New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - December 17, 1996, New Braunfels, Texas
4 □ Herald-Zeitung Q Tuesday, December 17, 1996
■ To talk with Interim Managing Editor Jim Denery about the Opinion page, call 625-9144, Ext. 221.
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“It is the irresistible course of events that all men who have been deprived of their liberty shall recover this precious portion of their indefeasible inheritance.”
John Browne Russwurm newspaper publisher, 1826
EDITORIALAllow the EAA to get started
Give the elected board a chance to work
The Edwards Aquifer Authority’s board — the real board that was elected to succeed a group of political appointees following a lengthy court challenge — has made only one decision so far, naming Mike Beldon as its chairman, the same position he held on the appointed board.
It’s already catching flak from the same old sources of the past, sources that don’t appear interested in solving problems as much as appearing in the media to pursue some other purpose in the future.
Beldon’s selection by his elected comrades on the board drew charges of a fixed vote through special interest groups by Kay Turner, the San Antonio “water activist” and quite the special interest in her own right.
What is Turner saying about the board members? What is she saying about the people who elected them?
Rita Banda, who was elected in November to represent Comal County on the board, said she chose to support Beldon because “someone who is already working” should guide the “many new people on the board.”
That’s sound reasoning, especially when the board is dealing with something so vital to South Texas’ environment and econ-
State Rep. Ron Lewis, D-Mauriceville, said late last week that the region’s water problems will require cooperation from sometime adversaries. “If I’m sitting on the Legislature Appropriations Committee, I’d say you guys need to prove to us that you’re willing to work together and put down your territorial ideas to find a regional solution.”
Lewis’ point is no one’s going to help us until we help ourselves.
The EAA board doesn’t need somebody undercutting it when it’s just getting off the ground.
Just prior to the vote for Beldon at the Dec. IO meeting, Turner said, “I’m sorry for what I’m about to witness.”
Well, Ray, we’re sorry to hear it, any of it.
(Today s editorial was written by Interim Managing Editor Jim Denery.)
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Perry is a good man who did a difficult job
Now that William Perry is leaving as secretary of defense, the secret known to but a few can be revealed. We are neighbors. His wife, Lee, and I serve on a condominium subcommittee, policing our neighbors to make sure none violates the covenants. I can see across a courtyard through his windows when the shades are up. Often the fluorescent light in the upstairs office bums late into the night — when he is home, that is. Many nights he has been on the road, dealing with the defense chiefs of 60 nations. Instead of spending holidays with his family, he was often with the troops in inhospitable places like Bosnia.
Living close to the Penys and seeing them socially — not to mention occasionally meeting Mrs. Perry in the trash room — gives me, a frequent critic of this administration's domestic and undefined foreign policy, some special insights.
Perry told reporters a major reason he is leaving the Cabinet is the constant strain he felt from sending American military personnel on missions that are, or could be, a threat to their lives. That stance is consistent with what I’ve seen of him. Some might think such a statement from the secretary of defense sounds wimpish, but it is characteristic of Bill Perry, a man who loves his country and personifies a quality some say doesn’t matter much
these days: character. Not many leaders would accept sole responsibility for the terrorist attack on a building housing American troops in Saudi Arabia. Perry did. Not everyone would share the credit for policies the administration believes have succeeded. Perry has.
When he mentioned the strain of sending young men and women into harm’s way, I recalled a comment by the late Sen. Harold Hughes who withdrew from the presidential campaign in 1972 because he said he could not push the nuclear button, even in retaliation for a first strike. No one ever accused Hughes — a burly former truck driver — of being weak. The families of those in the military ought to be grateful we have leaders who anguish over the morality of war and the responsibility they have for the lives of others.
Bill and Lee Perry met in a dance band in the '40s. He was a musician; she was the band’s singer. Last year, before ceremonies in Hawaii
commemorating the 50th anniversary of the end of World War II, I learned how much the Perrys still love the music from that period. I gave them an audiocassette set of V-Discs containing popular tunes recorded by the stars of that era for the troops overseas. Perry told me he stayed up half the night listening to them and played the songs on the plane going to Honolulu.
The people who work with him at the Pentagon speak about him in admiring tones usually reserved for beloved family members or friends. It is easy to understand why. He exudes gentleness and kindness, qualities not usually associated with someone who can head the world’s largest war-making (or peace-keeping) machine.
Party labels and persuasions aside, Bill Perry is an American first. He has served his country with dignity and distinction. His mistakes came with the territory of heavy responsibilities.
ITI miss him as a neighbor when he moves to California. Though I disagreed with policy decisions regarding Bosnia and women and gays in the military — issues mostly driven by the president — Bill Perry represented his country well. You've got to love a guy who loves Glenn Miller and whose wife doesn’t think it beneath her dignity to take out the trash.
Clinton defense fund quietly returns donation
By PETE YOST
Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON — The Asian money controversy is spilling over into the Clintons’ Whitewater defense fund, with a belated post-election disclosure that some $600,(MX) in questionable donations were returned beginning in March, some of them tied to a Buddhist religious organization.
