The Arizona Desert Lamp

Disani Water, Gaterrade, and $175,000 – The Kelly Clarkson contract

Posted in Campus by Evan Lisull on 15 September 2009

Kelly Clarkson AlbumEven as ASUA attempts to erase the memory of That Event Whose Name Shall Not Be Said, the writers here at the Lamp still don’t feel that all of its questions have been answered (even if they probably never will). Shain did a great job of documenting demands for good-quality grape jelly and foldable toothbrushes, but the Lamp‘s got an incurable obsession with primary sources (thanks a lot, high school history). As a result, in our hands are the four contracts signed by the performing artists. As time permits, we’ll be scanning these and uploading them for public consumption.

First up is Kelly Clarkson, whose 18-page contract can be viewed here [PDF]. Unfortunately, the first page is a real pain to read – and the scan of the copy of a fax of scan is probably worse, so apologies for that. Some quick notes to clarify the patchy text:

– The contract was first signed on December 15, 2008, making Clarkson the first artist that the UA inked in. (Changes were made up until the finalized contract was signed on April 23, due in part to the addition of new artists and the subsequent changes in the show.)

– The original estimate (under section 4) for the concert promised the sale of 24,000 tickets, at flat ticket price of $29.75 (although a note at the bottom explains that, “Ticket prices range from $29.95 to $89.95,” these prices were not used to estimate gross ticket revenue). By the time of the Third Eye Blind contract (originally signed February 4, 2009), this model was quickly replaced with a tiered system to maximize revenue.

– The April 29 concert date – criticized by several in the aftermath of the event – was one of the few provisions that remained unchanged.

-Ms. Clarkson was guaranteed $175,000 for her services.

The rest of the document should be pretty easy reading, “Gatterade” and “Disani” aside. There’s a lot of good stuff in there, but my personal favorite is this amendment to the UA’s rider:

ClarksonControlledSubstances

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ASUA is thinking about going into the music business. It’s thinking about producing.

Posted in Campus, Media, Politics by Evan Lisull on 4 May 2009

Chili PalmerShain Bergan should get a medal for all the great quotes he’s managed to get this year (here you go, Shain!). Take this doozy from his must-read Bash basher:

The lead up to such a large-scale concert began four years ago, with ASUA slowly building up its reputation through smaller shows until they had proven they could handle a big-time concert, Bruce said.

You have to prove yourself in the industry,” he said. “There’s a lot to be learned about what we’ve done.” [emphasis added – EML]

Despite the financial losses, Bruce still called the concert a success, as it can be used as a retention and recruitment tool for the university, Bruce said.

The music industry is tough – which is why a student government should have no business attempting to move up the ranks or establish itself within it. Tucson already has the Rialto Theatre and the Club Congress, which bring in well-renowned acts at far more affordable rates; for those who like their music at the margins, the bars along Fourth Ave. – especially Plush – offer a variety of options. Nearby Phoenix has even more offerings. Yet even if the UA were as isolated a desert community as it were in the 1890s, on what basis has its student government determined establishment in the music business as a top priority? The preamble to the government’s constitution states the following as ASUA’s goals:

the articulation of student opinions and interests both in the governance of the university and to the community at large; the encouragement of the greatest level of cooperation and communication between students and student organizations; the assurance that students have full access to quality higher education at The University of Arizona; the provision for programs and services of
benefit to students; and the encouragement of the highest level of excellence in education at The University of Arizona.

Arguing that a concert of this magnitude was done for “retention” purposes is disingenous at best (as an Eller student, Bruce should know about cost-benefit analysis by this point), and one must openly wonder if the UA even wants to retain students who stay in school only for the concerts. Yet the broader issue is this: neglecting basic democratic principles while working tirelessly on music industry outreach is bad government.

