Archive | March, 2009

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The Only Art Major on Campus: The Performing Arts Department fights for recognition despite its anonymity within the Marquette community

Posted on 31 March 2009 by Monica Stout

Marquette has a theatre. Marquette has a theatre department. Marquette has a theatre major. Really.
“I have gotten on the L.I.M.O. and told them to go to the Helfaer Theatre, and they have pulled up in front of the Varsity. That happened twice,” said Jessica Orr, a junior double major in Theatre Arts and Communication Studies.

The Helfaer Theatre is actually located next to Lalumiere Language Hall and is right behind the Haggerty Art Museum. It houses the program, students and faculty for Marquette’s only art degree, a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Arts. Theatre Arts is a major in the Diederich College of Communication.

Both faculty and students in the Performing Arts Department recognize that the theatre is not well-known at Marquette.

“When I meet other professors and faculty, they are often surprised to learn that there is a theatre department on campus,” said

Debra Krajec, an adjunct associate professor of Performing Arts. And not only the professors and faculty are unaware of the program, the students remain oblivious as well.

“They just don’t know [we’re here],” said PJ Berns, a senior Theatre Arts major.

There seem to be a variety of reasons for this university-wide lack of knowledge.

“I don’t think the arts are very prominent on campus,” said Jenni Shine, also a senior Theatre Arts major. “We don’t have a music department or a visual arts department or anything else to tie into [the theatre]. I think we’re more focused on sports and academics.”

Records held by the Department of Special Collections and University Archives, Marquette University Libraries (UNIV C-11.1 Series 1, Box 1 “Carousel”) show that Marquette once had the awareness and focus on theatre it lacks today. In 1954, Rev. John J. Walsh, S.J., the chair of the theatre department at the time, traveled to New York to personally ask Oscar Hammerstein II for the rights to perform “Carousel.” Marquette became the first amateur company allowed to perform the musical.

According the Thomas Jablonsky’s book, “Milwaukee’s Jesuit University: Marquette 1881-1981,” the theatre tradition continued in 1963, when “Oliver Twist” was in such high demand on campus that extra performances had to be scheduled, totaling 78 performances in all. Theatre’s reign on Marquette’s campus continued into the 1970s with the construction of the Helfaer Theatre in 1974.

After the theatre was built, the prominent Marquette interest in the theatre began to dwindle.
Provost John J. Pauly believes that the advent of multiple other types of entertainment has been another source of the decreasing appeal of theatre to the University as well as to the public in general. However, as an ardent advocate of the theatre program, he believes that Marquette should “reclaim that part of our history.”

The current program offers quality that deserves just as much appreciation as the theatre offered earlier in Marquette’s history.
“Marquette theatre is as good if not better than many professional shows that I’ve seen,” said Bonnie Auguston, a senior French and Theatre Arts double major.

And behind these performances is the intensive education in all aspects of theatre that Marquette theatre students receive.
“What we offer that is totally different from any other school is a BA program in a liberal arts school with a Jesuit mission and a top-notch theatre program,” said Stephen Hudson-Mairet, the Performing Arts Department Chair. “A Marquette education is so strong. Here they become the whole artist. We educate them beyond how you move on stage. That theology class ties in to that performance you are working on. Drama’s about being human and if you don’t know anything outside of these four walls you don’t know what it means to be human. So we encourage our students to go out and experience life, which they can do here at Marquette.”

Marquette’s Performing Arts Department is constantly working on improving this education. The department is currently applying for accreditation through the National Association of Schools of Theatre. According to Hudson-Mairet, the department needs to make some improvements to achieve the full accreditation, such as increasing the number of faculty, as it currently only employs five full-time faculty members. However, he hopes that Marquette will receive an associate membership or a deferred membership in NAST this spring.

This accreditation could mean extra money for the department, which already has a strained budget, only another aspect of why many Marquette students do not know the theatre exists: there is no money for advertising.

“I am given an allotted amount of money each year, and out of that has to come the money for the staging, the costumes, the lights, the guest directors and everything we do here in the theatre,” said Hudson-Mairet. “And out of that same budget I have to find the money for advertising, so it doesn’t end up being a lot of money that we can spend on advertising.”

