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UBC Publications

The Ubyssey Oct 7, 2005

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Friday, 7 October, 2005   THE UBYSSEY
Blossom Chic
Local designer aims to dress Vancouver up:
Fewer yoga pants! More ruffled trims!
by Jessalynn Keller
Chloe Angus is on a mission. While
other aspiring colleagues have
thrown in the towel and headed
eastwards, this local designer is
. determined to make Vancouverites
more stylish. Angus launched her
Spring 2006 line at BC Fashion
Week on Granville Island. Tided
'Blossom Chic,' Angus' pieces are
sophisticated and sexy, yet casual
and fresh. 'Blossom Chic is strong,
feminine, and unique,' the designer explains, 'it is eveiything that
BC women are.'
And therein lies the secret to
Angus' designs. Born, raised and
educated in Vancouver, Angus
knows Vancouver women and
what they want—casual, easy to
wear clothes for all body types
that are still sophisticated and
cosmopolitan stylish. Her new
line uses many of the spring
trends seen recently at the Spring
2006 New York Fashion Week
while reworking the styles tor
make them wearable for west
coast women.
"I want to dress Vancouver
women up a httie," the designer
explains, "show them they can
throw a fitted gold jacket over their
casual outfit" Angus designs with
this mix and match philosophy in
mind, pairing soft linen pants with
delicate hand-painted tops and
flowing chiffon dresses with tailored silk jackets. A classic pencil
skirt is teamed with an open back
blouse to add an edge for a night on
the town, while a satin slip-dress
and patterned scarf provides the
perfect outfit for a casual evening
walk along the beach.
Angus' colour combinations
also reflect her desire to make
dressing easy for Vancouver
women. Combining rich whites,
buttercup yellows, and slate
greys with accents of blues and
pale golds, the muted colour
palate of "Blossom Chic" is not
only effortless to wear but also
easy to match with those pieces
already in your closet.
While clean lines and simple
cuts dominate Angus' collection,
she accents many of her pieces
with feminine flowers, a modest
ribbon, or a ruffled trim. These
additions remain subtle surprises
though, adding a unique west coast
spring feel to the clothing. It is no
shock that Angus specifically mentions the beauty of Vancouver
spring blossoms as a major inspiration to her collection.
Angus plans to stay in
Vancouver, unlike many of her fellow west coast designers who make
the move east to Toronto or
Montreal in order to escape the
Vancouver style staples of fleece
and yoga pants,, and to access larger fashion scenes. Angus has a
passionate    enthusiasm    about
Vancouver's style and sees value
in the newness of the Vancouver
fashion scene. Consequently, she
has high expectations for the city's
future in the fashion industry.
"I want to help bring the international [fashion] eye this way," Angus
gushes. Not surprisingly, she is
already doing her part—Angus has
been invited to show her next collection at Saks 5th Avenue in New
York. Lucky for lis, we can get our
hands on Angus' collection before
the rest of the world at several
stores in the Lower Mainland,
including The Bay Downtown
Vancouver, Helmet on West 4th
Avenue, Ella's' in Langley, arid
Marilyn's in West Vancouver. II
UBC Men's Volleyball
October 7,7pm
UBC Thunderbirds play
against Hawaii. Come cheer
on your school team and
watch a game of volleyball.
UBC Symphony
Chan Centre
October 7,8pm
Are you interested in enjoying a night listening to
instrumentals? Then come
listen to the UBC Symphony
Orchestra directed by Jesse
MuchmusicVJ Search
October 7,10-4pm
time to whip out your best
talents for the Muchmusic VJ
search 2005 baby! Here's
your second chance to audition and wow the judges
and become the next
MUchmusic VJ or to find out
how you can make it on TV.
In either case there will be
tons of prizes for all efforts.
SUB Partyroom
October 7,7pm-11pm
$5 tickets
SUS is having a jager-
themed event featuring lots
of drinks such as the jager-
bomb. If you arrive before 8
you can receive a free beer
and bratwurst. Members of
The Ubyssey will be there
stealing new volunteers.
Turkey Bowling
Third Floor Lasserre (just behind
that long useless bench)
October 7,5pm
Frabric Land and Good
Times present turkey bowling. There could be turkeys
there but it is uncertain.
However there will be a
chance to win prizes and if
you shoot a spare or a strike
you get one free shot.
Arcade Fire
The Forum
October 7, 8pm
The tickets for this show
could or could not be sold
out at Zulu Records.
Commodore Ballroom
October 7,8pm
This concert is unfortunately
sold out but I'm sure you'll be
able to find some scalpers if
you really want to see the
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Friday, 7 October, 2005
Editorial Board
coordinating editor Jesse Marchand
news editors Paul Evans St Eric Szeto
culture editor Simon Underwood
sports editor Megan Smyth
Bryan Zandberg
photo editor Yinan Max Wang
production manager Michelle Mayne
volunteers Liz Green
research/letters Claudia Li
The Ubyssey is the official student newspaper of the University
of British Columbia. It is published every Tuesday and Friday
by The Ubyssey Publications Sodety. We are an autonomous,
democratically run student organisation, and all students are
encouraged to participate.
Editorials are chosen and written by the Ubyssey staff. They
are the expressed opinion of the staff, and do not necessarify
reflect the views of The Ubyssey Publications Sodety or the
University of British Columbia. All editorial content appearing in
The Ubyssey is the property of The Ubyssey Publications Sodety.
Stories, opinions, photographs and artwork contained herein
cannot be reproduced without the expressed, written permission
of The Ubyssey Publications Sodety.
The Ubyssey is a founding member of Canadian University Press
(CUP) and adheres to CUP's guiding prindples.
Letters to the editor must be under 300 words. Please indude
your phone number, student number and. signature (not for
publication) as well as your year and faculty with all submissions.
ID will be checked when submissions are dropped off at the
editorial office of The Ubyssey, otherwise verification will be done
, by phone.*Pefsperth«s^ are opinion pieces, over 300 words but.
.under 750 words and are run according to space. "Freestyles" are
opinion pieces written by Ubyssey staff members. Priority will be
given to letters and perspectives over freestyles unless the latter is
time sensitive. Opinion pieces wil not be run until the identity of
the writer has been verified. The Ubyssey reserves the right to edit
submissions for length and darity.
It is aareed by all persons placing display or classified advertising
that if the Ubyssey Publications Sodety faiis to publish an
advertisement or if an error in the ad occurs the liability of the
UPS will not be greater than the price paid for the ad. The UPS
shall not be responsible for slight changes or typographical errors
that do not lessen the value or the impact of the ad.
Room 24, Student Union Building
6138 Student Union Boulevard
Vancouver, BCV6T 1Z1
tel: 604-822-2301
web: www.ubyssey.bcca
e-mail: feedback@ubyssey.bcca
Room 23, Student Union Building
•advertising: 604-822-1654
business office: 604-822-6681
e-mail: advertising@ubjrasey.bcca
business manager Fernie Pereira
ad sales Wesley Ma
ad design Shalene Takara
Chris Little went on a scavenger hunt to find Szabo who was
shopping for Greg Ursic who wanted to buy a Jesse Ferreras for
Jessalyn Keller's birthday so that Trevor Gilks could wear his original Amanda Stutt and carry a Laurence Butet Roche handbag
before he went to dinner with Will Keats-Osbom who wanted
Heather Travis to take him to Boris Korb/s house and introduce
him to Gaelan Marsderi who secretly thought that Heather Pauls
was really gorgeous even though she had a thing for beautiful
boys named Gabriel Murray who drove a Scott Birdsley and was
talking to Colleen Tang, the girt who believed in love at first sight
because Champagne Qioquer had said it existed after a conversation with Andrew MacRae who got drunk off of Trevor Gilks martinis after he had been to see the new movie directed by Bryan
Zandberg the famous director who made the movie called Simon
Underwood starring household names like Claudia Li and Eric
Szeto who had secretly had a moonshine business with Paul
Evans and they had been busted by Jesse Marchand even though
Megan Smyth had told her not to because she thought that
Michelle Mayne was a better target and Liz Green agreed quietly
because she feared for her life and Yinan Max Wang had asked
her not to say anything in case Spencer Keys heard and wanted
to join the scavenger hunt
cover design Michelle Mayne
editorial graphic Simon Underwood
Canada Post Sales Agreement
Number 0040878022
I ?^Sf^^'^,sSJS^<»i5!S?.^T.lr»;;.r
THE UBYSSEY   Friday, 7 October, 2005
Culture 3
Dragons and Tigers leap from the screen at VIFF
by Jesse Ferreras
Running parallel to the press-heavy exhibition
of Canadian film at the 24th annual
Vancouver International Film Festival was the
2005 Dragons and Tigers showcase. This
year's program featured eight films in competition and over 30 features from several countries, ranging from smaller nations such as
Tibet to stronger commercial and independent markets such as Japan. A wide selection of
films provided for an exhibition of talent that
succeeded in bringing East Asian cinema wide
recognition in Canada.
