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April 09, 1974 - Image 4

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1974-04-09

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Eighty-Four Years of Editorial Freedom
Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan

lettersletters lettersletters lettersleti

420 Maynard St, Ann Arbor, Mi. 48104

News Phone: 764-0552






i.......... .... o. .

I XI4,101VP


To The Daily:
"ONWARD Wycliffe Soldiers"
(Michigan Daily, Tues., March 26,
p. 4): What a curious combination
of idealism and ignorance!
Hart and Stoll seem ignorant of
the tremendous population growth
in such areas as Latin America -
or they don't know this means that
expansion into sparsely populated
areas really is 'inevitable'. Is it
fair to the millions of slum-dwel-
lers in 20 Latin American cities to
close off the jungles to agricul-
tural projects when only a few
thousand natives live there now?
It's not a question of trying to bring
them into societies that are pre-
judiced against them: it's a mat-
ter of giving them some pro-
tection from the inexorable ex-
pansion of the larger more pop-
ulous societies. We Cant expect
to bury our hearts in the sand and
hope that all the nasty problems
will go away and leave the native
Americans alone.
The real ethnocide is carried
out by profit-hungry land speci lat-
ors, who are trying to get rid of
natives through disease, machines,
alcohol, and guns. Governments
are too far away and too beset
with the problems of ciies to give
the natives more than token pro-
tectionaeven when they want to.
IN ANN ARBOR we couldn't
stop Briarwood or MacDonald's,
yet the authors of this article seem
to expect the largely illiterate and
helpless natives to resist ;he so-
phisticated white man and their
companies. SIL people may be
idealistic, but they are not as
naive as this; they are trying to
give native leaders the literacy
and knowledge they need to deal
with government and business. As
the article pointed out, they train
native leaders to be self sufficient
in the 20th century; the. also
bring medicines to protect natives
from white men's diseases, teach
improved agricultural methods to
combat the prevalent malnutri-
tion of the tropics, and help them
to preserve their culture and lang-
uage through writing. Would the
authors like the natives to be de-
prived of these proections? ?g-
norance is no weapon.
We have seen how the oil com-
panies deal with 200 millio, Ame"
icans; do Stoll and hart actually
believe that these same comnanies
were waiting for missionaries to
clear the natives out of their way?
The companies have the power
and lack.of conscience to crush a
few hundred Auca tribesmen vitb-
out noticing them, and the Auca
would have been finished if they
6adn't been warned to escape.
BEHIND THIS article there
seems to be a touching faith on the
part of its authors that evP is-
sued from Western Europe (or
thereabouts). They speak of an
idyllic time 500 years ago as if it
were the paradise of Adam and
Eve - and they speak of i with the
fervor of Biblebeating fundamen-
talists, telling us that the 'devil'
is the 'centuries long cllusion be-.
tween state, commercial and relig-
ious interests to pa .'fv and de-
stroy the last barriers to the
world-wide worship of Mammon.'
Yet they ridicule the Christian
doctrine of the fall of man and his
present depravity. Do they expect
us to subscribe to their naive faith
instead? Even though American
schools don't talk about much be-
sides European and recent Ameri
can history, it is well documented
that 500 years ago in South Amer-
ica the jungle tribes weri slave
laborers for the Incas, building tre-
mendous palaces under the tender
ministrations of the foremen's
whips; while in Mexico the Aztecs
were extracting the warm and
beating hearts of human sacrific-
ial victims from conquered tribes
for their blood-thirsty rites.

THIS IDEA of paradic and the
Noble Savage are pro-i.cts of ig-
norance, large fostered by the
American schools' blindness to an-
ope's history but our own. Combin-
ed with Stoll and Hart's neo-funda-
mentalist approach to world prob-
lems, this ignorance produces some
serious misinformation. I suggest
that Daily readers try to find mere
facts before they make judgments
on this matter, and that Daily edi-
tors insist on more accurate and
less emotional reporting.
-Laurence Krieg
Dept. of Linguistics
March 27
great deal of ignorance himself.
His statements are riddled with
factual error, his blindness to the
context in which the Summer In-
stitute operates truly gross.
The first of his erroneous state-
ments is that "expansion" is "in-
evitable" due to "tremendous pop-
ulation growth," further that the
interests of "millions of slum-
dwellers" hinge on driving In-
dians off their land. In fact, the
fate of slum-dwellers no more de-
pends on thin-soiled jungle land
than it does on the next military
The poor settlers who come to
the jungle aren't from the city, but
from agricultural areas dominated
by large estates. Population den-