According to Krajec, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel no longer covers academic theatre, which means it is harder to reach the Milwaukee and Marquette community. So, the department had a public relations class work on ideas to promote the theatre on campus and even instated a committee of public relations students to provide additional help.

One of the promotions to come out of the class was the institution of “Date Night” on the second Thursday performance of every mainstage show. According to Hudson-Mairet, this has really increased ticket sales on that night. Another promotional idea was “Philanthropy Friday,” where the theatre offers the opportunity to student groups with a philanthropic outlet to sponsor a Friday mainstage performance. The theatre would then give $1 from each ticket sold for that performance to the student group’s charity. This particular promotion has not been successful for the department yet, but Hudson-Mairet remains positive and hopes to continue working on it.

Another idea to increase ticket sales is the ability to sell tickets online. Hudson-Mairet hopes to have this service running by next year.

The Performing Arts Department also has one advocate at the administrative level: Provost John Pauly, former Dean of the College of Communication.

“I tried to bring the special needs of the theater program into the normal budgeting and planning processes of the Diederich College, and of the university as a whole,” Pauly said.

If and when the Performing Arts Department is able to reach the majority of the student body, it will only enrich the Marquette student’s college experience.

“[Theatre] is different than reading a book. It’s different than going to see a movie. It’s your peers up there, going through that… watching them walk in the shoes of this person; it makes it a personal experience for you too,” Krajec said.

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Disappearance of speakers on campus

Posted on 31 March 2009 by Robert Christensen

A few weeks back Christopher West came to University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee to speak about Pope John Paul II’s Theology of the Body. While the speech itself was extremely interesting, many of the Marquette students who attended wondered why a presentation like this has not been put on at our own campus or why there has generally been a lack of speakers visiting this University over the past few semesters.

This has not always been the case. Two years ago student organizations at Marquette had invited so many different speakers that it was impossible to attend them all. Some of the most notable was the production of “Porn Nation,” and two extremely interesting speeches by Reza Aslan and former Attorney General John Ashcroft. But since this period there have been increasingly less and less high profile speakers coming to this University, while UWM has consistently been able to attract exciting, controversial speakers such as Walid Shoebat.

While Marquette University could certainly do a lot more to attract interesting speakers with extremely important messages like Christopher West, much of the fault lies with us – the students. As members of various student organizations we must take the necessary steps to search out and ask different speakers to come to this campus to discuss topics relevant to that particular organization.

But rather than making an effort to search out speakers that would be both interesting and relevant, we have gotten lazy, resorting simply to having  a campus showing of a certain film that we could just as easily watch on our own.
All of us only have a short time here at Marquette, and we need to make the most of this opportunity. We should all be striving to learn as much as we can not only in our classes and from fellow students but from people who have actually had experiences and have acquired knowledge they can impart to us.

These different perspectives will further a free market of ideas that will help students better understand the world and the problems we will all face in the future. We should be making an effort to ask speakers from many different backgrounds who can discuss specific topics relevant to our world today. This will not only allow us to better understand the world we live in but will also allow us to better determine what type of life we will choose to lead.

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No – Congress should not pass the Freedom of Choice Act

Posted on 31 March 2009 by Jason Ardanowski

Although the Freedom of Choice Act has not even been introduced to the 111th Congress, it has drawn significant attention from the pro-life community. Every pro-life activist in this country knows that if the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA) is introduced, it or a similar version of the bill will only be stopped with a filibuster. And since Republican Senators Snow, Specter and Collins like to ally themselves with left-wing politicians, a filibuster is beginning to seem very unlikely.

One would think that pro-abortion advocates would be satisfied with legislation from the Supreme Court. However, the left is organizing itself to make the most sweeping anti-life legislation this country has ever seen under the misleading title of Freedom of Choice Act.

Presently, abortion is, in a certain sense, a choice on the federal level. If a woman wants to have an abortion, the federal government says go ahead but take care of it yourself. But FOCA is a mandate of support for abortion from the federal government. Tax-payers will now be forced to pay for abortions with their own hard-earned money. I always thought that freedom of choice meant you did not have to categorically give support to a decision you disagreed with. Then again, I am old-fashioned.

