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The Pinto Project: Never look a gift horse ...?
byj Jn neubaclier
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TUESDAY, OCTOBER 20, 1970
NIGHT EDITOR: DAVE CHUDWIN
Prime Minister Trudeau
and the War Measures Act
LIBERAL PREMIER Pierre Trudeau has
opted for a dangerously anti-liber-
tarian course of action with his invoca-
tion last week of Canada's War Measures
The War Measures Act gives the gov-
ernment emergency power to censor and
suppress publications, make arrests with-
out following normal procedures and con-
trol virtually all aspects of the nation's
economy. It has never before been in-
voked in peacetime.
Trudeau, acting upon the authority
given to him by the War Measures Act
announced regulations providing five
years in jail for members of the Quebec
Liberation Front (FLQ) or for anyone
even assisting a member of the front. So
far, scores of intellectuals, writers, mu-
sicians and trade unionists as well as
several leading members of the Parti
Quebecois (which won 25 per cent of the
votes in Quebec's spring elections) have
fallen under the Canadian government's
Trudeau, it is true, acted upon the re-
quest of the Provincial Prime Minister
of Quebec in sending troops into the cities
and countryside where the FLQ has sup-
port, but the political reality of the situa-
tion is not so clear cut.
WHOLESALE crackdown on those
who have dissented from the tradi-
tional path of Canadian politics demon-
strates a readiness on the part of the
federal government to extinguish all radi-
cal manifestations of the French libera-
While it may have been true that the
government was pressured to take the
extraordinary measures it did, it should
have been aware of what the effects would
be on the frustrated extremist kidnapers
of the now slain Quebec Minister of
Labor, Pierre Laporte. Moreover, there
has as yet been no sign of the promised
scaled-down version of, the act to replace
the one now in force by Trudeau's decree.
Inadvertantly, Trudeau may have pro-
vided an impetus for increased radical
activity in Canada. The formation of the
United Front for Liberty - consisting of
the four major trade unions, student
groups and independence organizations
under the united platform of repealling
the War Measures Act, the release of all
political prisoners and the opening of the
closed schools, - was a direct conse-
AT TIS point in time, the future course
of Canadian politics is uncertain and
confused. While few have doubts t h a t
civil liberties will be-restored, the ramifi-
cations of the War Measures Act on the
psyche of the nation - which may be im-
mense - will not be understood for some
It is within this background that a noon
rally on the Diag has been organized for
today. This rally should be a starting
point for ongoing discussion and analysis
of the situation.
PROBLEM: How does the Ford Motor
Company, which introduced its new
sub-compact Pinto last month, crack the
Volkswagen barrier that surrounds our
college campuses and win the hearts of
the youth of the nation (who, of course,
are the future big-car buyers of Amer-
SOLUTION: Dd massive amounts of re-
search about student attitudes toward the
new car, letting them test-drive it, see it,
fill out questionnaires about it. Evaluate
the reaction and then adapt.
There's just one problem. Massive
amounts of research cost massive amounts
of money. So, Ford had a better idea. They
went to the experts - College Marketing
Corporation, a New York-based firm spec-
ializing in analyzing and selling the youth
Sure enough, CMC concocted a campaign
that will provide nationwide publicity for
Ford and their mini-car, and at the same
time provide Ford with millions of words
of research, statistics and buyer profiles
at a cost that can only be described
as dirt cheap.
How? Well, you let the students do the
research themselves, and call it educa-
UNDER THE TITLE: "The Pinto Pro-
ject for the Academic Community" Ford
has business and advertising students and
professors at 160 campuses across the na-
tion engaged in extensive, detailed a n d
absolutely free research on how to sell
the Pinto to the college and youth markets.
Ford sends a professor at each campus
a free, fully insured Pinto that is his to
do with as he pleases for five weeks. Along
with the car goes: a 4-inch thick manual
of facts about the Pinto, and the rest of
the Ford line: a description of the current
marketing strategies now being used by
Ford to push the Pinto; some statistics
on the college-student-as-consumer pre-
pared by the College Marketing Corpora-
Each professor, in turn, is supposed to
build a term project for his class using the
Pinto as the focus. Market research, crea-
tive advertising approaches, media selec-
tion and sales promotion are all areas that
the professors are encouraged to explore
-anything goes, just as long as it helps
Ford find out how to most effectively
sell the Pinto to students.
The professors are encouraged by Ford
to include as many students as possible
in the project, and make it an inter-dis-
ciplinary project, i.e., a well-rounded pro-
ject that touches all the bases for Ford.
