â€¢ STAFF CHANGES. You will notice several changes on the masthead this month. Joining the roster of contributing editors is Lowell Ponte. A long-time libertarian journalist, he has had a regular radio commentary on Pacifica's KPFK (Los Angeles) since 1968. From 1971 to 1975 he wrote a syndicated column, first for the Freedom Newspapers and later for the McNaught Syndicate. His book on climate and weather control, The Cooling, appeared in 1976. Ponte has been published in a number of national magazines, including Politics Today, for which he is a contributing editor.
REASON's Money column acquires a new columnist this month, as Mark Tier steps down to devote more time to consulting work. Taking his place is Steve Beckner, who has written previous financial articles for REASON. Beckner is editor of Deaknews, the monthly newsletter of Deak-Perera, the well-known currency trading firm.
REASON also welcomes two new foreign correspondents. Rick Bolstler, of Vancouver's Libertarian Foundation, has become our Canadian correspondent. And Hubert Jongen has taken over for The Netherlands from Michael van Notten, who will be keeping tabs on the European Economic Community from his new position with the European Institute.
â€¢ UFW PUBLICITY. Our November report on the United Farm Workers union and federal grants is still generating interest. Over 16,000 reprints have been sold, another 8,000 are on order, and a Spanish-language translation is in preparation. Conservative Digest has requested permission to reprint a condensed version, and the American Farm Bureau Federation will be reprinting the entire article. And REASON is not the only publication questioning the UFW'S image as friend of the downtrodden. The November/December Humanist carried a moving article by migrant worker C.C. Bruno documenting his own experiences at the hands of the UFW.
â€¢ PRESCRIPTION. Want to spread the word to your neighbors? How about giving your doctor or dentist a subscription to REASON for his or her waiting room? It will certainly give the patients something to think about.
â€¢ MEDIA WATCH. Among the worthwhile pieces published by our competitorsâ€"in this case, Harper'sâ€"are Ben Martin's article on the case for a constitutional convention to balance the federal budget (Sept.), Tom Bethell's "Fooling with the Budget: How Congress Causes Inflation" (Oct.), and Jude Wanniski's "Oil in Abundanceâ€"Without Taxes or Synthetic Fuel" (Oct.). And check out Neil Postman's "Order in the Classroom!" in the September Atlanticâ€"a paean to educational discipline by an erstwhile disciple of the "new education."
â€¢ MORE REPRINTS. C.R. Batten's "The Second Battle of the Redwoods" (Oct. 1979) has been reprinted by Arcata Corporation for distribution to interested parties. And Steve Wright's "The First Amendment under Siege" (Sept. 1978) has been reprinted by the Foundation for Economic Education for use in its high-school debate information packet.
â€¢ POLICY RESEARCH. The Reason Foundation plans to begin a series of policy research projectsâ€"studies of important current issues such as land-use controls, defense policy, building codes, and privatization. Besides contributions to fund this program, we are also seeking research proposals from qualified individuals. If you have such a project in mind and would like to be considered for Reason Foundation support, send a one-page summary of what you plan to do and how much support you're seeking (together with a resume) to Policy Research, The Reason Foundation, 1129 State Street, Suite 4, Santa Barbara, CA 93101.
â€¢ DIAMOND PROTECTION. As the dollar continues to sink, many people have turned to diamonds as an inflation hedge. Unfortunately, numerous shady operators have moved into the diamond business, leading to considerable fraud and numerous rip-offs. A small group of sellers is now trying to police the industryâ€"and help forestall government intervention. Contact the American Association of Diamond Merchants at 350 S. Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90071, or call their consumer hotline: (800) 8247888 (in California it's (800) 852-7777).