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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - July 5, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta 4 THI IETHBRIDGI HfRAlD Thursday, July 5 ,1973 EDITORIALS Taking time on energy policy pays off The money is there It's about time Southern Alberta's oldsters got in on the million windfall known as the New Horizons Program, the geriatric version of Op- portunities for Youth, available to Canada's residents over the age of 65. A check with the local National Health and Welfare off.ce reveals only five enquiries have receiv- ed from interested persons to date. It is highly unlikely these have been pursued since no grants have been made to this area as The cash-grant program, the brain- child of former Health and Welfare Minister John Munro, designed to give retired persons an opportunity to put their often-unused knowledge and experience to work for the bene- fit of senior citizens, will inject a little federal silver into the golden years of Canada's oldsters. The health department has already .given away million to fi- nance 785 approved programs of lei- sure activity dreamed up by oldsters' groups across Canada and there is million left, practically for the ask- ing. According to one health depart- ment official, applications are sel- dom rejected; in one group of 158 applications only two were rejected. Quick to take advantage of the scheme were the Sechelt Senior Citi- zens' Association of B.C. which collected for their Senior Swing- ers Old Time Dance Band; Toronto's Estonian Pensioners' Club which ob- tained for what it termed Sen- ior Citizens' Sauna Days planned to "share an interesting and health- ful element of their the Com- mittee on Kosher Meals on Wheels from Hamilton which received to provide hot, nourishing meals to elderly Jewish people and the Prai- rie Restoration Society of Saskatoon which received to convert an aircraft hangar to restore and display vintage machinery, artifacts and household items. Certainly no one can accuse the government of being skimpy with New Horizon grants but it would ap- pear the oldsters have been slow in cashing in on the windfall. Here in the Lethbridge area, with such a high percentage of senior citi- zens, planned weekly bus tours to scenic and interesting locations (for all oldsters, not just members of sen- ior citizens' groups) would provide them with a wonderful opportunity to get out into the great out-of-doors. Tea arrangements could be made along the tour route, a guide hired to explain points of interest and a schedule listing weekly destinations, time and place of pick-up and hour of return could be posted well in ad- vance. This could become one of the most enjoyable and educational past- imes yet offered to the area's senior residents. Or what about summer afternoon band concerts at Hender- son park with oldsters encouraged to come with their lawn chairs and tea served from a mobile cart dur- ing intermission. With million left to claim and such a high percentage of proposals approved it is high time Lethbridge took advantage of this program. If the Wild Mushroom Hunters of Mus- koka can get a grant to pre- pare a mushroom guide, surely South- ern Alberta residents should war- rant help with their schemes. What is needed is for a group of interested oldsters to present a proposal and apply for a grant. The money is there now. Next year will be too late. The price of energy Last week's federal report on ener- gy made one statement that cannot be controverted. This country is an extremely heavy consumer of ener- gy, indeed wastes a lot, and one of the reasons is the cheap price which time will soon correct. Canadians have been living in a fool's paradise. Oil and gas especial- ly have been so cheap since they been so easy to find and pro- duce. Now the glut is ended, and prices will become more realistic. Oil and gas get much of the blame for global environmental deteriora- tion. But so often the people who complain loudest are those who waste most, who drive unnecessarily be- cause gasoline is cheap, who heat more household water than they need and then waste it, who think they need a host of electrical gadgets. How can their wastefulness be check- ed? It can't, except by making them appreciate the value of energy. Nothing in the world can stop price increases, and perhaps then people will awaken to proper values and to the cost of environmental preserva- tion. Montana's coal problem With environmental hearings in progress in Alberta, it is of interest to note a recent remark of the gov- ernor of Montana. Governor Judge elected last No- vember, said the number-one issue he had to deal with in his first six months was the state's coal reserves. On the one hand Montana has huge reserves of good coal, needed to help the state's and the nation's energy crisis. On the other hand improper development would be "disastrous" for the state. He noted that to avoid the state being "steamrollered" by coal development, several measures have been adopted: strong reclama- tion standards, studies on the envir- onmental effect of coal development, creation of an energy advisory coun- cil, higher taxes on coal, and estab- lishment of a trust fund to reimburse the state for extraction of non-re- newable resources. The casserole Inflation is just about everywhere. Years ago everyone in school was taught that