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March 19, 1996 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 1996-03-19

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4 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, March 19, 1996

G$be £tidigu uiI

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

RONNIE GLASSBERG
Editor in Chief
ADRIENNE JANNEY
ZACHARY M. RAIMI
Editorial Page Editors

"NOTABLE QUOTABLE,
'We are wondering why you are
not concerned with GEO.'
- Graduate Employees Organization member Alejandra
Marchevsky at the Friday Board of Regents meeting

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.
FROM THE DAKiY
Art vs. technology
Students deserve mput in curriculum

MATT WIMSAIT

MooluE's Dj i~,uA

ollowing the example of the communi-
cation department, the School of Art has
mutated into a new form - the School of Art
and Design. The change comes from one side
of an internal debate - technology versus
-tradition. Many artists use their work to ex-
press themselves and ultimately as a way to
be heard. So, when the administration chose
-to ignore student input, it
not only went against the
principles of art, but educa-
tion as well. V
After several Art profes-
sors declared their retire- 3
;ments, the school an-
nounced four openings in
design and one position I
each in ceramics, painting
and new genre (the combi-
nation ofcomputertechnol-
ogy and traditional art).
Recently, Allen Samuels,
dean of the School of Art
and Design, announced that
the school was adding an-
other new genre professor,
instead of a ceramics instructor. Students
emerged in large opposition; many value the
fine arts department and worry about its
future with the dean's heavy emphasis on
design. Adding another professor to new
genre in addition to one in ceramics would be
acceptable. But Samuels took away from one
to add to another, contradicting the needs and
wishes of his students.
The dean, whose background is in design,
is focusing a large amount of his agenda on
building up the design curriculum; in the
process, he is taking away from the fine arts
by not rehiring another ceramics teacher.

Students are afraid Samuels' intense focus
on technology and upholding the University's
reputation as a competitive art school will
result in a school that specializes in design
and neglects its fine arts department. Stu-
dents have voiced opposition to the latest
events. It is important for a learning institu-
tion to listen to its students, especially on a

F i ,
I al
V RE '
h fh
~AC~iA~/0

THE ERASABLE PEN
The insecure l-1
year-old'wuss'
in all of us
It's a Saturday night, and I'm at
home. This shouldn't be a big deal,
except part of me feels that spending
a weekend night alone is a failing.
Like a lot of anxieties, I'm con-
vinced this one started in junior high
school. For the
most part, I was a
pretty geeky I11-
year-old. I wore N
whatever my {4
mother boughtme.
I climbed trees. I
had a short, prac-.
tical haircut that
made me look like
a boy. I always
brought a novel to
school with me. I JEAN
ate lunch alone be- TWENGE
cause the few.
friends I had were in a different lunch
period. When pressed on why I didn't
want to "go with" a boy, I told my
questioners -the most popular girls
in the school - that if you started
dating too early, you'd getbored with
the preliminaries too quickly and end
up pregnant. They misinterpreted my
future prediction as ignorance, and
told everyone in school that I thought
going together could make you preg-
nant. Needless to say, I was never
part of the popular crowd.
Some herding instinct injunior high
school girls makes not being popular
the worst possible failing. Being
popular is the essence of success for
ateenage girl, an obsession that many
carry into their adult lives. Similar
hierarchies exist for boys, with ath-
letes at the top of the heap and the
uncoordinated at the bottom - what
the Dr. Demento-style band King
Missile calls being a "wuss."
"I was into science fiction, math
and chess," confesses the singer. "I
didn't work up to my full potential in
school, because to the other kids, the
smarter you were, the wussier you
were."
Even well into high school, all
weekends meant was that I could
read all day instead ofgoing to school.
When I finally started getting dates
during my senior year and went to
Social life should not be

0

1

MATT WIMSATT/ Daily
nize themselves

curriculum issue that can
drastically affect their aca-
demic futures. While
Samuels held an open fo-
rum when the changes took
place, many students left
feeling that the adminis-
tration was making deci-
sions and keeping students
in the dark about them.
Moreover, students felt
their views were ignored
at the forum -just as ad-
ministrators ignored stu-
dent concerns over the
breakup of the communi-
cation department.
Art students have orga-
quickly, proving the seri-

" COME

40-tYOUR. SftAcS.SH1P _NOU) .T
BE MI EG901 N U~TI L 4OVeEfAR"-

TO

01

'I

LETfERS TO THE EDITOR

ousness of their objections. They are wear-
ing black arm bands to emphasize the loss of
vital programs. With 400 arm bands in circu-
lation and at least 250 students attending the
forum with Samuels, the administration can-
not proceed under the illusion that the stu-
dents do not care about the proposed changes.
Out with the old and in with the new is not
what the students want - and what they
want matters. Students do not want their
education to be caught up in a theoretical
debate about which medium is better. If they
want to learn paint, give them paint.

