[EM] Cyclic Ambiguities = misinformed voters? (was: The True Majority Ghost)

Tarr, Adam ADAM.H.TARR at saic.com
Tue Jul 2 07:23:36 PDT 2002

> Adam-
> I like your geometric proof.  However, I'm rusty on 
> geometry.  For a given triangle, will the perpendicular 
> bisectors of its 3 sides always meet at a single point?


> Also, when working in issue space, I assume you're 
> measuring the distance between two points (x1, y1) and 
> (x2, y2) as |x1-x2| +  |y1-y2|.  I don't think it 
> matters for this case, but it seems more logical than 
> using the pythagorean theorem.

I hadn't really thought about it; you could probably make an argument for
either euclidean or taxicab geometry.  But as you say, it makes no
difference in this case.  The bisecting line remains the same.

> So, overall, I'd say IRV-completed Condorcet is better 
> than IRV, even if other methods might be preferable.

Well I certainly agree with that.  IRV-completed Condorcet has some
strategic problems that better Condorcet completion methods lack, but it's
able to avoid some of the most eggregious flaws of IRV.

That said, this does not mean we should be promoting IRV or accepting it
where we find it.  While IRV promoters have the strongest organization of
any USA electoral reform group, it's still very small in the grand scheme of
things.  I think we should mostly concentrate on promoting election methods
we like, such as Approval and Condorcet.  If you happen to run into an IRV
movement, then sure, try to expose the flaws and redirect their efforst.
But I think we stand to make a much more lasting impact by changing a few
local elections to Approval or Condorcet voting.


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