Re: [RangeVoting] Re: Direct Representation
- Your conclusions about the problem of "integer" power is exactly what drew
me to DR as well. But now that I understand Asset voting better, I think
it may be a simpler solution to the problem.
"We might set the maximum ... and .... minimum ... So delegates would have
roughly the same level of support,"
This was my intent behind quorum and district use as well, although I fear
your limits would be so high as to bar entry to less commonly held (but
still significant) political views.
"Transfers would occur just like under STV, but only the surplus above the
maximum would be transferred"
I could see some confusion here. Consider a case where half the votes for
X are X > Y > Z and the other half are X > Z > Y. If X got a surplus of
votes, where does the surplus go? This is why I like the Asset form of
transfer (where the candidates decide where the excess goes). It gives the
power to your favorite candidate to decide who she thinks will best help
further your shared agenda.
"An area might be former a natural district, where all the residents
identify it as "their" area"
Conceptually, Asset voting allows voters to form these natural districts
themselves by voting for a candidate from "their" area who shares their
opinion on what is best for that area. As such, candidates will get votes
in this manner directly proportional to the size of that area and how many
people agree with them from that area. When it comes time for asset
negotiation, they will either join the legislature, transferring excess
votes to other candidates likely to help them in the legislature, or they
will use their assets to ensure someone who does join the legislature is
there to represent their constituents.
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- At 11:33 PM 6/13/2013, jimrtex4192 wrote:
>During the time the BC Citizens Council was considering a newAsset Voting. Voters will self-assemble into virtual districts. They
>electoral system, I had thought of a form of STV. In British
>Columbia there are vast areas that are sparsely populated. A
>3-member district would need to span hundreds of miles, and 1 or
>2-member districts do not provide political proportionality. In
>addition it is difficult to create districts that have a magnitude
>proportional to population, if that magnitude is restricted to integers.
will naturally prefer to vote for electors close to them, whom they
can know or at least meet. This will tend strongly to produce
accurate political representation, without the parties needing to be
an official part of the process. Electors will then choose actual
seats, but the electoral college created, which could have very large
numbers of participants, will serve as a communications structure
between voters -- who will largely vote for electors with whom they
can have actual conversations with relative convenience -- and those
elected to seats by voluntary coordination of the electors.
Asset creates an intermediate structure that will serve in many ways,
not just for the election itself.
Hard to get Asset considered? Well, create a Citizens Advisory
Council and elect it through Asset. It will powerfully represent all
those who participate as electors, which will accurately represent
all the members. And so the Council will be able to lobby the
official system, and deliver real votes in the real elections. The
Council will advise in two directions: it will advise the official
legislators, and it will advise its members, though the structure,
how to vote in the official elections, as well as providing open
channels for discussion and debate.
(As what is really a Free Association/Delegable Proxy proposal, it
can readily be expected that I'd propose that Council itself be
rigorously neutral, that it would *not* take controversial positions,
based on majority vote. Rather, it *assembles* consensus, and
measures it. Any recommendations are made by single council seats, as
their own opinions, or in coalition, and as confirmed by the full
electoral college. That's important, because the goal would be for
the Council to represent *all citizens*, not just some faction, the
goal would be to encourage all citizens to register as members of the
Council Free Association, to thereby obtain the right to vote in the
general Citizen's Council Asset election, and thus to be accurately
represented in the structure. Such a council could become quite
powerful politically in representing citizen consensus. If you were a
legislator, wouldn't you want to know the Council results on some
issue? It would include a full deliberative record, etc. This is far
higher in quality than mere polls.)
Most people, we might notice, don't want to spend a lot of time with
"politics." They prefer to live their lives, on a level that is real
to them. And, indeed, those who then do participate in politics are
the servants of this larger number, being willing to represent them.
And what we want to do is to empower those representatives who are
*actually chosen by the citizens.* What Asset does is to create
representation by choice, pure choice. No votes are wasted, so there
is no need for "contests." I should not have to "beat" anyone to be
Asset is a radical revolution in how we think about politics. Yet
it's very simple and destroys nothing. Except maybe the isolation
that most people feel from government, which will truly become "us."
