December 15, 1978

LIB

Marke Raines

Liberal

Mr. Marke Raines (Burnaby-Seymour):

Mr. Speaker, may I say to the hon. member for Hillsborough (Mr. Macquarrie) that I wish him all the best when he retires from this House after his career as a parliamentarian.

I was somewhat suprised that when he resumed his seat he was applauded by members of his party. While I respect the hon. member, I am completely and diametrically opposed to his ideas. During the four and one-half years 1 have been a member of this House, 1 have wanted other people from British Columbia to travel to his beautiful part of the world, to Ontario, and to Quebec. I want massive student exchanges. I must tell the hon. member what we have in British Columbia and why I cannot in any way support his plea for exchanges with the Caribbean.

The economy class air fare from Vancouver to Ottawa and return costs $430. It costs more to Montreal, and far more to go to the hon. member's province. For four and one-half years I have been urging this government, the Secretary of State (Mr. Roberts) and everyone else, to provide lower air fares to lure British Columbians to other parts of Canada. So far we have seen just a small drop in fares and the introduction of some charter fares. Many British Columbians still have not seen Prince Edward Island, they have not seen Ontario or Quebec. For half the fare they can travel to Hawaii, San Francisco and Seattle, and people in eastern Canada can take their holidays in the Bahamas and the Caribbean. They can have student and teacher exchanges between Canada and France or, as the hon. member wishes, between Canada and the Caribbean, which are supported by the federal government, while we do not have enough funds to support this country. At this time in our history I want people from the west to see the east, and vice versa.

I propose that every Canadian from British Columbia to Prince Edward Island should have the right to travel to other parts of the country once a year for a fare of $100 or $150, to put an arbitrary figure on it. People from British Columbia could visit Quebec city, Montreal, Prince Edward Island, and people from those areas could visit British Columbia. In this way all would have a better understanding of the country. As a

H0067-67'/2

Commonwealth Caribbean

member of parliament I have had the opportunity of going to Quebec.

The hon. member spoke of a list of priorities. I should like to refer to some that have not done too well. In the Ottawa Journal of May 27, 1978, under the headline "Student Exchange Program Goes Broke", there appeared the following report:

The federal government's showcase student exchange program, Open House Canada, has run out of money with 6,000 on the waiting list.

Co-ordinator Brian Gilhuly said the program's budget of $6 Vi million is enough to take care of 23,500 students. Another 6,000 students have completed the necessary steps and are waiting to be accepted.

Open House Canada offered free airfare to anyone between the ages of 14 and 22 who was willing to be matched up with a host somewhere else in Canada.

Apparently we do not have enough money for these student exchanges. I see the hon. member for Hillsborough is having a chat with a member from British Columbia who is a colleague of mine. I am sure my colleague on that side of the House will add his persuasions to mine.

I do not want to oppose the program for the Caribbean, Mr. Speaker, but it is low on my list of priorities. It is a good idea and I, too, want exchanges with the Caribbean, but also with France, England, and other places. The hon. member, of course, has his list of priorities, but during the 20 minutes that he spoke he never once mentioned any other part of Canada. Has he forgotten British Columbia, Alberta, and other parts of the country? They are all rather beautiful, but it costs the average Canadian too much to visit them.

I should like to hear the hon. member's views on lower airfares. I am sure there are people in his riding who would like to see Quebec and Ontario.

I should like to tell the House of the value of the student exchanges, Mr. Speaker. In British Columbia there is some prejudice against Toronto and Ontario, perhaps even more than in the maritimes. Certainly there is some prejudice against Quebec and against another language. From time to time to it has been my pleasure-as 1 know it has been for other members-to welcome students from all parts of the country who are participating in programs such as Open House Canada. They have all thought how wonderful it was to have the opportunity to participate.

