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February 16, 2007 - Image 4

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The Michigan Daily, 2007-02-16

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4 - Friday, February 16, 2007

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com


C74C ACd tgan 3altl
Edited and managed by students at
the University of Michigan since 1890.
413 E. Huron St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48104


When wolves lose their fear of humans, it's
not a good situation:'
- Biologist SCOTT MCAUGHEY, on wolves entering communities in northwestern Ontario, following deer
lured there by naive residents, as reported yesterday by the Winnipeg Sun.



Unsigned editorials reflect the official position oftthe Daily's editorial board. All other signed articles
and illustrations represent solely the views of their authors.
Gone fishing
Tourism a worthy, short-term solution for state's woes
ith the state of Michigan facing serious economic prob-
lems, it would make little sense for it to abandon its
second most lucrative industry. While the auto indus-
try continues to drag the state down, the money put into promot-
ing Michigan tourism continues to pay off. The $30 million "Pure
Michigan" ad campaign, aimed at out-of-state vacationers, provides
a short-term boost that is well worth the cost. Unfortunately, it does
little to address the state's long-term economic problems, which the
state legislature seems less eager to address.


~, ,
.G 1

Promoting Michigan as a vacation des-
tination and expecting returns may come
as a surprise to many (especially after the
recent blizzard and extended cold spell). But
with world-class attractions like Mackinaw
rsland, weekend destinations like the Sleep-
ing Bear Dunes and the miles of solemn Great
Lakes coastline, the state actually has a lot
to offer. Every year, millions of tourists come
by to enjoy skiing, hunting, camping and, of
course, thousands of miles of beaches.
The tourism industry is not, however,
immune to the economic problems of the
region. Unemployment is high in these last
throws of the state's decades-entrenched
manufacturing-based economy. Ulti-
mately, this means that Michiganders
have less money to spend on vacationing.
Considering that as much as 70 percent of
Michigan's tourism revenue comes from
in-state residents, this does not bode well
for the industry. And it makes focusing on
out-of-state tourists all the more impor-
tant. Unfortunately, many people outside
of the state remain unaware of what it
has to offer. They think of Michigan only
in terms of bad roads, worse weather and
maybe the Pistons.
The state legislature is taking action to
correct this issue. This year, it has opted to
continue the "Pure Michigan" advertising
campaign. The effort is part of a two-year,

$30 million drive to boast tourism through
advertising directed at out-of-statevacation-
ers. When tourists come, they are certain
to spend money, so tourism helps support
small businesses and to encourage economic
activity as well. The ads also serve encour-
age Michigan residents to vacation in their
state, informing them of possible vacation
In a state facing an economic crisis, even
as the rest of the nation rebounds, the adver-
tising blitz is a good way to support a vital
industry. The success of tourism in 2006 is
due, at least in part, to this campaign. The
number of out-of-state tourists was up con-
siderably, and many business owners credit
the ads. Itappearstobe aneffectiveprogram,
and the legislature should continue efforts
to keep tourism a productive industry.
But keeping that in mind, this is not a
long-term solution to the problems Michi-
gan is facing. Tourism helps to bring vital-
ity to the economy, but it cannot replace
the high-paying jobs once provided by the
auto industry. To do that, the legislature
needs to place funding where it belongs:
education and technology that can spur
the growth of a stronger and more diverse
economy. "Pure Michigan" ads may alle-
viate the economic problems in the short
term, but legislators cannot afford to take
a vacation just yet.

Afailure of the media

Suppose there was a pill out
there that could raise your IQ
by 15 points and solve a number
of health problems. If the price was
5 cents per year and it had no side
effects at all, would you take it? sadly,
convincing people to do so required
tens of millions of dollars, and the
media certainly did not help.
This pill is _
common salt
with traces
of potassium
iodate added.
The simple step
can eliminate
the problem of
iodine deficien-
cy - one of the
leading causes RAJIV
of mild retar- PRABIAKAR
dation, stunted
growth and
other diseases. One in four people
in the world suffer from iodine defi-
ciency, and it is particularly a prob-
lem in central Asia.
Considering all the problems that
can be solved by the cheap fix of
iodized salt, it is hard to understand
why iodine deficiency still exists.
Turkmenistan's despotic ruler was
able to effectively solve this problem
by simply outlawing non-iodized salt.
Tackling the problem in the more
democratic Kazakhstan, however,
proved to be much harder than iodiz-
ing the salt itself.
When organizations like UNICEF
set out to eliminate iodine deficiency
in Kazakhstan, they encountered
fierce resistance. Strong lobbies
formed of iodine pill makers who
feared reduced revenues and salt
companies who feared higher costs.
With their backing, cardiologists
argued against iodized salt, claiming
that increased salt consumption isn't
healthy, even though salt iodization
had no correlation with increased
salt consumption. Civil libertarians
denounced government measures to

