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Re: current A.6 draft

On Sun, Nov 24, 2002 at 10:54:43PM -0500, Branden Robinson wrote:
> >      If they believe the current situation is superior to any of the
> >      proposed changes, they should propose or second an amendment that
> >      simply preserves the status-quo, and only rank options they find
> >      unacceptable below the default option.
> Since this is the case, why do we need a default option at all?

Well, the default option usually means "further discussion" (except
in leader elections, but that one doesn't allow free-form options).
It expresses unhappiness with the ballot itself, not necessarily with
any of the options on it.  They might all be fine options, but perhaps
an essential combination of options is missing in the voter's opinion.

By contrast, "keep the status quo" is a definite proposal, which will
not invite further discussion if it wins.  In fact, the Constitution
pretty much assumes that there will be another vote if "further
discussion" wins (A.3.1), so the only way to actually vote against
a proposal is to rank it under a "don't do that" option.

I think it is good policy to allow a "this ballot sucks" option on
any ballot.  It's a safety net for procedural mistakes, and it copes
with cases where a ballot is overtaken by current events.

Richard Braakman

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