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September 10, 2008 - Image 3

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The Michigan Daily, 2008-09-10

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Wednesday, September 10, 2008 - 3A

The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom WednesdaySeptember 10, 2008 - 3A

NEWS BRIEFS
MCALLEN, Tex.
Texans prepare
for Ike, brace for
evacuation
With Hurricane Ike steam-
ing into the Gulf of Mexico, Texas
emergencyofficialsyesterdaystood
ready to order 1 million people
evacuated from the impoverished
Rio Grande Valley and tried to con-
vince tens of thousands of illegal
immigrants that they have less to
fear from the Border Patrol than
fromthe storm.
Emergency planning officials
. were meeting all day to decide if
and when to announce a mandato-
ry evacuation for coastal counties
close to the Mexican border.
With forecasts showing Ike
blowing ashore this weekend, au-
thorities lined up nearly1,OO bus-
es in case they are needed to move
out the many poor and elderly peo-
ple who have no cars.
Federal authorities gave as-
surances they would not check
people's immigration status at
evacuation loading zones or inland
checkpoints. But residents were
skeptical, and there were wor-
ries that many illegal immigrants
would refuse to board buses and
go to shelters for fear of getting ar-
rested and deported.
WASHINGTON
Kim Jong Il may
have suffered
" stroke
North Korean dictator Kim
Jong Il may be gravely ill, per-
haps the victim of a stroke, U.S.
* and other Western officials said
yesterday after he failed to appear
for a major national parade. If so,
it could jeopardize the already
troubled international effort to
get his nation to abandon nuclear
weapons.
Kim's absence from a mili-
tary parade for the country's
60th anniversary lent credence
to. reports that the man North
Koreans call the "Dear Leader"
had been incapacitated during the
past few weeks.
The 66-year-old Kim, who has
been rumored to be in varying
degrees of ill health for years, has
not been seen since mid-August.
Thoughhe appears rarely in public
and his voice is seldom broadcast,
Kim has shown up for previous
landmark celebrations.
LANSING
House Speaker to
* face recall election
House Speaker Andy Dillon's
last chance to avoid a recall elec-
tion fizzled yesterday.
A federal appeals court refused
to halt a lower court's order that
cleared the way for the recall elec-
tion to move forward. That means
the recall continues on track for the
Nov. 4 ballot, at the same time Dil-
lonis up forre-election.
Voters will be weighing wheth-
er to recall Dillon from his current

House term ending in December
while decidingwhetherto re-elect
him for anewtwo-year term start-
ingin January.
Dillon, .a Democrat from Wayne
Coupty's Redford Township, is
targeted for recall by a group upset
about his role in raising taxes last
year as the Michigan Legislature
wrestled with a huge state govern-
ment budget deficit.
TBILISI, Gerogia
Russia will keep
troops in Georgia
Russia announced yesterday it
would keep 7,600 troops in Abk-
hazia and South Ossetia for the
foreseeable future, asserting power
in the breakaway regions even as
it began a pullout from positions
deeper in Georgia.
The Kremlin's plans for a heavy
military footprint in the enclaves
mock Georgia'shopesthatarevised
peace agreementwillleadto acom-
plete Russian withdrawal from the
fractured country at the heart of a
bitter fray between Moscow and
the West.
- Compiled from
Daily wire reports
U,.S. D TJ
Number of American service
members who have died in the
war in Iraq, according to The
Associated Press. There were no
deaths identified yesterday.

Alum gives $10
million to"U'

Money will go
toward programs
studying emerging
democracies
By CAITLIN SCHNEIDER
Daily StaffReporter
A University alum and his.
wife have donated $10 million
to the University's International
Institute for research on emerg-
ing democracies, the University
announced Monday.
Ronald Weiser, founder of the
national real estate company
McKinley Associates, is a former
U.S. Ambassador to Slovakia. Dur-
ing his time in that position, he
became intrigued with the often-
tumultuous process of a country's
transition into democracy. Weiser
said the experience motivated he
and his wife, Eileen, to donate to
the University research.
"I am interested in what factors
have led some countries to achieve
democracy and others not,"Weiser
said in a statement. "In Europe and
Eurasia are some of the best exam-
ples of places that have achieved

democracy and freedom. It is very
important to understand how
these countries transitioned and to
share that information with coun-
tries that are in transition."
The donation will establish the
Ronald and Eileen Weiser Cen-
ter for Europe and Eurasia. That
umbrella organization will over-
see the existing Center for Rus-
sian and European Studies and
the Center for European Studies-
European Union Center, as well as
the new Weiser Center for Emerg-
ing Democracies.
Students will likely see the
donation manifest itself in the
form of new courses, seminars,
conferences and lecture series.
The University President's
Donor Challenge Fund, which
contributes $1 for every $2 gift to
a graduate and professional study
program, will tack on another $1.5
million to the donation.
Weiser's $10 million gift is the
second $5-million-plus donation
this year. In June, the University
received a $5.2 million donation
for LSA Fellowships from the late
alum Mildred Dorothy Sommer's
estate. In 2004, alum Stephen M.
Ross made the University's largest-
ever donation, a $100-million gift.

