Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - March 17, 1971, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 - THE IETHBRIDGE HERAID - Wednesday, March 17, 1971 Anthony Westell A meeting of minds needed If Canadians wonder what goes on in Parliament from time to time they are well justified. On the one hand we have a prime minister who denounces the Opposition's so-called delaying tactics in the passing of legislation, and on the other hand we have an Opposition denouncing Mr. Tru-deau's accumulation of power and what they regard as his "downgrading" of the parliamentary system. It's quite true that far too little legislation in recent years gets a sensible airing and quick passage, and a few governments have become so irritated that they've discarded some worthwhile new ideas rather than endure more of the endless talk session which occupies much of the time in the house. Of late Mr. Trudeau has been quite outspoken in his criticism of the Opposition's habit of pushing debate to silly extremes. On the other hand the Opposition, particularly old die-hards like Messrs. Diefenbaker, Knowles and Douglas, regard Mr. Trudeau as an egotistical political upstart, determined to get his own way or he won't play. In consequence, forgetting the reasons for their positions in the House in the first place, Mr. Tru-deau's opponents very often are in contest with him personally, rather than devoting their attention to the business at hand. The machinery of government would probably run more smoothly if there was some time limit allocated for speeches and debate on bills that have nothing conceivable to do with such matters of national concern as budgets, or certain depth studies of the Criminal Code. But the opposite unfortunately, seems to be the rule. Almost every piece of legislation presented for debate gets a lengthy going over regardless of its relative insignificance to the country as a whole. That Mr. Trudeau would like to have things his own way is admitted even by members of his own cabinet. This would of course be a convenient measure in getting legislation passed, but unfortunately that isn't the way our parliamentary system is set up. The Opposition is there to see to it that no one person, or one group of persons runs the whole show, for democracy just doesn't work that way. So in order to get things moving, obviously there must be an attempt to. "give" a little more on both sides. If there isn't, the already restless public will question the role of the House of Commons, and worse yet, lose respect for our parliamentary system. Responsible government by irresponsible, self - centred people cannot survive for very long. Thoughtful people will become disenchanted with the mindless waffling which seems to go endlessly around and of course, will demonstrate their wishes for improvement, and replacement. To work or not to work? The federal government's new legislation on unemployment insurance states quite bluntly that all members of the work force who are not self-employed must now be covered. Unemployment insurance, up until now, was exactly what the term implied; a program of insurance designed to help workers through periods of unemployment. The new bill with somewhat extravagant benefits, has the connotation of social welfare rather than an insurance program. Up until now, about 1.2 million Canadians were excluded from the insurance program either because their income was $7,800 and over, or because they were in occupations such as teaching, police and the armed forces which provided them with job security. Under its new bill the government would make almost all Canadians contribute to the unemployment in- surance fund, regardless of income and job tenure. The new legislation also provides for a sharp increase in benefits. The maximum benefit has been raised from $57 per week to $100 a week. It's not at all unlikely that many Canadians will find it more rewarding to be drawing unemployment benefits than slugging it out at an alternative job for the minimum wage. The generosity of scale of benefits is such that many will say "what's the point of working?" There can be no quarrel with the government intention to'improve the unemployment insurance system. The rising cost of living has made this essential. However, the new legislation is bound to be a temptation to easy abuse, for $100 a week for doing nothing will have great appeal to many people who find working a drag. ART BUCHWALD WASHINGTON - Mr. Harold Hopsack, the Hollywood agent, and Frederick Roarington, the well-known sports promoter, have just announced that they have tied up the closed circuit television rights to the Third World War. Mr. Hopsack told reporters at a press conference, "This has got to be the greatest fight of all time, and we think that there are millions and millions of people all over the world who would be willing to pay 15, 20 or even 30 bucks to see this historical event." Mr. Roarington said, "We are paying each of the participants $250 billion. In order to meet our expenses and make a reasonable profit, we have had to demand complete exclusivity for the rights to the Third World War. This means that no one will be able to see or hear it on their regular TV channels, even on a delayed basis. There also will not be any radio broadcasting of the fight except where it has been authorized by Musical Variety Enterprises, the company which will license and sell the engagement." "Does this mean that our GIs will not be able to see or hear the Third World War?" a reporter asked. "We are working on