Now in its twelfth year, the Dragons and
Tigers series owes much to the participation of
two individuals who have worked diligently to
bring the cinema of East Asia to Vancouver.
The first is Tony Rayns, a London-based filmmaker, critic and festival curator who has contributed numerous articles to publications like
as Film Comment and the influential French
pubhcation Cahiers du Cinema. He is the
author of the forthcoming book Wong Kar-wai
on Wong Kar-wai.
"When I was first asked to do this job, I
wanted to focus on Pacific Asia, and I wanted
it to be veiy comprehensive,* he said. "I wanted to show a wide margin of films...commercial, art, poHtical, experimental...I am against
the idea of a focus...I want it to be inclusive
instead of exclusive.*
Rayns found a common ally in Brad
Birarda, an employee of Dundee Securities
in the departments of finance and venture
capitalism, who has served as the single financier for the program for the,'past five
years. Through his financial contribution to
the festival he has sought to bring Canadian
and Asian cultures together in Vancouver.
One of Birarda's most significant contributions is his support for the Dragons and
Tigers Award for Young Cinema, recognizing the most creative and innovative first or
second feature-length film from Pacific
Asia. The award itself is a prize of $5,000 to
the film's director, courtesy of Birarda, and
is administered by a juiy of seasoned filmmakers and scholars.
This year's jury was comprised of three
members whose involvement in the international film community reflected
Vancouver's strong ties to international festivals . and exhibitions across the world.
David Bordwell, professor of Film Studies at
the University of Wisconsin-Madison and
co-author of Film Art: An Introduction,
served this year  as  chairman of a jury
rounded out by Li Cheuk-to, previously
the director of the Hong Kong International
Film Festival, as well as Gerwin Tamsma,
programmer for the Rotterdam International Film Festival.
The competition proved exceptionally
difficult with the screenings of varying films
from, several different genres and countries.
One particular film that amassed significant
attention was Gie, a sophomore feature
from Indonesian director Riri Riza. It is the
story of Soe Hok-gie, a young intellectual
who utilises his superior intelligence and
respect for free thought to organise protests
against Indonesia's repressive governments
of the '50's and '60's. The film documents
efforts that culminated in the organisation
of student protests against these governments and attests that they contributed to
their fall.
Although the jury acknowledged the
achievements of all films competing this year,
they were excited to announce the winner, Liu
Jiayin's Ox Hide, which received its North
American premiere at this year's festival.
Thirty-two fixed-angle shots of the filmmaker
and her family in a cramped Beijing home
encompass the film, which has received wide
acclaim as one of the most innovative Chinese
films since 1997's Xiao Wu (Unknown
Pleasures). The audience greeted the young
filmmaker with rousing applause and Tony
Rayns thereafter announced that a screening
of the film had been added for October 7th at
the Vancity Screening Room at the new
Vancouver International Film Centre.
Bordwell himself claimed Ox Hide succeeded
at "[showing] how formal experimentation
can coexist with engrossing human drama
and powerful emotion."
In addition to its competitive program,
Dragons and Tigers functioned eveiy year as
an exhibition for an eclectic selection of films
from Asia-Pacific nations. Though he does not
like to play favourites at the festival, Mr.
Rayns gave particular attention to Nagasaki
Shunichi's Heart, Beating in the Dark, a world
premiere event at VIFF 2005.
"I think it is the greatest achievement in
Japanese cinema this year," he said. "I was a
supporter of the first film and had a preordained curiosity about the new one...[a world
premiere] places great trust in VIFF."
Shunichi's film is a remake of his 1982
film of the same name, the haunting story of
two young lovers hving in self-imposed exile
after the murder of their child. Shunichi takes
a remarkably unique approach to the remake,
telling the story of a new couple following the
same path trod by the original twosome,
intercut with images from the original film as
we^l as the rehearsal and shooting of the
The meteoric rise of Korean cinema was
reflected in this year's program with two special presentations. Duelist is the latest from
director Lee Myung-se, whose international
hit Nowhere to Hide had its world premiere
in Vancouver. His latest is a spectacular
swordplay thriller set in Joseon Dynasty
Korea. The stoiy of a feisty young officer who
pursues a mysterious swordsman known only
as Sad Eyes, Rayns described the film as the
"first erotic swordsplay" movie.
The diverse selection of East Asian films
finished its primary exhibition on October
5th, but many screenings from the Dragons
and Tigers slate continue to the end of the festival. Rayns advised audiences at the October
fifth awards ceremony that Ox Hide had a
slim chance of receiving a wide theatrical
release, and that its final screening on
October 7th would likely be the last time for
filmgoers to catch it. a
Talk to people on the other side of the aisle': Greenstreet
What happens when Michael Moore gets invited to a Utah campus days before the US election:
Oct 12, VanCity
by Greg Ursic
The decision by the student council at Utah
State Valley College to book Michael Moore for
a speaking engagement two weeks before the
2004 election seemed like a great way to start
a dialogue. But few could have anticipated the
firestorm that came to divide the campus.
Petitions, threats, and lawsuits: it was ideal-
fodder for a documentary.
As soon as Moore's visit became public ;
knowledge, Steve Greenstreet knew he had to :
act fast Greenstreet, a film student at nearby;
Brigham Young University, called independent film producer Bryan Young. The two wasted no time deliberating about whether of not
to make a film.
"We were shooting in two hours," relates
By the time they reached the campus the
halls were bristling with angry political
groups who were protesting Moore's visit. It
was a harbinger of what was to come..
The ensuing 'debates' heated!* up* to  a
fever pitch when Kay Andrews, a multimillionaire real estate developer and Bush-
backer became downright outrageous by
Moore's impending visit. When efforts to
bribe the student council failed, Andrews
filed a lawsuit which left me puzzled. How,
I asked Greenstreet, "can a private citizen,
not affiliated with the college, a supposed
bastion of free speech/ sue them for dis-
,agreeing 'lyith a speaker?
:'.".'• "It's suhple," he replied. "[Kay] has money
and clout witli'the legislature."
With all vitriol hovering around the film, I
wonderied'how the filmmakers' families reacted to the project
"t tibiae* from a militaiy family where
everyone -has served in the military except
ine,"' smd:Greeiistxeet "They're extremely
Republican and right wing. To this day my
parents have not seen the film and refuse
to see it"
There is no doubt that the story makes for
great drama. But what about the legitimate
criticism that a person like Mr Andrews comes
across as a caricatures who represents neither
Mormons nor neo-conservatives?
Greenstreet does not mince words when it
comes to understanding the polemics  of
American politics. "I don't beHeve it's that
polarised," he insists. "Whenever a controversy arises everyone feels they must choose a
side. You're either for or against Moore and
can't be in the middle."
And as Young notes, "It's so easy to spark
that ignition. If you say you're against Bush it's
considered treasonous...as one caUer says, if it
were up to him, Michael Moore would be
tried, convicted and executed for treason."
"I believe it's because people weren't tolerant [is why we are] spending our time fighting
each other," Greenstreet continues. What's
missing in civil discourse in America is that
people don't Hsten to each other. We need a
more gentlemanly debate, where you shake
hands at the end. Let's find some common
ground and start from there."
Young concurs, "The message in the Q
and A's [after the screenings] land the tone
of the website is that we need to have a
more open dialogue and civil dialogue and I
think that people on both sides respond to
that. We've been able to have sane, civil discussions."
At this point I check to see if either of them
is wearing rose coloured contacts—surely they
can't   be   that   naive.   And   that's   when
Greenstreet drops his bombshell.
"The students who invited Moore were
actuaUy Mormon RepubHcan Bush supporters," he says almost nonchalantly. Thinking
I've misheard him, I ask him to repeat what
he said and he does, adding "I expected
them to be these Hberal left-leaning people
and they weren't and that was kind of inspiring, that someone with an opposing view
would support him. To the last day they were
the strongest supporters of. Moore's right
to speak."
"It was moments like that," Young notes,
"[that] gave us a glimmer of hope that you can
talk to people on the other side of the aisle."
While he's optimistic, Young is also a
realist: "It's hard to do with people shouting
from the sideHnes. If Michael Moore were
invited back to the school today, you'd Have
the same problem." t!
MGx<Mwtav«Mo«AKwmi A Culture
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Shirley Madame wades
through the schmalfze
Talented Oscar winner gets cutesy
playing everywhere
by Trevor Gilks
Shirley MacLaine is like a fine
French wine. She gets classier and
more exquisite with age. Shirley
MacLaine is also like a tuba. She is
loud, brash, and unsubtle, but in
the right contexts, beautiful.
