Photo by Cindy Cui / Photo Editor

With the slogan “Earth Toned Prezidante for a Toned Earth,” Jackson Tarlin presents a four pillar platform full of unorthodox proposals that aim to improve student life and enhance campus. Where Tarlin may score a ten in humour, he scores a zero in feasibility. 

Tarlin’s plan to divide McMaster’s campus into five zones, with each zone corresponding to different levels of permitted expression, is a violation of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The harms largely outweigh any possible benefit, and it would be impossible for Tarlin to overcome legal obstacles to achieve his first platform point. 

Another one of Tarlin’s proposals to improve student life is to publicly shame unsatisfactory water fountains. Unfortunately for Tarlin, however, water fountains do not have feelings. His suggestion to publicly shame water fountains will not result in water fountains learning to “toe the line — or else”. Merriam Webster defines water fountains as machines and devices, structures that have one function and can neither change nor adapt. These structures cannot make their water warmer, increase their own water pressure or change their taste, which Tarlin highlights as problems that need fixing. In addition, Facility Services have already installed  signs above most water fountains on campus with a phone number that students may call if they encounter problems. 

As part of his plan to enhance clubs and services, Tarlin aims to hire enough staff for The Silhouette to release issues daily. He plans to secure funding for this by raising the tuition of a select 20 students by thousands of dollars each. It is unclear how Tarlin would select these lucky few. Furthermore, Tarlin neglected to consult The Silhouette about the feasibility of this proposal.

As the old saying goes, solar panels don’t grow on trees. While McMaster would benefit from an energy retrofit, purchasing and installing solar panels would require large investments from the university. Although  solar energy may become cheaper in the future, Tarlin has shown neither research nor consultation to back up his plan to install solar panels on trees around campus. Furthermore, Tarlin does not consider the ecological damage that may result from putting solar panels on trees. This is particularly surprising given that Tarlin has an entire platform point dedicated to protecting animal species on campus. 

If there was one action point that could sum up Tarlin’s whole platform, it would be his plan to fund and build a stationary campus monorail in the roughly three metre passageway between MUSC and Mills. The magnitude of this cost is not even worth investigating. Other than functioning as a high-tech tunnel, the monorail would provide no benefit to students. 

Climate change and affordability are two themes that could be important for students. While Tarlin names these issues, he neglects to provide actionable steps towards addressing them. 

From random ideas, such as taking down a tree near Togo Salmon Hall, to training McMaster geese to be more violent, Tarlin has a lot going on in his platform. Unfortunately, none of it is useful. 

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