Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 4, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta
September 4, 1973 THE UTHBRIDGE HERALD 5 There are some virtues in inequality By Bruce Whitestone, syndicated commentator In Canada some nine per cent of all families and unat- tached individuals collect 25 per cent of total personal in- come. At the other end of the scale 26 per cent had to make do with seven per cent. Per consumer units, the prosperous nine per cent at the top had 11 times more than their less suc- cessful countrymen at the bot- tom. These hard facts call for some hard thinking. We have made great strides in our country toward political equality and we have made a good advance towards a class- less society. Practically nobody in Oanada thinks of himself as belonging to the proletariat. Tie French Canadian more and more is taking his right- ful place in Canadian society and in the economy. How then do we reconcile economic in- equality with our belief in polit- ical equality? If a man rates one soul and one vote, why should he be worth varying amounts in dollars? For partial answer, we can truthfully say that the real dif- ferences are not so big as they look in Statistics Canada. The actual figures present a dis- torted picture: the gap in liv- ing standards is much smaller than the gap in incomes. The cash income in rural Canada, among the lowest paid group, does not mean that actual liv- ing standards there are that much below those who com- mand higher incomes in urban areas. Second, many with low incomes are the elderly whose cash requirements are relative- ly small. Finally, many in the lou-income category are the young, unattached adults who are just starting their careers. Yet the fact remains that the rs WORLD "Forget knockin' over banks. That's small time! Let's start hittin' lumber logic of our economic system demands some degree of eco- nomic inequality even in the face of egalitarianism of our political system. How much of this inequality can be justified in the light of our moral be- liefs? We must recognize that one kind of equality that is vital to a healthy capitalism is that of opportunity. A clcse look at the people caught in the pockets of pov- erty tells us that the whole- sale redistribution of income is not a good answer Many are poor, not because they are part of a class, but as individ- uals they were brought there by event s. Advanced age, broken homes, physical or psy- chological factors often play a key role. Certain regions ac- count for a disproportionate share of low income families, particularly in the Maritimes and rural Quebec. Eskimos and Indians too seem to have been on the low end of the eco- nomic totem pole. These causes of low income and earning power should be attacked on their own grounds. the is no sure way of mending family ties, providing motivation to the psychological cripples or im- proving regional economics. All such undertakings demand money, hence taxes, but what they primarily require is ener- getic private and public action. The evil is more social than economic. It is less a matter of general inequality than of particular difficulties and mis- fortunes. However, we do have in- equality of incomes. Funda- mentally, the constant change and variety of our free society is responsible. Property cbanges hands and changes in value, self made individuals displace those who have in- herited their wealth, industries flourish and decay, labor moves from the farm to the city. This means rotation in top brackets. The dynamics of capitalism create great con- centrations of wealth and break up old pools of capital too. The mam leveling forces have been our rising stand- ards of living. During the Nine- teenth Century the lives of a well-to-do family and a manual laborer exhibited marked dif- ferences. These differences have been shrinking rapidly, primarily as a result of gen- eral economic growth. Growth can be seen as the alternative to redistribution. Even those are at the low end of the income scale gain more in the not very long run from speed- ier progress than from re- distribution. General economic improvement does not mean down" economics, but quite simply, that if the entire economic community were more prosperous, there would be more wealth to share and more material comforts for all. Lower income recipients today have more conveniences than the wealthiest Canadians had one hundred years ago: better housing conditions, bet- ter food, superior medical care and more readily available en- Book Reviews tertainment and leisure time facilities. Soaking the rich may yield political dividends but not much consumable revenue. If a thoroughgoing economic egali- tarianism were