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Subject: RE: Agenda and Parliamentary Procedure for the FTF meeting

I am prepared to give the chair - of the TC and of the subgroups -
considerable latitude in expression of motions, issues resolution and
closing of meetings.  I am in favour of giving the chair more control than
Robert's or Bourinot's rules.  Given that none of us have entered this with
the express mandate of attempting to block or humiliate another party (as in
the house of commons case), I see no reason for process that assumes such a
confrontational an environment.  Further, I have every confidence in the
chair ability to build consensus and make arbitrary decisions on when to
consider meetings closed, debate ended, whether consensus has been achieved,
etc.  Even at the W3C, much bemoaned for it's lack of progress in WGs,
allows greater flexibility in these things.  

Further, in parliamentary systems, the speaker is appointed by one party,
typically against the wishes of other party(s).  Thus the speaker must
follow a rigorous process to prevent the aggrieved parties from making
accusations of bias.  We do not have this case, I believe that there were no
votes against Eve.  

I have never believed that rigorous process is a substitute for extremely
talented people achieving a goal.  I have seen many cases where a chair has
actually gone around the "official" process to ensure that the WG members
goals are met.  A scenario from my past, about a year and half ago: Tim Bray
is chair of W3C XLink WG.  An issue comes up, is discussed, and then is
voted upon.  2 vote passionately for the issue, 8 vote against the issue.
Process says issue should die.  TimB realizes that there is something behind
the passion for issue that the 2 have expressed (such as the fact that they
are recognized experts in this area and are extremely passionate on the
topic).  He refuses to declare the issue closed and refers it back to the WG
for further discussion.  In the next week, the 2 have managed to convince
the rest that the issue was relevent and a new vote changes the previous
outcome, the entire WG is happy with the result.

One of the major reasons that I voted for Eve and against a
security-oriented co-chair was to explicitly allow for Eve to exercise her
judgement in areas such as this.  There can be no claim of bias made against
her - which is one of the things that Roberts and Bourinot's rules attempts
to mitigate.  A security-oriented co-chair would have made it necessary to
more rigorously follow various rules.  

I do not argue against all aspects of various rule systems, but against
extreme rigidity in the process under which a chair can conduct and
interpret debate.  I particularly against the aspects of parliamentary
procedure that are inapplicable to our WG.

My view and approach gives more authority to a chair to enable them to
exercise their judgement in attempts to achieve consensus.  Let us not
rigourously bind our chair and ourselves in coming to reach a specification
that we can live with.  This is the key difference of approaches.  I freely
give the chair rights to do what they can to achieve consensus (including
dynamic changes in process), as opposed to empowering a chair to execute a
process.  And let us take full advantage of the fact that we have a talented
and unbiased chair to the best effect.  A process is a means to an end, not
the end itself.  


