Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas on April 12, 1976 · Page 4
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Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas · Page 4

Fayetteville, Arkansas
Issue Date:
Monday, April 12, 1976
Page 4
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{Kme3 Big Oil Companies Juggle their Books Editorial-Opinion Page The Public Interest h The First Concent Of This Newspaper Aldcn H. Spencer, Publisher and General Manager Floyd Carl Jr., Managing Edilor 4 9 MONDAY, APRIL 12, 1974 Two-Way Attack ' The Arkansas Legislative Council is going to have its way al Arkansas State University concerning spending money renovating the school president's home. At leas! that is what' the Board of Trustees voted, lour to one. When Ross Pritchard was named president of ASU, certain agreements .between the educator, who came to-Arkansas from another school presidency, and the Board of Trustees, were made. Renovation of the house provided for ASU presidents, along with some expansion to accomodate Dr. Pritcharci's large family, was part of the understanding reached 'by the new official and the board. The school received a low bid of $73,340 for the desired work, but instead of providing the $75,000 first agreed, the council " cut the amount to $30,000. So, the contract was out the window even if the Board derided the bid would be acceptable. Some sympathetic citizens raised privately some S4'200 to be spent on the house pro- feet. The Board of Trustees, in deciding to go along with the Council, voted to include the private contributions to make up the total of $50.000. As one member of the board-said, it should be chalked up to good legislative relations. During the course of the debate on the subject, in some msiiner the difficulties have appeared t" bi= between Dr. Pritchard and members of 'he legislature; at least he has been. .."X'led in remarking about the situation, mostly agreeing with what apparently has to be, according to decisions of the'legis- lators. The mailer should rest between the Board and the lawmakers, with the Board standing staunchly behind whatever agreement it made with Ihe new president. That hasn't been the way it has gone, and there has been some conjecture that the vole to hire-Dr. Pritchard was not unanimous and that fact might have something to do with what has transpired. If so, it would be most unfortunate, because that would point'to pettiness on the part of some'who ought to be above that sort of thing. In the course of the discussions some of the legislators tended to become personal in speaking of the president, one even referring to him as "That gentleman up there." The whole thing has not been edifying. Whether as a result of this or just on general principles, a survey into presidents' homes, their original cost and how much has been spent in expanding or just in upkeep has been discussed by legislators; in fact may even be under way and include a check on fringe benefits enjoyed by the educators. When these figures are in hand (if they are) it will be much clearer as to what should be spent in Jonesboro on a president's home at the state school. Meanwhile it would be far better if differences could be ironed out between the official boards and those in the legislature who are involved, so that the presidents themselves are spared the experience of personal exchanges. There are enough subjects dealing directly with educating the young people which call for presidential-board-lcgislative decisions and comments without taking on any extras. The Roundtable Jackson Advocates Increased Spending By WALTER R. MEARS Ap Special Correspondent NEW YORK (AP) - Democratic presidential candidate Henry M. Jackson envisions a fcetera! government thai is at once hJHgfT. more expensive and more responsive to the American citizen and he maintains that he could accomplish this without raising federal income taxes. He proposes programs (hat would add well, over $S4 billion to the federal budget after a four-year period, and a new tax deduction that could cost $20 billion a year in revenues. But the Washington senator said economic revival would produce the revenues to accomplish al! this arid more. He based this on the contenlion that a sharp decrease in unemployment, which he has made his top priority, would put more than enough money into the federal treasury to finance his programs. ' Jackson said that would work despite