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Friday, August 12, 2005

Gerry Rinehart--stupid or malicious

--posted by Tony Garcia on 8/12/2005

MOBsters...conservatives on campus need your help. They need you to put A LOT of constant pressure on Gerry Rinehart (Vice Provost, Office of Student Affairs). His phone number is 612-626-1242 and his e-mail is g-rine@umn.edu. He is willfully trying to kill all the conservative groups on campus.

Here is the background.

Gerry Rinehart is a part of the University of Minnesota administration who oversees the Student Fees process. The Student Fees process is the annual ritual where liberal students appoint fellow liberals and a few token conservatives on committees to decide how much funding student groups will get the following year via the theft known as Student Service Fees. These fees are mandatory for each student.

Now the next thing that should be understood is that the University's fees system is in conflict with Supreme Court rulings. Rinehart gets around this fact with two tactics. The first is that by constantly "reviewing" the process he claims that the University is actively trying to move into compliance. This is a bald-faced lie because the system does not get any substantive changes. The second tactic is to cut the funding of the groups that would have standing to sue the University. No money means no lawyers. No lawyers for the conservatives means that Rinehart can continue funding the hate groups (La Raza, BSU, QSCC, etc) while eliminating all groups that oppose his ideological stance.

Rinehart decided AFTER most of the student body left for the summer and before the summer sessions started that he would review the process again this year. The truth is that the conservatives actually made some progress in cutting fees and Rinehart actually had to overrule some committee determinations. As you will in a moment this is important. He claims to have no knowledge on the specifics of various rulings that he overturned though he does overturn the funding recommendations.

Today I had a conversation with Gerry. Everyone needs to understand that the conversation shows the abject diregard Gerry has for any sense of equality...and he knows he can get away with it because NOONE puts any presurre on him. Parents, media and legislators fail in this regard.

Here is the summary of the conversation.

I called Gerry Rinehart about the student fees overhaul committee that he is running. The conversation was enlightening. All this time I was not certain if the administration was intentionally shutting conservatives out or if they really just were that stupid. Today I know. Rinehart is maliciously shutting out conservatives. The conversation went basically along these lines.
1) I told him that there is concern that the already biased process is going to become worse for conservative. He said that the process is not broken and only needs to be tweaked.
2) As determined by a group of ideologically bent people? He said that the people on the committee are representative of the student groups.
3) The only student group representative is a member of La Raza...where is the conservative representation? Was that intentional? He said that the members of the committee are representative of the student groups in whole
4) If the process is not in need of an overhaul then it is intentional that conservative groups get shut out of the process both in getting on the committee and in getting equal amounts of funding as other groups. He said that everyone is treated equally.
5) Besides Students for Family Values (SFV) can you name another group that suffered around 75% cuts? He said he thinks it was because they were failing in meeting various standards.
6) What standards? Can I view them? He said he does not know what they are but that the committee is giving training on those standards.
7) How can you say the system is acceptable when you do not know the standards? He said that the committee knows the standards.
8) But if you overturn decisions shouldn't you know what standards were not met? I review the recommendations from the committee.
9) So what standards could be in place that would allow a group to get an increase in funding despite repeated embezzlement, another gets an increase even though they never submitted any paperwork in time, meanwhile 100% of the conservative groups get shut out or substantial cuts. (I did not mention the group that runs a student dating service with the fudning.) He said that SFV was cut because they were harrassing other groups. I told him that SFV was vindicated because the charges had no merit. He said he did not know about that. I asked how could he feel comfortable cut conservative groups based on fabricated information. He said he cannot answer that.
10) In essence he is making decisions to cut programs while not knowing the full details of accusations, not understanding the standards that groups are supposed to be judged against and all biased against a viewpoint in particular. He said the standards for a group to maintain funding is a very complicated process to review.
11) What are the objective criteria that a group is given at the beginning of each year that they need to meet? He said there are none.
At this point Gerry said that my questions were too hostile and that he has "real things to deal with instead". I told him that I understand..."answering tough questions about a broken system that you perpetuate is difficult."

