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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - October 16, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta TuMday, October 16, 1973-THE LETHBRIDQE HERALD-5 How fares the NDP government in B.C.? By a Herald special correspondent VICTORIA, B.C. After a year of office, the New Democratic government of British Columbia is clearly the most radical, socialistic and expensive in Canada's history. Unlike its poorer contemporaries of Manitoba and Saskatchewan, it is also the only government to apply socialism in any rich, sophisticated area of North America, with results yet un- foreseeable but certainly profound. Now in its first real working session of the provincial legislature here, the govern- ment already has altered the society of the third-largest Canadian province drastically and perhaps permanently. And all this, says the young, euphoric Premier David Barrett, is no more than a beginning. The social reform program (as he modestly calls it) includes, so far, a government monopoly of automobile in- surance and plans, not specifically coined, to extend the scheme into other in- surance business such as fire and even life; a huge northward extension of the government-owned British BERRY'S WORLD Columbia Railway; public ownership of two major and several minor forest in- dustries; a state corporation to control the natural gas in- dustry and probably operate some sectors of it; a farmers' contributory insurance system to guarantee them minimum incomes in years of poor crops or low prices; a vast expansion of social welfare and all branches of the civil service. No other Canadian government, federal or provincial, has ever bitten off so much in a single year, but can even the affluent economy of British Columbia chew it? That question will not be answered for some time yet. At the moment the government, riding a boom which it acquired from its Social Credit predecessor, has almost an embarrassment of revenue, though the exact figures must remain unknown until Mr. Barrett, his own finance minister, brings down his second budget next spring. Meanwhile he says only that the current budget is still in handsome surplus. Trained as a social worker, he seems to have learned 1973 b, NEA, Inc. "Do prices ever go something about finance and apparently has started to grapple with economics. At least he has understood, and publicly admitted, the obvious fact that British Columbia's current prosperity results from a general North American boom which, he warns, may not continue indefinitely. Moreover, he sees the danger of inflation, and his policies have greatly stimulated it. In an interval of candor he once proposed that the federal government un- dertake a system of total wage-profit-price control. After this advice was flatly rejected by his NDP colleagues in Parliament, he ceased to talk about it. But he has seen some of inflation's damage at first hand. A recent illegal strike on the government's ferries forced it to grant average wage increases of 15 per cent when the responsible minister, Robert Strachan, pleaded that he had found "a gun at my head." Himself a veteran labor unionist, Mr. Strachan was shocked by this experience and said he would his support of the government's plan to allow all civil servants to strike. Mr. Barrett quickly corrected that heretical suggestion and an- nounced that the plan would not be withdrawn but fully im- plemented, shortly, in a new labor law. Here the government faces its basic political dilemma. Depending mainly on the labor unions for its election, with a minority of the popular vote, and depending on them even more for re-election, how can it resist any of their demands in both private and and public industry? What happens if strikes interrupt vital services when Mr. Barrett has promised that the government will never intervene in such disputes well, almost never, he has lately added? As for private business, it is baffled by the government's long-term intentions. What taxes must the great forest and mining industries pay in the end? What additional cor- porations will the government socialize? And under its ex- ploding wage costs, how long can a provincial economy bas- ed primarily on exports re- main competitive in Canadian and foreign markets? Mr. Barrett replies that business has no reason for alarm. He has reassured in- dustrialists at home and ardently wooed the money men of Wall Street where he urged them to invest in his province. This gesture of friendship for American capital could hardly have pleased the xenophobic David Lewis, but Mr. Barrett does not worry much about his friends in Ottawa. He is playing his own game and, as his worst enemies ad- mit, playing it so shrewdly that he can reasonably hope for a second term of power which he richly enjoys, along with an annual salary of more than the Cana- dian prime minister's, the historic socialist doctrine of equality be damned. Besides, Mr. Barrett has luck, the essential ingredient of success in politics. His op- position is split three ways, the Conservative party vir- tually dead after the byelec- Book reviews Travelling the Yukon "Drifting Home" by Pierre Berton (McClelland Stewart, 174 Doubtless detractors of Pierre Berton will pan this book for its nostalgia and sen- timentality but, as an admirer of the author, I read it without embarrassment. It is true that Pierre Berton writes about the members of his family with obvious affec- tion and relates with relish things said and done by them that are scarcely immortal. But it is refreshing that a man of the world is so unabashedly fond of his wife and children and so unfettered by the inhibitions of sophisticated society that he can delight in the nonsense of campfire skits and boat banter. In the summer of 1972 the author, his wife, their seven children, the author's nephew, a daughter's boyfriend, a guide and his wife and a helper journied from Bennett, B.C to Dawson in the Yukon Territory along the Yukon River, the route of the 1898 Klondike goldrush. Berton's father had been among those early gold-seekers and Pierre spent his childhood in