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June 03, 1976 - Image 3

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1976-06-03

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Thursday, June 3, 1976


rage i nree

British pound dips to gloomy level

LONDON (i - In one of the sharpest
plunges ever, the sickly British pound
sank to new record lows yesterday,
threatening to wreck the Labor govern-
ment's economic strategy and perhaps
to bring down the government itself.
The pound - which was worth $2.40
in spring of last year - dropped nearly
4 cents to an all-time low of $1.7160. Lat-
er it recovered slightly to close at
$1.7213, still well below the previous re-
cord low of $1.7543 at Tuesday's closing.
The opposition spokesman on finance,
Sir Geoffrey Howe, demanded Wednes-
da, night that the government take
measures to save the pound or resign.
"Action is now imperatively needed to
restore national and international con-
fidesce in Britain's economy," he said.
ii a statement, Howe called for more
cits in national and local government

spending, less government borrowing
and an end to all plans for further na-
tionalization of large industry.
Chancellor of the Exechequer Denis
Healey indicated the government was
not contemplating any drastic mea-
sures. The important thing is "to keep
our nerve and not panic," he said in a
television interview.
Healey expressed satisfaction with
progress in restraining pay raises and
correcting Britain's balance of payments
deficit Ile said the government already
has made "massive cuts" in state
spending programs at the cost of popu-
larity among its own supporters.
Dealers said the pound's dive was one
of the steepest ever in a single day's
trading. Normally the pound's rate
changes by only a fraction of a cent in
one day.

At its low, the pound had lost some 1S
per cent of its value since Jan. 1, when
it stood at $2.02 and nearly 30 per cent
of its value since April 1975 when it
traded at $2.40.
Financial sources have blamed the
year-long decline largely on Britain's in-
flation, the highest in the industrialized
world. The British have brought their
inflation down over the past year from
26 per cent to 18.9 per cent, but the ma-
jor industrial nations competing against
Britain for world markets all have in-
flation rates of less than 10 per cent.
Dealers said yesterday's drop was
triggered by orders from Switzerland to
sell pounds and convert to Swiss francs.
Sellers were not named but Arab oil
producers are among the clients who
deal through Swiss banks.
They said a second selling wave in

the afternoon came from big British
companies made nervous by the morn-
ing drop. Firms dependent on buying
material abroad are tempted to buy
foreign currency as a hedge against a
further drop in the pound.
The drop of the pound was a major
blow to the government and its econom-
ic strategy.
The key to the government's inflation
control program has been its plan for
voluntary wage restraint. Trade unions
are supposed to limit raises to 4.5 per
cent for the next 12 months.
The drop in the pound, however,
threatens that plan. The cheaper pound
buys less abroad, and Britain must im-
port half its food and most of its indus-
trial raw materials. This means higher
prices, making the unions less willing to
restrain wages.

Syrian troops bring quiet
to north and east Lebanon

i-tUIT, Lebanon s'--Syrian troops
, tanks brought peace to northern anti
er trn Lebanon for the first time in
seeks yesterday. But clashes continued
im Iteirut and the chief of Moslem mi-
las said he would not sit down to talks
i his rightist Christian rivals until
the Syrians pull out of the country.
The Syrian forces were reported mark-
iay time after their initial thrust into
I-son in Tuesday, evidently anxious
. F
That's progress
Officials in ('ache County, Utah
theight tax collection would be faster
i the help of a computer. But as a
restt the county missed the legal dead-
iv fur mailing out property tax notices.
Stile law requires that the notices be
lsi't to property owners by May 20, but
acc irding to officials it could be another
10 days before they are in the mail.
County Treasurer Curtis Miner said the
isformation had been fed into the com-
puter, "but the computer hasn't given
it sack in the form of the notices."
Good clean fun
"Girl watching is an American as
blueberry pie," declared a Tulsa Okla.
district court judge Tuesday, as he re-
fused to order the permanent closing
of a nightcltb featuring go-go dancers.
However the judge kept in force a temp-
orary restraining order requiring the
club meet certain conditions in order
to remain open. While "girl watching"
is all right in his book, the judge added
lewd conduct took go-go dancing out of
the area of entertainment. The case was
a result of reports of nude dancing at
the lounge. The court order requires dan-
cers to wear a minimum of panties and
a g-string.
today is the deadline for reserving
seats on East Quad's Cedar Point trip,
call 764-0100, 764-0649 or 764-1616 for
Weather or not
Expect more nice weather today as
sunty skies and 7 degree temperatures

