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August 20, 2009 | by  | in Online Only |
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Roger’s VSM bill

Sir Roger Douglas’ Voluntary Student Membership (VSM) of students’ associations bill has been selected as a members bill this morning.

The bill entitled Education (Freedom of Association) Amendment Bill has the stated aim of “uphold[ing] students’ right to freedom of association, by ensuring that no student is compelled to join a students’ association.”

Under the current system every student enrolled at Victoria University has to become a member of Victoria University of Wellington Students’ Association. The only way to opt out is to approach the president of the association and provide sound ideological reasons for not wanting to be a member.

New Zealand Union of Students’ Associations (NZUSA) co-president Jordan King said, “The bill is another idea from Sir Roger Douglas who hasn’t been a student for a long time.

“It looks like he wants to impose his 1980 beliefs on unsuspecting students. He probably doesn’t know what it is like to be on a tight budget. We don’t all get a 90 percent discount on our undertakings.

“We find the system is working fine. We don’t think he is the best person to make this decision for students,” King said.

Douglas frames it as an issue of choice. “We allow students to choose what university or polytechnic they attend, and what papers to take; it’s time we gave them the freedom to choose whether or not to join their local student association rather than forcing them to pay a union fee if they want to study.

“In addition, student associations often support particular political causes, which is inappropriate given that all students are forced to financially contribute. Voluntary student membership will increase the legitimacy of the involvement of such associations with politics,” he said.

The bill is expected to have its first reading in parliament within three to five weeks.

This is not the first time a VSM bill has been put before parliament. In 1997, then-MP Michael Laws managed to pass an amendment allowing VSM under the condition that: a) 10 percent of students signed a petition to force a referendum, and b) a majority of students in the referendum voted for VSM.

The full bill can be read here [pdf].

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The editor of this fine rag for 2009.

Comments (83)

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  1. peteremcc says:

    “We don’t think he is the best person to making this decision for students.”

    Come on Jordan, there are better arguments for compulsion than that.

    Roger isn’t making the decision, he’s passing law that lets every student make the decision for themselves!

  2. Laura McQuillan says:

    Slowboat, Peter.

  3. How can Jordan King’s point that students are “on a tight budget” be an argument in favour of compulsorily acquiring some of their money and giving it to often corrupt Student Associations?

    What nonsense.

  4. Jordan says:

    Peter, i’m happy to have coffee with you anytime to discuss the effects the ACT Bill will have on campus life.

    Drop me a line.

  5. peteremcc says:

    Sure.

    It couldn’t really get any worse though, could it?

    Not at VUWSA at least!

  6. Mike says:

    Jordan, the President of an organisation that is financed mostly by compulsorily-funded associations, says that the current system is working fine.

    Funny that.

    He also says Sir Roger is not “the best person to be making this decision for students”. Well that’s fine – what the bill does is allows students to decide for themselves whether or not to join a student association.

    I see nothing wrong with that. I can certainly see why Jordan does.

  7. Rick Giles says:

    Look forward to hearing what you have to say too Jordan. I hope you’ve got an open mind about this as we do.

    I suspect you’re concerned with apathy of the sort we’re seeing at UC in the stududent body. My conviction is that this is the result of offsetting behaviour caused by the compulsion of membership.

    Fruitful discussions ahead.

  8. Matt says:

    So wait, students have the option of holding a referendum to decide whether or not membership is compulsory, right? That was the point of the last paragraph, or am I missing something? And since, as SRD points out, students are also free to choose their university, shouldn’t students who want VSM either a)organise a referendum, or b)exercise their right to choose and go to somewhere with VSM? That sounds fairly straightforward to me.

  9. Jackson Wood says:

    Earlier in the year Tolley told Salient, “The current law gives student bodies the ability to change between voluntary and compulsory student membership. The government supports that flexibility and doesn’t see changing the system as a priority.”

    Probably should have put that in the story.

  10. Sean says:

    If it was about what’s best for students there might be something in it. But lets face it, it going to fuck students.

    Even though VUWSA appears to be generally incompetent, simply having it there stops a lot of student-unfriendly shit happening. The ACT on Campus kids can moan about freedom of choice all they want but that’s not what it’s about. Sir Rodge just wants businesses (and universities are businesses) to have an easy ride without the checks and balances.

