Publisher's Notes


• ARTICLES WANTED: The editors of REASON are seeking knowledgeable persons to produce articles on the following subjects:

(1) Copyrights vs. copying machines: What kind of intellectual property rights are involved in the widespread use of office copiers to duplicate articles and sections of books, and how should they be protected? This subject cries out for some clear thinking. A good source of background information is "Copyright, Public Policy, and Information Technology," by Nicholas L. Henry, SCIENCE, February 1, 1974, p. 384. The wider issue of paying residuals to authors whose books are loaned out by libraries might also be addressed in this context.

(2) Gun control laws: It is becoming increasingly difficult for an American to exercise the right to "keep and bear arms." REASON would like to publish an article describing the extent of freedom still remaining, pointing out states with the fewest or least onerous restrictions, ways of exploiting loopholes in the gun laws, actual enforcement policies, etc., and how to prepare—now—for the likelihood of even greater restrictions in the future.

(3) Alternatives to public schooling: What alternatives are open to parents who want to keep their children out of the decaying public school system? How does one find a worthwhile "free school"? Of particular interest, how can parents educate their children at home without running afoul of the law? Both case histories and general principles would be welcome.

Persons knowledgeable in any of the above areas should write for information before submitting manuscripts. Write Reason Author Information, Box 6151, Santa Barbara, CA 93111.

• STUDENT ACTIVISM: While American students are livening up the news with "streaking" on campus, students in several African countries have recently engaged in serious disorders, including strikes and demonstrations. In the west African country of Niger, students went on strike, demanding payment of an increased allowance, three meals a day and transport to and from school. The crisis was solved and students returned to their classes after the government conceded on all three points, according to the CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR (March 7).

• COMPULSORY CLOTHING: Although the new "streaking" fad has been criticized by some as sinful and immoral, we haven't yet seen many American politicians propose that students be put in jail for nonviolent public nudity. However, in Belgium, the Labor Ministry has recently ordered all people to wear specified clothing for their job, beginning January 1. As reported in a dispatch from Agence France-Presse (Feb. 26), Belgium's Labor Minister said that clothing suitable for their work will be "compulsory for all trades and professions whether they are cooks, surgeons, firemen, sewermen or welders." The Labor Minister said the clothing requirements would include standards for safety, hygiene and esthetic design, and "would give a boost to the textile industry."

Meanwhile, in the United States, in a discussion of the propriety of streaking, one observer wrote in the LOS ANGELES TIMES (March 15), "If God wanted us to run around in the nude, he would have made us that way."

• NEW RULES FOR PRESS AND POLITICS: In a fascinating column, "No More Mr. Nice Guy," in NEW YORK MAGAZINE (March 11), Richard Reeves writes that there is a harsh "new tone" creeping into the middle of American political journalism. Observes Reeves, "The country, it seems, has had it with its politicians, with the inoperative imbeciles in the White House and the equivocating eunuchs in Congress. And if familiarity breeds contempt, you can imagine how the press feels." Reeves, who recently described Nelson Rockefeller, Ronald Reagan and John Connolly as "hypocritical bastards" after watching them campaign for President at the Southern Republican Conference said he had felt good afterwards to receive letters and calls from other political reporters "saying essentially: about time!"

Although Reeves could hardly be accused of advocating laissez faire, he did state "The people are right. Politicians are a bunch of no-good lying hypocrites," and concedes that "A lot of influential people in press and politics consider [Teddy] Kennedy an overage adolescent and are more than a little frightened about what kind of President he would be." Reeves says the politician he would "most not want to be" is Kennedy, and predicts that reporters "are going to write some very unpleasant things about Teddy." He expects the new approach to political reporting to show up in the networks, the NEW YORK TIMES and other publications not noted for their irreverence. Encouraging news, Mr. Reeves!

• NEW STYLE POLITICAL TRAINING: A retired madam, Sally Stanford, who ran San Francisco's best known brothel during the '30s and '40s holds a seat on the City Council in Sausalito, California. Although she now operates a fashionable restaurant on Sausalito's waterfront (just north of San Francisco), we can't resist the observation that, considering what our politicians have been doing to us, Ms. Stanford has had useful training for her elected position.