data, see K. Griffin "Coffee and
the Economic Development of Co-
lumbia," Bulletin of the Oxford
University Institute of Economics
and Statistics).
IF THE ESTATES were broken
up, many more people could sup-
port themselves. Instead, regimes
try to relieve popular pressure
by packing peasants off to peri-
pheral areas like the jungle. There
they are settled on land often so
unsuited for farming that it is
nothing but red clay, within a few
By blaming population pressure,
Mr. Krieg also diverts attention
from the real force behind expro-
priation. These are the companies,
usually foreign and often U. S., in
search of petroleum, minerals and
land upon which to graze livestock
andl capital.
Mr. Krieg's single most astonish-
ing statement is that the "real
ethnocide" is being carried out by
someone else. When the Guahibo of
Colombia revolted against just
"profit-hungry land speculators"
which Mr. Krieg mentions, did the
Summer Institute come to the aid
of the Indians? No, but it did come
to the aid of the "land specula-
tors," by helping the army sup-
press the Guahibo revolt.
"THE AUCA WOULD have been
finished if they hadn't been warned
to escape," Mr. Krieg says breath-
lessly. In 1964 the Summer Insti-
tute ferried the first of the oil com-
pany prospectors around Auca ter-
ritory, helping the oil companies
plan the invasion against which it
later "warned" the Auca.
The Summer Institute is valuable
because it stabilizes penetration,
pacifying the inhabitants of invaded
territories so they won't revolt and
make a mess of world opinion. La-
tin American governments now
stipulate that corporations are re-
sponsible for the "general social
welfare" of the people living with-
in their concessions, making the
Summer Institute every bit as nec-
essary as government troops.
The "protection" which the Sum-
mer Institute gives the Indians is
a hoax. Ignorance may be no wea-
pon, but a semblance of reading
and writing, "improved agricul-
ture" and medicine is no protec-
tion against a vicious social order.
tute's improvements come laden
with outside values, which not only
destroy traditional ways, but also
develop into instruments of con-
trol. "Literacy and knowledge"
may help an Indian sign a con-
tract, but it doesn't guarantee the
fairness of the deal. Its terms are
invariably the lowest rung in a
class-stratified, racist society, a
fate for which "self-sufficiency" is
a curious description indeed.
With some dubious anthropology
Mr. Krieg tries to prove that the
Indians weren't any better off be-
fore anyways.
It is not at all "well document-
ed" that the Incas built "tremen-
dous palaces" with "slave labor-
ers" under "foremen's whips,"
however. The Incas did build tem-
ples, did conquer a few jungle
tribes and did have a system of
rotating corvee labor, but Mr.
Krieg colors the facts so luridly
that his interpretation amounts to
untruth. For an accurate picture
of the Inca, consult the work of
John H. Rowe or Alfred Metraux.
Aztec wrought havoc among neigh-
boring peoples for their sun ritual,
the depredations they caused were
nothing compared to those of the
Spanish and their successors. For
confirmation, see Stein and Stein
The Colonial Heritage in Latin
Comparative bestiality aside, the
article "Onward Wycliffe Soldiers"
was based on the belief that In-
dians are best left alone and that

they can be left alone. The Auca
who managed to kill intrduers into
their territory for decades, were
no more helpless than the Summer
Institute made them. Corporations
and Latin American governments
are sensitive to public reaction
when wordvof barbarities on the
frontier leaks out. Reordering of
national priorities could leave the
Indians with enough territory to
save themselves.
only too willing to further the
schemes of thoroughly unjust,
thoroughly un-Christian L a t i n
American oligarchies, however,
just as Mr. Grieg displays a most
un-Christian willingness to sacri-
fice "a few thousand natives" to
the onslaught of Western society.
It should be obvious in whose coin
the Summer Institute is paying. Al-
though the Summer Institute
speaks solicitously of the Indian,
this is only double-talk for the pe-
culiar conjunction of commercial,
religious and academic interests
which it actually represents.
The ethnocide of the South Amer-
ican Indian is no more inevitable
than the Summer Institute helps
make it; the University and the
Dept.'s complicity in the Institute's
operations is shameful, unneces-
sary and inexcusable.
behavior mod

