[Foundation-l] Why is it...

Florence Devouard Anthere9 at yahoo.com
Fri Apr 27 01:29:10 UTC 2007

Ray Saintonge wrote:
> Delphine Ménard wrote:
>> ... that every time community input is asked on a subject by a board
>> member, little to none is given?
>> And why is it that every time the same things that were put up for
>> discussion are said "approved' or "official" suddenly everyone finds
>> something to say?
>> Shouldn't it be the other around?
> Welcome to Franz Kafka's real world!
> I often find that it's my most imaginative ideas that are ignored.  When 
> I read the messages of others it's easy when I can respond with a 
> one-liner, but when someone like Anthere produces one of her most 
> thoughtful comments to which I really want to reply I find myself 
> paralyzed in contemplation with wanting to respond in a way that is just 
> as thoughtful.  The result is that much of what I want to say remains 
> unsaid.  Her comments to start the tread on "Governance" is a good 
> example of that.
> In Boston you commented to me quite rightly that you find some of my 
> posts interesting, but tending to come too late in the thread.  I often 
> wonder whether there is any cure for that.  I completely avoid IRC, 
> because by the time that I would be ready to make a thoughtful response 
> everyone else would have moved on to a different topic. As my teenage 
> son, who manages several chat room conversations at the same time says, 
> "Dad, you think too much."
> Others who have responded to your request are quick to  prescribe a set 
> of steps or rules to deal with the problem.  I don't think any of them 
> will work, because we are dealing with a fundamental problem of human 
> nature.  This is compounded by the very real problem of information 
> overload.  That problem forces us to choose between alternative 
> applications of our time, because it would be physically impossible to 
> deal with all the demands. 
> There is no easily apparent result when one is asked to express their 
> ideas in a broadly visionary way.  Learning to vision is just not a part 
> of our upbringing.  I can easily imagine Jimbo in January of 2001 
> telling people about his plans for an encyclopedia, and receiving 
> comments akin to Bill Cosby's "Riight! How long can tread water?"  On 
> the oher hand, when an apparently complete proposal is presented there 
> is a near immediate response to specific criticism, and even an outright 
> rejection can be satisfying if it comes immediately.  It ties in with a 
> broader need for instant gratification.  Look at the energy that is 
> often expended on deleting a tiny stub of an article with questionable 
> notability.  This absolutely ignorable backwater of the database becomes 
> important by virtue of the emphasis on its unimportance.  Nature's 
> efficiencies include a tolerance for the useless.  One can only wonder 
> what would happen if the question of whether men should retain their 
> nipples were put through one of our democratic processes.
> I think that we have a lot of broader social trends that come into play 
> here than most people are not even willing to imagine.  I do not use the 
> term paradigm shift lightly, but I do see us stuvk in one where it is 
> easy to sympathize with the offspring of the Grand Inquisitor who would 
> do whatever it takes to preserve a comfortable established order.
> As we grow up we enclose and trap ourselves in a net of preconceptions.  
> Democratic structures require a balance between diligence and trust 
> before they can become fully effective.  Trust also requires us to 
> Assume Good Faith, and that's difficult to do when one is afraid of 
> losing everything he doesn't have.  It's so much easier to flounder 
> about in Dante's fourth circle.
> Thank you Delphine for providing me with an opportunity to rant. ;-)
> Ec



More information about the foundation-l mailing list