28 January, 2008

VFM Voting

Like everything else in this election, the VFM ball was dropped hard. But don't let that stop you from voting. Log on to your friendly SSC and vote for your favorite VFMs.

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26 January, 2008

Elections party gossip column!

Maayan "way more serious than Steve" Kreitzman here. This is part two of a post exchange between VFM partners-in-awesome UBC Insiders and this here Advocate. It's almost like having a bloggified pen-pal. Note the smoothly worked in elections buzzword. Watch and learn.

Now then, not everyone is cool enough to attend one of the funnest parties of the year - the elections results party held yearly at the Gallery Lounge. Our intrepid reporting is there for you, of course, with an account of the evening's notable fashion moments.

AMS council speaker Dave Tompkins horrified/fascinated in a faux double-denim look. This corner couldn't tear our eyes away from the travesty of tint-matched blue jeans and blue shirt. This didn't seem to prevent him from scoring with the ladies at the infamously sleazy Gallery bar, however. Double the denim, double the fun?

Incumbent AMS president Jeff Friedrich continues to build his brand with his permanent hippy intellectual look. Jeff was scruffy in his moccasins and grizzly-adams beard, which he has vowed not to shave off until the executive switchover. Jeff wants to assure you, his dear constituents, that the razor-sharp edges of his facial hair are 100% au naturel, though. "Look, there's some stray hairs up here!" he eagerly demonstrated. "I'm worried that people will think I sculpt it," he confided over beers. Is Jeff really free of such unseemly vanities? YOU decide.


"He that soweth iniquity shall reap vanity: and the rod of his anger shall fail"
- Proverbs 22:8, King James Bible.


Meanwhile, BoG rep Darren Peets flaunted his taste in heinous ties with a boardroom-boring pattern of squares in dour shades of tow. Rubbing shoulders with UBC's sinister power-brokers for a year has had a bad effect on poor Darren's physics grad student-caj fashion sensibility. Personal shopper needed.

On the flip-side, UBC's VP Students Brian Sullivan was dapper in a beautiful camel-coloured sport jacket and his signature impeccably styled bow-tie. B-Sull, you're an inspiration to fashionable men everywhere. Both Russel Smith and I approve wholly.

Representing the citizen-journalist community at the party, UBC Devil scribblers Aaron Palm and Serious Steve were both rather fetching. The former was classy in a matched black felt private-eye hat and peacoat. Nice touch with the green scarf. Steve was in a category of collegiate charm all his own with a geek-power Shad Valley polo shirt - and hell can that boy fill out a pair of jeans!


Irresistible Serious Steve. Hawt.



Well, that's the roundup. Democracy has never been so goddam couture. As Tim Gunn would say, "that's alotta look". In a tragic turn, however, the night ended with the loss of my much-envied green duct-tape wallet. Here's a picture of it, three years ago. If you see a beat-up version of this, containing ten bucks and a Black Dog card with 8 stamps on it, drop me a line, please?

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25 January, 2008

Results: Duncan, Pornstar, and Lipdock win!

AMS election results (pending the potential Student Court challenges that are anticipated by at least half of the hacks around) are in. Well, except for VP Admin as noted before. In more exciting news, Brendan Piovesan was disendorsed today by the Devil's Advocate at the Elections Results party. Here are the results:

  • President: Mike Duncan (by a landslide - almost 1000 votes)
  • Finance: Chris Diplock
  • Academic: Pornstar a.k.a. Alex Lougheed
  • External: Stef Ratjen
  • Board Reps: Bijan Ahmadian, Tim Blair
  • Senate: Blake Frederick, Azim Wazeer, Alfie Lee, Rob Mclean, Alex Lougheed
The results came as no suprise to your correspondent, though it was a bit troubling that candidates expressly disendorsed by the Devil's Advocate still managed to capture crucial positions on the AMS executive. The war against hackery will continue, dear readers.

A further note on the "voting irregularities" observed during the election. We have this admission, from a "Cel" who posted on our comments:
"I was manning the Kaiser polling booth in the afternoon. ... I openly admit that I was asking people who they voted for, as well as endorsing my own favourite candidates..."
WTF? Can the elections committee not hire semi-competent students to man the polls? This at the very least (according to my "reading of code", to be a hack for a second) should result in this poll-manner not receiving their stipend; however, it really just compliments questions about the whole election that the VFM have been asking all along.

Of course, the VP Admin campaign is another matter. According to "Scary Movie" Mike "The Rabbinical Atheist" Kushnir, he will appeal the results to the AMS Student Court (a triad of law students who read the AMS code more than Brendan "Elections Adminifuckup" Piovesan, apparently). My guess as to what will happen? Yian will be (very justly) disqualified, Sarah "Vote for Experience" Naiman will drop out, and Kushnir will decline the position because he's a joke candidate. He confirmed that he would do this tonight.

To continue my prediction: there will be another VP Admin Race, as Piovesan has claimed, starting in February. Several semi-qualified candidates will run against each other (some familiar from the previous elections or VFM sites) and one will win without fanfare, and most importantly, without a smidgen of student interest. Your humble reporter for the Devil's Advocate (along with his sworn competition from the "UBC Hacksiders" and the "Cavalierly Stealing Other People's News") will continue to cover the race with witty and sarcastic commentary. No one will care.

Best quote of the night? Admittedly this is second-hand, but it comes from Matthew Naylor, candidate for President:
"I'm just concerned. We're fucked."
I present the AMS elections in a nutshell.

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24 January, 2008

Clusterfuck of Democracy



Okay folks. I can no longer take this shit seriously, and neither can any of the candidates. The next asshat who makes fun of U.S. primary elections can suck my absentee ballot. A short list of recent lameness:






1. Chris Marincat - the campaign period closed last night at midnight. You've got lots of shiny campaign balloons up today. Riddle me this Batman, how long can Helium stay in balloons
not 14 hrs? Smooth. But that's not your fault Marincat. No one is following campaign rules. Someone should be providing oversight. Where are they?

2. Paper balloting. Apparently the elections folks don't know the meaning of secret ballots. They are requiring voters to put student numbers on the back of ballots. And watching you as you vote. Transparency my ass.
Additional paper ballot issues: no yes/no options. Several of the races are single candidate races ( Student Legal Fund and Ubyssey Editors), so voters require the option of voting yes or no.
Furthermore: the folks running the elections are not putting up campaign posters at the polling stations, instead requiring candidates put their own posters up. Except there are election rules not allowing candidates within 10 feet of a polling station. Smooth move guys.

3. VFM: When I asked elections booth people where I could vote for VFM, I was met with blank stares and "what is a VFM?" Fortunately, VFM voting is now online. A week late, but up nonetheless. Yay...?

4. Shortened campaign period, which is why the last debate didn't matter.
Speaking of debates, cancelling the only debate that was supposed to be held in a UBC Rez, then holding the next one at the Gallery, where minors aren't (officially?) allowed
what does mean for the inclusion of all UBC students in AMS Elections?

5. There was supposed to be an information meeting for candidates last November. That didn't happen because there was no elections administrator at that time. No prep time for these elections may be a huge cause of CLUSTERFUCK that are the 2008 AMS Elections.

6. VP Admin race was canceled. What the hell?

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VFM Voting open

Voting for the Voter Funded Media is now open finally. If you've enjoyed the posts of the Devil's Advocate, please vote to reward us!

Voting is done at the Student Service Centre. The procedure is very simple:
1. Click on the link above.
2. Log in with your CWL.
3. Find "Webvote" way down at the bottom of the left-hand menu.
4. Click "Cast Vote"
5. Vote!

Don't worry we'll have more to come on the election results tonight, as well as the Devil's Advocate "Best of" 2008 awards. Stay tuned.

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23 January, 2008

VP Admin Delays: Who will pay for my broken heart?

By Austin Holm

I was traipsing towards my education this morning when a small bird alighted upon my shoulder. “What is it my gentle Avian friend?” I asked, my charm radiating outwards in doses strong enough to give onlookers leukaemia.
“Chirp Chirp,” he said, “VP Admin election has been postponed chirp chirp.”
And then my heart broke. I was really looking forward to the VP Admin election results.

I say this, not in the snarky, macho, sarcastic tones for which I am known, but in the earnest falsetto of a prepubescent boy, too young to know the disappointment of being lied to. To have my hopes for the future so cruelly stolen from me, and without even knowing the thief or his motives, was so cruel it rocked me to my core. VP Admin was the first debate I’d ever covered as a member of the press, back when I was still green, a certifiable press n00b, and I’d deeply looked forward to the results. It was a lonely time, a time of mists. Thunder Lizards still roamed the earth and the early civilizations of man hid as best they could, in bars and conversation pits, transcribing the debates for VP Admin as best they could, so that future generations would know what had come before.

