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Re: supermajority options

Raul Miller wrote:
> Branden Robinson wrote:
> > > Supermajority requirements don't retard mistakes, just change.
> On Wed, Nov 20, 2002 at 11:04:10PM -0800, John H. Robinson, IV wrote:
> > i tend to agree with the philosophy that you need to convince at least
> > half of the voting populous.
> [1] Who is the voting populous?

depends upon where you count, you have all elgible voters, then you have
those voters that actually vote, then you have the minimum number of
voters to vote for a vote to be binding.

the last one refers to quorum.

i specifically meant half of those that are interested enough to
actually vote. if that number fails to meet quorom, then there is not
enough interest in the issue to perform any action on it.

> [2] Why are they the voting populous?

depends upon context. in the US, it is citizens over 18 that have not
had their right to vote (ie: convicted of a felony) revoked.

in this context, it is each Debian Developer as listed in the

in other contexts, by virute of being in the set defined as The Set of
Eligble Voters,or however you want to phrase it

> [3] Is competence an issue?  Why or why not?

yes it is. in the US system, it is assumed that you are competent at
age > 18, until proven otherwise (ie: convicted of a felony)

in this context, each DD has been vetted by the NM procress, in whatever
form that was at the time of induction.

in this context, we also demand competence by forcing voters to follow
directions on filling out and returning the ballot.

> [4] Is involvement an issue?  Why or why not?

yes. you have to have at least ONE person vote. if NO ONE participates,
then you have no results. you can increase the demands of participation
via quorum requirements.

i can see requiring a higher quorom for certain actions (Constitutional
Ammendment) than for other things (Official Debian Mascot) to ensure
that there is enough interest in the issue. i beleive that the more
interest you have, the more likely you are to see a greater reflection
of the groups desire. you get a perfect picture at 100% participation.

if every eligble DD voted, and the Smith set had only 415:414 would that
indicate that the Debian Project should move in the direction indicated?

> [Hint: for most things in Debian, you need to convince at least one
> person who happens to be the package maintainer.]

yep. in the case of GR's, you need to convince six (sponsor and five

> > Condorecet seems pretty resilient to insincere voting. for each method
> > of counting Supermajorities, it has been shown to where it possible, in
> > some cases almost trivial, for an insincere vote to change the result of
> > an election. that appears to defeat the whole purpose of using Condorcet
> > to begin with.
> For some methods, this is true.
> You seem to be assuming this is true for all methods, but you offer
> no proof.

that is correct. i do not have the math to do that. however, those with
the math (here i refer to electionmethods.org) do not address the issue
of Supermahorities at all.

> > just out of idle curiosity, has anyone asked the electionmethods people
> > about Condorcet+Supermajority?
> Yes.
> Unfortunately, most of them seemed to lose interest in the discussion
> before we had much discussed the underlying issues.

:(  so we are floundering on our own on this one?

> That said: Debian 3:1 supermajority is LESS OF A CONSTRAINT than a
> requirement that a majority of the voting population agree.

depending upon quorum requirements, and how you defice ``voting
population.'' most methods define it as those that are eliglble to vote
_and_ actually vote. this is where quorum comes in: that there is
sufficient interest to use as a statistical model that the subset
reflects the entire set.

> Are you suggesting that we prefer majority rule because it's more of a
> constraint ["more tyranical"] than supermajority?

i will agree with branden that the use of the word tyrannical in this
case is bad. however, i will still answer the question.

i am suggesting that we prefer majority rule because with our election
method (Condorcet) it has been shown that at least some methods of
counting Supermajorities can lead to insincere voting for strategic
purposes being effective. this is one of the things we wish to _avoid_.

> Or are you saying something else that I've completely misunderstood?

something else (see above).


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