Guess what? You may have a sleep disorder. Victor Katch describes the symptoms and health impacts of sleep disorders and describes two simple tests to see if you are at risk.
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Frank Beaver explores the Redgrave dynasty's far-reaching impact on film and theater history.
Scientists have identified how much pain people feel by looking at images of their brains. The research may set the stage to objectively measure anxiety, depression, anger, and more.
Video: The U.S. Dept. of Defense recently blamed China's military for cyber attacks on American systems. Just how do these attacks occur, what kind of damage can they create, and how can we combat them?
Innovators are exploring business opportunities around their technologies via Michigan I-Corps, a seven-week entrepreneurial training workshop funded by the National Science Foundation.
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Letters to the editor
(April 17th, 2013)
I'm delighted to know Branch Rickey was a Michigan grad (Partners in Courage, April 2013). And of course, it's always good to know the Burns brothers were from Ann Arbor. (Ken Burns Returns, April 2013). While working overseas for decades, I voted absentee from Ann Arbor, where my parents settled after my dad retired from the US Army in 1966. He worked at Ann Arbor Bank for years. Whenever I returned home summers, we would go to Tiger Stadium to catch games, since we were long-time Tigers fans. My brother attended the same high school as the Burns brothers. He and I both attended U of M. Thanks again. Sincerely,
Mamaroneck, New York
(April 16th, 2013)
Thanks for James Tobin's revealing piece on Burton Tower. I thought to take the stairs to the top as a graduate student, but soon decided to put it off until I passed my Oral Examination for my PhD. The photograph looking down the stairwell gives a idea of the climb. Taking the many steps up and down in 1980 was worth the wait and a fitting conclusion to my education at the University of Michigan. A wonderful building in all ways.
Norman B Wilson
MA, English; PhD, Comparative Literature
(March 24th, 2013)
Want to make you aware of an article I wrote about the realignment of the midwestern NCAA Hockey teams as a result of the Big Ten pulling all its hockey teams in to play as a conference. It talks about the possible strengths of the new alignments. You can find it at http://sportales.com/hockey/ncaa-hockey-realigns-many-of-its-conferences-for-the-2013-2014-season/ Thanks Floris Wood, AKA AmosTheCat
Toledo, United States
(March 19th, 2013)
I always enjoy reading Michigan Today. However, it seemed to me inappropriate and slightly bizarre to include Victor Katch's jeremiad against genetically modified food in the last issue. His unsubstantiated arguments added nothing to the debate, especially since he has no professional qualifications in the area. Otherwise, keep up the good work.
PLEASANT HILL, California
(March 1st, 2013)
Sheryl James's article on the film "Love and Honor" includes this: "It is July, 1969. The Vietnam War is at its height, and so is the anti-war hysteria..." Hysteria? Excuse me? Those of us around then protesting America's misguided war were hardly hysterical. I have no idea how old Sheryl James is and whether she actually knew any of the people participating in the war protests, but this particular choice of phrase is offensive to the millions of people, and particularly thousands and thousands of noble and principled college students, who protested the Vietnam war on solid moral grounds, not visceral "hysteria."
John O. Biderman
(March 1st, 2013)
The intellectual content of the February 2013 "Michigan Today" online issue is pretty thin: the University's past, a 1924 athlete, winter scenes, a bit of health news. Let's dig a bit deeper, please, into some of the writing and research that University professors are producing. Take a look at Johns Hopkins Magazine and Harvard Magazine. We are not all Philistines!
(February 26th, 2013)
As news director of WCBN during its Golden Age, 1965-67, I'm here to tell you that your reporter would have been fired for filing the January 2013 piece "Left of the Dial." He missed the story entirely. During that period, WCBN's news department made national headlines with its reporting on the Vietnam war, from coverage of the first teach-in to exclusive reportage on the military draft. Our radio documentaries on these topics were picked up and rebroadcast worldwide by the CBC. The programming department set the standards for what became "underground radio," so important in the cultural history of the '60s and early '70s. Most importantly, WCBN was the training ground for a whole generation of media stars and standouts: Gilda Radner, original cast member of Saturday Night Live, began her career as "the weather girl" on our breakout morning program "The Saltman-Segal Psychedelicatessen." Steve Segal, my co-host on that show, became a famous DJ on the top stations in Los Angeles and Boston. Joe Quasarano, DJ and program director, became a top media executive in LA. Justin Friedland, DJ, became Paris bureau chief for ABC News. Bill Kirchen, a regular guest on our show, became a world-famous musician, after a long stint with our pals and frequent on-air guests, Commander Cody and the Lost Planet Airmen. Jim Mack, Vince Capizzo, Rob Marks, and other technical wizards became big behind-the-scenes stars in the media. I became a producer on CBS News Sunday Morning, then executive producer of documentaries at CNN in New York. There is much more to this story. In fact the writer's characterization of WCBN in the '60s as placid, compliant, and amateurish could not be further from the truth.
