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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - November 3, 1972, Lethbridge, Alberta 4 THE IETHBRIDCE HERAID Fridny, November 3, 1977 Lack of communication hurts Liberals Should Trudeau hang on? Mr. Trudeau, in not resigning, is quite within his rights. And he may also be doing the best thing for Can- ada. He is taking the courageous course, the hard course. But that is not the whole story. His government was repudiated by most of non-French Canada. He says the reasons are varied and unclear. True, perhaps, but an explanation must be ventured. High among the reasons, we sub- mit, are these: (1) an anti-French backlash; (2) resentment of the "ar- rogance" of the government; (3) bit- terness- toward the person of Mr. Trudeau. The first is the most serious. It probably has done irreparable dam- age to Canadian unity. We will dis- cuss it at length on, another oc- casion. The government has been arro- gant, as the St. Laurent government was when the people turned against it. There was too little initiative from Parliament, from the caucus, and grossly unsatisfactory communi- cation with the people, the cabinet seemed to operate as if it had a di- vine commission, and as long as it did what it felt should be done, the people's understanding wasn't really important. Time and again private members have complained that the "mandar- the secretariat, the prime min- ister's personal staff had all the pow- er and influence, and the lowly mem- ber of Parliament was taken for granted. Now Mr. Tmdeau is de- pendent on the these same MP's, and he is .in trouble because he lost so many of them. Canada has been getting better gov- ernment than it knows, but as we have so often argued, popular govern- ment is more important than good government. This government has failed not in governing but in poli- tics, and politics is the game. Thirdly, the depth and breadth of resentment almost contempt for Mr. Trudeau personally is far greater than any of his supporters has feared. Only a psychologist could attempt to explain why that should be. He is widely considered to be the most intelligent prime minister this country has ever had, and one of the most capable national lead- ers in the world. But those tilings apparently don't count. His very strength may be the cause of much of the resentment. He doesn't need public affection. He has seldom exer- cised tact for the sake of tact. His personal integrity is an affront to many people. Four years ago the free world looked on Canada as the pioneer in a new type of leadership. Mr. Tru- deau was Ihe antithesis of the Diefen- baker type. He was so contemporary, so much a man for the nineteen- seventies. Now he is widely repudiated. Only French Canada has voted worthwhile confidence in him. His course, therefore, perhaps should have been to resign and to let Mr. Stanfield have the office. Or, perhaps with more validity, he might have announced his resignation as party leader and carried on in of- fice until a new leader had been chos- en and then the new prime minister (meaning a new government) would have faced Parliament and perhaps have got a more sympathetic and patient, reception. But as Mr. Trudeau said Thursday night, no government was elected Monday. He sees it his duty to carry on until Parliament orders other- wise. He is answerable only to Parli- ament. And let's face it: Mr. Lewis, who will decide life or death for any gov- ernment, has implied more confi- dence in Mr. Trudeau than in Mr. Stanfield. Finally, Mr. Trudeau's course of- fers the only hope of repairing the damage to Canadian unity that was caused by Monday's voting. The non- French section of Canada expressed opposition to French Canadian nation- al aspirations within Confederation, and invited Mr. Levesque to lake Quebec out of the country. Perhaps Mr. Trudeau's refusal to concede the victory to Levesque is at the root of the decision he an- nounced Thursday night. He is not giving up the fight to save Canada. Porch lights beneficial The friendly atmosphere emanating from the glowing porch lights Hal- loween night should be captured ev- ery night of the winter. Seeing an entire street aglow with outdoor lights gives the pedestrian or the motorist a sense of well being a feeling that his town is indeed a friendly place. True, porch lights were left on to facilitate the annual treat or trick- sters making their yearly rounds, but they also lighted avenues for adults too. It was interesting to note how much the extra lighting en- hanced the streets while also adding to neighborhood safety. The minimal cost of such a practice would be compensated by the knowledge one was contributing to both a safer and friendlier city. ART BUCHWALD The money draft WASHINGTON As the war conies to an agonizing, screeching halt, great minds are at work in this country trying to figure out a way we can avoid getting ourselves into such a mess again. Many solutions have teen offered. My favorite is the Haak Plan, suggested by Leo Haak of East Lansing, Mich. Mr. Haak told me, "The