oil by making it even more expensive than the Arabs are making it! The flaw in the logic is known in the hearts of the people, if not of economists. Gasoline is a necessity. We are a car culture and most people must drive. The only time most people can cut down much is on their days off or their vacations that is, when they are taking relief from work. In economists’ language, the demand for gasoline is relatively inelastic. In common language, the need for gasoline is like the need for natural gas or electricity. That is what this whore’s dream is leading us to: the realization that, gasoline being like gas and electricity, the production and distribution of gasoline is a public utility. Captive customers in the filling stations, we know this. But the politicians, knowing it, quail. What has become of the bill, sponsored by the leading progressive Democratic senators, to establish a federal oil and gas corporation through which the people can produce oil from public lands and offshore? That would be a beginning that would be a structural change. All you hear about from Washington is whether to try to open this faucet wider or to close that one a little more. The faucets themselves they belong to the major oil companies. Crime is safe Television has been engaged in the criminalization of American culture as long as I have been an adult. Movies have joined the work, assisting, as exports, in the criminalization of Western civilization. I suppose the main reason is a banal one. There is not enough creative talent to hold attention, show after show, in the endless series of shows technology makes possible. Violence replaces quality by its power to stun and hypnotize the attention. A few brutal killings make up for a valueless half hour; just because we do not see killing in our lives, it’s interesting. But there is another reason, not so banal. Crime is safe. It is not social criticism; it is not concerned with gargantuan corporate power; it does not endanger the war economy. And it sells products, so it’s better than just safe it’s profitable. Well, I repeat: television and films are criminalizing culture. The next time Republicans lecture the country on law and order, the people should turn, not on the Democrats, but on the corporate sponsors of television violence. R.D. how well their rep is doing. Let’s give credit where credit is due! Your salute to the DMN was hilarious. Nadia Fleming, 5802 Laurel Valley, San Antonio, Tex. 78242. Sorry about the error. Korioth does hail from Dallas County, not Bexar. Ed. McCarthy again Syndicated columnist Mike Royko recently noted that, in the United States today, “There are some things far more damaging to a person’s career than being wrong. Being right, for instance.” The point of his column was that now, when we find ourselves near the end of the road in Southeast Asia, we turn for advice and for analysis to the very people who were wrong in the first place, while ignoring those who were right. This, I fear, is the first step on the road to not-having-learned-a-lesson-land. Even a great nation can make only so many mistakes and still remain a great nation. Royko suggested that we not take advice from men like Robert McNamara, McGeorge Bundy, and Dean Rusk. I agree. They and their successors in the Nixon administration made the domino theory come true by involving nations bordering on Vietnam in the civil war of the Vietnamese. Royko also seemed to suggest that it would make far more sense to listen to political leaders who judged the situation correctly and had the courage to act upon that judgment. Eugene McCarthy, for example. Ronald Cocome, Chairman, McCarthy ’76, 1223 Connecticut Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20036. Postmaster: If undeliverable, send Form 3579 to The Texas Observer, 600 West 7, Austin, TX 78701. DMN had a good day Poo-poo on us I am painfully aware of all the ignorant, even cruel things the DMN has done through the years \(see Obs., let me tell you something that happened to me when I was a legislator in the days of Joe McCarthy, the days of terror. There was a bill before the Texas House to remove all books from state-supported libraries which were soft on communism or degraded Texas history, U.S. history, religion, or the family. The bill actually passed the House. My father told me to write to an editorial writer of the DMN who had been, I think, in the First Officers Training Camp of World War I with him at Camp Bullis, Tex. He told me that the editorial writer, whose name I do not remember, was a decent man who would be offended by the legislation. I wrote the letter and never got a reply, but some days later an editorial came out denouncing the book-branding bill. That one editorial gave courage to others. Tommie Call, then editorial writer for The 16 The Texas Observer IDialogue San Antonio News and a good fellow, wrote the second editorial. It began to pick up steam. We won in the Senate. Philadelphia-type Quakers like John Barrow of Austin say there is some good in every man, in every institution. I don’t know if I can go that far, but I saw some good that day in The Dallas Morning News. Maury Maverick, Jr., 114 Belleview, San Antonio, Tex. 78209. Oops Regarding the 23 House members who voted 100 percent wrong \(see “Political Antonio representatives inevitably make any list that isn’t giving credit for intelligence! We don’t need Al Korioth to add to the list. Let the folks in Farmer’s Branch Al’s stomping grounds know I have been an Observer subscriber for many years. I have always enjoyed your excellent journalism. The thing I like most about the Observer, however, is the format. It fits precisely into the bottom of my bird cage. Please continue to send me your excellent publication \(but don’t change the James A. Evans, 2311 Willowby, Houston, Tex. 77008.
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