Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - March 29, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 THE IF1HBR1DGE HSRMD Thursday, March 29, 1973- The strike goes on Southern Alberta school trustees, duly elected to get Tor the people the best educational value for the money available, were asked by the teachers for more money. The offers they made were not acceptable to the teachers, and so the matter went to conduc- tion. The trustees accepted the con- ciliation award. The teachers reject- ed it, and reiterated higher demands. These tlie trustees would not pay, so the teachers went on strike. The strike is now in its third week. The teachers have hammered away at two themes to justify their position and their action. First, they say they are paid iess than teachers elsewhere, and yet they do the same work. The trustees' answer is (a) tliat they get some compensating benefits, and if all teachers in Alberta get the same as the highest-paid, then local bargaining is meaningless, re- gional school autonomy does not exist, and the only provincial authority, namely the government of Alberta, must do the negotiating and hiring and the teachers will be civil ser- vants. Secondly, Hie teachers have said that hidden away in the local govern- ment coffers is enough money to pay the increases demanded. The trustees reply that (a) the sur- pluses mentioned do not exist, and (b) even if they dirt, the teachers have no more right to them than any other municipal service or social need, and (c) if the reserve sums did exist and were handed over to the teachers this year, what about next year? Dr. Murray Jampolsky, president of the Alberta Teachers' Association, said in Lethbridge a few days ago that the trustees could end the strike in 15 minutes. Of course they could, by surrendering to the teachers' de- mands. But because they haven't, Dr. Jam- polsky convened a press conference at which he called the trustees "irre- sponsible, insulting, inexcusable and Jespicable." That kind of name calling and play-acting won't do much to end the strike. But it sure makes it a lot easier to understand how it got started. 'Restrictive' financing This is not a reflection on the local school board or the way in which it budgets or conducts its business. It just happens that school board re- cords, in addition to being public, of- fer a simple, concise way of. illustra- ting a point. The board itself is not being criticized, nor should it be; its financial policies are very much like those of other boards anci councils, here and elsewhere. Two excerpts from a commentary on the board's 1973 budget should suf- fice. The first gives the total for the year and then says, "Tills represents an increase of 8.8 per cent as com- pared with last year." The second reads in part, "If the government continuss to impose restrictions upon the availability of funds and goes on to make certain gloomy pre- dictions. Arithmetic based on the 8.8 figure should interest readers. At that rate of increase, for every required this year will be needed next year. In 1975 it will be (the effect is compound) and the 1976 bud- get will need By 1980 the same 5100 requirement will have grown to S180.47, and by 1983 that's just 10 years from now it will have readied In 10 years, then, the increase will be 132.43 per cent. So, starting with the 1073 budget of just under million and using the same arith- metic, a budget in excess of ?18 mil- lion can be forecast for 1983. That is, of course, if there is no growth in the system, and "if the government continues to impose re- strictions on the availability of funds. If not well, the reader can do his own arithmetic. Step in the right direction Immediately following his sweeping in Bangladesh, Sheikh Mu- jibur Rahman took an important step in the direction of improving relations with Pakistan. He proposed that the United Nations and the International Red Cross assist in a population ex- change between Pakistan and his state. The proposal is that the Bengali minority in Pakistan be exchanged for the Bihari minority in Bangla- desh. Many of the Biharis were ac- cused of collaborating with the Pakis- tanis in the 1971 war which resulted in independence for the eastern state. Life has been difficult for the Bi- haris as a consequence. Over in the western state of Pakistan the lot of the Bengalis has been equally un- pleasant. Shifting unwelcome populations is generally not a feasible solution to situations where there is friction. The people who move in may not assimilate any better than those who have moved out. However, in this in- stance it appears that the risk is worth taking. Wider benefits could result from an agreement to trade populations. It could be the first step in improved relations between the