Re: Bug#727708: Call for votes on init system resolution
On Sun, Feb 09, 2014 at 01:17:50AM +1000, Anthony Towns wrote:
> On 8 February 2014 18:26, Adrian Bunk <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
> > On Sat, Feb 08, 2014 at 04:40:22AM +0000, Anthony Towns wrote:
> > I'd actually call it a bug in the voting system that the casting vote
> > might decide between an option that 3 TC members do not find acceptable,
> > and an option that is unanimously considered acceptable. 
> Sure, that's the power of the word "unacceptable". But it's not like
> there's an objective measurement of what's "acceptable" -- it's
> (literally) just whether an individual is willing to tolerate
> something that's not perfect. If you want to put it in its most
> negative light, it's empowering the intolerant, which probably isn't a
> terribly healthy thing to do.
> The reason that FD works the way it does is to allow a minority of
> developers to object to changes they don't like -- like social
> contract changes to drop non-free, or constitutional changes to elect
> a benevolent dictator for life. That sort of obstructionism is
> probably a useful thing to enable to some degree, but it's not
> something that should be used tactically in the way that "should I
> vote X above or below FD" usually is. Ultimately, you shouldn't have
> to think "hmm, I really dislike Y, but I really, really, really
> dislike Z; do I put FD just before Z or before Y too?". You should
> just have to figure "I like X, dislike Y, hate Z, okay  X,  Y,
>  Z, done." and remember to explain to everyone else why you think Z
> is horrible and Y is bad.
> If it ends up everyone disagrees with you -- or just an equal number
> of people and someone lucky enough to have a tie-breaking vote -- and
> thinks Y is okay or even Z is, well, that's the way things go.
> Sometimes you just don't get what you want. Sometimes, everyone else
> actually knows better than you, too.
You make it sound as if the way votes are currently counted would make
it a good result when in a 4:4 situation the casting vote picks an
option that is honestly considered unacceptable by 3 members, instead
of an option that is considered acceptable by all members.
Such a result that goes extremely into one direction might be the result
of a purely technical vote counting, but a less extreme option everyone
considers acceptable might actually be better for the peace inside the
> > A TC member would have to initially vote "yes" to FD, and only switch
> > it to "no" when the remaining votes make it clear that the option he
> > considers unacceptable cannot win.
> Honestly, anyone who couldn't "accept" *whatever* any five, or four,
> or even three  of the eight committee members decided, probably
> shouldn't be on the committee. The membership of the ctte is carefully
> selected so that they'll come up with at least vaguely sensible
> decisions. At least on technical matters...
Add to this that a chairman who might use his casting vote to choose an
option not considered acceptable by 3 members of the TC over an option
considered acceptable by all members of the TC, wouldn't make a sensible
decistion and probably shouldn't be the chairman - and you would be
closer to my position...
You are basically saying that no matter how much the losing side
despises the result of a 4:4 plus casting vote decision, they should
shut up, accept it, and must not use FD to block it.
I am saying that it is also important that the result is not an
extremely partisan result that might in the worst case drive half
of the people out of the project. It is more sensible to search
for common ground instead of having the most extreme option for
which a TC member can manage to get a 4:4 plus casting vote or
5:3 majority as resolution. 
 this is not meant specifically against the current chairman
 I am not saying that a 4:4 plus casting vote result is always
bad - when all TC members consider the result acceptable that's
much less of a problem
"Is there not promise of rain?" Ling Tan asked suddenly out
of the darkness. There had been need of rain for many days.
"Only a promise," Lao Er said.
Pearl S. Buck - Dragon Seed