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April 17, 1973 - Image 4

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1973-04-17

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'°""° PI vE&)

Senate lacks understanding
of tax reform problem


EAK ,S NAs Bff


&OW) Ed CH

SNU;BER of senators in recent
idays have spoken out on the
need for tax reform. The one thing
that stan4s clear from their state-
ments is that they don't really un-
derstand the problem..
Senators tend to approach re-
form from the angle that while
their backs were turned s o m e
nefarious person or persons un-
known infiltrated the Internal Re-
venue code and riddled it with loop-
holes. In their view, tax reform
is needed to undo the work of
highbinders acting at the behest
of vested interests.
I certainly agree there are ele-
ments of inequity in the tax laws.
And that something should be done
before the phantom loopholer strik-
es again. But this is not the great-
est defect.
the premise that:
--People who mean well c au s e

more trouble in this world than
those with evil intentions.
-True reform must begin by
dra mping the great dismal swamp
through which one must slosh in
order to pay one's taxes.
Believe it or not, our tax forms,
which are the verbal equivalent of
freshly discarded bubblegum, were
not deliberately contrived to vex
and nettle you to the point where
you break out in hives. It just
seems that way;
At least 90 per cent of the quag-
mire was created by efforts to ad-
vance through tax breaks, meritor-
ions causes that fail to qualify for
direct subsidies.
Tax laws are used to abet' moth-
erhood, philanthrophy, home own-
ership, scholarship, dental work,
entertaining business associates,
joining the Elks Club and I don't
know how many other laudable and
uplifting, activities.
ADDITIONALLY, new candidates
for exemption are nominrted al-
most daily.

One recent proposal would per-
mit contractors to write off the cost
of installing ramps for the handi-
capped in new buildings. Another
would allow individuals to deduct
sums put into retirement funds.
These are desirable goals to be
sure. But also potential new
thorns in the tax form thicket. I
can see myself agonizing for hours
over whether anything I built dur-
ing the tax year might conceivable
be used as a ramp by the handi-
NO, SENATORS. Merely closing
loopholes that compensate fat cats
won't get the job done. Any ac-
tion worthy to be catlei tax re-
form also must eradicate the good-
ness and mercy, virtue, probity,
nobility and social well-being that
are cluttering up the tax forms.
Let this their motto ye: Any-
thing worth doing at all is non-
Dick West is a writer for United
Press International.



--- r ---°

' .
1 . f t M
e Id



Eighty-two years of editorial freedom
Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan

420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, Mich.

News Phone: 764-0552


Fightig executive privilege

IS REASSURING to know that Con-
gress has resurrected a legal weapon
in its dispute with President Nixon over
his usage of Executive Privilege.
A piece of Congressional legislation
passed in 1928, yet never used by Con-
gress, was recently unearthed by Sen.
Sam Ervin Jr. (D-N.C.) which appears
to empower Ervin's Government Opera-
tions Committee to obtain from the
President in writing almost any infor-
mation it requests.
The law, Section 2954 of Title 5 of the
Federal Code, states that "an executive
agency, on request of the Committee on
Government Operations (of the House*
or Senate )shall submit any informa-
tion requested of it relating to any mat-
ter within the jurisdiction of the com-
IVAT MAKES this law look so promis-
ing is that it states that the executive
branch "shall" provide the information.
Legally, the word "shall" implies manda-
tory agreement with the ruling, and
thus the President must obey, unless the
law is overturned in court.
Editorial Staff
Co-Editors in Chief
ROBERT BARKIN ...........Feature Editor
DIANE LEVICK .... ......Associate Arts Editor
DAVID MARGOLICK............Chief Photographer
MARTIN PORTER............... Magazine Editor
KATHY UC 1KE ................ Editorial Director
ERIC SCHOCH ....................Editorial Director
GLORIA SMITH ..........................Arts Editor
CHARLES STEIN .......................City Editor
TED STEIN........................Executive Editor
MARTIN STERN.....................Editorial Director
ED SUROVELL..... ............Books Editor
ROUTB TESSEM.....................Picture Editor