It brings a single manly tear to my eye, remembering those bygone days. I invested so much of myself into the VP Admin race, and I’ve waited so long to find out the results. Would people take heed of my words and treat Yian like the platformless, chromosomally-superfluous primate I proclaimed him to be? Or would he be born into office by UBC’s legions of construction worker fetishists? Alas, it seems I shall never find out, not until this cold and bitter January has left me, to be replaced by February. And the reason I must endure this eternity of waiting, this purgatory of political bus stop anxiousness, is because one candidate, one foul, oozing herpetic sore on the testes of democracy, has violated the sanctity of our ballots by pressuring helpless students into voting for him. Now, I must wait until February to watch Yian’s hopes and dreams fall out from under him.
“You poor bastard,” I hear you cry, “whatever will you do in the mean time!?”
“Well,” I reply, my voice marinated in the smoky juices of reluctant acceptance, “I reckon I’m a gonna find the sumbitch gone and done this to me. And then, I reckon me and him’ll… ‘have a chat’.”

Thus steeped in Eastwood-esque machismo, I donned my Sam Spade overcoat, tilted my felt fedora, drew on a pencil thin mustache, and set down to do some serious detective work. Yes sir, I went straight to the Devil’s Advocate, home to all serious Journalism relating to the dark machinations of the AMS electoral process, where I promptly learned that this travesty had been perpetrated by Yian Messoloras. I should have known! I should have foreseen! I should have… I should have…
Disendorsed him?

Dear AMS Ass Clowns,
Once the Devil’s Advocate disendorses someone no amount of pressuring, no amount of douchebaggedly anti-democratic dickery, no amount of construction work can possibly push them into office. When the Devil’s Advocate disendorses a candidate, that candidate may as well sleep with a dead tranny hooker while doing lines of cocaine off of decapitated gnomes. Orphan Gnomes. Because no matter what, nothing you can possibly do can possibly save your chances in this election. A DA disendorsement is a death sentence to your AMS political career. I’d say that disqualifying him would have been more appropriate then delaying the whole race, but let’s be honest: our hard hated friend was already disqualified. And what was the crime Yian perpetrated that so disrupted the cahones of liberal democracy?

He approached voters with his laptop asking them to vote for him.

Take a moment to think about that. I’ll wait. Hell, I could use a break to go get some more food. Take all the time you need.

Asking voters to vote for you.

What a bastard.

I mean, for seriously, I’ve known my fair share of assholes in my time. I’ve been my fair share of assholes in my time. But never, ever have I heard of a crime that surpasses approaching voters and asking them to vote for you. Especially voters on a campus with 85% apathy. Yian, the Nazis were assholes. Stalin was a jerkwad. Osama bin Laden, Robert Pickton, Charles Manson, George Lucas and Saddam Hussein: all evil, cat-abusing shitwits. But you Yian! You are the razorblades in the urethra of mankind! You are worse than the cancerous societal smegma that keeps pissing on the seats of public toilets! You are worse than the venereal smear who invented child abuse! You are worse than the idiots who cancelled Firefly! Election delay? Disqualification?!?! HANGING IS TOO GOOD FOR YOU! YOU… MONSTER! I HOPE YOUR LIVER IS EATEN BY RABID DICKROACHES!

Ahem…
The point is Yian has not just tainted the race for VP Admin. Nay, gentle reader, those few voters he wickedly pulled out of apathy and into political participation did not vote for one race solely. They may have voted in any number of different races, including president! What if this skews the results? He could have convinced as many as fifty people to vote. What if every person Yian got to vote knew nothing of the election and chose at random? Rodrigo could… well, perhaps not win, but he could lose by a very small margin. At what would happen then?
Anarchy, gentle reader. Pure Anarchy.

The Straight Shit

Dear AMS,
I entreat you, do not be lenient with Yian Messoloras, nor with the democracy he so callously raped. Gentleness is overrated. You are no blushing, prom night virgin; he is no fumbling, inexperienced high-schooler. Justice cannot be timid! Have Yian burned at the stake for his anti-apathy heresy and delay, not only the VP Admin elections, but all democracy at UBC. Declare Martial Law. Tell me who will and will not be allowed to serve me in public office. Decision making is over-rated. Be strong. Be rough. Be proud.
UBC shall prevail!

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Fuck Democracy

Fuck Democracy

By Austin Holm

I hate Democracy. All these choices, all this pressure to make the right decision. You cast the wrong vote, you doom your entire society to be ruled by some chimp in a suit for god knows how long. Whose idea was it? Ben Franklin? Robespierre? It was a bunch of ancient Greek pricks, wasn’t it? Listen to me you Athenian Necrotwats, I hope your corpses get dick cancer. Founding Fraternities, starting Democracy: it seems like everything pissing me off right now is the fault of some dead Greek assholes.



Honestly, I’m barely competent enough to decide whether I should have Coke or Liquor for breakfast. How am I supposed to choose who to represent me at government?

I have this friend, let’s call him Boston Golm, who goes to school at MEBC, a prestigious university located in a nearby parallel dimension. Boston shares my loathing for Democracy, as the two faced whore has recently saddled him with quite the trilemma.

The SMA, Secretive Mutant Association, is holding elections for the Vice Chieftain of Money, and poor Boston just doesn’t know how to vote. All three candidates are known to him personally and he can see convincing reasons to vote for each one. This situation has led him down a twisted, deep rabbit hole of introspection. Why does he vote the way he does? What’s more important: loyalty, belief system, or professionalism?

Samoan Courage

The first of these candidates is running under the alias ‘Samoan Courage’. Samoan Courage is a brave man, a just man, a man with no real platform. Samoan Courage stands for traditional Samoan values (such as becoming a professional wrestler, like the Rock, and sexing with your schoolteachers, such as Vili Fualaau) but also for modern Canadian values, like alcoholism and anti-police sentiments. Samoan Courage represents a section of campus that believes in the MEBC dream: that each and every student has the right to have sex with their professors, while body slamming the Hot Fuzz and chugging Morgan’s.

Samoan Courage stands proudly for a belief system that Boston firmly supports, and, as you all know, Democracy is sham if you don’t vote for what you believe in. However, Samoan Courage is probably not the best qualified person for the job and, even if he is, he’s certainly the least dedicated to upholding the duties of the position. Also, it’s generally agreed that he will probably not follow up on his campaign promises to patent Oxygen and resurrect the monsters of Samoan Myth. Is it worth throwing down a vote for the sake of a laugh? Samoan Courage’s campaign may taste good but, like a Twinkie, it’s ultimately just a bunch of empty promises.

His detractors have even accused him of being a joke.


Andrea “Nosey” Shnerfor

Boston and Andrea go way back to when Boston first started attending MEBC. “She and I have saved each other’s lives countless times,” Boston told me, his deep, manly voice shaking me to my core, letting me know the words were unequivocally true. Together, they raided the underwater death ranch of Dyke Muncan and fought his legion of Scientific Android ‘Friends’. Side by side, they trespassed through the grey wastes of Lord Mayler, the dark god of boredom and hackery. Back to back they were on the cold morning of Boston’s first Science County Fair, fighting off the Po-Po with one hand and drinking beers with the other. With so much history between the two, you’d think it’d be a natural choice for Boston.

The only problem is that dear old Nosey might not be the best candidate for the job. And as much as Boston likes Nosey and her boy friend, Aaron, he also feels that having heuvos the size of Ron Jeremy’s wang is not the sole prerequisite for becoming Vice Chieftain of Money. You also need to show your qualifications on the campaign trail and Nosey’s has a pretty turbulent journey to the ballot box. Although Boston feels like he should vote for Nosey out of loyalty, he also feels like he should probably vote for someone with penis and a more consistent performance in the debates and a stronger platform.


Lipdock

Lipdock has a reasonable platform, decent debate skills, and eyes so soulful they could make Charles Manson volunteer at an orphanage. A brief bout of Facebook stalking has revealed Lipdock to be sensitive to preserving MEBC greenspace, an issue that matters deeply to Boston. Unfortunately, Lipdock is otherwise largely a ‘stay-the-course’ type candidate. It’s a philosophy which is not always inappropriate, but might warrant some reconsideration when you’re aimed at an iceberg.

Although he’s probably the most professional candidate, Boston still has reservations about voting for him. Boston writes for one of the campus papers, The Jesus Judge, a paper that Lipdock has repeatedly snubbed in annoyingly polite ways. If you’re going to blow someone off, you might as well go with the trumpets and elephant parades approach. A hearty ‘Fuck You, media swine!’ and a punch in the ovaries leaves a much more pleasant taste in a man’s mouth than a polite ‘I’m sorry, your paper has too many close ties with my opponents. On top of his antics vis a vis the media, Boston feels he can’t turn his back on his friendship with Nosey, nor can he ignore Samoan Courage’s idealistic platform.

