The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, April 14, 1992, Page 5, Image 5

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Tabloids untapped news source
As a newspaper columnist,
I’m expected to keep myself
relativelyinformed on
current events. This means reading
a great deal, not only enjoyable
materia] like my monthly issues of
Guns A Ammo and Mad Magazine,
but actual hard-core, long and
sometimes boring daily newspaper
I even read the articles in my Play
boy. Honest.
I read publications cover to cover
— every story, every caption, every
advertisement. I read books by the
stack, magazines by the dozen, news
papers by the ton, forms, brochures,
pamphlets and leaflets. I read about
things I find fascinating, and I read
about things I really don’t much care
about, such as articles on Hillary
Clinton’s scope of control over her
husband and reports on Bush’s thy
roid problems.
In short, I considered myself to be
one of the most well-informed people
on campus, a veritable plethora of
pertinent information, a regular cor
nucopia of impressive knowledge.
That is I “considered” — past tense.
I recently discovered how little I ac
tually know, how backward and out
of touch with the world I actually am.
Unbeknownst to me, there was a
world of information and facts that I
was totally m issing out on, two exclu
sive publications that, when taken
together, carry the really big and
important stories — stories the little
newspapers such as The New York
Times and The Washington Post are
afraid to take on.
1 m talking about the Sun and the
Weekly World News. I bought copies
of these papers recently and was
amazed at the incredible news they
While The Omaha World-Herald
and The Lincoln Star were running
stories on semi-important issues such
as the presidential campaign and the
economy, these papers were warning
the publ ic about potential devastati ng
dangers — such as giant 8-foot killer
bees — and boons to mankind —
such as the space alien who is going to
teach us how to live to be 500 years
So in an effort to keep my fellow
students, who have not yet discov
ered these incredible news sources,
informed on the really important is
sues of the world, I’m taking a break
from my normal subject matter to fill
everyone in on the big stories:
Captured Alien — According to a
/ recently discovered
how link L actually
know, how backward
and out of touch with
IM world / actually
highly placed CIA source, fighter
planes from the aircraft carrier U.S.S.
Nimitz intercepted a 150-foot saucer
shaped craft and escorted it onto the
deck of the carrier. The alien from the
planet Elnar in the Andromeda sys
tem was captured and, despite look
ing like a 3- or 4-year-old child, is
actually 500 years old.
The alien has an I.Q. of 400 and
speaks every language and dialect on
Earth. Despite being kept prisoner, it
is being quite cooperative and is talk
ing freely with CIA agents and Presi
dent George Bush, who expect the
alien to provide mankind with the
technology to make our own inter
stellar flight. The alien also is ex
pected lo help us find the keys to
perfect health and the secrets of liv
ing to the age of 500 and beyond.
It is rumored that the alien's ship
has been transferred lo Cape Canav
eral for further study.
Eight-Foot Killer Bees — A swarm
of giant honeybees is heading north
from somewhere near the Mexican
border. The bees came from the Rus
sian countryside near the site of the
Chernobyl nuclear reactor and were
imported onto this continent by a
group of wealthy Americans looking
for something more exciting than
pheasants and ducks lo hunt.
Unfortunately, the bees escaped
before the hunters were ready and arc
now terrorizing the countryside.
Some experts believe the bees are
sterile and soon will perish on their
own, but the government is taking no
chances and has hired a small army of
crack shots and bounty hunters to
track down and kill the mutated
Experts are trying to track down
the hive to use an airdrop of high
power insecticide to take care of the
bees but have so far been unsuccess
ful. ' * -
Satan Escapes From Hell — Satan
recently escaped from Hell after a
team of high-tech oil well drillers
went jUst a little too deep. The drillers
could hear the Devil coming up the
well but were unable to cap off the
shaft before the Evil One escaped in
an impressive explosion of burning
No one seems to know exactly
why Satan chose this particular lime
and route to come up from Hell or
why he had to use a well shaft instead
of just passing through the rock or
coming up through a volcano.
Saddam’s Birthday Gift — An Iraqi
computer virus set to go off on April
19, Saddam Hussein’s birthday, will
leave America bankrupt and defense
less if it cannot be stopped in time,
government computer specialists say.
The virus was created by a group
of Iraqis trained and led by a Russian
defector and will shut down the
computer systems used by the IRS,
Social Security Administration and
the Department of Defense — effec
tively ruining our economy and armed
forces. Experts still haven’t found the
virus. Our only hope may be that the
Iraqis screwed up and did not use the
virus correctly.
Castro N wipes baoaam s uay Lover
— A former Fidel Castro confidant
reports that Castro is beside himself
with pride after successfully wooing
away Saddam Hussein’s lover.
Fidel is reported to be bragging to
friends about how he stole his new
lover from fellow dictator Hussein.
Fidel is even said to be talking of
marriage to his new friend, but sources
close to the Cuban say they are not
sure if he is really in love or just liked
the idea of beating out the Iraqi ruler.
And these stories arc just a small
taste of the many important and inter
esting items found in these papers. I
thought I was informed before, but I
found out I was missing out. No more
World-Herald or Newsweek for me.
From now on I’m not going to waste
my time on the unimportant stuff.
For me, it’s straight to the check
out line of the supermarket where the
real news sources are.
Allen is a senior mechanical engineering
major and a Daily Nebraskan columnist.
Clean environment act deserves support
I am writing to encourage all stu
dents, faculty and administrators in
the in the University of Nebraska
system to attend the ASUN meeting
this coming Wednesday. At this week’s
meeting a bill will be debated and
voted on which would encourage the
University Board of Regents not to
support the Clean Environment
Committee’s petition drive to place
the Nebraska Clean Environment Act
on the November general election
The Nebraska Clean Environment
Act was truly designed to benefit the
University of Nebraska and its stu
dents, as well as the environment.
