Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 25, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta
4 LETHBRIDGE HERALD Wednesday, September 25, 19.4 The answer to high oil pricing U.S. President Gerald Ford and Secretary of State Henry Kissinger have warned (almost threatened) the Arab nations that they must reduce oil prices. The reasons: the world cannot afford to pay the present prices, the resultant hardship endangers world peace, and the huge cash reserves moving into Arab hands are threatening the stability of the world economy. All of this is true. But one point has oeen overlooked. The economic system, of which the U.S. has been the chief proponent and the most successful operator, calls for charging all that the traffic will bear, whether for goods or for services. The theory is that the forces of supply and the forces of demand should contend with each other and together they will set the right market price day by day. It is out of character for the United States to intimidate countries which have just discovered that law and how to use it to their own advantage. Instead, the answer of the United States to Arab oil pricing should be to reduce the demand, to find new oil, and to stimulate the discovery and develop- ment of new energy sources. That, ac- cording to the rules of the game, is not only the best but the only effective way of checking outrageous pricing policies. Countering the doomsayers The note of optimism to be found in Bill Wilson's article on this page may strike many readers as unwarranted. Every day seems to bring additional evidence supporting the dire predictions of doom. There is, for instance, the threatened destruction of the ozone layer n the stratosphere that protects living .hings from the sun's radiation, discuss- ed by Norman Cousins in his article also an this page. Nevertheless, it is important to be -eminded that there is another con- sideration to be taken into account besides the Club of Rome's mechanistic projection. The Bariloche group, referred to by Bill Wilson, is right in in- sisting that man's capacity to change must also be calculated. Doomsday scenarios can only be accepted as inevitable on the assumption that man cannot or will not solve his problems. In his editorial in the August 24 issue of Saturday (the magazine arrived on September 24, a week after the September 7 issue, illustrating the unpredictableness of human enterprises, especially the postal Norman Cousins dwelt on this theme. He said that Ihe predictions of the experts are vulnerable because they confine themselves to projections based on facts. But history is shaped as much by in- tangibles as by hard facts. There is no way of knowing where or how human hopes or fears will be suddenly created into vast surges of energy that will transform political, economic, and social institutions. Despite the serious situation of an under-supply of food and an over-supply of nuclear weapons (causing the scien- tists who put out the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists recently to move the hands of their doomsday clock, on the cover of their publication, three minutes ahead, to nine minutes to midnight) the possibility of momentous changes in human direction should not be ignored. It may be that a realization is dawning on the influential, as well as the impotent, that a world response is required to deal with the problems that beset human beings. Should that be true, this will turn out to be one of those great periods in human history. The value of the pessimistic forecasts, as both Norman Cousins and Bill Wilson say. is that they serve as warnings against inactivity in the face of danger. They ought to shock people into massive effort. But that will only be so if people know they are not locked into a grim inevitability. So the optimists need to be heard as well as the pessimists. The CIA danger It's hard not to worry about the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency even though it is the agent of a friendly power. Its operations are never very clear, but there doesn't seem much doubt about its involvement in Cambodia, the Dominican Republic, Indonesia or Chile, to name only countries where CIA intervention has been well documented in the past. Recently CIA interest and interference in Cypress became painfully evident. Now it comes to light that Prime Minister Indira Gandhi is most apprehensive of CIA-inspired insurgency in India. Most of the theatres in which CIA ac- tivity has surfaced seem comfortably far away, until it is remembered that the CIA was implicated in the Ellsberg af- fair, and not exactly inactive behind the Watergate scenes. Then it will be recall- ed how it engineered a kind of financial subversion of the National Students' Association, that triggered the dis- closure that CIA funds and influence regularly find their way into a hundred seemingly innocuous national and inter- national organizations. The CIA theme is always the same: implacable, never-ending war against communism. Even in these days of detente, when American statesmen and industrialists are striving so anxiously for cordial relations with Russia and China, the CIA has not budged one inch in its unrelenting opposition to any Com- munist or Communist leaning government. There could be a serious danger here. The Communist ideology aims at taking over wherever it can, by whatever means present themselves. If Moscow can justify that, then Washington