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September 12, 1972 - Image 4

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1972-09-12

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Aiwe £id in DaU4
Eighty-one years of editorial freedom
Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan

HRP responds


'S un

420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, Mich.

News Phone: 764-0552

Editorials printed in The Michigan Doily express the individual opinions of stuff writers
or the editors. This must be noted in all reprints.
Biting md dog' MCGovern

GEORGE McGOVERN'S apparent diffi-
culties in the popularity polls here in
the United States seem pale compared to
his reception by South Vietnam - or,
more correctly, by the South Vietnamese
government. Take heed of the following
analogous description of his policies
broadcast recently over South Vietna-
mese radio:
"It is just because of these stupid
pronouncements (by McGovern) that we
are now faced with an onerous task, like
catching a mad dog and putting him in
a cage for mad dogs, or killing him by
bashing his brains in, even though by
doing so, we could be stained by the ani-
mal's saliva or dirt."
Not very neighborly things to say at
all. It is clear that Nguyen Van Thieu
does not think much at all of the sena-
tor. But it is probably encouraging that
McGovern has given him little reason to
like him.
McGovern's commendable refusal to
support Thieu's dictatorship has won
him the most hostile reception in the
South Vietnamese government-control-
led press of any American in recent
memory. Referred to as the "Mad Dog
on the American Political Scene," he
has been called "mentally ill" and "an
enemy of the South Vietnamese people."
The Thieu government is so sure that
McGovern will lose they see no reason

not to attack him in the most vicious
way possible.
rVHIEU IS USING McGovern's underdog
status as a chance not only to blast
the antiwar movement. in the United
States, but to reestablish his position
with the Nixon administration. Nixon is
seen aS a "known" quantity - he is
known to support the Thieu regime, to
be willing to continue American involve-
ment in Vietnam and to have seemingly
no compunctions about raining bombs
on the North. Thieu 'knows that if Mc-
Govern assumes power he loses his, and
is consequently using every opportunity
to extinguish any pro-McGovern sym-
pathy in his own country.
And where does the Nixon administra-
tion fit in? The American Embassy in
Saigon recently lodged a formal pro-
test wth the South Vietnamese govern-
ment concerning the broadcasts. The ad-
ministration shares in Thieu's confidence
about Nixon's reelection, and now wants
to appear magnanimous in decrying the
blasts on McGovern.
IT SEEMS, however, that Thieu's voci-
ferous outbursts are a bit misdirect-
ed. Perhaps they should be directed at
the American people in general, who by
now are hopefully getting fed up with the
grandstand ploys of a threatened dicta-

The following article was issued by the
Washtenaw County Human Rights Party
in response to articles appearing in the
current issue of the Ann Arbor Sun de-
tailing an apparent rift between the Rain-
bow Peoples Party and HRP.
played a dual and sometimes confusing
role in the HRP. There was never a formal
"alliance" between the two parties. Instead,
many RPP members participated in HRP
as a caucus, while at the same time oper-
ating as an independent group. It was
from this latter perspective that the ar-
ticles in the Sun were written. The HRP
always accepts political differences within
the party. However, since the RPP has es-
sentially stepped outside the HRP, we
feel it is important to state the differences
between the basic RPP political philosophy
and that which is stated In the current
HRP platform. This in no way is meant to
exclude or de-legitimize the views held by
RPP within HRP discussions.
Underlying the Rainbow People's Party
criticism of the Human Rights Party are
basic political differences. RPP's primary
constituency is "freaks on the street, stu-
dents in the public schools and universities,
the rainbow merchants around town, rock.
and roll bands, community service workers,
[and] brothers and sisters who work for
the honk one way or another in order to
insure their survival." RPP believes in
a youth and cultural revolution, one which
is happening here and now and which in-
volves smoking marijuana.
HRP disagrees with this philosophy on
several points. First, we feel that it is an
age-chauvinist position, writing off the old-
ers and elderly as useless to fundamental
social change. While we recognize the poli-
tical effect the legal prohibition of mari-
juana has had on many people's understand-
ing of the system, we do not see the act
of smoking marijuana as particularly signi-
ficant in itself. Though calling for its legis-