posed to the practical applications
of the theories he advocates.
In his letter to :he Daily (2
April) McConnell streies that he
is "opposed to the use of punish-
ment to force change on prisoners
(or anybody else)." However, in
his article which appeared in Psy-
chology Today, McConnell speci-
fically cites the desirability of the
manipulation of behavior through
punishment: "Somehow we've got
to force them [prisoners] to want
to behave properly. I speak of psy-
chological force. Punishment must
be used as precisely and dispas-
sionately as a surgeon s scalpel if
it is to be effective."
This is exactly the way in which
behavior modification is being In-
flicted on people in federal prisons.
Physical brutalization has proved
insufficient to deal with the ris-
ing resistance to oppression by poli-
tically aware prisoners; psycholo-
gical punishment has become in-
creasingly common.
ONE OF THE most widely em-
ployed of the new techniques is the
use of drugs to 'modify' a prison-
er's behavior. Some of the most
powerful of these substances, such
as Prolixin or Anectin (a deriva-
tive of the South American arrow-
tip poison, curare) reduce the pri-
soner to a vegetaole and make
him/her unable to think clearly or
react with emotion. The prison-
er's spirit is so drastically broken
that he/she is more readily amen-
able to behavior condi:,oning. Ano-
ther type of behavinr conditi',n-
ing which has been used consist-
ently against prisoners who resist
authority is that of negative rein-
forcement. Electric shock, for ex-
ample, has been used to "cure"
women (particularly housewives),
Third World, and Gay people of
their socially "deviant" behavior.
Perhaps the most frightening me-
thod of "modifying behavior" is
the use of lobotomy and electro-
shock to the brain. This stops "pro-
gressive behavior" for life by
selectively destroying portions of
the brain, leaving the victims in
a totally passive state.
THE ABOVE techniques used in
behavior modification are becom-
in increasingly common practice.
All of them involve a complete de-
nial of the human and legal rights
of their 'captive audience'. McCon-
nell was entirely correct when he
stated . . . "But we ca no more
prevent the development of this
new psychological methodology
than we could have prevened the
development of atomic energy."
Thus it is all the mre ludicrous
that he himself seems to be im-
pervious to the fact that his aca-
demic theories have become a
prime means of dealing with poli-
tical and social resistance. The
forum would have provided a ve-
hicle by which to examine the im-
plications of behavior modification,
so blithely 'taught' at the Univer-
sity, and its concrete ramifica-
Social and physical scientists
must no longer be permitted to
abdicate their social responsibili-
-The Ann Arbor Health
Care Colective
April 3
To The Daily:
I WAS VERY excited to see
your article, "Behavior mod de-
bated," in today's Daily. Indeed
I was pleased to see that you
printed the letters of Professor
McConnell and his teaching fel-
lows which attempted to clarify
their stand on the current behav-
ior mod controversy. As one of
those teaching fellows who has in
Mr. Schwartz's words, "chosen to
lap up the party line," I was very
Disappointed with his response.
Our letters were written for the
purpose of clarification. We believe

that we are teaching a very posi-
tive approach to the use of behav-
ior modification techniques. I sin-
cerely believe that evidence of
this can be seen by simply attend-
ing any of Professor McConnell's
lectures or by attending any of the
recitations or lab placements. The
proof is in the pudding.
WHAT DISTURBS me most about
Mr. Schwartz's reply is that he
is misinterpreting the intent of
Professor McConnell's 1970 arti-
cle. The article is indeed a warn-
ing: we have at our disposal the
means for controlling human be-
havior. Professor McConnell's lat-
er article, "Feedback, Fat and
Freedom," which Mr. Schwartz
did not quote, provides the blue-
prints for the careful, controlled
use of those methods. I would
recommend the reading of that
article to anyone who would like
to learn about the modern ap-
proach to behavior modification. I
could never explain it as well in a
brief letter as Dr. McCannell has
in the 1973 Encyclopaedia Britan-
nica Yearbook.
INDEED, EVEN in the earlier
article, the use of punishment and
aversive methods is not condoned
or suggested, it is simply explain-
ed. McConnell says that "we can
. . . gain almost absolute control
over an individual's behavior." He
does not say that "we should."
But if we can, then we should