He replied that my words are too harsh...I cut him off with, "like your revered committee members calling conservative groups a 'cancer' to the campus to justify cutting their funding. Sounds like the pot calling the kettle."
...he hung up.

Gerry knows that he is maliciously squeezing out the conservative viewpoint from equal access to funding, equal access to office space and equal access to the Student Fees Committee. But noone puts any pressure on him so it is not changing.


Blogger lloydletta said...

Students for Family Values was harrassing the Women's Student Activism Collective. Though Campus Republicans were ringleaders in this endeavor (posts to the campus republic yahoogroup by Tom Meyer give pretty clear evidence of planning an WSAC "takeover").

I was also on the SFV forum (which has since been taken down), and it seemed rather clear that their main focus was anti-gay.

As I said before on Lloydletta - does the SCOTUS decision in the Wisconsin case mean that Universities should be required to fund hate groups as part of the viewpoint neutrality issue?

August 13, 2005  
Blogger Tony Garcia said...

1) Simply being "anti-gay" does not make them a "hate group". You liberals always confuse disagreement with hate.

2) Southworth DOES include all groups.

3) MPIRG is also a hate group (in your definition--disagreement).

So, yes SFV should get funding in the same manner as WSAC, Africana (who had embezzelment several years running), Al Madinnah (sp), and EVERY OTHER STUDENT GROUP. That is regardless of if YOU like them or not.

For the record...taking pictures of an office is not harrassment and that is why SFV was vindicated. The detractors (you & Rinehart) constantly fail to mention that important part of the issue.

August 13, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

and my vote is for stupid

August 13, 2005  
Blogger Aaron said...

I would like to point out several things about this -

It should be noted that, as far as I know, Tom Meyer is not a member of SFV. Besides, Campus Republicans and SFV are two different groups.

If you go back and review the 2001 U of M reform committee, they write that even the KKK would have to be able to get funding if they met the criteria.

The committee is given no actual criteria. I know this because I was a member of the administrative fees committee. The criteria they have are ambiguous and include the provisions that if you meet the criteria

The standard bearer of a viewpoint neutral fees system is this test: if the committee has 12 conservatives on it, could liberal groups get funding? This plays both ways. The current answer is no.

Jerry Rinehart is full of a bunch of BS when he says that the group is representative of students as a whole. In 2001 Students Against Fee Excess was given a seat at the table. While I probably don't agree with Tim Lee, their representative, he at least was kind enough to point out that the process was just a hack committee then as it is now. The group is almost fully comprised of kids from MSA, hand picked by Rinehart. As I have related on my blog.

An example of how unconstitutional the U of M's system is - Groups that are not liked by the committee always commit the fraud of having either too much or too little grant money. If a majority doesn't like a group they will say "We think you can be self sufficient without fees, as you have too much outside grant money in your budget, therefore we are cutting your fees" or they can cut a group under the pretense: "You are not doing enough to be self sufficient and are not pursuing outside grant money, therefore we are cutting your budget". This is all arbitrary as there is never a hard number that defines when a group is or isn't getting enough grant money. Liberals aren't the only ones to do this, conservatives who want to cut fees play this trick too.

SFV deserves 15,000 dollars - there was some problems with the voting, as one member voted no on 15,000 to try and bump it up to 22,000. 22,000 failed by one vote and before that member could remotion for 15,000, the vote for 0 was called and passed on a 6-5 vote, with the chair breaking the tie. This is important because the person who motioned for 22,000 was the pivotal vote on 15,000. Had he voted "yes" on 15,000 SFV would not have been cut.


August 13, 2005  
Blogger lloydletta said...

Tony -

1. substitute anti-black, or anti-semetic for anti-gay - and the groups would be considered hate groups.

2. What was the taking pictures of an office about? That's the first time I heard this part of the story. WSAC refused to comment, when I called them about this story last spring.

I found emails on the campus republicans list that talked about a WSAC takeover (I posted about those on my blog). I was unable to find similar emails on the SFV website.

