[EM] There's indecisiveness, and then there's indecisiveness

Kevin Venzke stepjak at yahoo.fr
Tue Jun 7 12:57:50 PDT 2005


--- MIKE OSSIPOFF <nkklrp at hotmail.com> a écrit :
> With such examples, it's easy for MMPO to have a tie. And yes, that's a kind 
> of indecisiveness that wv doesn't have.
> But would it happen in a public election? All it would take is for one voter 
> to not vote exactly like the others in his/her faction. I claim that MMPO's 
> indecisiveness examples won't happen in public elections with thousands of 
> voters.

I agree (based on simulations I've done in the past) that MMPO's problem is
moderated as you add more types of voters.

> ...but tMMWV's indecisiveness _will_ happen in large public elections, when 
> there's some indifference or truncation.

Well, truncation won't cause problems any more than it will under WV. It's
only equal ranking at the top which can cause indecision. If people do this
extensively than I guess you could frequently have multiple CWs.

> Sure, someone could ask why you use votes-against, instead of votes-for. But 
> that can be answered: It's for the lesser-of-2-evils voters, who insist on 
> effectively voting against someone, on voting against someone and having it 
> count against that candidate as strongly as possible, to do everything 
> possible to keep that greater-evil from winning. The counting of 
> votes-against is a concession to the lesser-of-2-evils voters, of whom there 
> are very many.

If this argument doesn't convince them, you could note that electing the
candidate with the most votes for him in a contest fails Majority Favorite
and Later-no-harm.

> Now, about the Plurality Criterion:
> Doesn't it say: X must not win if the number of people voting Y in 1st place 
> is greater than the number of peope voting X over Y?

"...people voting X above (equal-)last."

> I don't understand why that's essential. I don't understand why failing that 
> is a grave problem.
> Every criterion sounds plausible, and, for every criterion, failure doesn't 
> sound right.
> But will failure of the Plurality Criterion cause a strategy problem for 
> voters? Will it make them vote in a way that gives the election away and 
> conceals what they really want? No one has made a case that the Plurality 
> Criterion is essential, or that failing it is a grave problem.

No, fortunately, I don't believe it creates strategy problems. It's only a
problem of acceptability of the result. Will voters accept the election of
candidate X when X couldn't be the FPP winner even when all X preferences are
raised to the top?

Personally, if we're electing a president, I would rather not elect X, even
though this means either SDSC (or at least MD) or LNHarm has to be given up. 
But I don't mind electing X to be a legislator.

Kevin Venzke


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