[EM] Voting as duty (was ties & truncation)

Dave Ketchum davek at clarityconnect.com
Thu Sep 15 21:27:07 PDT 2005

Puzzling where this comes from.

If the voters are to vote, they still need to decide who to vote for.

These committees look like a lot of work - remember that there are many 
elections on a normal election day - some perhaps with districts as small 
as one precinct.

Cure for this nonsense is for most of the committee members to flip a 
coin, or equivalent, before voting.

On Thu, 15 Sep 2005 09:24:30 -0400 Abd ulRahman Lomax wrote:

> At 05:17 PM 9/14/2005, Simmons, Forest wrote:
>> (1) Pick 400 registered voters at random.  Give them time off work, 
>> and have them study the candidates carefully and decide a tentative 
>> winner by some reputable method (like DMC, Shulze, Approval, Asset 
>> Voting, etc.)  It will definitely be worth the time for these voters, 
>> since there will be an appreciable chance that their votes will be 
>> pivotal.
>> (2) Analyze the ballots from step 1 statistically.  If the results are 
>> so decisive that there is less than a one percent chance that a 
>> different winner would emerge from the same method involving the 
>> entire electorate, then submit the tentative winner to the electorate 
>> for ratification by a Yes/No vote. [and more]
> The idea of using a committee, essentially, to select a tentative winner 
> is an excellent one, and parallels my own ideas in a way. If the 
> committee is statistically unbiased, it should work. Tricky to ensure 
> that, however.
> It would be a good idea to have *any* election result that is below a 
> clear and general consensus (supermajority definition not stated here) 
> be submitted to a ratification vote. This effectively forces voters to 
> approve or disapprove of the result. Thus, in the end, it is Approval 
> which has been used, in a way, with a very significant tweak that deals 
> with straight-ticket, truncated votes.
> However, it might be advisable to allow more than one candidate on the 
> runoff ballot. Top two (by undefined standards; what about Condorcet and 
> Approval winners?) might be appropriate. More than that, we would start 
> to get strategic voting in the runoff. Another option in the runoff 
> might be () Start Over.
> If a majority of the voters want to redo the whole election process, it 
> should be their privilege. Presumably the existing office-holders would 
> remain pending new results, or there could be statutory caretakers.
> However, in my own concepts, instead of some abstract (or possibly 
> corrupt) agency choosing voters at random, *the voters* choose 
> representatives on the committee, through Delegable Proxy. The committee 
> functions deliberatively, instead of aggregatively. The committee could 
> be quite a bit smaller. And the result would *still* be subjected to a 
> full vote by the general electorate. (Committee members would have 
> variable voting power according to the votes they received. 
> Alternatively, Asset Voting would be used to create a PR Committee that 
> is almost fully representative, while being a peer committee, though 
> this introduces constraints that produce the "almost."
> In a DP committee, one member might represent a very large percentage of 
> the electorate. If the committee size is fixed, this allows members to 
> be elected to the committee who represent much smaller blocks of voters. 
> This is why DP is more fully representative than Asset. However, there 
> could be advantages to peer committees, in terms of the encouragement of 
> collegiality.
> In the end, the voters should choose their own election methods. And, 
> again, DP is a way to do it that would be likely to produce an 
> intelligent result, enjoying the broadest possible consensus.

  davek at clarityconnect.com    people.clarityconnect.com/webpages3/davek
  Dave Ketchum   108 Halstead Ave, Owego, NY  13827-1708   607-687-5026
            Do to no one what you would not want done to you.
                  If you want peace, work for justice.

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