ACWGC Forums

Cabinet update
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Author:  pierred [ Wed Dec 19, 2012 1:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Cabinet update

Fellow Members,

I will attempt in this thread, and please bear with me, to keep you informed of the Cabinet activities during my tenure. Sort of a blog if you will.

Feel free to respond in this thread.

The current Cabinet topics under review. For reference Cabinet topics are numbered XXX.

Dec 18: 001 the rules -- Status: Currently a club wide vote end Dec. 31.

Dec. 19: 002 Endorsements - Currently in discussion. A formal proposal to be submitted shortly. Poll currently indicates approval of endorsements. Cabinet to continue discussion and submit a proposal for vote.

Dec. 18: 003 Election Reform. -- Under discussion

Dec 18: 004 CoA - Who votes for them. Blakes proposal to allow all side members to vote for a CoA is currently under discussion

Dec 22: Current Cabinet vote to extend the Union CoA term by one month to give time for the current vote and other proposals that may affect the process to be completed. Cabinet vote passed - One month extension

The Cabinet will close for the Holidays Dec. 24th till Jan 3.

Author:  pierred [ Mon Dec 31, 2012 10:48 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Cabinet update

Even though the Cabinet is on Holiday we have been working.

To bring you up to date. A new topic was introduced for Cabinet discussion 005 PROPOSAL TO MODIFY AND EXPAND SECTION 9 basically to provide rules for proposal and idea submissions.

002 and 004 are moving forward with recommended proposals under review.

Club wide voting for 001 is coming to an end and the results will be submitted this week.

Author:  pierred [ Tue Jan 01, 2013 6:58 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Cabinet update

004 the proposal was voted down and a modified version is being discussed and proposed.

001 Vote has ended with no change to prerequisites and an adjustment of the rule for clarity. 40 - 21

Author:  pierred [ Sun Jan 06, 2013 10:15 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Cabinet update

After about 2 months of use, the Cabinet forums used for discussions and voting are working. A few issues have been noted and a detailed instruction manual is now being put together. The goals is to minimize post manipulations, and ease of use. For the most part it helps organize the flow of work through the steps of receiving submissions and proposals, discussions, voting and to their final archiving.

For your information here are two pics of the forums being used by the Cabinet.

The following image shows the basic Cabinet forums:


This image shows the Cabinet Business Forum - sub forums


Author:  Blake [ Sun Jan 06, 2013 12:40 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Cabinet update

FYI - maybe its just me but we don't seem to have access to the Cabinet Forums as described in the first pic. If it is a place to submit ideas by the members we need to be granted access or the forum be switched from the ACWGC Cabinet HQ to the main forum group in the MDT.

Author:  pierred [ Sun Jan 06, 2013 5:09 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Cabinet update

Thanks Blake,

Moved it to the main forum area right after the MDT. A good reason why it was not being used much.

Author:  pierred [ Wed Jan 16, 2013 2:22 pm ]
Post subject:  Current Cabinet work


I have decided, due to work load demands, that Cabinet business will be done via email. Archive Forum will remain the rest removed.

Current Cabinet vote on 3 proposals.

Submission proposal
Endorsement Proposal
Cabinet voting made public

Author:  Blake [ Thu Jan 17, 2013 2:34 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Current Cabinet work

From Pierre's post am I to assume that yall are moving away from the Cabinet Forum? In my opinion this is a major error.

The reasons we moved to a forum in the first place are as valid as ever. With emails there is no permanent record of anything. Emails can be lost, deleted, edited, or "misplaced" at will. The idea behind the forum was that it would become a permanent file cabinet for the Cabinet to use. All Cabinet Business would be locked, stored and recorded there for future reference. This idea passed by a vote of 6-1 just 12 months ago! Now it is to be done away with?

If yall recall when I joined the Cabinet in 2010 there was no record-keeping system... oh wait. Yall can't recall that because none of you were there when I first joined. You will have to trust me on that one. And, hey, did you guys know Pat Carroll once served on the Cabinet. So did Tony Malone. Did you know that there was once an instance of a CoA dismissing his Cabinet Secretaries for arguing with him. Did two Union Secretaries really getting into a heated rage over an excel document? Were posts ever arbitraraily deleted by the Cabinet? Who is Karel and how did he become a member even after being expelled? And was Notso expelled? Who voted for that? And wasn't I told by a Cabinet Member that the Club would collapse around me before my two years as President was over? Is any of that true? Is any of it half-true? Or, is the answer based on simply who you ask? Or, am I making it all up? Perhaps, I am sadly misinformed on some issues? Or, have I regrettably been provided poor information?

