Sunday, February 11, 2007

Rallying The Troops

"I always sensed a falseness in Jardon's crew. I like Tommy, Ben, Josh, Kim, Ryan etc. as people, but they are pretty mediocre SGers." -- A Key Independent Leader
"After learning more about it, I'm not dissapointed by some of the former indies, I'm disgusted. Keep up the good fight" -- Amanda Kane

Some nice emails to date. I want to thank Amanda Kane for a short but very encouraging email. I also want to let you guys know that despite working m-f, I'm trying to be there for Bruce & Pants in more ways than just on the net. tomorrow I'll be attending a meeting with Bruce & Charlie Grapski to discuss s variety of issues. I'm also talking to people I worked with in Access about fundraising (not really my forte) as well as getting more people to advise the young, independent PANTS Party.

Although I didn't attend, I heard the PANTS meeting tonight went very, very well and the candidate's meeting held earlier last week was also a huge success with all but one candidate showing up and/or excusing themselves. The Party is also finalizing its much-anticipated platform and will likely have an article in either tomorrow or Tuesday's Alligator.

I want to stress that PANTS is fighting an uphill battle against turncoats for the key backing of the Independent community. The Party needs this backing to hold a secure bloc before moving onto the unchartered waters of the Greek Rows and the multi-cultural orgs. It has been speculated that the turncoat's deals wrest on their ability to keep PANTS from regaining the GDI vote. This theory holds truth in that during many of PANTS' recent campaign stops they have not seen members of Gator in any capacity. Gator leaders are confident that the turncoats will make good on their end of the deal in exchange for deals, positions, and in some cases taps*.



Virgil said...

What "independent community?" Through three elections now working overtime trying to garner the full support of this mythical "independent community" using three very differing campaign strategies, I have yet to see one solitary iota of evidence that it exists. There is absolutely *nothing* that binds together any significant bloc of independent voters. Sure, you have the occasional voters that vote for whoever the Alligator tells them is opposing the Greek machine this cycle. And you have the 30-50 hardcore SG nerds who comprise every party and are the ones always out there campaigning and reading blogs like this.

Other than that, I can only conclude that the folks who historically vote for the independent party are personal friends of candidates, folks who pick up an Alligator on election day, and members of cultural or academic organizations who are supporting the indie party that cycle.

I mean, look at Action - 400-something votes for Chris Chase. Less for Bruce. A bunch for Nina, not because she had any message at all, but because she got the Alligator endorsement. Not much of an "independent community" turnout, and not for any sense of apathy - Action was creatively run and very principle-oriented; we were just trying to attract a community that doesn't exist.

For one, I've never even read a good definition of what an "independent" is. Kind of hard to have a community of people you can't even really define a common characteristic for.

Anxious to hear your response to this, Chris - this is actually a discussion I'm interested in pursuing. Cheers, -J

Christian Duque said...

If you go around campus with a clipboard trying to write down all the Indie names you'll prolly not do very well. You're right, unlike a Greek fraternity or multi-cultural org, there aren't any roll-books in the GDI community, but that doesn't mean that there aren't Independents.

There were plenty of Indie votes in Impact's 2,800 votes in '05, more so in Progress 2,000 votes, and practically all of which in Voice's 805...remember there wasn't much AA or Greek support that election but somehow it was done.

Having Independent backing, however, won't win you an election. It's just one block out of many, but it's a key block to have (e.g. the Greek block or AA block) b/c it's historic and rich in tradition. It also adds tremendous credibility and usually includes Alligator support.

Again, the more Independent (which in previous elections has been misinterpreted as being solely anti-Greek, which thankfully PANTS is not), has also served as marker of how much support the student-run paper will give.

I know you want CC's opinion, but I wanted to throw in my own before heading out to work. Thanks for commenting. :)

Anonymous said...

Josh, let me explain something to you. Action was horrible because the platform sucked. People laughed at the party because they stuck a waterslide and other stupid promises on the platform. The campaign itself was also terribly run, had no momentum, and the candidates and party leaders seemed like they just didn't give a damn. You have to run a decent campaign to get a decent amount of votes.

will said...

8:16: very good pt. I know indies who just gave up after Gloria's waterlside.

Tommy said...
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Tommy Jardon said...

This constitutes the first blog comment I've ever written, as I've only recently began to read them (somewhat) regularly, and I admit, for purely vain reasons.

