READER COMMENTS ON
"VICTORY VIDEO: New Florida Secretary of State Says He's 'Physically and Mentally Exhausted from Defending Touch-Screen Voting'"
(18 Responses so far...)
COMMENT #1 [Permalink]
said on 2/7/2007 @ 1:50 pm PT...
The whole regime is getting tired. Can you imagine carrying 363 tons of $100 dollar bills into Iraq? It is "hard work" ...
That would be 736 half-ton pickup trucks fully loaded, or 1472 Toyota pickups full to the gills of $100 bills. Gives new meaning to "green zone".
And of all things, they got so tired carrying the load, that they lost all of it. All of it.
Anyone think some of it made its way back here for elections? Someone has to be paid to keep hawking this junk they call electronic voting systems.
The green zone is at Diebold and the GOP campaign head-quarters.
Fort Knox has probably been ransacked too ... but that is classified.
COMMENT #2 [Permalink]
said on 2/7/2007 @ 3:39 pm PT...
would have been cheaper to pay every family in Iraq $1000000 to become proxy-americans and you'd have their oil and 3000 odd soldiers would still be alive.
COMMENT #3 [Permalink]
said on 2/7/2007 @ 5:09 pm PT...
I recently got some message from Black Box Voting saying that (Warning I might hate this story) ...Progressive public interest groups. Labor unions. Civil rights groups all bit into HAVA.
And I read through it, I was not supprised. But the bottom line, has to continue to be that this is a non-partisan issue. Okay, so some progressive groups supported HAVA, I remember that back in my DU days, arguing about disabled access. The spirit of HAVA was good, but the execution of it has destroyed the peoples voice.
Look man, this SOS in Florida may be physically and mentally exhausted, I personally don't care. How do you think I felt for the last several years now?
And another thing, I am hearing talk of Optical Scan's for all in Florida. Have we already forgot that no electronics can be trusted? Or are we saying now that out of all the crappy technology for elections, Optical Scan is the best of the evils out there, because you do physically put a paper in one of the slots. There is an Auxillary slot, but I couldn't tell you what happens AFTER you put your ballot in there. Does anyone actually count or check it? Tell me one test where 100% of the paper ballots were compared to an Optical Scan during a real election. They don't do it. They won't do it. (I feel like this is friggin 2004 all over again!) Do we really have to fight and make the same old damn arguments again? And again, and again.
Then we have this half-assed Holt bill, made overly complex by use of terminology, name changing, and complexity. What number is this bill now? IIRC it was 550 but that isn't so anymore, is this yet more obfuscation. Who can keep up with this crap?
Gee Holt, if the paper ballot is so important, why introduce it to a system that is prone to errors? So maybe on a rainy day, when things look bad the whole thing can be manupilated?
Hey I have an IDEA Holt. How about vote on paper ballots, count the paper ballots with people, then if you want to archive them electronically (but not officially), you get to buy a bunch of document scanners. Actually, I'd rather see a warehouse store the crap for 50 years.
There is NO REASON to be using electronics in counting of our elections.
I personally might be swayed to argue that in the case of a disabled person, electronics could be used to HELP the person PRINT a ballot (A ballot that should be exactly like regular paper ballots except that it came out of a printer.) I mean if all you can do is blow on a tube, to answer yes or no, then that would help them with access to vote!
Think along the lines of we need a light bulb to SEE the paper ballot. Electricity and electronic could be used for that, but even that isn't perfect. there are blackouts.
But the moment you go with this idea that all these votes need to be counted via an optical scanner, that's where I have a BIG PROBLEM. I even have a resentment against you regardless of your political party.
I don't care what damned party your in. Our votes are sacred they have to be counted or we are not the United States of an by the people. We are "half united states of and by the electronics." How can you people even consider electronics, when you can even keep your own computers safe?
A glitch in an electronic circuit or software is not an error, it's a failure. A failure to count the vote, is the same as denying you the right to vote. Your constitutional right to vote, someone's broken their oath of office here!!!
don't forget that.
Paper ballots, hand counted.
Forget all this complexity, physics, secrecy and beaurocracy. You don't need to learn about power supplys, logic circuits, memory timing, clocks, network security, NDA's, electronics, programming, complex bills with new slang languages, new numbers, and misleading names, billions of dollars in funding and maintenance.
You need a paper ballot hand counted, by people.
Please don't loose sight of that.
