[EM] What it takes to give meaning to a criterion "failure"

Jameson Quinn jameson.quinn at gmail.com
Mon Jul 30 10:45:44 PDT 2012

As far as I can tell, you are arguing that ICT meets the majority Condorcet
criterion (does it? it seems to...) and that the MCC is more important than
the CC. Do I read you correctly?

It is important to reemphasize that the majority CC is compatible with FBC.
I'm not sure that ICT is my favorite of the methods which meet both, but I
do agree that meeting both is pretty much what puts a method among the best.


2012/7/29 Michael Ossipoff <email9648742 at gmail.com>

> I described a verbal scenario in which ICT fails the version of
> Condorcet's criterion based on unimproved Condorcet's definition of
> the verb "beat".
> Jameson asked why that "failure" isn't meaningful. So, what does it
> take to make it meaningful?
> For it to mean something to fail version-1 of a criterion, when
> passing a different version-2, version-1 must be importantly better
> than version-2.
> And for that to be so, when the two versions differ only in one
> definition, version-1's version of that definition has to be
> importantly more valid or justified than version-2's version of that
> definition.
> The definition in question is the matter of what it means to say that
> X beats Y, when some ballots rank X and Y both in 1st place.
> .
> I've discussed the fact that ICT's version of that definition  is
> completely consistent with the intent and wishes of the voter of that
> ballot that ranks X and Y both in 1st place.
> That makes it difficult to claim that the unimproved Condorcet version
> of that definition is importantly more valid or justified.   Yes, I
> know that many feel that _tradition_ is a justification. Sorry, I
> disagree.
> For that reason, ICT's "failure" of the CC based on unimproved
> Condorcet's "X beats Y" definition isn't a meaningful failure or
> violation.
> "What about the scenario?", you say. Ok, in that scenario, X was CW,
> by unimproved Condorcet's definition of "beat", and thereby wins.
> Then, if we count by ICT:
> But lots of the voters had ranked both X and Y in 1st place. When
> those ballots are counted against the defeat of Y by X, then X no
> longer beats Y, and both X and Y are unbeaten. With more 1st choice
> ratings, Y wins.
> ...in violation of the CC version based on unimproved Condorcet's
> definitions.
> Who has reason to be aggrieved by that? Surely you can't be aggrieved
> about how I use my equal voting-power. The only person who has a right
> to be aggrieved about the way ICT interprets those equal-top ballots
> is the voters whose ballots they are.
> Those are voters who have expressed indifference between X and Y. When
> one wins instead of the other, they have no reason to be aggrieved.
> What _was_ important to them all is that X or Y win, instead of
> someone whom they ranked lower. And, as I've already discussed, by
> unimproved Condorcet's equal-ranking interpretation, ranking X in 1st
> place with Y can cause the winner to be someone you like less than
> both (if you've ranked X and Y at top).
> So, though those voters are indifferent between X and Y, they are not
> indifferent between {X,Y} and the lower-ranked candidate whom
> unimproved Condorcet might elect instead, because of their equal
> ranking.
> So, again, it would be difficult to claim that unimproved Condorcet's
> "beat" definition is more valid or justified than that of ICT.
> Therefore, a CC based on unimproved Condorcet's definition can't be
> importantly more justified than one based on ICT's definition.
> The CC based on unimproved Condorcet's definition of "beat" could be
> called (for brevity) "unimproved CC").
> ICT's "failure" of unimproved CC is only meaningful if you like
> unimproved CC, and prefer it to improved CC. But that's purely your
> personal feeling--to which you are, of course, entitled. But an
> objective complaint about improved CC would require claiming that the
> equal-ranking voters care about how we choose between two candidates
> among whom they are indifferent, more than they care about electing X
> or Y instead of some they genuinely like less and rank lower.
> Yes, I know: "Tradition".
> Mike Ossipoff
> ----
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