the value of the chemicals making up a hu- man body were worth about 96 cents. At today's prices, according to a University of Missouri biochemist, those same chemicals are worth at least What's more, if the body happens to reside in the U.S. where blood transfusions are charged for and blood serum can be worth up to 1170 a quart, almost anybody (if you'll excuse the pun) should be worth around Pregnancy from a virus? Sounds a bit like one of those "I found this baby in the willows, Daddy" sort of stories. But ac- cording to a spokesman for a team of gene- ticists and physiologists at Penn State Uni- versity, there's a poultry virus that can spark embryonic development in virgin fe- male turkeys. And they have about a thous- and completely fatherless turkey chicks, all hatched from unfertilized eggs, to prove it A 14 year old St Louis boy is facing a long list of charges as a result of having taken a Greyhound bos and driven it around until be collided with an automo- bile. He's in real trouble, but can hardly claim he wasn't warned; for years the Greyhound people have been urging "Leave the driving to us." If there is any business in which early obsolescence has been considered a fore- gone conc'usioa, it is the building of aero- planes; rarely has a new model managed to take off on its initial test flight before its successor was on the drawing boards. The DO a 40-passeBger seaplane built by Dormer of Friedrishshafen and first flown in 1935, is a notable exception. Domier has just received a firm order for .30 of these ancient planes and a tentative bid for 120 more, from buyers who insist this model's ability to land and take off in rough seas has never been matched. South African authorities have been puz- zled over the causes of campus unrest at the country's only university for black students. To gat to the root of the prob- lem they've appointed a seven man com- mittee of investigation; one member is black, the oihsr six white. And tJjey're still puzzkd! No one wants to jinx a good thing, but it is noteworthy that since the really tough anti-skyjackiag measures went into effect in the U.S. last January, not a single sky- jack attempt has been made against an American plane. That's against a record of around 30 a year for the previous five years. Now, there are rising complaints from passengers who resent the inconven- iences involved, but there are probably many more who are content with knowing they'll likely get to their destinations with- out a detour via Cuba. Presenting legislation to ban tobacco ad- vertising and forbid selling tobacco to ju- veniles, Norway's minister of social affairs informed the Storting (Norwegian parlia- ment) that "at least 1200 persons die an- nually hi Norway as a result of smoking." Based on population, and assuming Ca- nadians smoke about the same as Norwe- gians do, a proportionate figure of smok- ing deaths in Canada would be close to 7000, or 40 per cent more than we've been killing on our highways each year. The report didn't mention government subsidies for tobacco growers, so it's hard to compare Norwegian legislation with Ca- nadian- while some provinces ban tobacco ads, and most forbid selling tobacco to youngsters, Canada still subsidizes tobacco growing. By Anthony Westell Toronto Star commentator A visiting British industrial- ist called on Energy Minister Donald Macdoaald recently and politely asked permission to give a word of advice on how Canada should develop its resources. Macdonald brac- ed for a lecture on the folly of discouraging foreign invest- ment and hesitating over the Mackenzie pipeline. Instead he was told: "Go slowly. Don't be in a hurry to make deci- The visitor's view ran exact- ly contrary to the conventional opinion in this country, where there is a growing demand for an instant National Energy Po- capital letters, with bells on. But the advice squares well with the reality of the sit- uation as it is seen by Macdon- ald and by Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau. The government's view is that Canada is not in an energy crisis. There are no real short- ages. No city brownouts, no factories closed, only a few ser- vice stations temporarily short of supplies because they cannot buy cut-price gasoline. Nor is there any danger of Canada being sucked dry by United States demand. Electric power and natural gas have for years been under expert control. Now crude oil and re- fined products such as gasoline and heating oil are also under control. So there is no need for Can- ada to make .instant long-term decisions about energy develop- ment. As the influential deputy energy minister, Jack Austin, put it in a speech: The energy situation needs a long and cool look both at do- mestic and international sources of supply to see what is avail- able, where it is available, for how long .will it be available and at what price will it be available." That's what Macdonald's white paper is: A long cool look at the energy situation in Can- ada. It's been long in preparation. With his tendency to take the broad general view of a pro- 1 THIMK YOU'RE I HOPE YOU FOR ANOTHER TERM Ulster rejects violence candidates By David, Humphreys, Herald London commentator LONDON Wiffie Whitelaw, British secretary of state for Northern Ireland, went to his Belfast office as usual to begin yet another of many seemingly impossible tasks. Mr. Whitelaw is studying