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January 21, 1975 - Image 4

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1975-01-21

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

Eighty-four years of editorial freedom
Edited ond managed by students at the University of Michigan

Waste

in

a starving world

Tuesday, January 21, 1975

News Phone: 764-0552

420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, Mi. 48104

Pilot: Struggle for survival

PERHAPS some members of the
LSA Executive committee are
misinformed. Apparently in their
consideration of disbanding the Pilot
Program, committee members seem-
ed to think that students don't think
much of the program. This assump-
tion is false.
The general state of disbelief
among students in Pilot as they re-
acted to the Executive Committee's
consideration did not lull them into
inaction. Pilot students were quick-
ly moving to assure the College of
their desire to keep Pilot going and
of their strong recommendation that
alternatives be seriously considered.
Petition drives, plans for protest, and
massive letter-writing campaigns be-
gan almost immediately. The conver-
sation in the cafeterias of Alice Lloyd,
where the program is housed, center-
ed mainly on the issue at hand, and
people knew what that issue was: a
struggle for survival for Pilot Pro-
gram.
THE PROGRAM, started in 1962, has
had a history of educational in-
novations. Pilot's history of exciting,
progressive learning was continued
this year and enhanced by the addi-
tion of the Theme Experience on per-
sonal and social change.
Though as yet nothing has been
confirmed, it seems amazing that
LSA would even consider disbanding
Pilot Program. For the almost 550
students who live in Alice Lloyd, the

Program is definitely not expend-
able. Though no one talks about it,
if the University would release some
of the "special" $44 million dollars
that they have been saving, the threat
of a state appropriations cut of four
percent would not be as threatening.
In between the classes in academic-
ville, the new chant may well become
and possible should become "Free the
44".
THIS UNIVERSITY'S LACK of com-
mittment to progressive learning
is depressing. As soon as a hint of an
appropriation by the state hits the
wind, the University immediately
looks for ways to cut off some of its
more unique programs, some of which
make the University bearable to
plenty of students.
There seem to be various other al-
ternative solutions that are viable.
One may be to free the 44, or dust
maybe a small percentage of it. An-
other possible solution is the cutting
of those academic departments whose
enrollments do not warrant their
budgets. It has been asserted in re-
cent days that Rackham uses it's bud-
get inefficiently and as a result
wastes money. It could easily survive
a budget of about four per cent. One
wonders how many other inefficien-
cies could be axed.
RUT PILOT PROGRAM is no effic-

By ALAN KETTLER
THE FIRST organized arrangement of
molecules that could be called life
was concocted out of the non-living in-
gredients of the sea billions of years ago.
One of its requirements for self perpet-
uation was that it reproduce and grow
by the subsequent division and addition
of molecules. This addition of mole-
cules allowed the divided organism to
regain its parent's size, divide, and for-
ever continue this cycle of reproduction.
'In simple terms, this primeval ances-
tor of our infinitely more complex bodies
had to eat to live. With time and ma-
terials, the living thing evolved into
millions of varied organisms, most of
whom are only imprints in ancient rocks,
leaving us today with their descendants.
AT LEAST IN one way time has not
changed the way of life. For during
those billions of years of existence, every
single species has made its number one
preoccupation with life the acquisition
of energy, or food, so that it might live,
grow, and perpetuate its kind. For ani-
mals (plants make their own food), ob-
taining food has been serious, business.
Individuals who practiced wasteful mod-
es of consumption were eliminated by
natural selection, for it was then who
died, and the thrifty who survived, in
times of scarcity.
Human beings are by far the most ad-
vanced form of life on earth. Still, the
need for energy and suzstance through
the ingestion of food remains unchang-
ed. Man meets this need mainly through
agriculture. Although the Modern Era
is in part marked by the hundreds of
millions of people who do not directly
engage in food production, four-fifths
of the world's 3.5 bilion people remain
directly tied to the land and what food-
stuffs it can yield.
SIMILARLY, ALL are motivated to
work by hunger, their primary day-to-
day responsibility. All are on very in-
timate terms with what they eat, for
their food is the fruit of their own labors.
All know that their ability to produce
food could decide whether they live or
die. Life is precarious, food is precious.
But not all are succesful, or so lucky.
For now, more than ever, millions of
the world's agriculturists are failing to
meet their basic needs for survival, and
are losing out horribly in the battle
against hunger. Due to a bewildering
network of many conditions, starvation
threatens at least 460 million people to-
day, and 10 million are fairly sure to
due this year.
The effects of starvation on a people
are staggering and frightening. As des-
cribed earlier this year in a speech by
Roger E. Anderson, "It [hungerl en-
slaves entire peoples by depriving them
of their energies, their senses, and, their
dignity. Or it drives them in desperation
to emigration, panic, or revolt. It influ-
ences the policies and courses of govern-
ments and redirects relations among the
nations of the world."

