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Old 09-11-2010, 01:46 PM   #101
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If next month's newsletter is what will bring an end to all these discussions about organization, then I can't wait for next month! The majority of people posting to this thread are NOT for the writing of a mission statement. Some of us just wish this discussion was over / forgotten about. There was no talk of a mission statement or regions, divisions...nothing until a couple weeks ago and up until then I was gung-ho about TAC. I feel these couple of recently started threads have breached topics that most TAC'ers didn't want to breach and that the rest of TAC'ers could care less. TAC was fun because it was loosely organized and you did what you wanted when you wanted. I was happy to tell anyone and everyone about TAC. Now, I'd hesitate because it's getting political. There's threads involving the TAC where emotions are escalating rather than sharing excitement about an upcoming rally, gathering, or event. The fun is now being sucked out of it. I just want to hold my hands over my ears and shake my head and scream, "make it go away! make it go away!"

Why be TAC vs. something else now? Sure, I could ignore these national / higher level discussions and say, "I'm just camping. I like the people I've met at rallies and that's all that matters." Hmm...sound like the "excuse" to stay in another club around here? TAC IS different today. Let's not change that by making regions or mission statements or other political / administrative stuff.
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Old 09-11-2010, 01:47 PM   #102
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Did the mission statement contain insanity, or did the committee fail to observe or achieve the mission?
In fairness there was probably nothing wrong with the mission statement.
They acted in accordance with it and presented a lot of good ideas.
Where it came apart was getting any of them acted on by those in power.
The net result was that the mission statement seems to be the only thing that got accomplished, but that is probably starting to stray off topic here.
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Old 09-11-2010, 02:19 PM   #103
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If next month's newsletter is what will bring an end to all these discussions about organization, then I can't wait for next month!
It'll certainly bring a definitive end to the discussion.

Please don't think of this as politics - it really isn't. It's just a little growing pain stab at defining our identity, while asking ourselves if we even want one.

I hate to think anyone has become disillusioned by this discussion - it's truly just a bit of back and forth which I see as no more than a few friends around a card table discussing what game to play next
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Old 09-11-2010, 03:51 PM   #104
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TAC was fun because it was loosely organized and you did what you wanted when you wanted. I was happy to tell anyone and everyone about TAC. Now, I'd hesitate because it's getting political.
Huh? Dave asks about a "mission statement," I presume because he wants to make sure he understand TAC before he has to make unilateral decisions as the publisher, editor and chief-bottle-washer of the newsletter. Some of you are acting like he's trying to sell you life insurance.

On that note, no one is asking anyone for money. Those who have contributed to TAC (including those of us who penned newsletter articles) have done so for purely altruistic reasons. I'm not posting on this thread because I want to be the Grand Poobah or Exalted Master. I just know, based on experience, that sooner or later TAC will need to make decisions. I'd rather we find a way to make those decisions with the absolute minimum of hierarchy, structure and rules... rather than pretend it's 1967 and everything will just be groovy, man.

You want TAC to work; there need to be at least a few simple rules and framework for the members to make decisions. It's not politics; it's the reality of how any organized human activity works.
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Old 09-11-2010, 03:55 PM   #105
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It's not so much that I want to make the right unilateral decisions (I would simply ask Rob and Frank for guidance) as that I want to have a sense of "good judgment" in getting the balance of the magazine right. Not just for myself, either. I'd like the readers and members to have a sense of balance in the articles/content too.

This thread has been very educational for me, and for those here that are looking to learn something new. I know it's a way of the world that some people want to talk and only listen to the answers they agree with, and brand everyone else a fool. Fortunately, there's been a distinct lack of that here - which is a credit to members of all viewpoints and persuasions.
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Old 09-11-2010, 04:55 PM   #106
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Huh? Dave asks about a "mission statement," I presume because he wants to make sure he understand TAC before he has to make unilateral decisions as the publisher, editor and chief-bottle-washer of the newsletter. Some of you are acting like he's trying to sell you life insurance.
Sorry, Dave's taking the fall for some of my comments because it seems (maybe wrongly from my perspective) that he's the one that decided to start these discussions when there wasn't so much of a "buzz" of interest in such discussions.

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I just know, based on experience, that sooner or later TAC will need to make decisions. I'd rather we find a way to make those decisions with the absolute minimum of hierarchy, structure and rules... rather than pretend it's 1967 and everything will just be groovy, man.
Exactly, but now is too soon. The need is not there.