the economic pattern of the past year, which has seen a decline in the unemployment rate but not in the anticipated federal deficit. , Jackson and several other Democratic candidates, citing fieures developed, by congres- -sionat budget committees, say , 'each. 1 per cent of unemployment costs She nation S16 billion in tax revenues and increased spending for social services. A decrease in unemployment, therefore. should produce a SIG-billion increase in revenues it other factors remain constant. Jackson discussed his programs in an interview with Associated Press reporters and editors at AP headquarters in New York. Asked whether increased federal aid, such as a federal takeover of welfare, would not mean higher taxes. Jackson replied: "No ... The payment for it will come out of what I see as an increase in revenue as we move toward fuller employment ..." He denied that this revenue would have to be used to finance his proposed $20 billion public works program. When you enact a jobs* program, he said, "industry knows that these orders are coming in. then they are accumulating inventory, (hey start putting people back to work before the money comes out of the Treasury ..." Jackson scoffed al the suggestion of rival campaigners who r u n , in effect, against the government, and at (he proposal of former Georgia Gov. Jimmy Carter for consolidation of federal agencies. "I dan't buy (he argument that because something is big that it's bad," Jackson said. For example, he s a i d . "You can't have a national health plan unless it's a big one ... What people are concerned about is the arbitrary and capricious conduct on the part of government officials." Jackson would have Washing- Ion take over S19 billion in welfare costs now borne by state and local governments, and woutd increase federal aid to education, in both cases over three to four-year periods. He advocates a national health insurance program, hut said in answer lo questions that he has no firm" figure on what the plan would cost the government or whether it would mean thai fecleral lax money would replace dollars now spent in private payments. ., He says the United Slates should triple its public'and pri- v a t e energy development spending over the next 15 years to a total of about 52 trillion. At the same lime, Jackson advocates an income lax credit (hat would permit taxpayers to subtract from (heir tax bills a sum equal to one-half of what they pay in,Social Security payroll faxes. Jackson said he had no figure on the totai cost of that tax credit. The Social . Security Administration estimates Ibat the payroll tax will raise SBO.n billion this year. The tax credit would amount to one-quarter of that, or $20 billion. They'll Do It Every Time l£ SSEBW.I. TEAMS Y£AfcSQX GOES TO THE PRINTED AT TH£ LfaST f TVJfS \6, THE f CO By J A C K ANUKHSON - With Lcs W h l t l c n WASHlNCTON-Thc nation's top oil companies, embarrassed over Ihrir recent riches, hare · juggled their books lo conceal their good fortune f r o m their customer s, TIMS financial hocus-picus-- now you see the profits, now you don't--has been e ('ir-iiy , legal. H nmy hu llie f i r s t time, however, Ihat an industry h.'is" used flexible accounting procedures to mJe p r o f i t s rather t h a n boi si them. The details liave been dog out of corporate financial reports by Rep, William Hughes,, D- N.J.. whose finding'* are summarized in an unpublished study. It is a treatise on creative account ing. . . . . While the rons'lmers have !ll the painful pinvli of Ihc Arab oil squeeze, petroleum profits' I'avoi soared '"t» the wild blue ; ycnder. This has caused; the oil barons acute Therefore. 14 of the lop 20 companies, accord ing to the Hughes' study, quietly "chang- ' ed accounting policies, created' r e s e r v e s and 'split stock, with t h e e f f e c t s ot r e ported earnings ranging from *"educ!,ions 'if -5 to 100' ctr cent." The oil companies went to ili£ w a i l i n g wall lo plead that li.ejr prt.fils weren't, as exorbitant bs the; seemed and, anyway, ( h a t every cenl was needed lo explore for new oil reserves. YET THE STUDY shows t h a t 'The 20 largest oil companies The Washington Merry-Go-Round 10. YEARS AGO Applications ,are being sought tor adult guards at school crossings in Fayclteville. There was standing room only in (he 21-foot boat 28 Cuban refugees used to escape from their homeland. Jack Nfcklaus won his second straight Master's title Monday in a victory in an 13-hole playoff with Tommy Jacobs in Augusta, Ga. 50 YEARS AGO , There arc 2o known dead al Port Arthur, ex., w h e r e a tanker exploded while being loaded with gasoline. The Butter Bill, a u t h o r i z i n g a five year building program for the n a v a l air services passed the House today. It is Din first aviation legislation resulting from the controversy over Col. William Mitchell and IB a victory for his views. n.L. Stan fill has purchased (he two blocks in (he southeastern part of the city known as Ihe While Mill property. He plans to build a wagon y a r d and rnufo b a r n . 