I'm wondering what exactly is the harm in letting developers idle for a while? While they might not be actively committing they are still knowledgeable people that are just as capable as everyone else to push in a fix for small packages. There's lots of bugs in bugzilla with items that just need someone active to commit them. There's even a lot of these items are filed by retired Gentoo developers who could have easily pushed this fix for all users. The fact that someone only does one commit a year does not marginalize their contribution. While it may be small it is improving the overall quality of the distro. I'm constantly seeing developers getting upset over getting pushed out.
What we really need is not a smaller, leaner development force. But a leadership team that's smaller and more effective and willing to take charge to get something done. I'm hoping that we can get away from the 6 month GLEP process and towards something more streamlined. -- Doug Goldstein