Students are given four months for their
study. A detailed, well-written report of
the results and analysis of the semester's
research, complete with charts and sta-
tistics and conclusions, is expected to be
on a desk at the College Marketing Cor-
poration no later than Jan. 30, 1971.
(Spokesmen at CMC say that while the
official stance will be to frown on requests
for incompletes, students needing until
Feb. 15 will get the extra time.)
NOT SURPRISINGLY, the response on
the campuses has been enthusiastic. Both
professors and students alike have been
more than happy with the propspect of
getting out of the classroom and into the
real world of product pushing. In fact,
the program was originally planned by
College Marketing Corporation to include
only 80 colleges, but the response was so
good it prompted CMC to double that to
the current figure of 160.
Thieu' s shaky government
And just to make sure the enthusiasm
doesn't dwindle during the long dark ;days
of winter, Ford has set up a contest in
the form of a competition between t h e
schools. For that, Ford has sweetened the
pot with 16 regional prizes of $1,000
and a grand prize of $15,000 to the school
submitting the best report.
Ford, of course, does not publicly re-
present the Pinto Project as an attempt
to milk the campuses for hundreds of
thousands of dollars worth of research at
a fraction of that price. According to a
spokesman at CMC, "Ford wanted to work
with college students. The question was
And in a pamphlet distributed by Ford
to the professors running the program,
Ford says that "classroom experience can
be enhanced by giving students the op-
portunity to participate in solving actual
business problems. "Therefore, the Ford
Marketing Corporation has created the
Pinto Project as an educational service to
the academic community." (Emphasis
With that line, Ford has enticed 160 pro-
fessors who have managed to come up
with some interesting and at times con-
troversial projects in market exploration.
(At Bryant College in Providence, R.I., a
class has put forth the hypothesis that
the introduction of the Pinto, and Chevro-
let's strike-bound Vega 2300, will simply
make foreign imports look all the more
attractive to the consumer, especially,
Volkswagen's new stripped-down bug
which undercuts both American mini-cars
One problem the professors have run
into in administering the Pinto Project
is finding a creative and original use for
the actual car that goes with the pro-
In anticipation of this sticky problem,
Ford made sure to suggest that the Pinto
be used on campus for promotion at club
or fraternal events, student activities, or
at athletic events.
AT ONE SMALL business college on the
East Coast, the students are studying the
comparative selling techniques and appeal
of the Pinto versus foreign imports. They'll
get a lot of use out of the Pinto as they
ride around town in it from dealer to
dealer for five weeks.
At Boston University, the students will
be doing an "image study" of the Pinto.
They will study the advertising strategies
now being used by Ford, and the pitches
actually being used in the salesroom by
Boston Ford dealers. At the same time,
they'll let students test-drive their Pinto
and look it over, then fill out an eval-
uation questionnaire. Then they'll com-
pare to see if the advertising and dealer's
sales pitches are aimed in the right direc-
But according to BU Prof. Peter Mc-
Clure, there is a hangup. "The car they,
gave us broke down," he said. "A part
went bad." Unfortunately for BU, it's
been less than simple to get a replacement.
It seems that since the Pinto hit the
market only a short month ago, there isn't
yet a large and efficiently distributed
backlog of spare parts.
"We're beginning to wonder if we have
an Edsel on our hands," McClure moans.
In the meantime, his test-drive program
They're hurting also at Emory Univer-
sity in Atlanta. Prof. M. B. Neace's under-
graduate marketing class was promised a"
Pinto for 5 weeks beginning Oct. 12, but
it still hasn't arrived.
"We haven't heard a word from New
York," he says. "I told my class this morn-
ing that they better make plans to do
their research in some other way."
MOST OF THE universities involved are
going .along the same lines as Emory and
BU, letting students and others test drive
and look at the car, then evaluate it on
specially designed questionnaire This is
exactly what they're doing at the Dear-
born campus of this University.
"We'll first work in class, designing the
questionnaire for students to fill out after
taking a test drive," says Robert Leidig,
a lecturer in Business Administration who
is the coordinator of the Pinto Project
there. The test drive program and survey
analysis will be supervised primarily by
12 seniors in business administration who
are enrolled in an elective course in Ad-
vertising and Sales Promotion. According
to Leidig, his students are "super-delight-
ed" with the Pinto Project.
"They'll analyze the data, and then de-
sign advertising and promotional c a m-
paigns for the Pinto,". Leidig says.
