[EM] RE: Let's found an organization to oppose IRV

MIKE OSSIPOFF nkklrp at hotmail.com
Sun Nov 12 19:30:48 PST 2000

Craig Layton wrote:

>Mike wrote (in part):
> >To a H or S voter it must look as if Washington is equally likely to
> >be frontrunners with H or S. Unless W is _exactly_ halfway between
> >H & S, one side considers W closer to his side, making W's difference
> >from the other side the important utility difference. One side will
> >vote for Washington if they're trying to optimize their outcome.
> >Washington will win. Hopefully he'll free his slaves before he takes
> >office.
>Yeah, it's possible, but I don't think H or S voters would actually vote
>like this.  I think they'd be much more likely to gamble on winning
>outright, rather than ensuring a Washington victory.

Our experience shows that nearly all votes vote to maximize their
utility expectation, according to their frontrunner probability
beliefs. That means that either the H voters or the S voters would
vote for W in Approval, unless W is precisely in the middle, which
is unlikely.

>In fact, if both
>Hitler and Stalin voters locked themselves into this strategy, then
>Washington voters might well be forced to consider lesser of two evils

That's an if. But if-clause isn't what we would expect, based on
experience with voting in national elections.

>would think that moderates are more likely to try to optimise thier
>outcomes, while extremists are more likely to want to make a point).

What percent of the people who prefer Nader voted for him? They
were extreme, in the sense of extreme honesty and principle. They
mostly didn't vote to make a point. They voted to maximize their
utility expectation, according to their perception of the frontrunner

>the fact is, there is no way to tell what outcome is the most likely, which
>is what my original point was.  Voters do not always vote to optimise the
>electoral outcome (or else more Nader voters would have voted for Gore.

Nearly everyone who prefers Nader voted for Gore. The evidence
shows that nearly all voters insist on trying to maximize their
utility expectation, voting in the way that they believe will do that.

>They were certainly aware that they could cost him the election).  However,
>there are other points to voting other than getting in to office.  Many
>groups may consider sacrificing their LOTE candidate in favour of making a
>point / raising an issue / giving voters a genuine alternative, with the
>hope of winning at some point down the line, to have more utility benifits
>than actually getting your LOTE candidate elected.

Very few, if our experience is any indication.

>Stalin and Hitler (and
>even Washington) voters might consider that civil war is a better
>alternative than having ANY other candidate elected.

That civil war alternative or course complicates the strategy
calculations. But it isn't one of the possible outcomes for us,
and so we needn't let it complicate our strategy.

Mike Ossipoff

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