Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Cal State Fullerton Reporter Slammed for Speaking Truth


CSUF Daily Titan scared by the truth
 Fullerton - A California State University of Fullerton student reporter has come under attack for quoting me in the Daily Titan. 

Ally Bordas wrote a brief article for the Daily Titan on the financial mess at CSUF and pointed out the irresponsibility, waste, and hypocrisy within the universities management.  In her article, she quotes my blog post Cal State Fullerton President - Lifestyles of Our Rich Public Employees at the El Dorado Ranch, which was cross-posted on the Friends for Fullerton's Future blog. 

The CSU media specialist didn't like the fact that Ms. Bordas used my post and even less that it was pulled from the 4F blog.  Unfortunately, the story was pulled from the Daily Titan and Ms. Bordas has had to endure a lot of questions on her fact checking. 

The fact remains that the words she quoted from me are based on the official legal agreement between the State of California and the Chapman family who donated the El Dorado Ranch.  You can find the document at the Orange County Recorder's Office by asking for Instrument No. 1989-334761 of Official Records.  You can also email me at GregSebourn@yahoo.com and I will email the 28-page PDF to you. 

Here are a few facts to consider that the agreement spells out:
  1. Donated in 1989 by the Chapman Family.
  2. CSU Fullerton President Milton Gordon takes office in August 1990, almost exactly 1 year after the donation.
  3. No property taxes are paid on the compound because it is owned by the State of California.  However, the Orange County Assessor still keeps track of how much the 4 acre property would be taxed if anyone else owned it.  That figure puts it at $3,351,724 in 2009! 
  4. The property was donated and all parties agreed that the mansion would be the "official residence" of the president.  This is mentioned multiple times throughout the agreement.
  5. The agreement stipulates that the property shall not be converted into student housing.  However, there is one MAJOR and MASSIVE exception.  The "apartment adjacent to the house [which] may be used for support staff for the President of the University and/or El Dorado Ranch.  In my initial post I said his assistant had a home on the sprawling estate but I was wrong.  He could actually have as many assistants (a.k.a. "support staff") as he feels he needs to have on hand and all of them are welcome to live at the El Dorado Ranch.
  6. At the time of the initial donation, there were numerous antiques on loan to the State that remained in the home.  Some items dating from the early 19th century.
  7. The Chapman family still retains mineral rights to the El Dorado Ranch.  That means they have a right to pump oil from underneath the State's property. 
  8. Item 11 of Exhibit "B" of the agreement requires that any garden developed on the property shall be named the "Alice Wilber Chapman Garden".  Alice Chapman was the mother of the donors. 
  9. The property is owned by the taxpayers of the State of California yet the sign at the entrance reads "PRIVATE PROPERTY".  Surely it was an error on the part of some underpaid state employee who didn't know that public property can't also be private property.
  10. Not in the agreement but worth noting is that we all need to do our part to conserve energy because energy conservation is clearly not high on the President's list of priorities.  Of course when someone else is paying the bill, who cares...  Thanks for leaving the light on!
At the end of the day, Ms. Ally Bordas was correct to point up the chain of command within the CSU system and call out the hypocrisy that exists.  The leadership insists on burdening the students with higher tuition and "fees" but they are not willing to look within their own ranks.  The CSU system has many great minds but where they are being used remains a mystery.  In my opinion, the media specialist should do a little fact checking of their own.


For Milton Gordon, its still good to be king!

Why the look of surprise?













***********************************************
Original Text of Ms. Bordas' Article
***********************************************

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger approved the state budget and allocation of funds to the Cal State University system Oct. 8.  
This is the first time that there has been an approval for an increase in funding for Cal State Universities since 2007.
The CSU Past, Present and Future Budget
The CSU system educates around 450,000 students a year and graduates nearly 90,000 students annually.
Cal State Fullerton is the CSU with the most students, more than 36,000 in 2009, and is followed closely by Cal State Long Beach, which has about 35,500 students, according to the CSU website.
The pending budget weighed heavily on faculty, staff and students. The approved $119 million will restore the university budget and $60.6 million will be helping enrollment growth.
The CSUs will also receive a one-time $106 million federal stimulus fund, which will go toward “helping CSU meet its payroll. In turn, CSU will use monies from state support and student fee revenues previously set aside for payroll to admit new students and restore courses that were previously cut due to budget reductions,” the Cal State University Employee Union, CSUEU, report stated.
The CSUEU said, “the final budget will increase the system's General Fund support from $2.35 billion (2009-10) to $2.62 billion, marking the first restoration of state funding to the CSU since 2007.”
CSU Chancellor Charles B. Reed was relieved after the budget had been announced.

