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Re: Missing Brigade -- Hommage A General Roberts

  charles mueller wrote:
  >  Here is the completed version of my suggestions for making a list attractive
  > to ... distinguished people:
  >                                                   .....................
  >         1.  No name-calling, ad hominem attacks, or discourteous, uncivil,
  > disrespectful or offensive posts.
  >         2.  The list owner will himself, or through a designate, provide an
  > E-mail address for the lodging of complaints under (1),  above, either by
  > the person offended or by any other member of the list.
  >         3.  Upon receipt of such a complaint, the offender will be invited
  > to submit  to the group, and to the person offended, an on-line apology
  > which has been accepted by the latter.  Should the offender decline to do
  > so, he will be forthwith removed from the list of members.
  >                                                   ......................
  I have given this matter some thought and a bit of study for several years. I do
  not believe your rules will work. There is too much freedom in an electronic
  forum for what our colleague, A.O. Hirschman, calls Entry and Exit, a matter not
  unrelated to Monopoly.
  I do not think that this medium will even begin to meet the deliberative
  requirements of a republic or a democracy, a government or a church, even an
  army or a warship, without conventional order, something like Jefferson's
  Manual, Roberts' Rules, or the old Commercial Codes.
  We are drowning in archaic modernisms which never worked tarted up with
  newfangled gadgets that run but still do no real work.
  There needs to be, at a minimum, ...
       A Deposition, ...
       A Quorum, ...
       A Speaker, ...
       A Credential, and ...
       A Cloakroom.
  We already have Threads, which will do for Main Motions. But, there needs to be
  more than that.
  In the end, words like ... name-calling, ad hominem attacks, discourteous,
  uncivil, disrespectful or offensive ... are too hard to parse and interpret fast
  or logically enough. One gets into "terms of art" and "aesthetics", not
  efficient interrupt or effective exception handling.
  Contrast all such verbiage with the simple Parliamentary convention of
  addressing remarks to the Speaker, nothing directly at another Member.
  Or, consider the Soccer referee's signal ... PLAYON! by which a player with the
  advantage of an advance on goal is protected by not rewarding a deliberate foul
  with stoppage of play.
  The technology is in hand to construct an electronic assembly and various sorts
  of administrative boards. I am no fan of the GAR, but we really could use a
  General Roberts. He was District Superintendent in the Corps of Engineers here
  before the Great War. He invented a multi-tasking OS long before there was a
  logical engine of the sort we call a computer now.
  There were rich scoundrels then and low life, too. Nonetheless, there were more
  public assembly and meeting halls than all the courtrooms and jail cells in four
  counties combined, unlike now, when jail cells outnumber saloons.
  Folks knew all about monopolies and hardly a thing about communists. I do not
  long for those or any good old days. But, I still like the idea of "workin' on
  the railroad".
  Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and PLAYON JRBehrman sends.....
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  fn:             John Robert BEHRMAN
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  org:            TETRA ENGINEERING, Inc.
  adr:            1436 West Gray, Nbr 298;;;HOUSTON;Texas;77019;USA
  email;internet: jbehrman@netropolis.net
  title:          Chief Analyst
  tel;work:       713 610 1162
  tel;fax:        713 610 1161
  tel;home:       713 524 4154
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