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November 26, 1969 - Image 7

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Wednesday, November 26, 1969

-rHE MICHIGAN DAILY

Page Seven

Wednesday, November 26, 1969 THE MICHIGAN DAILY Page Seven

Mendel Rivers:

Military's

congressman

By JOhN S. LANG
WASHINGTON try',--Officially, it i; simply
PublicLaw 91-121. Unofficially, it is a testament
to the power of L. Mendel Rivers.
P.L. 9-121, signed without comment last week
by President Nixon. authorized the Pentagon to
spend $20.7 billion for ships, planes, missiles and
research.
It gives the military at least a start on every
project it requested and at least one it didn't
request.
It gives a back-handed slap to Senate reformers,
who battled for months to clamp stringent con-
trols on defense spending.
And it gives new evidence that Lucius Mendel
Rivers, chairman of the House Armed Services
Committee, has more influence over military
spending than any other man in Washington.
The authorization measure signed by Nixon
was $637 million lower than when it cleared the
House. But it also was $722 million higher than
the amount approved by the Senate.
The final figure was worked out in a House-
Senate conference committee. Senators generally
acknowledged that House conferees, led by Rivers,
prevailed in the committee's ten secret meetings.
"Of coui se, no one can turn down Julius
Caesar," commented Sen. J. W. Fulbright (D-
Ark'i in reference to a statement, attributed to
Rivers, that his legislative successes could never
be matched by "Caesar in all his glory.",

"Even our secretary of defense could not resist
Julius Caesar," Fulbright told the Senate. "The
Defense Department iself had to give up and
knuckle under."
Fulbright was particularly piqued at a $28
million authorization for a "free world fighter
plane" which the United States would sell or give
to other nations. The Pentagon did not ask for
this item, and endorsed it only at the insistence
of Rivers.
Rivers generally views his committee as the
voice of the military.
"You must remember," he told his colleagues a
few months ago, ". . . this is the only voice, the
official voice, the military has in the House of
Representatives."
The South Carolina Democrat, whose flowing
silver hair crowds his collar and tops a ramrod-
straight 6-foot-3 frame, has been praised as a
patriot, a defender of the Constitution, a cham-
pion of the little guy in uniform.
Critics-and he has plenty of them-denounce
Rivers as a militarist, a junketeer and a tool of
the military-industrial complex. The late column-
ist Drew Pearson wrote frequently that Rivers
had a drinking problem, but the congressman's
friends say this has been overcome.
It also is said that in his Armed Services Com-
mittee he is dictatorial and beats down dissent.
"That's a bum rap," says one of Rivers' critics
on the committee. "He doesn't have to be dicta-
torial. He has the votes."

"That's exactly the point," complaints another.
"The committee is so packed. There's not much
opposition."
"Look at the Democratic side of the committee."
says a northern congressman. "There are 23 Dem-
ocrats and half of them are from the South.
That is way out of proportion. The committee
doesn't represent the thinking of the country."
When Rep. Allard K. Lowenstein 1D-NY) a
war critic known for organizing support for the
Eugene J. McCarthy campaign, was elected to the
House this year, he let the powers know he wanted
assignment to the Armed Services Committee.
But when the five new members were chosen
to fill Democratic openings on the committee,
they came from Texas Alabama, Georgia, Vir-
ginia and West Virginia. Lowenstein didn't make
it.
The committee's opposition bloc usually adds
up to three-Otis G. Pike (D-NY), Lucien N.
Nedzi (D-Mich) and Robert L. Leggett (D-Calif).
When Pike, who has been sharply critical of
soaring defense contract costs, came in line to
head the standing investigations subcommittee
this year, he didn't get the chairmanship. Rivers
took the post himself.
"Not giving chairmanships is Mendel's way of
keeping people in line," says one congressman.
"Everybody wants to head a subcommittee.
There's power and status. He passed over one
member who hadn't been going along a couple
of years back, and that gentleman saw the error
of his ways and has been cooperative."
Rivers, 65 and a member of Congress since 1941,
is sensitive to criticism of his defense of the mili-
tary-industrial link.
"The longer the war lasts in Vietnam the more
somebody's going to make out of it," he said in
an interview. "I don't believe anyone should make
money out of people dying.
Rivers has never been in service himself, a

