[EM] Raw Deal for Mayors, more unfairness than improvement

Craig Carey research at ijs.co.nz
Fri Aug 9 05:11:47 PDT 2002

At 02\08\08 22:15 -0700 Thursday, Bart Ingles wrote:
 >Craig Carey wrote:
 >> http://www.fairvote.org/irv/faq.htm
 >>  >      Who opposes IRV?
 >>  >
 >>  >      Little  organized  opposition  to   IRV   exists.   Election
 >>  >      officials are understandably cautious about  a  system  that
 >>  >      may increase their workload, and some  incumbents  fear  any
 >>  >      change to the system that elected them. If you  can  win  an
 >>  >      election under a plurality or runoff  system,  however,  the
 >>  >      odds are that you would also win under IRV.  The  exceptions
 >>  >      are rare but can  be  important.  Examples  include  several
 >>  >      recent  House  races  in  New  Mexico,  where  Green   Party
 >>  >      candidates threw races to Republicans, and state legislative
 >>  >      races  in  Alaska  in   which   Libertarians   and   Alaskan
 >>  >      Independent Party candidates knocked off Republicans.
 >>  >
 >>  >      Some political minorities may believe that they can only win
 >>  >      representation in a  plurality  election.  Such  groups  may
 >>  >      oppose IRV, but of course,  in  such  situations,  a  larger
 >>  >      groups stands to gain representation by IRV.
 >>  >
 >> At their own FAQ they assert that it is also "rare" for the Alternative
 >> Vote, to produce a different result from the result that
 >> First Past the Post ("a plurality election") would produce.
 >Sure it's rare.  Both systems give the parties and voters incentive to
 >focus their support on the top two candidates.  It's counterproductive
 >to allow a spoilers to gain too much ground, whether in Hare/IRV or in
 >First Past the Post.

It is unsatisfactory how the CVD is ever unable to name the individual
that creates their documents (and who named their method).

I am not commenting on political parties and I am not ruling out that
the method may provide linear additive biases to some candidate. Also
I am not limiting the number of winners to 1.

Just like how government departments are ideally expected to open when
allowing companies to compete in contracts, so too ought comparisons be
used. I am guessing that you had some principle that allowed the
Approval Vote method to be compared against only a very limited range
of options.

Approval is not being named and it is not being compared.

I myself prefer the view that view that spoilers are fully acceptable
to an alternative where the Instant Runoff Vote methods ends up being
photographed as being no more living than a charred Egyptian mummy
that went through a fire. Something analogous to that most certainly
could occur in the 22nd during a court case where the merits of
IRV are considered.

I guess it was assumed that I am uninterested in the spoilers issue.

I ought be, since spoilers has no relevance to axioms guaranteeing
fairness to individuals. But if still unacceptable then the problem
of spoilers could be measured and the test applied.

There is no test discernable when you write that FPTP has a problem.
That very much does not say that there is a problem with STV but
instead it defines something that has less than perfect precision
and thus is not commenting on First Past the Post.

Where is the test?. Approvalists and abandon themselves to whatever
thoughts come their way, but maybe won't get a following.

Proportionality counters FPTP style vote splitting (which is taken
by me to be the same idea as the "spoliers" idea). If there is no
other axiom countering spoliers, and I estimate that that is the
case for my IFPP theory (there is only P2, P1/monotonicity, P4,
embedding, and right number of winners), then you only need pick
from the list. If it interests you, then which axiom is the
problem ?. I.e. it may be tricky to motivate a question asking for
a definition of a spoilers problem.

I assume that Bart is roughly fully wrong, if implying that
politicians regard vote splitting is a problem, because they
can expand their considerations to include all the issues, e.g.
actual real fairness, an increase of which may increase the
spoilers vote splitting problem. I am suggesting that you are
explaining that politicians (or someone) would use deft "thinking
person's" reasoning that is wrong, since inconsiderate of the
offsetting factors. E.g. monotonicity and equal suffrage.
I.e. your position can be rejected irrespective of whether your
view on spoilers was roughly correct. Again you are not asked
to defined what a spoilers problem: what justifies it?. They may
not be any actual real freedom to say that the spoilers problem
must be less than a set of axioms would produce.