(February 19th, 2013)
My new novel, "Held Hostage," was recently released and is available on amazon.com in print-on-demand paperback and on Kindle. It is the sequel to "The Campaign of Fear" released in 2010. Terrorists take over Iran and the Middle East, cut off OPEC oil to the US and demand nuclear weapon technology to turn it back on again. Our elite team is called into action again to help free us from OPEC oil and get the terrorists at the same time. There are new technology developments to help us become OPEC oil independent and an international battle of wits to defeat the terrorists .... constant action with near heart-stopping, white-knuckle scenes ... and a dangerous fictional scenario that could be our reality. My first novel, "The Campaign of Fear," was mentioned in Michigan Today in 2010. A former 3M Executive and CEO of Minnesota Technology, Inc., I currently help run Pletcher, Inc., a business 'growth by innovation' consulting company. I also teach, as adjunct professor, at the University of Minnesota and of course, write fiction. Thanks. Wayne
Wayne A. Pletcher
(January 22nd, 2013)
The WCBN article (January 2013) brought back many good memories. I was the WCBN general manager during the 1961 and 1962 school years. I recall that we had administrative space in the new SAB but not studios there at that time. Our engineering staff began to put together the information for moving to over-the-air transmission during that period. Interesting sidelight: We received a letter from a federal government agency asking that we relinquish the call letters so they could be used by that agency. The call letters WCBN (Campus Broadcasting Network) evidently also would fit the initials for the agency. We said no.
It was also during that period that we extended our listening reach by wire to attempt to include all of the dorms and beyond. The extension project was called ACRES, for All Campus Radio Emission System. I pitched the extension to the Intra-Fraternity Council (IFC). Don't recall how many takers we had. Our student engineers were skilled in running the steam tunnels with wire.
We earned enough money from ad sales, as I recall, to fund equipment upkeep and upgrades. The hottest show was an afternoon rock and roll program hosted by Tim Belion (sp?). Many of our original programs were imitative of Detroit radio station personalities. I was taking courses in radio-TV production although my academic program was pre-law. Oddly, although I was not one of his broadcasting majors, my professor took the liberty of putting me forward (without my knowledge) for a year's scholarship ($2000) given, one to the U of M and one to MSU, on the occasion of WWJ's 50th anniversary. I won it. A couple of years later when I was working on the air commercially in Grand Rapids radio, by happenstance I ran into another broadcaster who was the MSU winner. We were both on our way to Detroit for our selective service physicals prior to induction into the armed services. I'm not sure where his path led, but mine was the US Navy where I proudly served for 31 years as a Naval aviator.
I returned to academia 20 years ago as an adjunct professor of management and leadership in Prince George's Community College, Maryland. That fits well with my full-time management and leadership training and consulting business in the Washington, DC area. And, having begun my college career at Grand Rapids Junior College, perhaps very appropriate.
Thanks for the reminder.
Carl Richard "Rik" Karlsson
(January 17th, 2013)
Looking at the photos of destroyed university buildings in the George Swain article, and recalling still more, I am once again saddened at how little the university has valued its architectural heritage.
Ann Arbor, Michigan
(January 17th, 2013)
I enjoyed the George Swain slide show of old campus views. A correction: the old Library, except for part of the stacks, was torn down in 1917, not 1918. Before it fell, the clock tower had had numerous bricks knocked from its base. The base was then shored up with timbers, which were set afire, and burned for several minutes. The weakened tower buckled and collapsed with a roar. "It just sat down," was the comment of one witness to the spectacle, on an early morning in July, 1917. The man at left in the photo of the "Scholar" statue, at the Michigan Union, is the Union's architect, Irving Kane Pond, a graduate of the University who practiced architecture in Chicago with his brother, Allen. Pond's boyhood home was one of the structures originally on the Union site. In 1879, Pond scored the first touchdown in Michigan's first intercollegiate football game (against Racine College -- a game played in Chicago.) Pond remained an athlete all his life. Another photo of him, which appeared in one of the earliest issues of LIFE Magazine, shows the spry old gent celebrating his 80th birthday by turning a backflip in midair! (The Pond brothers also were architects of the Michigan League.) The other man in Swain's photo was the statue's sculptor, M. Thomas Murphy, who also sculpted the companion statute of an athlete. Swain took a picture of both men with "The Athlete" as well.
