Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas on September 1, 1974 · Page 5
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September 1, 1974

Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas · Page 5

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Fayetteville, Arkansas
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Sunday, September 1, 1974
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Northwest Arkansas TIMES, Sun., Sept. 1, 1974 · SA rAYETTCVILLE, A R K A N S A S 'Just Doing A Little Unpacking In North Dakota POW Challenges McGovern By JOHN T. WHEELER SPEARFISH, S.D. (AP) The words are lean and direct, the style as austere as the Dakota Badlands. "Hello, I'm Leo Thorsness. I'm running against George McUovcrn for the U.S. Senate. Thank you for letting me come and talk to you tonight." The candidate leans lightly on his hawthorn cane, a legacy of Vietnam War combat and torture session during six years in the Hanoi Hilton prison camp. He pauses and looks down at the toes or his black cowboy boots trimmed in gold and blue. Perhaps 10 seconds pass. He shoves his right hand deep ntio the pocket of his rnaroon western cut double knit slacks and sweeps the crowd with his hard, almost cold eyes. "With your help, I'm going to Washington and do what I can to cut down big government and get the government oft yo d g ur fafarms." The tone is level. The voice almost soft. So soft a man 15 feet away can he heard to mutter: "And git old George good." The man looks almost pleased, then turns hack to the two handed job of swatting away mosquitos swarming to the attack much as Thorsness and his fellow fliers attacked North Vietnamese targets years ago. Curiosity as much as Re- Aftor their release, many POWs made no secret of their belief that, the antiwar movement and McGovern's presidential campaign prolonged their captivity and the war. But if there is some highly personal revenge motif running through the campaign, non- j p a r t i s a n political analyists believe it is only one of many :hreads. Although some of Thorsnoss' campaign rhetoric "tas been described as over-simplified and only brushing the edges of the hard issues facing the nation, he has built an image of a man with a profound sense of mission. He constantly hammers at. the theme: Something is wrong, badly wrong, in tne United Stales and must he changed if the nation is to survive with its democratic heritage and institutions intact. Be- eath the quiet ernestness there are hints of deep alarm and evangelical fervor. Thorsness in this sense is only one among many POWs who returned home after prolonged captivity and found themselves uneasy and even alarmed with what they saw as national trends. A half-dozen decided to run for office -- Congress, governor of New Mexico, the U.S. Senate. Some were Democrats, others Republicans. Winners and losers in the pri-' maries have been evenly di-' vided. There arc accusations that in the federal budget and bureaucracy. Leo Thorsness was born 42 years ago in Wo'.nut Grove, Minn., hard by the South Dakota border, A farm boy, he attended a one-room school. After high school he entered South Dakota State with the vague intention of studying forestry and the certain knowledge it would be a grinding four years of work to pay his own way. Thorsness is a carpetbagger and an opportunist. The first is a bit hard to toss o f f , since he publicanism had brought out many in the small crowd to see Thorsness, who turned his back on security and certain success in the Air Force for a high risk, charge. Why did he rush in starchily conservative dial-i here to challenge McGovern in- lenge to liberal Democrat I stead of returning to his native Thorsness insists he Is not running on his military record or the fact that he was a POW. But many of his speeches start, 'I'm not running as an ex-FOW . . " which lets him have it aoth ways. Of his war record he says little publicly, but his campaign literature Includes pictures of his homecoming and 3 list of awards including the Silver Star, the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Purple Heart besides the Medal of Honor. PARTY SPLIT Thorsness' upset primary victory in bygone days probably would have placed him in a commanding lead for the general election in November. The Republican party is slill king in South Dakota as far as registration goes, but it has shown a strong capacity for defeat in recent years. Not only has McGovern won twice, but, while the state went decisively for President Nixon in 1972, it also elected Democrats as the other U.S. senator, governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general and other important po- lived in South Dakota only [ mi ca i p OS t s m TM* hs r ° e n i s d i " As the blistering days of sum. ci raw to a close, the popu- McGovern's seat. In South Dakota, some call it the "war of the bomber pilots," since both men flew combat missions -- McGovern during World War II. Thorsness says with grim determination that the similarity ends there, that there is no camaraderie possible between the two politically opposite men. . Over punch and cookies inside the f a r m home of Asa Queen after the speech, there was less than unanimity over the Thorsness campaign. The candidate's quiet fervor in denouncing big, free spending government; America's moral decline; the dangers oi socialism, and the fonr A's -atheism, abortion, acid (drugs) and amnesty for war registers -- is familiar conservative fare here. But there were questions at Minnesota, where he might have built a political organization over the next two years and challenged liberal Sen. Hu- lar guessing seems to hold that Thorsness' smaller, less sophisticated and