> At a certain point, it's easy to get the impression that your time is intentionally being wasted by
> people who have no interest in ever accepting your work.
For what it's worth, this isn't unique to kernel patch review: I suspect that almost anyone who has been in academia long enough has a story about how one of their papers has been "held hostage" by a reviewer who appears to be motivated by delaying its publication. And while I'm sure there are cases where that's really true, I think more commonly the true source of "obnoxious" reviews are people not understanding or appreciating what you're trying to do. Perhaps the main culprit is lack of time: if you aggregate all the different forms of review together (student exams and presentations, papers, grants, and administrative proposals), a typical academic may spend more time evaluating other people's work than doing his/her own research. That adds a lot of time pressure to get reviews done quickly, and contributes to occasional sloppiness. It's the dark underbelly of a system that, despite its warts, is basically necessary for any large undertaking to make progress.
I'm not saying this is what happened in the case of Android (I don't know enough about the details to know), but just a bit of outside perspective on the weaknesses of review processes in general. I suspect there's no way to avoid problems altogether, but one positive step might be more recognition for people who do a good, conscientious job of reviewing.