reason the war lasted so long was that only the young people in this country were truly involved in Vietnam. While the rest of the country grew rich and fat, this small minority of the population, with no political clout, was shipped off to Indocliina to hold back Communist aggression. This made it rather easy for the rest of the Americans to show no urgency to end the war." "That's I said. "But what do you "The Haak Plan provides that if you draft young men to fight a future war, then you must also draft the money of Ihe men too old to go, to pay for it." "How would it "When a man became '10 years old, ho would register for a wealth draft. His peak earning years are from 40 to 53, just as the peak physical years of a young man are Jfl to 26. A lottery would be held and Iho man would be assigned a number accord- ing to his birthday. Those will] low num- bers would have to turn over nil their money to the government to finance tha war. "Those with high numbers could go about their lives just as young men wilh high draft, numbers iihnul I heir business witliouf fear of being railed up." "Would you have drnfl 1 asked. Hank replied. "They would bo composed of young men under the age o[ "Why young I "Well, you have older men sending oil young men to die in a war, so you should have young men deciding who must give their money to pay for it. The draft board could give exemptions in hardship cases and deal with conscientious objectors." "By conscientious objectors you mean those who refuse to give money to a war because it's against their "Yes, exactly, If a man can prove he is a serious conscientous objector, we would let him donate his wealth to a hospital or an educational institution." "What about men over 40 who would flee to Canada to avoid having their money "The Haak Plan does not provide for am- nesty. We think its the patriotic duty of every American to proudly serve his coun- try, if not with his Ixxly, then wilh his for- tune." "How much of his Haak said. "When we draft young men we ask them to give up everything, don't "It sounds like a crazy I said. "No crazier than what we've been doing for in ycnrs. Had the Haak Plan been in effect when we [irst got into Vietnam, Ihe howls of the money draftees would have been heard from Maine to California, Pic- lure, if you will, millions of well-dressed men in their 40s descending on Washington demanding Ihe president and Congress to end the war. How long do you Ihlnk any politician could survive if the country were drafting the entire wealth of its middle-ago "Not very I' admitted. Haak said, "Kcncling young people off to undeclared war is a thing people don't like, hul will put up with, nut drafting (.ho fortunes of the men who stay at home ts something nobody In this country will lolcr- alc for very long." (The Los Angolcn Times) By Maurice Western, FP Publications Ottawa tuimncnlalor election of 1972, apparently the closest in our history, will fascinate polit- ical scientists who may be ex- pected to analyse the results with care; to appraise the cam- paign generally; and to ex- plain, as best they can, the be- havior of the nation's voters. Some leading political figures have already come to grips with the subject. The prime minister, who is usually rather deliberate in such matters, did not wait for the dust to settle; indeed, he made his contribu- tion before it had even begun to gather. In a final comment in Toronto, he discussed his own approach to the campaign and observed: "We've been fighting the media and I think the media have been lighting us." It is certainly true that Mr. Trudeau did not mesmerize the press, radio and television com- munity in the manner of 1968. This may be explained in part by the gap between anticipa- tions and a four year record. In addition, the prime minister was seldom al pains to conceal his limited rcgardi for the press and was sometimes abrasive in his dealings with reporters. But Mr. Trudeau at Toronto was apparently not accusing Hie media of partisan miscon- duct. Examination of the news columns is unlikely to show that the government went short of coverage or that reporters suppressed tidings favorable to it, such as the repeated surveys revealing the hopelessness Mr. Slanfield's efforts. The message, read in con- text, was quite different. In Mr. Trudeau's view, the media failed in its mission. News- papermen either failed to grasp or declined to accept Ihe new concept of an election as a con- versation between the prime minister and Canadians. What they did was to emphasize po- litical battle. It was in this sense that ministers found themselves fighting the media. It will be recalled that, in the earlier case of the Official Lan- guages Act, the newspapers also failed in their mission as Mr. Trudeau pointed out al the time. The difficulty is that the press cannot accepl instruction in such matters from prune ministers while al Ihe same time asserting Ihe role of inde- pendence expected by the pub- lic. If newspaper reporters em- phasized political bailie, Ihe ob- vious explanation is that Cana- dians have