can justify countermeasures. But the CIA believes it has the right not only to com- bat all Communist aims, but also to classify as Communist any philosophy, movement or government of which it does not approve. The world has seen all too recently what can happen when one man. or a small group of men. has or grasps the right to determine unilaterally what con- stitutes the national interest, and to cite "national security" as a bar to any ac- countabilitv. Down to earth again By Bruce Hutchison, Herald special commentator In the first sentences of a famous book, published in 1968, Pierre Trudeau wrote as follows- "The only constant factor to be found in my think- ing over the years has been opposition to accepted opinions. Had I applied this principle to the stock market. I might have made a fortune. I chose to apply it to politics and it led me to power a result I had not really desired, or even expected." After making a political for- tune (or misfortune as his critics will Mr. Trudeau has changed his mind about power. Now he ardently desires, expects and possesses it. But does he still oppose the accepted opinions of the best experts beating in on him from ail sides, most of them contradictory? In our Cana- dian autumn of gaudy foliage and grim decision has he framed any workable economic policy for a nation which the experts have long deluded, as they have deluded themselves and him, too? When Mr. Trudeau wrote his book the only constant fac- tor in his thinking mattered little to the nation. It matters greatly now when he must make the grim decisions and when the strongest microscope could not discover any constant factor in the thinking of the government or the opposition. Even if he has some constant thought, some mysterious logic and secret plan behind the boyish smile and trampoline somersaults, can he. or any statesman anywhere, rise above the clamor of the experts to perceive and state the simple truth of our human situation? For the last 10 vears at least the truth has been mis stated or misunderstood by the ex- perts everywhere and their accepted opinions became the policies of the world's governments, including the government of Canada. We should not be too critical of our governments, however, since they are composed of laymen who naturally depend on their experts and the ex- perts, with rare exceptions, have been wrong about almost everything of importance. Mr. Trudeau's worst mis- take, as he must now see, was to relax his original scep- ticism and accept the experts opinions. Again we should not be too critical of him since the rest of us (including this reporter) have done the same thing. Yet the collapse of their opinions and the worldwide muddle which they failed to foresee has not humbled or even slightly embarrassed the experts. They are bobbing up all over the place, still cocksure and infallible, just as if they had been' right all to urge their latest opinions on the laymen of government. Every expert in Washington, Ottawa, London and other capitals has his special foolproof remedy if the laymen would accept to- day what was denounced as absurd yesterday and doubtless will look more ab- surd tomorrow. A witch doc- tor in darkest Africa could not have up wilder scenario than the solemn prophecies issuing, only a year or two ago, from the Western world's governments that didn't even foresee the perfectly obvious approach of an energy crisis and now a food shortage. Thus Mr. Ford is warned by one set of experts that his fiscal policies will plunge the whole world into a catastrophic depression; by another set that the present recession will be mild and short if he leaves it alone: by yet another set that he must act boldly against inflation or. alternatively, do nothing about it lest he make things worse. No wonder the layman in the White House or Washington is puzzled. Despite all the autumnal confusion.the most ignorant layman can count. I venture to think, on two certainties that nothing will turn out as the experts predict; that the impossible expectations must be scaled down to reality by sensible agreement and self discipline among ourselves or by the compulsion of physical facts. In short, the Western world's dropsical boom of the last two decades is now en- ding, like all previous booms, and for some time, perhaps for a long time, the party is over, the only question being whether we shall make a hard or soft landing after our flight into the economic stratosphere. For a landing of some sort is straight ahead of us and Mr. Trudeau must know it. But when will he, and the other world statesmen, come clean and tell us that un- avoidable truth while there is still time to open the parachute of common sense and. with a little bit of luck, make the landing tolerably soft? Qualitative research on humanity progresses in Argentina Bv A. Wilson. Montreal Star commentator OTTAWA The great "Doomsday scenarios" that have commanded wide pop- ular attention since The Se- cond World War have ex- ploited the possibilities of cataclysmic destruction through nuclear conflict and with the possibility that the human race might exhaust this planet's resources. The first of these is less in nowadays. There has ijecn a decline in the level of >ar in the world. The tensions that flowed from the Soviet-led cold war have gradually been dis- -ipatme The change has been dramatic 11 is even becoming bit fashionable to question detente. the rri'-n' in relations with one of the t'reat