Power Is The Most Addictive Drug Ever Discovered

I am not only a ‘voting method theorist’, but just as much, a want-to-become ‘movement evangelist’ advocating the utilization of high quality election methods, to enable the commonalty to wrest political power away from the elite power addicts. Before describing my proposed strategies, let me mention a problem this (high-dollar) website presents to low-dollar movements. CES demands that material on its forum be presented under a Creative Commons content license. That is likely to create difficulties when low-dollar movements attempt to get their material published in larger venues, something that the high-dollar organizations do not need to be much concerned with. So why not allow the low-dollar advocates just publish under the sort-of ‘common law’ copyright that is so prevalent on some other websites?

Note: This forum is planning to go dark soon. What all of the contributors need to do is open their own free WordPress.com websites, and (loosely) tie them together (blogrolls would provide a good start). (I really think Zoom will turn out to be the next sorry Facebook.) One of mine is:

Ranked Choice Voting Is A Fraud

About my proposed strategies. I do not prefer approval voting for the following reason: The approval method is not adequately differentiative of contenders, and therefor imposes a double bind effect upon voters, whereby the most collectively desired contenders might possibly never ever win, or only win on a random basis. Thus we could find ourselves governed by lesser evils as often as not.

Another strategy – Know it or not, there is a tremendously potent ‘semi-grass roots’ movement to implement IRV/RCV, which extends vastly beyond the drives in Maine, Oregon, and Massachusetts. Here’s the thing: I would be happy to support this IRV/RCV leviathan, with the provision that one very small enhancement be included. (I do demand hand counted paper ballots, since voting computers and scanners are always controlled by election managers who are beholden to power addicts.) In some prominent place on the ballot there should be a pair of ‘ovals’ where the voter can indicate whether the electoral contention ballots must be tabulated according to the ranked choice voting method, or according to the ‘simple ranked voting’ method.The will of the majority for IRV/RCV vs. SRV in each contention mandates which of the two tabulation methods will be applied. The salient problem with IRV/RCV is that it requires a vast amount of very insecure information traffic, and worse, individual ballots must be edited by election managers who are beholden to power addicts, so as to set-aside the weakest contenders, and transfer rank-place positions to the ‘surviving’ contenders. Simple ranked voting (SRV) tabulation, if mandated by a majority of the voters (why should they be denied this choice?), completely eliminates ballot editing by the managers. Here’s how it works.

For each paper ballot, the contender indicated in the highest rank-place receives 100 votes; the one indicated in the second-highest rank-place receives 99 votes, and so on. The lowest rank-place is twenty places down, so the lowest number of votes that can be cast for a contender is ‘80’. It’s futile to cast less that ‘80’ votes, and only makes hand counting much more difficult. And voters will eventually learn to use the hedge strategy: The voters could utilize hedge voting, mitigating total electoral leverage sacrifice which could invoke a spoiler effect, which could cause the greater evil to win. With hedge voting, voters could cast, say, ‘80’ votes to an elite-fronted lesser evil, and ‘95’ to ‘100’ votes their most desired contenders. Then, all of the votes simply get added up in just one pass, in precincts. SRV is quite simple.

I do not accept the ‘reiteration effect’ that insists that voters must be somehow ‘honest’, as it is impossible for a normal voter to commit fraud in a secretive voting booth. It is obvious to me that the so-called max-min ‘strategy’ is at best a totally losing strategy, whereas the hedge strategy is a winning one. I also do not believe that proportional ‘representation’ has been shown, ultimately to have realistically accomplished much for the proportioned camps. That is a social and cultural issue, where politics has proved, ultimately, to have led to futility.

A non-binding preliminary quasi-election should probably be held prior to a subsequent decisive election.

This approach, such as the all-caps giant font “RANKED CHOICE VOTING IS A FRAUD” page, is way too adversarial / confrontational / in-your-face / conspiracy theoryish for my taste.

Sorry but that doesn’t work for me, at all.

That is merely the way that WordPress Theme operates.

