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Editorial-Opinion Page The PwMic Interest Is The First Concern Of This Newspaper 4A Â« SUNDAY, SEPTEMBER 15, 1974 How Nixon's Pardon Was Negotiated In The Interest Of Safety '; We keep hearing and reading comment dn the lack of drivers observing the national speed limit of 55 miles per hour. A frequently arrived at conclusion seems to ba that since few pay attention to the 55 maximum, it ought to be changed back to something more reasonable -- like 65 mph. At least one editorialist we've noted, even goes so far as to suggest that the 55 mph limit is dangerous, since most accidents occur at speeds of 55 and under. Our own view -- and we are happy to find that the U.S. Senate concurs, 85-0 -- is that the 55 mph limit is an efficient, effective compromise between requisites of transportation, and such considerations as safety, the energy shortage, and'the salubrious psychological effects of taking things a bit easier than we sometimes are wont to do. It seems apparent, on the face of it, that slower speeds on the nation's highways are safer, too, at least in terms of fatalities. Fatalities are running well under pre-energy crisis averages. We hope the House has both the time and inclination to concur in this bill before next month's recess. Likewise, on the subject of driving safety, the state Department of Finance and Administration's Office of Driver Services last week recommended to the Legislative Council that stricter licensing regulations be en- Art Buchwald acted by the next General Assembly. As we understand the ODS's proposal, it merits the Council's close attention. Under terms of the proposal, state drivers licenses would be issued at four-year intervals, and would require visual testing on renewal. Driver education would be required for initial issuance. Under the proposal li-, censes would carry an individual's photo and would be made in a permanent plastic binder. Trie original recommendation is for the license to cost the same, per two-year period, as it does now -- or Â§12 per four years. Costs of examination and administration of the new plan, however, would be appreciably higher and we have an idea the General Assembly will, if it gets down to serious study of the reform suggestions, ponder a boost in price, too. Maybe Â§15 for the period. Proponents point to a number of advantages of the proposed system, the most important being the vision testing, which is aimed directly at traffic safety. A drivers license would serve as a more reliable personal identification card, too, and would curtail use of stolen licenses: Presumably, license renewals could be continued on a birthdate renewal basis, at reasonably convenient locations. The system then would be more than worth the small additional inconvenience. Mr. Ford Hires A Staff By ART BUCHWALD WASHINGTON -- President Ford has been putting his new White House staff together. We have heard about the people who have been hired for his Administration, but we haven't heard anything about those who, for one reason or another, didn't get jobs. Here are some of the people and what they said to President Ford which gave him pause about hiriri glhem: Billy Graham's Answer Where does the Bible mention temper, or temper trantrums? Are we born with a temper? And what is the best way to overcome it? An avid reader. Really, the word temper is neither good nor bad. It refers basically to one's disposition -a state of feeling -- a frame of mind. Thus it can be positive and good, or negative and bad. Your use of it, however, seems to imply,anger, and that subject does come up in the Bible. In the book of Proverbs men are dissuaded from anger (15:1) and those "slow to anger" are commended Â£16:32). In the New Testament Christians are asked to p u t away vindictive anger (Ephesians 4:31) and cherish no desire of personal revenge (Ephesians 4:26). While 'an aroused temper and an angry spirit display themselves in a variety of ways, most typical is the language we use. Our vocabulary yields first to the temptation of anger. How good, if we could all pray like the Psalmist in 141:3. "Set a watch, 0 Lord, before my mouth." If you live in subjection to God's Spirit, and seek to do His will, you will find the handling of a temper somewhat automatic. If you don't, your trouble will multiply because a m^n's venom poisons himself nxore than his victim. We thought our married daughter (38) was happy. She loves sports, and with her husband coaching, they both play ball. Recently, however, a yejung girl, in the process of divorce, occupies most of her titne. My daughter feels sorry for her I suppose, but time spent counseling with t h i s woman has hurt her family life, and it's hurting us. Can y o u help? T.Y. Sometimes when a spouse wants to relieve stress in a marriage, an outside interest takes on new importance. From what you say, the relationship with this girl seems innocent enough, but it becomes svrong to the degree that it is a wedge -- separating husband and wife and .mother and child. It was in Paul's letter to Timothy (1 Timothy 5:8) that he wrote: "If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever." So the Scripture makes it mandatory to work for healthy family relationships. Somehow, trying to assist that divorcee has polarized your daughter and her husband. Suggest they consult a competent counselor, so that the underlying problem can be ventilated and handled. The best you can do is to play a positive and supnortiye rule. Pray daily for all involved. Especially help your daughter to see that refusing to talk