  11. Matt says:

    “I hope you’ve got an open mind about this as we do.”

    I forget if that particular rhetorical move has an actual name, but it sure is a great way of saying that anyone who disagrees with you is being close-minded.

  12. If a majority want a Student Association, then they should be free to join. Why should they have the additional right of forcing others who do not want to be part of the organisation to give up their money and their freedom?

    If a majority of workers in a workplace want a Union, should they be able to compel the others to join?

    If students believe they need to have checks on a University, they should be free to organise themselves in this way. It is precisely the fact that Student Associations are compulsory that makes them non-representative. How can a compulsory organisation claim to “represent students”?

  13. Felicia Jollygoodfellow says:

    Remember than whenever the ACT Party uses the word ‘choice’, they mean user pays, ie that the determining factor is the amount of money you have. The richer you are = the greater your choice. Also, before you sheeple give uncritical support for monetarism on campus, consider that student services will likely be taken over by the university (which may be at a higher price) and that you will give up student representation and advocacy. If you don’t like how your association is run, isn’t better to stand as a candidate and change it rather than ‘throw the baby out with the bathwater’? Lastly if the point of Roger’s bill is truly about student choice, then why will enforce compulsorary VSM?

  14. Sean says:

    You make it sound so simple Roger. But comparing students to employees doesn’t wash. They’re significantly different situations.

    If you want to use the freedom argument are you also pro students deciding what university services they pay for? Or ratepayers having a choice over what individual services they pay the council for? Or which individual baubles for politicians tax payers pay for?

    There are many things we’re “forced” to do, that people individually get nothing from. However, belonging to a students’ association is something that has significant wide-ranging benefits. One of the best benefits is how associations protect students from unfair treatment from institutions.

    If you aren’t Roger Douglas, please have the decency to stop using his name.

  15. bananarama says:

    At Auckland Uni, students just give the same amount of money to the University for services that they’d give to AUSA. Is ACT going to outlaw that too?

  16. bananarama says:

    By that, I mean instead of giving AUSA the money, they have to give it to the Uni. And then to join AUSA, they have to pay again. So basically, you’d pay twice.

  17. Stephen Whittington says:

    @Felicia

    Monetarism on campus? I hardly see why campuses would have a need for targetting the stock of money… I can’t wait to be enlightened on that one.

    @Sean

    Sir Roger probably is in favour of many of those ideas. He put out a paper on local Government advocating choice in what services one pays for.

    If being a part of an association “has significant wide-ranging benefits,” why are the Associations so scared they’ll lose members? Every one will join for the benefits!

    @Bananarama

    Yes, that is prohibited. Read the Bill.

  18. Electrum Stardust says:

    Take off every ‘ZIG’!!

  19. Paul Smith says:

    I certainly didn’t expect this Bill to be so lucky to get drawn. I have one brief comment.

    I don’t understand what the proposed section 229(2) in the usefully adds to section 229(1). If anything, it adds more uncertainty to the provision.

    What is the spirit and intent? Shouldn’t the Act specify exactly what is wrong with compulsory student membership? And then make conduct connected with these perceived evils unlawful.

    If it’s purpose is to broaden the meaning of “require” or of “exert undue influence”, then surely it could be more precise.

    For example, does subsection 2 permit a challenge in the courts on the ground of unlawfulness to a university separately charging a separate student services levy at the same time it invoices for course fees? If that is what Sir Roger wants, say it: don’t use some air-fairy notion of “sprit and intent” without any guidance as to what that means.

  20. Boris Pissoffski h h says:

    As someone who attends Auckland, and who is a member of an already-voluntary student union, I’m wondering how much of our NZUSA contributions will be used to fight this bill.

    Also, Sir Roger would be wise to consider requiring all students to be able to instantaneously opt-in/opt-out, without the need to put your case to a president or anyone else.

  21. James says:

    How about we introduce voluntary taxation Douglas?
    Sounds like a good idea to me. People can either receive all the benefits the state provides and pay taxes or be left to starve if they don’t.

