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May 13, 1966 - Image 4

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1966-05-13

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Seventy-Sixth Year

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The 'Occupation' Game,
The Sit-In at Chicago

icalism, under the heading "demon-
strations," the word "occupation." That
was what the University of Chicago stu-
dents were terming their protest staged
Wednesday at the school's administration
building against the policy of sending
class ranking and grade points to Selec-
tive Service officials.
And, rather than being just a sit-in as
several news services called it, the action
was an occupation: students did sit-in
at some points, but also slept, studied,
sang, played cards, had poetry readings,
ate well and spent much of the time mill-
ing around in a disorganized manner.
There were no consecutive rounds of ex-
hausting polemics, but rather small dis-
cussion groups-just living.
THIS IS NOT TO SAY that the stu-
dents lacked enthusiasm for their
cause. As one delighted demonstrator
said, "It's -real, it's real!" Some flamboy-
ant crowd inciters did step up a few
times to build morale. Paul Booth, execu-
tive secretary of Students for a Demo-
cratic Society, tried rallying the crowd
with, "The revolution-wait!" And, the
call for strict organization was heeded
when the demonstrators needed to block
passageways and entrances to prevent
the entrance of non-students.
They were excited, yet kept a certain
distance, not letting the issue overwhelm
them. While they were dead serious about,
fighting for their "cause"-opposing the
Selective Service's demands-they were
also playing a prank, and having much
fun doing it, to those who had played
many on them.
Students gleefully shinnied down ban-
nisters, unable to pass through stairwells
packed with their compatriots, and "cap-
tured" elevators in a part of the building
that had previously been sealed off. No
somber, "dedicated" teach-in faces there.
A Chicago law professor very aptly said
of the demonstration, "The Southern Ne-

groes did it, now middle class whites can
play the game too."
The students were playing, yes, but not
in the sense that the professor was talk-
ing about. He meant that the demonstra-
tion would be useless in inducing Selec-
tive Service officials to change draft laws.
Maybe their efforts will have been
wasted. But, even if they are, at least
the demonstrators will have made an ap-
pealing case, because they were playing
at demonstrating in a different way.
Their tactics had not made them lose
sight of the fact, as has happened so
often, that demonstrating alone is not
the ethos, even for a little while, for liv-
God Lives!
THE LATEST ATTEMPT to answer the
much asked question of Is God Dead?
is both humorous and somewhat dis-
maying. Originally a subject of theologi-
cal and philosophical debate among the
likes of Pierre Teilhard du Chardin,
Rheinhold Niebuhr, or Betrarand Russell,
the question of God's state-of-health has,
with the aid of a cover story in Time
and other publicity, becone a matter of
major national concern.
WITHIN THE LAST few weeks, a bump-
er sticker, loudly proclaiming "God Is
Alive!" in orange on blue had made its
appearance. Now, the bumper sticker is a
handy little invention of the '50's, useful
for advocating the support of the UN,
advocating the abolition of the UN, en-
couraging votes for one's favorite sena-
tor, or eliciting support for the local po-
lice. However, the use of bumper stickers
to proclaim the existence of God seems
to be carrying the thing a bit too far.
It is generally acknowledged that the
United States has become an automobile
society. We seem to be well on the way to
becoming a bumper sticker society as
well. Bereft of the overhead signs and
newspapers Indispensable -to riders on
buses and subways, the motorist is lim-
ited to perusal of these ubiquitous pieces
of sticky plastic.
Nevertheless, the back end of Ameri-
can cars is a rather unsuitable place for
one of the most important questions deal-
ing with the faith and existence of man
in the twenty-first Year of the Atom.
E "GOD IS ALIVE!" sticker does
have one small saving grace. As the
driver's inadequate brakes fail and his
non-collapsible steering column comes up
to spear him, he can have the consola-
tion of the declaration on the bumper of
the car he has just hit.

