The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, January 11, 1978, Image 2

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The Battalion Wednesday
Texas A&M University January 11,1978
When drawing attention goes too far
LAREDO — Farmers blockade a cold storage plant with tractors, demon
strating against the importation of cheap Mexican beef and fruits which the
plant stores.
LUBBOCK — Angered by editorials describing them as “goons”, striking
farmers surround the offices of Lubbock’s Avalanche-Journal with tractors,
and block all traffic in and out. Police arrest several farmers and tow away
tractors before the strikers disband.
ROCKWALL, HEARNE, BRYAN — Tractor processions parade down
mainstreets, farmers gather at central malls or buildings and listen to speakers
and politicians, then quietly go home.
So has gone some of the best and worst of the national farm strike, today
entering its second month. Most farmer demonstrations have been orderly,
peaceful and have done what they meant to do — attract the sympathetic
attention of a public ignorant to the economics of keeping food on America’s
But those occasional violent confrontations may undo all the good the strike
may do. Most Americans are just as stubborn as those independent farmers
and they dislike being threatened just as much. The farmers need to re
member that and keep demonstrations peaceful.
American consumers may need to be hit between the eyes with a 2x4 to get
their attention, but they won’t stand for a knife pointed at their bellies.
Carter seeking greener fields abroad
By David S. Broder
WASHINGTON — Jimmy Carter has
gone abroad.
That is not just a statement on the Pres
ident’s whereabouts. It is a comment on an
important shift of focus that has taken
place since he entered the White House
almost a year ago.
Carter the campaigner and Carter the
novice President was a handy-man eager
to fix up the home place — to remove the
rust from the economic pipes, rebuild the
rickety structure of the federal bureau-
•cracy, replace the eyesore tax and welfare
codes and correct the dangerous lean in
the budget by putting it back into balance.
When he drained the pond in Plains of
its accumulated debris right after the
Democratic convention of 1976, it was un
derstood as a symbol of his intention to
clean up the mess in Washington and the
domestic economy.
Well, after a year of mucking in that
mess, a year of nagging arguments with
Congress and the interest groups about
what ought to be done and in what order,
Carter gratefully shucked his blue jeans
and work shirt and jumped into diplomatic
pinstripes and set off to see the world.
Nobody can blame him. But equally no
one should minimize the importance of
what has happened.
The most striking thing, to me, in the
President’s year-end interview with the
four television networks was the sharp
contrast between his optimism on interna
tional questions and the weariness and res
ignation with which he spoke of domestic
Sadat and Begin, he said, are well-
launched on their quest for a Middle East
ern peace, and the United States is ready
to help them achieve it. The SALT talks
with Russia are going well, and a treaty —
with a Brezhnev summit in Washington —
is probable in 1978. The Panama Canal
treaties will be ratified this year. The
United States can use the leverage of its
human-rights campaign, its increased pres
tige in Africa and Latin America, to ad
vance progress all around the world.
But when the questioning shifted to
domestic affairs, it was as if the lights had
been turned down in the White House.
Here at home, Carter said, the problems
are “intractable” and “very difficult” of so
lution. The oft-promised balancing of the
federal budget by the end of 1980 is “obvi
ously something I can’t guarantee” — not
with unemployment and inflation stub
bornly resisting his economic policies.
The promise of comprehensive tax re
form has been abandoned in favor of fast
action on the 1978 version of what is be
coming an annual tax-cut-and-stimulus
package. Welfare reform is in deep trouble
in the H ouse. The promised national
health insurance plan will be introduced
late this year. But a President sensitized
by his first-year experiences to the dangers
of what he called “building expectations
too high, wants everyone to know in ad
vance it will not pass. As for energy, the
failure in that area is a “cloud. . .over the
determination and leadership qualitities of
the nation.”
Three quick observations on all this:
First, let no one think the shift of focus
is of no significance. Presidents, like the
rest of us, work hardest where they see
hope of success. Even for a workaholic like
Carter, time spent on the international
agenda means presidential energy di
verted from the unsolved domestic prob
Second, there are risks as well as re
wards in the switch from home repairman
to world statesman. The Panamanians, the
Palestinians, and the Politburo may look
easier to deal with than the tax lobbyists,
the energy conferees or the unemployed
—- but they are not easily managed either.
And finally, on a political note. Presi
dents — and especially Democratic Presi
dents — tend to be judged by the voters
on their record in domestic affairs. You can
stack the treaties as high as the Washing
ton Monument and they won’t be as con
vincing to voters as a healthy economy,
with more jobs and better pay.
The message to the touring President
really is: You have to come home again.
(c) 1978, The Washington Post Com
- V* >*» •• j*.. •.« •.*« m * .-n)* - **’• ;f ■»
Too much leisure time can be dangerous
Never before have so many people in so
many countries had so much leisure time to
devote to pleasure, fun and games. Even
with this increase in time, money and lei
sure, people in the United States are still
hoping and fighting for a four day work
I maintain, and evidence is now appear
ing, that we are not learning to cope with
the increased amount of leisure time at our
Readers Forum
disposal. As mechanization and modern
technology provide more leisure time and
less work time, boredom and frustration
will increase rapidly. When people become
bored with life, lack goals, have nothing to
live for or sacrifice for, and have no driving
purpose for living, they stagnate, become
restless, and are easily irritated.
