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Congress passed an increase in the luxury tax on boats. That was supposed to add some $9 million to the Treasury coffers. Instead, the higher tax reduced the sale of boats and only brought in some $5.9 million of revenue. Added to that, according to the Republican staff of the Joint Economic Committee, the luxury tax on boats and airplanes put some 9,070 people out of work and thereby cost the Federal Government $17.3 million. In the end, according to Melcher, of Prudential Securities, “Congress sure fixed those rich, boat-buying SOBs, didn’t they?” Of course, the main item of labor’s legisla tive agenda has been trade. They had some success in paring down Japanese car imports here, but this hasn’t exactly created “a protectionist environment.” Of course, from the Administration’s view point, the U.S. trade policy creates jobs. In a recent report by the Commerce Department, “U.S. Jobs Supported by Merchandise Exports,” the Administration concludes that for each billion dollars of exports in 1990, some 19,100 jobs were created. Maybe that is not as impressive as job growth from infrastructure, but at least it is something to brag about. That is more than the unions can do. These days it seems unions that are only treading water are considered a success. In Texas, Emmett Sheppard, who directs the AFL-CIO’s legislative and political efforts, hopes to use voter registration and awareness campaigns to change that. But according to Burtless, anyone who mistakes Clinton for labor’s white knight will find is likely to be disappointed. Burtless thinks unions are just too small a segment of society to wield a lot of power. Maybe labor should consider Dr. Kubler Ross’s On Death and Dying, which says when you come to the end you go through stages: anger, denial, bargaining and acceptance Continued from pg. 18 numbered by the pro-choicers, and for some reason the chants and their looks of scorn brought me close to tears. “Don’t worry,’ the previously suspicious O.R. man said to me,.”No woman is going to have an abortion while all of this is going on.” Tears welled in my eyes as I thought of those women. “They don’t hate you,” he further consoled me, “they hate God.” The O.R. bus carrying “rescuers” left Planned Parenthood and hit several clinics. Two of the clinics were near downtown and I went to the wrong one. I finally reached the right clinic but the bus had already left. Fortunately, Patricia was there and she had a map to the next clinic, where the bus would stop. The midtown clinic was protected by the most radical group of clinic defenders I had seen, but the busload of rescuers was successful in surrounding the entrance to the clinic. The defenders kept the anti-abortionists from entering the clinic, and .soon after our arrival the police arrived. The O.R. faction backed off when police threatened to arrest them. Getting arrested when there was no hope of shutting down the clinic wasn’t worth it to the anti-abortionists, who proceeded to another mission. As I tried to find Patricia I was surrounded by a crowd of prochoicers trying to isolate me from the rest of my group. Patricia, encircled by a group of angry clinic defenders, was treated worse. “Where is your God now?” the pro-choicers demanded as they closed their circle around the terrified anti-abortion protester. During the convention I heard politicians talk of “middle ground.” The past week has taught me that there is no middle ground. People like Patricia and others that I met taught me that there are kind and compassionate people who believe that abortion is wrong. Ironically, however by sharing her own story of being abandoned by an abusive husband who left her with two small children, Patricia unwittingly illustrated whose choice an abortion ultimately is. And although both factions seemed to believe God was on their sides, I felt no divine presence at any of the confrontations between prochoice supporters and anti-abortionists. I only sensed hatred. CLASSIFIEDS ORGANIZATIONS LESBIAN/GAY DEMOCRATS of Texas Our Voice in the Party. Membership $15, P.O. Box 190933, Dallas, 75219. SICK OF KILLING? Join the Amnesty International Campaign Against the Death 592-3925. WORK FOR OPEN, responsible government in Texas. Join Common Cause/Texas, 316 West 12th #317, Austin, Texas 78701 TEXAS TENANTS’ UNION. Membership $18/year, $10/six months, $30 or more/sponsor. 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