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February 15, 1966 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1966-02-15

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Seventy-Sixth Year

The University: Communications Gap

Ttt Opinions Are Free, 420 MAYNARD ST., ANN APBOR, Mict.
Truth Wil Prevail

NEws Pt-oNE-: 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.



Ronney Abandons Principle
For Headlines

seemingly advanced his campaign for
the 1968 GOP presidential nomination by
making the brilliant and radical state-
ment that he is. against a Communist
conspiracy to destroy the U.S. govern-
Romney's declaration came after last
week's Senate uproar over Communist
speakers at the state's universities. Rom-
ney chose the opportunity not to clarify
his position on the issues, but simply to
get his name in the headlines.
It is no secret that Romney is at least
interested in the coming presidential race.
He has just finished a trip to New Eng-
land during which he was treated like a
candidate, and during which he acted
suspiciously as if he was considering the
IT HAS BEEN NOTED by many sources
that although the governor has an ex-
cellent liberal record as a governor, he
has a major weakness in his lack of
knowledge of national and international
The problem of Communist speakers,
not only at universities, but any where
in public, is just such an issue. It is a
complicated and often emotional problem
which will not be settled by being ignored,
or buried under a mass of cliches.'
Romney should have used this oppor--
tunity not only to clarify his views on a
complicated subject, but also to enlighten
the public on the problem.
ROMNEY SAID that there is "a differ-
ence between providing understanding
(of Communism) and permitting the use
of facilities and meetings to further the
Communist conspiracy."

He then said that he "would be in-
clined to think that the speeches by
Communist historian Herbert Aptheker
"would be for the purpose of promoting
the Communist party. His past record
would indicate that."
*He continued by declaring that his
comments were not in the category of
restricting free speech, and that ulti-
mately, the problem would have to be
solved by the individual schools involved.
HE THUS AVOIDED saying anything
that would be damaging to his reputa-
tion on the right, the left, or the middle.
He avoided saying anything against
freedom of speech, while at the same
time putting all Communists into a cate-
gory by themselves, and saying that it
had nothing to do with freedom of speech
to deny it to them.
Romney is falling more and more into
President Johnson's pattern , of keeping
his opinions and the facts they are based
upon from the people.
If he is seriously considering running
for the presidency, Romney should re-,
sume some of the responsibility that
comes with the desire. It is time that he
stopped hunting for headlines, and began
to give the American people something
to think about.
HE CAN ONLY DO this by becoming fa-
miliar with the issues that are before
the American people today, by forming
intelligent opinions on them, and by free-
ly and clearly expressing these opinions
to the public. It can't be done by avoid-
ing the issues, or making palid state-
ments which say something pleasant to
everybody, and, thus, say nothing to

.wE HAVE one nearly impos-
sible problem at this place,"
an observer said recently. "It's
the gap between the Regents and
the administrators on the one
hand and the students on the oth-
er. And I don't know how to over-
come it."
The controversy over a Univer-
sity-supported bookstore is an ex-
cellent example of this difference
in outlook, and the "obvious" is-
sue, student economic welfare, is
in the long run the least signifi-
cant aspect of the entire episode.
What the Bookstore affair also
demonstrated was a problem of
the greatest magnitude: a very
great communications gap be-
tween the Regents and adminis-
trators and the students for whom
the University is run. A majority
of the Regents didn't want to meet
with interested students to dis-
cuss Vice-President Cutler's report
on the bookstore, and they, with
the tacit approval of several ad-
ministrators, also made it abund-
antly clear that no administrator
should either.
IT IS also, however, abundantly
clear that approach to communi-
cations, which the Regents and
the administration unfortunately
did not choose, would have been
wise if only from the tactical
standpoint. It is unfortunate in-
deed that the only group of men
in anyone's memory to sit down
with students in the august Reg-
ents Room to hear student views
has been a committee headed by
a publicity-hungry state repre-
sentative. One wonders if that's
what it takes to involve students
in their own University.
The communications gap ap-
pears in fact, pervasive. The Reg-
ents rarely see students except for
a few formal and largely ceremon-
ial gatherings. Students recently
criticized the Student Housing
Advisory Committee as a "power-
less farce" and attacked Cutler
and Vice President Pierpont for
failing to attend committee ineet-