“We thank the Governor and the legislature for their commitment to reinvest in higher education, and appreciate the increase in state funding support for the CSU," Reed said in a report released by CSUEU.
Management from the top of the CSU
Chancellor Reed is “the chief executive officer of the country’s largest senior system of public higher education,” according to the CSU. He represents not only CSUF, but all 23 CSUs.
 
"Like the rest of California, the last two years have been extremely challenging for us, but our mission is to educate the future workforce of the state, and despite these ongoing challenges the CSU will continue to provide both access and service to students," Reed said.
 
Reed also provides leadership to 44,000 faculty and staff and 433,000 students.
When the budget cuts reached their peak, every Board of Trustees member, CSU president and state representative was under the highest scrutiny from student and faculty protesters. An article published in the Daily Sundial in 2009 released Reed’s salary, “$424,548 a year… which we pay for as (students).”
Management at the CSUF level
President Milton A. Gordon, head chief executive at CSUF, also receives an annual salary. According to the Sacramento Bee, he is among the highest paid public employees and earns $302,042.
Gordon was named CSUF president in 1990.  One of the luxuries of being a CSU(F) president is free housing in addition to an annual salary.  
According to a blog post by Greg Sebourn of Friends for Fullerton’s Future, “(Gordon) is living rent free.”
Jessica Barrile, a 24-year-old sociology major, expressed her opinion on Sebourn’s article, “(I don’t know) what Gordon does with his time, cut programs?  I would not mind if he lived rent-free if he was not paid so much.”
 
Gordon’s house, as described by Sebourn in his political blog, is located in El Dorado Ranch and is owned by Chapman family properties.
It is “a four-acre estate sitting high in the Fullerton hills overlooking the commoners eking out a living below and no longer appears to be a working ranch despite its name,” Sebourn wrote.  
 
According to the same blog post, the house is “public property and is valued at $3,351,724 for tax assessment purposes (although the property is exempt from actually incurring property taxes).”
Though the house was a gift from the Chapman family in 1989, the Chapman family made a prior agreement with the state stating, “the taxpayers (meaning us), have to house the university president there and maintain the houses and property,” Sebourn wrote.
 
The assistant to the president has the privilege of living in the guesthouse (as well).
David Armstrong, recent CSUF graduate, said “you don’t want to shortchange the president of the school and the like, because they're your sales team. These are the guys who don't just run the school, but solicit for grant money and put the campus on the map.”
Campus level action on behalf of the CSU and CSUF
In order to keep the CSU system in check, there are many student groups as well as faculty groups that have formed over the years to make sure the CSU system stays true to its mission.  
California Faculty Association
One of these groups is the California Faculty Association. The CFA has 23 chapters, one for each of the Cal State campuses.  
The Fullerton chapter is lead by professor Mougo Nyaggah, and professor Jarret Lovell serves as the vice president.
The CFA Fullerton website states “(We) are the voice and link to the statewide CFA… CFA is a democratic organization with an elected leadership and decision-making structure both at the statewide and campus levels.”
The CFA is not just for faculty members, there is a section dedicated for students on its website.
“CFA has a long standing position of opposing students fee increases because fee hikes hurt access to higher education,” according to the CFA.
 
Last year, the CFA organized many on-campus events to combat the budget cuts. They tabled on the Titan Walk to inform the student body about furloughs and also held open forum discussions.  
Working alongside the CFA last year was the CSUF student lead group who coined themselves as the “Elephant in the Room.” This group of students and faculty advisers held many on-and-off campus protests, organized discussion events, wrote manifestos, and held many meetings to openly talk about their concerns with the CSU.
Today, this reformed group calls themselves “We! Communities for the Future of the University.”  They fight to sustain the CSU and all of the programs attached to it. The group meets on-campus to discuss old and new problems within the education system and possible solutions.
 
The group met two weeks ago with history professor, Steve Jobbitt, who moderated the discussion. There were about ten students in attendance, differing in age and major.  
“Last year, We! was taking small issues and expanding them. This meant that we related issues to not only how they would affect the university, but how these issues would affect society as a whole,” Jobbitt said at the beginning of the meeting.
The group discussed creating a website to inform the student body about different social justice issues occurring in the world, holding more open forums and talked about news occurring around the nation in the educational system.
Recent concerns with the CSU system were also discussed. The new early start program really seemed to irk many We! members.  
“The early start program forces recent high school graduates preparing to attend a CSU school in the fall to take remedial classes before they qualify for financial aid,” Jobbitt said.
 
