[ExI] elections again; was [Time Magazine: Person of the Year: Putin(!),my voteinstead:Anna Politkovskaja]

spike spike66 at att.net
Fri Dec 28 23:52:46 UTC 2007

> bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf Of spike
> ...
> The software merely goes down the list, asking:
> President?  You type in a name, any name, no party affiliation necessary.
> Vice President?  In my proposed system one may split parties, choosing an
> unmatched president and veep for instance, for at one time in the states
> the second place winner of the president election automatically became VP
... spike

After I wrote this I realized my notion of allowing a party split between P
and VP is no good.  I might add an 11th criterion that says the new system
must require no changes in the actual legal system as it now stands, but
rather is restricted to the mechanics of counting votes.  Legal
infrastructure is difficult to change.  So the president and veep need to be
voted as a pair.

The only possible legal change, one that would be easily done, is to require
that the ballot boxes may not be opened for counting until the last one
closes.  We could encourage Alaska and Hawaii to close the polls at 6PM
however (and open at 0400 on election morning), in which case the counting
starts at midnight east coast time.  This would be a small price to pay to
avoid a repeat of the November 2000 election.  That turning point event
demonstrated to us and the whole world that we were attempting to extract
six digits of precision from a process inherently good to only two, or at
very best three digits.  

The counting need not take long, a few hours perhaps.  Most of us have seen
those hand held laser bar code readers that could easily read four to six
pages per minute per volunteer, which could git R done that night.  I would
gladly stay up all night and help.  

Europeans and others, my apologies for using US-centric language throughout
this discussion.  It's the only system I know.  The US appears to me to be
the nation most immediately and desperately threatened by loss of confidence
in the democratic process.  (Well, other than Russia, and I fear Mr. Putin
would intentionally defeat such reforms in any case, should they be
proposed.  We saw what happened to Kasparov and others.)


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