Committee he reported no substantial holdings
in any company doing substantial business with
the government.
But his hometown of Charleston and the people
of his district have fared well.
Military installations there include the Charles-
ton Navy Yard, a Navy weapons station, Farris
Island Marine Corps Recruit Depot, a Polaris sub-
marine base, an Air Force base, a Marine Corps
air station, an Army supply depot and two Navy
hospitals,
"They talk about everything I have in Charles-
ton," Rivers smiles. "But you know, I haven't got
a thing (military installation) since I've been
chairman."
In those four years. however, at least six de-
fense industries have built plants in his district,
including Avco Corp., J. P. Stevens & Co., General
Electric Co., Lockheed Aircraft Corp., McDon-
nell-Douglas Corp., and United Aircraft.
Rivers gets much publicity for his junkets,
particularly to the Paris Air Show. When he
travels, the chairman goes first class with the
military who know on which side their stars are
buttered.
When he flew to New Orleans this year to visit
"my right hand man on the committee"-Rep.
F. Edward Hebert (D-La), who was recovering
from eye surgery-Rivers got a welcome at the
Navy Air Base usually accorded to kings and
presidents.
As he stepped from his Air Force jet, flown by
a pair of majors, a red carpet was rolled out ahead
of him and a Navy car was waiting to speed him
to his visit with Hebert.
Once a year Rivers turns out the shiniest brass
in the Pentagon and in industry for a Capitol Hill
luncheon in tribute to House Speaker John McCor-
mack.
"It is a command performance by Mendel," says
a former high-level Johnson administration of-
ficial who was awed by the turnout.
"There were defense firm presidents and all
the joint chiefs, every top general and admiral.
When you sit there, seeing them all gathered in
one room, you think, 'There's the power.'

Regent bylaw Nine convicted
Ss for LSA sit-in
By LINDSAY CHANEY
j " ° Nine students were convicted
new eritieisimi' yesterday for their part in the
LSA Bldg. sit-in on the night of
(Continued from Page 1) Sept. 25.
ratify them in their own assem- A request for a mistrial was
blies, and then charge SGC with made on the grounds that t h e
obstructionism if SGC failed t courtroom doors were locked while
give in to pressure to ratify the lawyers were making their final
rulezsummations, but District Judge
McLaughlin also criticized t h eS. J. Elden denied the motion.
elimination by the Regents of the
right of the students or the faculty The nine students found guilty
to "disaffirm" a rule of the UC by the four-woman and one-man
after it has been in effect. jury were: Steve Horwitz, Dave
That clause, which made t h e Denier, Lorna Cherot, Jim Klop-
UC rules subject tothe 'contin- r piAmy Rayack, Nancy Hol-
uing consent" of ever-changing strom, Paul Dostie, John Leithaus-
student and faculty bodies, was er and William Allison. Sentenc-
particularly disliked by the Re- ing was set for Jan. 30.
gents, according to Prof. Joseph Defense attorney Robert O'Con-
Payne, who is chairman of nor requested the mistrial after
SACUA.
Prof. Gerhard Weinberg, mem- discovering that Elden had order-
ber of SACUA, sided with Mc- ed the doors to the courtroom
Laughlin. locked because he though there
"In this proposal we had a way was excessive traffic and noise
to change a rule already in ef- creating a disturbance.
fee t when it becomes outmoded
or in need of clarification." he O'Connon said the locked doors
said. violated the defendants' rights to
Weinberg said the faculty had an open trial, but Elden said any-
originally viewed this "disaffirm-
ation" clause with the same mis- one who had business in the court-
trust as the Regents. He pointed room could have entered by a
out however, that enough pro- back door.
fessors had changed their minds '
so that it was included in t h e
Senate's final draft. (correction
Weinberg said "the drift of the
thinking expressed here (in the The caption on a picture in
Regents' draft) is not enthusias- yesterday's D a i Iy incorrectly
tically encouraging." cited Summit Associates as the
Payne disagreed, however, say- manager of a building on which
ing he did not find it discourag- Ann Arbor Tenants Union
ing. He proposed that the people members had placed signs sup-
at yesterday's meeting study the porting their rent strike and
Regents' draft carefully a n d pre- demanding recognition for the
pare suggestions and comments to union. The Daily regrets the
be relayed to the Regents before error.
their December meeting.