3. Are you a University student?

4. I have never met Rinehart. The U is a huge place you know.

5. It seemed from the description of your conversation with Rinehart that you were trying to pick a fight with him, so you'd have an excuse for a lawsuit.

6. Do you have sources for your Africana embezzles claim?

7. I don't have problems with the SFV getting funding - providing they play by the rules. I looked at the student fees request for last year, and it sounded excessive - 85K was requested I believe.

8. Why did they take down their web forum? That seemed to be the best thing they had going?

August 13, 2005  
Blogger Aaron said...

So they apply for 85k, I don't understand what the big deal is about that.

1)They [SFV] are the only conservative group funded through mandatory fees. By that logic they are just getting equal funding to liberal viewpoints. Viewpoint neutrality doesn't just mean equal access, it means equal funding as well.

2) The complaint would be more apt if the budget was inconsistent. The budget corrected bad numbers that were present in prior years requests. You may believe that the amount of money they requested is excessive, but that is no reason to punish a group or justify 0 dollars.

3) You decry a group for an 85 thousand dollar request while not even commenting on MISA, which turned in their application late and incomplete according to one of my friends on the committee (and this kid isn't a white republican by any stretch). Just walk by their office in Coffman - they have a big screen TV, X-Boxes, and more computers than the "student government". Now walk to the back of the building where SFVs office is cramed into a cubicle that can barely hold a mini fridge. I'm going out on a limb here, but I'm guessing that 85k request wasn't full of video games, big screen TVs, and multiple computers.

On another note -
A recount of the picture taking event: A alum of the University named Will, for reasons unknown to me or anyone with SFV I've talked to about this event, went and took pictures of the WSAC office. I don't know the manner in which he acted, but if you really feel that threatened by a guy taking pictures in your office, then you need tougher skin. Maybe he was documenting accounts of their liberalism, maybe he didn't like the art on the wall and wanted to make fun of it on his blog, maybe he was just envious of the huge office they have. I don't know and I'm sure Tony doesn't know either (could be wrong there). Isn't Coffman/the office space supposed to be open to the public anyway?

And once again, I am not a member of SFV, but I know for a fact that SFV had nothing to do with Tom Meyers' desire to take over WSAC.


August 13, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eva, stop with your mindless liberal jibber-jabber...until you actually know what you're talking about, I'd suggest going back to your group of lesbian femi-nazis where you can revel in the lesbianism and become distracted from your ridiculous goals of calling yourself a Republican, for one, and a blogger, for another.

August 14, 2005  
Blogger lloydletta said...

Well then SFV should get funding under the KKK rule.

August 14, 2005  
Blogger lloydletta said...

Doesn't the Federalist Society get fees? Aren't there other libertarian conservative groups?

SFV shouldn't be getting the sum of what all liberal groups get. They do not represent all conservatives on campus. Many campus conservatives are fiscally conservative and libertarian on the social issues.

August 14, 2005  
Blogger Anonymous said...

The other conservative groups (those few that saw applying as something other than an act in futility)were rejected, just like sfv in its early years. I think your using the wrong acronym. It should be called the GBLT, WSAC, or MPIRG rule. And again, i wouldn't call the WSAC thing harrasment. For a better definition of harrassment see the "monitoring" activities of the "dump michelle bachman" blog. And don't bother coming back saying "but thats a public figure, it's politics" because you can't get more political than what goes on in the fees process.

August 14, 2005  
Blogger lloydletta said...

Here's the KKK Rule:

If you go back and review the 2001 U of M reform committee, they write that even the KKK would have to be able to get funding if they met the criteria.

EY: Under the KKK Rule, SFV should be getting funding.

This post suggested that the reason Tony wanted student fee funding was in order to have standing to sue the University, that hardly seems to be a useful reason to fund a group with student fees.

August 14, 2005  
Blogger Aaron said...

There is a Federalist Society, but they do not receive fees. They don't even apply for fees.

The only other conservative libertarian group that has access to fees is CFACT, but they are an opt out fees, that is you can opt not to pay the fee when you register for classes.