Such a concept is incomprehensible – literally – to President Bruce and EVP Anderson, who are both prizewinning marketing majors. In the course of three years (stretching back to Hertzog), ASUA has been effectively turned from a combative elected body, into a quasi-corporate firm. It is this mindset that pervades the organization currently, and goes a long way in explaining its seemingly bizarro nature. Naturally, a marketeer has no interest in transparency – for why should they reveal the company’s secrets? And what are national elections and climate threats, if not excuses to expand market awareness of ASUA through sponsored parties? So what if the Student Services Fee and the Elections Code subverted the democratic process – look at those awesome signs!

Platinum Bash Reax

Posted in Campus, Media by Evan Lisull on 30 April 2009

Last Smash Platinum BashUnder the Sun’s own Laura Donovan managed to make it to the show:

Pretty much no one sat in their assigned seats, and the man on the loudspeaker said Kelly Clarkson would not come on stage until everyone retreated to the actual seats they bought. And nobody moved, so even though I got the cheapest ticket, I sat in seats worth $200 a month ago, and there was nothing ASUA could do to control this issue. They tried to get everyone to get what they paid for, therefore, move further away from the stage. Everyone stayed put, though, and why would ASUA have a problem with everyone moving forward if those seats weren’t sold, anyway?

Meanwhile, the Wildcat‘s Shain Bergan liveblogged (!) the thing over at the Wildcat‘s house blog (?!), and got in some great lines. First up, on President Bruce:

Revisiting the high five narrative, ASUA President Tommy Bruce is the only person I’ve ever seen high five someone without smiling.

Then, in a post entitled “ASUA’s got 99 problems, and ticket sales are one” (great minds, etc.):

After unsuccessfully trying to track down ASUA officials for some answers (finally), I realized I still needed another quote or two for the next day’s story. Running out of one of the tunnels, I grabbed the only two kids I saw. “Are you guys UA students?” I asked. Turns out they were high school freshmen. I need a new job.

You and me both, Shain.

Ticket sales numbers are still being processed, but already there’s a pretty wide discrepancy. Back to the liveblog:

In the end, estimates ranged from 8,000 to 13,000, so obviously some of us have not yet mastered the art of counting. I went with 12,000, and I’m really hoping I win the pool.

In the full-length article in today’s paper:

About 12,000 spectators flowed into the stadium Wednesday night to watch what Associated Students of the University of Arizona officials are calling one of the best concerts the university has hosted.

. . .

ASUA is expected to at least break even on the concert thanks to revenue generated from ticket sales, merchandise and sponsorships, but it is unclear whether the organization will be able to deliver on its promise to create scholarships from the profits.

The Daily Star‘s estimate was not so high:

About 10,000 fans gave Arizona Stadium a party it hasn’t seen in more than three decades Wednesday night.

. . .

Even with a reduced capacity of 17,000 for the concert, ticket sales had been underwhelming leading up to the show. The people who did show up didn’t seem to mind the extra space, dancing in front of the massive, video-screen-aided stage that faced the west side of the stadium.

The Citizen, curiously, didn’t send a reporter – or if they did, the story missed the cut for today’s issue. Yet an article on Tuesday gives us a good sense of the magnitude of the ticket snafu:

With showtime barely 24 hours away, slow ticket sales continued to plague the first major concert in Arizona Stadium since Jimmy Carter was president and Elvis was a reigning king.

Tuesday morning, Tommy Bruce, president of the Associated Students of University of Arizona, which is sponsoring the Wednesday multigenre show, would say only that more than half of the 17,000 available tickets had sold.

It’s the same thing he said April 12, but organizers still cling to threads of optimism.

“Ticket sales are slow, but they’ve definitely picked up the past few days,” said. [sic]

‘Picked up’ is quite the understatement. If the 12,000 number is correct, it means that ASUA managed to sell 3,500 tickets in a 24 hour time period. In contrast, the unweighted average per-day ticket sales leading up to yesterday works out to around 258 tickets a day (8,500/33). Certainly, students tend to procrastinate when buying concert tickets, but even this seems a bit high for a last minute rush of sales. Unless. . .

The Arizona Daily Star reporter sitting next to me just said that he saw a tweet claiming security is now letting spectators without tickets into the concert free of charge.

