re/ report from St Imier


Richard Moore

Bcc: FYI
rkm website

Brian Hill wrote:
actions speak louder than words – that’s what I’m doing. We have a pretty self-sufficient 320 acre wilderness ranch. Peace and balance are replacing more money.

hope to get to get there one of these days and hang out a bit! do you have good internet?


Jim Fadiman wrote:
I’m am happy for you that you are taking your work to the next level, beta testing. Also wonderful for you to be saying, this is not a time for writing (maybe) but a time for reflecting. May you enjoy making and then drinking the wine of experience.
Best Jim

cheers! i seem to return to writing, in cycles. action and reflection lead to insights, and then i need to write in order to consolidate.


Chris Chapman wrote:

Hi Richard
Hope things go well for you.
I agree ‘how decisions are made’ is a very central question and like that you are putting that very simply.
Alongside that for me, there are questions about ‘taking responsibility’ – i.e. who is willing to take what responsibility ? and also enforcement – i.e. how are any decisions made to be enforced or re-visited if circumstances change ? (which they tend to). All of which, may be called Governance and all of which inter-relates, but unfortunately I think there is a bit more there to grapple with than just the taking of decisions, and I think it does get more context dependent as it gets a bit more complex.
Good luck and look forward to hearing more.
Best regards

Nice to hear from you. Yes, the broader issue is about governance – how a self-governing society would operate. I’ve got a model that is I think useful in thinking about self-governance, but it’s certainly not the whole story:
A model of self-governance  (slide show)


Jim Rough wrote:
Hi Richard,
Nicely said. It’s fun to see your current thinking so clearly stated here.
One conclusion I’ve reached that would be an addition to your conclusions is. … The question of “how decisions are to be made” is two fold. Yes, one level of “how” involves issues like who is involved, who gets to vote, who gets a voice, and whether there are representatives or not, etc. As you know but don’t say … the more interesting level of “how” is in the quality of thinking, the thought process used. … I don’t think there is an answer to your question “how decisions can be made by people generally, without delegating that power to designated decision makers”  if we continue to think in terms of “decisions being made.” I think there probably will always be a decision-making mode that involves representatives. More important is to establish in place a choice-creating mode which is more primary. And I think that’s what you are experimenting with in Switzerland.  
It’s fun to think of you and Chris shaking the trees and making a powerful difference. Jean and I aim to be there in March. We have a  seminar Mar 4-6 in Zurich. Hope to see you then.

Yes, choice-creating has got to be at the core of self-governance. And the principle of the representative microcosm brings high-power leverage to the game. I imagine I’ll be here in March, but not sure.


Jim Macgregor wrote:
Hi Richard,
I hope you are enjoying your time with Chris and that your health is 
holding up since your cardiac scare two years ago.
I’m just back from a week researching material in the 
National Archives at Kew, and the Bodleian Library at Oxford 
University.  Turned up some quite exciting stuff, but I’m pretty 
certain that any truly incriminating  material was culled before the 
documents even reached the shelves of these institutions.  The usual 
excuse offered is that the records papers and diaries of individuals 
involved were “organised” after death by their widows, simply to remove 
deeply personal material.
While in Inverness a few weeks ago I picked up a second hand book by a 
Canadian Professor called d’Ombrain.  In the early 70’s he was 
researching material in London relating to the Committee of Imperial 
Defence in the pre 1914 years.  He tells how five sixths of the 
documents were removed from the shelves during the period he was 
actually conducting his research and he never got to see them.  
Who controls the present controls the past, who controls the past 
controls the future, and by revealing exactly how the Elites have 
monopolised so completely the writing and teaching of history, we can 
hopefully lessen their control.  That is the aim of the WW1 book. 
Take care Richard,

Sounds like right out of 1984, the Ministry of Truth adjusting history. Glad you’re doing your research while there’s still some material left. Can’t wait to see your book in publication! I’m doing fine, having fun, and am in pretty good health, but I don’t go fast uphill.


Peter Koenig wrote:
My answer to all of the above:
The only thing we can change is our conscience.
the change of our conscience will also change our environment.

Hmmm, lots of people are saying that. I’m not convinced myself.


Sharon Almerigi wrote:
Hi Richard,
These thoughts sound good.
Heard a good interview today I think you would find interesting re a new book about 1775 by a former Republican who was responsible for the Southern Strategy, Kevin Phillips. I believe he would agree with you. He has written about the renegades that hammered out the principles of this country in the year before 1776.
I believe you are right about approaching how decisions are made which also includes how people think and work together. I like the work of Chris Argyris which has been embodies in the Mutual Learning Model by Roger Schwarz. To me this is one of the missing pieces of the puzzle.
Best wishes,


Vera Gottlieb wrote:
Right now the most important thing – in Europe and in North America (and perhaps in Asia too), is to get people back to work any which way and I don’t see any efforts happening. Crumbling infrastructures that are in desperate need of repair can be seen all over. Why not create ‘Make work’ programs and provide financial relief (even if only temporarily) – not to get rich on but certainly to help put food on the table. Stop bailing out the banks at all costs and at the expense of so many who did not create this financial mess. Bankia Bank in Spain being bailed out with millions in exchange for 10,000 jobs to be eliminated in the next 3 years. The ensuing unrest, and not just in Spain, should not come as a surprise to anyone – unless dumb, deaf and blind.
     As for Swiss democracy…don’t tamper with it – it has done fine for many centuries. Many a country could learn from it. In my view, what needs dismantling is the European Union/Euro – it doesn’t allow for any kind of flexibility. A European Commonwealth, each country with it’s own currency, would make a lot more sense – at least to me. I am not the only ‘Euro skeptic’ around. All these mega bailouts…where is all that money going to come from? I am glad to live in Switzerland now.