The Entrepreneurship club applied for fees (I have no clue if they are conservative or not, the one guy I know in the club is left leaning) and I was told by the Chair of the Fees committee, Steve Wang, they were rejected because they were not a 'diverse group'. Heh, another example of how people in the process don't understand Southworth.

I accept that SFV does not represent all conservatives. They do not represent my views on drugs/gay marriage and no one would consider me moderate to liberal by any stretch. At the same time you should say that the liberal groups do not represent all liberals/people who lean left. The point is that funding levels have nothing to do with who you represent or if you represent a majority of a group/the student body as ruled by the supreme court in Southworth. The point is that funding must be viewpoint neutral i.e. you can't fund a group less or treat them differently because of their viewpoint no matter how popular or unpopular it is with anyone. Its hard to see how a system complies with southworth when it consistently and systematically under funds/denies conservative viewpoints (or even possible ones like Entrepreneurship club).


August 14, 2005  
Blogger lloydletta said...

That's the Dump Michele Bachmann blog - 1 L 2 Ns.

Thanks for mentioning it.

I don't follow all the student groups.

And anon, why not sign your name to your post. And Feminazi - ohpuhleaze....

August 14, 2005  
Blogger Tony Garcia said...

"This post suggested that the reason Tony wanted student fee funding was in order to have standing to sue the University, that hardly seems to be a useful reason to fund a group with student fees."

Maybe you can explain for me where this suggestion came from. FAIR funding would need no lawsuit. But the conservative groups are held to a different standard and given different funding. The reality is that the real hatred comes from WSAC, La Raza, QSCC and MPIRG. So, since the University and Rinehart's student lackey's are blatantly squashing free speech (which according to many Sup.Court cases is what student fees represent) a lawsuit is necessary. But there is no money because they cut the funding.

What I find more interesting lloydletta is your incredible lack of facts as you spout off.

As for the evidence of the missing $10K for 2 or 3 years running (plus a few years off and on before that) just look at the committee recommendations (which mention the theft), the tapes of the hearings (where the theft is rationalized by Africana) and the proposals. Africana changed their name to try to alter the financial appearance of their group...so that when people say "your group had theft problems" they can get away with saying, "that is a different group".

They get away with that crap, but uber-liberals like you want to call picture taking allegations grounds for pulling all funding for all things conservative.

I also finding it interesting that instead of attacking an obviously discrminatory system you attack the victims of the discrimination. Should we attack you when you bitch about discrimination against gays? Or is this another double standard by the gay-rights theocracy?

Finally, call it the KKK-rule if you want. I call it Southworth. I understand that you feel the need to engage in hate-baiting while accussing others of what you are doing.

August 15, 2005  
Blogger 'yeti said...

This is pretty pathetic, and so in the interest of healthy debate, I'd like to offer this tip...

Learn how to spell Jerry Rinehart's name! If you can't even think enough to spell his name right, why do you think anyone is going to take you seriously??

And when the best insult to be spewed out here is "feminazi," seriously - some family values. Good luck making any kind of inroads with that sort of rhetoric - you're going to need it, and then some.

August 15, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a former chair of the QSCC, could one of you please provide some sort of examples or proof that the QSCC is a hate group for me? Really, please find some evidence for your claims, otherwise you all just sound like a bunch of crybabies. I can assure you that I'll take any evidence that the QSCC is a hate group to the current leadership and demand change.

And when I was participating with the fees process in 2002-03 and 2003-04, that committee was pretty damn conservative.

August 15, 2005  
Blogger Tony Garcia said...

Excuse me for the spelling error. His profile says his name is Gerald and most people do not change Gerald to Jerry. Why should we take HIM seriously in light of that?

Misspelling aside, his conversation is still enlightening in that there is not any effort to treat all students equally.

"that sort of rhetoric..." That is the exact rhetorical tone that is used by the student fees committee when discussing conservative groups. It seems to be the standard that the administration and the committees want. That is the tone that the liberal groups use. And they get rewarded with fees increases. Yet you imply that such tone will not make "inroads"...that is only true for the conservative groups. That is the status quo that JGerry wants to protect. GJerry knows the system he is protecting is unconstitutional but he knows that providing EQUAL access would mean the end of kicking conservatives around.

