From Black Daze, an Occasional Commentator Who Seems to Know the IAFF Quite Well:
Eric: [I’m] just a concerned member with concerns in common with yours.
Perhaps it is just my inability to fathom the reach of this medium, but I fear we have merely scratched the surface of this deep, disturbing dilemma.
In less than one week, important committees will report to Cincinnati to examine the early resolutions, discuss and debate them, and offer them to the delegates assembled on the floor of the Convention.
These committees are filled with some of the best and brightest from around the 16 districts (from State leaders, local leaders and from the IAFF board and staff); they landed on these committees because their DVP nominated them and the GP approved them.
Therein lies the depth of the dilemma â€¦ whom of the committee appointees will be able to say to their own DVP or to Harold and his legal co-horts, â€œI want to adopt an ethics policy that reflects the dignity of our unionâ€ â€“ in the face of Haroldâ€™s opposition, intimidation or threat to your future leadership in any capacity of the IAFF structure.
Further, there is the obvious opposition displayed by the inaction (tabled the simple motion to review the current policy!) of the Huppets who share the same fear of their â€œmaster.â€
Worse yet, the[y] employ the same strategy on those members who reject the servant/master model of leadership!
The â€œincestuousâ€ (unhealthily intimate or interconnected, especially so as to exclude the involvement or influence of others) nature of the appointments is an incredibly steep impediment to necessary change or correction.
Harold understands this â€“ thrives on it, really.
Each of the board members and insiders seem more than comfortable with its continued practice and existence â€“ as if they will someday sit near the throne. I wish I knew of a more appropriate method, but isnâ€™t that what Conventions are all about?
Get together, discuss your union, what works, what doesnâ€™t; brainstorm ways to make it better and debate the merits of the proposals â€¦ without the manipulative, heavy handed interference of the master.
Isnâ€™t it an unfortunate truth that you now serve your â€œmasterâ€ instead of the â€œelected leaderâ€ serving the general membership? Somehow they believe that the members of this union exist to provide them with money, position and power.
Leadership personalities at the International level can be an ardent study of psychology and a disappointing recognition of the reality we live in or under.
For all the good that has been accomplished by the IAFF and by Schaitberger, these last few months may very well be the way he is remembered.
Almost 100 years later and the traits of International leaders havenâ€™t really changed much.
Keep the faith, Eric â€¦ I will too.
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