tetters From The Readers View point Editorial-Opinion Page The Public Interest Is The First Concern O/ This Newspaper Alden H. Spencer, Publisher Â»nft General Manager Floyd Carl J:., Managing Editor 4A Â· SUNDAY, APRIL 18, 1976 Fantastic Demands There should be little tendency to "blame" anybody -- or people in general-for looking for the main chance. Almost everybody is doing it. Some are much more successful than others. Athletes, in most sports, are heavily involved. How much of what some of the so-called superstars are seeking as part of their due for signing contracts to perform before the public is their idea, and what part agents and attorneys play in setting "the price," is not always 'clear. However, some of the "ask- ings" appear to some of us to be pretty far but. Maybe not in these days, but even with inflation and heavy support for sports the demands are little short of fantastic. Take Ihe case of Larry Csonka, formerly of (he Miami Dolphins, a professional football team which has had above moderate success in winning gmaes and honors. Csonka left the Dolphins to go with a team in a newly-formed World Football League. When this venture petered out financially, the league folded and the backfield whiz was willing to talk with Miami about taking him back. This did not work out, and Csonka went to another pro team, hut in the midst of negotiations, contract demands were made known by the club. They were worth public interest, all right, mainly because learning about them shows something or other about the professional sports scene in the United States today. The contract sought, said the owner of the Dolphins, was worth more than 82 million. Even (he player admitted the figures are astronomical, but said in negotiating for as much as he could get "yon have to start somewhere." As divulged by the club, some of what was asked included: A salary of $250,000 a year, a $50,000 Art Buchwald bonus for signing, and an annual bonus of $15,000, all in cash. A~20-year loan of $125,000 at minimum legal interest. ' Separate compensation and an expense for public relations service during his playing years and separate compensation to perform certain scouting and coaching consultant activities for 10 years after retirement, plus a minimum expense .allowance of $500 per month or more. Eight first-class round-trip airline tickets each season between Cleveland-RHtsburg and Miami to_be iiseri by anyone named by Csonka, and one round-trip ticket each year for Csonka's family members. Fringe benefits' including game tickets, transportation and expenses and a luxury automobile and a furnished luxury two-bedroom lownhouse. If there were to be any expense of insuring Ihe contract for its entire term against any disability or death, the club would bear it. . As anybody who reads the sports pages knows, Csonka is not alone in reaping what he has sowed in the sports field. Baseball has superstars, too, who demand, and receive, enormous benefits from playing before the public. \Vhen one of those figures does well, fans say "he is well worth what i they're paynig him;' when he does poorly, as all do one time or another, "he's an overpaid player." The guys and gals who put up the funds for all this are those who go to the ball games, and as long as they go, in large numbers, the superpay to superstars can continue. There's something exciting just to look at sports figures who can ask all they're asking these days, even before they get on the field. The bigness of the matter has its own attraction. The Pocket Watch Heralds A Change By BILL VAUGHN This department, dedicated a= it is to bringing good news 'mid the gathering gloom, is glad to report Ihat the Wall Street Journal say5 the pocket watch is making a comeback. Sales up 40 per cent in 1975 over 1974 and probably another 40 per cent this year. It has certainly taken a long lime for the flcopte wjio organize this country to catch on. Nearly 10 years ago I pointed out that-the decline of the pock pt watch would be accompanied by a decline in everything else. I cited the weakening of the moral fiber, the dissolution of the family, the lank of respect tor our established institutions and predicted (hat they would get worse. Of course, other thinkers were predicting the same thing, but For complicated reasons. d i f f i c u l t to understand. My reason was simply that a man who has to look at his wrist to tell what time it is does not command the attention of a man who takes a watch from his pocket, which includes most of the Pounding Fathers whom - w e are. supposed to be saluting in this Bicentennial year. WORLD WAR r produced the wristwatch and a lot of other ' things that didn't turn out to be Â· such a good idea. I admit I wear a wristwatch. A man gets forced into these '. things. For one thing the tailors qu it puttin g watchpockets in trousers. (Wait a minute while I check; whenever I write that I discover that I am