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Fwd: The battle rages on in Dornach (another lawsuit)

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  • Robert Mason
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    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 12, 2006
      > Members Bring a Third Lawsuit against the Dornach Executive
      > Council.
      > Five members whose motions the Executive Council declined
      > to hear at
      > the Extraordinary Members’ Meeting on April 8, 2006 are asking
      > the court
      > to declare invalid all resolutions taken at that meeting,
      > which had
      > officially been called expressly to hear those motions.
      > The Dorneck-Thierstein Court will hear the case on
      > Tuesday, July 11,
      > at 10 AM. The plaintiffs are asking the court to establish
      > that, according
      > to the Anthroposophical Society’s principles and statutes and
      > according to
      > Swiss corporate law, the Council is obligated to hear these
      > motions – all
      > members have a right to hear, discuss, and vote on them. The
      > court is also
      > being asked to reexamine the financial report, because,
      > according to the
      > plaintiffs, Society funds have been unlawfully used to cover
      > the legal
      > expenses of the two previous lawsuits, and financial
      > disclosure has not
      > been accurate and complete.
      > The first two lawsuits, as you probably remember, were
      > decided in
      > favor of the plaintiffs; this one, too, raises issues central
      > to the
      > future of the Society, while making important legal points.
      > I am resending my account of the events leading up to
      > the
      > plaintiffs’ decision to go to court, as well as a summary of
      > the five
      > declined motions.
      > Refused Member Motions for the April 2006 Annual Members’
      > Meeting of the
      > General Anthroposophical Society in Dornach.
      > This meeting took place on April 8th and 9th, 2006. Member
      > motions,
      > which have to be sent to the Executive Council in writing in
      > advance of
      > the meeting, started coming in well beforehand. Motions about
      > topics not
      > on the agenda must be received eight weeks before the meeting,
      > and those
      > having to do with topics on the agenda, a week in advance. All
      > motions may
      > be read in German on www.goetheanum.org., along with the
      > letters in which,
      > as of March 1, Paul Mackay notified the authors of some of
      > motions that
      > they would not be heard. English summaries of these motions
      > appear below.
      > Faced with the possibility of another lawsuit, the
      > Council then
      > announced that the motions would be heard, after all, and a
      > one-hour
      > extraordinary meeting was scheduled an hour before the start
      > of the
      > regular members’ meeting to hear them. However, at that
      > meeting, different
      > Council members in turn brought countermotions against every
      > one of these
      > motions, asking that they not be heard, and asking members to
      > vote in
      > support of their countermotions, which a majority of members
      > did, without
      > knowing what it was that they were voting not to hear,
      > discuss, and vote
      > on! No discussion was allowed, no further explanations were
      > given.
      > The Council’s refusal to hear the motions is all the more
      > disturbing
      > because all involve actions of the Council – requests that the
      > Council
      > comply with the law and give members the information and
      > explanations that
      > are rightfully theirs.
      > Here are the motions, along with the names of the members
      > bringing
      > them.
      > 1) The Executive Council is requested to act in accordance
      > with Swiss
      > society law
      > (Andrea Stahlberger).
      > At the November 2005 meeting of group and branch leaders,
      > which was
      > publicly announced and to which previously all were admitted
      > as a matter
      > of course, some were excluded without explanation, and one,
      > who had
      > traveled halfway across Europe to be there, was even turned
      > away at the
      > door. These unexplained exclusions violate Swiss law (to say
      > nothing of
      > Anthroposophical principles and statutes).
      > This motion was turned away on the grounds that the
      > Executive Council
      > is already automatically obligated to comply with Swiss law,
      > so that there
      > is no point in voting on this matter. Yet the urgent question
      > remains why
      > the Council obviously isn’t in compliance.
      > 2) The Council is requested to allow Anthroposophists the
      > freedom to
      > form their own groups, on a geographical basis or for the
      > pursuit of
      > topics of common interest. This right is guaranteed by Swiss
      > society law
      > and the GAS Statutes, specifically # 4, and the Principles,
      > specifically #
      > 11. ( Dr. med. Gian Bischoff)
      > The Christian Morgenstern Branch members of Bubikon,
      > Switzerland,
      > would like to be recognized as members of the GAS, and thus be
      > allowed to
      > share in the responsibilities and privileges of Society
      > members.
