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February 02, 1968 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1968-02-02

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GIarM141an lmuun
Seventy-Seven Years of Editorial Freedon

Captives In A Native Land

,__ .

Where Opinions Are Free, 420 MAYNARD ST., ANN ARBOR, MICH.
Truth Will Prevail-

NEWS PHONE: 764-0552

Editorials printed in The Michigan Daily express the individual opinions of staff writers
or the editors. This must be noted in all reprints.




Nixon Runs; Man Bites Dog

AM TIRED ... really tired . . . of doom and gloom.
The doom is impending but I'll be damned If I am
going to blow my mind being gloomy about it. When it
comes it will come, and we will wonder how it happened
and secretly know and lose ourselves in platitude of
righteousness that we already invoke.
I say this all to Sainte Annie one day last week and
then we decide we'll take a trip. Really we don't decide
like that at all. We just go. She calls my bluff and we're
on the road one early morning, leaving while Ann Arbor
is dark and still.
The country rolls easily by. Thirteen hours of super-
highway endlessness, punctuated only by gas stations
and Howard Johnson's Restaurants where we stop and
have the same coffee it seems we had a few hours be-
fore. The flat-land of Ohio and then the coal-hillls of
Pennsylvania float past while the Top Ten Tunes be-bop
a steady background.
A hundred miles before Philadelphia we stopped. The
people we were with went in, and while they did Sainte
Annie showed me the flag of the land, flying above the
dusky silhouettes of a few farms and a church steeple
and crimson clouds The flag is blowing, striped-and-
starred and we both think how grand this land might
have been.
IT IS AMERICA Where we were born, Sainte Annie
and me. We stand there, next to the road for a few
moments, and glory in the sun setting and the quiet
and the peace. This is the country that once was ours
and may again be. Today it is not ours, for we are
captives. As perhaps we shall forever be captives to the
nameless fear that enslaves us as a nation.
We think how glorious it is that we are privately
peaceful for this moment, and then return to the car.
The radio is telling, for the fiftieth time this Thurs-
day, that the President has activated 15,000 Reserve
Soldiers and that the world is yet again perched on an-

other brink. And we quiver inside, knowing how quickly
collective madness intrudes upon private peace.
But Sainte Annie smiles and I think that she may
be destroyed but never beaten.
We are on our way to New York City, Sainte Annie
and I. And although it was I who had more often been
to the city, it was she who was my guide. Sainte Annie
is American Royalty, the heir apparent to the throne
that the land may someday be worthy of possessing.
Whether or not she is real is less important than the
fact that she exists, and can do with the grace of a
natural aristocrat what most of us can only clumsily
Sainte Anie's thing is that she loves. Without trying
and without knowing. Naturally.
So tripping out with Sainte Annie is turning on to a
world worth knowing. And in the city she showed me
things I didn't even know I didn't know.
NEW YORK IS, of course, it's own world. Seething
and sprawling up instead of out, separate clusters and
knots tied together by underground tunnels from which
one is constantly ascending or descending. It is a hungry
town. and on-the-make town where pound-for-pound
the best of America's creative and entrepeneurical elite
are gathered, snipping at each other's heels and dream-
ing of gnawing on the biggest bone.
This is the place Sainte Annie conquered with her
We arrived on the night of the call-up, coming across
from New Jersey and into Greenwich Village, the old
west village, where we stayed. By the end of the evening,
a night passed drinking dark beer and shelling the
peanuts of a bar named Ninth Circle, we were wander-
ing through Washington Square Park, dosie-doeing the
Sainte Annie is the hippie's hippie in penny loafers
who can do what others do with drugs without them.