The Straight Shit

So who does Boston vote for? Friendship? Idealism? Professionalism? It’s not an easy choice. Sometimes democracy means a choice between an idiot, an asshole, and an idealist, but it’s not always that simple. In the same way that I’ve occasionally lain in my bed, wondering if I should wake up and face the day or use my alarm clock as a projectile weapon, Boston stands at a crossroads. No matter which road he walks, he has to turn his back on two other equally enticing opportunities. So what’s he going to do?

Well, it’s none of your business. That’s what the secret ballot is for, you fascist pig porkers. But I will tell you one thing: whomever he votes for, he’ll regret it.

Fuck Democracy. Why doesn’t someone just make these choices for us?

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Breaking: VP Admin Election Postponed

The VP Administration race, between Sarah Naiman, Yian Messoloras and "Scary Mike" Kushnir, has been postponed. Details on when the voting will happen are not known; however, nominations will reopen and all three candidates currently nominated will be allowed to re-enter. According to Elections Administrator Brendan Piovesan, the postponement was caused by the actions of one candidate, which may have effectively invalidated the results of the election. Piovesan declined to give more details (who and what, for example) at this time, but did say that the actions were not enough to disqualify the candidate.

UPDATE: 2:30 PM:
The candidate with an "irregularity" in campaigning has been identified as Yian Messoloras, who violated elections rules by approaching voters with his laptop and asking them to vote for him on the spot. Yian will be allowed to run again, though his earlier campaign slip-ups and the revelation that he cheated may make it difficult for him to win. He has already been disendorsed once by the Devil's Advocate; we won't hesitate to disendorse him again if he chooses to run.


Nominations are tentatively scheduled to end by February 1st, 2008. Piovesan says that he will announce when voting will resume when he gets in touch with the WebVote administrators. We expect to recieve an email with official details soon.

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21 January, 2008

Coming soon...

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An open letter to Blake Frederick

Dear Blake,

I came to watch you in the senate debate today! In case you don't remember me, I'm the one who asked all the candidates to show some personality. I want you to know that I'll accept your invitation to your house tonight. Courting a VFM during the debate: now that's spunky. I expect candles and lots of personality.

I'll probably share with you tonight that most of the candidate's answers really disappointed me, though. I mean, appealing to your friend in the audience "they're asking me to show personality" (I'm looking at you, Ms. Harder) is kind of pathetic - lowers the standards for sorority girls everywhere. And please, telling me that you have personality really doesn't convince me.

That said, Blake, you didn't have the best answer. That honour belongs to Philip Edgecumbe (aka Senator of Rock 'n Roll!), with an honourary mention for Colin Simkus for admitting that he had no personality. Being a debater who is really all about blanket liberal hackery -- right up my alley. (Colin, it was an answer worthy of Matthew Naylor.)

But you've got my vote, Blake [one out of five, at least]. This is because for Senate, I'm really going to vote on looks, brevity, and personality. You've just shown you have the last one, you've always had the first (you can guess my response to the orgy poll question) and no-one in senate really has shown any brevity.

Yours,
Serious Steve

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20 January, 2008

More dis-endorsements

We at the Advocate won't tell you how we are voting. We won't publish lists of endorsements. But if a candidate crosses us they will find themselves disendorsed. Fast. Even Mr. T does not pity those fools.


On Jan 15 I sent the following email to all candidates:

As you know, elections are soon. What you also know is less than 10% of students actually vote. This means you do not matter to 90 percent of campus. In 150 words or less, justify the existence of your campaign.
cheers,
The Devil's Advocate, VFM of the radical centre
www.ubcdevil.com


Most candidates responded. Some did not. 150 words. Not hard. Most the putzes in the race just sent a generic platform (though props to Nunes for writing something that didn't make my eyeballs bleed) I don't find it unreasonable to expect a response from (if not everyone) at least candidates in the more contested races. If you're running for, say, president, you should be on top of your game. It hurts my feelings when people ignore me. Therefore:

Matthew Naylor,




We at the Advocate are not hacks. We don't do the whole "wordy analysis" bs. We assess candidates by staring deep into their souls and writing what we see. Inside Naylor's soul I found a man who does not answer email. Sure, I could also dis-endorse him for drunkenly accosting people at Mardi Gras, and then trying to get Erin to drop out so she could endorse . . . Naylor. Smooth one, cowboy. But yeah, either way:

Game over.

Oh, and don't think Naylor was the only candidate who doesn't respond to email. There are others and they are on my list. Way to go slackers:

VP External:
Stefanie Ratjen
You have a website so you must understand the concept of email. Too bad we already disendorsed your opponent and someone has to be VP external. So I guess you are safe.

VP Academic:

Alex Lougheed
Not disendorsed because you make a point of following us around and pretending to be our friends. And somehow one of your posters made its way into my kitchen (damn sure I didn't put it up) If a candidate is hardcore enough flyerfuck my house I can forgive his lack of email.
Status: not disendorsed. Yet.

Rob Mclean
You have groupies, that's nice. And your facebook page says you have a campaign rabbi. Sweet! Now get him to answer your fucking emails!
Status: not disendorsed. Yet.

Nathan Crompton

You didn't answer my email. But your platform is long, and I feel slightly obligated to read it before I disendorse you.
Status: safe. For now.

Adendum:

Okay asshats. I just realized that out of all the VP Academic candidates, the only one who actually responded to me was the hydrant. Seriously! The thing has no thumbs! That makes me sad. I think it would actually do a better job then all off you. Y'all are off.
Lougheed: disendorsed!
Mclean: disendorsed !
Crompton: disendorsed!

VP Admin:

Yian Messoloras
Already dis-endorsed, irrelevant.

Senate:

Colin Simkus
Here is a special case. First, Eoin disendorsed him already.
Second, he Facebook messages me asking if he can help out with the Advocate (he has written for us in the past, a fact which he made sure to remind me of) Also he asked me to forward him any questions I wanted answered because his blackberry is on the fritz so he may have missed my email. I send him a copy of the email.
No response. Disendorsed 2x!

Then as I'm trying this post I get a whiny email from him complaining about being disendorsed the first time. Because he has written for the Advocate in the past he expects us to back his campaign. Bitch. We have no loyalties!
Disendorsed 3x

Board of Governors

Bijan Ahmadian
Check your email!
Disendorsed!

Andrew Carne

From your blurb on the AMS election site: “My primary goals if elected to Board are as follows: To improve communication between the board and students”
Start by answering your email.
Disendorsed!

Genevieve “Malt Likkah” Sweigard
You don't even have a blurb on the AMS election site. You don't answer your email. Do you even exist? I don't like fictional people.
Disendorsed!

and that's all for now!


ps - speaking of fictional people, Gary Brecher: I'm on to you. Not only is your ass disendorsed but next time I see you I'm challenging you to a duel. Bring your swords.

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Duncan Disendorsed

By Austin Holm


Michael Duncan has been picked as a favorite in this race by quite a few people. He’s a rugged, gregarious Scientific Aqua Cowboy party slut with more Facebook friends than Jesus. I’ve been told that, in no uncertain words, if I personally knew this lady-slaying bad boy I would be forced, nay compelled, to literally orgasm my endorsement of him right onto the interwebs. Fortunately for you, the thirty something people who read the Devil’s Advocate, I’ve never met the man, never watched him party, never gently grazed his neck with my lips, so I can be completely objective. Which leads me to the heart of this matter:


It seems to me, a lowly super-genius cursed with the inability to be wrong, that Duncan’s giant friends list has distracted us all from his platform. Having read it, re-read it, and then read it again, I’m here to tell you: I journeyed into the heart of the beast and came back confused and unsatisfied. His platform consists of seven points:

UBC Athletics
Campus Involvement
SUB Renewal
Branding and Engagement
UBC Roundtable
Transit
Student Housing

One by one now:

UBC Athletics
If elected (it’s nice to have dreams) Mikey promises to “create leverage with athletics to negotiate a reduced cost gym”. Create Leverage? Negotiate? A platform is basically a job application, Duncan. When I apply for a retail job I don’t promise to “attempt to negotiate a working relationship with the cash register and leverage my fluent English to sell toasters to costumers.” I say “I’ll talk people in buying shit they don’t need and then I’ll take their money.”
“I will also work hard to get UBC Athletics to reduce the intramural costs even further”
Awww, that’s sweet of you Cowboy, but it does me little good that you’re going to ‘work hard’. How about promising to actually do something? These vague platitudes amount to “golly gee, sure would be swell if we could have a cheap gym. Maybe if I’m elected I’ll leverage my ass out of apathy and seriously consider doing something… or whatever.” Jerk.

