We tend to think of polarization and divisiveness as symptoms of the current administration in the U.S. and maybe they will just disappear with future elections; well that’s not going to happen. This has been trending for over forty years and getting rid of Trump will not change this. Putin’s efforts to undermine the institutions of democracies around the world exploits this vulnerability, but this only highlights how bad it can get. With or without Putin’s help polarization will bring an end to many democratic regimes. Continue reading
As published in Grinnell Herald Register on July 9, 2018
The Washington Post recently published an article entitled Give ranked choice voting a shot. Believe me if we do we’ll never go back. Ranked choice voting (RCV) is better by orders of magnitude. The idea of ranking your choices in order of preference is really not that hard for voters to understand.
As a matter of clarification RCV is not the same thing as instant run-off voting (IRV) as implied in the article. RCV is simply the format of the ballot allowing us to rank our choices whereas IRV is the algorithm most commonly used for sorting out the winner. Continue reading
It has been said that the 2016 election gave us the worst pair of presidential candidates the two major parties could have found. Whether or not that’s true, all the mudslinging certainly made them seem this way. Beginning with the primaries every candidate’s strategy is to fire up his base and to hell with the rest of us.
We tend to blame social media and fake news stories for the polarization and lack of civility, but I think we are overlooking the obvious culprit, our voting method.