always looked on elections as battles, taking some pride in the monly noted by they are fought here with bal- lots instead of bullets. There were comploints in the Trudeau years that the govern- ment was at limes impatient of debates in Parliament. The most reasonable answer to this is, presumably, thai debate must necessarily be limited to some extent and that it is open lo an aggrieved Opposition to carry dispuled issues lo Ihe country for a final accounting. But how is there to be such an accounting if reporters divert their eyes from issues, which involve battle, and concentrate on conversations, however eng- aging these may be? The dust had scarcely begun to dissipate when Gerard Pelle- tier, well known as an avanl- garde thinker, pron o u n c cd judgment on Ihe behavior of the voting population. In his simple summation, the rich had taken umbrage at the govern- ment's share-lhe-wealth policies and had voted down the poor. Until David Lewis emerged as NDP leader, few Canadians had even begun to appreciate the number of corporate bums loose in this country. But Mr. Pelletier has done betler. II is clear to him that the rich are behind every bush. As a glance at the popular, anti-government vote will show, they have been multiplying like rabbits, thus demonstrating the truth of Ihe government's otherwise rather irrelevent slogan, The Land is Strong. While Mr. Pelletier's analysis may be helpful lo some mil- lions of taxpayers, in- sufficiently conscious until now of their own affluence, it is open to objection on at least one point. The proposition is that the rich, in their selfish hordes, begrudge aid to tho poor as arranged by the present government. There is much more evidence in cam- paign reports that people who work begrudge higher taxes di- rected in part to people who do not choose lo work. If Mr. Pellelier cannot see this distinction, it can only be concluded lhal he has fallen too much under the influence of his colleague, Eryce Mackasey. The careful polilical scientist will also give due weighl lo Ihe explanation of Monday's events offered by a defeated minister, Martin O'Connell. In his inter- pretation, things went wrong because "an irnlable, grouchy, small conservative mood crepl over the country." Tliis is much more per- suasive. There is latent grouchiness in the country al almost any lime. What has not been examined, however, is the impact of the election laws in limes such as Ihese on Ihe na- tion's temper. According to reports, the weather was generally favor- able on Monday morning, as it often is when the week-end is over. The mood of volers may not al Ihe outset have been par- ticularly ominous, But Ihe great rush develops laler in Ihe day. Wilh four hours permillcd for ballol-easting, citizens normally do Ihcir shopping first, slopping off at Ihe poll on the way home. In the present price situation, there is nothing like a visit to a supermarket lo bring on irrita- bilily and grouchiness. Thus Mr. O'Connell's inter- pretation appears on its face the best of the three. All of them, however, have one de- fect. They do nol explain tho utterly opposing tides In tho two sections of the country. Quebec, unlike the other provinces, appreciates the art of conversation. In Quebec, and only in Quebec, the though numerous in places like an ex- emplary altilude towards the poor. In Quebec alone, citizens emerge from Ihe supermarkets radiating benevolence and good cheer. It has long been known that Quebec is not a province like Ihe others; possibly Mr. Pelletier, when he has had time for mature refleclion, will assist the political scientists by ex- plaining why. By Jam Kamienski, in The Winnipeg Tribune Conservative trend detected throughout the world By James Rcslon, New York Timei commentator WASHINGTON These are hard days on liberal democracy and charismatic leaders. Sel- dom a week goes by without news of some conservative comeback or triumph some- where in the world, or the re- vival of nationalism and pro- tectionism. The startling success of the Conservatives in Canada and the decline of the Liberals under their flamboyant intellectual leader, Pierre Elliott Trudeau, is only the latest evidence of a worldwide swing to the right. It is by no means general. Chile, for example, has elected the Marxist government ever voted into office in this hemisphere. Also, all ideologi- cal parties are modifying their traditional views so sharply that the old terms of conservative, liberal, and socialist now have little precise meaning in prac- tical politics. Nevertheless, though each na- tion has its own unique set of problems and reasons for politi- cal change, there seems to he some kind of trend or at least tendency toward the more con- servative parties. In Europe, even Chancellor Willy Brandt, probably the most attractive and innovative politi- cal leader on the continent, is having trouble keeping his So- cial Democrats in power in West Germany. On the other band, Prime Minister Edward Heath and his Conservatives, despite all their economic troubles and battles with the unions in Britain, seem