Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Regress to the Mean

If everyone votes on every issue doesn't policy just regress to the mean and not benefit from the intellect of the best and the brightest and the decisions they make?
  1. Issues that reach the referendum stage will have been discussed in detail by Parliament. The debate is televised and the plus, minus and interesting points that emerge will be presented as each voter casts their vote.
  2. The choices available to voters will typically be very limited: perhaps yes or no or choice 1, 2 or 3. This isn't a regress to the mean type of scenario: it operates like a switch between one or the other. On the other hand, Political Parties usually try to appeal to the majority of voters and dominate the centre ground of politics. They may avoid contentious issues, radical proposals or decisions that leave them open to criticism. They may "regress to the mean".
  3. Leadership and good quality debate can raise the average persons understanding of the issues and can enhance their empathy with disparate groups. The debate itself could enhance social understanding and the average point of view.
  4. The brightest aren't only found in Parliament; there are many more people with a high IQ score in the rest of the population and they can draw on a wide array of professional and personal experiences that are not often found in the Westminster Village.

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