lation, HRP has never advocated the use
of marijuana.
HRP sees social change arising primarily
from political and economic forces. We see
our constituency in terms of tis social
class. Labor, organized and unorganized,
and oppressed groups - women, racial mi-
norities, gays and students - are the people
in society whose interests and power give
them the capability to achieve social
change. We are a long way off from a
democratic socialist society. It will take
years of grass roots organizing through open
democratic organizations such as HRP to
bring it forth.
Differences such as these can only be
resolved by full and open discussion. We
welcome that discussion.
Sun's article was HRP's failure to 'nom-
inate a candidate for sheriff. What was nev-
er made clear in the Sun was that the
HRP convention on August 20 voted that
the party should run a candidate for sher-
iff if an acceptable one could be found.
In this decision, the so-called homogeneous
hard core of HRP was split. Two people who
had considered running for sheriff withdrew
from the race for financial and personal
reasons before the August 24 caucus. This
left the party with two people contending
for the sheriff's nomination, neither of
whom had even been to an HRP meet-
ing. After interviewing the prospectice can-
didates on August 24, the party voted almost
unanimously that it had no acceptable can-
didate and would therefore run no one.
RPP threw their votes in - as a bloc -
with the majority.
The second main point of the Sun articles
relates to the nature of the Human Rights
Party. We are pleased to see that the RPP
has stated its commitment to the HRP plat-
form, program, and elected officials. If this
is the case, then it makes little sense to
withdraw support from an electoral effort
which pushes for that same platform and
Because arguments, debate, and nom-

inating procedures were heated does not
make HRP a "campus-radical debate so-
ciety." It is important to have a thorough
debate on nominees and issues, especially
since state law forbids the HRP to nom-
inate by primary and requires the "cau-
cus" procedure. The law also requires a
late-August caucus, when everyone is out
of town!
We do not propose to defend or attack
any alleged "faction" in HRP, but it is im-
portant to note for the record that no "fac-
tion" prevailed during convention voting
and that there were many occasions when
the supposed "factions" did not vote as a
bloc - e.g., the sheriff's race. In fact,
all of the losing candidates and both of the
people who considered but rejected run-
ning for sheriff are or will be working hard
for HRP. They are doing sodbecause they
see the importance of building an open,
democratic, radical Human Rights Party.
be aware of and consciously fight elitist ten-
dencies. No one can ever accuse us of try-
ing to brush this problem under the rug
after our caucus. It is to our credit, not
our discredit, that the openness of our party
underwent a thorough debate. And the fact
is, despite a charge that HRP "regulars"
run the whole show, that our present steer-
ing committee has a majority of people on
it who were not active more than a month
in the party before the April election. Sim-
ilarly, our candidate slate combines people
with various degrees of experience in the
The HRP runs its meetings by parliamen-
tary procedure because we feel it is the
best way in which the majority can rule
and the minority have its rights. This sys-.
Finally, there is some criticism of the
party's perception of its constituency. Con-
trary to what John Sinclair has said, Steve
Burghardt, our state representative nomi-
nee, did not say our party's constituency is
"liberal Democrats." What he, and many
tem can be oppressive for people who are

not familiar with it, but the alternative is
a kind of "shouting democracy" which is
oppressive to those who have difficulty
speaking out. It is not necessarily a "parlia-
mentary trick" when someone loses a vote
because of the will of the majority at a
well-attended convention. In fact, when
RPP felt it had been unfairly muzzled in
its attempt to explain its position on the
sheriff's race on August 19, the HRP con-
vention overwhelmingly voted to suspend
its own rules and allow for a lengthy RPP
presentation on that issue.
others who are concerned about keeping
HRP open, said was that we must recog-
nize that many people who have voted and
might vote for HRP are in fact "liberal
Democrats." That does not mean that we
try to sound like liberal Democrats with
a different name, but rather that we seek
to persuade them in a reasonable way
that the Democrat Party cannot meet their
needs or provide for their concerns.
Liberal Democrats are not the only peo-
ple this party must win over. M a n y
people in this country have only an un-
directed bitterness and cynicism towards all
manner of politics, gained through exper-
ience with an inhumane system. Certain-
ly large numbers of the student-youth com-
munity are part of the force for change.
But youth is by no means the only part.
In order to bring about fundamental social
change, we must seek to bring together all
those victimized by the American social
system and unite them to change that sys-
tem. This requires a broadly based con-
stituency and a party that is open, not ex-
clusionary. That is the HRP position. TJiat
is our candidates' position.
It is time now to get down to the work
of building the Human Rights Party, con-
fronting the Democrats and Republicans,
and changing the system they perpetuate.
Let us have differences about how to do it,
argue those differences in a fair, demo-
cratic, comradely way, a d m i t where we
differ, hail our agreements, and get on with
the urgent tasks we face.



