Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - March 12, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 - THl IETHBRIDGE HERALD - Frldoy, March ^2, 1971 EDITORIALS Benson plays cat and mouse Canada's tax system is out of date. That is generally agreed. The Carter commission was set up to study tax reform. It duly reported to the government, with recommendations. Based substantially pn the Carter recommendations, the government then issued its famous White Paper which proposed major changes and innovations and (ill-advisedly) spelled out far too many precise figures and formulae. What is a White Paper? In this case it seemed to represent tentative government thinking, and it was obviously projected for benefit of public discussion. The inference was that subsequent legislation would probably be based on the White Paper as amended by legitimate and relevant public consensus. So the public, invited by the government to study and debate the White Paper, did so with a vengeance. Few public documents in recent Canadian history have been so hotly analysed and criticized. Every major national body has had a good deal to say about it. Committees of both the House of Commons and the Senate have gone over it thoroughly, and recommended numerous changes, some of them fundamental. The astonishing feature of the controversy was its one-sidedness. The government has been ominously silent. By not answering the critics, by not defending its White Paper, it has lost the battle of public opinion by default. Even people who stood to benefit from the changes have joined in condemning it, because its iniquity was so unanimously being proclaimed. Time and again The Herald begged Mr. Benson either to defend his document or to withdraw it, either to answer its critics or to admit they were right. On a few occasions he said this or that part would be changed, but mostly he seemed to be sitting back enjoying the public's frenzy and frustration. And the frantic protestations have continued, to this day. Then early this week Mr. Benson said in a speech - well, what did he say? The interpretation placed on it was that the White Paper would be dropped. It was now history. And this was seized on by a nervous nation as major news. The collective sigh of relief across Canada was like thunder. Perhaps people weren't thinking too clearly, but it seemed that Mr. Benson had finally levelled with them. He had finally got their message. The next day, Wednesday, their apprehension and irritation were restored, stronger than ever. Mr. Benson expressed astonishment at the interpretation placed on his Kingston speech. All he had said was that the White Paper would not be legislated, and he had said this "a hundred" times before! Of course he had. But what does he mean? He seems to mean that the bill, when it comes down next month, will be separately written; nothing more. Every item in the White Paper could be legislated without legislating the White Paper. So the great debate has sunk to a quibble over words. Mr. Benson has said nothing. He continues to play cat and mouse with the people. The bill, when it comes down, could be a good one. But the government's handling of the public discussion, particularly including the events this week, is a mockery of participatory democracy. U.S. to pressure Israel Israel's continued refusal to withdraw from Egypt's Sinai Peninsula has pushed the United States into the position where it is almost certain to join the Soviet Union in putting pressure on Israeli Prime Minister Golda Meir to do so. This means that, for the first time since the six day war of 1967, U.S. and Soviet delegates at the United Nations may unite in a major move aimed at Israel. Mr. Nixon, in his State of the World address recently, demanded that Israel withdraw immediately from land captured in the 1967 war and hinted if this request was once again denied there would be a de-escalation of aid to Jerusalem. Having come out with such broad statements it will now be difficult for him to remain an impartial middleman if the shooting resumes again. Behind Mr. Nixon's outspoken decision lies a contradiction between Israel's and Washington's analysis of the fast-moving Middle East. Mrs. Meir's cabinet believes that the U.S. holds the whip hand over the Soviet Union in a determined competition for dominance after a Mideast settlement. To the Israelis the Egyptian agreement to recognize the existence of Israel is a direct result of a Soviet reluctance to risk a war along the Suez Canal, for the U.S. has indicated it would certainly intervene if this happened. Thus deprived of Soviet backing, the Egyptians are now said by Israelis to have been forced to sue for peace. They believe the U.S., allied with Israel, stands higher in prestige than at any time since the 1967 war. This leads Israel to conclude that Mr. Nixon should exploit his prestige by supporting Israel's position. But Mr. Nixon has indicated they do not share Israel's views mainly because they regard Cairo's desire for settlement as the first serious opportunity since the six-day war to halt rapidly increasing Soviet influence among the Arabs. Minor prophet By Margaret Luckhurst JIM WILSON asked me the. other day if I believed in "psycMsm." After he'd carefully defined the tongue-twister for me I had to admit that yes, I did believe in supernatural forces to a degree. I confessed that when I receive the Herald, the first thing I do is turn to my horoscope to see what dire predictions it has in store for me on the morrow, then having studied that carefully I broaden my mind further by turning to Ann Landers. After reading me a lecture on my