behaviorist approach is a p >sitive
one, using rewards to achieve last-
ing changes in behavior.
-Art Rothschild
Teaching Fellow
Psychology 474
April 2
To The Daily:
Today I went to vote in the
Fourth Ward to which I had legally
been assigned some tw months
earlier when I registered a ar
Ann Arbor voter.
No onehad turned in my regis-
tration though - as l found out
only after waiting in line while the
clerk called City Hall.
I felt strongly about the candi-
dates in my Ward and the issues
before all of us. To be denied a
vote because of the registrato's in-
competence and unreliabity is
This is a poor piece of propa-
ganda for all the new voters de-
sired. How are we supposed to
support what we believe if we
cannot rely on the faitn of those
who execute the formalies
TONIGHT I AM soel disan-
pointed and wondering w'i I took
the trouble to vote. Wondering why
I almost was allowed the oportun-
ity to vote, except for a blunder
on the part of someone who did
not value my right.
This is a poor showing for tl e
whole registration drive and I only
hope no one in the future has to
experience the ostracism I felt
at that polling place today.
-Martha Woodward
April 1
To The Daily:
ticle, "U" Threatens Audit - sev-
eral student organizations object"
is so full of inaccuracy that it's
hard to know just whee to begin
to set it straight. The contest and
administrative slant in the article
seems to indicate that its author
did not attend the meeting, but
relied on administrative sources
for his information. It is this type
of jaundiced coverage that serv-
es the University's strategy of
making student organizations so
paranoid of their own initiative
and right of self-regulation, that
they will come crawling to them
on their bellies to beg security and
"'U' Threatens Audit" - why
this point was chosen for emphasis
is impossible to .determine, since
the overwhelming threat to stu-
dent organizations at this time
is the threat of Universiy appro-
priation of all student organization
finances by July 1, 1974.
THEARTICLE would have been
more aptly titled: "University
Threatened by Audit", because af-
ter the first hour of discussion,
there was little doubt in anyone's
mind that the University wanted
control, not accountabili y, t h a t
none of the University's vague
slurs about student organizations
were backed-up with evidence, and
indeed seemed only to be base-
less ;rumors designed to damage
the integrity of self-regulating stu-
dent groups. (A pretty low tactic
considering the University has re-
Fused to disclose its own salary
list, let alone a financial statement,
let alone an audit, to the Michigan
Although it is true that some
organizations objected to a Univer-
sity audit and some didn't, none
were against some form of public
accountability, and non saw it
as the central focus of the meet-
ing. No one spoke in favor of a
mandatory audit, howeve, and
most were highly dubos of the
University's legal and financial ex-
cuses for forcing student monies
into the University banK account,
conducting an audit of student

groups without firt showing cause
or otherwise using arbitrary pow-
er to influence student organiza-
contention, that it stands to lose
its tax-exempt stitus if student
groups refuse to subject thenselv-
es to financial control and surveil-
lance, was laughingly dismissed
early in the mee'ing when some-
one pointed out that the 'U' was
one of the largest coatractors for
the U.S. Government in the West-
ern hemisphere, and har dly risked
losing its tax-exempt status* be-
cause student organizations insist
on controlling their own finances.
The reporter's ignorance of the
recent history of "he conflict serv-
ed to further diatort the article.
Everything the University said
was portrayed as a fGod-given fact
('U' Threatens Audi:), while all of
the points raised by students in
their defense were regarded as
"charges" and "allegations". Let's
look at some of the "allegations"-
1.) ". . . several . . . charged that
this was a move by the University
to extend control over groups
which are now financially inde-
pendent." This is hardly a charge
or speculation. When one institu-
tion controls the finances of ano-
ther institution, it controls that
institution, that's a fact 2.) ". .
film groups charged that the Uni-
versity had refuse the film groups
use of auditorium faoilities . "

