Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia on May 19, 1974 · Page 60
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May 19, 1974

Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia · Page 60

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Charleston, West Virginia
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Sunday, May 19, 1974
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'After all, whaCs a few cents a gallon?' Q FANNY SEILER: Affairs of State Results Give New Light With the primary election out of the way, there's a little different light on the race for speaker of the House in 1975. Speaker Lewis McManus. D-Raleigh, enhanced his chances for re-election somewhat by coming in a close second in his county, compared with two years ago when he squeaked in last. The d e f e a t of M a j o r i t y Leader T. E. Myles. D-Fayette. and Finance Committee Chairman Harry Pauley removed the possibility that they would be in contention. As the current speaker. McManus probably has the edge, if he can correct the problems he has had in the 61st legislature when he lost control, and 11 dissident Democrats joined with Republicans to shove through nearly all measures wanted by Gov. Moore. McManus is a competent legislator, and a nice person, but he's been weak on leadership with loyal Democrats complaining about being in the dark on what was happening. Myles deserves credit for retaining control, when there was any. · THERE ARE a number of potential candidates if McManus can't put it together for the 62nd legislature. All of them, like McManus, must be elected in the general election. Some of them are hesitant because McManus has been good to them, and some think he is the only one who really can put all the time in that needs to be devoted to that job. Del. Donald Kopp, D-Harrison, is a serious contender, and as state vice chairman of the Democratic party he'll have to be recognized when ^GAZETTE-MAIL Charleston. \V rst irjjinia. May 19. 1974 Page Vol. 18 No. 19 Time to Experiment It is an irony of considerable proportion that President Nixon's administration has been smeared so thoroughly by scandal that Mr. Nixon has largely escaped blame for ruinous inflation. S Without Watergate, the President would be facing an angry and frustrated people who have seen their incomes shrink in relation to buying power and have been forced, for the first time in decades, to cut back on food purchases. The newest figures on the national economy show that there still is no effective remedy. In the first quarter of the year, inflation continued to rise -combined with a plunging national production, the lowest in 16 years. We have seen the failure of controls. reluctantly imposed by a President whose ideology rejects the concept. But^ we have also seen the failure of the forces of supply and demand, upon which ideal capitalism relies. Is there another way? Perhaps. Sen. James Buckley, New York conservative, has proposed a taxing scheme which might be applied to the general economy. Under the Buckley plan, income taxes would be tied to the value of money, rising and falling with the economy. In Brazil, inflation has been countered by a similar plan. The Brazilians have imposed a series of economic "corrections" periodically throughout the economy. Wages, rents, interest rates, pensions -- all are adjusted to compensate for the effects of inflation whenever certain levels are reached. So far, it has worked rather well. The annual rate of inflation was lowered last year from 80 per cent to 15 per cent. The plan didn't originate in Brazil, of course. Labor leaders long ago recognized the possibilities of contracts which permit wages to rise and fall with the government's buying power index. Inflation control along these lines might be worth a try. The American people are in a mood to go along with experiments, we suspect. Spirit Worth The Expense the leadership is put together. Kopp and Del. Charles Cline, D - W y o m i n g , are being watched by the West Virginia Labor Federation, AFL-CIO. So too is Joseph Albright, who served one term in the House two years ago, and is now one of the Democratic nominees in Wood County. Albright isn't actively seeking the job. but he wouldn't likely turn it down if there was a chance. In 1972 -- the year he lost in the general -.the late President Miles Stanley of the labor federation approached Albright about running for speaker. Albright is a -capable legislator and is regarded by those who know him as a bright lawyer. AS AN incumbent in the House, Cline is highly regarded by his colleagues for being capable of smoothing the rough edges when there is controversy such as the House redistricting. Cline was commended by both Democrats and Republicans for his handling of that.issue, and others as well. He also has a terrific sense of humor, and is a natural when it comes to delivering speeches. Cline is serving his second term. Del. Marion Shiflet, D-Monroe, has a following with the farm bloc and served as ma- j o r i t y leader in p r e v i o u s years. Whether he would have time to devote to the job is a factor. Del. Robert Dinsmore, D- Monongalia, is said to have been the early pick of the United Mine Workers Union. His * good work on the black lung legislation hasn't been forgotten. But Dinsmore still has to master the chairmanship of the House Political