The axing of Al Ackerman

AL ACKERMAN is gone. The TV 4 sports
commentator was canned on Friday
after commenting on the expulsion for
life of two American track stars from the
Discussing the banning of dash men
Vince Matthews and Wayne. Collett for
not standing at attention during the
playing of the national anthem follow-
ing their one-two finish in the 400-
meter final Tuesday, Ackerman said,
... I can't feel the same sense of moral
outrage as some of our viewers, with the
m'urder of 11 Olympians still fresh in my
Ackerman was. fired apparently be-
cause he "editorialized" too much in his
daily presentation of sports news. He at
times has been notably critical of the
Detroit Lions' and Red Wings' manage-
'Seemingly, Ackerman's r e f r e s h i n g
comment on the Olympic expulsion was
deemed too controversial and was the
last straw for the WWJ-TV management.
The station however, had no comment
for the press and the tapes of the show
and Ackerman's script are nowhere to
be found.
CKERMAN BROUGHT to the screen a
human, perceptive look at the sports
Today's staff: -
News: Robert Barkin, Pat Bauer, Meryl
Gordon, David Stoll, Marcia Zoslaw
Editorial: Robert Schreiner
Photo Technician: Rolfe Tessem

world, avoiding standard recitations of
scores and schedules.
When Ackerman approached a contro-
versial issue, he did it openly and said
what he thought - rather than camou-
flage hostility and bias in snorts and
snickers while reporting news of a par-
ticular bent. In this respect, Ackerman
stood shoulders above the vast majority
of TV commentators of both the sports
and news variety.
It is this that is most unfortunate
about Ackerman's firing. Watching Al
might not have been quite the same as
experiencing Sonny Elliot, but it was not
a lot of hyped up baloney either.
Chucle up
for safety
THE NATIONAL Motor Vehicle Safety
Advisors Council has given GM
President Edward Cole its first award
for "outstanding contribution to automo-
tive safety." Cole, known as the father
of the Corvair, heads a company that has
recalled over 17.7 million automobiles, or
54 per cent of its total production, for
safety defects since 1966.
September 1972j

China thaw causes ch I*.
WASHINGTON - W a r m i n g renew their pledges of support of ments are reaching North
Chinese-American relations, which North Vietnam. nam.
weathered the bombing and min- NI'.
ing of North Vietnam's supply One strongly worded message -NIXON'S '76 STRATeu
lines, are chilling again of support reportedly was signed While House aides tell us
The interception of Chinese ship- by Chairman Mao Tse-tung him President Nixon will not an
ments, according to a CIA report, self. Such a rare message from Spiro Agnew as his success
has soured U.S. relations withg Mao has the force of being en- 1976 if the President is re-e
mainland China. graved on the great wall of China. this fall. The President, say
The report reveals that Chinese The CIA report, furthermore, sources, wants a wide open
freighters are successfully unload- affirms our earlier report t h a t publican convention in 1976.
ing an astonishing amount of sup- heavy U.S. bombing has failed to With this in mind, the
plies at hidden anchorages up and halt the flow of supplies across dent intends to give nationa
down the North Vietnam coast. the network of rail lines, roads and posure to several presidential
The supplies are unloaded on trails that lead into North Viet- pects, including New York's
small barges and boats, which nam. Nelson Rockefeller, ex-Tre
smuggle the war booty to shore. The CIA report claims more t Secretary John Connally, c
The ingenious Chinese, we have h oh epwa mr thich living czar Donald Rumsfeld
learned, even use huge waterproof half of the war material, which United Nations ambassador G
plastic bags to float supplies a- used to be shipped to North Viet- Bush.
shore. nam before the bombing, is get- The President is not like
ting through. Even the Air Force,emrc lira IlnosS
To disrupt Hanoi's supply line, which has a vested interest in embrace liberal Illinois Se
the U.S. Seventh Fleet has inter- Chuck Percy. But even if a I
cepted some Chinese shipping. But monstrating its bombing raids are bandwagon begins to pick up
such action, according to the CIA, effective, acknowledges that more steam, the President is expect
has only prompted the Chinese to than a quarter of the former ship- remain above an election fig

- i> J
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1~ . ~~

l iet-
,or in
A ex-
ost of-
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iv to
ted to

Agnew playing

P1K GIll



Letters to The

Rainbow politics
To The Daily:
THE CURRENT Ann Arbor Sun,
the Rainbow Party newspaper, in-
cludes this inviting headline:
ITY." Traditionally the Rainbow
people have treated students as
middle-class transients, not real
people like themselves. Reading
beyond (and behind) the h e a d-
lines, an explanation appears. The
RPP, which already controls a
newspaper, other media channels,
a rock band, two houses, a counter-
cultural martyr (John Sinclair), a
radical image and useful official
connections, is breaking into poli-
tics. Its expressed purpose is to
take over the Human Rights Party,
or wreck it! and for that they
need support from the students
they have always shown contempt
Superficially, the Rainbow busi-
nessmen criticize HRP for two rea-
sons: (1) For allowing "ultra-left-
ist intellectuals" to influence nomi-
nations, and (2) For nominating at
least one candidate who believes in
appealing to liberal votes. T h e
Sun does not explain how the Hu-
man Rights Party can be too far
left and too far right at the same
time. They do say, though, that
the "strong rainbow contingent"
at the last nominating convention
was defeated - a risk one has to
take in dealing with a democratic