I ndependents
for MSA
TO THE DAILY:
Though we are outsiders
running for the Michigan
Student Assembly president
and vice president, we seem
to be all too aware of the
problems of the student
government. Day after day
in the Daily, there are
articles that attack the
current members of MSA.
Whether calling for officers
to resign, or condemning the
parties creating the current
stalemate, these are the
charades that the Geoff
Tudisco /Adam Mesh
candidacy seeks to rid the
student government of.
The preamble of MSA's
constitution states, "Be-
cause student participation
in University decision
making is important to the
quality of student life at the
University, the students of
The University of Michigan
hereby enact this all-Campus
Constitution ..." Now it is
clear to us that there is a key
word being ignored in the
above statement; that word
is student. It seems that the
current MSA government
has forgotten that it is there
for us, the students, and not
for their own agendas.

The source of the power
of MSA, according to
MSA's constitution, comes
from the students. It is quite
apparent that the voice of
the students has been
ignored for far too long.
Complaints about the
stagnation are mounting,
and the bickering among the
large parties dominated a
nasty campaign season last
semester. That is what we
want to do away with.
The Geoff Tudisco and
Adam Mesh independent
ticket for MSA president
and vice president offers the
students the only real choice
for change. As the only
independent ticket, we are
in no way affiliated with
any of the current MSA
parties. We are getting
involved because it seems

like nothing is getting done,
and we want to see results.
Very few students are
involved in the student
government, and we hope to
attract many students who
have never voted before as
well as draw on those
disenchanted by the major
parties.
Our campaign's goal is to
break the gridlock in MSA.
We are not counting on party
support because we want to
break the stranglehold that
the parties have on the
student government. We are
independents bringing
individuals together. We
want the student government
to represent those that it was
intended to - the students.
GEOFF TUDISCO
LSA JUNIOR

M

Elections for sale
Campaign spending requires active reforms

LETmRS PoucY
The Michigan Daily welcomes letters from its readers.
Alllettersfrom University students,facultyand staffwill be
printed, space providing. Other materials will be printed at
the editors 'discretion. All letters must include the writer's
name, school year or University affiliation and phone
number. We will not print any letter that cannot be verified.
Ad hominem attacks will not be published.
Letters should be kept to approximately 300 words. We
reserve the right to edit for length, clarity and accuracy.
Longer "Viewpoints " may be arranged with an editor.
Letters should be sent via e-mail to daily.letters@
umich.edu or mailed to the Daily at 420 Maynard St.
Editors can be reached at 764-0552 or by sending e-mail to
the above address.

ST ast week, Steve Forbes quit the Repub-
lican presidential race after spending an
estimated $30 million of his own money on
his campaign. Coupled with the prospect of
Ross Perot spending tens of millions of dol-
lars from his personal fortune on another
independent White House bid, this has led
many Americans to question current cam-
paign-finance laws. In order to keep wealthy
candidates from "buying the White House"
with their personal fortunes, the system re-
quires bold action.
In the 1970s, Americans had similar con-
cerns about the funding of presidential cam-
paigns in the wake of the Watergate scandal.
This led to the important reforms that are the
law today. All presidential primary candi-
dates meeting certain qualifications - such
as vote percentages in primaries and fund-
raising levels - are qualified to receive
federal "matching funds" to help with their
campaigns. In return, candidates are required
to limit their campaign contributions and
their total spending on the campaign for their
parties' nomination. Once a candidate wins a
party's nomination, the federal government
covers the expense - a fixed sum for each
party- for the general election. While presi-
dential campaigns are still too money-driven,
these laws have forestalled egregious spend-
ing by most candidates.
The problem with the current law is that it
does not apply to candidates - such as
Forbes - who use their own money. The
current regulations are not strict legal man-
dates. Rather, they are conditions for the
receipt of federal money. The courts have
a consistently ruled that it is unconstitutional
for the government to place actual regula-
tions on camnaian snendiini. Thus. if a can-

considered a contest for
rich or cute friends

without the help ofthe government, he or she
can spend as much money as desired. In
short, anyone who is wealthy enough can try
to buy the presidency.
Concerns over free speech should never
be taken lightly. However, the framers of the
constitution could not foresee the advent of
television advertising and multimillion dol-
lar campaigns. Money has become one of the
most important determinants in a given
campaign's success or failure. Therefore,
unlimited campaign spending by the wealthy
is an attack on free and fair elections - the
cornerstone of American democracy.
The line between free speech and com-
merce is blurred by political campaigns.
Congress should pass legislation limiting the
total amount of personal money that million-
aires can spend on their own campaigns.
Every effort should be made to comply with
court rulings. However, if the courts remain
obstructionist, Congress and the states should
clarify the situation with a carefully worded
constitutional amendment allowing the gov-
ernment to place legal restrictions on cam-
paign spending. The effect of such an amend-
ment would be to close the gaping loophole
in the current law - the loophole that gives
millionaires free range to outspend their op-
ponents who rely on traditional campaign
finance methods.
The advent ofmodern, media-driven cam-
paigns has made American politics vulner-
able to the corrupting influence of money.
While the concern over campaign spending
is a recent trend, the problem will continue to
create a gross distortion of the democratic
process if allowed to continue. By taking
bold action-which could lead to amending
the Constitution -America can maintain its