arrangements now for the armed forces network to pick it up, but we cannot permit broadcasting in areas where the rights have already been sold to commercial promoters. Our first responsibility is to our clients." "What do you think a fight like this could gross?" a reporter said. "We estimate that with the excitement that the Third World War has engendered, we could make $3 trillion, not counting the printed programs and the commercials we hope to sell between the battles. "We have already committed the largest halls and arenas, plus race tracks and ho- tel ballrooms in every major city in the world, to carry the event. We also plan to make a film of it which we will distribute in theaters one year after the war is over. Our contract with the participants gives us carte blanche to sell any and all of the rights in any manner we choose." "Will the winner get a percentage besides the $250 billion?" "No, this is a flat fee arrangement. Neither side expected to get anything like that' sum for the Third World War, and if they can come out of something like that with $250 billion guaranteed no one has cause to compladn," Mr. Roarington said. "Musical Variety Enterprises," Mr. Hop-sack said, "will pay all the expenses for the closed circuit TV installations, so the only expense to the participants is out-of-pocket expenses during the fight." "Will there be press seats?" someone asked. "Of course the press has been provided for," Mr. Roarington said. "We're counting on you guys to promote this event like no event has been promoted before. And believe me, you will have plenty to write about. The Third World War comes along only once in a lifetime." A reporter said, "It's true that this is probably the greatest box office event of all time, but isn't there a possibility that some of the theaters will be destroyed during the Third World War?" "We've thought about that," Mr. Hop-sack said, "and we will refund the money to anyone caught in a theater which has a direct hit." "Are you making any plans for a rematch?" someone asked. "Of course there will be a rematch. We have too much invested in this to have just one war." (Toronto Telegram News Service) The best defence By DOUG AT the Gilbert Paterson Home and School meeting awhile ago an alarming proposal was made. It emerged in a discussion of how the building could be more fully utilized by scheduling after - hours activities such as instructional courses for adults. One of the women present suggested that there was great need for an elementary class for unhandymen. She said there are a lot of wives burdened with husbands who are useless at fixing things around the WALKER house and needed instruction on how to make simple repairs. The first impulse I had was to run for cover. But then I remembered that the best defenco is offence. I think I should vigorously promote the institution of a course on harmonica playing. At the rate of progress I have been making with the instrument I should be safe in a class like that for several years. A look at some familiar untrue truths rVTTAWA - In making poli-tical judgments, as in most other activities, it is not what you don't know that misleads, but the facts you are sure about which turn out to be wrong. So let's take a look at some of the accepted truths about current affairs which are probably untrue. The first of the untrue truths, repeated day in and out by the Opposition critics and by those they have brainwashed, is that Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau treats Parliament with contempt. "I am proud to sit in this honorable house," he told the Commons this week, but was he being sincere? He was responding to the warm congratulations on his marriage from the Opposition, and perhaps he was being no more than polite. Actions speak louder than fancy words, say the critics, and soon they will be back with the old pitch that the Prime Minister is at least indifferent to Parliament. But does Trudeau act toward the institution of Parliament with scorn and disdain? Hardly. He has granted research funds to the Opposition parties and to his own backbenchers, a modest but significant reform. The expansion of the committee system and the cabinet's habit of putting forward policy in white papers for discussion before adoption make it possible for the Commons to be less of a rubber stamp than it used to be. The House's budget is rising .sharply as services to members improve. The estimates for 1971-72, for example, forecast an increase in manpower of 13.6 per cent "mainly attributable to the provision of additional secretarial assistance to MPs'. . . and estab- lishment of a Journals Research Division." Information Canada is instructed to make its surveys of public attitudes available to the Opposition parties as well as to the government. Without exaggerating the importance of any of these positive developments, they argue strongly against the idea that the Prime Minister is bent on downgrading the Commons and dismantling the Opposition. Is the accusation, then, that Trudeau is contemptuous not of Parliament, but of some of the members who sit in it? Obviously he is. One can observe him in the Commons on dull days squirming with impatience and irritation, and he occasionally fires off a crack which is not merely scornful, but downright objectionable. But if it is a grand offence to be contemptuous of opponents in Parliament, what of the Opposition critics who daily pour scorn and ridicule on the Prime Minister and the cabinet? Politics is a war of words, and one, of the tactics is to keep repeating an