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Rep Election 2018: Vote Now

Remember, remember!

The ninth of December,

The Gunpowder treason and plot;

I know of no reason

Why the… fine this doesn’t fit well at all here.


Perhaps it does. Perhaps Guy Fawkes can be used as a parallel to crudely describe certain UCL students. Perhaps UCLU – in its current state – is seen as king and parliament, and some want nothing more than to do away with such atrocities. The feedback from some students as part of the Strategic Review (or was it the Governance Review? There are so many reviews taking place this year, they’ve all turned into a strange amalgam of toot in my head) points to that notion. Bureaucracy scored high in the ‘less’ category, with one memorable piece stating “less bureaucratic bullshit!”

Before I get branded as someone who lives and breathes bureaucracy, I don’t. It’s very easy for the B-word to rear its ugly head and waste resources, as has been the case with UCLU in the past. At the same time, any level of organisation is also referred to as bureaucracy, particularly when something is not in line with the name-caller’s wants. Flat structures work extremely well for small bodies, though fall apart in larger groups; differing opinions in large bodies (inevitable) facilitate fragmentation.

I feel “bureaucracy” has turned into a default criticism (not a constructive one) that students fall back on, a little like “more democratic decision making!” What does that even mean? We have several structures in place for that, General Assemblies being one.


########## You can skip this little rant. ##########

Consider the following 3 entities; the government, the market, the people. It’s impossible to separate the 3 in practical terms, though for the sake of this little exercise, assume you can. Now rank the three in terms of size, starting with the largest. Most would agree the people come out well ahead of the other two, even when combining both the government and the market. Now rank the 3 in terms of power/influence, starting with the most influential. Some would be tempted to rank the people 1st again, and to them I ask this: Are the people responsible for the financial crisis? Going to war with Iraq and Afghanistan? And very recently the absurd counter-terrorism bill by Theresa May? No would be the correct answer for all. You might argue it’s the people who vote the government in; I rebut that with asking when was the average voter ever satisfied with a Labour/Tory manifesto in its entirety (or Lib Dems, but who cares about them eh?)

With regret, the market has an uncanny clasp on first place. Its influence on fiscal policy is eyebrow-raising; the government’s addiction to quantitative easing does nothing but allow the private sector to hoard even more money. In addition, central banks (a VERY large part of ‘the market’) are like salivating blood hounds. The moment the economy bleeds value (inflation), up go interest rates whilst wages remain static. Why I think banks should freeze interest rates in face of inflation (seems contradictory) in today’s economy is another topic.

Now rank according to the level of organisation (or bureaucracy, whichever tickles your fancy) exercised by the 3 entities. The people come last again, and to those who disagree, I would like to point to the spread in votes for the last general election. Though not a communist myself, I deeply admire Lenin and Trotsky’s endeavours in unifying the early 20th century Russian people.

########## STOP SKIPPING, YOU. ##########


You may have guessed the original intent with my subtle GENERAL ASSEMBLY: MONDAY 9TH DECEMBER, LOGAN HALL, 20 BEDFORD WAY, 6PM tacked on everywhere. I implore everyone to attend the General Assembly, as we will decide how the Sabbatical office is to be structured.

There are only two proposed structures, one of which is questionable and the other seeming increasingly unfeasible. I may write why I think both are strange, and the need for amendments in either case. For once my blog post will be semi-relevant. I’d have to write about StARs or exam timetables if I am to venture back into relevant-realm.

If you don’t want a small bunch of snotty brats deciding what’s best for all 30,000 of us, then please attend.