Thursday, November 15, 2012

Vote for your PCC! :-)

What a job specification. You're essentially a regulator, dealing with a vast and opaque police bureaucracy which controls the information you get to see. Somehow you have to exert public oversight, but how can you tell what the public wants?

Seems to that a tough, no-nonsense and experienced politico-bureaucrat is required.
In fact my reverse-engineered job description hasn't been published. On the website, the candidates have vied with each other to list banal law-and-order platitudes: so vote for me! In fact you have to dig quite a bit to find their experience (or not) for this not-unimportant job.

In Bryan Caplan's book, 'The Myth of the Rational Voter', he considers a model where almost all voters are under-informed and vote effectively at random. By the magic of the Central Limit Theorem these votes cancel and just a few thousand enlightened voters, who have done their homework, can carry the day.

Better get out there and vote then!
NB: What will actually happen is not random but tribal voting, split along party lines. Smart voters are diluted out.

Update (Saturday): yes, that happened but there was a substantial anti-politics vote which saw a lot of independents in.