Yes, everyone dislikes Eagle Bucks and those who ask for them. Few people have warm and fuzzy feelings about petty regulations or overzealous Mall Cops on Segways. Plus governance disputes seem to eat up far too much time.
Yet without a few simple rules and small fines, what would happen to a society? Would peer pressure alone prevent people from driving at dangerous speeds or rolling through stop signs?
We have just finished Part One of a two part experiment by abolishing Eagle Bucks for up to two weeks, starting last Monday. Bottom line, we only made it eight days. The vote to reinstate Eagle Bucks was nearly unanimous, and even some of the harshest Eagle Bucks critics have changed their minds.
Once we digest the lessons from this experiment, we may try one in the opposite direction – arming Guides with Red Cards. During this experiment, if a Guide sees an Eagle violating a rule adopted by the community, the perpetrator and his or her Running Partner will each owe double the normal penalty. And Guides will reserve the right to prospectively raise the fines for certain violations that keep occurring.
The idea here is that Eagles will have an excuse for asking for legitimate Eagle Bucks. Either I ask you, or both of us risk owing a double fine if a Guide has to intervene. This way, it becomes easier for someone who doesn’t care about popularity to draw crisp boundaries on certain types of disruptive behavior.
If this experiment proves valuable, eventually the Guide’s Red Card prerogative would be transferred to an older Launchpad Eagle, removing adults (but not authority) from the governance structure.