I'm going to have to strongly disagree with attempts by the 'Yes' campaign to paint this as "evil Council and Sabbs call referendum".
The fact is, the loudest calls for a referendum after conference were coming from the democratically elected NUS delegates, not the sabbs (who are apparently undemocratic, despite getting more votes for their positions than the delegates).
No-one from the Yes campaign seems to have gone to any conferences or really been involved, except maybe Camilla who chose to vote against the reforms.
In other words, the 'Yes' campaign is complaining that the people who've been involved in NUS, and given their time and effort to it, think they know what it's like more than the people who never actually took an active role.
Talking to Wes, Laura and Bubble made me think twice about which way to vote, but the 'Yes' campaign is using the same "it's undemocratic when elected representatives make decisions" argument that the loony left use at conference. That completely undoes any of the good work the NUS people may have done when they came in (as did Bubble's Mate, who seemed to basically say "ICU is s**t because I've never heard of anything you've achieved, and your students don't protest all the time").
Try and win the argument with facts and evidence, not whining because elected representatives chose to enact the greatest form of democracy there is - a referendum. The 15% quota rule exists to avoid cliques calling referenda, not advertising them and then getting their mates to vote. If we hit quota, it was a democratic decision. If not, then the decision is invalid so it doesn't matter.
Stop this "it's undemocratic and they're evil bureaucrats" bulls**t - Imperial students are smarter than that, which is why they don't take that c**p from the loony left at conference.
you got the ICU turnover way way way wrong. Did you just make it up? And it's not just a question of whether we can afford it - it's whether the nus DESERVES the money. Just because a City boy can afford cocaine does that mean he should buy it?
And yes, the affiliation fee IS a rip off. That's a staff member's salary foing towards an organisation that doesn't listen to us, mocks us when we make speeches, bores us with irrelevamt arguments and definitely does NOT represent us.
And lastly - this says it all:
"1. Students' unions can work together on common issues, they don't need NUS
Turnover excluding one-off income for Beit is around ?3m, however that's taking a simplistic view. You can't really consider that figure without looking at costs you have to pay - cost of sales, staffing, insurance etc. You'll see that in 05-06 we made a small profit, in 04-05 a large loss. As for 06-07, I have no clue because I can't find any financial statements in minutes (this stuff should be available to the members, and is published openly in the College annual report anyway).
There isn't excess profit sloshing around the place. Beit money is being awarded separately by College, at a political price.
I'm assuming Soumaya's opening comments about access to Sabbaticals were referring to the NUS Debate that was hosted by Live!
I was referring to the fact this article was being authored by me. I think articles should be written by a variety of people, not the same old seasoned veterans, it's a good experience. However a lot of undergradute students on the YES campaign (and I'm guessing the No campaign as well, since only matty is a student and ashley doesn't really count) wanted to contribute but due to exam pressures had to back out.
Oh please, whether one supports YES or NO it's still the same proportion of students that have exams still - it's hardly affecting the yes campaign more than the no. As it happens, all the students I know including myself (!) who choose to support the NUS campaign support the NO campaign, apart from one whose brother's on the NUS committee. So stop whinging and making excuses for yourself and your campaign!