private) is so corrupt that t x e y
thought they could control h i m.
As for ultra-leftism, this is a cur-
ious charge to come from self-
styled revolutionaries; these days
even John Sinclair talks less about
the liberating effects of rock and
roll and more about the monopoly
capitalist basis of American socie-
ty. I think that puts him on the
right track, but then why dues he
attack the "ultra-leftists" w h o
figured this out when Sinclair and
friends were apolitical dropouts?
The Rainbow Peoples Party must
be understood as operating on two
levels. One is the theoretical
"counter-culture" level, the level
on which we are assured that sex,
drugs and cheap thrills not only
liberate the individual, but demon-
strate the necessity of overthrow-
ing the State which denies us these
sacraments. Many people, includ-
ing myself, sympathize with some
of this thinking even when we have'
to criticize its shallowness. What-
ever popular following the RPP has
consists of people who sincerely
believe in a freer, more humane
approach to social relations.
Rainbow party as a business and
as a political faction - has al-
most nothing to do with the first.
Here the tiny RPP elite is concern-
ed operationally with whatever it
takes to amass wealth and power.

Since in the short run there' a
bigger pay-off in corrupting t h e
system than in transforming it, the
Rainbow leaders trade favors with
any actual or potential power-hold-
er - with a liberal Democratic
mayor, with a predatory bail
bondsman, or with a radical third
party. The fact that this rarely
yields real benefits for the people
in general is just one reason f o r
repudiating this approach.
The remarkable thing is that the
Rainbow clique has not been more
often attacked for its crass hpo-
crisy. In the issue of the Sun I
noted, contradictions abound. On
the front page, the Sun belatedly
welcomes students into the com-
munity; on page 10, they attack
HRP for "running a candidate for
County Commission in the 15th Dis-
trict who has been out of town
vacationing all summer while peo-
ple in this community have been
struggling to survive." But the
Rainbow community which exclud-
es students includes "the rainbow
merchants around town, rock and
roll bands, (and) community serv-
ice workers" -- that is, the RPP
leadership, their employees, and
other petit-bourgeoise hip-fascist
rip-off artists.
I SUGGEST we should eliminate
these corrupt elements from radi-
cal democratic politics, because
they are not radical, not democrat-

0 0
for activism
Daily Guest Writer
MICHIGAN STUDENTS now have more potential to effect change
than we have ever had, since we now employ three full-time pro-
fessionals whose sole job is to act in the public interest as determined
by a student-elected board. We -can now direct our energy and research
to gathering material for lawsuits, lobbying for new laws, public aware-
ness campaigns, or however else change can be accomplished.
PIRGIM - the Public Interest Research Group in Michigan - is
the students' non-profit corporation set up to deal with issues like en-
vironmental hazards, consumer fraud, discrimination, housing condi-
tions, government-industrial closeness, etc.
The PIRGIM professional staff in Lansing consists of:
-Executive director Joe Tuchinsky, 35, veteran movement organ-.
izer, co-author of "Guide to the Draft", founder and former head of the
Midwest Committee for Draft Counseling;
-Legal director Bob Hicks, 28, organizer of the Cambridge, Mass.
anti-poverty law office, transportation team leader of the 1971 Nader
study of land use in California, co-author of "Power and Land in Cali-
fornia"; and
-Research director Cary Africk, 26, systems analyst and social
scientist with experience on both sides of industry.
More professionals will probably be hired in January.
PIRGIM can be the most powerful voice in the public interest in the
state, if we students make it that. How can this be accomplished?
" Research for credit - class papers, lab reports, seminars, inde-
pendent study, theses, etc., in disciplines ranging from introductory
economics to urban planning, chemical engineering to environmental
education, etc.
* Advocacy - lobbying, testifying, pressuring for change recom-
mended in PIRGIM reports.
* Coordination - keeping contact with student and community
groups to avoid duplication and build issue-oriented coalitions, arrang-
ing credit for PIRGIM class work, establishing new courses in the
public interest.
* Publicity - media releases, speaking, leafletting, telephoning.
" Decision making - participating.in open meetings held Wednes-
days at 7:30 P.M. at the PIRGIM office (1511 S.A.B.), and possibly
running in campus elections for the Board of Directors.
PIRGIM was formed in response to a crying need for a balance to
the vested interests of certain industries and other small groups with
a disproportionate amount of power used adversely. The idea is to ob-
jectively expose and document issues, then use the tools the vested in-
terests have employed so effectively, to overcome those same interests.
16,000+ students here, 11,000+ Wayne State students, 2,000+ Grand
Valley State College students, and others have signed petitions calling
r,-- " T t fX .. .. ,...L ....' - ... - . +, - + n w si 4t n e

W- -W 1 PA

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