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ASUO Elections Achieve New Heights of Absurdity

We’re entering uncharted territory here, folks. Beyond thunderdome, if you will. The Oregon Action Team exec ticket has been kicked off the ballot, with the rest of its slate also under the axe. The OAT is threatening legal action. ASUO Exec Sam Dotters-Katz has issued a statement calling the election board’s ruling “one of the most reprehensible and shameful acts I have witnessed at the ASUO,” although he said he would not try to intervene.

All in all, it’s a complete disaster. Either the OAT is guilty of bribing volunteers with alcohol, or their opponents sandbagged them with false accusations. It’s a lose-lose situation for the student body either way.

This is why the Oregon Commentator did not endorse any of the executive tickets. I know that both campaigns have been doing these shady things all along. The problem is I don’t know which one to distrust more.

For example, the following is from the ODE article on yesterday’s exec debates:

“I had the pleasure of going to a conference funded by student fees,” Haley said. She said she used the conference as an opportunity to lobby legislators on behalf of students, but that, “Every morning at 6 a.m., Emma was meeting with two people from the ASUO planning her campaign.”

Kallaway then snapped back, “At six in the morning, I’m pretty sure that you were sleeping and I was being more educated about the ASUO.”

After the debate, Kallaway said she had been meeting with ASUO alumni who did not want to be identified. She said it was “a privilege to see old perspectives” on a variety of issues, and the way she spent her time in Washington D.C. indicated her ability to get the maximum use out of available resources.

Do you know what they’re talking about? It’s called Fight Club. The progressive bloc in the ASUO have their own Mystic Society of No Homers to organize their campaigns and get “the right people” in office. Most everybody around the ASUO knows about it, but it’s hard to get anyone on the record because … well, you know the first rule of fight club.

But this is the kind of atmosphere that pervades the entire ASUO on both sides of the spectrum; the conservatives have their little Karl Roves as well. It’s all insider politics, backroom deals and smoke and mirrors, and it’s disgusting.

Most people expected the Commentator to support the OAT. We did last year, and I don’t regret that. But besides opposing OSPIRG and paying lip-service to lowering the I-fee, it’s hard to see how this year’s Oregon Action Team slate qualifies as particularly conservative. As the ODE noted, their idea to increase football tickets is unrealistic, especially in an economic crunch. The rest of their platform consists of maintaining and/or expanding services. How this will lower the I-fee is beyond me. The OAT seemed more concerned with fostering an image and winning seats than promoting fiscal responsibility.

So there you have it: Stuck with the choice of the “ASUO tested, Fight Club approved” candidates or a faux-conservative slate full of mostly lackluster people and ideas, we chose neither. (Well, actually we chose “Deez Nuts.”) No one on the Commentator staff was interested in endorsing any of the exec tickets. The students of the University of Oregon deserve an open and transparent government, not a bunch of self-serving twits.

I don’t give the benefit of the doubt to any ruling coming from the elections board, and their ruling once again seems completely arbitrary and nonsensical. However, I have trouble being outraged because, frankly, we were doomed from the start.

The cherry on top of all this is 80 percent of students could care less.

(Oh, P.S. Emma and Getachew voiced conditional support for bringing OSPIRG back next year, so if Michelle and Ted are completely off the ballot, you can expect to see those money-grubbing clowns again come budget season.)

  1. nike urbanism duk says:

    You will love a drunken LTD student route bus cut story now on the Register Gaurd website. It looks like it was written for the Commentators amusement. It is a subject that would have the Sudsy doing some radical breakdancing moves. This is not a drill.

  2. Vincent says:

    Amusing enough, given some of the other comments posted today, is Timothy’s years-old comment on the “Fight Club” post, which in part reads:

    Anonymous internet poster claiming the OC isn

  3. nike urbanism duk says:

    Do not forget-What do UO dungeon dorms, the Westmoreland sale and student fee LTD bailouts have in common ? All were engineered by former UO Housing dept. overlord Mike Eyster. (current LTD board prez.)

  4. Alex McCafferty says:


    I was assuming a transportation fee, but touche on the double cost to students (multiple I fees)

    ALSO just because the ACFCS benchmark is not below 0% doesnt mean we cant still lower the I-fee

    eh eh?

    ACFC love <3

  5. Vincent says:

    Oh, come on! You would have endorsed Haley had she not been on your staff.

