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December 04, 1982 - Image 4

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1982-12-04

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al

Page 4

OPINION
Saturday, December 4, 1982

The Michigan Daitj.
fences?

Who will mend state

By Michael Caro witz
Beaten and battered in the last elec-
tion, Michigan Republicans are
desperately looking for someone to
rebuild the party and lead it down the
road to victory once again.
Picking a strong leader now may be
the secret to Republican success in the
future. While the long-term goal is to
prepare for the 1984 election, the im-
mediate need is to mend the split bet-
ween moderates and conservatives
within the state party.
RICHARD Headlee, the titular head
of the party by virtue of his nomination
for governor, obviously is not the per-
son to bring the party back together.
After his primary victory over Lt. Gov.
James Brickley, Headlee neverbmade
any major attempt to mend the broken
fence with Republican moderates who
had supported Brickley. Later, he ac-
cused Gov. William Milliken and
Milliken's supporters of sitting on the
sidelines and "sucking their thumbs."
In addition, Headlee never learned
that during a campaign you have to be
all things to all people. His outspoken
assertions only served to alienate
voters, including some women leaders
of his oawn party who endorsed James
Blanchard. Headlee failed toeput
together a winning coalition of support

because he failed to broaden his appeal
to anyone outside of his party's conser-
vative wing.
In the moderate wing, the loss of heir-
apparent James Brickley in the
Republican primary is an indication
that Gov. Milliken no longer has the
support necessary to remain the leader
of the state party. A growing
dissatisfaction among conservatives
with Milliken's policies has contributed
to the party split. Milliken also is an un-
pleasant reminder to conservatives of
the days when the moderates had com-
plete control of the party apparatus.
UNFORTUNATELY, the other
major candidates from the 1982 election
do not offer much of a leadership choice
either. Senate candidate Philip Ruppe
is well-known and well-liked throughout
the party, but his political experience
has been primarily at the federal level
in Washington, D.C.
L. Brooks Patterson was an attrac-
tive candidate for attorney general, yet
he remains tied almost exclusively to
the capital punishment issue that was
at the center of his campaign for the
gubernatorial nomination during the
primary season.
Current party chairman Mel Larson
already has announced his decision not
to run for re-election at this February's
state convention. National commit-
teewoman Ranny Riecker is regarded

as too much of a Milliken loyalist to
gain the broad-based support needed to
lead the party. Conservative activist
Harry Veryser has already lost once
before in a bid for the party chairman-
ship, and it is doubtful that his prospec-
ts are any better now.
AT FIRST glance, national commit-
teeman Peter Secchia appears to have
the best chance of success in rebuilding
the state party. He is popular,
charismatic, and skilled at grabbing
the media spotlight.
While Secchia may have the right
ideas about party loyalty, his uncom-
promising attitude of follow-the-party-
line-or-get-out does not wash well with,
some party moderates. Secchia is at his
best when speaking on behalf of the
party, but he may be too outspoken to
walk the tightrope between the
moderates and conservatives.
The answer for the Republicans ob-
viously is not simple. But they must
take care not to forget the one person
within the party whose reputation was
enhanced and not injured by the recent
elections.
THOMAS Brennan suddenly jumped
into the public eye when he was chosen
as Headlee's running mate in August.
Brennan's political activity, however,
goes back much farther to earlier cam-
paigns and his former position as chief
justice of the Michigan Supreme Court.

Repu
Brennan seems quiet a
unassuming, yet he worked hard for
Republican ticket and earned
respect of party regulars. He paid
political dues, and many Republic
believe that he deserves a greater
in determining the future of the part
Brennan also was one who suppoi
the ticket strongly, but was able to s
clear of controversy and avoid the
falls that were a problem for Headle
.HE IS definitely a conservative,
he is equally respected by all faction
the party. His establishment cred
tials are reassuring to the modera
and his unqualified support for Hea
and the Republican ticket has endea
him to the conservatives.
Brennan is somewhat unknown tc
general public, but this may en
working to his advantage. He
assume the leadership of
Republican party without a past rei
to defend. He is a fresh face without
negative handicaps.
Michigan Republicans will cant
their search for a new leader.
though they have many willing can
ders, they are unlikely to find any
with as much potential as Tho
Brennan.

blican

"J

6
0

Carowitz is a sophomore
majoring in political science.

Headlee: '... not the person to bring the party back together.'

Wasserman

Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan

yol. XCIII, No. 71

420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Editorials represent a majority opinion of the Daily's Editorial Board

T6cINNOl.oGy 15 &OINGTO BE
"[E ANWRTo AMC-RCA$
PROBLEMSP
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New heights, new challenges

