Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - October 4, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 LETHBRIDQE HERALD Friday, October 4, 1974 ALS The latest Japanese import If reports of a recent Ottawa conversa- tion between Premier Tanaka of Japan and Prime Minister Trudeau are ac- curate, the next Japanese import into Canada may be pollution. Or, to put it another way, the latest Canadian resources to be made available to the Japanese may be clean air, clean water and unpolluted land. There is no reason to believe that the news reports are not accurate, since they originate with Ivan Head, Trudeau's new foreign policy adviser, who was present at the two hour meeting between the two heads of state. Mr Trudeau reported- ly invited Japanese industry to come to Canada and build factories that would "strain the limited space, energy resources and manpower available in Japan, while contributing to that country's severe pollution problem." And the Japanese are now said to be "ex- amining energy absorbing, pollution yielding enterprises that might be on Canadian soil." To say the least, this incredible, seemingly carte blanche invitation, published in the foreign press (New York and is embarrassing. It is es- pecially embarrassing to those Canadians who had thought that the awareness of the value of the environ- ment had finally come of age in Canada. To say the next least, the ramifications of the invitation are manifold. Is Cana- dian air for sale? Is it the official at- titude of the federal government that pollution cannot be controlled, only shared? This is akin to the official at- titude towaro inflation that one must learn to live it since it is an inter- national problem and calls for inter- national soluticns. If this is really the official attitude of the -federal government, it should be debated in Parliament as a matter of national concern. And it would be interesting to know what Alberta Liberal leader Nick Taylor thinks about this policy. There can be no doubt that Japan has pollution problems but whether Canadian generosity should extend to offering a home for some of that pollu- tion is at least debatable. If the federal government, in its sweeping invitation; is assuming that en- vironmental controls are the respon- sibility of the provinces and it is simply paving the way for economic opportunity which they can reject or accept as they see fit, this also should be debated on Parliament Hill, since there are those who feel that environment should be a national concern. In the meantime, Mr. Head's candid remarks put great importance on provin- cial attitudes toward pollution and great emphasis on provincial regulations and provincial enforcement policies. On being considerate Life in crowded urban societies can be difficult unless the utmost consideration is exercised for one another. Awareness of this has led to a number of laws seek- ing to restrain the irritants imposed, usually unwittingly, on others. Thus there are laws governing the level of noise, against trespassing, restricting the use of guns, covering behavior influenced by use of alcohol and other drugs, and latterly, prohibiting smoking in designated areas. Most of these laws are difficult to en- force. The police cannot be everywhere and neighbors do not like to be in- formers. Still, the passing of such laws can have the salutary effect of jolting the careless into a realization of the offen- siveness of their behavior. A posted hospital area restricting smoking could serve to remind the smoker that his habit is obnoxious in other situations as well. Consideration for others ultimately depends, doubtless, on the kind of train- ing received at home and school. A ma- jor reason for the current questioning of emphasis on individualism doing one's own thing with its attendant climate of permissiveness, is the fear that society may come unstuck as a consequence. In the long run the ability to do one's thing is dependent upon the tolerance of others which in turn is dependent upon the ex- pression of 'mutual consideration. The state of near-anarchy that exists in some homes and in some classrooms and school assemblies does not bode well for the individuals who are being reared in it or for the society into which those in- dividuals will be injected. The imposition of restraint upon the inclination of students to talk through a teacher's instruction or to make bored noises in an assembly has positive implications. It is the kind of necessary training for being considerate and receiving consideration in the total environment in which the in- dividual lives. RUSSELL BAKER Hard times among the mighty Poverty is bursting out all over. Italy is bankrupt and Britain is shopping for loans among sandy emirs she once dismissed with a show of the Union Jack and a taste of the grape. France is in such penury that she is about to scuttle the majestic oceanliner which bears her name, a step not far removed from offering the Mona Lisa to a pawn broker. Former president Nixon is in such harsh straits that the Congress has agreed to give him about to get set- tled in California. Nelson Rockefeller has told Congress that he is worth only million, an admission that will change his life forever once its full import has been ab- sorbed by his creditors. For the first time, now that the scantiness of his capital is known. Rockefeller will be hearing from the demon credit manager of Lord Taylor when his bill becomes two months overdue. Con- solidated