higher interest rates, but also lower production and higher unemployment. If policy makers are unwill- ing to bear the costs of restraint, what will the conse- quences be for the Canadian economy? In the first place, many aspects of the Canadian nation will suffer irreparable harm. Universities, museums, hospitals and other such in- stitutions will be seriously hurt. Old age pensioners, in fact all at the bottom of the economic scale suffer because they lack sufficient muscle to maintain even their relatively meagre standard of living. Under inflation factory workers, businessmen and farmers all make demands on the economy. The politically and economically strong will get increases and the politically and economically weak will pay. There is no role here in free market deter- mination of rewards. Monopo- ly unions which are strategically situated, can ex- tort an uneconomic share of the spoils. Those with political connections also are enabled to get a disproportionate share of the available economic resources. This system tests the democratic system to the utmost as it seems both so unfair and so dishonest. As a result of this way of dividing our wealth, our society changes its whole approach. Selfishness becomes an "in" way to "success." We are encourag- ed to organize for personal preferment while the traditional process of dis- tributing shares of the nation's gross production are discouraged. If we become less tolerant of the correctives and Letters Few sincere teachers Regarding a news item which appeared in The Herald Jan. 18, which dealt with the working conditions, staff aids, and number of pupils which the teachers of today had in their classes. Until about three years ago, I was active in the teaching profession The average number of students in my classes was over 30, oc- casionally closer to 44, and space was at a premium. I had no aids and a spare period was available for 40 minutes three days per week. For two hours once a week for two years I supervised a group in physical development. This was volun- tary time which I gladly spent with the young people who attended the group, and who took the activity seriously. I mention the story in The Herald because it implies the overwork and difficulties which teachers of today are forced to endure. In the new schools which, have been built in the last 10 years, teachers have been forced to work in buildings which are well-lit, air-conditioned, and free of noisy clatter. Wages have increased to the point that, even the lowest qualifications for a teacher pay a very substantial salary. Holidays are still horribly short consisting of only two months plus three other weeks throughout the school term. I have heard many colleagues grouch because they had no prep time in their schedule up to p.m. This meant that some time before 9 a.m. the following morning they had to spend two hours of their own time preparing for the classes they would have. In the profession today we have too many money-seekers on staff and too few sincere, dedicated teachers. Extra- curricular activities which at one time were supervised by the dedicated teachers are no longer considered by present- day teachers unless there is extra remuneration. The guiding body for teachers is the Alberta Teachers Association and from this ivory tower in Ed- monton emanate the direc- tives, bulletins, and organized snowstorms of paper advising pedagogues of the modern trends in education. For the services provided to the membership of ATA the ex- ecutive secretary is paid at least The associa- tion is a highly over-organized Soup who accomplish very tie for the teachers in any part of Alberta. I mention only a few of the weak spots which I have observed in my 35 years of teaching. I do not imply that teachers today should per- form all the duties which were accepted by the teacher in the little red school house nor do I say that teachers should work for the pitiful salaries that teachers of 35 years ex- perience have worked for. I say that too many members of the profession are working for the dollars which come easier in teaching than they would get in another oc- cupation. I say that present- day teachers in many cases could not go out in the open commercial field and com- pete for jobs which would pay them the salary which they draw at the present time. I say this because I actually had the experience of working out- side the profession and was able to learn the thinking of the average worker in in- dustry This experience over a period of eight years gave me a broader view of the actual world as compared to the academic world. I maintain that every teacher should be exposed to the commercial and industrial field. When they return to the classroom they would have a chance to present practical views to students. They would know the thinking of people who have to develop practical down-to-earth methods of making a living in a tough field of work EX-TEACHER Hillcrest Useful piece of junk safeguards built into a market economy, we