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AA Th» Parli Navn. TKura.. March 21. IMS Opinion Too much of a good thing Those folks who by temperament or the demands of employment study World Problems, both in the abstract and in the particular, know that what is referred to as the "information revolution" has become a confounded nuisance. It is too much. Tons of information are available on subjects of the remotest interest. Millions of facts contradict millions of other facts. There is propaganda presented as news, news buried in progaganda releases, propaganda masqueraded as scientific treatises, propaganda dressed up as history. It is overwhelming. An item in the Houston Chronicle recently said the nation's librarians complain that they can't keep up with the 800,000 books, 400,000 periodicals and countless other documents published around the world each year. As the article said, mankind today lives in a sea of information. Because there is so much to choose from, we nibble at this and nibble at that. Our appetites for information have become jaded. Now, ar- ticles and books must not only inform us, they must at the same time entertain us or they risk losing our attention. With all this information are we any smarter? Is the man who on any given day can pick and choose between dozens of periodicals, books, and 30-odd television channels any better off than his grandfather who sat down and read the Saturday Review from cover to cover? Is the child today who can come home from school and choose from a wide variety of television programs better off than the child of a century ago who entertained himself by reading Robinson Crusoe? Perhaps what is needed in this "mass communication" age is a new publication telling us which books and publications are disguised propaganda and which are objective, which are worth attention and which ones should be consigned unread to the circular file. That might give us more time to study that which is worth studying. Analysis Lookina Back Is civility really dead in Washington? By HARRY F. ROSENTHAL Associated Press Writer WASHINGTON (AP) - What's all this tough talk coining out of official Washington? How come the rhetorical darts whizzing around the capital are so tipped with poison nowadays? Is "Go ahead, make my day," what it's come to? If politics is compromise, civility is the catalyst. Is civility dead? When President Reagan promised during his reelection campaign that "you ain't seen nothing yet," was he declaring all-out war .against .his, opponents? Does he mHWM-Owit-my- way or no way? . ..—.,..—.., ^ Item: The White House, in an unmistakable warning to congressional Republicans who don't vote with the administration, says it will "help our friends first" when the next election comes around. "Strong arm tactics," retorts Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa, a member of the president's party. *- Item: Sen. Lowell Weicker, R- Conn., arguing with budget director David Stockman over Stockman's plan to kill the Small Business Administration, acidly tells him: "You've had a month to peddle your misinformation." .*• Item: Secretary of State George Shultz is accused at a House subcommittee hearing of "red-baiting" as he seeks support for more aid to Nicaraguan rebels. He tells the congressmen: "When you compare me to Sen. (Joseph) McCarthy, I resent it deeply." K- Item: Defense Secretary News Analysis Caspar Weinberger says he doesn't question the patriotism of senators who seek deeper cuts in Pentagon spending, merely their judgment. This, in response to an accusation by Sen. John Glenn, D-Ohio, that Weinberger has impugned the senators' patriotism. ^ Item: Clarence M. Pendleton - Jr., the black chairman of the civil "Ttghts commission, calls some black* supporters of civil rights "new racists." ^ Item: Lt. Gen. John T. Chain Jr., director of the State Department's bureau of politico-military affairs, orders his staff not to speak to a reporter for writing something Chain thinks breached security. A picture of the journalist — who once held Chain's job — is replaced with a note saying the newsman "did willingly, willfully and knowingly publish, in 1985, classified information the release of which is harmful and damaging to the country." Why all this venom? "It's hard to tell how much of it is plan and how much is accident," said political scientist James David Barber of Duke University. "I'd be kind of skeptical about the effectiveness of it. A former Republican congressman from New York, Barber Conable, has no such reservations. "If I were Ronald Reagan, I'd be pretty tough at this point, because I can be sweet and gentle