Subject: Re: Bruce Perens rejected from license-proliferation committee.
From: Ian Lance Taylor <>
Date: 22 Aug 2005 15:28:51 -0700

Russell Nelson <> writes:

> Ian Lance Taylor writes:
>  > > A priori, democracy is held to be good.  This is faith-based reasoning.
>  > 
>  > Just for the record, this completely misdescribes my complaint.  The
>  > issue I'm complaining about is the lack of democracy and transparency
>  > (both are important) in conjunction with the claim to act for the good
>  > of the community.
> So .... I'm making a mistake by saying that you hold democracy to be
> good without examination of the facts.  You then go on to say that
> democracy is good without examination of the facts.  Could you please
> explain *exactly* where my mistake lies, cuz I sure don't see where
> I'm wrong.

Am I really explaining myself that badly?

I was replying to your whole message.  You were talking in terms of
means and ends, and saying that people arguing for democracy were
focusing on means rather than ends.  I'm not arguing for democracy
because it is a better means.  I'm arguing for democracy and
transparency because I think that an organization which claims to
represent me has a duty to find out what I think.  Democracy is the
mechanism commonly used for that purpose.  It's true that there are
other mechanisms.  The OSI implements none of them.

You're right that democracy is just the obvious choice here, not the
only one.  I could accept an argument of the form "democracy is not
best for us because ....  Instead we will do this: ...."  Then I could
think about that argument.  But nobody is saying anything like this.

And in any case transparency would seem to be critical for an advocacy

>  > Since I consider myself to be part of the community, it irritates me
>  > that the OSI claims to act on my behalf yet has no mechanism for
>  > actually finding out what I want.
> You mean that you've sent email to without getting
> any reply?

Waiting to see whether anybody complains is not the same as actively
finding out what they want.