Shirley MacLaine is a fine French
In Her Shoes is MacLaine's lat
auu     v/iitJ
in which the
eccentric goddess somehow suppresses every charming trait that
has made her an icon, as if she's
trying to keep it a secret that she's
talented. Essentially, the effect is
that In Her Shoes becomes the
equivalent to About Schmidt. Both
movies put flamboyantly full-of-life
performers into the minds of mundane characters, but what separates the two films is that while
Schmidt gives Jack Nicholson a quietly triumphant journey of self-discovery, Shoes gives MacLaine a
two-dimensional character with
nothing more to do than look cute
and spout vague truisms.
In addition to the inexcusable
waste of Shirley MacLaine, the
intellect-insulting predictability is
In Her Shoes' other glaring flaw.
The film centres around two sisters, played by Cameron Diaz and
Toni Collette. One of whom is a successful lawyer, practical, all business and too busy for a boyfriend
while the other one is a hopelessly
ditzy but beautiful blonde who
can't hold down a job (guess which
actress plays which sister!).
Even without seeing the trailers,
it should come as no surprise to
anyone who grew up with basic
cable that that the sisters will quarrel, then have one big fight, separate, realise they miss each other,
and have a heartfelt reunion. More
experienced pop culture aficionados will also be able to guess that
the 'serious' sister will learn to
have fun, the 'wild' sister will
realise the value of hard work, one
or more of them will finally meet
Mr Right, and the movie will end
with a wedding.
Despite a lucrative and diverse
past of films like LA Confidential,
Wonder Boys and 8 Mile, director
Curtis Hanson only now seems to
have found the type of film he was
born to make: a shamelessly
manipulative chick flick.
Curtis Hanson plows through
this muck like Jimi Hendrix playing
'Mary Had A Little Lamb.* Hanson
presents everything in such a likeable way, and Diaz and Collette
take their lightweight roles very
seriously. The result is that a number of individual scenes are so
emotional and persuasive that we
forget the fact that the screenplay is
still running strictly on autopilot.
But then there is also a good
chunk of the movie that takes place
in a retirement home. After the sisters have their big fight, Diaz tracks
down their long-lost grandmother
(MacLaine) to try to scrounge up
some cash. This is the unfortunate
section of the film where the whole
thing falls apart.
All of a sudden the seriousness
of Diaz's performance is completely forgotten in exchange for easy
laughs at all of the supposedly
hilarious ways a wild city girl can
cause a ruckus in a retirement
home—she wears a bikini to aqua-
cize! And worst of all, instead of
actual characters, we get a collection of all of the cutest senior citizens in the world who sit around
and self-consciously mug like they
know they're on camera.
In a movie that is 130 minutes
and already, has a perfectly complete stoiy, why do we have this
pointless segment of the film set in
a retirement community? Maybe
because it was in the book on which
the movie was based, or maybe a
screenwriting team just had an
impromptu 'wouldn't it be funny
if an old person ..." brainstorming
session and were really, really
pleased with what they came
up with.
It is to the film's great detriment
that Curtis Hanson cuts the microphone on the tuba—he reminds us
how boring the rest of the orchestra is and misses the opportunity to
turn a schmaltzy tear-jerker into a
moving character drama. But, if
you like your wine cheap and
sweet, this may be what you're
looking for. fl
I £■..
THEUBYSSEY   Friday, 7 October.2005
Culture 5
Roll me up some Yerba Buena
Richards on Richards, October 8
by Szabo
They could have been called the
Andres Levin Band.
But the mastermind behind
Yerba Buena, the seven-piece
Latin funk orquestra export from
New York City, opted against
that self-aggrandizing inclination,
naming the band "good herb"
instead (In Spanish, yerba buena
refers to a variety of, uh, mint).
Smart marketing move, and not a
bad suggestion for a Httie pre-
show refreshment either, should
you chose to join me at Richards
on Richards on Saturday for some
very good herb indeed.
Having worked with the likes of
Tina Turner, Macy Gray, Chaka
Khan and David Byrne, "Dre" Levin
knows talent when he hears it Yerba
Buena s permanent members flesh
out the vocal, horn, rhythm, percussion, and bass sections of the group.
Hailing from Caracas, Havana,
Miami and "Neuva York", in the new
album Island Life, Levin has pulled
together an energetic, polished, and
knowledgeable group of professional musicians, each highly competent
at helping you getyo' groove on.
Levin also has the pull needed
to keep the revolving doors at his
Funhouse Studios in NYC swinging with superb guests, such as flamenco maestro Peret, Latin R&B
soul man Joe Bataan, and Ml from
hip hop politicos Dead Prez. Also
the composer, bandmaster and
executive producer for Yerba
Buena, Levin is best known as a
recording  artist,  mixing all the
tracks as well as playing electric
guitar for the band.
This new album, like the debut
President Alien, does not content
itself with being the funkiest
Latin boogaloo you ever shook
your thang to. The band builds on
solid solca, cumbia and rumba
rhythms, diverging into delectable tangents of the hip hop,
house, pop, and middle-eastern
varieties. The reggaeton remix of
"Sugar Daddy* confirms that
Yerba Buena has all 70 of their
collective fingers on the musical
pulse of this entire hemisphere.
So stuff some mint into the bottom of your mojito, roll up some
good herb and grab the saddle of
the Venezuelan donkey now transporting you into the heady jungle
heights of the Pico Bolivar mountain range. This will be the hottest
hve show you might ever miss. II
Blitzkrieg Pop: support the resistance
Blitzkrieg Pop
by Chris Little
Marco Hass is definitely not for
the faint of heart. His fourth
album under the alias ' T.
Raumschmiere—borrowed from
the William S. Burroughs story
"The Dreamcops*—infuses the
most metallic and abrasive elements of electronic music with a
nuanced pop sensibility. The
result is similar to the aftermath
of a horrific accident: gruesome,
yet strangely fascinating.
Blitzkrieg Pop augments the
brash sonic assault with Haas'
own vocal contributions, which
recall the work of several stalwarts of the early-nineties industrial scene. Assistance from luminaries like Ellen Allien of Bitch
Control fame also lend the album
some diversity, but the tone
throughout remains steadfastly
"Sick Like Me", the album's
first single and leadoff track, is a
driving paean to social depravity
that wastes no time illustrating T.
Raumshmiere's unique approach
to producing music in addition to
revealing his not-so-hidden
thoughts on the human condition.
The tendency toward self-destruction is recurrent theme on
Blitzkreig Pop, made abundantly
clear by song titles like "Diving In
Whiskey* and "A Mess". At other
times however, the dance floor
appears to be the primary focus,
with robust 4/4 techno jams like
"An Army Of Watt" and "All
Systems Gol" providing welcome
relief from the intense fury of the
more corrosive numbers.
The only true anomaly on this
release is the pop-centric "A Very
Loud Lullaby*, with its layered
female vocals . and euphorically
melodic chorus. While it certainly
has the potential to appeal to a
wider range of listeners than the
rest of the material on Blitzkreig
Pop, it would be a shame to see
such a talented artist achieve success by so clearly betraying his
punk roots. We all need to do our
part to support ihe resistance. 55
lP\d you khow..
• io BC public school
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elementary level
• more students are
entering public and
private elementary
classrooms with
Montessori preschool
experience than ever
• there is a shortage of
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The Montessori approach to education
offers something for all teachers interested
in promoting a positive attitude towards
life-long learning and  helping students
to reach their full potential. Investigate
professional development, university credit,
and alternative employment options.
Don't expect to clap your hands
The problem with the hype machine is that it raises its followers'
expectations far higher than a straight-ahead rock band could
ever hope to satisfy. The good news about Clap Your Hands Say
Yeah's spotlight-stealing on their tour 'supporting' The National,
which made a late and rainy stop at Sonar last Sunday, is that
the audience is forced to endure the entire set of the original
headliners—a pleasantly rewarding experience, including some
electric string action—to get to the goods. Whether CYHSY
has got the goods can be based loosely on one's expections.
I went expecting the hype to disappoint, and was impressed
by the band's solid and simmering intensity. Word has it I'm
the only one. michelle mayne photos
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Friday, 7 October, 2005
Friday, 7 October, 2005
Feature 7
Discover Japan!
Experience Japan for a year with The Japan Exchange and
Teaching (JET) Programme as an Assistant English Teacher or
Coordinator for International Relations, beginning August 2006.
Applicants must be a Canadian citizen, hold a Bachelor's
Degree by the end of Juiy 2006, and be under the age of 40.
Information Session at UBC
Thursday, October 13 -12:30-2:00 PM
Buchanan D, Rm 230
Tuesday, October 18 -12:30-2:00 PM
Asian Centre Auditorium
Application Forms and Information
UBC Career Centre
Consulate General of Japan _. . ^«   #*«*«%>-
Tel: (604)684-5868, ext 415 November 18, 2005
The JET Programme Is an official programme of the Government of Japan
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Proto&tyJvdM Marat** Prtjicta
What is in the stars?
by Heather Pauls features staff
illustrations by Simon Underwood
A thousand years after astrology and astronomy went their separate ways, people still believe that their
destiny can be written in the stars. Are their ideas credible or is it just more fun to be superstitious?