Edison will start sending in those warnings about discontinuance of ser- vice which the rest of us have been getting for years whenever we forget our monthly tribute. None of these financial shortfalls present an insoluble problem. There is ample money in the world, but at present it is badly distributed. The problem is to bnng the ex- cess money to the places of need The solution to Italian bankruptcy is not difficult. Italy would make a splendid acquisition for one of the giant multi-national conglom- erates whose holdings already so vast that Jhey are larger than most of the world's nations. ITT, for example, could easily incorporate Italy into its Sheraton chain, thus becoming the first conglomerate to own a grand canal, a forum of the Caesars and the Mafia in one neat package the Sheraton Italy. France can preserve at least a wisp of her maritime glory if, instead of taking her great ocean liner out of ser- vice, she leases it until times get better and it can once again sail the Atlantic under the Tricolor. The McDonald's hamburger chain would surely grasp at the opportunity to have the France permanently anchored in Manhattan under the world's greatest golden arch and might even honor the glory of Gallic cuisine by creating a lucky Pierreburger to sell with its Big Mac line. Would it not, moreover, give new meaning to french fries? Britain can be saved by the CIA, which has money galore to pump into foreign countries for the purpose of subverting governments. The paltry millions disbursed by the CIA in Chile to subvert the AUende government would have to be multiplied many times ovei to overturn a government as stable as Britain's In the process Britain would once again hear the rustle of foreign exchange flowing through the treasury and taste again the pleasures of blackballing an Arab at the racquet club. Congress would surely be quick to fund CIA export of subversion to our English cousins It is not that Congress likes the British, but that it Joves the CIA and Prof Kissinger so profoundly that it invariably delivers the cash with no questions asked. Moreover, unlike Chile, Bri- tain would not be affected by having its government overthrown, since it makes no -difference who governs Britain. Heath and Wilson, Wilson and Heath. Rockefeller's and Nixon's financial problems are relatively easily solved. All that is required is President Ford's resignation, which he may already be in a mood to submit after a full month's taste of the joys of the presidency. If he is not, however. Gen. Haig and Prof. Kissinger can surely talk him into it by alerting him to the distress Rockefeller is suffer- ing under the humiliating dunning of Lord Taylor and Consolidated Edison. With Ford's resignation. Rockefeller would become president. No creditor would dare press him then, to come across with his limited capital. He might even ac- quire banker friends knowledgeable about Florida real estate to help him put a little padding on his million. Installed as president. Rockefeller could then ap- point Nixon as vice president it is constitutional- ly feasible, since Nixon could legally succeed to the presidency The 22nd amend- ment limiting presidents to two terms states that "no person shall be elected" presi- dent more than twice There is no prohibition against becoming president a dozen times by the appointment route Once back in Washington as vice-president, Nixon's 000 shortfall of moving to California expenses would be eliminated, and with the world's more immediate financial problems solved, he and President Rockefeller could tackle the high price of milk Spinola loses By David Martin, London Observer commentator I wouldn't mind it signifying nothing, if only it was full of sound and fury." Laissez-faire approach By W. A. Wilson, Montreal Star commentator OTTAWA-The Speech from the Throne reveals that the government is holding close to the laissez faire course in dealing with infla- tion which it adopted about a year ago but everything possi- ble was included to obscure that fundamental decision. The government's policy is one of the tenable approaches to our present economic prob- lems. The members of the cabinet are entitled to claim that the public voted in favor of what they are doing. Nonetheless, .it continues to seem certain to me that a great many people feel the need of a sense of direction, or leadership, during very uncer- tain and troubled times. There is nothing in the gov- ernment's opening statement of its policies which could convey this sense of leadership, the feeling that things are under control. There is a reason for this. A hard, blunt statement of the true policy would have been acceptable. That would have involved a declaration that while anything possible will be done to relieve hardship, this inflation will have to run its course and that there are no shortcuts around it. Given the way they voted in the election, there does not seem to be much doubt that most Canadians have accepted that. The hard, honest line, how- ever, is not compatible with the window-dressing the speech contains, all the little elements that are there to ob- scure the real approach. The nation is told, for instance, that the first objective in deal- ing with inflation is to increase supply and that, of course, has been the finance minister's position ever since the sharp rise in prices began. Then, however, the speech cites increased food pro- duction as the first example of this goal and it becomes down- right dishonest at that