in reply to Downvoting Aging
Remember, those most likely to do this have a limited number of votes in a given day. While they could "attack" you over time, it takes a lot of effort to repeatedly downvote every single post over a period of several days. They'll eventually cool off or run out of messages. As an example, suppose you decided to take me down a peg, it would (as of this writing) take you 33 days to ding every one of my posts. During that time, I'd still be posting. You'd have to be pretty upset to keep a voting vendetta alive for that long.
Now, it's entirely possible that I could seriously ruffle the robes of a senior monk. They'd be able to knock me down a few pegs pretty quickly, but it would still take days for the effects to accumulate. Based on the personalities these folks have shown in their postings over the time I've been slouching about, I think that a) they wouldn't do this without a reason and b) they'd use other measures to put me in my place.
In any event, the rest of the community helps insulate you from this to a degree. If you participate, contribute, and pay attention, you'll inevitably attract enough votes to counter the effects of a single attacker or even a cabal. If the rest of the community likes your posts, they'll gain reputation. As Reputation grows beyond $NORM, the effects of a downvote are minimized.
Bad votes happen and you simply need to accept them and move on. If you get feedback, great. Learn from it; update as needed. If there's no feedback and you can't see how someone might have misinterpreted your post, shrug your shoulders and move on. If you're really concerned, ask in CB or privately /msg one of the senior monks. They may not know why you're being downvoted, but they might have a suggestion.