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February 28, 1980 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1980-02-28

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Page 4-Thursday, February 28, 1980-The Michigan Daily

-'

Ninety Years of Editorial Freedom

Go the easy way-take MSA!

Vol. XC, No. 123,

News Phone: 764-0552

I

Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan

-j

0 Fight
HEN THE drin
gan was raise
students solemnly v
change in the law.
petitions, and refer
back and forth like sc
ber; students vowe
famous Proposal D.
Pne year later, stu
tAste for alcohol, bus
14t interest in wor
dinking age.
On Tuesday night,
Fair Drinking Age (
atdrive on this cam
d inking age to 19
p ople showed up.
t's clear that Pro
a d ineffective. In
f led miserably: All
p event high scho

for lower dr ink age
king age in Michi- drinking and decrease alcohol-related
d to 21 last year, traffic accidents, statistics show in-
owed to work for stead a six per cent increase in traffic
Talk of rallies, fatalities since Proposal D went into
enda was passed effect.
3 many pitchers of This increase has been attributed to
d to repeal the in- poor enforcement of the law,
and-more significantly-to greater
dents still have a numbers of young people drinking in
t apparently have parks and in cars.
king for a lower Aside from its failure to reduce traf-
fic deaths, Proposal D is quite an in-
the Citizens for a convenience for most college students.
CFDA) kicked off In short, there are ample reasons why
apus to lower the students should band together and
. Fewer than 20 work for its repeal.
Nearly 300,000 signatures are needed
)posal D is unfair on petitions to place the lower drinking
fact, the law has proposal in the November ballot.
though intended to. Fewer than 20 students cannot help the
of students from petition drive significantly. Sober up!

Money always seems to turn up
when you really need it. At least
that's the way it works at- the
Michigan Student Assembly
(MSA). Even when they are ap-
parently strapped for money, our
dedicated student leaders are
always ready to put in that extra
effort when they hear the call to
duty to represent us in faraway
conferences.
Last term, after hearing
requests for financial aid from 31
student organizations, MSA
decided it could not afford to
finance half of the almost $30,000
requested.
YET, AT THE end of
January, MSA found almost
$1,000 to send three MSA mem-
bers and one former member on
an all-expense-paid trip to
Washington, D.C. for a conferen-
ce of the American Student
Association (ASA).
Most recently, MSA picked up
the tab for MSA President Jim.
Alland's trip to Washington to
take part in a White House
discussion of PresidenteCarter's
draft registration proposal.
Alland's trip cost University
students $600.
In financing two expensive
junkets to Washington while
simultaneously allocating a slim
$8,600 to student groups-shaving
off over $11,400 worth of requests
and flatly denying funds to two
groups-MSA has made its
priorities clear.
PARTICULARLY outrageous
is the jaunt to Washington for the
ASA conference. Former MSA

Member Brad Canale who went
on the trip described the ASA
conference as an "organizational
meeting." The conference, which
lasted from January 31 to
February 3, was designed to
begin structuring the ASA, a
student lobbying group in
Washington.

By David Meyer

whether the benefits of sending
the students to the organizational
meeting were worth the $922 it
eventually cost University
students. The junket did not
require the full $1,200 allocated
for it.
Presumably, the reason
students are required to hand

especially those who got to see
the Lincoln Memorial and the-
Washington Monument, will con-
tend that students interests are
best served by flying their mem-
bers about the nation to par-
ticipate in organizational
meetings.
THIS UNUSUAL logic can be
questioned without even touching 0
upon the lengthy debate over the
competency of MSA members.
Although MSA's representation
at these national meetings
ultimately and indirectly benefits
students to some degree, studen-
ts' money might be better spent,
by supporting University and,
student organizations in their ef-
forts to provide more direct op-
portunities for students here on
campus.
Student organizations, whether .
they be the Spartacus Youth
League or the Young.
Republicans, provide a crucial
service to the University com-
munity, enriching the campus
educationally, , culturally, and.
politically. Student organizations
offer vital opportunities for in-
volvement and there is no reason
they should starve financially
while MSA sends its members on
costly excursions to Washington.
Daily Assistant Night Editor..'
David Meyer covers student gov
ernments for the Daily.

WASHINGTON, D.C. WAS the destination of two recent trips taken
by various members of the Michigan Student Assembly. Some have
questioned use of student funds to pay for these trips.