COMMENT #4 [Permalink]
said on 2/7/2007 @ 9:47 pm PT...
a professor of mine
explained it to me this way
its called (FORGIVE MY SPELLING) Occam's Razor
or other wise known as K I S S
keep it simple stupid.
COMMENT #5 [Permalink]
said on 2/8/2007 @ 6:28 am PT...
Rawstory has an interesting article today:
Key senator calls for probe of voting machines in Fla. contest
From the article:
Did y'all notice this? (emphasis mine)
"Feinstein, who chairs the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration, said she planned to follow the lead of Democrats in the House of Representatives and back a measure to require PAPER TRAILS for every voting machine in the United States."
then further down...
"In addition to pushing for PAPER BALLOTS, Feinstein, who said she expected Wednesday's hearing to be the first in a series, said she wanted to ask the watchdog agencies to look at the Sarasota machines."
So is Feinstein pushing for paper TRAILS, or paper BALLOTS? Anybody know? Has she been made aware why we need paper BALLOTS and not just a paper TRAIL?
(comments cross-posted at Rawstory)
COMMENT #6 [Permalink]
said on 2/8/2007 @ 7:05 am PT...
Yeah, this butthead was the Pasco County election Supe back during the 2000 Presidential race, guess what? it was one of the funny-count counties (not that he would ever admit it)
COMMENT #7 [Permalink]
said on 2/8/2007 @ 11:15 am PT...
Hand counted paper ballots work here in Canada... BUT we only get to put ONE "X" on a ballot in a federal election. We get to vote for the Member of Parliament for our riding... that's it!!!
In the U.S. you guys have a dozens of choices to make in your few minutes in the polling booth. It would take a month to count the ballots by hand.
I don't have any problem with OptiScan machines as long as the software is Open Source and Public Domain. Let Diebold et.al. sell the machines, minus the software.
just my 2¢ worth (that's about 1.7¢ US)
COMMENT #8 [Permalink]
said on 2/8/2007 @ 12:11 pm PT...
... DonM said...
"In the U.S. you guys have a dozens of choices to make in your few minutes in the polling booth. It would take a month to count the ballots by hand."
That does not follow.
The varied methods of counting votes in areas that use paper ballots is geared individually to what those areas expect to count, and so it's not a case of "one size fits all".
Thus thinking that the time used to count a single-choice ballot in a different country means that a multiple-choice ballot here is impossible makes no more sense than... say... relying on the the e-voting proponent's horror stories of how manual recounts in the districts afflicted by e-voting take days and days and days. That's because the EVM proponents cleverly overlook the fact that their system is deliberately not designed for hand-counting, and that their efficiency at it sucks when other areas in the U.S. that traditionally hand-count have no such problems.
So Canadian systems are just not designed for U.S. style balloting and while Canada and other nations can be held up as a good example that hand-counted paper ballots can work on a national level, trying to invoke a direct copy of the Canadian style here cannot succeeed. The system will need to be designed for American use from the ground up and thus will be uniquely American.,
It'll also be something to be proud of... as opposed to the sham and the shame that was DRE voting.
COMMENT #9 [Permalink]
said on 2/8/2007 @ 5:24 pm PT...
From KestrelBrighteyes link concerning the Jennings race in Florida:
The Senate committee's ranking member, Sen. Robert Bennett, R-Utah, noted that several of the witnesses - those who work in elections - warned that paper ballots aren't a panacea. He suggested that ballot design could be a greater factor.
"Technology only will not produce a sense of confidence we ought to have in our election," he said. "We need to pay as much attention to the human factor."
Bennett's comments on voting machines are so rare, I can't say I know where he stands, but after reading that I can say with confidence that I still don't know where he stands. Thanks for the clarification Bob!
COMMENT #10 [Permalink]
said on 2/9/2007 @ 4:03 am PT...
Wow, turned my back on this thread and boom. lol
I like Canada. I went there back in the 70's. I guess I need a friggin passport to visit now, but that's another story.
uh, I don't care how long it takes to count manually. It's high time that freakin people get drafted to do the work! e.g. If you vote, you signed up to volunteer to count. I ain't gonna get into the whole, "what if I am disabled?" argument. Obviously if you don't have hands, or eyes it'l be a hardship. You won't be needin to do it, unless ya want to. And then your only gonna do so much.
But for the MAJORITY of us.
Man, paper ballots hand counted by voters would cut the cost of elections down so friggin low. It's the worst leadership in the history of this country to allow this to happen.
Oh and SCREW the HOLT BILLS and the horse he rode in on. ALL HIS BILLS SUCK!
