Group Dynamics

Discussion in 'General Survival and Preparedness' started by Clyde, Nov 9, 2006.

  1. Clyde

    Clyde Jet Set Tourer Administrator Founding Member

    We have had a lively discussion over group dynamics and powers over the past few days. In prepping and survival planning, a group can only be as strong as the "constitution" created which governs their little "republic". If you look at the root greek in word "dynamics" you will see one similar to the word "Dynamite". And yes, they both come from the same word.

    If 5 people form a group and 2 pick up their stuff and leave when things don't go their way, then there was a problem in in the initial creation of the group and the group dynamic exploded

    How does a group set-up its governance plan to handle the situations when discussion gets explosive and could potentially destroy the group?

    Anyone have examples of a group "constitution" they would be willing to share?

    All posts welcome.
  2. Blackjack

    Blackjack Monkey+++

    An online community constitution and bill of rights..... interesting.

    The Cyber States of Melbo.... we need a Flag :).... and a ban on same sex marriage ;)
  3. Clyde

    Clyde Jet Set Tourer Administrator Founding Member

    This post is not meant as an an online group dynamic thought, but rather a face-to-face group dymanic of a Post SHTF group that was created Pre SHTF. With this in mind, how do we set-up the group structure to avoid an explosive meltdown.
  4. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    I'll yield my time to Minuteman...
  5. RightHand

    RightHand Been There, Done That RIP 4/15/21 Moderator Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I think that any group is subject to a meltdown regardless of the initial intent and structure. We are all members of a variety of groups - family, work environment, community - and no codified or unwritten rules will prevent implosion.

    The strength of the group is determined by its members and the reason for group formation. If we are brought together voluntarily by a common purpose, there is probably a better chance of the group surviving change but if the group is formed simply by opportunity or chance, destruction is imminent. Every group needs a cohesive purpose.

    A few years ago, I joined with a dozen or so like minded people for worked on a Veterans project. The group decided that the standard practice of electing a "chairman", a group leader who would co-ordinate the work, was in the best interest of completing the project. It all started off fine, everyone accepting responsibility for certain tasks. The cog in the wheel became the chairman who proceeded to complete the tasks of others. Everytime we brought something up to the chairman, she would say "I've already done that." After a period of time, the members stopped doing anything because it seemed as though our efforts were wasted.

    The lesson learned was that members of the group will only continue to contribute they are allowed to do their job. For the most part, it isn't enough for us to simply show up, we want to get the job done or we wouldn't have joined the group.
  6. Blackjack

    Blackjack Monkey+++

    I had misunderstood.... excellent question! In fact, this one will probably dominate my spare thoughts for some time.

    Certainly won't be a simple answer, I'll have to do some "ruminating" on this.
  7. Minuteman

    Minuteman Chaplain Moderator Founding Member

    The wheels are turning!!

    Have I become the defacto Jefferson of Monkeyland?

    Some thoughts from the sage of Monticello;

    "Every society has a right to fix the fundamental principles of its association, and to say to all individuals, that if they contemplate pursuits beyond the limits of these principles and involving dangers which the society chooses to avoid, they must go somewhere else for their exercise; that we want no citizens, and still less ephemeral and pseudo-citizens, on such terms. We may exclude them from our territory, as we do persons infected with disease." --Thomas Jefferson to William H. Crawford, 1816. ME 15:28

    "I have so much confidence in the good sense of man, and his qualifications for self-government, that I am never afraid of the issue where reason is left free to exert her force." --Thomas Jefferson to Comte Diodati, 1789. Papers 15:326
  8. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    " Large government and personal freedom are incompatible. All power is eventually abused. That is why governments should be given the absolute minimum." - Thomas Jefferson

    Given the minimum? These buggers TAKE it without do much as a "By your leave." Somehow, we have ceded the power to them to do so. Methinks more from inaction, apathy, and ignorance than knowlege and a wish to stay free.