Out of the Rose Garden

NTIL THE Iowa caucuses, it ap-
peared that President Carter's
p licy of attacking international
problems from the White House (while
s ering clear of the campaign trail)
vas justified. The approach of the of-
f ial campaign season, however,
brought to mind Carter's silence on
ny important domestic issues ever
sice the international situation wor-
sned. It seemed that the time had
cme for the president to fall into line
w4th the other candidates, and to begin
speaking out on the matters of his
record and his intentions for the next
f~ar years, should he be re-elected.
Now Iowa has come and gone, as has
tle traditional kickoff of the campaign,
tl ,New' Hampshire primary. Unfor-
t ately, voters in both the Midwest
aid New England keystone states have
given approval to the incumbent
without benefit of hearing him defend
his policies on domestic issues. The
1Dose Garden Strategy has worked
very well, and it would be surprising to
see Carter abandon it now.
Candidate Edward Kennedy, after a
t of dancing back and forth on the
iolitical spectrum, has finally settled
into a consistent array of stances on
,te various issues, and has been trying
tp goad the president into debate. It is
past time for Carter to talk about his
record, even if most voters seem not to
ble demanding that of him.
How does Carter explain the way the
inflation rate has' swelled under his
leadership? What about -the charge
that Carter's wavering over the matter
of the Soviet troops in Cuba en-
eouraged the invasion of Afghanistan?
To these, and to a dozen other
questions to which Americans deserve
a reply, Carter has somehow managed
to affix an aura of irrelevance. All that
mericans need to think about, the

president seems to be saying, is the
threats posed by Karmal in
Afghanistan (if indeed he is still
heading the government) and
Khomeini in Iran (the same).
It's certainly possible that Carter
may be privy to secret dealings with
the Iranians-ones he cannot afford to
make public if the hostages are ever to
be released. There may be important
communications going on between the
White House and the various in-
telligence agencies concerning the
recent Soviet threat, as well.
But there is a distinctly irresponsible
quality about a candidate-even if he
happens to be a president-who will
not speak openly about his record,
while simultaneously calling criticism
of his actions "unpatriotic." As long as
Carter is busily engaged in flag
waving, we would encourage him to
"patriotically" leave the sweet smell
of the White House roses behind, even
though the electorate has not yet in-
sisted that he do so. In the long run, it
will serve his own political purposes,
as well as the information desired by
the citizenry, to discuss and debate his
political past. The voters will soon see
that mere Cold War blustering does not
a president make.
Editorial policies
Unsigned editorials ap-
pearing on the left side of this
page represent a majority
opinion of the Daily's Editorial
Board. Letters and columns
represent the opinions of the
individual author(s).
naamanaamiasessosessnas .ma::

While MSA's attendance at the
ASA organizational meeting may
have been worthwhile, the
necessity of sending four studen-
ts, one of whom was no longer a
member of MSA, may be
questioned. Equally debatable is

over $2.92 to student government
each term is so groups like MSA
can use that money to serve
student interests and promote
educationally and culturally
enriching activities at the
University. MSA, members,

Will Marcos follow 1

Despite the victory claimed by the Philip-
pine government's New Society Party in the
January elections, evidence continues to
mount that the eight-year dictatorship of
President Ferdinand Marcos is heading for a
fate, similar to that of the Shah of Iran,
Somoza of Nicaragua, or even President Park
of South Korea.
The rising level of popular unrest in the
Philippines, fed by a deteriorating economy,
has already caused a number of American of-
ficials and businessmen to send up cautionary
alarms. The potential loss of yet another
strategic U.S. ally is not a welcome prospect
in Washington.
THE GOVERNMENT victory in the elec-
tions has done little to reassure anyone of the
government's stability. Philippine elections
are characterized by a long history of fraud,
and this latest-conducted under conditions of
severe martial law-was no exception if the
opposition is to be believed.
At the root of the current .unrest is the wor-
sening poverty and rising inflation throughout
the Philippines, fueled in part by the recent
rises in oil prices and the failures of the ex-
port-based economy. The cost of- living has
more than doubled since 1972, and inflation is
expected to exceed 30 per cent this year.
In Manila, one-third of the population lives
in some of the worst slums of Southeast Asia,
and 15 per cent of the city's population has
been reduced to begging.
The nation's foreign debt soared to $10
billion last year, an 800 per cent increase from
the time martial law was imposed eight years
ago. The government now has to borrow 'fun-
ds simply to meet its $1 billion annual debt
payment. In addition, the balance of paymen-
ts deficit reached nearly $500 million last
year, almost a ten-fold increase from 1978.
The recent 40 per cent rise in the price of rice,
compounded by the continuing rise in the
price of oil-80 per cent of which must be im-
ported-promises to create an even greater

