Yawn… ASG President T. Greg Doucette responded to the piece by the Pope Center for Higher Education (posted on CRDaily.com) the other day and in it, heavily criticized the Carolina Review. As the Review has long been a critic of the wasteful expenditures and general dearth of tangible results coming from ASG actions, this was only to be expected.
However, his attacks on the Review were completely unfounded. He refers to the magazine as being “known as much for its factual errors and limited readership as any incisive analysis.” Of course, he is rather short on the details (as these gross generalizations normally are). But let’s look at the article he’s referring to “Waste, Bureaucracy, and the ASG” which I authored for the September 2009 issue. I’ve spoken with several ASG members and sympathizers about the article, but so far, none have contested the facts behind my argument. They only quibble over why the ASG should exist. Check the numbers for yourself. For Fiscal Year 2009, these were the budget outlays, categorized using Forbes‘s “Charitable Commitment” methodology:
Ironically, right after damning the Review for being factually inaccurate, he says, “I stand by my comments in that particular column.” So what exactly is the issue?
Only a few paragraphs down, he sounds off again: “Calling the low-circulating, error-filled, poorly-edited, monthly-published Carolina Review a ‘major student publication’ is laughably ridiculous on its own.” Again, accusations without foundation. Where are all these errors he refers to? So tiresome.
My suspicion is the ASG folks realize they can’t win the argument based on its merits. When UNC sends about $28,000 a year to the ASG and realizes no benefits, we should pull out and stop paying the fee. This is commonsensical to most people. But between a combination of salary and self-importance, the ASG members of UNC’s Student Congress didn’t let this question be put to the students and will not allow serious discussion of the viability of an organization like the ASG to take place without resorting to ad hominem attacks. Because that’s all they’ve got.
PS I thought it was hilarious he referred to Our Dear Leader Nash Keune’s campaign for SBP as an example of why UNC SBPs have changed their mind on the ASG (he had a “withdraw from the ASG” plank in his platform). Nash “came in a distant 4th place in the campus’s election last month with a whopping 12% of the vote.” Never mind that this meant he beat two other candidates (one of whom was a huge ASG sycophant), his campaign WAS A JOKE if it wasn’t obvious at the time. I don’t think students went to the polls and determined their selection based in the candidates’ ASG platform (outside of those students who pull a salary from the ASG, then that makes sense).