Campus Involvement
An excerpt from Mike’s Platform:
• Why do we only have one Clubs Days?
• Can people only join clubs during this short 3 day span?
• That answer should be a most certain NO; however, many students find it increasingly difficult to join a club outside of clubs days
• I will work with the VP Admin to increase club exposure through the AMS and to ensure that we are an aid, not a burden on our clubs
• I want to create a second clubs days in the new year, improve how clubs are represented on the AMS website, and work with volunteer connections to help direct people to clubs and groups they would be interested in
Let me turn translate this out of Ramblese: “My AMS will work to expose clubs”. Seven words against one hundred and fourteen. I like my version better. At least you had some semblance of a plan this time. Unfortunately for you, the other candidates have similar plans. Guess you’ll have to move onto something more unique. Jerk.

SUB Renewal
Aww, you and Sarah Naiman have something in common. How cute. Maybe after you both lose to Radical Beer Factionaries, you guys could run away together and start a family of cute children who obsess about things no one cares about. Also, why are you both so keen on putting showers in the SUB? I saw Cruel Intentions 3 too guys, but I don’t think that a student union building is an acceptable place for threesomes with twins.

On second thought, why isn’t the SUB nothing but showers? It’d get rid of the pigeons and, as a Scientific Aqua Cowboy, you’d fit right in. It’d make a better platform than your current plan of passing out surveys and then… handing out more surveys. And then talking to students about their surveys. And then hyping up the surveys and establishing clear lines of communication with people who care about surveys. IE people, not me. Jerk.

Branding and Engagement
“When you walk into the SUB, you should know you are entering a student run space”
Should I, Duncan? Should I really? Because I can think of things I’d rather know. Like all the answers to my exams, whether or not the cute girl in my tutorial wants to sleep with me, or where in this building I can buy a tight R&C and a loose hooker. I don’t think a big banner saying “STUDENT RUN SPACE” is really going to improve my life by solving any of these problems.
You also complain about how not enough people are involved in the AMS. Now, I know you think the AMS is a big deal Duncan. Hell, you wouldn’t be running for President if you didn’t think that. But I’ve got to level with you:
85% of this campus doesn’t give a shit.
And I’m one of them. Don’t get me wrong cowpoke, I’m well aware that the AMS does many useful things. It gives me my uPass, it organizes the clubs, and it saves the kittens (but not the SFU kittens). But a smooth running machine doesn’t make noise. The simple fact the 85% of the campus doesn’t give a shit is proof that, on some level, AMS gets the job done. You keep the Wi-Fi running and you don’t bother me when I’m drinking, whoring, or writing. That’s all I really need from you. Any attempt on your part to motivate me into participating in the circle jerk that is student government will be met with force. Force in this case being a euphemism for thrown, rotting fruit. Jerk.

UBC Roundtable
Duncan knows he doesn’t have all the answers, so he wants to invite other campus presidents to talk things over twice a term.
Not a bad idea Duncan, but let’s think this over. Do the clubs really need to talk to you? Do the War Gamers? The NDP kids? Afternoon Tea Society? Do we really want to let the Spartacists have a say? I say sure, but what do you say? Who gets a seat and who doesn’t? What about non-club groups, like Aletha and Stash’s little Poetry Slam group? Or the Wreath Underground? Remember, it’s not Terrorism once you open an embassy.
Then it’s War! Jerk.

Transit
Duncan’s Transit platform consists of noting that stuff’s being done, said stuff’s not going to be done for a while, and that the stuff we have is pretty sweet, and we should support that. Sorry Dunk, but when it comes to the UPass, UFail. Jerk.

Housing
More Statements of the Obvious followed by vague platitudes. Suggestion: stop cruising the high seas on your jet skis, lassoing sea cows and seducing ladies. Instead, sprout some huevos and make some decisions. You’re running for AMS president, not Chairman of the National Association of Indecisive University Students.
You didn’t even suggest floating, transient housing. What kind of Aqua Science Cowpoke are you? Jerk.

And thus ends the platform of Mike Duncan, leaving me as satisfied as an Asian co-ed after a night with [name removed, -ed]. Now, it is insulting that his platform manages to be so long, while saying so little. But here’s the real insult:

Arts County Fair
Remember when I said the AMS’s job was to keep the Wi-Fi running? Wi-Fi and Beer. The other Candidates have all addressed this issue. Naylor’s going to forgive the debt, Rodrigo’s got his space program, and Rennie is going to start an AMS county fair. What are you going to do? Painting yourself blue and attending a party isn’t going to fix this issue. People are legitimately pissed off about this. I know. I’m one of them. Want to address an actual issue? Find a way to bring the jam back into our space. Find a way to bring back the County Fair. I don’t care if you have to descend into the depths of hell and drag it back kicking and screaming, all while using your Scientific Aqua Cowboy Six Shooter to blast the Devil in the nuts. I know it’s bad for an Advocate to advocate blowing away his client’s testes, but I mention it to help you realize just how badly I want the Fair back.

The Straight Shit
Sorry Duncan. I’m sure you’re a nice guy, but quite frankly, I’m not. It takes more than social skills and cowboy hats to make a president. Maybe if you had a platform to stand on, things could be different. Unfortunately, every plank of your platform is either imaginary or rotten. Consider yourself dis-endorsed. Jerk.

Read more!

Rennie goes serious

Time for some serious news. Presidential "joke" candidate Erin Rennie, of "fight the war on fun" fame, has recently decided to declare her intention as a serious candidate in light of several requests from friends and VFM (we started it right here, folks!). Read more to see Erin's comments, and be sure to check out her facebook group to read her qualifications and platform.


IMPORTANT UPDATE: RENNIE "GOES SERIOUS"!

Dear friends, over the past week I have received overwhelming encouragement to run as a "serious candidate" from everyone from my closest friends to a number of the VFMs. This encouragement has been both flattering and extremely confusing, but after much consideration I am willing to step up to the challenge. I recognize that it being half-way through the voting period I haven't got much of a chance, but what the heck.

If you've been able to read between the lines of my obnoxious platform, you will probably see that my message, while hopefully hilarious, is serious and that I am sincere about it. I want to reignite campus life, to take the campus back for students, to develop a fair relationship with the RCMP, the Administration and the UNA, to unify the student voice, to demand more value and better education for hard-working students - I want to continue to be proud to be a UBC student. So in fact, I have always been a serious candidate, a serious candidate running a silly campaign. I got into this wanting to revive an old joke candidate tradition, crack a few one-liners, and most importantly raise important issues, but I see now that if I really care about those issues I should be willing to do something about it.

People say I haven't got much of a chance, and I'm ok with that. I want to be an alternative to the two front-runners. So if you like my message, and you can see that I am just as qualified as the other candidates, go ahead and vote for me and if you manage to elect me I will serve as President to the best of my ability. If you are worried that I will be a "spoiler" and split the vote, then go ahead and vote for your second-best choice, but if you want your vote to mean anything, vote for the candidate you feel will do the AMS and UBC students justice.

Erin Rennie

Read more!

How the President is voting - Che Allison's ballot

Che Allison is next year's AMS president. Who is he endorsing for on the presidential ballot? In his own words.

Photo courtesy Peter Rizov

As Rennie noted, the cocks are out and up against the rulers as different AMS candidates start counting their endorsements from semi-important people and others who really don't fucking matter. But why do we care? Sorry Jeff, I like Aggies as much as the next guy (mechanical bulls kick ass) but why are you endorsing someone to replace you? If you'd done it right in the first place, there wouldn't have been an election at all and you'd be ruler for life. But you snooze, you loose and I'm here now. So this is my official endorsement for the next president of the AMS; me.

I have clearly stated why I am better than the other candidates and why I am going to win. My platform is clearly and concisely laid out and is easy to follow. My Facebook group has a large membership and is only being a little bit censored. I have yet to kill anyone for disagreeing with me. Today. While we're on the subject, Knoll Weekly, you made fun of me. I thought you would have my back, but instead you left me hanging. Now you're on the list next to the Cavalier, Pat Meehan and the state of Wyoming (it knows what it did).

Some people may have been offended by my campaign. To those people I say, "eat me." I'm redistributing the GPA, throwing state-madated parties full of badass-ery and beer. Yeah, I said beer and not bzzr, RCMP. OHNOES!1eleventy3!
Yeah, I just went there. And I will continue to go there whnever I damn well please. My roomates know where I keep my bail money. But once elected, I won't need it anymore, being above the law and all.

Oh yeah, and Devil's Advocate, you guys will be the only media outlet permitted to operate once I rise to power. Despite your subtle mockery of me, your humour and wit in the elections coverage makes me laugh. And I'm an iron-fisted dictator who likes to laugh.

