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May 06, 1967 - Image 4

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Michigan Daily, 1967-05-06

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uhe arcahilan a
Seventy-Sixth Year

Where Opinions Are Free,
Truth win Prevmil


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.






An Obituary


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T NEW YORK World Journal Tribune
is dead.
Yesterday's demise of the paper, a sharp
contrast from the sanguine attitudes and
self-congratulations that marked the re-
cent gathering of American newspaper
editors in New York, is another spasm
in the death throes of big city journalism
in America.
News coverage is the weakest element
in American journalism today. There are
now no more than a half a dozen papers
which rely substantially on their own
correspondents, rather than the wire
services, for national and international
It's not that the WJT was a good paper.
The corporate amalgam of Hearst,
Scripps-Howard and John Hay Witney
was graphic evidence that dying news-
papers make strange bedfellows. Com-
pared to the Herald Tribune-the lead-
ing party in the merger which reduced
New York's papers from six to four-the
WJT was bland and unexciting, Its edi-
torial line seemed to be vacuous, non-
controversial, main stream Republican-
ism. Yet there were enough elements of
the old Tribune present to make the WJT
worth reading. The WJT provided the sole
New York outlet for Walter Lippnann,
Art Buchwald and its own Jimmy Breslin.
The unions are not the real murderers
of the WJT. Instead it was killed by the
dominance of its rivals and television.
Both the New York Times and the New
York Daily News are the archtypes of
their respective styles of journalism.
There was just not enough reader and
advertising demand for the middle ground
between the massive seriousness of the
Times and the semi-literate irrelevance
of the News. In addition, the dominance
of that little black box in American liv-
ing rooms has cut deeply into both news-
paper advertising and readers. And in
New York the two biggest papers received
the bulk of what advertising there was.
maining papers is indicated by the
dire measures resorted to by newspaper
afficionados. There is a growing demand
in New York for the Washington Post and
the thriving Paris edition of the Her-
ald Tribune.
The Times should not be the only ser-
ious voice in New York. Lack of competi-
tion can easly foster stagnation. There
is already too much emphasis at the
Times for blanketing the news rather
than analyzing it or commenting on it.
The Times editorials read like they are
written by a committee and reflect a
cautious, dull, grey liberalism. On days
when James Reston or Tom Wicker do
not appear, the Times editorial page is

barren of almost all meaningful com-
Television news coverage is no sub-
stitute for a newspaper. Huntley-Brink-
ley, and their fellow performers provide
no more than a capsule summary of the
news. Television news pictures are more
apt to distort, than edify. Usually they
just bore. But mostly television is mark-
ed by-the lack of courage or conviction.
PERHAPS A WORD should be said about
New York's third newspaper, the Post.
The Post has survived primarily by cat-
ering to a limited audience and keeping
its expenses small. The tabloid Post's few
news pages are primarily concerned with
local and state news. Their reporters
rarely venture further than Albany.
But what the Post markets is opinion.
Liberal, controversial opinion. Either of
these factors would make the Post an
American journalistic phenomenon. The
demise of the WJT will undoubtedly
strengthen the Post's position, since it is
now New York's sole afternoon paper. But
due to its limitations, the Post, like the
News, cannot supplement or challenge the
Times' coverage of the news.
New York's news coverage has not real-
ly suffered from the death of the WJT.
For the WJT did not challenge the dom-
inance of the Times. The Times' last
challenge ended with last year's death
of the Herald Tribune.
'THIS DOMINANCE of wire services is
the saddest element of today's news-
paper crisis. For the wire services are the
voice of the conservative, middle-aged
Establishment. TheIr anti-Communism
no longer is relevant to a changing world.
Their coverage of Washington and Viet-
nam eschew controversy and criticism.
Wire services merely reinforce American
preconceptions and prejudices about the
world beyond their local newspaper.
There are more real newspapers in
Switzerland than in this country-papers
which depend on their own correspond-
ents, rather than wire services or gov-
ernment handout, papers with distinctive
viewpoints. Admittedly many of these pa-
pers are subsidized by various interest
groups. But there is nothing wrong with
this as long as there a multitude of other
papers to reflect divergent viewpoints.
The difference between American and
European journalism is a key explanation
for the European rejection of the sim-
plistic American outlook on foreign af-
SO WE NOTE the passing of the World
Journal Tribune and look with dismay
at the paucity and barrenness of its sur-


