Re: What OVC does not address

From: David Mertz <voting-project_at_gnosis_dot_cx>
Date: Fri Apr 16 2004 - 14:07:36 CDT

On Apr 16, 2004, at 2:50 PM, Jeff Almeida wrote:
> Telling people that we can compute the plurality winner, but that that
> result may not mean anything significant...

Yeah, yeah.

And you can compute the Condercet winner, and the results may not mean
anything significant because because of the overarching influence of
money/advertising on voters' knowledge and opinion.

...or because voters don't really understand how Condercet resolves the
winner.

...or because of unfairness in ballot-qualification rules.

And you can compute the IRV winner, and the result may not mean
anything because of consolidation of media ownership into a small
number of hands.

...or because the US Constitution mandates the Electoral College,
thereby only allowing IRV at a state-by-state level.

And you can compute the Burda winner, and the results may not mean
anything because of a poor quality of public education concerning
politics, history, and science.

...or because of gerrymandering of districts by prior legislatures.

...or because of segregation of neighborhoods by house buying patterns.

And you can compute the Cardinality winner, and the results may not
mean anything because of a history of racism and prejudice that blinds
voters to their real interests.

And...

Our job (OVC) is to make sure that elections accurately record voter
intent, and protect voter anonymity. This means voter intent WITHIN
the political and historical context that actually exists. We don't
try to record what voters WOULD intend if they REALLY understood all
the political issues in a race, but very narrowly which candidates,
options and ranks they actually selected

OVC is NOT, NOT, NOT a partisan lobbying organization. I'm not
personally against improving any of those above flaws in US elections
(or elsewhere in the world), but I am STRIDENTLY opposed to doing so
while I wear an OVC hat.

Yours, David...

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Received on Fri Apr 30 23:17:09 2004

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