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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 11, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta LETHBRIDGE September A personal energy goal The practice of conserving energy has not proved to be very popular with Canadians. The main reason for this is, the plain fact that this country has not undergone any apparent energy crisis in spite of last winter's anticipated shor- tage of fuel in the east. A secondary reason, however, is the difficulty facing a concerned person in evaluating his individual contribution in the area of energy conservation. The what can -1 do about it syndrome is almost universal. An economist working for the national department of energy, mines and resources has produced a concept which should help. Dr. David Brooks, who heads a four man team within the energy department to investigate ways in which Canadians can reduce their wasteful use of energy thinks every Canadian can. and should, attain the goal of zero growth in per capita energy use. This simply means that 20 years from now an adult should use no more energy than he does today, although the nation's total use of energy will grow with the population. This is a standard which can be used by any Canadian in adapting his daily prac- tices and his lifestyle to a better use of available and non renewable resources. It is true that it is sometimes impossible for the layman to assess the energy in put of various products he uses every day although studies are now being carried out in many universities and research in- stitutes to determine comparative energy requirements but the use of energy in transportation, heating and lighting are not difficult to evaluate. Small cars use less gasoline than large ones, for instance, and bicycles use less energy than either. Statistics for last year show that Canadians drove 7.4 million automobiles an average of miles each at a rate of 17.5 miles a gallon. If the mileage con- sumption had risen to 25 miles a gallon, this would have lowered national con- sumption by about 30 per cent and if those cars had averaged miles a year instead of the consumption of fuel would have decreased another 30 per cent. The transportation sector absorbs about 25 per cent of Canada's total use of energy. Space heating consumes another 25 per cent and Dr. Brooks' team es- timates that better maintenance and minor equipment changes can effect a savings of 15 per cent in energy consump- tion, and improved insulation can cut heat losses by 25 to 50 per cent. Pursuit of the goal of zero growth in energy use should have two beneficial side effects as far as the individual is concerned, in addition to the main goal of conservation of resources. It should save him money and it should promote his physical well being. In this regard it can be pointed out that Canada and Sweden, which have similar climates and stan- dards of living, are far apart in some ways. Canadians use considerably more energy per capita than Swedes and the latter are reportedly much1 healthier than their North American counterparts. ERIC NICOL Fugitive no more Well, I'm glad it's over. Being a fugitive from justice has taken a lot out of me. Others may feel that it is a bum rap, but to me it comes as a distinct relief that the law of the land now says that anyone intending to change the weather by physical or chemical means must henceforth inform the federal government of his plans and submit records of his activities in altering weather con- ditions. Until the Weather Modification Informa- tion Act was proclaimed in the Canada Gazette last week. I have been one of this country's most hardened weather modifiers. I don't change the weather by seeding clouds or exploding an atom bomb or using any of the other physical or chemical means familiar to the meteorologist. I change the weather by packing a picnic basket. In as awesome a rite as ever watered a tribe of Navajo rain-makers. I can transform a morning of clear, sunny skies into an after- noon sullen with downpour, simply by remov- ing the press from my tennis racket. No need to perform a dance, utter incan- tations, pound drums. All I have to do is make the plain statement: "This year I am taking my holidays in August." This suffices to shatter instantly the long-range forecast. August becoming a month whose inches of precipitation boggle living memory. When I am near one of those Swiss barometers whose carved wood figures represent Fair and Foul. I am tired of having the little man come out and lash at me with his umbrella. People planning a round of golf phone me. not to invite me to play but to make sure that I shall be working in my den guarantee of a ridge of high pressure. Apparently this strange power of mine to alter weather patterns has caused Ottawa enough concern for them to pass a law against unauthorized messing with the elements. It is difficult to believe that the record breaking chilly temperatures prevalent across Canada this spring and summer, and the rumbling southward of gigantic glaciers outriders of the next ice age may be traced to my taking more walks after dinner. But unless I am mistaken, my phone is being bugged by agents of the Department of the Environment. They suspect that there is a contract out on Canada's climate, and I'm the hit man. God knows, I want to go straight. I want to be like other people, who say: "Everybody talks about the weather but nobody does anything about it." Only in self-defence would I rain on your parade. I'll cop a plea, turn state's evidence, submit a complete confession of my activities in altering weather conditions. I plead guilty to Hurricane Frieda, which in 1962 wreaked millions of dollars' worth of damage on the west coast. I did it by buying my kid a kite and trying to assemble it in the back yard. I desperately want to rid myself of the criminal record responsible for the position of my picture in the offices of managers of ski resorts (peasoup fog) sidewalk cafes (sand- storm bowling alleys (black I want to be able to buy a ticket at the football stadium without creating a scene from Nanook of the North. On a clear day I can see forever till I put on my hat. I sure hope that the federal law will change all that. Lest I spend the rest of my life behind isobars. Letters "And then I said, well how the hell do you guys expect us to get the grain to China A most serious blunder By Tom Wicker, New York Times commentator NEW YORK "If I am wrong." said Gerald Ford, cribbing from Lincoln in his effort to confer instant in- nocence on Richard Nixon, "ten angels swearing I was right would make no difference." Even a hundred angels caroling in unison on the steps of the White House could not rectify the horren- dous blunder Ford made in giving Richard Nixon advance pardon for any and all criminal acts he may have