And that's the system you guys want to go back to?

I dont say any of this to be rude I am merely stating my opinion that the Cabinet needs to be more responsible than it was in the past. I simply dont know what happened in the past on the Cabinet. All I have is heresay. And no two people EVER AGREE. And everyone is convinced everyone else is lying (or conveniently stretching the truth). Mainly because there is no record of it written anywhere for anyone to read so nothing can ever be proved or disproved. Oh everyone has emails. I have read dozens forwarded to me. You would be shocked how saintly people can look in the emails they choose to forward. While the person they are railing against comes off looking like a dictatorial arse.

The point is that relying on emails to form an impartial understanding of Cabinet actions is a folly of monumental proportions. Remember the recent proposal I made? I couldnt quote a single email or person who had any hard evidence of why the rank of Lt. General was arbitrarily chosen years ago. Why? Nobody can remember! We had plenty of opinions and "rememberances" but nobody had any emails or posts. I am sure someone may have an old email buried somewhere. But they apparently have no desire to produce any such email. And what can we do? Subpeona people to produce email evidence? We dont even know who may have such emails. They likely don't even know they have the emails. So we assume the logic and we guess at the meanings of past decisions by the Cabinet.

That's the way to do things?

Now, go back to the Cabinet Archives. Check and see what we discussed last July. It's there. Every post - every topic - every comment - it's there. No heresay. No personal opinions. No interpretation of meanings. As Joe Friday would say, "just the facts, please."

Now which is the more efficient - fair - and rational way to do things?

Or, to quote Pierre's Campaign Thread when running for President in October:
I proposed to the Cabinet that meetings and discussions would be better served on a private forum rather than by email. The benefits, of reduced email clutter and a better organization of the discussions and establishing a true history of what the Cabinet is and has done. Current and future Cabinet Members would thus be able to understand what was previously discussed and achieved. After overcoming initial reservations it has been working well for the last year and we have the beginnings of a real Cabinet history index for the future Cabinets to browse and study.

When we began using the forum we voted to use it. I suggest that if it is to be discontinued that it should be voted on again. If anyone believes they don't have the time to properly visit the MDT forum and keep up with things than they should reconsider their place on the Cabinet. Before anyone thinks that is rude to say - remember I left the Cabinet because I felt I didnt have the time or energy to keep up anymore. I needed to re-charge. There is nothing wrong with that. There is no shame in saying - "Hey, I am out of gas! Someone else needs to carry the torch for a while." I'd rather have people realize their limitations than go on over-burdened in the Club.

This is all just my two cents. But I was also a driving force behind getting the Cabinet Forum in place and I still believe in its merit 100%. I had to say something. If the Cabinet Forum is voted to be closed the Members have a right to know why and to be explained how some other system is supposedly better and serves the needs of the Club in a better fashion. Because from what I just wrote I struggle to find any argument in favor of using emails to create a lasting Cabinet archive.

(would someone please place this in the Cabinet Archives for future reference)

As a side note - for those rapidly re-reading my third paragraph and preparing to quickly skim their past emails to prove or disprove what I just wrote - please don't. Let's not rehash old arguments yet again. The facts of the past are so distorted that to bring them up and try to make sense of any of that now is impossible. Let it lie. But learn from past mistakes - dont repeat them! A permanent Cabinet Forum and Archive is the best way to avoid any such misunderstandings in the future. That's what this Archive idea represents and seeks to accomplish.

Author:  TMiller [ Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:35 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Current Cabinet work

Its important to be transparent while governing...and to have all business in the open/recorded
I concur....if the Cabinet is going to change the ways business is conducted
then it needs to be putted to a vote to the entire club.

Author:  nelmsm [ Thu Jan 17, 2013 5:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Current Cabinet work

Hmm.....I don't recall there having to be a club wide vote to move it to the forum in the first place?

Author:  Blake [ Thu Jan 17, 2013 10:39 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Current Cabinet work

nelmsm wrote:
Hmm.....I don't recall there having to be a club wide vote to move it to the forum in the first place?

Hmm... I dont recall a Club wide vote to conduct Cabinet Business via email either.

Just saying...

But in direct answer to your comment - there was a Cabinet vote taken to open the Cabinet Business Forum which passed 6 - 1. Thus a Cabinet vote should be taken to close it. That seems fair and makes sense. The vote shouldnt be opened to all Members (yes, it pains me to say) since there is no actual Club Rule involved here for members to vote on. But there are Cabinet formalities involved which, I think, should be voted on by the Cabinet as a whole.

