There is a fundamental construct that is anathema to all advocates of democracy–the concentration of power in the hands of a few people coupled with the injunction to “just trust us.”
While the “just trust us” proponents would like to make the debate about personalities and who is or is not a good person, the real issue is about structure. Structural power imbalances inevitably lead to power abuses, if not today then tomorrow or the day after. This is why the Founders set up a system of checks and balances in the US government so that power would not be concentrated in one or a few people however sterling of character (George Washington, anyone?).
The question before us is why co-op governance–especially a tenant sponsored co-op–functions so undemocratically? NYS corporation law may allow a co-op to be undemocratic, but does it require it to be? In other words, does co-op law require that 2 people defy the will of 20 people when scheduling a meeting, as happened Wednesday night at the Energy Committee meeting? Does the law insist that for each and every decision a few hairs on the tail get to wag the rest of the dog into the ground? Or does the law merely give those few hairs the naked power to impose their will if they so chose? And if the law does not require that they impose their will at every turn, then what is going on at WVH?