Re: [OPE] Behaviour on the list

Date: Sat Apr 23 2011 - 11:02:54 EDT


As I have often reminded subscribers, we are a collaborative
group. As such, every member of the list can help to shape
discussions and re-invent the list. We should see this as
an opportunity for a new beginning. Without pointing fingers
at anyone, I think we can improve the quality of discussions.
If you - or anyone else on the list - have ideas about how
our list can be improved, the AC and I would love to hear
them. But, each of us individually can also help the list
simply by contributing more and doing so in a constructive
and comradely manner.

If I haven't been aggressive in moderating list discussions,
it is because I felt that's what the list wanted. On all
matters, I am answerable to the Administrative Committee.

We need rules (such as the rule against flaming) but we
want to perpetuate an environment in which everyone feels free
to share their perspectives. Rather than stifling and controlling
discussion, we want an an open and free discussion. None of us are
so naive that we think that ultimately we will all come to
an agreement on the theoretical and political topics we discuss,
but we can all benefit by such discussion despite that.

I will take to heart what I wrote above and make even
more of an effort when addressing topics as an individual (i.e.
when I'm not speaking as coordinator) to write posts in a
manner which I believe will stimulate a healthy and respectful
exchange of perspectives. Another old saying is "it takes two
to tango". Sometimes it's better to just not dance, i.e. not reply
to a post, and thereby avoid the possibility of an escalation of
useless and unhealthy dialogue. Consider this to be
a form of self-criticism.

finally, I want to add that we recognize that there are issues
which listmembers feel passionately about. That's because we take
theory and politics seriously. It's hard not to be impassioned,
for instance, when the lives of workers and peasants in struggle
are at stake. We can, however, feel passionately about a
subject and still confront contrary perspectives in a comradely
and respectful - yet forthright - manner. Sometimes it is not
easy to do this but it can be done and we should all make an effort
to try.

In solidarity, Jerry
ope mailing list
Received on Sat Apr 23 11:03:48 2011

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