nations of the Indian subcontinent The recognition, of Bangladesh by Pakistan might be speeded up and that in turn could lead to the resolution the aggrava- ting POW problem the return of the Pakistani soldiers held in Indian prison camps. There is an almost desperate neces- sity to get the political situation nor- malized in the subcontinent so that the staggering problems of meeting the needs of vast numbers of people can be tackled. The Bangladesh prime minister has taken a step in the right direction with a proposal to ameliorate one immediate prob- lem. The casserole There are still some modest people around; one is the manager of the Gang cattle ranch, near Williams Leke, B.C. Charged wilh overgrazing by wilrllift bio- logists, Manager Irvine Sidwell ii quoted as having pleaded "We're jusl digging and thriving and trying to exist; it isn't as if we owned the whole world." Indeed they don't. The Gang ranch con- sists of merely a million acres. as they do in opinion pools, it seems very likely the Common Market will have at least one new member soon. Apparently Rip Van Winkle had nothing on the Siberian salamander which awaken- ed 100 years' hibernation in the permafrost of the Kolyma tundra. The East German news agency ADM re- ported from Moscow that gold miners dug the salamander from a clump of ice 35 feet underground with the animal waking to life after the ice melted away. There is no other record of a winter sleep lasting 100 years. When it might have mattered, back in September 1972, Norwegians voting in a referendum on whether to enter the Euro- pean Economic Community, saicl "No" by a margin of 52 per cent to 48 per cent. A later poll, taken by the Gallup people in January 1973, showed that they have changed their minds; asked how they would vote if a new referendum were held, the voters answered 56 per cent in favor, only 44 per cent opposed. Even allov ing for ihe fact that people don't always vo.e in reality The End may he near. The ultimate heresy has been uttered. Reacting to the piteous pleas of the auto- makers that they cannot possibly produce a "clean" car by 1975, the model year for which effective emission controls have been decreed, anti pollution czar Ehrlichman came right out in public women and children and everything and said that until they can produce a clean 1975 model, they may have to keep right on turning out 1974s! Convinced free-enterprisers on both sides of the border have always been a bit leery of the Canadian National set-up; they con- tend governments have no business owning things or doing things in competition with private enterprise. They will be interested to know that the most free enterprise ori- ented by the White House in years is giving serious consideration to taking over the largest U.S. railway, the Peno-Conlral system, and seven others that serve Ihe north eastern U.S. Of course this didn't come up until the railroads concerned got so unprofitable as to come within scope of the. bankruptcy laws. Which may say something about the free-enterprise philosophy, when carried to extremes: a good thing when profitable, a government responsibility when not. Letters Opposes Hutterites Swinging through Alberta By Peter DesbECats, Toronto Star commentator People here still remember the day last year when Gerard Pelletier, then secretary of State, decided to wow the west by announcing a new museum policy in Calgary. Four journalists showed up for his press conference. At the cud of an open-line ra- dio show, when Pelletier thought thai he was off the air, the host asked him casually, "is it true that you, Trudeau and Marchand really run things in "That's a lot of blankety- said the Secretary of State, using a rather forceful expression. It was only after he had left the station and turned on bis car radio that Pelletier realized what an impression he had just made on thousands of Alber- lans. At the end of that long day, as the national anthem closed the final function, a member of the local Literal commiUee was standing on stage, head bowed, arms crossed, the picture of de- jection. No sooner had the last chords died away than a mem- ber of the audience was at his side, grabbing his lapel. 