wearing trousers with a watchpocket. No, there is certainly none in these pants.) About the same time, the vest disappeared. Nobody e v e r explained why. It just went. And a pocket watch isn't much good if you don't have a pocket to put it in. Â·,, Now, the vest is coming back. And with it the pocket watch. * And with the watch will come f l o o d i n g back promptness, respect for elders and all the things that made America great. I remember when I was a young fellow, dating the girls, and you brought the lovely thing, cheeks aglow w i t h healthy fun, home a bit late, say 10:32, (here would he her father. They marie fathers very big in those days. And he would reach in his vest pocket, produce the gold watch and say, "Young man, do y o u realize. I say do you realize what time it is?" BOY, I'LL SAY T realized. What does it mean today when a father tries to impress the belated deliverer of his daughter by looking at his wrist, even if it's digital? None at all. There is a lot of nostalgia about the railroads. Some people remember that lonesome whistle in the night, Others the glass revolvers filled with candy that they used to sell. To me the most impressive thing was when you asked (he conductor if you were on time, he would pull out (hat clock, snap it open, and say, "Looks like we're about seven minutes late now but we'll make 'er up. 1 ' Can we really feel the same security with pilots who wear crazy wristwatches that may, for all I know, give the time in Beirut or Singapore, but actually accomplish nothing else than giving us the feeling that the plane is being flown by a lefthanded handball player who needs a strap around his wrist? i Â·- . I SUPPOSE the airlines won't pay a n y - a t t e n t i o n , ' b u t L think it would help a lot of us sweaty-' palmed passengers If the pilot would si roll through the cabin from time to (ime looking at a good dependable turnip. "-The fact that a pocket watch used ] , to be known as a turnip' is merely tossed in for the education of (hose under 78. In my youth we revered the professor, the preacher, the physician because they used pocket watches. The first two would put the clocks out on the pulpit or lectern to remind them of time's winged chariot. Old Doc would use it pulse- liming and other vital matters. With all due respect to these professions, quite a bEL of their , success depends upon the . c o n f i d e n c e o f I h e class, congregation or patient. It could be entirely coincidental, but I I h i n k (here is no denying that the dive in the public; esteem for the university, the church and the medical . profession began about the time the pocket watch began to vanish. So, as I said, it is heartening to know (hat the pocket watch i s ' m a k i n g a comeback. After all. air-conditioning has made the vest, and therefore the vest pocket, a year-round garment. There is good news out there, folk, if you look hard enough for it. The only handicap, and it may be temporary, is that I am having a great deal of difficulty finding a dollar IngersolL And I'm certainly not going to buy a vest until I do. (c) United Feature Syndicate, Inc. Power! Lines 5 ; To ttie Editor: The- Southwestern Eleclnc Power Company is constructing a high-tension power (runs-" mission line between FayeUe- . ville and the new coal-fired p o w e r planL at Gentry. Â· SWKPCO officials have chosen not to build tlicir power line In a direct route over unproductive Nat tonal Forest lanrl; instead, they- propose a route Â·which will amble ten extra miles in order lo slay on flat; productive, private farmland. 1 . SWEPCO's reasons? They say that getting an easement to cross govertimenl tand wouln take too long -- pcrh'nps'HS long as a vear. They neglect to add that they have already spent two'years planning t h i s new power plant; during .that .time Ihcy have not approached even a single government otficial to obtain an easement. Now when faced with resistance from a group of farmers in (tie Wellington area (western W a s h i n g t o n and Bnnton Counties), SWEPCO suddenly must force the powcrlme through o n 1 private land as quickly ,.as possible. The farmers wlio are resisting have experienced daily harrassment. Why is SWEPCO trying so hard to crush resist- . ance? Â· . In future years SWEPCO stands to gain a lirty "windfall" by-placing its power line on productive farmland. On government laud. SWEPCO might be expected to keep its own right-of-way clear. On private land, farmers would clear the brush from their own fields And in the process they would maintain the rirht-of-way for the electric company. Simple, no? That way nobody will have to pay, right? ~ Right. --' Except for the inconvenience to farmers "of working their machinery around Â·huge concrete and steel m on st.ro- 'sities, 'Â·Â·Â·Â·--'. except for the decreased ^property values _ of land within 'sight "of ,these eye- Â· .sores, __ except'for the^discouragement of knowing that