Call for Judgement from Jim Shea: (Wed 21 Jul 1993 2:12 GMT)

"If a proposal purports to reward or penalize voters based on the
votes they cast on that proposal, or based on any other action
taken / not taken by any player prior to the end of the voting
period on that proposal, then that proposal will, if passed, be
in conflict with rule 108."

I find this statement to be FALSE.



It is clear that this hinges on our interpretation of rule 108. Rule
108 consists of two sentences, the first of which is that :

      No rule change may take effect earlier than the moment of the
      completion of the vote that adopted it, even if its wording
      explicitly states otherwise.

This is clearly not relevant to the case at hand because the issue is
not whether the rule is taking effect, but whether it is allowed to
reward or penalize voters on the basis of their past actions. 

The second sentence is that: 

      No rule change may have retroactive application.

It is here that we shall have to determine the truth or falsehood of
the statement in question. The important issue is whether penalising
or rewarding someone based on their past behaviour is 'retroactive
application' of a rule. It is central to this argument that this is
not the case. 

Retroactive application is, in our view, the application of a rule to a
previous state of the game so as to influence the course of the game
at that point. If this is so, then clearly using a proposal to alter a
Voter's score on the basis of how they have voted in the past is not
retroactive application.

One may examine the past state of the game in order to determine the
application of a rule in the present moment, but one may not attempt
to apply a rule 'in the past'.