Labor-Management Relations, Animal Deterrent, Resource Depletion, and More

The effect of improved labor-management relations at a former Motorola factory, the use of red reflectors as an animal deterrent, and a White House report on resource depletion were among the stories this magazine was covering in brief in 1980.

| September/October 1980

065 resource depletion and more - Fotolia - KUROJI

A White House study released in 1980 painted a grim picture on resource depletion, projecting extinction for 20% of the world's species, a 33% increase in deforestation, and a higher incidence of drought and floods throughout the world by 2000. 


LABOR-MANAGEMENT RELATIONS: Within two years after Motorola, Inc. sold its unprofitable Franklin Park, Illinois television plant to a Japanese firm—which uses virtually the same American work force—the number of sets being turned out jumped from 1,000 to 8,000 per day ... while the defect rate dropped from 60% to 1%. The success is credited to the quality of the relationship between management and personnel.

NATURE KNOWS BEST: The forest industry contends that the use of herbicide sprays will increase future forest growth, allowing harvesters to cut more timber today! However, a 1978 study indicates that killing off young alder trees by spraying actually leads to reduced Douglas fir yields, since the leaves of the red alder provide the evergreens with fertilizer, and its roots support nitrogen-fixing bacteria.

MICKEY MOUSE AGAINST HEALTH FOOD! Walt Disney Educational Media Company has prepared four film strips that supposedly attack the health food industry. For example, one of the strips (called "Is Natural Healthy?") is said to refer to health food "faddists" as being people who are overly concerned about chemical fertilizers, pesticides, and food additives!

ANIMAL DETERRENT: It's been found that pairs of special reflectors—placed 10 to 20 yards apart—frighten animals away from roads (when hit by car lights, the disks give the appearance of red eyes glowing in the dark). The devices have brought about an 80% reduction in collisions with animals on Austrian highways ... and the Animal Welfare League is encouraging their use in this country, to save both animal and human lives.

A POLITICAL MACHINE: Omaha, Nebraska's mayor, Al Veys, decided to "personalize" his campaign with "canned" telephone messages. However, the mayor's computerized machine failed to cut off at 9:00 p.m. as programmed, and all through the night prospective voters were awakened by telephone calls, and the words, "Hello there, I'm Al Veys, and I'd like you to ...."

THE WHITE HOUSE "GLOBAL 2000" RESOURCE DEPLETION STUDY—which has been called everything from "very conservative" to "positively optimistic"—concludes that by the time today's baby graduates from college, he or she will face a world where one fifth of all now-existing species have become extinct, one third of the world's trees will have been cut down, much of today's farmland will be desert, and both floods and droughts will be more common throughout the world!

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