October 2, 2012

If I stand in my office window Thursday, I can expect to be contacted by police personnel.

Here's the University of Wisconsin's latest information about the various intrusions to be experienced when the President of the United States has his big political rally historical oration on Bascom Mall. I noticed this:
Blinds in buildings facing the event area need to be closed on Thursday. Anyone standing in a window facing the event area Thursday can expect to be contacted by police personnel.
But it turns out, I can't be in my office anyway:
Academic and administrative buildings: Between the hours of 7 a.m. – 6 p.m. the following buildings will be closed to classes, employees and all other activities: Science Hall, Education, North Hall, South Hall, Law School and Music Hall. Students should await details from their instructors on alternative arrangements. 
The law school building will be inaccessible for 11 hours.  And my students are told to "await details" from me.

By the way, the University is still linking to the Obama campaign website, where you have to go to get a ticket. You cannot attend unless you give the campaign your telephone number.

68 comments:

Tim said...

Barack Obama.

America's Boyfriend.

He's the best.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

The world stops spinning when Lord Obama deigns to step foot upon the lowly ground.

Grovel before the might of Ozymandias ....I mean Obama, and marvel at his works.

Shouting Thomas said...

In short, the University of Wisconsin officially endorses Barack Obama for President!

TWM said...

"All your cheezeburgers are mine." ~ Barry O.

Brennan said...

Honestly, schedule the classes at alternative site if the lessons and days are valuable. Take it to any one of those cafes where you can talk about anything.

This information is going to change. The next iteration will be even more strict that this one.

chickelit said...

Tell your students to enjoy their day off! Tell them to go to the rally and to vote Obama.

Dan Collins said...

You're badgering the witless.

Rustling Leaves said...

So is the Obama campaign going to reimburse the students for their missed classes? Doesn't he know how expensive an education is these days? If I were a student there, I would demand payment for missed class time.

Michael in ArchDen said...

YES! Rodney Dangerfield remains at the top of the list of famous people Ann has seen from her office window!

TWM said...

"Blinds in buildings facing the event area need to be closed on Thursday. Anyone standing in a window facing the event area Thursday can expect to be contacted by police personnel."

Yes, because a smart sniper would of course stand out in the open where he or she could be seen, instead of, you know, HIDING BEHIND THE FUCKING BLINDS. Sometimes the stupidity of my law enforcement breathern astounds me.

On the other hand, it's more likely they are worried about photos being taken from up above showing a less than hoped for crowd? Normally I wouldn't worry about that there, but Barry hasn't been exactly bringing them in droves lately, has he?

chickelit said...

Tim said...
Barack Obama.
America's Boyfriend.
He's the best.


I am woman, hear me rowr (and vote too)

DADvocate said...

I suggest you stand in the window with a broom stick, umbrella, or other long, thin object and repeatedly point it at the president.

TWM said...

"YES! Rodney Dangerfield remains at the top of the list of famous people Ann has seen from her office window!"

Good for Rodney. He also gets more respect than Barry.

TWM said...

"If I were a student there, I would demand payment for missed class time."

It's just school loans. Nothing to worry about . . .

EMD said...

Any grassy knolls nearby?

EMD said...

For Sale!

Kit said...

Correction: You cannot attend unless you give the campaign some telephone number.

McTriumph said...

I'm surprised a phone number is all they want. In my experiences with US Presidents, the Secret Service wants all kinds of personal info, including mother's maiden name.

It will be a bitch for the University and Madson that day, but it's always cool to meet a president. Although I doubt many students will actually get to meet Berry.

TWM said...

Obviously there are valid security concerns regarding the buildings, etc., but the whole name, address, phone number, email deal plus the shutting of the buildings so no photos can be taken from above points to advance damage control in case crowds are smaller than they hope.

Marshal said...

Take your camera when you try to enter.

DADvocate said...
I suggest you stand in the window with a broom stick, umbrella, or other long, thin object and repeatedly point it at the president.


It would be awful to become a martyr for a cause you don't even support. Can you imagine the nuts: "We always knew she was a right-wing lunatic".

leslyn said...

11 hours! MAH GAWD, THINK OF THE CHILDREN!

Boo effing hoo.

Quayle said...

Your non-dischargable student loan dollars at work.

MadisonMan said...

How many people get to take the day off from a job? Tell your students that the material on Thursday will form the crux of the midterm, and then make it so. If they complain about not being able to see the President, repeat the first sentence, above.

I think you should hold the class in Bascom. I notice it's not closed (wouldn't want to inconvenience the Adminstration!!). Or the top floor of Van Hise. You could see -- well, if the blinds were open -- Bascom from there.

dbp said...

Students! Go to the event site well before they cordon it off and refuse to leave if asked. Occupy Bascom Mall!

leslyn said...

"It would be awful to become a martyr for a cause you don't even support."

