The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida on December 12, 1976 · Page 73
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The Palm Beach Post from West Palm Beach, Florida · Page 73

West Palm Beach, Florida
Issue Date:
Sunday, December 12, 1976
Page 73
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Page 73 article text (OCR)

The Palm Beach Post-Times An Optimistic Washington Day Cecil B. Kelley, Jr. General Manager Daniel J. Mahoney, Jr. Publisher Thomas A. Kelly Editor Samuel J. Pepper Managing Editor Clarke B. Ash, Associate Editor SUNDAY MORNING, DECEMBER 12, 1976 A Partial Answer Thursday was a rare December day in Washington - clear, sunny and not too cold. It was the kind of day when it was easy to feel good about your country and optimistic about the future. There is no evidence that Jimmy Carter exerted any unusual influence on the weather, but the president-elect couldn't have ordered a better day for his conferences with some of the giants of American business. Bill Clark of West Palm Beach - insurance-man, banker and weekend athlete - was among the parade of invited consultants who huddled with the Carter transition team at Blair House across Pennsylvania Avenue from the White House. Clark, who headed Carter's campaign in Palm Beach County, wasn't privy to an audience with the next president. That honor was reserved for the Henry Fords, Reginald Joneses (General Electric) and Irving Shapiros (du-Pont). However, Clark did get to talk one-on-one with Thomas (Bert) Lance, the new director of the Office of Management and Budget, Robert Lip-schutz, new general counsel to the president (John Dean's old job) and several key members of the Carter transition team. He says he was "tremendously impressed" by everything he saw and heard. "The message that came across was that our country's economy is going through a dangerous period and the Carter administration is looking for input from businessmen. They want a cooperative effort to find positive ways to go." Clark's interpretation of Thursday's discussions was that the businessmen urged Carter to stimulate the economy through housing and tax cuts. They were less enthusiastic about government jobs programs. names. The Carter people have their hand on all the proper handles and I expect to see a happy balance between the academicians and the people who have been down in the pits. I see no evidence of any tilt toward either the Eastern Establishment or the so-called Georgia Mafia." Carter's final selections will be announced before Christmas. Clark admitted that he'd have to think hard about accepting a role in the Carter administration. "I've lived in West Palm Beach all my life and I wouldn't leave here for anything," he said. "Nothing was offered, nothing was promised and nothing was sought." In keeping with his plan for a "people's presidency," Carter dispensed with any lavish entertainment for his Blair House guests. "I was offered a cup of tea, which I declined," Clark said. The president-elect also failed to give Clark his private telephone number in Plains, Ga., which he passed out to congressional leaders last week. Clark left Washington with good feelings about the country's new leadership, partly because of his propensity for making small talk with taxi drivers. "I always feel that cab drivers can tell you a lot about a city, and I found a wide-open, positive mood among the drivers I met in Washington," he said. "One driver a black fellow -opened up to us when he discovered we were from Florida. His family has a farm outside Gainesville. I asked him what he thought about the changing of the guard and he said, 'I got a real good feeling about it. I been driving a cab here for 16 years and I never felt as good about the country as I do now. It's like a fresh breeze coming through." Lance's grasp of economic issues impressed Clark. "He was very refreshing ... a practical, no-nonsense guy from Calhoun, Ga., with an ability to get directly to the point. He reminded me very much of successful farmer - man with a sixth sense about such things as whether it will be a good crop year or not. " Clark was accompanied by Richard Swann, an Orlando attorney and Carter's campaign chief in Orange County. "We made sure they were aware that unemployment is still a serious problem in Florida," Clark said. "I'm confident that helping Florida achieve a balanced economy is a problem that will be addressed by the Carter administration." In addition to picking their brains for economic opinions, the Carter people also bounced names of potential appointees off Clark and Swann and solicited suggestions from them. Clark said, "They confided in us on the names of the people still being considered for Cabinet-level positions and I was very impressed. I couldn't see any minus signs behind any of the A Municipal Service Taxing District is not the best way to solve the double-taxation problem. But it's probably the only way that is politically feasible; at present. Understandably, residents of municipalities are unhappy at being taxed once by their cities for municipal services, then again by the county for such services in unincorporated areas. Just as understandably, residents of unincorporated areas fear that any change will mean a big tax increase for them. The solution presently arrived at is a taxing district encompassing all unincorporated areas of the county. Such a district was created Tuesday by the Palm Beach County Commission. But that's only part of the answer. Still to be decided are which services will be financed by all county taxpayers and which will be financed only by those who do not live in municipalities. Some, such as property appraisal, obviously apply to all residents; in other cases the issue is not so clear. Even when all this is worked out, however, the solution will be at best an improvement over the present system. For instance, how can an unincorporated residential subdivision adjacent to a city be equated with farmland in the Glades? Yet both are unincorporated. The only long-range solution is to recognize that it's absurd to try to govern an urban county such as Palm Beach under the traditional city-county