As for the evidence...simply the things that are said to the SFV members are sufficient...the rhetoric, if you will. Now, we just understand that such treatment from QSCC and WSAC and others is normal. We do not run to the SAO each time (otherwise we would spend all of our time there). What is odd is your assertion that the "committees were conservative". The slant was decidedly uber-left, the fees recommendations were left-loving and right-hating and then GJerry's refusal to institute equality undermines your assertion.

The bottom line is thaat JGerry is not about finding objective criteria for student fees groups.

Tell me, Mr QSCC Chair, what does a group have to do to maintain funding?

August 15, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's 'former' QSCC chair.

You said: "The reality is that the real hatred comes from WSAC, La Raza, QSCC and MPIRG."

As someone who was charged with maintaining the organization in 2003-04, I'll ask again for proof or evidence that the QSCC exhibits hatred toward anyone.

The fact is that SFV is basically a bunch of conservative white Christians, or a population whose veiwpoint is shared by well over half the United States.

My suggestion for maintaining funding: Find an angle. Just being Christian and white and conservative is so run of the mill, you know, with POTUS and Congress and SCOTUS oh and the Minnesota House basically reflecting your values. I would look for a viewpoint that actually needs some exposure, and can contibute to the diversity of thought.

August 15, 2005  
Blogger Tony Garcia said...

See, that is EXACTLY my point. There is no criteria...it is 100% at the whim of the liberal admin, the liberal-super-majority committees, and the power-hungry GJerry.

"Just being Christian and white and conservative is so run of the mill" actually should be enough. How many of those groups get mandatory student fees funding? SFV (barely) and...that's it. How many are legally supposed to? ALL THAT APPLY.

So what are the criteria to maintain funding? None. There is not any criteria that can be given to the groups to let them know what they must or must not do to protect their funding. That is problematic because it inherntly cannot be veiwpoint neutural. Your answer alone ("Just being Christian and white and conservative is so run of the mill") as justification for lack of funding is not viewpoint neutral.

JGerry knows that...he just does not really care about equality, viewpoint neutrality or following the laws and spirit of this nation's High Court.

Oh, and you are wrong about "Christian and white and conservative" being reflected in the Supreme Court. There is ONE person that fits that and he is going to die/retire soon.

August 15, 2005  
Blogger Aaron said...

"Just being Christian and white and conservative is so run of the mill, you know, with POTUS and Congress and SCOTUS oh and the Minnesota House basically reflecting your values. I would look for a viewpoint that actually needs some exposure, and can contribute to the diversity of thought."

Your understanding of Soutworth is a little off.

You can't make decisions based on viewpoint. Thus, a group can't be cut if their viewpoint is 'overrepresented' in society, or they can't be funded just because they are underrepresented. The neutrality part comes in with the fact that various viewpoints deserve comparable funding or at least a roadmap to obtain equal funding.

The problem is that there are no roadmaps or criteria. Its a shot in the dark, a crap shoot, and generally you have to engineer a take over of the committee to get 'your groups' fees. That is a serious problem, both left and right.

Once again, the standard-bearer of a viewpoint neutral and constitutional fees process is this scenario: If you had a committee full of liberals, could conservatives get funding? If you had a committee full of conservatives, could liberals get funding?

At the U of M, this is clearly no. The process needs to be made less arbitrary and political.


August 15, 2005  
Blogger lloydletta said...

1. Tony, you've never answered my question. Are you a student at the U of MN? If not, then why were you calling G Rinehart?

2. I hadn't heard of the photo taking incident with WSAC until you mentioned it hear.

3. If you want me to report on the other groups shenagans, provide specific links. It's your responsibility to back up what you say, not my responsibility to back up what you say.

Finally on this:

Maybe you can explain for me where this suggestion came from. FAIR funding would need no lawsuit. But the conservative groups are held to a different standard and given different funding. The reality is that the real hatred comes from WSAC, La Raza, QSCC and MPIRG. So, since the University and Rinehart's student lackey's are blatantly squashing free speech (which according to many Sup.Court cases is what student fees represent) a lawsuit is necessary. But there is no money because they cut the funding.

