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March 13, 2009 - Image 3

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The Michigan Daily, 2009-03-13

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Friday, March 13, 2009 - 3

Bernie Madoff
pleads guilty to
ponzi scheme
Bernard Madoff's victims got
what they wanted to see, but not
what they wanted to hear.
Saying he was "deeply sorry and
ashamed," the disgraced financier
pleaded guilty yesterday to perhaps
the biggest swindle in Wall Street
history and was led off in handcuffs
to begin serving a sentence expect-
ed to be up to 150 years in prison.
While some bilked investors
were delighted by the spectacle, the
bigger questions were left unan-
swered: What happened to all the
money, people's life savings, their
college tuition, as much as $65 bil-
lion in all? Who helped him pull
off the fraud that turned a well-
respected investment professional
into a symbol of Wall Street greed
amid the economic meltdown?
"So he spends the rest of his life
in jail - is that justice? People's
lives are ruined," said Adriane
Biondo of Los Angeles, one of five
members of her family who lost
money with Madoff. "Where's the
money, Bernie?"
State Senate passes
bill to help ailing
automobile sales
People would pay less sales tax
when they trade in an old vehicle and
buy a new or used one under legisla-
tion passed yesterday that's designed
to boost auto sales in Michigan.
Gov. Jennifer Granholm opposes
the bill approved 30-7 in the Repub-
lican-led state Senate and sent to
the Democratic-controlled House.
The measure would make Mich-
igan like 38 other states and apply
the trade-in value of a car to the cal-
culation of the 6 percent sales tax
when a new or used car is bought.
The legislation also would apply
to RVs, boats, snowmobiles and
heavy earth-moving equipment.
Vehicle buyers now pay sales tax
on the full price of a new or used car
even if they usually owe less than
the sales price because of a trade-in.
"We're one of six crazy states
that does it this way," Sen. Alan
Sanborn,R-Richmond, said."We've
got to change our mind-set."
Obama says
economy is "not as
bad as we think"
Confronting misgivings, even
in his own party, President Barack
Obama mounted a stout defense of
his blueprint to overhaul the econo-
my yesterday, declaring the nation-
al crisis is "not as bad as we think"
and his plans will speed recovery.
Challenged to provide encour-
agement as the nation's "confi-
dence builder in chief," Obama said
Americans shouldn't be whipsawed
by bursts of either bad or good
news and he was "highly optimis-

tic" about the long term.
The president's proposals for
major health care, energy and edu-
cation changes in the midst of eco-
nomic hard times faced skepticism
from both Democrats and Repub-
licans on Capitol Hill, as senators
questioned his budget outlook and
the deficits it envisions in the mid-
dle of the next decade.
But Obama, speaking to top exec-
utives of the Business Roundtable,
expressed an optimistic vision and
r called for patience.
Pope acknowledges
church mistakes
Pope Benedict XVI has made an
unusual public acknowledgment
of Vatican mistakes and turmoil
in his church over an outreach to
ultraconservatives that led to his
lifting the excommunication of a
Holocaust-denying bishop.
In an attempt to end one of the
mostserious crises ofhis papacy, he
said in a letter released Thursday
that the Vatican must make greater
use of the Internet to prevent other
The Vatican took the rare step of
releasing the German-born pope's
personal account of the incident
addressed to Catholic bishops
around the world.
Vatican spokesman the Rev.
Federico Lombardi said the letter
- released in six languages - was
"really unusual and deserving of
maximum attention."
- Compiled from
Daily wire reports

Nobel-winning economist
talks early life investment

Heckman discussed
the role family
dynamics plays in a
child's development
Daily StaffReporer
ton Room in the Union was filled to
capacity with students and faculty
as Nobel Prize-winning economist
James Heckman lectured about
the role that early life investments,
both material and emotional, plays
in human development.
Heckman, who is the Henry
Schultz Distinguished Service
Professor of Economics at the
University of Chicago, spoke about
ongoing studies in the economics,
psychology and sociology fields
examining the role that gaps in
cognitive and noncognitive abili-
ties play in children's growth.
During yesterday's speech,
Heckman said early childhood
From Page 1
and given the current state of the
economy, that can be quite diffi-
cult," she wrote in ane-mail.
But the Indian American Stu-
dent Association, which doesn't
charge a membership fee, has
also been feeling the effects of the
struggling economy in other ways,
according to Ross School of Busi-
ness junior Anuj Lal, the group's
logistics coordinator.
"We have a 3-on-3 basketball
tournament comingup in April and
the cost for renting the IM Build-
ing went up by almost $300 from
lastcyear," he said. "When we asked
them aboutthe price increase, they
said it was the economy."
Rachel Goldstein, the chair of
American Movement for Israel,
said thatAMI hasn't felt the effects
of the economic crisis yet because
From Page 1
brook, a member of TAMID's
executive board, said the orga-
nization helps fill a vacuum on
"We looked around campus
and saw that if you wanted to
connect to Israel you could do
so politically, you could do so
religiously, but there was never
a channel to connect with Israel
economically from a business
stand point," Levenbrook said.
Members of TAMID partici-
pate in a three-part program that
includes education, fund man-
agement and fellowship.
Business junior Elianna Starr,
another member of TAMID's
executive board, said members
are currently involved in the
educational program. Students
attend weekly seminars led by
University professors and Israeli
professionals to learn about basic
investing skills and the structure
of the Israeli economy. Students
also participate in debriefing ses-
sions that emphasize Israeli cul-
+iirnl omnq

