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March 06, 1968 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1968-03-06

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4r A rtigatt Daily
Seventy-Seven Years of Editorial Freedom

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

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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.



Investigation Mandatory
For City Building Practices

ALBERT TERRACE apartments' history
of building and zoning violations,
landlord negligence and deliberate eva-
sions of city codes implicates the entire
Ann Arbor building and renting trade.
Charter Realty President John Stege-
man repeatedly violated the law-and
the city Department of Building and
Safety Engineering did little to stop him.
Stegeman could not have unknowingly
evaded the city codes at Albert Terrace,
for he had pleaded guilty in court to
evading the identical codes a year before.
Building and safety department officials
could not have overlooked the unprose-
cuted violations in a. haze of confusion,
because they recorded all violations in
their own files.
Something is wrong in Ann Arb6r city
government. If one apartment complex
owned by one realtor has such a record
of blatant violations; if the building and
safety. department has shown itself in-
capable of preventing or rectifying them;
then among Ann Arbor's multitude of
other student apartments, other land-
lords may be profiting from illegal opera-
tions as well. And no one has the ma-
chinery or power to correct the situation.
ACTIVITIES AT Albert Terrace are at
last reaching a plateau of legality, but
the history of the $350 per month apart-
ments is a colorful one. Basically it en-
compasses four issues:
O When Stegeman first applied to the
city in 1966 for a zoning compliance.
(certifying Albert Terrace would comply
with the zoning law), the Department of
Building and Safey Engineering approved
the construction plans, which included
provisions for the minimum number of
parking spaces required by city codes.
Just as Stegeman was about to open his
apartments and build his parking lots,
however, the department took another
look-and discovered' the parking plans
were, under zoning codes, illegal.
0 Stegeman prepared to open Albert
Terrace to tenants last August while his
parking lots were still incomplete al-
though city law states all parking must
be provided prior to occupancy.
The building department let him pro-
ceed, but only on the condition that
Stegeman would first provide a monetary
bond guaranteeing to finish all the park-
ing by a certain date. Stegeman promised
the bond, and occupied his apartments-
and delayed posting the bond until five
months later. -
Stegeman occupied 32 apartments
before the building and safety depart-
ment inspected them, contrary to city
codes requiring inspection before occu-
pancy. The realtor had violated the same
code 14 times the year before-but build-
ing and safety did not press charges.

" Stegeman's zoning compliance ap-
proved construction of 62 one-bedroom
apartments. Stegeman built Albert Ter-
race as two-bedroom apartments -- and
never changed them to comply with the
permit, as the city demanded.
ALBERT TERRACE mocks city govern-
ment and decent realty practices
everywhere, but it can serve Ann Arbor
as a valuable, crucially needed lesson;
landlords in the All-American City flout
the laws at the city's expense and to their
own financial benefit. Ann Arbor govern-
ment needs drastic restructuring to stop
A thorough investigation of Albert Ter-
race and its persistent violations is
The city must determine responsibility
for the zoning "error," the bond issue, the
requested occupancy violations, and
maniputlation of the bedroom permits. If
the apartment's landlords are blameless,
an investigation will clear them. If land-
lords are guilty, then the city must bring
them to account for their unchecked
violations of the past.
Even more important, the city must
undertake a critical review of the entire
Department of Building and Safety En-
gineering, its procedures and place in
city government. The department is the
autonomous controller of every building
and building practice in Ann Arbor -
when the department fails in its duties,
no one rises to check it.
CITY COUNCIL has taken a good first
step by hiring professional consul-
tants to examine building and safety
operations. But Council must complete
the task by investigating building and
safety in the context of Albert Terrace
and all of Ann Arbor.
Why did the building department ig-
nore 32 serious violations? Why did it
deal permissively with others? How could
the department approve construction
plans which violated city laws?
The City Council and all of city gov-
ernment must answer these questions;
then they must restructure the building
laws and , departmental machinery to
prevent their recurrence.
Otherwise, local builders will continue
virtually unchecked to proliferate their
apartments as they please, with no con-
sideration of their tenants or the laws
which "govern" them. Why not? As Chief
Engineer Charles Blackmer of the build-
ing and safety department says, "It is
more profitable to break the law than to
obey it."