Subdivision Committee, and he is absent at times when he is needed -- as in 1973 when McManus needed one more vote to pass the budget, and again in 1974 when the vote was taken on the budget. »· SHORTS -- Health Director N. H. Dyer was one of the graduates of West Virginia University who celebrated their 50th graduation anniver- sery in Morgantown Friday. Out of 400 in the class, 211 are living. .. .The West Virginia Library Commission reproduces in Braille the editorial page and news stories in the Sunday Gazette-Mail for blind persons all over the state. . . .A greater percentage of Republicans responded to a COPE survey this year than Democrats compared with previous years. In 1972, 73 per cent of the Democrats responded but only 66 per cent in 1974. The Republican re- Relax and Enjoy It West Virginia's mountainous terrain, poor roads, and relativpty poor community facilities were for years cited as the reasons the state was shunned by industry. And for years, chambers of commerce desperately sought to overcome this picture of the Mountain State and remained studiously silent Now, it appears, West Virginia's day has come. It still has mountainous terrain. Its roads have improved vastly. Its schools and other community facilities have improved moderately. Its population is stable. But all that doesn't matter so much today. West Virginia is free of the on the matter of dwindling population. street crime, racial strife, and overcrowding from which industry now seeks escape. Its sparse population is an asset. Its clean air and clean rivers are attracting the eye of industry. Indeed, the day may come when the state must confront the possibility of too many manufacturers descending upon it. Let Greed Play Part It's just a thought. Would it clear up the White House problems if Congress were to vote Mr. Nixon a tax deduction for providing the House Judiciary Committee the complete and unedited White House tapes? Mr. Nixon has shown that he will go to extreme lengths for a tax deduction. It might work. In the meantime, let's relax and enjoy our unprecendented situation. For starters, we may contemplate, here at home, the expansion plans of Union Carbide and the newly announced p l a n s of American Motors to b u i l d auto components in South Charleston. Elsewhere in the state there are almost daily announcements of new facilities being planned or built. Looking about, we find that we are bullish on West Virginia. ^ The House of Representatives has rejected 240 to 153 a bill which would provide for adoption of the metric system over a 10-year period. The naysayers were persuaded, no doubt, by the argument that the bill would cost $60 to $100 billion. This contention was made by a h u f f i n g and puffing Iowa lawmaker who presumably considers the Anglo-Saxon measurements sacred. He offered no statistical evidence. On the other hand, proponents of the bill insisted that passage would mean a cost of no more than $14 million for operation of a conversion board, which would prepare a plan for the least painful conversion. Almost all the world has gone to the metric system, including Great Britain. It should be said here, too, that Great Britain has abandoned its ancient and awkward monetary system for the decimal system employed in the United States. Academicians and scientists rely upon the metric system, and more important, so do manufacturers, merchants, and prospective customers outside the United States. Loss of export trade may be attributed to the lack of a metric system in this country, if legislative advocates are correct. A greater loss, we believe, is the loss of worldwide community spirit. As matters now stand, Americans are isolated by their unique measurement system. ' 1 cent this year. . . . The UMW's political arm, COMPAC, mailed contributions to candidates it supported in the final days of the campaign, too late for some to make much use of the money because they had to pay in advance for advertisements and, in most cases, literature. . . .Larry Sonis, who won nomination to the House on the Democratic ticket in Kanawha County, got a $200 contribution from COMPAC but sent $100 of it back because of his policy of putting a $100 ceiling on contributions from any single source. . . . New Labor Federation President Joe Powell almost single-handedly unseated Sen. Oley Hedrick, D-Marion, a few years back, which gives some insight into his interest in politics. . . .Del. Donald Kopp D-Harrison, says Joe Powell will make the labor movement - o n e fine person." Powell takes a lot of credit for getting a liberal workmen's compensation and minimum hour and wage bill through the l e g i s l a t u r e this year... .Nick Fantasia, who served six terms in the House before his defeat in 1972, led the Democratic ticket in Marion County for nomination as candidate for the House. . . . »- DEL. Ivan White, D-Boone, isn't the only UMW candidate to be defeated. Fred Stottlemyer, an assistant to UMW President Arnold Miller, lost in his bid for the Democratic nomination to the House from K a n a w h a C o u n - ty. . . .Political observers predict a close race between Democratic Prosecutor Patrick Casey and Judge George Wood for Wood's job, and between Democrat Jack Catalano and Republican Hoppy Shores for Kanawha County Court c o m m i s s i o n - er. . . .Mayor Hutchinson and his street commissioner, Jack