The Des Moines Register from Des Moines, Iowa on August 15, 1984 · Page 1
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The Des Moines Register from Des Moines, Iowa · Page 1

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Des Moines, Iowa
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Wednesday, August 15, 1984
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Page 1
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Ice cream 7 llawkeye games on TV Economy sloYiing a f rea THE-WEATHER - Sonny and warm today, highs upper 80s to low 90s. Fair tonight, lows 80s. Mostly sunny, continued warm Thursday, highs low 90s. Sunrise: 6:24 a.m.; sunset 8:14 p.m. Details: 12T. From ancient China to Europe to America, ice cream has come a long way; no matter, just enjoy it Details: IT. The good news is that Iowa will be on TV 7 times this fail; the bad news is the Hawk-ISU game won't be. Details: IS. Retail sales slumped fi.9 of a percent last month, providing a new sign that the 1)3. economy is slowing. Details: SS. Jje Dos Moines 71 Retail J , . SslM I 1 In Bo of DUa -A Tito dark threat ! terror now staling Dai1... should make us at! 'mad as hell' By JAMES P. GANNON Editor of Th Rmisttr Somebody has singled out Des Moines, Iowa, for a special brand of terror. Here, in the normally safe-and-sane heartland of middle America, where clean living, neighborliness and a sense of security are supposed to prevail, a sinister shadow darkens our doorways and our lives. It took Johnny Gosch. Now it's taken Gene Martin. It has raised questions that violate everything we hold dear about living in this comfortable, contented community: Is it no longer safe to let our , .. , youngsters walk our neighborhood streets? Will Des Moines, as if it were Detroit or Newark or Chicago, shut itself behind closed doors and cede the streets to the shadowy threat of terror? When 12-year-old John David Gosch mysteriously disappeared while delivering his Sunday Register newspaper route nearly two years ago, the reaction of the community was tentative and uncertain. The police, the press and many citizens wouldn't assume the worst from the start. It was as if we were making up excuses in order to maintain the "it can't happen here" myth: Maybe it was a runaway, maybe it was just a family squabble. The excuses justly infuriated the Gosch family and eventually fell apart as reality was faced. Now 13-year-old Eugene Wade Martin has disappeared, again on an early Sunday morning, again in going out to deliver the Sunday Register. There is no comforting myth to rely on this time, no excuses. The police immediately labeled the Martin case a likely kidnapping. The press, including this newspaper, played the story hard and fast. The community is anguished and concerned. So now the national media, the television networks and the national press are fascinated with an unlikely tale: terror in Des Moines, of all places. We are on display, each one of us bit players in a drama that examines what's wrong in a place that's supposed to be so right. - And what should our reaction be? ' We should be mad as hell. We should be as agitated and outraged as Howard Beale, the character in the movie "Network," who gave our modern culture a famous rallying cry: "I'm mad as bell and I'm not going to take it any more!" He stirred people to literally hang out their windows and shout it to the streets: "I'm mad as bell and I'm not going to take it any more!" I didn't move my family to Des Moines to limin fear behind locked doors. I do not cede the night to shadowy figures who hide by day. I do not accept the notion that my children's freedom of movement is a daytime right only. The sun should never set on freedom and personal security. Liberty is not a dawn-to-dusk proposition only. Freedom from fear only half the time is no freedom at all. The question is much larger than the disappearance of two teen-age newsboys. They are the catalyst now, but the issue is the violence and lawlessness that we have come to live with. In the first six months of 1984, there were eight murders in Des Moines, 43 rapes, 181 robberies, 738 assaults, 1,719 burglaries. The raw numbers aren't huge, but considering the city's'size, the crime rate is disturbingly high. A new book titled "Safe Places for the 80s" ranks Des Moines' crime rate as higher than New York City's. Iowa's capital city couldn't make the list of 1 1 0 secure spots to live in America. It's time to stop living with that, as if there is nothing that can be done about it. It's time to ask if we are buying all the police protection we need, or only as much as we can get without raising taxes a bit. On a typical pre-dawn morning, the Des Moines Police Department has only 25 to 30 officers on the streets covering 65 square miles. Would Johnny Gosch and Gene Martin be safe today if - GANNON Please turn to Page 11 A Six people report they saw carrier on Sunday By TOM ALEX and FRANK SANTIAGO Rwlstor Stall Wrttort As many as six people may have seen 13-year-old Eugene Wade Martin talking to someone on his newspaper corner between 5:15 and 5:45 a.m. last Sunday before he disappeared, Des Moines police 3aid Tuesday. But the description of the possible kidnapper remained frustratingly vague: A white male, 30 to 40 years old, 5 feet 9 inches to 6 feet tall, medium build, medium-length hair, clean shaven, neat in appearance and wearing light-colored clothing. Assistant Police Chief Donald Knox said that although it wasn't much to go on, he hoped that additional interviews with the six witnesses eventually would provide investigators with a better description and possibly a composite of the man's face. Knox said an artist from Washington, D.C., may be called in to work on the composite. Meanwhile: Gene Martin's parents will meet with Gov. Terry Branstad at 11:15 