    The VUWSA provides many services for students which are comparable to those provided by the state. For a price of 120ish a year I like the idea of having access to food if I run into financial difficulties.

    Many of services that the VUWSA provides would not be possible under VSM because of their limited funding. Instead of campaigning on student issues, and providing welfare services and clubs etc for students they would be busy campaigning for students to become members.

  22. Robin says:

    Oh Sir Douglas, you are soooooooo sexy! When Battyman takes me for his hot superheroe love, I lie back and think of you.

  23. Felicia Jollygoodfellow says:

    “@Felicia

    Monetarism on campus? I hardly see why campuses would have a need for targetting the stock of money… I can’t wait to be enlightened on that one.”

    Interesting how you ignored the rest of my comment to focus on this. My point is that if you get compulsory VSM, you also be likely to get other failed right-wing economics of Douglas and his cronies. Look at the effects of monetariat economic policy: everywhere we have choice imposed on us, we have big profits for a few fatcats and higher costs for everyone else.

  24. James, there is a clear difference.

    The Government has two roles. The first is to provide public goods – things which, in the absence of coercion, the market could not provide but that people nonetheless want. That is why taxation has to be compulsory.

    The second is an equitable role – to ensure that every one can meet their basic needs. They do this already with students, with a variety of loans and benefits.

    You should not be able to declare that you are an organisation fulfilling the role of Government and therefore be able to operate like one. We do not allow it anywhere else, so why should we allow it on campus?

  25. dopantic says:

    Generally incompetent?!?? VUWSA? Wrong year to say that, buddy. VUWSA’s in much better shape than it has ever been. fremantles a good president.

  26. Madeleine says:

    Fantastic news regarding the VSM Bill!

  27. peteremcc says:

    Boris says:

    “Also, Sir Roger would be wise to consider requiring all students to be able to instantaneously opt-in/opt-out, without the need to put your case to a president or anyone else.”

    Boris, that’s what VSM IS!

  28. Boris Pissoffski h h says:

    No, that’s compulsory/opt-out. Voluntary is is voluntary/opt-in. The former is a compromise and the latter is the VSM model that Douglas is proposing, and one that is in practice at Auckland.

  29. mikePP says:

    Roger, it’s great that you’re back in parliament after that stroke. What a guy!

  30. Nigel Smith says:

    I’d agree that Freemantle is doing a good job.

    The point is however, that if Jasmine or other competent people ran then I could vote for them, but only under VSM could I get out if no competent people ran.

  31. Stephen Whittington says:

    @ Felicia,

    I highlgihted that comment because it highlighted your ignorance of monetarism. We currently have a monetarist monetary policy – the Reserve Bak targets inlfation, one of the ways they do that is by looking at the total monetary growth. That is all that monetarism is. It is highly technical, and only relevant to monetary policy.

    I think the market has made a huge uimprovement to all our lives. No other system has been more effective in providing wealth for the ordinary person.

    You oppose user pays – but someone has to pay. Should it be the people who benefit, or the people who do not?

  32. bananarama says:

    the market is ghey

  33. Megan says:

    Why shouldn’t we have a choice? I agree that student associations provide useful services but why should we be forced to join? I transferred from Auckland Uni this year where I had been a member of AUSA. I had the choice – and I think students at VUW (amongst other inistitutions) deserve that choice too. People will happily join an association which provides its members with quality services and representation. I would not choose to join an association which is more or less a political mouthpiece. I won’t join the Workers’ party, nor will I join the Greens or Labour as I don’t agree with them politically. But I’ve been forced to join VUWSA even though I don’t agree with it.

    To the person who basically said “if you want VSM, go to a uni with it” fails to realise that not all subjects are offered at all universities in NZ. Some people have only one option for their area of study.

    The bottom line is that we deserve a choice. If we don’t want to join a political organisation which offers us nothing and certainly doesn’t represent our views, we shouldn’t have to. Conversely, if we do want to join, we can choose to part with some money and have access to what they provide.

  34. I kinda hope the “Roger Douglas” responding to posts up there is the real Roger Douglas. The thought of him clicking the wrong link and responding to an endless stream of “footy” posts amuses me.