to take hold, gone would be the incentive to take risks. Successful risk-tak- ing has built most of the large fortunes. It is here that the problerns of stagnation would make itseli felt most strongly. If profit motives cvere limited, enough of the dynamics of cap- italism would be removed to mean a stagnant, if not worse, economy. All in all the rational argu- ments for income and wealth inequality suggest that it is useful to preserve incentives. This does not mean preserving the status quo but that social problems should be recognized as such and not confused with economic ones. Adventure at sea "Return to the Sea" by A. Robinson (Peter Da vies Limited, London, 232 pages, S15.95, distributed by Col- The adventurous mile trip aboaid the 70 foot brigan- tine Varua from. Massachus- etts to Papeets on Tahiti is an adventure few sea lovers will want to miss. This unforgettable trip takes the reader via Trini- dad, the Panama Canal and the Galapagos Islands through trade winds, hurricanes, tor- rential rain, phospherous seas and unbelievable sunsets The performance of the Varua IP vicious seas, is thrillinCT all credit going to her design- er. Robinson himself, who spent as long as 36 hour watches alone ordering his wife and crew latched down below deck, for safety reasons. His description of his return to his home in Papeets aban- doned 10 years earlier when he established a shipyard in Mas- Here's what the AGT Building Industry Consulting Service does for developers, architects, engineers and contractors. We pre-plan communication facilities needs with you now to save costly problems later. Such as expensive alterations cr added-on wiring eyesores caused by communication congestion. The service costs you nothing. But from a success standpoint it can mean communication flexibility both now and years down the road. For one thing, it can increase the building's value. "Communications Ready" buildings are increasingly important to prospective tenants or buyers because they are designed to cope with growing communications demands. As a team of specialized engineers, draftsmen and specifications writers, we're tuned-in to the complex communications needs of modern buildings. Commercial, industrial, and institutional. We're ready to work with you as soon as you're ready for us ideally, before the blueprints are final. And we'll stay on the job right through the final inspection. AGTT BUILDING INDUSTrtY CONSULTING SERVICE Call collect Edmonton 425-4901. Calgary 261-3311. sachusetts, is beautiful as is the growth of his thriving copra plantation on his uninhabited atoll, Taiaro. His ability to de- scribe the exotic plants, tropi- cal trees, scents, colors, sounds, wind and seas, makes the read- er wish he could have gone along as a stowaway. The sense of clear purpose, joy and release is irresistible throughout the book as Robin- son describes the incredibly beautiful Polynesian islands and their happy people, the corol reefs and lagoons centre- ing Taiaro. His research onto the ghastly tropical disease filariasis is fas- cinating as is the 15 month ex- pedition he mounted, along with a group of scientists aboard the Varua, highlighting his 25 years in the Pacific and for which he was awarded the French Le- gion of Honor. A most enjoyable and infor- mative book by an experienc- ed ship builder, seaman and ac- complished writer, sure to de- light those fascinated by the sea and voyages to far away places. CHRIS STEWART Books in brief "The Girl In The Plain Brown by John D. MacDonald, (McClelland and Stewart Ltd., 276 This latest addition to the Travis McGee series, aside from maintaining the excellent standards already set by John MacDonald, offers two provoca- tive asides: its title and its dedi- cation. The title is not what it may appear to be at first glance. The girl in the plain brown wrapper is actually a lovely young thing, pushed from the top of a 20-storey office window, found by McGee who then wraps the crushed corpse in construction paper to keep the killer guessing. MacDonald dedicates his book "With gatitude for the constant encouragement of the Internal Revenue Service." You figure it out. Despite the interest generated in this mystery, it's still a puz- zle why any reader would pay for a hard cover edition of what will eventually become a great little pocketbook at a sixth of the cost. For good read- ing, though, TGITPBW is worth the price and that's a matter of personal fortune. HERB LEGG "Oklahoma Crude" by Marc Norman (E. P. Dtitkm and Co., 251 pages, Marc Norman lives in Los Angeles with his wife and chil- dren and writes books and mov- ies. Let's be sympathetic. Any- one who lives in Los Angeles deserves our sympathy. And anyone