Daw- son Having written an im- mensely successful story of A lot of people have been drinking your whisky. The 8 people in this photograph can stop production at Tradition s distillery. And not even the President can budge them. It is no joke There are 3 teams of people at Tradition's distillery and they have almost legendary power. The power of taste. With it they can stop cases of whisky from ever reaching you You see, we have spent a lot of time and money getting Tradition to taste the way it does. Smooth, mellow. As we say "so Canadian you can taste But making a great whisky once, is no great feat. Most Canadian distilleries make very good whisky. The problem is making great whisky, day after day Bottle after bottle. Sip after sip. Pity the single blender. At schemey we think ,rs inhuman to give one man the responsibility of deciding on the maintenance of whisky, day after day. The food he eats, his personality, his habits all contrioute in some ways to his perception of taste. And a certain taste is not something you can tap with a hammer You can't see taste. You can't feel taste. You can only taste taste. And this is why Schenley has developed the 3-team method of whisky tasting. The First Second Team and the Training Team. Not one drop of Schenley Tradition can reach you until it has passed the critical palates of our taste teams. Not a drop. It does not matter if a production man howls about schedules. It does not matter if an execu- tive says through clenched teeth, "it's close If it isn't passed, it isn't Tradition. Pictured here are some of our First Team members as of March 15th, 1973. Each member has earned his position by recording consis- tently high averages in taste tests. But none is secure. In the wings, members of the Second Team wait. And be- hind them, a team of rookies practice The Training Team. All of this effort, is based on the fact that we believe Tradition is a great-tasting whisky. And we'd like to keep it that way. This whiskj has passed the tests ol Ihc Schenli'> Tr.tditmn T.iste Twins .inH IH t'uaranteei! to earn the true Tradition tasto i T.isli-d approved signed by theap pooplp Schenley Distilleries No other Canadian whisky is signed as Behind the label of each bottle of Schenley Tradition, you'll find the signatures of the two teams, who approved that particular blend of whisky. It means you're about to enjoy Tradition. Not something close to it. We think you'll enjoy Schenley Tradition. Probably the most thoroughly taste-tested wh isky in the country. Schenley Ihutition. signed by 2 teams. TRADITION tion defeat and resignation of its leader, the Liberal party, with only five elected members, rapidly getting nowhere, and the once reg- nant Social Credit machine of W. A. C. Bennett in ruins. While conceivably a prac- tical alternative to the government will emerge before the election of 1976, up to now it is only a gleam in Mr. Bennett's nostalgic eye. He has successfully bequeath- ed his own constituency of South Okanagan to his son, William, and made him the heir-apparent, to be crowned, if all goes well, at a party convention in November. But the younger Bennett, inheriting his father's horror of "the socialist has a lot to learn, a long furror to plow. And as he learns, it is plain that Mr. Barrett is effecting not superficial but deep organic changes in British Columbia's life an omelet difficult for any future government to unscramble. Do we really want to know? By Eva Brewster, local writer COUTTS If Watergate has achieved nothing else, it has certainly had the unfor- tunate result of turning most people into skeptics. It is a well documented fact that the huge web of CIA counter insurgency measures cover all continents from Australia to Asia, India and the Middle East to Africa. Nor is Latin America with its volatile, unstable political systems exempted. The U.S. never made a secret of her anger at Chile's Presi- dent Salvadore Allende's socialist measures which dealt indisputable blows to U.S. in- terests. It is therefore hard to believe the fee- ble protests of a senator who does "not think the U.S. had anything to do with the military take-over in Chile" or, for that matter, the junta's statement that the Chilean revolution was "purely a domestic issue without any ex- ternal involvement." Although Canada is not often mentioned in connection with CIA protectionist activities, it is hard not to be suspicious that such ac- tivities do take place within or around our borders. The recent Toronto Star story of revelations on American troops along the Quebec border and CIA involvement during the Quebec crisis although denied now cannot, therefore, be dismissed lightly. Mr. Trudeau's amused public declaration that he "was not aware of CIA involvement or troop on the border" could remind cynics of Presi- dent Nixon's less jocular assurances that he was not aware of any part of the Watergate affair or the American senator's unconvinc- ing denial of U.S. involvement in Chile. Watergate has taught many lessons and one that cannot be ignored is the harm it has done to the American image and prestige all over the world. Whatever the outcome of that en- quiry, it cannot return us to "Paradise lost" nor can it restore innocent faith in politicians' and governments' honesty and integrity anywhere. Without being cynical, it must be admitted that for every governmental and political deception discovered, there are in- numerable others which never become public knowledge. The best one can hope for is that, in Canada at least, any secret kept from the public or any truth denied is in the interest of the country as a whole and not for the sake of political power. If we can no longer believe that, we might as well give up hope in democracy. Neither the Liberal government with its precarious hold on leadership nor any of the opposition parties can afford an enquiry (which may be costly in more than just a material sense) into something that "might have been All parties have to cope with enough problems and issues that are actually threatening us right here and now. Mill! Si In 'I I'y I liVin. f i lir III i 'hi .'illli Ann u i Mli ;