  35. ghost of WSU past says:

    Oh Great, look at your legacy at WSU Madeleine… they went Universal only a few years after you and VSM butchered it.

  36. Matt says:

    Megan, I didn’t “fail to realise” anything. The point is, if you’re using “choice” as a argument, it applies equally to attending a university with CSM. CSM arguably provides benefits to students that VSM doesn’t, hence why students at pretty much every university in NZ have voted to retain it, and hardly any have voted to do away with it. The fact that “not all subjects are offered at all universities in NZ” isn’t really the point. All universities offer different subjects, strengths, weaknesses and services. If you’re taking a market-based approach, you choose the university that suits you based on that. Hell, the yoga club at Otago beats the one at AU hands down (due, in no small part, to CSM), yet I’m still planning to go to AU because they have other services that are more important to me.
    Having said that, I support your right to campaign for VSM. I just really think the change, if it occurs, should be initiated by students themselves. There’s provision in the law for that as it stands. If students really wanted the change, surely the VSM campaigners could have got together a petition with a mere 10% of the student population on it. Either that, or a lot more students would have voted for ACT last year. Choice.

  37. Boris Pissoffski h h says:

    Hmm. If you get to opt out of sovereign parliament laws, then I get to opt out of paying tax. Only fair. Retarded, but fair. And no, not all of us can ‘choose’ which university to go to. For me, it was UoA or nothing, as I couldn’t afford to move out or go anywhere else. Feel free to throw the word ‘market’ around, but markets operate in constraints, and there are constraints on how universities operate (like Fee Maxima, impotent but symbolic) that you’re probably perfectly happy to have.

    My biggest issue is that it should be no problem for a CSM union to prove to students that it should be that way. If they’re worried they might lose, then they aren’t doing their jobs properly enough to point out how vital their services are.

  38. Felicia Jollygoodfellow says:

    Oh Stephen Witlesston, what a stupid ignorant little hogget you are. I hope that you open your eyes before the butchers get their knives out for YOU.

  39. Matt says:

    Well Boris, presumably there’s some sort of exception for universities, unless you’re claiming that they’re all breaking the law?
    As to your biggest issue, isn’t the fact that there is one university in NZ that has VSM, and a whole bunch that have CSM evidence that those universities with CSM have proved that it should be that way?

  40. Matt says:

    *edit* proved to their respective student populations I mean to say.

  41. Boris Pissoffski h h says:

    I can name any number of ancient practices that have fallen by the wayside as an extreme, but I’m going to run with “if everyone else jumped off a bridge….”

  42. Paul Danger Brown says:

    VSM mean’s one less place for Peter to blog his right wing ideals, with Salient gone, less activities on campus, weaker representation for students’ possibly no food bank which is used by hundreds of students less funding for clubs and societies at Vic. Talk about an effective way to suck the fun out of a university that has little character already—doing it nation wide seems like genius.

    Colour me biased but when you receive the benefit of student representation on boards, committees and so forth I believe you should pay. VSM is just a free ride for the selfish and ignorant as far as I’m concerned. I’ll happily pay $2.25 a week to create awareness of student issues and to make sure student views are strongly represented. With out a well resourced student voice student debt will just continue to rise at and drop out rates will just continue to rise. I’m no longer a student but I intend to donate to your Students’ Association because I believe you get an incredible amount of value out of them be it they may have problems

  43. Stephen Whittington says:

    “I’ll happily pay $2.25 a week to create awareness of student issues and to make sure student views are strongly represented.”

    Go for it.

    Unfortunately, the current people do not express my views as a student. So why should I have to pay that money?

  44. Paul Danger Brown says:

    feel free to use the resources they provide to express your own views. You can do so on a number of boards at Vic though your associaition

  45. Stephen Whittington says:

    Shouldn’t have to.

    Voice is fine – if you want to join and make a point, go for it. Exit is also good – if I don’t want people to claim to be speaking on my behalf when they are not, I should be able to easily get my money back.

  46. Paul Danger Brown says:

    Ignorance is bliss isn’t it? Without your Students’ Association who knows how you would be effected or your courses. I’m pleased to have worked on a campaign last year to save the film school—helping them express film students’ point of view.