through the week results of Ul- ster's first provincial election since 1969 to see if be can put together government by con- sent upon a foundation of vio- lence and distrust. At the same time Irish Prime Minister Liam Cosgrave went to London for talks with Brit- ish Prime Minister Edward Heath. He offered "a working and living recognition of the status of Northern Ireland" in return for a British undertak- ing to press ahead with plans to restore a council for Irish co-operation. Thus the negotiations have only just begun. In the back- ground brutal violence contin- ues in the north and the Ulster election results have caused a wetter of pessimistic comment in Britain about Mr. Whitelaw's prospects in bringing the new elected representatives -togeth- er. The Guardian commented that "after four years of vio- lence success win be in the na- ture of a political miracle." Mr. Whitelaw, Mr. Heath and Mr. Cosgrave have opened a series of historic discussions, as historic perhips as the discus- lions of 1921 which led to the 26-country republic and the six- county British province in the north. BERRY'S WORLD For the first time since the 1921 settlement an Ulster pro- vincial election has failed to Teturn, almost automatically, a legislature dominated by a single Protestant Union i s t party. By Mr. Whitelaw's design, this has been impossible under a proportional representation system of voting for six parties. This time the official Union- ftsts that have pledged to sup- port Mr. Whitelaw's govern- ment proposals number only 23 in a 78-seat assembly. Their leader, former premier Brian Faulkner, still acts and talks like a chief executive. Although he still commands the largest single group of seats, it is by no means certain that he will return to the province's top po- litical office. His group is outnumbered by 27 members opposed to' the Whitelaw proposals. They in- clude 11 breakaway Unionists and eight members each of Rev. Ian Paisley's Democratic Unionist Party and William Craig's Vanguard Unionist Pro- gressive Party. The Social Democratic and Labor Party, a party formed since 1969 out of various na- tionalist and socialist elements favoring a united Ireland, em- erged as a strong political force with 16 seats. Another new party which at- tempted to break from Ulster's sectarian voting pattern, Alli- ance, managed only eight seats. The Northern Ireland Labor Mr. new Party won the other seat. Alliance embraced JWthitelaiw's appeals for a politics most enthusiastically. Alliance candidates were the happy moderates, going bravely into both Roman Catholic and Protestant areas urging a break with the past. Mr. Whitelaw would have preferred perhaps to be deal- ing with larger representations from Alliance and Mr. Faulk- ner's wining Unionists. All sides are agreed on the ut- ter defeat at the elections of candidates sympathizing with the Irish Republican Army IRA. None was elected. And their people collected no more than one per cent of the popu- lar vote. The claim, which gathered some credibility, that the 1969 election results were hopelessly irrelevant and that the IRA represented the true wishes of the non-unionist-loyalist one third of the population, was de- molished. An IRA campaign resulted in only two per cent of ballots spoiled of which nearly half could be attributed to a complicated strange ballot. With the IRA recrnsidering its strategy, Mr. Whitelaw looks to Mr, Faulkner's group of Unionists and Gerry Fttt's SDLP, as the elected moderate spokesmen of the Ro- man Catholic non-unionist com- munity, to make his proposals work. Mr. Whitelaw is attempting to form a joint "power shar- ing" administration from Mr. Faulkner's and Mr. Fitt's ranks with the help of the eight Alli- ance members. Mr. Whitelaw's white paper, issued before the elections, said: "The executive itself can no longer be based solely upon any single party, if that party draws its support and its elected representsSon virtually entirely from only one section of a divided com- munity." It was precisely the familiar sectarian voting pattern that has caused so much pessimistic comment in Britain. If the Craig-Paisley coalition holds to- gether with support from Un- ionists opposed to the White- law plan, they may hold largest block in the assembly. Unionists would have been more willing to share cover with the Alliance party. Mr. Faulkner may risk defections if he strikes a bargain with the SDLP. Unionists have never forgiven SDLP its support for civil disobedience, tax and rent strikes and its opposition to the constitutional union with Brit- ain. Almost certainly the SDLP have to state its support for tbe onion indefioetety, with its members swearing an ap- propriate oath of office, as the price for any share of power. Both parties will be reluctant bedfellows, driven on only by mutual detestation of the vio- lence: The SDLP, under whatever name, has usually looked to Dublin for inspiration. The Cos- grave government has already made clear its support for a shared-power administration. It has been seeking British assur- ances that Britain will move to- wards all-Irish co-operation in parallel with restoration of the northern government Although security win remain with Westminster rather than the new assembly, Dublin con- tinues to worry about the re- form of police, still distrusted in some areas by the Roman Catholic minority. The wrecking power