CHILDREN ARE hardest hit by the
absence of food because their growing
bodies need food for development. When
the body responds to a lack of nutrients
in itself, it begins a process whereby
it literally feeds on itself. Receiving no
external nutritional supply, it seeks out
the inventory of its internal supply by
first turning to the liver for nourish-
ment. Once the liver exhausts itself,
protein is removed from cells and brok-
en down into useable compounds, and
finally, fat is utilized in the same way.
Listlessness, dullness, and apathy dom-
mate the mental state of the famished
person, for the brain is a voracious fur-
nace which requires large apiounts vi
nutrients for use and growth. Without
them, its cells flicker out permanently.
Eventually, the child can utter no more
than a few sounds, and moves only to
gather or ingest food. Suffering from
kwashiorkor means that tissue fluids
bloat his stomach, and movement is pain-
ful because of swelling in his joints. At
a certain point the child has no feel-
ing of hunger, and cannot eat if given
food. Finally, when this empty bag of
leather and sticks has consumed its
limit of tissues, death removes this ves-
tige of a person from one of the most
horrible, torturous existences possible.
YOUNG CHILDEN, who survive mal-
nutrition are often physically and ment-
ally retarded for life. Over 300 million
children are thus physically deformed
in the underdeveloped countries, and they
will one day make poor food producers.
Uncounted millions of others with stunt-
ed brains will make poor students if
ever offered the education needed to de-
velop a country economically and soc-
ially. A generation of already diseased
and malnourished adults will have to
accent the burden of caring for these
hundreds of millions of permanently
damaged people.
For so, so many people, food is so, so
important a matter in living and in dy-
ing. Thoughts of food, food, food and its
relative abundance permeate the minds
of hundreds of millions of farmers
around the world. Its presence brings
some security and happiness, its ab-
sence summons misery, disease, death,
disorder.

HOPEFULLY, the reader will unaer-
stand or feel the importance z nd sacred-
ness of food, for its helps in analyzing
the sickening decadence to be witnessed
in the residence hall cafeterias of this
university. There, while whole nations
are experiencing the most morbid period
in their histories, a carnival-like atmos-
phere prevails as vats of perfectly edi-
ble food are thrown away.
According to estimates made by the
university, about $140,000 worth of food
is wasted each year in the dorms. This
writer, having visited three dorm of-
ficials, found that almost 'alf of the re-
turned trays inspected contained substan-
tial portions of edible, uneaten f o o d.
Witnessed were whole oranges cram-
med into glasses, half-eaten hamburg-
ers, bowls of discarded vegetables, etc.
As Mr. Lynford Tubbs, Assistant Direc-
tor of Food at the U declared, this food
waste is "inexcusable." He rejected the
practice because it, along with food
theft, dishware breakage and theft, and
meal sharing, unfairly forces each stu-
dent to pay the costs of these activities.
WORDS ARE NOT adequate to de-
scribe the miserable insensitivity of this
waste. Why waste food?! In the end,
taste is absolutely of the minutet rele-
vances when one is eating, as food is
sustenance and strength while taste is
only a momentary sensation on the
tongue. Even a lizard can learn through
experience and sight to distinguish bad
tasting food from good tasting food,
and will consequently eat only the good
and ignore the bad. Cannot a human
rise to such an intellectual level, a n d
take only those foods that are palatable
to him?
A small bit of judgment s sufficient
to let the eater know whether or not
he will have room in his stomach for
a certain morsel. With a liktle fore-
sight, the reckless consumption habit of
saying "Ugh, I'm full' to a half-eaten
hamburger can be avoided.
The selfish manner of taking food so
that it can be thrown away is indicative
of our indifference to or ignorance of the
systems of man and nature. Unlike the
African subsistence farmer, we're not
on intimateterms with what we eat, so
it has lost its value.

