[EM] Re: Election-methods Digest, Vol 3, Issue 18

Adam Tarr atarr at purdue.edu
Mon Sep 6 19:38:25 PDT 2004

Last post on this subject for me for the time being.  We're well into the 
glue factory stage.

Paul Kislanko wrote:

>The assumption that my second choice for first would be the second on my 

I think the disagreement is as simple as that.  Alex, James, and I believe 
that that is the only reasonable reason to rank the candidate second.  You 
and Jobst do not.

>  That s all I (and Jobst) have been trying to say. The ranked ballot does 
> not necessarily reflect an individual s pair-wise preferences. If we had 
> that little chat, and you told my first choice was unavailable and asked 
> me who my choice was given that, I d integrate issues over remaining 
> candidates and come up with an answer, but there is no particular reason 
> to assume that it would be the same answer as the one listed in position 
> 2 on my original ranked ballot.
>Now, if the vote-counting is IRV, I would know to fill out the ranked 
>ballot as if we d had that chat. But if the vote-counting is a 
>Condorcet-based system that depends upon pair-wise comparisons, I have to 
>know a lot more than who my 2nd-favorite choice is.

I fail to see any situation where a preference order you derive for IRV (or 
from the chat, whatever) is bad for Condorcet.  If E>B, E>C, and E>D, then 
when does voting some cyclic ranking give you (and other like-minded 
voters) a better result than voting A>E>B>C>D does?

>I don t see how it creates a problem for any method that depends upon 
>pair-wise comparisons to count the votes to allow voters to explicitly 
>state pair-wise preferences. To just say voters are stupid and must 
>conform to the method to make the method easier to analyze just strikes me 
>as academic arrogance.

That is not and has never been the reason for my rejection of explicit 
pairwise ballots.  The analysis isn't significantly harder, anyway.  I 
reject them because I see individually cyclic preferences as noise, and 
because no matter how clever we are, pairwise ballots will make the ballot 
more complicated and harder to vote with.  James has also brought up the 
issue of strategic manipulation, which hasn't been addressed.

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