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Re: Party List P.S.

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  • Mike Ositoff
    Regarding the candidate withdrawal option: Maybe someone could pay a candidate to refuse to withdraw, & to be a spoiler , but that would likely be the end of
    Message 1 of 5 , Jul 27 3:01 PM
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      Regarding the candidate withdrawal option: Maybe someone could
      pay a candidate to refuse to withdraw, & to be a "spoiler", but
      that would likely be the end of that candidate's career. Of course
      if they paid him well enough, he wouldn't care about the career.
      But then we'd be no worse off than if we didn't have candidate
      withdrawal as an option.

      As for coalitions, I don't know. What is certain, though, is
      that when a candidate withdraws, his votes go exactly where
      his voters would want them to. His withdrawal when he loses,
      but holds votes that could go to my next choice--that withdrawal
      is in my interest. Of course maybe I'm in the minority, and
      most of his voters have ranked someone after him whom I don't
      like, but it's perfectly democratic, since every voter's
      Plurality vote goes to his next choice.

      (If anyone says that means that IRO is democratic, then I
      emphasize that there's nothing democratic about IRO's
      _elimination_, when it eliminates someone preferred by the
      majority. Voluntary candidate withdrawals are quite different,
      being done in order to _avoid_ that sort of problem in whichever
      method they're used with).

      It _will_ be obvious to a candidate that he didn't win
      the Plurality count, and that if he doesn't withdraw, then,
      because he's holding those votes, someone unnecessarily bad
      wins. So he doesn't have to be able to forsee the future--the
      present is all he has to go by.

      Why not instead use a better method, that has less need for
      candidate withdrawal? Of course there's a strong case for that.
      But the reason for Plurality With Withdrawal is merely the
      fact that Plurality is already well-known, and it avoids arguments
      about what new count rule should be used. The withdrawal option
      is the obvious answer to Plurality's well-known problem.

      The fact that your ballots are mailed doesn't prevent using
      the candidate withdrawal option. The ballots would be ranked,
      and need only be sent once. Only 1 set of rankings is needed,
      on which the Plurality counts are based. It's the candidates,
      not the voters, who would react to the results of a Plurality
      count.

      One problem, if Plurality With Withdrawal were used as the
      single-winner method for the system that I've proposed for
      choosing & ordering party lists, would be if it were _often_
      the case that not all of the N-1 candidates already chosen
      for the list were in the current N chosen by the N-candidate
      STV count. Because, then it would be often that the single-winner
      method would be needed, and each time PWW is used, the candidates
      would have to be on hand to withdraw when necessary.
      But if the house monotonicity violations are few, there wouldn't
      be a problem.

      Anyway, I'm not really _pushing_ for PWW over the other very
      good methods from EM. I merely mention it as one of those very
      good methods with its own advantages.

      It had occurred to me, then, that if it's necessary to apply
      the single-winner method often, it would be better to use
      one that works well automaticlly, like Condorcet(EM),
      Smith//Condorcet(EM), & Schulze.

      What does the EM stand for? The name of this list, election-methods.
      It's named after this list because here is where that version
      of Condorcet's method was proposed & discussed, and we recommended
      it to the ER list.

      MR. Condorcet, in the 18th century, wasn't specific about how
      to measure defeats. He probably assumed that everyone would vote
      a complete ranking of _all_ the alternatives. But that does't
      happen in real elections. So we don't know if Condorcet would
      have favored measuring the defeat of B by A according to
      "votes-against" (how many people ranked A over B); or "votes
      for" (how few people ranked B over A); or "margins" (the
      difference of those 2 numbers); or the ratio of those 2
      numbers.

      But we've shown here that "votes against" is what gets rid
      of the lesser-of-2-evils problem and protects majority rule.

      ***

      Schulze's method?

      (Tell me if I'm mistaken)

      * A beats B if more voters rank A over B than vice-versa.