I know you mean this literally; but A is already getting as much martyrdom as she can squeeze out of this. Expect a flood of pictures sufficient to last the next three months, in which the little woman has imagined herself being treated unfairly (oh, the incivility of it!) or--MAH GAWD, I WAS THREATENED, THAT BIG MAN BACKED INTO MY TOE!

garage mahal said...

but the whole name, address, phone number, email deal plus the shutting of the buildings so no photos can be taken from above points to advance damage control in case crowds are smaller than they hope.

I'm not a security expert, but I imagine not wanting people standing in windows has more to do with security than people taking pictures.

Obama drew 20,000 in Milwaukee a few weeks ago, I'm guessing he will do well in Madison.

Beta Rube said...

How many people get to take a day off of work?

Ask Barry, who oiled his way to a fundraiser in Vegas before the bodies of four Americans in Libya were cold.

Kit said...

TWM, they're asking for your name, email, zip and phone number. No address. They email you the confirmation... and there is no mention of additional I'd needed.

I'm sure the window and rooftop restrictions are for safety reasons, only.

Inga said...

He's the President, no doubt Madison doesn't want the distinction that Dallas earned.

Too bad you can't stand in your window though, what a blog post that would've been! I Got Arrested by the Campus Police.

Sorun said...

"You cannot attend unless you give the campaign some telephone number."

There's always (608) EAT-SHIT.

McTriumph said...

"He's the President, no doubt Madison doesn't want the distinction that Dallas earned."

He's in Wisconsin for the same reason Kennedy was in Texas.

Bryan C said...

"I'm not a security expert, but I imagine not wanting people standing in windows has more to do with security than people taking pictures."

Or maybe they shouldn't commandeer a public university for a campaign rally.

"Obama drew 20,000 in Milwaukee a few weeks ago"

Was that the miraculous loaves-and-fishes crowd at the 5000 seat arena? The preposterously high number helpfully provided to the press by the campaign?

Chip Ahoy said...

That's a very good window.

Oh, a guy named Chávez called and got my number by mistake. Said he wanted to know the best time to come vote

MadisonMan said...

One of the reasons they want your number is that they'll send your ticket to your smart phone.

My phone is dumb.

Smilin' Jack said...

Anyone standing in a window facing the event area Thursday can expect to be contacted by police personnel.

As I recall from my own experiences on Bascom Hill, the proper response when "contacted by police personnel" is "Fuck you, pig!!"

Lindsey Meadows said...

"The law school building will be inaccessible for 11 hours. And my students are told to "await details" from me."

the Oracle from Delphi speaks. We eagerly await...

bagoh20 said...

" You cannot attend unless you give the campaign your telephone number."

867-5309

bagoh20 said...

Just think about all this cost, disruption, and hoopla, and try to imagine what possible purpose it could serve that would justify it.

Obama will say the same stuff he's been saying for 5 years. People will cheer their favorite sound bites, and then every single person will vote the same way they were going to before.

It's good to be the King...so at the very least you can remind people of it every day.

Lindsey Meadows said...

bagoh20 said...
" You cannot attend unless you give the campaign your telephone number."


gosh, can I remember back to 2004 when you had to sign a paper declaring you were a Bush supporter and you would behave and all kinds of stuff in rallys at a public place...so those folks just need to go stuff it.

Tim said...

Inga said...

"He's the President, no doubt Madison doesn't want the distinction that Dallas earned."

I suppose somewhere someone wrote a book blaming all of Dallas for Kennedy's assassination.

Tim said...

"867-5309"

Fitting.

Sluts for Barry.

Paddy O said...

Now we get to the "How Obama lost me" territory.

Althouse does not like being told what she has to do and what she cannot do.

Paddy O said...

Never kick a homebody out of their home or office.

Synova said...

Maybe Romney should demand his equal time and all the students can get TWO days off school.

damikesc said...

Obama drew 20,000 in Milwaukee a few weeks ago

Or less than a 1/4 of that. Depends on if you want reality or Barrett's VERSION of reality.

pst314 said...

"Blinds in buildings facing the event area need to be closed"

IIRC, that requirement has been around for a number of years.

Eric said...

You cannot attend unless you give the campaign your telephone number.

I'll bet you have to show ID as well.

Freeman Hunt said...

I figured they'd do that. I saw Clinton speak in downtown Little Rock after his second election. Watched them check every single window with spotlights.

Penny said...

There's a 30% chance of rain in Madison that day.

If the past is predictive, we should hear an announcement for a change of venue to some indoor arena as early as tonight.

harrogate said...

it is either this, or not have the President come on a school day. I really don't think the security measures are that surprising. Whether or not the need for such measures should have dissuaded him from coming to campus is another question altogether.

Patrick said...

Obama drew 20,000 in Milwaukee a few weeks ago, I'm guessing he will do well in Madison.

In venue that holds only 5,000. It's like the loaves and fishes all over again! He has returned to us!

Tibore said...

They won't let you in your own office???

