Page 6-Sunday; October 8, 1978-The Michigan Daily
to William Simon
By Mark Parrent
A TIME FOR TRUTH
By William Simon
McGraw Hill, 248 pp., $12.50
DON'T LET the fact that A'Time for
D Truth is written by a former
Secretary of the Treasury stop you
from reading William Simon's conser-
vative message - it's not a blitz of
complicated economic and mathematic
jargon. Simon's laissez-faire defense is
plainly written to present traditional
right-wing arguments, and does so in a
surprisingly fresh way.
Despite the initial promise of his
frank approach to the subject, however,
his coverage of many of the issues is
disturbingly incomplete. He describes
current governmental intervention as
bad in case after case. He proposes the
lifting of governmental restrictions and
leaves it at that. He usually provides
nothing in place of the status quo but
fuzzy abstract solutions. He also fails to
Mark Parrent is a Daily day editor.
analyze historically some of his
philosophical arguments. Such
discussions would no doubt make the
book more burdensome, but credibility
is lacking in his conclusions.
William Simon served as Deputy
Secretary of the Treasury, "Energy
Czar," and Secretary of the Treasury
under Presidents Nixon and Ford. He
was an extremely vocal spokesman for
the conservative school of thought
during his rather short career in gover-
nment. It has been said that his book is
a preface to a 1980 presidential cam-
paign, but that's neither here nor there.
It is an interesting explanation of his
Simon repeats his theme with em-
phasis over and over through various
examples and philosophical
discussions: the less government the
THE PROBLEM, as Simon sees it, is
that this country's government is
assuming more and more control over
the economy. He says individuals are
hindered from productive innovation at
every turn by some government
regulation. He sees the government as
absorbing far too much wealth for
redistribution by huge bureaucracies.
Many startling examples are presen-
ted, but he fails to propose specific
levels of acceptance for such programs.
He simply says they are bad, tells
why, and leaves it at not much more
Another area Simon does not
adequately examine is the environmen-
tal regulation maze. He points out the
strangling effects that many of the
regulations have on various businesses,
but never examines the comparative
benefits of the environmental statutes.
Overall, his attacks on big gover-
nment are interesting and worth con-
sideration. Especially interesting is his
discussion of the Federal Energy Agen-
cy he once headed.
One notably worthwhile chapter is
the segment on his dealings with New
York City during its acute financial
crisis. His explanation of his actions is
intriguing, as is his evaluation that New
York City is a microcosm of the United
States at high speed.
He ruthlessly attacks "liberals" as
the big spending source of the huge
See SIMON, Page 8
Tracking the elusive 40
Can there be life after 'Life'?
By Julie Rovner
By Richard Berke
T HOUGH EVERYONE had told me Life was
gone, its demise didn't hit me until the check
came. A 17-cent refund arrived with a note from an
apologetic publisher, who explained that hard
times-notably network televison and soaring
postal rates-had halted Life's presses.
Since Life's day of reckoning in 1972, I have
missed the magazine. Life reminds me of Vietnam,
women in mini-skirts, Lyndon Johnson, communes,
and Joe Namath-all captured in sharp, multi-
colored photographs. But as it looks now, I don't ex-
pect the revived Life to have the high priority in my
magazine reading that it did six years ago.
The new Life is not the old Life. The publishers
had to make several changes in their publication to
make it attractive to a market which is vastly dif-
ferent from the one Life used to serve. And that's
where the problem is.
The shift of Life from a weekly to a monthly for-
mat means it can no longer be a
newsmagazine-and the editors acknowledge that.
"Picture-magic" is their answer for sustaining a
comeback. In the premiere October issue the
editors say: "It is our intention that Life should look
wonderful every time it appears ... our pictures
and our stories will have to convey the continuing
sense that this new Life, like the old one, is deeply
involved with the world it covers..."
W HILE EXTRAORDINARY photography,
which fills the first magazine, is great to look
at, without some element of timeliness the real
value of the pictures is lost.
The old Life kept readers informed on big news
events, but with an offbeat flair that Time and
joy good photography, but I think not. Aside from a
significant amount of news, gone from the reborn
Life are the commentaries and reviews that kept
the magazine current.
In some ways, Life has less appeal than People,
the successful weekly spawned by Time, Inc. that
capitalizes on photographs. Though People is gossip
put across in a sometimes chatty style, its subject
matter is timely; the magazine talks about what
people are talking about.
THE PROFILE of Pope John Paul I in the
October edition points to Life's distance from
its readers. The pope died in September, as we all
know, but as far as the October issue is concerned,
he is alive and well.
