[EM] The issue of comments about Arrow's theorem

Paul Kislanko kislanko at airmail.net
Sat May 14 20:48:04 PDT 2005

Mike, if you haven't read the paper, don't complain that you don't know what
Arrow meant by IIAC.

If you think IIAC is unimportant, fine. Then quit with all the "strategy"
complications, since those are heavily dependent upon the degree to which a
method complies or doesn't comply with IIAC.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: election-methods-electorama.com-bounces at electorama.com 
> [mailto:election-methods-electorama.com-bounces at electorama.com
> ] On Behalf Of MIKE OSSIPOFF
> Sent: Saturday, May 14, 2005 10:40 PM
> To: election-methods at electorama.com
> Subject: [EM] The issue of comments about Arrow's theorem
> When I read Curt's posting about Arrow, it was obvious to me 
> that he was 
> saying that Arrow's impossibility theorem is flawed by the 
> unimportance of 
> its criteria.
> Sure, who appointed Arrow to decide what criteria are "reasonable" or 
> necessary or important?
> Arrow's result can best be reported as: Arrow proved that a 
> few criteria 
> that he likes are incompatible with eachother.
> For some reason, many people have given those criteria 
> undeserved status as 
> the important criteria.
> Curt mentioned IIAC. We'd all cheerfully do without IIAC, to 
> have methods 
> like wv. IIAC isn't important.
> Anyway, when an invoker of the impossibility theorem is 
> pressed to define 
> its criteria, he never gives a usable definition of IIAC. To 
> this day, I 
> don't know what Arrow meant IIAC to be. I haven't seen his 
> original paper, 
> but most likely Arrow's own paper won't tell what Arrow means by IIAC.
> I've posted here a simple votes-only IIAC. It's, so far, the 
> only actual 
> definition of IIAC that I've heard:
> Deleting a loser from the ballots, and then recounting those 
> ballots, should 
> never change who wins.
> [end of IIAC definition]
> With that IIAC definition, Approval meets all of Arrow's 
> results criteria.
> I say "results criteria", because one of Arrow's criteria is a rules 
> criterion rather than a results criterion. At least in the version of 
> Arrow's theorem that I ran across, one of Arrow's 
> incompatible criteria is 
> one that says that a method must be a rank method.
> As I've been saying, rules criteria are no good, and say 
> nothing about 
> methods that fail or pass them. That goes for criteria that 
> don't apply to 
> Pluralilty, or which Plurality fails by definition. And it 
> goes for Arrow's 
> rankings criterion.
> Anyway, that's the other flaw of Arrow's impossibility 
> theorem, the fact 
> that it contains a rules criterion.
> People could debate what Arrow, or some other voting system 
> academic, is 
> trying to say, but does it reallly matter? If he wanted his 
> meaning to be 
> known, it's for him to say it. We shouldn't have to try to 
> decrypt it or 
> guess it.
> Mike Ossipoff
> _________________________________________________________________
> Is your PC infected? Get a FREE online computer virus scan 
> from McAfeeR 
> Security. http://clinic.mcafee.com/clinic/ibuy/campaign.asp?cid=3963
> ----
> Election-methods mailing list - see http://electorama.com/em 
> for list info

More information about the Election-Methods mailing list