UAC To Consider
Canadian Weekend
TIn E LIFE OF A male upperclassman or graduate student who
isn't interested in studying medicine or dentistry lately amounts very
much to a waiting game: waiting for current deferments to expire;
waiting for induction into the armed forces: waiting perhaps for an
end to the Vietnam War - and most important, waiting for the
courage to relinquish the American tragedy for a self-preserving
Canadian exile. Many students talk of the trip, to Canada, but it is such
a severe move that few have gone far enough to plan for it.
In such times of hesitancy, the University Activities Center can
serve students with information and, in so doing, make clear how
desperate and final the options of dissenters have become. UAC should
consider sponsoring a new all-campus event - "Canada Weekend."
Tens of thousands of University students, faculty members and ad-
ministrators would spend two days in our Neighbor to the North ex-
amining alternatives to life in The Great Society.
All who left campus for "Canada Weekend" would not be expected
to return.
"CANADA WEEKEND" would serve several serious purposes:
-It would inform the myriad members of the University com-
munity who lately seem so uncertain in their American tenure of the
opportunities they would find in their self-banishment.
-It would be a far more effective protest than a Day of Deliber-
ation where everyone talks about the evils of American foreign policy
but no one really does anything about it. A pre-Exile exile would be
only less effective a demonstration of dissent than the Exile itself.
-It would give stay-at-home Americans a preview of the im-
pending mass exodus as their government becomes more merciless in
pursuing its Asian policy despite widespread and rational opposition.
The fat old men of the so-called Establishment would find that when
America's anti-war intellectuals leave, the protecting liberal cushion
from hostile, militant ghetto fighters and rifle-toting rightist fanatics
also depart. When the college students lead the exodus to Canada,
the fat old men will discover they must fend for themselves. There
will be no more liberals to sop up America's guilt and despair.
-It would give an early boost to the tourist season in Canada,
the peak of which would probably be felt in mid-summer as big city
residents leave their fiery hot, congested homes to national guardsmen
and ghetto fighters.
THE CANADA WEEKEND would be in keeping with UAC's two
major spheres of activity: student flights and gala weekends.
While the Canada Weekend would be primarily a student flight,
faculty and administrators would also be invited to flee. Hopefully,
for the sake of faculty and administrators wishing to participate, the
event would be priced somewhat below the means of rich, white
middle-class students.
Canada Weekend could be organized as a far greater affair than
any past UAC weekend spectacular. It might be called "Wild, Wild
Westmoreland" and could be advertised as an 'alternative to that
other government-sponsored student affair, "The Maniacal Misery
Tour (Roll Out!)".
' WHATEVER IT MIGHT BE CALLED, the weekend could be well-
organized and fun-packed. A secret destination in Canada would be
selected by UAC to heighten the excitement. After the fifty-mile line
of vehicles finally crosses the Ambassador Bridge late Friday, it would
be greeted by Sgt. Preston and his dog King and that other Canadian
folk legend, The Lone Evader and his sidekick Toronto.
A delegation of University grad students would plant a Univer-
sity banner in Canadian soil, thus picking the location for a pos-
sible New Ann Arbor, the Exilepistemiad of Michigania. The 50 mile
caravan would be directed to form a circle on the Canadian tundra
and the real festivities would begin.
Saturday morning would be devoted to calisthenics. A delegation
from the Royal Canadian Air Force would demonstrate its eleven-
*minute exercise program, and Ann Arborites would be moved to think
of the contributions toward physical fitness of their own American
Air Force.
For entertainment, UAC would arrange a concert featuring some
of Canada's finest entertainers, stars such as Giselle McKenzie, Oscar
* Peterson, Ian and Sylvia, Glenn Gould, Robert Goulet, and Gordon
Lightfoot. The concert could be M.C.'d by some of Radio CKLW's fun
jocks. Forseeably, however, because of previous commitments in the
United States, some of these Canadian stars might be unable to

"\Q4 Fc aR, THE OM3 N' 5 BGLEKiCi. , ITS MAD
The President's Riot Commission
Mood of Congress, Country Set Against Report

