For an introduction to this expanding meta-thread see Integral Anti-Capitalism pt I. We continue here because we have, hilariously, exceeded this website's capacity...

LAYMAN PASCAL

I agree that holacracy should be singled out for special investigation. The provocative notion that we are dramatically over-emphasizing the need for "conscious leadership" pertains very pertinently to this discussion. Robertson, like ourselves, is pointing to the fact that business (organizations) which integrally improve the interiors and cultural
spirit of their participants are still predisposed to certain outcomes as a result of their actual structural habits of communication and their specific decision-making protocols.
His notion of a constantly self-correcting dynamic organization drawing upon the capacity of individuals to act as tension-sensors relative to the "evolutionary purpose" of the organization is compelling and admirable.

More important is simply that he is making a stand and making an attempt to construct a protocol (constitution). I am not fully versed in the 4.0 version of the holacracy constitution but we should get deeper into some of these proposals.  

Given the level of your current knowledge of their protocols, what would you want to change or add in order to ethically and functionally empower this approach even more?

THEURJ

First some housekeeping in providing links in part I to comments on holacracy: their website, comment 1, comment 2, comment 3 (and 3 more on p. 7), and the first 7 comments on p. 8

I’m not yet familiar enough with holacracy to know it might need. So for now I’ll ask questions.  From p. 8 there was a blog post on ownership and the model might (but not necessarily) include outside capital investors. I asked:

“One question immediately pops up on outside investors. Are there limits on the amount of outside capital investment? What if their investment is such that without it the company could not financially survive? And/or depends on it for start-up? Then such investment would control the company, like it or not. If you don't do what I say I'm taking my ball and going home. No ball, no ballgame. Not the same as a mortgage or loan company.”

Granted why such investors are included on the Board there are other stake-holders to balance their input. But are there rules about which outside individuals or companies can invest? Do they have to have similar values like triple bottom lines instead of just profit for their investors? Can a Goldman Sachs provide start-up capital? Or Romeny’s ex-firm, Bain? Just wondering, so perhaps it’s time for those out there more familiar with the system to engage us?

LAYMAN PASCAL

I appreciate your inquiry about the potential influence of outside investors in holacratic systems. Perhaps they have a good protocol for that. Or perhaps not. In general, all "smart groups" need to comprehend and anticipate the distortion influence that donors and enablers wield. The psychology of human nature shows that we may believe ourselves to be quite sturdy and impartial while we are really bending in the breeze.

One of the concerns I had while perusing the holacracy constitution was about the voting procedure for filling roles. There are many parts of their approach which impress. In particular I would like to make not of the necessity to place constraints upon discussion. When the mention of a concern is met with the mention of counter-concerns then the intelligence and practical efficacy of discussions drops dramatically. A highly suspicious mind might even supposed that the human hive is encouraged to engage in the constant casual usage of dysfunctional conversation. So their use of controlled phases in both operational and hiring decisions is admirable. However, their actual voting protocol seems (to my naive glance) to be based on a model of transparent majority. A sophisticated "show of hands".

So this may be an area in which holacratic principles can be expanded to include a more thorough use of "secret ballot" and "averaged ranking".

The former often seems like a show of bad faith and an invitation to covert dangers... but these are considerably outweighed by the liberation of individual intelligence from any conscious or unconscious concerns about the social consequences of their input.

The latter evades a primitive "first past the post" approach in which our intelligence is functionally limited to a yes/no determination about each candidate relative to other candidates.

Another thing I admire about holacracy is that it represents a functional procedure and culture in which participants would appear to become better participants by participating. Their capacity and ethical commitment to the good of the organization through its evolving protocols should be an increasing trend. Any smart group needs to be arranged so that even people who try to distort the results will find their capacity and will to do this reducing over time. Replaced by the inspirational efficacy of the group.

This brings me to another issue relative to voting, both in political and economic groups. That is the relative absence of specific instructions about how to translated ones feelings into a vote-mark. This is almost completely unaddressed in terms of popular elections. To discuss it even seems insidious to some people who fear coercion (and/or wish to maintain the current material power structures).

Protocols should have at least a clear suggestion about how to locate both "gut" and "intellectual" data within ourselves and convert that into a numerical value which can be contributed to a group decision. A lack of clarification at this critical junction may act as an invisible source of drag upon an otherwise very functional group organism.

It might even be possible to define an "integral-level organizational set up" for business or politics by simply compiling a list of areas in which intelligence and capacity are distorted. We might recall that most of Wilber's philosophy has emerged in levels correlated to his discovery of "fallacies" or "basic errors". Integral proposals about business and society could be all over the map unless there is a reasonable set of constraints that make sure they fall in the most lucrative zone.

