The Battalion. (College Station, Tex.) 1893-current, April 08, 1982, Image 2

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Battalion/Page 2
April 8,1982
By Jim Earie| Speech shadows GOP gloo
“If it were my car, I’d suggest that you throw it in
without a penalty. ”
Ted Stevens: your
Senator with a cause
By David S. Broder
WASHINGTON — It was just a word
change, so casual and offhand that it was
probably noted by few of the millions
watching President Reagan’s prime-time
press conference the other evening. But
for Republican Party candidates, it had
an awful clang of doom.
When Reagan was winding up an
answer about the recession, he said the
signs indicated that “we are bottoming
out and I believe we’re safe in saying that
we think there’s going to be an upturn in
the second half of the year.”
The second half of the year? All
through the winter, the administration
view has been that recovery would begin
in the second quarter of the year. That
change of words is freighted with politic
al gloom for the GOP.
It is a concession on the part of the
always optimistic President that the re
cession which began last July will last at
least a year before it begins to relax its
grip on this country. It means that the
“tragedy” of which Reagan spoke for the
unemployed and for farmers, builders,
merchants and small businessmen being
pushed to the wall will be prolonged.
When the country goes to the polls in
November, many will still be hurting and
for many more the paiti will be a recent
searing experience.
Particularly is that likely to be true of
the jobless. The history of past recessions
clearly suggests that rehiring will lag be
hind the turnaround in sales and produc
tion. If the President is right in his fore
cast, the odds are good that unemploy
ment will be at its peak level during the
fall campaign.
Unfortunately, there is no reason to
think that the President is erring on the
side of caution. The leading indicators of
economic trends were down again in Feb
ruary for the tenth straight month. The
Commerce Department’s chief econom
ist said, “There is no suggestion (the re
cession) will have ended in March or
April.” Alan Greenspan and other lead
ing private economists agree.
What makes it worse for the Republi
can candidates running this year is that
there is now almost nothing that can be
done to alter the circumstances they will
face in November. Reagan at his press
conference ruled out any consideration
of emergency measures to stimulate the
economy, saying that similar efforts in
the past simply bought short-term relief
at the cost of escalating inflation.
But even if he were inclined to try, the
odds would be against any economic
medicine being felt in the system in the
time that remains before Election Day.
The only stimulus now in sight is the
10-percent tax cut already scheduled for
July 1. Administration economists hope
that this boost to real income will trigger
an upturn in spending that will signal
and sustain a turnaround in the eco
The trend shows cleariyinasetj
ing numbers on voters’ prefert
the November congressional
Last November, when the hopei
the recession would end withtk
ture of chilly weather, a W;
Post-ABC News poll gave the;
a 53-40 percent lead national!);
March that lead had widened]
points, 55-36.
That could easily translateij
seat House loss that Sen. Paul
Nev.), the President’sdpsestppj
said last week the GOP laces
quick budget compromise w
vaguely suggested by Reagan's|
ference words.
The numbers have beendeten]
rapidly for the GOP as therect
taken a heavy toll on publicconfii
the Reagan administration;
widely believed to be a 1
controlled Congress as well.
A Gallup Poll taken in Febr
published last week showed Rejii
trailing the opposition in theirhl
of seven of eight major issues,lij
by Chris
Battalion 1
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Dr. Wayland
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Whether the tax cut will be sufficient
to overcome the drag of high interest
rates is questionable. Families that have
held off on the purchase of homes, cars
or major appliances may still balk at the
carrying costs of the loans they would
need. But even if the tax cut works, the
recovery is probably coming too late to
reverse the gloomy prospects Republi
cans face.
. . .Br. Melvin Friec
exception being national dehvWjc.iu g eo ] 0 gy j-
the success on the inflation IrMkeoveras die as;
which Reagan did some justiliatltBosciences effec
ging, does not seem to lie uorb;|Pe Texas A&M 1
benefit of his party. Andwhenili tem Board of Reg
unemployment and the emir wasannounced IV
the Republicans are miles in an f F r ' e dman, a fa
: for I.) veais, has ^
\<> longci >y>here serious* J bf)th th)
Republican gains in \oveitil«M nter for TectoI
operative question is whetherikBbth Resource
can be held below the point tli; housed in the Coll
make Reagan a lame-duck Pidii ences
years early.
by Steve Gerstel
United Press International
Washington — At least give Sen. Ted
Stevens of Alaska proper credit. The
man does not shy from a fight.