      > This motion was turned away on the same grounds as the
      > previous
      > motion, leaving the same obvious question: If the Council is
      > obligated to
      > comply with these rulings, then why isn’t it?
      > 3) The Council is requested finally to make a joint,
      > official
      > statement condemning a slanderous, distortive article about
      > Rudolf Steiner
      > which appeared in the May 2005 issue of Info 3 (Independent
      > Monthly for
      > the Exploration of Rudolf Steiner’s Ideas) (Ursula Ruchti)
      > In this article, Felix Hau calls into question the
      > honesty, moral
      > integrity, and lifestyle of Rudolf Steiner, claiming that in
      > effect he
      > “led listeners around by the nose” and only added the
      > Christian elements
      > to his philosophy to make it acceptable to his audience.
      > This motion was turned away on the grounds that,
      > according to Article
      > 8, # 2 of the Statutes, spiritual/cultural matters (Geistiges)
      > will not be
      > voted on but only dealt with in free discussion. But this is
      > not a
      > discussion of spiritual ideas at all, but a reminder that the
      > Council
      > live up to its basic obligation of defending the integrity of
      > Rudolf
      > Steiner.
      > 6) The gathered members request that the Executive
      > Council respect
      > and affirm the identity of the GAS as described in the two
      > court judgments
      > of February 3, 2004, and January 12, 2005, and that they
      > publicly correct
      > the misleading statements they have made regarding this matter
      > (Bernhard
      > Ruchti)
      > The suits were brought because the Council had stated
      > that a claimed
      > society (the General Anthroposophical Society (Christmas
      > Conference)) was
      > the true society and our existing society did not go back to
      > the Christmas
      > Conference. The courts were asked to establish that the
      > claimed society
      > has no legal existence and that our existing society is in
      > complete
      > succession of the Christmas Conference, and two courts
      > confirmed just
      > that. However, to this day, the Council claims that the courts
      > said the
      > Christmas Conference society no longer exists, which gives the
      > impression
      > that the bringers of the suit destroyed that society, when
      > actually they
      > saved it. (The Council intended to merge it with its claimed,
      > legally
      > nonexistent society, and when you merge an entity with a
      > nonexistent
      > entity, it loses its existence.
      > This motion was turned down on the grounds that the
      > Council is
      > already obligated to truthfully present and abide by the two
      > court
      > judgments, no matter how members might vote. If, or, rather,
      > “since” that
      > is so, then members should demand the Council immediately stop
      > misrepresenting the judgments, as the author of the motion
      > does.
      > 7) The gathered members request that Treasurer Cornelius
      > Pietzner
      > give a complete and fully itemized account of the expenses
      > paid out in
      > connection with the Council’s claimed, legally nonexistent
      > GAS(CC), the
      > lawsuits resulting from the claim, and all expenses connected
      > with them,
      > and that immediate restitution be made to the Society for
      > expenses
      > wrongfully taken out of Society funds.( Ulrike Hader)
      > The court judgments, which were not made freely available
      > to members,
      > state that the six Executive Council members are jointly
      > responsible for
      > all the court-related costs. The Council’s claimed society
      > (the GAS(CC)
      > should have paid the legal costs, but since, as the courts
      > found, it has
      > no legal existence, it cannot pay. Second in line are the
      > members who, at
      > the Christmas of 2002 meeting expressed by vote their belief
      > in the
      > existence of this nonexistent society. But it is no longer
      > possible to
      > determine exactly who these members were. Therefore, according
      > to the
      > judgment, (available in full in both English and German on
      > www.888GOYA.org) responsibility for the cost passes on to the
      > 6 members
      > of the Executive Council, who, at that same meeting, appointed
      > themselves
      > the executive council of the nonexistent GAS(CC).
      > .

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