Apportioning Democracy

by Jonathan Kujawa Despite what he may wish, the President of the United States is not a king. We have Congress to act as a check and to ensure the varied opinions of the citizens are represented [1]. In principle, a representative democracy is straight-forward: the voters vote, select their representatives, and the legislature gets down…

A Sad Concurrence

by Jonathan Kujawa As we know from the Law of Small Numbers, coincidences happen. Indeed, Ramsey's Theorem tells us they are downright unavoidable. Unfortunately, not all can be happy coincidences. In the first two weeks of July we lost three remarkable women of mathematics: Maryam Mirzakhani, Marina Ratner, and Marjorie Rice. The most famous was…

A Question of Counting

by Jonathan Kujawa On November 8th everyone will be counting. Counting can be hard. Especially in messy real world situations like elections. But in pure mathematics we get to decide the questions in which we are interested. We can choose to count countable things. The secret to math is the art of asking “good” questions.…

Democracy is Rigged

by Jonathan Kujawa In April Donald Trump howled that the Republican delegate selection process was “rigged“. This was back when it looked like he wouldn't have a majority of the delegates going into the Republican convention. In the first round the delegates are required to vote for a particular candidate according to how they were…

Newtonianism for Ladies

by Jonathan Kujawa This spring I had the pleasure of spending several months as a visitor at the Mittag-Leffler Institute in Sweden. Hanging on the wall above my desk was a copy of this print: The Mittag-Leffler Institute has two patron saints: Gösta Mittag-Leffler and Sofia Kovalevskaya. The Institute is located in Mittag-Leffler's home just…