promote iodized salt - they wanted reached a consensus on the issue.
the right to consume non-iodized In both cases, the media deserves
salt, even though iodized salt tastes part of the blame for not doing a bet-
exactly the same. The fact that their ter job of educating and informing
demands would cause iodine defi- the public. The prevailing policy of
ciency to remain a major problem telling both sides of the story with
among the poor and impoverished equal credibility and airtime only
didn't concern them. serves to increase public confusion
Local tabloids started rumors and indecision. I'm not calling for
that iodine could cause "AIDS, censorship - the media should con-
diabetes, seizures, impotence and tinue to provide all relevant infor-
peevishness." It was also blamed mation. However, if one side of the
for "ruining caviar, softening hard issue has indisputable evidence, this
cheese and exploding pickled vege- should be made clearly visible.
tables." A large portion of the public News coverage should sound
eventually viewed any government biased if all the facts and evidence
attempts to iodize salt as an attempt themselves are one-sided. In the
to poison them. case of Kazakhstan, the average Joe
This entire circus just proved
that no matter how great an idea is,
someone will always tryto sabotage Is always reporting
it. It was only after tens of millions
of dollars were spent by foreign aid both sides of the
organizations that all the misinfor-
mation was cleared up and iodine story really fair?
deficiency was eliminated from fair?
The media's fundamental role who knows nothing about medicine
is to inform and educate the pub- should be informed that only those
lie about issues. The Kazakh media with vested interests are critical of
clearly failed and the battle to pro- iodized salt, but the vast majority of
mote iodized salt was won only due doctors and scientists, supported by
to political and PR efforts of altruis- overwhelming scientific evidence,
tic international parties. If you think are in consensus over its benefits.
that such a debacle would never hap- One of the media's most basic
pen in America, think again. roles should be to combat self-serv-
Over the past few years, scien- ing propaganda. This is a job that
tific issues like evolution and global the media has lately shirked. In its
warming have been represented as drive to eliminate the specter of bias
political issues where everyone's and tell "both sides of the story,"
opinions are equally valid. On the media presents both argu-
global warming, corporations like ments for and against with equal
Exxon-Mobil spent millions of dot- credibility. Real journalism, where
lars in funding groups that seek to spurious arguments are ferreted
"undermine mainstream scientific out and exposed, is hard to come
findings." The U.S. government was by these days. Instead of educating
accused of pressuring climate sci- and informing the public, the media
entists to oppose global warming. has simply become another medium
These efforts, along with the media's through which rumors and propa-
"balanced" news coverage, allowed ganda spread.
the battle to continue in the court
of public opinion - even as the vast Rajiv Prabhakar can be
majority of the scientific community reached at rajivp@umich.edu.


Editorial Board Members: Emily Beam, Kevin Bunkley, Amanda Burns,
Sam Butler, Ben Caleca, Brian Flaherty, Mara Gay, Jared Goldberg,
Emmarie Huetteman, Toby Mitchell, Rajiv Prabhakar, David Russell,
Gavin Stern, John Stiglich, Jennifer Sussex, Neil Tambe,
Radhika Upadhyaya, Rachel Wagner, Christopher Zbrozek
Are you going to studyjust walk it out...l
some black culture just walk it out...
ca r? la. HitorySouthsidle walk it out.. A
during Black History this my friend
Month? y'p does not count oh

A statementfrom Studentsfor a
Democratic Society
The history of our organization, Students for a
Democratic Society, is a varied one. In the heyday
of our previous incarnation, SDS led the national
peace movement, mobilizing students across the
country in the pursuit of democracy. Toward the
end, however, things began to unravel: in-fight-
Ang, power grabs and an expanding left caused
the organization to collapse under its own weight.
After its dissolution in 1969, several new groups
formed from the wreckage. The most infamous of
these was the Weatherman Organization.
The Weatherman's tactics were denounced by the
SDS of the time. We denounce them today. Today's
SDS is a different organization from the SDS of the
past, but we maintain the same basic ideas of democ-
racy and student rights. We are now working on sev-
eral new campaigns. We are deeply concerned over
the University's treatment of its temporary workers
as well as its involvement in Iraq. We encourage you
to come to our meetings and find out who we are and
what we are working on.
Syma Khan, Alexandra Lazar, Matthew Roney,
kelly Simmons
Khan, Roney and Simmons are LSA juniors, Lazar is an
LSA sophomore. They are the organizers of the University
chapter of Students for a Democratic Society.
Basketball team is a
perennial disappointment
Daily sports writer H. Jose Bosch put it well
when he wrote, "Last night's game was ugly.
Britney Spears at an open bar ugly," referencing
Tuesday's basketball game against Michigan State

