Polk County Enterprise (Livingston, Tex.), Vol. 99, No. 45, Ed. 1 Thursday, June 4, 1981 Page: 4 of 32
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IV JUNE 4, Mil 4
Old-style vigilantes used to hunt down
lawbreakers and hang them on the spot. New-
style civilian crime-fighters patrol, watch and
sometimes catch offenders, then turn them over
Citizens anti-crime groups are multiplying all
over the country, a not unpredictable response to
the constantly rising tide of crime, violence and
The old-style vigilantes got a bad name because
they were known to punish the innocent along with
the guilty. This aroused a strong American dic-
tum against “taking the law into your own
But as reported serious crimes mounted beyond
the 10 million a year mark, as many streets and
neighborhoods were terrorized by louts and
outlaws, as older people began fearing to go out-
doors, as increasing numbers of criminals preyed
on their victims and delinquents committed acts
of vandalism, with little if any worry about being
caught or punished, attitudes underwent a
In New York City, increasing numbers of
volunteers cruise in their cars or walk their blocks
with flashlights and walkie-talkies, looking for
criminal activity. In apartment buildings and
housing projects, patrols walk the halls.
City officials say such patrols have doubled in
the last year and estimate their number at 10,000.
Officials expect them to increase. Signs are
posted throughout many areas, warning that they
are being patroled.
New York police encourage the patrols. The
need for civilian crime-fighting has grown as the
number of police has dropped from 29,500
members in 1972 to 22,924 now.
In one civilian-patroled area in the Midwood
section of Brooklyn, where detailed studies of
crime statistics were made, felonies dropped
almost 17 percent in three years, burglaries drop-
ped 20 percent and auto larcenies dropped 32 per-
Across the nation, hundreds of civic and
ing to and from school and also to look out for
suspected criminal activity involving
iborhood homes, businesses or property.
license numbers, vehicle makes and
, suspects’ descriptions and other
I lnfounaiion can lead to arrests, while quick
rts pay bring police fast enough to nip
les in the bud.
success of existing neighborhood anti-
crime programs and citizen patrols is likely to en-
courage their growth.
Ih a society where crime is perceived - correctly
• as one of the chief national problems, that is a
healthy popular response.
There’s a double standard on Capitol Hill when
it comes to budget slashing.
The exception, in the House at least, is when it
affects the representatives themselves.
The 435 representatives will receive a total of
about $2 million more a year in expense
allowances, thanks to the House Administration
Committee, which issued the order and members
won’t have to go on the record since a vote isn’t re-
quired under this convenient procedure.
Committed staffers have attempted to justify
the increases as an effort to keep up with inflation.
These are probably the same people who argue
that a rebate to taxpayers somehow would be in-
Congress with its heavy red-ink spending is a
major cause for the soaring inflation. The in-
creases for House members aren’t what one
would call modest. Travel allowances were
boosted 65 percent. Funds to buy equipment and
furnishings for a congressman’s offices in his
home district were hiked 30 percent and the
allowance for postage, stationery, newsletters,
etc., went up 10 percent.
1 Why didn’t the representatives tighten their
own belts and give up some of their numerous
perks to balance out the above hikes? Such a
trade-off would have revealed a genuine concern
for the overburdened taxpayers. Instead the
representatives displayed contempt for their con-
stituents. Perhaps, the voters may decide to do
the same to their representatives in the 1982 elec-
• - T '
Do you have an opinion?
nonnal editing such as grammar,
punctuation and spelling. The let-
ter* must be written within the
confines of good taste.
efense probably spends more
WASHINGTON-Of all the federal
government's agendas, the Defense
Department probably wastes the most
money. The reason for this is twofold:
The Pentagon gets more money than
any other department, and potential
critics are intimidated by the fear of be-
ing called un-American.
President Reagan’s defense
secretary, Caspar Weinberger, has set
out to change all that. The word has
gone out to the generals and admirals to
tighten their belts. Weinberger has
even installed a special assistant just to
check on waste and fraud in the
military establishment. «
Unfortunately, the Pentagon's old ex-
travagant habits seem hard to break.
As just one example, consider the
millions being spent to encourage ser-
vicemen and women to stay in uniform.
The program ranges from televsion
ads to cash bonuses for those who re-
enlist. And the bonus program appears
to be a mess.
