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Old 07-16-2006, 04:51 PM   #15
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tell me if I am wrong, but if the main thrust of Airstream owners getting together is to camp as a group and fellowship with each other, why do you need a club at all?
This is the question that has a very good answer but that answer does not seem to be well understood. Some in these forums do not accept the answer from experience and history and want to learn it all over again the hard way. A really good understanding of the answer requires experience with large groups and small, well run groups, and badly run groups, and paying attention to what makes for desired long term results.

The fact is that when people want to do things together, anarchy has its limits. The efforts of those who volunteer and participate and get things done is made more rewarding and more efficient if there is an infrastructure to assist it, guide it, and set expectations and norms.

WBCCI has nothing on the books that discourages informal and ad hoc fraternization - in fact fraternization is an objective of the organization. But if you are looking at being able to communicate and share that activity, spread the load, address liability and financial and regulatory and tax issues, and on, then organization is needed. Pretending these don't exist will only take you so far.

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The only thing they limited MALs from is the politics.
This is confusing politics with governance and they are two entirely separate concepts.

MAL's only select to not be a part of the governance of WBCCI.

There is no way anyone in any group is going to be able to avoid politics. Any time you have more than one person working towards a common effort you will have politics. How you deal with politics is pretty much up to you. You can join the fray and encourage others to see it your way or you can float with the parade and pretend it doesn't matter where it leads, or you can drop out and find another group more to your interests. But to pretend you can avoid an inherent part of working with other people is not going to help you find your best options.

There are problems to be solved and things to be fixed. Where I worry is because I know where 'in your face' and 'up yours' and confrontational behavior leads and I see a lot of this destructive behavior, some in jest but some does not appear to be so. It creates resistance and makes finding effective solutions harder and more difficult to achieve.

Active responsibility is significant part of civility. Any participant in a group has a responsibility to understand the implications of their views, to listen and learn, to know what it is they are getting into, and to share with others for the strength of the community. Ripping and shredding when you don't know what you are tearing apart or don't understand the consequences is not usually a good idea.
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Old 07-16-2006, 05:13 PM   #16
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I respectfully disagree

Unfortunately the governace has made the politics unbearable. bring out the worst in people.

This is confusing politics with governance and they are two entirely separate concepts.

MAL's only select to not be a part of the governance of WBCCI. True

There is no way anyone in any group is going to be able to avoid politics. Any time you have more than one person working towards a common effort you will have politics. How you deal with politics is pretty much up to you. You can join the fray and encourage others to see it your way or you can float with the parade and pretend it doesn't matter where it leads, or you can drop out and find another group more to your interests. But to pretend you can avoid an inherent part of working with other people is not going to help you find your best options.

I don't believe there is NO WAY ANYONE can avoid politics. If you are not trying to govern your gathering and good time. There goes the politics.

We have family reunions each year. A date is set, a place is picked it's a pot luck event and we get together and have fun. This year is the 52.

young members want to camp, have fun. If it's kept simple perhaps it could be more sucessful.
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Old 07-16-2006, 05:52 PM   #17
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hi rgesch, leipper and others.....

many might think and post.....
'so sorry to read of your resignation...the unit is losing....blah, blah, blah..'

my thoughts.....
hey, congrats on making a fun change, i'm a mal too! lets go camping!

leipper's distinction is subtle but spot on....
governance and politics are distinct...
but it is short sighted to assume mals cannot affect governance....
or give up participation in governance....
the smarter we mals get the more influential we become!

politics happens every time 2 or more members talk.......
happens at your family reunions too......but it's subtle....

anyway, mals can't vote and are treated poorly and don't have a formal voice but that doesn't mean we cannot impact governance......u don't need examples...

rgeasch......
at local unit functions and local rallies and so on....
your voice, example and will still have impact....
at the big winter rally or international....well that takes work.

i'd still like to see 'at large' folks have voting rights,
but i can live with out it...
can the wb live with out rgeasch, myself and others who own and enjoy airstreams?

for many wb folks one trip a year defines camping, membership and the airstream life.......many others of us are out there often, have a voice, express ourselfs in many media.......
and have far greater impact as airstreamers.......
than a whole can of dried wb'ers.....

cheers and congrats again, on the membership upgrade!

