[EM] majority tyranny (was proof idea for non-summability of STV)

robert bristow-johnson rbj at audioimagination.com
Thu Dec 3 17:25:37 PST 2020

> On 12/03/2020 7:57 PM Forest Simmons <fsimmons at pcc.edu> wrote:
> An insight of Jobst Heitzig has made a big difference in my thinking about this topic ... namely that all of the supposedly democratic deterministic consensus-building techniques must (in order to guarantee reaching a full formal consensus compromise in every case) sometimes resort to some kind of more or less subtle group pressuring of some participants.
> Once this insight gets lodged in the brain of someone who is categorically opposed to coercion, compulsion, or abuse of conscience in any form, in any degree, such a person must wonder if there exist non-deterministic, abuse-free methods for achieving consensus.
> To Jobst we also owe the insight that in the context of "lottery methods" a non-coercive, proportionately fair, full consensus solution always does exist!

but it's not repeatable, if it's truly a random lottery selection.  if you were to base any random numbers (to make a decision) on a PRNG (that's repeatable), then it's not really random.  you will know in advance which candidate is getting picked.


> I'm not saying that every election methods scientist needs to specialize in lotteries.

But without repeatability, there is no recount.  The only way an election can be recounted (if the law or courts required it) is if the RNG is a PRNG beginning with the same seed.

> Kevin Venzke (i think) wrote:
> >  
> >  But realistically there is probably a minimum faction size you would want to allow to wield power. And to prevent whiplash you'd probably want a minimum amount of time that a faction could be in power. Could a faction representing 25% of the voters be allowed to set policy for even a year? If not, can we defend that without invoking the principle of majority rule? (I doubt it... And for me that is always the limitation, that no matter what, you have to implement majority rule somewhere in the process.)

Nothing wrong with the principle of majority rule.  Elections are about majorities.  That's why Hare RCV failed in Burlington in 2009 and a Condorcet method would have complied with majority rule.

Drawing lots should only happen when, after recounting and litigating and scrutinizing, there is a dead tie. 


r b-j                  rbj at audioimagination.com 

"Imagination is more important than knowledge."

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