Of course, I can’t go investigate, because everyone is being held hostage to their seats right now.

I just talked to a spectator who said he was angry at ASUA for lowering ticket prices after he had paid the original price for his and his friends’ tickets. If this info about letting people in for free is true, this guy’s going to be pissed.

ASUA later denied the allegation, but a 3,500% 1,257% jump in per-day ticket sales deserves at least some scrutiny.

Keep the hecklers close: you know them smokers will test you

Posted in Campus by Connor Mendenhall on 10 April 2009

PB&Jay-ZIn today’s Daily Wildcat, reporter Shain Bergan performs an annual ritual for student media: picking through the concert rider of whichever big name performer’s been booked by student government. This year, it’s Jay-Z, whose demands seem downright pedantic compared with the rambling whims of artists like Iggy Pop, or even Kanye West, who performed at McKale Center last year.

Where Kanye wanted Caribbean Tabasco sauce, fruity “Slenderize” energy drinks, and curiously, a copy of first-grade favorite “Connect Four”, Jay-Z seems to be content with quality peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Their tastes in booze diverge as well: Kanye requested Stella and Sky, while Jay-Z prefers Sapporo and Belvedere. Both artists asked for a bottle of Patron–and as usual, both had their alcohol requests flatly denied by the university. (No wonder we haven’t had a big name concert since 1977!)

But there’s one more item purged by the powers that be that stands out. From the article:

Per university addendum, the artist will have no use for the following items that were also requested: eight wine glasses, 12 champagne glasses, a martini shaker, 12 shot glasses, a pack of Marlboro Lights Hard Pack and a package of lighters.

The glassware’s fair enough, but why scuttle the smokes? Is UA trying to avoid the new dollar-a-pack federal tax? (Note to President Shelton: “SCHIP recovery surcharge”) Or are they just playing choice architects and protecting Mr. Carter’s delicate, Grammy-award winning lungs? Dare I detect the occult hand of SHAC?

It’s even more odd, considering that the outdoor areas of Arizona Stadium, where Jay-Z is slated to perform, are one of the few exceptions to university smoking regulations. Come on, UA! It’s bad enough to deny a guy seven bottles of super-premium liquor, a cooler full of beer and enough assorted crystal for the class of 2010. But nixing a pack of Marlboros and a few lighters? That’s crossing the line.

ASUA Senate Meeting XXIV

Posted in Campus, Politics by Evan Lisull on 26 March 2009

1. Information wants to be fee-d. In the continuing blitz of fee-prop, the Senate was privy to a presentation from the Access and Information Services Team (thanks, Wildcat!), speaking on behalf the force behind allocation of the library fee. Continuing the tradition of fee transparency, the library-fee-allocating body has absolutely zero online presence – no contact information, no information on how funds were allocated, and no list of council members. A Spockian eyebrow should be cocked when you read something like the following from the minutes (wait – a governing body that publishes its minutes, pursuant to the Arizona Revised Statutes? C’est impossible!) of a 2007 Faculty Senate meeting

Dean Stoffle provided Senators with numerous handouts and slides that demonstrate increased levels of use as well as the Library’s due diligence in allocating resources optimally and transparently, and in providing accountability for those resources and for the student library use fees.

Of course, this is perfectly within the theory of government postulated by Sen. Emily Fritze, in which the student government exists because they “have access to information that the average student doesn’t.” To release information such as the library fee’s allocation to the public would undercut this justification; thus, the Senate is provided with a library fee status report and a memorandum from the Dean of Libraries to Provost Hay – documents that almost certainly will never grace the public eye.

The current proposal would increase the library fee by $95, from the current $30 to $125 per year, to help combat the $4.2 million deficit that has been accrued since FY07. Should the fee not be approved, certain boutique libraries – the CCP library and the Fine Arts library are named in this article – would be closed; if the fee is approved, they will remain open. These representatives also mentioned that they might be forced to provide less journals. This is indeed troubling news – if only they would deign to let us know what journals these might be.