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You want TAC to work; there need to be at least a few simple rules and framework for the members to make decisions. It's not politics; it's the reality of how any organized human activity works.
Again, this will occur naturally when required. No one even mentioned so much as the need for a framework at this time. There may be a need for TAC heirarchy, but it will come about and the leaders / office holders will emerge at that time. Right now is not that time and pushing the process to happen before it's due only creates animosity.
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Old 09-11-2010, 05:00 PM   #107
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It's not so much that I want to make the right unilateral decisions (I would simply ask Rob and Frank for guidance)
And that's exactly why I'm so vehement against things like mission statements, etc. at this time. Because right now, we're all still looking to the founders of TAC for guidance. Anyone who come in now and takes-over either in part or full will not have the respect and following and ultimately run TAC into the ground. Therefore, let's all sit back down in the back seat for now and enjoy the ride.
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Old 09-11-2010, 05:10 PM   #108
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No one even mentioned so much as the need for a framework at this time. There may be a need for TAC heirarchy, but it will come about and the leaders / office holders will emerge at that time. Right now is not that time and pushing the process to happen before it's due only creates animosity.
I think the liveliness of the debate shows that isn't a universal view.

What I have heard in this debate is that some people want no organization forever, a similar number think no organization is needed now, but at some point it might be helpful, and a smaller number of people think we should be working out simple things now.

The majority view does seem to be in the direction of some organization, be it now or later - but that majority is not a large or vocal one. The minority is vocal.

I do not think these two sides will come together or see eye to eye unless some event/incident moves people from naysayers to planners, or some planners relax a little and go with the flow.

I think the conclusion of the discussion is that the status quo will be maintained. The planners could do great things, but the naysayers don't see the benefit of it, and the naysayers don't have to DO anything to get where they're going, whereas the planners need to be spurred to action and have been firmly told that this is not the club for that.

Am I right, or did I miss something?
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Old 09-11-2010, 06:52 PM   #109
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Am I right, or did I miss something?
So, everything's groovy? Far out!

Now that we can return to sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll, a word for politics.

Politics has become a dirty word, and some of the practitioners are dirty, but the practice need not be. This definition from Wikipedia: "Politics (from Greek πολιτικος, [politikós]: «citizen», «civilian»), is a process by which groups of people make collective decisions. The term is generally applied to behavior within civil governments, but politics has been observed in other group interactions, including corporate, academic, and religious institutions. It consists of "social relations involving authority or power"[1] and refers to the regulation of a political unit,[2] and to the methods and tactics used to formulate and apply policy.[3]"

There are honest and caring politicians, but the ones that make the most news are either leaders or slimeballs. Some are both, but it is not mandatory. I see politics as an example of human interaction to get things done. Humans have frailties (power is dangerous for many, but not all). So, humans make love, some corruptly, some for money, some for love, but because some humans are corrupt lovers, does that mean all love making is bad? To say all politics is bad means all human endeavors are bad.

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Old 09-11-2010, 07:22 PM   #110
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I guess it's a good job I have no interest in politics, but a great interest in diplomacy. And love.
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Old 09-11-2010, 07:44 PM   #111
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Ok Im sitting in the backseat and watchin. But if theres anymore talk about Mission Statements and Liability Insurance and Treasurers IM OUT. I book and pay for all my own sites,so I dont need no dam treasurer. I pay my own Insurance and Health care so I dont need nobody in a club tell me what I have to have. If I fall down and hurt myself its probably cause IM drunk and I sure aint gonna sue the campground fer that. Although I should sue someone fer gettin me drunk in Michigan.There should of been a warning on that punch bowl.CAUTION !!!!! HEAVY LIQUOR. LOL
SO lets just go have fun and enjoy each others company and forget about what other clubs do, Cause we are different don't ya know???
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Old 09-11-2010, 08:58 PM   #112
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Again, this will occur naturally when required. No one even mentioned so much as the need for a framework at this time.
Yeah, people are bent out of shape over the mere discussion of some rudimentary framework... I'm sure when the magic moment arrives, Frank will come strolling down the mountain with stone tablets graven upon by Rob. And I'm sure everyone will give up doing their own personal golden calf thing and fall neatly into line.

And my wife wonders why I'm not a "joiner."

In every organization, 20 percent of the people do 80 percent of the meangingful work. Coincidentally, 80 percent of people are sure they are part of that 20 percent. The success or failure of TAC isn't trying to find a solution that makes 100 percent of the members happy. There are already people saying if this happens or that happens, I'm out. Well, folks, it's just a matter of time before something happens. For TAC to survive and thrive it needs members who are willing to 1) work; 2) contribute; and 3) compromise. The club can get by with the usual 20 percent working and contributing; it's not going to go anywhere if only 20 percent are willing to meet in the middle.
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Old 09-12-2010, 08:15 AM   #113
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I hate to think anyone has become disillusioned by this discussion - it's truly just a bit of back and forth which I see as no more than a few friends around a card table discussing what game to play next
Then, you Sir, need someone to interpret the tea leaves for you. I just sent an email to Rob asking that I be removed from TAC's membership roll (FL-1 can be reassigned). This has been like watching a train wreck, but I need to look away....you are now on ignore.

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Old 09-12-2010, 09:16 AM   #114
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Then, you Sir, need someone to interpret the tea leaves for you. I just sent an email to Rob asking that I be removed from TAC's membership roll (FL-1 can be reassigned). This has been like watching a train wreck, but I need to look away....you are now on ignore.