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Letters to the Editor
An Open Letter on the Draft

Books: On Tolkein's
(Fairy) Coattails
Eddison. E. R., "THE WORM OUROBOROS." Ballantine, 1967.
Cover design, blurb. everything about this new paperback is meant
to catch the eye of the reader who was captivated by "The Lord of
the Rings" and would like something else of that sort. The publisher
are right: Eddison is the only writer whose work can be compared with
Tolkien's. Since "The Worm Ouroboros" first appeared (England, 1922;
U.S., 1926) it has become a byword among readers of fantasy. It has
been praised by some of Tolkien's friends and admirers. among them
C. S. Lewis. At least one reviewers of the first edition thought It would
still be read a century later. I do not doubt it.
There is a hint of more to follow: here's the scoop E. R. Eddso
who died in 1945, wrote three more otherworldly romances: "Mistress
of Mistresses," "A Fish Dinner in Memison," and "The Mezentan
Gate." These form a loosely linked trilogy set in a world called Zimiam-
via. Their events have no connection with those of "The Worm Ouro-
boros': only once, in Chapter 12, is Zimiamvia seen from a mountain
"'Is that true, thinkest thou, which philosophers tell us of that
fortunate land: that no mortal foot may tread it, but the blessed
souls do inhabit it of the dead that be departed, even they that
were great upon earth and did great deeds when they were living,
that scorned not earth and the delights and the glories thereof, and
yet did justly and were not dastards nor yet oppressors?"'
THE SETTING of "The Werm Ouroboros" is another mdd
earth, though the author calls it "Mercury." When you compare
with Tolkien's work, the two turn out to be as different as peas and
apples. Tolkien's hobbits are ordinary people, gifted with no outstanding
qualities. Yet they are chosen for a great task and must use such
strength and wits' as they have. A point that Gandalf makes time and
again is: when deeds must be done. it does not matter what you are,
what you have become-even Gollum. In direct contrast to all moder
fiction, personality is no excuse.
Eddison's world is pagan and aristocrat. "Unearthly," he said of
it. "Like the saga-time: there is no malaise of the soul. In that world,
well fitted to their faculties and dispositions, men and women of all
estates enjoy beatitude in the Aristotelian sense of . . . activity accord-
ing to their highest virtue." But of the lower estates we see almost
nothing. His heroes are the Lords of Demonland: Juss, GoldrL
Bluszco, Spitfire, and Brandoch Daha.
They are what Boromir thought himself to be. Their opponents are
the King of Witchland and his lords. Everybody has his faults: theirs
hapens to be being wicked. After deserting the Demons in a sea battle
against the Ghouls, the King sends his jester as ambassador to ask their
homage: a calculated act of defiance.
"'I come before you as the Ambassador of Gorice XI., most 4
glorious King of Witchland, Lord and great Duke of Buteny and
Estremerine, Commander of Shulan, Thramne, Mingos, and Permio,
and High Warden of the Esamocian Marches, Great Duke of Trace,
King Paramount of Beshtria and Nevria and Prince of Ar, Great
Lord over the country of Ojedia, Maltraeny, and of Baltary and
Toribia, and Lord of many other countries, most glorious and most
great, whose power and glory is over all the world and whose name
shall endure for all generations ....'"
The Demons take counsel and challenge the King to unarmed
single combat. He accepts and is killed. His successor by metempsy-
chosis is Gorice XII, "a most crafty warlock, full of guiles and wiles,
who by the might of his egromancy and the sword of Witchland shall
exceed all earthly powers that be " He conjures up a spirit of the deep
and sends him against the Demons.
War is therewith joined Invasions, perilous journeys, battles,
palace intrigues: as long as Eddison keeps his characters in motion,
he is Tolkien's equal as a storyteller. But how different the flavor of
his story! C. S. Lewis spoke of its blend of Renaissance luxury and
Northern hardness. Very apt. Tolkien can describe trees and make me
love them, but I cannot share Eddison's love for the decoration of
palaces. His book is not for everybody: a taste for it must be aquire
HIS STYLE, of which I have given some samples, is like nothing
since the 16th century. If Tolkine is the Bach of the heroic romance,
Eddison is its Berlioz. or perhaps Verdi. He was influenced most deeply
by the Elizabethans, and the verses spoken or sung by his characters
are borrowed from them. From John Webster ("The White Devil," "The
Duchess of Malfi") he takes phrases, half lines, whole lines: most 4
his diction, in fact. It is literary theft at its best: the man believed
in writing that way. This is not the phony "Ho, varlet!" style of "The
White Company." It has power: almost every page is a set piece.
If you try reading it aloud, you will not be able to keep your face
straight. Least of all in Chapter Four, "Conjuring in the Iron Tower."
But please don't laugh too loudly. It is bombastic: it is corny-but it's
meant to be that way. Eddison's villains are more interesting in thei
wickedness than his heroes in their heroism.
Even now I cannot tell the latter apart or visualize them in-
dividually. The Witches-Corund. Corinius, Corsus-are real char-
acters. I have become fond of them. So did the Demons after-by their
might and the overweening pride of the King-they had utterly de-
feated them all. Like Boromir, they lived for their deeds and could wish

