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March 15, 1996 - Image 4

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1996-03-15

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4 -- The Michigan Daily - Friday, March 15, 1996

Uote digutn ouig

420 Maynard Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Edited and managed by
students at the
University of Michigan

Editor in Chief
Editorial Page Editors

I can only describe what I saw ...
as a medieval vision of hell.'
- John McEwan, a paramedic working at a Scotland
schoolyard where a gunman killed 16 children Wednesday..

Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion of a majority of the Daily's editorial board. All
other articles, letters and cartoons do not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
The money man
'U' community will miss Womack

W~ L ...'fHE $cj5v tr,>-


O n Tuesday, Farris Womack, the
University's chief financial officer, an-
nounced his intention to step down from his
high-ranking post Dec. 31, and return to the
School of Education classrooms. Womack,
61, said he has been contemplating retire-
ment for some time. Although Womack's
post was not as high profile as other execu-
tive positions, he has quietly left his mark on
the University, making it more financially
secure, and helping to raise the quality of life
for students.
Womack held the same position at the
University of North Carolina before joining
the University of Michigan eight years ago.
While at the University, he worked on a
variety ofprojects, from improving the credit
ranking to leading the campaign of campus
He has earned the respect of colleagues
and students, and proved a valuable member
of the University's executive team. President
James Duderstadt told The Michigan Daily,
"He is the best CFO in the country. Any
University in the business would gives its
eye teeth for him." Indeed, the University has
big shoes to fill.
Under Womack, the University's wealth
increased significantly. In eight years, he
raised the University's portfolio of endow-
ment funds from $300 million to more than
$1.6 billion, enlarging the University's fi-
nancial base and putting the institution on ,
solid footing.
In addition, Womack restructured the
University's investment strategy, which
helped secure a high credit ranking. In 1994,

Moody's Investment Service gave the Uni-
versity an AAA bond rating, the highest ever
for a public university. A high bond rating
means the University has more secure credit.
It also allows the University to pay lower
interest rates when making debt payments.
Furthermore, the ranking helps to attract a
high level of research expenditures. After
Moody released its findings in 1994, Womack
said, "The rating upgrade represents a sig-
nificant accomplishment for the University."
It no doubt represents a significant accom-
plishment for him as well.
Womack left his mark on the University
in other ways as well. Perhaps his most
visible project was his involvement in the
University's massive renovations and build-
ing the last few years, a $1.5 billion project.
In addition, he has worked to improve the
landscaping and overall aesthetic appear-
ance of the University. His active role in
these projects will make the buildings and
facilities more modern and of better quality.
Womack is the third high-ranking official
to announce retirement in less than two years.
Duderstadt plans to step down June 30, and
former Provost Gilbert Whitaker retired last
August. Womack's decision gives the re-
gents plenty of time to search for his succes-
sor. Also, if the new president is in place by
fall - the regents have said this will be the
case - then he or she also will be able to
have a hand in selecting the new CFO.
In just eight years, Womack has accom-
plished a great deal. He deserves commen-
dation and thanks from the University com-





War games
U.S. must protect Taiwan from China

Just weeks before Taiwan's presidential
elections, China has launched test fire
missiles near the small country, causing alarm
for Taiwan, the United States and the world's
stability. China's present imposition on Tai-
wan threatens the delicate balance between
the United States and China. As China fires
missiles less than 30 miles outside Taiwan's
major ports and threatens to obstruct ship-
ping and air traffic in the Taiwan Strait, the
Clinton administration must continue to avert
Chinese military action in the Taiwan Strait
and preserve the security, social and eco-
nomic systems in the Western Pacific.
This latest event demonstrates that while
China's trade policies are becoming more
democratic, it has yet to abandon a policy of
military intimidation to secure the "renegade
province" of Taiwan. China's military op-
eration is strategically positioned before
Taiwan's presidential election, which is
scheduled for March 23. Lee Teng-Hui, the
incumbent and member of the nationalist
party, threatens Communist Chinese
government's autonomous rule. China's re-
sentment of Taiwan is growing. The interna-
tional community has been sympathetic to
Taiwan. Also, China dislikes the proposition
ofa seat for Taiwan on the United Nations -
claiming this move is tantamount to seeking
The Clinton administration responded
quickly and appropriately to the present situ-
ation. The U.S. government dispatched war-
ships to the region to attempt to keep order
and dissuade China from sending more test