    "Every society has a right to fix the fundamental principles of its association, and to say to all individuals, that if they contemplate pursuits beyond the limits of these principles and involving dangers which the society chooses to avoid, they must go somewhere else for their exercise; that we want no citizens, and still less ephemeral and pseudo-citizens, on such terms. We may exclude them from our territory, as we do persons infected with disease."
    The Tribe arises (or should, for our purposes.) I think the Founding Fathers, who saw so much strife to avoid in the future, could not have imagined how large our society would become, and could not possibly fathom the problems size begets. Power and authority has gravitated to the central gov't rather than remaining at the state level. Much beyond their ken. (And they assumed that there would be motivated individuals to stir and inspire the people. As it turns out, apathy became the norm, not the accumulation and application of knowlege and wisdom.) I note with sadness that there is no other place to go if one does not like the rules here. The days when the sociopathic (yes, they mostly were) Mountain Man could get lost in the beaver country for years without contact with society are over. I was born 125 years too late, it seems, but you guys "will do to ride the river with."

    "I think that any group is subject to a meltdown regardless of the initial intent and structure. "
    I disagree here. The group cannot fall apart if the basic principles that are forged when the group forms are adhered to. (Assuming the principles themselves are not faulted to begin with, and the cause remains.)

    "The strength of the group is determined by its members and the reason for group formation. If we are brought together voluntarily by a common purpose, there is probably a better chance of the group surviving change but if the group is formed simply by opportunity or chance, destruction is imminent. Every group needs a cohesive purpose."
    Agree completely, with the caveat that the purpose must remain constant over the life of the tribe, or at least the members can adapt the founding principles to the times to which they are exposed.

    "I have so much confidence in the good sense of man, and his qualifications for self-government, that I am never afraid of the issue where reason is left free to exert her force." --Thomas Jefferson to Comte Diodati, 1789. Papers 15:326
    Smart cookie, ol' Tom. But where is reason to be found? Sure as hell, it is NOT taught, and not used in Congress these days either, unless double think and double talk will stand surrogate. (NOT.) These days, who has time to think and analyze, to reason? The cell phone, the radio, the kid's soccer team, weather, crowded roads, the pressures of making a living as a wage slave, and other distractions that may be more entertaining invade thinking time, even for those who can.

    JMO, but the tribe will survive; the individual will not.
  9. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    Maybe a few rules taken from this?

    Even if you are not a believer in God, the rules in this book are prolly a good start for a close group
  10. Minuteman

    Minuteman Chaplain Moderator Founding Member

    Group dynamics and what does it take to survive?

    The topic here is a SHTF, Teotwawki type, survival situation.

    A strong group must have a strong and decisive leader. And one leader and authority. You cannot have a democracy in a life and death situation. If circumstances allow you can have debate and come to a consensus on issues. But when the SHTF every member of the group must recognize and follow only one voice.