for nothing better than to have their enemies back again.
Did they get them? Consider the title. The ouroboros is the ancient
symbol of infinity, a snake eating its tail. And instead of "The End,"
the story concludes with "The Worm Ouroboros."
Dainis Bisenieks is a graduate student in English at the University.
Mao That Roared

Both this country and many of
its young men stand to suffer
greatly from the continuation of
a compulsory military draft.
In the midst of the most ques-
tionable war in this nation's his-
tory, the President's proposal for
revamping the draft structure
would make available to the mili-
tary unlimited numbers of young
men, obligated to wage the admin-
istration's battles.
Those who oppose the war in
Vietnam stand to suffer most from
the draft, because they cannot in
good conscience serve in the arm-
ed forces. For the majority of
them there is no possibility of
conscientious objection, because
that demands complete moral op-
position to all war. Thus, these
young men, who care for their
country but cannot yield to the
demand to effect the government's
foreign policy, will spend several
years in prison, or go into self-
imposed exile, rather than serve
in the military. This probable sit-
uation is a tragic waste of human
potential, both for the individ-
uals and for the country.
WE SUGGEST the formation of
an alternative - service system
which would present a choice to
those young men called upon to
serve their country. Now is the
time to act. We must not merely
stand by hoping that the new
draft law will not touch us. Now
is the time to make the draft
something more than the arbi-
trary imposition of a military ob-
ligation. We want service to the
country to be a constructive, in-
dividual act, rather than a bur-
den. The creation of alternative
service would fulfill this wish.
Objections to alternative serv-
ice have been raised by the Presi-
dent's National Advisory Commis-

sion on Selective Service. Our, an-
sw.ers are given below:
OBJECTION 1: Peaceful alter-
native service does not equate with
the rigors and dangers of mili-
tary life.
Answer : A means of equating
the two might be to ask all those
who choose alternative service to
give three or four years, as op-
posed to the two in the military.
With this system, people who want
to find the easiest way out of any
national service, the true "draft
dodgers," would think twice be-
fore making the sacrifice of an
additional year or two of their
lives. On a more fundamental lev-
el, we might question the presi-
dential commission's underlying
assumption that the act of killing
and the danger of being killed is
more inherently important to the
nation than the constructive acts
of alternative service.
In addition, we might ask wheth-
er all1who serve in the military are
equally exposed to dangers and
hardships. If this is not the case,
why then is there such concern
about equalizing hardships for
those serving in alternative serv-
ice and those serving in the mili-
tary, if the armed forces them-
selves have such an imbalance?
Objection 2: A universal na-
tional service, be it military or
peaceful, might be unconstitution-
al because it requires all to serve.
Answer: The system of drafting
could remain. Those classified I-A
would then have the choice of the
form of their service. While this
would require a larger draft call,
it does not obligate all to serve.
Objection 3: Certain forms of
service, such as the Peace Corps,
require high educational standards
and would be open to relatively