to her husband can only aggravate conditions -- and really hurt the five y e a r old son. God can give you an "overcoming spirit" (I J o h n 4:4), so this won't hurt your family unduly. "Now, Mr. President, I think the first thing you should do is to install a recording system in the Oval Office. In that way you can tape the conversations of everyone who comes in your office." "NEXT!" "Mr. President, it's not too early to think about your election in 1976. I have a plan for your approval here. What I would like to do is set up a committee for your election which would be in complete charge of raising funds - and directing your campaign so you wouldn't have to be bothered with the details. We would call this, group the Committee to Elect the . . . . " "NEXT!!" "AH right. Gerry, being President is fine, but you have to think about your future after you're out of office. Your best bet, as I see it, is to invest in real estate. Now what I will do is talk to a few rich friends of mine and we'll buy you some land and then we'll get the government to fix it up and A recent column told of. a woman jealous of her husband. My situation is just the opposite. My husband is both .selfish and jealous. If I would sever all lies with family and friends, he would be pleased. Can't togetherness go to an extreme more than a prison? M.J.H. Any good thing can toe carried to an extreme. Togetherness, however, is such a great need in our society, particularly in marriage, that one wonders how it could ever become an evil. "Mr. President, there is no reason why you shouldn't take advantage of the tax laws just like everybody else. Now if I were on the payroll, I would see that you got every last possible deduction you were entitled to First, we'd work out something for your papers from the time you were House minority leader. I think, staying within the law, you wouldn't have to pay more than $800 a year. Of course, I'd need your power of attorney and'. ; . . .' "NEXT!!" "You ask me what I can do for you. Mr. President? I'll tell you what I can do for you. There are a lot of people in this country out to get you. What I would do, if you gave me the job, would be to set up some sort of clearinghouse where we could keep a list of your enemies. Everyone on the White House staff could contribute names to the list, and then I would turn the names over to the Internal Revenue Service and ask them to audit them and . . . ." They'll Do It Every Time 6Â£TTO PAY TOMORROW i THOUGHT MY HUS8ANP star. IT our MAYBB IfS IN Ml snu.owe.Me.Trie MONTHS RetJT I BMP IN APVAMC6.' TO eiVJNO A DEPOSIT gACK.SHE/S ON A "Your biggest worry, Mr. President, is leaks in the White House. What you need is your own special group which would prevent our secrets from getting out. Now the important thingg Is that since this group could be Involved in some illegal activity, such as breaking and entering, wiretapping and forging papers, you would have to keep it from everyone, including the F B I , . . ," "NEXT!" "Howard Hughes asked me to give you this letter of recommendation . . . ." "NEXT!!" "Sir, if I might be so bold, the most important person a President needs is a Jesuit priest. There are times when you will have to defend yourself over an action that could be considered by some as morally wrong. What better person to have in our corner than a humble man of the cloth who could ' "NEXT!!" "Mr. President, I believe the first thing we have to do to bring the country together is g r u n t a full pardon to Nixon. This would heal the wounds and put the bad dream of Watergate behind us." "Hmmnnm. When can you itart?" --(C) 1974, Los Angeles Times By JACK ANDERSON WASHINGTON -- The dramatic events can now he told, which led to the pardoning of Richard Nixon. The former, President didn't participate in the conversations at San Clcmente but let his , loyal aide Ronald Ziegler do the talking for him. Not until the parleying, had been completed did a taut, troubled Nixon put in an appearance to murmur his thanks. He didn't even mention the pardon. Nor did he ask about the fato of his former aides who face trial on September 30 for the alleged crimes that he no longer can be prosecuted for. In an earlier column, , we detailed the reasons that Pre^i- dent Ford granted his predecessor a blanket pardon. The overriding reason, according to our White House sources, was to save Nixon from a possible emotional collapse. But the President's lawyers, Philip Buchen and Benton Becker, wanted a "contrition statement" from Nixon as p a r t of the pardon agreement. The were concerned that he might aggravate the Watergagte controversy by proclaiming his innocence once it was no longer possible for the courts to establish his guilt. As one White House source put it bluntly: "We wanted to avoid the Ted Agnew bull -- of protesting his innocence all over the country." Tlie question of contrition was brought up delicately with Nixon's crack criminal attorney, Herbert "Jack" Miller. They didn't want to make it a condition of the pardon, so they merely suggested that a cleansing statement from Nixon would be helpful. On September 5. Becker and Miller flew out to San. Clemente The Washington Merry-Go-Round for the final negotiations. White House aides say President Ford's parting instructions to Becker were: (1 lie should not promise Nixon a pardon b u t should inform him only that a pardon was possible; and (2) Becker should stress that the Watergate case was an "albatross" which Ford wanted to remove from around his neck so he could concentrate .on solving other problems. The two lawyers arrived at San