yoiir' fences can be' cut ami your soybeans, silage, squash, or pasture 'destroyed at Â· any moment by the monstrous tracked vehicles which "repair" the power line. : But for SWEPCO it's a fr.ee windfall, right? Local farmers will maintain (with" no " reim-" faursement, -of course) the right- of-way .fp; the'powe'r.'company. - Do you ' think . SWEPCO's "windfall" might mean cheaper electric rates for the consumer? D o n 1 ' t hold your breath. SWEPCO seems hardly -so generous. I As a Bicentennial gesture; maybe we should kick SWEPCO ''EDITOR'S N O T E i ' . T M .TIMES welcomes and solicit* letters lo the editor on a D y Â· topic Writers are asktd (o limit letters to 400 words because of space requirements, Ln an attempt to print all lel- 'ters received. We will nut consider anonymous letters, nor will the TIMES publish letters w i t h names withheld. All letters should he typed, If possible, or In clear handwriting. The TIMES will not cut or edit letters; those ri- ther too long or unacceptable because of obscenity or linei will not be published/ right where: i t - h a s split the scams o f , its britches. M a y b e . we can remind its officials that public utilities were meant to serve the people, not. rob them. . George Newton . Lincoln Â· Â· Â· . . = the Highway To (he Eiiilor: ., , , , , - . , r I am areally. concerned that,-.-. a group of people in Northwest 1 Arkansas arc .manifesting a malicious a'tlibde! toward-the; , proposed north-south expressway. This . - g r o u p has made statements that they, will make.. it as difficult and .expensive as .possible to .build Ihis road. They have made statemcnls .that'the Fayetteville by : pass and . the segment f r o m ' Fayctleville north to Missouri would be all Â·Â· right, but because Ihcy fear that, these segments would be preliminary -to building lire . e n t i r e route ' lo ' Interstate 40 Ihey are opposing Ihe entire project in a n y : form.'Their altitude is obviously so nasty that they, refuse to listen to reason "or good judgment; n - . Â· 'Some ot them claim to be : in 1 Ihe ; irilercsls of environ" rnehtnlisls, ;. who . .are .more,. ,'. concerned , . a b o u t ' Irees and ' nature ; . : t h a n ' . about humans, : Â· while other's are'probably only 'selfishly concerned about land : or business losses. 'Whatever " t h e i r interests, 'they certainly rioili show' any feelings 'or regards for 'the entire family 'and others who have been killed on llwv. 71 in recent years. Certainly il would be desir- ' able for the growth- in-' Norlh- Â· west Arkansas lo slow down, but this growth is going to continue anyway. It is absolutely necessary thai ' a four-lane expressway be built: This is the only way to sulve the traffic problems in Northwest Arkansas and create a highway where both cars and I rucks can .make the 55 mile per hour speed limit in safety. Nearlyall 1 people in Sebastian and Crawford Coun- lies want tills highway built, and t .[irmly -believe ' th'al the great majority of people in Washington ami Benton Counties want it too. Will you people please slnnd up and be counted? Don'l lei Ihis group of "loudmouths" d e s t r o y o u r chnncc-lo 'get this desperately needed highway. Write Idlers to y o u r congressmen, your stale officials, and your newspapers. Appear al all highway hearings and supporl this and olher needed -raiicl projects. I love trees too. II hurls me deeply when a single Iree is cut. .but I love humans more and want lo see-lives saved. We have a death trap and a nightmare 'for drivers on Ihe existing Hwy. 71, and this condition will Â· become- worse. Let all selfish inleresls be set aside and - work for Ihe good of all people in Northwest Arkansas. r ,.,' .- Winlon Carson Fort Smith Amendment 55 To Ihe Edilor: . ) Amendment 55. (lo .the consli- Â· lution):' J is' so -unconstitutional Ihal Ihe pushers of it are bound to be well aware of its .illegality. 'Â·Â·Â·Â·Â·Â·Â· Â·'Â· " Â· I suppose Ihey hoped UiÂ«'-jfesf ot us would not catch on until It was loo late. It is' never 16'- late to rpical A. 55 neither can it possibly authorize all lhÂ« things Ihe pushers of i t ' - p y i it docs. . . ; :'"_ If tile women who don'l nwa" to work would stay home and take care of t h e i r children and; home there would, he less delinquent and unhappy 1 children. Then perhaps the more sober- minded men would bring about a better order. T h e n rnayb* they could keep Governor Pryor: at home where he belongs .in stead of r u n n i n g ' t o Washington., or here at the University f a l l the time. To get more federal- motley to implement A. 55. I ponder i f , a bunch of these regional government wonders- aren't subject to suits'and to' be taken lo court a real one, not a half-baked j u s t i c e - o f . thÂ«. peace court. . . . . Â· ' The constitution, Articlfi 3, section..2. The Supreme' Court shall have .original jurisdiction both as the -law-and-facts with; such exceptions as Congress- shall make.. Congress has the power to slop Ihe judges rulings if Ihcy would use their power.,.