100 YEARS AGO Mrs. North's slock of ladies hats are of (he very latest style and are indeed beautiful ami we believe Ihey would add 50 per cent !o any young lady's appearance. The almanac says t h a t tomorrow is Easier Sunday but. there are others here that say that last Sunday was Easter. We presume thai (his d i f f e r e n c e of opinion will have no serious effect upon the weather and price of eggs. look steps that would ease public outcry about w i n d f a l l profits and reserve some porlioti of these p r o f i t s for Inter . years." · ' · In 107-1, fat' example, "when skyrocketing i n f l a t i o n .mil profits hit oil companies, nine of the 20 largest made a change" in their inventory accounting policies, the study slates.. This reduced "their i reported income b aii average of 1-1 per cent." - Here are some of '.he -specifics: . - . . - - i --Standard of Indiana, according (o the .Hughes sturfy, "issued a 100 per cent stock dividend and restated prior years' figures." The 197-1 financial statement ''reported $G 86 : per share. Without the slock' dividend. Standard would' have shown S13.72 per share," --Standard .of California uscj a similar method to make ils profits . look smaller. The, company "saw its income increase from $B44 million in 1073 to $Q70 million in 1574.". The distribution to the stockholders, however, "would have lookeJ substantially more dramatic." Ihe study noles,."had Standard not split ils stock two for one in 1373." --Atlantic Richlie'd shaded its profits by "writing off $21.7 million as a result of with- ' rirawa! from a Canadian tar sands project announced the previous year." ·- --Cities Service r e d u c e d , its income by a lal $21 million "as a .result bl \vrilc : offs of plant, c(iuipmcnt and inveulory costs al several locations. 1 ' . . r , -- K X X O N SIMl'LY "added $·10 million 16 Investment iT5.crvcs.-; which ' i l ' i .deducted f r o m cnrrenl revenue." Anolher $38 million was "allocated, to oilier reserves." --Mobil, which has tried to , m o u n t n, .counter-offensive 'against its crilics, wound up in 197'i with only a 23 per cent "' profit. This -was : small by oil ' industry standards.: Mobil used its profits, the, Hughes study cliargcs, lo purchase Marcor, the corporate complex that controls Montgomery Ward stores. V e t ' M o b i l ' h a s ' b e e n howling to · (he ratters 1 thai- higher profits are .needed 1 , to' finance oil ex: -, alnrationsi , - , ; , . , · · ·' Concludes, the study:, "To use (the.flexible accpiinling) to enhance Ihcir public image to the exlenl done may not be scan: dalous, but it is at hest a questionable practice." NO "FAULT: ' The naliorfs trial lawyers hired a t o p . C I A veteran, Joseph O'Neill, to kill fedem] no-Eanlt insurance. The legislation would have cost the · · lawyers ; and saved . ( h e public an estimated $1.8. billion a year- Uririer no-fault, insurance companies wouEd have been required to pay aulo accident victims without regard to who caused t h e accidents. This would have cul out court costs and lawyers' fees. So while no- faulL won't necessarily lower i n s u r a n c e I'atcs, it gives t h e victims more of the insurance The ex-CIA m a n , supported by a $5UO,QUO war c tie it. suc- moncy. cceded in obstructing t h e no- f a u l t legislation- He headed a lobbying team, which also in. eluded Tom Hoggs, .son ot t h e late House Democratic leader Hale Hoggs, and Tom Bendor, a former consultant for Lockheed. · " · ' . ' , O'Neill and his associates defeated no-fault simply by twisting a r m s and slopping ' backs. No CIA-style dirty tricks were used, : '- r W A S H I N G T O N WHIRL:' Local bunks arc bombarding their congressmen vilh letters oriiiosing "bank reforms. Soina b a n k s have urged their stockholders to join in llio campaign . . Government regulations r e i u i r c . o f f i c i a l s lo