In relation to my thesis question, where do I stand? A story or two here may help.
Firstly, when I was a councilor at REIWA I was censured by council for submitting a review of one of the acts to the Ministry of Fair Trading. My review differed in substance and conclusion from REIWA’s views, and I went to some length to distance myself from REIWA and to show the work represented my opinion and not that of REIWA. I thought then, and still do, that REIWA had no jurisdiction to tell me what I could or couldn’t say on matters of public interest. As a councilor I was happy to support the organisational line, as a private citizen I had the right to say my piece in a legitimate public environment. The fact that I was censured smacked of insecurity and fear on the part of the leadership group and failed to respect my rights as an individual.
The second comes from my experience growing up as a member of the Jehovah’s Witness religion. At lay person level there exists no mechanism by which a person may question, especially publicly, dogma as handed down by church hierarchy. The use of thought and reason for the purpose of questioning such dogma was, and, as far as I’m aware still is actively discouraged, with the ultimate indignity to be disfellowshipped thus losing favour and contact with family and friends. I believe that such rules and regulations affect peoples lives in a very direct and negative manner and it is this form of abuse of power I believe everyone should be on guard.
For these reasons I position myself as holding that the greatest organisational good is achieved through creating an environment that respects the fundamental rights of a person to seek their own enlightenment through self-expression seen in the broadest possible terms. At times these expressions of the self may appear on face value to be opposed or to actively question authority within the organisation, however, allowing such expression, and the resultant debate provides for a far healthier, more nurturing, and prosperous working environment.