Ok, So Why This Event?
By: Barry Belmont
Did you want thousands of your dollars spent on ponies, bounce houses, mechanical bulls, balloons, pizzas, and drinks today?  Proponents of democracy and the ASUN would argue “yes” since you were afforded the opportunity to either run for election and “change” the situation or vote for people you feel would do a good job.  They will argue that unless you select either one of these two options, you are implicitly agreeing and supporting their activities.  What proponents of such a system fail to realize is that you never agreed to have such a system in place to begin with: when did you agree to have a club commission allocate over a hundred thousand dollars of your money to the most active students?  When did you agree to pay the student government officials $7,000+ a year to sit on their asses and spend your money?  When did you agree to have yearly elections to decide which members of a small minority get spend your money?  You, and 90% of campus never agreed to this by the very fact of not participating in their election — the vast majority of us simply don’t care about our student government.

With homework to do and tests to take and jobs to fulfill and families to be responsible for and beer to drink and TV to watch, we rarely get an opportnity to study the nature of government.  As such, there exists a large body of us (most of us in fact) who know very little about what a government really is. The consequence is that we tend imagine that it can do certain things that it cannot do and that it can be prevented from doing certain things that it can do. We think government can eliminate poverty and violence.  But it cannot.  We think government can resist expanding both in size and waste. But it cannot.

It cannot because all governments are based on force of some kind – either the suggestion that force can and will be used or the actual use of that force. For instance, if you don’t pay taxes you will be thrown in jail. Similarly, if you don’t pay your ASUN fees, you will be kicked out of the university. Now, even if we agreed to this — Which. We. Don’t. – the revenue generated can never be spent in an efficient or optimally productive manner because the motives which dictate the allocation of funds are based upon individuals with differing opinions, stances, morals, behaviors, and beliefs. Not one individual, or a group of individuals elected to “represent” other vastly differing individuals, can ever arrive at a fair, efficient, or optimal outcome.  So long as policies, laws, and rules created by some individuals are enforced through force upon other individuals, neither a fair nor a voluntary agreement can ever exist.  As a result, we are subjected to a never-ending cycle of strife and disagreement.  The only fair way to resolve this is to leave all such decisions in the hands of the individuals themselves.

This event was meant to expose the utter and absolute waste inherent in our student government, in all governments. It was meant to show the absurdities of compulsory fees absurdly and mock anyone who thinks they know how to spend your money better than you with all the mockery we could muster. This event is a joke. The whole thing is just a big joke. The punchline, of course, being “Government Works!” It doesn’t. It can’t. And as long as some of us aren’t afraid to laugh at the jester pointing to the emperor without clothes, we can do something about it.

Abolish ASUN.
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8 Comments Posted in Abolish ASUN
  • Disgusted Alum

    Seems to me, Barry, that ASUN simply obliged you to play along with your foolishness. Funny thing is you actually went forward with this farce. While your point may be superficially proven, the ends do not justify the means because one fact is still true: YOU ARE PURPOSELY WASTING MONEY, not the “almighty” student government.

  • Mr. Encyclopedia

    Did you read past the first sentence? If so, I'd like to know what your thoughts are on the remaining 5 paragraphs which deal with political economy and the viability of democracy.

  • http://www.ladyinliberty.com/ Slitz

    Disgusted Alum is an idiot.

  • http://unrforliberty.com/ Barry Belmont

    Stacy Litz is awesome.

  • Epic Fail

    Stacy Litz is a Paultard :-P

  • Eric C.

    No obviously the vast majority of students didn't want thousands of dollars in student funds to be spent on bounce houses, mechanical bulls, balloons, pizzas, and drinks. This is a perfect example of irresponsible leadership. The ASUN promotes responsible leadership by making it difficult to put on events like this. I will refer you to flow chart of paper work that was needed make this event happen. As a club leader, I know that it took several days if not weeks or months to make this happen. So in my view, this is what you've accomplished (assuming of course). The UNR Students for Liberty have made it more difficult for responsible club leaders to receive funds that will actually benefit our ENTIRE campus (whether directly or indirectly) and possibly our entire human society (Please don't make me name them all off because i'll be typing for awhile. There are numerous engineering, medical, business, journalism, political science, agricultural, environmental, and more…) So is this a bad thing? Maybe not, but there was definitely a more responsible way to go about doing this in my view because if the ASUN were abolished, our campus would most definitely have less esteem (again please don't make me go into them because I'll be typing for hours explaining all the beneficial things that active students have brought to our school.) We gain recognition through our students becoming more than just students. We all go out into our fields and if we're successful our campus gains from that because the world notices. Not one in the UNR students for liberty can say whole heartedly that the ASUN doesn't have several individuals working hard to represent student opinion and make students goals become reality. Just as in our democratic society there are many unappreciative citizens, many elected officials make an incredibly meager wage to try and make the lives of their small communities better (as the ASUN tries to do for it's small community) while many sit, relax, and enjoy the benefits. Although many philosophers believe a true democracy is the best form of government, some philosophers believe that a true democracy cannot exist, and I cannot blame them not only because the reckless behavior that you've displayed during this event and in past events, but also because in our society only 56.8% of people voted in our presidential election in 2008, much much less voted in our primaries (weird how there were about 22 presidential candidates in 2008 huh? yet I site a video that the UNR students for Liberty have posted on their website that displays several ignorant americans complaining about how there are only two presidential choices), and a similar percentage of people participate in our local/state elections. In my opinion, this is either due to ignorance or inability, but the ignorant most definitely outweigh the unable. Thousands of americans refuse to become educated not only democratically but just in general because they fascinate themselves with other things or rationalize it by saying that their vote won't matter or that society discriminates against them with class, race, gender, appearance, or background. Our society has gone through a lot, and I'm not saying that these barriers have always been torn down, but in today's world anyone can hop on public transportation or their own to feet, go into the public library, pick up a book, and read it. Students and citizens would find that they would be getting much more out of their education and life if they became actively involved in their democratic system.

  • rudyjarvis

    The fundamental flaw with all arguments against this event is the need to bring up indirect arguments in order to find ground on which to debate. The discussion has absolutely nothing to do with the fact that some clubs do a lot of good, or that active students benefit the university, or anything else beside “is the ASUN necessary?” And more importantly “is it right to FORCE every student to fund the ASUN?” So to debate on these issues I say that the ASUN is nothing more than a SYMBOL of the student voice and a STEP between students and the Board of Reagents. That being said to say that without the ASUN, students would have no voice is like saying a book without a cover or title can not be read. As far as the step between us and those really in power goes; it is absolutely ludicrous to think that the heavily involved students would somehow be unable (or not have time) to interact with the Board of Reagents. And before anyone even brings up events such as homecoming, Flipside, and other various programs ASUN puts on I say it is equally absurd to think that no one would take up these responsibilities or that no one would be willing to fund them. Bottom line, nothing the ASUN does is something that, magically, only they can do; and by spending 1.6 million dollars a year in student fees to do so no one can say they are the most efficient means of doing things.

    Now for the actual important part of the whole event. IT IS WRONG TO FORCE STUDENTS TO PAY FOR ACTIVITIES THAT OTHERS DEAM TO BENIFITE THEM! Before anyone tries to compare this fee to other fees you pay when registering for classes the difference is that those fees are a payment for services (your education) and the ASUN fees are strictly for your benefit. It is like going to a restaurant that has a mandatory fee that pays for a huge chocolate cake and ten bowls of ice cream regardless of your desire for it or size of your party. So, if you don’t plan on attending homecoming or any clubs why should you have to pay for them?

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