few. Thus, discrimination


Answer: Only a small portion
of services need have these stand-
ards. Alternative service should be
broad enough so that all who wish
to serve would be accommodated
to their satisfaction. For example,
an underprivileged youth might be
trained in a skill, and then apply
it and teach it to others. Both
foreign and domestic projects in
community development, s 1u m
clearance and conservation might
be undertaken. These need not be
discriminatory because of high ed-
ucational requirements.
ALTHOUGH we recognize that
the call for alternative service does
dot help in ending the war in
Vietnam, we must seek to be con-
structive wherever possible.
Ideally, we would have no draft
or guns or bombs, but that day
has not yet come. At present, we
are faced with the reality of a
draft, and we must attempt, by
every means in our power, to
make national service a meaning-
ful part of an individual's life. We
believe that the creation of an al-
ternative-servicesystem would ac-
complish this goal.
When a young man is obligated
to serve, the course he will take
is a matter of individual con-
science. Today, the apparent al-
ternatives to military service -
imprisonment or self-imposed exile
-are too narrow a set of options;
they will ruin many lives and ul-
timately do harm to the country.
Therefore, as individuals, we must
do everything in our power to
create options for all young Ameri-
-Barry Lesch,
Executive Committee
Indiana University Committee
to End the War in Vietnam

You Always Gotta Watch 'em

LY AFTER STUDENT demonstrations
flared did -the Wayne State adminis-
tration put its confidential "dirt" files to
the torch. This- typifies the order in
which progressive measures are taken in
colleges today-the impetus coming from
the frustrated masses of students upward
to the efficient bureaucracy that truns
the show.
Of course the destruction of the rec-
ords was only one of six demands present-
ed the administration by a group of WSU
students-demands that have been ac-
companied by sit-ins, rallies and dem-
onstrations. Aside from the physical act
of the file-burning, we might pause a
moment to ask, just why in the world
these files were ever kept in the first
place. Why did the university previously
deny even their existence? What business
did the campus police have with the poli-
tical, sex and personal lives of the stu-
dents attending the university they pa-

THESE QUESTIONS will, no doubt, fall
on deaf ears, because the adminis-
tration's action was prompted by exigen-
cy, not moral concern. Here in Ann Ar-
bor, we are familiar with the problem,
and in fact had a big brouhaha over a
similar practice by our administration
that went one step further-our bureauc-
racy not only kept personal records, but
it also was provided with an opportunity
to turn them over to the House Commit-
tee on Un-American Activities. In the
wake of this odious deed, the debate still
goes on, as witnessed by the recent rejec-
tion by the Graduate Student Council of
a special report on the disclosure of per-
sonal information by the Office of Stu-
dent Affairs.
The Office of Student Organizations, a
section of the OSA, assures us that no rec-
ords are kept on students' organizational
or political affiliation. We hope this is
the case. Nonetheless, every effort must
be made to limit the discretion of the
vice-president for student affairs in
handing out private information for vari-
ous and sundry reasons.
THE STUDENTS at Wayne State have
acted and have obtained the desired,
immediate results. Our experience at the
University, however, shows that more
than a pile of papers must burn. The
whole set of attitudes that mold an ad-
ministration's decision to maintain files
on student conduct must also go up in

Today and Tomorrow ... By Walter Lippmann
The Honored Dead

Is it really a good idea to use
the ceremony of giving the Medal
of Honor to the widow of a soldier
killed in battle as the platform
for dealing with the President's
The President's remarks on
Tuesday while conferring the med-
al posthumously on Marine Sgt.
Peter S. Connor intended to stamp
upon the public mind the notion
that but for the dissenters Sgt.
Connor would not have died.
The President should realize
that this is playing it rough, that
to degrade debate to this level is
certainly to provoke the retort
that Sgt. Connor did not die be-
cause Sen. J. W. Fulbright and
Sen. George Aiken and the Coun-
cil of Churches and some editors
and some columnists and some
students were against the Presi-
-dent's conduct of the war.
Sgt. Connor died in a military
operation conducted under the or-
ders of President Johnson. The
obvious rebuttal to the President's
use of the heroes is that if Mr.
Johnson remained true to the poli-
cv on which he was elected, if he