Clemente at 11 p.m., California time, and immediately went into a three-hour huddle with Ronald Ziegler. After the discussions broke up at 2 a.m., Becker and Miller drank a couple of beers and then retired to guest rooms in the. San Clemente compound. Becker was up at 5:30 a.m. to telephone a progress report to Buchen at the Whits House. Later the talks resumed in Ziegler's office. Frequently, Ziegler and Miller would slip out of the room for whispered consultations, perhaps with the President. At one point, Becker showed Miller an advance draft of the pardon statement that the President might issue. An understanding ultimative was reached that a pardon, if the President agreed to it, would be followed by a statement of contrition from San Clemente. The contents, if not the exact language, of the s t a t e m e n t were carefully worked out. T h e details were also finalized for giving Nixon eventual custody of his presidential tapes and documents, with safeguards to assure that they would be available to' the courts. All the agreements were completed before President Ford's weary emissary sat down with Nixon himself. Before Becker and Miller were ushered into Nixon's office, they were cautioned to keep the meeting informal. They found Nixon mentally alert but terribly tired and distraught. Ziegler stood at .the door while the others sat and talked. "Thank you for being fair Nixon murmured to the 36-year- old Becker. "You are a fine young man." He was, pleased with the .agreement to give him custody of his presidential papers, but he made no mention of the pardon or the plight of his former aides. In a few minutes.lt was over. History had been made. HEADLINES AND FOOTNOTES: Whispers have reached us that President Ford, while he was Vice President; spent a weekend at Hawaii's fashionable Maunakea Beach Hotel last May at the expense of U.S. Steel's top man in Washington, William G. Whyte. It is true that Whyte paid the bill, which ran over $1,000, because some of his charges had been added to Ford's bill. But we have established that Ford subsequently sent Whyte a check for about $350 once his correct share of the bill had been calculated...the Greeks are deadly serious about closing their bases to NATO. In the past, the United States routinely flew F5 fighters, purchased by the shah of Iran, to the air base outside Athens on the way to Iran. But the Greek government A Nation Divided In War . . . AND Peace State Of Affairs Only Doing What Comes Naturally has now secretly notified Wasli- ington that such landings no longer will be ' permitted. Result: the Pentagon It preparing to crate the fighters and fly them in C5 cargo planes to the shah.... The defense minister* of Â·everal European nations w i l l come to the United States thta fall to inspect the small YF-16 and YF-17 fighter planet. At stake is several billion dollars worth of business, which could go to the United States' or France ... Belguim official* have notified the French, according to intelligence reports, that they would look more favorably upon France's Mirage F-l fighters if Paris would cease its stubborn ways and participate more fully In the NATO logistics system, \ --United FeatoM Syodlcat* Fight Of Century-Or Week? NEW YORK (ERR) Â·-- Tht heavyweight title boxing match between George Foreman and Muhammad All will be held in Kinshasa, the capital of Zaire, at 10 p.m. EOT on Sept. 24. By CLAYTON FRITCHEY WASHINGTON -- Throughout the rash of post-mortems that have followed in the wake of President Ford's decision to pardon former President Nixon there is a common strain of surprise, astonishment, even incredulity. Yet his action is entirely consistent with his record on Watergate and Nixon's role in it. The surprise is that so many were surprised, for Mr. Ford from first to last has slavishly defended his predecessor antl his whole Administration. Even toward the end of ,the House 'Judiciary . Committee's harings in late July, when other Republican leaders were calling for the resignation or impeachment of their leader, Mr. Ford was still shouting, "I can say from the bottom of my heart the President of the United Stales is innocent, and he is right." Also from the beginning, Mr. Ford has consistently made light of the worst scandal in U.S. history, dismissing it as "Democratic partisan politics" even in the face of a large bipartisan vote for impeachment by the House committee. He called the impeachment resolution a "travesty." Almost up to the time of Nixon's resignation, the then- Vice President kept saying that "the preponderance of the evidence, all of it, is in favor of the President and exonerate;! him from any impeachable offense." Mr. Ford went so f a r , in fact, that some of his closest associates were reported to be concerned, as some of them now appear to be distressed over the pardon decision. A WEEK OR SO before Nixon quit tho White House, I mysalf felt obliged to write that Mr. Ford, instead of becoming the Mr. Clean that his party had hoped for, had "become Mr. Whitewash." In view of the President's pardon action and his openly acknowledged desire to get Watergate off the front pages, I see little reason for altering that judgment. Since taking over the White House, the new President has continued to surround himself with many of Nixon's closest aideV especially Gen. Alexander Haig, the closest of all. It is.especially significant that Haig was in on the Nixon pardon, while Mr. Ford's own first appointee, J.F. terHorst, was not. The press secretary understandably resigned. Also since becoming the Chief Executive, Mr. Ford has asked