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Freepers Beware of the Non-Meeting Meeting (Vanity)
www.rileysfarm.com ^ | 02-15-2004 | Self

Posted on 02/15/2004 3:52:23 PM PST by farmer18th

Perhaps some of you who are veterans at planning issues have seen this, but the other night I witnessed my first community plan meeting that was moderated in the "Assets, Issues, and Solutions" format.

Here's how it works. Community members don't get three minutes to address the meeting. A moderator stands in front of the room and asks questions such as "What do we like about our community?" (The assets column) Another question is "What problems do we have in our community?" (The issues column) and "How can we solve our problems?" (The solutions column).

Community members raise their hands and the moderator has complete control over who is called upon. The moderator's side-kick gets to summarize complex issues into two word descriptions that are written with magic marker on butcher paper in front of the room. No vote is taken. No discussion ensues except between the moderator and the member of the audience. If one person rises to say "parking" is an issue, there is no chance for that observation to be moderated by a vote on the matter, or even a show of hands. In our case, I noticed that the person wielding the magic marker was writing down whatever tickled her fancy, whether it had anything to do with an audience members observation.

A member of our extended family observed that "Living History" was a community asset, since we perform American Revolution and Civil War Reenactments. The Magic Marker person translated this to "country living." An apple farmer said the expense of agriculture was a community problem and the magic marker person scribbled down "organic farming" in the solutions column, even though it had never been mentioned.

At one point, my brother stood up and said, "is this an Oprah Winfrey show or a community meeting?"

When I spoke with the moderator afterwards, a retired planner, he defended the process on the grounds that community members won't be interested in the details of the planning process. He said he had a pretty good idea about what the community was interested in. I asked him how he would quantify that, since he never took a vote.

"I have a pretty good feel for it," he said.


TOPICS: Government; Your Opinion/Questions
KEYWORDS: communityplans; delphi; facilitator
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1 posted on 02/15/2004 3:52:24 PM PST by farmer18th
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To: farmer18th
You got Delphi'd.
2 posted on 02/15/2004 3:56:11 PM PST by Pukin Dog (Sans Reproache)
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To: Pukin Dog
Is that what it was? I've heard of that in the education community, but we got into home schooling so long ago, I did't know it had spread over to planning, building and safety, environmental health, all the rest too, heah?
3 posted on 02/15/2004 3:57:35 PM PST by farmer18th
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To: farmer18th
Shut up and take your Soma. Or we'll banish you to the wilderness.
4 posted on 02/15/2004 3:58:56 PM PST by TheErnFormerlyKnownAsBig ( I went to the gun show today and saw an Sharpton for President sticker on a truck. Seriously dude.)
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To: farmer18th
Not a "hearing" in the strictest sense of the word. Maybe try to not let any decisiosn be made based upon the supposed "community feedback"?
5 posted on 02/15/2004 3:59:10 PM PST by BenLurkin (Socialism is Slavery)
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To: farmer18th
Yep. Brainwashing.
6 posted on 02/15/2004 3:59:42 PM PST by Pukin Dog (Sans Reproache)
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To: farmer18th
the state people aren't quite as blatant up here, but it all works out the same way. It's one size fits all and they have an agenda.
7 posted on 02/15/2004 3:59:44 PM PST by brooklin
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To: big ern
Or we'll banish you to the wilderness

But, sir, I already am 45 minutes from the nearest mall. I thought, sir, this was Jeffersonian Democracy country. My bad.
8 posted on 02/15/2004 4:00:34 PM PST by farmer18th
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To: Pukin Dog
For the benefit of freepers who get caught in one of these dog and donkey shows, what's the best way to combat it? Make sure the magic-marker gal writes "THIS PROCESS" in the issues column?
9 posted on 02/15/2004 4:05:15 PM PST by farmer18th
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To: farmer18th
Who is paying the moderator?
10 posted on 02/15/2004 4:05:33 PM PST by tacticalogic (Controlled application of force is the sincerest form of communication.)
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To: farmer18th
Trying to force smart-growth on the unsuspecting?
11 posted on 02/15/2004 4:08:26 PM PST by mabelkitty
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To: tacticalogic
The moderator is retired from the planning process and was a volunteer, (I think). Ironically, as a volunteer as well, I have been the chairman and moderator of at least six community meetings that we have run in the traditional western, parliamentary fashion: agenda, discussion, written proposals for voting. He, however, insisted on running this meeting in this fashion, so it seems to have come out of some professional play book designed to make democracy less messy. Fool me once.
12 posted on 02/15/2004 4:09:05 PM PST by farmer18th
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To: farmer18th
<! Created by LMS>

The Delphi Technique.
How to Disrupt It.