The bantam dandy rode to the wars
again last week in pursuit of what seems
to be his favorite goal — more money for
the members of Congress.
No one could have been surprised that
Stevens led the battle to retain ajuicy and
very special tax deduction of $75-a-day
for each day the nobles are forced to
- spend in Washington.
After all, it was Stevens who was in
strumental last winter in getting the gim
mick on the books.
The Senate gave Stevens a scare. His
more circumspect colleagues voted
against him several times before the re
peal effort was killed on a technicality.
No one will ever know how many of
Stevens’ colleagues honestly believe they
deserve the deduction — previously a Hat
$3,000 — for maintaining a second home
in the nation’s capital.
Most of them just can’t stand the poli
tical heat generated by that kind of a vote.
There is no question what Stevens be
lieves. He not only considers the tax
break more than justified but considers
members of Congress way underpaid.
There is much than can be admired in
a legislator who fights for his beliefs — no
matter what the political risks.
In Stevens’ case, however, the admira
tion is more than tempered by the nature
of the cause and the Alaska Republicans’
whining about having to live in the city of
“God forbid someone should tell me
that the city of Washington is my home,”
the trigger-tempered Alaskan yelled. “I
detest it.
“I can’t think of a worse city in the
world to have a capital . and I don’t care
who knows it,” he said.
Well, there’s always the Black Hole of
Calcutta. Or maybe Juneau.
He complained about the high in
terest rates, “the worst crime and the
worst schools ”
In addition, hi
activities of the U
Fellows phase of tf
Honors Progran
years. Undergrad
who must by c
among the top sch
M, may recei
hours for superv
ring their senio
The appointmt
in, a graduate o
e Universities,
Stevens, conceding a little exaggera
tion for dramatic effect, is not that far off
t by the resignat
Dean John Hat
issumed part-time
esearch duties.
But that raises the question, as the
Washington Post did, as to why Stevens
first came to Washington 30 years ago,
worked for (he Interior Department in
the ‘50s and now has been a senator for
14 years. He is free to return home to his
beloved Alaska.
What also is less than admirable in
Stevens is his total insensitivity to what is
happening all over the country.
How can a senator argue for a person
al tax break or added pay at a time when
many Americans are really up against it?
How can anyone sympathize with
Stevens when he says that he is selling his
home because “it costs too much to own a
house in this town” when people are hav
ing their home mortgages foreclosed.
How can Stevens forget that he makes
$60,000 a year as a senator and in 1980
added another $ 15,000 in honoraria and
in that same year picked up another
$39,000 to $128,500 in outside income.
Stevens is one of the least affluent of
senators but the Senate is very much a
haven for the very rich. .
But, in making his fight, perhaps
Stevens should stop casting envious looks
at the bank balances of his colleagues and
ponder instead the distress of the poor.
Donations of ft
Irniture and men
(rnado victims in
II be accepted Ire
Jwn. today and I
Hfjentral Baptist
yan on 600 Sou
Local radio stati
sponsoring the di
ndthree truckst
Letters: Candidates, election process both lacking
For the second time this week I have
made my way to the Texas A&M polls
; only to find (also for the second time this
j week) that I feel qualified to vote for no
more than 30 percent of the candidates
listed on the ballot. This seems to be a
common problem that rests not only with
the student political system, but with the
candidates themselves. .
The fact that Student Government
does impose a maximum campaign
budget on the student candidates is a
good one because it prevents a candidate
! from spending in excess to launch an im
pressive campaign. Incidentally, im
pressive campaigns seem to have quite an
effect on the outcome of the A&M elec
tions — especially campaign signs. This
! fact brings to light another kink in the
election process. Since few students are
aware of the credentials and political
! opinions of the candidates, many voter
are cast for the candidate with the most
original campaign signs. Unfortunately,
the most qualified candidates are not al
ways the most creative.