Jobbitt asked the group, “If we as the students and faculty don’t do something, then what? We cannot wait.”
 
The group thought about this question as Jobbitt pushed even further saying, “If the CSU system goes, that’s it. We are the biggest education system in the nation. We affect everything.”
Students for Quality Education
Another group that works alongside the CFA is “Students for Quality Education (SQE).  Formed in 2007-08 by students in the (CSU) system to build the student movement for educational rights in public higher education,” said the SQE.
 
The SQE motto is “Stand up, Speak out, and Protect the Quality of our Education!”  
Although CSUF does not have a SQE chapter, CSULB does and welcomes students from all schools to unite to fight the budget cuts and other CSU problems and concerns.
Armstrong brings a different perspective to the budget issue.  
“Personnel makes up for 75 to 85 percent of all expenses. This is faculty salary, pension, healthcare, and other related benefits,” Armstrong said. “If you want to cut the budget, the biggest slice to trim is faculty salaries.”
Armstrong does not deny the fact that the faculty has taken pay cuts and hasn’t received a raise in several years.  
“However, what they won't tell you is if they are Ph.D.s, or better yet, published, (they can) be making from salary alone $85,000 plus. This ignores benefits,” Armstrong said. “That is a very professional salary, not blue collar.”
Barrile fears for the future of the CSUs if student admissions continue to increase without the monetary grants going to the right places and meeting the concerns of the student body.
“I think it is bad for those who are serious about school, because so often I see students trying to add a full class and there is a fair amount of enrolled students that end up dropping it, and those who wanted the class cannot have it,” Barrile said.
Armstrong asks the student body to ponder this question before siding with the faculty, who he says is just “wanting your sympathy so you'll side with them… when was the last time one of your professors genuinely impressed you, taught you new knowledge, and not just a cliche or pithy quote from a dead white guy?”
Armstrong continued to express his concerns and dissent.
“I will never donate money to the school, because the faculty are so unimpressive and uninspired,” Armstrong said.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Greg Sebourn

Orange County Bail Bonds

The Beauty of a Storm

The Beauty of a Storm
Orange County, Ca.

My Grandma - A Eulogy

LET'S TALK ABOUT 1914 FOR A MOMENT.



FOR STARTERS, GRANDMA WAS BORN TUESDAY, DECEMBER 22, 1914 IN HER FAMILY'S ATWOOD RANCH HOUSE.



IT IS WORTH NOTING THOSE ALSO BORN IN 1914:

JACK LALANNE

JOE DIMAGGIO

DANNY THOMAS



AND WHO DIED IN 1914:

JOHN MUIR, THE FAMOUS NATURALIST FOR WHICH NUMEROUS ROADS, PARKS, HOTELS, AND NATURE RESERVES ARE NAMED.



IT IS ALSO WORTH NOTING THAT IN 1914 WOODROW WILSON SIGNS MOTHER'S DAY PROCLAMATION AND BABE RUTH MAKES HIS MAJOR LEAGUE DEBUT WITH THE RED SOX. MOTHER'S DAY AND BASEBALL- TWO OF MY FAVORITES!! (PERHAPS HER NICKNAME "BABE" CAME FROM BABE RUTH???)



GRANDMA WAS BORN INTO A PERIOD OF TIME FILLED WITH TURMOIL. IN JUNE OF 1914 ARCHDUKE FRANZS FERDINAND WAS ASSASSINATED. WITHIN ONE MONTH WORLD WAR I RAGED ACROSS EUROPE. TWO DAYS AFTER HER BIRTH HOWEVER, GERMAN AND BRITISH TROOPS INTERRUPTED WWI TO CELEBRATE CHRISTMAS. (PERHAPS THEY PAUSE KNOWING THAT A GREAT WOMAN WAS BORNE) WORLD WAR I CONTINUED UNTIL THE TREATY OF VERSAILLES IN 1919.



ALTHOUGH SHE WAS ONLY 5 YEARS OLD, SHE SAW THE LEAGUE OF NATIONS CREATED AND THE 19TH AMENDMENT WAS APPROVED BY THE U.S. CONGRESS GUARANTEEING THE RIGHTS OF WOMEN TO VOTE.