nuclear super- powers. is really a good .bine or not The liberal that MW tend to be imposed at rorn the Soviet Tnion or ies> on inteller- uaK -would inManllv dis- appear if there wer" a ise in the level oi iear The a't that thev have become a actor )n the process of im- iroving relations is ar; mdira- ion in itself how much im- provement there has been since the worst days of the 1950s and the beginning of the i960s The other fear, that the hu- man race might exterminate itself through sheer growth, remains more fashionable. The great statement of this possibility was the "Limits to (irowth" model prepared at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology under Club oj Home auspices, the Forrester-Meadows work This was a horror story coTT-tmcled by extrapolating present trends in population growth and consumption of re- MiurroS vita] 1-0 human hie TH- model demonstrated as lusiveu am neo- Malthusian could demand, that there was a logical end human beings would en- 1udv the International Development Research here supported it with a crant to the FundacioT) The Meadows work was mechanistic in that existing trends were projected forward The Bariloche group operated on the assumption that man. even collectively, is capable of rational choice and hence can change patterns of behavior and consumption. The group also took into ac- count the existing disparity in consumption of vital resource :he fact thai far more of them are consumed the moderately-populated advanced nations than by the densely-populated Third World One of the starting points for the work "f the BanJorhe croup was the definition of the possessions oi all sorts, including those that are spiritual and cultural as well j> the material ones, needed 10 achieve full status as a human being without wasting resources This is the applica- tion of f> qualitative approach i" thf demand on world opposed to the quantitative approath taken at MIT Curing a seminar here Ihe work was in progress. Or Sabato remark- ed on the possibility of momentous changes jn the human direction and lhat such changes of pattern had oc- curred in the past. A momen- tarily puzzled listener asked him for examples. He replied that the rise of Christianity was the sort of vast change of which he had been thinking. There have, of course, been others in the human story. The Forrester-Meadows study had a useful shock effect on the world. 1DRC views the subseqenl work which it spon- sored in America as a uscfui complement to the "limits of approach. The centre was a project of the Pearson government which attracted the sympathy and interest of both the late Lester Pearson and of Senator Paul Martin when he was minister of external affairs After he left office. Pearson became chairman of 1he centre's board of governors, a position now held by Rasminsky. formerly gover- nor of the Bank oi Canada. The president of the centre is David Hopper, a Canadian who acquired a 'v i d e knowledge of the problems of the underdeveloped world while he was working in India. The work of the centre docs not involve foreign aid in Jhe nonmal sense but sponsorship of research on the sort of problems that the foreign aid community are attempting to resolve, often without enough knowledge. Some of the re- sdarch is Canadian but there is a strong emphasis on getting qualified people from the third world to do the research themselves. A root called cassava is the basis of tapioca pudding and it is used in the food, textile and paper industries. It is also an important source of food in many parts of the world, the sixth or seventh most impor- tant of all food crops. IRDC became involved in research on it. and a reJated hog im- provement program, in 197C I'ntil shen. despite its impor- tance as a human food, there had been very little cassava research Now a good deal goes on aimed al improvment in yield, food value, reduction in toxicity 'a problem in damaged roots t. 3DRC seems to have been a catalyst as well as a direct sponsor of research The Doomsday scenarios all depend upon a common as- sumption, that men wiIJ not solve the problems that could destroy them. The final out- come is unknown Ogamzations such as this Canadian centre work against the under-lying premise that nothing wiJl be done. Human rights By Norman Cousins, editor of Saturday The ozone in the stratosphere is no less vital than oxygen in the at- mosphere in sustaining life. The ozone shield protects liv- ing things against the destruc- tive effects of ultraviolet rays. In particular, ozone prevents the sun's rays from tearing apart protein molecules in plant and animal life. We now learn that the test explosions of thermonuclear bombs by the United States and the Soviet Union in 1960 and 1961 punctured the stratosphere, resulting in a 4 percent loss of ozone. The loss may be irreversible. The dis- closure comes from Dr. Fred C. Ikle, director of the U.S. Arms Control and Disarma- ment Agency. Dr. Ikle has explained that the heat produced by a nuclear explosion results in the formation of nitric oxides. As the atomic cloud rises, the nitric oxide molecules destroy the ozone molecules. The resultant loss of ozone could create all sorts of havoc with the delicate and intricate chain of life on earth. Dr. Ikle says that too many ozone punctures could "destroy critical links of the intricate food chain of plants and animals and thus shatter the ecological structure that permits man to remain alive on this