Aau A RI us
The night sky is wonderful like shattered glass
on black asphalt or a black velvet blanket
speckled with sparkling diamonds. Lying on
an open field outside of the city, the sky looks
immense, dazzling, and overwhelmingly
huge. Sublime. Compared to the vastness of the universe—even the part of the universe you can see with
the naked eye—you're essentially insignificant You're
a speck of dust in a conglomeration of matter. Does
your life mean anything? Is there something going on
in this universe, something to take away from those
myriad constellations?
According to astrologers, there sure is.
Basically, astrology is the belief that the sun, moon,
planets and stars radiate energies, and that the
positions and movements of these celestial bodies
are affective in understanding, analysing and predicting human existence on earth. An astrologer
believes that what happens in the heavens, will
affect human life—so above, so below. Calculating
the position of celestial bodies at the moment of
your birth could then foretell your destiny, your
fated personality, and even offer insight into your
daily life. For thousands of years, astrologers have
been looking up into the night sky, and creating
meaning from all those twinkling lights.
Astrology is popular; you can read your daily horoscope in most newspapers and magazines. Almost
everyone knows their own 'sign' depending on their
birth. But how many people are actually believers? Is
astrology even a plausible, scientifically validated
belief system? Or is it a throwback superstition that
still hasn't kicked the bucket?
Astrology in ye olden days
Many moons ago, astrology and astronomy were one
and the same thing. Both looked heavenward with an
eye of wonder, eager to decipher planetary movements and the physics of the universe. But even well
before the onset of the Enlightenment the two disciplines diverged on one major issue. Yes, astrology
was a study of the stars that could mathematically
map the heavens and make predictions on celestial
movement However, unlike astronomy, astrology is
the study of how these movements influence life on
earth. Gleaning meaning from the stars is where
astrology and astronomy parted ways.
"The words sound kind of similar, but one of them
is actually a science, and the other one'is actually a
whole bunch of nonsense,' says Douglas Scott a professor at UBC's Department of Astronomy and
Physics, when asked the difference between astronomy and astrology. They were kind of similar, but that
was a thousand years ago." So if astrology has
digressed into nonsense from its prior scientific
glory, why is it that astrology is no longer considered
valid from a scientific perspective?
The signs, they are a-changin'
First off, back to the basics of astrological charting.
The zodiac is made up of twelve 'signs,' each corresponding to certain character traits and destinies.
People, depending on the date of their birth, are
lumped into one of the signs. For instance, I was born
January ninth, therefore I am a Capricorn. My power
animal is a goat My element is earth. At the time of
my birth, the sun was in the constellation Capricorn,
according to astrological charting.
But without even questioning the probability that
my birth date will affect my life, it is already problematic to say that I'm a Capricorn. The constellations
have changed.
The earth wobbles on its axis, so the constellations are actually moving round the sky over many
thousands of years. So the actual constellations now
have shifted compared to the ones that most
astrologers use," Scott explains. Precession, the name
given to this phenomenon of the earth's movement,
has the dire effect of giving people incorrect astrological readings.
Richard Dawkins, a well-known scientist for his
best-selling book The Selfish Gene, expressed the
same frustration with constellation changes when he
wrote The Real Romance in the Stars," published in
The Independent newspaper in December of 1995.
"My birthday (26 March) is listed in the papers as
Aries but this is the sun sign which somebody with my
birthday would have had when Ptolemy codified all
that stuff," Dawkins explains. "Because of the preces-
sional shift of approximately one whole zodiacal sign
over the [CE] era, my sign is in fact (if you can call it a
fact) Pisces." Perhaps all this time, everyone has been
reading the wrong horoscope when they check the
daily newspaper.
People are complicated
At this point, the only problem with astrology noted
has been that people might be grouped into the wrong
sign. That's a significant slip-up, as every single day,
people are receiving incorrect information about
what to expect from their day. Or are they? Is it safe to
speculate that perhaps grouping the world's estimated six billion people into only 12 categories might just
be simplifying human experience a Httie?
Dawkins worries about the effect of astrology on a
psychological level. He feels that it's "an insult to the
science of psychology and the richness of human personality/ Having all people grouped into specific categories, for Dawkins, doesn't leave much room for all
the variation of characters life throws our way.
"Daily horoscopes split everybody up into twelve
sets. People are more complicated than that," says
Scott "It's obviously ridiculous that one twelfth of the
population will have this particular kind of day."
So how do astrologers write something that will
pertain to a huge chunk of the population each day?
In the mid-1980s, French Statistician Michel
Gauquelin sent out the horoscope of one of France's
worst mass murderers in history. Of the 150 people
he surveyed, 94 per cent of the subjects said that they
recognised themselves in the description.
"All astrology works on the 'Barnum principle' of
saying things so vague and general that all readers
think it applies to them," says Dawkins, explaining
why one horoscope might apply to one-twelfth of the
let the airplanes guide your destiny
You may have been born under a different constellation and your horoscope or birth chart may be vague,
but that doesn't necessarily imply that astrology as a
- concept isn't plausible. But for this argument's sake,
let's compare astrology to jetology, the position that all
the world's jumbo jets flying at the moment of a person's birth affect his or her personality and destiny.
Ihe concept of jetology was introduced by Andrew
Fraknoi in the article 'Your Astrology Defense Kit,' published in Sky & Telescope in August of 1989. Although
yes, the article is old, Scott advises that the ideas still
A professional jetologer would analyse patterns of
jumbo jets flying over the earth, and extract their intrinsic meaning. Such an abiHty would take years of training. Fraknoi sets up a possible situation.
"For example, take that bunching of planes over
Chicago's O'Hare Airport—its significance for the subject's love life will require a great deal of study by an
experienced jetologer," writes Fraknoi, assuming the
role of the jetologer. "As your listeners begin to chuckle
over the absurdity of the example, you can ask them
what makes it so amusing. Someone will surely inquire
why the positions of those things in the sky should have
anything to do with our Hves."
The image of jetology indeed seems absurd, but one
could argue that planets and stars are natural phenomena, larger and more significant that the workings of
planes. But jetology, scientifically speaking, might be
more plausible than astrology.
If astrology claims that your destiny and personaHty
are effected by the energies of the planets—whether it's
magnetism, gravity, or a tidal pull—then wouldn't closer objects have a stronger influence?
"If you walk past me, the force of gravity is really
weak," explains Scott "But the principle is there is a
force of gravity between us, and that's way bigger than
the force of gravity between me and Jupiter, because
it's really far away." Essentially, the gravitational field
of a pedestrians could effect your destiny. Scott jokes
that a truck passing the hospital during your birth
would have a greater effect on your personaHty than a
planet Additionally, he also comments that if astrology
doesn't work with gravitational puU, and maybe instead
with electro-magnetic forces, then washing machines
and cell phones could also have a greater effect than the
"It's totally totally absurd because there's so
many other things going on that would dwarf [planetary pull] anyway," Scott says of astrology. But perhaps astrology doesn't need to be proved. Maybe
they're talking about immeasurable forces. To
Fraknoi, it makes no difference.
"Even if we give astrologers the benefit of the doubt
on all these questions—accepting that astrological influences may exist outside our current understanding of
the universe—there is a devastating final point
Astrology simply doesn't work."
Case in point: looking at a birth chart
To test Fraknoi's claim, I got my birth date charted.
When I was born the sun was in Capricorn, the moon
was in Sagittarius in the fifth house, Saturn was in the
fifth house, the sun was in the seventh house,
Venus was in the eighth house, and the sun was
opposition ascendant. Now if you know your astrological charts extremely well, you could surmise
that I was born on January 9, 1983.
I learned all this from Roman Roman, someone
I found on Craig's List (an online buy and sell service) who offers free birth charts. His personaHty
summarisation based on my birthday was at times
vague—"Your life will be full of changes'—and at
other times, chillingly accurate—"Your vulnerabiH-
ty to external influences makes you subconsciously
imitate the manners and ways of those with whom
you relate."
What confused me, however, was the evaluation
of my love life. On the one hand, Roman writes: "In
love you are dependable and able to curb your recklessness." But on the flipside, "the fact of the matter is that in love you are very changeable, unstable, or too preoccupied with trivialities.* The two
don't exactly reconcile.
My birth chart says, "Your life will be one of very
intense social activity... this position tends to make
you somewhat extroverted." And while this doesn't
exacdy contradict, it also says somewhat puzzling-
ly, "secretly you nourish the desire to be involved
in human situations, but you apparently have lost
the abiHty to relate to other people" I'm not sure I
like that evaluation of myself, although there is
redemption in knowing that I am "very perceptive"
of "psychic vibrations." But all in all, my birth chart
left me puzzled, not entirely remembering what it
is I just read.