Students have also said that ad-
ministration representatives, who
do appear, have been unwilling to
give them full information and the
complete rationale underlying Uni-
versity housing policies.
A large number of students
have started taking courses at the
Free University in a demonstration
of their relative lack of enthus-
iasm for the deficiencies of Uni-
versity academic life - which stu-
dent steering committees are sup-
posed to be improving.
impossible or minimal, as they fre-
quently have been in this sort of
situation, then protest movements
of all kinds - pickets outside the
Adminstration Building, Student
Government Council efforts to
register 2000 graduate students in
Ann Arbor, criticism in The Daily,
legislative snooping and all the
rest - become the rule.
The Daily, in particular, has
been criticized itself for its criti-
cism, and for its occasional re-
semblance to the Central Intelli-
gence Agency. But when normal
communications are block-
ed, everyone from Voice to SGC
to The Daily wonders if a CIA ap-
proach is almost the only way to
discover what's going on. This,
naturally raises administrators'
and Regents' suspicions even fur-
ther, tensions and demonstrations
start and the University acquires
something of an air of a Latin
American banana republic.
If it were possible to manage
the University's affairs by ignor-
ing students, the gap between
them and the Regents and ad-
ministrators would be unimport-
ant. But it is essential to under-
stand the needs and problems of
students as completely as pos-
sible - and University students
know and can discuss those needs
and problems better than anyone
else. For that reason the present
communications gap at the Uni-
versity is extremely grave.

As the University's 1962 Reed
Report on student affairs says, the
student ". . .must be considered a
participating member of a 'com-
munity of scholars,' with respon-
sibilities and opportunities com-
mensurate with his capacities. He
should be expected to participate
fully in decisions affecting his wel-
fare." In the last analysis, the
University must either believe in
the Reed Report or not, and only
if it does can it overcome the tre-
mendous problem of communica-
THE SITUATION may not be
completely grim, however. The
Regents' proposal on selection of
President Hatcher's successor- is
wise and full of foresight in its in-
clusion of students -- the first
time a university has sought stu-
dent views on such a question.
Neither administrators nor the
Regents realize fully how much
future student opinion will depend
on how meaningful their partici-
pation in this decision is. But at
the moment, despite its under-
standable lack of specifics, the
Regents' plan has been extremely
The Regents now have a great
opportunity to add to the new
esteem in which they are held by
students by establishing a small
executive committee of students,
faculty and alumni to sit with the
Regents and interview presidential
candidates. Any other arrange-
ment fails to provide for the con-
tinuous student - faculty - alumni -
Regents interaction which is in-
dispensable for a wise decision.
Any other arrangement inherent-

ly creates a "we-they" feeling in
which alumni, student and faculty
panels vie for the attention of
the Regents and wonder if they
are being bypassed.
ALL THESE questions - from
housing to the selection of a pres-
ident -- involve delicate questions
of confidence: both secrecy and
candor. And these issues call for
a good deal of realism from every-
one involved, for no one is so noble
or so informed as to have a mon-
opoly on insight or truth.
There is always, of course, a
good deal of popularity to the
conspiracy theory of the Univer-
sity: the idea that administrators
and Regents, and occasionally
faculty, are constantly scheming
to deprive students and each other
of what is good and meritorious
from the University.
The more realistic interpreta-
tion to its many problems, how-
ever, is the confusion theory. A
communications breakdown has
deprived each group in the aca-
demic community from the full
counsel of the others on Univer-
sity problems. It is going to be
difficult to overcome the com-
munications gap, but such decis-
ions as the Regents' plan on pres-
idential selection give hope that
they, administrators, students and
faculty will in the future be some-
what like Chaucer's Oxford scho-
lar who "would gladly learn and
gladly teach."
"IT IS very tragic," said a letter
from an obscure physician printed
several days ago in these columns,
"that placing the' editorial policy
of The Daily alongside the editor-
ial policy of The Worker, one
would be hard pressed to tell a
significant and cohsistent differ-
More encouragingly, another ob-
server was quoted recently as say-
ing, "The Daily has a proud tra-
dition as an outstanding news-
paper of reportorial fact and edi-

torial opinion."
But what, after all,
Daily? Its new editors
chance at defining it.

