The Behrend beacon. (Erie, Pa.) 1998-current, September 17, 1998, Image 4

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    page 4- The Behrend College Beacon. Thursday, Scptember 17, 1998
The Behrend College Beacon
published weekly by the students of Penn State Erie, The Behrend College
News Editor
Mil Jordan
Photography Editor
Andrea /Wpm,
Business Manager
Jainle Davis
Robert Speel
Jim 07,,,iwitlin
The Beacon is
published weekly by the students of
Penn State Erie, The Behrend
College; First Floor, The J. Elmer
Reed Union Building, Station Road,
Erie, PA 16563. The Beacon can he
reached by calling (814) 898-6488 or
(814) 898-6019 (FAX). ISSN 1071-
A view from the lighthouse
Behrend makes its mark
U.S. News and World Report has
ranked Behrend in the top ten north
ern public universities. Also on the
list from Pennsylvania was
Millersville University (#4) and
Shippensburg University (#5). This
is the first time that Behrend has been
ranked in the top ten public universi
The factors that go into determin
ing the rank of universities include:
academic reputation, retention, fac
ulty resources, student selectivity, fi
nancial resources, value added, and
alumni giving. Behrend faced several
challenges in regard to these criteria.
Behrend's retention rate is not as high
as many other schools because of
University Park. Many students are
forced to go to University Park be
cause of their majors. Despite this,
Behrend's retention rate has been ris
ing significantly, and this may have
pushed Behrend's rank higher. Dean
Lilley commented, "The high qual
ity of education at Penn State Erie is
a secret that is now coming to light
The anonymous gin of $2O million
will no doubt only further improve
the educational opportunities for stu-
etter to the Editor
1 ear Editor
We are writing to clarify several
isleading statements made by Mark
reenbank in his article in the Bea
-on on computer resources. In the ar
'cle Mr. Greenbank argues that it can
difficult for a student to find a com
b uter on campus because computers
n the labs are often in disrepair or
being used for classes. While we sym
bathize with Mr. Greenbank and any
.tudent having difficulty finding a
omputer, we would like to take ex
eption to his statements at the end of
is article where he suggests that
• pening up the "special computer lab
stablished in Lawrence Hall for the
'sychology department" would solve,
• r even help, the problem. First Mr.
reenbank seems woefully unin
ormed about both the purpose and
ature of the Psychology Lab.
Briefly, the Psychology Lab is not
: special computer lab for psychol
• gy majors to type their class papers
nd "play games" It is a small research
acility used by five faculty research
• rs, 15-20 independent study students,
0-50 students taking courses in the
• sychology research core, and an ad
• itional 30-60 students in 200 and 400
evel laboratory courses each semes
er. We conduct experiments, have lab
eetings, run lab classes, and train
tudents in statistics and research
A number of the computers that he
.peaks of are specialized research
- • uipment, configured for a variety
• f experiments. For example they are
sed to collect brain waves (ERPs) for
esearch on language and attention.
. everal are 386 and 486 DOS ma
hines, completely useless for stu
• ents interested in typing papers, surf
ng the web, or getting E-mail. One is
faculty's personal machine, and oth
rs were purchased with research
rant money. Those that are WINNT
1 achines are used primarily for data
Editor in Chief
Anne RapPtte
Managing Editor
Features Editor
J,tn Stubbs
Associate Editor
Mark Greenbank
Layout Editor
Mike Pokinr
Advertising Manager
Erin Edmger
Carey Smith
encourages letters to the editor.
Letters should include the address,
phone number, semester standing and
major of the writer. Writers can mail
their letters to behrcoll2@)
Letters must he received no later than
spm Tuesday for inclusion in that
week's issue.
dents. U.S. News and World Report
lists Business as the most popular
major at Behrend. With the increase
in funds for the School of Business,
retention is likely is also increase. It
is hoped that the U.S. News and
World Report rankings will bring Be
hrend more national attention and re-
cruit even more quality students.
The students, faculty, and staff of
Behrend deserve congratulations on
bringing Behrend to a new standard
of quality. By being ranked in the
top ten public universities, we are
giving Behrend the opportunity to
keep improving.
crunching and project development.
It is also important to point out that
for most of the semester the lab is
heavily used. In fact, an average of
350 students take part in experiments
each semester. Psychology research
students volunteer their time to keep
the lab open and provide tech support
and security. Based on availability,
any student in a psychology class is
welcome to use the lab during open
hours. We should also point out that
psychology classes often meet in the
psych lab for lessons requiring com
puters, thereby freeing the Computer
Center labs for other students.
We couldn't help but wonder why
Mr. Greenbank did not suggest open
ing up the laboratories in engineering
or science as extra student computer
labs. We would like to invite Mr.