 If at all possible, write your question down to help you stay focused.  Facilitators, when asked questions they don't want to answer, often digress from the issue raised and try to work the conversation around to where they can make the individual asking the question look foolish, feel foolish, appear belligerent or aggressive.  The goal is to put the one asking the question on the defensive.  Do not fall for this tactic.  Always be charming, thus deflecting any insinuation, innuendo, etc, that may be thrown at you in their attempt to put you on the defensive, but bring them back to the question you asked.  If they rephrase your question into an accusatory statement (a favorite tactic) simply state, "that is not what I stated, what I asked was… (repeat your question)."  Stay focused on your question.
  • Be Persistent.
 If putting you on the defensive doesn't work, facilitators often resort to long drawn out dissertations on some off-the-wall and usually unrelated, or vaguely related, subject that drags on for several minutes – during which time the crowd or group usually loses focus on the question asked (which is the intent).  Let them finish with their dissertation/expose, then nicely, with focus and persistence, state, "but you didn't answer my question.  My question was… (repeat your question)."

Remember…

Never, under any circumstance, become angry.  Anger directed at the facilitator will immediately make the facilitator "the victim."  This defeats the purpose which is to make you the victim.  The goal of the facilitator is to make those they are facilitating like them, alienating anyone who might pose a threat to the realization of their agenda.  [People with fixed belief systems, who know what they believe and stand on what they believe, are obvious threats.]  If the participant becomes the victim, the facilitator loses face and favor with the crowd.  This is why crowds are broken up into groups of seven or eight, why objections are written on cards, not voiced aloud where they are open to public discussion and public debate.  It's called crowd control.  It is always good to have someone else, or two or three others who know the Delphi Technique dispersed through the crowd; who, when the facilitator digresses from the question, will stand up and say nicely, "but you didn't answer that lady's/gentleman's question."  The facilitator, even if suspecting you are together, certainly will not want to alienate the crowd by making that accusation.  Sometimes it only takes one occurrence of this type for the crowd to figure out what's going on, sometimes it takes more than one.  

If you have an organized group, meet before the meeting to strategize.  Everyone should know their part.  Meet after the meeting to analyze what went right, what went wrong and why, and what needs to happen the next time around.  Never meet during the meeting.  One of the favorite tactics of the facilitator, if the meeting is not going the way he/she wants, if he/she is meeting measurable resistance, is to call a recess.  During the recess, the facilitator and his/her "spotters" (people who wander the room during the course of the meeting, watching the crowd) watch the crowd to see who congregates where, especially those who have offered measurable resistance.  If the "resistors" congregate in one place, a "spotter" will usually gravitate to that group to "join in the conversation" and will report back to the facilitator.  When the meeting resumes, the facilitator will steer clear of those who are "resistors."  Do not congregate.  Hang loose and work the crowd.  Move to where the facilitator or "spotters" are, listen to what they have to say, but do not gravitate to where another member of your team is.

This strategy also works in a face to face, one on one, meeting with anyone who has been trained in how to use the Delphi Technique.

With thanks to Sandy Vanderberg, Peg Luksik and others

©March 1996; Lynn M Stuter



13 posted on 02/15/2004 4:11:32 PM PST by Pukin Dog (Sans Reproache)
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To: Pukin Dog
what's delpi?
14 posted on 02/15/2004 4:12:45 PM PST by drhogan
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To: farmer18th
You've got to understand that my comments a bit of sarcasm based on the Aldous Huxely novel A Brave New World.
15 posted on 02/15/2004 4:13:59 PM PST by TheErnFormerlyKnownAsBig ( I went to the gun show today and saw an Sharpton for President sticker on a truck. Seriously dude.)
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To: farmer18th
The moderator is retired from the planning process and was a volunteer, (I think).

I'd be very curious about the background and entanglements of the moderator (and his assistant).

16 posted on 02/15/2004 4:15:43 PM PST by tacticalogic (Controlled application of force is the sincerest form of communication.)
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To: farmer18th
Using the Delphi Technique to Achieve Consensus How it is leading us away from representative government to an illusion of citizen participation

he Delphi Technique and consensus building are both founded in the same principle - the Hegelian dialectic of thesis, antithesis, and synthesis, with synthesis becoming the new thesis. The goal is a continual evolution to "oneness of mind" (consensus means solidarity of belief) -the collective mind, the wholistic society, the wholistic earth, etc. In thesis and antithesis, opinions or views are presented on a subject to establish views and opposing views. In synthesis, opposites are brought together to form the new thesis. All participants in the process are then to accept ownership of the new thesis and support it, changing their views to align with the new thesis. Through a continual process of evolution, "oneness of mind" will supposedly occur.

In group settings, the Delphi Technique is an unethical method of achieving consensus on controversial topics. It requires well-trained professionals, known as "facilitators" or "change agents," who deliberately escalate tension among group members, pitting one faction against another to make a preordained viewpoint appear "sensible," while making opposing views appear ridiculous.

In her book Educating for the New World Order, author and educator Beverly Eakman makes numerous references to the need of those in power to preserve the illusion that there is "community participation in decision-making processes, while in fact lay citizens are being squeezed out."

The setting or type of group is immaterial for the success of the technique. The point is that, when people are in groups that tend to share a particular knowledge base, they display certain identifiable characteristics, known as group dynamics, which allows the facilitator to apply the basic strategy.

