Tue Mar 26 21:48:26 PST 2002

Forest had said:

>At best Saari proves that Borda is the best choice method based on
>rankings in situations where there can be no stacking of the deck (clones)
>or insincere rankings.

This seems to beg a question of balance. At what point is the BC's accuracy 
determining the "correct" winner overcome by it's mamipulatability?

I reply:

When you speak of manipulability as the problem, you're missing the
point, as was pointed out earlier in discussion with Blake. The
real problem is the voter's dilemma on how & when to strategize.
Sure, sometimes that situation is made worse still because of the
liklihood that someone else will use strategy.

You ask at what point that becomes a serious problem with Borda.
At what point on what continuum? It becomes a serious problem as
soon as Borda is used in a public election. As you must know, Borda
is the only proposed voting system that can fail to elect a candidate
who is the voted favorite of a majority of all the voters.

Saari made it clear that he wasn't dealing with the matter of
strategy problems. For situations where everyone ranks sincerely,
because no one is interested in optimizing the outcome for themselves,
and everyone is only interested in doing their part to maximize
social utility by voting a sincere ranking--for that voting situation,
Borda may be the best rank-count. That situation has no resemblence
to the situation that exists in actual public political elections.

Sportscasters use Borda to elect the most-valuable-player, and
maybe they're deterred from insincere voting by the knowledge that
everyone can observe how they voted. Borda can find application
when the "voters" are considerations in a decision, or other nonhuman
entities. But it's no good for political elections, and I'd have
serious doubts about using it for any kind of elections. Someone
described on this list how he proposed Borda for a vote about what
sculptor a museum would hire. But people's voting strategy resulted
in a winner so unpopular that he couldn't have possibly won even
in Plurality. He said he'd never recommend Borda again.

Mike Ossipoff

qualification about sincere votes seems to imply that there must be some 
at which another method is more likely then the BC to determine the 
which would have been elected by the BC under sincere voting conditions. It
seems to me that this may be a quantifiable problem.


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