SHE LIVED THROUGH MANY NOTABLE EVENTS. LIKE THE 1933 LONG BEACH EARTHQUAKE OR WHEN ATWOOD FLOODED ALONG WITH MOST OF ORANGE COUNTY IN 1938 AND THE FLOOD-WATERS CLAIMED MORE THAN 50 PEOPLE, 43 OF WHICH WERE FROM ATWOOD! ALL OF THIS DURING A TIME THAT WE READ ABOUT IN SCHOOL AND KNOWN AS "THE GREAT DEPRESSION". SOMEWHERE IN ALL OF THAT SHE FOUND THE LOVE OF HER LIFE, GRANDPA LEO, GRADUATED HIGH SCHOOL, GOT MARRIED, AND HAD KIDS!



THEN THERE WAS WORLD WAR II. FROM PEARL HARBOR TO HIROSHIMA, GRANDMA WAS RAISING MY UNCLE BOB AND MOM ARLINE. WITH AIR-RAID SIRENS AND BLACKOUTS SHE WAS A WIFE AND MOTHER. WHAT A TIME TO RAISE CHILDREN! I BET GRANDMA'S PARENTS WERE ABEL TO TELL HER A THING OR TWO ABOUT RAISING KIDS IN WARTIME.



GRANDMA WAS THERE WHEN THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA HELD THEIR 3RD ANNUAL NATIONAL JAMBOREE IN 1953. SHE SAW AIRBASES OPEN IN '42 AND CLOSE IN '99. SHE WATCHED WALTER KNOTT START UP HIS BERRY FARM AND WALT DISNEY TURN ORANGE GROVES AND STRAWBERRY PATCHES INTO DISNEYLAND!



SHE SAW THE HORSE AND CARRIAGE FADE AWAY INTO HISTORY AND SPACE TRAVEL EXPLODE BEFORE HER WITH THE FIRST LUNAR LANDING. JUST IMAGINE HOW MUCH TECHNOLOGY HAS CHANGED OVER THE LAST 100 YEARS. FROM TUBE RECTIFIERS TO SUPERCONDUCTORS; FROM TRANS-ATLANTIC TELEGRAPH CABLES TO SATELLITE TV.



SHE SAW MORE IN HER 93 YEARS THAN MOST OF US WILL EVER READ ABOUT, LET ALONE LIVE THROUGH!



OF THOSE 93 YEARS IT IS MY HONOR TO HAVE BEEN HER GRANDSON FOR 35 OF THEM. SHE WAS MY MOTHER WHEN MOM HAD TO WORK. SHE WIPED MY NOSE AND PUT FOOD IN MY MOUTH. SHE LET ME PLAY WITH GRANDPA EVEN THOUGH SHE NEEDED HIM TO TAKE HER TO THE STORE. SHE WAS MY GRANDMA AND I WILL MISS HER IMMENSELY.



JUST LOOK AROUND THIS ROOM; SHE DID THIS. SHE IS RESPONSIBLE FOR BRINGING SO MANY GOOD PEOPLE INTO THIS WORLD AND TOGETHER TODAY. THIS IS HER LEGACY.



A Dedication To My Loving Wife, Stacey. Thank you for all you do for me!

Brad Paisley - I Thought I Loved You Then


I remember trying not to stare the night that I first met you
You had me mesmerized
3 weeks later in the front porch light taking 45 min to kiss you goodnight
I hadn’t told you yet but I thought I loved you then

Chorus
Now you’re my whole life now you’re my whole world
I just can’t believe the way I feel about you girl
Like a river meets the sea
Stronger than it’s ever been
We’ve come so far since that day
And I thought I loved you then.

I remember taking you back to right where I first met you
You were so surprised
There were people around
But I didn’t care I got down on one knee right there
And once again I thought I loved you then

Chorus
Now you’re my whole life now you’re my whole world
I just can’t believe the way I feel about you girl
Like a river meets the sea
Stronger than it’s ever been
We’ve come so far since that day
And I thought I loved you then.

I can just see you with a baby on the way
I can just see you when your hair is turning gray
What I can’t see is how I’m ever gonna love you more
But I’ve said that before.

Now you’re my whole life now you’re my whole world
I just can’t believe the way I feel about you girl
Well look back some day at this moment that we’re in
And I'll look at you and say I thought I loved you then
And I thought I loved you then...

Download AutoCAD's Educational Version