Tuesday, December 21, 2010

LANA has been forced to withdraw from negotiations

From the outset of negotiations to form the LFA, LANA has found itself continually fighting an up-hill battle on disadvantageous terrain. This difficulty stems partly from the fact that while there are three divisions equally casting votes in decision making (USLR, LANA, and ALBA) , there are, in actuality only two membership organizations (USLR and LANA), while ALBA, an evaluation-dedicated organization representing little, if any, membership base, casts its voting power in lock-step with USLR.

This unequal playing field exhibits itself in almost every position taken by the Interim Board. The most recent example is the attempt to select a database program to be utilized for the registration of horses. The process has dragged on for months, mainly because no matter what suggestions are made by any Board Member, the USLR faction - inclusive of members of ALBA - insists on carrying the day, insists that its suggestions are superior. When solutions to questions are finally in sight, more questions are posed, more resistance is thrown into the balance. At one point, cost became the sole issue, with questions posed directed solely to cost or purchase, cost of upkeep. When LANA advised that it's program - already owned by LANA, accessible by any number of authorized persons without the need to purchase additional licenses or copies and demonstrably more economic than the USLR program - USLR voiced the objection "we don't believe" the numbers, and another log-jam was formed, a continuation of the search for a solution.

When a number of questions were posed by the Interim Board in a hope to resolve the difficulties, before answers can even be interposed to the specific questions, USLR members unilaterally pose new, additional, unauthorized-by-the-Board questions - supported by USLR Board members as an attempt to move the process along.

How can a process move along when any step forward is followed by extending the road. The only moving of the process along results when LANA slogs its way through the continually new impediments, always winding up with the insistence of the USLR faction to do it the USLR way or no way.

It has been, and continues to be, a losing battle of trying to keep LANA’s voice heard, trying to equitably resolve issues on a rational basis, whichever side is favored by the result, while other Board Members insist on their way, their methods, their systems, regardless of the factual reality of the circumstances - the latest example, significant costs (USLR) versus no costs (LANA) in the registration programs; despite the objectively-real price distinction, USLR continues to battle for its program on the school-yard basis of "we don't believe" the facts. Even this evening, in the hours before an Interim LFA Board Meeting, the assault on LANA's honesty continues, with emails from Muffin Smith indicating that she conducted a personal pseudo-investigation of the Alpha Five Program, and she again insists that she does not believe LANA's report that the cost of LANA's database program to the LFA is $0. This is at least the fifth time that Muffin has directly accused LANA of lying; this accusatory behavior is unprofessional, intolerable, inappropriate and unacceptable.

Unfortunately for Unification, there have been months and months of bickering without progress, bogged down in obstructionist tactics apparently intended to obtain one result or to sabotage the process.

Well, in a manner of speaking, these tactics have achieved their purpose. There is no progress, the Board cannot control members of the organizations, cannot organize or achieve its goals, cannot direct sub-committees, without obstructionists vociferously insisting on continuing their refusal to agree on anything but the USLR way or the highway.

In November 2008 there was a resolution of the LFA Interim Board citing 23 steps toward consolidation, all to be completed by June 2009. Yet here we are, in late December 2010, 18 months past that "final" date, and work has not progressed beyond step #10 of the 23 steps. Remaining and incomplete, or not even begun, are a Transition and Election Plan, a Financial Plan, Asset Conveyance, a Database Plan, and a Plan to Run the LFA Office. All that has been accomplished is a Resolution to Commit, a Resolution concerning the 23 Steps, Articles of Incorporation, Bylaws and Rules, all largely completed in 2008. The pace has been glacial but has now ground to a halt over use of a computer program. Continuing in this manner is pointless.

Thus, LANA wishes to withdraw from this vortex of confusion, derision, and obstruction in favor of continuing to function independently on its own, regardless of whether others agree or disagree. Everyone is entitled to their own view, their own comfort level.

We thank you for the opportunity of participating in the attempt at Unification and regret that more result and less clangor was not possible to achieve.

The LANA members of the Interim LFA Board:
John Nicholas Iannuzzi
Gary Lashinsky
Delphi Toth

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