'Say, butldy, where are you he demanded. bleated the local Liberal. said the other, ob- viously not believing him. "Well, show some respect and stand at attention when they play 0 Canada." With precedents like tliat, there was every reason to ex- pect the worst last weekend when Health Minister Marc La- londe made his first swing through western Canada as a member of the Trudeau cabi- net. Before Ins arrival, westerners were vaguely aware of him as "the man reputed to be one of the sharpest brains in the coun- try and the second most pow- erful" to quote the description of one of his questioners in an Edmonton audience. During the years from 1968 to last October, as the Literals lost support in the west, Lalondc was the gfey eminence in the east block, the power behind the throne, the Cardinal Richelieu figure whis- pering in the ear of the philoso- pher-king. Not only was he an easterner but a French Canadian, a law On the Hill JOE CLAHK, HIP for Kocky Moutain Tlie commission proposing new boundaries for federal constituencies in Alberta has brought down its report. One casualty of the proposed redistribution is Rocky Moun- tain riding, parts of which would be split into five new dis- tricts. However, no-one knows when the proposed redistribution will take effect. Publication of ten- tative maps is only the first step. Next there must be pub- lic hearings, then debate in Parliament, and finally a per- iod of almost five months for the chief electoral officer, in Ottawa, to set up new poll boundaries, returning officers, and other electoral machinery. Likely, the next federal elec- tion will be fought on the old boundaries. Even if the bound- aries do change, I am still the representative in Parliament of every person and every part of Rocky Mountain, at least until the date of a new elec- tion on new boundaries. There are some major week- nesses in the proposed new maps. The biggest fault is that the new map is biased against rural areas. When Parliament set up the redistribution commissions, it indicated there would be a tar- get population each riding should try to achieve. The basic principle would be "representa- tion by population However, it was recognized tbat strict ap- plication of that principle would be unfair to sparsely populated areas. It is a lot easier for an MP to serve people pack- ed into one part of Edmonton, than it is to serve the same number scattered up and down the Rocky Mountains. So a "tolerance rule" was created. It said the population of some constituencies could he 25 per cent above the and the population of others would be 25 per cent below. In Alberta, the new map re- verses llic "tolerance rule." The biggest populations are in rural ridings (Letlibridge: IMS; Battle River: 94.886; Red Deer: Wclaskiwin-Ycl- lowhead: and the smal- lest in city ridings (Calgary North: Calgary South: Calgary West: Calgary Centre: Tlie target is voters; only four country ridings are below the target, while seven city rid- ings are below. The commissioners will argue that they drew the boundaries to anticipate new urban growth. That is alarming in itself, be- cause it assumes the continued rapid decline in rural areas, and the continued rapid growth of cities. In Alberta, at least, it is the conscious purpose of provincial policy to check, and perhaps reverse that trend. When the Progressive Conser- vatives form a government in Ottawa, I personally intend to do everything possible to stop this mindless expansion of cit- ies, at the cost of the country. Yet the new redistribution is based on the premise that the cities will grow and the towns disappear. Most of us had assumed that there would be one more cily seat. The commission created, in effect, three new city seats. Since Alberta's total stayed the same (19 the countryside suffered. Public hearings are being held by commissioners. They were in Leihbridge on March 8, and will in Grande Prairie on March 31, Edmonton on April 2 and 3, Edspn on April 5, Red Deer on April 9, and Calgary on April 10 and 11. For the last redistribution, the hearings were an empty ritual. The commission heard argument, but paid virtually no attention. Members of our caucus from Nova Scotia, where hearings have already begun, suggest there is a different attitude this time. The commissioners seem- ed prepared to listen. Probably on this question, they are going to listen more to private citizens and groups than they will lo elected politi. clans. I hope that anyone who is concerned about the rural-urban unbalance, or any other aspect of redistribution, will appear nt Uie public hearings. yer, a bureaucrat, a former company director and expert on anti-combines fact, even more than Trudeau, an ap. parent compendium of every- thing that westerners dislike and distrust about eastern Ca- nadians. This is probably what west- erners expected to see last weekend. It certainly wasn't the slim, balding 44-year-old maa in the windbreaker who barn- stormed through Alberta as if he had been trained for politics by their own super-premier. There was nothing that La- londe wasn't prepared to try. He inspected the terrain of the 1975 Canada Games at WesU castle, not far from Lethbridge, by skiing down the slalom course. He went horseback rid- ing at Pincher Creek. In Fort Macleod he threw the first cur- ling rock of his life. He laced on his ancient pair of