    Says “Jackson”/”ASUO Analysis”/”DFC Student of Color”/”Still Rockin

  6. Tina Snodgrass says:

    As another ACFCer, I feel the need to respond to my good friend Alex McCafferty’s post.
    Bear with me for a moment while I give you some numbers:
    If next year’s ACFC chooses to increase just two football games to full allotment of student tickets (5,445 tickets per game) while keeping the others at their lower allotment, it will look like this:
    Increase in tickets for 2 PAC-10 games: +$114,117
    Decrease in tickets for the OSU game that won’t be home: -$149,737
    Total change in the A.D. contract with only those changes: -$35,620

    Regarding LTD, Alex is right that they did give us advance notice that their group rate increase would be lower next year than it was this year. Actually, they told us outright that it would be a non-negotiable 5% increase. A 5% increase to their budget is $44,405.

    If the only changes in the whole ACFC budget were those changes I just outlined, the budget would still increase by $8,785, which, though a very slight increase, cannot be accurately classified as a contribution to a lower incidental fee. Furthermore, that doesn’t even include CSL increases the other seven contracts such as Office of Student Advocacy, the Emerald, Sexual Assault Support Services (a 3% increase for all the contracts excluding LTD and A.D. is $32,441). It doesn’t include institutionalizing late night LTD (about $120,000) or buying any additional tickets for the new basketball arena.

    Alex, I’m not sure where you’re getting your numbers. The only way in hell the ACFC budget would decrease next year is if a transportation fee is established, and a t-fee is just going to relocate student fees, not relieve them.

    We increased student football tickets by quite a bit this year. I think next year we should hold off on it in the interest of students’ wallets and more essential services.

  7. Bryan says:

    Oops, not ITC. Information Technology department. I work at the library’s ITC, so that’s probably where I made the mix up.

  8. Betz says:

    Word … The “services” the I-fee goes to sponsor are pathetic (no offense) little campus organizations that do nothing but to foster an “us-versus-them” attitude for that minority group of people, and for the leaders to pad themselves with a leadership title.

    Yes, I am incredibly jaded.

    I would be COMPLETELY in favor of creating a campus brewery … more than that, it would be totally awesome if the UO created a Zymurgy / fermentology or vitocultural dept. like OSU has.

  9. Bryan says:

    UO Administration ordered the ITC not to remove Michelle and Ted from the ballot.

  10. Ryan McCarrel says:

    Walter Sobchak: This is what happens when you fuck a stranger in the ass! – The Big Lebowski

  11. Jackson says:

    Oh, come on! You would have endorsed Haley had she not been on your staff.

  12. Alex McCafferty says:

    Great post! Although as an avid ACFC:er, I can tell you it is possible to increase tickets and lower the I-fee, mainly being that LTD will not be requesting an outrageous increase next year, and we do not have to host a civil war game, which could with careful budgeting result in a lower benchmark!

    As for the OSPIRG support, I was wondering why (until last nights debate) I had heard rumors of OSPIRG helping out true blue and the like! I think conditional support is a loose term that will soon change once elections are over…

    Although the commentator will not endorse a slate (and I fully understand your reasoning) I just dont want you or your readers to forget the work that Ted and I put in to kick out OSPIRG! Keep on fighting!

  13. Ryan McCarrel says:

    “Fucking narcissists.” lol

  14. Matt says:

    Great post, CJ. I totally agree these events constitute whole new levels of ASUO absurdity (levels which, despite my massive expectations for the extent of ASUO absurdity, I never even imagined could exist).

    I must however remind you of some silver lining perhaps: increases ASUO elections absurdity directly correlate with increases in “the LOLZ,” which I think are similarly at an all-time high. For me at least.

  15. Vincent says:

    Fucking narcissists.

  16. Stachelrodt says:

    well of course 80% of students don’t care. Most people don’t use many (if any) of the “services” that are provided. Until there is talk of I-fee money being used for a campus brewery I doubt anyone will care where any of the money goes.

  17. thunderlove says:

    Deez Nuts is still on the ballot, thank god

  18. Lee says:


  19. Alex says:

    Good post, if for nothing else than that the OC comes across as morally sacrosanct while reiterating its endorsement for Deez Nuts.

  20. sj says:

    oooohhh, cant wait until the uo is sued big time for this. please do keep the blog updated on any impending (and inevitable) lawsuits. ultimately, this fall on the university, right? read between the lines –> $$$$$$$$$$$

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