The new Life does outclass its predecessor in one
obvious area: advertisements, splendid ads. Use of
vivid colors and the large, slick pages-an ad agen-
cy's dream-are taken advantage of. A double-page
lipstick ad could pass for a poster and an eight by 10
inch Big Mac, grease and all, certainly is attention-
Sometimes it is even difficult to distinguish bet-
ween ad and magazine spread. I read through a full
page spread on scouting in the new Life several
times until I realized it wass created in Life's offices
and not by a Madison Avenue ad hustler.
My disappointment in the revised Life comes in
part because it doesn't fill the void in memory of an
all-purpose, entertaining, and, informative
publication. But, I must admit, the old Life wouldn't
survive today. Magazines have specialized reader-
ships and mass appeal is hard to muster.
But one fact is for sure: the revived Life doesn't
WHEN THAT white envelope arrives
about three weeks into next term,
most students will fare just about as
they expected. Some will crumple the
carbon-copied grades and wait for the
letter asking them to leave. But a few
will have no complaints after having
earned a 4.0.
As grade point averages loom in im-
portance, 4.0 has become more than a
mathematical figure. It has become a
way of life, a personal identification
symbol for the academic elite. But
those who attain that perfect score
claim it is far from the central aspect of
"If you saw me on the Diag, I
wouldn't have horn-rimmed glasses or
pants that only came down to my
knees," says LSA Literary college
junior Mark Pearlstein. Pearlstein is
one of the University's Angell Scholars,
a group of students who have achieved
all A grades for two or more con-
But despite their illustrious grade
points, scholars of 4.0 caliber vehemen-
tly rebutt their stereotypical role. They
say they have a wide range of interests
outside of academics and that they are
not significantly more intelligent than
most other students _ they just work
Pearlstein says that during a typical
week he spends Tuesdays and Thur-
sdays in the graduate library, where he
is safe from the distractions of his apar-
tment. Since he has no classes on those
days, he camps out, preferably in a
carrel, from 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. The
other week nights are a bit
"problematic" but they do include a
solid block of study time. Regular
studying is a distinguishing feature
behind the academic success of excep-
"It's a lot of hard work," says
Pearlstein, "I guess I'm reasonably in-
telligent, but if I hadn't worked so hard,
my grades certainly wouldn't be what
they are now."
PROFESSORS AND students agree
that grades, along with test scores,
don't necessarily indicate superior in-
telligence. And many claim the ability
to get good grades, whether due to raw
intelligence or hard work, is an accom-
plishment in itself.
"Professors have to judge students
on their work and not on their records,"
says English Professor Eric Rabkin.
"How do I know, when a student hands
me a paper, whether it took him two
hours or two weeks to do it? But who's
to say that the gift of perseverence isn't
just as rare as the gift of intelligence?"
The hours 4.0 students log with their
textbooks can sometimes take a toll on
a student's peer relationships, as well
as his or her dealings with instructors.
"I've had trouble coming to terms
with the fact that I'm very smart," says
English major Joan McGee. She says
she has earned a "reputation" among
her friends and is often teased about
her study habits.
Pearlstein, too, admits he is often
chided about his rigorous study habits
but says he feels his grade point does
points out that his friends represent just
about every location on the grade point
Rabkin says he has noticed some
ostrasizing of 4.0 students, although he
says it is not because others harbor
jealousy towards the exceptional
student. "It's not considered nice" to be
an extremely good student, says
Rabkin, who entered the University at
16. "We feel we have to apologize for
our good grades."
A CCORDING TO Rabkin, earning
high marks is considered an accep-
table practice, but "The world doesn't
want people who are too far off scale,"
he says. "Man is a herding creature
and people who don't fit in are per-,
ceived as a threat."
Perhaps by virtue of their common
academic achievement, exceptional
students tend to socialize with other ex-
ceptional students. McGee and several
friends make the Classics Library in
Angell Hall a regular meeting place
where, besides studying, they gossip,
drink coffee, and daydream, just like
any other group of students who share
Avery Katz, another Angell scholar,
points out, "I like to socialize with my
friends, and I don't think I study more
than the average person. But then, I
guess I hang around with people who
study more than average.
But to spend 12 hours a day at least
two days a week in the, library
Pearlstein, like the others, has a strong
motivation. For him, it is a desire to go
Newsweek lack. The October Life is all stunning
picture: the Shah of Iran in his Caspian hideaway,
colorful hot-air balloons meandering through
America, and dogs leaping for frisbees. While all
those topics make for stunning visual displays, they
are isolated from the tempo of the nation.