Thursday, October 28, 2004

Ballots for the Intelligent

Regarding the purportedly confusing Ohio absentee ballots, Eugene Volokh says:
...I think well-designed ballots should be understandable even by people of below average intelligence -- there are quite a few voters like that, and one doesn't want them to be confused, either. More to the point, ballots should be understandable by people who are intelligent but who are distracted, or who don't invest much time in following directions closely....
Why should we tailor ballots to fit the needs of those who are stupid or distracted? If you're too dumb or distracted to understand a ballot, you shouldn't be voting. The loss of liberty can be traced to too much democracy (see here and here). Complex ballots might be an antidote for excessive democracy.