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September 21, 1971 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1971-09-21

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

Ehe t Tian Biy
Eighty-one years of editorial freedom
Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan

futures past
Spartacus: Alive and kicking on Tartan Turf
by dave Chudwin

420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, Mich.

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.,



A V-7


Student inpi
THIS FALL,; the literary college will put
into operation a committee which
could give students some input into de-
cision-making inftheir school.+
After more than a year of considera-
tion, debate and revision, members of the
lySA Joint Faculty-Student Policy Com-
mittee will soon be selected to begin
their study of literary college issues and

into LSA

However, the success of the committee
is not yet guaranteed, nor has its viabil-
ity been proven. Unfortunately, it may be
destined for the fate of previous L S A
faculty-student committees - either
lacking the time to follow through i t s
ideas or lacking the power to win ap-
proval of its recommendations from the
governing faculty. And once again it will
be up to the faculty to make the com-
mittee more than a paper proposal.
The policy committee, as approved by
the LSA faculty last April, will be made
up of ten students and ten faculty mem-
bers. It will be expected to make recom-
mendations and introduce legislation be-
fore the LSA faculty. Student members
of the committee will be granted all the
privileges of faculty members except the
right to vote.
BECAUSE THE committee's reports
must be supported by a majority of
members and are thus representative of
the viewpoints of both students and fa-
culty on the committee, the reports
should not be dismissed by the governing
faculty. And under stipulations of the
proposal, ideas developed by the com-
mittee are to receive top priority con-
sideration by tl _ faculty.
But it is doubtful how much impact the
committee can have. For the governing
faculty has treated with disdain t h e
ideas of previous student-faculty commit-
tees, particularly several proposals pre-
sented last fall.
One proposal would have created an
80-member faculty-student legislative
council. However, from the start t h e
faculty killed the council's chances.
Whenever the plan was presented b o t h
Editorial Staff
Executive Editor Managing Editor
STEVE KOPPMAN .. Editorial Page Editor
RICK PERLOFF . Associate Editorial Page Editor
PAT MAHONEY .. .. Assistant Editorial Page Editor
LYNN WEINER Associate Managing Editor
LARRY LEMPERT Associate Managing Editor
ANITA CRONE............. Arts Edito?
JIM IRWIN ..... ...... ........ Associate Arts Editor
JANET FREY .......... Personnel Director
ROBERT CONROW . Books Editor
JIM JUDKIS .... ........ Photography Editor
Sports Staff

last fall and last April, the faculty rap-
idly dismissed it without discussing what
role, if any, students should play in de-
cisions on degree requirements, curricu-
lum and faculty appointments - where
now the faculty has the final word.
Instead, the faculty approved the pre-
sent policy committee, which is substan-
tially weaker than the proposed council.
The committee, of course, allows student
input; but input is all it allows. The
faculty made certain that, at least in the
immediate future, students will continue
to play a minor role in college decision-
IN OTHER CASES, the faculty treated
the proposals of its student - faculty
committees in a haphazard fashion. At
the April meeting when it began final
consideration of the policy committee,
the LSA faculty also heard the report of
its student - faculty Course Mart Com-
mittee. It was a detailed report, prepared
with a great deal of consideration be-
cause of a controversy last winter over
the nature of some Course Mart courses.
When the report was finished, a group
of professors, deciding that the course
mart was letting students get "too many
easy A's," capriciously ignored their
avowed moratorium on new pass-fail
courses, and with a stroke made course
mart pass-fail.
In the ruling, they quickly overturned
their own limitations on pass-fail-in-
stigated to allow time to explore the
g r a d i n g system - simply to make a
change a small number of them wanted.
Though professors often claim that be-
cause they are at the University longer
than students, they are better able to
see the ramifications of new ideas,
with actions such as this, have they
really displayed their wisdom?
TN THE FINAL analysis, for there to be
any sense to professors and students
working on literary college problems on
the policy committee, the ideas they for-
mulate must be treated-not haphazard-

