[EM] Democratic consensus

Richard Lung voting at ukscientists.com
Sat Jan 7 08:53:16 PST 2023

Happy new year.

Democracy is defined as the representation of the individual (vote) in 
the community (count). The one must amount to the other. Personal 
preferences must amount to a collective majority. A wish that is greater 
among individuals must translate to a greater majority in the community. 
There must be a correspondence between the magnitude of individual and 
community wishes.

Single choice-order votes may aggregate to a single majority count. 
Multiple order votes or ranked choice votes are required to establish a 
multiple majority count.

Single preferences for a single majority corresponds to the first term 
in a series of rational counts (as in the Droop quota).This general 
relation of vote to count was regarded unexceptional by the 
mathematician Carl Andrae, when he invented it, in the middle of the 
nineteenth century, as did Thomas Hare.

The mathematician Robert Newland, a member of the London Mathematical 
Society, using Meek method STV, regarded the one choice vote for the one 
majority count “only half a democracy.” John Stuart Mill called it 
maiorocracy not democracy.

Politics, however, has not proved that logical, but partisan, and 
perhaps primevally tribal. A one choice vote cannot logically elect a 
multi-member constituency, as party lists are supposed to do. That is, 
unless the lists are party clones. People are not clones but 
individuals. Indeed, that is how the list members are treated; in a 
preferential manner, by a privileged group or individual making a party 
list. Party lists are an oligarchic fashion. Voters lists are a 
democratic condition.

Party lists are tolerated because the simple plurality count of the spot 
vote elects a party list of one candidate. The excuse is that the 
two-party system never really offered individual choice [it was always a 
party monopoly on personal representation] and isn’t going to start now. 
This was essentially the (politically led) argument of the 
Ontariocitizens assembly on electoral reform.

HG Wells promoted a Charter of Scientific Fellowship, in 1941, which 
asserted the democracy of science.The Trouble With Physics, by Lee 
Smolin, says democracy is like science, except democracy is majority 
rule and science works by consensus. However, the democracy of John 
Stuart Mill MP, his prescient speeches envisioned in parliament, is a 
democracy of consensus. Laws should be proportionate to their support in 
the country, which was not possible, by (single) majority counting, 
perhaps splitting the vote in half, in the country, with support for a 
law, possibly halved again, by how representatives vote in parliament.


Richard Lung.

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