The facilitators or change agents encourage each person in a group to express concerns about the programs, projects, or policies in question. They listen attentively, elicit input from group members, form "task forces," urge participants to make lists, and in going through these motions, learn about each member of a group. They are trained to identify the "leaders," the "loud mouths," the "weak or non-committal members," and those who are apt to change sides frequently during an argument.

Suddenly, the amiable facilitators become professional agitators and "devil's advocates." Using the "divide and conquer" principle, they manipulate one opinion against another, making those who are out of step appear "ridiculous, unknowledgeable, inarticulate, or dogmatic." They attempt to anger certain participants, thereby accelerating tensions. The facilitators are well trained in psychological manipulation. They are able to predict the reactions of each member in a group. Individuals in opposition to the desired policy or program will be shut out.

The Delphi Technique works. It is very effective with parents, teachers, school children, and community groups. The "targets" rarely, if ever, realize that they are being manipulated. If they do suspect what is happening, they do not know how to end the process. The facilitator seeks to polarize the group in order to become an accepted member of the group and of the process. The desired idea is then placed on the table and individual opinions are sought during discussion. Soon, associates from the divided group begin to adopt the idea as if it were their own, and they pressure the entire group to accept their proposition.


How the Delphi Technique Works

Consistent use of this technique to control public participation in our political system is causing alarm among people who cherish the form of government established by our Founding Fathers. Efforts in education and other areas have brought the emerging picture into focus.

In the not-too-distant past, the city of Spokane, in Washington state, hired a consultant to the tune of $47,000 to facilitate the direction of city government. This development brought a hue and cry from the local population. The ensuing course of action holds an eerie similarity to what is happening in education reform. A newspaper editorial described how groups of disenfranchised citizens were brought together to "discuss" what they felt needed to be changed at the local government level. A compilation of the outcomes of those "discussions" influenced the writing of the city/county charter.

That sounds innocuous. But what actually happened in Spokane is happening in communities and school districts all across the country. Let's review the process that occurs in these meetings.

First, a facilitator is hired. While his job is supposedly neutral and non-judgmental, the opposite is actually true. The facilitator is there to direct the meeting to a preset conclusion.

The facilitator begins by working the crowd to establish a good-guy-bad-guy scenario. Anyone disagreeing with the facilitator must be made to appear as the bad guy, with the facilitator appearing as the good guy. To accomplish this, the facilitator seeks out those who disagree and makes them look foolish, inept, or aggressive, which sends a clear message to the rest of the audience that, if they don't want the same treatment, they must keep quiet. When the opposition has been identified and alienated, the facilitator becomes the good guy - a friend - and the agenda and direction of the meeting are established without the audience ever realizing what has happened.

Next, the attendees are broken up into smaller groups of seven or eight people. Each group has its own facilitator. The group facilitators steer participants to discuss preset issues, employing the same tactics as the lead facilitator.

Participants are encouraged to put their ideas and disagreements on paper, with the results to be compiled later. Who does the compiling? If you ask participants, you typically hear: "Those running the meeting compiled the results." Oh-h! The next question is: "How do you know that what you wrote on your sheet of paper was incorporated into the final outcome?" The typical answer is: "Well, I've wondered about that, because what I wrote doesn't seem to be reflected. I guess my views were in the minority."

That is the crux of the situation. If 50 people write down their ideas individually, to be compiled later into a final outcome, no one knows what anyone else has written. That the final outcome of such a meeting reflects anyone's input at all is highly questionable, and the same holds true when the facilitator records the group's comments on paper. But participants in these types of meetings usually don't question the process.

Why hold such meetings at all if the outcomes are already established? The answer is because it is imperative for the acceptance of the School-to-Work agenda, or the environmental agenda, or whatever the agenda, that ordinary people assume ownership of the preset outcomes. If people believe an idea is theirs, they'll support it. If they believe an idea is being forced on them, they'll resist.

The Delphi Technique is being used very effectively to change our government from a representative form in which elected individuals represent the people, to a "participatory democracy" in which citizens selected at large are facilitated into ownership of preset outcomes. These citizens believe that their input is important to the result, whereas the reality is that the outcome was already established by people not apparent to the participants.


How to Diffuse the Delphi Technique

Three steps can diffuse the Delphi Technique as facilitators attempt to steer a meeting in a specific direction.

  1. Always be charming, courteous, and pleasant. Smile. Moderate your voice so as not to come across as belligerent or aggressive.

  2. Stay focused. If possible, jot down your thoughts or questions. When facilitators are asked questions they don't want to answer, they often digress from the issue that was raised and try instead to put the questioner on the defensive. Do not fall for this tactic. Courteously bring the facilitator back to your original question. If he rephrases it so that it becomes an accusatory statement (a popular tactic), simply say, "That is not what I asked. What I asked was . . ." and repeat your question.

  3. Be persistent. If putting you on the defensive doesn't work, facilitators often resort to long monologues that drag on for several minutes. During that time, the group usually forgets the question that was asked, which is the intent. Let the facilitator finish. Then with polite persistence state: "But you didn't answer my question. My question was . . ." and repeat your question.