the stadium on the top of the,'
hill. They entered to sit on tiered
rows and view the spectacle be-
To the accompaniment of bug-
les and drums, the contestants
marched onto the field. The
brawny athletes, supported w i t h
state funds to win glory for their
teams and to provide entertain-
ment for the people, had trained
for weeks for the event.
The masses, bearded, drinking
and drunken, became increasingly
boisterous as the competition be-
gan. Visitors from different areas
cheered their native sons w i t h
traditionaluyells while dignitaries
coolly occupied seats high above
the middle of the stadium.
Punctuated with musical flour-
ishes, the teams lunged and bang-
ed across the field, attendants
carrying out the injured as the
controlled carnage continued.
centuries ago could be transported
to our time, he would probably
grow a bit homesick as he watched
last Saturday's football game.
Football players are our mod-
ern gladiators, paid, educated and
trained for 60 minutes of violence
on a plastic lawn. The show is en-
veloped in enough pomp,patriot-
ism, music and loyalty to one's
alma mater to produce a spec-
tacle that would warm the heart
of a Roman emperor.
Even the gods of old were ap-
peased as thousands of g r e e n-
glass wine bottles and a few peo-
ple were passed to the top of the
stadium never to be seen again -
sacrifices to the football god.
Of course, some things h a v e
changed over two millenia. For
one, the Romans usually got free
admission to gladiator shows. Also,
now there's a bit less blood -
Don Canham, sovereign of the
athletic department, has too muen
invested in an athlete to lose him
for a season.
And there was no Roman public
address system blaring, "Mr. and

Mrs .Charcoal, call the Ann Ar-
bor Police," or "Mrs. Schwartz,
please go to Gate 9."
Gladiator contests, football
games, bullfights, soccer matches,
lacrosse, rugby, wrestling, hockey
-the list lengthens for each coun-
try or historical period one might
Each of these sports is limited
violence, elaborated through cere-
monies into what soon become
traditional ritual occasions. Be-
cause these rituals are so common
in one form or another at differ-
ent periods and in different na-
tions, it seems likely they serve
some basic human needs.
Alvin Toffler in his book Fu-
ture Shock suggests that "in an
accelerative society, the need may
well be for the preservation of cer-
tain continuities."
WITH CHANGE 'swirling about
us so rapidly, listening to Band
Day in its twenty-third year,
yelling "Go Blue", singing "T h e
Victors" and watching the foot-
ball team play its 93rd season
links us with the past.
While obviously not all tradi-
tions are good, participating in at
least some of the same types of
activities as our parents or grand-
parents provides the young a
common ground to relate to the
oldergeneration and perhaps per-
suades them that we have n o t
completely gone awry.
Rituals, as formalized tradi-
tions, provide a buffer against
change by making it possible to
preserve some of the things of
the past, presumably those mean-
ingful to the present.
While rituals buffer against the
new, they also provide a yard-
stick against which change can be
measured. The seasonal regularity
of rituals such as football a s o
help mark the passage of time,
the pigskin representing autumn
and the return to the University.
As Toffler explains, "repetitive
behavior, whatever else its func-
tions, helps give meaning to non-


-Daily-Tom Gottlieb
'When in Ann Arbor, do as the Ann Arborites'

repetitive events, by providing the
backdrop against which novelty
is silhouetted."
Football's most important ritual
function, however, is serving as a
substitute for aggression.
KONRAD LORENZ, in books he
has written about animal behav-
ior, points out that many species
of animals engage in ritualized
aggression. They go through form-
al contests of strength and skill
to establish a "pecking order,"
hold on to territory and to find
These contests rarely result in
serious injury or death, merely

pitting opponents against e a c h
other and working out their ag-
gressive drives in a non-harmful
In a sense this is also true with
football. The players, and through
them, vicariously, the fans, relieve
aggressive tendencies within pre-
scribed rules in an organized way.
Of course, football, like o t h e r
areas of emotional controversy,
can create aggressive impulses.
It's doubtful that the students at
Ohio State University would be so
hostile to students here if it were
not for the football rivalry t h a t
has developed over the years.
Lorenz has suggested that form-

alized international contests be-
come a substitute for war, w i t h
countries ritualizing their corpor-
ate aggressive impulses in m o r e
benign activities.
is debatable. Our time-traveling
Roman citizen could tell us that
gladiator contests and other rit-,
uals in his native land and time
did not seem to prevent imperial-
istic expansion and war.
However, if such a scheme could
work, it would be quite ironic than
football, that circus of violence to
entertain the masses, even had be-
come an instrument of peace.