Greenbank, or any other interested
party to contact us for a guided tour
of the psychology lab so that they
learn more about our research and the
training we provide. In the future,
might we respectfully suggest that the
reporters at the Beacon make at least
a modest effort to get the facts before
printing their articles.
Dawn G. Blasko, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Experimental
Coordinator of the Psychology Labo
Carl A. Kallgren, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Social Psy
In-Charge, Psychology
The Critic
Bad remakes of good films
The 1990's seems to be a decade of
remakes. Artists these days remake
songs, which can be enjoyable to a
point as long as the listener maintains
respect for the original. Another form
of art that is very popular to remake
is cinema. It is true that some films
can improve slightly by a reproduc
tion. However, this theory only hold
true when the film was pretty bad to
begin with (The Getaway 1976 vs.
The Getaway 1994). Producers with
a little more gall will make an attempt
at remaking some of history's more
notable films, with the only interest
in mind being money (can there be a
creative interest in mind?).
The Beacot
One made for television remake
comes to mind, that being the remake
of Stanley Kubrick classic The Shin
ing. Watching the TV version was
like watching a Leslie Nielsen spoof
of the original. True, I've heard some
of my friends giving it good reviews,
but these were all people who had
never seen the original. Had they seen
the Kubrick production, their re
sponses may have been different.
The lobster and the music to the dance o
Clinton should stay President
A few days ago, I took th
liberty to sit down at my compute
to read. Yes, I logged onto th
Internet and downloaded Kennet
Starr's report to congress on th
president. A document 40 millio
dollars in the making.
It was simple to undeistanc
very descriptive and it read like
cheap adult novel. In the end, th
Independent Counsel summed u
his research by declaring that th
president is guilty of perjury, of
struction of justice and a host c
other crimes. My reaction wa
Normally I am a fan of ju. ,
tice and any people who break th
law to be punished for it immedi
ately. However, when it involve
this president, and these crimes,
George Wallace: A bad ole
; y Michael Dorman
The one thing to know about
eorge Wallace is that he was a su
sreme opportunist.
Some considered him a racist. He
was not really.
Some considered him a segrega
ionist. He was not really.
Some considered him a populist. He
was not really.
But Wallace was a shrewd politi
ian. He would espouse virtually any
ause that he knew would win him
otes. That trait was evident from the
• arly days of his political career. As a
oung Alabama state legislator, he
ollowed Gov.. James Folson; a popu-
I ist and relative moderate on race is-
But then, in 1958, he ran for gover
or against a crime-busting state at
, prney general, John Patterson. Dur
i. rig a tough race, Patterson cam
le aigned day after day on his promise
o maintain segregation in Alabama.
allace, the Folsom protege, was
ore restrained. And Patterson won
he election.
Afterward, Wallace told associates:
'Boys, I let John Patterson out-seg
e. And I'm never gonna be out
.egged again." It was one promise he
Four years later, Wallace again ran
lir governor _ promising to stand in
very schoolhouse door in the state
o prevent desegregation and won. He
ent on to three more terms as gov
• rnor and to run four campaigns for
president, all the while playing the
ace card.
Jim Folsom, sitting in the living
oom of his home at Cullman, Ala.,
once told me: "The difference be
ween George and me is that he wants
o keep people in slavery and I don't."
Wallace barely flinched at such
riticism. Once, sitting beside him in
small state-owned jet from Mont
:ornery to Mobile, I asked him about
Imagine comparing two people's re
sponses to each of the films after
viewing them for the first time. After
viewing the TV version, the response
may be, "Yeah it was pretty scary."
After viewing the Kubrick original,
didn't sleep that night."
The reason I'm harping on the sub
ject of remakes is that during the MTV
Video Music Awards, my friends and
I saw a commercial for the new Gus
Van Sant picture, Psycho. After the
advertisement, somebody said, "That
looks pretty good. - "Did you see the
original?" I asked. Their answer was
Now I'm not attempting to appeal
to the reader as a film expert, I'm just
simply trying to state that those who
have not seen the original Psycho may
he intrigued by the new version be
cause it is intriguing, just as it was
some thirty years ago when the Alfred
Hitchcock version was originally re
leased. The producers depend on this.
They expect people to associate a
movie title with greatness, and have
these people expect that the newer
can't quite demand the same type
of justice.
Legally, Clinton is hiding
behind terminology and may be
safe for a while, hut did he lie? I
would have to say he did. Does this
however constitute a high crime for
which impeachment is the only an
swer? Absolutely not.
I feel that impeaching Presi
dent Clinton is the absolute worst
thing congress can do. If he is im
peached, Clinton would most likely
resign, and a resignation would
cause the same amount of turmoil
that it caused when Nixon did it.