TIHE FRICTION and difficulties
which have resulted in the
legislature and the state in general
apparently are not going to change
the University's dubious policy of
refusing to recognize labor unions.
But-unless the University takes
a more flexible and intelligent
stand on its own shortly-there is
every reason to expect that some
potent pressures may force such
a change.
The University is currently in
a court fight against Michigan
Public Act 379, which puts col-
lective bargaining at universities
(among other public employers)
under the jurisdiction of the state
labor mediation board.
Under the law, a public employ-
er would have to recognize and
bargain exclusively with a union
receiving a majority of votes from
employes in an appropriate de-
partment or unit. The board could
find the employer or the union
guilty of unfair bargaining prac-
tices but could not force them to
agree on specific contract terms.
that putting the University, a con-
stitutionally-established autono-
mous body, under jurisdiction of
the labor mediation board, a sta-
tutorily-created panel, is uncon-
stitutional. It insists that the
court fight is solely a defense of
University autonomy, and nothing
While it has already lost a re-
quest for an injunction to pro-
hibit establishment of bargaining
units and conduction of elections,
the University intends to continue
its challenge of the constitutional-
ity of the law itself up to the
State Supreme Court.
This is the legal issue, and legal
minds are sufficiently muddled
about it to make a court test of
the law's constitutionality as it
applies to the University worth
BUT THERE ARE two other
issues as well-although many
University officials give little in-
dication they are thinking on their
own about either.
one issue is the collective bar-
gaining question. Public employe
unionism is an increasingly im-
portant area of collective bar-
gaining, so much so that President
Kennedy in 1962 set up in an
executive order for federal em-
ployes much the same regulations
embodied in PA 379.
At the University, over 575 em-
ployes are presently union mem-
bers, even though the University's
policy of union nonrecognition
means their unions can do them
absolutely no good. Local union
officials are eager to get recog-
nition, and so are state union of-
ficers. Michigan State University
has already recognized a union
under PA 379, which is not going
to make union leaders more sym-
pathetic towards the University's
dubious policies.

This sort of situation will not
go away even if the legal issue
does get settled, and it will not
change even if the University tries
to stall for time in the courts-
which it obviously intends to do.
"WE KNOW what we will have
to do if we lose our fight against
PA 379," says one professor, expert
in industrial relations. "We'll
simply have to follow it. But what
if we win? The unions won't dis-
appear. We'll still have to deal
with them somehow."
Whether or not this has oc-
curred to University administra-
tors, however, is doubtful. The
administration asked not one of
the University's collective bar-
gaining experts in the law school,
the business administration school,
the institute of labor and indus-
trial relations or the economics
department for advice.
It has also ignored by and large
the pleas for reconsideration and
flexibility these men-who have
advised state and national gov-
ernment on such issues-have
made of their own accord.
Doubtless, these experts con-
cede in reply to administrators'
comments, there will be problems.
Contract negotiations, like nearly
everything else that is important
in the modern world, are not
simple. But, as one key adminis-
trator admits, such difficulties can
all be boiled down to the observa-
tion that collective bargaining
isn't the best possible process
from the standpoint of the em-
ployer-something that is fairly
obvious to even the most casual
student of industrial relations but
which has evidently escaped the
administrators involved.
collective bargaining issue, hence,
are not similar, but-as even the
administrators insist-completely
separate. And yet, while it leans
heavily on the legal issue, the Uni-
versity has yet to face the col-
lective bargaining question in a
meaningful way, privately or pub-
licly. -
True, one of the University's
Republican regents, who has con-
siderable industrial experience-
the sort of experience on which
the University is not now relying
-has commented privately that
collective bargaining is necessary
and inevitable. Regents Irene
Murphy and Carl Brablec asked
at February's Regents meeting
that the University reconsider its
But beyond that almost nothing
has been done to face the collec-
tive bargaining issue. The Uni-
versity still has an ostrich ap-
proach to the question, exemplified
by President Hatcher's cold, tight-
lipped silence-his version of a
reply to Brablec's statement in
President Hatcher's statement at
April's Regents meeting was noth-
ing more than a review of events

in the legal fight, and avoided any
mention of what will be done if
the University loses-or, more im-
portant, if it wins.
BOTH THE LEGAL and collec-
tive bargaining issues are complex
and fairly subtle, which is perhaps
why the administration-having
avoided or ignored the advice of
its experts-is having difficulty
making much sense out of them. -
Yet the last issue in the union
controversy is a very simple one,
and, when complexities of law and
industrial relations are put aside
for a moment, it alone argues
strongly for University recognition
of unions. This is the moral issue.
the men who run one of the most
prominent educational institutions
in the world would swiftly and
cheerfully grant their employes
the decency and self respect which
collective bargaining affords. Yet
it is ironic that University em-
ployes unions remain unrecognized
while the Regents put students on
a panel to select the next Univer-
sity president, and the adminis-
tration pays heed to the voice of
the faculty senate.
Administrators say, and it is
indeed true, that only a small
proportion of University employes
presently are union members. But
this argument is at best ingenious
and at worst vicious and hypo-
critical-for the University's re-
fusal to recognize unions means
that unions can do absolutely
nothing for their members.
It is not surprising that so few
employes are union members. It
is surprising that over 575 em-
ployes have "voted with their poc-
ketbooks" and paid dues to unions
which the University will not
THE SITUATION is not hope-
less, however, unless the University
chooses to make it so. While the
legal issue will be decided in the
courts, the University could meet
both the collective bargaining and
moral issues by establishing a
framework of union recognition
and collective bargaining of its
own and on its own, without re-
gard to PA 379.
As Regent Murphy has pointed
out, this approach would fulfill
and strengthen the University's
tradition of autonomy and solve
the important moral and collective
bargaining questions which under-
lie the issue of unions.
BUT-as suggested above-the
administration has given no in-
dication it has the understanding
or the creativity to try such an
approach. Whether or not external
pressures will force it to do so,
moreover, is doubtful.
The University is unaware that
anti-unionism-which is what the
University's stance on the moral
and collective bargaining issues
amounts to after it is stripped of