IT'S OUR VOTE, LET US COUNT IT. SCREW THIS SECRECY CRAP GOD DAMN IT!
COMMENT #11 [Permalink]
said on 2/9/2007 @ 5:08 am PT...
One of the problems is that the feds are "tired" too ... they are lax on prosecuting eVoting crimes.
One reason is that the regime has been firing and threatening the firing of US Attorneys.
These are the people who prosecute crimes. Gonzales has been replacing them with republican political hacks.
Senator Feinstein, D. Cal., has introduced a bill, S. 214:
A bill to amend chapter 35 of title 28, United States Code, to preserve the independence of United States attorneys.
The 109th republican congress slipped in text that allows Gonzales to fire US Attorneys without congressional oversite.
This must be changed or the DOJ will be composed exclusively of republican political hacks. Notice that prosecutions of crimes the 109th did are no longer being prosecuted?
COMMENT #12 [Permalink]
said on 2/9/2007 @ 5:52 am PT...
Follow up to post #11:
If republicans are replacing people who would prosecute eVote crimes (i.e. not be too "tired"), soon there will be no prosecutor who disfavors the crimes of the republican machine:
Former U.S. Attorney John McKay told The Associated Press on Wednesday that his resignation last month was ordered by the Bush administration, which gave him no explanation for the firing.
(link here, emphasis added). The republican regime in the white house is the regime that has been suspected by this blog (beginning with the Feeney/Curtis legacy), of throwing elections.
Now they are covering their tracks by replacing prosecutors who would prosecute them with prosecutors who will not.
This gives new meaning to "tired" doesn't it?
COMMENT #13 [Permalink]
said on 2/9/2007 @ 1:31 pm PT...
Australia uses some form of electronic voting, but it's OPEN SOURCE, thus improved over time by the public. Plus they have a financial incentive to vote. I believe AU$5 as either a tax credit for voting or as a tax if you're not on the poll books as having voted. Not sure how the privacy issue is handled, but I believe they're satisfied with the system. Why can't something very similar be done here? My guess?...corruption, power elite hanging on.
COMMENT #14 [Permalink]
said on 2/9/2007 @ 3:33 pm PT...
... Bill O'Neil said...
"Australia uses some form of electronic voting, but it's OPEN SOURCE, thus improved over time by the public."
It's been in trials. The majority of Australians still vote via paper ballots. Like U.S. EVMs the Australian EVMs are based on commercial software running on a PC... in this case Linux instead of Windows.
And another one for the FAQ... Open Source is not a panacea. While open source software is often superior to proprietary software in both performance and security, it does not automagically make a software app "bulletproof". There have been cases of vulnerabilities exposed in open source software after months or sometimes years of use... and all it takes with e-voting is one exploit to get you in a royal mess... literally.
"Plus they have a financial incentive to vote."
A nominal fine of $20 AUS.
"Not sure how the privacy issue is handled, but I believe they're satisfied with the system."
Secret ballot. They do not technically have a right to vote "none of the above", but a blank ballot serves just as well and because the ballot is secret it can be gotten away with.
"Why can't something very similar be done here? My guess?...corruption, power elite hanging on."
Because e-voting sucks. That the Australian system is open source makes it better than U.S. EVMs but this is a case where "better than crap" is simply not good enough.
Australia watched the U.S. EVM debacle unfolding and tried to learn from it. But as the long-term results of using EVMs continue to unfold it seems quite likely that Australia is going to learn a very hard lesson further down the road... assuming they don't bail on the concept before it gets that far.
COMMENT #15 [Permalink]
said on 2/9/2007 @ 3:36 pm PT...
Kestrelbrighteye, Feinstein doesn't know the difference between a paper trail and a paper ballot because Feinstein doesn't need to know the difference and couldn't care less. Feinstein knows something that most Americans, the ones who don't bother to vote, and all politicians (explain to me again why Kerry didn't bother to see that the votes were counted?) know: that elections in this country are rigged and have always been rigged. Read, "Deliver the Vote." Election fraud is an American tradition that dates back to the time of George Washington. Only the minority of Americans who still vote, and a lot of ivory tower election reform activists don't know the truth.
Anyone else old enough to remember The $64,000 Question, an early TV show that was sort of a pre-inflation Who Wants to Be A Millionaire? And how shocked, shocked I tell you, people were when they found out it was rigged?