Through a lax of 25 cents placed on
cigarette packs, the Nebraska Clean
Environment Act would devote $33
million to tree-planting programs,
recycling programs, stop-smoking
programs and cancer research at the
University of Nebraska. If passed, the
university could receive up to $6.6
million for cancer research programs.
The fact that this proposal will
help to clean our environment, re
cycle, reuse and reduce our waste and
decrease the number of teenagers
smoking should be reason enough for
ASUN and the Board of Regents to
support this measure. Buton lop of all
that, the Nebraska Clean Environ
ment Act could pump another $6.6
million into the university system.
This $6.6 million would be used for
programs designed to prevent and
cure cancer — indeed a worthy ven
Why are AS UN Presideni Siger
son and others concerned about this
proposal? They fear that an increase
in the cigarette tax will decrease the
amount of money for future construc
tion projects at the university. Let’s
examine the facts: The concern is that
future projects may be harmed, not
present ones. The Nebraska Clean
Environment Act is “sunselted” and
will end in the year 2000 at which
time the tax is discontinued. So, there
will be room for more taxes for con
struction projects in the year 2000.
Secondly, as was mentioned in the
article in Friday’s Daily Nebraskan,
demand for cigarettes tends to be
inelastic, which means that even if
the tax goes up, consumption will
remain fairly consistent. Thirdly, the
percentage of lax on a package of
cigarettes was over 50 percent in 1955
and has decreased to under 30 percent
in 1992 — so there is room for more
Finally, it should be noted that this
does not prevent the university from
starting new projects even if there is
less revenue. Because university
construction projects are done on a
cost-per-project basis, it may just take
a little longer to fully finance and
complete new projects. This seems to
be a minor inconvenience in order to
protect our environment, recycle our
waste and Find cures for cancer.
When the facts are examined, it
becomes evident that the fear that the
university would lose money is a slight
one at best. Plus, it will be getting
benefits through $6.6 million for cancer
research and a healthier and cleaner
environment for its students to live in.
This is a proposal that is good for the
university and is definitely good for
its present and future generations of
In conclusion, I feel it is important
to mention that a number of groups
and individuals who are concerned
about the future of education in Ne
braska arc a part of our coalition. The
Nebraska State Teachers Association,
which represents 22,000 teachers
statewide, has endorsed this proposal
and is helping us circulate petitions.
Prominentpoliticians in Upstate who
also are concerned about the future of
education in Nebraska have signed
on to this effort including Ll. Gov.
Maxine Moul, Lincoln Mayor Mike
Johanns, Sen. Dave Landis (who
represents the district in which the
university is located) and Dr. Jerry
Schenken, who is a board member of
the American Medical Association.
I hope that all who are interested in
this project will attend the AS UN
meeting on Wednesday night. De
mocracy truly works best when indi
viduals get involved. And that is what
our petition drive is designed to do.
Brian Mikkelsen
statewide coordinator
Clean Environment Committee
Students make presence felt
I would like to thank all of the
members of the university com
munity who helped design, pro
mote and testify on behalf of the
safety and parking proposal put
forth by ASUN and the Faculty
Senate. It was their hard work and
determination that made our ideas
I would also like to thank Chan
cellor Spamer for his quick action
to involve the entire university in
the process to improve safety on
this campus. Dr. Spanier realizes
that in order for this campus to be
successful, we must work together
to solve our problems. It is nice to
see our top administrators provide
fastand positive leadershipon such
an important issue.
Finally, I want to say to the
students on this campus that stu
dent government can be effective
if we work together. This safety
and parking issue is a prime ex
ample. We have such a powerful
voice, but unfortunately, we rarely
use k. I challenge the student body
to stand up and make their pres
ence felt. Do not stand by passively
by while other people make deci
sions about your life and your fu
ture. Our country was bulk on this
principle, and it is our generation
that will make this cainpus, and
this world, a better place. Student
government (AS UN) is one place
where you can make a difference.
Andrew Sigerson
economics and political science
AS UN president
Animal, smoker rights don’t mix
in response to Fran Thompson s
letter (“Clean air act picks on minor
ity,” DN, April 13), 1 would like to
point out some particularly compel
ling reasons to Fran why smokers
should clean up or pay up. The obvi
ous reason is that smoking is damag
ing to the environment, which we
people share with animals. Not only
is the smoke in itself damaging, but
carelessly tossed butts have caused
countless forest and grass fires, re
sulting in the loss of wildlife popula
tions and habitat.
That isn’t the worst. You, Fran,
may not want to argue the results of
studies of second-hand smoke and the
health dangers of cigarettes in gen
eral, but I suggest you consider where
and on what these studies are per
formed. Yes, ma’am, cigarette com
panies do animal testing. An awful lot
of those little critters die that you may
maintain your right to smoke.
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Fran, you have written many let
ters to the DN regarding animal rights,
and although sometimes I thought
your arguments were ill-considered, I
admired you for the courage of your
convictions. However, it is now ap
parent that your convictions aren’t
very carefully thought out and not
only have you undermined your own
credibility but you also damage the
causes you fight for by coming off as
an ignorant crackpot. I fail to under
stand your reasoning that you would
blast one minority for killing animals
(hunters) and in the next breath at
tempt to defend the right of another
minority to kill animals (smokers).
You have revealed yourself for the
frustrated misanthrope you really are.
Please keep your moral imperatives
to yourself and kindly shut up.
Lauri Morris
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