all its verbal camouflage-is un-
popular and unwise in a unionized
industrial state with a heavily
Democratic legislature.
Administrators, who lunched
secretly with AFL-CIO President
August Scholle in March, add con-
fidently that the University won't
suffer. But the highest source, re-
flecting on this, commented, "Hell,
there's no point in threatening a
budget cut-we'll just go out and
do it."
This reply indicates the ad-
ministration's self -deception on
state relations-President Hatcher
was confused and upset in April
when one of the Republican re-
gents told him point blank that
the University's relations with the
state are at a dangerously low ebb
-and such blindness shows no
sign of ending.
thus unaware of such external
dangers, internal pressures might
in the end make the University
change its mind-and, unless such
a change seems to be forthcoming
spontaneously, union officials here
will and should be thinking about
such ways to help foster such a
One way suggests itself almost
at once. Local union officials are
bitterly critical of the University's
e m p 1 o y e grievance procedure,
which provides for no third-
party arbitration but merely sets
forth a chain of possible appeals
culminatng at the top-the Re-
gents. {

An obvious form of union pres-
sure would thus be for the unions
simply to appeal every grievance
case all the way up to the Regents.
This would eventually immobilize
the board, focus statewide atten-
tion on the University's anti-
union policy and put considerable
political pressure on the Regents,
two of whom (Brablec and Mrs.
Murphy) must run for re-election
in November.
It is not a very appealing pros-
pect, although it is probably in-
evitable unless the University
adopts a more intelligent and
creative approach to collective
bargaining. Such pressure would
create a crisis here, it is true.
That would be tragic.
BUT THERE IS a quiet crisis
presently-a crisis of realism, of
sophistication, of knowledge, of
morality-and that is fully as
tragic. The spectacle of the Uni-
versity administration, blindly and
blithely ignoring common sense
and common decency, gives the
observer a sense of outrage and
If the University adopts a more
realistic and humane attitude this
quiet crisis will pass. Once in a
great while, as the approval of
the residential college indicates,
the University will rise to the call
of wisdom and greatness. But if
it cannot or will not do so in this
instance then power and force will
enter the picture and will create
a new and very different crisis. It
is not an inviting prospect.


"Says He's An Expert On China And Wants To
Testify Against It"

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Editorial Staff
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CHARLOTTE WOLTER ................,... Co-Editor
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BETSY COHN ...... ............Supplement Manager
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Direct Action and Respect for, Law

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AGAINST SUCH direct action as
the Civil Rights sit-ins, the
student sit-in of Sproul Hall in
Berkeley, and draft-card burnings,
it is always said that they foment
disrespect for law and order and
lead to a general breakdown of
civil society.
Even -when it is granted that
due process and ordinary admin-
istration are not working, because
of prejudice, unconcern, double-
talk, or tyrannical arrogance, nev-
ertheless, it is alleged, the recourse
to civil disobedience entails even
worse evils.
THIS IS AN apparently power-
ful argument. People who engage
in civil disobedience tend to con-
cede it but to claim that, in the
crisis, they cannot do otherwise;
they are swept by indignation or
outrage, the situation is intoler-
able, they act for a "higher" jus-
tice or humanity.
Yet is it true that particular
direct action of this kind, which
is always aimed at very specific

abuses, in fact leads to general
lawlessness? Where is the evi-
dence-e.g., statistics of correla-
tive disorder in the community, or
an increase of unspecific lawless
acts among the direct-actionists
themselves-to prove the connec-
Such flimsy evidence as I have
seen weighs in the opposite direc-
tion: e.g., crime and delinquency
have seemed to dimish where there
has been political direct action by
Negroes; and the academic and
community spirit of Berkeley this
year is better than ordinary.
indeed, the probability is that a
specific direct action, especially if
it is successful or partially suc-
cessful, will tend to increase civil
order, since it revives the belief
that the community is ours;
whereas the inhiibtion of direct
action against an intolerable sit-
uation inevitably increases anomie
and therefore general lawlessness.

