[EM] Declaration wording refinement

Kristofer Munsterhjelm km_elmet at lavabit.com
Fri Oct 14 08:57:31 PDT 2011

Richard Fobes wrote:
> To:  Kristofer Munsterhjelm
> I believe that you imply, in your message copied below, that you like 
> the following words in the older version of the recently edited 
> paragraph (of the Declaration of Election-Method Reform Advocates):
> "... we would not hesitate to support any of these methods over 
> plurality voting"
> Unfortunately it is becoming clear that the words "support" and "any" 
> are problematic.

I read "supporting these methods over plurality voting" as, that when 
given the choice between any of those methods and Plurality, we would 
(without hesitation) pick the method, whichever it was.

I understand that exactly what constitutes a choice of one method vs 
Plurality might be fuzzy. As you mention, failing to support method X 
outright when you prefer Y might lead both X and Y to fail against 
Plurality. On the other hand, I still think we prefer all the methods 
mentioned in the declaration to Plurality itself, and if we could find 
some way of saying so beyond just "anything but Plurality", it would 
make the declaration stronger. It could serve to distinguish the methods 
of the declaration from, say, Borda, where some of us might say "okay, 
that's better than Plurality", and others may say "no, the teaming 
effect is too severe".

If the declaration is meant primarily to be against Plurality, then the 
newer wording is probably best; but if it recommends methods when people 
ask with what one should replace Plurality, then distinguishing the 
methods we all like enough (approve in Approval terms? :-) ) from those 
that some of us do, is also useful.

(I hope I didn't mangle my words too badly!)

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