performed from Jan. through Aug. 9, 1974. Advance pardon was a blunder in relation to the Nix- on case, for the reasons already stated here and in many other places because no formal judgment on Nix- on's conduct can now be ob- tained in the courts, because of the double standard erected between him and those who have served time or face trial in the Watergate matter (not to mention defendants in other criminal and because of the bad precedent establish- ed for the handling of any future presidential miscon- duct. Advance pardon was a blunder in relation to the pending Watergate cases, because lawyers for those defendants are already claiming, with much logic. (A) that their clients should not be tried if the principal for whom they acted as agents has been given immunity, and (B i that if widespread publici- ty would have prevented a fair trial for Nixon, as Ford said it would, it also prevents a fair trial for Haldeman. Ehrlichman. et als. Either or both these arguments may yet negate the Watergate prosecutions. Advance pardon was a blunder in relation to the Ford presidency, so ably and en- couragingly begun. Richard Nixon himself never governed more high handediy than Gerald Ford did in this im- perial act conceived and negotiated in secrecy, ordain- ed by one man alone without consultations with anyone out- side his closed circle of ad- visers, carried out by surprise executive fiat, contradicting every public statement Ford had made on clemency and on the way he intended to wield presidential power. Advance pardon was a blunder in relation to the 1976 election. With that televised stroke of his pen, Ford obliterated the opportunity he had appeared to be nourishing to go to the voters as a man of unchallenged probity and per- sonal restraint, who, in a time of crisis, had restored honesty to government and limits to executive power. The Republican party can tear up its "Mr. Kleen" bumper strips and start worrying about a new kind of "cover- issue. The Democrats, who had been put briefly on the defen- sive by the Nixon resignation, Ford's early popularity, and the removal of the Watergate mess as an overt campaign issue, now have the political right and the public obligation to make advance pardon an issue against the man who granted it without so much as a nod to Congress, the special prosecutor or public opinion. They do not need to charge any collusion between Ford and Nixon to raise the "cover- up" question again; whatever Ford's intention, he has seen to it that the public may never know the whole truth of the Nixon administration. And the "cover-up" issue will be all the more potent if advance pardon results in the remain- ing Watergate defendants avoiding trial or getting con- victions reversed. It is possible, of course, but not likely that either Special Prosecutor Jaworski will seek an indictment, or that the Watergate Grand Jury will in- dict Nixon on its own, so that the constitutionality of ad- vance pardon can be tested. But the Democrats control Congress and can act, if they choose. Senate Majority Leader Mansfield says Jaworski ought to disregard the advance pardon and proceed with prosecution; Assistant Majority Leader Byrd says advance pardon is "injurious to the system" of justice. If they feel that way, and if they really want to restore Congress to a respected place in American government, they are in a position to act. Resuming impeachment proceedings, as has been suggested in the House, is one possibility; apparently, there are precedents for impeach- ment even of persons no longer in office. A vote on a formal congressional censure of Nix- on once advanced by his supporters as a means of avoiding the impeachment issue is another possibility. Either could provide at least an official verdict, by a jury of his peers, on Nixon's conduct. Before Congress now, moreover, is Ford's request for in special appropriations for Nixon over and above his an- nual pension, his an- nual staff allowance, and his entitlement to federal office space and secret service protection. If Gerald Ford thought Richard Nixon so liable to criminal prosecution that he needed advance par- don, and if Nixon felt himself so liable to indictment that he accepted that pardon, why should the American people pay one penny more than the minimum required by law to this discredited man who tar- nished their most cherished institution? Turner making visible effort to bolster business sector By Maurice Western, Herald Ottawa commentator OTTAWA With the first session of the new Parliament rapidly approaching, the Government is again becom- ing visible after its summer disappearance. Not all the credit for this belongs to BeryJ Plumptre. despite her remarkable success in starting Ministerial hares There is a good deaJ to be said for invisibility if it enables Ministers to under- take sencrus planning without the normal distractions The summer season 15 usually quiet and there is no reason to complain of thai Hut 'he thi> >ear highly unusual :ind 11 have occurr'd thai an -jppt-ar- ancc of martiviu not helpful at this time The latest comments :urred this summer and recognizes a need to counter it Increasingly, since election night ended the public debate over economic prospects. there has developed a sense that rising two-digit inflation cannot continue indefinitely and that it nay lead to recession Surh sombre ex- pectations are not at- tributable alone to national news, nor to economic fore- casters They may arise from business experiences ol a character to arouse apprehen- sion If for example, shor- create uncertainty abmii deliveries. foci t-nmpHk-d defen- lo enlirgc inventories an1- v. prc- A high iheyare oppressed not only with higher 1 but also x of ll alwais been con- sid'-red ,j of government, and of ihe Minster of Hnanr" lo 1o -uslam n Ihe business ommuTii'-. Mr Turner vf-'TTN v, v approarhng this in 4 of Kssen- the message difficult problem fK-cause investors have been growing increasingly wary of Savings bonds The Minister of Finance is now -eeking to reassure business bv a new emphasis on finan- cial restraint coupled with -ecogmlion that new programs will have to be meaning presumably that spending will be postponed until the era of economic flattening has been safely passed. It can scarcely be said that earlier Liberal ventures in fi- nancial restraint were out- standing success stories: they all seem to have ended, unac- countably, with more people on the payroll and higher budgets. Mr. Turner does not promise anything "dracoman" this time; on the contrary, he considers spending in an international context, warns that we are "all on a tightrope." and speaks of the danger of "over- kill tipping ihe world into a depression. But this is one of the more agonizing aspects of the Gov- ernment's problem. For much of the anxiety about inflation's aftermath