I do not wish to imply that the cam
paign budgets are too low, but I do think
they could be applied more effectively.
J Campaign signs are fine and they are a
good way for a candidate to gain campus
) exposure. However, more emphasis
should be placed on personal campaign
ing by the candidates and their top sup
porters. The area around Rudder Foun
tain is an excellent location for campaig
ners to make “lunch hour” speeches
asserting their opinions on campus
issues. Dunn Hall did in fact try to orga
nize a “Meet the Candidates Night” to be
held in the Commons, but the organizers
met with very little response from the
candidates and the event was cancelled.
Apparently, there is not only a problem
with the election process but with the atti
tudes of the candidates and the campaign
methods that they employ.
The Battalion did a great service to the
student body by publishing their “Voter’s
Guide” prior to the election. However,
this guide only listed the names of the
senatorial candidates. It did not give a
single clue to the way these candidates
would vote on particular issues or what
legislation they might propose in the in
terests of their constituents.
I sincerely believe that an informed
student body would be more inclined to
vote in the election of their peers — at
least more than the scant 6,000-plus that
did appear at the polls.
to the left rear-view mirror off my Suzuki
450, parked near the library Monday
night: We don’t need your kind here!
useful as a buying guide. Bring back Vic.
Chris Thomas ‘83
Editors Note: This letter was ac
nied by eight other signatures.
T.S. Fehrman ‘80
Record reviews lacking
Katherine Hurt ‘85
Mosher Hall
More thievery
To the gentleman who helped himself
We are writing this letter to publicly
declare our frustration and disgust with
both the style and content of the meager
record “reviews” in the Focus supple
ment. Many Battalion readers are
genuinely interested in your record re
views as a source of information concern
ing recent album releases. From Daniel
Puckett’s superficial treatment and ques
tionable insight we gain nothing. Recent
ly his reviews have been too short, too
short-sighted and totally off the mark.
We refer in particular to his insufficient
reviews of new albums from Joe Carrasco
and the Cars. Although he may have
turned a few quaint phrases and un
loaded some time-worn cliches, his re
views consistently seem flat and unimagi
Whatever happened to Vic Sylvia’s re
views? We agree that at times they were a
bit bizarre, but at least they had some
understanding of the album and were
The Battalion
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Member of
Texas Press Association
Southwest Journalism Conference
7 A&M University administrators orttM (
bers, or of the Board of Regents.
The Battalion also serves as a laboratarilffl |
for students in reporting, editing and phOggiff^'
ses within the Department of ConnnunialiW
Questions or comments concerning ||l'r
matter should be directed to the editor.
Editor Angelique Copeland
City Editor.. Denise Richter
Assistant City Editor Diana Sultenfuss
Sports Editor Frank L. Christlieb
Focus Editor Cathy Saathoff
Assistant Focus Editor Nancy Floeck
News Editors Gary Barker,
Phyllis Henderson, Maty Jo Rummel,
Nancy Weatherley
StaffWriters JenniferCarr,
Cyndy Davis, Gaye Denley,
Sandra Gary, Colette Hutchings,
Johna Jo Maurer, Hope E. Paasch
Daniel Puckett, Bill Robinson,
Denise Sechelski, John Wagner,
Laura Williams, Rebeca Zimmermann
Cartoonist Scott McCullar
Graphic Artist Richard DeLeon Jr.
Photographers Sumanesh Agrawal,
David Fisher, Eileen Manton,
Eric Mitchell, Peter Rocha,
John Ryan, Colin Valentine
Editorial Policy
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paper operated as a community service to Texas A&M
University and Bryan-CoIIege Station. Opinions ex
pressed in The Battalion are those of the editor or the
author, and do not necessarily represent the opinions of
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The editorial staff reserves the right toedilltl |^,
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versity, College Station, TX 77843, or phonejfl®
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