THE TECHNOLOGY that has so sep-
arated us from our ties with the earth
has destroyed the elementary knowledge
and value of digging intd the soil with
one's hands, to feel the gristle and smell
the clean mustiness of the matter that
intimately keeps us so well fed, and
which is so forgotten and cloaked by
this separation.
As the world becomes more of a glo-
bal community oit of necessity for world
preservation, and we begin to feel the
effects of the limits to growth, traditional
consumption habits much change. The
era of endless, wasteful consumption
habits has to end. As a writer in Harp-
er's said, "The Earth is not a banquet
at which we are free to gorge."
The waste of food at the University
is in part a manifestation of traditional
ideas in a modern capitalist society -
that we are free to self-indulge as we
please, that all self'interests are legiti-
mate, that the individual and his inalien-
able rights take social precedence. With
such a narrow outlook, the individual
loses sight of the effects of his collec-
tive actions.
WE AND, WHAT we consume are
part of a much greater whole. This
can be seeh by examining what is re-
quired to produce a meal. Our orange
juice comes from Florida, our bacon
from a midwest meat packer, our cof-
fee from Colombia. In short, we eat
food that is brought to us from all parts
of the globe by boats, planes, trains, and
trucks. Prior to the transport of. food,
tremendous amounts of energy are spent
in plowing, planting, fertilizers, pesti-
cides, and irrigation. Later, food must
he harvested, processed, shipped pack-
aged, refrigerated, and finally cooked.
Twelve per cent of our national energy
goes into the food system. It has be-
come so intensive that for each unit of
energy we ingest (or throw away) we
use nine times as much energy as in-
put to the food system. When food is
wasted, every input that helped to pro-
duce the food was purely wasted, too.
Such folly has no basis for continuation.
THE CHINESE philosopher Lao-tzu
has some old but relevant words to say
concerning our treatment and abuse of
the Earth: "Nature sustains itself
through three'precious principles, which
one does well to embrace and follow.
These are gentleness, frugality, and hu-
mility." Much work and energy goes
into the production of food. Praying for
the deliverance of a commodity we have
so callously treated, millions suffer and
starve. Our notions of superabundance
and resource use are archaic and de-
structive. Especially now, the Earth and
its fruitfulness can no longer be taken
for granted. Specifically, each individual
must eat his share, and must end his
waste of precious food.
Alan Kettler is a staff writer for the
Editorial Page.

ate
cut

iency. Perhaps a more appropri-
way for them to look at it is to
down, not out.f
-CLIFFORD BROWN

New House not unsmudged

HE RECENT SHAKEUP in con-
gressional committee chairman-
ships has been greeted with the mix-
ed reaction appropriate for the mix-
ed results that were accomplished.
Was this a genuine revolution or a
cosmetic change?
True, the House Democratic Cau-
cus did note to depose a pair of reac-
tionaries, W. R. Poage of the Agri-
culture committee and F. Edward He-
bert of Louisiana on Armed Services.
And for this they are to be thanked.
Poage of Texas has been an ob-
struction in the freeway of progress
for decades. He has spent much of the
last few years attempting to elimi-
nate the Food Stamp program or,
failing that, get its budget drastically
cut.
,)NE CANNOT BE that optimistic
about Hebert's replacement on
Armed Services, Melvin Price. Con-
gressmen on the Armed Services
Committee tend to sell themselves to
the Pentagon early in their careers.
But Hebert, the man who refused to
hold hearings on the secret bombing
TODAY'S STAFF:
News: Gordon Atcheson, Cindy Hill,
Josephine Marcotty, Judy Ruskin,
Kate Spelman
Editorial Page: Vincent Badia, Alan
Gitles, Paul Haskins, Marnie Heyn.
Arts Page: Ken Fink
Photo Technician: Karen Kasmauski

of Cambodia, will not be missed.
But, having kicked the aforemen-
tioned unsavory pair out of power,
the House Democrats retained the
worst committee chairman of them
all -- Wayne Hays of Ohio. Control-.
ling the Administration committee,
Hays has been blackening the repu-
tation of Congress for years.
The Administration committee
controls the House's expense ac-
counts, office supplies, and commit-
tee budgets. As committee chairman,
Hays has practiced and condoned the
kind of petty thievery that has re-
duced public esteem for congressmen
below that of garbage collectors.
One would have though that Hays
'would have been a prime target of
the Fighting Liberals who supposed-
ly comprise this year's freshman
class in Congress. And indeed, the
Democratic Steering and Policy com-
mittee voted his removal. But Hays
also controls the House Democratic
Camnaign Committee, with the nower
to allot campaign funds, and the
freshmen chose to follow their poc-
ketbooks.
The last major House reform was
in 1910, when Speaker Joe Cannon
was stripped of his power to dictate
committee chairmanships. Maybe in
another sixty-five years genuine
democracy will come to the House of
Representatives.
--JOHN KAHLER

PIRGIM REPORTS
Pharmaceutical laws hurt consumers

"WHAT THE LEGISLATURE has given, the Board of
Pharmacy is trying to take away.
This is the view of one of the consumer organizations
which helped to lobby for Michigan's new law on
prescription, drugs - which, when it goes into effect
at the end of March, will allow pharmacists to save
consumers money by filling prescriptions with generic
drugs, and will require all pharmacies to post prices.
In testimony prepared for a hearing today on rules
to implement the new law, PIRGIM director Joseph S.
Tuchinsky criticized both the process by which rules
were drafted and the proposed rules.
Tuchinsky charged that the advisory committee that
drew up rules for the Pharmacy Board "contained not
a single consumer representative," and met "in virt-
ual secrecy." Tuchinsky stated that his complaints to
the Board resulted only in an invitation for him to ad-
dress the committee, but at a time when he couldn't
make it, while no other consumers were even informed
of the meetings. The result, he says, is anti-consumer
provisions in the proposed rules.
TUCHINSKY ALSO charged the Board sent announce-
ments of today's formal hearing on the rules to inter-
ested parties in the industry, but not to the legislators
who sponsored the bill, to affected government agen-
cies, or to consumer organizations.

