A few poorly-formed thoughts:
It seems we aren't even able to pick a system to let us vote, let
alone actually debating and voting on issues.
Maybe the answer isn't hyper-democracy, where everyone who maintains a
package gets to decide on every issue.
Maybe we ought to recognize that the power is already in the hands of
those who *do* things, and align our control structures accordingly.
Ever more technical and detailed voting schemes seem like a bad
management hack to me. Maybe some sort of hierarchical structure is
better. I can see how these appeal to the inner geek, but they strike
me as heading off in a direction that is potentially very different
from "rough consensus and working code".
One really important role Debian fulfills that makes it somewhat
different from other open source projects is that of a place to ramp
up and get involved, even if you're not an expert C hacker. I know I
didn't know half of what I know now when I started. More like 1/10th?
I think this is very important for the free software comunity at
large. On the other hand, is it fair to entrust the project to a
(potential) majority of developers who are still learning as they go,
and who haven't been around that long? Not that these people are in
any way bad - as I state above, I think they are terribly important
for the future of free software.
Me? I'm not that involved in Debian any more, except for a few
packages. Most of my work these days is for the Apache Software
Foundation. I have been around Debian since 1997.
If Debian happens to need an supreme and feared emperor-for-life, I'd
be happy to volunteer. I want minions as part of the deal, though.
David N. Welton
Free Software: http://www.dedasys.com/freesoftware/
Apache Tcl: http://tcl.apache.org/