missiles in the area.
Yet many Americans may not understand
why this is necessary; therefore, the admin-
istration must step up its public information
to inform citizens why China is important to
the United States, and why their recent ac-
tions are wrong.
The United States has a vested interest in
preserving the open-door trade policy, which
was initiated by China's leader, Deng
Xiaping, to integrate the People's Republic
of China into the global economic system. At
the dawn of the 21st century, China is be-
coming a major player in East Asian and
international affairs.
Presently, China has the world's fasted
growing economy and sustains a population
of over 1.2 billion people. China's emer-
gence as a potential superpower in the post-
Cold War global economy - measured by
its military might and its natural resources
- sets a precedent for United States' bilat-
eral trade interests with China. The United
States and Europe embrace the democra-
tization of China's foreign policy - while
recognizing China's history of human rights
The Chinese foreign minister announced
Monday that "China has never committed
itself to abandoning the use of force for
renunciation." China may be bolstering its
military force to threaten Taiwan. Or more
likely, more substantive measures lie ahead?
The United States and other nations should
continue to pressure China into backing off
its attack.

argument is
I read Jean Twenge's
column "The best sitcoms
have a box of condoms and a
bottle of honey," (2/20/96)
and I must say that I can't
agree with her line of
thinking. To argue that ads
run during episodes of "The
Simpsons" about abstinence
are unrealistic and don't
relate to the real world, is in
itself unrealistic.
First of all we must
realize what we are watching
- a cartoon aimed at
children and young adults.
What better way to shape
young minds about sex than
to run ads that they can
relate to. How can we say
that this is unreasonable?
Watching such shows as
"Seinfeld" and "Partners"
that deal with adult issues
are not relevant to children
under the age of 18.
Another issue we must
address is: What is wrong
with the idea of abstinence?
Why not reach the youth as
early as we can about the
dangers of sex, pregnancy
and sexually transmitted
diseases. Everyone has a
right to understand that it's
OK not to have sex until you
are married. We must realize
who these ads are aimed at,
and understand that even
though these ads may not be
aimed at us, they definitely
serve a purpose to those
younger than us.
She mentions that
marriage does not protect
you from AIDS and
pregnancy, but she's
forgetting a very important
thing. The fewer partners
you have before marriage
greatly reduces your chances
of getting AIDS or becom-
ing pregnant. Even though
these ads about abstinence
may seem unrealistic to you,
the average college student,
to a young girl in her early
teens about to make some
very important decisions
about sex, these ads could
make a very important
Savic is
MSA leader
I wish to comment on
Carlos E. Hernandez's letter
to the Daily concerning the
Students' Party's vice
presidential candidate

is one of the most thought-
ful, kindhearted, rational,
intelligent people I have
ever met. I could go on, but
her impeccable record as an
MSA representative stands
for itself. It shows her to be
possibly the most highly
respected member whose
concerns for all students is
second to none.
As for the issue of Code
panelist training, Hernandez,
you have no clue. You think
you have the capability to
pass judgment on a fellow
student. But perhaps if you
had actually experienced the
training, you might feel
otherwise. You might see
that this inadequate training
leaves one wondering, "How
do 'I' come off thinking that
I have the ability, knowl-
edge, experience, and
perhaps most importantly,
the "power" to pass judg-
ment on a fellow student?"
It's unfortunate for it to take
this experience to see this,
but it is even worse that
people like Hernandez have
failed to. If he thinks it is so
easy, he doesn't know. So
why is she involved you
might ask? Olga's feelings
are shared by many people
who are actually involved in
the process, including to
some extent, the administra-
tive judicial adviser. It is
exactly "this" judgment of
Olga's character that shows
Hernandez's naivete on the
process itself. More
importantly, however, as
anyoneuwho knows her can
tell you, Olga Savic's
character is exactly what
makes her a special person
and a great vice presidential
candidate for the Students'
Students do
not care
about MSA
The campaign season is
upon us. Once again we see
the needless waste of paper
on the walls of Angell Hall,
annoying candidates
standing outside polling
sites, and general, uniformed
debate on all sides. Great.
And they wonder why voter
turnout is at 7 percent.
As someone who is
incredibly distanced from
the childish games that go
on in and outside of MSA, I
often wonder what the point
of the exercise is. Is it to
make beneficial changes on
this campus or is it to play
stupid games in the MSA
chamber that do nothing but
inflate ego's of the political
science majors who "serve"
as elected officials? More
often than not, it is the latter.

