PLUS: More Resounding Thuds from the Baker/Carter Report...or, as it may soon be known, Pastor's Disaster...
By Brad Friedman on 9/20/2005, 9:13pm PT  

Shares of Diebold, Inc. hit a 52-week low today, for some reason, falling to $44.37/share at Tuesday's close. Perhaps it has something to do with this, but whaddu we know?

In other tales from the last vestiges of American democracy...I was working the media circuit big time today (e.g. here's me on the Stephanie Miller Show [MP3] at the crack o' dawn --- wherein the lovely Steph declared The BRAD BLOG her "favorite blog to steal from!" --- and we couldn't be prouder!). As well, I was busy carrying on other super-secret missions which we hope you'll hear about in the future...So I wasn't able to get done all I had hoped to here today. Then again, haven't I done enough damage already?

Instead, here's a few quick items and links of note that I believe you'll enjoy...

  • RAW STORY's Larisa Alexandrovna adds to the drumbeat by helping to tear the Baker/Carter Recommendations yet another new one, as she reviews the sordid genesis of the entire fetid Baker/Carter "Blue-Ribbon Commission" in her latest HuffPo blog item, entitled "Baked-Cooked Election Reform". Lots of good research, and lots of very good dirt on the very bad guys.
  • Speaking of the sordid genesis' of Baker/Carter and the man at the middle of the entire ill-concieved folly, BRAD BLOG regular, Valley Girl gives us a blast from the past, reminding us of our remarkable first-hand encounter with the Commission's own Executive Director Dr. Robert Pastor and the moment when we directly challenged him on the Commission's sorry/scammy make-up. Right at the get-go. He shoulda listened. No real Voting Rights groups invited to participate. Just fake ones. It's all recorded for posterity in an item called "Executive Director of National Election Reform Commission Goes Ballistic at BRAD BLOG!" (Reading that link will also give newer-comers here an idea of where the many "BRAD BLOG 6 or 7" references that you may have seen here come from).
  • Speaking of the sordid geneses of Robert Pastor and "The BRAD BLOG 6 or 7", we're told, by several birdies who were in attendance, that Dr. Pastor's invitation-only "get together" in D.C. with Voting Rights groups to discuss the Commission's roundly criticized Recommendations today went...um...less than good. The report was...um...less than well-received. By...um...every single group present. Every. Single. One. And the "get together" had to be...um...called to a premature end. So the birdies tell us. We'll try to have more details on that disaster of a meeting tomorrow if time allows. But for now, suffice to say...um...we tried to warn ya, Bob. (See link in the above item.)
  • Oh...Washington Post's editorial board didn't care much for Dr. Pastor's Disaster either, pointing, in an Op/Ed today to the sage point made by dissenting commissioner Spencer Overton who was forced to set up his own website to dissent when he was just shut down by Dr. Pastor. WaPo wonders why the Commission is attempting to impose Photo ID restrictions on voters who show up to the polls (which would disproportionately disenfranchise elderly and minority Democratic-leaning voters), while allowing absentee voters (largely White and Republican) to skate by with just a signature:
    Indeed, election administrators agree that absentee ballots pose a bigger risk of fraud, and in that case the commission would guard against fraud by having election officials match a signature on file. As commission member Spencer Overton, an election law expert at George Washington University, asks, why wouldn't the same be sufficient for those who turn up at the polls without ID? Allowing voters to show alternative forms of identification or to sign a sworn affidavit of eligibility could go a significant way toward deterring fraud without imposing the burden of an inflexible photo ID requirement.
  • Meanwhile, we're pointed to Steven Carbó's must-read from mid-August pointing out "The Hype Over Voter Fraud" wherein we're reminded yet again how the entire "Voter Fraud" brouhaha is nothing more than a cynical and well-coordinated Rightwing scam on the American Voting populace. Definitely worth both reading and BOOK MARKING that article for use later! Have a feeling we're gonna need to keep hauling it out for the wingnut zombies!
  • We came across the above link, via a blog item by Democrats.com's Bob Fertik who responded to the Baker/Carter Photo ID fiasco by wondering why Americans aren't simply registered to vote automatically when they receive their Social Security numbers. We haven't yet figured out the potential pitfalls of Fertik's notion (if there are any), so it seems worth pondering.
  • And then Kathy Dopp, one of the first folks to ask questions and compile data about the election results mess last November, and organizer at USCountVotes.org and ElectionArchive.org, has an entirely different reason to hate the Baker/Carter report: Namely, their recommendations to hide Exit Poll Results from Americans!
  • Lastly, Fitrakis & Wasserman over at FreePress.org, the investigative guys on the ground from the get-go in Ohio, blast Baker/Carter to smithereens in their latest, with a splash of cold water which includes "unless the public is ready to face the reality that we no longer live in a nation with credible elections, the 2008 balloting is all but over."
  • Does the phrase "like a turd in a swimming pool" come to anyone else's mind yet? Not that we enjoy being vulgar, but we gotta call 'em like we see 'em.

    So many things to hate about Pastor's Disaster...so little time to cover them all. But I have a feeling...there will be much more to come...Stay tuned Democracy Fans! And be sure to tell a few friends!