      * The strength of that defeat is the number of voters who ranked
      A over B.

      * There's a "beat path" from A to B if either A beats B, or
      if A beats something that has a beat path to B.

      * The strength of a beat path is measured by its weakest defeat.

      *If A has a stronger beat path to B than B has to A, then A
      has a Schulze win against B.

      *If an alternative has a Sculze win against each one of the
      others, then it wins.

      ***

      However it seems to me that there could be elections without
      a Schulze winner. In that case Condorcet(EM) would be a good
      way to choose the winner. Or maybe there's always the possibility
      that a different tie-breaker could confer new properties.
      Maybe one could hope for a method that would avoid _all_
      subcycle fratricide, not just in clone-sets. Or a method
      that meets Positive Involvement (if Schulze doesn't already).

      Schulze automatically chooses from the Smith set, and so avoids
      the need to define the Smith set. But Schulze's definition is
      (seemingly unavoidably) longer than that of Condorcet(EM), and
      that could be an important factor in explainability. So Schulze
      is almost surely better than Smith//Condorcet(EM), at least because
      Schulze avoids subcycle fratricide in clone sets, and therefore
      meets the stronger Independence from Clones Criterion.
      But that's a "fine point" compared to the gross problems that
      both Schulze & Condorcet(EM) get rid of.

      Mike Ossipoff
    • Saari@aol.com
      ... Of course, this method has at least three obvious flaws. One, for an extended period of time after the election it is indeterminate who the winner is.
      Message 2 of 5 , Aug 4, 1998
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        In a message dated 98-07-27 04:04:21 EDT, you write:

        >Candidates can withdraw any time a result is announced, and so
        >the process of withdrawals & new count is repeated till no one
        >else wants to withdraw.

        Of course, this method has at least three obvious flaws. One, for an extended
        period of time after the election it is indeterminate who the winner is.

        Two, this method won't work when candidates are things/proposals, not people.

        Three, a losing candidate who either withdraws or does not withdraw is now in
        a position to directly influence the outcome. Issues of corruption and
        bribery aside, clearly the outcome is now a consequence not merely of the
        wishes of the voters but is also being manipulated by the candidates
        themselves. A flaky or unpredictable result indicates a flaky election
        system. In a good system the outcome is completely or primarily a reflection
        of the feelings of the voters WITHOUT the opportunity of direct manipulation
        of the outcome by certain individual participants.

        Proponents of ranked voting (first, second, third, etc.) offer us a variety of
        "scoring systems" but seem unable to find a single scoring system that is not
        obviously flawed. (And Arrow has essentially proven that they will never find
        such an ideal scoring system based on ranked voting.) In my book this
        indicates that a different approach is required.
        One such approach involves discarding historical dogma such as "majority
        rule", "ranked voting" or the simplistic "one man, one vote" and instead asks:
        What is a method of voting which allows for full freedom of expression? What
        is a method of scoring such votes that does not create instant paradoxes or
        contradictions? And can such a voting/scoring system be devised that does not
        create incentives to lie or exaggerate?

        Some people on this list believe that the above goals are impossible to
        achieve, and prefer instead to stick blindly to the old methods even though
        they do not produce satisfactory results in all cases. Perhaps a single ideal
        method is impossible to achieve, but personally I think it can be done.

        Mike Saari
      • Mike Ositoff
        nn ... Nonsense. We typically have to wait till the next day anyway. How long will it take a count computer do the several counts. The candidates could be
        Message 3 of 5 , Aug 5, 1998
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          nn>
          > In a message dated 98-07-27 04:04:21 EDT, you write:
          >
          > >Candidates can withdraw any time a result is announced, and so
          > >the process of withdrawals & new count is repeated till no one
          > >else wants to withdraw.
          >
          > Of course, this method has at least three obvious flaws. One, for an extended
          > period of time after the election it is indeterminate who the winner is.
          >
          Nonsense. We typically have to wait till the next day anyway. How
          long will it take a count computer do the several counts. The
          candidates could be required to remain in town if they want to
          withdraw. In Cambridge, the wait has often been several days.


