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October 21, 1985 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1985-10-21

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OPINION

Page 4

Monday, October 21, 1985

The Michigan Daily

Mtdpian 1awI
Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan

Buying a balanced budget

Vol. XCVI, No. 33

420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

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

, -.

Courts and the Cruise

O N AUGUST 6, 300 demon-
strators commemorated the
atomic holocaust of Hiroshima at
Williams International, a missile
making plant in Walled Lake.
Later in August, Williams
requested what amounts to its
second injunction against demon-
strations on public property in
front of its plant. At present, the in-
junction awaits hearing.
Originally, Williams asked that
demonstrations on public property
outside Williams' gates be limited
to three or fewer people. Now
Williams has amended the injun-
ction request only to prohibit
"mass picketing," as to be inter-
preted by the judge.
The reaction of Williams under-
scores the potency of the demon-
strations against facility. Williams
specifically cites three anti-
militarist groups and about 30 in-
dividuals in their activities;
specifically seeking to ban demon-
strations by a student group called
the Michigan Alliance for Disar-
mament.
Williams claims to have suffered
"irreparable harm" from the
perennial demonstrations citing
the national coverage past demon-
strations have attracted.
What is at stake at Williams that
is so important? Why does
Williams and the government seem
intent on repressing anti-militarist
demonstrations at Williams?
Williams builds Cruise missile
engines. Cruise missiles are known
for their small size (25 feet in
length), slow speed and low-flying
altitude. Designed to avoid radar
detection, the Cruise missile is un-
settling because of its potential to
reach targets unnoticed.
According to Robert Aldridge, a
former Lockheed military

engineer, during his term at theG
White House Jimmy Carter pointed
out that it is possible to launch
Cruise missiles from anywhere yet
it is impossible to know whether
their payloads are nuclear or con-
ventional. Carter conceded that
"Cruise missiles represent a class
of weapons which raises potentially
troublesome verification
problems."
Most dangerous of all, the Pen-
tagon admits that the Cruise
missile is the most accurate
weapon it has. The Cruise's "high
kill probability" for "hardened
targets" makes it a candidate for
cleanup operations after a U.S. fir-
st strike on the Soviet Union, which
might be initiated with quicker
missiles like the Pershings in
Europe that can reach Soviet
targets in six to eight minutes.
Robert Aldridge has pointed out
in his book First Strike! that a first
wave of U.S. missiles that hit the
USSR may cause atmospheric
problems for the firing of the
USSR's missiles that would other-
wise be operational. Hence, while
the Soviets reload their silos with
undestroyed missiles and wait for
proper conditions to fire, the Cruise
missiles could be arriving.
The arms race is dictating to the
courts how much repression is
necessary. Both superpowers build
weapons that make sense in
fighting a nuclear war. While the
U.S. criticizes the Soviet Union for
its supposed totalitarianism, it
builds ever more first strike
weapons and defenses against
retaliation and gives a back seat to
so-called civil liberties.
The kind of weapons that
Williams builds and the treatment
of even non-violent anti-militarist
activists makes sense to an elite of
warriors but not to humanity.

By Sean Jackson
Last week the Democrats on Capitol Hill
gave away their best shot at regaining con-
trol of the Senate in November of 1986 when
they agreed to support a Republican spon-
sored balanced budget amendment. Instead
of challenging the deficit problem like
leaders - the Democrats joined the
Republicans in a game of politics.
No one has wanted to deal with the deficit
problem - which has gotten massively out
of hand since the Reagan Administration
took over in 1981. In four years Reagan ac-
cumulated a debt higher than all the
presidents before him - combined. And
campaign promises in 1984 prohibit him
from raising taxes or cutting back Social
Security. Congressmen - facing elections
in just 12 months - would not want to face
their constituents after voting for a tax hike
or cutting spending power to lower the
deficit.
But the deficit has to be dealt with - and
after six years of booming budget deficits -
all the Democrats would have had to do was
point to the Republican record to show the
Republicans' inability to solve the riddle.
But the Democrats have blown it. They let
the Republicans out of their own political
noose by agreeing to the balanced budget
law requiring no deficit spendingby 1990.
A balanced budget however, is the wrong
way to solve the deficit problem that is
bleeding the United States red. While a
seemingly good idea and quick fix for the
moment, the amendment poses severe
problems for the long run effects on the
economy.
The end result of a constitutional amen-
dment requiring a balanced budget would
be deeper and longer recessions and hard to
control economic expansion. The business
cycles that produce the recessions and
booms are still unpredictable and cannot be
altered yet by economists. They have been
trying for decades - but still cannot
predict exactly when they will come and
how to prevent them.
To try and prevent a slowdown in the
economy from becoming a full fledged
recession, or to soften the blow of inflation
Jackson is an LSA sophomore.

