Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - June 4, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta
LETHBRIDGE Toward rehabilitation The scheme, recently announced by Solicitor-General Warren Allmand, to put prisoners at federal penitentiaries in everyday working situations should have value if it can be brought off. It is at least an indication of the serious effort being made to change the system that tends to keep offenders continually returning to prison. No doubt the major problem with the plan will be in providing real jobs at which the men can work. Penitentiaries are frequently located in communities where there are few employment opportunities; sometimes, in fact, the suspicion is strong that the penitentiaries are so situated to provide employment for those on the outside. If the intention is to establish penitentiary industries there may be objections from those with whom they might be in competition and from workmen who might see their jobs threatened. Nevertheless, is is to be hoped that every effort will be made to implement the plan. To habituate a man to the routines and responsibilities of holding a job would surely offer more likelihood of him getting re-established on the outside than a life of idleness. Also, returning to society with a bank account earned while serving a sentence should provide some feeling of security and self-regard which is now such a notable lack in the lives of most prisoners when they are released. Optimism about this plan providing the whole answer to recidivism, of course needs to be tempered. The psychological quirks, the addiction to alcohol, the associations already made, the negativism too often encountered in the community all conspire to work against rehabilitation. It will be worth remembering this when the new scheme is being evaluated and perhaps doesn't seem to be a smashing success. Public business The board of governors of the University of Lethbridge is reported to be considering opening its meeting to the public. It is to be hoped that such action will be taken. As a general rule all public business should be conducted in public. The board spends large sums of public money and its operations are very much of public concern. Of course certain items of business must sometimes be considered tentatively and initially in confidence. Personalities may be affected, or public moneys risked, if the board had no privacy whatever. The only point in doubt is the motivation and intent of the board. If it abuses the measure of privacy properly retained, if it transfers "to committee" or otherwise to secret disposition business that ought to be publicly handled, then the display of public meetings will be a deception. There is no indication that that will be done, but it will be a constant temptation that the board must carefully watch for and firmly resist. No little orphan By Jeanne Beaty, Herald staff writer Some apparent inconsistencies are turning up in the area of oil development and production which need more attention than they are getting. The oil industry has the reputation of being high-risk and capital intensive. It is on this basis that it is justifying the highest profits in recent history. At the same time, at least in this province, it is also seeking so many safeguards that it is fair to wonder whether it deserves the occasional extreme profits of high risk industry. An example of this is the legislation now under consideration in Edmonton to allow an oil sands consortium to negotiate labor contracts covering the entire construction period of the plant, so that work will not be delayed by strikes This is the kind of safeguard which would be welcomed by any contractor anywhere. And what small businessman wouldn't like the assurance that there would be no mail strikes to disrupt his business for five years? What consumer, burdened with high food prices, wouldn't like the assurance that there would be no strikes in the meat-packing industry, or. indeed, on the farm, whenever a decline in food prices is imminent? This particular bit of legislation, following upon legislation establishing a northern czar to expedite development of services in the oil sands, area, is being rushed through the legislature in a haste which must be precipitated by warnings that Canada will be temporarily short of oil by the 1980s at present rates of consumption and export. But if it is true that an oil shortage looms in the not-too-distant future, with the corollary of higher prices which shortages always bring, why then is it necessary to consider returning some of the province's million oil bonanza to the oil companies to generate exploration within the province? Shouldn't the demand, in this case, be enough stimulation for the industry? In the third place, there is the old observable inconsistency between the oil industry's frequently stated antipathy to governmental controls and the ease with which it accepts certain kinds. Regulations at the marketing end are anathema, as are environmental controls, but regulations which facilitate production, and usually at a cost to someone else, are eagerly awaited as they come from the legislative mill. The present struggle in Canada between provincial and federal authorities for political as well as economic benefits from oil production sets a scene of uncertainty in which it seems relatively easy for a multinational, billionaire oil company to masquerade as an orphan, eking sympathetic concessions with every performance. In the deplorable absence of any clear co- operation between the two levels of government, one can only speculate as to who is taking advantage of whom in the tripartite relationship. But it does seem necessary to remind Alberta MLAs at this time that that's not Little Orphan Annie up there in the oil sands crying for help. That's Daddy Oilbucks. ERIC NICOL TV commercials awards Post-TV season awards