then are in danger of developing a general disillusionment with the entire concept of growth. The youth culture's general disdain for material things, for doing anything because the rewards are so unfairly dis- tributed, could become an over-riding trend. Who would provide the mainsprings of our nation, our culture, and not least of all, our economy? A continuation of our "easy rider" attitude toward infla- tion thus will mean that the amenities usually associated with the good life, better medical service, an expansion of educational opportunities, and an improved control of the environment, will be more dif- ficult to achieve. Finally, inflation out of control or continuing un- abated disrupts the entire savings and investment process. Our economy literal- ly becomes starved for funds for capital projects or repair of existing production facilities. Then costs rise even more dramatically as in- dustry is unable to afford new technological improvements. Gradually, the entire economy slows down, fewer are able to afford the things now taken for granted, and, ultimately, unemployment rises. Inflation is a dangerous psy- chological sedative. And like any drug depenric-ncy, not only does it soon .0 mask the symptoms it is supposed to alleviate, but it also creates new problems more devilish than ever. We have the knowledge to keep it under control. All that we need is the courage to do so, and the abili- ty to transmit this point of view to our political leaders. Alderman Hembroff is to be commended for agreeing, on short notice, to speak publicly on the critical issue of the city's power needs and future supply problems at the recent meeting of the Southern Alberta Council on Public Af- fairs. His presentation in general was straightforward and open and shed con- siderable and useful light on a most complex and difficult matter. However, in one remark he chose to refer to the city power plant as "that piece of junk on the river bot- and that expression and some of its implications, it seems to me, demand a response. Mr. Hembroff's remark was an aside and presumably made in jest. But the fact that it was made at all suggests an attitude on the part of at least one alderman that may cost the ratepayer dearly. That "piece of junk on the river bottom" is currently generating about half of Lethbridge's total power re- quirements at a cost of the city purchases the rest from Calgary Power at a cost of I cannot avoid the feeling that a "piece of junk" that can generate half of the city's power needs for only 45 per cent of the cost of the other half and that has a useful life expectancy of 20 years with reasonable maintenance is worth con- siderably more than (the reported both to Lethbridge and Calgary Power. It may well be that the city is in such a bind with respect to electrical power that purchase of the total supply from Calgary Power is the only financially feasible op- tion available. If this proves to be the case (and I think it is far from proved at the it is to be fervently hoped that city council will ex- tract from Calgary Power, which will then be in an air- tight monopoly position so far as supplying the city's needs is concerned, every last dollar of the true value of the present publicly owned plant. And by true value I mean not only the intrinsic worth of the equipment, but, more impor- tantly, the long-time value, to Calgary Power, of elimination of the last competing source of power in the Lethbridge area. C. B. BEATY Lethbridge. Apathetic Canadians Remember when we were proud to sing: "0 Canada, our home and native That was before the socialists and neo-socialists drove us off our land by way of massive taxation. "True patriot love in all the sons command? Except those with loyalties to Castro, Mao Tse- tung and Brezhnev! "With glowering hearts we see thee rise rising taxes, rising food prices, rising interest rates and rising in- dignation among citizens. "The true North strong and Free sanctuary to U.S. draft dodgers, Chilian radicals and European criminals; free handouts to any kook who can spell gim- mi: freedom to panhandle on the streets flourishing a switchblade; freedom for homosexuals to solicite on the streets and free government grants to do your own thing. "0 Canada, we stand on guard for Like fun we do! Most citizens are so apathetic they have allowed politicians, perverts and pink- petticoated manipulators to lead them around by the nose. I personally value my Cana- jdian heritage too much to lie down and be trampled into the dust of any people's paradise! PATRICIA YOUNG. Vancouver. The lethbridge Herald 504 7th St. S. Lethbrldge, Alberta LETHBRIDGE HERALD CO LTD Proprietors and Publishers Second Class Mail Registration No 0012 CLEO MOWERS, Editor and Publisher DON H PILLING Managing Editor DONALD R DORAM General Manager ROY F MILES Advertising Manager DOUGLAS K WALKER Editorial Page Editor ROBERT M. FENTON Circulation Manager KENNETH E BARNETT Business Manager "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"