The law, unfortunately, doesn't affect
President Nixon's claim to withhold an
unlimited number of witnesses from
Congressional hearings. But it does re-
quire the White House to provide docu-
mentary information that it has up till
now refused to make available. As such,
the law will at least restrict the Admin-
istration's use of executive privilege.
For instance, Congress has not been
allowed to examine records of military
flights undertaken by the President,
members of his family, and Administra-
tion officials during last year's Presiden-
tial campaign. The Administration has
revealed that the President's re-election
committee paid $149,291 for 55 flights on
the Presidential aircraft during the cam-
paign, yet has refused to list passengers
or flight details.
This information was sought so that
the Government could check that it had
been reimbursed for any political trips
by the President's campaign organiza-
tion, 'as required by law. The 1928 law
should now lead to the release of this
THE TOTAL scope of this law still re-
mains to be seen, but it is not too
improbable that it may be useful in un-
covering some- truths about the Water-
gate incident. We sincerely hope so. t
Today°'s staff:
News: Don Blugerman, Gene Robinson,
Terri Terrell, Becky Warner
Arts Page: Jeff Sorensen
Editorial Page: Bill Heenan, Martin Stern
Photo Technicians: Steve Kagan, David

PO W torti
THE TROOPS ARE well home now, at
least the ones who wear the uniforms
of combat. (Some 9000 plainclothes soldiers
remain in South Vietnam, in the employ of
the great Gen. Thieu.) All the PWs are
back. Perhaps now it will be possible for
Americans to examine some of the more
treacherous current pieties without being
accused of playing easy with the lives of
those beloved American "boys" whom the
politicians have always been so fond of
sending off to fight strangers.
Specifically, it would be in the interest of
America to begin de-mythifying the PWS.
Every night now for weeks, we have seen
these men on TV. The torture stories have
come with an increasing well-orchestrated
crescendo, at least three a day, at precisely
the ,time that Richard Nixon is in large
trouble over skyrocketing prices, ITT-Chile.
Watergate, and the unconstitutional bomb-
ing of Cambodia.
THIS IS NOT to say that torture did not
take place. It is to suggest that the torture
stories are now being used, the way the
PWs have been used all along: to cover up
other matters.
We have to start with one premise: the
PWs would not have been tortured if they
A looka
THE ARAB-ZIONIST conflict in we migh
the Middle East is now over both pec
50 years old. Though many out- before a
side political aspects have chang- It ise
ed, the central problem remains systema
the same: that the elemental hu- reds of
man rights of the. Palestinians can- army fr
not be reconciled with the objec- reasons
tives of Zionism, . curity, c
There .is a strong similarily be- nebulous
tween defending the Arab position rights p
and speaking on behalf of the ers now
North American Indian in the 19th gee cam
century. One faces the image of viving oi
pioneers arriving with the bene- grant la
fits of civilization represented by their con
superior technology, while the na- comes t
tives are dismissed as primitive, villages
backward, and warlike people.
Driven to desperate acts by the Israel
outright seizure of their lands oi Arael I
expropriation with token compensa- -
tion (as in Jerusalem today), there ination L
results even greater concern for many in
the colonists' security and even and so
less for the natives' situation. The born Isr
images are thus reinforced, just tion, ye
as they once were in Tasmania or fe just(
the American West. A Boston jour- surprisin
nalist once went so far as to com- erals dei
pare the Arab g-uerilla leaders to ples are
Sitting Bull or Chief Pontiac, add- No cou
_ _ e leg.
David Mendenhall, a University ts or n
graduate, is a guest -writer for Tie ities antc
Daily. ence th


hadn't been in North Vietnam in the first
place. The great majority of these men
were pilots. They were not drafted. Nobody
tore them out of their homes and told them
they must go and bomb North Vietnam.
From 1966 on, the nioral issues of the war
were clear, and those men still chose to get
into airplanes and bomb North Vietnam.
They justified their acts by saying they
were acting "under orders." But at any
point, they could have resigned from the
armed services They could have refused
to bomb the North. Instead, they choke to
go off and bomb people firom 50."0 fet.
In the process of doing this, they were
shot down. They were captured. They were
interrogated. Some were tortured. Some
died. When the survivors were finaly 're-
leased, most of them looked a lot healthier
than most of the people in the South Bronx.
They are, in fact, the healthiest looking
crowd of prisoners of war in histor At one
of these Pentagon-sponsored press confer-
ences someone should ask them what they
think would have happened to a North Viet-
namese pilot if he had been shot down over
Bay Ridge while bombing the U.S. I would
guess that the guys would have been beaten
to death on the spot.
This is not to question the individual cour-
age of the prisoners themselves. Courage is


