As I was not around for the old rules I am bias towards current rules. That being said, I feel the current rules make people require more RP to do things.
Old rules: Rob whoever you want. The 2 Things that I can only see as to reasons to rob someone you just met is either you want gear or you want hostile RP. Gear should never motivate or change the outcome of an encounter.
Current rules: You require reasoning to do things, You actually have to think about what you are doing, how you are going to do it and you have to gain information and RP To get a reason to do it. From what I understand you can simply run up to anyone and for no reason hostile RP with them which seems really... well poo. Current rules as I have said require information gathering, roleplay and actual effort.
As for unbanning people. They are permanently banned for a reason. You cant magically get 30 warning points, a few people have over 50 and are still around. Getting 30 warning points, you must've done multiple stupid things to get them. Keep em banned I say.
If you can link me to the old rules so I can look them over to see exactly would change then I gladly will but for now I prefer current rules.