“The trouble with majority vote”

Majority rule creates winners and losers. It breaks us apart rather than bringing us together. Majority rule becomes a game.

The focus is on winning not on the ideas. The focus is on who is ahead in the race not on what is healthy for the people. False scandals, voter suppression, that’s all part of the game of winning. In the United States, majority rule does not even mean one person one vote. Whether you win by 60 million to 59 million, or by 4 to 3, we are left divided. Relationships are broken. The winners remain clueless and the losers apathetic or rebellious.

Inevitably, the tables turn. The winners become losers, the losers become winners, and nothing changes except for the color of the paint. Without connection and dialogue across every divide, inequality persists. The short-term perspective wins over the long term perspective. No matter who wins everybody loses.

There are many variations of majority rule that are more inclusive than simple majority. They point the way to what it means to be a human society in the 21st century. No one can be ignored. Everybody’s voice matters. Everybody’s needs matter. An enemy is a friend you do not yet know. We need a form of governance and decision-making that brings us into connection and dialogue with each other, that opens the flow of creativity towards most effectively meeting the needs of all. I think such a possibility exists. It’s called sociocracy.

 

Further SoFA Reading

Self-Organization – a leap into the unknown

Self-Organization – a leap into the unknown

There are organizations, and in them people, who will never see the value in involving employees in shared governance. There are those who, although they feel the growing discomfort of working ‘in the old way’, remain full of fears and doubts about the incomprehensible concept of self-organization. Self-organization is a set of meta-processes: how to decide together, how to divide the areas of responsibility and decision-making, how to jointly create and develop ourselves and the organization thanks to ubiquitous feedback. With preparation and the right skills, techniques, and tools, transitioning to self-organization can be an empowering experience.

Hager Homestead Case Study

Hager Homestead Case Study

Hager Homestead is a community in Littleton, Massachusetts (United States) working to form the first 55+ cohousing community in New England. They anticipate construction to begin in 2021, with move-in planned for 2022. Their Vision and Values statement says,“We are a community of active older adults committed to living sustainably on the earth, creating a beautiful place to live, and nourishing the body and soul. We embrace diversity as vital to a flourishing community. We value lifelong learning and personal growth. We care about and support one another, balancing independence and mutual concern. We strive to be compassionate and respectful in our relationships. We look for opportunities to celebrate, engage with the world, and have fun!”

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