Mar

24

Student Anti-ROTC Coalition Responds to Resolution

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In response to the early draft of the Senate’s resolution to “engage the armed forces” and bring back ROTC to Columbia, the student Coalition Opposed to ROTC has written a clause-by-clause response. An excerpt:

12. Be it further resolved that any further relationships with the Army will be subject to periodic review
There is no doubt that such periodic review is important. However, we categorically and unequivocally reject this entire resolution, both flawed and politically biased as it is, and will continue to voice our opposition to the reintroduction of ROTC at Columbia as this highly undemocratic process unfolds before us.

It is important to remember that whatever the Senate resolves, they still do not have the final say (read all about it in the Charters and Statutes… or don’t.) In this case, concurrence by the university’s Trustees is required, and notwithstanding this, PrezBo can convene a special meeting and ask the Senate to change their minds. Bear in mind though, that in recent years, it has been rare for the Trustees not to concur with Senate actions. Bwog couldn’t find anything about Trustee concurrence on the Task Force’s website. Can you?

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18 Comments

  1. what?  

    How is this a "coalition" ?

    It's one bad wordpress page.

  2. Ex Senator  

    Honestly, if I thought the students in this coalition would be even half-decent alumni I would care about their opinions. But let's be real. These people will not give back to Columbia with their time, their money, or their networks.

    Who cares about what these people think? they'll be gone in 3-4 years and the University will never have anything to do with them again.

    • Eric  

      You sound like a truly sterile individual.

    • Anonymous  

      But these students aren't alumni yet. They're students now. Why should the value of a student's opinions depend on the chances that this student will produce money or influence in the future? It sounds like you're talking about stock options, not humans.

      This is a pretty fascinating (though, I hope, not telling) take on at least one ex-senator's idea of what it means to take student opinions into consideration, and what it means to represent the student body.

  3. Anonymous

    That's cool it helps the pro-rotc people out, I think they didn't really want Army ROTC as their first choice. I'm pretty sure they'd rather have the Navy or AirForce instead.

  4. Sick logic  

    Only a stereotypical anti-ROTC activist would claim that doing what sixty percent of the voting student body prefers is "highly undemocratic."

    • Anonymous  

      it isn't 60%. Its about 5% if you do the numbers. Out of the 44% of students who were eligible (11,629), 19% participated (2,252), and 60% (1,351) recorded support for ROTC's return to campus. This is about 5%.

  5. highly undemocratic?  

    Yeah, democracy sucks balls when you get outvoted.

  6. LOLOLOL

    I love how these hippies about bitching about this process as "undemocratic"... As if Columbia University were a "democracy"! Hahahaha! Get real, hippies. Columbia is, at best, a self-interested oligarchy (Prezbo and the Trustees) backed by an entrenched aristocracy (tenured faculty) funded by shady monied interests (rich alumni). Students are, at most, paying customers with no leverage. That's it. That's life. Deal with it.

    • full ride = noncustomer  

      Man you just went one LOL over the line

    • Dude,

      that's the coalition's whole point, that Columbia should move from being the undemocratic behemoth that it is towards being a university that listens to the voices of its own students. The fact that our student population really has no say it what gets done here at CU is quite disconcerting....

      • No, dude.

        That'll never happen. Want to know why?
        This is why:
        http://finance.columbia.edu/controller/resources/financials2010.pdf

        You are seriously delusional (or perhaps just naively idealistic) if you think a massive $3.3 billion enterprise will somehow agree to turn its tried-and-true operating principles over to your conception of "democratic" purposes. Let me be clear: Columbia is not "democratic" and never will be. IT. IS. NOT. GOING.TO. HAPPEN.

        Students are paying customers. Customers only have leverage if 1) they are highly concentrated and represent a large proportion of revenue, or 2) they are recurring and their disappearance can harm the corporation.

        In this case:
        1. Students are totally unconcentrated. Your cute little coalition can never threaten Columbia due its small size.
        1a. It doesn't matter if all students leave -- Columbia rejects 10x as much students as it accepts. There will be enough to make up your lost revenue.
        2. Students graduate in 4 years, so much for recurring revenue.
        3. Tuition income is actually a very small proportion of total revenue (20% or so).

        Where do you get off thinking students have a "right" to have a "say" in how Columbia runs? The only people who have a "right" and a "say" in how Columbia runs are the tenured faculty who have employment here for life and whose intellectual capital drive the reputation of Columbia, and the wealthy donors who fund them. You? You're a paying customer who will in a few short years leave. And at that point, your leverage will shrink even further because: 1) you won't pay any tuition, 2) you have the option of giving money, and 3) even if you hate Columbia, if you are successful, CU will claim you as an alum a la Barack Obama and send hordes of eager young foaming-at-mouth students like Sean Udell to harass you.

      • Hahahaha  

        That'll never happen. Want to know why?
        This is why:
        http://finance.columbia.edu/controller/resources/financials2010.pdf

        You are seriously delusional (or perhaps just naively idealistic) if you think a massive $3.3 billion enterprise will somehow agree to turn its tried-and-true operating principles over to your conception of "democratic" purposes. Let me be clear: Columbia is not "democratic" and never will be. IT. IS. NOT. GOING.TO. HAPPEN.

        Students are paying customers. Customers only have leverage if 1) they are highly concentrated and represent a large proportion of revenue, or 2) they are recurring and their disappearance can harm the corporation.

        In this case:
        1. Students are totally unconcentrated. Your cute little coalition can never threaten Columbia due its small size.
        1a. It doesn't matter if all students leave -- Columbia rejects 10x as much students as it accepts. There will be enough to make up your lost revenue.
        2. Students graduate in 4 years, so much for recurring revenue.
        3. Tuition income is actually a very small proportion of total revenue (20% or so).

        Where do you get off thinking students have a "right" to have a "say" in how Columbia runs? The only people who have a "right" and a "say" in how Columbia runs are the tenured faculty who have employment here for life and whose intellectual capital drive the reputation of Columbia, and the wealthy donors who fund them. You? You're a paying customer who will in a few short years leave. And at that point, your leverage will shrink even further because: 1) you won't pay any tuition, 2) you have the option of giving money, and 3) even if you hate Columbia, if you are successful, CU will claim you as an alum a la Barack Obama and send hordes of eager young foaming-at-mouth students like Sean Udell to harass you.

  7. Anonymous  

    According to one of the more-connected-to-the-administration ROTC task-force members, "trustees can't wait to bring ROTC back to Columbia." That's what I heard after the 2nd town-hall. I would reveal my source but I don't really want to get a dean in trouble for off-the-record remarks.

  8. Anonymous  

    it isn't 60%. its about 5% if you do the maths. only 20% of 1/3rd of the student body voted at all.

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