- B.B. Cochran Gbshen - , . . . ' How Time 16-YEARS'" AGO , About : 20 per cent of the American population lived aL a different address in March, 1965 than it did ,a'year "earlier, the -today. .. ; "Po'poyo The. Sailor" will visit '.the Hickory Creek Â· boat dock .near Spnngdale on .Beaver L'ake next Saturday. i. The Rogers Board of Zoning Adjustments will hold a public hearing Monday 5 on a neiition by ponrey Outdoor Advertising f o r ' v a r i a n c e s of regulations on outdoor billboards. ; 50 YEARS ; AGO ^;. ' .' Dr. Allan; A. Gilbert has just been notified of his election lo Â· fellowship in Ihe American College of-Physicjans. ; Hendrix College defeated Ihe Razorbacks on'track and field here Saturday afternoon. A Wesley Foundation al the University of Arkansas,' with d o r m i t o r i e s , chapel a n d recreation hall of Iheir own. is [he dream of rayetteville's Central Methodist Church. 100 YEARS AGO \ The Democratic . cqurity, committee have" fixed' upon EhÂ« first ; Saturday - in June foi^ Â· holding 1 'the county convention" to instruct delegates to |he statÂ«^ and congressional conventions..; A' good, live,. , w'ide-awakÂ»" cabinet maker! a good cooper! and; brick-maker, who-would ! h$ - p r o m p t anoV-seil at fair pvicear could each do.a good job .here.; - They-are needed badly. ; ; Â·*, Bible Verse7![ "For I-will declare mine,inl-1 quity, I will be sorry.for;my; sin." Psalms 38:18 Â·Â·,./':; When .we reach ..this point, in' our lives,'we can look for thÂ». burden lo , go i and the blessing to come. "Except rye repent-yj shall "all likewise perish." -- GOVERWOfc CARTBP CM THE OWE HAMP YOW SAY BELIEVE- IN PRESERVING "ETHNIC PURITY" OF SAY YOU'RE. /AGAINST s JUST WHAT IS VOUP- HOUSIMG PWW? OSETV/O ATEMENTS Jungle Jim, Congressional Delays And A Legal Limbo 'Â· P I N E BI.UFF COMMERCIAL Qneition: What's a Jungle Jim? Answer: A f i x t u r e of election' year politics in Arkansas. This year, Jim Johnson is r u n n i n g for chief justice of 'be Arkansas Supreme Court. But, as aficionados of Arkinsaw infighting may have observed, ' not in his usual pungcnl way. - In his opening statement last 1 week, Jungle Jim began with overmuch praise and a lervenl profession of friendship for -his opponenl (Carlelon Harris). It took Jungle Jim almost another paragraph before he - began m a k i n g accusations ami : a whole page before he got down to accusing the other fellow of "totally, wholly and ' completely failing" to do his duty and responsibility. Maybe il just lakes longer for Justice Jim In warm up these more sedate days in A r k a n s a s politics. Or else the judicial nature of the job he seeks promp- ; tfd a prefatory measure of - temperance as his campaign jfnt unnYr way. This year, Jim Johnson seems to be r u n n i n g "n the bloodless issue of the poor organization of Arkansas's courts. Which surely must he one of the milder complaints he "** lodged against ite American Judiciary, remembering some of his speeches in the Furious Fifties and Geggish Sixties. If there has been a failure in organizing the Arkansas judiciary, Mr. Johnson himself might be eligible for some of Ihe responsibility. He was, after all, an associate justice of the state's Supreme Court for some time. Could Ihat explain the relative temperance of his opening statement? For he did say "il pains me lo make Ihis race." Though perhaps not as much as it pains Carleton Harris. Or those of us who can remember the muddying e f f e c t Jim Johnson's entry has bad on other political races in the past. They say Jim Johnson's actual decisions as a judge were not too bad. thai some even showed juslice .ind corn- passion. Bui he is not arguing the (|ua!ity of the court's Â·membership: he is stressing the organizational burden under which Ihc court must labor, a burden Carlcton Harris himself Â· has been known to expatiate on from time to time. Mr. Johnson's solution to the court's poor decisions mighl appeal to Warren Burger, a chief justice of another court who seems much more interested in, and much better al, discussing Hip efficiency of the j u d i c i a r y than the thoughlful- ness of its justice. The perspective of a William O. Douglas is more appealing. Mr. Justice Douglas wasn't so much interested in the workload of the coiirl as the qualily of ils thought. The amount of work lacing the justices npver bothered h i m ; their conclusions certainly did. As his dissents made clear. The mediocrity and worse of s o m e of the decisions e m a n a t i n g Irom A r k a n s a s ' Supreme Court may nnt stem cnlircly from a f a i l u r e o f ' organization, And if Ihey did. Jim Johnson's mosl obvious political lalcnl has nol been one for organization. He has shown a genius for disniplinn. Hearing Jungle Jim enlcr .still another political race, one wishes it \vere easier lo defend the court's record against a