OMG... I'd be telling them classes cancelled for the entire day, I'll work from home.

Sofa King said...

Ok, blinds have to be closed...but I wonder what they would say about a large "unhelpful" poster in one of the windows? I really wish I had your office right now!

karrde said...

Sounds weird.

Let me put it this way: the University is saying you won't be allowed to be in your office.

I suspect that you have keys which will give you access even if the front door of the building is locked. Thus, they cannot deny you access unless either (a) a guard is posted at every door of that building, or (b) the locks at the outside doors are changed to not accept the key you currently use.

Option (a) is more likely, but the University may still simply lock the doors and trust those with keys to stay away.

I'm still not sure that you would like to test the system by showing up and attempting to get into your office.

But my first guess is that it is very possible. Most University buldings have several entrances; even if a guard is posted, the guard is not likely to be at all entrances that a Professor's key would open.

Aside: it is worth noting that very few people in the press realize or articulate the amount of security hassle that surrounds visits from the President.

Roads get shut down, traffic diverted, regular use of buildings of suspended or canceled for a day.

It's almost like the President and the Press retinue that reports on him live inside a bubble. They don't understand the perspective from outside that bubble.

Another aside: I once worked a student-employee job that entailed being a Security Assistant at a University. I rapidly learned that security of buildings mostly depended on when the doors were locked, and who had access to the keys. Every building had at least one entrance for general use, and a secondary entrance for use by maintenance staff. Both doors would open to the same set of keys. Every door inside the building had a unique key, but those keys would also open the main door to the building.

Worryingly, sometimes doors that should be closed were left open. Sometimes, doors that should be open are left locked. Sometimes, student groups had forgotten to request late-night access to the room that they wanted to use. (And once a student group reserved a 10x10 storage room for a meeting that involved more than 100 people. Either that, or they wrote the room-number of the storage room onto the request form when they had intended to write the room-number of an adjacent auditorium...)

I also learned that security mostly depended on trusting the people involved. If many people attempt to break the security system, then some will succeed. Because no security system is unbreakable. However, some security systems are better than others at minimizing the consequences of people breaking through security.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

harrogate,

it is either this, or not have the President come on a school day.

And your problem with that would be ... ?

I really don't think the security measures are that surprising. Whether or not the need for such measures should have dissuaded him from coming to campus is another question altogether.

Look, there is no educational point in shutting down half a university campus during class time so that the President can hold a campaign rally. On what grounds is this defensible? I'd say that the President, like any other candidate for any office, ought to be able to make as many speeches as he likes; but that if he insists on making them in places where the speechmaking impedes the actual business of the people for whom the institution actually exists, then he's being a bit of a jerk, and the UW administrators allowing it are accomplices-in-jerkitude.

karrde said...

@bagoh20, 867-5309

Would they recognize it? What about 555-1212?

(After all, if you know who you want to contact, you should be able to get to them through that number.)

rhhardin said...

I'd schedule a solar eclipse or something.

Meade said...

MadisonMan said...

"My phone is dumb."

Racist.

edutcher said...

All you have to do is fly an Al Qaeda flag from the jackstaff.

After that, you could dance naked on the roof with a Barrett .50 in each hand and an RPG slung over each shoulder and no one would bother you.

Sunslut7 said...

Ann,
I hope that you and Meade cover the event and live blog the festivities. its not everyday that the World Emperor comes calling to Madison.


Will the crowd chant: "We're not worthy, we're not worthy...."

James Pawlak said...


Obama cares nothing for the Law.

Think .50-caliber Barrett from the outer, top, platform of the Capitol Building.

WineSlob said...

They Interrupt Your Studies of Henry David Thoreau
And Vincent Van Gogh
Put on Some Sheryl Crow

Can't Overlook the Lefty Freak Show
Going On Below
Can't Even Be in the Building
No Place Else to Go

And So the Liar's Dice Will Roll
And a Pair of Fives Will Show
Defiant Ann in Her Office--Oh No!
Oh Yeah PairAFives: That's Tits-in-the Window.




Paul Zrimsek said...

"Whose offices? OUR offices!"

joeshmo99 said...

If you're not alarmed by the fascistic trend, you're not paying attention.

Lawyer Mom said...

Err, the students attending Obama's "rally" will have to give up more than their phone #s. They'll have to give up their free speech rights if they want to get in. Sure, it's temporary, but temporary does have a funny way of becoming permanent when the gov't is involved. Camel's nose and all that.

http://nation.foxnews.com/obama-event/2012/09/19/obama-not-president-guy

Rick67 said...

So UW Madison pretty much takes the mask off and announces "screw neutrality, we want you to vote for Obama!" One gets mighty sick and tired of having to say over and over, "You know, if this were happening with a Republican candidate" ah heck you know the rest.

Rusty said...

A hundred bucks to the first person who can yell,"You suck" loud enough to be heard on tape.

Michael said...

You don't need no education. You don't need no thought control.