Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Vegan Society AGM - Sparks Will Fly

Vegan Society AGM 2006 It's promised sparks will fly as active members of The Vegan Society try to bring it's governing body, strategic planning and campaigning, kicking and screaming into the 21st Century. Members are urged to attend not just for the celebrations afterwards but to be a voice of reason at The Vegan Society Annual General Meeting 2006.

For a small UK charity The Vegan Society has admirably managed to make huge changes to the world we live in, the way we think about life, the way people shop and the way we live.

But for the many new converts to veganism it's not enough. Unlike some of the older vegans who appear humbled by the small changes we now take for granted the new vegans are not prepared to accept a status of second class citizen. They want and expect the same service, quality, value for money, convenience and enjoyment from life as they had before they became vegan and they want it now. It infuriates them and their friends that restaurants would prefer to ignore their preferences or charge the same price for a low value vegetable side dish as their friends are paying for the expensive meat or fish dish.

These new vegans are no longer just academics, amateur philosophers, musicians, students or unemployed anarchists with plenty of time on their hands. They are IT executives, Doctors, marketing and PR gurus, designers, chefs, authors, dieticians, fireman, company directors, food manufacturers, financial directors and accountants, city bankers, journalists, broadcasters, athletes, property developers, market anaylists, and business consultants.

They want to see a slick new vegan society that behaves in more professional, dynamic and pro-active way - mere existence is not enough they have much higher goals and agendas.

The Vegan Society's AGM 2006 in London is set to be one that could make or break the future of the world. If the Vegan Pandora is allowed to fully escape out of the box that Donald Watson opened in 1944 then this most logical, simple, practical solution to some of the biggest dilemas that face mankind could become totally infectious and create a world epidemic of common sense.

There are a number of motions being put forward and despite the present undemocratic regimes best attempts to hang on to the cliquey status quo it's hoped the old guard will finally be thwarted. The hope is that the intimidation, lies, political backstabbing, and procrastination will finally be flushed down the toilet and a new more vibrant vegan society will emerge capable of taking on the global corporations that are ruining the world in the name of short term profits.

Some people suggest that The Vegan Society has been infiltrated by a competitive industrial body - the aim being to do just enough to exist and avoid suspician but to sterilise, make all innovations and campaigns ineffectual and impotent. It would be easy to fall for this conspiracy theory given the many projects that have been completed but never put into action. Coupled with big legacies that have just been frittered away on running costs rather than invested in the future and a planned move to Birmingham????? it's easy to get suspicious.

Those on the inside know that fear is the biggest complications. "The controlling trustees are just plain scared of what they don't understand, can't comprehend and have no experience of. They are afraid to enter into the territory of the world's arena preferring the safety and comfort of their little cliquey world where they can feel important, clever and in control. They surround themselves with amateurs and sycophants who perpetuate their delusions of grandeur. Anyone who tries to change things in their particular area of expertise is patronised or outmanoevered with petty committee politics." says one ex member of staff.

No wonder so many people have got frustrated and left in recent years. The good news for veganism is that they have nearly all gone on to bigger and better things.

There is a move to change the constitution of The Vegan Society so that trustees are recruited in set areas of expertise and are designated individual responsibility for key functions of The Vegan Society that will benefit from their experience and qualifications.

In this way it's hoped to stop the culture of "intefering busybody" where instead of getting involved in scary areas of IT, media, marketing, legislation and PR where they are unconfident they get involved in accounts, merchandising and publishing and get away with opinions rather than productive results.

" I'm always amazed how much The Vegan Society gets mentioned- they've not had a formal Press Officer for 3 years" says Tony Bishop-Weston author of Vegan - (a healthy diet cookbook)

Anyone with an interest in furthering Veganism is encouraged to both vote for change and attend the Vegan Society AGM in London - See Vegan Society AGM 2006 for details.

For Vegan Society Members' discussion on the AGM motions see Vegan Forum


Stephen said...

Read more here at the VeganForum.

vegagnostico said...

Fascinating blog, I'd like to know more but the link to vegan forum doesnt work. Typical, that is not the best place for information, according to anyway.

Where can we find out whats going on?

Tony - FoodsForLife said...

One of the reasons that The Vegan Forum is so succesful is that it is so strictly moderated.

They allow slanging matches but only in private and away from the public eye to avoid libel.

A look around the site will reveal a wealth of information.

The main reason people don't like it is they don't allow you to use it to promote other web sites unless totally relevant. They don't want their high google rating abused by spammers.

If you want to talk to other Vegans or find out about veganism it's one of the best vegan message boards out there

Tony - FoodsForLife said...

PS you can find out what's going on by Joining The Vegan Society and fighting to make it live to it's full potential.

Attending the AGM would be a good start.

Tony - FoodsforLife said...

See Vegetarian Society AGM