SLOFUC!

Love, Che

Read more!

19 January, 2008

Hack points awarded

As promised, the Devil's Advocate is awarding "hack points" to each candidate. After much deliberation from our entire editors and writers board today, we have a conclusions.

And the hack points go to...
Most hack points: Matthew Naylor (9)
Least hack points: Irish Courage (-2)
Special "jam points" award: Rodrigo Ferrari-Nunes (666)

Special award for most hack points in one action: (tie!)
Alex Lougheed, for handing out flyers while dancing at Mardi Gras.
Mike Duncan, for name dropping Stephen Lewis in response to our question.
Rob McLean, for having groupies.

How do we reccomend you use these hack points? Well, we suggest finding the range you're comfortable voting in - AMS insiders could be comfortable in the 6-9 range, but we'd suggest the 0 - 4 range for the rest of us. Then find the candidates on our list, and vote!


The Full List

President
Matt Naylor: 9
Michael Duncan: 7
Erin Rennie: 2
Che Allison: -1
Rodrigo Ferrari-Nunes: 666 jam points

VP Academic
Alex Lougheed: 6
Rob McLean: 3
Fire Hydrant: 0
Nathan Crompton: -1

VP Finance:
Andrew Forshner: 6
Chris Diplock: 1
Irish Courage: -2

VP Admin:
Sarah Naiman: 4
*Yian Messoloras: 4
Scary Mike the Rabbi: -1

External:
*Freeman Poritz: 3
Stefanie Ratjen: -1

Board of Governors:
Cris Marincat: 2
Bijan Ahmadian: 2
Tim Blair: 2
Andrew Carne: 0
Fiddler Crab: -1
Malt Likkah: -1
Rodrigo Again: 666 jam points

Senate:
Alex Lougheed: 6
Colin Simkus: 4
Blake Frederick: 3
Rob McLean: 3
Alfie Lee: 2
Philip Edgecumbe: 2
Aidha Shaikh: 1
Eileen Harder: 1
Azim Wazeer: 1

* has been disendorsed already. Kept on list for archival reasons.


What the hack do these mean?

How did we award hack points? The following offences were worthy of a hack point, with exceptionally outstanding displays of hackery.

  • name dropping
  • shameless campaigning (including "flyerfucking" ... as in "Hey I just flyerfucked Buchanan!")
  • endorsement wars
  • making stuff (esp. endorsements) up
  • a year in student government
  • a pet issue
  • being too close to the VFM
  • being "shamed" by an audience
  • avoiding questions or giving excuses as answers
  • being boring
  • involvement (prior to or during campaign) with Liberal Party
  • looking too much like a politicial (esp. displaying Canada flag behind you in candidate picture, and pictures with Children) or a tool
  • general douchebaggery

And some things were worth negative hack points

  • communist tendencies
  • being disliked by members of student government
  • running for the Radical Beer Faction
  • being generally awesome (needed unanimous vote)

Read more!

18 January, 2008

Pretty graphs

Some of you may have been deluded into believing that polls and statistics mean something prior to the end of voting. So I present my mathematical proof that they do not.


Take Graph 1. It may seem that Mike Duncan, due to the large facebook support, has the lead. But then we compare against their whole number of facebook friends, which shows that he has a large group just because he has lots of friends. Will other people support him? On the other hand, Erin Rennie has almost as many group members as friends... obviously doing a better job of outreaching to campus.The next couple I will admit I just made up, with no justification as to the numbers. You could note the correlation of the "hack index" to the Cavalier's straw poll of council... but I'd be careful, since of course I made these numbers up.
And of course how can you measure readiness to be President other than contribution to the intellectual debate? I measure by contribution to the VFM message boards [the Insider, Devil's Advocate and the Cavalier]. (Of course, one could also take this to be a factor of most-maligned...)

To sum up, these polls show us very clearly what will happen in the Presidential race. My prediction? Duncan, Naylor and Rennie will split the serious vote, leaving Rodrigo the surprise victory.

Serious Steve out.

Read more!

The Election: Day Three (or Two, depending on how you count):

So Tuesday’s debate in Vanier got cancelled due to conflicts with the AMS Council meeting, so the people in Rez will never actually see a candidates’ debate and will never be infected with the virus of democracy. Kudos Brendan! Keep those first years down!

Thurday was a momentous occasion as we had two debates to try and squeeze in enough election goodness as possible into twenty four hours. The first in the conversation pit involved the candidates for President, VP Finance, and VP Academic. Once again, I only saw the Presidential debate, having to go off to learn about cosmology midway through. I therefore regret to inform you that I can only speak of what occurred in the Presidential debate.

Of the candidates, only Naylor seems to have been wise enough to read our words of wisdom, speaking out in favour of the AMS as a homeland for hacks, reminiscent of the Balfour Declaration. After being ravaged by his former endorsers – Spencer Keys strikes back! – he was narrowly saved by Erin Rennie, who tried to make the debate about issues again. Naylor claimed that he was working against the old school of hacks in response to the questions from the Ubyssey and comments by Duncan. Have we won a convert, or is the good ship Naylor going down in a blaze of endorsement hell?

Duncan learned to speak clearly since the last debate, and we finally learned what he’s all about. He’s all warm and cuddly and wants to get VPs to hand in their assessment forms (or whatever the important paper work they have to hand in is called) by being a good role model. Really, he’s a care bear at heart, which makes me distrustful. I don’t like warm and cuddly politicians, because eventually they turn around and do shit like this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skSksoO9Fek

Erin Rennie earned her title once again as a professional shit disturber when she decided she had enough of Duncan and Naylor’s dick measuring contest over who had the most friends in high places. Rennie is officially now the David Kucinich, the Ron Paul of this election, (Except for being a woman) for pointing out shit no one else has the guts to. She isn’t a joke, she isn’t running to win, but she’s serious about beer. We salute her. (again) Speaking of Ron Paul and Kucinich:

http://www.angryflower.com/paulvk.html

As for ‘Che’ Allison, he was his usual communist self, arguing for the redistribution of GPAs so that those poor folk who wanted to party could maintain 2.5 averages. To you, Sir, we have one thing to say. For all your talk of revolution, the Devil’s Advocate staff accomplished in one afternoon that which you have spent the better part of this week ranting and raving that you would – take over the AMS!!! In one swell swoop we seized the AMS Council room and the seat of power and reigned on high for approximately four hours. Observe the evidence of our victory:















We then got bored, and relinquished our hold, preferring to scoff at the foolery of the political system from afar.

Rodrigo was Rodrigo. When asked how he felt about being sandwiched between the two serious candidates he boldly proclaimed that he was not a sandwich ( you tell ‘em Rodrigo!) and went on to emphasis the importance of Jam spaces and his other charms. We’d like to inform all the candidates that we are keeping a running ‘hack point’ tally that we will publish at the end of the election. Rodrigo so far has no points, as we will be using a separate system to evaluate him. (Jam points)

I left before anyone could talk much more about the issues, but what I essentially gleaned from the debate was this: if you don’t have the approval of the old AMS guard, you’re nothing. Democracy doesn’t matter as much as hack approval. I still don’t know where any of the serious candidates stand on issues other than ACF. That’s sad. I suppose I should go read some online platforms. That would be a good idea. I’m certain Aaron or Commodore Cuddles will fill you in on the rest.

For the second debate, we went deep into the heart of the Gallery. The debate started late, so we ended up wiping the nacho cheese from our hands and the beer foam from our luxurious beards before we began to write down the exploits that followed.

Austin has done coverage of the VP Admin. I’m not going to mess with his wisdom. It’s simply sublime. Commodore Cuddles has taken on the VP External, so there only remains for the Senate news from me.

In that debate, Rob McLean had a bunch of groupies cheering him on. Hot Rob, hot. That’s the kind of populist democracy we like, the kind with a little eye candy to brighten up the gloom of AMS politics. Lougheed was the only senator hopeful with the good grace to say he’d never been to a senate meeting without a five minute long excuse. We also dig his soft core porn posters. That low cut shirt, those dreamy bespectacled eyes – it’s almost enough to turn me gay. We’d like to clear one allegation up however - those posters weren’t a result of Lougheed’s photographer’s desire to mass produce erotic material. He dresses like that all the time. Or at least he does in debates, which is the only place that matters, but I digress.