shallow intellectualism, Jim explained that it wasn't that type of psychdsm be meant, but rather the big stuff; scarey transcendentalism, and metaphsysics, like Rosemary's Baby. The present popularity of extra-sensory perception, fortune telling, telepathy and other forms of psychic phenomena, is difficult to understand. Psychologists say it is an escape from the harsh reality of a troubled, friendless world, and they point out that the adored Beatles gave occultism a lot of support in their popular song Aquarius. This song told us, in no uncertain terms that we are living in the age of Aquarius, a heavenly constellation supposed to represent a man dumping a jug of something out on top of us. What this astronomical body has to do with our era of slavish devotion to things supernatural escapes me, but it must be very significant to psychismites. The funny thing is, I actually should be endowed with some small measure of supernatural powers. Traditionally, the 7th child of a 7th child, (according to Scottish folklore), is supposed to be brimming over with second sight - the ability to see in the mind's eye, events which have happened or which are about to happen. Although I fit the requirements quite satisfactorily, I regret to say I've never been able to boast of any second sight achievements. As a matter of fact, I don't even have a respectable amount of reliable female intuition. If I have a "feeling" I am going to get a letter this week ten chances to one I won't receive one for a month. If I wake up with a little feminine idea that something nice is going to happen today, before you can say spook I'll put salt instead of sugar in my coffee, arrive at work with odd shoes on and spend the day trying to pick fights with my cohorts. But my Scottish relatives will not accept a total failure in their clan, and in spite of my protests to the contrary, see in me a genuine, plaid edition of Jeanne Dixon, and Nostradamus combined. Unfortunately, I have only myself to blame for their obstinate faith in my nonexistent mystic faculties. Years ago I agreed to pinch hit for a gypsy fortune teller who didn't show up to read cards at our community Strawberry Festival. Always ready to fill the ranks 1 quickly volunteered, got myself togged out in dangly earrings, gaudy satin blouse and lots of thick makeup. Regrettably my first client was a very pretty cousin of mine who trailed into my mystic presence surrounded by a retinue of adoring young men. Although I scarcely know one playing card . from another I made a big show of predicting a handsome stranger who would claim her hand before Christmas, but I warned her to have her appendix out before her marriage or an illness might upset their plans. Well, I hit the jackpot. A couple of months later my pretty cousin phoned me from the hospital brimming with joy and full of praise for my unique talents. She was engaged, she burbled idiotically, to the handsome young doctor who bad taken out her appendix. It had been love at first sight, (with each other, not the appendix) and could she bring her fiance up for me to card-read his future? It was this little event that convinced the family I was a chip off of old great-grandma Burns. They began looking at me strangely as if they expected me to start keening and whirl away on a broomstick. To this day they regard me as some type of minor prophet and if I so much as happen to remark that I have a "feeling" it might rain tomorrow they won't say much, but I know full well before they set out next day they'll arm themselves with rubbers and umbrellas, Fame is like that. Dave Humphreys British continue debate on arms sale 1 ONDON: Commonwealth ^ diplomats, including Canadian High Com m i s s i o n e r Charles Ritchie, turned out in force to watch the Conservative government pass up Harold Wilson's invitation to limit arms sales to South Africa. The arguments have been so thoroughly worn on both sides that Mr. Wilson's claim not to have pressed the government since November caused some double-takes. With a fine display of moral indignation, the former prime minister was' pressing now. Precisely, he invited the government "to demonstrate that this is not the thin end of the wedge by announcing that it will supply no arms to South Africa excepting those it is legally obliged to supply." Prime Minister Heath and his colleagues would have none of it, not at this stage anyway. Mr. Heath still believes Britain should be able to divorce cooperation with South Africa on the seas from the universally-hated internal apartheid of South Africa. Britain should therefore be able to supply whatever resources are needed to carry out the co-operation which went on in more restrict- ed ways with the Labor government. Like pregnancy, cooperation is either a fact or it is not. Equally - and Canada and the other potential members of the Commonwealth study-group should note this - Britain has not closed its option to limit the sales to the seven Wasp helicopters already agreed on if the government can yet be persuaded that the divorce is impossible and the co-operation just isn't worth the effort. It is still worth holding the study if only to buy a few more months time on grounds that the future is not foreseeable. Foreign Secretary Sir Alec Douglas Home, replying to Mr. Wilson, said he hoped the committee would meet: "I think it will be useful to all of us to survey the problems of security in the interests of the countries which live around the Indian Ocean. If it meets we will do our best to make a constructive contribution to it." At present the government is trying to be reasonable without abandoning its basic