in an economic upswing, Congress created
automatic stabilizers. These stabiliziers
work like a sprinkler system during a fire -
they automatically turn on when they sense
smoke and try to put out the fire before it
gets out of hand. The automatic stabilizers
- progressive taxes and unemployment in-
surance - small the economic smoke and
try to put out the fire before and prevent a
deep recession or uncontrollable inflation.
These mechanisms may not do the job by
themselves - sometimes Congress will
have to be called in like firemen to put out
the fire.
A balanced budget resolution would
eliminate the economic sprinkler system
and cause serious damage before the
economic firement can reach the scene.
A balanced budget requires that the
government spend no less than it takes in.
But doing the opposite is what prevents a
souring economy from becoming a rotten
one.
An economic swoon is often caused by a
fall in consumer purchases, and as the
number of goods bought begins to fall,
businesses begin to layoff workers. If the
pink slip meant no more money at all, pur-
chases by consumers would fall even fur-
ther making the recession even worse.
That's where unemployment insurance
comes in. It allows the consumers to con-
tinue to buy goods and prevents a
precipitious drop in demand.
Now, just as the government is spending
more money to try to maintain the level of
cinsumer spending, its revenues are falling
because of people being laid off or
businessmen with sinking revenues are
paying lower taxes. It's sort of a built in tax
cut to stimulate spending - or at least to
maintain it.
The stabilizers also check economic
growth and prevent wild economic booms.
When salaries and business sales begin to
climb, as in an economic recovery, the
higher income will boost consumers and
businessmen into higher tax brackets. Un-
bridled growth is as bad as an approaching
recession. Inflation and higher interest
rates, the byproducts of the boom, could
choke off a recovery before it hits its poten-
tial. A tax bite would avoid that problem,
somewhat, by slowing the increase in
demand and allow for stable economic ex-
pansion instead of rapid booms.
A balanced budget amendment would

turn off the Congress's automatic sprinkler
system. No longer would small economic
fires be snuffed out by the sprinkler, but
they would grow into economic bonfires.
The beauty of the progressive tax system
and unemployment insurance is they
require no action by Congress. When the
economy needs help, the automatic
stabilizers act immediately. No debate, no
politics, just action. And if the stabilizers
cannot do the job, the Congress or the
President can come to the rescue.
When Uncle Sam will be forced to keep
the books in balance, he will not be able to
stimulate the economy when it slows or
when it booms. Since revenues fall as people
are laid off. The government would not be,
able to spend more to maintain consumer
demand and prevent a deep recession.
Recessions would be deeper, booms more
out of balance. The result hurts business.
That's bad, but think of the unemployed;
they are forced to live off of savings - if
they have any - and may well end up in
povertry.
The answer to the deficit problem is sim-
ple. No one wants to cut programs any fur-
ther than Reagan did in his first term, so
let's face the facts. We have to pay for them.
Republicans are realizing it. Former Senate
Majority leader Howard Baker, who
castigated Walter Mondale's tax hike plan a
year ago, is calling for tax increases. The
man as close to the nation's economy as
anyone, former Office of Management and
Budget Director David Stockman, says a
$100 billion tax hike is a must.
Democrats have done more than hurt
their chances of regaining control of the
Senate in 1986, and maybe the White House
in 1988, they have turned their backs on the
American people.
Now everyone will get off the hook. Since
the budget doesn't have to be balanced for
another five years, today's Congressman
will not have to deal with the problem. When
Congress convenes in 1990 the balanced
budget will be the law - and blame for the
necessary domestic spending cuts and tax
hikes will be blamed on their predecessors.
But the real losers, as is usually the case
when Congress and the President play pass
the buck instead of leadership, are the
American people. They will suffer the effec-
ts playing politics with longer than
necessary recessions and out of control
booms.

41

LETTERS
Hidden militarism, ads and escalation

To the Daily:
It is a disturbing commentary
on our times that in a recent issue
of the Michigan Daily (Oct. 9)
highlighting the twenty-fifth an-
niversary of the Peace Corp I
found so many elements of
militarism and the hidden but
implicit attitude that the only
route to peace is through military
strength. Much of the reporting,
story topics and even adver-
tisements were indicate of the
present administration's Rambo-
like mentality towards world
peace and an acceptance of the

infiltration of this attitude into
our academic institution.
It is no longer possible to
overlook the fact that being a
state-funded institution means
that we are only an appendage of
the administration in Washington
and its economic and political
goals. Therefore, it becomes
justifiable that a front page
"Profile" story on a top-ranking,
silver polishing, Army ROTC
cadet is merely routine, that a
story headlined, "V.P. Praised
Peace .Corp" is in fact really
talking about a man who is part