skates at a nearby Indian reservation to open a peewee hockey game. And he seemed to enjoy it all so genuinely that he carried his audiences along with him. When students at the Univer- sity of Lethbridge presented him with a team jersey, he quipped, "for a moment, 1 thought it was for the UIC ski (earn." When reporters in Edmonton asked him if he had noticed "a sense of pride" in Albertans as a result of the province's tougher stand on natural gas revenues, Lalonde equated it with "the kind of local nation- alism" that he is familiar with in Quebec, "a kind of 'we-can- show-those-guys' feeling." A French-speaking journalist in Edmonton who said that she had the impression that La- londe belonged to "the last gen- eration of federalists in Que- bec" was advised not to take all her views on Quebec from the CBC. When one of Lalonde's aides tried lo close off a meeting with a council of Blood Indians, pleading a shortage of time, the .chief of the band urged him to be patient. "You can wait a few min- he said. "We've been waiting nine years." "In Lalonde added quietly, "We've been waiting a hundred years." Beneath the quick wit and the physical exuberance, reminis- cent of the 1868 Trudeau, there was an ability to communicate political programs in terms of human concern. Neither his education nor his years in the federal bureaucracy have elimi- nated a healthy peasant streak from this son of a Quebec farmer, just as the huge hands always seem a bit at odds with the business suits that he wears in OHasva. When Lalonde talked about old age pensions and social as- sistance, he used few slatisties and many personal approaches. His own parents, and his atti- tude toward them, came into the picture. Trying to decide on social assistance priorities, he said, is something like raising his family of four children and trying to provide equally for each one of them. By the end of this initial foray into the province that failed to elect a single Liberal last Octo- ber, Lalonde was showing an ability to carry politics to the people that is rare in the Trudeau cabinet lei alone among its Queboc members. If be can build on this, in English- speaking Canada as well as Quebec, his position in the Lib- eral party will be significant during the phasing-out period of t h c Tru dca u-Pelletier-Marcha nd combination. I have always thought of my- self as being broad-minded and tolerant toward peoples of oth- er races, religions and cultures. Now that Hutteriles are plan- ning to settle in our district and pulthig my beliefs to the supreme test, I am surprised to find that I object to their invasion. While the Hutterites remained a good distance away from me I seldom thought about them at all, but when I did It was with a feeling of respect and admiration for them, and possibly with a little envy Tha only people favoring the Hutterite invasion are absen- tee landlords or people who plan to sell to the Hutterites and move away from the dis- trict. These people are receiv- ing a price for the land too high for the farmers of the dis- tict to compete with. The ven- dors are not going to have the Hutterites as neighbors or com- pete with them for a living. Agricultural -experts have been advising small farmers to expand their holdings into more economically-sized units. Small farmers cannot compete with the superior financial resources or the low standard of living labor force of the Hutterife col- ony system. At the present time, school teachers who should be fairly representative of the labor force in Canada are holding a strike in our area in the hope of maintaining or improving their standard' of living. I am sure that Cana- dians would not ask. farmers to willingly lower their stand- ard of living in order to com- pete with the Hutterites. We oppose Hutterites be- cause they totally reject im- portant parts of our social and economic system presenting us at the same time with unfair competition in earning our live- lihood. They are unwilling to take an active part In our so- cial events, schools or local government We are being forced to com- pete for a living with peopla who work for room and board. Most Canadians I am sure would object to this kind of competition for the mselvcs. Even the MLAs who voted to repeal the Communal Proper- rise Act would have second thoughts if they should be per- sonally confronted with the pro- position of living among and competing with a people having a social philosophy so alien to that of the rest 'of Canada. All of the financial and phy- sical energies of a Hutterite colony are directed not towards a higher standard of living, but to the continuous expansion of the Hutlerite colony system. Ultimately, they could own the entire country On April 1, 1973 the Hutter- ites have the legal right lo buy