Letters to The Daily

ly-but with much consideration.
And here a partial burden rests with
students. It is important that the student
members of the committee treat their
role seriously, not cynically. There have
been too many departments which have
seated students as nonvoting members
of their policy-making committees only
to find that students attend meetings
irregularly and, in general, display only
occasional interest in the policies them-
But students can have no effect-es-
pecially in an advisory capacity-if the
faculty does not treat their presence and
their suggestions with respect.
And although the college policy com-
mittee's name is clearly a misnomer-
it won't make policy, only recommenda-
tions-the faculty does have the chance
to give it some validity.

Youth culture
To The Daily:
Culture" (Daily, Sept. 14) was
definitely not 'in' and certainly
should have been left 'out' of the
paper. Our disgust with the story
stemmed from confusion over the
vein in which Perloff was writing.
If "Youth Culture" aimed at por-
traying social reality on campus
it failed miserably in its inco-
hesiveness. As an attempt at sa-
tire, the writing style made it only
Not only do we feel the article
would always be in bad taste, but
its presentation at the beginning
of the term is particularly ill-
timed. To generalize the student
society creates only a partial pic-
ture for the newcomers to the
university community. Such at-
tempts at socilization are con-
trary to the philosophy of a free
U. Tactics of ostracism can only
be harmful to those trying to
develop a life style in a new en-
We feel Perloff's rigidity in
portraying social norms on cam-
pus is an example of narrowmind-
edness. In most instances it is the

adult who is throught of as strictly
enforcing his social values. In
"Youth Culture," it is Perloff im-
posing an inflexible value system.
IN SHORT we feel "Youth Cul-
ture" was a waste of column in-
ches and a poor excuse for a
Mary Connelly, '73
Karen Visschers, '73
Prisoners' dignity
To The Daily:
AS A READER of The Daily
and as a member of the Human
Race, I should like to be heard
on the Attica revolt which just
recently took place and in which
the forces of law and order are
taking a beating in your paper.
My heart bleeds for the poor
prisoners! Your Radical Inde-
pendent Party can condemn to
the high heavens but gradually,
in this country, a move is afoot
to put teeth into the law and
order end of this jazz. For every
member of the RIP who con-
demns Rockefeller for his actions
I'll find you ten who praise him
for his stand.
I, and millions of others you

will soon find, believe that a pri-
soner loses his right to dignity
and the right to lead "construc-
tive and fulfilling lives within the
community" (as your editorial put
it) when he gets his butt thrown
into the can. If he had any dig-
nity and had led a constructive
and fulfilling existence outside the
prison he wouldn't be where he
is now. Prison should be made
into a place where conditions of
life etch themselves so indelibly
into the person's mind that he
will do anything on earth to keep
from going back.
The editorial gives statistics of
four blacks in prison to every
white. Is this supposed to make
the whites feel bad or conscience
stricken? I do not doubt for a
minute that the way things are
going in this country that it won't
be long before things will be bet-
ter though.
All the prisons up north are
solidly white so I -presume a move
will soon be afoot to bus some
of them down here to achieve
"racial balance". After all, if it's
good enough for our kids its good
enough for our prisoners. No?
-Homer F. Bruneau
Sept. 16

MORT NOVECK, Sports Editor
JIM KEVRA, Executive Sports Editor
RICK CORNFELD ...... Associate Sports
TERRI FOUCHEY ... Contributing Sports
BETSY MAHON .............. ... Senior Night


-Associated Press

The god of football?