who writes movies de- serves our sympathy doubled and tripled because movie writ- ers don't count for a hill of beans in Hollywood. Sure, thev make big dough. But some guy will probably take their script and rewrite the whole thing. This is probably a movie turned into a book. Now we can say, I liked the movie but I can't stand the book. Go ahead, read it. It's about Lena Doyle and her desperate fight to bring in her oil well against overwhelming odds. Why are odds always over- whelming? Try writing for the movies and you'll find out. D'ARCY RICKARD Stamps tell a story By Chris Stewart, Herald staff writer The special stamp authorized by the Queen and Prince Phillip to commemorate the wedding of Princess Anne and Capt. Man? Phillips in Westminster Abbey, No- vember 14th, will highlight this year's many distinctive, commemorative stamps. In June Swaziland issued a set of stamps showing scenes of the Mpaka coal mines, oxen pulling a sledge, and a view oi the weir cover over the Komati river: Japan released the 23rd in its National Parks series featuring views of Ogasawara National Park; France honored a naval hero of Louis XIV's wars, Duguay-Trouin, by adding a stamp with his portrait to its "Celebrated Frenchmen" series; Spain commemorated the llth Congress of the International Dam commission by issuing stamps featuring the Iznajar Dam at Genii, while the Republic of Toga commemorated the first World Scout Conference in Africa by issuing six special stamps. In August, Malaysia will celebrate the 25th annix'ersary of the World Health Or- with stamps showing its pro- gram, and New Zealand will release its an- nual health semipostals portraying Prince Edwarj. third son of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip, Guyanna has announced that in September it will issue part three of its new definitive series featuring flow- ers, and for November, four stamps with designs celebrating Christmas. Stamps have told the -world's story since the p o r t r a i t of the late Queen Victoria, her 1837 visit to London, was shown on British stamps in 1840. Some are very valuable, such as the "One-Penny Magenta" of British Guiana .issued in 1856 and reputed to be the most valuable in the world; it was priced at a hun- dred years following its issuance. The Lon- don times reports that the mania of philately (stamp collecting) was sweeping Britain as early as 1849, when a woman was said to have collected stamps and covered her dressing-room with them. One of the most outstanding stamp col- lections in Europe during the 1960s was the private collection of Elizabeth H es- tablished by her father George V, famed philatelist. The practice of picturing only heads of state en stamps is fast disaopearing; they now include scenes of major world and historic events The US. 10-cent airmail stamp, for example, commemorates one of history's greatest events, July 20, 1969. man's first landing on the moon, and in- cidentally was printed from plates pro- duced from a dye carried to the lunar surface by the Apolla 11 landing module. One of the most beautiful examples is Canada's stamp commemorating the land- ing of the Scottish settlers, complete with their bagpipes, kilts and the Scottish flag in the background, at Pictou on the shores of Nova Scotia. Collectors appreciate stamps as a won- derful means, of armchair travel, and also as a source of knowledge about art, his- tory and current events. The tiny stamp, soon to be winging its way around the globe bearing Princess Anr.e's attractive pom-ait, will help to share her wedding happiness with the world. High positions open in Alberta By E. George Mardon, U of L professor E'-en though the Liberals do not hold one federal seat in Alberta, the party faithful are expressing interest in several important non-elective positions that must be filled. In the 1972 general elections the Liberals lost the four ridings they held in Alberta. Two cabinet ministers, Bud Olson, minister of agriculture, and Pat Mahoney', minister of state, as well as Dr. Hu Harries of Ed- montcn-Strathcona and Alan Sulatychy of RocKy Mountain, were defeated at the pol's. Alberta now has no representative in the federal cabinet. This is not the first time this has hap- pened. Back in the 1920s, when the United Farmers of Alberta controlled the legisla- ture, the Liberals were without an Alber- ta member of parliament. Prime Minister Mackenzie King appointed Charles Stewart, who had been the premier from 1917 to 1921, to his cabinet and found him a safe seat in Quebec in order to get him into blie Commons. Stewart was later elected in Edmonton-West. Then again in the 1960s, when the then minister of agriculture, Har- ry Hays of Calgary, was defeated at