system, designed in and for an era when almost every county consisted of a small town surrounded by farms. At the very least, most if not all of the services at issue locally should be consolidated at the county level, a move that if carried out properly would mean less cost for everyone. Silence on Death Row controlled, orderly basis. Whether Mr. Hazelton likes it or not, the inhabitants of death row are of public interest because the state, through its legislature and governor, has chosen to subject them to capital punishment. Their comments would be of far less interest if they were serving life terms rather than awaiting the executioner. Public opinion seems to be running strongly in favor of the death penalty at this time only a few years after polls showed it was unpopular. Perhaps a full public acquaintance with the realities of capital punishment might start the pendulum swinging back again something which definitely would, in Rep. Hazelton's words, "prove counterproductive to the reasoning behind implementation of the death penalty." State Rep. Don Hazelton (D-West Palm Beach) is off base in calling for a halt to press interviews of condemned inmates on Florida's death row. Rep. Hazel-ton says the interviews are turning the prisoners into "folk heroes" and implies a muzzle is proper until the state can silence them permanently. The legislator, who recently was named chairman of a corrections committee, told prison officials a "carnival-like atmosphere that is emerging from this coverage can well prove counterproductive to the reasoning behind implementation of the death penalty." His argument was rebuffed quickly by the governor's office. An aide said there was nothing wrong with permitting the inmates to grant interviews on a Lack of Incentive 'Beg Pardon, General Ford. I've Been Assigned to Relieve You of Your Command.' Letters to the Editor Time for Action to Aid Crime Victims Beach. Whatever his compensation, it is not enough. Maurice B. Frank Palm Beach Informed dealers or buy spare tires, even though the cost of spares was included in the price of the autoi they bought. It all goes back to incentive. The only person with any incentive to see the spare tires delivered is the auto owner, and he has no leverage, inasmuch as he's already paid his money. The tire makers have no incentive to fill guaranteed sales such as the spare tires until their retail dealers are fully restocked. And the auto firms have no incentive to rush the spares to the dealers inasmuch as they've, already collected for them. It would be nice to think that something besides financial incentive was at work here. But it also would be unrealistic. Owners driving their new cars without spare tires 3V2 months after the rubber workers' strike ended are unhappy. And rightfully so. In order to conserve their stocks of tires during the strike that shut down Firestone and Goodyear from April until late August, auto manufacturers shipped new cars with only four tires, promising to supply a fifth after the walkout ended. But the tires haven't arrived. The dealers blame the auto manufacturers and the auto manufacturers blame the tire manufacturers. The latest estimate for one major auto firm is delivery by Jan. 1. Meanwhile, owners have had either to drive without spares, carry used tires provided by protect us either at home or abroad. In one of Israel's wars Russia's ground-to-air missiles shot our Phantom jets out of the sky like sitting ducks. And in the Yom Kippur War, Israel again acted as the proving ground that showed us that a $15 bazooka shell could knock out a million-dollar tank at will. The unforgivable thing about Gen. Brown's remarks is that he evidently didn't learn that Soviet air-to-ground missiles and Soviet antitank weaponry exposed our weakness and Russia's strength. This is not the man I would trust to protect my country and my fellow Leo Feinstein Boynton Beach Good Puzzle Land Ownership Now that the election is over I would like to express to you the excellent job that I feel The Post did during the primaries and general election. The exposure of the candidates and their views on the issues was outstanding, the best that I have observed during the 25 years in Palm Beach County. The high voter turnout was in part due to your efforts. State Rep. Tom Lewis North Palm Beach Execution The current popular imbalance in favor of capital punishment is no doubt in large measure caused by the constantly increasing crime rate (though the rate of increase has abated somewhat in the past year). However the populace feels, we are not observing a "rush to the gallows" by prison directors, pardon boards, judges, governors and others who can again put the machinery of execution into operation. There is a somber reluctance on the part of all to be the first after a hiatus of 10 years of no executions. This reluctance was evidenced some weeks ago when Prison Director Louie Wainwright announced that he was having difficulty in finding a person who would throw the switch for the first person to be electrocuted under Florida's new execution statute. I have a suggestion. I would devolve the duty cf throwing the switch on the judge who passes sentence of death, or the foreperson of the jury which decrees the death penalty. They should have no conscientious qualms whatsoever. Philip Hilsenrad West Palm Beach The Record Let's examine the validity of Gen. Brown's "professional" opinion that Israel is a military liability. Let's also examine the worth of your reader's comment that the general's statement should not be questioned by the layman. For the past several years I have endeavored to stimulate legislative interest in some type of reparations plan for innocent victims of crime. Although many bills have been introduced no legislation has been enacted. The innocent victim of crime is truly the forgotten American. There always seems to be sufficient funds available for the apprehension, prosecution, incarceration, nourishing, treatment and rehabilitation of the criminal offender. But the innocent victim of the criminal act still must pay his own way including the cost of the ambulance that transports the injured or lifeless body to a