Are They Crazy?


“Decision making isn’t a matter of arriving at a right or wrong answer; it’s a matter of selecting the most effective course of action from among less effective courses of action”.  …… Phillip Marvin, Developing Decisions for Action, 1971, chapter 6

Decisions by committees…good concept…democracy, majority rules, sharing of ideals, etc…

Here is the flaw that lies…”not in the concept”…but many times in the end result of those decisions.

How many times have you heard or read a decision that was made by a group of individuals (a committee)…and you asked “How in the Hell could anyone think and agree that’s a good idea?”

For the sake of simplicity…let’s look at all committees as a “jury” of 12 individuals that make decisions that can affect our lives.  To name just a few …school boards, city councils, committees within committees of government agencies, board of governors, advisory boards, church boards, etc…You get the point?

After reviewing all the facts and options…one’s intellect and common-sense should led to a rational and justifiable decision (don’t confuse intellect with education)… but here lies the answer to the question “How in the Hell could anyone think and agree that’s a good idea?”… because not all committees consist of objective and intellectual individuals.  As the fictitious character Forrest Gump said “stupid is as stupid does”.


  • Twelve left wing liberals or 12 right wing conservatives in two different committees viewing the same set of facts…will arrive at a different solution to the problem at hand. Common-sense and objectivity will not exist in either of these environments.
  • A committee of 12 individuals with 2 strong personality that agree…and 10 passive individuals that don’t have a clue are easily intimated and will probably vote in line with two other members…and if those two are “idiots” that would answer you question.
  • A committee of “dueling personalities”…where you have the majority voting with and for the dominate “personality that they liked best”…the subject matter was lost in the duel itself.
  • The committee of “self importance”…the individuals that are so enamored about being on “the committee”… but don’t have a clue and could care less about indulging into researching the subject matter at hand….but will always go along with the majority and are happy as long as their name is pronounced or printed correctly.

NOW…let’s thank the individuals that dedicate their time for the right reasons.  Not for recognition or monetary reasons…but because they may have the experience, expertise, or passion for the subject matter that lends value to that committee.  In the public sector these people truly are public servants that make decisions for the benefit of others.

The reason we may not think or hear about them as often is because they don’t readily factor into… “How in the Hell could anyone think and agree that’s a good idea?”

 DISCLAIMER: The information presented is either my opinion or information obtained from sources believed to be reliable and factual; however, I make no representation as to the completeness or accuracy thereof. Any errors, including misuse or misspelling of words is either due to my fingers hitting the wrong keys, oversight, or my own ignorance.

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