Yesterday the UQ Union stuff arrived in the mail which included all the usual garbage.
For all those not familiar with UQ and the the Union, here's some background info for this blog: All UQ students are also by default members of the UQ Union, and pay a semesterly 'Student Services Charge' (now $136) of which most (if not all) goes to the Union. As stated in this years send-out, the constitutional ethos of the union is "service, support, representation".
Sound ok doesn't it?
What i haven't meantioned so far is that the Union is mainly comprised of Socialists, Communists, Hippies, homosexuals, Howard-bashers, and basically any other minority that can fit in as long as they belong to the political left. (if i've left any out let me know!)
For these people, the Union is their bastion of University political power. But all of this i don't have a problem with. Although i don't necessarily like, or associate with, most of the above mentioned groups (i am not a socialist, a communist, a hippie, a homosexual, and i am not left: and although i am not a completely right wing, i do lean toward that side), i have no problem with them having their own organisation to represent them. That is their democratic right.
What i DO have a problem with is me being forced to be a member of this so called 'Union'. They really do not represent me in any way (other than me simply being a student, which seems to be a low priority to the other groups mentioned above).
The whole notion of what i call 'compulsory unionism' is contradictory in so many ways it's not funny. All over uni there are Union posters proclaiming our to be in a union. By the same token I, and those like me, should have our right NOT to be in a Union. This should be OUR democratic right.
When the Union uses our money contributed to them in the form of the student services charge to fund people to go to South Australia and protest at some detention facility, this really ticks me off. I wouldn't give half a toss about this if i wasn't FORCED to give money to these people and be a member of their organisation.
What i want the hardcore UQ Union people to recognise is how unfair and undemocratic this compulsory unionism is, and before they start using the democratic system, both in uni and in all other political arenas, to push their own agendas (most of which demand fairness, equality, and democracy), they should realise how unfair, unequal, and undemocratic their own so called 'Union' is.