If you were really an advocate for democracy for the commonalty, your ‘taste’ would have no bearing on the real message.

It is certainly no conspiracy theory that a certain class of individuals are addicted to power. C. Wright Mills was quite explicit in regard to this.

If you insist to ignore this, you will have no viable theory regarding the nature of real democracy.

Ok. I think my issues with your approach go a little bit beyond your choice of a Wordpress theme. I guess I’ll just have to take that risk on remaining unenlightened as to the true essence of democracy…

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Democracy has not only a ‘representational’ function, but more importantly a ‘defensory’ function. It should defend the common people against the (virtually sociopathic) rich, deeply embedded elites.

What reason could there be to deny the people the opportunity to (as a majority) choose simple ranked voting (SRV) as an option on their ballot papers, when they come to discover that IRV/RCV offers nothing?

According to the website, publishing your work under a CC license on the CES forums doesn’t prevent you from also publishing it somewhere else under a different license.

That sounds like something that would make more sense to do in addition to getting a new forum rather than to replace it.

So in Maine they published the raw ranked ballot data for the election that required a ranked count, in a machine-readable format. There have been discussions on this forum as to how this could allow ballots to be ‘signed’ (and the way Maine released the data made this even easier, since it didn’t just release rankings, but also how the columns were filled in, e.g. undervotes, overvotes, and duplicates were listed). However, it allows anyone with programming knowledge to compute the outcome themselves and see if it is accurate based on the released rankings. Thus the only way the outcome could be fradulent is if the ballot data was itself fabricated (which RCV isn’t uniquely at risk for).

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=/ According to the website, publishing your work under a CC license on the CES forums doesn’t prevent you from also publishing it somewhere else under a different license. /= – above comment

Well, this is an obvious legal minefield. Consider:

=/ That is likely to create difficulties when low-dollar movements attempt to get their material published in larger venues, something that the high-dollar organizations do not need to be much concerned with. /= – my article

So even if you have a good lawyer, you are not trying to convince a judge. Rather, you are trying to convince publishers of “larger venues.” Good luck with that.

Do recall I said:

=/ I do demand hand counted paper ballots, since voting computers and scanners are always controlled by election managers who are beholden to power addicts. /= – my article

It has been noted that, since computer voting has been adopted, some Republicans have begun to win in places where they had never won before. People ask why bank ATM machines are trusted. But there are good reasons why the ATMs need to be trustworthy, since if they were not, people simply wouldn’t use them. (Note that many ATM users do not vote.) With simple ranked voting, each precinct can achieve reasonable security simply by announcing the vote totals in public prior to sending them to larger tabulation facilities. With IRV/RCV they would need to provide copies of every ballot paper. In fact, since the determination of the weakest contender (whom is to be set aside prior to the requisite ballot editing) can only be performed in a central location, anyone trying to monitor the process would have to receive paper ballot copies from all of the precincts at once. (Imagine UPS trucks delivering hundreds of pallets of the copies to your front lawn.)

At least to me, it seems obvious that IRV/RCV elections will inevitably degenerate into stripped-down versions, and their tabulation procedures degenerate into some form of guesswork. Considering the utterly vast amount of information traffic and extensive individual ballot editing that IRV/RCV entails, the achievement of any accuracy would be surprising.

Considering all these IRV/RCV complications, why should the voter be disallowed to mark a little oval (or equivalent) on his or her paper ballot to indicate a vote in favor of the vastly simpler simple ranked voting (SRV) method of tabulation? Why not?

Mostly because you haven’t convinced us that “SRV” is better. Sure looks like Borda count to me, with some odd and arbitrary-seeming differences.

I think your accusations of fraud and such are overstated, as is your assertion that your system would completely alleviate them. IRV isn’t my first choice, still… all this other talk of “(virtually sociopathic) rich, deeply embedded elites” makes it very hard to take your views on this stuff very seriously. I’d suggest dialing back that sort of conspiracy-minded rhetoric.