    <FONT]AFTER font and must the But to have can you leader question.< without followed be orders their crises during successfully. lead failed she he if Replace assessment. review passed is threat>
    <?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com />[/FONT][/SIZE][/FONT]
    <font size=" />[/FONT][FONT=Times New Roman]
    [FONT=Times New Roman][SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]So, needless to say, the election of a group’s leader is the paramount priority in any survival situation. And that choice must be made rationally and without prejudice or bias.[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]I have been in the Oil business all my life. And my observations of the workings of group dynamics come from those experiences. In the beginning you work on a crew, then work up to a crew leader, then the leader of all the crews on that rig, then to where I am today, the leader of the leaders of everyone on location. The money is good, but that is not what gets “oil” in the blood of most us. I have been through times when the work was so slow that it was chicken one day and feathers the next. But in the early days I seldom went through one day that something didn’t happen to make my heart race and the adrenalin pump. That “rush” is addictive. Just like a racecar driver or skydiver etc. you become an adrenalin junkie. I have actually had withdrawal symptoms when I couldn’t work for some time.[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]I have seen grown men fall to pieces when something dangerous was happening. The most dangerous thing in our world is a blowout. Oil spraying over the top of a derrick is Hollywood stuff. It is blowing because natural gas is pushing it out of the ground. And your rig, and all your people are standing on top of it. One spark and you, all your men, and all your equipment are toast.[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]The only people who make it to my level in this business are the ones who can function under pressure, lead their crew, and get the situation under control. I have had times when, after the danger was past, I went down to my trailer and collapsed. My knees shaking so hard I couldn’t stand. My hands shaking so bad I couldn’t pour a cup of coffee. But, my crew never saw that. While the emergency was happening I was barking orders and co-coordinating a response to neutralize the danger.[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]Now I am not bragging on myself. There are thousands of people, in all professions that have that innate ability. My point is that they are the type of leader that any group of people in a survival situation must have if they are to survive.[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]These are a few of the things that I have learned over the years that make a good and successful leader.[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [FONT=Times New Roman][SIZE=3]1)[/SIZE] [SIZE=3]Never let your sub-ordinates know that you don’t know. People in a panic want answers and direction. They want to know what to do. They won’t follow you if they don’t have confidence that you know exactly what to do and how. Always have an answer. Never let them see you sweat. Be confident, even if your not.[/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [FONT=Times New Roman][SIZE=3]2)[/SIZE] [SIZE=3]Never allow yourself to become too close to anyone under you. Your ability to lead will be compromised if you are “buddies” with someone you have to command. Familiarity with subordinates gives them the impression that you are “one of them”. They will start to view you as an equal, not an authority.[/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [FONT=Times New Roman][SIZE=3]3)[/SIZE] [SIZE=3]Do whatever it takes to get results. The end does justify the means in a life or death situation. If the end is successful. Yell, cuss, get physical, threaten, whatever it takes to motivate those under you to act and to follow orders. If you are alive afterwards, then you can apologize.[/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [FONT=Times New Roman][SIZE=3]That covers leadership. Now lets turn to the group itself. It is possible for a pack of sheep, led by a wolf, to sometimes, overcome a pack of wolves led by a sheep. But don’t count on it.[/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]We have a saying in the “Patch”, “A weak driller can’t make a good crew. But, a good crew can make a weak driller.” Meaning, a good crew (or team) can make even a weak leader look good. [/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]The ideal “group” or tribe would have members with varied backgrounds and experiences. Everyone has something to contribute. And the leader should be able to recognize the ability of each member to contribute his or her share.[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]I was on a crew one time that had one guy that none of the rest of us liked. He was “different”, not sociable, not “one of us”. We tried to get our Driller (boss) to fire him and get someone else. He refused. When we asked him why he would keep this guy that nobody liked he said, “ I hired him to do a job. He does that job, and as long as he does that job I won’t fire him.” We were thinking of our own personal preferences, the leader was thinking of the whole. Every one of us had a specific job to do. And if each one of us did our jobs it made it easier on the rest. This guy did his job. He was a part of the team, whether we liked him or not. I learned a lot from that.[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]But on the other hand. I have seen situations where a team member didn’t fit in not because of simple prejudice, but because of personality conflicts. Those can have an adverse effect on the group as a whole and must be dealt with. A person who constantly agitates, whines and complains, or otherwise: “stirs the pot” will tear a team apart. Infighting most times can be dealt with, either rationally, or by a strong hand from the leader. But, occasionally, you have someone who just does not want to play by the accepted rules. Who will not compromise and disrupts the harmony of the entire operation.They have to be dealt with or the entire team is in danger.[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]With that said, a strong group is one who can adapt, compromise, reason and accept the rule that “ The needs of the group come before the needs of the individual.”[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]So there is my dissertation on group dynamics. A diverse group, with multiple talents, opinions, and abilities. Led by a strong, decisive leader.[/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]That is the kind of group that will face and overcome any obstacle, any circumstance. [/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [FONT=Times New Roman][SIZE=3]That is the kind of group I want to belong to, when and if, TEOTWAWKI ever happens.[/SIZE][/FONT]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman]I would be happy to be together with a bunch of Monkeys!!!!!!![/FONT][/SIZE]

    [SIZE=3][FONT=Times New Roman][/FONT][/SIZE]
  11. CRC

    CRC Survivor of Tidal Waves | RIP 7-24-2015 Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I keep coming back to this thread...and thoughts I have had.

    I called my father first, to ask if I could share this information..and he said "SURE!"

    My father is a member of Alcoholics Anonymous and has been for 37 yrs....(soon to be 38) He gave his permission for me to break his anonymity.

    Over the years, I have attended meetings, conventions, gatherings..and many things, with him. I have traveled to other countries for conventions to hear my father , when he was a keynote speaker...I have met people from all over the world and enjoyed learning about how this thing works.....Because, in reality, it shouldn't!