But this bill gets even more dangerous. Interference is eliminated. This has the potential to prevent parents from counseling minors as to what is the best decision to make, even though the purpose of parents is to help children make good decisions. Moreover, the government would not even be able to make informed consent laws. If neither parents nor the government can help an individual decide whether or not to have an abortion, who is supposed to help the woman make the right decision?
Yet this bill gets even worse. Currently, physicians and hospitals are not required to conduct abortions if they have a conscientious objection. However, FOCA aims at eliminating this also. Catholic hospitals and physicians may be forced to perform abortions even though Canon Law clearly states that procuring a successful abortion results in automatic excommunication.

Apparently, if you are a pregnant woman, you have every right to abort your child and every right to force someone to help you do it. But if you are a faithful Catholic, you do not have the right to follow your conscience and spare the child.
Finally, the bill allows for partial-birth abortion to be allowed once again.

If you thought this bill could not get any worse, you were wrong. Partial-birth abortion borders on infanticide. This could lead to the outright murder of children who are in fact born. For those who think this is merely a joke and has no possibility of happening, I would like to inform them that President Obama, while serving in the Illinois state legislature, effectively voted in favor of infanticide. Oddly enough, even Secretary of State Hillary Clinton voted against this bill in the United States Senate.
If there was ever a time for pro-life activists to panic, it is now. FOCA is the single most comprehensive, pro-abortion legislation this country might ever see. It could stick a dagger in the very heart of the pro-life movement.

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Yes – Congress should pass the Freedom of Choice Act

Posted on 31 March 2009 by Warrior Staff

There is much debate among those in Middle America about the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA). This act prohibits any legislative body from interfering with a woman’s right to reproductive freedom.  The proposals set forth in the Freedom of Choice Act would guarantee the right to choose for all women in America, no matter who may occupy the White House or control the Legislature.

The right to choose is a fundamental part of the American concept of freedom, and protecting women’s rights is as important to uphold in our courts and legislatures as was the idea that a person of color was more valuable than 3/5 of a person. The principle is the same: a woman, a minority, must have the same rights under the law if we are to stand on our platform as a nation of character and a community of character.

The various provisions of the Freedom of Choice Act can be debated – viability, parental consent etc – but let us not kid ourselves; the fundamental issue at hand is much more simple, it is a debate about abortion, it is a debate about life itself.  The right to choose is a right afforded to women by the 1973 Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade.  Since 1973, it has been repeatedly attacked and undermined by the anti-choice movement.  But the fact is, it is within no one’s rights to impose their own values on another person; it is within no one’s rights to tell a woman what she can and cannot do with her body. The greatest thing about our nation is that it is a place of extraordinary freedom. If those freedoms are undermined by the elected representatives or appointed members of the judiciary, then America loses something; its position as a beacon of freedom dims and it is Congress’ right, not to say duty, to guarantee these rights for posterity.

Underlying the divisive and complex debate surrounding the right to choose is the idea that any one person has the judgment and the wisdom to determine such issues as when a life begins, and can make these judgments with such absolute certainty that they are willing to impose their beliefs on millions of others.  The facts are simple, where abortion is illegal, women still obtain abortions.  However they do so in a black market, unsafe environment, and are subject to imprisonment for exercising their judgment about whether or not they want to use their body to house a fetus for nine months.  Forcing abortion out of mainstream America merely forces women into potentially hazardous situations – situations they should never have to face while the technology and the ability to protect their rights as a nation exists.

The Freedom of Choice Act is just the latest installment of the pro-choice movement to ensure the fundamentally equitable treatment of women and the protection of their rights to choose. There is no provision in the constitution that gives anyone the right to impose their values on others; as a matter of fact, this nation came into existence based on the principle that no one can do that.  We call it the Freedom of Religion and it ensures that anyone can believe anything they choose. The far-right idea that the founding fathers only meant this to include values that jived with their Judeo-Christian values is ludicrous, and the idea that the religious movement’s values, while certainly valid, should be imposed on those of differing opinions is equally ludicrous. They have no right to tell a woman what she can do with her body, they have no right to tell a couple that they cannot marry because it differs from the practices of their beliefs and they have no right to base our laws off of their sacred scriptures. If we allowed this to happen, there would be community stoning for dishonoring the Sabbath.

