# [EM] Re: Blake's margins arguments

MIKE OSSIPOFF nkklrp at hotmail.com
Tue Feb 18 22:30:23 PST 2003

```I'd said:

>
>101: A
>50: BAC
>100: CBA
>
>About 60% of the voters have indicated that they'd rather elect
>B than A. And so margins elects A.
>
>WV counts, keeps, & honors the B>A majority. A has a majority defeat that
>wv doesn't lose or erase. With margins, what happens to that majority
>against A? Margins erases it.

Tom McIntyre replied:

And about 60% prefer A to C. What about honoring *that* majority?

What about it? Do you believe that the wishes of the people preferring
A to C has been violated? How? Tom, if you'd rather elect B than A,
and the voting system elects A, then it has gone against your wishes.
If you'd rather elect A than C, and the voting system elects neither,
is it that you believe that the voting system, then too, has gone
against your wishes? When you say that you'd rather elect A than C,
you're saying that if we elect A or C, you'd prefer that it be A.
But that wish isn't violated when we elect neither.

Tom continued:

One
of these majorities has to be lost.

Tom, you aren't being very clear with us about what you mean by "lost".
The record of that majority preference remains recorded, as the
magnitude of the AC defeat. AC151. So it isn't quite clear in what sense
you believe that the A>C majority has been lost.

Tom continued:

Both WV and margins count

No doubt anything counts if you count it.

Tom continued:

, keep, &
honor one of them, and erase the other.

Is it that you believe that wv has "erased" the margins of the defeats?
It doesn't record or use the margins, but you need to be more specific
about what you mean when you say it erases the margins. I guess the
problem with that statement is that it's difficult to erase something
that hasn't been written.

Margins erases the 60% majority for B against A.  The raw pairwise vote
totals record that majority, the fact that 60% have indicated that they'd
rather elect B than A, and then margins erases that majority--
after margins' subtraction, no trace remains of that majority. Margins
loses majority information. That information was available in the
pairwise vote totals matrix, and is lost by margins, in the sense of
no longer being among the numbers that are used in the remainder of the
count.

I'd said:

>If one wants a majority to count, then one doesn't want margins.

Tom replied:

Apparently, then, one doesn't want WV either! Or any other system.

The fact that a majority indicated that they'd rather elect A than
c doesn't mean that we have to elect A in order to not violate that
majority wish, as I explained earlier. If we merely don't elect C,
that majority wish is not violated.

You wouldn't have sent the posting that you sent if you'd paid more
attention to the meaning of the statements that you felt like disagreeing
with, and the meaning of what you wanted to say. I suggest
checking those things out more carefully before posting next time.

But things that margins advocates say tend to justify my concern that
the public might have a very difficult time choosing a good rank-count.
That's why I claim that Approval is the better public proposal. We
won't have all these people with different theories on how to count
up.

Mike Ossipoff

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