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March 15, 1988 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1988-03-15

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OPINION
Page4 Tuesday, March 15, 1988 The Michigan Daily
Department teaches status quo
By Dean Baker and Mark cent of the average white family's income. since she probably would not qualify to be hiring more faculty in these areas, as well Also, having more Black and women fac-
Although there are some models within tenured, then she should not be inter- as showing something other than con- ulty, as well as the course in the eco-
Greer the mainstream that attempt to explain viewed). While the University has funds nomics of race, gender and class mentioned
Part two of a iwo-part series how such inequality could persist, for the set aside to encourage the interviewing and tisertaotopn these aas e earlier, would encourage Black and women
While we have argued that economics most part they are somewhat suspect hiring of women or Blacks, such efforts would also like to see the established undergraduate and graduate students to
acts to support the status quo generally, within the discipline. The more plausible have little impact when departments em- fields attempt to realistically examine the study economics.
we also believe it acts to provide an ideo- approach for someone inclined to accept bark on policies designed to subvert the institutional structure in which they seek Many of us in the graduate program
logical support for racism and sexism. The the orthodoxy is that there is something purpose of such funding. We have no way to apply their theories. It is not necessar- have been fighting around these issues for
way it does so is fairly simple. Main- wrong with women or Blacks that causes of knowing whether the economics de- ily eir tose Ia rs not nsr- several years. The department has made it
stream theory will readily show that racial them to earn less than white males. From partment's behavior is exceptional or the desirab e t oassur e away reaics clear to us that we possess no ability to
or sexual discrimination cannot persist in this perspective it should not be surprising norm, but it does provide at least one ex- We also feel it is important that the influence the direction of the program.
a remre.I twere tecase tatcer- weeaaSice thilisithesasepitteems thtaunles
free market. If it the that that we found a quote in Dean Steiner's ample of how the University's affirmative economics discipline address the issues of sie pris the case, it seems that unless
tai firms were unwilling to pay Blacks or textbook that seems to express disap- action programs can be undermined at the racism, sexism and class conflict. outside pressure is brought to bear on the
women the wage they were entitled to (or pointment at what is imagined to be an departmental level. graduate students have proposed that a department, we can anticipate further nar-
to hire them altogether) other firms would unwillingness among scientists to inves- The research of the Black economists course covering these topics be taught at rowing of the sort we have discussed.
be able to hire these workers at a lower tigate differences in intelligence between that the economics department refused to the 200 level so that any student could While the direction that the department
wage than a white male with comparable the races, hire was in the field of political economy, enroll. It is a tremendous deficiency in the goes is ultimately a matter that will have
skills. This would both put out of busi-erlI sateedu eiinyi h
nssan. Tfir thad t discrimiat, fsie i The ideological support that mainstream one of the areas outside of the mainstream current program that most students to be decided among the faculty within the
ness any firm that discriminated, since it economics provides for racism and sexism that the department is seeking to weaken (undergrad or graduate) would go through department, it does remain for others to
notuad altsompewthwaeofBlacdid is mirrored by the fact that it is an over- or eliminate. It should not be surprising, the program learning little more about determine both the level of funding the
not, and also bid up the wages of Blacks whelmingly white male discipline. There however, that Blacks and women might these issues than the material from the In- department is to receive and the respect
and women to a level equal to that of is not a single woman with a full time turn to such alternative approaches in dis- tro textbooks referred to above. If we are which its work is accorded. Since it seems
white males. Thus any difference in wages appointment in the economics department proportionate numbers, since they may to say that economics really has nothing as though the University will be subjected
due to race or gender would be quickly and only one Black. Furthermore the de- find some of the racist and sexist implica- more to say about such issues, then this is to increasing budgetary pressures over the
eliminated. This argument is taught to partment seems to have little concern tions of the orthodoxy less acceptable than a very powerful indictment of economics. next several years, it would certainly be
roughly 3000 intro economics students about taking steps to change this. In the do white males. As the content of eco- Finally, the economics department must appropriate to question the extent to which
each year at the U of M alone. last two years there were two Black nomics narrows, it will probably become make the hiring of women and Blacks a resources are committed to the economics
While economics tells us that discrimi- economists we sought to have hired by the increasingly difficult to increase diversity top priority. This is clearly the Univer- department in light of the value of the
nation based on race or gender cannot per- department. In both cases the department in the backgrounds of economists. sity's stated policy, but it has no impact if work which takes place there.In a period of
sist in the market, women still earn on showed virtually no interest, in one case Having said what we believe to be departments are allowed to ignore or sub- belt-tightening a Department of Astrology
average only about 70 percent of what refusing to even have the person come out wrong with the direction in which eco- vert it. It is not uncommon for the de- may be a luxury the University can no
men earn, and it is still the case .that the for an interview based on the judgment nomics is going, it would be irresponsible partment to set up search committees in longer afford. Also, if nothing else, this
average Black family's income is 60 per- that she did not have a good chance of be- not to discuss the direction we feel it specific fields of study, and given its dis- series should at least encourage people to
ing tenured. (The reasoning went some- should take. To start, we would suggest mal record on affirmative action, it would view anything written or said by
Dean Baker and Mark Greer are PhD thing like this: If she came here for an in- attempting to rebuild the fields that have not be unreasonable to set up a search economists with a healthy amount of
candidates in economics. 26 other graduate terview, there would be a lot of pressure to come under attack: Economic History, committee specifically for women and skepticism. A bad theory buried in a so-
students in Economics signed this letter, hire her. If she were hired, there would be History of Economic Thought, and minority faculty. Perhaps then they would phisticated mathematical model is still a
but wished to remain anonymous. a lot of pressure to tenure her. However, Political Economy. This would involve finally be able to show some results. bad theory.