for commercials unusually devoid of merit: The Lady Bleah Trophy goes to the commercial, aired to the point of dementia during the Stanley Cup playoffs, for "the paint of many applications." If there is one thing I don't need, it is paint that requires many applications. What I'm looking for, insofar as my eyes are open at all. is a paint of one application. Better yet. a paint that finds its way onto the house by osmosis. What the paint commercial was trying to say was that the product was a paint of many uses. Instead it showcased the principle of contemporary jargon: Never use a word of two syllables if four will do. The Gordon Sinclair Award for sincerity carried beyond the bounds of good taste is won. in a close contest, by the oil company whose television commercials have real service station operators testifying that they eive the customer a fair deal. The sparkling interview goes something like this: Q You really do give the customer a square A Uh. sure, we give the customer a square deal You gotta give the customer a square deal. That's what the customer expects, and. ahem, excuse me. that's what we give him. Q A square deal. A Where'' Q Here You give the customer a square deal A absolutely If the customer comes back, a square deal is what you gotta give him (Etc Runner-up in this category the real person who confesses honestly and without script. that he buys a certain brand of deodorant because he likes the name. The 0 Hamlet, Speak No More! Award for the most abased talent seen in a TV commercial: Sir Laurence Olivier, flogging a camera that produces the photo almost as quickly as a viewer can frown up. Because ot the social and dramatic prestige involved in this commercial, we brace ourselves for the 1974-75 TV program that pauses for. the appearance by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. dei gratia regina. holding a can of liquid wax and saying: "My husband and I have found that when one lives in a home as large as Buckingham Palace one does have a problem keeping the floors clean and bright. The Dental Plaque for Unfulfilled Promise: goes to the pro baseball player who tells us that off the field he lets his men's cologne do the talking for him. Hopefully next year viewers will hear from the cologne: "Hi. My name is Beast, and I owe a lot to problem perspiration. For years people have been putting sweat down. Personally, I have no trouble relating to underarm wetness. In my opinion, God must love the pores He made so many of them." Darling, We Are Growing Older D- Cup goes to the Jane Russell commercial hustling a girdle for the woman with a mature figure. Honorary mention: The Barely Living Bra. To summarize the 1973-74 season: TV commercials have once again proved that they draw on the world's largest known reserves of ennui. We look forward to their summer replacement: black fly, and the paid political broadcast. Henry Hercules and hats By C. L. Sulzberger, New York Times commentator PARIS If Henry Kissinger hadn't already received the Nobel Peace Prize (or its better half) he would merit it this year as a result of his remarkable Middle East negotiations. In fact, there isn't any regulation governing that award which should prevent it going twice to the same man if he twice makes peace. Of course, those who have an automatic tic (cq) against anything Kissinger does are probably going to say snide things about him the moment shooting pops off again in the general region of Israel. After all, despite what he did to extricate us from Vietnam, he is still sniped at whenever fresh blood spatters that brutal land. The fact is that perfect peace is almost a forgotten concept nowadays except among friendly nations. Those who detest each other show it by violence, even without formal war. And only disengagement not peace has been achieved between Israel and Syria. All one has to do is recall the endless roster of other tense frontiers. What Kissinger has done, however, is to reduce the level of fighting in Southeast Asia and Southwest Asia to such a degree that neither area now presents the threat of major world war. Since Israel's creation in 1948 there have been four formal wars in the general area of Palestine from which the Jewish state was carved. Moreover, in between these formal wars, there has been sporadic violence that often threatened to touch off open conflict. For a long time Kissinger refrained from active participation in United States efforts to tranquilize the situation, preferring (as a White House adviser) to leave the job to Secretary of State William Rogers because he felt his own Jewish origin might be considered prejudicial by certain Arab leaders. However, Rogers never made much headway in the search for compromise. Kissinger therefore moved actively into behind the scene peacemaking even before he succeeded Rogers as secretary. Right afterwards jcame the Yom Kippur War of last October with its curious result: reassurance to Arab confidence and, at the same time, the verge of an Israeli strategic victory. The first significant Kissinger success was arrangement of a disengagement formula between Egypt and Israel. This achievement facilitated development of a new friendship between Cairo and Washington, prying Egypt loose" from its previous dependence on Moscow. Thus, as a spin-off from an initial Palestine truce came a weakening of Russia's strategic position in the Mediterranean. But, while Egyptian President Anwar El-Sadat had always been instinctively pro American and suspicious of communism, no such a priori sentiment existed in the Syrian government which relies unabashedly on Russia for military and diplomatic aid and is traditionally considered a "radical" Arab land. It had signed no compact with the Israelis since 1949 when armistice ended the first Palestine war. I wrote on May 2, after a long conversation in Damascus with President Assad: "many