point. Food production, the government declares, will be improved through stabiliza- tion of farmers' and fishermens" incomes and markets. The purpose of market stabilization, however, is precisely not to allow the ordinary forces of supply and demand to operate, which would bring down prices as supply improves. It is the exact opposite: to pre- vent the operation of the sup- ply and demand factor and to prevent prices from falling. The government's policy is, in fact, to keep food prices high. The minister of agriculture, Mr. Whelan, has been telling us this on every conceivable occasion for more than a year. He is telling the truth and his policies support his claims. The example of the eggs is notorious. The imposi- tion of a severe quota on beef imports to sustain price levels has received somewhat less publicity. Canada held grain off the international market, even prior to the interruption of the shipping flow by in order to keep the price up. The' emphasis on restraint in government spending is no more than a very elaborate way of saying that the ministry and its advisers see no need to stimulate demand at the present time. That, however, is as far as they go because the budget contains the firm assurance that nothing will be done to de- flate the economy deliber- ately. The NDP's house leader, Ed Broadbent, has dif- ficulty accepting this because he wants to fight a battle on the grounds of deflation. All the signs are, however, that he will have to accept different fighting ground a laissez-faire economic policy rather than the deliberate management which would be involved in a deflation. Although insiders have claimed it has little priority, the speech promises a return of the anti-profiteering legislation tentatively put forward in the last Parlia- ment and promises that it will ensure that "unacceptable profit levels are not being realized." We are at the point, though, when a far higher level of political honesty is re- quired in dealing with the question of profits. The behind our present high level of prosperi- ty is the capita! investment boom. Much of the expansion of plant and equipment it in- volves is essential to the long term improvement in supply the government is seeking. The economy is at the threshold where financing this investment will become a far more severe problem than any issue of profits. The stock market collapse has made equity financing impossible. No one can say how long this problem will continue. Long term debt financing is made exceeding expensive by the present level of interest. This leaves, as sources of finance for the investment boom, whatever capital is generated within a corporation coupled with whatever level of bank credit it can secure. The sec- ond is a function of the first. There is only one rational way to look at profits. That is over a time-span of several years. After a surge earlier this year, the prospect is that corporate profits will be squeezed in the next 12 months or so. So far as the members of the NDP are genuine socialists they can, pre- sumably, attack profits in good faith. Members of the other political parties need to remember that a healthy level of profits is indispensible to the successful operation of this economy. The time for playing to the gallery is over. Costly transportation proposals played their part in the election campaign and since then the government has been backing off. The speech maintains that freight rates should be based on "competi- tion among alternate modes of transportation in areas where there is effective com- petition." We have heard this for years. If the government ever reaches the point where it ac- tually does believe in that principle, instead of seeing it as something to pay some lip service to, it would then have some action to take. It would have to cause both railways, its own and the CPR, to divest themselves of their trucking companies and their airlines. In the past, both railways have deliberately sought to buy up competition from alternate modes of transport or to keep it under their ownership from the begin- ning. For all Jean Marchand's talk, the idea that a Liberal government would make the CP empire give up its profit- making trucking operations is absurd. This throne speech is badly marred by double-talk, and I am afraid a good deal of double-think behind that. It becomes hopeless to seek reflections of leadership in it. LISBON With his resigna- tion President Antonio Spinola of Portugal has lost a long ideological battle with the movement of the armed forces which reluctantly brought him to power. Other confrontations are yet to come, but it is encouraging that he has been succeeded by the original choice of the movement for presidency General Costa Gomes. The immediate cause of Spinola's departure in what he calls "the climate of anarchy" lies in Lisbon's weekend of political crisis; but only one side of this story has so far been heard. Ac- cording to young officers of the movement, a coup d'etat was planned by rightwingers, some of them protesting loyal- ty to Spinola, who had been storing arms, indulging in economic sabotage and creating an emotional climate of tension. So the movement surrounded the presidential palace with tanks, took over the national radio and ordered newspapers to suspend publication. A sniper's rifle with telescopic sights is said to have been found in a house opposite the home of the prime minister, Brigadier Vasco Goncalves and seven men were arrested there. Estimates of