land which they have options on in our district. The advis- ory liaison committee appoint- ed by the government does not have the power to prevent this purchase even though all of the present residents object. We as residents of a district in which the Hutterites plan to colonize ore asking for the right to decide whether a col- ony may be established in our district and if so where the lo- cation of such a colony would be acceptable by tlie local citi- zens. Shouldn't this be our right as Canadian citizens? Why should the Hutteriles and peo- ple who are or plan to be far removed from tbe district have the right to force their will upon us? What is the democra- tic thing to do? We are willing to negotiate directly with the Hulterites on this matter. D. H. JOHNSTON Mossleigh Strange exploitation Mr. Dave Roberts claimed in a recent interview that the Vul- can Chamber of Commerce was "exploiting" tlie Hutter- ites. How? By meeting to talk with them? He must have a special sense of humor since he stated that he could see nothing virong with the Hutterites own- ing all tlie farm land. Isn't that called a monopoly in any other business? He claimed the chamber was exploiting them by press coverage. We would appreciate some of the same. Meeting with Ihe Hufteriles to talk over our differences seemed the first sensible step to take in this difficult prob- lem. Mr. Roberts claims no progress was made at this meeting held in Vulcan at the request of the Hutterian Breth- ren. How can you te so sure of this? Does he really expect to settle differences covering 55 years in just two meetings? At our age miracles take longer! Our children, if allowed to get to know each other in school, play and work would bridge the gap much more quickly. We fell the Hutterian Breth- ern spoke most eloquently on their owm behalf, but, we speak "from the heart" also. Mr. Roberts and Mr. Tail, were very helpful in speaking of the economic benefits rural people derive from the "rub off" from the Hutterites. They live in the city to Lethbridge we live in the rural area. Jf, as Mr. Roberts says, there is no bene- fit to be gained in meeting fur- ther to exchange ideas what then does he see as the next step? THOMAS E. mvm Brant Cheaper choice? I cannot write this letter "as an innocent bystander" because I am a teacher. In general I like the way the persons elect- ed to run the schools have done their job. I approve of and like the men who hired me. However, do they really feel that the teachers they chose individually are worth less than the teachers they did not choose? I wish T had (he nerve to go to them and say, "Fellows, stop punishing me, I did not mean to be bad I did not price fhe hamburger at 89 cents per pound (low and I did not sign that 12 per cent in- terest bank note because I like such bigh rates." If they ap- that law of economics, either one that says you ulti- mately get what you pay for." Then I would go on. "Please, fellows, notice, we have bar- gained sincerely, while the gen- tleman who says he is your representative, might just as well have stayed at home in bed. You see, in a larger sense, we are your represen- tatives, too. In this bargaining, of whom are you most proud? Don't be angry because we won't give in would you want a spineless, easily Muffed bunch in your classrooms? We think you chose us for our pride in our work, our sincer- ity, and our character. Don't hold that against us, "We're glad you like tlie bus ONE LOCAL YOKEL Don't chop down trees According to a picture report In The Herald (March Lethbridge Girl Guides are be- ing trained to "rush out and chop down a few trees" when they go on their next campout. Indeed! That kind of survival education rightly deserves the sharpest axe. Have the Girl Guide instructors forgotten about conservation? Lord Robert Baden-Powell, founder of the Boy Scout and Girl Guide organizations, talk- ed about the proper care of our environment long before the pop can was invented. If Mr. Byron Rutt, or any other Girl Guide leader bother- ed to read their manuals again, I'm sure they would realize how the Chief intended them to "rough it." Please, Girl Guides, build a shelter from the branches and brush already on (he forest floor. Don't chop down the trees! A SCOUT LEADER Lethbridge Herald 504 7th St. S., Lelhbridge, Alberta LETHBRfDGE HERALD LTD., Proprietors and Publisher! Published 1905 1934, by Hon. W. A. BUCHANAN SKOnd Man Registration No. Wla I. f The Canadian Press and Ihe Canadian Daily Newipapt Publishers' Anoclatfon and iha Audit Bureau of clreuraltom CLEO W MOWERS, Edilor ana Publisher THOMAS H. ADAMS, Central Manager OON PILLING WILLIAM HAY Editor ROY f. MILES DOUGLAS K WALKEH Hvirllsrng Manager Edlic-ia Paje faux "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"