Monday, April 2, 2007

This Won't Make a Lick of Sense if You Don't go to Cal...


EDIT: I originally was planning on posting the picture by itself, perhaps explaining it another day, but then I realized I'm not that mean. (If you're a Berkeley student, you can probably skip this unless you want to hear a political rant.)

Right now at UC Berkeley (and, I'm assuming, at a lot of campuses), we're having our Associated Student of the UC (or ASUC, conveniently rhyming with "they suck") elections, better known as "they worst period of the academic year."

During the upcoming weeks, practically no sidewalk in Berkeley will go unchalked. No moron will go without holding up a picket sign for someone he's never met, just so he can get a few bucks an hour. No flyer will miss the epic journey from printer to hand to hand to trash. And no Cal student, regardless of how much he loves or hates politics, will go without hearing the words "Student Action."

Student Action is a "political party," the campus equivalent of the Democrats or Republicans. Actually, make that the Democrats and Republicans. Because, you see, at Berkeley, one of democracy's cities on a hill, we essentially have a one-party system. And that party is Student Action.

If one were to look on Facebook right now, you'd see a disgustingly large number of people with this ad as their profile picture (consequently, it's the ad I'm parodying). But Student Action doesn't stop there. No, they love to flood the campus with flyers about how they've instated yet another gelato lounge on Sproul...while conveniently forgetting to mention the fact that to do so, they tore down a beloved arcade and multi-school community center (which didn't fill their pockets like the ice cream money does).

Student Action is a self-aggrandizing, self-glorifying, elitist club who claims to serve the students but time and time again has done projects - projects that no one asked for - which conveniently gave them a revenue source. And, like any political organization, it is not about a heaping helping of foul play.

And yet, year after year, the people in this party are voted into office without fail for the simple reason that the names of their candidates have been pounded into students again and again (along with the normal assortment of empty promises) through all heavy, high-priced advertising.

One word comes to mind when I think of this scenario (though, in fact, it's two words): "Political Machine." Basically, if you want to get elected, you pretty much have to be part of Student Action (or, at the very least, on their good side). Is Student Action the new Tammany? Thankfully, no. But, as far as campus politics go, it's pretty damn close. Here's their cycle of power:
1) Use expensive, ubiquitous advertising around campus, hammering knowledge of you into the poor, unsuspecting voter.
2) The voters choose you for the mere fact that yours was the only name they recognized on the ballot.
3) You're in! Hooray!
4) Hurry, start some projects that will make you and Student Action lots of revenue.
5) Harvest the green cash money.
6) Lather, rinse, repeat.

Needless to say, I'm not voting for them. Well, I'm not voting at all (I hate politics, after all), but if I was, I wouldn't vote for them. Hell, I even have an aquaintence/co-worker running for VP, and I would have no intention of voting for her. But don't you worry: she'll make it. I'm so confident of that, in fact, that I was thinking to myself today, "You know, you could have all evil monsters running, but as long as they were part of Student Action, they'd get voted in."

And thus, my little fake ad was born. And now all you non-Berkeleyans get it...or, at least, you should...

10 comments:

Squall said...

Question. Why don't you run? you seem to be more in touch with the common berkely voter than any of those other clean cut smiling faces. The cry of "REMEMBER THE BEARCADE! oh and vote Schnorr too" could be heard across campus. Of course I could be getting ahead of myself, still you must admit it is a rather intriguing idea.

Andrew Schnorr said...

Well, considering that my first act as President would be to disband the ASUC, I'm not sure how far I'd get.

Squall said...

Bringing back the bearcade, and disbanding the ASUC. With those 2 alone you'd have my vote, if I could vote for you.

Anonymous said...

Andrew,

Your cynicism with politics is unfortunate. I do realize that one must be mentally ill to enjoy politics (I can speak on my experiences at CSULB's ASI, which I loved.) Oh well, at least I know I probably won't be running against you in the future. Muwahaha, all I must do is eliminate Eddie, and my aggrigation of power is complete.

-Comrade Chavez

Alexander said...

you know you're right. I have no idea what you're talking about.

Andrew Schnorr said...

Chris, er, Comrade Chavez, you're making a mistaken implicit assumption there. I have no problem ruling, I simply wouldn't get there by democratic means. I'll still be a threat to you, just not on the ballot.

Squall said...

At least not your own ballot...

Alexander said...

I still have no idea what you people are talking about but I saw that there's 7 comments and I felt like adding it on. that's weird this blog has the most amounts of comments and its about politcis. you should make a sequel about religion. and then another sequal about money.

Anonymous said...

Well, we'll see. It all depends on who gets there first, my friend. If you get there first, I will lead a revolutionary movement, which you will atempt to crush through mass executions and slavery...And if I get there first, you will try to dismantle my system by trying to exploit human laziness while I use forced labor and Stalin-esque techniques to supress dissent. It's all fun and games.

-The comrade behind the comrade, Christopher.

Alexander said...

HAHAH I MADE IT TEN NOT NINE YOU BETTER FIX THAT OTHER BLOG.