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I know I'm probably guilty of crossing beams (boundaries!) but I refer the aspiring Group of 30 (G30) to the last email on ...moans and groans ... and specifically the short few pages I have uploaded at http://cybernetics-society.wikispaces.com/Forensic+Audit (it being an old dead satellite that comes in handy sometimes for attachments etc) -- my guess is that if any organisation of professionals would now be super charged and ready to go it would be the Audit Fraternity. Please see my other comments and the targeting of the forensic audit area. They would surely see value in their 3* role being related to all others at system and meta system levels -- if not then all hope is lost and we do not have a viable system down here on planet earth!

--- On Tue, 14/10/08, Frank <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
From: Frank <[log in to unmask]>
Subject: Re: Adaptation and Global Warming (Was Stafford Beer] and Oracle)
To: [log in to unmask]
Received: Tuesday, 14 October, 2008, 9:17 AM



 
 

Dear Boris,
oops, meant panic stricken reaction on the part of 
scientists, govenrments etc!
 
>But also note that not a single soul on this 
list responded to the challenge in my e-mail of March 19, last:
>"so my question and 
challenge to all here is this: are there thirty people here who are ready, 
willing and able to engage in a full fledged >Syntegration 
and begin meaningful progress in bringing Stafford’s ideas to a world in 
desperate need of real change?"
 
Don't tempt me to make a comment :-) I locked horns many 
a time with members of a Complexity listserv on the attitudes of academics. 

 
I'm not an academic. All I bring to the table (as they 
say) is experience in the frontline as regards organisational dynamics and how 
things and systems fall apart. I also can help as a web researcher as I've been 
told I'm pretty good at that and sometimes actually get paid for 
it!
 
So, everyone, as Boris said, lets begin meaningful 
progress in bringing Stafford's ideas to the present world. 
 
In other words what is step one in this 
progress?
 
Regards
 
Frank Wood

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: 
  Boris G 
  Freesman, Q.C. 
  To: [log in to unmask] 
  
  Sent: Monday, October 13, 2008 7:07 
  PM
  Subject: Re: Adaptation and Global 
  Warming (Was Stafford Beer] and Oracle)
  

  
  Frank: "What I would 
  like to see discussed here is how we can build on the VSM in order to manage 
  the challenge of global warming rather than the panic stricken reactions we 
  have now."
   
  No panic on my part!
   
  But also note that not a single soul on this list responded to 
  the challenge in my e-mail of March 19, last:
  "so my question and 
  challenge to all here is this: are there thirty people here who are ready, 
  willing and able to engage in a full fledged Syntegration and begin 
  meaningful progress in bringing Stafford’s ideas to a world in desperate need 
  of real change?"
   
  Talk about the brain of Savannah man!... or, 
  are you referring to Savannah, Georgia?  ;-}>
   
  Boris
   
   
  
    ----- Original Message ----- 
    From: 
    Frank 
    To: [log in to unmask] 
    
    Sent: Monday, October 13, 2008 9:42 
    AM
    Subject: Re: Adaptation and Global 
    Warming (Was Stafford Beer] and Oracle)
    

    Hi Boris,
    well as the saying goes:
     
    "No answer is an answer in itself" which can be 
    interpreted in many way :-)
     
    SNIP
    >until about 75 years ago, in what then was, 
    comparatively speaking, a simple society, that seemed to suffice... who 
    even thought, then, of >accelerating change and 
    complexity?
     
    Bill Livingston has a lot to say about this 
    in his books "Having Fun at Work" and "Friends in High Places". The main 
    thrust of his arguments is that we still have the brain of (say) Savannah 
    man of eons ago and yet we are struggling to make sense in a highly complex 
    world, both technologically and organisationally speaking. 
     
    His books and Beer's Purpose of a System Is 
    What It Does and Ashby's "Law of Requiste Variety" saved my sanity and 
    that's no understatement! Once I began to understand the nature of the 
    organisational beast I could then have fun, do little controlled experiments 
    to provoke predictable reaction from "org man".
     
    And of course survive that reaction. 
    :-)
     
    SNIP
    >Yes... that is why the VSM was 
    articulated... but, as you say, humanity 
    is extremely addicted to rearranging deckchairs: yes, 
    let's change >everything, just so long as nothing 
    changes! 
     
    
    One of the examples of the rearranging of 
    deck chairs is that over 130 million people have had their territorial 
    rights violated by conservation agencies so 
    that parks could be set up and certified logging 
    concessions handed out and so on. Add to that alleged human rights abuses 
    such as massive forced resettlements, destruction of property and farms and 
    other violations.
     
    All this done by conservation agencies so 
    that we in the West can feel that we are "doing 
    something".
     
    What I would like to see discussed here is 
    how we can build on the VSM in order to manage the challenge of global 
    warming rather than the panic stricken reactions we have now.
     
    Regards
     
    Frank Wood
     
     
     
     
     
    
      ----- Original Message ----- 
      From: 
      Boris G 
      Freesman, Q.C. 
      To: [log in to unmask] 
      
      Sent: Monday, October 13, 2008 1:00 
      AM
      Subject: Re: Adaptation and Global 
      Warming (Was Stafford Beer] and Oracle)
      

      Sorry Frank. I did not ignore you; I forgot 
      you!  ;-}> 
       
      I think we should be restructuring 
      societies so that they can continuously adapt to constant 
      complexification. People, too.
       