As more free time has become available,
people crave excitement and thrills be
cause there is nothing normally thrilling
about modem education, or normal home
About 300 B.C., there lived in Greece, a
philosopher who taught that the supreme
purpose of life was to get all the pleasure
possible out of it. His name was Epicurus
and he said, “We declare pleasure to be the
beginning and end of the blessed life.”
This ancient philosopher found some of
his greatest followers in Rome. Food,
goods and services flowed into Rome and
Rome wallowed in luxury and wealth. The
Romans soon lost sight of their national
objectives. Fun and games became more
important than survival. The Romans
gorged themselves on exotic dainties, in
dulged in wild sex orgies and were spec
tators to many killings in the Coliseums.
The main attraction for the masses was
the circus. This is very closely related to the
thousands who attend American football
games. Today, the happiness of many also
seems to hang on the outcome of the Grand
Prix, the Indianapolis 500, a baseball or
football game, or dog or horse races.
Juvenal, Roman poet and satirist of A. D.
100, wrote, “The public has long since cast
off its cares; the people that once bestowed
commands, consulships, legions, and all
else, now meddles no more and longs ea
gerly for just two things—bread and cir
Today, millions of Australians, Cana
dians, English, and other Europeans, and
Americans also seem to have lost their
sense of national purpose and destiny. The
Romans became obsessed and engrossed
with fiction and indecent stage prod
uctions. “Almost from the beginning the
Roman stage was gross and immoral,”
wrote Myers in “Rome, Its Rise and Fall.”
We are much like the Romans in that we
are addicted to watching television, or at
tending the latest bloody motion picture,
absorbing the violence, the sadism, the
sex, and the horror displayed. Davis wrote
in “The Influence of Wealth in Imperial
Rome: “And so the barbarians at length
destroyed a society that was more slowly
destroying itself.” Dr. James C. Charles-
worth remarked several years ago that lei
sure is “growing much faster than our
capacity to use it wisely.”
Good wholesome leisure is fine as leisure
does not become an end in itself. When
millions begin putting fun and games be
fore serious business of life, when leisure
activities become a form of escapism from
reality, when the sole purpose for leisure
activities becomes the gratification of the
senses—then a whole society is in trouble.
Tetters to the editor
The ‘painless’ way to cook in dorm rooms
I read, with a certain amount of amaze
ment and disbelief, George Friedel’s arti
cle (on cooking in dorm rooms) in Reader’s
Forum in the Dec. 9 paper.
I was amazed only because I had tem
porarily forgotten how Mickey Mouse cer
tain A&M administrative functions really
are. But I come forward today not to speak
about the fact that George Friedel is a
puppet in a very childish play, but rather,
to offer him a simple recipe.
You see, in so many ways, I have been
there before.
Back in 1970 when I lived in Legett
Hall, the non-cooking rule was in effect,
and many of us had classes that ran from 8
a. m. to 6 p.m. It was often impossible to
eat, especially if that late afternoon class
was a chemistry lab — that tended to run
somewhat past 6 p.m.
In 1970 I pioneered a new cooking
method that apparently has not survived
the rigors of time. (If it had, you would be
using it and would have been able to avoid
this harassment you are receiving.)
So, I developed a cooking method that
worked without hotplates or electricity. It
was a method that I published in a small
newspaper and which eventually spread
all over my dorm (It may have spread fur
ther though I have no wav of knov in
All you have to do is go down to Char
lie’s Grocery, buy a 15 cent cc rk, march
back to your dorm, poke the cork into the
sink, turn on the hot water, drop your cans
of food into the water, and wait. Chili
takes 20 minutes, soup 15. Other foods
may be cooked at times relative to chili
and soup, taking these as extremes of food
consistency. (Stew would take, for in
stance, about 17 minutes.)
After the elapsed time, remove the can,
open and serve. You have, presto, a hot
meal, and without the expenditure of elec
tric power, without the odor of cooking,
without the time required to cook and
without the mess of dirty pans to wash.
Sure it costs to run the hot water, but
they don’t have a rule against it — I ve
I hope this recipe will help you — I
couldn’t have lived without it.
Oh, and George, there is one other
thing. Before you heat your cans, take the
label off. Otherwise you run the risk of it
coming off in the hot water and clogging
the overspill drain. If you develop a clog,
your sink will run over. I’ve done that be
fore, too.
—Douglas W. Kirk
Psychology, M.S., B.S.
Jounalism, B.S.
Corps doesn't 'boo'
1 nave recently seen some newspaper
articles that indicate that the Cadet Corps
actually booed David Walker during the
A&M-Houston game this year. I find that
very hard to believe but the prospect of
such a thing bothers me even more.
