Here’s a newsflash; The Vermont Cynic can be best capitalized on by picking up 1000 issues of their paper, bringing them back to your dorm, house, or apartment, and wiping your butt with them. These untouched issues are readily available for your taking and can be found in the basement of the Billings Student Center. Stop buying bounty and start tearing pages; there’s gotta be at least 50 wipes to a single issue. As stupid as it is for me to even write an article for this piece of trash newspaper, I feel compelled. For the past two years of my college career I’ve picked up an issue of the cynic newspaper purely to see what types of negative things have been said about me. You see I’m a member of the SGA Senate, and tend to express my views as I was elected to do. I fight for what I feel strongly about and brush off the trivial issues. No matter what my stance, it is always directed at an issue; not an individual. So anyway, for two years I’ve sat quietly while some of my close editor friends and acquaintances have gotten me in trouble and miss-characterized me. Despite my persistent requests for my name not to appear in the paper, without fail it almost always does. Just to guess, I’d say my name has appeared in the paper about 40 times, about 10 of these were quotes or paraphrases. Correction; miss-quotes and out of context excerpts that paint me as a cold, heartless, jerk. Recently, I decided to draw the line. Last week, Chase Soule wrote the following: “Bent Cardan and Ben Wildstein are both advocates of the first ideology and have demonstrated their beliefs through their anti-blue collar rhetoric-it has been said by these Senators that they will pay for their education but not for those who scrub their toilets and that if people can’t afford to send their children to school then they shouldn’t have children in the first place.” First off, I challenge Mr. Soule to provide documentation that I have said anything similar to what he asserts that I said. Two, I challenge Mr. Soule to write with strong opinion when he has knowledge of the issues at hand; he has never attended an SGA Senate meeting and in addition he clearly doesn’t read the SGA Senate Meeting Minutes. Three, perhaps Mr. Soule could have elaborated on what my anti-blue collar rhetoric was? I sure don’t know, and would think that I’d know best. I’m not anti-blue collar. I’m pro student. Here’s an idea for everyone who supports the “livable” wage and not the current unlivable wage. Start a private equity fund with cash inflows from the supporters of this campaign. Since, assuming full participation from all of SGA, it should only cost about $300 per student to raise wages to a “livable” level (according to ambiguous bias sources), bypass the system, stand outside cook’s commons with a jar and ask students for the money. Then, once you collect all the cash you can give stacks of twenties to each staff member. Since it’s the mandate of the students, you should be pretty successful. Subsequently, this method will allow for all the staff to see how hard you have been working at this effort, rather than how much you have wining about it. Isn’t that a great idea? It’s not that I don’t support paying staff as much as possible. I was elected by students, not staff, to look out for the best interest of students. Since this University has two sources of revenue, grants and tuition, obtaining this additional funding without making students bare the burden, will prove to be quite difficult. No person or organization will give an endowment to UVM stating that the money is to be used to pay staff higher wages and salaries. I challenge anyone to obtain such a grant sufficient to cover the costs of this campaign. The only way that staff will be paid more is if students pay more in tuition. Personally, I don’t feel comfortable with this approach. I empathize with the students who not only participate in work study but also are employed off-campus just so they can barely pay their way through UVM. I empathize with students who have financial aid and will be in massive debt for years subsequent to their graduation from UVM. These students are prevalent in this school. Since these students are already hard pressed, it will only be worse with any increase in tuition. I’ll fight for the students who need to be fought for. I’ll fight for the students who elected me. I’d fight for the staff if it was the staff that had elected me. This is the cold, heartless, stance of Ben Wildstein. Just to reiterate, The Cynic is a trash newspaper that is better used as toilet paper than for mental stimulation. I think that the editors and authors of The Cynic might fair much better in the future if they can state their opinions on issues and not attack individuals. Perhaps they may even try accurately reporting news and quotes rather than fabricating issues and statements.