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"Shoot the Moon" Elections

Good, but not great
  (+1, -6)(+1, -6)
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Standard "winner-takes-all" plurality election, but with a twist: If the winning candidate outstrips the next highest candidate by a certain margin (say, 2-to-1), he is disqualified and the election goes to the second place candidate. The idea here is that if too many people agree on something, chances are it's not a good idea.

This would also make elections that are a foregone conclusion much more interesting, as people who are on the losing side would see their only chance of winning is to vote for the candidate they DON'T like. Of course, those who would be voting for the winner would have to do the same thing... but not too many of them, because if everyone switches sides it has the same effect as only voters for the projected loser doing so. Consequently, pre-election polls would be effectively useless for projecting the winner, since the poll itself could likely have a very real effect on the outcome of the election.

At any rate, it's got to be better than what we have now.

ytk, Sep 10 2011

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       Other interesting ideas include: the ballot paper has only numbers: candidate 1; candidate 2; etc. up to 6. After all votes have been cast, but before the count, a die is rolled to allocate actual candidates to numbers.
pocmloc, Sep 10 2011
  

       better in that it will be completely dickish and arbitrary. If candidate 2 is a wacko and nobody else is running for district 8 port commissioner then the port district will be run by a wacko nobody voted for.
WcW, Sep 10 2011
  

       This is half of a good idea. The other half would be a way of imposing the first half on authoritarian governments who falsify elections clumsily.   

       Because they'd have a harder time cooking the books, and a slip-up would elect the opposition.
mouseposture, Sep 10 2011
  

       /better in that it will be completely dickish and arbitrary./   

       How is that different from the current system?   

       /the port district will be run by a wacko nobody voted for/   

       As opposed to the country being run by one?
ytk, Sep 11 2011
  

       However you twist it around, the concept of 'democratically elected government' is fatally flawed.   

       Whatever the mechanism of the ballot, the candidates are all individuals who think they know what's best for the rest of us and are seeking to enforce their ideas by gaining political power. It is these individuals who are least suited to be in any position of authority.   

       Elections give us the apparent opportunity to pick one of the wackos.   

       I suggest our politicians should be randomly selected to serve a limited term. Statistically, this can only be better than the current systems.
Twizz, Sep 12 2011
  
      
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