four years from now," said Conable, a scholar with the American Enterprise Institute, "He's in a position now to change the condition of things. That will pass away." Conable, who was the ranking minority member of the House Ways and Means Committee when he retired from Congress in January after 20 yeacs, said Reagan must get his fiscal house in order and try to get some sort of deal with the Soviets. "If he postponed those things to try to be loved by everybody, he'd go out of office loved by nobody," said Conable. "Ronald Reagan did not veto extensively in the first four years, he tried to work out the best solutions he could, and what are the fruits? A $200 billion deficit, a defense budget larger than it was, with no prospect of getting it down." David Gergen, who served as the White House communications director in Reagan's first term, said he suspects that some people in the administration feel they have to pay less attention to the establishment since the president's last election is behind them. "I think there are times when Reagan has been very effective by being tough," said Gergen, now with the American Enterprise In- stitute. "Being tough on the air controllers strike early in the first term paid rich dividends." But, he said, "Reagan in the past has won a lot of points in this city by doppling out the honey and it's worked very well for him. I'm surprised to see him throw it away in favor of the vinegar jar." In a newspaper column he writes, Gergen looked at other incidents of name calling — in one, a congressman called another "a draft-dodging wimp" — and said many comments made these days in Washington "are so bitter that they fall on the outside world like acid rain, corroding bonds of public trust so carefully built up only a few months ago." James Sundquist, a Brookings Institution scholar, noted that the harder line coincides with changes in the White House staff, notably onetime Wall Street executive Donald T. Regan to chief of staff and conservative columnist Patrick Buchanan to the post of communications director. "Politicians tend to live in the world of compromise and the previous White House was staffed with politicians," said Sundquist. "Businessmen are raised in a different world, and certainly Pat Buchanan has been. It was Regan who brought Buchanan in. I hadn't thought of Regan as one of the ideologues, but he may turn out to be." EDITOR'S NOTE: Harry F. Rosenthal writes about government and politics for The Associated Press in Washington. From The Paris News files 50 YEARS AGO Thursday, March 21, 1935 C. W. Bolin has opened a dance hall in connection with his sandwich shop on Lamar Road and is planning a series of dances this spring. W. B. O'DANIELS, district representative of the General Food and Sales Corporation, was in Paris Thursday.on business with the Paris Grocer Company. JACK ELLIS, silhouette artist, has arrived from New Orleans with Mrs. Ellis to visit his father, E. L. Ellis, on East Washington Street. 25 YEARS AGO Monday, March 21, 1960 Urban Women's Home Demonstration Club announced Features Of borrowed film and the end of war Forty years ago I borrowed something and never returned it. I promised I would but I didn't. I've always felt terrible about it. It was not just any day in my life. I was standing on the west bank of the Rhine River looking out at the Ludendorff Bridge on the day the 9th Armored Division captured it, March 7,1945. Everyone calls it the Remagen Bridge but Remagen is the name of the town nearby. The bridge is named after a German general. It was a reporter's dream. One of the great stories of the war had fallen into my lap. As I scribbled pencil marks in my notebook, wondering how to describe an event of such importance, a young lieutenant in the Engineer Corps came along with a camera. He said he'd taken lots of pictures of the bridge. They were still in his camera as exposed negatives. It was too good to be true. I had Potpourri By Lou Boyd DO YOU refrigerate tomatoes? Likewise. Thought everybody did. But the Tomato Growers Association says don't. Tomatoes taste best when kept on the kitchen counter between 65 and 75 degrees F. Andy Rooney's Column not only a story but pictures to go with it. I pleaded with the lieutenant, promised him, cross-my-heart- and-hope-to-die I'd have his pictures developed and returned to him. Hs let me take the pictures and The Stars and Stripes printed two of them the following day. The young lieutenant's name was Eric Hoffman. I have thought of him many times in 40 years. When I go to a strange city, I often look to see if his name is in the telephone book. I never found Eric Hoffman again ... never returned his pictures. I still have them. Eric Hoffman, where are you? If you wonder why all the fuss is being made about a bridge this month, let me tell you. There were five great days for the Allied Armies in Europe in World War II. 1 — D-Day, the invasion on June 6, 1944. 