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I too am thinking of pulling out. Dave, you need to shut this dumb thread down. Your are ruining a good thing.
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Old 09-12-2010, 11:11 AM   #115
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I guess I shouldn't be surprised that people get upset when some things are discussed, or they become polarized at the mere mention of some ideas, but maybe I'm too idealistic.

So, aren't the Emperor's new clothes beautiful?

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Old 09-12-2010, 11:15 AM   #116
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Old 09-12-2010, 11:53 AM   #117
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I think they must have been reading a different thread. Or they just read the first page and the last, and glossed over that whole part in between were it was reinforced over and over again that the majority view is to change nothing at this time, with an acceptance that at some unknown point in the future, we might need to do something about becoming more... organized.

I try not to be offended when people tell others to not even discuss things in the open that they don't personally agree with. Which is hard. I like to sit around a campfire with people and hear views that are different to mine, and to even let it change my views sometimes. It's a great way to learn, and to get to know new people.

But I'm letting it go, because it's just a conversation.
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Old 09-12-2010, 12:42 PM   #118
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Many times I have heard the quote "To little to late".

Guess for some folks this thread is "To much to soon" .

Organizing TAC may be tabled for now but current leaders will be looking for relief or assistance sometime down the road and I would hate for folks to drop out as one of them may be a future leader or providing needed assistance as the club moves forward.
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Old 09-12-2010, 12:45 PM   #119
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Well, if this is a "non-club," I can put my invisible non-numbers on my Airstream while wearing official non-hat. It also explains why I can't find my non-membership card; it's right in my wallet next to the pictures of the kids I don't have and the money I spent last week.

What's happening, Dave, is that some people aren't getting exactly what they want so they are taking back the dues they never paid and are going home... which is probably for the best. If a simple conversation on the Airforums is going to cause people to drop TAC then it was just a matter of time before they jumped ship. I think the important thing, Dave, is not to figure out how TAC will appeal to everyone. It won't and it never will. The key is to figure out how the generally nice, easy going, friendly, low-key people who don't fit into the WBCCI (for any number of reasons) can have a generally nice, easy, friendly, low-key club.

You and Gene are both wonderfully idealistic, if not a bit naive. One of the problems is that TAC was formed in a simplistic manner. It was totally open-ended (dead serious about having fun) and didn't require any contribution (zero dues). This created a situation where anyone could join TAC and immediately assume it was exactly what they wanted it to be. So what you have now is a group of people with wildly different expectations about TAC... and this is a recipe for trouble. It would have been far better for Rob and/or Frank to come out and say--with at least some specificity--this is TAC. You like it, great. You don't, no problem. At the end of the day people like you (Dave) and possibly Gene and others are going to make TAC into something. The folks who are bolting out the door aren't, and never were. Making an organization "work" requires time, dedication, sacrifice, flexibility, a sense of humor, a sense of humility and a heckuva lot of luck. I don't understand why people think it takes planning and hard work to renovate a vintage Airstream but an organization can just fall together perfectly by everyone doing their own thing.

So, Dave, we're down to brass tacks. Are Rob and Frank (and you) going to make TAC a "non club" with zero structure... or are you all going to try to make it into something?
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Old 09-12-2010, 01:19 PM   #120
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I freely admit to being a little naive. It was the reason I started the thread - for my own education, and the information of others too.

I think your words are very heartening - they weaken my discouragement.

I've said before that I think another club needs to exist. I see the need for TAC and a long and successful future for it, but it will not meet the long term needs of most of the members it COULD attract - as nobody can calculate how many people haven't joined because of the disorganization and failed stab at non-politics. There's the rub. The resistance to politics is actually the strongest political view I have felt, and it has been expressed bluntly.

I have no patience for politics. TAC isn't about politics. It's about diplomacy. It's about inviting people to get along, co-operatively and voluntarily. Some people just aren't equipped to do that.

So, let me outline a new idea:

WBCCI continues as is. TAC continues as is. A new club, let's call it "Airstreamers' Camping Club" (ACC) *grins* is incorporated.

ACC would be a family-focused club that charges $25/year in dues. It organizes itself as a non-profit and follows a least-cost path. It gets basic liability insurance to cover members/guests at events. It treats everyone the same, with no special benefits for anyone. It has three officers, who have two year terms and a two term limit, then a one-term furlough. It organizes events across the ENTIRE country, focusing on providing the best camping experience it can at the most affordable prices. It has no committees, no deficits are allowed, and expenses are limited. It communicates electronically. It has minimal rules, mainly aimed at regulating the people who run it, rather than limiting those who want to enjoy it.

To my mind, a club like that would need about 1,000 members to provide the most basic services, and once it had 2,000+ members it would be able to organize frequent national, regional and local events.

It's not unrealistic. It just requires three people who agree the plan to start it.

The main obstacle is getting those three like-minded people PMing each other.

If such a group forms, it will have my full support and paid membership. I'd continue with TAC also, and continue doing the magazine until it's more established (if a club that refuses to establish itself can become more established!)
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