uihAKgT nrnA~f VUIEMmtcrU uEO

Most med students
opt for specialties

Only 2 percent of
students want to
enter primary care
CHICAGO (AP) - Only 2 per-
cent of graduating medical stu-
dents say they plan to work in
primary care internal medicine,
raising worries about a looming
shortage of the first-stop doctors
who used to be the backbone of
the American medical system.
The results of a new survey
being published today suggest
more medical students, many of
them saddled with debt, are opt-
ing for more lucrative specialties.
Just 2 percent of nearly 1,200
fourth-year students surveyed
planned to work in primary care
internal medicine, according to
results published in the Journal
of the American Medical Associa-
tion. In a similar survey in 1990,
the figure was 9 percent.
Paperwork, the demands of
the chronically sick and the need
to bring work home are among
the factors pushing young doc-
tors away from careers in primary
care, the survey found.
"I didn't want to fight the insur-
ance companies," said Dr. Jason
Shipman, 36, a radiology resident
at Vanderbilt University Medical
Center in Nashville, Tenn., who
is carrying $150,000 in student
debt.
Primary care doctors he met
as a student had to-"speed to see

enough patients to make a reason-
able living," Shipman said.
Dr. Karen Hauer of the Uni-
versity of California, San Fran-
cisco, the study's lead author, said
it's hard work taking care of the
chronically ill, the elderly and
people with complex diseases -
"especially when you're doing it
with time pressures and inad-
equate resources."
The salary gap may be another
reason. More pay in a particular
specialty tends to mean more U.S.
iedical school graduates fill resi-
dencies in those fields at teaching
hospitals, Dr. Mark Ebell of the
University of Georgia found in a
separate study.
Family medicine had the lowest
average salary last year, $186,000,
and the lowest share of residency
slots filled by U.S. students, 42
percent. Orthopedic surgery paid
$436,000, and 94 percent of resi-
dency slots were filled by U.S stu-
dents.
Meanwhile, medical school
is getting more expensive. The
average graduate last year had
$140,000 in student debt, up
nearly 8 percent from the previous
year, according to the Association
of American Medical Colleges.
Another likely factor: Medi-
care's fee schedule pays less for
office visits than for simple pro-
cedures, according to the Ameri-
can College of Physicians, which
reported in 2006 that the nation's
primary care system is "at grave
risk of collapse."

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Stimulus checks seized
for unpaid child support

i

More than $831
million collected
BOSTON (AP) - Deadbeat dads
and moms around the country are
discovering that their economic
stimulus checks from Washington
- intended to encourage the pur-
chase of TVs, cars and other goods
- are being intercepted and fun-
neled toward the support of their
children.
Treasury Department figures
obtained by The Associated Press
show that more than 1.4 million of
the checks have been seized since
the payments began last spring,
and a total of $831 million has
been collected by child support
agencies nationwide.
Cheryl Hayes, a 32-year-old
paralegal student from Auburn,
Mass., said her ex-husband owes
about $30,000 in support for their
three children, and she hopes to
see some of that via his stimulus
check.
Hayes said that while sheknows
the stimulus checks were intended
to encourage people to head down
to the local Wal-Mart, Best Buy or
Home Depot, in the case of dead-
beat parents, their children's well-
being should come first.
"The stimulus check is some-
thing at least they can get to help
live off of," Hayes said. "It should
go to the children because the
children are the ones that would

need it."
The parents who are owed child
support won't immediately see the
money. And in some cases they
may not receive it at all.
The intercepted checks in Mas-
sachusetts,forexample, are depos-
ited with the state and held for 180
days to allow the parent to file an
appeal. If the appeal is denied, the
money is turned over to the parent
who has custody - in most cases,
the mother - unless she has been
on public assistance, in which case
the funds can go back to the state
and federal government to reim-
burse the taxpayers.
In California, $97.9 million
was collected via 152,877 diverted
checks, while Texas brought in
$80.3 million from 132,144 pay-
ments. Rhode Island saw a $1.9
million boost from 3,465 diverted
checks. Massachusetts took in
$11.2 million, Tennessee $24.4
million.
"It's been a very nice bonus
for our children in need of sup-
port," said Mike Adams, assistant
commissioner of the Tennessee
Department of Human Services.
"We've been very pleased with the
amount of money we've been able
to collect."
The stimulusprogramproposed
by President Bush and approved
by Congressprovided $600 checks
for most individuals and $1,200 for
couples filing jointly, with a $300
per-child credit added on.

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