Three years ago I attended Laval University in Quebec-at my own expense-in order to learn French. I met with students from the United States, British Columbia, and even from Prince Edward Island. All saw Quebec city and the province firsthand as they were learning the language, and they had no prejudices or misconceptions. If both students and adults had the opportunity to travel across the country and still had a dislike of one part of the country, at least it would be well founded on things they had experienced, and not based on misconceptions. Some of those misconceptions are due to the failure of the media, and of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation in particular to live up to its mandate of explaining one part of the country to other parts.

I have called for cuts in the CBC. I have called for these cuts in committee, and I have done so in opposition to this government at times. I have called for cuts in administration, but 1 have told the CBC president, A1 Johnson, in committee that I would even vote for an increase because I think communication is that important. If the CBC would live up to its mandate, nothing could be more important.

Of equal importance to communications is the right of Canadians at this time in our history to travel and see the country and to meet their friends and fellow Canadians from Quebec, Ontario, and Prince Edward Island. And now, in December, 1978, to have a colleague of mine say-and I call him a colleague whether he is on this side of the House or the other side of the House, our ideas could be the same-let us have exchanges with the Caribbean, valuable although that may be, I find it almost to the point of being discourteous that in a 20-minute speech he did not mention once that we have a need in British Columbia and Alberta that is not being fulfilled.

The airfare from Ottawa to Vancouver and return costs $430, and that is not an easy amount to find. So I suppose people from here go to Florida and the Caribbean. I do not blame them. People who live in British Columbia, because of the excessive cost of air fare and the lack of communication- we do not see that on the national network-people in British Columbia are more familiar with Seattle, Hawaii and California than they are with the maritime provinces. This national disgrace must come to an end sooner or later. That is why for four and a half years I have asked that the constituents who live in the Hillsborough riding, as well as all the people who come from Ontario, Quebec, or any part of eastern Canada, be given an opportunity to come to British Columbia, Alberta or any part of the west. By the same token I want the people of the west to have the opportunity to come east.

While I am not telling anyone what language they can or cannot speak, there are growing numbers of people in British Columbia who want the opportunity to learn another language. I submit that we should all join together to give them the opportunity to learn a second language. I do not care what the media or what orators in this House say, and at times I do not care what this government says, because I have been to Quebec, I have spoken to the people there and I have found a desire to learn English. I find their hearts are good.

No matter what premiers or officials of any province nay say, I have talked to the people, as have all hon. members-the hon. member from Prince Edward Island has talked to people more than I in his long and distinguished career-and 1 think the people of Canada are good, and that growing segment who want an opportunity to become Canadians must be given that opportunity. For that reason perhaps the hon. member for Hillsborough will join me in my plea that we have a chance to see all sections of this country and then, after that, perhaps I will be prepared to listen somewhat more carefully to an exchange between the maritimes and the Caribbean.

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NDP

William Arnold Peters

New Democratic Party

Mr. Arnold Peters (Timiskaming):

Mr. Speaker, I am surprised that you allowed the hon. member for Burnaby-Seymour (Mr. Raines) to discuss his motion when he was supposed to be discussing the motion put by the hon. member for Elillsborough (Mr. Macquarrie).

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?

Some hon. Members:

Order.

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?

Some hon. Members:

Shame!

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NDP

William Arnold Peters

New Democratic Party

Mr. Peters:

It is possible for those of us who like hockey to discuss baseball also and these topics do not have to be discussed at the same time. In fact there is some advantage in not mixing them up. I think that when members are discussing hockey they can discuss it, and likewise when they are discussing football, they can discuss it. But they do not necessarily mix, and the rules are not the same.

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LIB

Denis Éthier (Assistant Deputy Chair of Committees of the Whole)

Liberal

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Ethier):

Order, please. The hon. member is insinuating that the Chair should have intervened when the hon. member for Burnaby-Seymour (Mr. Raines) was speaking. I thought he was addressing himself to the motion before the House. I understood he was stating his views, that contrary to having an exchange of services and techonology, he referred to an exchange of students within Canada, and I thought he was quite in order.

