Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - March 13, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 THE IE1HBR1DGE HERAID Tuesday, Worth 13, 1973 The teachers' strike Generally, the few teachers' For their part, the professionals strikes that have occurred in this deny there is a real surplus teach- country have been over pay and work- ers, or (hat there be as long as ing conditions. Lately, however, dis- pupil-teacher ratios are so high, tea- piues between teacher organizations ching loads so heavy, and there are and their employers have begun to focus on a new concern, job secur- ity. so many areas oJ specialization to be defined and developed. Arguments like this, between pro- observing the operations fessional educators and the boards unions, especially during the that must find the .funds to meet power struggles that occur periodi- (heir recommendations, never will cally, knows the most serious charge be settled. But in the meantime, sev- that can be made against a union eral school boards in this province administration is that it permitted have reduced staff, either by elimi- jobs to be lost. The Alberta Teach- nating positions or by permitting crs' Association is thought of as a normal attrition resignations, re- professional association, rather than tirements, etc. to reduce over-all as a union, but it has the same res- numbers of teachers employed. ponsibility for the welfare of its mem- bers, tlie welfare of individuals, whether menibers of a union or of a professional association, starts with ensuring they have jobs. For a long time, teachers in this province enjoyed a sellers' market; there were always plenty jobs from among which to choose. A few years ago things began to change, and now there is plenty of evidence In time, no doubt, the public will decide what limit of support it wishes education to have. At present, it seems most are concerned with levels of taxation, and likely would ask for some pretty convincing evidence of need, before agreeing to higher taxes for improved education, even if it could be persuaded that "more cost- ly" really means "improved." Presumably teachers in Southern of a teacher surplus. Faculties of eel- are aware of how the public ucation, geared to turning out the number of qualified teachers they and the profession believe are need- ed, annually graduate more teachers than leave the profession. Numbers school children are not rising as they did, and fewer new schools are being built, as the trend to smaller families becomes more marked and as immigration continues to decline. And as costs press against the tax ceiling, trustees show increasing in- terest in para-professionals, and the ever more sophisticated gaclgelry feels, so this strike should not last for very long. The trustees have made it crystal clear that more dol- lars per teacher will mean fewer teachers employed. This is clearly against the teachers' best interests, and the philosophy their associa- tion. The public has only so much pa- tience with those it employs to serve it. The teachers would he most un- wise to use up that small store over any issue but the most important. that is supposed to reduce the num.- That means job security, not who her of teachers needed. pays for health insurance. The casserole With Southern Alberta rural leachers on strike, a reminder in the Alberta Teach- ers' Association newspaper is of interest. The paper points out that a school board may not hire as a teacher anyone1 without a valid teacher's certificate, and that if: it does, the person and tile board may eacft be fined. So much for any thought of try- ing to continue the teaching function with emergency help while the teachers are on. strike. These days stories of humans replacing machines are in the 'man bites dog' cate- gory. It is gratifying, then, to hear from Paris that mechanical ticket punchers in the Metro which is what they call the Paris subway system have had to be replaced by human ones. The reason, however, is quite normal. It seems the (very) human passengers quickly discovered a way to beat the ma- chines, and as many as 10 per cent of the Metro's daily four million passengers have been riding free. Reprehensible, perhaps, but it still must be scored as a point for humanness. If anyone were to mention the idea o! attaching licence plates to horses, he'd get a few curious looks, one suspects. Yet, that is precisely what will be required by law in the fair city of Munich, beginning April 1 this year. And why? Well, very much as you might suspect (if you could take the whole idea seriously for long According to the official report "anonymous equestrians are galloping through city parks and forests, damaging greenery and Liberals busy courting Canadians By Peler Deslrarats, Toronto Star commentator Martin O'Conncll, the new man at the head of the Prime Minister's cilice in Ot- tawa telephoned Alberta Liber- al leader Bob Russell in Janu- ary. "The Governor-General is now reading the Throne said O'Connell, "and he has just reached the section that includes