Nixon's economics: An exercise

in rhetoric

Daily Guest Writer
Dan Boothby, a junior in the literary
college, is a member of the Human Rights-
Radical Independent Party.
His article is an expression of his own
views, and in no 'way represents the
position of the party.
ONE month and two days ago, Rich-
ard Nixon announced his 'New
Economic Policy' (NEP). In the period
immediately following Nixon's August
15 speech, NEP was hailed (and dam-
ned) as a fundamental restructuring
of American economic institutions.
The passage of time has shed much
light on Nixon's intentions. It is be-
coming clear that the August "eco-
nomic revolution" was a hastily ex-
temporized political contrivance. The
NEP programs (with one exception)
are simply Nixon's attempt to neu-
tralize the economy as a partisan
Only when viewed as a public rela-
tions gimmick do NEP and the events
of the last month make much sense.
Prior to August 15, the Democrats
were accusing Nixon of inaction in in-
flation. Nixon's moves towards "jaw-
boning" had failed to slow the rise in
prices. Worse still, they failed to slow
Nixon'sfal in the opninion nblls.

tion. And the auto industry received
a special bonus - repeal of the auto-
mobile excise tax.
however, appended to the Nixon pro-
motional hoopla. The attempt to float
the dollar was a long overdue step to-
wards abandoning the international
system of fixed exchange rates. This
rigid structure has led governments
to create unemployment deliberately in
order to protect their currency. It has
meant that reevaluations which ought
to be gradual and continuous have
been sudden and traumatic. Severing
the bond between the dollar and gold
is an important move towards ending
a system which has long since outlived
its purpose.
Nixon felt prompted to such drastic
action on international monetary re-
form by the balance-of-payments sit-
uation. Shortly before the announce-
ment of NEP it became clear that,
for the first time since World War
II, the U.S. was going to run a deficit
in its trade account. Having decided to
float the dollar the Nixon adminis-
tration tied in the rest of NEP - not
because the parts of the program were
inter'or~11 ivnn'ofprl haft fr,.yyav,xmv

nomic institutions will remain funda-
mentally unaltered.
More specifically, a tripartite wage-
price board will undoubtedly be formed.
Any real controls on prices, however,
demand a considerable bureaucracy
and considerable enforcement powers.
The board (or boards) will have nei-
ther. At most it will be able to delay
major wage and price hikes. More
probably it will simply have the awe-
some power to shake a reproachful
finger and murmur tsk-tsk.
The exact form of the wage-price
board and the nature of the tax cuts
will prompt much partisan pockeying.
The maneuvering in Congress will
serve to obscure the reasons rising
prices and cheap imports are political
issues, just as the rhetoric surrounding
NEP has. However, assessing the ade-
quacy of NEP and of the Democratic
party counter programs demands an
understanding of why the mass of
American people are concerned about
inflation and foreign competition.
THE REASON for concern over infla-
tion is easily understood. In the five
years between 1961 and 1966 the real
weekly earnings of private, non-agri-
r'uitiiralo 1f n -s~unevsvwr kers-i~~7~i'i't'c.hp

mechanisms of the decline. Further, it
is important to note that 'should such
a tendency persist during recovery
from the present recession, a redistri-
bution of income towards high income
groups would occur.
THE CONCERN over foreign goods
is equally easy to understand. Cheap
imports certainly mean lower prices
for consumers. But in times of high
unemployment this benefit is out-
weighed in workers' minds by fear of
additional unemployment due to for-
eign competition.
Yet this tradeoff between, jobs and
the availability of inexpensive con-
sumption goods need not exist. To end
it, government need only replace un-
employment compensation with a
guaranteed annual income at a decent
level and provide relocation allowances
and job training programs.
Such a program would undoubtedly
redistribute income towards lower in-
come groups. As would a program that
ended the decline in workers' real in-
comes by lowering their tax burden
and raising that of high income.
groups. Nevertheless, such programs
would attack the inequities caused by

at a level so low as to render the pro-
gram meaningless. They are edging
away from their support of free trade
- and the lower prices for consumers
it brings.
The Democrats certainly have not
put forth reducing income disparity as
a response to NEP. Indeed, their pet
economic scheme, the incomes policy,
has as its explicit intent the freezing
of the income distribution. In theory
(and cet par) all incomes rise under
an incomes policy as productivity in-
creases - but the proportions between
them remain fixed. One can only con-
clude that the Democrats feel the
present income distribution is basically
In the past decade in the United
States, the top five per cent of in-
come earners received around 15 per-
cent of consumer income. The top 20
percent received around 40 percent of
income; the bottom 40 percent less
than 20 percent of income.
for change. And redistributive pro-
grams could resolve the problems
which prompted NEP. But if the people
want income redistribution they will
hnv4-to frn it. hrninh'1, 'A,.it i, f flp,


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