Advisory Commission on Civil
Disorders turned in its report four
months early, urging a "compas-
sionate, massive, and sustained"
effort to stave off the coming
racial crisis.
Commissions rarely report on
time, but the speed with which the
Commission finished its assign-
ment dramatizes the urgency of
our racial dilemma. Given the pre-
vailing political atmosphere in
America no "massive" effort to
remedy our racial ills can be ex-
The Commission recommends
specific actions:
(1) Programs to create two mil-
lion jobs in the next three years:
(2) six million new housing units
designed to break up the ghetto;
(3) creation of a national system
of guaranteed, or supplemented,
income; (4) programs to improve
community services, education.
and general relations between the
Although such actions will not
eliminate the problems, they are
the minimum steps which must
be taken to help ease the tense
situation. Nevertheless, despite all
the urgency of the racialdcrisis, the
recommendations of this report
will be ignored.
vard urban affairs expert, cited
the major obstacle on national
TV Sunday when he said that
the daily cost of financing the
Commission's program w o u l d
roughly equal our daily expen-
ditures in Vietnam.
When President Johnson, in deal-
ing with an economically minded
Congress is clearly having dif-
ficulty passing a surtax to f in-
ance his war program, additional
funds for any program, no matter
how urgent will not be appropria-
ted. As Moynihan said, until we
get out of Vietnam the nation's
internal crisis will receive no
significant attention.
While federal action is stymied
by the Vietnam commitment, po-
lice forces and citizens across the
country are acting directly anti-
thetical to the Commission's
recommendations. The Commis-
sion condemns "blind repression"
and police force. and says con-
structive community work is more
effective in controlling riots.
But police forces seem increas-
ingly to opt for bigger and more
powerful weapons. More efficient
chemical weaponry and armored
tanks are the pride of the

modern police force - many
acquired at the expense of good
police-community relations. When
violence erupts this summer, .the
philosophy of force will only fur-
ther inflame the violence.
Guard officers have been receiv-
ing training from the federal
government but there is no rea-
son to expect the leaders' new
knowledge to filter down to un-
trained troops.
The troops if is called out again
this year, the Guard will be just
as trigger-happy and ineffectual,
as they were last summer.
Much of the white community
is succumbing to the very par-
anoid fears perpetuating the ra-
cism which therCommission hopes
to eliminate-
These fears are evidenced in
the increased following of Donald
Lobsinger, and his Detroit break-
through organization, who special-
ize in promoting racist causes.
Many whites exhibit suburban
fear of a black mob surging from

the inner city to destroy white
middle class homes. One Warren
housewife stocked her basement
for a seige for several weeks, and
has armed herself and learned to
be a crack shot with a rifle.
weather this crisis, the Commis-
sion says, will require "new at-
titudes, new understanding, and
above all, new will." So far we
have failed to produce any tangi-
ble evidence of any of these.
The Commission cited the most
daring evidence that the U.S.
won't be able to handle this crisis:
it warned that the report is ai-
most identical to previous Pres-
idential reports on racial distur-
bances given to Presidents Wilson
(1919) and Roosevelt (1935 and
In a very few years, when the
ne x t Presidential Commission
writes a report on racial distur-
bances in the U.S. it will conclude
that its report sounds strikingly
similar to President Johnson's
Riot Commission report of 1968.




Johnson Cops-Out on His Advisors

Many Happy Returns

OMMITTEES AT this University seem
almost sacred. There are decision-
making committees, rule-making and
rule-breaking committees. But maybe our
prolific committee collection is not ex-
tensive enough. We forgot a birthday
William Haber, dean of the literary
college, is 69 today. After five years as
the dean of the lit school and 32 years
at the University, Haber deserves some
recognition for his service as adminis-
trator, scholar, economist and public re-
lations officer for the lit school. To recog-
nize accomplishments such as Haber's, a
birthday committee might be a small
first step.
Haber's reputation extends beyond the
confines of his Angell Hall office and into
Second class postage paid at Ann Arbor, Michigan,
420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, Michigan, 48104.
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Editorial Staff
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the chambers of federal economists in
Washington. As consultant to the Social
Security Board from 1939-45, Haber
played a key role in writing the contro-
versial program.
During World War II, the Rumania-
born Haber directed, advised or chaired
an impressive list of .federal committees
on everything from social security to
manpower mobilization.
STRETCHING THE meager budget allo-
cations provided for the literary college
has also been a Haber specialty. Although
Haber's five years have been lean ones
for the University, the literary college
has sustained a period of fantastic
growth due to the efforts of Haber and
his successor, Associate Dean William
L. Hays. And educational innovations have
been a constant concern for Haber. In
the last two years, the Residential Col-
lege materialized, the Pilot Program has
endured despite financial difficulty, the
pass-fail option was extended to juniors
and seniors, and a liberal studies program
was inaugurated.
Today is Haber's last birthday as dean.
But being too vigorous to retire, hopefully
Dean Haber will spend many more birth-
days at the University.
I T_._ t. s t- f I -