some of the ideas submitted by your people in Al- berta." KussfcU uses tha phone call to illustrate' liis claim that the Trudeau government's attitude toward western Canada actually, has started to change since the election last October. It is a good example. Russell himself, even in comparison with the liberal leaders of the other three western provinces, is a man of modest political weight. He has no seat in the legislature of his own province. In the October election, his party failed to elect a single member to -Ottawa. The party's above all knows how to handle it. Considering that anyone has to demon- strate ability to drive before being licensed to drive a car, supposedly not a lethal in- strument, some such requirements don't seem altogether unreasonable. Following an altercation in a Calgary of- fice, a man was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment for possession of an offen- sive weapon. The weapon in questions was an ordinary letter opener. Secretaries, please take note. If you find this is the only way you can keep the boss in order p well, you'll.just have to try to convince the judge that you were using it defensively. As if the military hadn't gone far enough in destroying the language with then- "non- zero sum "survivability quotients" and like gibberish, they are now being aided and abetted by curators of muse- ums who have recently taken to using such monstrosities as honest, they really say it "de-accessioning." public streets." In short, reckless driving Air Profite Not really surpris- or should that be 'riding'? Those who might have worried that the policy of apartheid could betoken a certain callousness on the part of South Africans will he reassurecl .by 5 rwprif, news release that points out there are severe penalties, running as high as six months imprison- ment and fines, for mistreatment of animals. Must make some of their black citizens envious, though. ing, eh? claimed membership of about is the smallest in the west by a considerable margin. Before the election, Russell had to read his local paper to find out wliich federal cabinet ministers had been saying what in his own province. But when Agriculture Minister Whclan visiled Alberta recently, he not only notified the provincial parly well in advance but asked leaders in the other western provinces. The effect of all this attention has been to reduce Russell's own sense of "Western Alien- ation" from the power centre of his own national party. Other western Liberals discuss their problems In the same terms. They don't spend a great deal of time on the practical Ottawa office last week, "of Trudeau government. But the being remote from the level's of result of the election proved be- powcr. yond a doubt that the feeling is "The people of Quebec talk there, that it constitutes the about feeling the same thing, most important obstacle to the but to British Columbia, Ottawa achievement of a Liberal major- ity in the next election, and that it has become stronger during the Trudeau years. The prime minister himself was candid feels much closer to Montreal than to Vancouver." In the living room of his home in North Vancouver, defeated Liberal MP Paul grievances of western St. Pierre, wearing sandals, for background papers on local the financial, industrial and slacks and a Mexican shirt, about that during a conversa- tion in his office last week. 'Certainly over the past ten It's almost enough to justify not reading more than one newspaper. A recent issue of the London Observer carries an advertisement offering jet air passage to Toronto, from London, Man- chester or Glasgow, for 44 pounds return. At the current rate of exchange, that's less than At the same time, a heading on the fi- nancial page of the local paper read "CP Most people who advocate more exacting registration requirements for guns seem to have in mind ensuring that the authorities know who owns all the guns, but not much more than that. There are a few, however, who believe that before being licensed to possess or use a gun, the applicant should be required to show that he or she is aware of what a gun can do, wants a gun 'for some reasonable purpose, and this transportation difficulties that talked about endless drives over years that we've been in power, couver in June, and that the prime minister will thrash out the following month with the four western premiers. tlie past few months. probably normally grows tirr.f-dislance barrier, but I "When I was in he ORamst the government that said, "I was conscious of the (0 be there, and the r Ulat llappened to be there recently was a liberal government, "I don't think that we are necessarily more guilty than- Instead, they echo the Benli- didn't realize how far away I inents expressed by Defence had really gons until I moved back." "Nation building is not a bookkeeper's as Richard- iny" oilier" parly, but that's not son said in there my concern, My concern is to ensure that Ihe government is recognized as the government diagnosis, is emotional trouble. It is trouble of the