To meet her once is to leave her undiscovered, for she
wears her beauty so quietly and unassumingly that you
will miss it. But after a while it grows on you, and
pretty soon you see what she sees and start smiling too.
So you walk around next to her, stoned. Laughing and
saying hello to people who don't know you and feeling
good inside and understanding that when the world
goes up at least you'll be a bit less empty than you
might have been.
OURS WAS A QUIET ODYSSEY. The adventures we
encountered were the kind you stumble across every
day and never realize. We met a lady who had two dogs
she bought from England and we met Hank the Bum
who hustles 40 cents so that he can get himself a
bottle of port wine and we met Pat Hingle the actor
whose eyes bulge when he leers at you about why he
decided to become an actor.
Fourth, Street and mumbles, 'daredevil' to anybody who
And we say the guy who rides his bicycle late along
challenges his right to the road. And the fellow who
carries around a briefcase full of grass to sell because
he- is "working his way through an off-Broadway show."
All the time while we're wandering and tasting, the
United Nations Security Council is in special session and
The Times is running five column headlines and we
don't care. Maybe we don't care anymore because we
used to care too much. And still do.
IN THE END WE CAME BACK. Maybe we never did,
but we are here now. Me and Sainte Annie. And the
world is better because she is in it and it is better be-
cause she taught me a little of what she knows.
That is the point of this column. Nothing more pro-
found than to tell that Sainte Annie is around, and
that while we fight our way through the muck and
the mire of our polluted souls, hers is around for the
asking. So ask.

4 n





On Books: Outside Student Politics


71w Inhkr
aLvoAa4patfig. -c

It's Downhill All the Way

J HAVE FOUND some answers to
the problems confronting the United
States," pronounced Richard Nixon
yesterday, virtually choking up those
of us who have been waiting so patient-
ly so long.
' I learned the awesome nature of
the great decisions a President faces,"
declared Richard Nixon yesterday, as
he reminded the nation of his close
association during those great years of
decision with Dwight "Wait - a - few -
minutes - and - I'll - think - of - Nix-
on's - contributions" Eisenhower.
"During the past eight years I have
had the chance to reflect on the les-
sons of public office, to measure the
nation's tasks and problems from a
fresh perspective," asserted Richard
Nixon yesterday, who urges a strong

continuation of our Vietnam effort,
the "unleashing" of local police, pass-
ing "new laws to fit new kinds of
crimes," and other assorted political
AND THUS WITH the closing of
entries into the New Hampshire
sweepstakes, the Republican candi-
dates are off and running. There is
George Romney, erstwhile prophet of
the American ethic, Harold Stassen,
symbol of American perseverance,
Richard Nixon, dean of the moribund
G.O.P., and Florida Gov. Claude Kirk,
who was entered without his knowl-
edge by an enthusiastic supporter.
Pretty exciting election, isn't it?
Editorial Director

Liberation News Service
mour Martin Lipset, Basic
Books (1967), 403 pp., $8.95
AGREAT DEAL has been written
already about student politics
both abroad and in the U.S. But,
apparently, Seymour Martin Lip-
set and a host of intimates, fund-
ed by "Ford and Carnegie and
federal and state grants," mean
to write a great deal more. This
book, we are told, is only the first
in an upcoming series called
"Student Movements - Past and
Present," all edited by Lipset.
Yet if succeeding volumes are
as bloated with classic footnotery,
as obviously predisposed against
radical student action, as devoid
of even one word written by an
actual student anywhere, as ut-
terly incapable of coming to defi-
nite conclusions without quali-
fications which negate their sig-
nificance, as dependent on often
absurd sources, and as studiously
lacking any of the passion and
experience of the student revolu-
tionary - if succeeding volumes
are like this one, brothers, the
movement is dead. It will be club-
bed unconscious by parasitic social
scientists who claim to have no
meaner motives at heart than
the gathering of pure knowledge.
LIPSET AND fourteen other
scholars, " ten of whom worked
with him in Berkeley's Compara-
tive Student Project, have gath-
ered, with widely varying degrees
of objectivity and clarity, 403
pages and 550 footnotes which
analyze student activists in many
countries. The data is all there--
their parents, their incomes, their
allegedly prolonged virginity, their
religions, their campus environ-
ments and, most of all, their
teachers - but hardly ever their
complete political programs and
serious objections to establishment
moralities. "Activism" is persis-
tently stigmatized as "indisci-
pline," and manifests a lack of
what Lipset calls "satisfactory
social adjustment." George Z. F.
Bereday classifies the 1964 Berke-
ley demonstrators as "rioters"
who "seem to have received their
training and developed their style
in civil rights demonstrations."

