Who leads an anarchy? LO29159

From: Jan Lelie (janlelie@wxs.nl)
Date: 09/10/02

Replying to LO29152 --

Hi Alan, dear readers,

The siege of Sidney Street is unfamiliar to me. What i do know is that
groups "regress" to protect themselves from uncomfortable aspects of the
real world. One form this regression takes is the"dependency" mode were
the group assumes it needs some form of leadership. A leader will step
forward. The leader however is most of the times unable to cope with the
expectations - fantasies - of the group regarding safety, protection.
Also he or she will be confronted with inaction on the part of the group
to take up their responsibilitties, as they have cleverly chosen a leader
to solve it all.... . The leader will be replaced - often by one of the
least able members of the group. This leader will also fail and
fragmentation and infighting will start. In the end this weak leader will
have to increase the threath from the outside, the real world, as a common
enemy might at least stop the infighting. Hmmmm - sounds familiar.

The intervention the first leader might have made - to prevent the
breakdown of the group - is NOT to accept the group becoming dependent on
him or her for a solution to the uncomfortable aspects of the world, but
to offer to support them in finding ways for themselves to learn to cope
with reality, the good, the bad and the ugly. This - i assume - doesn't
occur, because most parents - regression makes people go back to their
childhood - haven't learned to resolve issues this way, so people lack a
rolemodel. Most institutions - including churches, coporations and
universities - offer exactly the type of leadership - protection from the
real world - that disables people from learning to solve their own
problems with the group or team. The main argument is - of course - that
such a leaderless group or team would lead to anarchy, chaos and
conflict.. Another argument against solving problems with the team is
time: it takes more time - on the short run - to define and reach a
solution with a group than it takes a leader to make decisions. On the
long run, ....

Take care,


>Whenever someone talks about anarchy, I think of the siege of Sidney
>I think it's one thing to organise yourselves into a democratic team (and
>elect a leader), another to be controlled and manipulated by a despot or
>'control freak'. As you said 'a leader will always emerge', it shouldn't
>be a birthright.


Jan Lelie <janlelie@wxs.nl>

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