What you don't like about your government?

  • #51
Al68
Then it had to go through the motions of spelling out in detail why it wanted to expell the John Burke Society nuts...
Is that the illegitimate love child of the John Birch Society and the Edmund Burke Society?
 
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  • #52
mheslep
Gold Member
311
728
Is that the illegitimate love child of the John Birch Society and the Edmund Burke Society?
Birch it is, thanks.:redface:
 
  • #53
talk2glenn
Runoff? No, the election goes to the House in that case.
Correct; by definition a runoff. The top 3 candidates are sent to the House, which determines a final winner.

No, not nearly! It is very different from the French system, and not just in that it combines the two* elections.
I meant it was French in conception. In practice, it needlessly complicates elections, with no discernible benefit.

1800? 1824?
Dramatically change the electoral mechanism in response to 200 year old experience, that was handled sufficiently by existing mechanisms? Or did I miss the subsequent electoral crises?

My problem is the *lack* of direct representation in the case of the President.
What lack of representation?

You're arguing against a different system than the one I proposed. This is a valid criticism (though I'm not sure that it makes the system worse than the present one). But you don't need to give up local representation to gain proportionality.
Of course you do?? How would you divide the Representatives, "proportionally"? In proportion to what? Total votes cast. By definition, you cannot have both local representation any proportional representation. If 42% of Arizona voters cast votes for Republican candidates, than 4 of its Representatives in 10 would be Republicans, regardless of the outcomes of individual races.

Again, you're arguing against the wrong thing.
Proportional systems almost always use political parties as the measure of representation (thus in practice these systems are party-proportional). For example, a party that receives 15% of the votes under such a system receives 15% of the seats for its candidates.[1]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proportional_representation

Once again you haven't understood the system I suggested. Your criticisms don't apply to my system.
As it is used in practice in politics, the only proportionality being respected is a close match between the percentage of votes that groups of candidates obtain in elections in representative democracy, and the percentage of seats they receive (e.g., in legislative assemblies).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proportional_representation

There are roughly two fixes, not mutually exclusive, to this problem. One is to change the system to remove the benefit of gerrymandering. The other is to attempt to stop gerrymandering. I suggested a system that would deal with the first, and you (half-heartedly?) suggested a system for the second. I have thoughts on other ways to accomplish the second but I'm less interested in that than in the first.
The former fix is incompatible with any world that divides a nation into special administrative regions, with local voting rights. America is such a nation. Ergo, there will always be benefits in gerrymandering - someone must draw those borders, and that person will have a political interest in where those lines fall.

Regardless, I'm still not convinced that gerrymandering is actually a significant problem in modern American elections. Why do you assume that it is?

Suppose there were three states with one electoral votes: Right, Middle, and Left. Right is populated almost entirely with Republicans. Left is populated almost entirely with Democrats. Middle has a mix of both. Clearly a candidate will campaign only in Middle.
Clearly. So what? Why would the candidate, under any system, be served by campaigning for votes he's already secured? And how would democracy benefit? A candidate campaigns to convince eligible voters that his platform is in their interests. Party members clearly already share an affiliated candidates interests. Similarly, an opposition party's members clearly do not share the candidates interests. The only votes that can be gained - the intent of political campaigns - are in the "middle" or among the undecided.

This is neither bad, nor surprising, and it will always be.

Further, suppose a party is in power and must allocate money (perhaps highway funds). Strategically, they should send as much as feasible to Middle, so they can campaign as "the party that build the Whatzit Highway, employing tens of thousands of Middle residents and channeling billions of federal dollars to Middle".
Suppose they do, and suppose further that the elected party is the Right? How long do you suppose it will be before the Right becomes the Middle and the Middle the Right? It does not follow that because a candidate had to campaign heavily for a the votes of a particular constituency, that they stand to benefit from that candidates election anymore than anybody else (after all, why are the party loyal, loyal?).

Candidates campaign and govern by ideology. The former consists of telling the body politics what you will do and why you will do it, and the latter consists of doing it. This is democracy.

This has nothing whatever to do with the order of the primaries.

Incidentally, I was never talking about the primaries myself, but rather the Presidential election and Congressional elections. Most of my arguments carry over, though, mutatis mutandis.
You referred to "battleground states". Since national elections are, by law, held on the same day, there are no such beasts as "electoral battleground states". I assumed, then, that you were referring to primary elections, which are staggered.

Please, read some game theory (or at least the basics of the Shapley value) before talking about this. You might find the actual power index surprising.
What relevance? Disenfranchisement is loosely defined as "loss of the right to vote"? Since clearly everybody enjoys the right to vote, I understood by context that you were using hyperbole to decry disproportionate representation per person.

I fail to see any contextual, implied connection between game theory (perhaps you mean how people make their political selections?) and relative enfranchisement.

"Populist"? :rofl:
Populism, defined either as an ideology,[1][2][3][4] (more rarely and uncommonly) a political philosophy,[5][6][7] or a type of discourse,[3][6] i.e., of sociopolitical thought that compares "the people" against "the elite", and urges social and political system changes.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Populism
 

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