The Daily is, first, -a journal of
fact -a newspaper. The idea of
The Daily as a newspaper is sim-
ple, but deceptively so. Some feel
it must be a bulletin board, where
the various trivia of student and
faculty life ought to be prominent-
ly displayed.
Some want it to be a thermo-
meter, reflecting whatever the
temper and temperature of the
great mass of the University com-
munity might be. Others feel it
should be an arm of the Univer-
sity's public-relations apparatus
and keep foremost in mind what
some frustrated bureaucrat thinks
the public should know.
But The Daily is none of these,
because it is, quite simply, a news-
paper, and because it must judge
and report events according to
their significance and ultimate im-
portance. Adolf Ochs' dictum is
appropriate: "To give the news
impartially, without fear or favor,
regardless of any party, sect or
interest involved."
The Daily is also a journal of
opinion, found on the editorial
page, open to any opinion intelli-
gently formed and clearly phrased.
A good many seem to think The
Daily has an editorial policy -
but its only editorial "policy,"
other than editorials signed by
The Senior Editors, is that of a
healthy respect for ideas and for
perfect competition in the intel-
lectual arena.
But The Daily is also some-
thing of an institution. It is eager
and critical - possibly, at times,
too much so. It is impatient and
outspoken - but aware that
"civility is never a sign of weak-
ness, and sincerity is always sub-
ject to proof." Finally, it is proud
to be a great newspaper at a
great university, and aware that
the fruits of its efforts are bound-
ed only by the justness of its cause.


is The
want a


Writers' Convictions Hurt

Counseling System
Needs Revision1

THE JUNIOR-SENIOR counseling office
has taken the first step toward freeing
upperclassmen completely from counsel-
ing. Unfortunately, its new "optional"
counseling program indicates only that
it has'run out of a way to make the coun-
seling system effective in its present,
mandatory form.
Last year SGC recommended that coun-
seling for upperclassmen be made com-
pletely optional. The college's administra-
tive board, however, apparently felt that
something could be done for the student
who was not receiving help from counsel-
ing. Therefore it instituted its own new
Under the "optional" program, a stu-
dent meets only twice with his counselor:
once as a second-semester sophomore and
once as a senior. In between these meet-
ings he makes out (and changes) his own
election card. His counselor will not
even know what he is taking until they
meet again in his senior year.
THE TWO MEETINGS with the counse-
lor are the heart of the program.
What the counseling office envisions is a
new student-counselor relationship which
is to spring up out of the freeing of the
counselor from approving elections. The
question remains, however, what special
provisions are being made to foster a clos-
er student-counselor relationship? All
students are being given the same 15-
minute appointments they have been
given for some time.
While students not taking the optional
counseling program are expected to ac-
complish about what they normally ac-
complish, students who are under the
"optional" plan, bringing in their educa-
tional goals on a sheet of paper, are ex-
pected to develop a closer relationship
with their counselor.
Acing Editorial Staff
Managing Editor Editorial Director
JOHN MEREDITH.......Associate Managing Editor
LEONARD PRATT ...Associate Managing Editor
1ABErTE COHN---------------------PersonneI Director