heart." is no set of stalistics (bat sums "It is a said Envi- up western Canada's current ten to Russell and the party ronmcnt Minister Davis in his state of unhappiness with ihe For years there has been talk of Canada and the U.S. developing joint approaches to such things as industrial development, water resources and energy production, just as they do in the matter of continental defence. Interest south of the border has perked up considerably since Americans seemed to be running a bit short of oil, gas and water. Naturally Canadians will be happy to co-operate (though perhaps not always in exactly the manner our southern neigh- bors would But if this pooling idea Is such a good one, why not extend it even further? Per- haps they'd like to discuss pooling owner- ship of the oil industry, as well as the use of its products. The aircraft-building in- dustry, maybe? Of course there are limits; for example, Canadians wouldn't have the nerve to ask for a share of Disneyland. Mild desecration By Doug Walker My turn at cleaning off the table and doing the dishes after the evening meal comes with alarming frequency. I am sus- picious sometimes that I do more than my rightful share of this chore. Recently every time I lift the garbage pail out in order lo scrape the leavings from the plates I have been startled lo have Keith Eobiii grin (or is that a OTTAWA In the House of Commons on Thursday John Mefenbaker, referring to the sweeping provisions of the new British Columbia land legisla- tion, asked the minister of jus- tice whether the government in- tended to resort to the federal power of reservation. Nowadays such a question is highly unusual. Not since 1937 (the Alberta Press Act) has a lieutenant-governor been in- structed to withhold royal as- sent to a provincial measure. It was subsequently found ultra vires by the Supreme Court. The complementary power of disallowance was last employed in Louis St. Laurent being then the minister of justice. In reply to Mr. Diefenbaker, Otto Lang gave the answer which has now become stand- ard. After noting first that the question was hypothetical since the law officers have reached no decision about the validity of the Lang outlined the "ordinary BERRY'S WORLD up at me from his supine position on a massage table. I am usually sent off on a reflection about how little respect my wife has for dis- tinguished people imagine placing Dr. Robin's picture under the garbage pail! 'i'hcn I am cheered by the thought thr.l at least she spares the editorial page of The Herald from such desecration. problems. Health Minister Lalonde is the Liberals will discuss at a the baekroads of the province flic feeling of wesern alienation following the same procedure regional conference in Van- and hikes into the mountains in nas he said, "but it later this month. It's a brand-new world for Russell. When he goes to Ot- tawa now, ministers don't keep him waiting in outer offices. They ask him in for lunch. Minister Kichardson in Winni- There is even an Albertan on peg last month when he said, the prime minister's staff "Canada's real trouble, in my whose job specifications were drawn up by Russell last De- cember and whose job is to lis- of ail Canadians." In this conversalion, as in others, Trudeau tended to ap- proach the weslern problem via lus understanding of Quebec. Although there are pitfalls along this route, it does enable him to discuss his party's prob- lems in the west in terms of feelings rather than figures. "I would be hard-pressed to say that Quebec is more colo- nized by Ottawa than the west is, or than the maritimes are colonized by Bay he said. 'I just don't think that the facts and figures are all that relevant. "The important thing is that many Quebeckers felt alienated from the federal government, and we tried to correct that, mainly by our language policy. Many easterns and westerns also feel au'cnaled from the fed. eral government, and I've tried to correct that in my first four years by endless lours and com- munications and talks and meetings with people in all parls of Canada, but obviously I haven't succeeded as well as we succeeded in Quebec. "So, having at least crossed that particular difficulty in the case of it's never done once and for all, but shall we say at least the election re- sults prove that many Quebe- ckers understood what we were trying to I want to make sure that our efforts arc directed elsewhere. "And a special effort in the case of the west is particularly reeded because the government has very, very few of its spokesmen elected in the west either at the federal level or in- deed even at Ihe provincial level." The stakes are high in this quest for a new national policy identified firmly with diverse interests of western Canadians. They are just as high for the Conservatives who are working on an equally tight schedule to give Quebeckers a sense of be- longing within their party. "The party lhat is able to overcome its major Provincial decisions can harm nation By Maurice Western, Jlerald Ottawa commentator tance. He held