Why do you think a decent-sized, randomly-selected subset of
the IETF (i.e. the NomComm) are taking actions that are
substantially more conservative (in terms of keeping people)
than the IETF as a whole would do?
Because they only get to do it once and have no expectation of
The *whole point* of the
NomComm is for it to have roughly the same views as the IETF
as a whole, except in a smaller body. So what makes you think
that were the IETF as a whole making the decisions, they'd be
The people whoe wrote the constitution certainly thought that there
would be a difference. Otherwise they would have done it the obvious
> Why do engineers believe that they are experts in innovating
> organizations? Is the result an improvement over traditional
> arrangements that have been incrementally improved over
I find this comment particularly hilarious, in view of the
fact that an important part of the inspiration for the whole
NomComm process was the Athenian Constitution of 508 BC; in
particular, the mechanism for the selection of the Boule (the
Council of Five Hundred), which was the chief executive organ
of the state.
As I said, ignoring the 2,500 years of experience since that date.
Moreover the Athenian constitution was not exactly a success, they
murdered Socrates, got whacked in the Peleponesian war and finaly got
whacked by the Romans.
Given the fragmentary nature of classical accounts I find it astonishing
that you would think that you could understand the dynamics of the
organizations at all, let alone whether they were satisfactory. Most of
the accounts were written by the people whose interests were served by
those arrangements. The one dissenting voice, Plato provides a critique
so devastating that the same experiment is not tried again for two
As you will perhaps recall, this constitution was in itself
the result of several hundred years of tinkering with
democratic systems for use in small societies with direct
democracies (i.e. a very different environment from today's
mass representative democracies, with their millions of members).
The only large scale organization I know of that has anything similar is
the Socialist Workers Party - and for similar reasons, it allows the
politburo to keep talking about decentralization and grass roots power
while keeping power firmly concentrated in the hands of an elite.
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