LIPSET AND Philip C. Altbach
impugn both SDS and SNCC as
members of a disorganized, un-
reasonable "extreme" element and
prefer the "responsible criticism
of American foreign policy" which
they see emerging from the
Young Democrats, student YMCA
groups, etc. Principled youth
idealism, we are led to conclude,
is as inevitable, harmless, and al-
most as foolish as spring panty
raids, since "in all countries, of
course, reality is usually at var-
iance with principles," and (pre-
sumably) must continue to be.
Tables, charts, and percentages
follow in exhaustive procession.
Among the findings:
. 82 per cent of American stu-
dents believe the U.S. has "an ob-
ligation to provide military assist-
ance to Vietnam." (Source: A
Playboy survey published in No-
vember, 1965.)'
0 "Free University" courses,
which "range from Marxist phi-
losophy and revolutionary theory
to discussions of erotic literature
and the social uses of narcotics"
(a pretty nefarious range, eh?)
"vary greatly in quality" and "in-
volve only a tiny fraction of the
student population." (Source: an
article, "Students of Left Set Up
Colleges," in The New York
* "Right-wing student activi-
ty" (not to be confused with the
apolitical majority) "probably
still includes many more students
in its membership than does the
organized left." (Only source
cited: "the president of the most
significant such group, the Young
Americans for Freedom (YAF).)
0 "A comprehensive study" in-
dicates fewer than five per cent
of students are activists at every
college in the naton excluding
one-half of one per cent of them.
(Source: 849 Deans of Students!)
The entire data-gathering orgy
rises to the level of high comedy,
however, on page' 220, where we
learn that "almost four-fifths (78
per cent) of those sitting-in (at
the University of Chicago) report-
ed family incomes of over $15,000
a year." Notwithstanding the ob-
vious point that almost any sam-
ple of students at a major bour-
geois university would largely
come from such an income
bracket, try to imagine the angry,
committed sitters-in pausing to

chorus their "reports" on Dad's
income for the data-gatherers. It's
a premise worthy of a Lenny
Bruce routine.
AS A STUDY of student poli-
tics here and elsewhere, then, this
book actually flaunts its two most
disastrous faults. The first is that
it neglects even a puny attempt
to recreate the experience of the
student in revolt, preferring to re-
flect him in the same statistical
terms which university adminis-
trations use to 'characterize" im-
mense student bodies. The second
fault is that it ironically repre-
sents in itself many of the edu-
cational irrelevances which are
pushing students to coordinated
If Americans do not sympa-

thize with black insurgency or the
nationalist fervor of the tVie
Cong, for example, it is not be-
cause they don't know the statis-
tics on black unemployment, the
deprivations of ghetto housing, or
the atrocities of the Diem et,
seq. regime in South Vietnam. It
is because they have not them-
selves experienced these abuses
and insults, and because not
enough effort has been made to
bring these experiences closer to
their understanding.
,My own experiences with stu-
dent movements practicing con-
sistent, informed rebellion against
intolerable circumstances (in a
subtle, flexible manner) render
Lipset's data meaningless. A' se-
lection of articles by students,
American and overseas, would

