[EM] RE : Re: RE : Majority Criterion, hidden contradictions
Abd ul-Rahman Lomax
abd at lomaxdesign.com
Mon Nov 6 21:02:07 PST 2006
At 12:11 PM 11/6/2006, Kevin Venzke wrote:
> > Sure, people will insist on this. Because they
> > have confused the Majority Criterion with
> > Majority Rule.
>
>But as far as I can see it does little good to say that the "people"
>here are mistaken.
No, I'd claim that understanding this could be critical. If there is
a common misunderstanding, and this misunderstanding blocks a needed
reform, we need to know the nature of the misunderstanding to be able
to clear it up.
"People" as used above means, of course, "some people."
> > No, Range does this. If we assume that voters
> > express their expected value for the various
> > candidates, the expected value for the voters,
> > collectively, is the sum of the individual expectations.
>
>Sure, but I don't see how this assumption can be taken for granted.
No election method can extract information from the voters and use it
to determine the winner if the voters do not express the information.
The assumption cannot be taken for granted, which is exactly why I
expressed it as an assumption. However, what is being said is that if
people use Range sincerely and honestly, Range will maximize expected
value, summed over all the voters.
Consider a diagnostic tool, a questionnaire to be filled out to
determine health status and medical treatment. If people lie on the
questionnaire, the results will be suboptimum.
Now, the question then becomes, will people lie? Some will, depends
on the definition of "lie."
Here is the paradox: if voters care little about whether or not A or
B wins, but want A to win, they can distort the rating of B. For the
condition to be true, the voters must simultaneously "care little"
and care enough to lie about their true preferences.
My real point is that we don't know, very well, how voters will
actually behave. We very much need real-world examples, theory will
only take us so far.
>If we can't make this assumption then there is no guarantee that Range
>will outperform a majoritarian method in terms of expected value.
I think we can make the assumption that *some* voters will so vote,
and thus that the method will move results in the direction described.
This won't work in all situations. Two-candidate elections are a
quite likely example. But it might work even there.
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