University of Astrology
At Kepler University in Lynnwood, Washington
State, students are learning to make birth charts
like the one from Roman Roman. It's an accredited
university that has been authorised to issue
Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degrees since
March 10, 2001.
Their website boasts that "a degree-granting Hber-
al arts college that includes astrological studies has
long been a vision of scholars seeking to approach the
subject objectively. Kepler College is the answer to
that dream."
On the one hand, the history and anthropology
of astrology would be fascinating, in a traditional
classroom scheme. On the other hand, at Kepler
University—named for the late German
astrologer/astronomer Johannes Kepler—the students are not just history buffs but are already
beHevers in astrology.
"What I wouldn't give to be able to go back and
throw this newly revealed information in the face of my
ninth grade astronomy teacher (she wasn't very big on
astrology, I guess you could say)," writes Chris Bennan
in his student testimonial. "One of the goals of the
school is to re-establish astrology bade to its rightful
place as an academic discipline where it belongs, no
longer to be shunned by the intellectual ehte, and that
goal is not far off"
Karen Hawkwood is part of Kepler's first bachelor of arts graduating class, known as the Lobsters.
Speaking at an astrology convention in May, 2001
in Seattle, she said, "history without astrology was
much like a tapestry with one colour removed...you
always knew the pattern didn't look right but you
never knew why. Now I know." Calling for a rein-
troduction of astrology into Western academia is
Hawkwood's vision.
However, Hawkwood and Bennan may have a
point Astrology has been swept to the corner in
academic circles for hundreds of years.
The Bath Spa University in Bath, UK is host to
the Sophia Centre, which also the Centre for the
Study of Cultural Astronomy and Astrology.
Although their mandate is to study the impact of
astrological and astronomical beHefs on cultures,
reHgions, poHtics, and the arts—not the actual
influence of the stars on human affairs—their mission statement makes an interesting note:
"Whilst the scientific study of astronomy is well
estabHshed in universities, the academic study of
astronomy and astrology from a cultural perspective has not been the specific focus of research of a
university department in. the west for over three
hundred years."
Even though astrology has been omitted from
academic circles, it is surprising that it has been
deleted as a subject of cultural phenomenon. When
I took a class in witchcraft at the University of
Edinburgh we studied the historical instances of
witch persecutions, not how to cast spells. So could
we not reintroduce astrology as a history subject to
study without having to prove it's real?
Knowing what's real
Dawkins writes that "astrology has nothing to go
for it at all, neither evidence nor any inkling of a
rationale which might prompt us to look for evidence." He then shifts his attentions to astronomy:
"The real universe has mystery enough to need no
help from obscurantist hucksters." Indeed, perhaps the spotlight that should be on understanding
the cosmos has been on astrology too long.
Scott also beHeves that the tactile universe is
interesting enough. His eyes light up as he says,
"The real universe is pretty cool, I think. There's a
whole bunch of really wacky things in there that are
actually for real. It's much more amazing than
Jupiter wobbling around can make you happier
today. There's black holes!"
Fraknoi, also an enthusiastic astronomer,
mourns the fact that "even today, despite so much
effort at science education, astrology's appeal for
many people has not diminished." He points out
human's interest in the sensational and meaningful over the scientific. "For them, thinking of Venus
as a cloud-covered desert world as hot as an oven is
far less attractive than seeing it as an aid in deciding whom to marry"
The general scientific consensus is that astrology cannot be proved. If it's not proved, then why do
people beHeve it? Scott has his theory.
"People like to beHeve stuff. People like to think
that the universe is expHcable and comprehensible, and that it can effect things, rather than feeling
powerless." »
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COUNTER THIS: Jaspreet Khangura represented the UBC Debate Society at the University of Calgary
fall open tournament, scott bardsley photo
Debaters compete at
the varsity sport level
by Boris Korby
As October begins, many UBC varsity teams are hitting the gym in
preparation for their upcoming
seasons; however the university
debate team won't be one of them.
"We don't do a lot of push-ups
here at the debate society/ said
President Teddy Harrison. Though
the debate society may seem out of
place alongside hockey, football
and basketball in the UBC
Department of Athletics and
Recreation, both Harrison and
UBC Director of Athletics and
Recreation Bob Philip express full
support of this odd coupling.
The UBC Debating Society
(UBCDS) has been in existence
since 1902; 13 years before the
founding of UBC. However it was
not until 2003 that it became associated with the Department of
Athletics and Recreation.
'While we didn't perfectly fit
with the other athletics teams, we
don't really fit very well anywhere
else on campus,* says Harrison.
Though there are no official
qualifications to becoming a varsity sport, Philip says the intercollegiate schedule of the debate team
was one of the main criteria it had
to its benefit. Furthermore, other
prospective varsity sports such as
men's and women's wrestling and
women's softball would cost in
excess of $150,000 a year, far
more than the approximately
$5,000 that is given to the varsity
debate program annually.
Though the association between
the Department of Athletics and
Recreation and the UBCDS primarily
serves to subsidise travel and competition costs for debaters. Athletics
does not fund the entirety of the
debate program. The Department of
Athletics and Recreation is also
assisting the UBCDS in hosting the
World University Debating
Championships in 2007, and allows
debaters to be eligible for certain athletic scholarships.
The UBCDS for its part has
been one of the more successful
varsity teams the university has
had in recent years, finishing both
first and second at the Canadian
nationals in 2003, and winning
top speaker at the 2004 world
championships in Malaysia.
Despite their success and elevation to varsity status, the UBCDS
remains a casual club at heart.
"It's not like a lot of athletics
teams where you have to qualify
for the team and then you're on
Montessori Elementary
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Thursday, November 17, 2005
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it,* says Harrison. 'It's open to
everybody. You have to qualify
occasionally for individual tournaments, but all the training, all the
practices are open to everybody all
the time. We try to be accessible to
as many people as possible. There
"It's not like a lot of
athletic teams where
,  you have to qualify
for the team and then
you're on it. It's open
to everybody. you have
to qualify for individual tournaments."
-Teddy Harrison
UBCDS President
axe no distinct groups. There's a
club and a team in terms of official
status with the AMS and Athletics,
but it's the same people.*
For both the UBCDS and the
Department of Athletics and
Recreation, their mutual association is a marriage of convenience
more so than anything else. "We're
a place to hang their hat,* says
Philip, n
T-Birds run south
The UBC cross-country team recently
competed, in Salem Oregon at the
Willamette Invitational hosted by
Willamette State University. Despite
difficult course conditions caused by
heavy downpours the T-birds were
able to pull through.
One of the highlights of the
meet was Shannon Elmer's 4th
place finish in the 5km race. The
UBC women's team set a new team
record at this event placing 2nd
out of 32 teams.
Tristen Simpson set a personal
best in the men's 8km race. The
men's team placed 12th out of 29
The Thunderbirds next race is
in Portland, Oregon on October
15. Here they will get to test out
the course that will be used for the
Regional meet on October 29,
2005.11 I
THE UBYSSEY   Friday, 7 October, 2005
News 9
Thunderbirds power down the field!
UBC took on SFU last night in the 28th annual Shrum Bowl and triumphed over the Clan with a 40-33 win. yinan max wang photo
BC and China announce scholarship agreement
BC students set to receive scholarships to study at Chinese universities
-..;« by Evan Hesketh
British Columbian students may soon be headed off to Chinese universities to obtain their
The Government of British Columbia has
announced the creation ofa scholarship program
in partnership with China. Each year, five full and
ten partial scholarships will be awarded to BC students by the Chinese Scholarship Council so they
can pursue undergraduate, graduate, or doctoral
degrees at a Chinese university.
Murray Coell, Minister of Advanced
Education, feels these scholarships provide students with an amazing opportunity.
"Students, in addition to furthering their post-
secondary education, will be able to learn about
Chinese culture and business while developing a
valuable network overseas," he said.
In addition, Coell stressed the value this program will have for relations between BC and
"Signing this agreement with the Chinese
Ministry of Education opens a new chapter in
the friendly relationships that already exist
between the Province of British Columbia and
the People's Repubhc of China."
New Democratic Party MLA and Advanced
Education critic Gregor Robertson agreed that
the program is a "good sign that there are more
partnerships between BC and China." However,
he criticised the Liberal government for the
"lack of scholarships and grants in BC*
"It's great when we get scholarships elsewhere," he said, but "[we] need more support
here for students with [financial] needs."
As well, Robertson said BC has "a long way to
go* to Hve up to the progressive poHcy of creating
opportunities for foreign students here at home.
Scholarship winners will be provided with
in-depth Chinese language training in order to
ensure they can fully take advantage of studying in China. As weU, they will be able to choose
from an extensive Hst of post-secondary institutions based on the discipline they wish to study.