    AA , as I have witnessed , is TOTAL Anarchy! And it works. Go figure...

    No dues.
    No fees.
    No leaders.
    No rules.

    All they have is a Primary Purpose.

    Alcoholics Anonymous® is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for AA membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. AA is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy, neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.

    They are not allowed to ask for money....and no member can donate more than $2000 in a years can go to meetings, or not go to meetings. You can have an opinion and share it , or not.

    The Love and Spiritual wellness I have felt and witnessed in those rooms is amazing. The tolerance. Patience.

    I attended an open Speaker meeting one time..( I am only allowed to attend "open" meetings, as a non member) ....and the speaker was sooooo boring, spoke in a monotone and went 35 minutes over his allocated time.
    When we left...I said to my dad..."You can't have gotten anything out of that talk!"
    He just smiled..and said "Patience and Tolerance, Constance...." (yes, he still calls me that.)

    They have "suggestions"...not rules.

    There are over 100,000 groups in over 150 countries...with well over 2,000,0000 members.

    All different. Yet they function as a group, because they have a Primary Purpose and stick to it. The good of the "whole" overrides and decides what the next course of action is.

    They are the ones that taught me "Principles before Personalities".... I attended Alateen when I was 12 and went on to Alanon....(yeah, there goes my

    They operate on a Spiritual principle....something along the lines of what melbo mentioned earlier. Spiritual laws. Live and let Live....One Day at a Time....Easy Does It, etc.......To Thine Own Self Be True....
    They ask God's help , on a daily basis...and try to have their thinking directed by what God would want in their life... and decisions based on Spirituality, Love , and all the good qualities I see lacking in the world today....
    It is NOT a religous society, and most members are not affiliated with any church, although some choose that after being sober a while.

    It constantly amazes me that it works and has for as long as it has.

    When they disagree? They call a "group conscience"....a concensus , if you do what is right for the group as a whole, without compromising the integrity of the individual.

    They do not have any opinions on "outside issues"..not allied with any sect, denomination or politics....

    I realize this is not what we are talking about.....but my thought process keeps taking me back to AA....the "anarchy" , if you will...and that it works as long as the members stick with the Primary Purpose. And has worked since 1935. And grown. And prospered. And it works. I have heard stories that have reduced me to tears...I have laughed so hard I cried and could not talk....I am in awe of this organization.

    I know, I know....this is not the direction of this thread....but it is where my mind went...because for 37 yrs I have seen this in action...and seen it work. There's a lot to be learned from this organization.

    Tell me I'm way off base.....It won't be the first time...:rolleyes: :)

    What I learned is the 12 Steps is HOW it works..

    But the 12 Traditions is WHY it works...

    1. Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon A.A. unity.

    2. For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority - a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.

    3. The only requirement for A.A. membership is a desire to stop drinking.

    4. Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or A.A. as a whole.

    5. Each group has but one primary purpose-to carry its message to the alcoholic who still suffers.

    6. An A.A. group ought never endorse, finance
    or lend the A.A. name to any related facility or outside enterprise, lest problems of money, property and prestige divert us from our primary purpose.

    7. Every A.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions.

    8. Alcoholics Anonymous should remain forever nonprofessional, but our service centers may employ special workers.

    9. A.A., as such, ought never be organized; but we may create service boards or committees directly responsible to those they serve.

    10. Alcoholics Anonymous has no opinion on outside issues; hence the A.A. name ought never be drawn into public controversy.

    11. Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio and films.

    12. Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities.

    Reprinted from the book Alcoholics Anonymous (The Big Book)
    with permission of A.A. World Services, Inc.

    I am not saying we need these Steps , or Traditions...just showing different ways that groups function..and the ones that work, and have stood the test of time......and I have seen this work. It never ceases to amaze me. The Group Conscience decides what is best for the whole , rather than one person.
    And we must decide what is best for the group, as a whole.
    I have hesitated to post this, but read Clyde's initial post , over and over...asking how groups work, and that "all posts welcome" it is. For what it's worth.

    And I love the long version of the 12th Tradition...

    "And finally, we of Alcoholics Anonymous believe that the principle of anonymity has an immense spiritual significance. It reminds us that we are to place principles before personalities; that we are to practice a genuine humility. This to the end that our great blessings may never spoil us; that we shall forever live in thankful contemplation of Him who presides over us all."
  12. yonder

    yonder No Despot's Servant

    Less chiefs, more indians.