      Yes... that is why the VSM was 
      articulated... but, as you say, humanity 
      is extremely addicted to rearranging deckchairs: yes, 
      let's change everything, just so long as nothing 
      changes! 
       
      Until about 75 years ago, in what then 
      was, comparatively speaking, a simple society, that seemed to 
      suffice... who even thought, then, of accelerating change 
      and complexity? 
       
      And I agree with you that human arrogance 
      is a major (if not, the) problem: it stands in the way of letting 
      go of what we think we know (but do not), to let something new come in... 
      something that we don't think we know (but, in fact, 
      do). 
       
      Boris
       
       
       
      
        ----- Original Message ----- 
        From: 
        Frank 
        To: [log in to unmask] 
        
        Sent: Monday, October 06, 2008 2:10 
        PM
        Subject: Adaptation and Global 
        Warming (Was Stafford Beer] and Oracle)
        

        Dear Boris,
        "The reasonable man 
        adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to 
        adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the 
        unreasonable man."
         
        Isn't that what we are doing with our 
        approach to global warming? In our antrhocentric arrogance we think we 
        can change a huge system such as global climate by rearranging the 
        deckchairs.
         
        Shouldn't we be adapting socieities to 
        changing climates?
         
        Can VSM be used to help us?
         
        Regards
         
        Frank Wood
        
          ----- Original Message ----- 
          From: 
          Boris G 
          Freesman, Q.C. 
          To: [log in to unmask] 
          
          Sent: Monday, October 06, 2008 
          3:12 PM
          Subject: Re: Stafford Beer] and 
          Oracle
          

          "There is absolutely 
          no shred of evidence that, given time, society will gravitate towards 
          what’s best for its survival and advancement. There is no compelling 
          force towards enlightenment-based action. Anyone can find the same 
          miserable pattern of sabotage in the literature of a century 
          ago..."
           
          Thanks for that, sir!
           
          It echoes the criticism I have levelled 
          at this very group in the past... which is why I had sworn off this 
          list: we are a much smaller group but subject to the same 
          ailment.
           
          As explanation-in-part, I offer 
          one of Stafford's favourite quotes from 
          Machiavelli:
          "It must be considered that there is nothing more difficult to 
          carry out, nor more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to handle, 
          than to initiate a new order of things. For the reformer has enemies 
          in all those who profit by the old order, and only lukewarm defenders 
          in all those who would profit by the new order, this lukewarmness 
          arising partly from fear of their adversaries, who have the laws in 
          their favour; and partly from the incredulity of mankind, who do not 
          truly believe in anything new until they have had actual experience of 
          it. Thus it arises that on every opportunity for attacking the 
          reformer, his opponents do so with the zeal of partisans, the others 
          only defend him half-heartedly, so that between them he runs great 
          danger."
           
          It also corroborates my deep 
          concern (fear?) that Prigogine's theories apply to our social 
          systems, too: society 
          must first collapse in the face of overwhelming complexity before we 
          can reorganize it at a higher level of structural 
          complexity.
           
          And, finally, another quotation that I 
          consider germane... this time, from G. B. Shaw:
          "The reasonable 
          man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in 
          trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends 
          on the unreasonable man."
           
          Can we, the Metaphorum group, learn 
          anything from all of this?
           
          Remains to be seen!
           
          Boris
           
           
           
           
          
            ----- Original Message ----- 
            From: 
            William Livingston 
            To: [log in to unmask] 
            
            Sent: Monday, October 06, 2008 
            5:09 AM
            Subject: Stafford Beer] and 
            Oracle
            

            
            
            Thanks 
            for providing another round of data points about the sociology of 
            inter-domain technology transfer. What is significant about the vast 
            collection of these experiences of passive/aggressive rejections, 
            over the ages, is that the creation of this ubiquitous response 
            remains undiscussed and unexamined. Where is the clarion call saying 
            “Hey, anybody see a pattern here? How come there are no contrary 
            examples?” None.
              
            Decades 
            ago I made it a point to visit with the living greats in systems 
            think, including Stafford. Near the end all would say something to 
            the effect that – “Although my concepts have not yet taken hold to 
            any commensurate extent, in a hundred years or so society would 
            gradually get the message and the discipline of systems think would 
            become a cultural norm.”  I noted these mentors, and 
            their mentors, had tormented endings – to a man. 
              
            There is 
            absolutely no shred of evidence that, given time, society will 
            gravitate towards what’s best for its survival and advancement. 
            There is no compelling force towards enlightenment-based action. 
            Anyone can find the same miserable pattern of sabotage in the 
            literature of a century ago – Thorstein Veblen being but one 
            example. What is striking is that the behavioral attributes of 
            institutions are exactly the same, century in and century out – 
            oblivious to circumstances. The institutional rejection of VSM, 
            wholesale, is but one instance of the institutional aversion to 
            intelligence-informed management. 
            Friday, USA citizens bailed out Wall St. to the tune of a trillion 
            dollars without once investigating by what means this global 
            emergency manifested, unforeseeable, overnight. 
              
            “Oh, you 
            had no idea on Friday when you reported solid financial strength 
            that by Monday your institution would be down $300 billion? No 
            problem. Here’s money for you to keep doing whatever you were doing. 
            After all, your $400 trillion in unregulated derivatives makes out 
            national budget look parsimonious.” 
              
            In view 
            of this stunning measurement of institutional ideology, it just 
            doesn’t seem likely that promoting VSM in the ways and means it has 
            been promoted will fare any better in the future. But, that’s 
            another 
            undiscussable.~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 
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