allegation until it becomes so familiar that it is accepted almost without question. The Opposition parties have had some success in past months in driving home the idea that Trudeau treats Parliament with contempt. Before accepting it as true and mindlessly repeating it, we should at least ask just what is meant by the charge, and on what evidence it rests. Now let us politely question the truth of the repeated statement that our mining and resource companies are about to be taxed out of existence. The Dominion Bureau of Statistics recently published some interesting if slightly out "I see where Nixon's saying this'll be our last war, Joe - Joe . . .?" Letters To The Editor Teachers should have more public support Your editorial begins, "A teachers' strike ... is reported distinctly possible." As a teacher, I object to your quoting yourself. It was The Herald that introduced the word "strike" and it was your news headline that used the words "walk out" in what can only be considered attempted sensationalism. Doubtless your pseudo-calm editorial is designed to pour oil on the waters you have troubled? How can a responsible editor roll out such pharisaic remarks as those about people being "fairly good (compared with other provinces) to the teachers"" and not blush in the face of the publicans? The teachers are resisting the master - servant relationship being propounded by the trustees. How many occupations do involve such a relationship today? How many professions? How many should? Even if we manage to retain an employer - employee relationship, you must remember that teachers do not manufacture goods, but provide services. A teacher spends a minimum of 28',b hours a week in the school just "between bells." Many teachers are actually giving instruction every minute of that time. Add to that the time spent hefore class, at noon, and after class, while he is engaged in supervision, student conferences, providing extra individual help to students, and so on, and he is there at least thirty hours, more likely forty. Then add all the "extra-curricular" supervision involving sports, clubs; newspapers, yearbooks, music, drama, dances, parties, debates, field trips, and what have you. (Have you run out of fingers and toes? Borrow an abacus; your child will show you how to use it, because his teacher taught him, maybe even in base two.) Now what have we left to consider? Marking and preparation time, including hours of research and typing and taping. It may take thirty students an hour each to write that test, but it likely took the teacher two to ten hours to prepare it conscientiously, and it's going to take him up to fifteen hours to mark it, sometimes more. And then we have those two summer months, that lovely long holiday. But take away the time spent in Summer School and related activities, and the weeks spent on individual upgrading, such as those the English teacher spends on catching up on all those new novels and plays and their criticisms so that he can keep up with his special field, or the math or science teacher absorbing the three new texts he will be required to use next year. Now add the extra "assignable" time which the trustees wish the teacher to spend at school. The result is a deprived student. He will doubtless be in a class of forty instead of thirty, facing an overworked and underprepared teacher, and likely a darned crabby one at that. I do agree that the Advice to parents Thank you for publishing my recent letter to parents of minor hockey boys. It would appear the letter provoked considerable interest, but insufficient interest to evoke replies. Will you please publish the following as another appeal? To Parents of Minor Hockey Boys. With regret, I note there were no replies to my recent crusade, published in this paper, appealing to parents to clean up minor hockey. Therefore, I can only assume you are so deeply steeped in parental apathy, that you do not care what attitudes your sons are being exposed to, or that you approve of today's trend toward organized violence and sadism. If the latter is the case, then we, as a race, have regressed to an era in history when feeding the Christians to the lions was considered entertaining spectator sport. Minor hockey, in the past, was a wholesome sport for boys, wherein they learned good sportsmanship, team cooperation, skills, muscular coordination and how to be a good loser, or winner. It was, and still could be, a wholesome substitute for hippism, drug-abuse, alcoholism in minors, and many other trends in today's youth. Unfortunately, today's boys are exposed to the type of hockey shown on TV wherein, the rules, or lack of rules, are only acceptable on this continent. Olympic teams do not see fit to allow a Canadian team to participate in world hockey, until we clean up our game. My concrete suggestions to you, as parents of minor hockey boys are: 1. Go to your sons' games. Get to know the existing rules, not only of the game itself, but those of the Alberta Amateur Hockey Association. 2. Pit your honesty, integrity, and desire for the well being of your fellow man against the wiliness of the type of coaches who desire to win at any cost. 3. Insist that all referees show their referee card before any game is played. If they cannot produce a card, they are not entitled to referee. Appeal to your zone representative in Medicine Hat, of the AAHA to ban ALL poor referees. If he ignores your pleas, consider a replacement for him. 4. Communicate with sons and teammates. 