    On forums like this you get a lot of the "chief" types. Those who have strong opinions and the foresight to prepare and consider possible (even unlikely) scenarios well in advance.

    When and if our plans are called into action (again, for some of us) it will become pretty apparent pretty quickly who knows what they are talking about vs. those who slept in a holiday in express last night.

    In my case, I'm the head of my household. Anyone who wants to join in with us had better bring something compelling to the table, and be ready to cooperate and not cause trouble. If I am taking someone in (aside from my wife and kids, whom I have a direct responsibility for), they had better look to me like more of an asset than a liability. Otherwise I cannot assume the risk.
  13. phishi

    phishi Psy-Ops Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I've chewed on this for awhile now, and read many posts over again. These are some of my thoughts:

    Clyde: I'm not sure that it can or should be avoided. The threat of leaving post SHTF is the ultimate "nuclear" option. If you really think you can survive without the rest of the group, or conversly if the group thinks that it can survive without you, then both are free to fail in the attempt. The group should be formed with the idea of survival in mind. That means that you realize that you are stronger with others as opposed to standing alone. The nuclear option is the card in everyone's back pocket that they hope they don't have to play. It keeps everyone civil, on the same playing field, and working towards the same goal even if that means compromise. If someone is stupid enough to play that card, let'em go. You'll never get anywhere by caving in.

    Righthand: I agree with the first portion of your post, but stop where you feel destruction is imminent. Maybe I'm more optimistic? I agree with your lesson learned. It appears that your chairman was micromanaging, something that no one deals with well. Leadership should be strong, but willing to let those under them do their jobs.

    Ghrit: Well put.

    Melbo: While I respect your new found direction, I question the inclusion of religion into what is ultimately the government of a group. It could be successfully argued that the underlying principles are the same. However, I am a supporter of the seperation of the church and the state, and as such, feel that regardless of the similarities it should be removed as an option. Too much history has shown what can occur when you found a government strictly on religious beliefs. Just my .02.

    MM: I believe you are correct, but only to a point. I to have seen some tough life and death situations, ones where there needs to be one, and only one leader. I'm refering to codes in the ER, where the Doctor runs the show. The problem is that not all decisions that the group faces will need to be spur of the moment calls. On top of that, not all members will take to having someone else make a decision that affects them, without being heard. They may swallow that urge when a hoard of MZB are sweeping thru the retreat with pillage on their minds, but what about when the harvest is due, and they think that hunting is more important? My point is that some folks will work better if they feel that they are being heard, and that some aspects of retreat life lend themselves to more of a group call. If you don't believe me I challenge you to tell my wife what to do :D .

    CRC: Interesting take. Maybe there is more than one way to skin a cat......

    Yonder: I agree with your asset coment. Anyone coming thru the door should bring something to the table.

    Finally my comments: I believe that a there should be a balance between the individual and the group in terms of government. By that I mean that the individual should feel that they have a say in what occurs to them, yet the purpose of the group, the goal of survival, should not be forgotten. I think that the KISS principle should be used in forming laws/rules/regulations. I think that everyone should get a vote if the group is small enough, or that a council of elected officials should make a decision if the group is larger. I like the idea of a cover charge (amount of food, ammo, weapon, or skill set) that should be used to get individuals in the door. Once in they all should have equal say. I feel that if there is a leader they should only have power to settle disputs (tie breaker if you will).

    Only for defense of the group should one individual have absolute say. They should be held acountable for their actions. Not in the heat of a conflict, but afterwards. They should be judged only on their performance on the field, not how they treat those that serve under them. This isn't a popularity contest, its life and death. If they do a good job they should stay in the position, if they screw up they should be replaced. In the end they should be answerable to the rest of the group. This is to reduce the chances of abuse of power.

    This is not a perfect system, but its the one that I favor. In the end, comprimises always need to be made.

