The Des Moines Register from Des Moines, Iowa on July 27, 1969 · Page 26
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July 27, 1969

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The Des Moines Register from Des Moines, Iowa · Page 26

Des Moines, Iowa
Issue Date:
Sunday, July 27, 1969
Page 26
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*-T July ?7, 194? $e$ Ubine; Sutthay An Independent GARDNER CowLfiS, President TORN COWIES, Chairman ef the Board KENNETH MACDONAIB, Editor and Publisher DAVID KroneNiER, General Manager A. EDWARD HEINS, Managing Editor LACREW SOTH, Editorial Page Editor Lotns H. NORRIS, Busineu Manager Decline of America's Power? "QOME of President Nixon's top for- io eign affairs advisors are now haunted by a potentially disastrous decline of U.S. power around the world as' a result of Hanoi's blatant refusal I" negotiate and end to the war." report Columnists Rowland Evans and Robert Novak. The unnamed "Nixon advisors" think the President.having .inherited Ihe Vietnam mess, had no choice but to begin troop withdrawals, and they do not advise him to-- reverse this process. However, the advisors tell Evans and Novak that they now recogni/.e "the full world- vvide consequences" of the withdrawal. The Russians will he harder to deal with in the arms control negotiations, since, as one general told the columnists, the Russians think Nixon "can be pushed around by a second-rate Communist country." Also, say the advisors, the withdrawal from Vietnam will damage. U.S. prestige in Western Europe. It isn't difficult to figure out where Evans and Novak got their forecast of doom. They mention one general, and it is obvious that their other sources are nther military leaders or civilian hardliners who think America',* power and influence depend on its military stance. These are the "realists" who have ber-ri advocating -big military budgets ,nul a strrn military line in foreign affairs. Tliry swear by what we call the "Munich doctrine" of fnrrign policy. Dean Rusk had a hud cnse of it, and he infrrtrrl Lyndon Johnson. The doctrine holds that' if the British. French and Americans in 1938 had gone .to with Hitler, they could have stopped him before he launched World War II. Failure to back up Czechoslovakia at that time was fatal. This doctrine has been carried over, ,10 years later, in the era of nuclear missiles, and applied to a revolutionary situation in a former F'rench colony of Asia. Presumably, if the United States does not show that it will stand off Communism in such a place at any cost, ils word wifl he discredited; it will face a "disastrous decline" in power. Nonsense. America's prestige will' rise once U.S. troops arp removed from Indochina. The world respects force, hut even more it respects restraint in the use of force by a powerful country. The long Vietnam war has damaged American prestige in many countries which do not see the native communism of Ho Chi Minh as a great threat to world peace. United States power, in any event, does not turn on such 'a thing as one presidential decision — even in a crucial matter such as Vietnam. United States power rests on its enormous economic productivity, its technological genius, the character and courage of its people: their ability to marshal resources and skills to a national goal — dramatized by the flight to the moon. The war in Vietnam was a limited war with limited objectives that got out of hand, because a few warhawks and generals thought, a military victory was feasible. Most Americans, who never knew for sure what they wanted in Vietnam, now see the War as a mistake and. want to try to correct it. They see the limits of military power. Will that weaken America in the world? No more than Britain's withdrawal in defeat from America in 1782, without, using its full power, weakened Britain. HUMPHREY CALLS FOR NEW PRIORITIES* God in Outer Space To the distress of ardent church-state separatists, God continues to have an honored place in the nation's space pro- prams. The Apollo 8 astronauts, the first men to orbit the Moon, read the first 10 verses of Genesis to Earthbound television watchers last Christmas Eve, The barren, cocoa-colored surface of the moon gave a stark beauty to the simple words: "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth . . ." The show, however, didn't impress the Madalyn Murrays. Bible reading from space has continued. While coasting back toward earth, Apollo 11 astronaut Edwin Aldrin recited the Eighth Psalm, a favorite of America's space travelers: "When I consider the heavens, (he work of Thy fingers, the moon and the stars which Thou hast ordained, what is man thaCThou art mindful of him." This sacred theme rang out again Thursday when church bells in Iowa and throughout the nation were tolled after the Apollo 11 space capsule seared in fnr its Pacific landing. This was the idea of Mrs. Donald R. Brewer of Cedar Rapids, which was endorsed by the Na- lional Council of Churches and the Iowa Council of Churches. This was a fitting, rejoiceful response. America's astronauts are devout men. Americans, despite