Never become angry under any circumstances. Anger directed at the facilitator will immediately make the facilitator the victim. This defeats the purpose. The goal of facilitators is to make the majority of the group members like them, and to alienate anyone who might pose a threat to the realization of their agenda. People with firm, fixed beliefs, who are not afraid to stand up for what they believe in, are obvious threats. If a participant becomes a victim, the facilitator loses face and favor with the crowd. This is why crowds are broken up into groups of seven or eight, and why objections are written on paper rather than voiced aloud where they can be open to public discussion and debate. It's called crowd control.

At a meeting, have two or three people who know the Delphi Technique dispersed through the crowd so that, when the facilitator digresses from a question, they can stand up and politely say: "But you didn't answer that lady/gentleman's question." Even if the facilitator suspects certain group members are working together, he will not want to alienate the crowd by making accusations. Occasionally, it takes only one incident of this type for the crowd to figure out what's going on.

Establish a plan of action before a meeting. Everyone on your team should know his part. Later, analyze what went right, what went wrong and why, and what needs to happen the next time. Never strategize during a meeting.

A popular tactic of facilitators, if a session is meeting with resistance, is to call a recess. During the recess, the facilitator and his spotters (people who observe the crowd during the course of a meeting) watch the crowd to see who congregates where, especially those who have offered resistance. If the resistors congregate in one place, a spotter will gravitate to that group and join in the conversation, reporting what was said to the facilitator. When the meeting resumes, the facilitator will steer clear of the resistors. Do not congregate. Instead gravitate to where the facilitators or spotters are. Stay away from your team members.

This strategy also works in a face-to-face, one-on-one meeting with anyone trained to use the Delphi Technique.

Lynn Stuter is an education researcher in Washington state. Her web site address is www.icehouse.net/lmstuter.


17 posted on 02/15/2004 4:16:14 PM PST by SauronOfMordor (No anchovies!)
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To: drhogan
see #17
18 posted on 02/15/2004 4:17:15 PM PST by SauronOfMordor (No anchovies!)
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To: drhogan
The Delphi Process

Summary

The process of developing a consensus in areas of medicine where hard evidence is scarce can be problematic. The Delphi process offers a structured method of consultation that may help to eliminate bias.

Introduction

In recent years much has been written about establishing an evidence base for medicine and best practice. Establishing best practice can be difficult in areas where statistical or “hard” evidence is lacking. In these circumstances it may be left to “experts” or those with most experience in the field to define best practice. The traditional method for dealing with complicated problems where there are many conflicting views or where all views must be represented has been to use committee meetings or steering groups to reach a group consensus and then formulate guidelines. There are clearly drawbacks with this approach. Committees may be influenced by the nature of inter-personal interactions within the group. Dominant personalities may impose their views on other “weaker” members. Those in positions of responsibility may find it difficult to shift their position without “losing face”. There is clearly a further logistic problem when interested parties are widely distributed geographically.

Background

When the opinion of a large group of people is being sought other methods must be used. When looking at the development of guidelines, we need a method that will:


1. Allow free discussion of views without the influence of personal status

2. Allow the alteration of personal views without loss of face

3. Involve all groups with an interest in the subject

4. Allow the combination of many opinions into a group response

5. Be completed in as short a time as possible


The name Delphi was taken from the Greek Delphic Oracle’s skills of interpretation and foresight. The Delphi technique was developed in the 1950s by the Rand Corporation in California, USA. The procedure was designed to obtain the most reliable consensus amongst a group of experts by a series of questionnaires interspersed with controlled feedback. It was originally conceived as a method for predicting future events by consulting panels of experts in a particular field of interest. Generally these were in the fields of science and technology.



It gained popularity particularly amongst futurists, military planners and technologists in the USA. In recent years the technique has found a much wider application in more mainstream social sciences and business. More recently it has been used within the fields of medicine and nursing.



The original Delphi techniques were consensus research methods that were designed to harness the insights of appropriate experts in a particular field in order to enable decisions to be made in areas where published information was inadequate or non-existent. The definition of what constitutes an expert varies according to the question. In the situation of a Delphi intended to result in production of guidelines an expert may be defined as either those with the knowledge (the theoretical expert) or those who will have to implement it (the practical expert).



Many variants of the Delphi have been described, and its broad application in recent years has lead to new definitions, such as that by Linstone and Turoff as follows: “Delphi may be characterised as a method for structuring a group communication process so that the process is effective in allowing a group of individuals as a whole to deal with a complex problem”.


Description of the Process



The Delphi process has four necessary features:



1 Anonymity

2 Iteration

3 Controlled feedback

4 Statistical aggregation of group response



Anonymity is achieved through the use of questionnaires. By allowing group members to consider and answer their replies privately, undue social pressures should be avoided. In some instances it may be appropriate for the members of the Delphi group to be identified. However their answers will be anonymous, ie the individuals’ answers are anonymous even if the participants themselves are not.



Iteration occurs through the submission of a questionnaire over a series of rounds, allowing members to change their opinions.



Controlled feedback occurs between rounds. The results of each round are analysed by a central researcher and the responses for each given statement are fed back to all members of the Delphi group. This allows members of the group to assess their views in the light of the group’s responses.