Ann Arbor, Michigan
(January 17th, 2013)
I'm happy to see coverage of the older WCBN. Me, I was part of the very original Campus Broadcasting Network, which fascinated me during my days as a student staff member in 1953-7; I served as an announcer; dance host in South Quad; news specialist; hockey color announcer; ad salesman. Loved it! This during the days of the stringing of the first cable lines through the steam tunnels from East, West and South Quads up to the hill... my memories are affectionate and very warm!
Martin H Buchman
(January 17th, 2013)
Yes, was a graduate student during the early days of the SDS. Because of my studies and research, I was unable to join them, but I did read of their actions and, when lucky, talk to some of their members. They were liberals, some still call them socialists, etc. who were ready and willing to speak out for the principles of our constitution and liberalism. I know of no harm that they did but am aware of the good they did. I am a proud supporter of the SDS. Leonard Lash
Ann Arbor, Michigan
(January 10th, 2013)
Typically, one looks back over the decades and tracks the developments in the life of the college graduate and not that of his alma mater. However, as former University of Michigan president James Duderstadt once commented to me “Michigan is always changing.” I have been looking with jealousy at all the undergraduate programs that the university is sponsoring these days: Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program, 10 Michigan Learning Communities, 5 Theme Communities, Comprehensive Studies Program, Mentorship Program. I recall the Honors program and the Residential College from my time at UM three decades ago, but most of the others seem new. They look fantastic and cause my mind to replay the ending of Kurt Vonnegut’s Breakfast of Champions where he as the author visits his beloved protagonist Kilgore Trout and grants him any wish. After a stunned pause, Kilgore shouts out the following as the book ends: “Make me young, Make me young, Make me young.” Scott Kashkin LSA, Class of 1984
Passaic, New Jersey
(October 31st, 2012)
I'm a sophomore from Tsinghua University, Beijing, China. Two years ago, Professor Chris Peterson went to Tsinghua University for the first China International Positive Psychology Conference and gave a great lecture. We were all impressed and deeply touched. We invited Professor Peterson nearly one year ago to attend our second annual conference, and he said yes. We already planned about his coming and everything. Last month, after his passing away, in deep sorrow we decided to make a short video in memory of him. This video will be shown during the conference to let everyone know that a great teacher named Chris Peterson had helped us so much that now we learned to see a more colorful and positive world. Li Xing-yu Department of Psychology Tsinghua University
(September 13th, 2012)
Periodically you publish a list of recent releases by Michigan authors, and I generally run through the list and order one or more. Most recently I purchased Say Nice Things About Detroit and The Cellist of Sarajevo from your list. I’ve finished Cellist, and am just now finishing Detroit. Both are excellent! Thanks for listing these works. Please keep up the good work. Lin Hanson
Linscott Roberts Hanson
LL. B.; JD
Green Oaks, Illinois
(July 9th, 2012)
I am astounded by the lynch mob virulence of some of the comments and letters submitted in response to the article on the Port Huron Statement's 50th anniversary. We in SDS, and in the Port Huron Statement, advocated for democracy, human rights, reasoned discussion, a wider justice and freer life for all. Clearly some University "graduates" don't like democracy, prefer the rule of banksters, monopolists, and warriors. It escapes me how our bands of idealists and activists are to blame for the horrors of contrived wars and the predations of the gluttonous rich. Fascism was a preferred system by many in the pre-World War II world, and it still is, with a tight interlock between the political, the economic, and the military elites. It is laughable that we are the ones called arrogant and elitist. We did not invent the political struggle between democracy and fascism, but we did find our place on the side of justice and we did contend with the powers that be and their murderous ways. Those in the moral limbo of complicit silence may lash out at our imperfect-nesses, but they fail the test of courage to challenge a status quo rooted in oppression and rationalized by the gun. We sought a better way of living, more loving, more cooperative. The Michigan Today article talks about the Port Huron Statement as an object separate from the organization spirit that created it. It was not Tom Hayden's work or my work that made it happen. It was a determination arising in our generation then, particularly among young women, to do something about the wrongs we saw. Women like Sharon Jeffrey, Carol Cohen, Sandra (Casey) Cason, Dorothy Dawson, Becky Adams, Betty Garman, Mary (Maria) Varela, Sarah Murphy, Barbara Jacobs (to name but a few) all in all, were more significant than the men, like Tom and me who tend to get the attention. These women brought a human directness, and love, as well as organizing skill and knowledge, that made SDS different from other