America is a place where all are welcome.  No one is passing a bill that forces a woman to perform or receive an abortion, FOCA simply gives her the choice to do so. If her values and beliefs differ from others on this matter, that’s fine – it’s perfectly fine to disagree, it is not okay to undermine another’s beliefs simply because they do not agree with our own. That’s the issue here.  It isn’t this bill in particular, it isn’t about any of its particular provisions, but it is about protecting the fundamental values of our country – the values that have created the most free and open society on earth, the values that permit these differences to be openly debated and for no one side’s opinions to be forced upon others.  It is these values that have created a government for ALL the people who live in this great nation, not simply the far right or far left. It is these vary values that inherently protect the rights of the minority and it is these values that are at stake today.

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Holocaust denial is anti-Semitic

Posted on 31 March 2009 by Jonathan Stepp

Stating that gas chambers were not used and that only 200,000-300,000 Jewish men women and children were intentionally exterminated by the Nazis and their collaborators, is in fact Holocaust denial. It is one of the key aspects of Holocaust denial. Few if any people claim that no Jews died, instead they make arguments like the ones of Bishop Williamson, that far fewer people died and that there were no gas chambers, implying that there was no systematic murder. Denying this not only attacks history, but minimizes the suffering of millions of innocent people. There is no excuse for these actions. Simply because Bishop Williamson chooses to believe the lies of so called historians does not excuse his actions, nor does it mean that he is not spreading falsehoods. In addition, the “historian” whom Williamson cites, is Fred Leuchter whose “findings” have been thoroughly debunked for 20 years, and who is only cited by Holocaust deniers. The report which Williamson cites was funded by Ernst Zündel, who was at the time on trial for, and later convicted of, Holocaust denial, and who has published Nazi and Neo-Nazi propaganda. As such, Williamson’s statement that he will change his opinion when his sources change theirs is absurd, insofar as his sources are known anti-Semites.

It is an established fact that six million Jewish men women and children were systematically killed by the Nazis and their collaborators. There is no real debate regarding this. There are those who promote the truth, and there are anti-Semites who deny the truth in order to further their own ends. And yes, it is anti-Semitic to deny the Holocaust, as it creates a situation in which the Nazis and their collaborators did not kill as many people as history has recorded, meaning that they were not as evil as has been believed. In addition it means that someone has been intentionally spreading information that six million Jews died, which in turn implicates Jewish people, meaning that within the framework of Holocaust denial, Jews are responsible for spreading lies about Nazis and their collaborators. Denying “aspects” of the Holocaust is Holocaust denial.

The excuse that Bishop Williamson is just a conspiracy theorist further shows the lack of ground on which the bishop stands, in that the best label for him, albeit one which is severely whitewashed, is that of someone who believes in conspiracies. Sadly this is not the case, but rather Bishop Williamson supports the ideas of anti-Semites, and in doing so is acting as an anti-Semite. This stance is unconscionable, and cannot be the stance of a Roman Catholic bishop. Unfortunately the time for action against the Holocaust has long passed, yet we can still act in the memory of those who died. Not just the six million Jews, but also the five million others who were killed. The Roman Catholic Church stands, as it should, for truth, and the truth of the matter is that six million Jews died. As such, it is imperative that Pope Benedict XVI reaffirm the Church’s stance for truth and punish Bishop Williamson for his anti-Semitic attitude.

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Stimulus: A missed opportunity for Obama

Posted on 31 March 2009 by Nick Preston

When Barack Obama signed into law the largest spending bill in United States history, and by default the history of the world, many heralded it a great political achievement for his fledgling administration.  Scarcely months into his presidency, Democrats, with Obama at the wheel, were able to drive through both the House and Senate, and ultimately back through the House again, the $789 billion stimulus with relative ease. However, those that applauded the President also failed to see what is painfully obvious: that this bill will go down in history as one of the most partisan pieces of legislation ever.

With large democratic majorities in both the House and Senate, Republicans never posed any real threat to the passage of the stimulus and thus the survival of the bill never depended on more than a few Republican senators for survival. Nevertheless, the fact that not one of the 178 Republican representatives was wooed over to the bandwagon could prove to be a big missed opportunity for the President.