4. Tony - give some specific examples of hate coming from these groups. I second Andy's challenge.

5. SFV doesn't favor freedom of speech. Why else did they shut down their forum?

6. Next time you talk with G Rinehart, try being polite. Heard the old expression - you catch more flies with honey than vinegar?

August 23, 2005  
Blogger Tony Garcia said...

I am affiliated with the University. We can leave it at that...however, as a citizen I have every right to call the weasel.

I was very polite, aside from the fact that he was caught in some lies and I brought them to his attention. He was offered a chance to come on the radio to defend himself. He will have to call in next time...and when we do the Student Fees segment that boy is going to be flamed!!

Taking down a forum is not showing disfavor towards free speech. Especially if the forum is being abused.

Specific examples: many time I visit the office I witness the raised voices from the MPIRG and QSCC offices about bigots, right-wing lunatics, etc. That is not love.

What you liberals are really missing is that I should be able to start a student group that is called the White Student Union or the Straight Student Cultural Center or the Students for Tobacco. Those groups should get as much money with the same requirements as Africana (BSU), QSCC or KUOM. In fact, one of those groups should be allowed to steal/lose 25% of the money and be rewarded with getting more funding.

"If you want me to report..." I do not care what you report. Frankly, when you "report" something it is read by most for the entertainment, just like the National Enquirer. I assume you are referring to the embezzlement by the Black Student Union. If YOU want the "story" then YOU do the work. I have read the recommendations, heard the deliberations and frankly do not feel like wasting time to "back up" something that you do not believe.

Maybe if your "reporting" had credibility I might actually hand the stories to you. You do your own digging for the stories about CFACT, BSU and others.

August 24, 2005  
Blogger lloydletta said...

Why the weasle words about being affiliated with the University? Are you student, staff, faculty or alumni.

The general public is affiliated with the university - since it's a land grand institution here in MN.

August 27, 2005  
Blogger Tony Garcia said...

And that Public Affiliation is all that is necessary.

August 27, 2005  
Blogger Jaime said...

Wouldn't one be more likely to get on Jerry's good side if they, I don't know, made an effort to spell his name correctly?

And, you know, didn't threaten to sue him.

Just saying.

February 19, 2006  
Blogger Tony Garcia said...

Uh, I am pretty sure that his name is Gerry, but I do not know how misspelling his name AFTER the mentioned phone conversation would have any impact on the phone conversation being written about.

Sorry, it is high time that his office gets slapped around with lawsuits. What they do in that office INTENTIONALLY is engage in viewpoint bias and it is illegal. To get around being sued immediately it they tweak the system each year in the hopes that kids who would know better would eventually graduate and be gone.

The way they tweak the system is to exagerate the viewpoint biases which is unethical and contrary to what a University is supposed to be about. What happened to "free exchange of ideas" and "equal treatment"? Obviously, for Rinehart and his cohorts those phrases are only worthy pursuits for the liberal viewpoint.

I'm just saying.

February 19, 2006  
Blogger Jaime said...

Uh, and you would be wrong. Learn to use a search feature.

There's no need to get defensive; I really don't mind that you're threatening to sue, because it's not exactly going to help your cause. I also wouldn't really mind if "Students for Family Values" - certainly not for the family values of the majority of U of M students, or of Twin Cities residents, or of Minnesota residents, for that matter - didn't get a single dime. If "free exchange of ideas" really means "free exchange of racist, sexist and homophobic nonsense," and "equal treatment" really means "equal treatment for everyone except the fags," then fuck free exchange of ideas and equal treatment.

February 20, 2006  
Blogger Tony Garcia said...

Search feature...if he actually mattered I would bother with the search for his name.

Hmm, your comment shows to me yet one more truth...you are more hateful, quick to label people without justification and absolutely ignorant of the facts relating to the topics that you speak on.

February 20, 2006  

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