Aimed primarily at selling to the youth
"Well, certainly, the college market
stands out as a big one," he agrees.
Leidig shouldn't have any trouble
working with Ford on the Pinto Project.
The Dearborn campus is located right next
door to Henry Ford Community College,
and within spitting distance of the Ford
Motor Co. Central Office Building. And it's
situated on the old Henry Ford estate,
which was donated by Ford, along with $12
million to get the branch campus going.
AT LEAST ONE major and prestigious
school of business administration has de-
clined Ford's offer of a chance to get in
on the Pinto Project. Strangely enough,
it was the one on this campus - big
brother of the Dearborn campus.
The reason? Well, Marketing P r of.
Claude Martin had beaten Ford to the
punch by already designing for his class
a "real-life" project based on the Pinto.
But Martin, who has run projects like
this before, is demonstrating that "actual-
condition" study projects are feasible in
the area of marketing and promotion even
if you don't have a $6,000 incentive and
a free car And he doesn't find himself in
the position of using his students to sell
the Pinto for Ford.
"We had already set up a creative pro-
ject relative to the Pinto, before being ap-
proached on the Pinto Project," M a r t i n
explains. "We probably inspired the pro-
But Martin runs his project without the
actual car. In fact, he says, he wouldn't
want the responsibility of having one. And
while the final results of his class project
will be courteously given to Ford officials,
there will be no competition, no seeking
a cash payoff.
Furthermore, Martin emphasizes t h a t
the creative advertising ideas that his stu-
dents come up with will remain the pro-
perty of those students.
"We're not running a consultation pro-
gram for 'clients', commercial or non-
commercial," he says. "We insist that the
primary aim of any project be for teach-
ing. The company we work with must
understand that. Our Pinto project is not
designed as a freebie for Ford. Participation
in the class is strictly voluntary for the
students in the class. They are welcome to
work on some other project for the semes-
Martin's refusal to get involved doing
research for large corporate clients hasn't
seemed to hurt his students any, Last year,
they spent the term designing advertising
approaches for the American Cancer So-
ciety - approaches that other people in
advertising call "excellent," and which
the ACS is using as a basis for some of its
public service advertising.
It seems like 160 other business profes-
sors across the country might learn a lot
from Claude Martin.
"HO, HO, HO CHI MINH, NLF is going
to win," has been chanted at count-
less demonstrations, rallies, and disrup-
tions by various factions of the New Left.
It was a catchy chant and well suited to
drowning out speakers-the number of
people who actually believed in its proph-
ecy, however, was probably rather small.
Now a recently released study by none
other than the Central Intelligence Agen-
cy in effect predicts an inevitable Com-
munity victory in Vietnam. The reason
for the Communist victory, says the re-
port, is that the government of South
Vietnam is so thoroughly penetrated with
Communist agents, that when the United
States troops are pulled out, the govern-
ment will fall.
The CIA report estimates that some
30,000 Communist agents are actively
working at, all levels of South Vietnam
government. In addition, there are thous-
ands of /other Vietnamese who help these
agents by supplying them food and shel-
IN ITS ANALYSIS, the CIA says that
early last year, after a number of
setbacks on the battlefield, the Commu-
nists decided to shift their long-range
strategy from intense military activity to
political infiltration and erosion of the
Saigon government. In making this shift,
they were looking forward to the day
when American troop strength would no
longer be a serious threat, due to with-
Among the chief reasons for the effi-
cacy of the Communist organization is
the failure of hundreds of thousands of
South Vietnamese policemen and soldiers
to report contacts by Vietcong agents. The
report notes that the Communist net-
work could not exist without the tacit
complicity of the majority of South Viet-
namese soldiers and policemen.
THE CIA report indirectly criticizes the
President's Vietnamization plan as
unworkable, since the penetration of
Communists into the South's government
will insure a Communist takeover o n c e
American troops have been withdrawn.
Yet the President and government of-
ficials, who have had the report s i n c e
early summer, are still determined to go
through with a program of very gradual
troop withdrawals, hoping the S o u t h
Vietnamese government and army will in
the meantime be gradually strengthing
And while this slow troop withdrawal
is progressing, Americans will continue
to be maimed and killed.
THE EVIDENCE overwhelmingly indi-
cates that the majority of the South
Vietnamese citizens do not object to a
Communist government, and in fact may
prefer one over their present dictator-
ship. If such is the case, the U.S. is wast-
ing money and lives, fighting a "menace"
which exists only as a figment in the
imagination of Washington politicians.