Author:  pierred [ Fri Jan 18, 2013 6:51 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Current Cabinet work Club President. The Club President will serve as chair for all Cabinet discussions.

Were these discussions take place are at the pleasure of the President.

Until a solution is found to reduce the workload a President must assume, and maintaining the Cabinet forums is a workload, the decision stands.

Discussions within the Cabinet are on going in order to save the CBF.

It is certainly not because of I do not know of their value. Blake was not the only person to advocate Cabinet forums as his post appears to indicate. I fought with him to promote the idea where it failed during the previous Cabinet. The new Cabinet was more open and accepted the idea. To not use them is not taken lightly by me.

Author:  Olinsky [ Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:15 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Current Cabinet work

President Desruisseaux,

If I may quote something from the ACWGC Rules... Cabinet Secretaries. The Cabinet Secretaries will participate and vote in Cabinet decisions and perform other duties as assigned by the Club President.

I've never served on the Cabinet and I don't doubt for one minute that you've all got an incredible workload serving in that capacity. I know I keep very busy just serving as General Ringbloom's "Chief of Staff" for the Army of the Shenandoah and trying to run Hancocks Division properly. And that doesn't even include the time spent on my personal gaming within the Club.

Now to quote something from Webster's Dictionary...


There's absolutely no question in my mind what the FOUR Cabinet Secretaries are supposed to be doing. They are supposed to be assisting the Club President and the two Chief of Armies. They are supposed to be superintending various departments or areas within the Club. And there is absolutely no way to escape the fact that they are SUPPOSED to be actively managing the Club's records and correspondence. And this would include maintaining the Cabinet Forum.

I rather doubt any of the current Cabinet Secretaries are stool pigeons... well, except for maybe my old friend and adversary Lt General Hebert. :wink: But if they are... kick the stools out from under them and find someone who will do the job as it's supposed to be done. :shock:

If that is not the case... then might I suggest that it's time to add a couple additional Cabinet Secretaries to reduce the individual Cabinet Secretaries workloads and to make sure the Cabinet Forum is properly administered?

Author:  Blake [ Fri Jan 18, 2013 11:35 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Current Cabinet work

When the Cabinet Members come together and vote to create something than it is a pact. It should not be broken by a single member (even if he is the President) for any reason without the majority consent of the Cabinet. An individual can kill their own creation (for instance I could stop publishing the Confederate Dispatch since it is my own baby and not a Club-sponsored thing) but an individual cannot kill or edit something that the group has voted into existence without the permission of the group - given via a group vote.

The solution is really very simple. Call for a Cabinet vote and if they agree to end the CBF than that's fine. I will cease my comments and I can accept that. The fact that such a great idea - voted on and passed by a 6 - 1 margin, supported by you, and endorsed in your presidential campaign - can be dismantled by you for no other reason than you find it inconvenient now is worrisome to me. Although the CBF was your original idea the CBF was voted on and accepted by the Cabinet as a group - thus it should be dismantled in the same way if it is to be done away with.

I get that your busy and that weighs heavily on you. But dismantling the CBF is not the answer. Those of you who have not used it or read it may have a hard time understanding. It's the difference between trying to do mustering by email and mustering via a forum or the DoR. All CSA Armies have ditched email mustering. The system was just too difficult to use anymore. The forums and the DoR proved their worth and ability to create lasting records of musters and are a much more convenient method for the members as a group.

The CBF needs to stay active because it is the best way to keep the Cabinet functioning in a controlled, accountable, and recorded manner. If the Cabinet is working on a way to "save the CBF" than that's great. They must see it's merit. There are ways it can be better utilized and the President should have a CoS or Secretary or something at the very least to help him. Anything would be preferable IMHO than returning to the emailing system we used so poorly for so many years.

Author:  pierred [ Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:07 pm ]
Post subject:  Cabinet administrative position

The Cabinet has approved an assistant to the President voted 6-1 in favor. This position will serve at the pleasure of the President.. The position has been created to assist the President and Cabinet in managing the Cabinet forums, correspondence and any other duties that may be requested. The title will be Secretary of State (SoS) with no voting or discussion privileges. As such the Cabinet Business Forums (CBF) will continue to be used. They already have been re-organized and procedures will be added for all to understand how to use and go about Cabinet business on the Forums.

General Blake Strickler has graciously volunteered for the position. His experience and knowledge of the CBF has already proven valuable in re-organizing and setting up the CBF. He has already been an immense help.

No club rules will be added or changed therefore not requiring a membership vote.

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