Pr-OPLS WILL U;E I VAUZ -1V'S FOR,
5"AOPN6, iiote Am C rrE

7,

┬░mI

P RESIDENT Reagan is not one to
shrink in the face of challenge.
Faced at the beginning of his term with
federal regulations designed to protect
the environment, Reagan unleashed
Anne Gorsuch and James Watt. Later,
faced with the challenge of striking air
traffic controllers, he fired employees
by the thousands. And this year, faced
with October's post-Depression record
unemployment figures, President
Reagan had a challenge many thought
he could not overcome.
But not Reagan. None of this "10.4
mediocrity" for him. He wanted a new
record, and yesterday, he showed he
could do it. On Friday, the government
announced that the nation has
achieved a new post-Depression record
of 10.8 percent unemployment.
Like a dotty old uncle who insists he
is Napoleon Bonaparte despite the
exhortations of friends and relatives to
the contrary, President Reagan is
serenely "staying the course"-in fact,
striving for new heights-even as the
economy crumbles..
The latest news was just another
confirmation of what has been obvious
for months. New record high unem-
ployment levels were recorded in a
number of important areas, showing
that the economic downturn is
becoming broader-not more isolated,
as the administration has suggested.
The unemployment rate for blue-
collar workers jumped from a previous
post-Depression high of 15.9 percent to
16.5 percent last month. There were

more adult males, adult females,
teenagers, and Hispanics unemployed
last month then in any month since
1940.
And the figures also indicate that the
Depression is exacting more and more
from its victims. The number of long-
term unemployed is increasing: 30
percent of the unemployed had been
out of work for more than 14 weeks,
and of those, more than half had been
unemployed for more than six months.
Unfortunately, the future does not
look bright. The only proposals from
the White House to deal with unem-
ployment have been totally un-
workable and politically impossible.
And Congress seems to be content to
wait until the new session begins to
take up any legislation to correct the
economy.
As time passes, however, the
prospects for quick economic recovery
fade. Christmas sales for merchants in
many parts of the country are even
worse than they were a year ago. Such
sales declines could presage even
more unemployment in important sec-
tors of the economy, such as retailing
and clothing manufacture.
A solution seems elusive, at least un-
til the new Congress convenes. Many
private economists predict that, in the
meantime, unemployment will con-
tinue to surge higher-topping even
November's dismal figures. The
president appears to be well on the way
to setting yet another record-three
cheers for the Gipper.

ThR WKIN&N OM A EIS T
IiNE1 IVINGROMi0147

STREST
CRIME

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BERLIN-For 35 years this
nervous, divided city has been a
chief sounding board for super-
power confrontation. But a new
kind of commentary on East-
West tensions, in a most unlikely
idiom, is evolving here these
days.
The intensely disaffected
young of Berlin call it "Wall City
Rock"-a blend of punk music
and political critique that directs
its anger equally at Washington,
Moscow, and Bonn. It has
emerged as the new German an-
them of a generation that sees lit-
tle but madness in the conser-
vatism of its parents or in the
dogmatic left-wing views of its
older siblings.
"IN MY FILM, I'm the star. I
only get along with myself,"
declared the lead singer of
"Ideal," one of Wall City Rock's
most popular groups, in a recent
hit record. "The Ice Age begins
with me, the labyrinth of the Ice
Age. Ninety degrees below zero."
Says Thomas Starr, a musician
who has played with several local
bands: "These kids see them-
selves as the crazy products of a
time and place that don't make
any sense; they've grown up in a
city that is insane, thanks to
politics. Logically, the wall and
everything else about Berlin
must be a joke, but it isn't.
"What Wall City Rock says is
that the way we are supposed to
look at the world-the program-
med, ideological way-is clearly
ridicuonus And it savs it right

Berlin 's
disen clhanted
'Wall City
Rock'
By Frank Viviano

character in Degenhardt's book
finds unacceptable chaos and an
absence of necessary ideological
consciousness.
HIS CONCLUSION may finda
sympathetic reaction among
Berliners of Degenhardt's
generation, who have preserve
the atmosphere of '60s student
radicalism here to an uncanny
extent. This city is the last
stronghold of a protest-era style
that has long since passed almost
everywhere else: Its coffee shops
still feature sandalwood incense,
Beatles music, and a clientel&
garbed in denim workshirts,
wire-rimmed glasses and hiking
boots.a
The Wall City Rock kids share
these Berliners' aversion to being
nuclear pawns, to be sure, as do
virtually all Europeans under 40
today. They are much less ir-
clined, however, to believe that
any earlier decade offered con-
vincing answers to the dilemmas
of the present moment.
Pointing to the Berlin Wall and,
the divisions it symbolizes, one
Wall City Rock group calls upon
its audience to "dance to the tune
of Konrad Adenaur," the con-
summate Cold War West German
leader of the '50s. But as for the
'60s, proclaims Ideal, "All the
words have been said a thousand
times, every question asked . a
thousand times, every feeling felt
a thousand times."
THIS IS "the labyrinth of the
Ice Age," and none of the old
ideas will easily melt it.

F

Hagen-soon began experimen-
ting with German lyrics and
German themes.
What they discovered, contend
some, was a perfect match of
subject, form, and function: the
illogical nature of life in Berlin
described in a harsh, staccato
German that meshed well with
punk's harsh, staccato rhythms.
Description, in fact, is a central
element in the style of Wall City
Rock. In an early Ideal hit whose
title translates into English as "I
Dig Berlin," the lyrics carry one
on a graphic tour of the city, pic-
turing the wall between East and
West, the range of urban faces,
the exotic sights and sounds and
smells of the Turkish quarter.

an area along the wall known for
its large Turkish immigrant
population, are lumped in with
the city's huge "alternative"
political culture by most obser-
vers. But there are crucial dif-
ferences between them and the
"Green" alternative faction,
which is led largely by late 1960s
student activists now ap-
proaching middle age.
The differences came into the
open last year with the
publication of a novel by Franz
Joseph Degenhardt, an immen-
sely popular folksinger of the
earlier era. Observing the con-
temporary West German youth
scene, with its anarchistic squat-

I

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