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Re: TSA BOD - How concerned are they?

Mar 29, 1998 08:43 AM
by Bart Lidofsky

M K Ramadoss wrote:

> It is amazing to find the lawyers being blamed for the error. Since it is
> used in plural, how many lawyers? A dozen or more? Too many cooks spoiling
> the broth? Are these paid specialists in non profit tax exempt law or
> unpaid volunteers with no non profit exempt law expertise? If paid lawyers,
> Chicago lawyers are not cheap, how many thousands of dollars have been
> spent on them?

    You may note that I did not mention the exact source of the information,
either. Feel free to do the research yourself, but I still have a policy of not
quoting anything which is not a matter of public record on an Internet
newsgroup or maillist. In any case, what I believe to be the case based on what
I was told was that there were some potential legal problems based on the
current wording, that at least one qualified expert was asked to reword it, and
apparently nobody noticed the missing phraseology until it was made public.
Please note the following story:

    In New York City, there is a tramway going from Manhattan to Roosevelt
Island (my wife calls it a sardine can held by a paper clip to a string). When
they first built it, they took everything into account: the strength of the
cable, the weight of the tram, the level of sag of the cable, etc. Yet, on it's
first trip out, it knocked over a lamp post. It seems that one little factor
was not calculated into the sag estimates: The weight of the passengers. People
DO make mistakes, even ones which are obvious in hindsight.

> error? Were they sleeping at the wheel? Or are the Directors and staff who
> may have noticed the error are too scared of being *marginalized* kept
> silent. (The staff may lose their jobs, members of Board may be afraid of
> losing the previleges they enjoy.)

    Sigh. I am certain, at least, that Fernando de Torrijos (the Northeast's
representative, and the only one I really know) would have spoken up if he
noticed it. And as far as the staff losing their jobs, do you have any idea
what a pittance the staff members are paid? Let me put it this way: If I wanted
to become a staff member at Wheaton, I would make more money as an unpaid
volunteer than I would as a paid staff member.

> More than any one, I would fault the members of the Board of Directors
> since they *are* the ones who are supposed to take care of the interests of
> centers/lodges/branches and should have gone thru the changes with a tooth
> comb and see if there are any issues that need to be resolved. What depth
> of discussions that ever took place in the Board before finalizing the
> changes?

    I don't know. If my own judgement of their character is correct, however, I
expect them to take full responsibilty.    Bart Lidofsky

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