  14. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    Interesting format (AA)..Didn't know they were "unorganized"...
    Well All the constitution/bill of rights are based on Property rights ( so say Mike Bardnarik's constitution class) definitely set up a group based on a republic ( in a democracy 51% rules) in a republic the individual's rights are protected and trump the majority rule).
    I.E.The group can't vote to take all minutemans provisions( he gets to vote too, so it's "fair"(total democracy))and divide em up amongst themselves. Start with the Members' billl of rights.
  15. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    With a nod to phishi --

    "Only for defense of the group should one individual have absolute say. They should be held acountable for their actions. Not in the heat of a conflict, but afterwards. They should be judged only on their performance on the field, not how they treat those that serve under them. This isn't a popularity contest, its life and death. If they do a good job they should stay in the position, if they screw up they should be replaced. In the end they should be answerable to the rest of the group. This is to reduce the chances of abuse of power."

    I have carried on at length in the past about "tribal" organization, and this fits exactly. Before we got here (Europeans to North America) tribes had a council i(sometimes elders, sometimes others as well) ncluding Chiefs of several flavors. Different tribes had different caste setups, but nearly all had (for want of a better term) war chiefs that were responsible for offense and defense. The councils (generally) had the power to make the decisions to attack, but once that was made, the war chief had the job. Defense was obviously ad hoc, if needed.

    Not that it matters greatly for the discussion, but have a peek at the basic Mafia organization. The main difference in member's lives would have to be in the matter of control of the membership. I'm not fond of the Mafia's enforcement methods.

    I agree with the republic concept, and with phishi's assessment. It gets interesting when the selection of various sub chiefs is attempted, who is best equipped to do what? Check "Lights Out" for one scenario, it's more than possible a talent will be recognized sorta by accident --

    Righthand: I agree with your lesson learned. It appears that your chairman was micromanaging, something that no one deals with well. Leadership should be strong, but willing to let those under them do their jobs.
    Also agree, and add that the jobs may not necessarily be done as we might wish, but functionality counts in a stress situation. "Your job is to get us all a place to sit" could result in a bunch of stumps, not armchairs. But it is still a place for butts to park. (The elders may reassess the talent so assigned, but the function is fulfilled.)

    Yonder, you'll need to recognize that assets are not necessarily material goods. If I've mistaken your intent about bringing assets to the table, to forgive, but assets include talents that may not exist under your roof. You may need a guy with a really big forearm for forge work, and he could be starving. Your idea is sound, and as stated completely applicable to your household, but bear in mind that the group most certainly will have to be larger and diversified.

    melbo, I agree that there are principles laid down in the Bible that will fit without question, but keeping church and state separate has to be. The ten commandments rule, to my mind, right after the constitution (not capitalized, our hypothetical "tribe" will have to gin up it's own.) (Also aside, "Thou shalt not kill" is probably mistranslated; should have been "Thou shalt not murder" thus allowing defense.)

    Have I raved enough yet?:eek:
  16. yonder

    yonder No Despot's Servant

    My reference to "asset vs. liability" was about the person themselves. i.e. an Eagle Scout with relatively little in the way of supplies could be a much greater asset to my tribe than a guy with a trunkload of food and no skills.

    Perhaps. Perhaps not. If I am trying to recreate society, maybe I do need a larger group. If I'm just trying to quietly make a living out in the middle of nowhere, I don't think I'm going to want too many more than the people who already live under my roof. It's much easier to feed five than fifteen. And I trust my blood kin with my back turned to them much more than an outsider who has their own agenda.
  17. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    .02 welcome and taken
    My post may have been misunderstood. I'm not advocating a Religous driven group. That limits the involvement and ideas of some of the participants. Though I do believe that in a true TEOTWAWKI, we'd see a few more bibles on the cots.;)

    I was trying to explore this point of Clyde's:
    My thoughts on coming up with the basic core rules of a "Constitution" were to not have to completely re-invent the wheel. You could start with our US Constitution/Bill of Rights and then take a look at the basic set of guidelines from the Bible. Most of the basic rules in there are common sense. Weather or not you believe in God it's tough to argue with Thous Shall Not Kill and other basic rules for those living in close quarters.

    A close knit group of 10 families would fail if they lacked some of the basics of Trust, Loyalty, Love, Honesty, and Self Sacrifice.

    Good Points by all so far.

