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November 01, 2005 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2005-11-01

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41

4 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, November 1, 2005

OPINION

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JASON Z. PESICK
Editor in Chief

SUHAEL MOMIN
SAM SINGER
Editorial Page Editors

ALISON Go
Managing Editor

EDITED AND MANAGED BY STUDENTS AT
THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN SINCE 1890
420 MAYNARD STREET
ANN ARBOR, MI 48109
tothedaily@michigandaily.com

NOTABLE
QUOTABLE
44'Like Rosa
Parks, Judge Alito
will be able to
change history by
virtue of where
he sits."
- Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y),
on President Bush's nomination of
Samuel Alito to the U.S. Supreme Court, as
reported yesterday by The Washington Post.

COLIN DALY TiE MIH&IAN A L
I.

4

wvs Yo.

$LEV -El P# S1N4 tGAR

Preying on confusion
SAM SINGERS AM 'S C)B3
he painfully they incapable of leaving it at that?" details will reveal, lies somewhere in between
tedious chro- It's always refreshing to see a pundit dedi- one columnist's hyperbole and the other's
nology of cate margin space to deflating (instead of prop- deliberately narrow reality.
the Valerie Plame agating) media alarmism, especially when just Despite Rich's finger-pointing, Fitzgerald's
affair has been bor- inches away, Times columnist and self-stylized investigation hasn't come near the Oval Office,
ing its followers to muckraker Frank Rich is busy unveiling his and the President has been kept at a safe distance.
tears ever since it signature scandal of the week. Nor is there any reason to believe Libby's pros-
first made headlines Dating back to the Nixon years, Rich's sto- ecution will double as a show trial on the admin-
in 2003. With count- ried career as a journalist/film critic has left istration's candor in its pre-war intelligence
less side plots and a him hopelessly jaded; trapped in an ongoing gathering. But simply "leaving it at that," to use
background-intensive political stage show that stars him as Bob Brooks's words, would be just as misleading.
storyline, the 22-month probe into the White Woodward and President Bush as a latter-day Any doubts that the fallout from the Libby
House's role in leaking the identity of CIA Nixon. It came as no surprise that Rich opened indictment would penetrate the upper ranks of
operative Valerie Plame may be one of the this Sunday's piece, "One step closer to the the White House were dispelled with last week-
least appreciated and scarcely understood Big Enchilada," with an elaborate analogy end's news of Fitzgerald's plans to use Libby's
criminal investigations ever to grace the front comparing the Libby indictment to the open- prosecution as an opportunity to bring his boss,
page of a national newspaper. ing months of the Watergate scandal, when the the vice president of the United States, to the
I'd try to explain it myself, but they only country would soon "come to see that the orig- witness stand.
give me this little box. So for the sake of con- inal petty crime was merely the leading edge As the point-source behind the leak, we
venience, it's sufficient to know that a senior of thematically related but wildly disparate already know Cheney sits atop this mountain of
White House official - vice presidential aide abuses of power ... " Rich went on to directly controversy; it's now up to Fitzgerald to discov-
Scooter Libby - has been indicted for lying implicate the President, framing the Libby er in what capacity. The prosecution can place
under oath, and an even higher-ranking White indictment in the wider context of a cover-up Cheney on Air Force Two with Libby the day
House Official - the vice president - is still culture he claims has characterized the admin- Plame's identity was revealed to Time Maga-
treading water. istration's handling of the Iraq war. zine's Matt Cooper. And as a material witness,
In a hard-hitting Sunday column, New York But where Rich reaches too far, Brooks attention will certainly be brought to Cheney's
Times heavyweight David Brooks doused cold doesn't reach far enough. He closes the lid on potential motives for discrediting former dip-
water on the hysteria that's consumed the inves- the indictment, stubbornly unwilling to accept lomat and outspoken administration opponent
tigation, ridiculing conspiracy claims advanced the idea that someone or something bigger may Joseph Wilson by outing his wife.
by Democrats and accusing the party of being be behind the leak. Given the magnitude of the Look for some high-profile subpoe-
paranoid and "compulsively overheated" at first issue and the general confusion surrounding it, nas. Look for a showdown over the scope
wind of a political scandal. discussing this investigation in anything but the of executive privilege and a drawn out plea
Brooks properly points out that Patrick most sober and evenhanded tone seems need- bargain. Look for the president to begin dis-
Fitzgerald, the special counsel heading the lessly opportunistic. When readers need reso- tancing himself from Cheney. And regard-
investigation, found only enough evidence to lution most, Brooks and Rich, like too many less of where the pundits point you, keep
charge Libby and little to shore up allegations of of their partisan counterparts in the media, are looking for the facts.
a broader conspiracy or coordinated cover-up. busy towing the company line. Instead of peel-
"One of the president's top advisers is indicted ing away the layers, they bury the facts under Singer can be reached
on serious charges," Brooks rumbles, "Why are more spin. The truth, as the still-unfolding at singers@umich.edu.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