have been enormously more valu-
able than all of this book, espe-
cially if combined with what first-
hand research there is in it, such
as E. Wight Bakke's accounts of
activism in six countries. Aston-
ishingly, all of Lipset's conclusions
about students in "underdeveloped
countries"--chapter one-seem to
be based on secondhand library
references-114 of them in a 34-
page article.
THE IRONIES enmeshed in
the fabric of this anthology are
so powerful as to be much more
fascinating than the "informa-
tion" it contains. It insists, for
example, that SDS is chaotic and
incapable of sustained leadership
to date, while admitting that SDS
Is the strongest, most numerous'
group in American radical stu-
dent politics --which is "signifi-
cant" enough to warrant all this
research and more to come. It
cites lack of respect for faculty
members as a cause of student
revolt, while itself being so ped-
antic and. inconsequential as to
engender that very lack. It pleads
for better understanding of the
activist-while offering little.
At one point Lipset subtitles a
chapter "The Need for More Re-
search" (i.e., more systematic ac-
cumulation of data) when the
need is quite obviously (as some
other authors in the same book
sometimes suggest) for philoso-
phy, poetry, and exposition. It
cites academic overloads as a cause
of unrest when it is apparent that
a virtual army of graduate stu-
dents were employed, as they fre-
quently are, to gather and collate
all the obscure journals and un-
published theses on which so-
many of these articles rest their
explanation of international stu-
dent activism is comparable to
William F. Buckley's observations
on black power, or Harry Aschlin-
ger's on LSD; it was written apout
young people caught in a growing
movement by "bald old gents with
glasses" (as John Lennon would
say) sitting in Burtonian poses
of omniscience in the Widener
and countless other libraries. And,
as failure, like virtue, is its own
reward, it will largely be con-
fined to their vaults.


Older Myths, Newer Realities

IF HANOI AND Pyongyang had been
conspiring to make Washington look
foolish, they couldn't have done a better
Either for reasons of diplomacy (which
Ambrose Bierce defined as "the patriotic
art of lying for one's country") or unwar-
ran ted .optimism (which, unfortunately,
is more credible), our generals have for
tihe last several months-with reports of
Victory after victory-made it seem as if
Vhe war was on the verge of being won.
The fierce and shockingly successful
Viet Cong offensive against over half of
the cities of the South, including Saigon,
phopped that illusion to ribbons. Less
sensational-but almost as damaging_-
has been our conduct of the Pueblo inci-
dent. After hearing Jules Feiffer's taunt
(lot course, our government has access to
information we do not have . . .") for
years, it is unsettling to learn that it is
literally untrue...
Far from having access to classified in-
'telligence, our military apparently ig-
nored the danger signals in newspaper
and radio reports. The events of the
weeks before Captain Bucher, 83 crewmen
and an intelligence ship were so blithely
appropriated by the Pyongyang govern-
mnent, should have prompted more caution
dn our operations. South Korean ships had
been seized and Seoul radio stations piped
warnings from North Korea that Ameri-
an, ships were the next objects of in-
terest. For the past year, the Parks gov-
ernment has been complaining of step-
ped-up infiltration activity. With many
of the Pueblo's support vessels committed
to Vietliam, with our 'history of commun-
.ications goof-ups stretching back to Pearli
'Harbor, why did we take the chance?
SECRETARY RUSK admitted to an

ing is laudable. What the secretary ig-
nored is that the Cold War axioms which
the administration has refused to rethink
render a rational reappraisal of our elec-
tronic intelligence policy impossible.
For the ineptitude we displayed in al-
lowing the Pueblo capture, while grow-
ing out of a situation we should have
known about and could have controlled,
underscores our far more pervasive ig-
norance of what's going on in North
Korea. The United States has little diplo-
matic contact with Pyongyang and
neither does any of its allies; that is why
Washington immediately looked to Mos-
cow as an intermediary.
Clearly, our ignorance is the result of
our isolation. If the United States wants
to know; it must either intensify its in-
telligence operations a hundredfold or
cease to pretend that very real govern-
ments do not exist. The former is un-
thinkable. While it hardly seems possible
that the CIA could earn the United States
any more ill will than it already has, why
push our luck? Besides, to increase intel-
ligence operations would leave us open
to more incidents of the U-2, Pueblo
The latter alternative is more difficult
to effect but ultimately more realistic.
Hard as it may seem at this juncture to ,
bring about even a limited detente, the
Pueblo incident and the storming of
Saigon emphasize the urgency of estab-
lishing speaking relationships with the
Communist governments of the Far East.
UNLESS THE United States takes bold
diplomatic action now it is going to
be increasingly frustrated. As the Pueblo
crisis enters its second unsolved week,
with 14,787 air-reservists called up al-
ready and President Johnson studying
the possibility of recalling ground re-


Students March: "Experience" or Statistics ?




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