Whoever is talking shit about David Meyrowitz is an outright idiot. David and I have known each other for years now and there is no one on this campus I respect more, and few are his equal.

While I'm at it, a thought: Indies don't follow any individual person from election to election. I think the last might have been Dennis because he was Access's Treasurer candidate. Indies, in my humble opinion, follow ideas and qualifications.

Hence, when Brian Siler (God Bless him for helping us win a Nat'l Championship) gets nominated, Indies turn away. Also, when a certain unnamed party puts a waterslide on their platform, Indies turn away.

The closest thing to an Indie voting bloc is the Alligator's readership, which I credit with about 1,500 votes (in either a Fall or Spring campaign). Other than that, Indies must be convinced for whom to vote; as well it should be.

I take umbridge with the thought that I am somehow a turncoat for following my conscience and supporting the person I think will perform best. Pig-headed, blind fealty for or against one party or the other is what Indies have always fought against. Fighting against the system is all well and good when the system is based on nepotism and oligarchy.

But voting against someone simply because of his affiliation or who else is backing him is too simplistic a world view for me to subscribe to.

I'll tell you right now I don't think a lot of Gator's slate deserves to be on there, but I haven't been very proud of past Indie slates either; did that stop me before?

The choice, in the end, needs to reflect who will accomplish the greatest good for the greatest amount of people. Past Indie campaigns have fought to break open a closed system. Moseley represents a chance, though subtle, to do the same.

Call me a turncoat all you want, Christian.

A coward, I am not.

Anonymous said...

Wow, myy respect for Tommy grows everytime I read something he writes on this blog.

Tommy, you are the one true indie voice on here. I have to love an independent who truly is independent and making his own decisions about who to support and not giving-way to greek this or not greek that.

Make an informed decision on your own people. Don't believe the hype or conspiracy theories. Go out meet people and make a decision, everything else is just something to fill up free time from here to the election.

will said...

12:07: Don't confuse Tommy for the turncoats. While they all went to Gator, he did so for different reasons.

Gavin Baker said...

Will, you are the only one who left over the waterslide.

Can we bury this debate for good? OK, maybe it looked silly on a platform; maybe it's bad politics; certainly the Alligator pounced on it and made us look funny. But it was, and is, good policy -- as evidenced by the fact that Rec Sports has had it on their wishlist for some time. Poorly communicated doesn't make it a bad idea; it's not.

Can we move on now?

Virgil said...

I was actually referring to you by "Chris," Christian. Sorry for the confusion - I'll use your full name in the future.

I'd have said pretty much everything Tommy said, just less eloquently, and I'm pleased to note his Freudian slip about "Brian Siler." Good to know his head's in real-life politics, not this SG namby-pamby crap. ;)

I also don't know where Will gets that I (or anyone, for that matter) am supporting Moseley for reasons other than Tommy's. On the contrary, I'm supporting Moseley for PRECISELY the same reasons Tommy enumerated. To allege otherwise is merely to reveal your own debilitating ignorance.

To anon: yeah, Action wasn't perfect - the platform was shoddy and a lot of us got burned out too early. But it was still a hell of a lot more "indie" than Unite and my point was that if there was some contiguous indie voting bloc, then Action would've been a lot more successful than it was, and probably more successful than Unite (we didn't have nearly as much other institutional support in Unite as people think we did - a big portion of our votes were those "indie" voters).

Anonymous said...

I don't know where you came up with the idea that the other turncoats went to Gator for different reasons than Tommy. Or, for that matter, that they were even following Tommy. If the "Attila the Gator" blog has anything to say about it, the young upstarts went to Gator before Tommy did. But since Christian doesn't feel like taking the time to ask them, it's hard to understand why the baby indies left the nest. So far, Virgil seems to be the only one willing to step up and give us their reasoning.

will said...
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will said...

Try 2, there was a formating issue.

Josh: You didn't try to slate with gator so my post was not about you. You didn't "go to gator" you became a gator supporter and an amusing columnist.

Gavin: Yes, I stopped dealing with the Action Exec after the waterslide but I was far from the only one. Read Tommy's post, I don't believe "Indies" refers to me.

3:54: I never said they were following Tommy. What are you talking about? And yes, they did go to gator for different reasons.

Anonymous said...