that the power should be exercised only in ex- traordinary cases. But exercise it he did for the federal govern- ment was confronted wilh a ualion for which other remedies manifestly inadequate. Tlie basic problem was that procedure" in sucli matters. If there are doubts about the vali- dity of provincial legislation, de- cision is left to the courts. If there is doubt about the politi- cal nature of the legislation, it is tested in the provincial poli- tical arena. This doctrine has certainly Albcrta legislation of the late become widely accepted; in- 30s threatened grave injury to deed it is sometimes argued, al- lne pllbljc and privatc of hough not very convincingly, Canada. It is most unlikely that that the federal powers have lapsed from long disuse. Fur- thermore, Mr. Lang's formula is probably a wise formula in the great majority of cases. Ex- amination might well show that the B.C. land legislation falls within this category. But it is possible also that the doctrine has been too easily ao copied since governments are naturally attracted to the course of least political resist- ance. The last minister of jus- tice to use the power of dis- allowance in successive cases was a-nest Lapointe, who re- sorted to it with great reluc- the formula enunciated by Mr. Lang (although not invented by him) would have met the situ- ation. Much time is often re- quired for judicial consideration of constitutional cases. What would have happened in the meantime to the credit of the country? It would have been unreasonable, national interests being affected, to leave the a judicial determination of their claims. In that case the ap- proved formula may meet the case. But if the operations are not halted, the works will pro- ceed although the main ease has yet to be decided and may drag on through the courts for months or years. Even if they are vindicated in tlie end, they will have already lost to the bulldozers. It will have been demonstrated in the process that the federal government, however well intentioned, is unahle to defend the people placed in its charge. If it cannot defend them in Quebec, it will be equally pow- erless in Manitoba or in any other province where similar problems arise. Such cases are not common. forecast Defence Minister Rich- ardson, "will be the party that can govern Canada for the next decade.' matter for settlement by local have been successfully voters in the provincial political avoided since the war. It may well be a good thing that they are usually avoided. But this is not to say that there is no need for reserve powers in the con- stitution. The future is always obscure and Ihe trouble with the doctrine adopted by Mr. Lang is that it is too limited to "i don't suppose tfic price lag has the lock of the thirties, too, doei arena. There appears to he a com- fortable assumption in various quarters lhat such a situalion could not arise again. It this is the case, we are well rid of res- c r v a t i o n and disallowance which are held lo he relics, more or less, of a colonial sys- tem. But it is far from clear that it is the case. Jurisdic- tional dispules have certainly not ceased to afflict our feder- ation and it is quite possible that the modern formula, in- slead of producing the settle- ments expected, may simply lead through the studied avoid- ance of confrontations (o an erosion of federal powers. It is obvious from the testi- mony of Jean Chretien that the Bourassa government ha.s been attempting to brush Ottawa aside in its determination lo push ahead with the James Bay project. There is not the least doubt that a variety of federal interests are threatened. Mr. Chretien has resisted since tlie federal government has ex- clusive jurisdiction, under our constitution, for Indians and lands reserved for Indians. While the manner of the resist- ance may be criticized, the fact is that the Quebec Indians have been financed in their appeal to the courts. If the Indians succeed in ob- taining an injunction lo hall HIE present opcralions, they will have woo time la which lo seek cover emergency cases of the sort which have already arisen and may well rise again. I think you're overdoing this shopping around for cheaper groceries Betty. tetters are welcome and will be published providing: identification is included (name and address are re- qjirod even when the letter is to appear over a pseu- they are sensible and not libelous; they are of manageable length or can be shortened (normally, letters should not exceed 300 they are deci- pherable (it greatly helps if letters are typed, double spaced and with writers do not submit letters too frequently. TSie lethlnrufge Herald 504 7th St. S., Lethbridge, Alberta LETHBRIDGE HERALD LTD., Proprietors and Published 1905 1954, by Hon. W. A. BUCHANAN Second Class Man Registration No. 0012 CLEO w. MOWERS, Editor and Publisher THOMAS H. ADAMS, Central Manager DON P1LUHG HAY Managing Ediror Associate Editor P.OY f. MILE5 OOUGLAi K. Advertising Manawr Editorial Editor HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"