hospital or morgue. Crime-victim reparation plans are in effect in more than a dozen states, but Florida is not one of them. It is estimated that an appropriation equal to 10 cents per person would be sufficient to finance such a proposal. In these times when we are rightfully concerned with a restoration of integrity in government, it would seem that one of the best ways that government can participate in this restoration process is to show its citizens that it cares. A crime-victim reparations plan would offer financial assistance to innocent victims of crime invariably those least able economically to withstand the impact of a criminal act. Apart from the humanity of such a proposal, practical benefits would be derived by those whose jobs are lost temporarily or permanently because of a criminal act, whose health has been impaired temporarily or permanently because of a criminal act, and whose family unit may be disrupted temporarily or permanently because of a criminal act. In the last analysis, it would restore the confidence of the people in government. Perhaps the approaching holiday season with its festive and spiritual influence can serve as a prologue to some meaningful legislative action. Gerald Mager Chief Judge 4th District Court of Appeal West Palm Beach Unsung Hero There is a man in our midst who has done and continues to do a magnificent job in handling all the affairs connected with what has become a nationwide event due to the efforts of Frank Wright in procuring internationally known speakers for the Palm Beach Round Table. His recent coup in bringing the band together consisting of musicians from all the armed services was indeed thrilling, as was evidenced by not a soul leaving the playhouse until the performance was concluded. Then the entire audience stood and cheered as the band closed with "Stars and Stripes Forever." Frank has nominated many people as men and women of the year. I suggest that he receive the award as the unsung hero of Palm I am most pleased that you are at last giving your readers credit for the ability to do something a little more challenging than your daily crossword puzzle. My husband and I look forward to your Sunday edition with its New York Times crossword. It's stimulating and fun and we love it. Viola Salont West Palm Beach Thanks I would like to recommend your Sunday Post-Times for printing the article, "Legal Abortion's Grisly Details." For many, the abortion dilemma does not concern them in the least, or so they say. Printing such factual information concerning the inhumanity of man under the legal guise of the Supreme Court's abortion-on-demand decision, helps the readers understand and perhaps appreciate the fact that this abortion issue is not a dead issue. Rather it gives the readers an educational viewpoint into the complexities abortion presents. Also, that we are indeed as a people, watching as thousands and now millions of babies are being destroyed. I challenge readers of this letter and other articles that appear in your paper to study more and perhaps become involved in the movement that is growing across this country. Truth based on knowledge can give one a greater viewpoint and open-mindedness. Can we continue to allow this destruction of innocent lives? I say it's time for every man, woman and child to learn more about what is happening, if only to make a personal decision. Again, I thank you for the article and challenge other writers to do similar research in our own local clinics and report their findings. "Land reform" is a phrase without much meaning to lifelong residents of the United States. One of the great lures that brought in millions of immigrants was the promise of plenty of land, with virtually no restrictions as to who could own it. But that's not how it was in many other nations. A case in point is Mexico, where some 3,-000 peasants have squatted on the large landholdings of Sinaloa state, paralyzing the harvest of winter vegetables. Mexico's Indians were conquered in the 16th Century by armies from a Spain still locked in feudalism. The Spanish exported their feudalism in the form of the hacienda system. As late as the 19th Century, from one-third to one-half of the rural population, while theoretically free, was in fact in peonage due to debts owed the hacienda owners. Ever since 1542 there have been recurring promises of land reform. Most of them were little more than that promises. The constitution of 1917 set up the right of each community to a tract of communal land known as the ejido. Since then many ejidos have been broken up into private holdings for the peasants. Still, many peasants remain landless. The immediate cause of the Sinaloa crisis is that, after ordering redistribution of some 100,000 acres of land in neighboring Sonora state, President Luis Echeverria Alvarez left office without taking similar action for Sinaloa. Previous attempts at reform in Sinaloa were frustrated when relatives of the former landowners snapped up the redistributed parcels, thus in effect perpetuating the status quo. In one case 33 members of the same family control 2,500 acres. The major landowners are pressuring new President Jose Lopez Portillo to "normalize" the situation, a euphemism for doing nothing. Lopez Portillo for his part already has indicated he believes increased productivity is more important than land reform. Obviously the government can win in the short run simply by using the army and the police to expel the squatters. But that would only promise more trouble in the long run. So far, the powers that be in Mexico either have not learned, or do not care to learn, that there is no incentive for food production like private land ownership, as the contrasting results of the United States and the Soviet Union show only too well. The fact is that Israel has done something that the U.S. and the free world can never repay in money alone. At a cost of irreplaceable young blood our military learned that the Phantom jet and the tank are no longer the superior weapons to be depended upon in the event of a gr id war. These can no longer defend and Marie Egan Lake Park

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