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NDP

William Arnold Peters

New Democratic Party

Mr. Peters:

Mr. Speaker, thank you for your explanation. I did not understand that from the comments.

We have had the opportunity of associating with the hon. member for Hillsborough in a number of debates-

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LIB

Marke Raines

Liberal

Mr. Raines:

Mr. Speaker, I rise on a point of order. I would like to know if the hon. member understands either one of the official languages. I thought I had made myself quite clear, and if at any time in this House one cannot speak on the need-

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LIB

Denis Éthier (Assistant Deputy Chair of Committees of the Whole)

Liberal

The Acting Speaker (Mr. Ethier):

Order, please.

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NDP

William Arnold Peters

New Democratic Party

Mr. Peters:

Mr. Speaker, the member just proved my point.

As I was saying, since 1957 we have had an opportunity of associating on many occasions with the hon. member for Hillsborough and we will be very sorry to see him go. I am sure we will be no more sorry than the people in this country who have felt that we have an obligation in Canada to help some of the other Commonwealth countries. I agree with him that there are no better Commonwealth countries to help than those that will help us. It has never been suggested by the hon. member for Hillsborough that we were going to do this out of the goodness of our hearts. There was a great deal to gain from a relationship where we might need sugar, oranges, or the rum that comes from that part of the world, which is something dear to some people's hearts, as well as cigars. In turn they are interested in our potatoes, wheat, flour, and a number of other commodities that we have in excess in Canada.

It seems to me that is good neighbourliness for Canadians to participate with other Commonwealth countries in that kind of an exchange. Over the years the hon. member for Hillsbor-

Commonwealth Caribbean

ough and those who have participated in the Caribbean Canadian committee, loose though that term maybe, have always stressed the fact that this was not entirely one-sided, there were advantages on both sides.

It is interesting to walk down the streets of Toronto because one will find people there from the Commonwealth Caribbean area rubbing shoulders with other Canadians in a harmonious relationship. It is not odd either to walk down the streets in many Caribbean countries because one will find a branch of the Bank of Nova Scotia rubbing shoulders with a branch of the Bank of Montreal or a branch of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce. One can also see ships carrying Canadian goods delivering to Caribbean ports, and in return, bringing back to Canada some of the produce found in that part of the world.

The hon. member has stressed the advantages of developing ports. It is very difficult to deliver or receive goods unless sufficient facilities in the ports are made available. It means that if we are to import tropical fruits and other commodities of a perishable nature from those countries, they will have to be protected with refrigeration and container ships and the other necessities of modern merchandising. Those ports have to be established at both ends of the line. It is only in Canada that we have a ship docking off the shore of Frobisher Bay and then we find we cannot make the delivery via small boats because the water is frozen. Most countries are not that stupid, and it is only in Canada that we believe we do not have to have facilities. We have the ships but we cannot dock them wherever we please. I think the hon. member for Hillsborough is perfectly correct in saying that proper facilities at both ends of a trade route are necessary. We may help in the construction and with technology in the Caribbean, and they may help us in other ways.

There is one thing Canadians miss that our friend in British Columbia cannot give us; during our six months of winter we need warm sunlight. This is something the Caribbean has. The Caribbean has beautiful beaches, warm sunlight, and warm water in abundance. We have commodities the Caribbean countries need. In a limited way we are an industrial nation. A trade can be made very readily which is advantageous to both parties.

It might be wise and more to our advantage than it is to theirs if one were to pick up an Air Canada brochure and find that the prices are quoted in Canadian funds instead of American funds. The other Caribbean Commonwealth countries do not use American money either. It is only a form of exchange for the tourist industry that is operated for both Canadians and Americans. There would be very little difficulty translating Canadian money into money used in Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and other places in the Caribbean. However, that is not the way it is done. It is converted into American money. This kind of arrangement could be made very easy so that our money is directly related to the Commonwealth Caribbean countries which we visit.

Commonwealth Caribbean

I do not want to spend very much time on this subject.

