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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Editorial: Pass/Fail

    Money talks


    This week, the UA’s BIO5 Institute pulled in a record-breaking $50 million grant from the National Science Foundation, the largest award the UA has ever received from the research funding agency. The cash will support a new plant biology research project, with a multidisciplinary mission focusing on big issues like global hunger and climate change. Even better, some of the money will be going to support new courses and research for undergraduate students. Nearly everything about the project is ideal, except its atrocious name: the “”iPlant Collaborative.”” Then again, if one trendy lowercase letter brings in millions, we might want to start appending it to everything: iTuition, anyone? For bringing in the bucks to support an already excellent research mission, BIO5 deserves a Pass.

    Task force tie-up


    When it’s time to tackle critical problems, experienced policymakers know how to get to work: appoint a committee. Last week, the Arizona Board of Regents voted to appoint a “”tuition task force,”” charged with examining the way Arizona’s public universities set student tuition. Regent’s president Fred Boice explained that “”we are in need of education”” on changes that can be made to the tuition-setting process, and that “”the task force can help us understand how to move forward.”” Unpredictable tuition changes – and unpredictable funding from the state – are serious problems for UA students in need of reform. But we’ve got a better suggestion for the regents on “”how to move forward””: Make tuition reform a priority, rather than dispatching another task force to a bureaucratic wilderness. A discussion on tuition is a good start, but until it ends with real policy changes, the regents get an Incomplete.

    Meals at Midnight


    Starting Jan. 28, the Highland Market will be open 24 hours a day, in response to student requests to extend its hours. David Galbraith, the director of UA dining services, believes the new hours “”will better serve today’s student’s lifestyle.”” He’s right – a 24-hour market on campus will be a welcome relief for nocturnally-inclined and hungry students wanting more diverse nighttime fare than is offered at gas stations, Los Betos or residence hall vending machines. Additionally, a late-night eatery on campus allows students living on campus to get a snack or meal without having to venture off university grounds, making stress eating at 2 a.m. both more feasible and safer. For making it easier to feed hungry and sleep-deprived college kids around the clock, Highland Market gets a Pass.

    Operation Fleeting Freedom


    Technology gurus remind Internet users to be wary of the sites that they visit, but they probably never imagined anything like this. Twenty-three-year-old Perwiz Kambakhsh, an Afghani resident, was convicted of blasphemy last week for distributing an online article by his brother that asked why men can have multiple wives, but women cannot have multiple husbands. Despite the Afghani constitution’s stated aim to “”form a civil society void of oppression,”” the offense brought with it the penalty of death. Western nations and human rights advocacy groups urged the Afghani government to rescind or even lessen the sentence, but this Wednesday, the Afghani Senate supported the conviction and criticized outside interference. President Bush may have praised the budding freedoms in Afghanistan, but since then the country has taken about three steps back to Taliban-style rule. For allowing opression to revive itself in a supposedly liberated country, Afghanistan and its Western benefactors get a Fail.

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