So other than the potential influence of outside "helpers" and "donors" what other sources of distortion or inhibition do you see going mostly unaddressed in otherwise progressive groups?

THEURJ

My next question of holacracy is who came up with it? It seems to be the pet project of Brian Robertson, his own brainchild. I'm wondering if that is so of if it was a community or P2P project? I mean, the structure of holacracy itself calls for distributed decision-making but was the creation of holacracy itself derived from this process or mostly dictated by Robertson? I've yet to find an answer at the site so I posed this question to them via contact info. I'll provide the response if/when received. I think the answer is pivotal in determining if this thing called holacracy arose from its own medicine.

LAYMAN PASCAL

I look forward that answer if it is forthcoming. The notion of self-arising systems is something which haunts the periphery of these discussions. My fantasy is that we can devise a group protocol which so reliably and simply exceeds the cognitive capacity of the individual participants that it would be foolish to predetermine the purpose and nature of the group. Collectively we could a better job of determining what kind of a collective we should be. "Smartgroups" of this kind could then spread through the world in a very radical social uprising. How possible that is remains uncertain...

As I understand holacracy, the different companies making use of it are assumed to engage in their own mutational modifications of the "constitution". So even if Brian wrote the whole thing out in his bathtub it still retains an open source quality. The answer to whether its current forms are or are not the result of distributed decision-making is almost certainly: sort of.

One of the reasons the holacracy approach is so amenable to business organization is that it seems to depend upon the functional axis of a specified purpose. The aim is somewhat pregiven -- our job is to sell widgets or maximize share-holder profit, etc. His use of the metaphor of the sensors on an airplane derives from a mechanism that is assumed to be designed for a well-known purpose.

My question would be whether or not this "aim" is a necessarily functional element in generating enhanced organizational capacity? Or whether it is simply an artifact of the need to make these systems serve a relatively conventional marketplace task?

THEURJ

Your suggestion of a smart group that arises creatively from a continually evolving set of parameters seems to be the intent and practice of holacracy. As to the organizational purpose of Holacracy One, it seems to have multiple bottom lines including but not limited to profit. For example, see this post in the comments where I noted that the top to bottom pay ratio is 3 to 1, and quoted some of those multiple purposes:

"With Holacracy at play, the game is entirely different: with the decentralization of authoritythe separation of people and role, and the dynamic evolution of those roles, we end up with a situation that looks more like free agents going about their work with no central planning. There might not even be a single person who knows about everything you do."

This sounds much more like the sort of emerging P2P organizational structure discussed throughout this thread. And also of significance in the post following this article where The Integral Center of Boulder has "voluntarily relinquished their rights to control their company as owners. Instead, they have ceded authority to a purpose-centered governance process called Holacracy, a model that distributes authority across the organization and gives primary power to the organization itself."

These are indeed advances over the kind of conscious capitalism promoted and AQALly packaged for sale at I-I.

LAYMAN PASCAL

(comment pending)

This is an interesting moment. Apparently Amazon.com is experimenting with a version of holacracy as well. It clearly represents a theoretical advance over the typical kind of conscious capitalism which combines advanced sentiments with a potentially dangerous and uninspected ideological allegiance to more primitive routines of social organization and wealth production. Yet we cannot know the results of the experiment in advance.

I have tremendous optimism about emergent p2p organizational structures. Experimentation is utterly necessary and should be strongly encouraged. I am also very hopeful that advances can be made in terms of quantification. This is very central in my thinking lately.

It seems that experimental protocols for advances social organization systems suffer from the lack of a quantifiable evaluation of their respective degrees of "collective intelligence". Most people are drawn to such possibilities by ethical and aesthetic criteria which do no necessarily persuade the world. So I would love to see experimentation supplemented by the attempt to devise a metric for estimating the intelligence of a social organization protocol.

Along similar lines, my "tetrabucks" type notions represent the possibility/necessity to structure our currency at a level that correlates to advanced P2P organizational structures and post-pluralistic consciousness.

The potential of an evil holacracy has hardly been broached. If it works -- it works. Other than simply the tendency of less complex people not to use more complex systems, and the tendency of more complex systems to complexify their participants, there needs to be some inter-organizational structures which incline all organizations int he direction of broad human well-being. It is my assertion that as long as primary areas of value remain outside monetization the actions of groups trying to utilize official social credits will constantly become unstable.

So I am imagining a line leading from pathological capitalism to standard capitalism to conscious capitalism to trans-capitalist network organizations to such organizations bound together by a integrated set of metrics for determining the intelligence of groups and splicing together (at least) four broad domains of human value.

Along these lines -- how will we decide whether holacratic integral business is working better?