political organizations. The University community will have the benefit, for the first time ever, to hear a panel of some of these SDS women tell the story from their view. This panel will be part of the University conference on the Port Huron Statement, Oct. 31-Nov. 1 and 2, 2012. I hope the blowhards and know-nothings, commenting here, will come and attend, perhaps to learn something they missed as students, and still do. The more receptive commentators will find a chance for creative engagement with some of the pioneers in the freedom movement and struggle for human liberation. Our organization did not survive the Vietnam war, the "counter-intelligence program," (cointelpro), and the mind numbing horrors we witnessed in opening our eyes to the reality of world politics. As individuals. In the years since, we of that generation who then looked uncomfortably at the world we were inheriting, have continued, in myriad ways, working to build a peace system of non-violence, partnership, sharing, caring, generosity, kindness, and healing to replace the war system in which we were born and grew up, of patriarchy, violence, domination, imposition, impunity, etc. SDS of course is still organizing, students for a democratic society again, and now also, seniors for a democratic society. The umbrella movement for a democratic society (.org) is undertaking an activist projection to interact with the academic reflection, beginning with the question, for those who care: What would you want in a "manifesto for now." Participation is invited. It's about democracy. (http://bit.ly/manifesto4nowwiki)
Note: Some of the comments on the article were thoughtful and constructive. I think the one about a debate between the SDS democrats and the William Buckley/Russell Kirk crowd would be most interesting and worthy of University sponsorship. We did once have a debate with Mr. Buckley. Most to the point was the call and need for people to be flexible, imaginative, and committed. I hope Michigan Today will continue this discussion in subsequent issues leading up to the anniversary conference, and also publish a post-conference report.
Ann Arbor, Michigan
(June 25th, 2012)
Did you think it was an honor to Michigan to claim "parentage" for the SDS? That you will publish something on campus Republicans does not undo the ignorance of the not rare offense to alumni of U.M. publications which appear to get excited about the legacy of the University's darkest days. We do not share the faculty's dominant ideology now or the administration's weakness in face of it.
Lewis Center, Ohio
(June 23rd, 2012)
I was a little shocked by the intensity of the anger expressed in several letters received by Michigan Today concerning its coverage of the anniversary of the Port Huron Statement. These letters crucified the students involved in the Students for a Democratic Society and castigated the Michigan Today for even covering the anniversary of the seminal essay. Political terms were hurled as if the most vile of insults: “socialists,” “radicals,” “liberalism.” I felt as if I were listening to talk radio. I volunteer to go first to criticize not only the excesses of the Sixties movement but many of its principles and primary traits and behaviors, particularly moral relativism, sexual promiscuity, recreational drug use, pseudo intellectualism, and the generalized assault on traditional institutions such as marriage. However, the movement was not all bad. It did struggle against the Vietnam War, America’s suicide attempt in the words of historian Paul Johnson. The American military machine killed millions of people who had never attacked or even threatened our country. Even though Congress never declared war as the US Constitution requires, we dropped more bombs on Vietnam than we did on Germany during the Second World War. The Sixties movement and the SDS also battled America’s apartheid in the South, industrial pollution, and poverty. Sociology is complex as are people. The students involved in SDS were not demons, even though they were wildly misguided in most areas in my view. In some respects, they were idealistic and self-sacrificing. In other respects, they were decadent and reckless. You can say that they were much like the society that produced them. As the adage goes, apples don’t fall far from the tree. Anybody who is given to rant about their children needs to take a good look in the mirror. I am glad to see Michigan Today cover the anniversary of the Port Huron Statement just as I would to see it write about neo-conservative Ann Coulter, another Michigan graduate. We have all kinds of people here. Let’s read about them and discuss the issues with civility and reason.
Passaic, New Jersey
(June 21st, 2012)
It's always gratifying to receive the latest e-mail Michigan Today because each one makes me proud to have spent half a decade at this wonderful institution. I enjoyed the interesting piece on the Port Huron Statement, a document that showed that education was working, and the slide show on the Clements Library. I grew up in Bay City and my mom's house is half a block from the site where Mr. Clements's dwelling stood. Her home was built by the woman who became his second wife and was designed by a U-M architecture professor. Your publication reminds me that U-M is our state's crown jewel.