- You are obviously getting it, Brian. Congratulations. Seriously, a
lot of people can't do that so quickly.
At 11:06 AM 6/14/2013, Brian Goldman wrote:
>Your conclusions about the problem of "integer" power is exactly what drewIndeed. It appears to have the possibility of solving a much larger
>me to DR as well. But now that I understand Asset voting better, I think
>it may be a simpler solution to the problem.
problem, the problem of scale in democracy, the gap between the
general population and the deliberative center. Asset creates an
*intermediate structure* that, in one direction, feeds the center
(and creates it), and that, in the other direction, *explains* the
center to the population. I see Asset as potentially "vanishing" the
general sense of alienation from government that people feel.
>"We might set the maximum ... and .... minimum ... So delegates would have*No* political views are excluded from the electoral college in
>roughly the same level of support,"
>This was my intent behind quorum and district use as well, although I fear
>your limits would be so high as to bar entry to less commonly held (but
>still significant) political views.
Asset, unless they are radically isolated and no holder of the view
is willing or able to become a public voter, i.e., to register and
collect votes as an elector.
Some views will not be represented in the elected Assembly, the
collection of "seats." Those who hold those views will have the
opportunity of knowing exactly *why* the views are not passed on.
They may have supported electors who could not convince their
supported seats to advance the views. Further, where direct voting by
electors is allowed, those electors with the rejected views can still
vote. *One elector,* representing *one person* -- presumably himself
or herself -- can cast a vote opposing some action, and that vote
would be recorded and reported.
"I was the only elector to oppose the XXX war. Yeah, some people
yelled at me, but we have a total respect for democracy here, and,
the way things turned out, I was elected to the Assembly next round.
It was the last time I'll accept that! Too much work. I'd rather go
fishing. Still, it was a great opportunity to see how it all works,
and to help with this and that decision; the staff was great, and the
pay was decent! I can't imagine the old days when most people weren't
represented, and when every legislator was sweating being re-elected,
having to look for money to campaign, what a nightmare! I'll continue
to serve as an elector until they are wheeling me away, because I can
still go fishing whenever I like. I have a great friendship with the
seat I transfer my votes to, in fact, we are going fishing tomorrow."
>"Transfers would occur just like under STV, but only the surplus above theNo, the transfers are as in certain forms of STV. The difference with
>maximum would be transferred"
>I could see some confusion here. Consider a case where half the votes for
>X are X > Y > Z and the other half are X > Z > Y. If X got a surplus of
>votes, where does the surplus go? This is why I like the Asset form of
>transfer (where the candidates decide where the excess goes). It gives the
>power to your favorite candidate to decide who she thinks will best help
>further your shared agenda.
vote-for-one Asset and STV is that transfers are controlled by the
elector ("candidate") not the ballot. Asset can be used with STV, it
was invented for that, particularly to serve voters who only know
their favorite, to avoid ballot exhaustion. However, once the power
of Asset is realized, it is no longer necessary and possibly
counterproductive to use an STV ballot. Instead, to avoid spoiled
votes, I have suggested that overvotes be handled by fractionating
the vote, thus creating a kind of virtual committee. That *dilutes*
representation, but it's better, much better, than tossing the
ballot. That method was called FAAV. Fractional Approval Asset
Voting. It's a simplified version of Smith's original Asset voting.
He's a mathematician and had no concept of the representational
issues, he was purely looking at Baysian regret. So his system
allowed fractional votes, being rational numbers in the range of 0-1,
with the restriction that they sum to 1. FAAV simplified that by
dividing up the vote to accomplish that.