Shain Bergan gets in the best quote of the day:

The library officials presented to the senate as a means of updating students on the future plans of the UA Libraries and fees, because ASUA could pass on the understanding of the fee to the student body, said Executive Vice President Jessica Anderson.

2. Consent Agenda. Senator-elect Katherine Weingartner, according to Facebook, is still the president of Posada San Pedro Solar Powered (PSPSP) – the group received $100 for t-shirts. The Vagina Warriors received $557.50 for a “benefit performance” – presumably, the Vagina Monologues. With less than six weeks left in the school year, club funding stands as follows:

Total Amount Requested: $8,579.02

Total Amount Approved: $2,577.36

Club Funding Remaining: $18,145.95

Even if this is an indication that ASUA is saving the balance for the FY09-10 year (a good idea), the Appropriations Board has allocated less than a sixth of its total funds.

3. Elections Results Ratification. Unsurprisingly, the idea of any sort of recall was dismissed out of hand, and the election results were confirmed by the Senate today. Rather than having an open discussion about the state of the elections code, Senators have been urged to share any ideas that they might have with Commissioner Ho.

4. Impeachment By-Laws. No Senator addressed the issue that the impeached public figure will not be able to hear the charges against him/her – a sharp deviation from accepted democratic norms. The “elected official under investigation” will only see agenda items that “will only contain a general decription of the matters to be decided to protect student record confidentiality [8. b(ii)].” At this point, the proceedings go to a “confidential” executive session, where disclosure of the matters discussed will be subject “to such penalities as are prescribed by University policy and law [8. b(ii)].” The investigated official naturally will not be allowed to attend the executive session [8. c(i)]. Should grounds of impeachment be found, articles will be drawn in the executive session. Yet when a public vote is taken on these articles, the Senate is instructed to “identify the charges by article number without reading the specific charges in public [8 d(iii)].” Lest you think this is a non-issue, allow me to introduce you to the Sixth Amendment:

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district where in the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence. [emphasis added – EML]

“But you don’t understand – we’re helping!

Other Notes:

– The fee fun continues next week with a presentation from the IT fee board.

– Apparently, there exists an ‘ASUA Alumni Magazine.’ Anyone who could procure a copy of this fine publication for the authors will earn many Lamp brownie points (and, probably, a six-pack).

UPDATE: As Sen. Emily Fritze points out in the comments, the presentation of the library fee was an informational item, not an action item – the Senate has not taken an official stance on whether or not to support the fee, contrary to the Wildcat‘s angle in its article. Yet this raises an important question: will the Senate, or any Senator, take a definitive stand on any fee before their presentation to the ABOR?

ASUA: your student marketing firm

Posted in Campus, Politics by Evan Lisull on 25 March 2009

ASUA Concert PosterThere is something to be said for the critique that it’s ostentatious to flash bling when you’re groveling before the state (although I’m sure there’s some clause in the contract requiring a performance of “Hard Knock Life” with a shout-out to the latest budget battles). Yet this passage, from today’s Wildcat article, was the most striking:

The idea to bring a major act to Arizona Stadium began within ASUA three years ago. It is an idea that has become a reality for the first time since the 1977 Fleetwood Mac concert.

“This has been an event three years in the making,” Bruce said. “We always want to bring a large-scale event to the UA.”

. . .

The announcement comes after months of bids and invitations to 150 different music artists.

I am fairly certain that no one within ASUA has taken the time to consider 150 constitutions, student government or otherwise. I am entirely certain that no one has bothered to peruse 150 elections codes. I would be surprised if anyone had contacted 150 fellow student governments for advice. For a governing body, ASUA has an odd aversion to governance. Yet it loves marketing, and works tirelessly and effectively at this – that’s a pretty nifty poster. If this is the purpose of ASUA, why not have the Marketing and Promotion department incorporate them as an entirely student-run department? All the concerts and sports events, with none of the Bizarro rules.

President: “Don’t you mean BIZARRO elections process?”

