Page 5


for what they realistically think they can wrangle out of the legislature, patiently building a constituency back home that will ultimately wield the economic clout to pressure the growers. Probably in resp i onse to pressure the UFW is itself feeling from the TFWU, Harrington is also planning selective job actions she feels are manageable. “The ’75 strike in California cost a million and a half a month to sustain,” she points out. “We’re going to do stuff in the fields that won’t cost us a lot of money, things like sitdowns. We can’t support a strike.” It’s tempting to view the ChavezOrendain split as a King-Stokely Carmichael ’60’s replay Orendain the impatient would-be revolutionary goading his more cautious former mentor, repudiating his reformist faith in the system. Last year he was granted an audience in Lebanon with Arafat and then flew on to Iran, where he expressed support for the Iranian students. holding the Americans hostage. He’s also let it be known that he’ll have no truck with Chavez’s philosophy of nonviolence if it ever comes to that. In response to charges that he’s some kind of corn munist, he asks, “What is communism? I don’t even understand it.” He often proclaims that he’s willing to work with anybody who’ll help the farmworkers communist, socialist, Republican, “the devil himself as long as my hands don’t get burned.” Chavez, on the other hand, has evolved into an administrator of the third largest union in California, and no one writes corridos about administrators. He’s occupied on at least two fronts. With Gov. Jerry Brown’s continuing support, he’s managed to, stave off grower .efforts to weaken the state’s ALRB, but it’s a perpetual effort. In addition, just keeping the bureaucracy functioning is a formidable task. On his recent visit to Texas he told the Observer that the UFW in California, like unions of old, maintains an enormous social service load for its approximately 50,000 members. “Modern unions don’t have to worry about helping the members get drivers’ licenses or staffing service centers,” he said. “We have to help people fill out their medical claims and sometimes even to write a letter. If we signed up another 20,000 workers, we wouldn’t know what to do with them. We’re like the snake that ate the rabbit. We can’t move now; we’re digesting.” But what about Texas? What if you’re pulling onions in Deaf Smith County? Hauling watermelons out of a field in Starr County, trying to support a family on maybe $4,000 a year? What do you do? Whom do you believe? Chavez and the UFW have been preoccupied with California, as Orendain charges, and to some extent the UFW is still a California union. And yet, because of its money and manpower, its superior organization and organized labor backing, it’s with the UFW that the Texas farmworker’s future lies. The split, with its ego clashes and misunderstandings. does no one any good, of course, and yet as Sister Carol Ann Messina of the National Farm Workers Ministry points out, it’s the farmworkers themselves who must ultimately decide its outcome. “The two groups will come together,” she says, “when the people are ready.” Clayton Backs Reagan ‘s Cuts The following interview took place between House Speaker Billy Clayton and Observer reporter Mary Lenz in the Speaker’s office in the Capitol. Clayton discussed a wide range of subjects including his water bond financing bills, ethics legislation, federal budget cuts and his suggestion that the national debt be paid off by selling public domain west of the Mississippi. Are you still firm in yofir decision not to run for Speaker? No, I’m settled on that issue. I regret it in a way because I love the legislative process, but I figure 20 years is time enough in the legislature to move on and let someone else take over. Are you going to miss it? No question about it. I take something you devote 20 years of your life to, there’s no way you can keep from missing it. Do you have any future political plans that you’d care to get into here? No, not at this time. I’m not going to really do a lot of thinking about my future as far as the political arena is concerned until some time this summer after the dust has settled and we’ll begin to NIII11111111111111111111111111111111111111111111111IIIIIIINI J.- :-.-An Observer . :-.. Discussion .7 TIIIIIIIIicilicliclimulliclicliciiitclie take a look at the options at that time. Yeah, but thi , options would be a statewide office? Oh, I would certainly be leaning in that direction, yes. Do you think that the whole Brilab thing, does that have any.effect on your plans? No, I really don’t think so. You know, it’s hard to try and discern just exactly what opinions might be lingering from that. But we’ve never run into adverse opinions when we go places. People tell us that they believe it strengthened our position. You know, it’s just difficult to say. I’m certain that it’s had some adverse opinion with those who wouldn’t express themselves. Reagan Cuts OK On the state budget, how can the legislature go ahead and pass an appro priations bill when no one knows exactly how much the federal government is going to be cutting funding. . . . Well, we can do that, just you know basically like we always have in the past, becaue a lot of the programs that the federal government cuts . . . are programs that if necessary have to be reduced because they’re matching programs, where they say 75-25 federal-state funds or maybe 90-10, or some of those type of things. If the feds cut out one of those programs, well, it’s just for certain that the state can’t continue picking up that large a proportion of the rest of the cost of the program. So basically those programs will just have to be either phased down or out. It’ll be dependent upon what programs the feds do the cutting in. And if they do as they say and change categorical grants to block grant concepts and less regulation and more flexibility, it might be that our agencies will have the ability to adjust, you know, from program to program and work it that way. And a lot of times in our funding methods in appropriations bills, funding is from general revenue and from federal funds estimated-to-be. Now most of our agen 8 APRIL 17, 1981