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November 21, 1982 - Image 4

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1982-11-21

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OPINION

Sunday, November 21, 1982

The Michigan Daily
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Pot law repeal, institute

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T HE EVILS of marijuana had nothing to do
with it. Politics, that inevitable golden
rule which decides so much of what we con-
sider right and wrong in our society, kept Ann
Arbor's $5pot law alive last week.
Mayor Louis Belcher realized he didn't have
the backing of the Republican majority on City
Council last week and decided his attempt to
repeal the city's liberal possession laws
Wouldn't be such a good idea. At least that's
what Republicans said.

But, according to University predictors, their
outlooks aren't always accurate.
The good/bad news came with the Univer-
sity's annual Research Seminar in Quan-
titative Economics. The RSQE forecast for the
nation's-and the state's-economy was op-
timistic, with high but declining unemployment
rates, continued but moderate inflation, and
gains in personal income as part of the pleasant
package.
Steady increases in the Gross National
Product and in consumer purchasing power
will help pull the country out of recession, the
experts guessed.
But the researcher who came up with the
good news were the first to admit that the past
predictions have often been off the mark. Last
year's prediction for the economy, which
forecast a substantial recovery from the
recession in the early part of the year, was for
the most part incorrect.
"We've been trying to find something good to
say about the RSQE forecast presented at last
year's Economic Outlook Conference," said
Prof. Saul Hymans, director of the seminar.
"A colleague suggested that there were two
good things that could be said: No good and
good for nothing."
Win some, lose some
T HE MICHIGAN Student Assembly just
can't win.

Take last Tuesday's assembly meeting.
Things got off to a fine start, as members
courageously defended student rights to life,
liberty, and food in the Graduate and Un-
dergraduate libraries.
When folk from the libraries came to tell the
assembly their reasons for eliminating food
from the University study centers, MSA
representatives countered swiftly by arguing
that the change will eliminate much-needed
group study space and may even force female
students to go out alone at night to get a snack.
But before the members could congratulate
each other on sticking up for students so well,
ten College of Engineering students presented
an angry petition with several hundred
signatures.
Among other things, the students charged the
assembly had wrongly suggested that the
University's decision to give engineering more
money was linked to increased military
research. The students also claimed the man
MSA hired to investigatedefense research on
campus is biased against it.
Give and take
THE GENERAL fund giveth, and the
general fund taketh away.
This old University proverb was illustrated
in living color this week as the Regents in-
dulged in their unique brand of give and take.
The Regents voted unanimously Friday to
close the Institute for the Study of Mental
Retardation and Related Disabilities. The vote
capped a rough and rocky review process that
began last February. Although ISMRRD
Director Herbert Grossman charged all along

6
I

But speculation has it that the April ballot
repeal issue would have sent student voters
flocking to the polls this spring. This event
would spell doom for the Republican Council
majority, with students venting their ire at
Belcher & Co. by pulling the Democratic lever.
Belcher and the Republicans, however, say
they are still concerned about drug abuse in
Ann Arbor's junior high schools and high
schools, and perhaps they'll try again to repeal
the law, which has been in existence since 1972.
In the end, keeping power-or as the
Republicans would say, "not polarizing the
community"-was more important than
pushing through legislation. University studen-
ts should thus be thankful for the workings of
the political mind: The sweet smell of the sup-
posed "evil weed" will continue to grace the air
of our city.

Regents: Rearranging the 'U' pocketbook
that the review was biased and unfair, the
Regents opted for an elimination that will save
the University some $280,000 over the next few
years.
But where a door closes, a window opens-
usually to shed a little light on profits. At the
same time the Regents scrapped ISMRRD,
they approved an investment of up to $250,000
in general fund monies* for a new Center for
Molecular Genetics, and up-and-coming high
technology field. Faculty members in the cen-
ter hope to market their research-with a little
help from private corporations.
The Week in Review was compiled by
Daily staff writers Richard Campbell, An-
drew Chapman, Julie Hinds, and Phillip
Lawes.

Belcher backs down

Guessing game

ACCORDING to University predictions, the
economy will improve significantly in
1983.

I

Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan

Stewart
FoRTUNE LEAVES
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MILLION Dolt- RS
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Vol. XCIII, No. 64

420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Editorials represent amajority opinion of the Daily's Editorial Board
UAC stumbles on Kahane

