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a random thought about organising 

Unstructured organising favours existing informal hierarchies and is vulnerable to people fighting over social capital.

Consensus organising is vulnerable to people who realise they can wield power with blocking tactics - refusing consensus unless it’s on their terms.

Formal structure is vulnerable to capture by people who make a hobby of formal structure, and to people who use rules to excuse their bad behaviour.

a random thought about organising 

My point, I guess, is partly the uncontroversial observation that organising needs continuous work to keep things on track, but also that you have to beware the sunk cost fallacy and be ready to move on when the work of organising becomes too much.

a random thought about organising 

@ghost_bird i like these posts

a random thought about organising 

@pan Thank you. I'm interested in why organising efforts fail but I'm also trying my best to get away from reflexive cynicism.

a random thought about organising 

@ghost_bird I've found consensus minus 1 is sometimes a really effective way of avoiding that blocking.

… though only if people don't use it brutally, in which case it would be a formal structure vulnerable to exactly what you said. N-1 can be a good way for people to recuse themselves or save face though

a random thought about organising 

@nach Someone else suggested that too . I'd not heard of it before but I can see how just having it there would help keep things moving.

a random thought about organising 

@nach (What I've seen of consensus was mostly Occupy LSX, which was big on optimism but short on facilitators and practical experience.)

a random thought about organising 

@ghost_bird Reading with interest.

a random thought about organising 

@OldBrushNewPaper I’m not a seasoned organiser or anything, but I’ve been on the edges of various anarchist, enthusiast, and fan communities for long enough to have spotted some patterns.

a random thought about organising 

@ghost_bird Those observations gel with reports reaching my ears. (I've not got a lot of organizing people experience, just enough to have also seen confirmation of some of those points of human nature.)

a random thought about organising 

@ghost_bird
This is like a brief summary of anarchist philosophy, right? Any kind of organizational structure tends to go off the rails in some way.

I don't follow the anarchist solution - no organizations. But I think they nailed the problem pretty well.

a random thought about organising 

@mike More just me trying to put together what I’ve seen over the years, in a semi-positive way. But a lot of what I’ve been interested in is anarchist or anarchist-adjacent, yes.

a random thought about organising 

@ghost_bird
Thanks. I commented because up until two years ago I only knew anarchism as the chaos in Mad Max movies and the goal of James Bond villains. I was never introduced to it as a real philosophy and I have a minor in philosophy 😡 .

But as you said you know about it already, so my comments are superfluous and possibly mansplaining. Sorry. No offense taken if I'm muted or blocked.

a random thought about organising 

@mike No worries. It doesn’t help that, inevitably, there are lots of different views of anarchism even once you’re past the popular conceptions.

a random thought about organising 

@mike (As for anarchist principles... it’s not organisation anarchism’s against, or even organisations. The point is to find ways to organise without coercion, which sounds like a tall order but happens more often than you’d think.)

a random thought about organising 

@ghost_bird
I've spent too much time in the last year on Raddle.me, many active anarchists there seem to think organization without coercion is impossible.

a random thought about organising 

@mike I don’t know them. Sounds like American “post-left” individualism, maybe? Big on raging against society; short on solidarity and mutual aid.

a random thought about organising 

@mike (If you’re interested - and you very well may not be - then Kropotkin’s “Conquest of Bread” and LeGuin’s novel “The Dispossessed” are both sympathetic and persuasive in their own ways, and easy to find online.)

a random thought about organising 

@ghost_bird
I've read some of LeGuin's other books but not that one, and Kropotkin's name has come up before. I'll put them on my list, thank you.

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