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?

Some hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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NDP

William Arnold Peters

New Democratic Party

Mr. Peters:

That is not to satisfy my colleagues on the other side of the House. It is simply because they may not be able to stay on this subject long enough to kill the motion. That is the reason I will not take too long.

We have been very impressed with the efforts that have been made to relate in a fair and reasonable way the relationship between the Caribbean and Canadian people. There is a warm friendship on both sides. It has been ably demonstrated that, given a reasonable response, very unusual results may flow from that which will be to both our advantage and theirs.

We are all familiar with the lack of support on the government benches with regard to the request from the Turks and Caicos Islands. They petitioned Canadian members of parliament to make some kind of arrangement whereby we would provide them with the industrial development necessary to develop those islands into a resort area. In return, the islands could be used for the benefit of Canadian citizens.

The government pooh-poohed that, saying that we would be accused throughout the world of starting up a colonial empire. When my colleague from Waterloo-Cambridge (Mr. Salts-man) suggested those islands attach themselves to Nova Scotia, there was a great hullaballoo. It was suggested by the Turks and Caicos that they become a protectorate of Canada or a territory. The then secretary of state for external affairs, Mr. Sharp, almost had a fit. He asked what our neighbours would say when we went to the United Nations if we had a protectorate or territory in the Caribbean. He said we would become a colonial power.

That was not the way the people on the islands viewed it. They have a relatively small population, 5,000 or 6,000. Even if you include all the relatives on the islands, there still would not be more than twice that number. These people could easily be covered under our old age pension and other social security programs that we have. In return, they would have allowed Canadians to build hotels and establish seaports. The Canadian dollar would have been used as the exchange. Canada could have sent many processed foods and goods to these islands. They, in turn, could have sent us what they grow on their tropical islands, as well as letting us take advantage of their sun and sand. This was pooh-poohed because the officials in the Department of External Affairs felt it would indicate that we were not as pure in terms of being colonially oriented as we pretend to be.

There would be an advantage on both sides. All arrangements would have to be done in harmony. There could be an equal exchange and we could quite easily arrive at a trade balance that would be nil. By reciprocal buying and selling, there would be equal advantage to both sides.

This is not true at the present time in the Caribbean. In Jamaica, for example, we own the banks as well as the bauxite

industry. They look at Canadians in a different light than if we were equal partners in a Commonwealth arrangement.

The hon. member for Hillsborough (Mr. Macquarrie) has sown a seed that I hope will grow to maturity. I see great advantage for both the Commonwealth Caribbean and for Canada. I can visualize ships travelling between those two areas in the same way that airplanes do, carrying people and produce, with a mutual advantage to both parties. There should not be any roadblocks whether people want to travel to Hawaii or California. That is not the question. This is an opportunity to expand our trade in a mutually acceptable way and to do it with equality. We would be equal trading partners working to our mutual advantage under a harmonious arrangement between Canada and the Caribbean Commonwealth.

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PC

Douglas Roche

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Douglas Roche (Edmonton-Strathcona):

Mr. Speaker, there was joy in the House of Commons today when we were privileged to hear again the distinguished voice of our colleague, the hon. member for Hillsborough (Mr. Macquarrie). There was sadness in the House also when we were reminded of the pending departure of that gentleman who has done so much through his years in the House of Commons to raise the sights of Canadians to our international opportunities and responsibilities.

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?

Some hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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PC

Douglas Roche

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Roche:

I say to the hon. member for Hillsborough that this House will be the poorer for his departure. If he leaves behind the many aspects of a legacy through the years, the final chapter being his motion this afternoon, this House has been well served indeed.

Unfortunately, I have to tell the hon. member for Hillsborough that he has not been totally successful in raising the viewpoint of Canadians with regard to international opportunities and obligations. There was a perfect demonstration a moment after that gentleman sat down of a Canadian who has not yet had his vision widened commensurate with the responsibilities he holds as a member of parliament.