I think that such multiple votes will be, in a mature Asset system, a
small percentage. Some voters might see an advantage to deliberately
doing it, but, remember, *it's only one vote.*
>"An area might be former a natural district, where all the residents*Whatever they choose.* Asset creates *unconditional representation*
>identify it as "their" area"
>Conceptually, Asset voting allows voters to form these natural districts
>themselves by voting for a candidate from "their" area who shares their
>opinion on what is best for that area. As such, candidates will get votes
>in this manner directly proportional to the size of that area and how many
>people agree with them from that area. When it comes time for asset
>negotiation, they will either join the legislature, transferring excess
>votes to other candidates likely to help them in the legislature, or they
>will use their assets to ensure someone who does join the legislature is
>there to represent their constituents.
in the full process, based on unconstrained choice, beyond natural
consequences. Some level of strategy is required, on the part of
electors. But it's minimal, and is purely collaborative.
In what I'd consider a "full-blown" Asset implementation, all
electors would be able, in person or over the internet, to vote on
motions before the legislature. They are public voters, registered
and known, and those votes would be public, as are the votes of
seats. When an elector votes directly it would, in theory, deprecate
the voting power of the seat or seats holding their votes, but I
expect that this would only rarely flip a result. (They would vote in
person from a few terminals set up for such use, they would log in
and vote, or they might vote from a smartphone. Or from home or
elsewhere over the internet, logged in to a secure server. Because
this is public, this is *not* like most internet voting proposals,
which have severe security problems.)
This is the key, and revolutionary, concept here: a hybrid democracy
has been set up, combining features of direct and representative
democracy. Deliberation, where there can be a severe noise problem if
there is wide participation, is restricted to elected seats. That is,
only seats have a right to enter motions, to second motions, and to
possibly to vote on certain process motions (which are routinely
handled, sometimes, even by a chair saying "absent objection, ....")
No, Joe from Bearbutt, Remote Province, cannot object as an elector,
over the internet, even if watching the whole proceedings. *However*,
any enumerated motion, where, in modern assemblies, voting is often
by machine, i.e., some terminal, could be open to wide voting. That
would definitely include any substantive motion.
I've mentioned that I think this would only rarely flip a result,
because most seats already will represent their electors quite well.
Rather, this simply completes the connection and allows for electors
with small-minority views, differing from each other, to still
collaborate on creating seat who might represent different views,
without needing to cover *every position.* Essentially, TAANSTAFL. If
you still want to stand for a small-minority position, fine! But you
will have to *pay attention* and know when an important vote is coming up.
The goal of Asset, then, it that *everyone is represented.*
An Assembly has the right to protect itself. It can reject specific
seats, probably by a supermajority. Every time it does that, it would
place the goal of full representation at risk, so there had better be
a good reason! Seats will need to follow Assembly rules, or risk
ejection. Note that with full-on Asset, ejection does *not*
disempower the electors who voted for that seat, they may still vote.
And electors can vote on the issue of ejection, I'd assume. That is a
*very substantial* motion.
There is one kind of issue on which electors could not vote. Those
are what are called "national security" issues, or other issues where
confidentiality is crucial. I'm not going to address that fully, and
a fully PR assembly raises more questions about this than a 2-party
assembly. Suffice it to say that the legitimate needs for secrecy of
some sessions can be addressed without doing violence to the
principle of full representation.
I want it to be noticed that I am not attempting to bind the
Assembly. An Asset Assembly has the full right to create its own
rules, and elector-voting, I'd assume, would be implemented when the
Assembly was ready to do it.
Once those in government see what a difference it makes that the
public is *fully on-board,* and fully trusts the government, because
it has become trustworthy-by-design, they will want to complete the
process, only making sure not to do harm.
Standard deliberative process actually covers most of this.
And by the way, there would still be "officer" elections,
single-winner. But Asset makes a full parliamentary system possible.
Officers, then, are *hired.* And can be fired at any time. All it
takes is a majority vote in the Assembly. So Asset, with a single
ballot, generally vote-for-one, can cover the *entire structure of
government at a geographical level.* (I'm leaving out the judicial
branch, a separate issue, I really mean the legislative and executive