Clinton is “an old friend" of the businessman who delivered the money, appointing Charles Yah Lin Tne to a presidential commission on Asian trade several weeks after Tne bn Right some $450,000 to the fund’s executive director, attorney Michael Cardozo.
Trie delivered the money on March 21 and Cardozo informed first lady Hillary Rodham ClintonLetter to the Editor
and thcn-deputy chief of staff Harold (ekes about the questionable donations April 4. On April 15, Trie was appointed to the trade commission.
“The idea that there was a cause and effect between the money and the appointment is ridiculous,” Lan-ny Davis, special counsel to the president, said Monday. The appointment would have been in the works long before the contributions, he added.
C ardozo, revealing the quietly returned donations, said some of the signatures on the donation checks had “identical handwriting” and some of the donations were in sequentially numbered money orders hut from people in different cities.
Trie has been a fund-raiser for the Democratic National Committee, has operated Chinese restaurants in Little Rock, Ark., and is an international busi
nessman with an export-import company.
Cardozo said some of the donations were affiliated with a Buddhist religious organization, Ching Hai. It was different from a Buddhist group in California embroiled in a fund-raising controversy involving Vice President Al Gore.
Ching Hai came under scrutiny in Taiwan last summer in investigations of Buddhist sects that were defrauding followers, using land illegally or had other questionable financial dealings.
When Trie brought Cardozo more than $450,000 in checks and money orders March 21 in two large manila envelopes, Cardozo said he “culled out” about $70,000 with obvious problems, such as having no address on the check or being a corporate donation.
Ail offering of thanks to guardian angola
Contrary to what people may think, the world is not such a bad place. While on vacation on Nov. 24, my daughter and I had an accident on Interstate IO between San Antonio andToday in History
By The Associated Press
Today is Tuesday, Dec 17, the 352nd day of 1996 There are 14 days left in the year,
Today's Highlight in History:
On Dec 17, 1903, Orville and Wilbur Wright went on the first successful manned powered-airplane flights, near Kitty Hawk, N C.
On this dot#:
In 1777, France recognized American independence.
In 1990, South American patriot Simon Bolivar died in Colombia
In 1992, the dress rehearsal for “The Nutcracker Suite" by Peter llich Tchaikovsky was staged in St.' Petersburg, Russia. (However, the ballet was poorly received when it officially premiered the following night.)
In 1929, Col William “Billy” Mitchell was convicted at his court-martial of insubordination
In 1099, the German pocket battleship Graf Spee was scuttled by its crew, ending the World
Junction. Even though the weather was icy and tembly cold, several people stopped to help. One of those was a resident of your town, Beverly Welch, and her two daughters, Misty and Christy. For nearly three hours while we waited for the wrecker to come, Mrs. Welch and her daughters
remained with us. Even though they also were traveling, they stayed and made sure we were OK.
The Welches ended up spending the night at a motel with us in Junction, avoiding the icy roads. We can’t help but think that they were our guardian angels on that tnp, and by their stop
ping to help, they also avoided a dan gerous interstate. It just goes to show you that there are still good people in the world who will help out a stranger in need. God bless you, Beverly, Misty and Christy.
Beverly McGowen Plainview, Texas
War ll Battle of the River Rate off Uruguay In 1944, the U S. Army announced it was ending its policy of excluding Japanese-Americans from the West Coast In 1999, the U S Air Force closed its Project Blue Book by concluding there was no evidence of extraterrestrial spaceships behind thousands of UFO sightings
In 1999, an estimated 50 million TV viewers watched singer Tiny Tim marry his fiancee, Miss Vicky, on NBC s “Tonight Show ”
In 1979, Lynette Fromme was sentenced in federal court in Sacramento, Calif. to life in prison for her attempt on the life of President Ford on September 5. 1975
In 1991, members of the Red Brigades kidnapped Brigadier Gen. James L Dozier, the highest-ranking U S. Army official in southern Europe, from his home in Verona, Italy (Dozier was rescued 42 days later)
T«n yr* ago: Eugene Hasenfus, the American convicted by Nicaragua for his part in running guns to the Contras, was pardoned, then released Biwa ygar* agos In an about-face, the White
House used the word “recession" to characterize the state of the economy, although spokesman Marlin Fitzwater said the administration did not believe there was a recession in a technical sense. Russian Resident Boris Yeltsin and Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev agreed to dissolve the Soviet Union by the new year
Ona yaar ago: Angry voters handed Russian President Bons Yeltsin a stinging rebuff as Communists and right-wing nationalists scored big wins in parliamentary elections on a platform of rolling back democratic reforms
Today'* Birthdays: Newspaper columnist William Satire is 67. Magazine publisher Robert Guc-cione is 66 Singer-actor Tommy Steele is 60 Rock singer-musician Art Neville is 59. Comedian-actor Eugene Levy is 50. Rhythm-and-blues singer Wanda Hutchinson (The Emotions) is 45. Actor Bill Pullman is 43. Pop singer Sarah Dalltn (Bananarama) is 35.
Thought for Today: “Intellect alone is a dry and rattling thing." — Ilka Chase, American author, actress, humorist (1905-1978).