Statistical group response is obtained at the end of the procedure. This is an expression of the degree of consensus of the group on a particular issue. It is commonly expressed as a mean value and spread of opinion, which can be combined to indicate the “strength” of opinion.



Application of the Delphi Process.



The Delphi is conducted in three stages:

Stage 1 Selection of the “expert panel”

Stage 2 The submission, assessment and feedback of the Delphi

questionnaires

Stage 3 Final analysis and conclusions.


Stage 1



An expert may be considered to be an individual who has recognised expertise in a particular subject or may be anyone who can provide a worthwhile opinion on the subject in question. Some clinicians may be disturbed by considering the needs and opinions of groups to which they have traditionally dictated practice. However, if policies are to change effectively then all views should be considered. It may be advantageous at an early stage to illustrate the experience, seniority and diversity of the panel to all its members.


Stage 2 – The Delphi Rounds



Having selected the members of the expert panel, the Delphi process itself starts, in rounds as described below.


Round 1



In “classical” Delphi, the first round is completely unstructured, asking members to express any opinions that they may have on the issue in question. It is unlikely that the Delphi co-ordinator is sufficiently aware of all the potential problems that the first unstructured round may be safely dispensed with. The first round contains a synopsis of the issue in question together with the source and validity of the information upon which it is based. Thus the Delphi process educates and informs, as well as exploring issues.

Round 2



From the first round results, a questionnaire is constructed containing a series of statements or questions that respondents are invited to express an opinion on. This is measured on a scale. The member is also asked to express their self-rated expertise on a similar scale. The expertise rating may be used to resolve issues where there is a high variance at the end of the procedure. Rankings for each consensus statement are summarised and fed back to the respondents for round three.


Round 3



In the Delphi process participants re-rank their initial statements in the light of the results of round two. Their own answers from the second round are fed back to the panellists so that they may view their own answers in the light of the group’s overall response. Members of the group who have expressed extreme views (as compared to the group median) are contacted between rounds and asked to justify their position. Their argument is supplied back with the other information from prior rounds. The majority of the observed shift in opinion view is likely to be seen between the second and third rounds. Questions which do not achieve consensus may be reiterated in a fourth or subsequent round.




Stage 3 – Results and Conclusions



The results of the process are disseminated to the group and to all affected clinicians as a well-researched guideline to best practice. This may then be used as a bench- mark document for subsequent audit.



Some problems may arise with use of the Delphi process, most notably the time involved in completing the questionnaires. The Delphi panel of “experts” therefore requires to have a degree of commitment to the issue under consideration. The time saved in not having to travel to committee meetings or conferences may more than compensate for the time spent in pursuing the method. It is likely that a more worthwhile and effective conclusion is also attained. The time taken to complete the Delphi process may be considerably reduced through the use of e-mail or fax. Delphi should not be seen as a quick fix to complicated issues, and it is not always an easy process. It requires enthusiasm from both the respondents and organisers, but the results can be satisfying and informative for both.
19 posted on 02/15/2004 4:20:02 PM PST by Pukin Dog (Sans Reproache)
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To: farmer18th
The moderator is retired from the planning process and was a volunteer, (I think).

Volunteer or consultant? The essense of the "planning process" is the use of psychological manipulation and political tricks to get community acceptance for (or at least resignation to) the plans of the planners

20 posted on 02/15/2004 4:20:35 PM PST by SauronOfMordor (No anchovies!)
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To: mabelkitty
smart growth

I'm not sure what that term has come to mean around the country, but around here I'd settle for any growth, since we seem to be living in an area that is filled with "conservative no-growthers." ("I've got my 3 acres in paradise, so close the gates and let's start protecting the environment now.")
21 posted on 02/15/2004 4:21:32 PM PST by farmer18th
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To: Little Bill
This thread might be helpful.
22 posted on 02/15/2004 4:23:24 PM PST by spunkets
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To: SauronOfMordor
Volunteer or consultant?

Volunteer in the sense that no one is paying him to be involved in the process around here. (He lives here). Consultant in the sense that he now represents clients to community planning commissions, after serving as a planner himself.
23 posted on 02/15/2004 4:24:01 PM PST by farmer18th
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To: farmer18th
If you use Yahoo! or Google! to search "Delphi Method" you'll get a few sites that are very good, I saved them to hard drive. Beware facilitated meetings like that. In a nutshell, the whole meeting is rigged for a preordained outcome. The only defense is organization and requiring that meetings be held in accordance with traditional methods like "Roberts Rules of Order" and such.
24 posted on 02/15/2004 4:27:42 PM PST by Freedom4US
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To: big ern
Oh, I got it. I was just going along with it. I felt like using lines like that the other night.
25 posted on 02/15/2004 4:28:04 PM PST by farmer18th
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To: Pukin Dog
There are two things being labeled "delphi". One is the technique you describe, an above-board technique for arriving at truth. The other is what I have in #17, a covert technique for manipulating group opinion and intimidating group members towards a pre-determined conclusion, under the pretense that the session is above-board
26 posted on 02/15/2004 4:28:05 PM PST by SauronOfMordor (No anchovies!)
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To: farmer18th

