Date: Nov 6, 2000 7:04 PM
Author: Mark Schwartz
Subject: Peter's election math


Given it's the eve of our election, I have to comment that election math
is, in my view, more than simple summing. In our case, we have polls with
plus-or-minus values (what exactly does that mean? How many people are
represented by a "margin of error" of plus or minus 4 points?). And, HEY,
what about that electoral college thing? (I've become a political junkie,
watching the news and specials on the status of the polls and the
projections (just how does one do projections, mathematically?)). And what
if one candidate wins the popular vote and one wins the electoral vote?
Should we change our system? I think that this election is a rich ground
for introducing the use of math in a variety of ways, while addressing the
issues of citizenship. By the way, I know the answers to the above
questions, but there are many things about the math of elections (let alone
the math of politics, or funding, or what exactly is a trillion dollars?)
that certainly could be used to drive a lot of exploration of the math of
politics in a classrom. Thanks, Peter, and for those in the U.S. ---
VOTE ... later ... mark
--- Mark Schwartz
--- markdotmath@earthlink.net



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