great variety in (•heir form of worship, are deeply infused with religious hopes and beliefs. From the bleak vastness of space, Earth appears as a "grand oasis," a most blessed place. To see ourselves as we have never seen ourselves before produces a reverence which makes fine- tuned arguments about church-state separation irrelevant. A favorite question in man-on-the- street interviews has been whether the space exploration threatens or enhances one's religious views. We have heard no one reply that God is now less likely. That would require a childish view of God as a blurry, oblong light that must "live" someplace in the sky and, if He is not on the moon, that eliminates one home and reduces the number of possible homes from a zillion to a zillion, less one. A far more mature view was expressed by Albert Einstein: "My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble minds. That deeply emotional conviction of the presence of a superior reasoning power, which is revealed in the. incomprehensible universe, forms my idea of God." It follows that when man perceives more of the details of space, he learns more of the "illimitable superior spirit" of the universe. Technique of Forcing Confessions lowan Darrel Parker may soon be a free man after serving 13 years of a life' term. The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals tossed out Parker's conviction for the murder of his wife on the ground that his confession was involuntary. The Parker case is a classic example of the doubt «bat necessarily surrounds the guilt of the accused when the conviction is based almost exclusively on a confession and the incriminating statements were obtained in secret by possibly questionable methods. Parker confessed to strangling his wife in Lincoln, Neb., after being questioned by John Reid, a former Chicago police officer who achieved a reputation as an expert lie detector operator and interrogator. Parker subsequently charged that Reid browbeat him and practiced a form of hypnosis in inducing him to falsely confess. Parker testified at his trial, "He kept constantly grilling me. I was so sleepy, tired and groggy that I just wanted to lay down on the floor if he'd let me. I don't remember anything clearly after that." A psychiatrist told the trial court, "I am reasonably certain that he was in a sort of trance-like condition and still grieving about the death of his wife. I am sure he.was in a state of mind similar lo some of our prisoners-of-war in I he hands of the Reds when they signed false statements. Nowadays we call it brainwashing." * * * Reid's version differed markedly. He said he merely talked to Parker and stroked his head in a friendly, fatherly way before Parker poured forth his admissions of guilt. The jury believed Reid. Fortunately for Parker, Reid wrote a book on the art of eliciting confessions which is widely used as a police manual. The hard-boiled approach described in Reid's book, with its recommended use of psychological tricks and strate- gems. contrasted with Reid's description of his interrogation of Parker. It evidently impressed the appeals court. The power of Reid's recommended techniques to induce phony confessions also impressed the U.S. Supreme Court. . The high court relied heavily on Reid's work and similar police manuals to show the need for safeguards against coerced confessions in the course of its 1966 Miranda ruling. The court summed up the teachings of the manuals in these words: . . "To be alone with the subject is essential to prevent distraction and to deprive him of any outside support. The aura of confidence in his guilt undermines his will to resist. He merely confirms the preconceived story the police seek to have him describe. Patience and persistence, at times relentless questioning, are employed. To obtain a confession, the interrogator must 'patiently maneuver himself or his quarry into a position from which the desired object may be obtained.' " The last quoted words were from Reid's book. The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals seemed to accept Parker's version of events — and Reid's own written words — in concluding that Reid's tactics went "beyond approved standards" and resulted in an "involuntary" confession. * * * What transpired during the interrogation of Darrel Parker can never be known. The confession was obtained in secret in a windowless room. The validity of the confession thus became the subject of a swearing match between Heid and Parker. The Supreme Court has attempted to provide a better way by requiring that suspects be told of their right to remain silent and to consult 'an attorney before submitting to interrogation. This may make things more difficult for a John Reid, but it also makes less likely the existence of gnawing doubts about the guilt of a Darrel Parker. —, ••• Something to think about when you send the next check to pay the kid's tuition at college: Teddy Roosevelt once remarked, "A man who has never gone to school may steal from a freight car, hut if he has a university education, he may steal the whole