Alec Weisman's

Posts Tagged ‘Occupy Wall Street’

ASUCSD To Vote on Abandoning Their Resolution of Neutrality

In Higher Education on November 30, 2011 at 4:39 pm

Alec Weisman

According to Samer Naji, the Vice President of External Affairs for the Associated Students at the University of California, San Diego, due to complaints and “various concerns raised about the Occupy Resolution, the External Affairs Office decided to draft a different resolution directed mainly towards our campus.”

Therefore, instead of passing a resolution to support the occupy movement, they decided to focus their efforts on passing a resolution in support of Reclaim UCSD.

However, the AS office of External Affairs does not stop there. Instead, their new resolution decides to overturn their former Resolution Upholding Commitment to the Principles of Community that was passed last April. The new resolution states: “LET IT BE RESOLVED, the ASUCSD shall rescind their decision to maintain neutrality in regards to world events and political issues and instead shall take a more proactive approach to allow the association to partake in relevant political affairs that deeply impact students and are significant to their student lives.”

UPDATE AS OF 8:15 PM: Language of the Clause Currently Reads: ” LET IT BE RESOLVED, the ASUCSD clarifies that the wording of the “Resolution Upholding Commitment to the Principles of Community,” does not require the ASUCSD or the external office to maintain neutrality in regards to world events and political issues that deeply impact UCSD students and are significant to their student lives.”

This clause effectively overturns AS decision to remain neutral regarding world events and national political issues. Sadly this clause in the current resolution is completely unnecessary. The Resolution Upholding Commitment to the Principles of Community only restrains AS from remaining neutral on “divisive external political issue[s].” Although divisive, Reclaim UCSD is an on campus issue and does not fall under the purview of the Resolution Upholding Commitment to the Principles of Community. Therefore, the AS Office of External Affairs is effectively trying to once more assert itself as a partisan organization by seeking to repeal the Resolution Upholding Commitment to the Principles of Community.

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Boulevard of Broken Promises?

In Higher Education on November 28, 2011 at 4:38 pm

Alec Weisman

Update 1/6/12: This article was reposted on Larry Elder‘s website on January 5, 2011 and Larry Elder interviewed me about this story on 1/6/12.

On April 13, 2011 the Associated Students at the University of California, San Diego voted to endorse a principle of neutrality on political and divisive issues and refrain from passing resolutions.

Yet this promise has faded quickly, with the announcement that the AS Vice-President External Affairs Samer Naji will be introducing a resolution on Wednesday, November 30, 2011 that will explicitly announce the Associated Students support for the Occupy movement.

Although I am generally sympathetic with some of the goals of the Occupy movement, such as their concern that big business is in collusion with government and that bailouts for banks are wrong, yet other claims, such as debt forgiveness for all and “magic” money for every pet project they could imagine are hollow demands and are stupid. In addition, the recent acts of violence in Washington DC, Oakland, and San Diego (among others) has slowly eroded their positive attributes.

In addition, the resolution conflates the recent protests that have been met in some cases with what could be characterized as “excessive force” in the UC System with the Occupy movement at large. The resolution opens with statements claiming: “reckless greed committed by Wall Street firms and Executives,” “corporations prey[ing] on the hopes and aspirations held by millions of people with the simple and selfish aim to maximize profit,” “these corporations are responsible for the eviction of millions of people from their homes due to predatory lending practices.”

Most concerning of all however, this resolution calls upon the “Associated Students [to] provide support for protests and or occupations, should students decide to set up an occupation on campus.” This means that the A.S. will be using your student fees to bring the Occupy movement to UCSD and then proceed to disrupt traffic and interrupt classes and speeches. If members of A.S. want to use their stipends to cover the “Occupy Movement,” then that is their prerogative. But it is a shame that the Associated Students at UCSD continue to try to misrepresent more than 23,000 undergraduates, display their biases in a official capacity, and for revealing their belief that they know whats best for you.

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Brief Thoughts on the OWS Movement

In Domestic Policy on October 5, 2011 at 11:04 pm

Republished from my piece published today on the Young Americans for Liberty blog.

The frustration of the “Occupy Wall Street” (OWS) movement in their call to end corporate corruption and societal inequality is valid. Sadly, several solutions to the problem that have been presented are disastrous because they ask the wrong question. Instead of asking if big businesses and the Federal Reserve have screwed the American people (the answer to which is undoubtably yes, as Glen Greenwald of Salon outlines), they should probe deeper.

A better question to ask would be:  How did big businesses, the Federal Reserve, and the federal government cause the financial crisis, and how can it be kept from happening again? Some in the OWS movement will place the blame on capitalism and free enterprise. Yet these activists will miss the mark.

The culprit of this crisis is big government regulations, which no longer act as an impartial referee and permit some big businesses to succeed while others fail. The culprit is a distorted tax code, which enables certain companies to evade taxes. The culprit is departments and agencies that are not transparent and accountable to the people.

These big government policies caused the financial crisis.  Tim Carney, the senior political columnist of the Washington Examiner, has written extensively on the mechanisms that big government employs to assist its favored corporations. Solving the mess requires a government restrained and unable to create loopholes. Only then can the government respect the individual, the world’s smallest minority, to ensure equal treatment under the law.