Without a doubt, President Obama possesses an unprecedented amount of support and approval from the public and can seemingly do no wrong in the eyes of many.  If anyone could have reached out in the spirit of bipartisanship, it would have been the President. Unfortunately, rather than live up to his campaign promises, Mr. Obama chose idealism over pragmatism and caved to every ideological whim of the far left in congress.

What is even more unfortunate for the President is that even a few small concessions, such as more money devoted to infrastructure (which the President himself seemed to prioritize during his campaign) could have convinced a few Republican representatives to vote for the bill.

With all his hopeless rhetoric in the past few weeks, the President seemed to have made it his goal to convince the public that the economy is deeply entrenched in a horrible recession.  If this is the case, and I don’t doubt that it isn’t after listening to the President, it would not matter if the stimulus was passed this past week or next month, and more time could have been taken to modify the bill and make it more palatable to those on the other side of the isle (and more importantly, to more than 51 percent of Americans).  The President seemed to have put quantity over quality when he said “not to make the perfect the enemy of the good,” while possessing the time, power and support, to make this bill more perfect instead of just good.

This is a hard time for many Americans and no one doubts the need to do something about the economy.  Republicans are not just being obstructionists or sore losers, they don’t want to see this bill fail as recessions are apolitical and affect Republicans and Democrats alike. With so much at stake, it is in everyone’s interest that the stimulus works, and simply slowing down and hearing what others have to say can only ensure that the best measures are taken to restore the American economy. The fact is that should this bill fail absolutely, or even partially, Democrats will have no one to share the blame with or the “I told you so’s” from Republicans.

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Farewell Archbishop Dolan

Posted on 31 March 2009 by Remington Tonar

Although Archbishop Timothy Dolan has only been the pastor of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee since 2002, in that time he has had a tremendous impact on Catholics and non-Catholics alike throughout the greater Milwaukee community. For those who have not had the privilege of meeting Archbishop Dolan, the following comments on his demeanor and his accomplishments will not do him justice.

Archbishop Dolan came to Milwaukee after demoralizing revelations about former Milwaukee Archbishop Rembert Weakland’s inappropriate sexual activity and efforts to keep his actions secret. In the midst of this scandal, Dolan brought a boisterous Irish personality to the Archdiocese, full of energy and orthodoxy. However, far from raising his crosier (the staff that the bishop holds) against those who would dissent from Catholic orthodoxy, Dolan employed his personable and persuasive character to effect change.

Aside from being pastoral, Dolan also has proven to be a capable administrator, for which his experience as the rector at the Pontifical North American College prepared him. It definitely has not been easy, especially considering the recent financial burdens of the Archdiocese due to sexual abuse settlements. Just last year, Dolan managed to escape a multi-million dollar deficit by consolidating Archdiocesan offices and staff. In addition, his presence and candor have allowed him to successfully navigate the secular media, making him well liked by many.

While New York is certainly a larger and more diverse Catholic community than Milwaukee, Dolan will surely leave a positive impact out East, just as he has done here in the Midwest. His staunch opposition to abortion and his adherence to Catholic orthodoxy are essential for such a prominent and visible position such as the Archdiocese of New York. Of course, as he has done in Milwaukee, Dolan will undoubtedly express these positions gently and with understanding.

Archbishop Dolan has raised the level of religious morale in Milwaukee. His larger than life personality and perennially happy demeanor are magnetic, and his uncanny ability to remember names helps him build a strong relationship with Catholics in his flock. Milwaukee will miss Dolan’s style and personality, which has captivated many and renewed Catholic spirituality here in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee.

As his Excellency makes this transition to what is arguably the most visible diocese in the nation, there is little doubt in this writer’s mind that he will be welcomed and successful.
Thank you Archbishop Dolan for your leadership and inspiration in the short time you’ve been with us. You will be greatly missed.