THEURJ

As to how we determine whether alternative economic paradigms are 'working,' I'd suggest that even by the standards of typical business democratic workplaces like co-ops are successful. If by that we mean the organization runs smoothly, has low employee turnover, high employee satisfaction, makes a profit or surplus over operating costs, and other such typical measures. Plus they fulfill their stated purposes as expressed in theRochdale principles, like community education, cooperation, democratic control, etc.

I'd say the same applies to holacracy. They also have to accomplish the usual business parameters like above but also meet stated principles like in their constitution. Given Robertson's business acumen I'm sure at the site he has precise and measurable indices to track such progress, though I didn't try to find them as yet.

LAYMAN PASCAL

(comment pending)

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Acts 2:42-47English Standard Version (ESV)

The Fellowship of the Believers

42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, tothe breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe[a] came upon every soul, andmany wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. 46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts,47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.



theurj said:

"Key economic advisers to both Francis and his predecessor, Benedict XVI, come from the school of civil economy, which seeks to foster not just wealth, but also vibrant, values-driven, self-governing economies. This approach has roots in the ancient Christian insistence on the priority of the common good over short-term profits and private property."



DavidM58 said:

Acts 2:42-47English Standard Version (ESV)

The Fellowship of the Believers

42 And they devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and the fellowship, tothe breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe[a] came upon every soul, andmany wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. 46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts,47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

That paints a very beautiful picture David. It would be great to live in such a community. Note however how that works on the micro scale, where all participate voluntarily, and never the macro scale, where all are compelled to participate? there is a reason for that, beyond the ethical problem of it's necessarily non-voluntary nature. As the system gets larger the complexity of the system increases exponentially and grows beyond the ability of central planning to control.

Bryan, is exactly right on that point ! That is why my solution on the Zeitgeist thread ( addressing two specific issues - ACP- anthropocentric carbon pollution and clean energy to scale ) was foundational based on our limited freewill choice mechanisms . I think we may be able to have enough clean tech in the coming century for maybe a billion wealthy; but that still probably puts us over a cliff ( again, premised on ACP and P.O. not being a hoax ). So, the second economy needs to be as voluntary as possible and you would do this by covering all the bases for all humans at a minimum healthy standard ( using G.A.I.N. ). The trade off to live under the Global Commons Not For Profit Non- Debt Currency would be to give up high polluting lifestyles  for a few generations . Both communities could really set their  minds to solving these two core issues over the coming century . That giant squid media /sports/ entertainment complex would have to be put to better use as 20 % of the population needs to be re-educated ( their lifestyles are not sustainable ). 

Of course, laws would have to be past in the first economy to force the wealthy to use clean tech ( sorry Mr. Koch.))

NOTE: it will be interesting to see how quickly ACP disappears off the 'now trending ' memes once all these ideas start gaining traction . 

On the scripture : firstly , I have no desire to debate the ___ / non-theistic question here ( at least not on this thread ; or even forum ) I can say that I respect both views if they are premised on healthy foundations ( which most of the time they are not ) . Not explicit in scripture is the idea of my 2 primary spiritual principles : non-ownership of the earth and no unnecessary exploitation of other people and life systems . That scripture is the inevitable result of those two principles . Religiously , IMO, that 'episode' ended with the destruction of the temple around 70 AD . IMO, we have been, in general, been marching along to the tunes of the left hand protocols with todays conditions being the inevitable result . 

I guess it be pointless to address the other mass-hullcination of Christendom ; but I'll touch on it just briefly as it is relevant : SIN! Ok., there is no such thing as it is presently understood by the mainstream ( deluded stream ) . What this notion is really about is purity ! Even at my purest in my early 20's when my body smelled like roses I never saw ___. I was shown quite a bit but never that . From this perspective pretty well everything is a sin if one is not pure; and arguing over the various degrees of bad behaviour from that context is redundant . IMO...

Some lyrics from a epochal moment in human history ( the moment when a human consciously committed an act of murder ). 

You can call me by my middle name cause trouble ain't hard to find; 

You can find me everywhere almost all the time; 

I was there when the river ran red, the day first blood was shed; 

I am my fathers child, born reckless and wild; 

And I wear this ball and chain; and I wear this Mark of Cain .....

You can call me by my middle name cause trouble ain't hard to find; 

You can find me everywhere , almost all the time ; 

I'm the spirit of degeneracy, violence and brutality; 

Fear and loathing is my creed; and I make life a misery ; 

And I wear this Mark of Cain ...... 

So, a mythic story of two  differing mindsets about how one can relate to the earth and the condition one finds oneself in here .