railroad." — Appleton (Wis.) Press. A Nixon poll shows that 85 per cent of the country supports an ABM defense. Unfortunately, only 5 per cent of the country will get it. — Topeka Capital. il.S. Grows Richer But Less Livable 9 By Hubert H. Humphrey /COPENHAGEN. DENMARK - A visit \j to a country such as Denmark gives an American a fresh perspective on the relationship of people to tneir land and air and water. It makes us think about the quality of life we are leaving to our children and grandchildren. It compels us to question our national priorities. I had long known about | the Scandinavians and (heir achievements in agriculture, education, J and social welfare, but what I have found most impressive about the Danes is their love of the land. The beauty of Denmark is amazing. The cities and villages are clean. The roadsides and streets are free of debris. Mr. Humphrey is trnvelina in Europe this month. There are great numbers of trees. You seldom see a fence, and most of the wiring is underground. The Danes have automobiles and good roads, but many people bicycle along the trails that have been built all across the country. Many of the farm buildings are 200 years old, but in a three-day visit to rural Denmark, I didn't see a single rundown or unpainted building. As you travel the highways, you see signs all over directing people to camping sites. Thousands of people with their Irnts and trailers can he found at, these sites, and in (hose I visited, 1 never saw any rubbish or debris left behind. There arc no advertising signs along the roads. The highways are well marked and well policed. The message lhal comes through so clearly from Denmark is that what is really important is the human being. The .Danes are a civilized, cultured people. They flave a great lense of personal and national pride without being arrogant. They have a wonderful sense of humor. They work hard and play hard. Richer But Less Livable Above all, they have protected their natural resources and they have improved their public facilities so that everyone can enjoy the land. My visit to Denmark makes me think that we in America grow ever more privately rich and publicly poor. Our great cities are monuments of steel and concrete. They are hard and busy and dirty and noisy. In Denmark, so small and crowded, there are more parks near the cities than we have in America. We have many more acres of park land, but in European countries the parks are near the people. Trees and shrubs and flowers humanize their cities and soften the impact of industrial life. Europeans have learned that the products of an industrial society alone do not bring happiness and the good life. It becomes clear, traveling through Europe, that one of the frustrations of the American experience is that as our gross national product grows, our land becomes less livable. As some American families grow rich, they buy second cars and even second homes away from the city. But millions of our people cannot affortf homes at the shore, or long trips away from it all. Can Do It If We Will America needs more than higher incomes. We need parks, trees, and flowers. We need bicycle and walking trails. We need more camping sites so that every American can gel away for the LouiivHI* Courier Journal. "We need parks and frees and flower*. We need bicycle and wblking trails . . ." weekend, not just the fortunate few. We must clean tipfour polluted rivers and dying lakes. We have to clear the air that hovers over our cities, blotting out the sun and blackening our lungs. , We can do it. We have proved in,our Apollo program that we can set priorities and accomplish almost anything we put our minds to. In recent years, Congress has passed needed legislation to clean up and improve our environment. For instance, the Water Quality Act of 1965 and the Clean Water Restoration Act of 1966 authorized the spending of $1 billion this year to clean up our lakes and rivers. Six months ago. during hearings on his nomination, Secretary of the Interior Walter J. Hickel told Congress that he regards water pollution as one of our most serious domestic problems. Yet the Nixon Administration has requested only $214 million of the $1 billion authorized to fight water pollution, and it still has not come up with any acceptable plan to help finance sewage treatment plants. Congress also passed the Clean Alf Act of 1965 and the Air Quality Act of 1967, plus the Highway Beautlflcation Act oM965. 'Over 2.2 million acres hav« been authprized for addition to the nation's park system. To implement this legislation, and protect our environmental heritage, we need more than rhetoric from the federal government. Growing ' Dangers Government agencies still work at cross-purposes with one another. While the National Park Service attempts to develop the Everglades National Park, the Corps of Engineers cuts off the park's water supply and Ihe Department of Transportation spends $700,000 to plan a road and jetport that would seriously affect the park. The dangers are growing. Along with auto emissions and sewage plant effluent, we now must contend with more invisible but deadlier pollution from pesticides and nuclear power plants. President Nixon has continued, with a new name, the interdepartmental council which I headed as Vice-President. But also needed is a high-level presidential council, similar to the Council of Economic Advisers, to insure protection of the environment. The federal government must be more than .just a referee between the competing users of natural resources. It must become a trustee of our environmental heritage for all the people.'