The Michigan Party is a
good case in point.
Tammany Hall, top-down,
running-things party politics.
And the sad thing is that they
are elected year after year.
Has anything really substan-
tial changed? Julie Neenan
promised to change the face
of the M-Party. Flint
Wainess did the same thing.
Now Fiona Rose, who
appears to have switched
parties simply for her own
power, claims that her M-
Party is different.
All right, if you believe
that, then I have a Diag to
sell you.
'U' campus
to women
It was brought to my
attention that a woman was
attacked in the Church Street
parking structure recently. I
found this to be very
surprising, since I had not
heard of it happening, then I
realized where I was. The
University campus is not a
safe place for women. I
guess the "holy" Michigan
name is more important than
to report violent attacks
against women. After all,
everyone from DPS to the
Athletic Department have
been covering them up for
I remember my first year,
how care free my life was.
Now I am scared to walk
alone to my car. I would feel
better if this problem was
being acknowledged, but I
feel it is not. What kind of
message is this school
sending to women? Women
compose more than 50
percent of this campus. We
deserve to be informed of the
things that can be potentially
harmful to us. I find it very
alarming when an athlete can
beat on his girlfriend and
school officials choose to
just look away. (I guess,
since we are not bringing in
the revenue, why should they
care?) I am sad to admit that
my school has let me down.
May I respectfully point
out the harmful bad taste
shown in a recent cartoon
depicting Indian people in
racially stereotypical ways
("Sharp as Toast," 2/28/96).

CQnfessions of
a Francophobe
France, that most enigmatic of West-
ern nations, has rarely been in the
headlines this year.
This I regard as a "good thing," in
the same abstract dichotomy th
groups the new-car smell, Weste
omelets and romping with Fido after
mowing the lawn as inherently "good
things." It is such a "good thing," in
fact, that I am pro-
posing an interna-
tional news em-
bargo on France.
Why, you ask? tF,
My motives lie notk
in my scorn for all
things French, a
trait forced on me
during a year lived n% a
in London. My
emotions don't BRENT
spring from the MCINTOSH
taught to wannabe-
English like myself. My dislike of
France is an entirely reasonable, well-
thought-out contempt, acquired while
travelling that land.
For one thing, France is, uhh ..
umm ... OK, I admit: My disdain is
nothing but knee-jerk Anglocentrism.
But don't even think that having no
solid reason to hate France is going to
make me despise it the less. There are
lots of not-very-valid reasons to hate
France, and there are even some rea-
sons for which there is no better term
than "poppycock."
Not that the French would ever use
splendid word like "poppycock." 014
no: Their language is too full of reay
drippy "ooooooh" sounds-like vots
and beaucoup and mon petit chou i-
to say "poppycock" or "shenanigans."
The French take a wonderful phrase
like "Go Blue" and turn it into te
whiny exhortation Allez les bleus. Qo
Blue has spurred many a team to vic-
tory and will continue to do so; Allez
les bleus on the other hand, is about
attractive to an English speaker p
"Why don't you come over for some
Spam?" is to a gourmet.
The language is perhaps fitting,
though. All those "ooooooh" sounds
fit perfectly into the best word to de-
scribe Parisians: Snooty. And don t
think it's a coincidence that "whine"
and "wine" are English homonyms:
The world's great wines and the
world's great whiningebothtrace their
origin to France.
Francophones defend their language
by claiming it is "the language oflove."
This is most appropriate if you con-
sider "love" in its tennis sense: French
rates a big zero.
Francophiles also wield the "love"
gambit in defense of Paris, calling it
"full of romance." Full of rats, maybe,
but romance?
A true-story about Parisian romanc
if I may: A little European escapa
took a friend of mine and her boy-
friend to gay Paris four years ago.
They were floating serenely down the
Seine, enjoying the glittering splendor
that is Paris at night, no doubtthinking
the most romantic ofthoughts-when
two drunken Frenchmen on a bridge
high above decided that the boat, and
specifically my friend's shoulder, was
the ideal aim for a little urinary target
practice. Ah, romance is in the air
And it's on my shoulder, too.
If the romance is a myth, then ex-

actly what do the French have going
for them? I can tell you what they
should have in their favor. Here's a
hint: It has to do with running around
and kicking a medium-sized sphere,
and it's neither cheating at golf nor
what sane Americans would like to do
with Pat Buchanan's severed head.
It's soccer. By all rational measure4
the French really should be good at
soccer. Draw a triangle between En-
gland, Spain and Italy - arguably the
Northern Hemisphere's greatest soc-
cer nations - and you find France.in
the middle. And yet the French, like
fish and people in leg irons, are really
just not very good at soccer.
Really - what reason is there to be
European if not to be terrific at soccer?
There are those who would say tha
the secondary reason for being Euro
pean is to have a monarchy. It seems
like just about everyone in Europe is
royalty one way or another. The
French, though, seem to think they're
too good for a monarchy. They wreak
havoc in an old prison a couple centu-
ries ago, and somehow this makes
them too special to support royalty.
It is no shock, then, that a country
that so casually swears offa monarch4
is also the world's leading consumer
of berets. (For perspective, consider
that berets are more prevalent among
the French than Klan memberships
among Buchanan staffers.) What is a
shock, though, is that no one has had
the kindness yet to point out to the



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