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IRArE tOMIMI'TTEE HEARING:
Studenit referendum proposed
on dorirntory rate increases

*/

(Continiued fromn :, e I1)
needed to cover incased wages
and inflationary costs.
In the 500 questionnaires which
were returned, however, the major-
ity of the residents stated that
they did not want increased dor-
mitory services. But, some individ-
ual dormitories did express an in-
terest in certain services and the
rate committee will take this into
consideration\ when they publish
their advisory report at the end
of this term.
Peter Denton. representing the
Tenant's Union, moved that a
referendum of students living in
the dormitories be taken on the
rate increase so that the final de-
cision would be made in a "demo-
cratic" manner. He also moved
that the rate committee's final!
recommendation should be bound
by the result of this referendum.
There was considerable discus-
sion on this motion. Rate com-
mittee member Barry Blauer said
that lie was in favor of the re-
ferendum idea, but he was "not
sure of the feasibility of the se-
cond motion."
"There is a difference in the
amount of information which is
easily available to the students
and the amount which is accessi-

ble to the rate committee," Blauer
said. H° added that he did not
want the committee bound by thej
results of the referendum.
McLaughlin responded to Blau-
er's statement by calilng it t h e
"white man's burden approach."
"I only hope that the commit-
tee will make it explicit if they '
consider their role to be moret
informed than the student," he
said.
Another rate committee member
said that he considered the prev-
ious survey to be representative,
and so an additional one would not
be necessary.
Another objection to the refer-
endum motion was that there was
not enough time to draw up and
distribute a referendum before the
end of the term.
Blauer questioned whether or
not the entire issue was important
enough to merit a referendum.
"The explosiveness of the issue
may not really be that great. Only
one third of the surveys c a m e
back, indicating that there is no
vast concern on the part of the
students about this issue," he said.
This statement was refuted by
Douglas Kaller. a resident of Baits
who had been "fortunate" enough

situation he says he regrets.
to receive one of the ques- There is no evidence Rivers has benefited per-
tionnaires." sonally from his closeness to military contractors.
"I received the questionnaire on!
a Wednesday and they wanted it In his financial statement to the House Ethics
back on Friday. The tone itself
was enough to discourage an an-
swer. It assumed that there would
be an increase in rates and the
students didn't have much to say
about it," he said.
Final decision on the referen-
dum proposal was tabled until the
committee's meeting pext Tuesday.

Sell
a
POT
in Daily
Classifieds

t

The Belt Midrash of Ann Arbor
is pleased to announce the following courses for the
WINTER TERM
THE CHASSIDIC VIEW ON THE EXISTENCE
-- AND PURPOSE OF THE UNIVERSE
An introduction to Chassidic philosophy. Discusses the role of the Jew in the
world, and his relation to the ultimate unity of the spiritual and the material in
the EIN SOF, the wellspring of all being. Text: COLLECTED SAYINGS (Tanya) of
Rabbi Schneur Zalman.
The course will be taught by Rabbis Yitschak Aharon Mann and Yitschak
Kagan, among the leaders of the Chabad Chassidism in America.
-- JEWISH MUSIC
A guided tour through the golden treasures of Jewish melody, which arose out
of the Jewish experience in many lands, past and present, East and West. Listen-
ing, with commentary by the instructor.
The course will be taught by Asher Ben-Yohanan, a leading Israeli musician
and composer.

HEBREW FOR BEGINNERS

Mrs. Ruth Cohen

Grammar and conversational Hebrew for people with no background in the
language. Emphasis on comprehension of modern Hebrew, oral expression and
composition.
This class will meet twice a week.

HEBREW SPEAKING CLUB

Mr. Avram Hochstein

Hebrew conversation in an enjoyable, informal setting. All welcome.

INTERMEDIATE HEBREW

Mrs. Chava Kopelman

For graduates of Beginner's Hebrew. Students with some Hebrew background
can determine their appropriate level of placement by consultation with the in-
structor.

BASIC JUDAISM

Rabbi Gerald Goldman

This course covers the basic trends of Jewish thought and expression, as re-
vealed in three classics of Judaism-the Torah, the Siddur, and the Mishnah-and
their application to modern life.
Rabbi Goldman is the new director of the Hillel Foundation at Michigan.

THEMES IN AMERICAN JEV
LIFE

Mr. Harrison and Mr. Rockaway

Winter term topics include: Jews in a non-Jewish world, Jewish liberalism:
myth or reality?, Black-Jewish relations.

BEYOND flADlAAND Ef iVE-I

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