Congress to give his predecessor an unprecedented $850,000 to tide him over the transition to private life. This Includes not only $160,000 for pension and perquisites along with normal moving expenses but such undefined windfalls as $100,000 for "miscellaneous," whatever that may be. Congress, as it should, intends to take a sharp look at Mr. Ford's lush handout to the man he succeeded. It is depressing to see how so many vice Presidents g e t in the habit of compromising their independence by continuously bootlicking and kowtowing to the Presidents they serve under. Mr. Ford Is not the first, for Spiro Agnew was also reduced to a press agent for Nixon, and before him Hubert Humphrey had to play the humiliating role of apologist for Lyndon Johnson. It Is a process that takes something out of men. IT MUST BE conceued that It is not easy for any Vice President to be his own man, especially in an Administration like Nixon's. The N i x o n White House used Agnew as both apologist and hatchet man. After he fell, it lost no time in casting Mr, Ford in the same role. The President's men quickly sent him out to defend Nixon on Watergate and even wrote the speech for him. That was his initial F a r m Bureau talk when he blamed the continuous "ordeal of Watergate" on "a few extreme partisans," such as the AFL-CIO, ADA and o t h e r "powerful pressure groups." He didn't mention that much or most of the agitation for Nixon's resignation was coming from some of the nation's leading Republican newspapers, as well as prominent Republican politicians. Back in December, when Mr. Ford was sworn in as the first Vice President appointed under the 25lh Amendment, many Re- E ubllcans had high hopes that e would do for the party what Republican Calvin Cool id ge did In the wake of the T e a p o t Dome scandal of the Warren Harding Administration. When Harding suddenly died, Caolidge became the Chief Executive and, as the Mr. Clean of 1923, vigorously Investigated and prosecuted the malefactors of his own party. He was not, In Mr. Ford's words, afraid of disturbing the natlprCÂ« "Iran- quility." As a result, the GOP made a quick comeback, with Coolidge winning big In 1924. Mr. Ford, however, has Â· h o w n little somach for emulating Coalldfe. . (C) Â»M, Los AagelM Time* IN.BOXING, a s i n c e r t a i n other spodts, the art of promotion plays a crucial role. There are no i There are no pennant races or playoff games to whet the fans' interest. Evedy boxing match is an event unto itself, and so potential spectators must be coaxed into believing that they would be fools to p a Â« Â» Up a chance to watch the B o u t of the Century. This is where the promoter comes in. As a group, promoters have long had an acute image problem. The unflattering stereotype Is an unscrupulous, cigar- chomping peddler of flesh. But now a new generation is taking command. "The newcomers wear Cardin suits, keep the French sauces off their ties and talk of millions in m e t a l l i c voices," Mark Kram wrote in Sports Illustrated. "They know the law. taxes and politics and generally thrive In this land of the fee and home of the crave." The most spectacular of Bia new promoters is Don King, a former convict and numbers racket operator who startled the boxing world by arranging the G e o r g e Foreman- Muhammad A l l heavyweight title match Sept. 24 in Zaire. "The concert before the fight will be super-colossal," King says. "The cream of. Afro- American stars. Dynamite acts performing in a three-day festival. It will make Woodstock look like an elementary-school band concert." The fact that King is black was of no little help in persuading Foreman and Ali to agree to the match. In addition to promising each fighter ?5 million, he appealed to theld sense of racial solidarity. If the bout comes anywhere near meeting its extravagant financial expectations, King is sure to become one of the moat powerful promoters in the country. PROMOTERS were practle- ally unknown before John L. Sullivan's reign as heavy-weight champion, Frank J. Menka wrote in The Encyclopedia of Sports. "Pugilisti or their backers put up side bets, winner take all, and it was a custom to pass the hat among spectators, the funds so derived cither going to the winner or being split 50-50, as the contestant* may have decided." The first of the super-promoters was James W. Coffroth of San Francisco. In a career that began around the turn of ths century, he staged fights Involving such luminaries at Jamea J. Corbett and J-a m e Â« J, Jeffries. He also instituted the system of paying fighter* an agreed-upon percentige of gross receipts. Several of the great American boxing promoters have . been closely associated with New York's Madison Square Garden. Tex Rickard. who leased the Garden in 1920, promoted many of the fights of boxing's golden age, including the two Dempsey . Tunney matches. M l k Â« Jacobs and James D. Norrii, Rickadd's two immediate successors, proved equally capable. IN MUHAMMAD ALT, Don King has a fighter whose promotional skills are second to none. Whether he Is composing doggerel, hurling insulti, or throwing temper Umtrumi, All can always be sure of attracting widespread media coverage. But this sort of thing etn be carried too far. Veteran promoted Bob Arum Â»ayÂ« that "amateurs, a lot of them, make the mistake of hyping to* much; t a k i n g a good event and trying to make it bigger. That detract* from the event. You've got to know where to iton." The promoter* of the latest film version of The Great Gatsby didn't knÂ«w where to stop. On Sept. 35 Don King will know whether hÂ« did.