sane person ever argued that the
President had no right to answer
his critics?
What the critics want above all
are candid answers to the trou-
blesome questions. What is argued
by some and is felt by many more
is that instead of answering his
critics the President is evading the
issues by .stirring up a cloud of
patriotic emotion.
The exploitation of the dead
heroes is a flagrant example of
this. The exploitation of Gen. Wil-
liam Westmoreland, who as a
representative of the troops can-
not be attacked, is another exam-
ple. The President does not even
pretend to argue the administra-
tion case. He merely asserts it in
large, hot, question-begging gener-
If the undeniable right to an-
swer dissent is to be exercised
usefully and with dignity, the an-
swer must be addressed to the
best-informed and most responsi-
ble critics. It is, of course, a temp-
tation to ignore Sen. Fulbright and
Sen. George McGovern and Sen.
Aiken and the staff report of the

sue of the debate that Sen. Ever-
ett Dirksen comes out of the hos-
pital to pledge Republican sup-
port to the Commander-in-Chief,
for everybody knows that Sen.
Dirksen will do everything in his
power to prevent Mr. Johnson
from being re-elected. It is most
probable that this is all that Ho
Chi Minh hopes for from the
mounting dissent in this country.
INDEED, whatever the Repub-
licans may be saying now, the
President is on a course which will
cause the Republican Party to pre-
sent itself as an alternative to an-
other Johnson administration.
It is reasonably certain that the
President has enlarged the war
and has enlarged his war aims to
a point where he can no longer
hold the confidence either of the
hawks or the doves.
The President has reached a
point, as Sen. Aiken has just said,
when "the present administration
cannot achieve an honorable peace
in Vietnam."
It is a grevious predicament for
the country and also for the Dem-

Collegiate Press Service
man Mao Tse-tung has received
the ultimate insult from the West.
He has become the latest fad. He
is heir to the loyal admirers of
hoola hoops, skate-boards and
miniskirts. And he is taken just
about as seriously. "Quotations
from Chairman Mao Tse-tung"
has become a runaway best-sell-
er, first in France and now in
Britain and America. Time maga-
zine reports that it is the hottest
item at Columbia since Henry
Miller, and that even Brentano's
at the Pentagon has quickly un-
loaded a thousand copies.
MAO'S IDEAS are often mis-
guided and unrealistic but they
certainly don't deserve the label
"camp." But the Mao fad can only
be explained by the fact that the
Western public regards him and
the Cultural Revolution as the
purest camp. The millions of Red
Guards madly waving their little
red books was a camp tableau. So
the West bought the book and imi-
tated the spectacle. Likewise, the
poster craze sweeping the U.S. is
in part attributable to the influ-
ence of the Red Guards' poster

side of the globe. China seems
so ridiculous that the true threat
she poses is all but overlooked.
If this is not true, how then
account for the easy acceptant'
of the latest fashion from Carna-
by Street, the Red Guard uniform?
The London hippies wouldn't have
dared to deck themselves on in
Hitlerjugend khaki 30 years ago.
OR CAN YOU imagine a smar
alec of the 1930's standing up i.
class, whipping out his pocket edi-
tion of "Mein Kampf" and smirk-
ingly replying to the teacher with,
"Der Fuehrer says . . ?" The
teacher would not have laughed.
Fifteen years ago you certainly
would not have been invited to
Manhattan cocktail party in hon
of Comrade Stalin.
Why is Mao's image so danger-
ously distorted in the Western
mind? The blame rests with the
popular press. The Cultural Revo-
lution spawned a carnival of ex-
citing front page news but them
was little or no attempt to at!
alyze and explain the Chinese tur-
moil to Western readers. To report,
nothing at all would have been
preferable to making the Cultural
Revolution look like the Mad Hat-
ter's tea party.

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