Yes, hence Pogany's statement: "A new global system (GS3). two-level economy/strong multilateralism, will be needed to create a sustainable balance between culture and humanity's ecological niche. Micro-activities will have to be made legally subject to globally-determined and nationally allocated macro-constraints. The required transformation of individual behavior and institutions will be vast."

I'm a strong proponent of relocalization, and yet we also need a macro level organization as Pogany states, and I think this is why Edgar Morin says "we must globalize and de-globalize." There are a few ways to do this well, and many, many ways to do it poorly. And unless there is a significant level of integral consciousness (for me I'm thinking Gebser rather than Wilber/Beck), we will be more likely to do it poorly. But Pope Francis is on the right track, and we need to pay attention to him.

Bryan O'Doherty said:

That paints a very beautiful picture David. It would be great to live in such a community. Note however how that works on the micro scale, where all participate voluntarily, and never the macro scale, where all are compelled to participate? there is a reason for that, beyond the ethical problem of it's necessarily non-voluntary nature. As the system gets larger the complexity of the system increases exponentially and grows beyond the ability of central planning to control.

The article I posted on Pope-onomics indeed references co-operatives, which have local, regional, country and global components around core principles. Here's the link to the International Co-operative Alliance. Co-ops are, btw, a key player in Rifkin's survey of the neo-Commons.

I'm beginning to think, David, that Pogany is an economic genius . I would just like to touch on individuals for a moment ; especially ones who have a keen sense of my second right hand protocol , because I believe there are various levels of relativity and that some things are more problematic than others. I can't say i'm all that bothered by people who think it best under the current system to buy a modest piece of land and provide a home for themselves and their families . For me where it gets problematic is when one embraces the status quo of liberal economic thought and starts trading in the buying and selling of property . To me that is where a line is crossed . Partaking in the global casino and its structures would also be problematic from this perspective . I'd also add that some Islamic countries have a closer notion of these principles when it comes to homes where there is this partnership in financing . That is closer and better , IMO, than what classical economics advocates . 

BTW., Ed, that 250 sq. footer in Vancouver will only cost you  5 gazillion bucks! lol

Andrew,

I don't really have a problem with the people who decide to use real estate as a means to make money - it's part of the system we live in...though abusing that system is a different story, and there are many shades of abuse.  In fact, one of my relatives is a very prominent, internationally known real estate billionaire who is now trying to get into politics.

But, yes, this system of land ownership needs to change, and the change has to start somewhere. In the U.S. land trusts are one good current alternative.  Perhaps sacrificing some amount of financial security, my wife and I bought our modest home in association with a land trust. The Land Trust owns the land, and we own the house.  If we ever decide to sell, we're allowed to make a very small profit, but not by much.  The whole program is designed to keep these houses affordable in perpetuity.  Our participation is an investment in the community - the commons.

David

andrew said:

 For me where it gets problematic is when one embraces the status quo of liberal economic thought and starts trading in the buying and selling of property . To me that is where a line is crossed . Partaking in the global casino and its structures would also be problematic from this perspective . I'd also add that some Islamic countries have a closer notion of these principles when it comes to homes where there is this partnership in financing . That is closer and better , IMO, than what classical economics advocates . 

Hey David, my solution ideas within the Zeitgeist thread allow for the continued ownership of private property and economic trade with fiat currency if one so chooses . I'm persuaded that such choices are not the death knell to the universe . Of course , to my thinking under these ideas it is better to choose otherwise ; but that is another discussion . 

Eric Lindberg's paper is one of the better synopsis's out there and I think you and I are probably agreed on that; and it's within that context i suggest possible ways forward . I suggested many times that this current trajectory of civilization is probably unstoppable but that doesn't mean we shouldn't try to do better ; it's just that I think doing better should be based on real possibilities given the circumstances, concomitant with honesty and integrity . 

If the best humanity can do is the example set by V.W . then seriously Houston , wez gotz ourselves a problem . 

Oh, one point on the Bernie Sanders platform : to have the government as the last line of defence against poverty under this global monoculture is not the best idea out there . It's not hard to imagine the gun to my head as i clean the garbage filled alleys for the elite . 

A two economy system would eliminate that possible abuse . 

Anyway, forgive me for posting this here but the theme of what i am going to say has been brought up recently on this thread . I HAVE to say this and get it off my chest and hope we can get back to the theme of this thread . For the first time in my life last night I watched a jewish christian broadcast . These guys were hawking their wares and projecting their ego onto god proclaiming that they think god is going to punish brutally, forever, most people who have ever lived ( as if god put up a help wanted sign on judgment) ; moreover , there was an  implied notion that the most important criteria that god had at its disposal ( as far as human affairs is concerned ) was human ethnicity .  I can't stress enough how deluded this type of interpretation and thinking is, IMO . 

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