I agree with many of the comments above.
I think it is definitely designed to entrap elders by not allowing them to slip down a rung. They are essentially punished for walking away and branded as weak, without-proper-zeal, etc. It is an all or nothing proposition. How can they defend this as "Christian"?
The announcement is the same as well. If a brother is removed for screwing a prostitute or simply steps aside because of stress, the anouncement is "Brother SO and SO is no longer serving as an elder" which, by the way, always sounds like a bad thing when read from the platform.
Check this out from the "Secret" Elder Book:
A brother resigns for personal reasons.
Two elders should first discuss the matter with him.
Why does he wish to resign? Is he Scripturally
disqualified? If his personal circumstances hin-
der him from doing what he would like, can the
elders be of any assistance and encouragement?
Until his circumstances change, perhaps they
can lighten his load for a period of time while
he continues to serve. If, after this discussion,
he still feels he wants to resign, then the Con-
gregation Service Committee should write the
branch office and give sufficient information so
that the reasons for resignation are clear. Full de-
tails should be provided as to why he chose to
relinquish his privilege of service.
They see this man as dangerous. It's like a "you are either for us or against us" kind of thing.
Anyway, I think the topic is an interesting one. It is one of those things right under the noses of the JW's and never gets acknowledged.
It is a less-controversial subject that could potentially be brought up in an effort to get someone thinking.