Welcome to Catalyst’s guide to RMIT Student Union elections. Over the next few days, we’ll be sharing the what, the who, the why, the where, the how, the umm huh of election season at RMIT. Keep tuned as we unveil the best darn guide to student democracy in action you’re ever likely to read.
Why should you bother voting? Well let your election correspondents Brendan Wrigley, Ashleigh McMillan and Richard Ferguson set you right, mate.
Whether you like it or not, you’re paying to be here, and paying for the Union to exist. That Student Services and Amenities Fee (SSAF) we talked about earlier this week? That comes out of your pocket, and it pretty much funds the Union’s activities. And as such, it’s worth having a say in who gets your money, and ultimately what it goes toward. If you love the thought of lunch time beer and snags, there’s a party for you. If you hate the fascist federal government, there’s a mob for you too. And if you just despise the idea of giving any so called “Union” your hard earned, then there’s a group singing your tune. But just like waking up hungover on your mate’s couch with an empty wallet, there’s nothing worse than not knowing where your money went.
A lot of people put up their hands to serve you during student elections. Some want to puff up their rèsume, some want to start their journey into parliament, some think they’ll get some amorous attention (dead fucking wrong there…). But most of them just want to help out their fellow students and make uni a better place. For all their faults, you have to give them some dues for that. Service is a concept on the way out and we should preserve it while we can. Give these young people some support, tick a box and say, “Yes, good on you.”
Or – if there is a candidate you don’t like – you can vote against them and crush their dreams. That can be rather fun.
Frankly friends, our modern society rewards people who have no sense of humour and are really good at paperwork. We might kid ourselves into thinking we’re fine, but one way or another, we’re being screwed out of money or sex or interesting lives just by doing something we think we like.
But all the richies we’ll bow down to in the future? They’re currently having inane conversations and correctly filling out pieces of paper. This election is the perfect chance to sharpen your skills of self-punishment. Head down to the polls and have a wanky conversation you don’t really understand. Wait in line, forever. Tick some boxes perfectly and then eat an undercooked snag. Trust me, adulthood is about doing dumb rubbish you couldn’t care less about, so make this year’s RMIT Election your first step towards that. Eventually you’ll be so good at tolerating things you hate, you too will be a rich CEO!