it turned out, these regulations al-
so threatened the survival of a
number of film classes.
This angered several of the Fa-
culty who intervened on behalf of
the film groups, forcing Adminis-
trators to step back and tempor-
arily release the auditoriums.) Stu-
dent organizations spent a good
portion of last summer ironing-out
a new set of guide-lines that would
be workable for student organiza-
tions. These new guide-lines were
submitted to the Administration by
the Student Organizations B o a r d
(S.O.B.) on behalf of the students.
The Administration now claims
that it has never received a n y
guidelnes. This is no "charge"
this is a fact.
3.) "This they charged was a
deliberate attempt to drive them
out of business". It is a well-docu-
mented fact that New World lost
23 of its originally requested book-
ings, the equivalent of 46 shows
and about $10,000.00 during t h e
"freeze". This certainly wasn't a
friendly University feeler for ac-
conntability; this was extortion.
4.) ". . . film groups charged
that the University held lUrge in-
terests in the Butterfield Theatre
chain which owns the Michigan,
State and Wayside theatres." The
fact that the 'U' has large hld-
ings in Butterfield has been con-
mon knowledge in Ann Arno: for
several years. The Daily itself do-
cumented it in an article on film
groups two weeks ago.
IT MIGHT BE added that "film
groups" in this sentence is not
accurate. Ann Arbor Film Coop
and Cinema II did not eipres their
opinion. This was taken from a
statement by New World Media.
The other film group 'present,
Friends of Newsreel, simply point-
ed out that University holdings in
Butterfield shouldn't seem imprit-
bable because "the University is
a multi-national profit comporation
with $50 million investments in
South Africa alone."
5.) ". . . (S.O.B.) board men-
her Elliot Chikofsy termed t h e
University a "benevolent dictator"
in the matter. "In the past, he said,
the University has often been forc-
ed to pick up the tab for student
organizations that had run up large
debts and then dis-banded.'
Elliot's description of the Uni-
versity was. initially greeted with
groans from the audience, and was
later challenged by several groups
who apparently viewed the 'U'
more as an infringing monster
than a "benevolent dictator" and
wanted to know why the 'U' seemed
to be out to get them.
In the midst a fthis argument the
University Auditor (Rinkel) stood-
up an said that to "My knowledge,
we have never covered any debts
for student organizations." Which
dissolves the University's key as-
sertion that they are somehow lia-
ble for actions of student organi-
zations. It was also revealed in
the meeting that the University is
still holding money that belonged to
groups who have long-since dis-
6.) So much for his finishing
statement: "This, combined with
the suspicions that some student
groups may be making a profit,
could justify University interest in
control of student accounts."
FOR THOSE who would like to
further investigate the accuracy of
this article, S.O.B. has made a
tape of the mieeting which is avail-
able for general listening.
-New World Media Project
war tax
To The' Daily:
WITH ALL due respect to the
usual clarity of Preston Slosson's
judgment, I must object to the
thinness of his arguments (To the
Daily Feb. 21, 1974) against legi-
lative provision for conscientious
objection to war taxes.

There is a big difference be-
tween a preference, or a conscien-
tious objection. In one case one
says, "I think the government's
decision to do something is wrong,
stupid, unfair." In the other, "I
cannot in good conscience have any
part in this."
ONE WOULD expect th i: many
a German citizen disappruved of
Hitler's expenditure of taxis in
building the Autobahn; but one
would hope that many a German
would have had a conscientious ob-
jection to the expenditure of taxes
in building gas chambers. Their
failure to think in such terms was
a part of that monstrous tragedy.
The meaning of the war crimes
trials at Nuremberg was that the
extermination of people and the
conduct of war were put in a sep-
arate categ'ry from otaer matters
of national policy, and we.-e declar-
ed to be crimes against .humanity,
for which individuals who were in
a major way responsible cauld be
held personally accoun-dble.
AT LEAST one of the purposes
of providing in the law for con-
scientious obje tion to war and
to war taxes is to focus on this
question, as well as on the ques-
tion of whether our gove-amen-tl
m.chinery rmakes adequ re -
v'on for rrcuiring the consent of
the people in the waging of war,
l ou can ow choose whether S1
of your federal taxes s to go tc
fi i ncing elecmons. If you could

,, * (Cs ,. .,",
- 'a-


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