[MG] Secret Ballots

Michael Allan mike at zelea.com
Sat Jun 5 14:19:55 EDT 2010

We're defending public voting against charges of vote buying,
coercion, and other forms of voter corruption.

> > What exactly are [Alvaro] and David talking about?  Please
> > describe how an organization (or individual) would go about
> > coercing the public voters.  What is the first thing this
> > organization will do?  And how will it expect the voters to react?

Darwin O Connor wrote:
> Offer to pay individuals $1, $10 or $100 to vote in a certain way, check 
> their public vote and pay them.

So the individual takes the money.  Then he shifts his vote to the
other side, and takes money from them.  Public votes are shiftable
without restriction.  They cannot easily be bought and sold.

> Or an employer could suggest employees vote a certain way and check 
> their public votes to see if they did. If they didn't they could find a 
> reason to fire them or otherwise punish them.

This would become public information.  Statistical analysis of the
voting records would reveal that the employer was engaging in
systematic coercion of his fellow citizens.  In light of this
information, the employer's friends, family, collegeagues and
customers could re-evaluate their association with him.

> Of course doing these things would be against local laws, but that 
> doesn't mean it wouldn't happen.

If hiring/firing on the basis of political views is against the local
laws, then the local crown/district attorney may decide whether or not
to prosectute.  The public voting records will serve as evidence in
the case.  Class action lawsuits may also be possible.

> It this stage, I think any software should allow administrators to 
> choose between secret and public voting. Public voting isn't really a 
> problem with small organization, where the stakes are low.

But there is no reason to suppose that public voting is anything but a
benefit, regardless of scale or jurisdiction.

Michael Allan

Toronto, +1 647-436-4521

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