    I don’t want people like Roger saying they are speaking on my behalf but they do it every day; however if you have a point of view you need to express you can run for office against (using that voice of yours) or simply go in talk to him and about your point of view—he might even see your point and use it to represent you better.

    The same applies with VUWSA the office is always open for you to talk to anyone of the executive so that they can better represent you. It’s their job to canvass the opinion of the students’ they represent on boards (the funny thing about boards and committees is there are only so many seats and those who speak up are heard).

    You’d certainly miss their trained staff if you were accused of plagiarism or were threatened with expulsion for so breach of a poorly written statute of conduct

  47. Stephen Whittington says:

    VUWSA is not a Government. Do you people not realise that? Democracy is a way to stop the sovereign state abusing power. Outside of that, we have exit. Why should everyone but students have freedom of association?

    And Roger Douglas never claims to talk on your behalf. He never says, “I represent all New Zealanders.” Student politicians do (except, the great irony is NZUSA still have not put a press release on this issue out).

  48. Matt says:

    “Under the current system every student enrolled at Victoria University has to become a member of Victoria University of Wellington Students’ Association. The only way to opt out is to approach the president of the association and provide sound ideological reasons for not wanting to be a member.

  49. Stephen Whittington says:

    What if I just want to leave because I think they are wasting my compulsory levy? That’s not ideological, but is an equally valid reason to want to leave.

  50. Gibbon says:

    Don’t forget, even if you do opt out, you don’t get a refund of your fees.

  51. Stephen Whittington says:

    Yeah.

    And it probably goes to the VUWSA food bank, one of their approved charities.

    “I philosophy oppose being forced to give money to VUWSA.”

    “Oh, OK then, we’ll give it to a charity. Run by VUWSA.”

  52. Your Name says:

    “VUWSA is not a Government. Do you people not realise that?”

    Way to be patronising, ACT hack.

  53. mikeCC says:

    I love the ACT idiots…

    ‘I don’t want people to claim to be speaking on my behalf when they are not’

    But the other idiot, Peter…

    Hey John Key, listen to the people (the majority) on the referendum, you have to change the law cos the majority say so.

    So, in one instance, the majority shouldn’t speak for the people, but in the other the major should speak for the people.

  54. Stephen Whittington says:

    Two points:

    First, once again, that relates back to the distinction between Government and any other organisation. Democracy is a mechanism to control Governments. The majority view there is important.

    But the majority view in the marketplace is not important. A majority may prefer to wear green ties, but the minority are still allowed to wear blue ties. Some eat at McDonalds, others eat at fancy restaurants. The capacity for a majority to decide things is the hallmark of Government, and Students Associations are not a Government. That is why many think they should be voluntary.

    Second, I probably agree on the smacking issue with your point. Majorities are not the end of the question in Government – rights are also an issue. That is why some countries have strong Constitutional protections of rights.

  55. mikeCC says:

    ‘ Democracy is a mechanism to control Governments’

    Maybe, or maybe money and wealth are.

  56. mikeCC says:

    ‘But the majority view in the marketplace is not important’

    Bull…. Businesses react to what the majority thinks. Look at what happned with Palm Oil and Cadbury. They reacted because the majority cared about sustainable business practices.

  57. mikeCC says:

    Yup one last thing, maybe Peter is the idiot here, not you Stephen.

  58. Stephen Whittington says:

    I was meaning that that majority view in the market does not determine the scope of choice for the minority. Yes, Cadbury puts palm oil in their chocolate. Many do not care about that, and they are free to buy it.

    Others, however, do. Because there are others who make those ethical choices, there is also market supply – Whittaker’s, for example, do not use palm oil.

    You say that “Businesses react to what the majority thinks” and I agree. I would add that “Business also reacts to what minorities think.”

  59. mikeCC says:

    But let’s be honest here Stephen, businesses don’t give a fuck about what people think, they only care about making their shareholders profit.

    As your mate Milton F said, ‘why should business care about CSR, they know nothing about social responsibility.’ (or something on the lines of)

    It’s the people that do and that’s why student associations exist, to care about social responsibilty. Something the ACT Party doesn’t and don’t pretend they do. To only lie to yourself if you do.