With a whole long line-up of boring, we decided to leave early to get our editorials in order, once our beer was finished. For driving us from our beer, I therefore disendorse all of the senate candidates except for:

Blake – for actually going to Senate meetings in his spare time
Alfie Lee and Aidha Shaikh – for coming back for a second round.
Lougheed – for answering questions properly. And for those posters. Those dreamy posters

We invite you to choose the fifth candidate by rolling a die. Though it might have to be a D4, so get out your D&D set. Now I must go to Mardi Gras and obtain beads and alcohol. I suggest you do the same, and purge the knowledge of this election from your brain by selective neuron destruction, aka drinking till you can’t stand.

Read more!

BREAKING: Advocate dis-endorsements!

Jesus forgives. The Advocate does not.
Goodbye Freeman and Yian

















Freeman Poritz


Okay – first off, your campaign relies on hollow rhetoric. You haven't actually really said anything. Also, if you're making such a huge point about your mad lobbying skillz, you need to learn to speak without pissing off your audience. It takes a whole kind of special to get an entire audience to shout “shame!” at you during a debate. The context, for those who weren't there, was a question about international student tuition. Poritz gave a stock answer, and then added an asside about how he can't really feel sympathetic for students who don't bother to live in Canada after receiving a degree. Lots of booing and shaming followed.

I'm Californian, asshat. I plan on Canadianizing myself after I get degreeified. Regardless, if you plan on representing UBC you shouldn't make it a habit of saying stupid shit. Unfortunately you suffer from chronic foot-in-mouth disease.

Goodbye Poritz. And Stefanie, don't take this as an excuse to slack off. Just 'cause we dis-endorsed your opponent doesn't mean we can't dis-endorse you too.

Yian Messoloras

Yian means well, but I doubt anyone would care much about intentions once he reduces the SUB to a big hole in the ground, and then scrambles senselessly to suddenly come up with a plan that makes some semblance of rational sense. Plus he can't answer questions from the audience. Allegra Levy had to try something like four times to get her question out. And he still didn't answer it.

If you are making the debate about the SUB referendum, when someone asks what you're gonna do if it fails, have an answer!

Read more!

VP Admin Debates: rumble in the gallery

Austin Holm

I was walking home from class yesterday when I stumbled into some friends. “Prithee, amigos,” said I, flourishing my words like a lance, “where art thou hoofing it too?”
“The Gallery,” they said.
Now, here’s a list of my top three favourite things, in ascending order of importance.
3. Beer
2. My Friends
1. Drinking beer with my friends.
So off I went to the Gallery. Unfortunately for me, my friends fellate harder than a toothless Thai hooker, so instead of finding beer at the gallery, I found the debate for VP Admin.
It turns out that it’s a menage-a-trois race between Yian Messoloras, Sarah Naiman, and Mike Kushnir. As far as I could tell from the debate, the only thing VP Admin is responsible for is finding money to rebuild the SUB and then deciding how it should be rebuilt. Which is odd considering we don’t rebuild the SUB every year. I think it was mentioned once or twice that it would be swell if some other buildings on campus got some attention, but who cares? Buchanan is uglier than a pig eaten prostitute and freshmen aren’t important enough to fix the beer stained floors of Totem.
The race consists of two serious candidates and one joke candidate. I’ll deal with the joke candidate first before getting to the two serious candidates and discussing their platforms and debate performance, before hopefully getting around to telling you how you
should vote. But first, the Joke Candidate:

Yian Messoloras


The first words I heard Yian say were “Natural Construction Man”. Which was bad start for this voter, who doesn’t like nature, doesn’t like construction, and doesn’t much care for men. He then went on to detail how his background working construction in some way makes him better for the job than someone with administrative experience. Like say… oh, I don’t know… Sarah Naiman. He yawned continually during his own speeches, which is understandable, seeing as they were about as interesting as listening to a freshman girl talk about her problems.
His campaign promises were simple:
Number one, he’s going to rebuild the SUB, and not charge us a penny to do it. Instead the SUB will be funded entirely by ‘alternate sources of funding’.
Number two, he’s going to kick all potential alternate sources of funding off campus. Retail, real estate, you name it, it’s out. Apparently, money isn’t necessary to rebuild the most important building on campus, just so long as you have a leader who can ‘see the top’. Which would explain the architecture around here.
Number three, he’s not going to build the SUB anytime soon. Apparently, with the Olympics going on and all, construction prices are up, thus making it a stupid time to be rebuilding
anything. Which is the one part of this campaign that made sense.
Number four, he’s going to start rebuilding other campus fixtures immediately. He, and I quote, “sees no reason to stall”.
Number Five, he’ll address the issue of shortened clubs days. Apparently, clubs days were shorter this year because of a lack of interest (weird that people are complaining about it then) and that the problem can be fixed by better bran
ding. Renaming them “something awesome. Like Super-Dooper-Club-Stuff or something”. That will do it.
Yian’s campaign is a joke, but no one’s laughing. Maybe it’s ’cause he’s lacking punch lines. Instead of just contradicting himself on the SUB renewal funding issue, he should actually propose an alternate funding source. Like Leprechauns. Little bastards hide gold all over the place. Too bad Stash is already telling those jokes.
Yian, like most joke candidates, paid his dues to the Radical Beer Faction. When asked about Dry Campus politics, he responded “we need to stand up for what we believe in, and love. In this case: beer”. Fair enough, Yian, but simply plugging everyone’s favourite beverages isn’t going to make you funny. Stop retracing the RBF’s footsteps and find your own jokes.
The first time Sarah Naiman got up to speak, Yian covered his mike and said, sotto voce, ‘boo,
you suck’.
Yes, Yian, yes you do.
On to the serious Candidates.

Sarah Naiman

Sarah Naiman wasn’t as boring as Yian, but that’s kind of like saying Jupiter isn’t as big as the Sun. When I asked her what her position on Dry Campus Politics was, she responded, “that’s a complicated question.”
No, Sarah, it’s really not. It’s pretty much a yea or nay question. The correct answer was “I stand for a beer in every glass and two kegs in every dorm room”. It’s not a tricky sentence to say. They’re all one syllabl
e words (except “every”) and there’s no alliteration, rhyme, or other tongue-tied trickiness. I suggest you memorize it for your next debate. Assuming you get one.
Her actual response talked around the issue, but ended with a vague affirmation that, yes, beer is good. Which appealed to me as a voter. I too believe beer is good. We have so much in common. How could I not vote for you?
Too bad you immediately squandered that good will by finding a way to direct every question back to your pet project, the SUB. When faced with a question about shortened clubs days, you gave a deeply intelligent and analytical answer. And then you said “more people should come to the SUB”. It’s good to have hobbies Sarah. I myself enjoy auto-eroticism. But I don’t finish every statement with, “also, I plan to punch my clown later.” Stop pleasuring yourself and give a little lovin’ to the other issues. They do exist. Or so I’m told.

Mike Kushnir
When Mike first got up, I was under the impression that he was a joke candidate. When asked, he firmly responded in the negative. “I’m not a joke candidate,” he proclaimed. Fair enough. After all, serious politicians pretend to be rabbis all the time. Wins the Jewish vote. However, this is UBC and there aren’t many Jews around. Maybe you should dress up as Chairman Mao or the Dalai Lama instead.
Kushnir made more sense to me than both the other candidates combined. Which didn’t amount
to much, but still, good for him. His response to the club’s days question was simple enough. He suggested they find other ways to advertise themselves. He suggested Presidential Mud Wrestling. Which isn’t a bad plan.
Kushnir spoke out against designated prayer spaces and Sky Train routes to UBC. He suggested a slidewalk stretching from here to Commercial Drive take its place. Very sci-fi, Mike. I like the way you think.
He was also the only candidate who took a strong view on SUB Renewal. He isn’t interested. This may sound odd at first, but… well, here it is in his own words:
“It doesn’t matter whether the SUB is old or new, what’s going to matter are the memories you take away from this university”.
This campus is lo
sing fun all the time. Real Estate interests are squeezing out students, RCMP are squeezing out drinkers, and the UBC Admin are always trying to take away our jam spaces. Well fuck them. I like campus culture. I like beer. I like jam spaces. And I sure as shit like Kushnir. Don’t be fooled by his humorous speaking style. There’s nothing funny about these issues. This campus will be drier than the Sahara in a few years if we don’t do something about it. The other candidates need to stop worrying about the SUB. There are bigger issues at play here.

The Straight Shit
Yian said nothing, Sarah talked money, but only Mike made sense. Truth is, I don’t care who rebuilds the SUB. I don’t care why, how, when, or where. I don’t even care what they build it out of. My preference is for hookers and blow, but I realize I’m a minority voice. Most students would probably go for drywall or gingerbread.
I’m not telling you to vote for Kushnir. But I am telling you that’s who I’ll be voting for. And you might want to think about it too. Voting for Kushnir sends a message to the people who think the entire student body can’t get over what a big deal the SUB Renewal Project is. Message being “no one gives a flying rabbi about the damn SUB”.
Point is, unless Yian and Sarah start thinking about the bigger picture we are all going to suffer for it. These are issues that affect us all and, like it or not, the responsibility for this problem is going to fall to one of you two.
Don’t drop the ball.