of Mr. Paisely and Mr. Craig with im- pressive power bases cannot be overlooked. Mr. Craig said of the new assembly, "We will make it a laughing stock. It win be brought to its knees." That might be the wish of less than a third of the new elected members and their constitu- ents. Faced with tan alternative of violence tbe wreckers, Mr. Whitelaw hopes, can be made to think first The election showed first, decisive rejection of violence candidates, and second, overwhelming support for new government by consent over reduced jurisdictions which themselves are open to negotiation. After more than a year with- out provincial government, el- ected lepitisentauves will sit around a table with Mr. White- law. It will be his aim to move them into the Stormont legisla- tive building, with a difference. Instead of one phalanx of Un- ionists facing directly a small band of hostile opponents a more balanced arrangement is contemplated. The parties, if they can to convinced to sit at all, are likely to sit in a circu- lar form, as toe Manitoba labtre sits, around tbe cham- ber. blem, Trudeau first asked for a study of all forms of energy way back in 1970. Joe Greene's ill health when he was energy minister slowed the project, and Macdonald took over the department in January 1972 with orders to get moving. A team of officials from the department, the National En- ergy Board, Atomic Energy of Canada and other agencies compiled the information and analysis into two formidable volumes: 286 pages of report backed by 353 pages of appen- dices. It's a cool document because it offers analysis rather than recommendat ions. Officials concede that their studies are bound to include value judg- ments, but they have tried to be unbiased and neutral when dis- cussing options open to Canada. When the cabinet got a draft of the document and thought that it seemed to put the argu- ments in favor of a national petroleum corporation to com- pete with the foreign owned giants more strongly than the arguments against, Macdonald was told to water it down so that bias would not be evi- dent. That didn't mean tbe gov- ernment was against the idea of a publicly owned corpora- tion, but only that it isn't yet ready to make up its mind, and sees no reason to. Even if the cabinet did not feel. it had time in hand, it would have to try to make some, because it simply does not have the power to make na- tional energy policy on its own initiative. Much of tbe energy industry is under provincial control. Alberta, for example, effectively controls the price of natural gas produced within its own borders, and provincially owned utilities control most of the electric power in Canada. This is why Macdonald will make a cross-country tour to find out what the provinces think of his white paper analy- sis of tbe issues and how they want to proceed to UK business of making firm policy deci- sions. ProbaWy there win be a series of federal' provincial conferences starting In the fall to deal with different sectors of the energy problem. All the provinces are interest- ed in oil, although for differ- ent reasons. The West produces it; Ontario consumes it: Que- bec imparts it from abroad to refine; the Atlantic provinces are hoping to find it off their coasts, and, meantime, to de- velop a refinery industry importing crude and selling products to the energy starved U.S. market. Reconciling all the competing interests wffi re- quire the skiU and patience of a diplomat not qualities for which "Thumper" Macdonald is renowned. Natural gas is of concern mainly to tie West where it is produced and to Ontario and Quebec where it is consumed. They win probably have a sep- arate conference with Ottawa. Encouraged by Ottawa, the provinces have to decide how far they want to go in co-ordin- ating their hydro commissions to form a national grid. About the only area in which Ottawa can move on its own is in dealing with uranium, a federal jurisdiction. Macdonald hopes to nave legislation before Parliament in the fall ensuring that it is developed under Cana- dian rather than foriegn con- trol. But it wiU be next year at the earliest before Ottawa and the provinces are ready to make other policy decisions which can add up to a National Energy Policy. That's assuming that the pro- cess of participation, consulta- tion and policy development goes smoothly. But it seldom does. Time after time in the last few years, tbe Trudeau government has produced white papers for public discussion, only to see them overtaken by events, so that the cabinet is finally forced to rush-forward with hasty and ill-prepared leg- islation. In this case, it is far from certain that the minority govern- ment win even be around next year to begin to act upon the studies. So Canada is still a long way from deciding upon a na- tional policy. But as tbe Bri- tish industrialist told Macdon- ald, it wifl probably pay us in the long run to sit back, study our cards and play them slowly as tbe growing worid demand forces up tbe value of oar re- serves. The Lethbridge Herald _____ 9M Ttfa St S., LefflbriOge, AOerla LETHBRIDGE HERALD CO. LTD., Proprietors and Pa Pnbftsbed 1905-1951, by Hon. W. A. BUCHANAN am Hwwrtnon MO. (012 Pim ma the Caradim AvocMIDoR 9M AvCW ftwfMv cff ClrctfUDflnB CLEO W FuMWW THOMAS N. flfVMm. DON PtLLfNO WILLIAM HAT Anmwv _ MOT f. MILES OOUW.M JC. 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