io have a good chance of holding their own, and President Pom- pidou of France, successor to Charles De Gaulle's political philosophy of authority and cen- tralized control, is favored to win re-election next year. Meanwhile, the colonels main- tain their dictatorial control over the home of democracy in Greece. In Asia, the swing to the right is much more dramatic. South Vietnam retains a few demo- cratic forms but fills the jails with its political opponents and disobedient journalists, and South Korea and the Philip- pines, the other states that have ccme under American demo- cratic influence, have just gone under martial law. Even Japan, reacting to Pres- ident Nixon's new economic pol- icy, his opening to China, and liis promised withdrawal from direct military intervention in the affairs of Asia, is taking a more conservative, independent, and nationalistic view of its af- fairs under Premier Kakuei Tanaka. The United Stales seems to be going in the same general direc- tion in next Tuesday's elec- tion. It would probably be wrong to say that the re-election of President Nixon marked a swing to the right. In compari- son with the policies he ottered Book review the American people four years ago, ho has been going to the left ever since, but compared with the policies offered the country by Senator George McGovern, the American voters seem determined to choose the more conservative of the and probably by a very large margin. Moreover, the American cam- paign has been fought out large- ly on the issue of who could get out of Vietnam faster, and pro- vide the most prosperity and security for the American peo- ple. McGovern has devoted a great New look at marriage "Opun Marriage" by Nina O'Neill and George O'Neill (McClelland and Stewart Lim- ited, 288 pages-) QPEN MARRIAGE is a new look al marriage wilhin Ihe old trappings. The alteralions suggested by Nina and George O'Neill are altiludmal ralher lhan physical. The married couple can still have their wed- ding and their license, they don't have to take a trial run, and they live together as a two- some. But, with a lot of work, the couple in an open marriage can gain a relaledness to one another, (a personal and mu- tual commitment that would nol bind or constrict their growth) as well as freedom. The O'Neills cover many fac- ets of life (bat can be trouble points in any relationship honest communication, granting of privacy, Ibe need for flexi- bility in masculine and femin- ine roles, trust, jealousy, equal- ity and relcnlion of one's iden- tity. This is a very different look at Ihe problems of marriage and, if its slay al Ihe lop of the best seller list, is any indication of Ihe reception II's had, it Is n very welcome chnngc. It isn'l a book lo be lightly passed over. Slurly it. JUDI WALKER deal of time and energy to tha charge that the Nixon admini- stration has steadily weakened the civil liberties of the people and even debased the demo- cratic election process by the use of corruption, espionage and sabotage, but there is not much evidence that his appeals to the principles of literal democracy have had anything like the ef- fect he expected. Even in the midst of the most sustained campaign against the first amendment rights of a free press ia the last 50 years, the American newspapers have urged the re- election of the president by more than 600 to 38. No doubt the explanation rf this tendency toward conser- vatism differs from country to country. In Canada, for ex- ample, it could be argued thai Trudeau declined precisely be- cause he took an arrogant alii- tilde toward the people's Parlia- ment, whereas Nixon has slcad- ily increased his power at the expense of the congress and has seen his popularity rise with his power. Thus, in recent yeara them has been a tendency to agree with James Madison that "dem- ocracies have ever been spec- tacles of turbulence and con- tention and to put greater pbasis on the need for more auditorily rather than for more individual freedom. Often in limes past, (he pcopfo have lumed in periods of great stress to eloquent and charis- matic men, but with Tnidcau and Brandt in trouble, most of the great personalities of world politics seem to be passing from Ihe scene nnd the rising men arc the. efficient political man- agers (lie Heaths, Pompidous, BrdhneYS, Tann- kas who spenk of authority, efficiency, and the security of life al home. "Frederick never'wavered throughout the election staunchly undecided." By Lin Norrli, in The Vancouver Sun The Lcthbridgc Herald 50-1 7lh St. S., Lclhbridgc, Alberta LETHBRIDGE HERALD 10. Proprietors and Publlshcri Published 1905 195J, by Hon. W. A. BUCHANAN Second Class Mali Renlslrollon No. 0012 Mlmhpr of lhi> Canadian Prr-st and Ihp Canadian Dally Newspaper PublllhBri' Asioclflllon and (ho Audll Dtirfnu of circulation! CLEO W. MOWERS, Editor and Punllshir THOMAS H. ADAMS, General Mnnanor DON PILLINO WILLIAM HAY Mananlno Editor AssocHle Edllor ROY t MILI-S DOUOLAi K. WALKER AdvBrllilnu Manager editorial Parjo Edllor "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH" ;