Read more!

17 January, 2008

To the other VFMs

Eoin O'Dwyer


We rock. You guys don’t. I’ve prepared a list of what I think of the other media groups in this ‘contest’ and it ain’t pretty.

The Cavalier

Thank you for quoting our content. Many, many times over. You’re like an advertising agency for us. Awesome!

On the other hand, you’re not funny – you just try to be and fail. You can’t write any content except for what the candidates give you, which is really boring anyway. Who reads those? I don’t. I know ordinary students don’t Text hurts their alcohol induced bloodshot eyes. We need short snappy, sound bites.

Furthermore, what happened to sticking it to the man? What happened to in-depth analysis? The AMS already publishes the candidates’ platforms online. I can’t find time or the patience to read your stuff. Boring!

Your polls are shiny, we’ll give you that, but where’s your standard deviation? I demand proper statistics! Of course, you also have a paper edition. I foresee this ass-raping us in this competition. Damn you, bean counters!

Let them Eat Cake

You’re weird. Weirder than we are. That’s special. As much as I like boobs and pictures of Rodrigo’s wavy locks, your humour doesn’t make me chuckle. I just feel dead inside. Is my soul dying, or are you just not funny?

Macleans on Campus:

It’s cool you’re in this, but are you going to say anything? When you do, I will satirize it.

The Radical Beer Tribune:

Your coverage of last year’s election is amazing.
We know what you’re up to. Don’t even try to deny it. The Radical Beer Faction is back, and violating elections rules like a Catholic Priest violates an altar boy. And we love it.

The Insiders

You’re hacks. Competency is overrated and people don’t care about the issues you present. The Underground kicked your ass last year. Watch us do the same. (Tim, please don’t hurt me) Also, article overload! Couldn’t you have another section for candidate questions? We will, as soon as we figure out how this Blogger program works. I swear.

In Conclusion

Isn’t election coverage wonderful? I mean, even such ‘illustrious’ publications as the Ubyssey aren’t in the contest this year. Mark Latham is probably crying as I type this. Crying! I’m sure you can read the Insiders to find out who to blame, but as we at the Advocate like easy solutions that don’t involve much thought or research, we’ll just blame Brendan the Elections Administrator, Brendon Goodmurphy for appointing him, and….communists.

Read more!

A Solution to the Housing Crisis

Aaron Palm

To be fair, I spent most of the recent presidential debate daydreaming about Sparkles, the Advocate's pegasus, but apparently there was speaking. Still, I didn't hear a good solution to the housing problem. Nothing went far enough. Therefore, I propose an actual solution:

I rent a house with some fellow sociopaths. We pay something around $2,000 a month. In a year of leasing, that's $24,000. At the end, that's all money down the hole to landlords who sneak in during the day and put my yogurt into the freezer.

So what's a better use for that kind of cash? As much as I want to buy a scraper and ghost it up and down Main Mall, that's not a housing solution. But 20 grand will buy you a damn fine boat. Like this one I found on the internet:




Sure, it's not in the water now, but I'm sure it won't be that hard to get her there. Once we have a boat in the water, we anchor it off Wreck Beach and no longer pay rent. Wake up, catch a fish, and take the dinghy in to class.

But the beauty of the plan is this: there are many, many people who live in houses and pay rent. Because no one likes to pay rent it is only logical they turn to the water. Soon my floating commune will number in the hundreds. Engineers can help fix boats, earth & ocean science types can figure out tides so we don't drown, and chemistry students can manufacture explosives for when we have to fight off the nudist types which will undoubtedly oppose the Flotilla.

Also, think of the protest power a flotilla would have. Say we get antsy about fishing rights? We can shut down Vancouver harbour! Take that bitches!

So forget all this meaningless election stuff. We could be living on boats!

Read more!

16 January, 2008

Newsflash: hacks running AMS!!

Is it really true that the AMS is run by a bunch of insider political hacks and not a wide cross-representation of students as this writer erroneously believed? You bet.

In fact, Presidential candidate Michael Duncan seems to think so too. I'll directly quote him, too:

"There is currently a very small portion of students who are actively engaged with the AMS. ... I care very much about more than just the regular AMS hacks and will ensure that more student voices are heard." (my emphasis, quote from platform)
Well he didn't say it outright, but the inference I'm making is that (1) the regular hacks are those who are "actively engaged" [read: in charge of] the AMS, and (2) they don't care about students enough! Oh dear. (Sidenote: Duncan has been a Science rep on council since 2005, which would make him...)

The illustrious city newspaper (no, not the Xtra West, the Georgia Straight!) even noticed what I'll call the "AMS hack syndrome" in this article. I was astonished to learn that "the people that ... run for AMS office are just another campus subculture, a 'club'-with a $10.5-million budget." I mean, that budget (now over $11 million) is something I contribute to. I could be spending this valuable money on something like... well, housing myself, for example.

And you know what? I think the student body will be astonished to learn this too. They'll be so upset by learning about AMS hack syndrome that they'll turn out en masse and actually get involved in the "democracy" of the AMS. All 10% of them will vote in the elections, and overthrow the parade of hackery we see on the Exec and in Council. And so it should be.

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The Outsiders’ Perspective

Will Worden

Some people might wonder why I should post something given that I’m not paying attention to the elections. Like at all. I think Naylor is running or something and Rennie requested I wage war on the concept of fun. Anyway, I unfortunately represent the median voter. The ignorant masses that Edmund Burke was so worried were going to ruin society.

But before I start burning your art collection to cook my dinner while guillotining your mom, I wanted to whine about the lack of announcement to the rest of the UBC population that there’s an election going on. Where are the get out and vote groups on campus? This seems like the job for one of those meaning but ultimately futile social clubs that swarm me during club days then fade away when everyone remembers there’s still homework to do that won’t wait while your saving the world.

The south side of campus is devoid of any indication that we have a student election going on. Or a student government. Someone will say Science/CS/Engineering students don’t vote anyway. Probably, true. Most of the issues being discussed are about as interesting to me as eating my own hair. But being allegedly literate, I can read a paragraph that pitches a platform so I can vote for a candidate. Or I can look at pictures and vote based on candidates’ physical appearance. Either way, those are votes that are being missed.

If there are efforts to motivate this demographic to vote, they’re invisible when they shouldn’t be.

Will Worden is bitter. Send him hugs at devilsadvocate.ubc@gmail.com

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by Austin Holm

The race for AMS president is about as interesting as watching quadriplegics mud wrestle. Which is to say: hilarious. My understanding (which doesn’t exist) is that the president has enormous power and very little responsibility. Which makes the Spiderman fan in me cry. Five contenders have stepped into the ring: two of them boring, two of them funny, one of them pants-on-head-“special” and all of them laughable. Let's go through them one by one in order to judge them based on their Facebook profiles.

The “real”ly boring candidates, aka Matthew Naylor and Michael Duncan

Naylor:

Profile Picture: Kind of creepy. Way creepy, actually. Like full blown Reiki Creepy. A leering cartoon version of himself flatters him while taking away one of his greatest advantages: puppy dog eyes. This could cost him man-loving voters. Naylor’s a rough hewn hunk of quivering catholic man meat, so I left wondering why he’s not trading on his boyish charms. Self-Concious, mayhaps? Not a good trait in a leader.

Taste in… Stuff: Ok, who in their right mind lists student politics as an interest? I mean, seriously big fella. Your interests list is so boring that just reading it turned some of my luscious curls grey. Jazz? Cheese? Folk Music?! I wouldn’t let you plan a five year old’s birthday party, let alone a presidency.
On the other hand, you like some of the same music I do, watch Heroes, love Sin City, and quote Chuck Norris. Also, you debate. So I’ll forgive you your “eccentricities”.

Most Recently Joined Group: Werewolf Bar Mitzvah. A bold choice considering he is neither Jewish, nor a Werewolf. Kudos, Naylor. Kudos.

Generic Criticisms: His Facebook lists both Clinton and Picard as his choice for American President in the ’08 Elections. Which one is it, Naylor? Waffling already, are we? Also, his peers have apparently voted him #12 most trustworthy and only the #22 most reliable. Not a fact I’d be advertising if I was running for Prez.

Availability: Single. Surprise! If there’s anyone out there looking to enjoy some Jazz and Cheese, drop him a line.

Advice: Ditch the Cartoon, dude. Let’s see that sparkling smile. Also, cut down on the Facebook Apps. It’s a Facebook page, not a Japanese girl’s cell phone. Sparkly, dangling bits make you look like a wuss. Stand up for yourself and just hit ignore when people send you invites for useless space-wasters.

