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Re: Membership decline

Dec 29, 1999 10:15 AM
by JRC

> Regardless of what you say below, I see that you did add the
> qualification of the possibility of your remembering incorrectly, and
> thank you. You do, in fact, remember incorrectly. I said he was too
> to participate on these discussion lists, not to read personal

Its not my memory that is selective. There were general excuses. During
the entire ACT campaign the non-repsonsiveness of Headquarters was a
fairly continual theme. Remember, for instance, when doss was writing
and faxing headquarters and asking for financial details? By no means
without cause either ... several of us - that are definately qualified
to analyze financial statements - were looking at the surface view of
the yearly accounting summary the TS publishes, and noticed a couple of
significant peculiarities (in fact, the accounting firm that did the
reports ultimately did say it had made a rather large mistake). doss
wrote John Algeo, faxed him, and a number of times posted to the list
the exact content of his requests ... few were answered, some not even
acknowledged. This, you alledged, was because John Algeo, in fact the
entire Headquarters staff, was "too busy". These weren't just emails to
this list (that you first claimed he didn't read, then when that was
shown to be BS, claimed was because people were so mean). You have been
a consistant defender of John Algeo's right to respond, or completely
ignore members as he sees fit, and have come up with several different
justifications at different times.

And to this day I don't really get the "too busy". The President and
staff is "too busy" for the membership? Too busy doing what? This isn't
the national republican party. Its an organization with around 4,000
members. Over half are "at large". Many simply pay dues year after year
and take little interest at all in the actual Society. In fact only 1/4
to 1/3 even bother to vote in elections. I'd venture to guess the actual
number of requests to Headquarters from members during the course of a
year is but a few hundred ... and the requests addressed personally to
John algeo probably numbered in the dozens.

And as several people have pointed out, the thought that he is too busy
to participate in probably the most active and dynamic theosophical
discussion list on the interent is just bizarre. In the rest of the
non-profit world Presidents and ED's and staff members are mostly deeply
into examing every conceivable way possible to *use* the internet to
further the causes of their organizations, see it as a fantastic way to
interact directly with members, and many are coming to believe their
very long-term survival will depend upon exploring the full use of the

But then, I'm never sure which excuse I should be addressing ... the one
that says he is "too busy", or the one that says the list is just full
of meanies.

> I do, however, notice a tendency of some on this list to ask questions
> which carry inbuilt assumptions which are not always correct. For
> example, "I have heard you are a despoiler of young goats. If this is
> true, then how do you reconcile this with your position of authority?"
> is much more likely to get an answer than something like, "Since you
> despoil young goats, how come you don't resign?".

A thoroughly moot point. Again you are attempting to assert that it is
merely *PRESENTATION* that is the cause of his total lack of
participation in any internet activities. This is just bull. As I've
said before, I've been on this list almost from the beginning ... and
people were *NOT* mean, in fact, there was considerable hope on the list
that staff members and board members would join the list and actively
participate in discussions ... and they would have been eagerly
welcomed. This was not an unreasonable hope either - as staff and board
members of non-profits all over the country were beginning to do exactly
that. Fact is, it doesn't matter a damn how anything is presented, we've
never seen anything other than total silence from TS Executives ...
either Algeo or the Board.

The statement that  "... is much more likely to get an answer than
something like ..." is just completely false. *NO QUESTION, FRAMED IN
is clearly a policy decision.

> Actually, I really don't.

Good, I don't particularly care to either. It's all pretty much moot.
The current leadership clique has won. They control everything now. They
control all publications. They control elections. They can now control
every Lodge. They will, however, be responsible for what happens to the
TS. And by all objective measures of the effects to date, this is
certainly not something I'd want responsibility for. -JRC

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