fly tourist-class lo save the taxpayers' money. This blleims (ho ' dignily. however. · of Veterans Administrator Richard Roudebush, who insists on traveling lirsl class. At least 10 .UNESCO-sponsored conferences, whh-h had been scheduled at U.S. universities, have.been canm'-d because the , 'Arab-Communist coalition barred Israel from a regional UNESCO group two years ago. : . (C) United f e a t u r e - S y n a . Inc. END PRODUCED B7 NUCLEAR ARM0/UNLIMJTED WITH THE COOPERATION'OF THE GCVeRWMENTS OF THE tj.g., .S.K../ CHINA, FRANCE/GREAT-ERTTATN/IMPTA. ETC. State Of Affairs Ford And Reagan Face Only Defeat By CLAYTON FRITCHKV WASHINGTON -- The trouble with Gerald Ford, says Uonald Reagan, is that if he wins the Republican presidential nomination this year, he can't win the election. Reagan can hurdly be classed as a disinterested observer, hul the results of the f i r s t scries of primaries lend to confirm his prediction. The same evidence, however, indicates that Reagan couldn't be elected cilher. So much altenlion has nalur- tilly been paid to the primary performances of Ihe individual prcsidenlia] candidates of holh parties that little or no nolice has been taken of Ihc performance of. the rival major parties, although the" total Democratic and Republican vole in ihesn · early races is w e l l worth examining. SO FAR this year, in the first six presidential primaries lo be held, the combined Democratic vole has far exceeded Ihe combined Republican vole. uUhougn in the 1972 presidential election all hut one of these states went for Richard Nixon. The ID72 exception was Massachusetts, the only stale lo go for Sen, George McGovcrn. but in ils . recent primary iL voted o v e n more Democratic: than in the election four years ago. The tolal Democratic vole for Ihe six primaries this year is ·1,652,520, or almosl double the GOP tolal of 2.445.6Q3. Actually, including New York, there have been seven primaries, hul no comparison can be made for Ihe Empire Slate because (here was nn contest, on Ihe Republican side unrt hence no tabu- l a t i o n of Ihe vole. The other slates are New Hampshire, Massachusetts, KIo- rida, Illinois, North Carolina and Wisconsin. They represent a pretty good cross section of the counlry. The list includes bolh large and small slules, as well as N o r t h e r n . Southern, ami Midwest ones. . ONLY IN O N E of these . slates. New Hampshire, did the GOP lolal vote (Wft,33l) lop Ihe Democratic total (77,103}. In all Ihe others, Democrats not only won but won bifi. In North Carolina, which now has n Republican governor, Democratic candidates rolled up a combined v o l e of 599.407/. or more than three times Hie combined vote of 193,717 for Reflgan and Mr. Kord. In Plorirla, another Southern slate tfail has ROIIC increasingly Republican in prosidcnlial nlec- lions, Ihe vote was more I h a n 2-to-J for the Democrats who toted up 1,231,031 to 601J62 for Ihe opposition. In the Middle West, the presidential vole in Ihe key stale of Illinois was 1,283,763 Democralic vs. 765,661 Republican, In anotlier Midwest, stale, Wisconsin, the combined Demo- cralic vole was 725,000 as against 588,000 for Mr. Ford and Reagan. As might be expected, the Democrats ted in Massaeliusctls, but the m a r g i n , surprised even veteran pols, i The final Democratic total «*.)S 735,821 to 18M49 for the Republicans. IT LS ALSO i l l u m i n a t i n g lo sec how Ihe vote for Ihe Democratic front-runner (.limmy Carter) compares w i t h ' t h a t of the leading Republican, President Ford. After the first six primaries, Carter has a .total vole nf 1,778,134.' Ford has 1,301,435, or about o.i per cent lo '55 per cent for Carter. T h a t , however, docs not lell the whole story, tor Carter was dividing Hie Democratic vote wilh anywhere from three lo 13 rivals, while Mr, Ford was opposed only by Rcagnn. Thus, Ihe President edged Carler in New Hampshire. Massachusetts and Wisconsin, but in each of Ihese primaries there were 10 or more Democrats dividing up their parly's vote, In North Carolina, where Carter ran afe'jinsl only ,two other Democrats (Jackson and Wallace), he got 321,0,79 voles against 08,024 for Mr. Ford and 101,448 for Hcagan. In Florida, running in a field of 13. Curler got 433,870 againsl 318,344 for Mr. Ford r u n n i n g in a Held of two. There was also a Democratic field of 13 in Illinois, yet Carter got 621,DBS, while the President was getting only 450,812 in a two-horse race. ALTHOUGH