interventions and family dynam-
ics play a key role in children's
cognitive development.
He said parents must invest
in their children early because it
is significantly harder for them
to experience greater growth in
development, by the time they are
"We know that cognitive ability
plays a verybig role, and that these
gaps are opening up very early,"
he said. "If you condition cogni-
tive ability you are more likely to
be goingto college. Those gaps are
largely there by age three."
He added that those born into
disadvantaged environments strug-
gle to achieve a successful level of
development. These disadvantages
can range from a lack of resources
to decreased parental involvement.
LSA senior Elizabeth Kirk
said she agreed with Heckman's
claims about the importance of
early childhood development.
"I am planning on teaching for
Teach for America, so all of what
he said about investing in early
childhood development is impor-
it has grant commitments from
before the economic crisis hit.
"So far, things havebeen ok," she
said. "But it's possible that we will
feel the effects next semester."
Goldstein added that the group
will have to "think out of thebox" to
continue to fund its programming.
Encompass, an organization
that aims to bring together mul-
ticultural performance groups,
has been hit especially hard by the
struggling economy.
Ani Toumajan, one of the
group's executive board members,
said ticket sales for the group's
main event - a charity perfor-
mance that took place last Sunday
- fell far below previous years.
"It was barely enough to pay for
the venue," she said. "We are lucky
to have funds that we have saved
in order to pay for other costs."
Toumajan said she attributed
the poor turnout to strained bud-
gets, especially those outside of
Brandon Lebowitz, a TAMID
member and a freshman who will
he attending the Ross School of
Business in the fall, said he has
learned about everything from
social entrepreneurship to Israeli
venture capitalists from the sem-
"We've had seminars where
we've actually talked to business
leaders in Israel, and it's really
interesting to hear what they
think about business,"he said.
In the fund management phase
during the next year, Levenbrook
said students will use the knowl-
edge they have acquired to begin
investing in Israeli securities.
He said in the third phase,
students will be given a $5,000.
scholarship, funded through
donations and private investors,
to spend the summer in Israel
interning for Israeli companies,
performing community service
activities and traveling the coun-
Business School Associate
Prof. Reuven Lehavy, TAMID's
faculty advisor, said the group's
goal fits in well with the Business
School's curriculum.
"Thar ca enpt+y enhtn+iiI

tant to me," said Kirk. "But I think
it's a failure of school systems to
facilitate ways for families to be
part of their children's academic
experience rather than a failure
of the families and I think that is
one of the failures of our educa-
tional system. But I do agree with
his point that those are skills you
can't make up for later."
Public Policy Prof. Bob Schoeni
said Heckman was chosen as the
keynote speaker for this year's
conference because of his cutting-
edge research in the field.
Though Heckman's research
is incomplete, Schoeni said he
believes the findings will support
the growing interest in the effects
of early life investment in children.
"My guess is that within the
next three to 10 years we are going
to have better data and ideas and
methods to answer the questions
that we can't answer yet," he said.
"I think there is a growing appre-
ciation for the fact that early life
investments are very important.
I believe the policy community is
beginning to realize this."
Ann Arbor who had to drive to the
She said the group will have to
find more creative ways to fund-
raise and advertise for next year's
show in order to stay afloat.
"Next year, however, there is
definitely going to be a change,"
she said. "We have to fundraise
or apply for grants from different
University organizations and pro-
Though many groups have been
forced to cut back, the University's
chapter of Relay For Life hasn't
been affected, banking more
fundraising dollars and recruiting
more participants than last year,
said co-chair Chris Britten, an
LSA senior.
"Despite the economy, we set
our goals for this year's fundrais-
ing at the highest point they have
ever been so our event can keep
growing," Britten said. "I think we
may still reach those numbers."
educational benefit in terms of
practicing some of the concepts
we are teaching in the Business
School," Lehavy said.
Levenbrook said students'
involvement in the group doesn't
end after they go abroad. Once
they return from Israel, students
have the opportunity to further
build their leadership skills.
"They are given the chance to
come onto the executive board
and manage the future pools of
applicants," he said.
At the moment, TAMID is in
the process of raising capital.
Gribov said they aspire to raise $1
million in the next year through
donations and private investors.
The money raised will help to
sustain TAMID's presence at the
University and will be used pri-
marily as scholarship money to
send members abroad.
Gribov said he hopes TAMID
will become a national network
of young American business lead-
ers with a vested commitment to
"We expect in the next five
years we are going to have chap-
ters sprouting up all over the
nation," Gribov said.

