[EM] Part 1, Re: James, SFC

MIKE OSSIPOFF nkklrp at hotmail.com
Sat May 7 19:53:57 PDT 2005


I can't prove that offensive order reversal won't happen on a scale 
sufficient to change the outcome, and you can't prove that it will. The 
evidence that we have, the experience with rank-balloting polls, says that 
it won't happen. In these polls, with no material result, there's no risk 
for offensive order-reversal. Most who votred would probably prefer that 
their favorite win. But we didn't get offensive order-reversal. In a public 
election would anyone offensively order-reverse? Maybe a few. But evidence 
suggests that it won't happen on a scale sufficient to change the outcome.

You could argue that in the polls people didn't care enough to 
order-reverse, and hesitated to do so because voting wasn't anonymous. 
Anyway, in public elections, where the outcome matters, offensive 
order-reversal is well-deterred. Offensivse order-reversers? Bring 'em on!

You continue:

For example, wouldn't we expect a Bush backer to rank Kerry in
last place even if there were other candidates on the ballot whom that
voter would like even less than Kerry if that was the only choice?

I reply:

That will backfire badly unless the Kerry voters have ranked Bush. Your 
offensive order-reversal can only steal the election from people who are 
trying to help you.

You continue:

	I suppose that this kind of non-strategic order-reversal will probably
tend to exist on a smaller scale than non-strategic truncation, but it
should still be taken into account somewhat.

I reply:

Take it into account by not ranking a candidate if whose voters you believe 
to be dishonest or unethical enough to order-reverse against your favorite. 
Or by ranking only your favorite if you believe him/her to be CW, and the 
electorate to be super-devious.

Anyway, all this misses the main point of my posting: Truncation will always 
happen on a large scale, and it will be nonstrategic truncation. A whole 
different problem from offensive strategy, on a vastly larger scale.

I'd said:

>I always say that under certain plausible conditions, it won't be
>necessary to do other than rank sincerely.

You say:

	You think that voters should give full sincere rankings in WV? I thought
we agreed that voters should only rank one of the two major party
candidates (or truncate after reaching their approval cutoff, or truncate
after reaching their compromise candidate, or something along those
lines...), in order to assure that attempted burying strategies (OOR) by
the other "side", as it were, could only backfire.

I reply:

...if the electorate is extremelly devious, yes. In oiur EM polls, and other 
Internet wv polls, we all ranked sincerely and completely, and most would 
probably do the same in public elections. At least until such time as an OOR 
problem appeared (but one probably won't appear).

Speaking for myself, personally, I wouldn't rank anyone below my Approval 
cutoff, just because they don't deserve a vote. But I'd rank my Approval set 
candidates sincerely without concern, because of the guarantees of SFC and 
GSFC. AERLO and ATLO would afford further assurance.

But that's a good question: I believe we should all be a lot more particular 
whom we vote for. And that means that in rank-balloting we should be very 
particular whom we rank. Not so much for strategic reasons, but just because 
we shouldn't rank people who don't deserve a vote. It's important to show 
such candidates that they don't deserve a vote, and show other voters that 

But, if there were no undeserving candidates, would I suggest truncation 
just to deter OOR? No, not unless OOR became a problem. I wouldn't bother 
people about that problem that will probably never be a problem.

But I would always ask people to not rank people who don't deserve a vote, 
such as someone like John Dean or Kerry, etc.

To be continued

Mike Ossipoff

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