Edited and managed by students at The University of Michigan

LETTERS

Rep.wants open interview rights

Vol. XCVIII No. 110

420 Maynard St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109

Unsigned editorials represent a majority of the Daily's Editorial Board. All other
cartoons, signed articles, and letters do not necessarily represent the opinion
of the Daily.
Unite against racism

To the Daily:
Yesterday, the Daily printed
an editorial calling for the de-
feat of my MSA resolution on
interview disruption ("Don't
vote for CIA rights," Daily,
3/14/88). While the editorial
clearly explained why the CIA
should not be allowed on cam-
pus, my resolution does not
even mention the CIA, only
the disruption of interviews.
My resolution does not support
the CIA, it supports students
deciding themselves for whom
they should work. The reason-

ing behind my resolution could
be applied just as well to an
hypothetical Planned Parent-
hood interview disrupted by
right-to-lifers.
Everyone sees the value of
bringing employers to inter-
view on campus for the benefit
of the students and this is the
heart of my resolution. Why
should the CIA not be allowed
to take advantage of a privilege
extended to all other employ-
ers? Your editorial sets the CIA
apart because the it is a terror-
ist organization involved in

SUNDAY, A GROUP of leaders and
representatives from many campus
organizations met and reached a lim-
ited consensus in opposition to In-
terim President Fleming's proposed
policy to deal with discriminatory
acts. The group agreed in principle
on the need for a policy to deal with
racial harassment.
Unity of students and student
groups over the need for a racial ha-
rassment policy and in opposition to
a general code designed to restrict
protest and student rights is the only
way to block the imposition of
Fleming's policy. Fleming's policy
as presented reserves all the power
for the administration and only pun-
ishes students, ignoring racist ha-
rassment by staff, faculty, the re-
gents, and administration.
Students and faculty are currently
racially harassed out of the Univer-
sity and it is only through dealing
with this inequality of circumstances
that equal opportunity for everyone
can be established. Free speech
rights cannot be secured if basic civil
liberties are being eliminated by the
non-academic actions of other Uni-
versity members.
The Daily supports a racial ha-
rassment policy which is controlled
by students, condemns Fleming's
proposal as inadequate, considers
the time allocated insufficient, and in
no way endorses a general code to
dictate student actions such as
protest.
The Daily is, however, very skep-
tical about the implementation of
such a proposal and demands that
any mechanism to punish students
for racist acts be in firm control of
the students, staff, and workers of
the University. The administration
cannot construe this as support for
any position it has presented, all of

which the Daily rejects. If any part
of a policy on racial harassment was
exclusively controlled by the admin-
istration, it would be unacceptable.
Consensus is the key to student
power, but whatever the final
agreement may be, it must be under-
scored by a democratic process that
is responsive to the concerns of all
students.
The following is the text of the
joint student-group reponse to Presi-
dent Fleming's proposed racial ha-
rassment policy .
The leadership of MSA, UCAR,
LASC, RSG, NAACP, LaGROC,
RWL, and 'U' council hereby issue
this statement in response to Presi-
dent Fleming's proposed policy on
discriminatory acts.
-First, we recognize the importance
and necessity of a University policy
on racial harassment given the sever-
ity ofracism on this campus and the
very real threat racism represents to
the lives and well-being of people of
color in our community.
-Secondly, we reject President
Fleming's proposed policy as an
inadequate response to this reality.
-Thirdly, the time frame given by
the Administration for feedback on
this proposal, especially in light of
President Fleming's failure to clarify
the ways in which this proposed pol-
icy will or will not relate to members
of the University community other
than students is inadequate. The time
frame must be extended.
-Finally, while we recognize the
importance and necessity of a racial
harassment policy, we in no way en-
dorse the notion of a comprehensive
code of non-academic conduct, under-
standing that such a code would likely
be used to suppress the kind of protest
that has brought the issue of racism
to the fore of the University com-
munity's conscience thus far.