lliti propaganda
not the question, I know courageous vices. Their remarks about peace demon
bo ended up in New York prisons, I strators, Jane Fonda, Cora Weiss, and
a lot of courageous young men who others who were working to get them out
o federal prisons because they re- of prison are not to be taken too seriously.
to kill strangers for their country. They are men, after all, who believe in the
are courageous Americans in exile in essential nobility of killing for your country.
J Jane Fonda, for all the easy shots
>f the PWs have taken at her, has THE NIXON Administration has not mov-
great courage, too, risking her ca- ed these men into politics, exploiting them
d her life to speak out against bar- in precisely -the way the President promis-
ed he would not exploit them. But that
makes it the duty of all of us to scrutinize
QUES'TION ISN'T courage; it isn't them as toughly as we would anyone else
rture, although the torture stories involved in politics. Nixon is promoting
king it easier to justify the bombing some of them to generals and admirals,
:bodia and the current American tour which means they will be helping to operate
. 'lhieu, x hose "tiger cages" were the military machine for a long time to
ictly models of penology. The issue is come. If we continue to play "Hail the
r the American people will ever ac- Conquering Hero," it will not be long'before
e.truth. The Pw show, sponsored by the same men are operating again in ano-
d Nixon's Pentagon, is blurring one ther war which we could stumble into as
truth: that those men would never dumbly and arrogantly as we stumbled into
offered so much if they had not been Vietnam.
g North Vietnam in the first place. Vietnam is over for us, but we are still
PVs are almost all professional mili- bombing Cambodia, and it will be tough to
en, which is precisely why we should raise a cry again for the pilots who are
e their current judgments too seri- shot down near Pnomh Penh.
lost of them have been out of the
orld for the past five or six years; fete Hatill is a columimst for the New
that they inhabited the equally un- York Post. Copyright 1973, New York
01,d of the professional armed ser- Posi Corporation.
the Palestinitans

rt Israel and


perhaps in 100 years' time
ht admire them. As though
,ples had to be anihilated
nyone grasped their point!
exasperating to follow the
tic destruction of hund-
Arab villages by the Israeli
oom 1948 to the present. The
vary, though national se-
ollective retaliation and the
s concept of historical
redominate. These vilag-
face life either in a re u-
ap or as slum-dwellers sur-
n minimal wages given mn-
bour in Israel. Attacks on
nfiscated property then be-
he basis for clearing out
in surrotuding areas.
G 16,000 college students in
n 1970 there were 200
There is universal discrim-
by landlords against Arabs,
Austries are closed to them,
on. A "sabra", or native-
aeli, is a mark of distinc-
t if a sabra is an Arab
doesn't count. It is always
g how many so-called lib-
fend a state whose princi-
so alien to ours.
entry deliberately set up to
al privileges to one relig-
racial group can preserve
ept of equality that minor-
omatically demand h e r e,
e Israelis worry over t h e

hgh Arab birth rate, engage in
endless court cases to decide who
is Jewish (and thereby receive le-
gal advantages), even newspaper
ads are taken out by right-wing
groups encouraging the country to
rid itself of foreign elements. Could
Palestinians convert to Judaism
and gain their rights? Security
laws forbid this, nor can they mar-
rv into the faith without prior con-
The violent reaction that always
results when this subject is brought
Up is as much a matter of econo-
mics as one of misplaced religious
identificaion Over $50 million is
spent on this cause by Zionists an-
nually in the U.S. alone. This in-
cludes sponsoring of demonstra-
tions and cash payments to Senat-
ors who vote on financial aid bills.
This investment pays off. In the
decade 1960-70 direct government
assistance (excluding compensa-
tion), the sale of Israeli bonds, and
tax-exempt private contributions
amounted to over $4 billion. The
sales of the Israel Bond organiza-
tion along in the U.S. in 1972 was
$270,000,000 -- going to a popula-
tion of only three million. Any pub-
lie criticistn damages the coun-
try's inage and threatens this
flow of cash. In the past, dona-
tions have risen and fallen drama-
tically depending on the level of
crisis in the Middle East, reaching .