=/ Mostly because you haven’t convinced us that “SRV” is better. Sure looks like Borda count to me /= – above comment

Do you claim to speak on behalf of some ‘us’ here? Ultimately, it is not even my duty to convince some ‘us’ here that =/ “SRV” is better /=. I am simply advocating that the voters themselves should, by a very simple mechanism, decide what tabulation method they prefer to be applied. I’m in no way suggesting that some high-up-in-an-ivory-tower cognoscenti ‘hand down’ to them which method ought to be utilized.

Also, I have merely proposed a basic score/range method (albeit truncated for pragmatic reasons). The dynamics of such a method are profoundly different from the Borda count method, which among other details. entails predetermination of some fixed number of contenders, as determined by managers.

Most importantly, no sane person truly believes that the political quest for power is in any sense a ‘clean’ affair. Who will assert that oligarchs are innocent of asserting their powers and influence into political processes as deeply as they possibly can? And under the prevalent select-one voting system, the common people struggle within an elite dictatorship. Who can deny this?

A while ago rkjoyce posted a different version (that I like more than this one) that is basically 0-10 Score but you cannot give the same rating to 2 different candidates.

The difference between SRV and Borda is that (1) in SRV you can skip ranks and (2) there are only 10 ranks (well, you could rank someone 11th but it would be equivalent to a zero or an abstention).

The argument is that SRV is close enough to Score to be good while allowing it to be on the same ballots as an IRV election, so while you will never get “cast both an IRV ballot and a Score ballot, and vote on which system you want to use”, we arguably can get “cast a rank-order ballot, and vote on if you want to use system A (IRV) or B (SRV)”.

Properly speaking, it is not your reader’s job to deny your claim, but yours to prove it.

I think the biggest concern RobBrown has is that you come across as saying “You’re Wrong, and I’m Right!”, which even if true is not an effective way to persuade people.

The second biggest concern is stuff like this:

Things for Russians are getting better every day. Even gay people are not persecuted (they just are prohibited to counsel gaydom to small kids). Meanwhile America is being taken down by falsely elected ‘officials’ who are putting spy cameras everywhere, and enabling the police to stop people on the highways and take all the money out of their wallets.
George W. Bush deliberately killed 3,000 Americans by blowing up the World Trade Center (but he couldn’t have done it if Bill Clinton hadn’t set it up)
I think you are going to lose readers with this. If you're not trying to argue for Bush-9/11 then keep it out. (Don't the Russians also use Choose-One Voting... and with rigged ballots?)
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Dear NoIRV:

The version of simple ranked voting (SRV) that I propose (to be potentially chosen by the voters) as an alternative to IRV/RCV has from ‘80’ to ‘100’ possible rank-places (and one can ‘skip’ rank-places). This is to compensate for the fact that score/range method is more ‘expressive’, even if the score/range options only range from ‘1’ to ‘10’, with abstention. (The Borda count method is really far more complex.)

=/ Properly speaking, it is not your reader’s job to deny your claim, but yours to prove it. /= – above comment

I was actually just asking a question. The proof is pervasive anyway.

Here’s the thing: I am not trying to reach ‘keyboard warriors’. I am looking for radical people who will go out and hold signs and perhaps get arrested by election constables as I almost do. If I =/ lose readers with this /= who are essentially armchair enthusiasts, that is not such a great loss for a campaigner. Conspiracy theorists are acceptable allies for a low/zero budget campaigner.

Ok. Is there a reason you think this forum is a good place to recruit for that sort of thing?

I am not expecting to recruit anyone for a grassroots campaign at this time. I believe that that will have to wait until IRV/RCV becomes rampant, and people have had a chance to discover that it simply does not provide any real advantages.

I believe that simple score voting would actually be the very best system. (This is just a simple score/range system with votes from ‘1’ to ‘10’. To have a ‘0’ vote creates subtle issues for write-in candidates.)

Even voting systems that yield delegates from many parties tend to provide poor governance. I have discerned that political organizations, and parties in particular, have a sort of ‘shelf life’ – they all tend to become corrupt with the passage of time. The ‘Green’ parties of Europe are becoming corrupt of late, for example.