VIdEWPosNt
Students can impact politics

BY TAU KRAVITZ
OK, so have you decided
who you are voting for, yet?
Come on, the candidates, their
views and their personal lives
have been the top news stories
since President Clinton was
inaugurated in 1993.
If we decide now, we have
the ability to control the pro-
cess. Think about it: If you
take the time to make a knowl-
edgeable decision on the best
candidate, you will then have
the power to influence the
enormous system called "the
government." The media will
no longer dictate who we vote
for or whether we vote at all.
We can then use the media as
a tool to help become more
educated on the issues and on
what each candidate stands for.
But the moment you decide
who you think the best person
is to be president of the United
States, is the minute you hold
democracy in your hands.
I know you are wondering
now, "Why am I speaking in
such grandiose terms?" This
may be a product of the long
hours spent reading in Politi-
cal Science 406. But it also
may be to help explain why I
drove 16 hours with 13 people
sleeping on top of me to New
Hampshire for the primaries a
few weeks ago. Now, many
people have been asking me,
"Why wonid von ao al the

seeing the embarrassed look
on Lamar Alexander's face
when we diverted his "Walk
Across New Hampshire" and
seeing Clinton's face through
a barrage of pompons and
smiling children were more
of a turn-on than I ever ex-
pected.
But the sense of reality hit
when as I was driving home
through a fog-filled Canada
while listening to the exitpolls
from the small towns of New
Hampshire. When I realized
that the racist/isolationist who
I have been fearing for years
might carry the Republican
ticket in New Hampshire, my
vigilance for standing up for
what I believe in became that
much stronger.
Granted, Pat Buchanan is
rapidly losing his grip on the
Republican Party; however,
because of him and dema-
gogues like him, the world
seems to be much more of an
unpredictable and scary place
to live in.
It has been a challenge to
live in the academic world. I
find myself straddling the
fence, not on political issues,
but on whether or not to join
many of my peers in the ab-
stract world ofC. Wright Mills
and "Friends"' Ross and
Rachel, or the frightening and
in-your-face world of Pat
Buchanan and C-Span. As a

tion. The reading assignment,
for my Political Science class,
was ironic and a bit chilling.
But hey, aren't we in some
ways following in the foot-
steps of the previous genera-
tions?
Now, after all this identity
searching of mine, which I
don't intend to end any time
soon, I am still writing this
piece when my take-home
midterm is calling me back to
reality. But is that exam truly
reality? I'm not quite sure.
The Michigan primary is
today and we will continue to
see a barrage of red, white and
blue converging on our beau-
tiful state. The question is, how
do we respond. If you support
Bob Dole, that's great, let it be
known. Ifyou support Clinton,
say so, even if he won't actu-
ally be on the Michigan ballot
until November. If you don't
support anyone, figure out why
and do something about it.
Believe me, the halfhour view-
ing of Ross and Rachel can
wait. They've waited since
ninth grade, haven't they?
Many people say at almost
every election that we end up
choosing the best alternative,
even though we might not like
everything about him or her. I
am not at all saying that I em-
brace Bill Clinton wholeheart-
edly as the best leader of this
country, but I will say that it is

three different proms, I stacked this
next to my academic accomplish-
ments in my mind, feeling some mea-
sure of victory over the girls who had
teased me (several of whom were, as
predicted, pregnant).
Yet the feeling of unpopularity has
never left me. "Even now, I still feel
like a wuss from time to time," says
King Missile. "Kind of residual
wussiness - the kind of thing you
can never really leave behind."
Deep inside, I am still that 11-year
old girl with a short haircut and no
friends. She's still there inside my
mind, full of all the insecurity of
junior high school worries of never
making cheerleader and always be-
ing alone. She exists there, kept alive
by the knowledge that I'll never be
prom queen, a model or a princess
married to a prince (though we all
know how that one turned out.)
She reappears at the strangest times.
Sometimes I'll be talking to friends
who I've known only in grad school
but, I get the feeling early on, were
popular in high school - easily so-
cial, probably a cheerleader, never in
want of friends. We're on perfectly
even ground here, but somewhere in
the conversation I'll become that
geeky 11-year-old all over again and
feel like I said something stupid or
nerdy. I also see a lot of this on
weekends - the times I'd be per-
fectly happy staying home and read-
ing, but feel that I should go out and
do something social and not be such
a geek.
The problem is that social life
should be enjoyed for what it is and
when it can be - not as an award for
who can get the most friends or marry
the cutest or richest guy. Going this
route, we're left like the heroine in
the movie "Muriel's Wedding," who
finally achieves status in the eyes of
her popular, snobby high school
friends when she marries an Olympic
athlete. Never mind that he needed
citizenship and she applied for the
"job" out of the newspaper: she was
a social success at last.
I wonder how many friendships
and marriages are founded on this
principle, the voice ofthe junior high
school girl who says, "Look who I've
got! I'm a success because someone

1.0
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