The hon. member for Burnaby-Seymour (Mr. Raines), in responding to this motion, made a very interesting speech indeed. I say to him with great respect, and indeed friendship, that his speech this afternoon in which he lamented the high cost of domestic travel and deplored the drying up of funds for the domestic student exchange program, was not a speech against the motion of my friend from Hillsborough. It was an indictment of his own government for failing to do the things necessary in our own domestic economy, giving him a sense of frustration and exacerbation respecting travel in our own country. Just because a point he made indicated the government is not to say that the validity of the point made by my hon. friend from Hillsborough is any less.

I have to remind the hon. member for Burnaby-Seymour that only three or four hours ago in this very chamber the

Prime Minister (Mr. Trudeau), answering a question from one of my hon. friends, gave a run-down of his forthcoming trip to Jamaica where he would be meeting with several first ministers from around the world on the general subject of the north-south alignment. The hon. member for Bumaby-Seymour forgets that his own party has been a leader and, indeed, has supported the two reports of the subcommittee on international development to which my hon. friend from Hillsborough referred. The members of the Liberal party joined members from both sides in making unanimous the two reports which were prepared in 1976 and 1977 as a reflection of the concern of the many members in all parties with regard to the north-south problem.

Those reports from the subcommittee on international development were a reflection of the work which the Standing Committee on External Affairs and National Defence is capable of doing were it given sufficient opportunity. These reports stand out as exceptions to the general lassitude which characterizes the work of the committees generally, and specifically of the Standing Committee on External Affairs and National Defence. If there is any improvement to be made in helping Canadians understand a wider sense of opportunity and obligation-the hon. member for Hillsborough pinpoints a specific area, the Caribbean-it is through the Standing Committee on External Affairs and National Defence. I say to the House with great confidence it will not be long before events are set in motion whereby a sense of leadership will be given to the Canadian people to explain and support the measures which have been recommended by members of parliament from both sides who took part in those hearings.

I will just refer briefly to a couple of sections in that report from the subcommittee on international development. My hon. friend from Hillsborough, referring to the north-south problem in the Caribbean, has by implication talked about the debt problem of the developing countries today. The report which the subcommittee offered to the House and to the government started by quoting the Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, Mr. Ramphal, himself a distinguished son of the Caribbean. He said:

The inequities in the international system are of tremendous significance. They have given rise to essentially two worlds and the disparities between them are growing. One is the world of the rich, the other the world of the poor, united by its heritage of common suffering. A poverty curtain divides the world materially and philosophically. One world is literate, the other largely illiterate; one industrial and urban, the other predominantly agrarian and rural; one consumption oriented the other striving for survival-

The second report from the subcommittee had to do with intermediate funding. One of the recommendations, indeed, the principal finding and recommendation, reads as follows:

The flow of "aid", or real financial resources, to developing countries remains as important and urgent as ever and is still the most concrete yardstick of the commitment of wealthier countries to assist the developing world. It is important to stress the continuing role of aid since the debate on the "new international economic order" has often focused primarily on "non-aid" aspects of co-operation.

When the hon. member for Hillsborough comes into the House on a Friday afternoon and reminds us of our opportunities to fulfil the commitments our country has made over the

Commonwealth Caribbean

years, for his pains he gets a speech saying we have to improve the situation in domestic air fares and domestic student exchange rates. In other words, we have to make great improvements in the internal economy of our country before we address ourselves to the larger matters of the world. Mr. Speaker, every day of the week members of House are engaged in that very exercise of analysing and trying to improve domestic economy.

Is the hon. member trying to tell us that we cannot give any priority to the subjects my hon. friend mentioned? He forgets that a large percentage of the land of the world and 99.5 per cent of the people of the world are not in Canada. What shocks me is how little time is spent in the House of Commons devoted to occasions on which members can discuss more realistic policies of Canadian involvement in a changing world. If there is any characteristic which marks my hon. friend's motion this afternoon it is the characteristic of being sensible. It is eminently sensible.

