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February 16, 2007 - Image 3

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The Michigan Daily, 2007-02-16

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Friday, February 16, 2007 - 3

GOP rejects part of
Granholms plan for
this year's budget
Gov. Jennifer Granholm wants
Senate Republicans to put out their
own plan for cutting nearly $900
million out of this year's state bud-
get now that they have rejected part
of her budget-balancing plan.
"I can't negotiate with vapor,
when they've put out no plan on the
other side," she said during a news
conference yesterday morning. "I
call on Republican lawmakers to
have the backbone and the courage
to put their plan on the table."
Senate Appropriations Chairman
Ron Jelinek (R-Three Oaks) said
after the governor's news confer-
ence that Republicans who control
the Senate do have a plan and are
willing to sit down with the Demo-
cratic governor to discuss it.
"She has to talk to us. We are a
part of the process," he said.
The GOP-led Senate Appropria-
tions Committee on Wednesday
voted along party lines to reject
Granholm's proposed executive
order making cuts to the existing
Granholm wants to offset this
year's nearly $900 million deficit
through a mix of spending reduc-
tions to day care, foster care and
other programs; a new 2 percent
tax on services such as haircuts
and movie tickets starting June
1; delayed funding; and changed
accounting practices.
Republican lawmakers object
to the tax increase and say they
instead want more spending cuts in
the budget year that started Oct. 1.
Pelosi says Bush
would need con-
gressional approval
to invade Iran
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
said yesterday that President Bush
lacks the authority to invade Iran
without specific approval from
Congress, a fresh challenge to the
commander in chief on the eve of
a symbolic vote critical of his troop
buildup in Iraq.
Pelosi (D-Calif) noted that Bush
consistently said he supports a dip-
lomatic resolution to differences
with Iran "and I take him at his
At the same time, she said, "I do
believe that Congress should assert
itself, though, and make it very clear
that there is no previous authority
for the president, any president, to
go into Iran." .
Pelosi spoke in an interview in
the Capitol as lawmakers plowed
through a third day of marathon
debate in the House on a nonbind-
ing measure opposing the admin-
istration's plan to increase troop
strength in Iraq - and as Demo-
crats readied a more provocative
challenge to the president.
Investigators say
billions of dollars
wasted in Iraq
dered by the U.S. government on
Iraq reconstruction aid because of
contractor overcharges and unsup-
ported expenses, and federal inves-
tigators warned yesterday that

significantly more taxpayer money
is at risk.
The three top auditors oversee-
ing work in Iraq told a House com-
mittee their review of $57 billion in
Iraq contracts found that Defense
and State department officials con-
doned or allowed repeated work
delays, bloated expenses and pay-
ments for shoddy work or work
never done.
More than one in six dollars
charged by U.S. contractors were
questionable or unsupported, near-
ly triple the amount of waste the
Government Accountability Office
estimated last fall.
"There is no accountability," said
David M. Walker, who heads the
auditing arm of Congress. "Orga-
nizations charged with overseeing
contracts are not held accountable.
Contractors are not held account-
able. The individuals responsible
are not held accountable.
"People should be rewarded
when they do a good job. But when
things don't go right, there have to
be consequences," he said.
385 million
The amount of money in dol-
lars that Chinese con man Wang
Zhendong swindled from inves-
tors in an ant-breeding scam. Ants,
which are used in some traditional
Chinese medicines, fetch a high
price in China. Wang sold ant-
breeding kits for inflated prices,
claiming that investors would col-
lect returns of up to 60 percent.
Chinese courts sentenced Wang to
death this week, CBS reported.

To fight poverty, charity
in the form of livestock


For theDaily
For $5,000, Heifer Interna-
tional will send a menagerie that
includes goats, llamas, cows, rab-
bits and chickens to an impover-
ished country.
Short on cash? For $250, they'll
send a water buffalo.
Jo Luck, president and CEO of
the non-profit organization, spoke
to a large audience yesterday in
the Michigan League about the
challenges of global poverty.
Since Heifer International was
founded in 1944, the group has
sent aid in the form of animals to
more than 7 million people in 125
The group was founded by Dan
West, an American farmer who
provided humanitarian aid dur-
ing the Spanish Civil War. While
handing out cups of milk, West
realized there was a more effec-
tive way to fight poverty.
"These children don't need a
cup, they need a cow," West would
The group's aim is to encourage
long-term development by sup-
plying third-world countries with
livestock and agricultural skills.
Luck, an 18-year veteran of the
organization, said the organiza-