  60. Gibbon says:

    GUYS YOU ARE FORGETTING THAT VUWSA IS NOT A BUSINESS

    IF I WANT TO BUY CHOCOLATE I WILL IF NOT THEN I WON’T

    HOWEVER I HAVE TO BE A MEMBER OF VUWSA WHETHER I USE THEIR SERVICES OR NOT

    END OF STORY

  61. mikeCC says:

    ‘HOWEVER I HAVE TO BE A MEMBER OF VUWSA WHETHER I USE THEIR SERVICES OR NOT’

    Please don’t yell, you wont sound any smarter.

    And yes, you can opt out, it’s easy. So you’re wrong gib.

  62. Gibbon says:

    Typing in caps doesn’t mean I’m yelling, in fact I was sitting calmly typing.

    Tell me how to opt out then, if it is so easy.

    thanks

  63. peteremcc says:

    Contact VUWSA with a detailed description of your reasons for objecting to having to become a member.

    Disagreeing philosophically with the organisation is not sufficient.

    You will then be required to present this argument to a panel of VUWSA executive members and appointees who will judge your application.

    If they deem it acceptable, you may then donate your fee to a charity of VUWSA’s choosing.

    -Peter

  64. mikeCC says:

    ‘Typing in caps doesn’t mean I’m yelling’

    Um… yes it does… you need to learn about this thing called the interweb and forums.

    See Peter knows, it’s easy.

    And I wonder if Peter or Stephen have ever tried to opted out, even though they claim they don’t want to belong.

  65. Boris Pissoffski h h says:

    “Disagreeing philosophically with the organisation is not sufficient.”

    So not wanting to be part of the organisation is not a good enough reason to not be part of it. Gotcha.

  66. Stephen Whittington says:

    One of the reasons I do not want to be a member is because it consumes my money. I do not get this back if I “opt out.”

    Moreover, the fact that they advocate political causes I disagree is not sufficient to get out of the Association. I must disagree with the compulsion.

    Furthermore, it is ironic that the two mechanisms for me to influence the Association work in opposite directions. If I want to stand for a position I must be part of an organisation I do not like. If I want to get out of it, I cannot stand and oppose the way they waste my money.

  67. Felicia Jollygoodfellow says:

    Dog Part II (My apologies to U2).

    Don’t believe in Roger Douglas
    I don’t believe his bunk
    But the truth is not the same
    Without the lies he made up

    Don’t believe in the market
    Monopolies exist
    Don’t believe in riches
    But you should see where I live
    I…I believe in love

    Don’t believe in poverty
    Until I look outside
    The rich are getting richer
    God save Rodney Hide
    I…I believe in love

    Don’t believe in Joe McCarthy
    Social democracy’s for gimps
    Don’t believe in free choice until it’s forced down my throat
    I…I believe in love

  68. Tom Mathews says:

    You don’t have to want to opt out to support VSM. I would join the union if it became optional, because I think a lot of the services it provides are important. But I trust students are generally sensible and will come to the same conclusion. If not, I’m not sure that justifies me forcing them to pay up anyway.

    You don’t have to believe in monetarism-on-campus to believe that, I think. Although like Stephen, I would be very interested to hear about VUWSA’s stance on targeting the supply of money via central bank intervention.

  69. mikeCC says:

    ‘I would join the union if it became optional, because I think a lot of the services’

    Choice!

    ‘But I trust students are generally sensible and will come to the same conclusion. If not, I’m not sure that justifies me forcing them to pay up anyway.’

    I think you’re wrong here, many students wouldn’t join, because they wouldn’t think about joining at the start of the year, not because they wouldn’t want too.

    All these services would be lost under VSM.

  70. R2D2 says:

    “All these services would be lost under VSM.”

    No they wouldn’t. You think they would be lost.

  71. mikeCC says:

    No R2D2 your circuits are fizzed again.

  72. Hank Scorpio says:

    “weird” Felicia Jollygoodfellow yankovic

  73. Felicia Jollygoodfellow says:

    Winks at Hank. Lol!