The head of the office fully expects
that these appointments will run longer
than 15 minutes and, therefore, counse-
lors will run behind time. The knowledge
that one is running late is not likely to
foster the relaxed, interested atmosphere
the program's planners had in mind. Then
too, the student in this plan, grabbing at
a chance for more freedom, is not likely
to gain much-if he really needs help.
FOR THE MAJOR FAULT of this pro-
gram is not the manner in which it
attempts to free some students, but its
complete lack of effect on those stu-
dents who need help, and its lack of ef-
fect on the quality of counselors. The
head of the office does realize that these
two major problems exist, yet, for anoth-
er semester, nothing is being done about
Thus, for the moment, any sophomore
with a fairly good idea of what he is tak-
ing can hope his counselor will let him
join the program. Any sophomore who
needs help-good luck, just like under the
present system.
The counseling office, in its search to
change the nature of the student-coun-
selor relationship, which is probably a
major key to successful counseling, might
do well to note that traditionally the most
productive relationships on campus are
those which develop between interested
student and teacher. Not the random se-
lection of an advisor of the same field,
but the utilization of an existing relation-
ship, could be the most effective means of
"counseling" students.
FOR EXAMPLE, why not set up a small
fleet 'of non-professorial counselors
whose job is simply to check graduation
and concentration requirements of stu-
dents? Let each student, then, individ-
ually find a professor or even graduate
student. with whom he can discuss the
field and decide into what area he wants
to go and what courses he might take. If
the counseling office could find means to
openly encourage student-teacher rela-
tionships, the whole college would be
Maybe such a solution is impossible
in a large school. Maybe professors do not
-zrs- fn hnhnth rn i rif 4 the rnh .mc o

RUSSIAN writers Yuli M. Dan-
iel and Andrei D. Sinyavsky
were sentenced to seven and five
years in prison, respectively, for
allegedly slandering the Soviet
government in manuscripts smug-
gled to the West. In a surprise
move before the trial, the Soviet
Union permitted a third writer,
Valery Tarsis-author of "Ward
7", a novel highly critical of
communist politics-to travel to
London. Tarsis speculated that
he might be branded a triator
and not allowed to re-enter the
Behind these events in the
Soviet literary world having far-
reaching political implications, is
the indication that the slow evo-
lution of the Russian government
towards a less militant posture
has not yet been extended to ac-
comodate internal criticism.
BOTH Daniel and Sinyavsky
led double literary lives. While
publishing "acceptable" writings
in Soviet literary journals under
their own names, they managed to
smuggle out harshly critical works
to be published in the West under
pseudonyms. Daniel's name was
Nikolai Arzhak, Sinyavsky's was
Abram Tertz.
The charge under which the

two were tried was covered by Ar-
ticle 70 of the Russian Republic's
Criminal Code which states that
"agitation or propaganda conduct-
ed for the purpose of undermining
and weakening Soviet power, .;.
the dissemination with the same
intent of slanderous material be-
smirching the Soviet state and
social system" is a crime carrying
a penalty of six months to seven
years in prison.
The trial itself was termed
"open" by Soviet officials, but
newsmen from Western or other
Communist countries were not
permitted to attend, on t h e
grounds that limited courtroom
space prevented attendance ex-
cept by invited spectators.
ACCORDING to press reports
by Tass, the Soviet news agency,
both the authors, whose identities
had been unmasked last fall, de-
nied guilt of engaging in anti-
Soviet propaganda. Sinyavsky said
under cross examination that his
novels portrayed disillusionment
with the Communist society be-
cause, "I wanted to tell people
about th is nation's spiritual
needs." Daniel likewise said that
in his works "there were no po-
litical motives."
Many intellectuals in the West
saw the trial as a test case for

literary freedom in the Soviet Un-
ion under a post-Stalinist regime.
Peter Grose, New York Times
correspondant, said that the writ-
ers' refusal to plead guilty upon
first presentment of the charge
may have come as a surprise to
the court.
"Although there is no real pre-
cedent in recent years for this
kind of literary trial, where the
issue is the specific political effect
of what a man has written, it was
noted here that Soviet prosecutors
generally obtain at least a limited
admission of guilt before going to
trial," wrote Grose.
THERE is a small but very de-
termined literary underground in
Russia which centers its interests
around political and social criti-
cism of the communist state. Dur-
ing the first days of the trials
perhaps three dozen young peo-
ple, many students of Sinyavky's
World Literature Institute classes,
milled around outside the court
house, vocally expressing their dis-
content with the treatment of lit-
erate criticism in the Soviet Un-
An unsigned pamphlet showed
up in London, purporting to come
from an underground organization
called SMOG. The pamphlet said
the group's aim is to bring about

