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Re: Condorcet Voting and Supermajorities (Re: [CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT] Disambiguation of 4.1.5)

On Sun, Dec 03, 2000 at 10:13:58PM +1000, Anthony Towns wrote:
> > > I will assert that the options "no" and "further discussion" aren't
> > > usefully different.

On Sun, Dec 03, 2000 at 08:49:38AM -0500, Raul Miller wrote:
> > They're procedurally different, however.

On Mon, Dec 04, 2000 at 12:31:23AM +1000, Anthony Towns wrote:
> Not particularly so. If "No" wins the final vote, does that actually
> stop people from continuing discussion, and proposing a new vote? If
> "Further Discussion" wins, does that actually require people to continue
> discussing things, or does it ensure the newly reset vote doesn't expire?

"No" is a vote against all the whole idea under discussion, and
indicates how the person would vote on future such ballots.

"Further discussion" is a vote against the ballot itself -- it's
a vote for an option not present on the ballot.

> > I claim that "my first preference is yes on option A", is a yes vote
> > for option A.  And, if A requires a supermajority, then A.6(7) applies.
> > Do you claim this is not an actual reason?  Why?
> You're also claiming that "my second preference is a yes on option A"
> is a no vote for option A.
> I'm claiming that "I prefer option A to the status quo" is a yes vote
> for A, and "I prefer the status quo to option A" is a no vote for A, at
> least as far as quorum and the supermajority are concerned.

Actually, if you're talking about a properly formed A.3(3) vote, where
you're voting on option A and independent option B, there should be
on the ballot:

Yes on A and B
Yes on A, no on B
Yes on B no on A
no on A, no on B
further discussion.

> > > > >     and M has unanimous support over N, and then add a third option:
> > > > > 	* Evade constitution (E)
> > > > If M really has unanimous support, you wouldn't add a new option --
> > > > no one would want a new option.  Adding a new option only happens:
> > > No, M has unanimous suppoer over N, that is everyone prefers it to
> > > the current situation. That is, everyone wants to get rid of non-free.
> > > A minority of those people would rather do it by exploiting loopholes in
> > > the social contract ("We'll continue to provide non-free for download,
> > > but we won't necessarily allow people to upload to it!! Muahahaha").
> > > Why, exactly, is it so undesirable to modify the social contract that
> > > we should just ignore the expressed preferences of half/three-quarters
> > > of the developer body, and take the "easier" solution, instead?
> > I don't actually know, this is your fantasy.
> Well, it's also the result of your interpretation of the constitution, and
> your proposed changes to the constitution.
> The *sole* reason that "E" wins in the above is because the alternative
> preferred by the majority modifies the social contract. It's not because
> that alternative doesn't have supermajority support over the status-quo.
> It's not because most people dislike. It's not even because most people
> prefer some other option.

It's not even a well formed ballot, near as I can tell.  It's just an
exercise in numbers.

> I assert that the purpose of supermajority requirements (like the
> purpose of a quorum requirement) is simply to ensure that the
> character of the organisation doesn't change without due consideration
> by the members of the organisation.

For some definition of "due consideration".  I assert that it's a
requirement for greater than majority agreement.

> Your scheme seems to give it a meaning more like "try to choose
> any other possible alternative that doesn't involve modifying the
> constitution or overturning a decision of the tech ctte or whatever
> else might require a supermajority".

Those sorts of things only require a majority agreement, yes.

> > > > That's my understanding of how the constitutional voting system is
> > > > supposed to work,
> > > Considering, under the most liberal interpretation, the constitution
> > > describes two methods, one of which works that way, and one of which
> > > works the other way, it seems a little bold to say that the constitution
> > > is *supposed* to act that way.
> > > Certainly, I think the constitution pretty clearly indicates that's
> > > *not* how votes are meant to be handled or interpreted.
> > Eh?  If there's a sequence of votes, and people don't like the way
> > that sequence went, they can vote against the final option.  They
> > can even keep the sequence going at the same time by voting for
> > "further discussion".
> Even on an A.3(3) vote in your interpretation?
> Could you please give an example of some possible ways of conducting
> a vote that includes at least "remove non-free" and "move non-free to
> unofficial.debian.org", assuming that "remove non-free" modifies the
> social contract, and that that requires a supermajority?

See above "properly formed A.3(3)".  Use "remove non-free" as option 
A, and "move non-free to unofficial.debian.org" as option B.

> > > If they then get their supermajority support, why then ignore the stated
> > > preferences of the voters, and choose the unnecessary compromise position
> > > anyway?
> > Because people voted for a different option from the one which required
> > supermajority.  Do you want to discount someone's vote on the basis
> > that you find their position disagreeable?
> Again, you don't vote "for" or "against" an option when you're expressing
> preferences. You only say which options you prefer to which others.
> This isn't just a quibble about wording: it's a fundamentally different
> way of voting. Just because you list an option as second, doesn't mean
> you dislike it. It doesn't even mean you particularly care whether your
> first or second preference is chosen, it may just mean you prefer either
> of those to your third preference.
> This is in stark contrast to first-past-the-post votes, and "aye/nay"
> votes.

Are you disagreeing with my idea of a properly formed A.3(3) ballot?

If so, please specify what parts of the constitution I'm in conflict
with.  If not, please spell out what you mean in more detail.



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