2 — The Breakthrough at St. Lo, June 18. The U.S. and British forces had been bottled up on the beaches of Normandy. Until that day, it was not absolutely certain we wouldn't be pushed back into the English Channel. The beachhead was so narrow that German artillery could still shell our troops along the coast. Ships were dumping tons of weapons, vehicles, food and several hundred thousand men into France but until the Breakthrough at St. Lo, they couldn't get off the beaches. 3 — The taking of Paris on Aug. 25. It was more a symbolic victory than the others but it was some symbol. We knew we were on our way. 4 — Taking the bridge over the Rhine at Remagen. The Germans had confidence that, even if they were pushed back to their own side of the Rhine, that great river, with its bridges destroyed, would provide a barrier that would give them months of protection while they regrouped and rebuilt their decimated forces. When Americans raced across that bridge, it was the beginning of the end. It was only a few days later that we came on the first con- centration camps at Tekla and Buchenwald. In any way, the best fortifications are not manmade. It doesn't take many defenders with guns to keep a whole army from crossing a river when there's no bridge. The intact bridge across the Rhine was all the good news Eisenhower needed. The first reporter over the bridge that day was Howard Cowan of The Associated Press. Howard, still a towering hulk of a man, now owns a weekly newspaper in Boothbay Harbor, Maine. He has the good taste and editorial judgment to run this column in his paper. Last week we sat in a restaurant in New York and talked of those times. Life, on such an occasion and at such a distance from our first meeting in Germany, does not seem short at all. Howard had the fried oysters, I the eggs Benedict. Howard bought. 5 — The real end of German resistance came when we met the Russians on the banks of the Roer River at Torgau on April 26, 1945. They had been driving west as we drove east. Had we not captured the Luden- dorff Bridge intact, the Russians might have met us at the Rhine instead of the Roer and there would have been very little West Germany at ail. sponsorship of Mrs. pngie V. Fox as its candidate in the Mrs. America contest at the club meeting held at the George Wright Homes recreation center. MRS. GEORGE MCDONALD of Lindale, Calif, returned home Saturday after a two-weeks visit with her mother, Mrs. Irene Tharp, 1863 W. Kaufman, and other relatives. MISS MARSHA MARTIN, bride- elect of Britt Martin, was honored with a kitchen shower Friday evening at the home of Mrs. Melford Burns, 90-32nd SW. MRS. PAUL SWINT and children, Stephen and Paula, of Pasadena are visiting in the home of her mother, Mrs. Josephine Boswell, 510-19th ME. Today in History By The Associated Press Today is Thursday, March 21, the 80th day of 1985. There are 285 days left in the year. Today's highlight in history: Three hundred years ago — on March 21,1685 — composer Johann Sebastian Bach was born in Eisenach, Germany. On this date: In 1304, the French civil code, the Code Napoleon, was adopted. In 1918, during World War I, Germany launched the Somme Offensive, hoping to break through the Allied line before American reinforcements could arrive. In 1945, during World War II, Allied bombers began four days of raids over Germany. In 1946, the United Nations set up temporary headquarters at Hunter College in New York. In 1960, some 70 people were killed in Sharpeville, South Africa, when police fired on demonstrators. In 1963, the Alcatraz federal penitentiary in San Francisco Bay was closed. In 1965, more than 3,000 civil rights demonstrators led by the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. began their march from Selma to Montgomery, Ala. ! In 1972, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that states may not require one-year residency for voting eligibility. Ten years ago: The U.S. Senate began an all-day session to work on a tax-cut measure. Five years ago: Speaking to a group of nearly 100 athletes at the White House, President Jimmy Carter asked them to support his decision not to send the U.S. to the Moscow Summer Olympic games because of the Soviet invasion 'of Afghanistan. ; T9IBUNE MEDIA S Berry's World "And now for the latest update on the president's lower intestinal tract..."