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March 29, 1980 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1980-03-29

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Page 4-Saturday, March 29, 1980-The Michigan Daily

They're starting to smile in the

Kennedy camp

John Gage, one of the can-
didate's key aides, grabs his
scruffy notebook and slowly
retreats to the back of the bus. He
knows it is once again time to
collect the daily dues from the
men and women who report the
news. Not a happy
chore-politicians and their aides
usually prefer to give the press a
free ride-but Gage does it with
class, apologizing all the while.
Walking down the aisle, he
quietly asks each reporter and
cameraman to pay the bill.
Reporters who boarded the bus in
New' Haven, he explains, only
need to contribute $10, but those
who got on in Manhattan must
pay $35. By now, the reporters
are accustomed to these daily
'collections. They have become:
as much a part of the campaign
as the stump speeches and the
outdoor rallies.
ON THIS COOL cloudy day in
southern Connecticut, one repor-
ter jokes with Gage, explaining
that the press is doing candidate
Ted Kennedy a great service by
continuing to cover his campaign
when it would be easy to desert
him. The reporter kids that the
press is therefore entitled to a
free trip.
"Hey Gage, this is crazy. Do I
have to pay again?" the jour-
nalist asks.
Look, you know we need all the
moedy we can get," says Gage,
trying tosmile. He can't do it. He
has forgotten how.
IT WASN'T ALWAYS that way.
Back in October and November
when the polls showed that Ted
Kennedy could beat anyone,
there was confince, ambition,
cockiness, and direction in his
camp. No one worried about

Jimmy Carter, he would be
disposed of, quickly. It was the
Republican, the Kennedy
strategists feared, who would
pose the biggest threat during the
upcoming election year.
As the winter dragged on and
Ayatollah Khomeini saved the
Carter candidacy, confidence
turned into despair and direction
became confusion. The hostage
crisis was the first excuse. Ken-
nedy aides were patient, waiting
for the hostages to come home
and for the American people to
stop rallying behind their
president.
But as the hostages stayed put,
and the populace stayed with
Jimmy Carter. People were
frowing impatient with the ad-
ministration's failure to bring 50
Americans home, but those same
people still voted for Jimmy Car-
ter in the early primaries.
KENNEDY'S staff people were
confused. They turned to a new
scapegoat. They believed that as
inflation worsened,, the nation
would revolt against the inept
Georgian in office.
Though it didn't seem possible,
inflation did get worse. The polls
indicated overwhelming disap-
proval with the administration's
economic policies. The ad-
ministration's anti-inflation
program was taking a beating.
But Jimmy Carter was sur-
viving it all. More than that, he
was prospering from the coun-
try's woes.
KENNEDY aides came up with
one more excuse-Chappaquid-
dick. The personality factor, as it
has been renamed, was making
people vote for an incompetent,
naive Carter over an experienced
but untrustworthy Kennedy. On-

ce the public got that out of its
system after a few primaries,
then it could switch its focus back
to the most important
problem-inflation.
Hogwash. The Illinois primary
destroyed the hopes and predic-
tions of the Kennedy people. In-
flation was awful. Carter's
foreign policy was in complete
disarray. Illinois was the Ken-
nedy family's second home;
Chicago's black and unionized
voters, the ideal Kennedy con-
stituents.
It was the unanticipated whip-
ping the senator took in Illinois
that convinced the pundits Carter
had the nomination locked up. It.
was Illinois that drove some of
Kennedy's aides to ask that he
give up the hopeless cause, and
that showed everyone that Chap-
paquiddick was more powerful
than any other campaign issue. It
spelled'the end of the Kennedy
legacy. Americans would no
longer vote for a guy just because
of his name. He would have to be
trusted too.
IT WAS ALL this, on top of four
days of newspaper and network
reports discussing the inevitable
showdown between Ronald
Reagan and Jimmy Carter, that
had taken the smile off John
Gage'e face. He probably won-
dered if he would ever smile
again.
A good-looking man in his mid
30s, Gage's main role is to keep
the press happy, to make sure
reporters have the senator's
schedule and that the accom-
modations are pleasant. But he
had not received a check for
several weeks, and he was willing
to continue without pay.
His daily walks down the aisle
of the bus reminded everyone of

By Michael Arkush

the sad state of the Kennedy
campaign. How symbolic it was
that a campaign which once had
more money than it could spend
now had to take money from the
reporters.

