Salient: Victoria University of Wellington Students' Newspaper. Vol. 32, No. 3. 1969.
March 19, 1969
Opinions expressed in Salient are not necessarily those of VUWSA.
Small numbers, your business
Two gaily uninformed correspondents in this week's letter column, introduce by implication in their offering, a couple of factors which need discussing.
The letter to which I refer abuses the Publications Board for being able to muster only seven members at a recent meeting.
The attitude of these two, towards the Committee is one of privileged criticism because of lack of involvement.
The fact that there were only seven at that meeting and it requires little effort to see how extensive this is as much an indictment of those two correspondents as it is of the rest of the student body.
The procedure for joining a sub-committ of Executives is quite simple. A form can be found at the Students Association Office which goes through Executive, almost automatically, which entitles the student to full voting and speaking rights.
The amount of business transacted before an almost irrelevantly small number of students is downright appalling. Witness a Sports Committee meeting on 9th December 1968. There were three members present, none of them the Sports Officer, this years or last years. The minutes of two previous meetings were read and confirmed, the Cricket Club was paid $680 (subject to 3 provisions); a creditor of the Basketball Hub was paid $55, and to cap it off, two of the members present appointed themselves, together with the Treasurer of the Students Association, signatories to the VUW Sports Club Account. To compound the situation, it was made retrospective to the 25th of the preceding month.
Why? Why retrospective is the first question.
Why could this business be transacted and yet remain constitutional. To think that four members of the Pooh Club could have attended and outvoted them on every issue seriously needs deliberating about.
The committee system and the chairmen who are supoosed to encourage attendance need a thorough revaluation.
Reporting and presenting criticism
This week's correspondence columns contain some well-intentioned criticism of the lead story in Salient Two. Correspondents feel, and not without justification, that the possibility of a person losing his job; or the job being denied him in the first instance; if in fact these were the alternatives; because of views which do not flow smoothly in the mainstream (or cess pool) of social convention is unjust.
Far be it from the writer to say that it is.
The simple justification for introducing the story to be deliberated by readers was that it was news Sufficient people, upwards of thirty in fact, mentioned it to the writer, in the two months prior to publication to illustrate its potentiality in terms of news value that it deserved the significance it was accorded.
That rather nebulous phenomenon of opinion Salient, tries not to share its opinions save for editorials. We were reporting criticism of Mr Kelly and the Department of External Affairs, not presenting criticism ourselves.