a.m. today in Branstad's office. Spokeswoman Susan Neeiy said the governor wanted "to extend his sympathies and give his moral support." An anonymous caller to The Des Moines Register at 6:10 p.m. Tuesday claimed he saw a man talking to the Martin youngster at Southwest Fourteenth Street and Eighview Drive, where the youngster's papers were MARTIN Please turn to Page 11 A THE NEWSPAPER IOWA DEPENDS UPON B By JAMES P. GANNON Eugene Wade Martin Reward grows A reward fund to find missing newspaper carriers Eugene Wade Martin and Johnny Gosch has climbed to $35,500. Added to the $25,000 offered by the Des Moines Register and Tribune Company and $5,000 from WHO-TV and radio stations were $5,000 from the Iowa Newspaper Association and $500 from the Iowa Blue Flame Gas Association. Meanwhile, the Martin family has set up a Help Find Eugene Wade Martin Fund at the Brenton National Bank of Des Moines, P.O. Box 891, Des Moines, la. 50304. Donations are also being received for the Help Find Johnny Gosch Fund, P.O. Box 228, Ankeny, la. 50021. Des Moines, Iowa, Wednesday, August Soviets say Reagan quip is alarming By SERGE SCHMEMANN lM Ntw Ywt TUDM MOSCOW, U.S.S.R. - The Soviet news media reacted with sarcasm and scorn Tuesday to President Reagan's quip about outlawing and bombing Russia, seizing on it as proof that his anti-Soviet sentiments remain unchanged. In one of the more biting commen taries, the journalist Genrikh Borovik said on the evening television news that the world would recognize that "between the wishes of the president and their realization stand many hurdles." "But there are still grounds for alarm," Borovik continued. "They say a man's level of humor corresponds to the level of his thinking. If so, then are not the one and the other too low for the president of a great country?" The television broadcast offered detailed views of the tape machinery being set up at the Reagan ranch in California and gave the president's remark in both English and Russian. What He Said The quip was made while Reagan was testing the recording level before a radio address last Saturday. He declared: "My fellow Americans. I'm pleased to tell you today that I've signed legislation that will outlaw Russia forever. We begin bombing in five minutes." Yuri Zhukov, a senior Pravda com mentator and head of the Soviet Peace Committee, assailed Reagan in a long article prepared for today's editions under the headline "The President's Nuclear Joke." Zhukov declared that an "enormous political scandal" had erupted and cited lengthy condemnations of Reagan's joke in the Western press to support the contention that Washington's allies had risen in a "wave of condemnation." The main point in Zhukov's article, as in the others, was that the president's quip had unmasked his recent conciliatory gestures toward Moscow as "camouflage." "This self-exposing statement of Reagan's revealed in all clarity the falseness of the peaceloving veil draped over the aggressive, confron-tationist policies of the administration," Tass, the Soviet press agency, reported. "Political Scandal" "It is doubtful that the White House will be able to extinguish the spreading political scandal," Zhukov wrote. "One cannot doubt that Reagan's statement will be taken the world over as confirmation that his hypocritical discussions of a purported yearning to normalize relations with the Soviet Union and achieve disarmament represented only camouflage of the political course he proclaimed on entering the White House." The wave of commentaries on the president's quip suggested to diplomats that after gathering their forces for a day, the Russians bad launched what seemed certain to be a loud and sustained campaign against Reagan based on his joke. The Soviet press has been assailing the president with ever more raucous attacks over the past year. But Reagan's efforts to appear conciliatory toward Moscow since last January, supported by his seeming willingness to resume dialogue and arms talks, had left the Soviet propaganda short of material. The commentators were quick to link the slip to Reagan's previous controversial statements on Soviet-American affairs. "We would not have wasted time on this unfortunate joke if it didn't reflect yet another time the fixed idea which haunts the master of the White House," Borovik said. Zhukov in his commentary quoted at length the admonitory remarks made by Walter Mondale, the Democratic presidential nominee, with regard to Reagan's joke. He also cited what he called the wave of criticism from Europe, suggesting to readers a world seized by indignation. Wrote Zhukov: "The slip by the president on American radio on Aug. 11 provides new evidence of the dangerous thoughts harbored by the American administration." THE INDEX Advice 5T Crossword... 4T Business 5S Editorials - 14A Classified ads 6T Obituaries , 12T Comics ..11T TV schedules 4T 15, 1984 I Price 25( H Copyright 3E21 n mmmsmamwsiEmBSESMMm , WSk " Villll Train carrying poisonous gas derails at edge of l.ineville By SUSAN KOSTAL and BOB SHAW RMlstar Stiff Wrltan LINEVILLE, IA. - Work crews were still cleaning the mess Tuesday night after part of a North Western Railway train carrying poisonous and explosive gases derailed at the north edge of Lineville before dawn Tues O Milti 200 day. The derailment prompted city officials to evacuate about 40 of Line-ville's 300 residents Tuesday morning, and as a precaution, about 100 more were evacuated in the afternoon as crews began placing the cars back on the tracks. There were no leaks from any of the cars loaded with hazardous materials, and no injuries were reported in the accident. But traffic on U.S. Highway 65 through Lineville was halted while crews struggled to untangle the freight cars. Highway 65 remained closed Tuesday night. Of the 13 cars that derailed, two