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T'S HARD to decide which is more
absurd: the fact that Viewpoint
TLectures didn't realize who Rabbi Meir
Kahane was when they invited him to
'speak here, or the fact that Viewpoint
has now cancelled his appearance.
Last week, the executive committee
of the University Activities Center,
which runs Viewpoint Lectures,
decided to scrap Kahane's lecture
from a lecture series on the Middle
'East-even though they would risk
'osing the $300 fee they had promised to
Kahane.
The reason? UAC executive commit-
tee members claim that-despite the
fact that Viewpoint sponsored a
similar speech by Kahane two years
ago-they just didn't know what his
views were. UAC committee members
say that when they found out more
about Kahane, they decided it would be
inappropriate to sponsor his lecture
using student funds.
Granted; Kahane's views are
abhorrent: He's the founder of the
Jewish Defense League and
unabashedly advocates using violence
to further the interests of Israel. He
supports outlawing inter-religious
marriage in Israel; he wants all Arabs
living in Israel deported from Israel;
he has suggested that the massacre of
Palestinians in Beirut refugee camps
wasn't such a bad idea.
We disagree with Kahane's views as
strongly as many of the members of
UAC, but the issues involved in can-
celling his speech go beyond his
outrageous opinions. UAC's attempt at
dutiful stewardship of student funds is
admirable, but in this case they've
done students a disservice.

The idea of a lecture series is to
promote intellectual growth through
enriching the marketplace of ideas.
Programs such as Viewpoint exist to
expose students to opinions they
otherwise wouldn't hear-for that
reason all students contribute money
to pay for the travel expenses and
honoraria of such speakers.
Kahane's views are radical, but
that's just the point. By hearing diver-
se-and, yes, extreme-points of view
on a topic, students have an oppor-
tunity to develop informed opinions.
UAC, in cancelling Kahane's ap-
pearance, is setting a dangerous
precedent. It is a step toward making
the lecture program a sanitized ver-
sion of reality, with nothing but in-
nocuous, non-controversial speakers.
By withdrawing support from the
Kahane lecture, UAC is effectively
stifling the very discussion it sought to
support.
Fortunately UAC's decision doesn't
mean that students will not be able to
hear Kahane. After UAC cancelled
Kahane's appearance, a group called
Jewish Idea arranged for Kahane to
speak at the Michigan League
tomorrow night. Nevertheless, the
whole Kahane affair raises some
troubling questions about UAC and
Viewpoint Lectures.
If UAC is committed more to skirting
controversy than to airing opinions,
then its position as a student service
group needs to be re-evaluated. The
Kahane episode may be more than an
organizational embarrassment-it
could show an embarrassing lack of
commitment to the students UAC is
supposed to serve.

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TH E

IAPOSSIBLE DREAM..

SAN FRANCISCO- It's a
scene repeated daily nationwide.
When the Foremost-McKesson
company here needed a mail
clerk, scores of people applied for
the job. Like other personnel
directors and employers faced
with a deluge of applications for
scarce. jobs, recruiter Mark
Cloutier admits the final choice
depended more on "personality
fit" than on how the jobseeker
looked on paper.
"All five of the final candidates
had the basic qualifications, so it
came down to a question of who
would work well here, who would
fit in?" Cloutier says.
AT A TIME when the govern-
ment and major corporations are
developing computer-based job-
screening programs tohandle the
flood of job applicants, recruiters
and personnel directors admit
that personal interactions-and
personal connections-still are
the determining factor in hiring.
Almost echoing the Japanese
philosophy of work, employers
are talking about new applicants
"fitting into the family."
To hear those with the jobs to
fill talk about it, the jobseeker's
time is better spent expanding
social contacts than reading want

Getting a
job through
personality
By Mary Blakeman

for jobs, employers are upping,
the ante on requirements so un-
skilled workers, or those with
outdated skills, are most likely to
be screened out of today's
market. Also, the old truism that
an unemployed worker has the
hardest time landing a new job
still has an effect on employers'
hiring decisions. With some
analysts predicting unem-
ployment going no lower than 6 or
7 percent this decade, the
workers squeezed out now may
find they have no re-entry pass
into the job market.
If requirements are getting
stiffer, and a strong personal
network is the key to finding a
job, what about those displaced
workers who have traveled to
another town or state in search of
employment?
EVEN IF these workers move
to a more lucrative job market,
they are strangers competing
against people who already are
part of the social fabric of the
area, people who have the con-
nections to hear about job
openings. That was the lesson
disillusioned Michigan workers
learned, for instance, when they
left for Louisiana oil fields only to
find "not hiring" sings awaiting
them . Locls.however. knew

didn't use the paper," she adds,
"because then I'd have gotten a
thousand resumes.' d
MANY employers around the
country are abstaining from
using classified ads for the same
reason. "You don't have to ad-
vertise when you have people
knocking on your door looking for
work," says Miriam Johnson, a
longtime labor researcher in San
Francisco. Johnson estimates
that 65 percent of the work force
finds jobs through informal
means, such as word of mouth or
direct contact with employers.
"Because of these informal

employer is drawn to someone
they know about, just as you and I
would be. We all gravitate towar-
ds people we know."
Some companies are offering
bonuses to employees who suc-
cessfully recruit new workers. As
one airline manager says, "We
want employees to bring in more
people like themselves."
WHETHER a homogeneous
work force results from these
trends remains to be seen. It is
clear, however, that many em-
ployers are resorting to various
forms of discrimination to reduce
hundreds of applications to a

. . ... .. ..

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