The PIRGIM criticisms of the proposed rules concen-
trated on attempts to restrict competitive advertising
and attempts to reduce the usefulness to consumers of
the required price posting.
,The rules would allow a pharmacy to contain only
one price sign, the official poster being designated
by the Board. A number of discounters, such as the
Meijer chain, already have price signs "more useful
and conspicuous than your poster," PIRGIM asserted.
These would have to be taken down under the proposed
rules. "There is no reason why these signs and your
poster should not both be displayed," Tuchinsky told
the Board.
HE ALSO characterized a prohibition on advertising
price posting as "offensive to American free enter-
prise" and a violation of a section of the new law
which specifically allows advertising which is not "false'
or misleading."
Tuchinsky also criticized the official price list for
including only ten generic drugs. Since' consumers can
request money-saving generics instead of their branded
equivalents under the- new law, Tuchinsky asserted,
the sign should tell the generic name of every brand
listed and, in each case where both are available, give
the price of both the generic and the brand so custom-
ers will know how much they may save. He also called

for listing the lowest price if several generics are
stocked.
And, he pointed out, the Board may even have
trouble counting. The law calls for a price list of
100 drugs, but the board has listed only 99.
AFTER SUPPORTING legislative approval of the
new law and working successfully for strengthening
amendments, PIRGIM has turned its campaign for
more competition between drugs stores to the question
of price advertising.
A month ago, it filed a petition, supported by a
memo from the state Attorney General's office, for an
immediate ruling that price advertising of prescrip-
tion drugs is legal under Michigan law. Tuchinsky
reported today that the petition has made little progress
in a month. "The Board is just stalling, putting up pet-
ty legal -technicalities to avoid dealing with the issue
as long as possible, while consumers continue paying
high prices because there is too little information and
too little competition. PIRGIM will wait only one
more month before taking the question to court,"
Tuchinsky concluded.
PIRGIM REPORTS is an information service of the
Public Interest Research Group in Michigan, a stu-
dent-funded citizens advocate organization.

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Letters

to

The

Daily

:: '
" ; i f
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1

ROTC
To The Daily:
THE CURRVNT controversy
over granting academic credit
for ROTC coures fails to ad-
dress some fundamental ques-
tions.
I have had experiences here
that included substantial aca-
demic content and still did not
offer academic credit - cours-
es at Hillel, volunteer w o r k ,
study sessions and bull sessions
with friends. I have no c o m-
plaints; I chose these exper-
iences for what I felt they of-
fered me.
In this regard, there is some-
thina lnkrincr in tha Ahnta n

of the Universiy, a conscious
restatement should be made.
MEANWHILE, a worthwhile
opportunity will be selected on
its own merits.
-Martha Minow
pen pal
To The Daily:
I WOULD like for your news-
paper to print this ad for me in
the hopes that some of the stu-
dents would like to take time
out and exchange letters with
someone who is confined in the
Ohio Prison System. I am serv-
ing an armed robbery change,
and will be out in the fall of this
vear.

that
ter.

you may show to this let-
--Walter Lee Caruthers
P.O. Box 69
No. 129-208
London, Ohio 43140

peace ax
To The Daily:
WITH THE coming of 1975
and the inevitable task of filing
income tax returns pressing, I
feel compelled to ask myself
and others to think again, about
where our tax money goes each
year. Many of us work a good
part of our lives, and yet that
wedge taken from our p a y-
rhepks earh month fnor feera

fare, housing, medical aid etc.
Many will see this as fitting,
some will shrug their should-
ers, and still others like myself
will be outraged at the priori-
ties that our government has
established.
SOME OF THE men in the
U.S. are given a legal alterna-
tive to participating in the mili-'
tary through conscientious ob-
jection, and yet seemingly,
there are no such alternatives
for those of us who do con-
scientiously oppose killing and/
or would like to see the major-
ity of our tax dollars spent on
peaceful efforts which promote
life. rather than on weannons and

projects, as well as peace-relat-
ed research.
With the replacement of Wil-
ber Mills by Rep. Ullman as
Chairperson of the Ways and
Means Committee, (he was an
opponent of the Bill) it seems
possible that the Bill will get
consideration in Committee and
on the Floor of Congress,. but
it will take the continuous ef-
forts of those who are in favor
of this legislation.
THERE IS A steering com-
mittee working in Ann Arbor,
and a committee working in
Washington. If there are people
who would like to know more

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