Review (Guest): Gaming the Vote – Why Elections Aren’t Fair (and What We Can Do About It)

2 Star, Civil Society, Democracy, Intelligence (Public), Politics

Amazon PageWilliam Poundstone

2.0 out of 5 stars Gaming the Vote: Why Elections Aren’t Fair (and What We Can Do About It), February 12, 2008

The book is extremely well-written, and a joy to read. It would be highly recommended, except for two fatal flaws discussed below.

Poundstone’s latest book deals with an issue that is fundamental to democracy, yet almost totally ignored in the U.S. While many books focus on the role of money in elections, or voter registration, or voting machine integrity, relatively few popularly written books have tackled the more fundamental question of how votes get translated into representation. This is not a question of voting machine technology, but of logic. Most Americans are remarkably unaware of the variety of voting methods available, nor of the fact that the plurality voting method that predominates in the U.S. is not the norm among modern democracies, and, in fact, is probably the most problematic of all voting methods.

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