    We had discussed some of this last year as well.

    and a little bit here:
  18. Minuteman

    Minuteman Chaplain Moderator Founding Member

    I think my previous post was a little misconstrued also. While I was stressing the strong leaders role in life and death decisions, I didn't delve into the day to day management.

    A good leader will listen to all those under them and consider all points of view. They would have to have the ability to see "the big picture" and determine the best course for the group as a whole.
    But in the end, even in mundane decisions, I believe that you have to have a final authority. You could end up with constant debate on important issues that people might have diverse opinions on.

    Any leader who cannot seperate personal bias and make decisions based soley on the most benefit for the group as a whole, should be replaced.

    As for tribes, they had councils and different "chiefs" for different things. IE a "War Chief". But they still had a main chief who made the final calls, and who remained chief only as long as his decisions were beneficial.

    In my profession I have several different "Chiefs" under me who each have control over their particular aspect of the operation. They know more about their area than I do in some instances. I think that I am a good manager in that I let them do their jobs and don't interfere, unless I see that they are not getting results. But, in a Blowout, life and death emergency, they all must do what I say when I say it without question or debate. We don't have time for discussion. If my actions prove to be wrong and costs lives or equipment damage then I will be replaced. But before the job starts we have a "Pre-Spud" meeting and determine what each "Chiefs" job and responsibilities are and how we are going to proceed with the operation. Everyone has a voice and all opinions are considered then a "Plan' worked out and adopted.

    I just put this out there for consideration as a blueprint for a group organisation. I am sure that everyone has seen and been involved in other forms of administration. An adaptation of the best things from several examples would be the ideal.

    I remember the debates we had on this before. I will have to go back and read it again. See if my thinking has changed since then.
  19. phishi

    phishi Psy-Ops Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Melbo & MM: My apology for missing your points. Maybe not reading deep enough was my problem. To MM in particular, I like the Spud meeting idea. Not to far off from what I understand Spec.Op. teams do when preparing for a mission. Everyone is heard during the planning, but everyone falls under the control of the leadership during the execution. Now to convince everyone present that they are under my control..........Yeah.

    Questions: How do we keep abuse of power in check? Now how do we do this without tearing apart the group?

    Yonder: I believe I understand your point, but question if a single family could actually perform all the chores of day to day living while still preparing for an indian attack. Even on the frontier, the single family living outside of the local settlement was considered easy pickin'. My guess is that it would take a few families working together to be able to survive. More if you want to thrive. If you think you and yours could do it, more power to you. My vote goes to a larger group.

    Tango: I go back and forth with your post. I believe that the individual should be protected. However, this is about a group trying to survive. Using the "MM's goods" example: The group needs the goods in order to survive. If they do not take them, MM will be the only one to survive. In the end however, by letting the group fail, there is a greater chance that MM will fail also. I don't have an answer for this, hence my fence sitting. Some one please knock me off.........

  20. monkeyman

    monkeyman Monkey+++ Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    I like the idea of the basic system of the indian tribe, which along with influences from the Greeks and Romans was also a modle for the way our government was set up. Basicly you had chiefs who were recognized for their knowledge, wisdom and/or talent in a particular area as well as the elders council and other councils such as the warriors council and so on. No one in the tribe, not even ANY of the chiefs, realy had a true authority to ORDER or COMMAND any member of the tribe to do anything although reagularly refuseing to follow their recomendations especialy with undesirable results might have a person sent away from the tribe. Each person was free to do as they felt best but was given direction from the chiefs and councils. There were basic codes of conduct accepted to cover things like any violence against others, property rights and so on and if not adheared to were punishable by the tribe most often with strong input from those effected.

    I agree that it would have to be a republic especialy since it would most likely be made up of strong individuals none of whom would take well to haveing their personal liberty infringed by a majority opinion and all of whom would most likely know their own strengths and abilities well enouph to put them selves in the position where they would be most useful. Much like most any team that works well together, that there is in fact VERY little if any direction needed since each member will basicly work independently to complement the efforts of the others and comeing together for tasks requireing it with little or no prompting.

    To me the ideal set up would be such that the individuals/housholds of a group would function on their own to complement one another with no real formal leadership aside from perhaps in security issues and even in that area it seems that if SOPs are established ahead of time then little if any direction should be needed but someone to speak if thats an option and to coordinate if needed would still not be a bad thing.
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