(Add to this the increasing ar-
rogance and lawlessness of the re-
pressing forces, as in the South,
or among the northern police,
when they feel they are "mis-
understood" or are being legal
against their own moral con-
The enforcement of "law and
order" at all costs aggravates the
tensions that lead to explosions
like those at Watts. I have not yet
read the book but I think that this
is the thesis of Arthur Waskow's
"From Race Riot to Sit-In":
"creative disorder" increases civil
order and diminishes anomie.
ment, that general lawlessness is

increased by specific disobedience
for political purposes, depends on
the sociological proposition that
law and order are by and large
maintained by deterrence and
penalties. But in normal civil- so-
cieties this is not the case.
People who don't pick pockets
refrain, by and large, not because
of fear of arrest and jail but be-
cause of their upbringing, social-
ization and sense of themselves;
and in these, fear and anxiety us-
ually have an anti-social rather
than a social effect.
Many criminologists and peno-
logists would agree, rather, with
the anarchist proposition that
there would be less crime, espe-
cially serious felonies, if there
were no jails. Since jails are
schools of crime, most serious
crimes are committed by repeat-
ers, and fear triggers panic be-
havior. .
AND, IN MY opinion, contrary
to the conventional argument,
anarachic incidents like civil dis-

obedience are essential parts of
the democratic process. They are
indispensible in the endless vigil-
ence required for liberty, to keep
the system of power approximate
to the evolving moral and political
sense of the, community. Diret
action is part of the process by
which law is made.
That was, of course, JeffersoWi's
contention, for instance when he
argued to free the rebels disarmed
after Shay's Rebellion. If they
were punished, said Jefferson,
others would be discouraged from
rebellion against what they judged
to be tyranny, and this would be
fatal to democracy.
GIVEN THE berserk arrogance
of contemporary nation-states in
their military-industrial combina-
tions, their stock-piling of arma-
ments, and the wars they wage,
I do not see any future for democ-
racy except in widespread civil
disobedience. The chief hope is in
the young.
Copyright, Paul Goodman, 1966

The Ups and Downs of the Economy

T HERE IS A black cloud over
theReconomic horizon; Wall
Street has become frostbitten in
what has historically been one of
its sunniest months. A profitable
Stock Exchange is a panacea to
economic fears while a sliding
market sends even the most so-
phisticated economist in a panic-
stricken run to his broker.
These worried wanderings only
succeed in painting the picture
blacker than it may in reality
prove to be. There is, however,
good reason for the lows reached
in the last week.

This speculation, while the im-
mediate cause, was hardly the
only one. The more basic causes
of the market's skittishness were
-the inflationary trend of the
past few months has built pres-
sure within the economy; the un-
certainty among top governmen-
tal officials as to how to curb
this trend; the threat of a tax
increase; and the open endedness
of the Viet Nam war,
The panic over the lows recently
hit is understandable when one
considers the past highs. The
"Great Society" is one of unpre-
cedented prosperity. The greater
the height the further there is to

corporation profits. With the
threat of inflation ever present in
such a situation stocks seemed
like the best investment one could
make with the unstable dollar.
In the wake of the speculative
fever came restraining measures
aimed at the investors of modest
income rather than the profes-
sional traders and sophisticated
investors able to accept risks. The
anti-speculative moves called for
investors to do more of their busi-
ness in cash because of the fed-
eral government's requirement of
a 70 per cent down-payment on
purchases of shares bought on
credit. The hope was that self-

and large expenditures-was with-
in our midst; the stage was set.
THE PLIGHT OF the stock
market is one of a viscious circle.
The original stock boom has con-
tributed to inflationary pressure,
and the recent collapse is due to
these same pressures of stock-
building and rising prices.
Further escalation is expected
to come from the war in Viet
Nam. Few people, particularly
economists, rely on the Adminis-
trative budgetary figures outlined
in reports to Congress. The gov-
ernment, while verbally deploring
the situation, seems to be direct-
ing the economy in only one di-

year for the Exchange. May of 6'6
has hit the low of the year.
U.S. economy is a dangerous one.
So many solutions are needed and
so few have been offered. The ob-
vious answers, aimed at slowing
down -the economy - a tax in-
crease, a tighter monetary policy,
and reduced spending have "gone
in one official ear and out the
The result of such remiss atten-
tion to a grave situation may well
be that the government will find
itself paying for such pet projects
as the "Great Society" and the
war in Viet Nam with worthless


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