"THE PRESIDENTtcopped-out
on us," commented one re-
searcher for the President's Com-
mission on Civil Disorders in a dis-
appointed voice.
Last Friday, when the commis-
sion released its much-touted and
long-awaited for report, Nathan
Caplan, Associated Director for
the Institute for Social Research
was in Washington with other
members of the commission to
present the 1600 page document
to the President.
But the scientists and politi-
cionas fretted out the day in the
capital while their hopes of seeing
the President dwindled. Johnson,
it seems, had made a last minute
decision to go to Maryland for the
unveiling of a new cargo plane.
Still the commission waited. But
Johnson, in another surprise move,
decided to spend the rest of the
weekend in Puerto Rico.
"I think that this might be the
first time a President wasn't
around to accept the conclusions
of a presidential commission," said
Caplan is surprised and disap-
pointed about the outcome of the
commission's report. "The com-
mission printed everything the re-
searchers wanted" said Caplan, re-
ferring to the liberal tone of the
report and its recommendations.
However, the noticeable absence of

the President last Friday was cer-
tainly discouraging for the re-
IT IS EASY to speculate why
Johnson suddenly vanished just
before, the report was made pub-
lic. Perhaps he isn't willing to sup-
port the liberal conclusions of the
Or perhaps Johnson won't ac-
cept the commission's recom-
mendations that would probably
cost $30 billion to implement.
Domestic expenditures of these
proportions could only result from
a reduction of defense spending
which Johnson seems unwilling to
Eventually President Johnson
must accept the unfeasibility of his
guns and butter policy. When the
nation's cities exploded last July,
Johnson was forced to turn his
attention from Vietnam to dom-
estic affairs. By creating a com-
mission, he was able to forestall
action for another eight months,
although the commission's recom-
mendations could have been (and
were proposed last summer i.e.
more federal involvement in urban
Johnson ignore the situation? The
commission's recommendations can
only be pushed aside at the risk
of worse riots this summer.

MEANWHILE BACK IN Ann Arbor, municipal engineers would
be busy repairing buildings which collapsed in the vacuum of the
wholesale rush to Canada by the University community. Merchants
in a vacant Ann Arbor would keep in shape by exploiting themselves;
landlords with nifty new apartments to fill and no students to fill
them would at last confront the aught-month lease.
UAC itself would gain most from the weekend, coming one step
closer to its ultimate goal: sponsoring a world's fair. Inspired by the
University's example, groups of students from all over the United
States - from as far south as Panama - would begin to flood
Canada for weekend visits. The Canadian government, overwhelmed by
the demand, would ultimately call upon UAC to organize the festivi-
ties. And so, on that original Canadian turidra, UAC would build a
new exposition site, a Disneyland of Dissent known as "Exilo '68."
Letters to the Editor
More Rent Arithmetic

To the Editor:
IN ANSWER to Mr. Morris' Rent
Arithmetic letter (Feb. 28), I
would say that there are a few
points that he has beenrunaware
of during the University eight
month lease campaign.
In trying to persuade Ann Arbor
landlords to offer the University
eight month lease, SGC-SHA has
not ignored the problem of rent
increase. I will agree that a 25
per cent increase in rent that some.
of the landlords are charging for
an eight month lease is ridiculous.
The University lease itself has
no specific limitation on rent in-
crease, but we-have always stressed
that 15 per cent is maximum in-
crease that we feel would be ac-
ceptable (Mr. Morris based his
calculations on a 25 per cent in-
crease in rent). tnfortunately in
the apartment market where you
are dealing with entrepreneurs
who are out to make "the buck,"
it is difficult at this time to dictate
to them, "offer the University
eightamonth lease with little or no
increase in rent."
MR. MORRIS did not include
the psychological and time costs
that a student pays in trying to
find someone who will sublet sum-

side, for there are more apart-
ments for rent than there are stu-
dents looking for apartments-
By not signing leases for next
fall until this summer or even next
fall, students are going to force
more landlords into offering an
eight month lease. In the last
month and a half 18 per cent of
the total market has come to eight
month terms. This is not too bad
considering this is only the first
of March.
If a majority of the landlords
can be persuaded into offering an
eight month lease, then by the use
of the same student pressure tac-
tic, I think we will find the overall
rents going down. Landlords, in
order to fill up, their apartments,
are going to have to make more
attractive deals in terms of price
for the student. But first we must
get the eight month lease concept
itself accepted by a majority of
the landlords in town.
ALL OF THIS can only come
about by consumer pressure. When
two economic groups, the students
and the landlords, confront each
other, the group which has the
strongest organization will win out
in the long run. Right now there
is a buyer's market with the sup-

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