When die Gronene (the Green Party) originated in Germany as a post-war reaction to Fascism (capital F), it took consensus for its decision-making model. The movement made total sense, given that it is the antithesis of a system which eviscerates free speech. Ideally, whatever the issue, all concerned parties can speak to be heard, to come into an agreement. In the new Green Party system, everyone counts, no-one gets overlooked.
Doable? Yes. Simple? Uh, maybe not so much. Because a big question is: How does consensus actually work?
Well, as I said, ideally, everyone agrees. But in the so-called 'real' world where dissent occurs on a regular basis, people have to come to some agreement about how dissent, when it occurs, will be handled.
Dissent in some cultural groups may be so compelling that it will be met with an entailment ritual. One example is the ceremonial call for objections to the coupling that a ritual marriage ceremony will confirm. (As in: "Let anyone who objects to the union of this couple speak now or forever hold his peace!")
A group seeking Consensus might have agreements in place which permit just one individual to block a proposed procedure or process. One such group is The Religious Society of Friends: the Quakers accord to each of its individual Members a power equivalent to the power of the entire assembly.
I was told that at Arcosanti, where it's commonly felt that consensus is desirable, the Arcosanti Leadership Team (aka ALT) regulary practices/evinces consensus decision-making. I don't know what form of consensus decision-making is actually practiced: ALT meetings are held in camera and I was told there are no recorded minutes.
What I wonder is: does this mean that even those who have not had prior opportunity to test the power afforded by the ability to block any procedure or process are permitted to use such power to test how the practice of consensus helps achieve a given organizational goal?
I PRAY SOMEONE PLEASE PLEASE ANSWER THIS QUESTION: WHAT ARE ARCOSANTI'S ORGANIZATIONAL GOALS?
ARE ITS GOALS EXCLUSIVE OR INCLUSIVE? IF SO, WHY? HOW WERE THEY ARRIVED AT AND HOW ARE THEY BEING IMPLEMENTED?