planet." Meanwhile, one thing is ob- vious. The nuclear tests of 1960 and 1961 represented no more than 1 or 2 percent of the total megatonnage of nuclear power now stockpiled by the United States, the Soviet Union. China, France, Great Britain and India. The ex- isting nuclear stores, if used, would create more than enough nitric oxide to obliterate the ozone. Under these circumstances, even the possession of nuclear explosives is clearly a crime against humanity and should be recognized as such by world public opinion. The no- tion that these ozone alterin1 weapons are essential fo national security makes n< sense unless we take the view that the right to wage nucleai war is more important thai human rights, more importan than the need to preserve tht human habitat, more impor tant than the future o civilization, more importan than our obligations t generations to come. Justifying the nuclear arms race on the basis of nationa security is no more rationa than justifying a race to dril the largest hole in the opposite ends of a lifeboat. In a ver_ real sense, all the peoples in the world today are adrift in such a lifeboat Americans are one end. tht Russians at the other, the res of the world's peoples in between. The fact of a com- mon. peril has yet to the minds of the boat's oc cupants. The only chance for survival is through recogni- tion of a common destiny. Ye the leaders are seized by tht idea that they can safeguar their own sections of the sarru boat by threatening to drill larger holes in the enemy' section than the enemy can drill in theirs. The governments persist in their policies despite the fac that no nation can wagp nuclear war against anothe without also going to wai against the human race. Even the preparation for such conflict is tantamount to a act of war against the species No need on earth today com- pares in urgency or size with the need to deal with crime- against humanity. The Nations is the closest we havi come to it, but the curious no- tion persists that a worli organization can only reflec and not transcend worli differences. The mai business of the United is human survival. Any lesse concept perpetuates the pre sent insanitv. LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Expand library hours With the new central library and its additional and expand- ed resources for wholesome recreation, I suggest its open hours be also expanded. Many of the local sources of public recreation remain functioning to late evening hours and. as I see it, the new- library could well compete, giving the public a wider choice of recreational facilities. From my experience with recent meetings held in the library there is a noticeable drag to meet a set time of 8 p.m. indicating that many are not prepared to go out early. This indicated that the library would be better utilized if its evening open hours were ex- tended to or 10 p.m. There is something inade- quate about turning the public out at when no doubt many would like to remain and many others would enjoy coming out to spend an even- ing at the new library. While I am not in a position to say whether the morning activity warrants the opening of the doors to the public before noon, it does seem that most people are either working, at school, or attending household chores at this time, implying that the library could possibl; open to the public at noon without much hardship upor the general community. The library board recently established a policy of ni smoking in the public arear including the main floor am the lecture and film room probably out of recognition that smoke constitutes an offence and irritation to many non smokers and that i would be unjust to condont this all. over the library. In conclusion. I sincerely believe it is good that the public pulse on this matter be taken, encouraging those to express themselves who fee as I do that the new library would better serve the com- munity if it remained open to the public longer in the evenings and throughout tht entire week instead of jus part of it as at present. Support is needed if this ir to be realized and should be forwarded to Mr. Duncan Rand, chief librarian, or sending a signed letter to the library board at the library. LLOYD WEIGHTMAN Lethbridge Emphasis questioned Although a practicing veterinarian, I see no point in adding my own comments to the storm of criticism sur- rounding the selection of students for the Western College of Veterinary Medicine (The Herald. September I would, however, question the emphasis placed on two in- cidents by The Herald. One candidate's failure to be admitted to the college received two thirds of a ma- jor page of the paper. On the other hand, a three day convention of 370. plus Alberta and Montana veterinarians. held in Lethbridge last week with a great deal of assistance from faculty at the WCVM. was barely mentioned. The college is severely criticized on the one hand, while its ex- tremely beneficial assistance 'n the continuing education of the veterinarians of the area is not considered worthy of mention Mr. Janzen's refusal is an unhappy occurrence, but 1 feel the college should receive "good press" when it is as well W D. YATES, D.V M. Lelhbndge The Lethbridge Herald 5M 7jhS1 S LfflMjntJge. Alberto CO LTD Proprietors and Publishers Second Class Mail No 001.2 DON w PILLING Managing Eortoi MILES DOKALD ft DORAM POSER1 M FENTON f DOUGLAS K WALKER Frt s-'H Ed'lor KENNETH Business Manager "THE HE3ALD SERVES THE SOUTH'