Salient. An Organ of Student Opinion at Victoria College, Wellington, N.Z. Vol. 15, No. 11. June 26, 1952
Sir.—It is not good editorial policy to "blast" the executive merely because everything else "from staff to students" has already been blasted. To bull-balt this capable body—I say capable, because those functions recently held which have been controlled by the executive, namely the Easter Tournament, the Undergrade's Supper, the Capping Ball and Proeash, have all been unqualified successes—smacks of a rather public editorial subterfuge to obtain sensational copy. You succeeded. Mr. Horsley's letter was the bull-charge resulting from your rag-flappings. Had our president born in mind that the present executive has acquitted itself more than creditably, and that you apparently consider the executive to be endowed with powers equivalent to those of the College Council, then he would never have designed to answer your "deligerately provocative" editorial.
The executive cannot avail itself of powers it has never had. Its job, as representing the Students' Association, is to he "the official link between the students of the college and the college authorities ... to deal with all matters in which the students as a body are interested . . . ," etc. (See Vic. Calendar, p. 279.) The latter has been capably done and the college authorities are just as aware of the problems of the student body as the executive is. Why the pin-pricking? is it just something to write about, being the active, energetic, new-broom editor that you are? Is the executive to be blamed for V.U.C. apathy about which. M.W.R. was so eloquent in Salient of May 29? He like yourself. Is so impractical an idealist, that to combat this apathy, he suggests increasing it ten-fold by cutting Students' Association grants to clubs. For what club functions without at least some money? And what average, hard-up student, near as he undenably is to the abyss of apathy would not rather plunge back into it than be plagued for subs, by every club he cares to patronise in his semi-interested way? Many-clubs, remember, especially the cultural ones, depend on casual members rather than on an enthusiastic clique for their successful functioning.
The place to lay the blame for lack of progress round Victoria is not at the door of the executive, nor with the council—real progress has been effectively blocked by a drastically reduced (i.e.. as a percentage of total expenditure) budget grant to education made by the National Government.