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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - June 21, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta 4 LETHBRIDGE HERALD Friday, June 21, 19.4 The Eastern and Western Ontario voter By Peter Regenstreif, public opinion expert The friendly persuasion It now appears that Henry Kissinger did not have a magic formula for bring- ing peace to the Middle East. He just had a bagful of goodies to distribute judiciously to provide the necessary per- suasion. In the case of Egypt it was the offer of nuclear technology. There is nothing inherently wrong with this. After all, Canada is attempting to sell nuclear reactors, although for economic, not political, reasons. However, two things have added to the unease with which the world has greeted the news of nuclear assistance to Egypt. The first and obvious one is India's detonating of a nuclear explosion. This was a deplorable bit of timing, from Kissinger's point of view, for the world- wide furor aroused by India's action and the soul searching which has gone on in Canada as a result have simply emphasized that nuclear energy is poten- tially violent and whether it is used for peace or war depends only on the good judgment of national leaders. The American secretary of state's quoted remarks about Canada's culpability in the Indian explosion are simply the gift of hindsight, nothing more. Whether the safeguards with which the U.S. intends to surround the transfer of technology to Egypt are any more successful remains to be seen. The second and less obvious factor which adds to the unease arises from the question of whether Egypt really needs nuclear power, or whether the purpose would be political or military. In recent years there has been less preoccupation with the horrors of nuclear destruction and more attention to the horrors of over population and starvation on a world scale. It has been commonly assumed, if only because any other assumption would make a normal daily existence impossible, that the countries possessing nuclear weapons would have the good sense not to use them. With the proliferation of nuclear technology speeded up by the energy crisis and with almost daily examples of leaders who are willing to sacrifice everything for a cause, that rationaliza- tion is becoming less and less tenable. The day is rapidly approaching high noon it dawned when Enrico Fermi first split an atom when common sense must require a strict, world wide agreement on the permissible uses of nuclear energy and the acceptance of un- iversal responsibility for its en- forcement. Different attitude Some further observations on the meat packers' strike 1. The companies are hurting, but not critically. The employees are hurting, but again they're getting by. The con- sumers haven't yet gone hungry. But what about the The cattle feeders, reeling from other assaults on their industry, are taking this additional blow in their stride. But as The Herald reported Wednesday, the hog men are in serious trouble. When a hog is ready for market, the price starts going down the day after he reaches his peak, and each additional day of delay means a further squeeze or. his value. And of course more feed has to be put into him, increasing the cost. So the longer the plants are closed, the bigger the financial blow to the hog producers. This strike could ruin many of them. 2. The union argues that this is a lockout, not a strike, and insinuates that the men would like to work but are prevented from doing so. That is non- sense. They are not working because they were pulling a "slowdown" and because they are holding a moment's notice strike threat over the plants. 3. The main support for the strike comes from Alberta. The union members elsewhere in Canada are much more ready to settle. Why should this be? What is different in Alberta? So far there has been no explanation for the different at- titude here. THE CASSEROLE Across the line, the shortage of pennies is becoming so acute that some businessmen are petitioning Washington for permission to use paper script instead of pennies. That should work well enough in the supermarket, but won't it be awkward to stuff into a park- ing meter? Canada is going to give the U.N. World Food Program an extra over the next three years to help drought-stricken countries in Africa. That's about a month, which shouldn't exactly break a treasury that will be collecting a windfall per month from the S5.20 a barrel export tax on oil. Cairo recently announced that Arab defence and foreign ministers have un- animously approved the establishment of their own arms industry. No matter how much one may favor cutting out the middleman, somehow this doesn't sound like good news. This shortage dodge, that forces up the price of everything else, doesn't seem to work with money. For most people there's always a shortage of cash, but instead of go- ing up in value, their dollars keep going down. If there's one thing certain about the up- coming federal election, it's that Ontario voters will hear over and over again from Liberal campaigners how Conservative Alberta gladly ships its oil to the U.S.. but balks at selling it to Ontario. It's just a thought, but could it be that a certain promi- nent Albertan swung just a wee bit hastily at a Trudeau curve ball? ERIC NICOL Loving humanity The election seems to be swinging towards Trudeau. Not Pierre Margaret. Agreement is general, that the Liberal leader's campaign has benefitted enormously from the presence of his attractive wife. Charisma comes but once a year, but a good looking woman is steady. The Trudeau bandwagon was given a particularly useful boost when Mrs. T. told a West Vancouver meeting that her husband was "a very loving human being" who is "modest and very, very kind." While the people of Canada might have preferred to hear something warm and reassuring about the price of pork chops, she undoubtedly modified our impression of Pierre as the arrogant intellectual. The other contesting parties have been quick to make the point that their leaders too are pussycats. Miss Arcadia Kelp, of Truro N.S.. who described herself as Robert Stanfield's first girlfriend. 