Traverse City, Michigan
(June 21st, 2012)
I am a graduate of U of M (BFA--magna cum laude--1977) and I am appalled that, in your U-M Heritage article: "Port Huron Statement at 50," you would waste the pixel space to glorify some of the worst Communist/Socialist radicals--the Students for a "Democratic" Society or SDS--that this nation has ever produced. I am embarrassed to say that I am a part of that naive generation that produced such misguided and socially dangerous groups as the SDS. With the sad state of moral and economic decay in this once proud nation of ours I can see nothing to warrant pride in the fact that this student "movement," of social degenerates was begotten in the back alleys of U of M. It's already bad enough that we now have a president that was born and thoroughly indoctrinated on this socialist baloney. There are surely other events in the "heritage" of this great university one can take pride in and you should be ashamed (though I doubt that you are or will be)! Just my opinion. Thank you.
Dale H. Leach
(June 21st, 2012)
Your liberal slanted story about the Port Huron Statement is very offensive to me. It really marks the beginning of the left’s takeover of the colleges and the chilling of true free speech and interaction of ideas. Schools like UM are more indoctrination centers than places where facts and information and real thinking skills are taught. I actually received a great education in the 60’s. Most of my professors were dedicated to teaching, not indoctrination. Liberalism is a disaster. Just look at what Obama has tried to do. Transform America by taking away our freedoms. Liberalism has failed everywhere. Why don’t you run a piece that provides two sides to this story? Wait, that’s not what liberals do. I forgot.
(June 21st, 2012)
Dear Editors: I note with great dismay that Michigan Today appears to be proud of the connection between the University and the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). Unlike the author of this article, as an alumnus of the University of Michigan, I am not proud of any connection to such a movement—a movement characterized by spoiled rich kids devoted to communism, terrorism and treason. I find it interesting that the author completely ignores any connections in his article between the SDS and the Weather Underground, or any of the other violent, seditious movements of the sixties and seventies. When I think of SDS, the first images that come to my mind are of college kids spitting on brave soldiers returning from Vietnam, or planting bombs in Chicago—not this childish and ridiculous "Port Huron Statement." I encourage the editors of Michigan Today to publish a retraction of this article, or at least present a more balanced view of the damage that was wrought by these people and all their ilk during this terrible time. I would also encourage the editors to reject any further stories submitted by Mr. Maxwell, as a person who holds the SDS in such high regard has no business being associated with the alumni newsletter of the University of Michigan. Mr. Maxwell: I hope that this letter reminds you that not everyone in this country thinks that communism and political correctness are the cures for what ails America and the world. It saddens me to think that so many of my fellow citizens subscribe to the beliefs advocated by groups like SDS. My hope is that real-world experience will not be too harsh a teacher for the young people today that are misled by these ideas, and that we are able to reverse the damage caused by these thuggish, leftist organizations. The sooner the efforts of Marx, Hayden, and Haber are deposited on the trash heap of history, the better.
(June 4th, 2012)
Ladies and Gentlemen: Thank you, from Canterbury House, for your article "A Canterbury Tale" by Alan Glenn, May 23, 2012. As noted in the article, Canterbury House continues as the Episcopal campus ministry to the University of Michigan; and while it is true that times have changed, economically, musically, and even spiritually, some things remain very much the same. Gayle Rubin's description of Canterbury House as "very permissive, but [with] a deep and committed spirituality" remains true to this day, and our services continue to be "warm, welcoming, and ecumenical." Moreover, Canterbury House continues to be Ann Arbor's best venue for innovative, prophetic music. Our Concert Series features regional acts, student and faculty ensembles, and internationally-known artists drawing from jazz, contemporary classical, electronica, and other forms of improvised music. Recent concerts have included such established artists and Pauline Olveros, Stephen Rush, and the late Faruq Z. Bey, as well as musicians everyone else will be talking about soon, such as Joey Dosik, Theo Katzman, and Laurel Premo. I look forward to reading the article you will be publishing in another 20 years, about the thriving, welcoming, musical place that Canterbury House is and has always been. Again many thanks.
(The Rev.) Reid Hamilton, Chaplain
(May 29th, 2012)
LBJ's Great Society (May '12) has done more harm than good for its intended beneficiaries. My just published book, Marshall Plan versus the Great Society(www.createspace.com/3634888 or Amazon.com), describes how my wife and I used incentive-based methods, similar to the Marshall Plan, to help so many. The book is also listed on Michigan Alumni Author series, http://alumni.umich.edu/authors.
Vithaldas H Patel
Cornelius, North Carolina