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View Diary: OWS Occupy Atlanta on John Lewis (24 comments)

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  •  To clarify: (2+ / 0-)
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    Rich in PA, Bronxist

    I don't understand how consensus can be arrived at if each person can effectively veto? Can the objections of one or two people overrule the wishes of everyone else? If the equivalent of "unanimous consent" is required for every decision won't the result be a lot of inertia?

    It matters not how small the beginning may seem to be: what is once well done is done forever. Henry David Thoreau, in Civil Disobedience

    by Had Enough Right Wing BS on Mon Oct 10, 2011 at 05:17:20 AM PDT

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    •  Concensus is a procedure that is used (5+ / 0-)

      by Quakers in their business meetings.

      It does not mean that that everyone agrees. It does mean that you try as hard as possible toward that goal. All concerns are heard and are dealt with. Often the result is much better than any one person could have dreamed of.

      People are asked to stand aside if their objection is not a serious one. Most time people will stand aside with group pressure unless the objection is a moral one.

      What it does is make everyone in the group responsible for the end product. There is a skill to it. People who have experience in it become excellent  negotiators and problem solvers. It makes you think.

      It is messy, time consuming. and it puts a premium on patience. Occasionally big decisions take years. Literally.

      My husband was  a member of the Friends Meeting at Dartmouth College in the 1960s. They met in the basement of one of the College buildings.

      I nonmember offered to give the Meeting a large home on
      the finest street in town in memory of a woman Friend who had died. Included with the gift was a large sum of money for maintenance of the property. There were no strings attached.

      The discussions about accepting the gift went on for two years. One couple was adamantly against the gift and would not stand aside. They did not want the meeting to be encumbered by property. It was not the simple way to live; it complicated life...on and on. It was brought up at every monthly meeting to the point that it was embarrassing.

      The solution...the couple went away on vacation and the gift was approved.

      I understand that they later agreed that  accepting the gift had been a good thing.

      One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors." -- Plato

      by Jane Lew on Mon Oct 10, 2011 at 06:32:21 AM PDT

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      •  Very helpful, Jane, sometimes words are used in (0+ / 0-)

        non-standard ways (e.g. "meta" on Daily Kos), and one assuming standard usage will misunderstand much.

        This is what I consider to be a "normal" definition of consensus.

        I think it would be unwise not to recognize the intensity of ill-will on the right, with not all of it coming from the 1%, either. If none have tried to obstruct or distract OWS, well that comes as a relief.

        I am stuck in "the old ways" of exaggerated polarization. While I share the goals of OWS this is yet another example where I can be a supporter, but need to do so as a learner.

        It matters not how small the beginning may seem to be: what is once well done is done forever. Henry David Thoreau, in Civil Disobedience

        by Had Enough Right Wing BS on Tue Oct 11, 2011 at 02:50:45 AM PDT

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