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Date Posted: 04:08:13 08/01/02 Thu
Author: Jacqui
Subject: Re: Watchers: black, white or grey
In reply to: Robert 's message, "Watchers: black, white or grey" on 06:36:14 07/23/02 Tue

I'm in the process of writing my first fic. I'm basing it on Giles in England during season 6. This has led me to give a great deal of thought to the structure of the council. To do this I had to look at what sort of people are members and what they do. So from there I look at 3 types of people - the researchers, the operatives and the administrators.

The researchers I tend to think of as good, if sometimes impractical; perhaps ivory tower types, some of them enthusiastic amateur sleuths, little experience with the brutal realities of the death/loss/trauma aspects of the war they help wage. They are the intelligence corps for the war against evil.

The operatives I tend to also think of as basically good. They are special forces, perhaps ex military personnel. They are the ones who deal with the harsh realities. They trust the rest of the Watchers Council to make the judgement calls as to where, when and how hard they hit. They are the tacticians.

The administrators are the ones I conceive of as being a mixed group of good and evil. They form the policies based on the findings of the researchers. They enforce the policies through the operatives and the slayer. They are the one to judge what resources are used. It is with these that the 'politics' start, as ambitious, self serving individuals try for power within the organisation not really understanding the responsibilities and duties that come with it.

Just my opinion for what its worth.

Jacqui

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Replies:

[> [> Re: Watchers: black, white or grey -- Robert, 07:54:50 08/02/02 Fri


>The administrators are the ones I conceive of as being
>a mixed group of good and evil. They form the policies
>based on the findings of the researchers. They enforce
>the policies through the operatives and the slayer.
>They are the one to judge what resources are used. It
>is with these that the 'politics' start, as ambitious,
>self serving individuals try for power within the
>organisation not really understanding the
>responsibilities and duties that come with it.
>
Another thing that's easy to overlook is that the watcher's
council is old. Administrators playing politics isn't going
to be a new problem, but the council has stuck to its
mission for centuries. Somehow the council must have found
a way to keep the politics under control, or it should have
fallen apart centuries ago.

Of course drastic shocks, such as having two slayers or
Faith going rogue, could cause a lot of turmoil in the
ranks, but for the most part the council should be stable,
an organisation that can weather centuries with little
change.

The way the council is often depicted, full of feuding
bureaucrats and moustache-twirling villains, it would fall
apart in an orgy of back stabbing within five years.

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[> [> [> Re: Watchers: black, white or grey -- Jacqui, 10:51:40 08/02/02 Fri

>Another thing that's easy to overlook is that the
>watcher's
>council is old. Administrators playing politics isn't
>going
>to be a new problem, but the council has stuck to its
>mission for centuries. Somehow the council must have
>found
>a way to keep the politics under control, or it should
>have
>fallen apart centuries ago.

I agree with this, but I think the key problem from the administrators is in fact the age of the council. I don't think they look at the underlying reasons for some of the policies they enforce - just enforce them because that's 'the way it has always been done'. The reasons for the introduction of a policy in the 9th century may still be there, but are the means by which they address those reasons still relevent?

I think there is the old problem of tagging odds and ends on to existing regulations if there is something new that needs addressing rather than stripping things down to basics and addressing everything from scratch, (which may indeed mean keeping the original policy with an addition - but at least the reasons for it would be analysed and understood).

Jacqui

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