position. This, it must be admitted, does sound rather like John Diefen-baker's protestations that he was not being anti - American, only pro-Canadian. The reaction of South Africa to the helicopter sales may be very important in the end. The Vorster government has been embarrassingly friendly towards Mr. Heath. This has tended to confirm the worst fears of critics who claimed all along that it was international respectability, not a few helicopters, that the South Africans were really after. They promptly launched a crackdown on churchmen and expelled another English priest. They sould not have found better tactics had they deliberately sought to force Mr. Heath to refuse further sales. It must take considerable nerve to sit there smiling while Harold Wilson, however hypo-critical, sneers: "When he came to this House as an idealistic young Conservative did he really think he would become the hero of apartheid South Africa?" He was getting mixed up in some pretty ugly company and some pretty ugly projects. What the government is finding increasingly difficult is to project co - operation on the seas as a straight defence policy. The South African debate followed one on the whole de- fence picture which Rself was based on a new white paper. Although Mr. Ritchie was not in the gallery for the defenc* debate, that too will have more than casual interest for Ottawa. It afforded as clear a declaration as is ever likely to be presented of why the Heath government wants to co-operate with South Africa. Mr. Heath also revealed some indignation about the burden - sharing of NATO as it falls on a Britain determined to exert more global defence responsibilities. Labor critics see it as Justification for limiting defence to Europe: Particularly is this so in the Tory decision to allow the Labor policy of withdrawing British forces (2,400 army men and undisclosed numbers of airforce and na"y personnel manning various ships and aircraft), from the Persian Gulf. The white paper dealt with the Indian Ocean in these terms: "The growing Russian naval presence in this area should be regarded as a matter of concern for all neighboring countries, as well as for those countries, like Britain, who depend for the livelihood upon the trade routes which pass "A Miss Streisand to see you Letters To The Editor Problem of doctors9 high salaries is union approach For some reason, lately I find myself feeling sorry for doctors. It must be because of the difficulty of raising charges fast enough to keep up with the cost of living. In Leth-bridge apparently it is possible to obscure what I thought was common knowledge. The problem in large part, is due to too few doctors. That is because entry to the medicial union is almost perfectly controlled by union members. Flatly, the purpose of restricted entry into any union is to give to the members as much monopoly power as they can extract and through limiting supply to raise its price to what the traffic will bear. Entry is controlled at its most effective point, at the door to the medical course. There are each year many more qualified applicants to medical courses than ever are "admitted." These people are denied medical training so that the public can never hire the services of non-union doctors. Knowing the large and unsatisfied public demand in the medical market those who do not achieve entry often spin off into other trades such as osteopathy, optometry, naturopathy, chiropractic, podia try, and find themselves unjustly maligned by those who have managed to convey to the public mind that doctors are possessed of all knowledge. Short supply of medical service means a high price. When we do pay for available care it is so often of poor quality because doctors often being individually conscientious spread themselves too thinly. The result is high incomes for doctors; high as measured by the number of qualified students lined up trying to become doctors. We could measure the point at which we had reached a reasonable supply of doctors and hence reasonable incomes for them when any. intelligent student could say that the balance of required training, prestige - working condi- lons and lifetime earnings were no greater in medicine than in any other trade that he might select. For this ideal, free entry to expanded medical school facilities is required. Perhaps with increased numbers of doctors the psychic income derived from knowing that they were doing a good up job; having time to keep , with medical advances; time to spend with wife and children; and time to get an education would not find so many fifty-year-old doctors taking their own lives. Can't we do better than this? JOHN MacKENZIE Lethbridge. through the Indian Ocean, or who have other responsibilities or interests there. The decision to continue to deploy British naval forces and long range reconnaissance aircraft in the area is an important contribution to Britain's ability to maintain vigilance in the Indian Ocean." In the debate Mr. Heath presented his conception of Soviet policy as one of constant, tub-tie probing, taking advantage of revealed weaknesses' wherever possible. "The Soviets are playing cat and mouse with the U.S. now in the Caribbean. They could at any time use the same tactics to threaten traffic in the Indian Ocean. "These are facts and they cannot be wished away, because the experience is there in recent months since I became prime minister." That is just about all there is to it. It is. understood Britain is prepared to present classified information to the Commonwealth study, if and when it ever meets. But it is hardly likely to be of a nature to sway- countries which do not already