[EM] Doesn't matter what preference means, Markus

Anthony Simmons asimmons at krl.org
Thu Jan 31 19:43:00 PST 2002

>> From: Blake Cretney <bcretney at postmark.net>
>> Subject: Re: [EM] Doesn't matter what preference means, Markus

>> > You could just as well say egg-salad sandwiches too. But when
>> > we say "I prefer chocolate to vanilla, we mean that I like chocolate
>> > better than vanilla. That's what preference means. If you want to
>> > call ballots preferences, than that must be stated, because that
>> > isn't what preference means, unless you say that that's what you're

>> But you must recognize there's a difference between saying
>> "Mike prefers chocolate to vanilla" and saying that P&P
>> will be considering a preference order in which chocolate
>> is higher than vanilla.

>> I think it is obvious what P&P mean, and I don't think
>> they have to state the obvious.

It shouldn't be too difficult to see what "preference" means
in this context.  In places where preferential voting (IRV)
or it's generalization, STV, are used, the common usage is
that "preference" refers to actual choices on a ballot.
Parties engage in "preference trading", which clearly refers
to actual votes and not trading of mental states.  Likewise,
a candidate who "wins on preferences" gets more votes, not
more kind thoughts.

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