Hegelian Dialectic & the New World Order

For the benefit of those who have not yet heard of the Hegelian Dialectic, let me briefly run through it as taught by Authority Research Center president, Dean Gotcher. The Hegelian Dialectic or "Consensus Process" is a 200 year-old, three-step process of "thesis, antithesis and synthesis", developed in the late 1700's by a German named Georg William Friedreich Hegel that results in what we now know as "group-think". It is a system Dean calls "Praxis" that Socialists have used for centuries to seduce, seize and control mass populations without warfare. It is also in full operation here in the United States under such names as: "Outcome Based Education", "Goals 2000", "Sustainable Development", "School To Work", "DARE" and many more. It's all about embracing "tolerance, diversity and unity" for The New World Order. To put it in layman's terms, it's brainwashing.

Here's how it works: A group gathers, and has agreed beforehand that each in attendance will ultimately surrender his or her own personal position on any given issue to the will or "consensus" of the group after *processing to consensus* through dialog. In a Christian setting, the presupposition is that the group's will determines "the will of God". The group's "facilitator", whoever that may be, mediates between sides, be they "good and evil", "for and against", "republican and democrat", "liberal and conservative", etc., whatever the case may be, often instigating heated confrontations between the opposing sides for the purpose of suggesting compromise as the perfect solution to restore and maintain the peace and the relationships of everyone involved.

The resulting outcome or *consensus* is then re-introduced if necessary, at the next meeting for more "Praxis", more dialog and more compromise until another "consensus" is reached. Then the "process" repeats all over again...and again...and again until the facilitator's desired outcome is achieved. Over time, the convictions and concerns anyone may have had originally are processed away beyond recognition or relevance leaving one and all to accept the facilitator's pre-determined outcome as the consensus of the group. It's no longer a question of what is right or wrong, good or bad, lawful or unlawful, but rather HOW WE ALL FEEL ABOUT IT...no absolutes, no conscience, no convictions, no laws, no Constitution, no Bible and NO GOD!!!...only consensus....and a contrived consensus at that. That's the Hegelian Dialectic.

That's exactly what "facilitator" Bill Hybels accomplished the other day between church leaders attending the Willow Creek Conference and his friend Bill Clinton on ABC's Nightline. Protesting evangelicals (thesis), demanded socialist Bill Clinton (antitheses), answer for his lies and sexual indiscretions at the meeting. Hybels, as the "facilitator" voices their protests and then injects that Clinton HAD confessed to them by saying he publicly admitted: "I have sinned". Yeah, well...we ALL have sinned Bill. The Bible says it in Romans 3:23. That's not news. That's not a confession either. Nor is a politically expedient appearance in front of a church full of evangelical Christians before the Democratic Convention a demonstration of repentance.

The good reverend just wants us to forgive his pal Clinton so we can all be one big happy family. Thesis + Antitheses = Synthesis...the Hegelian Dialectic. Sounds like the perfect formula for an Apostate Church to me. I wonder if Hybels has sent everyone personal invitations to "The Millennium World Peace Summit of Religious and Spiritual Leaders", meeting at the United Nations later this month as well? I hear they're all getting together to create a great big One World Religion for us here on planet Earth. ...A WORLD CHURCH!

27 posted on 02/15/2004 4:32:25 PM PST by handk (The moon belongs to America, and anxiously awaits our Astro-Men. Will you be among them?)
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To: SauronOfMordor
under the pretense that the session is above board

It's all getting much more clear now. Last summer, when we started out with conventional committees and sub-committees, taking minutes, writing proposals, discussing them, we were told at the outset that a county consultant could help us arrive at a consensus. I asked the proponent of that idea, "how? How can a civil engineering firm help us reach a consensus in a meeting or two?"

She nodded her head vigorously. "They can! They can!"

I thought at the time she didn't understand me, but it turns out she was talking about Delphing the community into their pre-determined plan for our little valley.

The same retired planner who moderated the meeting argued that we really shouldn't have too many people in on these things.
28 posted on 02/15/2004 4:33:07 PM PST by farmer18th
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To: SauronOfMordor
I dont think what I described is "above board" at all. I think it is an insidious mind-control technique which has been mastered by Liberal government to keep us under their thumb.

One thing I learned in the Navy, was that ANY planning meeting that attempted consensus without open debate and open notation of final opinion is phony. Moderators start by telling you what you will be allowed to discuss, when you will be allowed questions, and state that the consensus opinion will be reported "later"; is an invitation to walk out, or even better expose them for what they are doing in a calm voice.

29 posted on 02/15/2004 4:37:04 PM PST by Pukin Dog (Sans Reproache)
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To: farmer18th
bump
30 posted on 02/15/2004 4:37:09 PM PST by RippleFire
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To: farmer18th
It's important to realize that the term "Delphi" is applied to two totally different procedures.

In the early 1960s the Rand Corporation developed a procedure the called "Delphi." It was to be used with groups of experts who NEVER MET TOGETHER. The idea was to extract expert opinion from the group in an efficient mananer.