By Robin Broad
drain on the national economy in the im-
mediate future.
THE ECONOMIC woes have been worsened
by a persistent and, some say, growing armed.
rebellion in rural areas, where 80 per cent of
the population lives. Although Secretary of
Defense Enrile promised a year ago to rid
northern Luzon of the communist New
People's Party (NPA), guerrilla warfare still
rages despite the infusion of $162.5 million in
U.S. military aide to the Marcos regime since
January, 1979-roughly one-quarter of the
Philippines' military budget.
Another rebel front, led by the Muslim-
backed Moro National Liberation Front in
Mindanao, has evidently gained en-
couragement, if not manpower, from the rise
of Muslim power elsewhere.
In Manila and the suburbs, new militant
opposition has arisen on college campuses
with a series of anti-Marcos demonstrations
led by the recently formed League of Filipino
Students.
MARCOS HAS reacted to this swelling tide
of militancy by dependingever more heavily "
on the military force to enforce civil order
and quell outlawed opposition. The Philippine
army now stands at nearly a quarter-million
men, up from just 60,000 when martial law
began. The army's campaign to rout out the
military opposition has resulted in increasing
charges of abuse against innocent citizens,.
including evidence of numerous
assassinations.
All of this has begun to translate into a
growing sense of unease among the nation's
business elite, which is dominated by U.S. and
Japanese firms. U.S. business periodicals,
which until recently trumpeted the advan-'
tageous business climate'in the Philippines,
have now begun warning of the "volatile en-
vironment." A U.S. banker in Manila recently
told Business Week that "Just a short time
ago there was a positive consensus in the in-
vestment community (here). Now there is no
consensus."
In fact, in the first six months of 1979, more
than $37 million of investment capital left the
Philippines, five times more than in the first
half of 1978. And in the first quarter of 1979,
new investment capital was down to two-
thirds from the same period of 1978.
Similar, if greater, capital outflows also
characterized the months leading up to the
overthrow of the pro-U.S. governments in
Iran and Nicaragua.
THE COMPARISON of the Philippines'
situation to those two countries may be
"facile," said a State Department source,
"but it is constantly being made. The sense
we get is that there is a feeling among staffers
and some Congressmen that the Philippines
could be another Iran," he added.
Congressman Tony Hall (D-Ohio), a mem-
ber of the House Asian and Pacific Subcom-
mittee, acknowledged last December that
"There is a growing number of U.S. officials

L-
he Shah?,
who believe that if we continue with the
policies of the past administrations, there will
be more 'Irans, and the Philippines will be-
one."
Needless to say, the U.S. does not want a<
radical coup of Muslim seccession in thOe
Philippines any more than Marcos does.
given the importance of the islands as a
staging area for U.S. military air and naval
forces. But there are signs in the shifting Car-
ter administration attitude towXard the Third
World that the U.S.. might be able to live
without Marcos, given a moderate, pro-
Western successor. Just as the assassination
of President Park in South Korea, and hiSa -
replacement by a more moderate gover-
nment, sent no alarms through Washington,
so a moderate-led coup against Marcos ma
be the solution that some officials are secretly
hoping for. P
THERE IS certainly no shortage of pro-
Western opposition forces, even though
leaders most threatening to Marcos have
been jailed or exiled. The National Union for
Democracy and Freedom, a group of former'
senators and congressmen formed in 1978,
has in the past few months raised its voice to
play up the comparisons to Iran an
Nicaragua. Former Philippines President
Diosdado Macapagal, a member of the group,
has declared that the disarray of Nicaragua is
already upon the Philippines, and former
Senator Jovita 'Solonga has warned that "a
radical solution will surely be dictated by
supervising events" if Marcos' martial law
continued.
Among the exiled opposition leaders the
same theme is sounded by former Senator
Raul Manglapus and his Movement for a Free
Philippines, headquartered in Washington.
This new boldness by the loyal opposition is*
also finding increased support among the
Catholic clergy. The army's violations of
human rights against the population (which is
95 per cent Catholic) has turned nuns and
priests into opposition activists" or sym-
pathizers. Even Cardinal Jaime Sin, the
highest ranking Catholic in the Philippines,
has recently spoken in praise of the im-
prisoned opposition leader Benito Aquino.
Cardinal Sin praised him for "what is best
what is good and courageous in the, Filipino;
character," while adding that "the greatest
punishment God could give any country is.
civil war."
The message that something must be done,
and done soon, to avert civil war was carried
to Marcos personally by a recent U.S.
Congressional delegation. As Congressman
Lester Wolff (D-NY) said to reporters at the
Manila airport, "It is important that the
Philippines, having been . a model -of
democracy, return as soon as possible to
democratic processes."
President Marcos promised during the
recent elections to consider that possibility in
18 months. Many observers doubt that he will
have the opportunity.

Higin
\. '\. \ 4..
'U2
41N"N

Robin Broad is a specialist in Philip-
pine affairs at Princeton. He wrote this
article for the Pacific News Service.

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