miracles have been reported in this part of the world but I somehow doubt if Henry Kissinger, described as a miracle maker by his new friend Anwar El-Sadat, president of Egypt, is going to pull one out of his hat when he comes here on his new tour of the Bible lands. To begin with, he doesn't wear a hat." Well, I am glad to say I was wrong. By brilliance, stubbornness and sheer hard work, by assembling every pressure available through the U.S. and. it would seem, the U.S.S.R., Kissinger achieved the unachievable. A dramatic first step toward possible permanent solution was signed Friday in Geneva. Like Hercules with the many headed hydra, Kissinger lopped off every new fire spitting head of trouble as it grew on the Middle Eastern war serpent. Thus Henry Hercules astonishingly managed to achieve the unexpected miracle and I for one am ready not only to buy him the hat he doesn't seem to possess but also to eat my own. Preachers have political biases, too By Carl T. Rowan, syndicated commentator WASHINGTON Evangelist Billy Graham says he finally has read the transcripts of President Nixon's Watergate conversations and finds them "profoundly disturbing and disappointing." Well, it's about time Graham spoke out even if he did soften his criticism of his friend, Richard Nixon, with such evasions as a call for "compassion for the wrongdoer" and an assertion that "it would be nothing less then hypocrisy to call for a moral housecleaning at the White House unless we are willing to do the same at your house and my house." One is left to wonder if Graham is confessing that the moral tone in his house is similar to that revealed in the Watergate transcripts, or if he is just insinuating that everybody else's house is i moral pigsty. I mention Billy Graham today because an incredible number of readers have telephoned my house, daytime and nighttime, to ask indignantly about the shattering silence "of all those preachers who held services in the White House." Callers professed to be even more shocked by Graham's silence than by the outspoken defence of Mr. Nixon's profanity and his actions by the Jesuit priest. Father John J. McLaughlin, who is on the White House payroll. What some callers did not want to face up to is that ministers are people, too creatures of political and ideological biases, victims of flattery by a president, vulnerable to opportunism. Billy Graham has been around long enough to know that a lot of politicians with little or no formal religion suddenly become devout churchgoers when they reach the White House, or even think it is within their grasp. Don't tell me for a moment that Graham didn't know that those White House church services were a phony show of alleged piety. Not only Graham but a lot of other preachers must have sensed that they were being used politically, just as Father McLaughlin has been used. It is patently obvious that Father McLaughlin wants to be used. He is an ideologue who shares Richard Nixon's political philosophy (whatever that Father Mclaughlin's political passions are such that it becomes easy for him to dismiss the president's swearing as "therapy" even though most other clergymen in the land might see it as taking the name of the Lord in vain. It is not so patently obvious, but one has to assume that Billy Graham and some of the other preachers were happy to be "used" by Mr. Nixon. After all. publicity and prestige are essential to successful evangelism, and how could it hurt to be known as the White House's preacher? The problem is that journ- alists who get too cozy with presidents and other top public officials often find themselves compromised unable to fulfill their most vital function of keeping government reasonably honest, a function that often requires revealing and saying things that hurt. Preachers who get too cozy with ruling politicians find themselves compromised unable or unwilling to deliver the harsh moral judgments that help to keep government within the pale of decency. Evangelist Graham hastened to mute his wishy washy criticism of the moral cesspool revealed in those Watergate transcripts with a declaration that Mr. Nixon remains "my friend, and I have no intention of forsaking him now.n The crux of it all is that we can never be sure which o Billy Graham's words flow out of a commitment to God, and which ones are inspired by a friendship for Richard Nixon. It is too much ever to expect preachers to be totally apolitical, to be uninvolved in matters of ideology. But it would serve both the cause of religion and the cause of politics if ministers observed more scrupulously the principles of separation of church and state. Let our presidents display their piety by going to a church instead of pretending to bring church to the White House. That way our most prominent ministers might remain just aloof enough, uncompromised enough, to leave no doubt as for whom they speak when great moral issues confront the nation. Letters Education articles "Earl E. Bloomer" is aptly named. He makes them early and continues to do so! Mr. Grant's article on objective based education was both topical and a fair assessment of the situation. He shows far better understanding of his topic than Mr. Bloomer, and stirred up only that which needs bringing to the public's attention. Teachers in Lethbridge are being forced to accept something sight unseen. There was little or no prior consultation, it was presented as a fait accompli, and it is a revolutionary fad, one which has largely been rejected by education authorities across North America, including Alberta. Why does Mr. Bloomer not ask for the results of a pilot project, carried out in Lethbridge at enormous public expense, which was such a disasterous failure the school board is probably afraid to make the results, and particularly the cost, known? Agreed, teachers having been practising QBE for years, but as Mr. Bloomer