New Big House luxury
boxes 'not our style'
TO THE DAILY:
I am one of the old University grads -
class of '49 and 83 years young. But I still
have fond memories of those fall afternoons
in Michigan Stadium watching Tommy
Harmon tear up the turf. (I started school
in 1940.) So I feel a kinship with that house
- now called the Big House - that our
beloved Fielding H. Yost built. And I doubt
very much he ever envisioned or wanted any
luxury boxes. We don't need them - they
are not our style. If the Athletic Department
needs more revenue, let's raise it some other
way. Them's my sentiments! Go Blue!
George Schumacher
Alum
Majority of affirmative-
action opponents are racist
TO THE DAILY:
The viewpoint from Oct. 25 (Consider
a vote for RAM this election year) touches
on something that frequently occurs yet is
hardly ever discussed. In that article, the
writer mentions that one member of the
class made a blanket accusation that all of
those in opposition to affirmative action
were racist.
Now, this type of accusation is nothing
new, but it is usually dismissed as an angry,
unfounded rebuttal. However, contrary to
what they might think, I would have to agree
that the majority of those who do not sup-
port affirmative action are - either directly
or indirectly - racist, as they do not seek to
find alternatives with the same fervor they
seek to destroy this policy.
Many people desire to do away with affir-
mative action. Fine, I have no problem with
that. I will be the first to admit that it is
flawed. However, what I do have a prob-
lem with is the fact that a viable alterna-
tive policy is never mentioned (half-baked
afterthoughts such as President Bush's sug-
gestion of the "10-percent plan" excluded).
It is almost surprising considering how pas-

at least he is completely honest with how he
feels.
The other part of that implication is that
removing affirmative action will level the
playing field. In response to this, I sug-
gest one look at things such as legacy
admissions into colleges, where children
of alumni are looked favorably upon by
universities solely because their parents
attended the same school. This and any-
thing in a similar vein are inherently rac-
ist, because the effects of racist policies
and practices from years ago do not allow
minorities to take advantage of them today.
Therefore, to deny that race plays a factor
in today's society is flat out ignorance, and
the product of that ignorance is more dis-
crimination against minorities.
With all that said, I pose this question to
those who oppose affirmative action: Are you
one of those who truly desires to reach equal-
ity in society, or do you actually deserve to be
labeled a racist?
Nathan Broyles
LSA senior
Affirmative-action
opponents lack awareness
TO THE DAILY:
I would like to say a few words in sup-
port of the viewpoint Silence and arm-
bands (10/27/2005). Many people oppose
affirmative action without knowing much
about it. It's just like people who oppose
stem-cell research without knowing what
exactly a stem cell is. They should prob-
ably research the topic first. Many do
not even know that Asians do not benefit
from affirmative action in this Universi-
ty's admission policy. Yet as an Asian,
I still support affirmative action. Many
people oppose it because they fail to see
how privileged they are. It's so ingrained
in us that we take for granted what we
could easily have. Now we have to share
those privileges with others. Obviously
we feel threatened, and hence the opposi-
tion to affirmative action. If we want to
abolish affirmative action and be "fair"

High-school students should
be in class, not at rally
TO THE DAILY:
Having an hour between classes Thurs-
day, I had the opportunity to talk with
proponents and opponents of affirmative
action, as well as some high school students
who had been bussed in.
Being a person who firmly believes in
preferences for socioeconomic or other
hardships, I listened to and pointed out
flaws in the arguments of people on both
extremes. Try as I might, I could not, how-
ever, discuss the issue with the high-school
students.
Not a single one of the Detroit students
I spoke with even knew what the Michigan
Civil Rights Initiative was. When I asked
them why they were there, one sincerely
remarked, "Because white people are try-
ing to make it illegal for black people to go
to college." When I told them that this was
patently false, I was told that their teach-
er knew more than me and that they were
right. It was simply an unacceptable level
of discourse.
Also, the only thing that the polar-
extreme partisan groups can agree to in
regard to affirmative action is the fact
that inner-city schools need to educate
their students better. This instantly calls
into question the rationale for bussing
these kids in and filling them with racial-
ly inflammatory and often utterly false
rhetoric. Considering Detroit has one of
the worst education records in the nation,
might there have been a better endeavor
for these students on a school day paid for
(in Detroit's case) by state and federal tax-
payers? Perhaps something that involves
textbooks and education instead of serving
as a rent-a-protest? If they absolutely had
to come, wouldn't they have been better
served by being truthfully educated on the
issue instead of merely serving as warm
bodies to chant on the Diag?
This also calls into question the motiva-
tions of those that brought them here. Obvi-
ously, it takes a lot of money to hire charter
busses for 1,000 students every five months.

Editorial Board Members: Amy Anspach, Reggie Brown, John Davis, Whitney Dibo,
Milly Dick, Sara Eber, Jesse Forester, Mara Gay, Eric Jackson, Ashwin Jagannathan, The-
resa Kennelly, Will Kerridge, Rajiv Prabhakar, Matt Rose, David Russell, Brian Slade,

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