underfinanced campaign is in trouble that may prove fatal. McGovern, if re-elected prob- bert H. Humphrey? Thorsness | a bly will be the second ranking says he simply wants to run I Democrat on the Senate Agri- now. period. I cultural Committee, a fact not But some, even in thej] o s t even on those registered McGovern camp say privately if. is a little hard to make opportunism slick, since Thors- .ness seems politically unsophisticated -- even to the point of naivete. A staunch Republican said, "Thorsness couldn't say the damn fool Ihinga he does if all he wanled to do was beat George McGovern any way he could." One Thorsness aide, uneasy about some of his boss' political stands, says: "Honest? Honest to a fault." Beef and wheat are the biggest industries here, and farmers and rachers are frightened by the seemingly chaotic move- Asa Queen's that night which merit of prices. One f a r m e r have been repeated over the state. What is it that really makes Leo Thorsness run? Is it said, "I'd take 50 cents a bushel less - f o r my wheat if we could just get some stability. simple political quest for of- Aid cattle, I've taken a terrible fice? Or is it the qucsl of a man seeking fo vindicate his role as a combat pilot in America's most divisive foreign war by taking on the most prominent antiwar critic? Thorsncss denies publicly that he seeks vengence. He go afler McGovern's seat because of McGovern antiwar speeches, played over and over again in the POW camps as part of an attempt to destroy the morale of captured American fliers. beating in the last year." GUARANTEE SOUGHT Stability translates here inlo some sort of government protection or guaranteed prices. Thorsness, knowing he does so at his own peril, argues strongly against government inter- uiai. IK: AtfeKs vciigeiice. ne v nsiJiiM. Buvurmneni. inier- says it is not true he decided f o ! fercnce with free enterprise. He -· ·· " ~ · - - would favor significant government intervention, he says, Goldwater Falls PATAGONIA, Ariz. (AP) -Sen. Barry Goldwaler took a spill from a horse-drawn surrey and the wagon's woman driver (ell out on top of the Arizona Republican, "I'd do this any day if she'd fall on top of me," commented Goldwater, who was only scratched on the arm and went ahead on Friday with a scheduled speech in this town near the Mexican border. A witness said the horse shied at a car and and tipped aver the surrey, spilling its four occupants onto "the only pavei itreet in town." GOP. Some Republicans say while they might like to vote for Thorsness, his no-compromise stand .on a significant role for Washington in agriculture denies some of the' economic realities faced by farmers and cattle raisers in this state. Labor is waging a vigorous and apparently effective campaign against the Republi- cn contender, but its membership is relatively small. CAMPAIGN YOUNG The campaign is still so young thai many call the race a toss up. Some who see Thorsness a little short of that mark are in his own camp. One who dabbles in Butte County politics said, "1 sure hope Leo has a better chance than I think h* has. We need him. Oh, he's up from the primary, but he's still running 40-60 behind old George." Many agree with another assessment made in the gathering darkness at Asa QQueen's f a r m near Spcarfish. One f a r m e r f i n - gered the turquoise and silver slide'holding his string tie and said, "Watch beef and wheat I prices. If they're up in October only at the last moment a n d ] a n d November, the Republicans only if it meant keeping farms will vote their consciences If and ranches from going under they're down, they'll most like- economically. Inflation is perhaps the deepest worry for South Dakotans. Thorsncss makes the stock conservative promises to seek cuU Cavaliers Camp CLEVELAND (AP) -- Coach Bill Fitch said Friday the Cleveland Cavaliers will open their rookie camp on Sept. 14, with veterans due at the Lakeland Community College base on Sept, 20. Fitch said the Cavaliers, who played an eight-game exhibition schedule last season, will play just two preseason games this season. Both exhibition games are against the New Orleans .lazv,, on Oct. 10 anil 11 In Bate- Rouge, La. ly vote their pncketbooks." Kissingers Vocal-ion CHARLOTTE AMALIE, V I (AP) -- Secretary of State and Mrs. Henry A. Kissinger are on a vacation in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The Kissingers slipped out of Washington · quietly Friday night and the secretary's Air Force jet was met on St. Thomas Island by Goy. Melvin H. Evans. Then Kissinger and hi? wife, Nancy, hoarded a boat foi the Rockefeller-owned Canec Bay resort on the neighboring island of St. John's, about 3( minutes away. Authorities would not say how lonfi Kissinger planned to stay. Store Only Satisfaction Guaranteed · Replacement or Money Refunded Mall Store Only LABOR DAY From 11 a.m.-5 p.m.--Prices Good Monday Only! ' Winchester #1200 pump action shotgun $ 112 Regularly 119.99 · Ventilated rib barrel · 12 gauge · American walnut stock · Lightweight, better balance HOT CYCLES $ 11 Winchester #190 rifle with scope $ 42 While 7 Last Semi-automatic .22 caliber riflefeatures bold pistol grip stock, adjustable rear sight. With 4-power weaver scope. Winchester #94 $ 30-30 cal, rifle i J / ^ One Day Only 7 sliot'capacity BearJ front sight Rugged positive (ever Sporting rear sights action COLEMAN FUEL 94 LIMIT 2 THERMOS RUST PROOF 55 QUART COOLER Reg. 15.57 POLAROID 108 FILM $153 3 AMF 3 SPEED BIKES $ 47 Unassembled -- Hurry. At this low price they won't last long. The going is greet. . .far fun and exercise on the "Super 10" lightweight 10 speed racer with most-wanted features. 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