an ability to make such choice. Curiously however, the most important factor in determining clarity of choice to Mills, it appears, was environment. Modern deliberative democracy, as already expressed, considers factors far beyond the environment, factors which ought to be fully demonstrated. In contrast, the social choice theory, disputes the notion that there can exist a rational choice.
In what, on keen observation, can be construed to be an affirmation of rational choice and deliberative democracy therefore, Nicolas de Condorcet (a Frenchman widely considered to be the father of the modern social choice theory) presents the Condorcet’s Jury Theorem, where he observes that:
“…if each member of a jury has an equal and independent chance better than random, but worse than perfect, of making a correct judgment on whether a defendant is guilty, the majority of jurors is more likely to be correct than each individual juror, and the probability of a correct majority judgment approaches 1 as jury size increases... under certain conditions, majority rule is good at ‘tracking the truth'…”
From this argument, while social theorists argue that there can never exist a rational choice, Nicolas de Condorcet is saying that there can, in fact, exist a “better choice.” Such “better choice” can be gradually improved towards “the best choice” (i.e. rationality) with the increase of the number of irrational persons making a decision on the same matter. Per de Condorcet's argument and, indeed, the entire social choice theory, man is generally selfish and therefore irrational. However, this irrationality is significantly diminished when two persons having different irrational biases make a choice on the same subject matter. The end result of these two people voting is not an ideal choice (as the votes cast are not based on rational considerations), but rather, a better choice which is simply the result that two similar irrational biases will hardly fuse to give life to generally agreed upon yet irrational choice. Consider this:
If Person X (a leader with a proven track record) is contesting an election in which there are only two voters, persons Y and Z, social choice predicts that neither of these two voters will cast a vote informed by the person X's good leadership qualities and in the very rare case that such a vote is cast, only one voter will cast such a vote. When voting therefore, voter Y will vote for person X perhaps because person X “has been my friend for a long time.” Person Z in the other hand will vote against person X perhaps because, “X is not from my tribe.” At the end of the day, when the votes are counted, the ideal situation of having “a leader with a proven track record” will not be achieved.
Not to be sad, however, since the votes cast cancel out, a re-run may be required in which X may actually win or “we would rather stay without a leader.” Conveniently, however, both voters casting biased irrational votes may actually just vote in a good leader in person X. It wouldn't matter therefore whether Y voted for X because X “has been my friend for a long time” while Z, a young lady, voted for X because he is “hot.” Both would have voted in person X. However, should person X actually be a very bad person and the second voting analogy carries the day, the end result will be the worst possible scenario of having a very bad leader in place. Such a conclusion is however significantly reduced because of the simple factor that hardly will a choice of such gravity be the sole prerogative of two persons and even if there was an even number of persons casting the votes, a “collusion of biases” is virtually impossible (especially in a national situation with millions of voters).
When arguing a case for deliberative democracy based on de Condorcet's argument on social choice, it can be argued that the chances of biased collusion, positive or negative, can be significantly increased when the voters share certain common characteristics. For such collusion to be possible, however, the shared bias must be a priority bias (a key component of the Social Choice Theory is that people are incapable of an agreement in which all the parties are wholesomely satisfied because all these persons have a list of preferences that is totally varied from the next person's. Having a common list of preferences, in the order preferred, is therefore an impossibility which increases with an increase in the number of voters – the famous Arrow's theorem).
Collusion based on a priority bias has been consistently proven in the Kenyan elections seen in party and tribal biases that often tramp upon individual wishes. The only way this can be eradicated is through a moderate deliberative democracy mechanism where the choice makers have a proven understanding and demonstrable understanding of their duty with regard to choice and law-making (for the elected representatives) coupled with a moral obligation to carry out such duty in a most honest way – the elites. By and