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Re: Constitutional issues in the wake of Lenny

On Sun, Mar 15, 2009 at 08:49:51AM +0000, Matthew Johnson wrote:
> Maybe I just see GRs as a last resort where we really really need a
> definitive answer.

Except they aren't; they're used any time six developers *think* we need a
definitive answer, which is not the same thing.

> Certainly after we've gone through the whole process I'd like all that
> effort to have resulted in a solution everyone has to follow...

Requiring supermajorities doesn't ensure that.  What says that the outcome
won't be "Further discussion" instead?  Then you've gone to all that effort
to result in no solution at all.

In any case, the desire to minimize the number of GR round-trips doesn't
justify preventing other DDs from proposing position statements if they
choose to, even when you consider those position statements to contradict
the Foundation Documents.  You *always* have the option of proposing an
amendment that explicitly modifies the Foundation Document instead.  Maybe
you'll persuade the proposer to accept the amendment; maybe you'll end up on
the ballot as a separate option and the developers will agree to modify the
Foundation Document; or maybe your option will fail to reach supermajority,
and we'll instead have a non-binding position statement.  Why shouldn't all
of these options be open to developers?

Even if you don't give developers the option of formally ratifying position
statements that interpret the Foundation Documents, developers are still
going to do their own interpreting of these documents, and more often than
not they're going to assume that the rest of the project agrees with them.
So I don't see any way that permitting such position statements is *worse*
than having Further Discussion win.

Steve Langasek                   Give me a lever long enough and a Free OS
Debian Developer                   to set it on, and I can move the world.
Ubuntu Developer                                    http://www.debian.org/
slangasek@ubuntu.com                                     vorlon@debian.org

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