I sat in a public space recently, and witnessed from the outside what I used to be a kind of insider in.
In response to a particular piece of corporate thuggery, a “how can we organise solidarity with those under the cosh” meeting had been called. By coincidence I was meeting a friend in the same place, so was able to observe a bit.
It went on for at least an hour and a half, with it proceeding at the pace of 1 person among the ten or so present speaking, with everyone listening, then someone else, then someone else…. And unless things have changed, I am willing to bet that 20% of the people did 80% of the talking.
The following day I happened to bump into someone who had been there. “Anything to report?” I asked.
“No, not yet. We haven’t really decided yet.”
Now, of course, they may well be deciding to do something they don’t want to publicise just yet. Fair enough. But the meeting was about solidarity, then shouldn’t at least SOME of that solidarity be in public?
And in my more pessimistic moments I suspect that the meeting circled its own tail and went on inconclusively until it just, well, petered out…
I remember clearly now, there were many reasons why I left. This sort of thing was one factor in my leaving, and a far bigger factor in me not getting re-involved.