Posted in Campus, Politics by Evan Lisull on 12 March 2009

BizzaroA full Senate report will be coming soon; for now, though, it’s worth going through the growing ASUA-Wildcat feud, in light of President Bruce’s comments at yesterday’s meeting:

“Absolutely no disrespect when I say, do not believe everything that you read,” Bruce said, referencing an editorial that appeared in Wednesday’s issue of the Daily Wildcat. “At no point whatsoever in this elections process has there ever been any intentional malcontent or bias against any candidate in this campaign.”

The worst part of all of this is that there is no malevolence – just incompetence and a failure to understand the basic underpinnings of free elections. The intentionality doesn’t really matter, though – if you’ve messed up a ballot, you’ve messed up a ballot. If you’ve banned the formation of political parties, you’ve done a hell of a number on freedom of association, regardless of how many exclamation points you tack on at the end.

One thing that particularly bothered the student body president was that he was not sought out or consulted before the running of the editorial, Bruce said.

“I do my best to try to return phone calls immediately. I always try to answer every question I legally can answer and try to provide all the information that is available,” he said. “And yet when – you know – when things like an editorial come out that have essentially disgraced and defamed everything that we do and then I’m not contacted, that’s frustrating for me.”

To paraphrase a good friend, campus media does not start and stop at your command, Mr. President. It is not our job to make ASUA look good. If something is printed in error – and, I should point out, genuine error, and not simply slanted in a way that does not please you – then it is your responsibility to point it out. During his mini-rant, President Bruce did not respond to any allegation from the editorial (or this site) – not one! Instead, he chose to insinuate and allude to ‘errors’. If a President can’t answer concerns like these at a public forum, then there are some very serious transparency issues within ASUA.

PIRG, in fact, went through the proper channels on its way to the ballot, since it received nominating petition signatures from 5 percent of the student body, Bruce said.

Also in reference to the editorial, Bruce said that the Elections Commission is held to protocol by the president’s office and the Senate.

Well, let’s see if President Bruce’s pledge to answer questions is genuine. How does changing the rules in the middle of the game constitute “proper channels”? If the President and the Senate are responsible for the Elections Commission, is it fair to blame them – and you – for the outrageously slanted PIRG question and the printing of a write-in candidate’s name? Can you point to any precedent where a write-in candidate’s name was printed on the ballot? When will ASUA elections meet the minimum standards set by the OSCE for free elections? Can you point to any other moment in ASUA history when ballots were changed during an election? For all your paeans to openness, do you plan on doing anything about the fact that your organization is the least transparent and least representative student government in the Pac-10?

Inquiring minds want to know. It’d be nice to get an answer to these questions, but I’m not exactly holding my breath.

Changing Ballots in Midstream

Posted in Campus, Politics by Evan Lisull on 11 March 2009

Idiocracy 2

As if there hadn’t already been enough elections madness for one year, the ballot itself has now been changed in media res:

Voters logging on to the student government’s Web site after yesterday afternoon to vote for the ASUA General Elections experienced something earlier voters had not – a changed ballot.

Shortly after a complaint by Presidential Candidate Shane Cathers to the ASUA Elections Commission, the wording under the area marked off for the presidential candidates was changed to make it more fair and unbiased, said Kenny Ho, Associated Students of the University of Arizona elections commissioner.

. . .

Ho said that it is protocol for a write-in candidate’s name to appear on the ballot, and that the Elections Code only states that a blank should be provided for a write-in candidate – not that the name should be absent altogether.

Protocol where? Ho cites no former ASUA cases, or any student government cases, in which the name of the write-in candidate appears on the ballot. None of the fifty states print the name of a write-in candidate on the ballot, nor does the federal government. It’s not even worth going through the rest of the world’s democracies, since the name “write-in” itself makes it very clear exactly what voters must do to make their vote count. If the Commission wanted to make Chris Nagata a “copy-paste” candidate, then they should have made that clear from the beginning.

It was not originally clear to the Elections Commission that the wording could be construed as biased, but now that the concerns have been brought to the organization’s attention, they believe they have done the right thing in changing the ballot, Ho said.