Dis-Endorsment Status: Not Dis-Endorsed… yet.

Duncan:

Profile Picture: Bad PhotoChop job, but I appreciate the rugged cowboy ‘tude. It makes you look like a Man’s Man. The blue circle makes it look like you’re running for the Conservatives but whatever. Jerk.

Taste in… Stuff: Your activities list reads like a résumé, but I don’t feel like hiring. Advertising that you used to be an RA? Sorry Amigo, not winning you points with my RezCrew. The SUS love might carry you into office, but it’ll never carry you into the hearts and minds of me.

Interests: You love love? Classy. The list of outdoor underwater sports also adds to this rugged outdoors man image you seem to be cultivating. I’m picturing you lassoing sharks while riding a seahorse and shouting Yee-Haw! I could vote for that.
Media-wise you seem to like Lame Music and Awesome Movies. I was hoping you’d listen to Willie Nelson, Tim McGraw, and Princess Ariel but I guess your submarine cowboy image was just a lie. You’re really alienating your core demographic: Scientific Aqua-Cowboys.
You don’t watch TV? Jerk.

Most Recently Joined Group: “Vote Eileen for Senate!” I’ll vote for whomever I want. Jerk.

Generic Criticisms: You’re not friends with me, in real life or on Facebook. That drops my stock in you immensely. Otherwise you seem like every other Scientific Aqua Cowboy Politician I know: solid. You put on a good Facebook page, Amigo. Well Played. Jerk.

Availability: Single?!?! How?!?! I would have thought rugged, eye-wear-wearing, political seacowboys would be in high demand. Waiting for the one? Fending off ladies with a stick and well tilted cowboy hat? Or do you think you’re too good for the tender embrace of a woman? Jerk.

Advice: I kind of feel like you’re trying to ride the SUS ticket into office. You’re not going to get there unless you man up and boogie down. Lasso our hearts by showing us non-SUSers how Aquacowpokes do things.

Dis-Endorsment Status: Not Dis-Endorsed… yet.

My Pick: Who cares what my pick is? Seriously? All the information I have comes straight from their Facebook pages. If you vote the way I want, because I want it, you should be shot for pissing in my democracy pie. Besides, picking between these two politicos is like picking between two frat parties. Either way, I’m going to regret it later.

The Awesome Ones:

Erin Rennie: Now, I’m a little biased when it comes to Erin, on accounting that she IS THE MOST AWESOME PERSON EVER TO GRACE THE PRESIDENTIAL BALLOT!!! Seriously though, don’t be fooled by her humble Facebook page, she will destroy anything that gets in the way of her attack on boredom. I once saw her kill a dinosaur using only her immense hueveos. Journalist’s honour. She’s not to be misunderestimated.

Dis-Endorsment Status: Whatever the opposite of Dis-Endorsed is.

Tyler Allison: Beneath this docile Facebook page lurks a menace redder than the Spartacus's. Didn't Red Dawn teach you anything? Seriously. Don’t vote for this madman. His reeducation camps will wreck our degrees. He has great taste for a commie though. Also, his hometown is the same as my mom’s. Weird.
Word to the Wise Stalin, don’t advertise where you live while publicly plotting revolution. Once Naylor’s elected, it’s only a matter of time until he’s in your house, singing Jazz and feeding your cat cheese.

Dis-Endorsment Status: Not Dis-Endorsed… but only because I fear his secret police.

The Special One:

Rodrigo Ferrari Nunes: I couldn’t actually get into his Facebook page, as it is blocked to outsiders. The one picture I can see depicts him holding a sign saying “your greed is killing our planet”. Nice one, hippy. I assume that sign is recycled paper? Rodrigo “Duuuuude…” Nunes can take his hippy bullsh… “organic fertilizer” to somewhere students give a damn. Like U of Nowhere.
Since I can’t see his Facebook page, I’m going to imagine what it looks like:
Activities: Murdering Kittens
Ooooh… bad choice Rod. That’ll cost you the kitten lover vote.
Seriously though, you’re a public person now. By all accounts, you’ve got some things to say that need to be heard, but no one can hear you. Get your gameface on and your Facebook up.

Dis-Endorsment Status: 50% Dis-Endorsed.

The Straight Shit: Look, let’s be honest with each other for a second. Their paltry attempts at campaigning may be laughable, but there’s nothing funny about the shitloads of money we’re voting to entrust these clowns with. Get out and vote.
And when you see the “joke” candidates on the ballot, remember:
Sometimes things are funny because they’re true.

Austin Holm is the Advocate's Resident Asshole. Belittle his jejune ideas at devilsadvocate.ubc@gmail.com

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15 January, 2008

The Elections - Day One of the Campaign trail

So, today was the first salvo in the AMS election. Unlike Steve, I don’t believe you all are interested in constructive news, so I will aim to drown out his serious posts in a wall of satire and verbiage before the night is out. DIE HACKERY, DIE!!!!!

And so, to the deeds of the day.

In the SUB conversation pit, the candidates for the President, BOG, VP Academic, and VP External. It took awhile for the Elections Administrator to find out who his moderator was, despite the moderator having introduced himself, but we got going all the same.

In this debate, the only ‘Che’ Allison provided entertainment worthy of mention. With his use of the red bullhorn to prevent his silencing of by the ‘capitalists’ in the debate, he threatened a coup if the sham that is this election did not elect him. As much as we dislike communists here at the advocate (Or at least I do, as who knows about the other crazies on the editorial board think) at least he has the guts to see the AMS elections for what they are – glorified pats on the back for resume padders and bureaucrats in training. Still, he got awfully serious when we started talking about what to event should replace ACF. Che accused the student population of not going to parties and so letting campus life atrophy. Which is…accurate . Scarily enough. I don’t like joke candidates being serious. It rocks the flimsy boat of my worldview.

Che wasn’t the only one doing rocking. Erin Rennie informed us of the War on Fun and the end of the free flow of beer on campus. We have to agree that the one thing students care about is beer, but Rennie said things that I agreed with. And might even get behind. Serious attacks again! Also, we’ve heard dark rumours that a force from the distant past is using her for its own dark purposes. Long, long ago there was a group called the Radical Beer Faction that was slain in the holocaust of the Slates instituted by Spencer Keys. We have reason to believe that this dark force may have possessed Rennie and some of her associates. Of course, since no one knows what a slate actually is, we’d be hard pressed to convict her of this.

The other candidates were like BLAH, BLAH, BLAH, till we heard that Naylor will be forgiving Arts County Fairs debt if he gets elected. Once again, we smell the bad breath of the Radical Beer Faction in the air, but we really can’t complain. It’s a conspiracy we can get behind.
Our intrepid reporter brought up the issue about of Wreath Underground, affectionately known as the-people-who-throw-rocks-at-buildings because the university did bad consolation about the planned university boulevard. I’m not even joking. Look at this shit: http://ubyssey.bc.ca/index.php?s=vandalism

When asked if they would expel the student involved if they were caught the candidates said….nothing. Okay, well Naylor indirectly said that it was conduct unbecoming of a student which means expellable in way too many words and Che said he’d expel them and their families and maybe even send them to the gulag that will be UBC Farm when he takes over, but he’s a communist, so like whatever. Erin went off the deep end and told us that student government was obviously failing students if this sort of thing was happening. The Advocate is leaning more to the explanation that the Wreath Underground people have just watched too many revolutionary propaganda reels and should eat some steak instead of granola. They’re also terrorists.

The other candidates we weren’t too impressed with. Duncan committed heresy by suggesting we have events that reach out to non-drinkers as well as alcoholics and hopefully we’ll learn more about him next time once he gets his tongue untied. He had issues forming words, but then again, I am too right now. Rodrigez suggested having many, many jam sessions like the ones he had organized in the SUB this year to replace ACF Of course, that would mean we’d have to have about a thousand jam sessions all over campus to meet the demand. That’s a lot of bad guitar playing.

I had to run away to class for a bit to face the horror of my undergraduate thesis meeting and so I missed the other debates, but Aaron took over from me. I’m sure he’ll add more.

Returning from my class, I found the President of IRSA engaged in a shouting match with the reporter from The Knoll over military funding to the IR department. Nathan Crompton (VP Academic candidate) unveiled his plan to remove the military (and other people as well I think) from campus. I personally think you’re all big boys and girls and can make your own decisions, but maybe I’m just crazy. I also basked in the warm light of the fire hydrant, which we think may be the source of the Radical Beer Factions power. That’s all I got for now. More rants tomorrow.

Eoin O’Dwyer represents the man. Stick it to him at eodwyer.devilsadvocate@gmail.com.

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