On top of that, Clinton is doing too
good of a job to remove him from
office. Of all Presidents who served
in my lifetime, and of most of those
in the recent past, Clinton is one of
widespread complaints that he ran the
most corrupt administration in Ala
bama history. "Hell," he said. "That
just reminds me of an old song;
'What's the Reason I Ain't Pleasin'
You?' "
It is customary, I know, to refrain
from speaking ill of the dead. I would
think that would be particularly so in
the case of a man who suffered terri
bly from bullet wounds inflicted by
an intended assassin. And I am trying
hard to think of something positive
about Wallace. About the best I
can do is to say he was instrumental
in greatly improving Alabama's jun
ior college system. Some undoubtedly
will say that, in recent years, Wallace
recanted his past views on segrega
tion. But since I don't believe those
were genuine views in the first place;
merely cynical examples of vote bait
'NOY, WOO GEM taiiktitY
version will he much more entertain-
While interviewing Alfred
Hitchcock in 1961, the great Francois
Truffant remarked, "It occurred to me
that Psycho was oriented toward a
new generation of filmgoers." Which
is absolutely true. Hitchcock intended
it to be that way. The film, in all of
its black-and-whiteness, was incred
ibly revolutionary for the early
1960'5. The classic look is what made
the film so great then and so captivat
ing today.
Trying to better a film that has been
rated number 18 on the AFl's 100 Top
Movies list requires either a huge ego
or a huge need for money. Gus Van
Sant, who is now soaking in the suc
cess of his latest project, Good Will
Hunting most likely has no need for
spare cash. So apparently, the Acad
emy Award nominee feels he can take
a piece of film history and make it his
The producer of the new Psycho,
Brian Grazer, has less notable credits
such as, Liar Liar, Sgt. Bilko, The
the best
We have a robust economy,
that with the exception of a few
days last week, has staved off the
global financial crisis. Clinton has
also balanced the budget years
ahead of schedule, and ended a year
with a budget surplus. He has stood
up to Saddam and to terrorists as a
whole, declaring that America
won't stand for terrorist actions any
As to the actual crime of ly
ing before a Grand Jury. This is a
serious crime, one that should be
punished under normal circum
stances. However, I can't attack the
president, or any person for that
matter, for lying about his sex life.
I don't think that the Grand Jury
even had the right to question some-
I can't give him much credit for that.
Perhaps it is unfair, but I recall only
too vividly sweating in 95-degree heat
and watching an adamant, clench
jawed George Wallace stand in a Uni
versity of Alabama doorway and bar
admission to two black citizens of his
state; simultaneously thumbing his
nose at the president of the United
States. That John F. Kennedy won the
fight; upholding court orders requir
ing the students' admission; did not
diminish the outrageousness of
Wallace's act. He was standing in that
doorway not to uphold any legal prin
ciple but to enhance his own political
And I recall watching Wallace's
state troopers, many of them dedi
cated law-enforcement officers but
following orders, bludgeoning the
Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s follow-
Nutty Professor (1996), Kindergarten
Cop, Spies Like Us, and Splash.
These were all great films in their own
right, but how can one expect a pro
ducer of mostly comedy films to make
a horror film successful? Because all
of these films contained in Grazer's
resume were directed toward main
stream audiences, as the new Psycho
is intended to he. Hitchcock admit
ted that the original was an experi
mental film. It takes experimental
filmmakers like Hitchcock to make a
radical film, to show the moviegoers
something new and different. But it
takes conformational, financially
minded filmmakers to trick the audi
ences into thinking that they're some
thing new.
I'm not advocating the boycott of
this film. I will most likely see it
myself. I invite the reader to do the
same. But beforehand, see the origi
nal, definitive Psycho. And remem
ber that Hitchcock's version was
made from scratch, from pure imagi
nation, not a prescripted model.
one on his sex life; no laws were
broken. True he had an affair, true
he is not a very moral person, but
no crime was committed between
Monica Lewinsky and him. It ap
parently was consensual, they were
both of age, no laws broken here
except possibly the high crime of
illicit use of cigars.
I have never bought into the
theories that the Republicans are
trying to ruin the president's career,
but the salacious extraneous details
that Ken Starr included in the re
port and the total frivolity of the
investigation may just change my
mind. Clinton was a good presi
dent, is and will continue to be a
good president. He made mistakes,
but he's human and he's still doing
a great job.
ers on the streets of Birmingham for
daring to
protest the governor's policies. This
government-inspired violence, again,
served no purpose other than
Wallace's political aspirations.
Wallace was fond of poking fun at
"pointy-headed" Washington bureau
crats. He claimed that all they had in
their expensive attache cases were
peanut-butter sandwiches. But
Wallace had his own pointy-headed
(or at least pointy-hooded) associates;
the Ku Klux Klan members who sup
ported his political campaigns and
indeed held important positions in
those campaigns.
I'm sorry. Try as I may, I cannot
find many pleasant words to say about
George Wallace.