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Salient. Victoria University Student Newspaper. Vol. 37 No. 3. March 20, 1974

Facts on the Union

Facts on the Union

Dear Sir,

In reply to R. Wilkes.

Why did you write to "Salient" without first discovering a few facts? You may or may not have noticed it yet, but there are a few things really wrong with this University. You could complain about these rather than resorting to "non-factual statements" and personal attacks on the wrong people.

You imply that you are not a kiwi student and that you are a poor student. You certainly are a poor student — even mediocre students do some research before rushing into print.

Your inaccuracies?
1)Student Union fees are not $25.50. There is no Student Union. The Students Association and the University Union are different organisations.
2)"Poor student" needs some defining but the great majority of NZ students are the sons and daughters of the well-to-do. During their vacation they earn at rates safeguarded by the NZ Trade Union Movement. A few students may be poor.
3)Fresh fruit is on sale at cost price in the downstairs cafe whenever the capitalist mode of production and distribution allows. Fruit drink is also on sale. Both are believed to contain Vitamin C.
4)The House Manager as a member of the University staff is entitled to the use of Union facilities. He is paid at rates comparable to other New Zealanders and enjoys the company of friends. Why use the emotive word "cronies"?
5)You are a member of NZUSA at a cost of $1. Is that "terrific cost"?
6)NZUSA does not have a tramping club. NZUSA has no clubs. Who did you give 50 cents to? There are a number of student clubs on this campus which do not require members to pay a subscription. In all cases the cost of membership is decided by club members at their AGM.
7)Discounts are available on forms of transport other than NAC. See your STB office for details.
8)NAC does not fly to Mount Cook.
9)The University Council Joes not administer New Zealand Railways (see Victoria University of Wellington Act and New Zealand Government Railways Act.)
10)The University bookship is owned by Sweet and Maxwell. Why complain to your German lecturer. Is he a shareholder in the firm?
11)Your German lecturer did not say "tut, tut" and do nothing. Please check your departmental noticeboard.
12)Your letter did get published.

Why do you not address yourself to analysing and correcting real problems.

David L. Cunningham

P.S. Do you want to pay for a locker, or do you want the New Zealand worker to pay for it?

Cartoon of two men drinking coffee at the Victoria University Cafe