Ignore the bumbling fools in Austin and Tennessee for a sec and pay attention to UCSB. Trust me, there are bumbling fools locally to make fun of, and they are wasting your money as we speak.

Two weeks ago I wrote a column railing against the inefficiencies of academic bureaucracy and their cancerous ability to waste our time and money. It was the truth of course, but no truth goes unpunished. When I publicly abused the College of Creative Studies for lagging on my application they promptly sent me my rejection letter. Thanks guys, the whale offal is being shipped to the Old Little Theatre as we speak.

The Financial Aid office, on the other hand, whipped itself into shape and coughed up my computer loan in 48 hours. To you guys, all is forgiven. I’ve disarmed the C-4.

But that’s all water under the bridge. This week there are dumber fish to fry, and the trash-sucking carp answers to the name of Associated Students. Every year A.S. puts out a student directory. Like most directories, it is supposed to have the names and phone numbers of important people on campus. It’s simple, first the name, then the phone number. Name, then number.

Somehow they managed to screw this up.

It wasn’t a total screw up. It was only half of a total screw up. They managed to get all the names down, but they put the same phone number for every name in the faculty section. Did I mention that the printing and publication of 10,000 A.S. mis-directories has cost students $32,000 and will cost another $3,000 to fix? Ah, it feels good to be right.

Now, I understand editing snafus. I have messed up and printed wrong things, and people have called me on it. Some readers have gone so far as to pick fights with me, and I’ve yet to cost anyone a dime. Meanwhile, A.S. blows $32,000 of hard-begged beer money and gets some more?!

This situation begs the question, “How do you screw something that big up?” I mean, it’s not like it was subjunctive verb tense conflicts contributing to a muddled argument, it was 52 pages of the same phone number for chrissake. My theory is that an overzealous attempt at diversity led to the hiring of blind students to do final edits. Now I have nothing against blind student editors, just the kind without Braille computer monitors.

I can only imagine the horror when they cracked open the first few and realized their mistake. Next to thousands of faculty names was 805-893-3791, the number for Professor Porter Abbott – A.S.’s new Superstar. Abbot might have to disconnect his phone, but probably not. In my meager experience, I’ve found that students get relatively little direction from A.S.’s annual directory.

And A.S.’s solution? After lengthy discussion and three consultations with a Magic 8-Ball, they are going to rip the 52 pages of misprint out of all 10,000 and put a sticker inside with directions on how to get the real directory. Let us hope to God they get the directions to the directory right.

Three thousand dollars of moron money doesn’t just appear out of nowhere. Finance Board is tapped, so they’re turning to Leg Council for approval to dip into $1.7 million stashed away as “emergency money.” According to new bylaws, an office full of blind editors somehow counts as an emergency. If so, I have better emergencies.

How about free course catalogs for every quarter. They only cost $2.50, but it’s the principal of it. Do you pay to look at a restaurant’s menu? Then why should you pay anything for a menu of classes?

I have another emergency. The price of beer in the UCen is god-awful. An immediate subsidy to lower the horrendous price of alcohol in the UCen would improve campus morale immediately. Other emergencies abound.

How about you take the $1.7 million and pay off all our bullshit parking tickets? The logic is clear. Our parents usually pay A.S. fees, as well as parking tickets. Why do you need the middleman? Make A.S pay the parking people.

It’s always easy and fun to stomp on local government mess ups, especially in light of such frustrating national politics. I encourage every reader to meet your A.S. representatives and promptly begin throwing produce at them. If possible, bill them for the produce you throw, claiming an immediate starvation emergency. In these d’as negros, you have to take whatever catharsis you can get.

Daily Friday editor David Downs is in search of yet another major, as well as a sugar mama to line his pockets with gold. He has failed miserably on both accounts. His column appears every Wednesday.