Walsh, were seen riding the home territory of Phyllis Rutledge on primary day. Hutchinson worked hard for Jack Kinder for circuit clerk but Kinder was defeated by Mrs. Rutledge.. . .Mrs. Rutledge beat Kinder in Charleston District -- where Mayor Hutchinson is in p o w e r -- by 505 votes. . . .Eric Nelson's son accompanied his father to the polling place election day wearing a John Hey bumper sticker on his pants leg. Nelson is a Republican and Hey is a Democrat... .Darrell McGraw got an airplane to fly a banner promoting his candidacy over Jackson County, but the plane nearly crashed before it got in the air. It was out of gas. . . .Mary Ellen Loy Mabe, past chief of general services for the state, is completing officers school in Tennessee to become an officer in the Air National Guard. While she was in school, someone ran into her husband's car, demolishing it. ... Dr. Harold B. Ashworth's term expires June 30 on the State Board of Health, and he says he is quitting. Ashworth has been chairman Rep. John Slack's win in the 3rd Congressional District increased speculation that he'll run for governor in 1976, leaving the way for Darrell McGraw to pick up labor support for Slack's seat in Congress. . . .Senate President William T. Brotherton Jr., D- Kanawha, spoke Friday to the spring meeting of West Virginia Forest Inc. in Lewisburg. Brotherton, like Jay Rockefeller, is moving around the state making speech- e s . . . . The Stacy twins -- Ted and Fred -- were nominated in Raleigh County for House of Delegates. Ted is an incumbent Democrat, and Fred switched from Democrat to Republican to run. Another JENKINL. JONES Fun Is Over What happened to Earth Day? It came and went last month with hardly a peep. Yet a year ago it was being proclaimed as our newest holy festival. It was to be the greening day, one on which youth wot !d gather to embrace the earth, to shout.down the polluters and plunderers of the planet. »· EARTH DAY was fun. You cut classes, or maybe school was dismissed. You had a bash on the quadrangle or in a public park and listened to denunciations of the Alaska pipeline and offshore drilling and strip mining and detergents and power plants. It was the thing to ride bicycles and maybe get your picture in the paper or in a short shot on the evening telecast. True, bike riding ceased to be a gas when you came to the,, first hill, but next day you'd be back in your jalopy, so it was really no sweat. There was no point in feeling guilty about the car, actually, although perhaps it did need a ring job. But you had that little decal of the green- striped flag of earth-lovers stuck on the rear window, so it showed you believed. And then, only a year later, Earth Day on the campuses went flatter than a blown tire. Wha' hoppen? The gas crunch hoppen. All of a sudden youth was confronted with a price tag. For a time he comforted himself that the shortage was a phony dreamed up by the oil companies to hike prices. He accepted rumors of overflowing tanks and Plimsoll-deep tankers lurking offshore. But grad- ually it began to dawn that we had, indeed, been outrunning a resource and the jalopy was in jeopardy. · SO THOSE politicians who talked about delaying the Alaska pipeline "until we need it" fell silent. The weepers for the caribou dried their eyes. Those who had been about to commit suttee over the immorality of offshore drilling crawled off the wood piles. Suddenly things weren t simple any more. Con Edison, the evil, grasping octopus, ever ready to pollute air and water for dirty dollars, inexplicably passed a dividend. Detergent makers, forced in many localities to substitute harsh caustics for gentle phosphates in order to prevent eu- trophication of streams and lakes, began fighting back. They asserted that in such forbidden areas inadequate sewage treatment was producing 70 times the nutrients necessary to maintain the maximum growth of algae. And who will eventually have to pay most of the staggering cost of tertiary treatment plants? Youth, no less. The happy slogan "zero pollution!" began to develop caveats. A scientist for the 3M company recently pointed out that to completely remove 4,000 tons of water pollutants for one plant would require 19,000 tons of coal, 9,000 tons of chemicals and 1,500 kilowatt hours of electricity. The process would produce 9,000 tons of sludge, 1,200 tons of fly ash and 1,200 tons of noxious oxides. RALPH NADER Ring Ma Bell W A S H I N G T O N - What would Alexander Graham Bell think of it all? The new Dallas-Fort Worth A i r p o r t charges 25 cents for a local pay phone call. Telephone companies are determined to make customers pay for information calls to the operator and to replace flat rates with metered message units that the customer cannot verify. What's more, telephone companies know that massive complexity of their equipment and service offerings can be the most lucrative merchandising policy to make customers pay more than they should if they only knew the difference. For example, a Wisconsin firm wanted a new telephone system. The telephone company suggested a system. But a study by the firm of the official tariff document revealed that two other systems were available with savings of 30 to 45 percent respectively over the quotation submitted by the telephone company. Most business and residential consumers are either unaware of the contents or