Yeah what reasons are those, I'd love to hear them. 12 senate seats that never materialized? You can have all the theories you want but here's what it was: Ryan Moseley is the best candidate and will do the best job as SBP.

Christian Duque said...

Tommy is not a turncoat -- that's why I gave him a spot to speak out. However, the people that went with Tommy are questionable and so is Tommy's decision to stay with Gator even though PANTS would come onto to the scene much later.

I stress Tommy's decision remains questionable, however, that of the main body of the rogue Action leadership border on suspicious.

Anonymous said...

Christian, what is wrong with supporting the best person for the job?

Merely because they are Greek?

Christian Duque said...

I have not called you a turncoat Tommy, but your actions are questionable, your cred is waning by the day, and if you're trying to tell me that your Party isn't making deals and/or playing dirty with PANTS then you're full of shit.

You can milk Dennis all you want, I helped put Jamal in office so that shit really amounts to zilch w/ me. I gave you a spot to speak (an open window that remains open) and interview. I also emailed you on multiple opportunities amount a series of issues. I have gone out of my way to include you.

You, the rival of FBK, Mr. Florida Blue Lightning is now a mainstreamer, please don't bitch at me. So some say you joined Gator to install Indies in positions of power to break away later...I think that's a pile.

Fact is, you're not with the Indies, for whatever your reason may be. If you're not a turncoat, waht are you?

Christian Duque said...

And can that Greek shit. I'm Greek, Pete's Greek, Bruce is Greek, Eve was Greek, and Jamal was Greek. Can it.

ym said...


So if Gator offered TEP a deal would that be bad? If a group offered TEP or Sigma Kappa a deal, would that be bad?

What if Gator offered, CASA or HABLA more funding? Or a position? Or offered extra senate seats for Grads?

Would lose things be bad?

If they are bad then why did you tell PANTS to do the same thing? What's the difference? Opportunism?

Christian Duque said...

I'm sorry I don't recall.

ym said...

January 7th, 2007

"Give the students a firebrand GDI and they will react, deal with the Greeks, deal with FBK, deal with Tap Dancing Club. Deal is not a bad word, get off your Billy Graham rockers and realize you are in politics and just because Dennis Ngin found Jesus in a glass of Ice Tea and decided deals were not the way politics were supposed to be done at UF doesn't mean you have to. Go to TEP and offer them Pro Tem, go to Sigma Kappa and offer them Accent, if the president of the Swedish Club and can get you Swedish support at UF in exchange for your backing him in the upcoming Nigerian Student Union presidential election, give it to him, you need to get some votes!"

That sounds like a pretty ringing endorsement of deals no matter what party... So if you are going to say no more to the Greek shit... no more on the deal shit

Christian Duque said...

I did write that, but I do not recall your accusation of me telling PANTS to go make deals. I am not in the PANTS leadership. And naturally you took a series of figurative examples quite literally. I was making a joke, you know, for laughs.

Christian Duque said...

Accent to Sigma Kappa? Swedish powerplay in the Nigerian Student Union, did you not get the humor there? Are you learning disabled?

Anonymous said...

You know what, Christian, I am sick of your bullshit. I, and many of my peers, have busted my ass to put on great programming for ALL students. I have sat through both cabinet and senate meetings to give student issues a voice, especially when dealing with SUCH a hostile administration.

I would just love for you to give me a SINGLE name of someone who has tried to get involved and been shown the door. I had no name, I had no house when I started, and the same people that you are blindly criticizing today listened to me, encouraged me, and got me involved.

Don't tell me there is a glass ceiling when there is IRHA, multicultural community, greek houses, FLC, Rec Sports, Reitz Union and DOZENS of other opportunities to be heard. Look at the composition of any of these groups and you will see diversity and outstanding leadership.

And I'm posting this anonymously because we all saw how much respect you gave Ashley when she included her name (Ashley, btw, you are AMAZING and do so much for RYMAC and your consituents in senate, don't let Christian or anyone else tell you otherwise).

Christian Duque said...

what's your name again?

Anonymous said...

9:24 PM: Joel, is that you?

Anonymous said...

9:24. I'm calling it as Joel or Lewis.

will said...
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will said...

I can't ever get blogger to format right. Try 2.

9:38 and 9:41: If it 9:24 was Joel, he is easily one of the nicest most approachable people in their party and deserves more praise than he gets.

