Warning are not necessarily "points" against members to "remove their membership".
It depends on a number of things. Some users of course won't even get a chance to even take a look at the warning issued because they are banned immediately. This is of course only in a serious case; like severe spamming, hacking, etc.
Though you may have two warnings, it doesn't necessarily mean if you get a 3rd warning or even a 4th you will automatically be banned. There are different levels of warnings. If you have two major warnings but they are worked out, and then you get a warning for your signature being too large, chances are you are not going to get banned just because your signature was accidentally too large.
You can protest, but I must say as far as the warning is concerned, we as a moderator team feel the moderator is right in doing so (and we are not involved in these/your topics).
A repeated offence will lead to a ban.
I hope I've cleared things out for you.
All team members are able to comment on each warning and that is exactly what we did. You can use the warning topic to ask questions about your warning to the team (not only to the moderator who issued the warning).
Banning decisions are made by our team administrators so you cannot be kicked out 'on personal grounds'. Again, we are able to vote about bans as a team. If you do not agree with a moderator's decision, the team will always be consulted for a second opinion, it is the way we handle every warning.
If a moderator is not willing to listen to your 'defence' (by not asking a colleague to step in), you could send a personal message to another team member. All team members have either an orange or a green colour in the members list and are more than willing to help you out at any time.
Since I am the mod in question then let me reiterate and expand:
I do not give out warnings without good reason and, apart from routine dealings with obvious spammers, I normally discuss any such warning with the other moderators in the mods forum - as I did on this occasion.
I have no issue with anyone challenging my decisions and if they are not satisfied with my response then, as James has said, they are free to pm another moderator - although I will almost certainly have already posted in the mods forum with a summary. As a matter of etiquette I would expect them to first raise the concern in the AWIT thread, before seeking further advice, but we don't insist on etiquette in the TOS, so there is no 'moderating' issue raised.
The posting in question was dealt with in the 'normal' way - it was moved to an area which is invisible to normal members but visible to the moderators - we call it the 'spamcan'. The posting is therefore freely available for any mod to look at, and there is no question of me doing otherwise. All above board and according to the TOS.
PS - I said that repeated offences could lead to a ban, not as a threat - I have no power to impose a ban - but as information to be considered. I normally include such a reminder to anyone who being warned for the second, third (or whatever) time, so that they are fully aware of the situation and will not get 'caught out' by suddenly finding they can no longer access the system.
Thank you again for taking the time to answer my questions. It has made me aware of how the system works and want to be very careful in the future to ensure that all the tos requirements are met. I do appreciate your support.