peaks when Israel is at war. To
even out these irregularities, an,
institution was recently established
in Jerusalem to train personnel in
the art of fund-raising, which is
referred to there as "taxing the
resulted in a continuous drain on
western economies for decades, at
a time when Arab countries are be-
coming increasingly profitable be-
cause of oil interests there and
Arab investment in western coun-
tries. Defending Israeli's "right"
to exist is not only irrational but
In spite of billions in foreign aid,
Israelis have the highest per capita
national debt in the world. T h e i r
tourist industry is greatly depend-
ent on areas seized from Jordan
and Egypt in 1967. The much-pub-
licized kibbutz (commune) system,
built largely on Arab land, exists
on state subsidies and the inex-
pensive labour of idealistic fore-
igners. The familiar problems of
treet crime, a military industrial
complex, air pollution, social in-
equities, and an unstable econ-
omy belie the reverence and mys-
tique surrounding Israel in t h e
popular image.
ZIONISM and antisemitism share

the point of view that Jewish .
dividuals aren't compatible with
those who are not. This is why in
Europe those very governments
where antisemitism was prevalent
were once approached for support
of a colonial enterprise in Pales-
tine, in order to solve their ethnic
problems. This is why "go to Is-
rael" is an epithet in Russia. To
be consistent, Archie Bunker would
favor Israel as a place (he would
say) to send all the so and so's.
Peace depends ultimately on jus-
tice and not military strength. No
lasting settlement will obtain un-
less Palestinians are given much
more than token rights in t h e
country of their birth. The situa-
,tion is deadlocked: for economic
and political reasons Israel must
identify its government with a re-
ligious group, and this identity is
the source of the problem in the
first place.
AN IMPORTANT part of t h e
solution lies not in the UN or the
big powers, but with people who
will think about just how their
charity is spent. It isn't unreason-
able to place hope in this., After
all, the concept of justice is one
of our most cherished Old Testa-
ment heritages, and the prophets
were outspoken critics of govern-
ment policies that are unfortunate-
ly familiar today.

- ,


'Lone Ranger',

To The Daily:
are two phenomena that have his-
torically been used as tools of pw-
erful governments and political
personalities to suppress informa-
tion and keep the large body of
people uninformed and unexposed
to certain ideas. These devices are
eemployed on the assumption t h a t
the general public must be k e p t
ignorant or that the public is too
stupid to evaluate the information
and judge for itself the releace
or truth of this information.
Recently in our liberal student
community, it has become appar-
ent that there is a really irrational
fear of being branded "sexist"
anti-racial, etc. on the part of
some people who are responsible
forso me of our local media The

more sensational tactic employed
to further the cause of radical fem- -
Pe-sonally, I am sympathetic to
the liberation crusades of t h e
American Indian Movement, Gay
Liberation, the Advocates of Medi-
cal Information and the feminist
movement in general, but not at
the expense of media censorship.
'The Boys in the Band" does indeed
present a tragically stereotyped
view of homosexual men, but it
must be acknowledged that this,
film is not entirely unlacking in
cinematic and dramatic value. The
problems faced by the individuals
-in this film are essentially human
dilemtmas, people forced to play a
role that society demands of them.
Beyond the pathetic fagginess and
bitnhiness. ano mlipunti *1 m

critical judgment.
This basic argument holds true
for the airing of "The Lone Rang-
er". Any damage that the portrayal
of Tonto has caused is a part of
history. I rather doubt that at-
one these days rea ly takes any-
thing the. Lone Ranger atid Tonto
do very seriously. Tonto is a fic-
tion part of Aterican nostalgia and
if we still retain -a sense o humor-
we can accept his role in a myth
that is no longer ptevalent. It is
just as silly to think that Tontos
"lackey' image is somehow dele-
terious to the contemporary Native
American as Spiro Agnew's hnage
is deleterious to the contemporary
I STRONiL fA\OR and Ldoi-
-uite the riht of m mntr~ ien to

material presentable or unpresent-
able on the basis of minority sen-
sitivity to the subject, we will soon
arrive at a- point where nothing
can be viewed, aired, or published
because someone, somewhere will
be offended.
Imaginative dialogue is the key
to constructive change and critical
awareness of certain problems, -not
censorship and suppression
-Phil Nash
Grad Student
April 10
Obiscei e' ad
To 'The Daily:
rI 'I) IT extremely offensive
that The Daily publishes obscene
advertisements in its "Personal"
cIohnnhes as onmiblnh ufor

e fended
don't even discuss with my b o y-
When I ent to see Kristin and
told him what I thought of his
questionnaire and people like ,him
he just smiled and told me that I'm
too young to understand. what was
going on (I'm 20). People like him
should be treated the same or
worse than those "masage parlor"
women you exposed earlier, and
a newspaper like yours should ;got
encourage wife-swapping or accept
ads from perverts. How can you
justify this?
-Mary Howard '73
April 16
Picking weed o



J91 51 U F7r-

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