to avoid a showdown with leftist Leba-
nese troops massed on the road to Beirut.
THE MAIN Syrian armored column on
the Damascus-Beirut highway was stop-
ed in front of leftist positions at the key
mointain pass of Lahr el Baidar, about
20 miles east of Beirut. A smaller force
was in the northern Akkar region.
Syrian-led guerrillas of the Saiqa or-
ganiiation were reinforced around the
port of Sidon and a nearby American-
run oil refinery vital to Syria.
Arab dinlonatic sources said the Sy-
virta ir force was on alert to support
the armored troops if they clashed with
the Lebanese.
THE PHAILANGE party said 10,000
regilar Syrian troops are in Lebanon in
addition to some 6,000 Saiqa troops under
Syrian orders. Leftist and Palestinian
estimates rose to 14,000. But the Defense
Department in Washington called these
reports "exaggerated."
Security officials reported the Syrian
presence in eastern and northern Leban-
on had brought almost total calm there.
lut clashes persisted sporadically in Bel-
rut and on other fronts and security offi-
cials estimated about 30 persons were
killed, most in predawn exchanges.
One shell struck a high-tension line
east of Beirut, plunging the capital into
total darkness.
KAMAL JUMBLATT, commander of
the Moslem-leftist alliance, set his con-
ditions in a meeting with President-elect
Elias Sarkis.
Despite lumblatt's tough stance, ob-
servers said his meeting with Sarkis
opened a crack in the wall of enmity
that has prevented talks between the
Christian and Moslem camps. Jumblatt
had earlier met with Bashir Gemayel,
son of rightist chief Pierre Gemayel.
The pirate radio run by the right-wing
Phalange party lauded the Syrian incur-
sion as a move to "preserve legality."
But Beirut radio, controlled by Moslems,
broadcast Jumblatt's call for a general
strike Thursday to portest what he called
an invasion.
IT WAS NOT clear what impact the
move could have snce government offices
and most businesses have been closed
by the fighting.
The Phalange radio said cars with
loudspeakers drove through Jumblatt's
home area in the central Chouf Moun-
tains urging villagers to "get out their
guns to fight off the Syrians."
The Palestinian leadership sent a for-
mal request to Secretary-General Mah-
moud Riad of the Arab League for an
emergency meeting of Arab foreign min-
isters to discuss the Syrian move
"AN URGENT Arab movement to cool
down the escalating struggle in Lebanon
has become a necessity,"' said the PLO
not delivered in Cairo.
See SYRIANS, Pages6

vildb l(ue yawncler
STANDING INERT and alert through an hour-long speech by Vice President
Nelson Rockefeller is too much to ask, even of the 920 graduating seniors of the
Air Force Academy. Here one cadet allows his face to break ranks and lets go
with a pronounced yawn.
Walkout brings Bicyce
Jim ski dding oto

A dispute between Bicycle Jim's own-
er Jim Thompson and four managers re-
sulted in an employee walkout last
Thursday that will leave the oft-visited
student restaurant inoperative for at
least two weeks.
The mass walkout came after Thomp-
son refused to comply with the mana-
gers' and workers' request for 100 per
cent control of the finances and work-
ings of the store. In return for this, a
large percentage of the monthly profits
was to be paid to Thompson's office in
"Hoodwinked" into thinking that
Thompson wanted to relinquish control
and simply share in the profit-making,
former manager Ann Beldon quit, say-
ing, "Jim wasn't meeting our needs in
terms of the store; the man was always
in Detroit-couldn't run a restaurant
himself - was mismanaging funds that
would have been money in our pockets,
and we took it on the chin."
Thompson called the four managers

"honest hard-working employees," and
stated firmly, "My job is to set policy
and for them to carry it out. Our sense
of future direction was in complete dis-
agreement. I wanted to put controls on
the store they weren't comfortable with,
and as a result they left."
Feelings of strong employe solidarity
run deep among Bicycle Jim's workers
and as a result the entire staff of 45
backed the managers in their fight
and walked out.
"I've never had a better job," says
employee Mark Mikulski, "We worked
hard and were proud of the place while
Thompson did not do anything to help
the restaurant. It will never be the same
Thompson has offered every employe
his or her job back with the same rate
of pay. To date, he claims that roughly
half of the hourly workers have come to
reapply for their jobs while none of the
managers have come.
Bicycle Jim's is set to open late next
week after a new staff has been hired
and trained.

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