> -----Original Message-----
> From: Heather_Hinton@tivoli.com [mailto:Heather_Hinton@tivoli.com]
> Sent: Monday, February 26, 2001 8:51 AM
> To: George_Robert_Blakley_III@tivoli.com
> Cc: security-services@lists.oasis-open.org
> Subject: Re: Agenda and Parliamentary Procedure for the FTF meeting
> Bob,
> I don't know Robert's rules, but according to Bourinot's 
> Rules (of Sir John
> George Bourinot, one time Clerk of the House of Commons), a motion to
> accept minutes is the same as any other motion. If it is 
> defeated, "it may
> not be re-introduced except in the form of a new proposal sufficiently
> varied in its terms to consititute a different quesiton, and the House
> itself may determine whether or not it does in fact constitute a new
> question". I too have never seen minutes defeated, but I have 
> seen them
> tabled (see below) or sent back for further clarification to 
> be taken up at
> the next meeting.
> Also, you should probably brush up on/provide a refresher course on
> - calling the question (the precedence of, debatability of, and voting
> required on)
> - tabling a motion (which means putting an issue aside to allow other
> business to proceed and then coming back to it at a later 
> time in the same
> meeting)
> Another point: in Bourinot, you must have quorum to adjourn a 
> meeting. So
> make sure you do this before everyone runs off to the airport :)
> heather
> ps I have a copy of Bourinot at my desk if you want to look at it
> Heather Hinton, PhD,
> Senior Security Architect
> Tivoli eZone Solutions Design
> 6300 Bridgepoint Parkway
> Building IV, B4001
> Austin, TX 78731
> e-mail: hhinton@tivoli.com
> Telephone: +1:(512)436-1538
> Fax: +1(512)436-9411
> George_Robert_Blakley_III@tivoli.com on 02/25/2001 10:40:47 PM
> To:   security-services@lists.oasis-open.org
> cc:
> Subject:  Agenda and Parliamentary Procedure for the FTF meeting
> All,
> Robert's rules of order impose some constraints on the way a meeting
> may be run, and how it may consider and dispose of documents.
> In order to be most productive, we need to use Robert's rules 
> to do the
> things they were intended to do.  Specifically, we need to 
> use Robert's
> rules
> to record areas where we have reached consensus, and to refer 
> things we
> don't
> have consensus about back to committees for more work and 
> recommendations.
> I don't want to go into parliamentary procedure in too much 
> theoretical
> detail
> here.  However, a few points are in order (no pun intended).
> First, parliamentary procedure strictly limits the kind of 
> things we can
> talk
> about.  We can basically consider two kinds of things: the report of a
> subcommittee,
> or a motion from a member of the full committee to take some action.
> To the greatest extent possible, I hope we can work by acting on the
> recommendations
> of subcommittees, since these are the forums in which we do 
> most of our
> (offline and
> telecon) work.  If we feel something serious is missing and 
> needs to be
> dealt with
> immediately, or if there's a point of procedure or other 
> constraint on our
> operations
> we wish to make which we don't want to have reflected in the final
> document, then we
> can deal with it as a motion from the floor.
> When considering a subcommittee's recommended text, we need 
> to carefully
> avoid simply
> voting down a motion to adopt the text which a subcommittee 
> has produced.
> Doing this
> would have a couple of bad effects:
>      (i) it would cause us to lose the benefits of the debates we've
> already
>           had online and the ones we'll have at the FTF, and
>      (ii) at least formally, it would require the 
> subcommittees to start
> over
>           from scratch on the sections they've worked on.  It might
> actually
>           formally end the work of the subcomittee and force us to
> constitute
>           a new subcommittee.
> Therefore, instead of voting against adoption of a 
> subcommittee's report if
> we feel
> it isn't finished or needs to be fixed, we should make a 
> motion to REFER
> the matter
> back to the subcommittee for more work, probably with 
> specific instructions
> about
> what we want done.  The motion to Refer takes precedence over 
> both the main
> motion
> (i.e. the one to adopt the subcommittee's report) and any 
> amendments to the
> main
> motion, so we can use it to send the subsection back to the 
> subcomittee as
> soon as we
> feel we've stopped making progress in the FTF, while still 
> preserving the
> progress we
> HAVE made in the body of the amended document and in the 
> instructions to
> the subcommittee.
> With these points in mind, here's how I imagine the meeting will go:
> 1. Call to order
> 2. Roll call to determine quorum (the remainder of this 
> assumes we pass the
> quorum requirement)
> 3. Motion (and vote) to approve the minutes of the previous meeting
>      (as a personal aside, I have no idea what happens if 
> this motion fails
> -- I've
>      never seen it fail.  If anyone knows, I'd be happy to 
> learn this.)
> 4. Motion (and vote) to approve the agenda for this meeting
> 5. Motion to adopt Bob's recommended outline as the outline 
> for our final
> specification
>      5a. Motions to Amend this motion; debate and vote on 
> each amendment
>      5b. Vote on the motion to adopt, OR Motion to Commit the 
> outline to a
> new subcomittee
>           (one of these votes should PASS!)
> 6. Motion to adopt the recommendation of the use cases and 
> requirements
> subcommittee as the
>      use cases and requirements subsection of our final specification
>      6a. Motions to Amend this motion (these should take the form of
> amendments recommending
>           specific changes to the text of the use cases and 
> requirements
> document,
>           especially amendments recommending inclusion or exclusion of
> specific content)
>           6ai. Debate and vote on each amendment
>      6b. Motion to Refer the document back to the use cases and
> requirements subcomittee
>           6bi. Debate on the instructions to the subcommittee
>           6bii. Vote on the motion to refer (this motion should PASS!)
> 7. Motion to adopt the recommendation of the core assertions 
> subcommittee
> as the core
>      assertions subsection of our final specification
>      7a.
>           7ai.
>      7b.                 (All same as in section 6)
>           7bi.
>           7bii.
> 8. Motion to adopt the recommendation of the protocols 
> subcommittee as the
> protocols
>      subsection of our final specification
>      8a.
>           8ai.
>      8b.                 (All same as in section 6)
>           8bi.
>           8bii.
> 9. Motion to adopt the recommendation of the core assertions 
> subcommittee
> as the core
>      assertions subsection of our final specification
>      9a.
>           9ai.
>      9b.                 (All same as in section 6)
>           9bi.
>           9bii.
> 10. Call for new business
> 11. Motion to adjourn
> If we all agree that this is how things should happen, then 
> the following
> agenda should
> be followed (with two omissions not relevant to our first 
> FTF, this is the
> standard
> Roberts' agenda for a meeting).  Motions from the floor would be taken
> during the "New
> Business" segment:
> 1. Call to Order
> 2. Reading and approval of minutes of past meeting
> 3. Reading and approval of agenda
> 4. Reports of standing subcommittees
> 5. New Business
> --bob
> Bob Blakley
> Chief Scientist
> Enterprise Solutions Unit
> Tivoli Systems, Inc. (an IBM Company)
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