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Thursday, May 7, 2009

Knapp Desperately Imputes Dishonesty; Seebeck Stonewalls

Tom, imputing dishonesty to me is just icing on your cake of intellectual laziness.  My arguments above stand unrebutted by you.  I've agreed with MDH that the Bylaws here are ambiguous.  By contrast, you've backed yourself into the corner of asserting that no honest reasonable person could disagree with you -- and then you don't even answer the arguments of mine that I've enumerated you not answering.  I'm happy to let the record stand as is; are you?

Mike, you seem to be confusing 1) the specific fact that "for cause" removal is a power of a 2/3 LNC majority, and 2) the general observation that the Bylaws don't give anybody -- Chair, Secretary, LNC, JudCom -- the power to remove an at-large rep arbitrarily i.e. without any pretense of a reason.  The fact that nobody has such arbitrary power of removal doesn't mean that any removal has to follow the 8.5 for-cause process.  This is obvious from the provision in 8.5 that consecutive absences automatically lead to removal, and not even Knapp argues that this must be effected by the for-cause machinery.  (He claims it doesn't happen until LNC uses a majority vote to approve minutes asserting a consecutive absence, and I claim it happens when "the recording officer of the Party" faithfully notes the second absence in his records. Do you claim that it doesn't happen without a 2/3 for-cause vote?  If you want to climb out alone on that limb, it can be sawed off by simply noting the absurdity it creates concerning regional reps.)

I don't claim that "the Secretary can unilaterally remove an LNC member", and I doubt our readers need to be told that this is a straw man.  What I claim is that "a National Committee member shall be a sustaining member of the Party", and that "the Secretary shall be the recording officer of the Party" and shall "keep such minutes and records as necessary".  What I further claim is that 8.4 says "shall", while 8.5 says "may".  You can cite "H.R. 101" all you want; I'll stick to quoting the Bylaws and RRONR, thank you very much.

My interpretation leads to no absurdities in the Bylaws, whereas you seem tor recognize that your interpretation means that 8.4 applies to regional reps but is in that case absurdly disconnected from the 8.5 for-cause power that you say 8.4 is so tightly bound to.  What you're not confronting here is the fundamental principle of interpretation that I've quoted repeatedly: a non-absurd reading of the Bylaws always trumps a reading that yields absurdity.

By the way, you're technically wrong to claim that "There is *no* removal [sic] a member from the LNC without cause, period. Show me in the Bylaws where an LNC member can be removed without cause. IT DOESN’T EXIST in there".   Actually, Bylaw 8.7 says: "A National Committee Regional Representative may be removed and replaced only by the act of the affiliate parties which constitute the subject region. The voting procedure for the removal and replacement of regional representatives shall be determined by the regions. In the absence of any such procedures, a majority vote of the state chairs shall prevail."

Nobody would dare claim that this isn't a plenary power of arbitrary removal.  Now, unlike Mr. Knapp, I'm not so desperate here as to pretend I don't know what you were trying to say -- namely, that _at-large_ reps cannot be removed arbitrarily.  Your mistake here surely was caused by your determination to continue ignoring the issue of regional reps and the absurdity about them that your reading creates.  You can say "red herring" and insult me all you want, but you're the one positing an absurdity in the Bylaws, not me.  I invite readers to notice whether your next response includes even more insults against me, while continuing to stonewall on my central argument about what is listed as the second fundamental principle of interpretation in the rules by which our Party has voluntarily chosen to govern itself.