[MG] Secret Ballots

Mark Janssen stalkingtime at gmail.com
Wed Jun 2 17:31:07 EDT 2010

>> While this is generally true at some levels, it cannot be true at all
>> levels.  The issue of timing and *need* requires decisions without the
>> luxury of consensus or a (both/and) grey middle.   Ultimately that is
>> what the executive branch is charged with doing, for example.  Make a
>> "gut" decision and live with the/any consequences.
> The issue of "urgency" has come up before, for example at:
> http://metagovernment.org/wiki/Talk:FAQ#Emergency_Planning
> and my opinion is that it is a red herring.
> ...
> But more generally, I think that urgency itself is a question of consensus.
> Is there a consensus that there is an urgency in the first place? If not,
> then what need is there for action? If there is a consensus that something
> must be done right away, then people who are used to operating under
> collaborative governance systems should be able to reach a speedy consensus.
> If they all agree that something has to be done, then they are going to be
> much more willing to figure out what that something is.

This is a decent analysis, but I must say that as soon as you ask the
damn question:  "Is this an urgent situation?"  Then the answer is
*already* no.  Urgent situations are one's where that luxury doesn't
exist (the mental dialog), OR the indulgence in that luxury would
create a unacceptable lack of progress.  Examine carefully people who
are procrastinators.

> First, most Metagovernment projects are not starting as massive
> international or international projects; they are more focused on small
> organizations. The sort of crisis that a small organization may face usually
> does not entail life-or-death immediacy.

 I'd say the issue of scale (nations vs small organizations) is a red
herring.  While the scope of consequence may not be as great in the
long term, in the short term there  is *need* to make progress.  As a
solitary individual, for example, when faced with two equally good
choices, one must not end up like Buriden's Ass and starve oneself
with indecision.

> Further nuance is provided at the above link. (Most notably, that
> collaborative governance does not preclude leaders, only *empowered*
> leaders.)

This point I think needs further debate.  I think a reputation network
would offer efficient allocation of decision-making authority while
also being fair; notably, it would *not* require consensus on every
decision (but transparency and accountability take care of that).


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