The bonuses were designed a couple
years ago as a way of getting skilled
service people to sign up either in the
reserves or the National Guard. When
an eligible serviceman or woman
agrees to stay in for a certain number
of years, he or she collects either a cash
bonus of $1,500 or an educational grant
of $4,000 over four years.
No one ever said the program would
be cheap. It has already cost the tax-
payers more than $65 million. If it were
doing the job, it would be worth it. But
government auditors have found exten-
sive waste in the bonus program. In-
dividuals are getting bonuses who have
no right to them. At the same time,
others who should have qualified got
nothing. And many people who agreed
to serve the required number of years
quit early, but took their bonuses with
In spite of the waste involved in the
re-enllstment bonus program, the brass
hats still think it's a good idea: They
have set aside a whopping $640 million
for it over the next four years.
SLEAZY TACTICS-In the past, we
have praised the FBI for its ABSCAM
operation. We were digusted at the
videotapes that showed members of
Congress taking bribes from a phony
Arab sheik and fell they deserved to be
Then we learned about the methods
that the FBI used. The agents set up il-
legal bank accounts and created a cor-
poration which underbid private com-
panies for government contracts. They
condoned the forgery of an in-
criminating letter, and they covered up
serious accusations against their star
witness, Mel Weinberg, a convicted con
Now we’ve obtained the transcript of
a secretly recorded conversation bet-
ween an FBI agent and two informants.
They were trying to penetrate a
criminal gang that was making phony
offshore banking deals.
They sought to compromise a former
Texas state senator who had powerful
Washington connections. At one point,
the agent and the informants discussed
blackmail as a means of getting the ex-
legislator to cooperate.
“Just watch me,” said one of the in-
formants, according to the secret
transcript. “I’m going to get him in
with a 14-year-okf.”
The plan was to videotape the former
Texas lawmaker while he was having
sex with a minor. Then the conspirators
intended to blackmail him into helping
them lure big-name politicians into the
phony banking transactions.
The idea of an FBI agent considering
sexual entrapment and blackmail is
disgraceful enough. But the scheme got
even more crude. As an alternative to a
14-year-old girl, the FBI informant sug-
gested a sex frame-up with a 12-year-
The significant point of this amazing
conversation is that at no time did the
FBI agent raise even the mildest pro-
test. He never objected to the suggested
blackmail or sexual frame-ups. In fact,
the agency’s primary concern in the
taped conversation seemed to be that
the former Texas senator might see
through the trap.
The pursuit of corrupt politicians is a
noble endeavor. But not with the FBI’s
YOU READ IT HERE FIRST-
President Reagan has confided to in-
timates that he will not seek re-election
in 1984. There have been whispers that
the president’s advancing age would
prevent him from seeking a second
term. Now we’ve learned that Reagan’s
narrow escape from an assassin’s
bullet a few weeks ago has confirmed
his determination to be a one-term
president. According to our sources,
Vice President George Bush is eager to
begin planning his own presidential
campaign for 1964.
WATCH ON WASTE-If congressmen
really wanted to come clean with the
taxpayers, they could start by
eliminating their own private car wash
on Capitol Hill. The lawmakers can get
their autos scrubbed for a bargain $3.
The taxpayers, of course, foot the water
Four diffemt government studies of
the Indian Technical Assistance Center
have concluded the agency is incompe-
tent and mismanaged. But despite a
new confidential study by the Interior
Department recommending the center
be shut down, according to our sources,
the 34 Colorado-based bureaucrats may
actually be in line for a budget in-
w i* it"’* %
Critic Sfow part of game
By L. P. ARNN
Mr. Aron Is an Editor at Public
(c) Public Research, Syndicated,
It has been said with increasing
regularity that the President’s plan to
reduce the level of taxation in this coun-
try is a novel experiment, an experi-
ment to be conducted by an amateur, if
not a mad, scientist It is even said that
the experiment goes beyond the bounds
of science, and ventures into the realm
of witchcraft. A recurring phrase is
“voodoo economics,” a phrase coined,
in an unfortunate moment, by George
Bush, who was then an opponent of
Ronald Reagan in the race for the
presidency, and who is now Vice-
President of the United States.
Mr. Bush is now a pructidoncr of tlic
black magic lie tuice denounced, and Ills
conversion leads us to wonder whether
the magic is really black, or even
magic. Arc the regions of lesser taxa-
tion really part of the darker realm?