(Ballhandling, pride push Spartans past Wolverines,
02/14/2007). To be honest, the Spears analogy
doesn't even do justice to this team, which unlike
Spears, can't recuperate after a big night. I, like
many students, had high expectations for Coach
Tommy Amaker with his recruiting prowess and
Duke championship pedigree. But his teams have
done nothing but disappoint - with last year's
monumental collapse highlighting the Amaker
This year is no different. Yes, Daniel Horton
is gone - but surely there is enough talent and
upperclassmen leadership to at least compete?
Apparently not. A flat offense and a lack of inten-
sity is the norm - led by a coach who often looks
unanimated and somehow surprised himself
while sitting quietly on the bench in his coat and
Barring an unexpected big run in the Big Ten
Tourney, this looks like another disappointment of
a year. Is it really worth it to wait around for savior
recruits to resurrect a program and a coach who
routinely come out with the same tired product
game after game?
Charles Reynolds
LSA senior
Columnist makes conveniently
selective accusations
In his column Wednesday (Law and Order?
02/14/2007) Daily columnist John Stiglich decries
the supposed dilution of the principle of "innocent
until proven guilty" by "liberals." Stiglich however,
conveniently forgets to mention the most egregious
violation of the "innocent until proven guilty" prin-
ciple currently taking place: the indefinite deten-
tion of detainees at Guantanamo Bay prison, who
are being held arbitrarily without trial.
While some of them may well be terrorists,

many are simply innocent civilians handed to
the authorities by neighbors lured by monetary
rewards or settlingascore. Unless they are brought
to trial and given a chance to defend themselves
and prove their innocence, they have simply been
preemptively determined guilty.
While Stiglich blames "liberals in the media"
for holding the Duke lacrosse players guilty in the
court of opinion, it must be pointed out that the
players are indeed getting due process in the court
of law. Due process applies in the court of law, not
in the realm of opinion, where anyone is entitled
to express their opinion about guilt or innocence
(you know, free speech). The Guantanamo detain-
ees, meanwhile, are being denied all legal due pro-
cess whatsoever - and not by liberals.
Sayan Bhattacharyya
Don't give up on the
basketball team yet
Having witnessed the Michigan-Michigan State
basketball game Tuesday night, I admit it sucked.
The second half was a debacle, but dwelling on it
will do no good either. At this point in the season,
pessimism from players, coaches and fans will be
the team's worst enemy as they try to make it into
the Big Dance.
The team can still make it. The worst of the
road schedule is over. Our final two road games
at Illinois and Minnesota are winnable. Our home
games against Indiana, Michigan State and Ohio
State are opportunities for key wins as well. We
still have a good team here, let's not back down
and give up. We've been suffering for almost nine
years now, having not been invited to the NCAA
tournament, and I don't think we want that num-
ber to rise to 10.
But the season's not over yet. We still have

plenty of basketball left to turn things around. We
have got five games left - three wins will get us
to 20 (and somewhere in there will be a win that
will impress the selection committee). Keep up the
optimism people! Let's go against what's happened
in past seasons and finish strong this time.
Whitaker Martin
LSA freshman
For safety's sake, students
deserve to have roads plowed
After Tuesday night's blizzard, I was not sur-
prised when the roads in the student ghettoes were
still covered in snow as were most of the roads on
the way to North Campus. Over the course of this
winter, many of these streets will remain unten-
ded until the sun finally comes out and the melts
the ice sheet. Ann Arbor needs to improve its snow
removal procedure so that all streets around town
are cleared quickly and are safe for everyone.
Brian Murray
Engineering senior
Walking to class through afoot
ofsnow worth the memories
To all the professors who still held class on
Wednesday: Please accept my sincere thanks. I
trust that your car rides to campus were warm and
comfortable. As for me, now I can truthfully tell
my children that way back in 2007, their mother
had to walk a mile to class in a foot of snow.
Rebecca Maxey
LSA senior



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