However, for students planning on continuing studies back in Canada or elsewhere after
completing a degree in China, there are some
important considerations.
"It is up to each student to make sure his or
her education is suitable for transfer," Coell
"Credential recognition is an institutional
responsibiHty and we will work with our post-
secondary institutions to esplore ways to faciH-
tate mutual credential recognition with China,"
he said.
Bo Zhang, Vice President External for the
UBC International Students' Association, was
thrilled to hear about the program. With this
program, he said B.C. students will be able to,
"learn the [Chinese] language and get acquainted with a very diverse and beautiful Chinese
culture, life style, as well as with the poHtical
and social state of the country."
In addition, Zhang feels there are other benefits. Not only will the scholarship winners be able
to bring their experiences to their friends in
Canada, but the Canadian scholars will also bring
their "ideas, culture, [and] language to Chinese
students, [helping to] open China to the world."
Jason Meyer, a third-year commerce student
at UBC, had the opportunity to go on a five week
summer trip to Hong Kong and Shanghai with
30 UBC commerce undergraduates to study
business and Mandarin.
"By studying in China we gained a new perspective on Chinese culture that could never
be taught from a textbook," he said. "The
announcement about scholarships to Chinese
universities will provide many more BC
students [with] the opportunity to share in
our experiences." fll
School of Social Work celebrates diamond anniversary
by Laurence Butet-Roch
The School of Social Work and Family Studies
marked its 75th anniversary last week with
celebrations that included an International
Symposium on Food and Human Rights:
Hunger, Health and Social Weil-Being.
Graham Riches, the Director of the School
of Social Work and Family Studies said that
the this topic was selected for the Symposium
because of its relevance.
"If you know what's happening to food, you
know what is happening in the society," he
The purpose of the Symposium was to explore
the issues and tensions in the global food system
both nationally and internationally.
Riches emphasised the importance of food
by stating that security should not solely be
defined as eliminating physical threats such
as terrorism but rather in terms of securing
the well-being of all humans: "Unless we
attend to global food and water issues we will
be in worse conditions in the future."
According to Riches, symposiums such as
this one help elaborate more imaginative solutions and poHcies to tackle grave issues.
His comments were echoed by UBC
President Martha Piper who noted the important role of the School.
"The leading role of the School of Social
Work and Family Studies in poHcy making on
challenging issue," said Piper.
She said that syposiums like this
demonstrate "how university can play a
key role in policy-making nationally and
Piper also took the opportunity to emphasise the role the School of Social Work and
Family Studies plays in advancing the vision
of TREK 2010. "[The School] embodies the values of global citizenship and promotes a civil
and sustainable society," she stated.
She reminded those in attendance that
being a global citizen means, "the abiHty of
moving from one society to another, knowing
that our responsibilities don't stop at the border of our community."
The School can trace its roots back to a turbulent period in Canadian history. According
to Riches, the first teachers in 1929 had been
volunteers who meant to address the issues
raised by the Great Depression. He also underlined the unique character of the School, as
the only school that combines social work and
family studies in Canada, a
Infants as teachers:
Roots of Empathy
program to counter
bullying in school
by Will Keats-Osborn
A team of professors and students at
UBC have been studying the efficacy
of a program called Roots of
Empathy, a program aimed at dealing with bullying by teaching children skills and values like empathy,
respect and inclusion.
The research is being spearheaded by Kimberly Schonert-
Reichl, a professor of education
and counseling psychology, and
ClydesHertzman, a health care and
epidemiology professor and director of the Human Early Learning
Partnership, an interdiscipHnary
research partnership aimed at
producing knowledge of early
child development.
The Roots of Empathy program
invites a baby and mother from
the community into an elementary
school classroom, and through a
number of hands-on activities
involving the baby, the children
are taught how to understand and
acknowledge the emotions and
temperaments of others in a very
tangible way.
"Reflection and self-awareness,"
Schpnert-Reichl said, "there are not
a lot of activities in school that promote those kinds of things."
With the help of a number of professors and graduate and undergraduate students at UBC, Schonert-
Reichl and Hertzman have been
evaluating the program since 2000.
In a recent study, 132 children
from ten classrooms were rated on
certain behavioural traits, such as
aggression, pro-social behaviour,
and hyperactivity. The ratings of the
children in the five classrooms in
the program were then compared to
the ratings of the children in the five
control classrooms.
The results were dramatic. Not
only did 88 per cent of aggressive
children show a decrease in aggression after the program, but almost
all children demonstrated increased
emotional understanding, pro-social
behaviour, and sense of belonging
to a community, a marked contrast
with the control classes.
According to Jan Johnston, the
provincial coordinator of the Roots
of Empathy program, "any teacher
who has the program or any instructor who has delivered the program
will tell you that the difference is palpable in the classroom."
The group is also currently doing
a follow-up study on students who
were involved in the program three
years ago, and several upcoming
studies on how the program affects
students' abiHty to handle stress and
how it affects their academic
They hope to continue the follow
up studies well into the future in
order to determine the long-term
effects of the program, Schonert-
Reichl said.
Since the program's 1996 incep- •
tion, it has spread to 1141 classrooms throughout Canada, as well
as to Australia; Japan did a one-year
pilot program, and New Zealand,
the UK, the Netherlands and the
United States have all expressed
interest in the program. It has
reached a total of over 68,000 childrensince 2000.
The hope is to make this program province-wide by 2010 but
the ultimate goal is to make bullying a thing of the past, said
Johnston. W
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10 Qpimon/Editorial
Friday, 7 October, 2005   THE UBYSSEY
-'- -*-
Good news, or is it?
The gloom and horror that's
shown on the news everyday can
take a toll on our mental well-
being, so we thought it might be
time to share some good news.
Venezuela's land reform
Hugo Chavez announced last week
that the Venezuelan government
would be seizing land to redistribute to poor farmers.
Altogether 1,235,000 acres of
unused land will be seized—all to
be appropriated to workers for
free. This is part of Chavez's land
and agrarian reform movement;
his attempt to eliminate private
ownership of land and to provide
stable levels of subsistence for a
country which currently imports
80 per cent of its food.
Anyone between the ages 18
to 25 can apply for a portion of
the land. After three years, the
recipients of the land cannot sell
the land, but it may be passed
along to family.
The seizure of this land has
galvanised opposition as skeptics
have warned that this will curb
foreign investment. Critics within the country beHeve that this
one more ploy to further
advance his sociaHst revolution
agenda, as landowners who are
having their land seized are not
being compensated.
But heck, it is not like they
were using it anyways.
IMF: One step at a time
Whether bowing to international
pressure, or issuing it based on
good faith, the International
Monetary Fund's (IMF) decision to
forgive $40 bilHon of debt reHef is
a welcome sign for developing
nations cash-strapped by international loans and the interest that is
accrued from these loans. These
totals may reach up to $55 bilHon.
Eighteen countries have had
their debts written off, and nine
more potential countries may be
eHgible in the future. Most of the
beneficiaries will be countries in
developing nations, primarily in
To many skeptics of the IMF
and World Bank, this good deed
doesn't erase the long Hst of bad
poHcies that the IMF has
employed. This should have happened years ago. Countless countries have had their internal
growth severely affected by IMF's
high interest poHcies.
Others warn that there may
be conditions attached to qualify
for debt reHef, such as HberaHsa-
tion of their economy and privatisation of its industries, all of
which may have a profound and
unpredictable impact on the
developing nations.
Maybe someone could forgive
our student loans also.
The play must go on
The Laramie Project," a play
recently banned by the Surrey
school district will now be staged
by the students of Lord Byng secondary school. The content of this
play is based on the tragic story of
Matthew Shepard, a gay college
student who died in 1998. He was
beaten and tied to a fence after
being picked up at a gay bar in
Laramie, Wyoming. Five days later
Shepard died ofhis injuries. The
decision of the Surrey school
board to band this production
causes concern as it comes on the
heels of a decision to ban several
books involving, same-sex parents.
Lord Byng secondary school is taking on the challenge of tackling a
controversial and deHcate subject
Although "The Laramie Project"
includes violence and coarse language, it is most definitely a story
that needs to be told.
Nobel Prize shared
The 2005 Noble Prize in physics
was presented to Americans John
Hall and Roy Glauber and German
Theodor Haensch. The team has
been working to advance and
refine the precision of optic technology. Such technology can be
used to assist spacecraft navigation abilities and improve worldwide communication. Team effort
was the key the success of this
international research project.
Smoking the tobacco
companies out
Following a ruling from the
Supreme Court of Canada, British
Columbia is now free to sue cigarette companies to reclaim pubHc
health care costs from treating illnesses caused by smoking.