correctly points out, the amount of time and work involved, which will run into hundreds of hours (outside school of course) has already clearly been demonstrated to be of limited value. The attack on Mr. Grant's sources of information is unwarranted. He is far better informed in this regard than Mr. Bloomer. His information is derived directly from teachers, and from meetings of concerned teachers which he took the trouble to attend and get the facts first hand. These meetings, called by concerned teachers and administrators, called for the suspension of the proposed program until such time as the teachers who would have to implement it were given a chance to discuss it. The fears are those of a substantial number of teachers, not Mr. Grant. While the quality of education may not decline, it seems abundantly clear that it will not improve either. Its only practical function is to increase the already heavy teacher load. If the writer had seen OBE programs at work, had participated in setting up such a program, and particularly had tried to evaluate one, he might think twice. Perhaps he will if he has a child bringing home a 15-page report card, just for language arts, that requires a Ph. D to interpret. Teachers do say the things Mr. Grant attributes to them. It is nonsense to suggest that the only way to see if something works is to try it. Carry that thinking to its logical conclusion and Mr. Bloomer might like to practice with a loaded revolver at his head, it has a good chance of working, and we could clearly evaluate the results. Mr. Grant, more than all his predecessors at the education desk, has always attempted to get at the facts from the most direct sources. He has done much already to bring to light some of the short sighted idiosyncrasies of the educational system. I trust Mr. Bloomer's contribution will be as valuable. MAGISTER Foremost Loving atmosphere The Raymond Home has been the focus of much attention in the last few months and soon the premier himself plans to visit this institution. Maybe there is a timeliness about this concern, for what I thought was a "forgotten haven of rest." For the past three years I have been visiting the home to conduct worship services with the ladies of the home (sure wish we had some visitors at that time) and I must confess that from my observation, the care, love and concern shown for those patients has warmed my heart on many occasions. The patience and dedication of the staff can hardly be surpassed. The matron, Miss Alice Birt, spends long hours far beyond the call of duty in that home and is on call for love duty anytime and to guarantee this, she chose to live right across from the home. The ladies are part of her family and the love is reciprocal. Occasionally I conduct the funerals of patients who have lived at Raymond Home for as much as 35 to 40 years. Many of them have never had a visitor for years, including their own sons and daughters or husbands. The staff becomes their family, it is home. Is it any wonder therefore that many of them have no desire to leave who wants to run from love and care and concern especially when they are forgotten by their own loved ones. One wonders whether relatives of the residents of Raymond Home should be encouraged to show a little more concern for the ones they have "left behind." The grounds and buildings and facilities have been very well cared for and I almost envy their beautiful garden and lawn and the spotless cleanliness of an aging building. In looking for thorns let us also pause to look at the roses. I say thank God for the Raymond Home and hats off to Alice Birt and her dedicated staff. Keep it up gals you are with it! ALBERT BALDEO Coaldale Mystery solved The Canadian Press Clipping Service picked up a reprint of an editorial (Herald, Feb. 6) from the Claresholm Local Press, dated April llth, titled "The great corn syrup mystery." Since we are the only Canadian manufacturer of Lily White Corn Syrup, I felt it necessary to attempt to cast some light on one of the "world's unsolved mysteries." Gosh. I wish I could build this into a great story with international implications and a far reaching conspiracy to deprive the Canadian consumer of this Christmas gumdrop ingredient until the price could hit fantastic proportions but I can't. The answer is simple. We had a four month strike at our plant in Cardinal. Ontario late last year. We couldn't manufacture Lily White. Knowing gumdrop addicts bought up the inventory in the stores and warehouses and we literally went out of business with this product We settled the strike but were frustrated in being able to obtain packing supplies glass, caps, labels and shipping containers. When we solved the supply problem, we couldn't rebuild the inventory fast enough, and it has taken several months to get the product back into the grocery stores throughout Canada. But we are now back in business. One of the editorial certainties is wrong. When Lily White reappeared on the grocery shelves the price wasn't doubled. Our wholesale price is up 16 per cent over a year ago not bad when you consider that the corn cost per bushel has doubled. So the mystery is solved and the future home production of gumdrops is protected one of the great values still remaining in our inflationary economy. Lily White Corn Syrup won't run automobiles but it is a great source of energy for humans. D. H. DAVIS. Vice-Presidenl, Consumer Products Division The Canada Starch Co. Ltd. Montreal The Lethbridge Herald 504 SI S Lethbrtdge. Alberta IETMBR1DGE HERALD CO. ITO Proprietors and Publishers Second Class Mail Registration No 0012 dEO MOWERS. Editor and Publisher DON M PULING Managing Editor DONALD R DDRAM General Manager ROY f MILES Advertising Manager DOUGLAS K WALKER Editorial Page Editor ROBERT M FENTON Manager KENNETH E 8ARNETT Business Manager HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"