Are the effects promised from a reduc-
tion in taxation really dependent upon
strange incantations and sorcerous po-
tions? These are the questions that the
Congress must answer as it decided, in
the next few weeks, whether and how it
will relieve us of some of the burden we
The present demand for a decrease in
taxation is founded upon the extraor-
dinary tax rates that afflict us. The
strength of the demand is proportionate
to the level of taxation, which is among
the highest ih the western world. Our
tax system penalises interest on saving
and investment more heavily Qian it
does salaries and wages, thereby en-
couraging us to spend our income as
soon as we make it, and to sa ve nothing
for the future. Our tax rates thwart in-
dustry; they obstruct the accumulation
of capital; they impose extra burdens
upon marriage. They are raised
automatically each year by that awful
force, inflation, which multiplies the
number of dollars in our pockets, but
diminishes the amount that we can buy.
Many Americans today find themselves
in tax brackets they never dreamed
they could enter, but they are no richer,
and even poorer, than they were five,
ten or fifteen years ago.
The President's plan to mitigate this
situation does indeed have certain
novel features, but we must separate
from the fundamental
i upon which ha relies. These
go back to WT
history of the United States.
"The power to tax,” wrote John Mar-
shall in 1819, "involves the power to
destroy." This illustrates the gravity
with which the founders of our nation
regarded the question of taxation.
Our Constitution, like the English
constitution in its later development,
recognizes that there is a
privatesphere, within which individuals
should be “free to live by no man’s
leave within the law.” This private
sphere is defined by certain rights that
accrue to every man equally. These
rights are sununarized in the Declara-
tion of Independence as the natural,
unalienable rights to “life, liberty and
the pursuit of happiness.” These most
fundamental rights are the foundation
for tlie civil rights enumerated in the
Bill of Rights of our Constitution. It was
"to secure these rights” that the gover-
ment of the United States was
Any state - such as a communist
state - that appropriates the whole
wealth of a nation to itself, destroys the
ground upon which liberty rests. No
man can speak frankly and candidly
upon politics, if his government is able
to take away his living. No man can
practice his religion unhindered, if the
state is able to seize his home and deny
him employment. And as a communist
or totally collectivist state squashes in-
dividual rights, it also stifles individual
initiative. Few are moved todiligent ef-
fort, when diligence and laxity win the
same reward. There is no motive for in-
dustry, there is no outlet forganius and
innovation, if genius, industry and in-
novation arc accorded no special scope,
nor granted no special distinction.
There is of course no question that the
government of the United States is
seeking to appropriate the whole wealth
of the nation. But excessive taxation,
which appropriates too much of the na-
tion's wealth, reproduces in a milder
form some of the vices of communism.
It is a drag upon and a distraction to
production. Its effects accumulate year
after year, until those who do not wish
to work are confirmed in their in-
dolence, and those who are inclined to
work are exhausted by the burdens they
haVe borne. Franklin Roosevelt, who
was neither a Republican, as President
Reagan is, nor an enemy of big govern-
ment, said in 1$M: "Taxes are paidin
the sweat of every man who labors. If
farms, and in hordes of hungry pec
tramping the streets and seeking jobs
The President’s plan to cut taxes is,
therefore, perfectly in keeping with the
tradition of free government that he in-
herits. If there is no black magic in his
plan, it is to be found in his prediction of
the future. It can not be proved with any
mathematical formula, nor
demonstrated with any economic graph
- even the famous 1 differ curve itself is
insufficient - that prosperity will follow
from a reduction of taxes.
The President argues, however, that
there is in America a vast, untapped
resource, a renewable, human source
of energy, skill and ingenuity. He
argues that this resource has been
cramped and constrained by excessive
levies of taxation. He argues that if
these excessive levies are removed, the
natural enthusiasm of the people of this
country will reappear, and production
will burgeon and grow. If he is right,
then sooner or later his plan must suc-
ceed. If he is wrong, then it is ques-
tionable that any plan can succeed.
ALVIN HOLLEY, PUBLISHER
Entered as Second-Class Matter at the Post Office at Livingston,
Texas 77351 under the Act of Congress of March 3,1897.
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White, Barbara. Polk County Enterprise (Livingston, Tex.), Vol. 99, No. 45, Ed. 1 Thursday, June 4, 1981, newspaper, June 4, 1981; Livingston, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth781613/m1/4/?q=trooper%20tom%20selman: accessed November 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Livingston Municipal Library.