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Archbishop Dolan heads to Big Apple

Posted on 31 March 2009 by Thomas Klind

Since 2002, Timothy M. Dolan has led the Milwaukee Archdiocese as Archbishop. His tenure included dealing with a wide array of priest abuse scandals, a petition by local priests to make clerical celibacy optional and the collateral damage left behind by former Archbishop Rembert Weakland. By all accounts, if Dolan were to get a report card at the end of every year, it would certainly include straight A’s.

On Monday, Pope Benedict XVI appointed Archbishop Timothy Dolan as the new Archbishop of New York. This private Vatican information was first reported by well-connected Italian journalist Paolo Rodari, who writes for the Vatican Watch periodical Il Reformista.

For those not in the loop, New York is the United States’ most important Archdiocese, according to the Catholic News Agency.
With regards to political hierarchy, New York, along with the Bishopric of Washington D.C., holds the most influence on Capitol Hill. This move reassertes the importance of the United States Catholic Bishops in a time of constant change throughout both the political and economic realms of the country.

Critics of the move state that Dolan is not one to take a hard line and stand up against the anti-Catholic, anti-conservative sentiment given off by the current presidential administration and others such as Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Well known for his dislike of Archbishop Dolan, Marquette Theology professor Dan Maguire has been quick to criticize the appointment. Maguire, who is banned from speaking in all parishes in the Milwaukee Archdiocese, was quoted in the New York Times on Tuesday,
criticizing the Church’s failure to listen to Theologians.

However, those who back the appointment of Archbishop Dolan say that he would bring the “soft touch” of a “pastoral leader,” according to the Catholic News Agency. Dolan’s attention to detail and hard line conservative stances are viewed as great counter-culture counters to the anti-Catholic policies of the current administration.

According to Rodari, Archbishop Henry Mansell of Hartford, Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Atlanta, Archbishop John Myers of Newark and Archbishop Roberto Gonzalez Nieves of San Juan, Puerto Rico, were all being considered for the appointment.
Whatever happens, Archbishop Dolan’s great legacy in Milwaukee, both as pastoral leader and man of the people, will never be forgotten. His contributions to the Archdioceses of Milwaukee and St. Louis have prepared him well for New York, and his down-to-earth style make him a great candidate for any Bishopric.

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MUSG: Double Sided Printing, Big Waste of Time

Posted on 31 March 2009 by Molly Petitjean

During the Senate meeting held on February 19, 2009, a very unimportant issue took up the most meeting time – that of Recommendation 6. Recommendation 6 was introduced to the Senate by Senators John Kristan, Mike Parreno, Liz Judy and Ellie Hastings. It reads, “Let it be recommended that the Office of the Provost begin to encourage professors to accept double-sided printed papers.” Aside from its silliness, which I will get to later, this recommendation that doesn’t really do anything has taken up so much of the Senate’s time compared to issues that matter so much more.

At the same meeting, the Senate passed an important election reform amendment that allows those students running for office to contact constituents with their consent. It reads, “Let … the MUSG Election Rules be amended to state: ‘The following activities are prohibited… Solicitation of votes by direct or indirect mailings (electronic or otherwise) or phone calls of any kind, unless the recipients individually and expressly request to receive such solicitations.”

This legislation, introduced by Senators Bill Doerrer and Tip McGuire, profoundly impacts the way campaigns will be run in the future.

It only took about five minutes for the Senators to make an amendment to the MUSG constitution, but it took them 22 minutes to determine whether or not to make a recommendation to the Provost.

Let me give you a brief history of this recommendation. During the Senate meeting held on Feb. 5, Senators Kristan, Parreno, Judy and Hastings introduced a recommendation that asked for the defaults on Printwise printers to be changed from single-sided to double-sided. The rationale for this switch was that it would save both the university and students money. Currently, printing two pages costs 14 cents whereas printing one sheet double-sided costs 10 cents for students.
During questioning, many Senators were concerned that the committee introducing the recommendation didn’t speak with faculty to see if double-sided documents would be accepted in class. It was also pointed out that it is a fairly easy process to switch from single-sided to double-sided on the print options menu, therefore making this recommendation unnecessary.
Finally, the dissent noted that it would be in bad to taste to tell the faculty what to do should an amendment to the recommendation be made about the acceptance of double-sided documents. After a painfully long discussion, it was suggested that it be tabled for two weeks.