“We wanted it to be very generic,” he said. “We didn’t want it to sound like we were supporting any candidates.”

So, the Commission decided, to make sure that they don’t look like they’re biased, to just go ahead a print a write-in candidate’s name on the ballot (defeating the whole purpose), and, what’s more, provide step-by-step instructions to make sure that nobody voting for Nagata messes up their vote. Is that about right?

There is a silver lining to this story, though; we’re not just two voices crying in the wilderness anymore. From the Wildcat‘s editorial desk:

We should note that, based on extended interviews with both candidates, our recommendation for president was write-in candidate Nagata. Despite our support for him, we’re incensed that his candidacy would be handled so poorly by whoever was responsible for drafting the ballot, presumably election commissioner Ho.

Given that the signatures he collected were, in the judgment of the elections commissioner, inadequate to get him on the ballot, Nagata’s name should not appear. The construction of this year’s ballot implies an unacceptable bias in favor of Nagata on the part of current ASUA leadership

. . .

Those involved with ASUA constantly argue that the organization is relevant to today’s students, and in all fairness, many of their actions have an impact on our lives. However, these student leaders are being paid for their service and serve in our name, and as students we must demand that their selection is fair, clear and open. Of all of the campus organizations with which we are familiar, none has election procedures as Byzantine and corrupt as those of our student government.

. . .

The root of these continuing problems can only be that elections are entrusted to an all-powerful elections commissioner, with absolute discretion over not only the conduct of the election itself, but also the very code that governs the election and his own position,

Given the gross malfeasance that has characterized this election, we call for an immediate end to balloting, and for the scheduling of a special election to take its place, to be held under new supervision.

Further, we call on the ASUA Senate to immediately undertake the enactment of an amendment to the ASUA Constitution placing the elections code under the direct supervision of the senate, and for the enactment of a new code after adequate input from the student body.

Really, you should read the whole thing. I’m not exactly sure how this matches up with their positively fawning endorsements yesterday, but it’s good to see another media outlet speaking truth to “smooth elections.”

ASUA: “We have no idea what the hell is going on.”

Posted in Campus, Politics by Evan Lisull on 18 February 2009

Idiocracy Screenshot

All that being said, Mr. Bergan gets some priceless quotes from your highly esteemed representatives. To wit:

Even if the Elections Commission thought a candidate might be violating a code, there is no guarantee it will be looked into, Anderson said.

“The Elections Commission doesn’t look for violations. They respond to violations,” she said. “There’s a point where it comes down to common sense.”

Surely it was “common sense” when Ms. Tubbs was docked for her unlicensed cookie distribution and an unauthorized Instant Message status — how dare she! And it certainly was common sense when the Administrative Vice President position had no listed candidate, until Sen. Ziccarelli suddenly, as if by an occult hand, acquired enough signatures between the deadline for filing and her currently listed status as a full candidate. Move along now – nothing to see here!

“We don’t want to see less people going out for ASUA,” she said. “We need to take the lessons learned from each election.”

Anderson said she believes no ASUA officials have violated the Elections Code.

Bruce, Anderson and Ho all echoed the sentiment that the rule is not clear-cut and comes back to the commissioner’s discretion.

Despite code-naming Facebook groups as online campaign material and Martinez’s assertion that the groups count as material that must be removed following elections, the trio says the rule is murky at best and open to interpretation. [Emphasis added – EML]

Rule of law is so twentieth century; instead, “smooth elections” are preferred to “free,” “fair,” “impartial” elections:

1-4.01

The Elections Commission retains the right to take all necessary steps to ensure the
smooth running[*] of the ASUA Elections.

I’m a bit slow on the uptake of these things, so bear with me. If an elections commissioner holds a grudge against a certain candidate (impossible, since all of our elections commissioners are angels gracing this earth; play along with me here), what is there to stop said commissioner from essentially ending this candidate’s run? In other words, is there any check on the Commissioner, or are we all just pawns in his/her “murky” game? Are we just hoping that the good will of the commissioner will save us?