From Page 1
Harris, a first-team All-Big Ten
selection, got hot later. But his
passing, uthit shots, fueled Mich-
igan. Harris dished out five of his
team-high eight assists in the first
half. He also scored 18 points.
"We've strived for balance on
the team all year long," Beilein said.
"Sometimes,youjust can't do it.And
this year, we've been able to have a
good balance as the season went on.
I think it's been a key to our success
right now in February and March."
The contrast in 3-point shooting
percentage between the teams was
Like Michigan, Iowa's suc-
cess rides on 3-pointers. But the
Hawkeyes (5-13, 15-17) hit just four
of their 17 shots from beyond the
are. Iowa shot a dismal 33.3 per-
cent from the field.
The Wolverines shot59.2 percent
and were 10-of-22 from downtown.
But it wasn't just the high shoot-
ing percentage that pleased Beilein.
When he looked at the stat sheet, he
couldn'thelp butsmile whentalking
about how the Wolverines notched
assists on 22 of their 29 baskets.
Since Iowa's defense closes down
on players who dribble drive, the
pass is critical for opening scoring
opportunities. Michigan's offense
quickly rotated the ball and often
hit Sims open in the paint.
Iowa point guard Jake Kelly,
who entered the contest averag-
From Page 1
Logan said while Housing
officials are certain that the
renovated residence hall will be
geared toward sophomores, the
students who will live there will
define the exact nature of the
"We're looking for a theme to
define and drive the new (Stock-
well) community," he said. "It
will be very much the students
work to decide what works for
the community and give it per-
Renovations on the resi-
dence hall began last summer.
From Page 1
place, its peoples and its challenges
- and these three visitors are the
verybest.guides we have."
While thespeakers disagreed on
some specifics, all three were cer-
tain that the United States failed in
its effort in Afghanistan under the
Bush administration. They all said
they are hopeful for the opportu-
nities of the future.
"We have to start acknowledg-
ing that what has been done since
2001 is a disaster," Monsutti said.
"First we have to agree on that."
Accordingto Shahrani, the Unit-
ed States went wrong by trying to
impose governance on the people
of Afghanistan. To move forward,
he said the strategy should allow
the people in the country to elect
their own local government in line
with their cultural values, even if
it means giving the Taliban limited
government power.
"We have to accept the principle
of community self-governance
based on community values,"

ing 21.4 points per game in his last
five games, scored just 10p pints.
Fifth-year senior C.J. Lee, five
inches shorter than Kelly, tightly
defended the Iowa guard when
Michigan used its man-to-moao
Just two players finished in dou-
ble figures for the Hawkeyes, who
looked nothing like the team that
beat the Wolverines 70-60 in over-
time Feb. 22 in Iowa City.
Michigan led by 21 at the half,
tying its largest halftime lead of
the season. The Wolverines' other
21-point halftime lead came against
Florida Gulf Coast on Dec 22, an
eventual 76-59 Michigan win.
The Wolverines will face No. 2
seed Illinois (11-7, 23-8) Friday at
6:30 p.m. in the second round of
the conference tournament. Mich-
igan split its season series with
the Fighting Illini, but the teams
haven't played each other since
Sims hopes to carry the same
swagger he had yesterday into
today's contest. And he thinks
Illinois should be a little scared to
face his Michigan team that might
have just played its best game of
the season.
"I think if we were sitting, and
we had the upper seed, and seeing
a team compete like we competed
against Iowa, it would bother me
and I would want to have played a
game first," Sims said. "It's hard to
play in tournaments when a team
has already played and they're
already loose."
In November, Housing offi-
cials announced that the for-
merly all-female residence hall
would become co-ed, a change
that members of RHA had been
requesting for a while.
"We had over twice as many
rooms in all female houses as
opposed to the requests," Logan
said. "A number of women were
assigned to an all-female housing
even though they hadn't requested
In addition to providing sopho-
mores with a new type of living
experience, the residence hall will
also feature upgraded amenities
like new community spaces, cen-
tral air conditioning and wireless
Internet, Logan said.
Shahrani said.
Monsutti added that Americans
need to think aboutchowthey would
reactifanother countryinvadedthe
United States and governed them.
"Let's reverse the situation and
think and see and realize how prob-
lematic is ourwayofthinkingabout
Afghanistan," Monsutti said.
Engineering senior Braden Sch-
rock will be affected by Obama's
strategy in Afghanistan more than
most. Schrock, who attended the
event, is in the Navy ROTC pro-
gram atthe Universityandbelieves
he will eventually be deployed to
Afghanistan. He said in order to
implement the ideas presented in
the talk, a major shift in thinking
would be necessary.
"It's interesting to think about
putting the Taliban in power
when we came in to topple them
basically," Schrock said. "There's
so much negative connotation
with the Taliban its interesting to
think about actually letting self-
determination work its own way
through Afghanistan as opposed
to telling them what they should



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