M r . Ford a n d much of Ihe press keep dismissing Rrtigan as a serious contender, his showing against (lie President in the primaries is more impressive than il is r;iled. Who since Teddy Roosevelt challenged Presidenl Will i a m Howard Taft in 1012 has over rfone belter against an incumbent Republican Presi- denl? And RcagVm could si ill end up topping Tedly's performance. The advantage oE incumbency is so great l h a l not even Herbert Hoover, after presiding over (he worst depression in U.S. history, was denied rrnomination by Ihc GOP. When former Sen. Eugene McCarthy, compel ing against. Lyndon Johnson in the 1568 New Flampshire primary, \v o n 41 per cent of the vole, it was considered a staggering repudiation of tlie then President, Several weeks later Johnson withdrew. Reagan, on the other hand, has bealen Ford in one p r i m a r y (North Carolina) and come within one to live points of taking him in three others. Afler the first sis primaries. Mr. Ford leads Reagan in total voles only by 1.3G4.4S5 It* 1,068.497. It's nol exactly an overwhelming testimonial Lo an incumbent Presidenl. (C) Los Angeles Times Tfie Saving-Quality Of Political Humor By R I C H A R D WORSEVOI* Kdilflrial Research Reports The ConsUtulion docs not require thai the President of the United Stales have a sense u. i i L i m t , , U U L LL i an airacuve trait in a chief executive all the same. A President who can laugh at himself, even as others arc laughing at him, is apl to hear lightly the burdens of his office. President Ford appears lo he just, such a man. His pialfalls on an airplane ramp in Austria and on a ski slope in Colorado, among other misadventures, inspired a long series jf Jprry- the-Btrrnbler jokes and political cartoons. If Ford was offended, he never let his feelings show in public. From all accounts the President felt Ihat the gibes were good-natured r a t h e r than malicious. The acid lest came on March 25, when Ford attended the a n n u a l dinner of the Radio and Television Correspondents 1 Association, He was introduced there lo the comedian Chevy Chase. whose satiric impressions of a clumsy Ford are a regular f e a t u r e on the "NBC's Saturday Night" television program. ("Mr. Ford was on the campaign trail, announcing in Detroit t h a t he has written his own campaign slogan," Chase said on one show. "The slogan: ' I f He's So Dumb. How Cwmo H/i's President?' ") T h c two men chatted amiably, and Ihe President laughed along wilh the audience when Chase ran through one nT his V o r d routines, "Mr. Ch/5vy Chase, you're a very, very f u n n y suburb," the President said -- a reference to the fact t h a t Chevy Chase, Mrf.. is z bcftrnnm community adjacent to Washington, D.C, CHASH IS only the latest in A ?Cris of comics who have built Iheir reputations by poking fun at Presidents. Moil Sahl aimed his barbs al Dwighl D. Eisenhower, while Vaughn · Meacler ,won fleeting fame [or his impersonation of .John F. Kennedy. Impressionist David Fn-e was equally skillful at portraying Lyndon B. Johnson or Itirhiinl M Nixon. Humor, nonetheless, is a sometime Ihing as a polilical commodity. Kennedy w a s renowned for his spontaneous wit, which showed 1 0 particular advantage at his televised news conferences, b u t Arllai E, Stevenson's even keener , wit proved lo be a. liability in t h e presidential campaigns of 10,52 and 1956. Eisenhower, his opponent on both occasions, took him to task for making light of (h/; EiatEon's problems. IT'S MUCH easier - and safer -- for a vice president to indulge his bent for humor. Albcn W. Rarkley, who servrrl under Harry S. Truman, captivated millions of American with his easy - going E o l f c - siness. And so did Thomas II. Marshall, Wood row Wilson's vice president, who coined Ihc phrase, "What this f o u n t i.v needs is a good five rent cigar." Marshall once told t h e brief story: "There were t w n brothers. One ran away lo sea and the olbor was elected vice president. Neither was r-ver heard ot again," Humor i.s likely lo be in short supply in Ihis year's president i a l election campaign .There is nothing very hilarious, a f t e r n i l . a b o u t unemployment, Ihe Middle Kasl, or mosl of Ihe o t h e r major issues. Bui a leavening dose of laughter would be welcome. Perhaps the two nominees should takjc one wcrk off in mid-October and let Chevy Chase a r i d . David Frye campaign as their surrogates.

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