If this code was so “murky”, then why was it described in opposite terms when the Senate voted unanimously to approve it? If the Code was still indistinct, shouldn’t it have been sent back to the drawing board, instead of being approved in record-setting time?

Bergan saves the best for last, with this gem from Sen. Jason Mighdoll:

Mighdoll said he will consider removing his 2008 campaign Facebook group.

“I didn’t know there was that rule (until) about a week afterward,” he said. “It gets complicated.”

Let me state this in no uncertain terms: You voted to pass this Code. You approved it, every last deplorable clause of it. To plead ignorance after the fact is to admit that, upon casting your vote, you had no idea what exactly you were doing. To admit so casts doubt on your entire record. If a mere 14 page document is too much to handle, what’s to say that a simple appropriation can be properly reasoned through? A resolution?

*- Now, if we had only had a “cool running,” that would be an election, mon.

Image via a Creative Commons license, from this post

In which the Desert Lamp infiltrates the news desk?

Posted in Campus, Media by Evan Lisull on 18 February 2009

The Wildcat today features a good investigative report today:

Almost all ASUA elected officials may be guilty of Election Code violations reaching back to last March’s general election.

The code states that all Associated Students of the University of Arizona candidates must remove their campaign materials by a business week after the general elections. This includes online campaign materials, according to the 2009 ASUA Elections Code.

However, as campaigning for the current election race officially began Monday, every sitting senator, as well as ASUA President Tommy Bruce and Administrative Vice President Seema Patel, still had not taken down all of their online campaign materials from last year’s election.

Funny, though; this sounds rather familiar. In fact, it sounds like something written on this site when the Elections Code was approved back in December:

Curiously, the Senate that approved this code is in violation of its tenets: every single standing Senator still has their campaign group in existence, well after the election period. Both of Tommy Bruce’s groups are still up; Patel’s Senate site and Admin. VP site still remain. Curiously, Anderson’s is off, perhaps since she’s the only one that actually read the Code. The ultimately failed “Abolish ASUA” group still exists as well.

The Wildcat then digs back into its own archives:

It was a big deal for Rhonda Tubbs, though, who knows something about election codes specifying online campaign material.

After winning a race for executive vice president in the 2006 ASUA elections, Tubbs was disqualified from entering office. Tubbs, the Elections Commission decided, had violated an Election Code when her friend posted “Vote Rhonda Tubbs” on her America Online messenger profile, the Daily Wildcat reported in Feb. 2006.

Tubbs was also found guilty of not receiving approval to hand out cookies on the UA Mall and sending emails through a campus listserv campaigning for votes.

This was an interesting discovery — when this site made it three days ago:

I’ve commented previously on the absurdly ahistorical nature of student government; and, in a never-ending attempt to make the past present, I present to you the case of Rhonda Tubbs.

Few, if any, of the current ASUA members, or those monitoring them, remember Rhonda Tubbs. Ms. Tubbs was a candidate for executive vice president, way back in 2006. By all regards, Ms. Tubbs was a popular ASUA figure among the student body, initiating the current laptop-loan program during her tenure as a Senator. During the primary campaign, Ms. Tubbs won in the EVP category, defeating future Executive Vice President David Reece by a 34.2% to 31.89% margin.

Yet unfortunately for Ms. Tubbs, she happened to be running for an elected office within ASUA — which means that she was subject to the ASUA Elections Code. Ultimately, she was disqualified for the commission of several ‘minor’ campaign violations . . .

The Wildcat has been very good to me — it provided me the first opportunity to write publicly on a regular basis; it forced me to hone my thoughts and to consider viewpoints I’d never really engaged in prior. Many of my best friends here on campus are former Wildcat writers. The paper continues to pay dividends in the way of source articles, which provide the stepping stone for many a post on this site. By all regards, Mr. Bergan is well-meaning guy; and perhaps this is unintentional, a case of the lightning of insight striking twice on our campus. In the future, though, our simple request is that if you use our research – and please do! – you let the reader know where it came from. A simple, “According to the Arizona Desert Lamp . . .” will suffice.