[EM] CR style ballots for Ranked Preferences

Forest Simmons fsimmons at pcc.edu
Wed Sep 26 11:40:33 PDT 2001

On Wed, 26 Sep 2001, Blake Cretney wrote in part:

> On Tue, 25 Sep 2001 22:33:26
> Anthony Simmons <bbadonov at yahoo.com> wrote:


> > 
> > But isn't summability the whole basis of an election?  We
> > have a lot of preferences on the smallest scale (the
> > individual), and wish to somehow combine these to formulate a
> > preference on the largest scale that accurately summarizes
> > the individual preferences.  There's something strangely
> > suspicious about a process that supposedly does this but
> > gives different results at an intermediate scale.  We have to
> > wonder whether it is the intermediate or largest scale that
> > is not accurately summarizing the preferences of the voters.
> > 
> > We expect that the social choice will be an accurate summary,
> > in some fashion, of individual choices.  That is, it's not
> > just a bunch of rules, an arbitrary function, but a measuring
> > device that tells us something empirical about the world.
> > 
> > Suppose we wish to measure the color of a section of a
> > mosaic.  Looking at the section as a whole, our measuring
> > device tells us that the section is white, but if we point it
> > at individual tiles, the same device tells us they are black.
> > We might conclude that the device is giving us an inaccurate
> > reading on one of the scales, but which one?
> > 
> > Likewise, if the device we use to measure the public will
> > gives different readings on different scales, we conclude
> > that it is giving faulty readings on one of the scales, but
> > which is it?
> If we view the election as finding the best guess for best candidate
> based on the ballots, then there is no reason to expect that it should
> have this kind of consistency, since probabilistic situations
> frequently don't.  Consider my recent candy jar example, or the oracle
> example from my web site.
> ---
> Blake Cretney

Because of the probabilistic aspect, it would be useful to know, for
methods that fail the Consistency Criterion, which ones are more likely to
fail it, and the relative likelihoods.

All else being equal, I would prefer a method that satisfies the CC.

Since most methods don't, the question I ask myself is what other property
or combination of properties would compensate for non-satisfaction of the

Different people will have different answers to (their version of) that

Does Demorep's method forced into a (resolution five) grade style ballot
have enough advantages over Approval to compensate for the loss of CC

In my opinion it does if (and only if) the public prefers it to FSA and
standard Approval. 


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