2air'
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Old 07-16-2006, 05:53 PM   #18
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I enjoy reading all the the replys to problems campers have and the advice that others have had and are willing to help out.I don't belong to any clubs or units,When I go camping I meet a lot of execellent people at different camp grounds.We keep in touch by phone or email . No rules or requirements..Don't have to put up with members trying to be gods.I just go where ever and have a good time meeting people or sight seeing what I want to see..so just go and have a good time and leave the squbles behind.WE HAVE ENOUGH at work,don't need any while camping..
Have a great summer of camping and travelling..
bobchevy89
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Old 07-16-2006, 06:10 PM   #19
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". . .congrats again, on the membership upgrade!"~2air
". . .have a good time and leave the squbles behind.WE HAVE ENOUGH at work,don't need any while camping..Have a great summer of camping and travelling..bobchevy89 ~G
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Old 07-16-2006, 06:38 PM   #20
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"but it is short sighted to assume mals cannot affect governance...."

This is one of the primary reasons to keep politics and governance distinct - to be able to recognize this influence and its sources. It is by politics - the relationships between people engaged in a common activity - that people learn how others feel and think. Whether by MAL's or the public at large (and their influence was seen quite heavily in the name change advocates' arguments), those that directly influence governance are influenced themselves.

Quote:
anyway, mals can't vote and are treated poorly and don't have a formal voice but that doesn't mean we cannot impact governance
MAL's are not the only ones treated poorly. Voting members can suffer poor treatment I know from direct experience (and from what started this thread). Staffing volunteers can suffer poor treatment (e.g. your story) I know from direct observation. WBCCI seems to be non discriminatory when it comes to "treating poorly."

I do not think segregating oneself into a victimized group is a good idea. We are all in this together. It is good to see things discussed but we need to better define "treating poorly" and find effective means to fix what ails, even if it is that the definition itself is a major part of the problem.

IMHO it is not an institutional problem but rather one where a bit of appropriate feedback is needed. The problem as I see it is that the kind of feedback needed is not the sort that people feel comfortable giving. So we get evasions, sidetracks, denial, and some other behaviors that really don't help.
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Old 07-17-2006, 02:16 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobchevy89
I enjoy reading all the the replys to problems campers have and the advice that others have had and are willing to help out.I don't belong to any clubs or units,When I go camping I meet a lot of execellent people at different camp grounds.We keep in touch by phone or email . No rules or requirements..Don't have to put up with members trying to be gods.I just go where ever and have a good time meeting people or sight seeing what I want to see..so just go and have a good time and leave the squbles behind.WE HAVE ENOUGH at work,don't need any while camping..
Have a great summer of camping and travelling..
bobchevy89



I can not agree with you more. These threads pull me in probably from my years of having to participate in politics of the organization. These threads also let me know just how much I dis-liked it and do not want it combined with my fun time camping. No formal organization is ever going to be needed to allow a bunch of friends to gather and have a fun weekend together. Alan is also correct that today with the Internet the need for communication is lessened. Lastly, the talk about liability always comes up. We carry our own insurance. If there was less structure, planning, and rigidity there would be less need for the group to take on the burden of liability.
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Old 07-17-2006, 02:24 PM   #22
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Liability

I am going to an outing with the Arizona Roundup later this year. This is how they handle liability...
Quote:
Liability: In consideration of the acceptance of the right to participate; entrants, participants, and spectators, by execution of this registrations form, release and discharge the Arizona Teardrop Group and their officers, directors, employees from any and all known or unknown damages, injuries, or losses, judgments, and/or claims from any cause whatsoever that may be suffered by any participant to his/her person or property, Further, each participant expressly agrees to indemnify all conduct of any participant(s) or spectator(s).
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Date: _____/______/________
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Old 07-17-2006, 04:07 PM   #23
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No formal organization is ever going to be needed to allow a bunch of friends to gather and have a fun weekend together. ... If there was less structure, planning, and rigidity there would be less need for the group to take on the burden of liability.
I guess one key is this use of "formal organization" and what that is supposed to mean. A lot of this seems to be knee jerk antipathy that tends to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Have you talked to a lawyer lately? Do you understand the role of event insurance in an organization? The role of incorporation in these matters? The nature of a volunteer acting for an organization versus as an independent actor? - as for the liability disclaimer suggestion, you should also get good legal advice before you hang your hat there as they don't provide much of a barrier, if any.

