Since certain email complainers (hi Gemma, did we go to high school together? Remember how we were not friends? Good times) are exhorting more ‘serious coverage that looks at the policy and doesn’t talk about roving booths as mesopelagic monsters’, well, here’s a serious. A semi-serious. A ‘do you really want us to be serious?’ Eh. As Cam Payne (ugh, how it grates on me we keep resurrecting him from his irrelevance) said in a comment on Day 14 of coverage: you can’t take it too seriously. Hacks, hold onto that – it’s a lifeline.
I’ll give ISL pride of place at the top because our coverage hasn’t treated them at all fairly. What’s more, we’re not inclined to believe insinuations by STAR/Launch, who have been snarling that ISL candidates shit-talk other candidates to libellous extremes in non-English languages, as part of a cunning scheme to win international student votes.
As with Left Action, ISL is still ghosting on social media and web. Are there versions of campaign material being circulated in a more accessible format for students with English as a second language? That sounds like it’d be a good idea. But why print more when Google Translate could’ve done the work for them? Well, perhaps they’re a more ‘on-the-ground’ campaign team.
Their pamphlet is a bit disappointing, with the same three vaguely-worded promises repeated on both sides of the yellow slip. Did they not have anything more to say to the voting public? What does ‘facilitate better accessibility to Guild services’ actually mean? There’s a marked lack of concrete policy objectives. The ‘enhancement of the mentor/mentee programme for international program’ is another one that sounds positive, but again – nebulously.
Their (and STAR’s) pledge to diversify campus food options has also copped a share of criticism from certain pundits, who have expressed concern that introducing more corporate-owned chain stores will leave surrounding local off-campus outlets hurting. “Ararat Kebabs is literally a 5 min walk from UWA!” wails old STAR engine Lizzie Long. (The comments mainly devolved into: yum.) It’s a fair point – but then again, UWA is so vast, nowhere is really a 5-minute walk away unless you have the quick and nimble gait of Jack Looby. Anyway, no one can really wave aside the fact that the white person’s panini is still the monolith and mainstay of campus cuisine. We can definitely up our game when it comes to expanding more culturally-diverse fare. Vegetarians and vegans are meanwhile wasting away; often spotted in the Botanical area of the uni, they have taken to scraping moss off of stones and scuffling competitively in the dirt for truffles.
[This section previously contained allegations that Left Action member Emma Norton was shouting at a member of UWA Security for removing election pamphlets. We were later informed that the confrontation was over anti-racism material. For sub-par journalism in this instance, Pelican apologises.]
I am not safe. In the last 24 hours, two STAR candidates whom I have yet to look in the eye messaged me out of the blue, each professing an interest to get involved in Pelican. The first made no mention of Guild Elections – I gave her the rundown, but told her upfront we wouldn’t be accepting any politically-themed articles from her until after September 22. She is yet to take my advice to join the Writers’ group, or subscribe to our mail-outs.
The second just clipped a ‘Pelican is cool’ message on after a VOTE 1 STAR plug.
Launch has failed to just that, with its website still ‘under construction’. This looks incredibly poor against STAR’s glossy new thang, which includes features like a calendar in which you can input a ‘cheeky reminder’ to vote (that naughty impulse to get to exert your power as a democratic citizen!), a comprehensive rundown of policy, and photos of attractive if grey/green-skinned candidates; kind of like how I’d imagine Post-apocalyptic Next Top Model contestants to look. The red team have seriously missed the boat on this one.
As to their griping over misused student funds, and their other cost-saving (if risk-riddled) initiative to introduce online voting: more on that in the days to come.
Meanwhile, an imitation Launch page has popped up, and is trolling all commentators. Named ‘Launch UWA’ and featuring an identical profile picture and cover image to those of the official, it is zooming its merry mischief about all #hotgoss hotspots, being a dick. While Launch’s Ben Martin reckons it’s a STAR gimmick, one insider has advised that he try a “little closer to his Liberal home for people looking for revenge…”
Do you feel soiled, readers? I do.
But that’s the elections for you – just a time when you wish you could just sit in a very hot bath for the whole damn duration. Well, for a brief time, I am done with them. Done. Let’s just shelve this whole shit-show for a bit because hey, what’s this? Pelican’s final Writers’ Night of the year banging off at 5pm? Well shoot. Theme is Naked/Beast (makes me think of a shorn hippogriff), with free pizza, free snax and free, fine bevs. If you haven’t written for us in 2016, this is your last opportunity to get your name in print. More importantly, this is your last opportunity to get your hot bod featured in our famously smutty final edition ‘Nudes Spread’. What have you got to lose but clothes.
Oh and hey – the afterparty. Just the Kramers playing at the Tav. #betterthanbasenji x
God knows we are going to need this to get through the Guild Prez showdown on Thursday.
Words by Kate Prendergast
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