Of course they're firing the prosecutors. It can cost money to defend themselves in court. But they don't have to worry about convictions because if they don't get immunity for talking to Congressional committees, the Supreme Court will overturn their convictions, or the new President will issue everyone blanket pardons. Corruption is as American as apple pie. Is there anyone who really thinks that politicians who would make arresting people without charging them or bringing them to trial, and torturing them without any evidence that they'd ever done anything wrong, official U.S. policy, who would lie to take us into war, who would vote for laws they've never read, wouldn't rig elections? When have these war criminals and human rights violators and their collaborators ever demonstrated that they have a shred of human decency or even the remnants of a conscience?
If we survive long enough, history will show that the reason they don't represent us is because none of them were legitimately elected. Ever. The corporations decided which candidates they wanted and the corrupt two-party machines did the rest. Just a coincidence that election fraud that was done by party bosses who ran what were called party "machines" have been replaced by actual machines. But as long as they count the votes and we don't, our votes don't count.
Phil's got it right. Even if walnut shells have been replaced with expensive black boxes, this is still a shell game. Read "Votescam: The Stealing of America" by the Collier brothers. They found out what was going on back in the '70s, but the prosecutors wouldn't prosecute and the media wouldn't cover it. And things have only gotten worse since then.
Mailed-in ballots often go into the round file and are never counted. If anybody ever questions it, the elections officials can just shrug and say that they must have gotten lost in the mail. Machines subtract 16,000 votes here, lose 18,000 votes there, count 4,000% more votes than registered voters in a third place, and the elections industry shrugs it off as glitches that wouldn't have changed the outcome of the election, and Congress swears in the "winners." Sometimes they swear in the winners before the votes are even counted. Who's gonna stop them, you?
A recent MSNBC poll said that 87% of Americans want impeachment. Well at least 87% of Congress members do not, so who are they representing? Whoever it is, it sure isn't us. And if we'd elected them, they'd be representing us, because they'd want us to reelect them. So it doesn't take much logic to figure out that it is very unlikely that we elected them. The machines elected them. The party machines, the voting machines, and the PR machines of the military-industrial complex-owned media.
It is too late to reform the system. They've shredded the Constitution, stacked the courts, removed checks and balances from government, and they're not going to impeach themselves. They can't. Picture an impeachment hearing:
Congress Member: Mr. President did you commit these high crimes and misdemeanors?
President: Hell, you oughtta know--you voted for 'em.
Paper ballots, hand counted, at the precincts, with FULL public oversight including videotaping. We count the votes the same way that casinos count money. By hand, in full view, one by one, on film. No mail-ins because they have no possible chain of custody. No provisionals, just signed statements of voter eligibility under penalty of perjury with mandatory minimum prison sentences for fraud.
Otherwise, as the Wobblies used to say, "Don't vote--it only encourages them."
COMMENT #16 [Permalink]
said on 2/9/2007 @ 8:21 pm PT...
Check THIS out! How much power do these people need!
"A study of reported federal investigations of elected officials and candidates shows that the Bush administration’s Justice Department pursues Democrats far more than Republicans. 79 percent of elected officials and candidates who’ve faced a federal investigation (a total of 379) between 2001 and 2006 were Democrats"
COMMENT #17 [Permalink]
said on 2/10/2007 @ 5:05 am PT...
That's what I'm talking about.
The republican dictatorship would have gone completely nuts forever if not for the people voting out the rubber stamp congress, and voting in the democratic minded overseers.
This current congress is trying to correct the problem, but they will not be able to get to all of it until 10 more dems are added to the senate in '08.
Then the jail will be re-modeled to house those wannabe republican dictators it was made for.
COMMENT #18 [Permalink]
said on 2/12/2007 @ 5:33 am PT...
Agreed, paper ballots counted by hand. The opportunity for "vote transmogrification" by snakes hired on by the RPOF exist in the county S/E computer (not secure) on which the totals are stored and transmitted to central tally computer (not secure either)in Tallahassee, thus there is no real vote security just because we switch to scanners, just the illusion of it. Sorry Charlie. And we must lobby, no demand he replace Browning--he is NOT to be trusted! Yeah, he's exhausted allright; he did a classic "George Bush" on our Pasco Dem club's voting machine Task Force, ignoring tons of evidence we presented that the iVotronics that he bought were junk. No, he made a sleazy deal with Sandra Mortham, turned coat and put an "R" after his name after 20 years as a DEM S/E, and kept his eye on the prize--a plum appointment in Tally by Jebthro IF he did his Republican chores as assigned. I would trust Ion Sancho to be in charge at the state level, but NEVER Browning! JanL