accept the strategy as now revealed. Either Canada and the others will accept the case for co-operation or they will not. If they accept it they will likely argue that it should be carried out without South Africa. The strain is already evident of maintaining this global strategy while contributing more to NATO. Pressure has been mounting on European members to contribute more to the alliance since Canada began the Vastic reduction of forces in Europe. Until the other day Britain's response had been a promise to divert to NATO existing resources valued at about $42 million for ten years. But pressure from other Europeans has wrung an additional $75 million in cash. Plainly, from Mr. Heaht's reaction, this was not a happy decision. "The point I want to make to our allies is bluntly this," he said. "Our contribution to NATO as a proportion of GNP (5% per cent) is greater than that of any of the other major NATO powers. This is therefore something of which we can be proud, but it must at the same time be recognized by our allies. "When there are proposals for development in the NATO organization it is not good enough to say to Britain that, of course, you must contribute . more and more in every possible scheme, which comes forward. We must have the right to decide in which way we can best make our contribution . ." The government's analysis of British, interests had concluded that there were times and places where those interests were better served outside Europe, hence the need for defence arrangements outside the continent. "We reject the narrow regionalism as such in other spheres, because we are convinced that it runs counter to the interest and to the character of Britain." Tl.< unspoken remainder of the conclusion so far as Canada is concerned is that an outward - looking British government must be in Canada's interests. Yet Canada is the ally whose NATO reduction has further taxed British resources. Canada is the ally whose opposition to arms sales threatens to f-irther tax her resources as well as her nerves. And Canada is the ally pleading for consideration if Britain joins the Common Market. (Herald London Bureau) Warped reasoning Your warped reasoning regarding Calgary teachers' negotiations for a 6.32 per cent increase in wages illustrates clearly that you have a double standard. When postal workers received an increase of over nine per cent you did not speak of any well running dry. When city police received a similar increase, you did not speak of this well running dry. When auto workers asked for parity with their U.S. counterparts, you never mentioned that tho water supply was nearly exhausted. " You probably accept the idea that MPs, doctors, social workers, postal workers, university professors, community college instructors (teachers), city employees, and editors require a yearly increase of at least six per cent. Yet when teachers, who now require a minimum So They Say In a recession people will stop buying a second car or a new television set but they will continue to buy books. - William Jovanovich, chairman of Harcourt Brace Jovanovich Publishing Co. Looking backward of three years of university training to teach elementary school and a degree to teach high school, ask for an increase equal to that in other fields, you immediately imply that a crime has been committed. I'm afraid that it is your argument that holds no water. You may also be aware that the amount of money spent on liquor last year in this city equaled the budget of one of our local school boards. Being a teacher and a property owner I feel that making property owners bear the brunt of senior high and elementary educational costs is entirely unfair. Some provinces and states use other methods in order to ease the burden of the local taxpayer. Even more unfair is the fact that people think they are paying only for teacher's salaries. Do you know that you are paying doctors' salaries, policemen's sal- Through the Herald 1921 - Six prisoners convicted of complicity in the murder of British intelligence officers and members of the crown forces in Ireland were executed in Dublin. 1931 - Due to overcrowding at the Collegiate and the fact that almost all graduates of Grade VIII are continuing, students must pass in at least five units each year on the departmental exams. 1941 - A boast by Hitler that the wa.1 will be won with a Nazi victory insuring plans "For a greater Germany" sounded the keynote of the third anniversary of the seizure of his native Austria by the Reich. 1951 - The sub-zero weather, which has visited the area for the past five days, was finally broken by a chinook, with a rise of 20'degrees in less than an hour. 1961 - Fire at the General Farm Supplies hog operation, just outside the city limits, caused an estimated $40,000 damage. Some 200 of the 800 hogs in the building were lost. aries, postal workers' salaries, university professors' salaries, MPs' salaries, and indirectly by buying this paper . . . Why do you think that it is only teachers' salaries that you are paying for? Lethbridge. W. S. The Lethbridge Herald 504 7th St. S., Lethbridge, Alberta LETHBRIDGE HERALD CO. LTD., Proprietors and Publishers Published 1905-1954, by Hon. W. A. BUCHANAN M�mh., M ThS.eCr^.S'.a!SoMa" Registration No. 0012 Memwr of Tn� Canadian Press and the Canadian Dally Newspapur and the Audit Bureau of Clrculationj Publishers' Association CTHr./Z<; "t0Wf�?.' EdI,or �"d Publisher THOMAS H. ADAMS, General Manager JOE BALLA Managing Editor ROY F. MILES Advertising Manager WILLIAM HAY Associate Editor DOUGLAS K. WALKER Editorial Page Editor "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"