1old a small election audience thai 'Bobby is really affectionate when you get to know him So far nobody has got 1o know him. Even some of the immediate family has trouble hacking their way through the bushy ?yebrow5. to find the soft spot in his head An NDP campaign manager declared: 'David Ixrwis is the most loving candidate in this election You only need to look into those 'wrnkly eyes to sec that he everybody. ?xcept those who make more than twenty thousand a year and are part of management, for his being modest, the record shows that nobody has more to be modest about than David Ivewis Real Caouelte was introduced to a Social" "Tredil coffee party, by a customer who once xnigbt a used car from him, as "ires aimablc, a man ready to take all the love >roduced an Canada and redistribute it so that this country will never again be dependent on being loved by a foreign power, except Quebec." Despite these late rallies of the other leaders as fun to cuddle up to. Pierre Trudeau holds a clear lead in what Margaret calls his "love for humanity." What the voters must decide is: Can we afford so much love in a country that is short of oil? To what extent is love for humanity inflationary? Most economists agree that government spending on welfare programs contributes heavily to inflation. Steeped in the milk of human kindness, the value of the dollar shrinks. It is exceedingly difficult for a very loving human being like Trudeau to strike a baiance between corporate love, unionized love, self- employed Jove, fixed-income love and the love for widows and old-age pensioners. There is also the problem of co-ordinating federal 3ove with Jove at the provincial and municipal levels, not to mention love in unorganized areas. Unless you have a mayor who hates people, your region can be up 1o its navel in maple syrup. Attempts lo nationalize Jove by the Labor Party in Britain and, more ardently, by the Soviet not been altogether successful. There is considerable evidence that it is less taxing for a people if the leader of the government leaves loving to private enterprise and merely develops a slight crush on humanity. Regardless of the economic consequences of loving humanity not wisely but too well. the trait is one that people will admire When it is vouched for by 1hc party loader's wife, who is prolly lovable herself, the boautifjil- guy image can make Jhe difference in an otherwise close election. Peg one for Meg. LONDON. Ont. Despite public concern about inflation, interviews with voters in Western Ontario indicate the Liberals are regaining strength in this area. Three days of interviews last week found many people who feel Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau is the best man to lead the country. Having rebuked him and his government 19 months ago, many voters are now prepared to keep him in office in the July 8 federal election. The interviews also suggest that opposition to price and income controls the key Conservative plank for dealing with inflation is significantly higher here than in Western Canada or Toronto and this is contributing to the Liberal upsurge. The Liberals won only 10 of the 33 seats in the area from Metro Toronto to Windsor in the last election, down 12 from the 22 they captured in 1968. The Conservatives won 21. an increase of 11. The NDP won two seats in 1972, up from one. Aline Radek, 51, the wife of a television service repairman living on Regent Drive in St. Catharines, voted Conservative in 1972 but now intends to return to the Liberals. She explained: "Last time it was a straight vote against Mr. Trudeau for the unemployment business and because I thought he had too much power. I guess a lot felt like me. We sure took him down a bit. But I'm voting Liberal this time because I feel Trudeau is the best leader. If the Conservatives had a new leader, they'd go right in." Several doors down the street, Ron Labatte, 41, an insurance agent, is also switching back after voting Conservative last time: "Trudeau's had a humbling experience. He's had to eat crow. But he did admirably well with the minority government. I think that if given a majority, he would do the most for the country." But these patterns are not uniform throughout the region. Local factors, for example the appeal of an individual candidate or whether the riding is urban or rural in character, are also important. While 60 per cent of those interviewed in nine ridings 44 out of 73 said inflation was the major problem facing the country, they came down strongly against Conservative Leader Robert Stanfield's price and income controls. Half were totally against the proposal while only one in five endorsed it. Another three in 10 were either not sure or gave highly qualified support. In interviews in farm areas, opposition to controls was almost total. Many longtime Con- servatives are so concerned about controls that they are drawing back from their traditional allegiance: A 65-year-old wife of a retired insurance clerk in Kitchener was undecided about voting Conservative this time because, she said, "I haven't looked into these price controls. I don't want to go into it blindly." About one person in five is "That's not the sale price Mr. Fell, that's the mortgage loan rate." Many-splattered Arab dream By C. L. Sulzberger, New York Times commentator President Nixon's Middle Eastern tour which has already underscored dramatic shifts in U.S. policy, brings for the first time the actual realization that the flickering idea of Arab unity is of inescapable importance to the United States. What will now have to be demonstrated is whether the friendship sealed by the presidential journey can truly be achieved without sacrific- ing traditional American links to Israel: also whether, as a result of the new diplomatic balance, real peace can be achieved in the blood-soaked Palestine region. The dream of unity is an im- mense force among the Arabs but has long been marred by quarrels and bickering. Its vision, nevertheless, was well- stated by Michel Aflaq of the Syrian Baath Party as "a tendency tovard univer- saiism. People of the same race, the same language, the same religion, the same culture, the same history, the same past and the same problems want to unite and strive toward a better future." But inherent paradoxes lie like reefs hidden beneath the surface of these words. Aflaq. although talking of "the same religion" for the Arabs (meaning Islam} is himself a Christian The "same history" and "the same past" are certainly not shared by Egypt (five millennia old at the time of the Arab con- quest i. Morocco. Jordan