[EM] A rant; forgive me.

mrouse at internetcds.com mrouse at internetcds.com
Mon Jul 7 00:01:07 PDT 2003

Quoting "John B. Hodges" <jbhodges at usit.net>:

> The battle-cry of a small-but-growing set of
> reformers is "Proportional Representation
> and the Instant-Runoff Ballot!" I am not
> accusing those who favor the Ranked Pairs method
> and Approval Voting of being pawns of the
> Capitalist Hegemonists. Really, I'm not. Not
> yet, anyway. I'd just like to keep the
> discussion in the real world.

The real world view is that the present system will 
continue to plague us for the forseeable future. It is 
going to take a certain amount of time, money, and 
effort to change from our present system to a new 
system. IRV might be "good enough," and at present it 
has more public awareness than other methods, but if a 
person thinks that Approval would be better (since it's 
as easy to use as FPTP and cheaper to implement than 
IRV), now is the time to make the case. The same with 
Condorcet methods -- if you are going to switch over to 
a ranked ballot anyway, and Condorcet tends to give a 
result you feel is fairer than IRV, why not fight for 

As for me, I like mean Kemeny order the best. It takes 
the same amount of effort on the part of the voters as 
IRV (a ranked ballot, *and* it works just fine with 
truncated ballot), it's hard to manipulate, tends to 
produce a centrist candidate, and can be used for multi-
winner elections (just take the top N candidates in the 
ranking rather than just the top one). It's major 
downside, other than the inevitable Arrow optimality 
problem, is that it takes a lot of computing power for 
elections involving many candidates and many voters.



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