violence, suppression and
coercion. Examine these one at
a time.
The CIA is terrorist? B y
whose definition? Just because
you and a few other students
think of the CIA as terrorist,
every student should not have
to live by your decision.
Maybe we should b a n
organizations that are sympa-
thetic to the PLO, the contras,
the African National Congress
and the State of Israel. All of
these organizations have be la-
belled as terrorist, too.
Organizations involved in
violence should not be allowed
to recruit on campus? Then we
had better get rid of ROTC and
all funding by the U.S. gov-
ernment. Creating a "violence
free campus" may be a nice
thought, but it is rather naive
to think that violence can or
should be banned from the
campus and the world.
Organizations involved with
suppression and coercion
should not be allowed on cam-
pus? I almost agree with you

that students who seek to sup-
press certain employers and
force their opinions on others
through coercion should not be
allowed on campus. However, I
respect the right of other peo-
ple to disagree with me and
disapprove of academic sanc-
tions for non-academic conduct.
The conclusion of your edi-
torial states my resolution
should be defeated because
"MSA should reaffirm its
position on human rights." I
think instead that the Michigan
Student Assembly should take
a stand on tolerance of minor-
ity opinions and the rights of
students to conduct their lives
by their own judgment, free of
interference by political radi-
cals.
Most importantly, students
who wish to address MSA on
this issue are invited to do so
during constituents time
tonight at 9pm in the MSA
office, 3909 Michigan Union.
-Dan Tobocman
MSA representative
March 14

Allow all to recruit

To the Daily:
I write in response to the
letter from the Rackham Stu-
dent Government (Daily,
3/3/88) concerning CIA
recruiting activities at the law
school.
The writers seem well-
meaning, but the actions they
advocate are dangerous to per-
sonal freedoms. RSG states,
"We now look to the 1 a w
school faculty and students to
...establish moral standards for
the entire University..."
Unfortunately, any such
"moral" dictum, once estab-
lished, will constitute a dogma
that restricts the opportunities
and freedoms of those who may
disagree with it. If the Univer-
sity is a marketplace for ideas,
the RSG proposal is an em-
bargo on the free trade of ideas.
Further, the writers say, "the
CIA has no right...to receive

the privilege of access..." to
University interview facilities.
I disagree. Let them come-but
instead of restrictions, let our
response be to raise our voices
in public forums, such as the
Daily, the Diag, or in peaceful
demonstrations. And let us be
toleratn of those whose opin-
ions of about the CIA are dif-
ferent from our own.
This type of issue is better
resolved by discussion and un-
derstanding-not by fiat. The
students of the University ca
nsend a much stronger message
to the CIA by refusing to re-
spond to their recruitment ef-
forts, and the University com-
munity will benefit from hav-
ing one less group of people
trying, through regulation, to
force their values on others.
-Mark Hoover
March 14

U.S. is not capitalistic

Attend fair rent talk

To the Daily:
Most of us have received
slick, expensive mailings from
the landlords which are full of
distortions about rent
stabilization. From everything
they claim, you would expect
rent stabilization to cause a
lack of maintenance and a
housing shortage. Of course,
the ordinance requires good
maintenance by conditioning
rent increases on compliance
with the housing code. In fact,
the ordinance will strengthen
your position as a tenant when

cessful rent control campaigns
and can answer many questions
about rent control and its ef-
fects.
Phyllis Salowe-Kaye is ex-
ecutive director of New Jersey
Citizens Action, President of
New Jersey Tenants Organiza-
tion and Vice-President of the
National Housing Institute.
She has been involved in
community organizing and
housing issues for 15 years.
New Jersey has more commu-
nities with rent control than
any other state and the New

To the Daily:
I am somewhat confused as
to the point of Mr. Hornback's
blusterings in his letter to the
Daily ["Kaplan undermines
opportunity," Daily, 3/7/881
but I would like to comment
nonetheless.
In his perplexing tirade
against Stanley Kaplan courses
the good Professor makes the
tired claim that capitalism, and
by extension Stanley Kaplan,
is incompatible with "the idea
of equal opportunity". If by
"capitalism" Mr. Hornback
means the economic system
which currently characterizes
the United States and most of
the West, he wrongly identifies
this system as capitalism.
Surely we have an economy
which is capitalistic, but it is
one which is more correctly
viewed as a hybrid of socialism
(with its ostensible
egalitarianism and government
paternalism) and seventeenth
century mercantilism (with the
degree of industrial cartelization
and alliances with government

out political ones) then their
resulting economic behavior
would be capitalism. And to
say that a free system is in-
compatible with equality of
opportunity is ridiculous. I
think what Mr. Hornback re-
ally means is "equality of cir-
cumstance"-- and the argument
for that is as compelling as if I
claimed that no one should be
allowed to study because it
might result in "competitive
disparity" with those who did
not. I realize that there is a
choice to study that does not
exist in the same way for in-
come, but my point is that in a
free society with a system of
true capitalism, economics is
a matter of choice (freedom)
whereas in a system of social-
ism or mercantilism or any-
thing else, it is not.
If Mr. Hornback intended by
his diatribe against Stanley
Kaplan to offer an example of
the "evils" of "capitalism", he
should have better served his
argument by choosing a more
nowe~rful example ~- ffor hv his

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