This decision will likely pave
the way for other provinces to take
the tobacco companies to court,
potentially costing the companies
hundreds of milHons, or even bil-
Hons dollars. Another important
consequence of this decision is
that it highlights the responsibiHty
companies have for the products,
especially harmful ones, they put
out on the market a
Perspective Opinion
Y  TTfc
1    1
udl snouia nox oe a political campaign aa
by Ryan Weddle
When I logged on to the UBC website, I was quite surprised to be
greeted with the headline 'UBC welcomes Mexican President Vincente
(sic) Fox," with a photo of Martha
Piper and President Fox applauding before a commemorative
plaque unveiled for the occasion.
Certainly, this is important news,
but isn't it a bit odd that no one
seemed to know about this ahead
of time? While we are sent emails
on everything from new construction proposals to the latest poHcies
in human resources, students were
not notified that the head of state of
Canada's fifth largest trading partner was to visit our school.
President Fox is, to say the
least, a controversial figure. A former Coca-Cola executive. Fox has
remained a staunch advocate of
free markets as the key to success,
despite Mexico's recent economic
decline. Fox also maintains what
the White House describes as "an
excellent relationship and a strong
friendship with George Bush." The
two have negotiated a proposal
that would allow Mexican citizens
to gain temporary work permits in
the US to perform labour that, as
Fox outlined, "not even blacks
want to do." This April, one milHon Mexicans marched in the capital opposing Fox's attempt to jail
his aspiring presidential challenger, the popular left-wing
mayor of Mexico City, on trumped
up charges.
This is not to say that Fox
should not have come to UBC. Fox
could have arrived and given a
talk somewhere like the Liu Centre
for International Relations. The
event could have been open to the
entire UBC community and pubH-
cised ahead of time, allowing students and faculty the rare opportunity to engage a world leader face-
to-face on the issues we study.
This would indeed have been a
moment UBC could take pride in,
showing how our university is a
pivotal institution for matters of
global significance.
Instead, Fox arrived in secret
According to the UBC Ceremonies
Office (the President's Office was
not forthcoming with information
when I called), the event was
arranged about two weeks ahead
of time through the Mexican
Consulate. Tucked away in the
life Sciences Centre with an audience of hand-picked students and
community members, Fox gave a
speech filled with flowery language about the "new horizons of
prosperity" that the two nations
are achieving (the transcript can
be found in Spanish at www.presi-
dencia.gob.mx). Afterwards, the
President fielded some softball
questions from the audience,
which were prefaced by remarks
like "I will vote for you in 2006,
this I promise you.*
Basically, the event was a
photo-op for the University
Administration and the conservative National Action Party of
Mexico. Fox gets to portray the
image that he is a popular world
leader, fawned over by foreign
faculty and students abroad—even
in a progressive city like
Vancouver. Likewise, Martha
Piper gets to tout the status of
UBC as a place that world leaders
deign to visit. The problem is that
we, members of the UBC community she is supposed to represent,
were not consulted in the matter.
Perhaps after the massive student
protests against Suharto, the
Indonesian dictator who came to
visit in 1997, the administration
is not taking any chances of the
student body actually having a say
in how well the visitors are
received. Let's make sure that in
the future, more than a handful of
in-the-know university officials
have a say'in who we decide to
welcome to our school.
—Ryan Weddle is a fourth-year
Asian studies student
UBC Counselling not the only option
To the students) who feels disappointed with Counselling Services:
As a service provider, I feel very
sorry about your experience at UBC
Counselling Services. I can only
imagine how frustrating it is to be
in need of support and not be able
to receive it because there are "no
appointments available." I know
that for the majority of students
like myself who have to work and
go to school, it is very difficult to
access a service that works on a
drop-in basis but always seems to
be full. There are, however, other
options for free support services
available on campus and off campus. If you are looking for support
on-campus there are two great
services provided by the AMS:
Speakeasy, which has a crisis line
(604-822-3700) and a drop-in
option with a private and confidential counselling room in the SUB
(their desk is located on the north
side of the main concourse in the
SUB) and the Sexual Assault
Support Centre (SASC) which provides both drop-in and by appointment counselling. They are located in rooms 119 A/B in the SUB,
light across from Mclnnis Field
and you can also phone them at
604-827-5180. The SASC provides
support to any survivor of any
type of violence. There are many
options for support services off-
campus such as the Crisis Centre'
(604-827-3311) and SAFER
(Suicide Attempt FoHow-up,
Education and Research) which
can be reached at 604-879-9251.
For more information about support services you can contact
Speakeasy and they will be able to
refer you to a service that works
for you. I hope that this information is helpful to you and to anyone else who might be looking for
—Mariana Payet
AMS Safety Coordinator
Tell us some good news.
I got an intern position.
Christine Su.
Arts 4
I had fun working with elementary
school kids today.
—Rob Gray
Human Kinetics 3
I got married.
—Ana Carolina
Graduate Studies
We just performed something in
class and it went over very well. It's
the end of part of our module class.
It's time to move on but it was a lot
of fun.
—Corey Fischer
Film 5
I'm in a band and two shows are
coming up.
—Carolyn Bailey
Arts 3
—Streeters coordinated by
Claudia Li and Colleen Tang THEUBYSSEY   Friday, 7 October, 2005
News 11
Bad credit
is bad news
by Amanda Stutt
"Student* and "debt" are practically
synonymous terms these days as
many students take out loans and use
credit to pay for tuition, books, residence and other expenses.
To address the issue of student
debt, the Alma Mater Society (AMS)
presented Financial Awareness Days,
a series of seminars and workshops
aimed at coaching students on how to
keep debt to a minimum and gain
control of their finances.
Jennie Yendall, professional financial coach and seminar presenter
said that students need to be more
aware of their options when it comes
to managing their finances.
"Students get caught up in the day
to day. They need to be aware of the
bigger picture."
And part of that bigger picture is
starting a savings plan while they are
still young, she said.
"The most popular option for
students is to wait to save
money...don't wait Even if you can
only afford twenty or fifty dollars a
month for a long-term investment
plan, find a way to save it It won't
affect your lifestyle. But if you don't
save that money, you'll find a way
to spend it*
Many students use not only student loans to make ends meet, but
also credit cards.
Yendall stressed the importance
of making payments on time, and
maintaining a good credit rating, as
missed payments now will affect
your abiHty to get a mortgage or
loan»inthe future. ■ ■■'•■-- ■■•■--*•■'*■-^-*=
"Be aware of what you are getting
into," she said. "Never think of available credit as available cash. And
UBC Hungary to share
its forestry curriculum
Joint program may increase enrollment in Hungary
remember that credit is debt dressed
up in a suit"
Yendall said it's key to establish
good financial habits now. "You are
being programmed to be consumers
and spend your money...take ownership of your finances and form good
habits now," she said. "The habits you
form in university are the habits you
will take into the adult world.
"Students often think when they
are in university, it's not the real
world. You are in the real world right
now," she explained.
MeHssa Anderson, a third-year
poHtical science major, has student
loans to pay for school and expenses,
but chooses to Hve at home to save
money and avoid accumulating a
large debt
"I have one credit card, a Visa.
That's all I need...I usually pay it off
every month." She said. "I use it to
pay for stuff like dinner, movies,
clothes. It's more for convenience...I
use my student loan money to pay off
my Visa."
Anderson said she doesn't work
during the school year but does look
for a job in the summer.
Heidi Newcombe, a second-year
Arts student, attended the workshop to learn how to better manage
her finances.
"I'm in debt pretty bad," she said.
"My boyfriend and I have a mortgage...and I also have about $10,000
in credit card and line of credit bank
debt...I use my credit cards for
absolutely eveiything, food, gas, haircuts...I don't work during school. I
have no income," she said.
Newcombe said a lot of what was
discussed in the seminar she knew
before, but learned some interesting
things about interest rates and percentages.
"You kind of numb-out money
issues and forget for a while. It's
important to bring money issues to
the foreground and deal with them."
Jennie Yendall wants students to
be aware of the difference between
good and bad debts. "Remember
that in the big picture, yotkr student
loan is a drop in the bucket. A
degree is good debt. A degree is a
return on an investment.'M
by Eric Szeto
UBC and the University of West
Hungary have embarked on a
joint forestry program—the first
of its kind between Canada and
the European Union.
The program, slated to begin
by 2007, wiU employ a common
English curriculum, which will
allow students from Hungary
and UBC who study in forestry
to have credits that are transferable between the two universities.
"It's mutually beneficial, it
really ties into the UBC Trek
2010 document with internationalised globalisation so I'm a
strong supporter of it, and I
think my coUeagues are too,"
said UBC's Dean of Forestry
Jack Saddler.
UBC forestry has had a long
tradition with forestry faculty
at the University of West
Hungary (Sopron), dating back
to 1957—one year after the
Soviet Union's invasion of
Hungary. For the school to survive under Soviet occupation,
UBC opened the Sopron division of forestry here in
Vancouver, which allowed over
200 Sopron students and 14
faculty members to emigrate
and continue their education
in Vancouver.