I will read the operative section of the motion. He recommends "assistance towards meetings of political, business and educational leaders of the two regions with a view to stimulating a north-south exchange of goods, people, services and technology in a mutually advantageous way." He understands the reality of the human condition today that is threatened by this widening chasm between the 30 per cent of the world who live in the advantaged countries and the 70 per cent who live in the developing countries devoid of any means by which to make themselves more self-reliant. That is what the issue is today. Canada benefits from a more vigorous participation in improving north-south relations.

I shall certainly not be the one to talk out this motion. I want it to go to a committee. I want the subject matter to be cummunicated to the people of Canada and, indeed, to the government side here this afternoon, because it represents the voice of wisdom and outlines the practical steps to be taken in order to move the north-south debate ahead.

There was an implication in the Prime Minister's answer this afternoon in reply to a question, and I invite the hon. member to go back and look at Hansard for the Prime Minister said, and he was right, a log-jam had interrupted the north-south dialogue between the developed and the developing nations. Everybody who follows the international scene today is all too conscious of that log-jam.

Many things must be done of a sensible nature, as my hon. friend suggests, which can begin to move us forward in practical steps to close that gap in such a way that the people of the developed countries, as well as the developing countries, are the beneficiaries. I invite the hon. member to give that aspect some thought, even from the vantage point of beautiful British Columbia. British Columbia as well as Prince Edward Island will be among the chief beneficiaries of this move. You see, it is in the interests of both the rich and the poor to boost productivity all over the world.

Commonwealth Caribbean

The heart of the dilemma today is low productivity in both the developed and developing worlds. That is at the heart of economic instability. Once we see that, it becomes easier to take a systematic approach, the kind of approach for which my friend is arguing. It is in the interests of both the rich and the poor, the developed and the developing, to increase the flow of capital into the developing world, and to improve the transfer of technology. That is what he is talking about in his motion today.

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LIB

Marke Raines

Liberal

Mr. Raines:

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, I hesitate to interrupt the hon. member, but would he permit a question now?

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PC

Douglas Roche

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Roche:

I will close my remarks in just a moment and my friend can raise his question then.

In supporting this motion I should like to point out that moving toward a more dynamic global economy is in the mutual interest of both the north and the south, and by raising the purchasing power among the greatly expanding populations of the south, releasing new resources and developing new markets for both the poor and the rich, higher levels of trade can be created within and between all countries. That is the essence of the motion. In effect, the developing countries of the south can become one of the engines of resumed progress in the industrial world. We need those expanding markets.

The subject which we are debating this afternoon is far beyond the subject of just aid. Aid is an inconsequential aspect of the totality of the north-south relations. It is, as my friend points out, an important aspect still, but those who follow the north-south dialogue recognize that if we are going to make a realistic response to the challenges in the world today, then we have to move beyond aid and create a new development strategy.

As the third development decade opens in 1980, one of the things that Canada can do, since we do not really have a strategy but only a lot of ad hoc programs, is to develop a new strategy on industrial development co-operation with the nations in the north-south complex.

Mr. Maurice J. Williams, who is chairman of the development assistance committee of OECD, one of the world's foremost authorities on this general subject, notes the following:

Broad international support is more likely to be mobilized for evolutionary changes which remove unjust constraints in the international economic order, facilitate an ongoing process of structural change and encourage a concerted effort to help weak and vulnerable people.

That is what my friend is asking for this afternoon in his motion.

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?

Some hon. Members:

Question.

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PC

Douglas Roche

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Roche:

Canada is well suited to lead and not be a grudging participant in the search for new order in the world. 1 think that the members of the House should have the opportunity to debate these questions. The Standing Committee on

External Affairs and National Defence should be much more active. If we did that, we would have a more realistic foreign policy that is understood and supported by the people of Canada, especially including the people from British Columbia.

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?

Some hon. Members:

Hear, hear!

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December 15, 1978