I believe he wore Green in spring of 05 but his only loyalty is to the students. He works tirelessly and doesn't play this gossip/blame game that pervades every other SGer i know.

If that post (9:24) isn't Joel, the poster was channeling one hell of a student leader.

Joel is everything a Key should be and definitely deserved his tapping.

Anonymous said...

Will: I'd be interested to know what those other reasons are that took the turncoats to the Gator party. Have you spoken with them? Because as far as I'm concerned, that would be the easiest way to resolve this little debacle, rather than making generalizations about people who I would only give you a 30 percent chance of recognizing if you passed them on campus.

ym said...


Read your Jan 7th post... I saw the humor in the suggestions of Swedish/Nigerian President votes for whatever.

But your basic point was that deals are part of politics. It is how things get done and people get elected. That the indies shouldn't be afraid to deal. Even in the absurdities of giving TEP something.

You even include the folliwing: "I sounds like a degenerate here and I'm kidding to a great extent, but Dennis' style is bullshit and I wouldn't say so unless it permeated the Indie movement. Indies are dirty too, we always have been, I was brought into Access on a deal, a deal I haggled over, a deal I negotiated, and my terms not been meant in any capacity I'd a been behind Scott. Public office is noble work, but politics is dirty and the sooner you realize that, the sooner you'll be able to get elected and started carrying out some of that very noble work you'd like to perform for the public."

Even there Christian (yes I see the words kidding in there), but your point is not missed. Indies are dirty, you did deals, and would gladly have turned your back on the entire Access Party if they had not met your demands. Talk about loyalty and being an indie. That's a turncoat and an opportunist.


Jamal was a good man, who was screwed by the system that had brought him up. He caught lightening in a bottle with his campaign. Something that truly had many, many things going for it. Did a developed group of indies help him win after a long series of losses? Yes! Do I fault people for backing Pants. No.

Some people have the absolute right to back people they see as being able to do a good job. I don't think SG or the UF student body is going to fall apart if Bruce wins. I don't think it's going to fall apart if Ryan wins either. I do think that the more rhetoric there is about "how s/he is not a nice guy/gal and they do this bad thing and that bad thing" without sitting and looking at why do they such a thing is wrong.

Christian Duque said...

Whatever you say. I don't have much free time and the time I do have I'm using for PANTS. I'll address all your concerns March 1.

Anonymous said...

Haha. You have all the time in the world to talk shit about people, until someone posts a response that you don't like?

Anonymous said...

Yeah seriously man? You going to go run and hide now that say serious issues are being discussed. What a way to stand up to the sytem... by hiding from it.

Hypocritical and Hilarious.

Flat out Hilarious.

Anonymous said...

You can continue to play the Gator party is evil etc. etc. all you want Christian.

But all you have to do is look at people like the Grad School slate out getting ideas from the students, an open platform workshop to any student or candidate (from either side), the Engineering senators going to their constituents and you'll see...

Gator is not the greek system of old. They're reinventing themselves within a solid framework and trying to make student government more accessible to students.

Essentially the Gators are doing indie better than the indies.

ym said...


March 1st!!!!
What is that? You can take the time to talk about issues, post videos, sub in the Alachua County School System, but you can't take time to answer the simple question of whether deals are approriate or not in politics?

Come Christian, I know of 10th and 11th graders can do a better job of defending their past statements.

You are calling people sell-outs, traitors to the cause, about to post your "Wall of Shame" and you don't expect people to fire back at your errors. At your misstatements. Think again Mr Duque.

Anonymous said...

Damn! Total Pwnage!

Christian Duque said...

I'm also studying for certification...don't wanna be a sub more than another month or two. Your posts are trivial and you compliment yourself, posing as other people. I seriously don't have the time right now -- please don't be offended, but you want to discuss posts from years ago -- literally.

I have never turned away from a good debate, but now I'm just too busy. sorry.

Anonymous said...

Oh come on Christian, you have time to do everything in the world except arguing for your own shady opinion?

Anonymous said...

How about you lay off his ass. If it wasn't for his blog to begin with you wouldn't even have a set place to talk trash anyway. So give the man some dues, let him worry about his own nonsense, and go play with yourself in the corner like the good little boy you are.

Anonymous said...

So Christian can pull stuff out of his ass, make baseless accusations, and we need to lay it off?