the right- wingers who have been detain- ed vary from 70 to more than 300. The focal point of the crisis was a right-wing rally scheduled for Saturday by the self-styled "Silent Majority" which General Spinola, under pressure from the movement and provisional government headed by Brigadier Gon- calves, a movement nominee, was forced to cancel. The term "Silent Majority" is completely misleading. It represents minority capitalist interests who are clearly threatened by next March's first democratic elections in 50 years, when the Communist and Socialist parties should win many seats. The first point to get into perspective about Portugal's political difficulties is that the movement of the armed forces never intended that General Spinola should become president after the coup. Gomes was supposed to become head of state, and General Spinola the com- mander of the armed forces. But many details of the coup plan went wrong: the squad sent to arrest Dr. Caetano missed him, and when he was found in the barracks of the National Guard he insisted on surrendering to Gener.al Spinola a condition the movement was forced to accept to avoid a bloodbath. General Spinola was not directly involved in the coup but, like General Costa Gomes, he knew about the plan. Before he be- came president, Spinola was opposing the young offi- cers on a number of crucial issues; for instance he struck the right to independence for African colonies out of their program before it was made public. Gradually Spinola was forc- ed to back down. He recogniz- ed the right to independence in Africa. With clear ill grace, he accepted Guinea Bissau's independence. The East African colony of Mozambi- que, despite his objection, is on the way to independence on June 25 next year under a transitional government dominated by the guerrilla movement, Frelimo. But Spinola had succeeded in blocking the Cape Verde islands in the Atlantic from attaining independence simultaneously with Guinea Bissau. Although he said before resigning that a referendum would be held to determine their future, his foes insisted that the elected members of a new National Assembly would .decide whether the islanders wanted full independence or federa- tion with the mainland. When Portugal's first provisional government resigned three months ago and the movement insisted on Brigadier Goncalves as the new prime minister, General Spinola lost another round. He had wanted a referendum to endorse his position and tougher government controls. Each new test of strength affected General Spinola's personal prestige, especially last weekend's crisis in which he was clearly identified with the Right. The young officers of the movement are erroneously cast as left-wing and a few may be; but the majority at the centre of the -movement includes monarchists and 'conservatives. General Spinola wanted to increase press censorship, ban strikes, enhance his own power and disband the move- ment co-ordinating com- mittee. The movement believ- ed that if it allowed this to happen, its promises of democracy would not be carried out and the elections in March would be called off. Many of the members of the movement not only believed that it was a disaster to ap- point Spinola; they also believed that if real disaster was to be averted, he had to be removed. They feared that he would take Portugal back to a dictatorship ruling in the interests of the capitalist interests. Now that he is out, the outlook for Portugal's five-month experiment in democracy can only be viewed as uncertain and dangerous. LETTERS TO THE Poisoning serious A number of dogs have been poisoned lately in Lethbridge. Most of the poisoning has been done by meat bap full of bones indiscriminately covered with strychnine, either thrown in a private back or front yard where any cat, dog or child can get them. I live right across from Agnes Davidson school. Children play and wrestle on my front lawn on their way to and from school. My guest's dog picked up enough strychnine right out on these same front lawns to "kill an ox" as the veterinarian said. Children could get this poison on their hands and into their mouths too. A baby had been out creeping on one of these lawns the same night as the poison killed the dog Parents should check their yards, both back and front, for meat containers of bones or weiners. before they allow their children out. This could be serious. KAY REDDING Lethbridge Musicians face loss During the past week Southern Alberta musical circles have suffered a severe blow occasioned by the un- timely passing of well known violinist and teacher. Odd Bentscn. While it would be presump- tuous of me to purport to represent Mr. Bentsen's numerous students and musical associates, I want to record my personal appreciation, and that of his many friends in the Lethbridge Symphony Orchestra, for his long and successful contribution to the development of violin playing within the Lethbridge distrct The community is grateful. LUC1EN NEEDHAM Professor of Music, U. of L. Lelhbndge Symphony Orchestra Conductor The Lethbridge Herald 504 Ttti St S Alberta LETHBRIDGE HERALD CO. LTD Proprietors and PdWWhers Second Class Mad Registration No 0042 CLEO MOWERS. and Publisher OONH PJLUNO Managing Editor DONALD R DORAM Manager ftOY F MILES Advertising Manager DOUGLAS K WALKCfl Editorial Page ROBEflT M FEMTON Circulation Manager KENNETH SABNETT Busmess Manager "Congratulations, I see you've found the one yon shot last vear." "THE HERALD SERVES THE SOUTH"