Re: Question about Consent Governance
From: Philip Dowds (
Date: Sat, 25 Aug 2018 15:43:21 -0700 (PDT)
And because we’ve been unable to invent a mechanism we trust to distinguish 
between good of the community, versus “mere” self-interest, we never seek to 
invalidate an objection.  If I object to a vegan menu because it will cause 
sunspots, then that’s my objection, and it's as valid as any other.  (A triumph 
of equivalence?)

Which is why we’ve created instead a super-majority vote escape hatch, to be 
used only after strenuous efforts within a well-structured, well-paced 
consensus process have failed to obtain unanimity.  Interestingly enough, with 
this option in place, objecting has fallen way off, and unanimously accepted 
compromises seem much easier to accomplish.

Philip Dowds
Cornerstone Village Cohousing
Cambridge, MA

mobile: 617.460.4549
email:   rpdowds [at]

> On Aug 25, 2018, at 4:57 PM, Sharon Villines via Cohousing-L <cohousing-l 
> [at]> wrote:
>> On Jul 17, 2018, at 8:40 AM, Alan O'Hashi via Cohousing-L <cohousing-L [at] 
>>> wrote:
>> Phil, et al. - Speaking for myself, the "objections" I think are valid are 
>> those based on whether or not the objection affects the good of the 
>> community, versus an objection based on self-interest. 
> And my oft repeated refrain:  Who decides what is in the good of the 
> community?
> Who decides what is “only” based on self-interest?
> Unfortunately unless you have a very clear vision-mission-aim statement and 
> have connected the proposal to that, it will be the majority that determines 
> the answer.
> This argument goes on the examine the purpose of community — Is it other than 
> the self-interest of each person in the community as a member of the 
> community?
> Sharon
> ----
> Sharon Villines
> Takoma Village Cohousing, Washington DC
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