Trustees-All - Independent Constitutionalists UK
Strategy Forum
- monthly focal point -

• LET’S USE THE SYSTEM
• TO BECOME THE SYSTEM
• TO CHANGE THE SYSTEM
• TO RECOVER TRUST

KEEPING THE VISION: The Independent Constitutionalist initiative, based on principled-pragmatism and a timetable for action, promotes
(1) the idea of a Confederation of the British Isles through devolution, subsidiarity and mutual accountability under a democratically written and living Constitution, and (2) the creation over time of a People’s Political-Economy of Trusteeship in the Harmony of Nature.

The means of furthering this initiative will, among other things, be: (a) the creation of a citizen Trustees-All Movement for propagating through democratic practice the inclusive universalism of Constitutionalists thinking; (b) provision of a broad rallying-point and banner through which like-minded activist groups (and there are currently many) can synergise their potential; leading to (c) the establishment of a Constitutional Parliament composed of independent members, to replace the existing House of Lords as set out in our Manifesto and Charter.

To these ends: Once a month an open Strategy Forum brings together voluntary associates who, through their physical presence or via e-correspondence, contribute, according to approved Ways of Working and Collaboration, to furthering Constitutionalist aims and purposes. An ongoing record of all agreed decisions is kept and sent out to all interested parties for comment.

Among the more specific tasks that the Strategy Forum has set itself are: • Identifying and establishing collaborative links with like-minded activist groups; • Identifying new ideas relevant to the Constitutionalist initiative; • Developing action models for local, base-level self-organising cells thereby to establish a much-needed and hitherto unachieved practice of participative democracy within our society; • Developing possible templates for structures of political organisation between base-level cells and any future Constitutional Parliament.

We seek to use the system, to become the system, to change the system, to recover trust.
Constitutionalists cannot prescribe what others should do. Only civil society can decide that for itself. We can, however, suggest ways and means that will help to ensure that democracy in our land and beyond remains inclusive, diverse, at all times accessible to all, genuinely representative of the will of the people and accountable, and rooted in collective trust and wisdom.

WAYS OF WORKING:
Guidelines for Strategy Forum meetings which all participants are called upon to endorse and honour
1. Agenda Item 1: Participants choose among themselves a Facilitator and a Recorder or confirm choices made at previous meetings.
2. Agenda Item 2: At every meeting, participants are notified of the origins (from previous meetings or as emailed by corresponding participants) of matters on the draft agenda as previously circulated and are given time to raise for inclusion in said agenda any points they consider require priority attention. Participants then agree the order in which items shall be debated.
3. Agenda Item 3: Approval of the Recorder’s Report of the previous meeting and Matters Arising.
4. As discussion of each agenda item approaches a conclusion, for items requiring decisions, the Recorder composes a draft consensus agreement and reads it aloud for approval. If amendments are suggested, the Facilitator and the Recorder negotiate approval of a final version. Should at any time and in respect of any matter consensus prove impossible, a decision shall by taken by simple majority vote of those present and voting, on the understanding that those present trust each other enough to consider important issues at a future meeting. 

5. The Recorder makes available well before the next meeting for comment to all participants, e-correspondents and interested parties the record of any consensus agreements and majority decisions reached, the names of those who have attended, apologies for absence, and the time, date and place of the next meeting.

6. In the interval between meetings contributions are gathered, a draft agenda which shall include any new items as well as those forwarded from previous meetings is circulated, and a request issued for firm commitments to be present.
7. All changes to these Ways of Working shall be debated and agreed following the above procedures.
COLLABORATION: Over time, we have learned that conciliatory dialogue is, among other things, aided by:
Remembering that nothing is impossible if we don't mind who gets the credit
Understanding that servant-leadership is about enabling, not controlling, others
Sustaining high tolerance for ambiguity
Welcoming newcomers at their point of entry
Holding strong convictions tentatively and keeping all boundaries permeable
Seeking to listen and learn rather than be right
Ensuring all comments are related to the task
Remembering that reality lies in the second glance, after dealing with prejudice in the first
Acknowledging that thinking is difficult and that people move at different speeds
Remembering that fragility is a mark of value: that which is not fragile may be pretentious
Throwing out dogma, while preserving any wisdom or poetry that inspired it
Checking one's own tribalism and egotism by remembering that we share our fragile planet with others
Being aware that dialogue’s ultimate goal is resolution and reconciliation

And we would add two pertinent aphorisms from Independents for Frome (www.iffrome.org.uk) which we share fully

The noble art of losing face may one day save the human race
Democracy is the art of thinking independently together
WORKING GROUPS, so far established, are as follows:

Structures of Political Organisation - Michael Mulvey (convenor), Brian Wills, Janos Abel and Peter Challen (from 10/2/2016) • To determine the basic constituents of democracy and examine the existing literature - Harrogate, Purton, ReImagine, Ergonocracy • To compile a list of the existing forms of democratic expression (i.e. participative, direct, representative, parliamentary, etc - starting with the Compendium-Glossary) with clear definitions of what they are and when and where they might apply • To provide a clear template(s) of how such forms might inter-relate within a coherent democratic structure that links base-level cells to a Constitutional Parliament • Thus to provide a clear and accessible answer to the question: When you Constitutionalists speak of democracy what exactly in practice do you mean? • To report regularly to the Strategy Forum business meeting.

Spreading the Message - Brian Wills (convenor),
Peter Challen, Steve Lancashire (from 10/2/2016)

• To identify and characterise relevant target groups and individuals • To identify the means available (e.g. Website, Booklet, Collaborative synergetic links with like-minded activist groups, Customised introductions to target groups and individuals, etc) • To compile a series of customised introductions • To develop a prioritised programme of action • To report regularly to the Strategy Forum business meeting.
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