^ We must be proud of something more than our wealth and power. The sense of pride we feel in our space exploits must be matched by a pride in our citizenship, by a love of the land. "America Ihe beautiful" must be more than just a song. It. must be one of our urgent national priorities. Like the Danes, we should learn to be a people at peace with ourselves and our natural heritage. Russian Go-operation in Glow of Apollo? WILLIAM R. FRYB By William R. Frye T)ARELY in recent years have the Xy "atmospherics" of East-West relations been quite as'congenial as in the past two weeks during the Apollo 11 moon mission. Publicly and privately, the Russians have been courteous, laudatory and even helpful. There is no way of knowing whether , this signals a long-range policy or merely a temporary expedient, a way of taking their moon licking with good grace. Certainly the Kremlin's polite words have yet to be converted .into the hard currency of diplomatic intercourse: action on Vietnam, the Middle East, the antiballistic missile. But it is a phenomenon worth*noting, and worth exploring. As Soviet Foreign Minister Andrei Gromyko implied on .Inly 10. this could be the moment to seek a major breakthrough in East-West relations. The necessary preconditions are rapidly being met. There has rarely if ever been a time when so many circumstances were favorable. • The Chinese are each month giving (he Russians a more urgent motive to seek tranquility on the European front. • The military postures of the two superpowers have reached, for the first time since 1945, what amounts to an equilibrium, rendering an agreed freeze on nuclear delivery systems at least conceivable. • Security requirements of the respec- "Thank heaven, it's the Americans! been our Chinese comrades." •ihrmdt, HH P«rool, Amittrdim I was afraid it might have live NATO and Warsaw alliances are not such, on either side, as to make an accommodation seem treasonable to friends and clients — except perhaps to extreme partisans in East Germany and the two Vietnams. • The costs of the cold war, in money and man-hours, have become an intolerable drain for both great powers on resources needed for a better society. Thus the political-diplomatic "mix" is excellent, and all that may be required for a detente is an effective catalytic agent. Space could be that agent. In one critical way, the Apollo 11 success improves the prospects. The Russians always have deal} more readily with others when they considered them equals or superiors. The United States now has shown itself to be pre-eminent in manned space flight, and the triumph will be widely extrapolated into other fields. It was not always so. In September, 1963, when President Kennedy invited the Russians to go to the moon together, NASA had little to contribute to a moon mission, and the Kremlin scorned us. This past week, President Nixon gave them a second chance. He hinted that if they wished to go to Mars together, he was willing. Ironically, the United States may now have too much bargaining power for an agreement on space co-operation to be struck. Americans can picture the difficulty by imagining that it was. a Russian flag planted on the moon last Sunday and a Soviet cosmonaut who put it there. Would Americans then have climbed readily aboard a Soviet-American space wagon to Mars, as a kind of junior partner? Might they not have wished first to prove that they could duplicate the moon feat? The Russians, being more face-conscious than Americans, may have just such a reaction, although they have plenty of space triumphs under their belt. In some areas—such as preparation for the orbiting of a space station, and unmanned exploration of the planets—they may be abreast or even ahead of the U.S. Too much is at stake for short-sighted views of the national interest to be allowed to get in the way. Happily, President Nixon and NASA spokesmen appear to realize all this. There have been gurglings from the Kremlin—to Col. Frank Borman and to Hubert Humphrey, for example — which suggest that it may, too. If so, the world may .soon see the remarkable sight of the two superpowers actively pulling in the same direction. Big Contract a Hopeful Sign to Black Businessmen By Roy Wilkin. E encouragement of Negro operators of going firms and the stimulation of others with talent and ability to enter into business received a major boost with the award of a $1,070,000 contract to a b 1 a c k-owned electrical' company by the New York World Trade Center. The contract also' pointed up a truism I which many emotional advocates of all things