[EM] Dave Ketchum: Repetition of previoius Approval discussion

Michael Ossipoff email9648742 at gmail.com
Fri Apr 27 21:56:39 PDT 2012

First, my apologies to Paul Kislanko, whom I called by the wrong name when
I replied to his posting, a few minutes ago.

_This_ reply is to Dave Ketchum:


I'd said:

>* How to avoid this problem? Why not repeal the rule that makes *>*Plurality so funny? Let people rate _every_ candidate with a 1 or
*>* a 0. Rate every candidate as "Approved" or "Unapproved". The
*>*candidate with the most "Approved" ratings wins. The result? Well,
*>* we'd be electing the most approved candidate, wouldn't we. Who can
*>*criticize that?
*>* *

You replied:

Anyone who realizes that there is more to wish for.


Ah, "If wishes were horses..."  :-)

Far be it for to tell you what you should or shouldn't wish for. But you
should keep the distinction
between wishes, fantasy, and feasible possibilities.

Anyway, as I explained to you when we had this same discussion a few days
ago, even you can't complain
about changing from Plurality to Approval. (At least I assume that you
don't believe that you have an argument
agains that change).

You can say, "But I want something more complicated that I claim will be
better." But that isn't an argument against
changing from Plurality to Approval. That change (from Plurality to
Approval) amounts to nothing more than repealing the ridiculous rule that
is Purality's problem.

Now, as I've discussed, a proposal to change from Plurality to Condorcet
would be a whole other ballgame.If you want
to try that, then feel free to. But don't say I told you to.

You continued:

Here you can vote for both Favorite and Compromise to help defeat
Worse, but cannot vote for both without implying equal liking for each


In a u/a election (there are unacceptable candidates who could win) your
best strategy in Condorcet
is to rank all of the acceptable candidates in 1st place, and not rank any
unacceptable candidates.
Doing so doesn't imply that you equally like everyone whom you equal-rank.

You continued:

- and thus risking unwanted election of Compromise.


Sorry, but you do need to risk that, in Condorcet, in a u/a election. But
don't feel too bad, because "unwanted"
has a whole other (and stronger) meaning when applied to the unacceptable

I'd said:

*If you have given 1 point to *>* Compromise, and 0 points to Worse, then
it’s obvious that also *>* giving a point to Favorite won’t change the fact
that you’ve fully *>* helped Compromise against Worse. *>* *

You say:

The above sentence emphasizes what happens to Compromise vs Worse,
ignoring that it destroys Favorite's desired advantage over Compromise.


But, with Condorcet, you can't say what I said: Top-ranking Favorite means
that you aren't fully helpng Compromise against Worse.
There are situations in which Worse will win instead of Compromise because
you top-ranked Favorite alongside Compromise.

Therefore, many people will be afraid to top-rank their favorite.

*  When Plurality’s falsification *>* problem is discussed, Plurality’s
inexplicable problem-causing *>* rule, then anyone trying to claim that
that problem should be kept *>* will be arguing an indefensible position,
and will be seen by all *>* for what he is. I’m not saying that desperate
arguments for keeping *>* Plurality’s problem won’t be made. I’m saying
that they won’t work. *>* *

You say:

Agreed that Approval was an easy, but valuable, step up from Plurality.


We agree that Approval should be the first step. Then what is your
complaint? I myself have said that I'd like to have
the rank method ICT (if it could be assured that people will understand or
trust that it lets them safely
vote their favorite in 1st place). But I was talking about what'd feasible
now. Let's not confuse immediate proposals
with discussion of possible plans for the more distant future.

You continued:

But, Approval does not help us vote our preference for Favorite over
Compromise.  I offer Condorcet as one easy step for this capability.


Sure it does, if that's what you want to do. No one's forcing you to
approve Compromise.

But you're saying that you want to vote all of your preferences. You want
the relatively complicated sort of method that
has that kind of balloting, and you want to not be able to give the
guaranteee that top-rating your favorite won't worsen your
outcome. If tha's what you want to propose, feel free to.

If you like rank balloting, you could have that with ICT, without losing
FBC. And you'd gain defection-resistance. But no rank
method is a winnable proposal right now, though they make a great topic for
future speculation. But don't confuse fantasy
with current feasibility.

You continued:

The negatives below suggest this is a difficult step.  Agreed, but its
value says it is worth trying.


It would be better to try it later. It isn't winnable now.

Condorcetists probably haven't discussed voting systems with members of the
public much. Or heard the objections that are made, regarding
reform voting systems. To ignore those considerations is to live in

That Condorcetists want to put their money on a sure-loser longshot, is
probably due to the fact that they really haven't looked at the
changes that Approval would make. I recommend that Dave re-read the article
that he's criticizing.

I told of the societal benefits that Approval would bring, and I told why.

Myerson & Weber have told why Approval will quickly home in on the voter
median (CW position) and then stay there.

Yes, you'd like rank balloting. I'd like ICT (more for
defection-resistance, but also for rank-balloting too,to a lesser extent).
But don't let your greed for more cause you to not get anything. Isn't
there an Aesop's fable about that?

Let's argue Condorcet vs ICT when Approval has been in use for a while,
because that's when the public and the media
will be suitable for enacting a rank method. But, even then, I suggest that
there's no point in a rank balloting method that
isn't defection-resistant.

Mike Ossipoff

Dave Ketchum
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