Liability problems are very seldom an issue in our activities but when they do arise they tend to be ugly.

Yes, indeedy, the campout with a group of close friends has a long long history. But I will disagree with you that they have no formal organizing or planning or rigidity or other such things as being complained about some WBCCI events. The organizing, planning, and rigidity are just different, that's all.

The group camping buddy situation is one I see a lot in stagnating Units. They close in around themselves and only those with closely similar views become welcome so they grow older together, start doing lunches rather than campouts, and gradually dwindle away. Then they wonder where all the fun went.

What I think you really need to do, rather than tell me about how organization, planning, and norms of behavior are not necessary, is to start brainstorming about your event and what might happen 'if'. Be open minded. Don't just dismiss anything anyone comes up with. Chances are good someone has encountered a similar situation.

WBCCI doesn't stand in the way of minimal planning, informal gatherings, or flexible events and I think it rather slanderous to imply they do. There are enough examples of Units and Intra-Clubs and ad hoc WBCCI groups in these forums to show just this.

You can use WBCCI as an organization to help you get more out of your RV experience or you can use it as a foil to express your frustration with some people that are severe or significant irritants to you. Venting and cussin' and complaining can be fun for a short while, but positive contructive use of what is available to you is likely to be more fun and more profitable in the long run.
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Old 07-17-2006, 05:48 PM   #24
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I believe it is time to think outside the box. Nothing IS preventing a bunch of people from gathing at a certain place, at a certain time. People do it all the time. To me my MAL-Content Rallies will just be another choice in the smorgeboard (SP?) of activites provided as a choice. i also would like to experiment an see if it can be done. I'm glad to see the liability issue is being discussed. I have always wondered just what we are covered for???? I think if you read the declaration page the organization is protected not us or or rigs. SO what's in it for us? What does WBCCI offer us that is beyond what the normal camper has?
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Old 07-17-2006, 06:10 PM   #25
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There are rallying rules in some places...

Liepper and Rgesch;

As much as I've enjoyed this, and wish the New England Malcontent Rallies the best, it is fair to point out that some units in some regions DO have Rally Rules that must be complied with to have a WBCCI Rally... While we enjoy our "Nor-Cal Forum Rallies" immensely, the level of effort to book a reservation collectively probably doesn't rise to create group legal liability. Beyond that, food, activities, timing and entertainment are the responsibilities of the individual attendees.

There are units in Calif where a Rally must include:

1. Communal Kitchen/Meeting Room so meals can be prepared by hosts and eaten together, with food costs pro-rated..
2. Name Badges to be worn
3. Breakfasts per pre-arranged menu's
4. Only members can attend, other than the annual "Guest Rally"

I understand this degree of regimentation is OK with the members who do participate, but the average participation is low enough that units are combining, even though several have 30 or more members, to have enough participants to reserve the kitchens...

Don't want to get into right/wrong/criticize or fix discussions, but just to point out that for some joining a WBCCI Unit Rally means acceptance of requirements that might not be their natural choice for enjoying their Airstream...

John
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Old 07-17-2006, 06:20 PM   #26
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Name Badges

I think that name badges are great. I think that it is much friendlier to call someone by their name rather than "hey you". I feel like an outsider at an event when I don't know anyone's name and they feel that they don't need to wear a name badge "because everyone knows who I am", well I am new and I don't know you. If you meet someone only a few times a year, how can you expect to remember their name. It is more difficult when the name on a forum, such as this, is not the same as their given name and they don't have a name badge with either.

Bill
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Old 07-17-2006, 06:28 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wkerfoot
I think that name badges are great.
I think name badges are great too, and I wear one whenever I have one and remember to put it on. I think name badge requirements are just plain silly.

-J
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Old 07-17-2006, 06:38 PM   #28
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Smile Good for you, life is too short for that malarky!

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Originally Posted by rgesch
I will be sitting back for a bit. Resting from the beatings and look at the creation of something new and different.Sometimes in organizational structure you have to let it die then see what can be rebuilt from the ashes. Robin
Very wise Robin. You know what's best for you. Take care of yourself and what you need to thrive and blossom. Sorry to read about all that negativity, sounds like a toxic scene. Just my 2 cents. Best wishes!
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