availability of the large tariff materials which must be filed by the telephone utility or they don't know how to read it. THOUSANDS of similar pitfalls and contrived complexities await the customer of telephone service and as the costs of such service rocket upward, a new market has emerged -- the independent telephone consultant to guide one through the treacherous shoals of Ma Bell and its subsidiaries and satellites. One such consultant, Frank K. Griesinger of Cleveland, Ohio, has written a new book called How to Cut Costs and Improve Service of Your Telephone, Telex, TWX and Other T e l e c o m m u n i c a t i o n s (McGraw-Hill). Griesinger knows more than he puts into this book of advice to the unwary business customer of telephone equipment and services. But as he points'out in his preface: "This book is not intended to be a critique of the telecommunications industry." What he does relate is how to grasp the differences in service, choose the least expensive, most suitable type and tr.ain employes to keep costs down. For instance he lists ways to shorten long distance calls. (One approach he doesn't mention is for people to stand up at their desk while making such calls.) Even without rendering critical judgments, the author details a pattern of complexity and hard-to-get information tbout telephone services that leaves even hard-headed business customers defenseless against "top of the line" telephone salesmen. But, writes Griesinger, "once you see the thick volume in which tariffs are contained, you can understand why even an experienced telephone company salesman won't know all the details about a particular piece of equipment or service which might be made to order for your particular problem. .. .Reserve a morning or afternoon for some leisurely reading. Then surprise your telephone company representative with «our new known set of twins, in Ohio County, wasn't as lucky. Democrat Larry T. Tighe won, but his twin, Jerry, lost on the Republican t i c k e t . . . Helen G. Casto, a receptionist in the office of Secretary of State Edgar "Hike" Heiskell III, is a first time grandmother. Her son's wife gave birth to a six-pound boy last week. . . .The wife of Terry Barron, director of the MEDIC program in Employment Security, is seriously ill. ... .The Board of Health approved the merger of the bureaus of heart disease and disease control, which will save $20,000. . . .State Democratic Chairman J. C. Dillon, D-Summers, predicts Democratic gains in the House in Marion. Monongalia, Harrison, Wood and Kanawha counties this fall. I n short, the idea that we could parade and demonstrate our way to a clean America at practically no cost in money or convenience received rude jolts. Still Earth Day was a good idea. Let it not be dropped. We have, indeed, been ravaging and messing up the planet at a frightening rate. We have rendered filthy that which didn't have to be very dirty and put up with scars, gullies and washouts that could have been healed. The basic concerns of the Sierra Club and Friends of the Earth remain legitimate concerns. What has changed is that we have gone beyond the hour for snake dances and rainmaking and collegiate emotionalism. We are confronted with the trade-offs. The organic nut can afford to denounce chemical fertilizers as long as he looks only at his lush, manure fed garden. But when he travels afar and gazes upon the distended belly, the toothpick arms and the wide eyes of a starving child he knits his brow. The demand that up to $1,500 an acre be spent to restore $50-an-acre Wyoming grazing land after the coal is removed makes sense as long as the seams are thick and rich. The crunch will come when we will have to go for the thin seams. Concern for ecology is wonderful. It was delayed too long. Earth Day must be revived, not as a bash but as a day for reason. It wouldn't be as much fun, but it is a fact of life that a display of intelligence isn't half as exciting as a war-whoop. ledge about the complexities of his. profession." »· THE READER deserves some more basic evaluation by the experienced Griesinger. Why are the tariffs so complicated and abstruse? What about the state and federal regulatory agencies and why can't the aggrieved customer effectively appeal to them for help? How is Ma Bell trying to stifle the new interconnect industry that is trying to inject some long needed competition against the Bell and Western Electric monopoly over equipment? What are the recognized abuses in the selling of the Yellow Pages? Why must customers pay a rental instead of making an outright purchase of equipment? How can consumers organize and develop workable strategies for basic changes in the ways they are treated? There needs to be a telephone consumers' action manual for use by people throughout the country. Three years ago, a citizens group in New York called Grass Roots started to take on the local telephone company for its deteriorating services and accelerating bills. But. it could not reach enough residential consumers for contributions to keep it going. If consumers would provide support for a local telephone users group to represent them, their complaints would be translated into reform. Industrial and commercial telephone users are beginning to organize themselves and none too soon, given the plans of Ma Bell.

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