The Canadian-Hungarian
community has roots here so
it's no surprise that Sopron
chose UBC for the joint venture
program, said Saddler.
There are currendy four vis
iting professors from Sopron,
aU here on a type of reconnaissance mission that they say will
help them understand the
nuances between the two
schools and their curricula.
Professor Vosak, one of the
visiting professor's from
Sopron called this program "a
unique European-Canadian
Professor Laszlo Jager,
another visiting professor,
expressed his hope that this
program would increase the
fledgling number of post-secondary students in Hungary.
"The number of the students
are decreasing in Hungary so
we hope that we will be able to
increase the number of the students with this program," said
One of the hurdles that people from Hungary will have to
overcome is learning English,
something that Sopron
Professor Balint Heil said will
be difficult because not many
students speak English—
although the numbers are
"More and more people are
learning EngHsh," he said.
The long term goal of this
program is for Hungary to be
able to recruit students to
Sopron from all the adjacent
countries, said Tony Kozak, a
coordinator between the two
The program's success will
bode well with the European
community and Canada, he
added, a
University of Ottawa     i
Attend law school in Canada
and the United States
< ' ."!  ^ .t A   - N~
't\~--'^—y-y-- --
y   3r* v*
Earn two degrees:
* an LL.B. from the University of Ottawa; and
* a J.D. from Michigan State University
College of Law.
Pay Canadian tuition for all four years.
v Balsam Dental Centre
Dr, Francisco Leos-Marquez, Inc, Dentist
Preferred Rates for Students!
Just 10 minutes from campus on the 41st bus.
We also specialize in implants and orthodontics.
Phone:     (604) 261-6232
Fax: (604) 261-6209
Email:      balsamdentaI@hotmail.com
Balsam Dental Centre
Suite #303,5704 Balsam Street
Vancouver, BC, V6M 4B9
u Ottawa
L'Universitg canadienne
Canada's university
For more information visit:
wvvwxommonlaw.MOttawa.ca or
call (613) 562-5800, ext.3288
Application deadline: November 1,2005.
Be one of the first to
stop by SUB 23, to
pick up a free movie
pass to a preview
screening of:
on Tuesday
October 11y 2005
7:00 p.m. at
Fifth Avenue Cinema
in Vancouver
White quantities last.
One per person, available on a
limited basis, not an employee
of FS or other promo partners.
-«v 12 News
Friday, 7 October, 2005   THEUBYSSEY
Marine Drive Towers encounter resistance
Public consultation
process for phase II
Marine Drive residences
doesn't offer solution
for its critics
By Eric Szeto
The   unveiling   of  the   phase   II.
designs   for   the   Marine   Drive
Residences was met with scathing
opposition during the public consultation Wednesday night
The recently revealed plans
called for three new residences to
be built — two of which were to be
18-stories — both to stand sidfr-by-
side with the completed phase one
tower. The remaining residence
would be seven stories and stand
perpendicular from the third tower.
There was grave concern, however, that the two proposed 18-
storey towers would be seen from
Wreck Beach, as was the first tower.
"We do not deny the views are
important to maintain [and] those
views ought to be protected,* said
President of UBC Properties Trust
Al Poettcker, responding to the
litany of complaints from the audience. 'But this heritage view doesn't
live up to its billing."
The first phase of the towers has
already registered 600 hew beds
and the completion of the second
phase would add another 1000.
The original plans called for
1980 beds, but after the first tower
was reduced because the height
exceeded Greater Vancouver
Regional District (GVRD) limits, UBC
lost an estimated 363 beds. Final
CAREFULLY OBSERVING: Attendants listen intently as design plans for the Marine Drive Towers are
completion of the residences would
subsequently increase student housing on campus by 15 per cent
The project is already $28.2 million dollars over budget and rising—
a fatal point is coming unless this is
passed soon, said Poettcker.
Students would be the ones
responsible for offsetting the losses
that UBC incurred, he added.
There will be a point when students will choose to commute
rather than Hve on campus because
rent will be too high, explained
Despite UBC's display of hardship Wreck Beach advocates are
requesting that the residence be
moved to a different location or at
the very least have the two towers
Nothing here convinced me otherwise, said chair of the Wreck
Beach Preservation Society (WBPS)
Judy Williams, referring to the
undue hardship clause that was
issued by the GVRD in August
The clause stated that if UBC
endured any undue hardship during the process it would be acceptable for the proposed towers to
exceed the tree-lines.
"UBC has a chance to not make
the mistakes of tower one which
happened without public input.
Please do not let history repeat
itself," said Williams. "Listen to
the people including over 2000 of
your own students and 700 of your
own alumni."
"If this project was done in the
right way in the first place none of
this would have happened," said
James Lowen, media relations for
"You make your bed and you lie
in it."
Wreck Beach enthusiasts may
have been displeased with the
designs, but according to VP
External and Legal Affairs Denis
Pavlich, this is just part of the
"The purpose of this process is
to listen carefully, and that's exactly what we will do. The planning
folk will take all this information
and as they say they will come up
with the report," said Pavlich who
added that he felt this consultation
was a success.
Alma Mater Society (AMS) VP
Academic Gavin Dew criticised both
sides during this deliberation
process, and requested that they be
more forthcoming and honest in
the fiiture.
"I call on UBC to improve its
communication but we also need to
call on everyone in the process to be
truthful," said Dew.
Dew sanctioned the jeers and
sneers that were coming from the
crowd during the meeting and proposed that the process move in a
more progressive manner.
"At what point are we being hypocritical when we say that this is a
cynical process and then we're
going to laugh," said Dew.
"At what point does it become
infinite regress...at what point do
we say is it never going to be end?"
The public comment period for
the designs ends on October 3 l.H
M. JL^r AAAV>JL%^v3o>    JLJL^J^JLA%4L«UR- Ta*
Totem and Vanier residences will
be closed for the holidays
by Carolynne Burkholder
Spending the holidays in a university
dorm may not be the first choice for
most students, but starting this
December, residents of Totem Park
and Place Vanier will no longer have
that option.
From December 22 until
Januaiy 2, the two residences,
home to around 2,700 students,
will be closed.
UBC Director of Housing and
Conferences Fred Fotis, said changes.
were made due to safety concerns.
"Since my arrival at UBC {four
years ago] I've been concerned that
we have about 20 students in each
area living in nearly empty buildings
for the break period," said Fotis. 'One
could fall and have an accident in the
shower and it is fully possible that
there may not be anyone else staying
in the entire building."
"While it was convenient for a
small number of students, it was
not a good risk to continue to
take," he said.
Over the past five years, approximately 40 students from Totem Park
and Place Vanier have remained in
residence over this period.
Students living in Totem Park and
Place Vanier will be able to leave all
their belongings in their rooms
although they will not have access to
them. As well, security will continue
to patrol the buildings and the desk
will be open every day.
Most residences at other
Canadian universities allow students to stay over the Christmas
break; the major exceptions being
Bishop's, St Thomas University,
and most of the residences at the
"One could fall and
have an accident in
the shower and it is
fully possible that
there may not be anyone else staying in
the enitre building
-Fred Fotis
Director of Housing UBC
University of Toronto.
UBC will provide alternate
arrangements for students who are
not leaving over the break, said Fotis.
"We will do our best to...help those
students who live at a distance and
choose to stay in Vancouver find
alternate accommodations,' he said.
Students can choose to stay in
Gage Towers and pay a small fee, or
stay with friends in other UBC residences, or at other accommodations,
such as the YMC A
"We believe we can fully assist
the small number of residents who
What else can you do with a BA these days? Part 2:
The Muchmusic VJ search is here on campus! Finally, a chance to cast off the shackles of your
minimum wage position for one which celebrates and markets your own 'unique* personality.
And there's virtually no competition for the job: yesterday's event in the Norm Theatre featured
less than thirty participants mostly performing for an empty theatre. But the brave souls who
did grace the faux-stage did the best they could under the big bright lights.There's still a
chance to audition today at the Norm between 10 and 5pm. Be brave. As one contestant today
so ably proved, you can always bust out your "mean robot." yinan max wang steam
live far away who choose to stay,'
he added.
Fotis said that all students should
have been aware of this change
before they decided to hve in residence. "We decided lastyear that we
would close Totem and Vanier for the
break and stated so in aU printed,
web-based, and contractual material," he said.
David   Kiloh,   Residence   Life
Manager for Place Vanier, said that
despite advance warning, 1 am certain that there are going to be students with nowhere (to stay] at the
last minute.'
For some students, the change
has affected their plans for the
"Tm upset that I can't come
back early/ said Nichole Wapple, a
Totem Park resident 'I was think
ing of spending New Years with my
friends in Vancouver...I'm realty
Wapple also added that she wasn't
aware of this change until last week.
Although students will have to
vacate their homes for two weeks, the
monthly fee schedule is consistent
Kiloh said that "the over all rent
increase was less than it would have


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