THE MOOD on the bus was
rather bleak. The reporters who
had once geared up for a long fight
to the Democratic convention in
New York, were now explaining
to each other the reasons for the

Kennedy collapse. Some of them
thought it was fruitless for so
many reporters to follow what
was obviously a dying campaign.
Others were guessing when the
candidate would officially drop
out of the race. Some were saying
that Kennedy had begun to look
foolish in his chase after an in-
cumbent president.
But others felt guilty. They
believed that the press was too
harsh on Kennedy's private life,
and had been influential in
knocking him out of contention.
After being accused of com-
placency during the campaigns
of his two brothers, this time the
press was not going to let the
candidate escape the most
careful scrutiny.
Take Waterbury, Connecticut,
for instance. Here was a working-
class industrial city, always a
good friend of the Kennedy
family. In 1960, 30,000 people
waited until three in the morning
to hear John Kennedy speak to
them. And in 1972, when Ted was
not even a candidate, 8,000 came
out to cheer him.
ON THIS beautiful spring day,
Kennedy received a tremendous
ovation. He told those at the rally
that inflation was breaking the
backs of the poor, and the Carter
administration just didn't care
about it. They yelled and stood up
when he said he would do
something about it.
But back on the bus, all the
reporters could do was notice the
small turnout-2,000, a
significant reduction from the
8,000 of eight'years earlier-and
write it off as a Kennedy city. The
rest of the state, they said, would
vote for Carter, so a rally like
this meant nothing.

THE SENATOR'S staff was
also unaffected by the rally. After
all, a New York Daily News poll
had just come out earlier in the
day which showed Carter leading
Kennedy by almost 2-1 in that
state. All the rigorous cam-
paigning, the 18-hour days
weren't paying off. Ted Kennedy
looked to be in no better shape
than he did a week earlier.
The next day, while Kennedy
was campaigning in Spanish
Harlem, a reporter asked the
senator's press secretary
Thomas Southwick, if he believed
there was a chance for victory.
"Come on, Chris. We've seen
some movement away from Car-
ter, but winning here?" South-
wick looked at Wallace, and
shook his head, as if the thought
of victory was a dream.
THROUGHOUT the rest of the
New York campaign, Kennedy
was only hoping to come close. At
least, the campaign would not be
embarrassed again.
When the results were announ-
ced Tuesday night, the Kennedy
staff seemed to be in shock. He
had defied the experts and the
polls, and had perhaps turned the
campaign around.
Several reporters were
crowded around Gage, asking
him how Kennedy had accom-
plished this latest political
miracle.
"You won, can you believe it?
Maybe now, you'll receive your
back pay," one reporter said.
Gage was speechless. But he
suddenly rediscovered his smile.
He didn't lose it once all night.
Michael Arkush is a former
Daily editor who is following
the candidates along the cam-
paign trail.'

0
6

0

AP Photo
SENATOR TED KENNEDY with wife Joan campaigns earlier this
winter in Washington, D.C. Kennedy's faltering campaign was
revived by his recent victories in the New York and Connecticut
primaries.

U

Ulbe I~ter alF ree I
Ninety Years of Editorial Freedom

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Vol. XC, No. 141

News Phone: 764-0552

Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan
Stand up and be counted

Hit',okSac Y c AM- -fAr loer' BUT (rl00HAW. iTo HAvC 1 C~'r
pDN I' U LCIJC _ /A I
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Y TODAY, thousands of students
on this campus should have
received census forms in their,
mailboxes. Unlike the many other sur-
veys students often receive, however,
this one merits careful attention.
The decennial head count of
Americans is important for reasons
beyond a mere curiosity about just how
many of us there are. Distribution of
state and federal funds and appor-
tioning of congressional seats are
perhaps the two most crucial functions
that depend upon the results of the cen-
sus.
In recent weeks, many individual in-
terest groups have been urging their
members to refrain from completing
the census forms. Illegal aliens fear
the information gathered will be used
to deport them; tax evaders fear they
will be discovered; and students fear

the census information will aid the
government in finding them if
registration or a draft is begun.
The Census Bureau, however, has
promised that the information will not
be released to any outside individual or
agency. Although the immediate reac-
tion to any such promise by a gover-
nment office is skepticism, there is
historical precedent to believe the
Census Bureau..During World War II,
the Bureau was under extreme
pressure to release information from
the 1940 census about Japanese
Americans, to be used in the round-up
of Japanese occurring at that time.
The Bureau resisted then, and has
never given out its information before
or since.
Take a few minutes to fill out the
census. As the Bureau says, the coun-
try is counting on you.