          > Two, this method won't work when candidates are things/proposals, not people.

          Wrong. The proponent of a proposal could withdraw it.


          >
          > Three, a losing candidate who either withdraws or does not withdraw is now in
          > a position to directly influence the outcome. Issues of corruption and

          Remember that if a candidate withdraws, his votes will go, not where
          _he_ says, but where his voters have indicated that they want
          them sent. If a winning candidate withdraws, then I'd agree with
          your anger. I feel your pain. If a losing candidate withdraws,
          then what's your problem?


          > bribery aside, clearly the outcome is now a consequence not merely of the
          > wishes of the voters but is also being manipulated by the candidates

          Manipulating by not being a spoiler? By a loser not hoarding votes
          that his voters would rather send elsewhere? :-)

          > themselves. A flaky or unpredictable result indicates a flaky election
          > system. In a good system the outcome is completely or primarily a reflection
          > of the feelings of the voters WITHOUT the opportunity of direct manipulation
          > of the outcome by certain individual participants.

          You wouldn't be setting yourself up as the person with authority
          to define what's "good", would you? Your error is that you're
          exaggerating the power of a withdrawing candidate. What purpose
          remaining in the count, holding votes that his voters want to
          help someone else with?

          Any election result is unpredictable (and therefore "flaky"?).
          What can be predicted, however, is that Condorcet winners will
          have pretty much a sure win. Without any strategy or predictive
          knowledge on the part of the voters.

          >
          > Proponents of ranked voting (first, second, third, etc.) offer us a variety of
          > "scoring systems" but seem unable to find a single scoring system that is not
          > obviously flawed. (And Arrow has essentially proven that they will never find

          The question is whether you have a proposal that isn't flawed.
          After years of discussion, we've minimized the flaws, and found
          methods that meet the standards most important to people, based
          on conversations & articles, etc.

          > such an ideal scoring system based on ranked voting.) In my book this
          > indicates that a different approach is required.
          > One such approach involves discarding historical dogma such as "majority
          > rule", "ranked voting" or the simplistic "one man, one vote" and instead asks:
          > What is a method of voting which allows for full freedom of expression? What
          > is a method of scoring such votes that does not create instant paradoxes or
          > contradictions? And can such a voting/scoring system be devised that does not
          > create incentives to lie or exaggerate?

          >
          > Some people on this list believe that the above goals are impossible to
          > achieve, and prefer instead to stick blindly to the old methods even though
          > they do not produce satisfactory results in all cases. Perhaps a single ideal
          > method is impossible to achieve, but personally I think it can be done.
          >

          "Some people on this list" have been involved with the subject for
          longer than you have, apparently.

          Do you realize how little sense you make when you attempt to
          claim that what we do isn't valid, because _maybe_ someone _could_
          find something better? Unless you yourself can either propose
          something better, or quote someone who has, then what you're
          saying has no validity.

          It's been pointed out to you that the flexible point systems
          that you used to propose, like -100 to 100 are not strategyk
          free, and don't encourage sincere voting, and are strategically
          the same as Approval (not a bad method, but we have better ones).

          Then you talked about charging money from voters to ensure
          sincerity. No, the votes that voters pay for would still
          be used strategically.

          I know of only 1 system that encourages sincerity:
          The Clarke tax, using real money. Charging real money froim
          voters is quite out of the question. Allowing for differences
          in income, savings, expenses, family, debts, gambling problems,
          substance habits, etc. etc., to try to make fair equal incentive,
          is completely unfeasible.

          You've been ousted from each point from which you attacked
          rank-balloting, and so now you resort to saying that maybe
          some hypothetical unknown, unproposed method might be
          better.

          Mike Ossipoff


          > Mike Saari
          >
          >
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