[EM] Public elections are the ones that matter.
Abd ul-Rahman Lomax
abd at lomaxdesign.com
Sun Nov 13 17:32:14 PST 2005
At 08:17 AM 11/13/2005, Dave Ketchum wrote:
>Doing delegable proxies for public elections means selling and getting a
>law to fit - worth pursuing.
Yes, I'd agree. However, it will be very, very difficult under
present conditions. Creating independent DP organizations should
theoretically be much easier, would be safer (i.e., it is not
necessary to entrust government itself to an untried and unproven
technology or technique), and would not have to deal with certain
very knotty problems until the organizational maturity existed that
could handle them.
>Doing them for corporations:
> Does Robert's Rules have anything helpful?
> Is there any law that forbids what you want? If so, work on the law.
The "law" that "forbids" it is the law of the persistence of power
inequities. Delegable proxy will redistribute power from those who
currently enjoy a power excess; they will see this as a threat.
Guaranteed, they will oppose it, and, within the existing structure,
they have excess power. That does not guarantee that they will
succeed, but.... it does give them a leg up. I've seen tremendous
effort exerted to overcome entrenched corporate management, all for
nothing. In California, there was a proxy battle, an effort by an
attorney who had noticed that the California State Automobile
Association was essentially in bed with the insurance industry and
was acting in the interests of that industry, not precisely in the
interests of motorists. In spite of having, I'd say, substantial
justice on his side, he lost. Of course, this attorney and his slate
of candidates may have had their *own* agenda....
CSAA, like many similar corporations, sends out proxy solicitations.
Most members, I think, don't understand the implications, and,
naturally, want to be helpful.... Existing management has, through
this, almost unopposable power.
>Then write up a bylaws change and have a stock owner submit it to an
>annual meeting for hoped-for adoption. Might even get the board to back
>adoption - assuming they see it as useful.
Might work. More likely not. What's in it for the board?
(A truly enlightened board might recognize the value to the
corporation of having a collection of owners who had, perhaps, "pride
of ownership." But I think that the fears would generally overpower
>Mention of nonprofits turns me off - for my stock I would like more
>flexibility than I have now as to proxies, but I would WANT a proxy paying
>enough attention to vote intelligently.
Don't know what this has to do with nonprofits. If a shareholder
wants his or her interests represented by a nonprofit, Warren Beatty,
or anyone, for that matter, it's his or her right. But the
shareholder does not need a change in law or corporate bylaws to have
this right. All the shareholder has to do is name the proxy suggested
by that organization or person (or to name that person himself or herself).
Shareholders *have* the right to do this, but don't generally do it.
Instead, small ones anyway, they just sign those forms sent to them
by the nice people at corporate headquarters....
This is a variation on my constant theme: we don't need *them* to
change, *we* need to change....
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