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Many learned historians and sociologists
believe our society is on a self-destructive trip
which we really do not want to or, for that
matter, need. to take.
Pitirim Sorokin, one of the most eminent
sociologists of our time, wrote a book in 1941
entitled The Crisis Of Our Age. In his book,
Sorokin pointed out that the rate of violence in
the first 40 years of this century was higher
than at any other time since the dawn of
civilization. He indicated that if this self-
destructive habit of the human race, along
with other self-destructive tendencies, were
not curtailed, our society would soon destroy
itself.
ARNOLD TOYNBEE, one of the most noted
historians of out time, wrote a book in 1965 en-
titled Change and Habit. He, too, discussed
the self-destructive habits of mankind and said
that if these habits were not changed, we
would destroy ourselves.
George Mendenhall, a leading professor of
Ancient and Biblical Studies at the University
of Michigan, wrote a book in 1973 entitled The
Tenth Generation. Mendenhall warned of
humanity's unfortunate affinity for the
distant past. He said that our society has
regressed morally and politically to the level
of the amoral Late Bronze Age and that the
two eras may soon share the same end-the
total destruction of their civilizations.
All of these men also stated that self-
destruction is not inevitable if we only realize
that these crucial problems cannot be solved
by the monopoly of power exercised by the
government; rather, the people themselves
must change and they also must change their
government.
TODAY OUR SOCIETY is closer yet to self-
destruction. Even though most attention is
centered on the threat from foreign countries,
history has shown that most countries first
fall from internal problems. However, there
are two very significant ways to prevent this

A merica:
On the
brink of
disaster

James F. O'Neil

"for the people" to the people peacefully?
Must we have a violent revolution to restore
our democracy?
President Carter spoke of returning the
government to the people after his election
when he said, "I believe in the next four years
that we will have a sense of purpose, a sense
that the government belongs to us." He said
this in response to the public.polls which in-
dicated that the people had lost confidence in
the government. Three years later only 10 per
cent of the people have confidence in the
government, and Presient Carter has yet to
endorse proposed legislation to give the
people power to initiate and vote on federal
legislation.
WHAT WE THE people need to do is ask
every presidential and congressional can-
didate to support legislation to give the peoplex
the power to initiate and approve federal'
legislation and to support a constitutional
amendment to give the people the power to
initiate and ratify constitutional amendments
at the federal level. This would be in addition
to the present methods which permit
Congress and the states to initiate con-
stitutional amendments.
The statesman- Edmund Burke once said,
"All that evil needs to prevail is for enough
good men to do nothing." Today too many
good men and women are in fact doing
nothing, and we are suffering the consequen-
ces.
Citizens are therefore urged to campaign
for "People Power." An organization called
Initiative America is working to secure the
people's right to vote on federal legislation.
However, the organization needs citizens'
help in all the states to secure the support of
their respective U.S. senators and
congressmen for this proposed amendment.
If you do this, society will be forever indeb-
ted to you; otherwise, the once bright hope of
America may be extinguished.

the people power to initiate and approve
federal legislation and constitutional amen-
dments. This is essential if we are to re-
establish our government as a democracy in a
peaceful manner. Otherwise, there may.., be
a violent overthrow of the government. This
will be brought on by the people's increasing
frustration with 1) the presidency and
Supreme Court, which are tending toward
imperialism, and 2) Congress, which ignores
the wishes of the majority of the people and
does very little to stem the runaway inflation
and higher taxes, which pose a major threat
to our society. This is leading us to the pitfalls
which Thomas Jefferson warned us of when
he said: "To preserve our independence, we
must not let our rulers load us with perpetual
debt. We must decide between economy and
liberty or extravagance and slavery."
IGNORING THE WILL of the people can
lead the people to follow the Declaration of
Independence, which says that whenever any

q~uyLAI VNECY-.

I

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