about what those basic philosophical ideals are? My basic concern it was when I was a teacher; it is now is to try to free the human spirit, to express the best that is in that spirit in each individual, whether it’s man, woman, child, whatever, to try to help create the kind of society in which a person has maximum opportunity to express himself or herself in terms of his or her fullest potential. And I think that, in economic terms, that is done best in marketplace situations because I think the government can plan well in the long run, but I think it does very poorly in short run. And so I believe in marketplace economics; I’m a capitalist. I also have a very strong record on civil rights issues because I feel very strongly about it. Some of the stuff you see just isn’t accurate; it’s just fallacious. That’s why I was an educator; that’s why, in fact, while I was dean, we expanded programs considerably in the one year while I was dean in terms of bringing in more minority students to Duke, and we set up special summer programs to help people bridge that gap between black southern high schools and the best university in the South. I work hard on things. There is my curriculum to give more liberty to students to make decisions on their own in terms of their curriculum, their life patterns, and so forth. That’s why I supported everything from two senators for D.C. to always having a pro-choice position on questions of determining pregnancy. I see the human individual, the human spirit, as being that unique thing that of handicapped in that bill, and my assistant, who is a brilliant woman, said, “Bob, the states will have to match funds with the federal government; that’s a requirement of law. And there’s no definition of handicapped. They could say that anybody under 100 IQ is handicapped, and the states would have to match those funds. Without a definition of handicapped in some way, you know, we’re just giving the bureaucrats an extraordinary opportunity to develop your own guidelines in ways that are going to come back to haunt us. We need a better written bill.” Economic Costs So in that case you weren’t opposed to the thrust of the bill. . . . I have countless votes in favor of the handicapped. But I had read the bill, and most people don’t. Just as I had read the bill with regard to insurance on the swine flu thing, and other people hadn’t. An awful lot of people are doctrinaire about their votes. They walk in and they see three or four people and they’re voting that way and their thumbs are up, they vote that way, and other thumbs are down. I’ve never sought to function that way. I mean, with something like the handicapped the government has to function; the individual family can’t be expected to. Something like water pollution or air. It’s always to the advantage of a particular industry, economically, to pollute, but it is not to the advantage of the community as a whole. So obviously we have :to have legislation. That doesn’t mean that I would vote for every piece of so-called environmental legislation that comes down the pike. I worked, for example, on the Clean-Air Act. I worked for an amendment that would have been considered by some to be anti-environment, or we could call it pro-jobs. What it was, the legislation sort of locked everybody into the present level of air quality. Well, a community that had no industry at all could simply never bring any industry there because they were locked into a present level, and they were not allowed to have, quotes, any pollution; whereas, Pittsburgh could clean up a little bit and then pollute back up to its present level, and it could keep industry. And the small communities that had zero industry now could never get it. That was your vote on the Clean Air Act of 1976. . . . It could have been; I cast 2,813 votes in Congress, so I don’t remember every one, but I can remember working on an amendment in that particular area. The one I was going to ask you about was in 1977 where there were amendments to the Clean Air Act setting new whether we needed this program medical advice from the surgeon general said that we did so I voted for it and virtually everybody else did. A week later they came back and said the drug companies will not produce this vaccine because they can not get insurance for it unless the Congress passes legislation making them exempt from any suits for any possible infection or any possible problems with this program. Well, at that point, I took the risky course. I said, I’m convinced that the Congress of the United States is not as qualified to make good judgments about what are good insurance risks as the insurance companies because I don’t think that I’m any worse than the average congressman, and I know that I can’t judge this. So I spoke against it, and I took a risk on that because if there had been a swine flu epidemic, which as it turned out there wasn’t, there would have been a vote against. There were about 30 or 40 of us John Dingle and John Moss were on my side who were considered liberals, but so were people like Symms and some of the rightwing Republicans. In that case, it turned out we were right. The government did wind up getting sued in these programs, and the government had to pay and the drug companies were involved in it. Well, you can’t campaign on the basis of “Look how farsighted I was.” I did it because I believed it was the right thing for the country. But it wasn’t a liberal or conservative issue. I don’t seek to look at things according to label, but if you get a senator who simply votes for things because they’re liberal and there are some who do then they’re not very good; they’ve stopped thinking. Let’s accept the idea that you’re not ideologically rigid, and yet you operate, I suspect, out of some political philosophy and maybe you’re articulating it now but could you be more specific 8 NOVEMBER 11, 1983 “I’m convinced that the Congress of the United States is not as qualified to make good judgments about what are good insurance risks as the insurance companies. . is worth enlarging and expressing in the best possible way, and that’s fundamental to what I’m used to. I think there are some things maybe that only the government can do, and that we can only do collectively. For example, if someone has a mentally retarded child. It’s a terrible burden to leave all the responsibility for that child on one family. I think the community has to assist in some way. And someone objected to my vote on the occasion against a certain bill for contact education for handicapped. The problem was; you see, that I read the bill; most people never do. And there was no definition
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