Applying for a
job with the Movement
By RICK PERLOFF
PAUL GLANCED about nervous-
ly. His hair w a s messy, his
pants torn. He looked fine.
The door opened,
came in. Marshall
briefcase down on
sat next to Paul.
slapped h i s
the desk and
what kind of work do you think
"I'm not completely sure," Paul
replied. "I think I'd be good at
Marshall grinned. "There's a
whole field opening up there,
many opportunities here at the
Movement for raising conscious-
ness. Let me show you." He took
out a graph from his briefcase.
"There's t h e consciousness of
workers and there's the conscious-
ness of students. For the workers
(and he pointed to the graph) we
"You're a senior, aren't you?"
Marshall asked. Paul nodded.
"That means you have about 50
protests. Good. Well, let's get go-
ing." Marshall smiled. "Tell me,
M~ERGE MLQ~F ?
SOUR) CMTOORA& "
tWRO cal C~SC++' A04
have public and financial support
for strikes, over on the right, to
mass picketing and then there's
joining the union a n d working
along w i t h workers to educate
"YOU'D BE interested to know,
Paul, that one of the newest boys
we hired, recruited yesterday from
Madison, has joined up with the
Marshall continued. "Educating
students is a brand n e w area.
There've been a number of new
discoveries by some of the top
men in the business; men, I might
add, who once sat just where you
did, but who had the gumption to
sign this piece of paper and join
our group. We're a great business,
Paul. We've got the finest bunch
of comrades this side of History.
"Where was I? Oh yes, student
consciousness. As a large com-
pany, we have to satisfy the or-
ganizing preferences of our many
constitutencies - the student
power freaks, the peaceful protest
dudes and the violence corps. No
one constituent is more important
than another, unless of course it
has the bulwark of the resources.
"COOtPLE OF YEARS back the
student power freaks had com-
mand of the Market. They had
the students, the profs and all the
best slogans. Naturally the Move-
ment ran in its interest, but now
the demand is down for student,
mnoetbt w h meott+his hua
MARSHALL NODDED.. "Y o u
bet your sweet Che it was. Up
there, one of our top revolution-
ary researchers devised the form-
ula. He discovered that if $238
of property is destroyed, at least
17 students injured and if 23 si-
lent majority bystanders a r e
harmed in the protest, t h e n it
hasn't been worth it because the
demonstration has alienated at
least 501,000 from the Movement.
"Ingenious," repeated Paul. "You
know I never knew these decis-
ions were so well investigated."
"You didn't think we ran things
from the streets did you?"
"Yep," Marshall w e n t on.
"That's the type of smarts our
rivals are up against. The Ripon
Society, Americans for Democratic
Action don't hold a red flag to us.
Do you know, Paul that the Lib-
eral stock has dropped 15 points
on the Dow Chemical Protest Av-
erage in the past three years. 15
points. That ain't just whistlin'
Lenin." he paused, then smiled.
"WELL, SO YOU want to raise
consciousness, Paul. Any more
specific area of interest now?"
"I like what you people have
been doing to students but then
again your work- with workers is
good too. I guess you better say
I'm not sure exactly yet."
Marshall shook his head. "Not
sure Paul? At your age? Paul, I'm
worried about your future.
"You have to get yourself to-
"BY THE TIME you graduate
you should know the answer to
the two basic questions. F r o m
your application, I see you haven't
answered them. Paul let me ask
you now: do you know who you
are and what your purpose is?"
"Not yet sir. Not completely."
"Just as I thought," Marshall
replied. "Now don't get me wrong,
Paul, you've been writing g o o d
leaflets, done some fine protest-
ing and I'm proud of you. As for
the Big Questions, I wouldn't
worry about them. We don't de-
mand detailed answers here at
the Movement. For 'who am I' a
compassionate radical dedicated
to change is fine; for 'what is my
purpose' the Movement gives its
"You can either say 'my purpose
is to effect gradual change,' which
is okay or you can take the new
route and say 'my purpose here
is to make the revolution.' Both
are fine. There's no use worrying
about the Big Questions, as long
as you know that. Pondering im-
ponderables went out with work-
ing within the System.
"NOW DON'T get me wrong,
Paul. We don't demand perman-
ent answers at the Movement. In
fact here at the Movement there
is a proud tradition of change.
But there is a limit." Marshall
"You could make it big with us,
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