the polls, Alberta did not have a i.' federal cabinet. But Libera's often obtain a reward for merely trying to get elected, A glance at the senators appointed in the last nine years of Liberal rule is most interesting. Alber- tans recently summoned to the Senate in- clude Harry Hays, Earl Hastings, former provincial Liberal president, and J. Harper Prowse, former provincial Liberal leader. All three were defeated at the polls in 1965 before being summoned to the Senate the next year. Independent Liberal Dona'd Cameron of Banff and former Premier Ernest Manning are the province's two re- maining senators. There is one vacancy caused by the death of James Gladstone of Cardston, the only Indian ever to be appointed to the Senate. Prime Minister Trudeau has not been in a hurry to fill this position. Senator Gladstone died two years ago. The name most frequently mentioned te that oi Olson who sat as a Social Creditor for several years before he crossed the floor of the House of Commons in 1968. He is a 48-year-old rancher and Medicine Hat businessman. However, if Olson is named a senator, the party will lose a valuable individual who may be able to win back his seat in the Commons in the next federal contest that may come before the end of tlie year. This same argument can be used against appointing Pat Mahoney, former MP from Calgary-South. Another position that will become va- cant in the near future that of lieutenant- governor. Grant MacEwan, a one-time Liberal provincial leader who has indicat- ed that he wishes to retire. He is 71 years of age. The author of more than a score of books on Western Canadian history, he is a former university professor in agricul- ture- MacEwan is also a former mayor of Calgary. It is possible that Hays will give up his seat in the Red Chamber to become Alber- ta's tenth vice-regal representative. He is a wealthy 66-year-old Calgary rancher. The third senior position that will be- vacant in the near future is that of justice of Alberta. The Ron arable S Bruce Smith, the present incumbent, is scheduled to retire at the end of the year. It is most likely that one of the judges of the appellate division of the Supreme Court will be promoted. However, it is worth noting that Bruce Smith only served two years as a trial judge before being appoinv ed chief justice by Justice Minister Davie Fulton in 1961. Unfortunately party affiliation seems to count a great deal in appointments such as these and not tlie intrinsic worth of the in- dividual for the position. The naming of Manning, the Social Credit premier of the province from 1943 to 1968, is an unique example when the federal Liberal adminis- tration was guided by non-party consider- ation. Report to readers David Bly Court reporting Several times a week, the Herald report- er covering court proceedings is approach' ed about keeping names out of the paper. Some offer reasons it is surprising how many people have grandfathers with weak hearts and some candidly admit they would rather not have the adverse pub- licity. Court proceedings are open to the public, and the press is allowed to report what goes on, unless specifically directed other- wise by the judge. Thus, anything that happens in court can be reported. However, the Herald has set a policy concerning which court cases are reported, since to report everything would be boring to the readers, and tedious for the report- er. Traffic and liquor offenses seldom make the news, unless there are unusual circum- stances. The same goes for first offenses of possession of drugs, impaired driving and" theft unde'r The more serious offenses are reported as concisely as possible without, we hope, sensationalizing. These are guidelines for reporters and not legal restrictions. If a minor offense has interesting or unusual circumstances, it will be reported. In an English court case, Webb vs. Times Publishing Co. Ltd., the judge made several observations about publication of court proceedings, including: administration of public justice concerns us all and it is well that the con- duct of judge and jury should be brought to the bar of public opinion, like all other matters of public concern. public can benefit by learning how the law is administered, especially when one appears as a party, witness or juror. persons affected may be better off with a fair and accurate report rather than rumors. To refrain from reporting a case because of a personal request would not be objec- tive reporting nor would it be fair. A news- paper doing this would be setting itself above the judge. And it's a sad reflection of present atti- tudes when people are more upset about having their name in the paper than they are about breaking die law.