Re: POLI: Random democracy

Robin Hanson (
Mon, 24 Feb 1997 10:22:44 -0800 (PST)

I wrote:
>You could now run for office on a platform that if elected, you will
>replace yourself with a randomly selected member of your electorate.
>Since people do not now run on such platforms, I suspect that voters
>do not in fact trust such a random person to do as well. Also, voters

The Low Golden Willow responded:
>I'm not sure the benefit would work at this scale. Between limited
>choice of your representative, and _one_ random person from your
>district, I'm not sure which is the rational choice. Statistics work
>best on a large scale.

You could replace yourself with a jury of twelve voters instead.

Anyway, you've got statistics even in this case. You're looking at a
legisture of N people composed of two random populations: N-M people
picked the usual way and M people picked this new way. I don't see why
you'd expect a nonmonotonic effect, so that you'd prefer M = N to M =
0, but prefer M = 0 to M = 1.

Robin D. Hanson