black have tended to overlook, namely, that quite apart from the color bar, the going is slow and the demand for competence is high. In other words, If one is a porter, it is extremely unlikely that, without additional education and experience, one can become an electrical contractor, even if one has the currently fashionable color of black. David L. Blaine, 35-year-old president of Electorque Associates of Brooklyn, N.Y., signed the contract for his firm and Matthias E. Lukens, Port of New York Authority official, signed for the builders. The $1.07-million job is the wiring of the refrigeration plant of the $600 million World Trade Center. Blaine came to the United States from Kingston, Jamaica, West Indies, when he was 20 years old. Like most West Indian Negroes, he resented the treatment of black people in the United States. He did not like the prejudice and the inequality. But he did not spend his time in wailing and railing. He went to work and kept steadily at it until in 1963 he put up $10,000 to start his own elec- trical'contracting firm.. In nine years he had learned about a new country and had found his way about in Brooklyn, no small feat in itself. He came up with a company that in six years more was to sign a million- dollar contract. There are 25 people employed by the firm,'10 of them white. The Blaine company did a business of $500,000 last year and believes the volume for 1969 Will exceed $1 million. At the signing Blaine said: "This is a great incentive to young and aspiring black businessmen throughout the country." The push to improve the opportunities jnf jjl^cj^businessrnen i.'Lon_The_NixorL Administration appears to be trying to help with its so far formless "black capitalism" idea. Every case is not simple and some unseen factors exist, but the basic trouble has been that white men can get loans without too much trouble, while black men have to fill out a list of requirements as long as two arms and they still do not get loans. David Blaine and his $1.07-million contract say to Negroes that they can make it. To whiles and to the nation, the lesson is that the road to mutual respect, to the development of talents and to the attainment of racial peace is one of unhampered access for black men of ability to, the fabulous rewards in an equal opportunity society. Half of lowans Favor More State Aid to Cities A LMOST half of the lowans interviewed in a recent Iowa Poll favor giving cities and towns an increased share of state funds rather than levying new local taxes. However, about two out of 10 would approve of local income or sales taxes. lowans living in cities of more than 50,000 were only slightly more, in favor of additional state funds for cities than ty taxes. Which wonld you favor ns a method for cities and towns to raise additional funds? (A) Cities and towns should receive an increased share of state funds; (B) Cities and towns should levy new local taxes on income, sales or autos; (C) Neither; (D) Other." City Total Metro* Town Farm and the remainder said they "don't know." However, in an open-ended question which records the verbatim answers of the respondent, most lowans had diffi- THE IOWA POLL . tact, THE IOWA. POL DM Mtliwi were lowans in general. Their support for new local taxes was weaker, though. Among farmers, almost four out of 10 favored new city taxes. The question: "Many Iowa cities and towns need additional funds to operate and have reached their legal limit to levy proper- A— Increased state char* B-Local taxes C— Neither D-fttber No opinion 41 18 13 5 16 53 13 16 9 15 52 15 13 4 1« 26 38 14 2 20 CltlH OVtr 50,000 * * * Answers to another series of questions relating to legislative lobbyists indicated that about half of lowans favor more control over lobbying. About one- third said lobbyists have a "bad influence 1 " on the Legislature; about one- fourth felt they have a "good influence;" culty giving an accurate understanding- of the term "legislative lobbyist." lowans were asked the following early in June: "What is your understanding of the term 'legislative lobbyist'?" Total Influence legislators, legislation .. 25% Paid to influence legislation 14 Tries to get bill passed 8 Sneaks for • bill 2 Miscellaneous i Indefinite 41 "Generally speaking, do you feel that legislative lobbyists have a good or bad influence on the state Legislature?" Total Rep. Dem. Ind. % % . % % Good influence 23 25 25 16 Bad influence 34 33 35 37 Don't known 43 43 40 47 In a cross4abulation of those who have a fairly accurate understanding of the term "legislative lobbyist," 34 per cent said lobbyists have a "good influence" on the Legislature, 44 per cent felt they had a "bad influence" and 22 per cent didn't know. "Do you feel there should be more control over lobbyists, less control, or the same control as now?" Total Rep. Dem. Ind. % % % More control . 49 51 53 44 Less control .2 3 3 Same 19 21 19 14 No opinion .30 28 26 39 Among those who have a fairly accurate understanding of what lobbyist is, 64 per cent thought there should be more control.

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