cancli- dale with his sleazy political hislory. SOtmiWF.ST T I M K S RF.COJID The Department of Hcallh, Education and Welfare should approve Oiw. David Pryor's request lhaf. viboul 200 Arkansas nursing 4 home . patients be exempted'from present income limitations thai endanger their future medical care. These people are caught in o vicious trap thai is not of their own crealion. Old. sick and generally without, relatives to cure for them--certainly unable to care for themselves --they receive Veteran Ad- minislraliDn and Social Security honelils. Their problem slems from the facl that these benefits have been increased lo aboul f i v e dollars a month more lhan is the m a x i m u m income permitted in Arkan.slis Lo q u a l i f y for medicaid f i n a n c i n g of nursing home care, which is paid joinlly by federal and stale governments. Technically, according lo law, Ihey should have slartctl paying for their nursing home care after Junuary 1. Of course, Social Security and VA benefits will nol cover Ihe costs. These elderly people have been placet! in a legal limbo because Ihe m a x i m u m income allowed in Arkansas is less ^an in many olher slales. largely because of lower living co',ls ( here. In New York, for example, nursing home residents can rccievc almost $600 per month and slill q u a l i f y for me.1ica:il bcnefils. Thus, the involved .nursing home patients are the v i c t i m s of conllicling slate and federal policies. VA and Social Security benefits were increased with the idea of helping all people receiving monthly checks lo eombvil'inflation. The Arkansas income '. ceiling is about right for living standards hero, according . to jstate officials who do nnl want to raise it to coyer the approximately 200 nursing home patients involved. It has been suggcsled I h a t Ihe five or six dollars above Ihe income ceiling he returned to Ihe VA ' or Social. Security to enable the piticnls to "continue to receive medicaid care; This, however, creates legal problems, - Another suggestion has been Ihal Ihey refuse lo accept any VA or Social Security money at all and be declared totally indigent, forcing the slale antl federal governments to assume total responsihilly for their heallh and .welfare. Bui thai, too, r u n s inlb legal roadblocks. T h e ' governor's solulion makes sense. Simply make fhese people exceptions to the general ; rule and continue to provide ^ t h e m with the medical Allention they miisl Imve in order lo live. There; is supposed lo be an exception to almost every rule. This certainly seems to he onfi that [cdcral welfare officials should rcconize and approve. A R K A N S A S DEMOCRAT Racial prejudice. It is absolutely unacceptable in public life, and righlly so. But there's a d i f f e r e n c e between the real tiling and th/i political thing. We are seeing examples of both in the presidential campaign of Jimmy Carter, First, lake political charges of prejudice. Carter has got himself into trouble defending racial neighborhoods against federal efforts to breaK them . up, as il has broken up schools. Carler said that anybody should be able lo move freely into racial ghetlos bul that govern: mail has no business trying lo mix them. In shorl, if a glicllo (Polish, Irish, black or whatever) hasn't attracted people of olher races, then Ihe government should leave il alone. The people arc entitled lo their "clhnic purity." Who'd quarrel will) Ihal? Not !V?n. Henry Jackson; not Rep. - M o r r i s Udall. They're for leaving those enclaves alone. ' too Bui Ihcy don't, use loaded phrases like "clhnic purity"; so they wenl inlo a hypocritical song-and-rtance over the Carter remark, all with - t h e mm of suggesting that (being a Southerner) the candidate Is a sneaking racist afler all. Well, the phrase wasn't Car^ ler's. A reporter used il when; he asked the candidate hii s t a n d on racial neighborhoods/ and Carter picked the phrasÂ« up in making his reply. That'll learn him!! ^ ' Jackson and Udall are merely hypocrites, a n d , - "politiqs_,.ij politics." Now, for real prejudice. The director of thÂ» American Civil Liberlies Union has Â· resigned, accusing certain Northern liberal mcmbrs of ACI.U of bigotry for refusing to back a Southerner -- Carler -- for president. He accuses one of the liberals' lor declaring he'rl "never vote lor anybody with a Southern accent." What do we make of an attitude that tries lo.ghetloize a whole section of the counlrjf politically? What do we 'mak* of a civil libertarian w'ho automatically attaints any Soulhern candidale as unacceptable on the unspoken ground thai lhÂ» candidate is a bigot? : Well, we conclude that tti* man's prejudice disqualifies him to be either a liberal or a libe-r- larian. In short, he Is Ihe higot Ihal the ACUJ director says hi is. Hill a lot less will be -made ol his remark than of Carter's. The higol Isn't running for president.
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