tion plays a role in giving rights to
women. The organization refuses
to send assistance to villages that
restrict women from education or
One Masai chief in Kenya was
reluctant to accept help from
Heifer International because he
didn't want to educate his wives in
agriculture, Luck said. After Luck
explained the economicbenefits of
agricultural education for women,
the chief accepted.
Luck showed a traditional Thai
headdress and bamboo flute she
received as tokens of appreciation
from women who had received aid
from Heifer International.
"We are there when the camera
leaves," Luck said. "We are there
for the long term."
Luck said there are misconcep-
tions about motivations of people
in impoverished nations. They
need things other than material
goods to develop, she said.
"Like the first Americans, these
people want leadership roles but
they need opportunity, resources,
and training," Luck said.
In an emotional moment, Luck
introduced a one-time aid recipi-
ent and current deputy director
of Heifer International, Tererai
Trent said she grew up in a vil-

lage in Zimbabwe where males
were considered more important
than females.
"The breadwinners oftomorrow
were boys," she said. "We needed
to nurture and educate them."
Trent firstmetLuck whilesitting
in a circle with nine other women.
Luck asked the women where they
hoped to be in five years. Trent
said she wanted to go to a univer-
sity and get an education.
"I cannot talk about the educa-
tion of my children," Trent told
Luck at the time. "I want to talk
about my education because if I
am educated, I will teach my chil-
Trent said the group has helped
women by giving them education-
al opportunities. She said she had
endured emotional and physical
abuse as a wife and mother before
Heifer International came to her
In her closing remarks, Trent
said Heifer International has also
played a key role in giving Afri-
can women an alternative to the
sex trade. She said she once asked
a former prostitute whether she
made more money as a farmer or
as a prostitute.
"I'm going to measure it in dig-
nity, not in money," the woman

Judge rules N.Y. police need
reason to videotape public events
ByJIM DWYER who were exercising their right Whilehecalledthepoliceconduct
The New York Times to free speech and breaking no "egregious," Haight also offered an
laws, the Police Department had unusual judicial mea culpa, taking
NEW YORK - In a rebuke of ignored the milder limits he had responsibility for his own words in
a surveillance practice greatly imposed on it in 2003. a 2003 order that, he conceded, had
expanded by the New York Police Citing two events in 2005 - a not been "a model of clarity."
Department after the Sept. 11 march in Harlem and a demonstra- The restrictions on videotaping
attacks, a federal judge ruled yes- tion by homeless people in front do not apply to bridges, tunnels,
terday that the police must stop of the home of Mayor Michael R. airports, subways or street traf-
the routine videotaping of people Bloomberg--the judge said the city fic, Haight noted, but are meant
at public gatherings unless there had offered scant justification for to control police surveillance at
was an indication that unlawful videotaping the people involved. events where people gather to
activity may occur. "There was no reason to sus- exercise their rights under the
Four years ago, at the request of pect or anticipate that unlawful First Amendment.
the city, the same judge, Charles or terrorist activity might occur," "No reasonable person, and
S. Haight Jr., had given the police he wrote, "or that pertinent infor- surely not this Court, is unaware
greater authority to investigate mation about or evidence of such of the perils the New York public
political, social and religious activity might be obtained by film- faces and the crucial importance
groups. ing the earnest faces of those con- of the NYPD's efforts to detect,
In yesterday's ruling, Haight, of cerned citizens and the signs by prevent and punish those who
U.S. District Court in Manhattan, which they hoped to convey their would cause others harm," Haight
found that by videotaping people message to a public official." wrote.

Street vendorJose Rasc6n grills a quesadilla inside Chilango's, his new Mexican
food stand located on the corner of State and William streets. Rascdn recently
obtained a food permit after a year of waiting.
WE PICK UP - NOW [campus area]
2'W X 3'H X 5'L
Additional containers $250.00
Save 10% on your complete order by purchasing
before FEB. 28, 2007
JUST $300.00 UP TO 4 MOS.
Call today 734-480-0900
Order on line

Russian Ford plant strike ends
ST. PETERSBURG (AP) - Pro- antee jobs for workers injured at
duction resumed yesterday at Ford the plant and provide extra pay
Motor Co.'s only car assembly and other benefits for hazardous
plant in Russia, with nearly 1,400 assignments.
employees returningto work after Company officials said man-
a one-day strike pending further agement was ready to continue
talks with plant officials, a union negotiations, but union leaders
leader said. rebuffed their offers. They als
Alexei Etmanov, head of the maintained that working condi-
labor union at the Vsevolo- tions at the five-year-old plan1
zhsk plant near St. Petersburg, were in line with local labor reg-
said work on the assembly lines ulations and Ford's own safety
resumed around midnight. standards.
The assembly line and other The Vsevolozhsk plant pro-
operations halted work at mid- duced about 60,000 cars last year
night Wednesday, as union lead- mainly the Focus model. Plant
ers demanded the company stop officials hoped to increase pro-
using temporary workers, guar- duction to 75,000 this year.


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