5. Join in the endeavor to clean up minor hockey so that decent boys may participate safely, with no danger to life and limb. 6. Do these things NOW. The need is urgent. Our only alternative is to abandon minor hockey. MRS. K. WALLACE Gem, Alberta. major victims would be the cjlldren, but I am looking beyond the immediate deprivation caused by a strike. I should think the public need be concerned. From whence comes your feeling of an apparent " 'public be damned' attitude in some parts of the teaching profession?" Could you be refer-ring to our reticence to engage in mudslinging? I admit we do seem to have poor public relations. Doubtless some of the blame for this is ours1, for not putting our sides of the picture before the speculators. But please regard your journalistic muddy hands. You say "let's hear no more strike talk." Then take your own advice, for you initiated this strike talk in the pages of your newspaper. MRS. I. JEFFERS Milk River. of date (1966) figures compaP tag book profits of varioul types of corporations witl their taxable profits. For a] corporations reporting, the to* tal book profit was $7,386 mil* lion and profits before ta* were 56 per cent, or $4,103 Ml* lion. Metal mining companies had book profits of $396 million, but taxable profits of only $15 mil� lion or 4 per cent. The mineral fuels industry had book profit! of $197 million, and taxable profits of $20 million, or about 10 per cent. Other mining companies had taxable profits of 28 per cent of book profits. Maybe the tax lawyers have some explanation for these remarkable figures, but thef look pretty lenient to private, citizens paying steep grad� uated rates of 30, 40, or 50 per cent on their salaries. Another conventional truth which will probably turn out to be untrue is that realistic full employment is when 3 per cent are unemployed, and that wo can and should aim for this target. The Economic Council of Canada adopted this familiar definition of full employment in its first report some years ago, and it is still frequently quoted - most recently by the Canadian Labor Congress in its brief to the government last week. But many economists are now adjusting their ideas in the light of what appears to be structural changes in the economy. The council noted in its most recent report that the U.S. authorities now use 3.8 per cent as the yardstick and accepted it for assessing the Canadian performance. Among government experts, the view is growing that a national average of 3 per cent unemployment in Canada must mean severe price inflation. The reason in part is that thi average implies a higher figure in the underdeveloped regions and a much lower figure in Ontario and the most prosperous parts of the country. This would mean an over* heated labor market, with employers bidding up the price, The key question now is how high does unemployment have to be to keep the market reasonably steady and prices within bounds. In the United States', it used to be said that 4 to 4Yz per cent unemployment produced relative price stability; now there are suggestions the modern figure is 5 to 5% per cent. In Canada, this could mean 5'/i to 6 per cent without jobs. The Prices and Incomes Commission is researching the whole question of the so-called trade-offs between inflation and unemployment and presumably the economic council will have more to say about it Meantime, it makes little sense to keep chanting 3 per cent (a level, incidentally, we last achieved 18 years ago) as if it were some magic password to a perfect world. It la more to the point to consider what measure of control, what limits on personal freedom, we are willing to accept as the price for getting unemployment down to a tolerable leveL And as a footnote to a quarrel-some column, isn't it high time we asked the government for some proof that it is really true to say that this country can have a bilingual public ser�> vice? Counting the time that the civil servants spend in the classrooms instead of at their desks we are investing tens of millions of dollars in teaching French. But how many people become usefully bilingual? How many emerge from the course using French in their work? (Toronto Star Syndicate) Looking backward Through the Herald 1921 - Ottawa will have daylight saving time this summer. It will begin May 1 and continue until September 17. 1931 - Sixty lambs out of 1,100 in the feeding pen at the Burns slaughter house at Henderson Park were found dead, having been worried by dogs. A number suffering from wounds had to be killed. 1941 - Despite months of inquiry by the International Red Cross, the whereabouts and fate of hundreds of British women interned by the Germans after the capitulation of France is still a mystery. 1951 - Lethbridge is experiencing one of the worst Mix-zards on record for this region. Roads are blocked and one train out of Medicine Hat was reported cancelled- 1961 - Canadian wheat plant ing this year is an indicated 23,400,000 acres, up one per cent over 1960 seeding or 1,300,000 acres more than the 1955-59 average. your The Lethbridge Herald 504 7th St. S., Lethbridge, Alberta LETHBRIDGE HERALD CO. LTD., Proprietors and Publishers Published 1905-1954, by Hon. W. A. BUCHANAN Second ?.lass Mall Registration No. 0012 Member of The Canadian Press and the Canadian Dally Newspaper Publishers' Association -' �"* -------- -' - ------ and 1h� Audit Bureau of Circulation* CLEO W. MOWERS, Editor and Publisher THOMAS H. ADAMS, General Manager WILLIAM HAY Associate Editor DOUGLAS K. WALKER Editorial Page Editor JOE BALLA Managing Editor ROY F. MILES Advertising Manager "THE HERAID SERVES THE SOUTH"