Delphi as developed at Rand had three characteristics:

(1)anonymity: the participants do not know who else is in the group;

(2) iteration with controlled feedback: the process consists of several "rounds" of questionnaires with written responses; on each round the participants are given a summary of the responses on the previous round, such as written reasons for or against something, with duplicate or irrelevant responses omitted;

(3) statistical feedback: the questions are always phrased such that the respondent gives a number -- a date, an amount, a percent, etc.; the feedback consists of a statistical summary of these numbers, usually the median and the two quartiles. This is in addition to the summaries of written responses.

Several experiments at Rand showed that this form of Delphi was often more accurate than conventional meetings. This form of Delphi is still widely used in technological forecasting, and has a long history of testing and improvement. There are frequent articles on it in the professional literature.

When you are in a meeting such as the original poster described, and are told that what you're seeing is Delphi as developed at Rand, you're being lied to. The manipulators have hijacked the term and used it for what amounts to a brainwashing scheme. As a long-time practitioner of genuine Rand-style Delphi, I object to this hijacking, but there's nothing I can do about it except try to inform people.

31 posted on 02/15/2004 4:40:09 PM PST by JoeFromSidney (All political power grows from the barrel of a gun. -- Mao Zedong. That's why the 2nd Amendment.)
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To: farmer18th
I just assume most freepers have read stuff like Huxely's basic stuff. Personally I fall in with the Savage Beasts. Although when I was 20 the whole sex for fun with anyone would have gone over reall well with me.LOL

My wife is out of town this week and the kids are at Grandmas and my idea of a fun day of freedom was stacking 2 cord of wood and window shopping at the gun show.

I even have a beer in the fridge I may drink later.

32 posted on 02/15/2004 4:45:04 PM PST by TheErnFormerlyKnownAsBig ( I went to the gun show today and saw an Sharpton for President sticker on a truck. Seriously dude.)
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To: farmer18th
There was a fascinating article written here on FR over 5 years ago you should take a look at called Public Opinion or Pluralistic Ignorance: The Theory Behind the Spin. B.K. Sulanowski, wherever you are, I never forgot this post you wrote.
33 posted on 02/15/2004 5:01:29 PM PST by Ziva
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To: farmer18th
Sounds like a communist meeting where everyone is exepcted to agree with the leaders.
34 posted on 02/15/2004 5:43:00 PM PST by GeronL (www.ArmorforCongress.com ............... Support a FReeper for Congress)
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To: Pukin Dog
I dont think what I described is "above board" at all. I think it is an insidious mind-control technique which has been mastered by Liberal government to keep us under their thumb.

OK, then let me re-phrase: it has the capability of being an "above board" technique for examining positions and arriving at the good position PROVIDED that the facilitator/coordinator/whatever-to-call-him is HIMSELF above board. It's weakness is the ease with which the facilitator can rig the results. As Stalin noted: "Who votes doesn't count, it's who gets to count the votes".

In the Leftist Delphi Technique, essentially the facilitator is trying to give the impression that the participants are engaging in a fair and unbiased process, while the process itself is as rigged as a Chicago election. This leads the participants to accept the results, or at least not fight the results. The technique is as old as politics: isolate the opponents and make each think he's in a minority

35 posted on 02/15/2004 6:26:43 PM PST by SauronOfMordor (No anchovies!)
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To: farmfriend
Maggie =

You and your pingees need to read through this thread and be aware of the methods being used. Until I read them, I did not realise just how some of the Agenda21 actions had been implemented -- now I know.

Cheers,
Mike.
36 posted on 02/15/2004 9:01:07 PM PST by brityank (The more I learn about the Constitution, the more I realise this Government is UNconstitutional.)
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To: farmer18th; abbi_normal_2; Ace2U; Alamo-Girl; Alas; alfons; alphadog; amom; AndreaZingg; ...
Rights, farms, environment ping.
Let me know if you wish to be added or removed from this list.
I don't get offended if you want to be removed.
37 posted on 02/15/2004 10:12:00 PM PST by farmfriend ( Isaiah 55:10,11)
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To: brityank
Agenda21

I thought I was the only 'nutcase' to mention Agenda21 on FR?

Do any others believe it is actually happening? WOW!

38 posted on 02/15/2004 11:38:19 PM PST by B4Ranch ( Dear Mr. President, Sir, Are you listening to the voters?)
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To: Ziva
Thanks for the link. That's exactly the pattern of public dialogue these days. If there's one nuance to add to that commentary it would be that our own descent into a dumbed-down television culture makes the whole business of manipulating acceptible speech easier. I went to one meeting a year ago, (a meeting that actually allowed 3 minutes of public commentary for members of the audience), and one man actually decried developers because builders never seemed to deliver cable TV as promised.