The word "counterproductive" is used. Is that about the model or
the people. If the people generate a lot of desire about some
"counterproductive" force then absolutely none of that is
relevant to the design or checking of methods unless some
alteration to the axioms or tests occurs. I rule out fake
electionmethods.org certifying since no one is interested in that.

If there is a matter that affects the public's mind, e.g. an
passing idealism of dissatisfaction, then what exactly is that
mathematical correspondence of returning that back to the
theory?. I have no idea, other than the weakening or elimination
of an axiom. Bart: please list the axioms, or more than one set
(there was a mention of more than one method). Any comments are
better than nothing. If you have feelings about the question then
they too lacking precision and an ability to test methods.

I am not intending to define a spoilers problem since it can be
reduced. It is an aim and not a strict rule, and being an aim,
to consider it closely is the same as paying little attention to
since it is constrained by the boundaries, i.e. by the strict
rules providing fairness (affected by the particular axioms,
or to be specific, my axioms defining fairnes).

The word "counterproductive" does not seem to suggest fairness
much. Was it constructed with an intent to provide connotations
of fairness, and if not, maybe there is no thought at all for
us if there is no consideration of the boundaries. It is like
putting hard to derive, piece-wise linear limits at the lower
end of a linear ramp: the actual equations of the ramp are
simple. Did you mean "spoilers" when you wrote it?.

Can you check any method that is provided to you?. I guess the
answer is "no". How can you check for a spoliers problem yet
not be able to check some methods under that test. There may
be no more than some endearing idea that voters exist. We
already believe that, but it does not assist in the assessing
of never seen before methods. Any testing maybe can easily
reject Approval for having the wrong lower limitations on

Perhaps you imagined that the set of methods that would be
compared is very small, e.g. no bigger than the ones you
mentioned plus maybe a few more methods. I don't see a test of
fairness but you can free me from doubt by declaring that
individual voters should ideally be subject to unfairness. If
an estimate of vote splitting is defined to be the negative of
some estimate of proportionality, then perhaps there is nothing
to get assertive over, since there is a consensus that it indeed
ought be reduced. Please say if proportionality is subject to
strict fairness tests passing the whole preferential voting
method. If the tests of fairness are withheld then the reason
may be ignorance or concealment, neither of which enhance
credibility before politicians intent to let the results fall
as they after possible personal attempts to influence the

Do please show the equations that permit an actual consideration
of "vote splitting" of spoilers faults, no matter which
preferential method (of the infinities possible) is being checked.

Suppose I produce a sub-optimal modified Borda method. where is
the public interest in respect of that method. If you can't check
that method if asserting presumptively that an interest in the
public is greater than that of candidates or minorities, then
were is the rigorous but good enough argument, showing that
an idea perfect method would not be rejected.

Was there an intention to be earnest or frank when making
comments [I presume I need not answer such a question myself.]

If the public desire is not translated back into equations and
the speaker upholds the Approval method, then why is there no
rigour permitting comparisons of methods.

We are running into the same principle that is often seen: the
public only gets a stupid or suboptimal method if detectable
specific references to the importance of the parties or the
public. Are voters to be averaged?. Why abandon fairness for
individuals in any complete absence of a showing that making the
method good for individuals results in a method that is good
enough for parties.

An unhappy mayor could implement Bart's new idea of no vote
splitting this: on the back of each ballot rules guaranteeing
fairness for the individual have horizonal lines through them and
some ill-defined idea of reducing vote splitting is on the
backs of that papers instead. A moment's consideration of that
indicates that voters do not want less vote splitting while
believing they are closing finding out whether they can get
reduced vote splitting and fairness for themselves and their
candidates, at the same time. Perhaps Bart was offering an
insight at how to make a statement, and the topic of the
statement is not important. Politicians can see that as trait
that they know well.


For more information about this list (subscribe, unsubscribe, FAQ, etc), 
please see http://www.eskimo.com/~robla/em

More information about the Election-Methods mailing list