Urgent! American exile in danger.

Hugh Rodwell m-14970 at mailbox.swipnet.se
Fri Sep 13 17:13:13 MDT 1996


Malgosia, in her inimitable fashion, swallows camels and strains at gnats
when I ask:

>> Since when does a list-jockey have the right to come snooping like this?

and she sees fit to respond:

>Hugh, I love the way you never quite tell the whole story; only the part
>that permits your rhetoric to flow smoothly.
>
>If you want to talk about rights, you should mention the fact that Bob
>Malecki used the LU subscriber list to send unsolicited posts to LU
>subscribers.

So unsolicited posts are a good reason for snooping?

She lays it on thick by adding:

>Yes, and another such gain worth defending might be the law that some
>countries have that makes unauthorized, unsolicited use of address-lists
>a punishable offence.

She seems to forget that there is a tradition of democratic assembly and
discussion that is stronger than the tradition of arbitrary power by right
of property. A list calling itself left-unity raises certain expectations
as to the democratic management of its business, at least resembling the
traditional code of conduct at workers' meetings. One aspect of this is
non-arbitrary chairing of meetings, and adherence to an agreed set of rules
known in advance.

The pre-emptive banning of Bob M was done without any general consultation
of list subscribers, as was the subsequent banning of Ben Burgis, PO and
myself. Rules were made up in midstream, and implemented immediately,
suddenly condemning behaviour that had quite plainly been within the
framework of the listed stated rules. With no warning given and no defence
possible, there are good grounds for insisting on getting a hearing by
posting to the subscribers of the list involved. To go on about violations
of "democratic rights" by unwelcome posting is specious to say the least
when these same democratic rights have been laid low by those running the
list.

Would Malgosia do a categorical imperative on this and say that all
disobedience by victims in relation to all owners is wrong?

>But if we are to talk about democracy and violations of rights, let's get
>_both_ sides of the picture.

I don't somehow think it will be possible for anybody but the most
formalist and blinkered pedant to get worked up about our superficial
breaches of posting rights when the circumstances leading to the
"unsolicited" postings are known. On the other hand you have to be quite
impervious to shame not to get worked up about the high-handedness and lack
of respect for workers' democratic traditions displayed by the moderators
of the unity-list.

Cheers,

Hugh





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