of an administration that has
been responsible for the largest
"peacetime" military build-up in
U.S. history, and that two huge
quarter-page advertisements for
the Navy, "The Nuclear Navy,"
are merely timely indicators of
the tolerance of an academic
community living in this current
political climate.
How very sad that the real con-
cept of peace is clearly lost within
all this. How very sad indeed that
pride in one's country means, as
it does for cadet Joseph Gneiser,
being allowed to gain "special
training in military strategy and
weapons use" at a university,
that students must fund their own
peaceful teach-ins like the recent
National Conference on S.D.I.
held at Rackham Auditorium,
and that theneditor of the Wayne
State student paper, the South

End, is fired from her past when
she refuses to print military ad-
vertisements.
If we, as students, do not object
to this tide of militarism and ac-
ceptance of global conflict and
nuclear arms escalation as
inevitable U.S. policy, we will
dearly pay the consequences.
Today we allow a man like
George Bush to grace the steps
of our student union in total
mockery of peace, and watch
researchers being prodded to
take on Star Wars contracts, but
tomorrow... what could the con-
sequences be for tomorrow?? If
we do not stop this flow of anti-
peace thought and action, where
will tomorrow be and what will
we have wished we had done
yesterday.

I
4

Under the rug

Hanover Band review
strikes sour note

T HERE WAS something
comical in the way the Univer-
sity managed to clean up all of cen-
tral campus to coincide with the
live broadcast of Thursday mor-
ning's Today show. But in taking
pains to filter which students were
actually televised, the program
came across as downright
sinister.
The express purpose of the Today
Show's visit was to present a glim-
pse of the University setting to con-
trast it with a similar look at Brown
University. To that end, host
Bryant Gumbel broadcast live
from the Diag.
At Brown, students were permit-
ted to come right next to host Jane
Pauley, yet at Michigan not only
was there a ring of chairs for in-
vited guests, but there was also a
rope preventing spectators from
getting within 30 feet of the
designated area.
It's understandable that the
University would have set up the
chairs, because with so many
nennle likely tn h interested in

national exposure.
Several students were frustrated
in their plans to display banners
protesting NBC's lack of coverage
of U.S. sponsored bombing of El
Salvador villages. The merits of
their cause aside, the protesters
are a part of the student body and
ought to have had the opportunity
to be a part of the proceedings.
Although the University has
claimed it put up the additional
ropes to prevent a shoutdown, as
occurred at Vice President Bush's
recent address, there was no in-
dication that any such a protest
would occur.
In going to such lengths to meet
an imaginary threat, the Univer-
sity penalized everyone in the
University community and demon-
strated a frightening inclination to
hide a certain part of that com-
munity.
By rights the University ought to
be proud of the fact that it has a
number of politically outspoken
faculty and students. At the very
least, though, it should not be

To the Daily:
Rebecca Chung's review of the
Hanover Band's performance
last Saturday ("Hanover band
fights self restraint", Daily, Oct.
14) evening was a sad commen-
tary on her misconception of the
idea of performance practice
music. Her attitude toward
period instruments and those who
play them caused her to write a
review which was misleading,
unfair and condescending. It
damages Ann Arbor's reputation
as a nationally known hub of the
early music movement to have
the Daily print a review written
by one so uninformed of the very
raison d'etre of early music.
Performers who choose to ply
their art on baroque fiddles,
flutes, harpsichords and the like
do so not out of some antiquariun
fascination with musical
museum pieces, but because they
seriously believe that the sounds
produced by the old instruments,
and the performance practices
they dictate, create an
aesthetically superior reproduc-
tion of the music of Beethoven (or
Haydn, Bach or Guillaume de
Machaut). To them the com-
parison is not, as Ms. Chung
suggests, between a Model T and
a Porsche 944; it's between a
painter's palette and a

modern instrument and its an-
cestor is irrelevant to a
sophisticated critique of a music
performance. The question
should be: did the Hanover Band
give a good performance, period?
If they didn't, thenthey should
have gotten their act together
before having the nerve to charge
admission.
Ms. Chung shouldn't feel con-
strained to pull her punches, but
she would do the entire musical
community a favor by swinging
with a bit more sophistication,
discernment and knowledge of
her subject next time.
-John Abdenour
October 14
BLOOM COUNTY

-Jennifer S. Akfirat
October 13

Letters to the Daily should be typed,
triple-spaced, and signed by the in-
dividual authors. Names will be withheld
only in unusual circumstances. Letters
may be edited for clarity, grammar, and
spelling.

K

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