Traditionally, the Cadet Corps and the
spirit of the twelfth man have staunchly
supported the Aggie team through good
times as well as bad. There has always
been the realization that you must support
the man in the arena unless you get in
there and do a better job, or said another
way, if you haven’t tried it, don’t knock the
man who is.
I hope the reports are unfounded but if
they are not, it may be time to reintroduce
the principles of cooperative effort, team
work and the twelfth man spirit that have,
in the past, distinguished Texas A&M
from institutions who do boo the players
who represent them.
—John B. Ferrata, Jr., ‘57
Colonel, USAF
■ ■
Top of the News
jlities i
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Registration begins today
Registration for spring 1978 classes will run today through Friday
this week from 8 a.m. to 12 noon and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. each day,
Registration begins at the office of the student’s department head
with processing completed in the Exhibit Hall of Rudder Center.
Fees will be collected at the Exhibit Hall the day after registration.
Add-drop opens at G. Rollie
Add-drop begins today at 8 a.m. at G. Rollie White Coliseum.
Add-drop will continue through Friday this week and will be open
from 8 a.m. to 12 noon and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. each day.
Off-campus problems aired
A session for all off-campus students needing housing or room
mates will be held from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. today. Women will
meet in Rm. 139 of the Memorial Student Center and men in Rm,
201 of the MSC.
Announcement orders available
Spring degree candidates may order graduation announcements
now through Feb. 17 at the Student Finance Center, Rm. 217
Memorial Student Center. Students expecting to graduate May 5 or
May 6 should place orders between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays.
Research funds climb for colleges
Research money at Texas public colleges and universities totaled
$189.9 million in 1976-1977 — a 12.3 percent increase from a year
earlier, the College Coordinating Board reported Tuesday. The fed
eral government provided 58.4 percent of the money; 24.3 percent
came from the state, the rest from private sources.
Tower seeks re-election
Sen. John Tower, R-Texas, formally announces his candidacy for
re-election today prior to a three-day statewide campaign tour. Tower
is not expected to face opposition in the Republican primary, but two
candidates already are in the race for the Democratic nomination and
the right to oppose Tower in November. The Democratic candidates
are Rep. Bob Krueger, D-Texas, and former State Insurance Board
chairman Joe Christie.
School taxes rise despite help
Speaker Bill Clayton said Tuesday only one 256 of the state’s 1,066
school districts cut taxes this year despite massive increases in state
funds for education. Clayton reported on the results of the state’s $1
billion school finance bill at a meeting of Texans for Equitable Taxa
tion. The House Speaker said he was disappointed more districts did
not use the additional state money to cut local property taxes. He said
159 school districts increased their tax rates and 651 did not change
their levies.
December retail purchases drop
American retail purchases dropped 0.7 percent in December —
the largest drop in nearly a year. Retail sales are considered the truest
indicator of consumer spending trends. But the Commerce Depart
ment, in releasing the figures, said most of the decline was due to a
0.2 percent falloff in automobile sales and a 6 percent drop in building
materials, neither of which is traditionally related to Christmas pur
chases. Department store sales, a more accurate gauge of Christmas
shopping, climbed 0,5 percent, the department said.
Mostly cloudy, rainy and cold today with a chance of thun
derstorms this afternoon. Continued cold with 70% chance
of precipitation today, decreasing to 50% tonight. High today
in the mid 40’s, high tomorrow in the mid 50’s. Winds at
10-15 mph. Clearing and warmer for Friday and Saturday.
The Battalion
Opinions expressed in The Battalion are those of the
editor or of the writer of the article and are not necessarily
those of the University administration or the Board of Re
gents. The Battalion is a non-profit, self-supporting
enterprise operated by students as a university and com
munity newspaper. Editorial policy is determined by the
Student Publications Board: Bob G. Rogers, Cho* 1
Joe Arredondo; Dr. Gary Halter, Dr. John W. H<
Robert Harvey; Dr. Charles McCandless; Dr. Clint*
Phillips; Rebel Rice. Director of Student Public^
Donald C. Johnson.
Letters to the editor should not exceed 300 words and are
subject to being cut to that length or less if longer. The
editorial staff reserves the right to edit such letters and does
not guarantee to publish any letter. Each letter must be
signed, show the address of the writer and list a telephone
number for verification.
Address correspondence to Letters to the Editor, The
Battalion, Room 216, Reed McDonald Building, College
Station, Texas 77843.
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nished on request. Address: The Battalion. Room 216.
Texas Press Association
Southwest Journalism Congress
Editor Jamie
Managing Editor Mary Alice Wc
Editorial Director Lee Roy Leschj
Sports Editor Paul
News Editors Marie Homeyer, Carol
City Editor Rusty
Campus Editor Kim
Copy Editor Beth
Reporters Glenna
Liz Newlin, David Boggan, Mark Pall
Photographer Ken H«
Cartoonist DougGi
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