a renaissance of Russian culture, tion now presumes that individual
but under the restrictions of the writers are directly responsible not
state-controlled press, "We turn to only for the political content of
the Free World which has }more what they write, but for any use
than once shown its concern for to which others may put these
culture in Russia. Give us help. writings. The defendants had
Don't allow young saplings to be steadfastly denied guilt of intent
crushed underfoot by h e a v y to undermine Soviet Communism
boots." in the smuggled books, but had
admitted that the works had been
WRITINGS in the Soviet Union used for these purposes, against
which receives open approval by their wishes.
the government consists of works Free speech is one of the funda-
written before the Octobert Revo- mental inalienable rights in West-
lution which criticize the czarist ern republics. Freedom to present
government, and recent works dissenting views and have them
which praise the communist state. heard is seen as essential for the
An example of the limits to direction of growth and change in
which the Soviet government is public institutions. The Soviet
willing to go is the contrasting government's attempts to limit all
treatment of two Russia Nobel art to subject matter acceptable
prize winners, Boris Pasternak to the current administration's
(1958) and Mikhail Sholokov philosophy has reduced art in the
(1965). Soviet Union to much lower qual-
Pasternak's novel "Doctor Zhi- ity than in czarist and early post-
vago" was critical of the failures revolutionary times.
of Soviet government policies in The dogmatization of any doc-
the immediate post-revolution era. trine, whether economic (Marx-
The Khruschev government order- ism), biological (the now discred-
ed him to refuse to accept the ited Trofim Lysenko's theories of
prize, and Pasternak did not go to heredity), or literary (Sholokovish
Stockholm for the ceremony. respectablibility) is really detri-
Sholokov, on the other hand, mental to the very system that
wrote a series of novels on the imposes these guidelines.
Don River cossacks during the
1920's and 1930's which did not THE SOVIET "underground'
overtly criticize the government. writers' concern with the progress
Sholokov's reputation rests on of their country as a whole moves
these works written thirty years one to comment that the sentenc-
ago and he has become the un- ing of Daniel and Sinyavsky is a
titled conservative dean of Soviet step in an unwarranted dogmatiz-
letters. ation of literary subject matter.
During the awards ceremony in One need only think of the po-
Stockholm last fall, when Sinyav- lemics of Thomas Payne during
sky and Daniel had been taken the American revolution or the ef-
into custody, a number of West- feet Emile Zola's "J'accuse" had
ern writers asked Sholokov to en- in arousing France's indignation
ter a plea for their release in his over the Dreyfus affair in 1900
acceptance s p e e c h. However, to see that writers have a grea
Sholokov did not do this, refusing and immediate influence in the
to throw the weight of the recog- direction nof.'social reform. The
nrazed literary establishment be- Soviet Union could make it,4
hind the new wave of critical dreams of an earthly paradise
writings. more realistic by permitting oper
discussion and criticism of poli
THE CONVICTION of Sinyav- cies and entertaining constructive
sky and Daniel is a precedent-set- suggestions for changes from al
ting case. The official Soviet posi- her citizens.
OFFSET Editor Replies
To Election Critictsm




To the Editor:
I shall reply to Mr. Schwartz's
letter in The Daily of Sunday,
February 12, by reiterating what
I said at the Council meeting.
Under SGC election rules each
candidate may spend only a fixed
amount of his own funds on cam-
paign expenses. When expenses
exceed this minimum the candi-
date, especially if he is not run-
ning as a member of a political
party and thus able to pool funds
with several other candidates, is
required to seek support from stu-
dent organizations.

Tutorial Project
To the Editor:
WE want to express our apprec-
iation to the people who so
generously contributed to the Tu-
torial and Cultural Relations Pro-
ject bucket drive Thursday, Feb.
10. The drive netted the grand
sum of $843, more than any of us
expected. These funds will enable
us to sponsor field trips, films, and
other projects aimed at giving new
experiences to the youngsters in
the program.
Some of the money will be used
to buy books that portray integrat-
ed situatiosn and books whose in-

} ..,..fi... , A / '.tt '4
' 1 ';
..L.I A ~ r


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