  74. Rodney Hide says:

    Yes I am a jerk off and a buffoon!

  75. Lets celebrate!!!!

    first reading of VSM bill this Wednesday
    ACT + NATZ = enough to pass it

    see you later you scungy vacuous NZUSA dogs

    bye bye to that that vile over-weight beast Sophia Blair, grown fat from the students pockets, echoing the monstrous Rebecca Matthews and Sarah Helm from days gone by. uuurrgh and that dreadful Randall sister guy, you and Sutton-beast got crushed in Epsom yayahahaha!

    bye bye to decades of corruption, an end to an era of exploitation and trough feeding from the poor students to fatten try-hard chardonnay socialists careers with nothing to say

    good riddance you fucking parasite dog people you never did shit for us.

    hahahahaha

    go get real jobs

  76. Roger Mussolini says:

    We at ACT have forced through VSM. Nyah ha ha! Now the only scungy vacuous fucking parasite dog people are ACT Party MPs!

  77. Jose Mendezzz says:

    I used to think it was good for everyone to be made to join the union, but after watching in shock, the god awful performance of the exec members, i am much less bothered by this issue.

    The whole ANZAC kerfuffle was just disgraceful, it really was nothing to be proud of…

    The <3 my penis, oh lord

    Maybe if there was a mature sensible leadership over there this wouldn't be an issue, but sadly the students who do need the the financial support and the social help clubs provide, are going to be at the biggest disadvantage.

    But if the truth be told, I would opt out if given the choice from the start. Just because the small petty house politics are always the same bollocks and the the students have to pay for it….yeah na yeah naaaaaa…..

  78. Fandango says:

    @Nick Keesing – I remember you from Auckland! You were the dude who like, lived in the quad for a while, and always turned up to english hons stoned and angry right?

    Sugar, I’d take a look in the mirror before you get all nasty about others.

    Yo’ ugly.

  79. CJH says:

    Ha ha ha ha ha. I can’t wait to see VUWSA die a painful death when VSM comes to town. You bought it on yourselves after too many years of shitting over students.

    The VSM movement only has to use VUWSA as an example of why VSM should come into place. Thanks to VUWSA, you have ruined it for others…. fuck you very much!

  80. CJH says:

    Oh and for those IDIOTS who claim this is ACT forcing it on students… you fucking dolts. Are you saying ACT is compulsorily getting rid of compulsion? Are you kidding?

  81. Phillip Simpson says:

    It is true that nobody should be forced to join an organisation. However what were to happen if VSM does come into effect. Most likely the majority of students will choose not to join, thinking they saved between 100 – 200 dollars a year. This will result in alot of services being lost, such as gym (and cheap memberships) free (or low cost) doctors on campus, social activities like sport teams, tournaments and social events. Who is going to provide all these. Universities do not have to provide these services. Under most cotractual agreements (between student and university) the only things the university has to provide is that of a quality tertiary education. and if universities decide to continue those services no doubt fees will have to rise considerable. My point is will the general student population be better or worse of if VSM is passed and my vote is for the latter.

  82. peteremcc says:

    Phillip,

    Most of the things you listed as services being under threat aren’t paid for by VUWSA anyway, they’re paid for by the university from the Student Services Levy that you pay ASWELL as the VUWSA levy that you pay.

  83. Alpha says:

    Posted by Milkshakes:
    “Contact VUWSA with a detailed description of your reasons for objecting to having to become a member.

    Disagreeing philosophically with the organisation is not sufficient.

    You will then be required to present this argument to a panel of VUWSA executive members and appointees who will judge your application.

    If they deem it acceptable, you may then donate your fee to a charity of VUWSA’s choosing.”

    Can you PLEASE answer why we can’t just reform the opt-out process, instead of changing to an opt-in process? We all know students are apathetic, so why would they go to the bother of signing up to VUWSA, even if they didn’t disagree with it on philosophical grounds? With opt-out, if you want, you can leave. The fact is, the majority of students don’t care either way. In an effort to retain student services, an opt-out would be of greater benefit to those who actually rely on, or simply make use of these services.

    You just want the destruction of VUWSA, you really don’t care about misrepresentation.

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