Recommendation 6, which was discussed on Feb. 19, was a version of the original recommendation. At 8:02 p.m. CST , (yes, this time I decided to time how much of my time they found acceptable to waste) questioning opened for the new recommendation and several of the same sentiments were raised on the part of the dissent. The faculty again had not been consulted, nor had the students.

When asked if he spoke to any constituents about the proposed recommendation, Senator Kristan answered, “I haven’t talked to any constituents, but we were elected to make decisions.”

Come on, Senator, you were elected to represent students. How are you to do that if you don’t know where they stand on issues?
During questioning, it also came out that the Renewal Task Force was working on something similar, making the passing of this recommendation basically pointless. Kristan noted that they would like to hear how the students feel. However, he shouldn’t talk about students’ feelings because he admitted to not actually knowing them.
Another new concern was directed towards the persuasive power of the Provost. Senators wanted to know if all professors would have to adopt the practice or if it would remain a judgment call by the professors after the Provost encourages professors to accept double-sided documents.

For all of the hemming and hawing certain members of the Senate did during the period questioning, the recommendation passed with only two votes against it. The whole ordeal was finally over with at 8:24 p.m. The Senate spent 22 minutes arguing about something they had no intention of rejecting and something that won’t actually do anything. Anything! In my humble opinion, it was a giant waste of time.

I was upset as a constituent and as an observer of the meeting. When only one person was against this recommendation despite the intense amount of scrutiny it got, I was flabbergasted. Their time would have been much better spent looking into items that held much more weight.

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Credit Union vs. Banks: Where should you put your money in hard times?

Posted on 31 March 2009 by Jacob Jasperson

It’s the age old question: where do I put my money? I want it somewhere it’ll be safe, but I still want it to grow. But I don’t want to lose any of it. And I don’t have time to manage it. And I want it available when I need it. Which is now.
Historically, we’ve turned to banks for this sort of thing; a nice safe checking account or a money market. Yep, that’s where I’ll go – the local money depository. I know my money will be safe there, and for the safety I’m getting I can’t expect any better return…right?

Maybe not. One often overlooked establishment in the financial sector is the credit union. Credit unions often times have better rates than banks on loans, checking and savings accounts.
But for those of us who are unfamiliar with the concept, let’s run through the basic differences. First of all, who owns it? A bank is owned by shareholders of the bank – investors. The bank, in turn, does what any good corporate citizen does: it tries to make the investors happy.

A credit union, on the other hand, is owned by the members of the credit union, very similar to a mutual company. If you are a member of the credit union, you own part of the credit union. So, in theory, instead of trying to please investors, the credit union is trying to please you.

Since we’re talking about mutual companies vs. stock companies, where do the profits go? In a stock company (the bank), the profits go back to the investors in the form of higher stock prices. In a mutual company (credit unions), the profits go back to the members of the credit union, in the form of lower loan interest rates and higher dividends.
A common misconception is that credit unions are not FDIC insured, and so people are often weary to invest. However, all federal credit unions must be FDIC insured.

Let’s take a look at some local banks here in Milwaukee: US Bank and Wells Fargo. The average interest rate on a savings account is 0.1 percent at US Bank, and 0.05 percent at Wells Fargo. If you wanted to open up a money market at US Bank, their best rate is 1.20 percent; and you need to have $100,000 or more in that account to get that rate (the lowest bracket is 0.25 percent). With Wells Fargo, you can get a 0.15 percent rate, but only if you link that account with another account at Wells Fargo.

Now let’s look at some local credit unions. Landmark Credit Union has a premier checking account with a 7.25 percent rate. Their money market has a 0.3 percent rate; still not great, but better than US Bank and Wells Fargo. Prime Financial Credit Union has a checking account with no minimum balance and a 3.01 percent interest rate. Their lowest money market has a rate of 0.5 percent , the best of any we’ve looked at.

As a disclaimer, please do not accept these rates as set in stone, as rates tend to fluctuate over time. Do not take a copy of the Warrior into the local credit union and expect them to give you these rates. Check with your local financial advisor before making any changes in your portfolio. What you can do, however, is call some banks, call some credit unions and get some quotes. The more information you have, the more intelligent a decision you can make.

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