The more we become peasants, the more we will deserve ruling nobles.
39 posted on 02/16/2004 12:10:01 AM PST by farmer18th
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To: farmer18th
For the benefit of anyone who actually wants to see the aftermath of one of these Crayola democracy confabs, visit:

http://www.sbcountygeneralplan.net/media/Redlands.pdf

Notice that they didn't even have the courtesy to transcribe their conclusions and set them in text. You have to download and use your PDF magnifying glass to glean anything from the site.
40 posted on 02/16/2004 12:33:09 AM PST by farmer18th
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To: farmfriend
BTTT!!!!!!
41 posted on 02/16/2004 3:04:58 AM PST by E.G.C.
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To: farmer18th
just because one is not paranoid, doesn't mean they are not out to get him...

t
42 posted on 02/16/2004 5:12:58 AM PST by teeman8r
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To: SauronOfMordor
The next step after delphi will be implementing soviets.

Soviets are that Russian thing. Here’s the Encyclopedia Britannica on soviets:

“Soviet: Council that was the primary unit of government in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and that officially performed both legislative and executive functions at the all-union, republic, province, city, district, and village levels.”

In these soviets, unelected and unaccountable commissars and their useful idiots, without help from citizens or the messy give and take of democratic meetings or popular voting, developed utopian plans for the peasants. With the master blueprint in hand, the commissars clanged the meeting bell for all peasants to gather to form a “consensus.” (The word “consensus” is a word you’ll hear again and again.) Those who agreed with the plan would be in the “consensus.” Those who disagreed were ignored. This is how a soviet operates.

There’s a name for this kind of people control. The Russians called it soviet socialism.
43 posted on 02/16/2004 5:59:42 AM PST by sergeantdave (Gen. Custer wore an Arrowsmith shirt to his last property owner convention.)
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To: JoeFromSidney
(1)anonymity: the participants do not know who else is in the group;

Is the thinking that anonymity frees the participants to write unfettered opinions about the topic? If so, I wonder if that benefit is outweighed by the probability of anonymous observations actually sabotaging the process. One of the founding principles of our republic--now long gone--is the notion that you should be able to confront your accusers. Our county agencies now run on the principle that anyone can make an anonymous complaint.
44 posted on 02/16/2004 7:19:19 AM PST by farmer18th
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To: farmer18th
Who held your meeting? Was is an neighbor? Was it your county planning department?

I have been to meetings help by a group of people who "want to help the county get a community plan" for our area. They get incorporated as a non-profit and get funding from the monster enviro/leftist/anti-American groups like the Pew foundation.

They hold a meeting and ask questions only they choose. If they like what you say they write it down, if they don't like what you say, in the ensuing heated discussion they will forget to write it down.

They will write a plan and claim the community had input. They will not let citizens review the draft or attend any meetings where they discuss the content of the plan after the initial meeting.

They do not have to let you see survey results or any drafts or include you in any subsequent meetings because they are not the government, they are a private nonprofit.

They however act like the government. When they are done, with the county's blessing, they will present the plan to the planning department who will approve it because the group has been coaxed by the county as to what to put in it. It will go to the board of superivisors who will thank the 'community' for their ability to put together such an excellent plan. They will vote to implement the plan.

The citizen, the people who actually live in the area and will be affected by the plan will have no say, because their government officials didn't write it. They will have lost their constitutional right to representation because now the community non-profit (mostly self appointed socialists) will be making the governmental decisions for the community not the citizen and his representative.

Your community will likely become very unlivable, because the goal is to deprive you of your property rights and force you to live a collectivists utopian ideal, no cars, no nonnative plants, no farming, no use of open space, tiny homes or high density apartments, etc etc etc.
45 posted on 02/16/2004 7:58:13 AM PST by hedgetrimmer
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To: farmer18th
Is the thinking that anonymity frees the participants to write unfettered opinions about the topic? If so, I wonder if that benefit is outweighed by the probability of anonymous observations actually sabotaging the process. One of the founding principles of our republic--now long gone--is the notion that you should be able to confront your accusers. Our county agencies now run on the principle that anyone can make an anonymous complaint.

No, the thinking is that if the responses are rendered anonymously, each participant can make further responses without being influenced, either favorably or unfavorably, by the reputation or notoriety of other participants. Remember, this is supposed to be used to extract opinion from a panel of knowledgeable experts, and to do it as efficiently as possible. It isn't supposed to be used for making complaints. If anyone were to make a personal attack, the moderator would likely delete that from the feedback anyway.

46 posted on 02/16/2004 8:19:26 AM PST by JoeFromSidney (All political power grows from the barrel of a gun. -- Mao Zedong. That's why the 2nd Amendment.)
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To: B4Ranch
Do any others believe it is actually happening?

Yes., and the pace is quickening.

47 posted on 02/16/2004 9:31:26 AM PST by forester
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To: forester
Just maybe, three years of trying to bring Agenda 21 out into public view has been slightly successful.
48 posted on 02/16/2004 9:43:54 AM PST by B4Ranch ( Dear Mr. President, Sir, Are you listening to the voters?)
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To: Pukin Dog
i'm speechless! this sounds like one of the phoniest techniques i have ever heard of.
49 posted on 02/16/2004 11:38:39 AM PST by drhogan
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To: Pukin Dog
i'm speechless! this sounds like one of the phoniest techniques i have ever heard of.
thanks for your post.
50 posted on 02/16/2004 11:39:01 AM PST by drhogan
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