carried vinyl chloride and one carried chlorine gas. Walter McDonald, a hazardous materials specialist for the Iowa Department of Transportation, said vinyl chloride is an extremely flammable gas used in the manufac r i DES MOINES ) Linevlllo J Government agencies take themselves to the cleaners By KARLYN BARKER 144 Washington Psit WASHINGTON, D.C. - Distressed that the federal government is paying more than it owes, the owner of a local carpet firm has refunded more than $25,000 to numerous agencies that have paid not once, but twice, for carpet cleaning or installation. Double payment has been going on so long, said Joan Estrada, owner of Professional Carpet Service, that she finally copied 21 recent refund checks totaling $25,009 and mailed them last month to David Stockman, director of the Office of Management and Budget "We regularly refund money that is overpaid by the government," Estrada wrote Stockman. "These agencies did not request these refunds, and most likely never would." Estrada, who estimates she has refunded more than $300,000 to various government agencies during the past 20 years, told Stockman her firm is 1984 Des Moines Register and Tribune n wm mm mm 8 m turing of plastics. Chlorine, the same substance used to rid swimming pools of germs, is poisonous if breathed, McDonald said. James Macdonald, a spokesman for the railroad, said North Western officials do not yet know what caused the northbound train to leave the tracks. The line is the North Western's main north-south route between Kansas City, Mo., and Minneapolis, Minn. The derailment flipped several cars end over end, and one dug a gulch next to the track, wiping out the shoulder of a Wayne County gravel road. The only leak was from a car carrying diesel fuel. About 20 gallons leaked onto the ground. North Western officials summoned two companies that specialize in cleaning up derailments to transfer the contents of the derailed cars to other freight cars and move them from the area. The crews and equipment arrived about 2:30 p.m., and an official said it would take approximately eight hours to clear the tracks. The north side of the Missouri border town was evacuated on orders DERAILMENT Pleose turn to Page 9 A just a small one and that she wondered what "the big businesses are getting." Estrada's latest refunds to the government ranging from $65 she sent back to the Department of Interior to $3,199.57 she returned to the Department of Commerce went to 16 agencies. The defense, agriculture, justice and labor departments, even the Internal Revenue Service, were among those who paid the same bill more than once, according to Estrada's check refunds and accompanying correspondence, copies of which were obtained by the Washington Post "I'm offended that the problem exists. ... I'd like it resolved," Estrada said Monday, explaining why she had written to Stockman. But she also ex- REFUNDS Pleose turn to Page 9A 10 Company n n n U' estructuring of liabilities is anticipated Cooperation of farmers, lenders and U.S. entailed s Records raise some questions about Block partner's security for loans: 5S. GOP platform writers promise to take action on farm problems: 4A. By JOHN HYDE and GEORGE ANTHAN 01 Tte Rtglttar'l WMNngtan Butmu - DALLAS, TEXAS - President Reagan is expected to announce next week a plan under which the federal government, lending institutions and farmers would cooperate to restructure the debt of financially failing farm families. The president's plan was revealed here during hearings on the GOP's farm platform plank by Senator Roger Jepsen'of Iowa, chairman of the party's agriculture subcommittee, and by Kansas Senator Robert Dole, the co-chairman.. U.S. Department of Agriculture officials in Washington confirmed privately that Agriculture Secretary John Block, Assistant Secretary Frank Naylor and Farmers Home Administration chief Charles Shuman had discussed the plan and had been "in contact with the White House on it." A USDA official said "something is in the works, but the feeling here is that it's in a preliminary stage. The people here can't talk about it at this point" There is speculation here and in Washington that Reagan may announce the debt restructuring plan during an expected visit to the Missouri State Fair at Sedalia, Mo., on Sunday, or during his appearance at the Republican National Convention next week. Few details could be learned of how FARM Please turn to Page 9A Block sees paid land diversion program in '05 By DON MUHM R Milter Farm EdMr DAVENPORT, IA. - U.S. Agriculture Secretary John Block said in Davenport Tuesday that there's a good chance that this year's expected bumper harvest will require that a paid cropland diversion program be made available to farmers next year. And, noting that persistent questions about his personal finances seem to have been raised primarily in Iowa, Block suggested that the allegations may be linked to the U.S. Senate campaign of Representative Tom Harkin. "If you travel across the United States, you don't find much about this except in Iowa," Block said. "You stop and think maybe there's a reason why there's been more attention in Iowa, and then I find that there's one person traveling around Iowa running for the Senate making a lot of talk." Block also said that "maybe you ought to check on his Harkin's financial disclosure . . . You'll find that he doesn'i own any farmland, he doesn't know what it's like to make a payroll or make a payment on a combine or market some grain or hogs .. ." Block spoke Tuesday at the Scott County farm of Glen and Jean Keppy a farm that this year boasts excellent crops, even though a good rain would be welcomed. On the set-aside question, Block said that he has authority under the cur- BLOCK Pleose turn to Page 12A

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