READER COMMENTS ON
"'Daily Voting News' For June 13, 2007"
(6 Responses so far...)
COMMENT #1 [Permalink]
said on 6/13/2007 @ 11:37 pm PT...
It's a lot like the old shell game, with three shells, and a ball under one of them. Shawn's been moved, Ciber's now destined for new crimes, and Wyle's got themselves a hero of the anti-democracy forces.
With that, I think I'm gonna go throw up, and then call it a night.
COMMENT #2 [Permalink]
said on 6/14/2007 @ 5:53 am PT...
John, you said "what makes anyone believe that voters will verify a voter verified paper audit trail printed by a printer on the side of their machine"?
That's what I'm talking about! Self criticism within our honorable electronic election machine movement.
Any movement is doomed when it does not analyze its own rhetoric for inconsistencies. The election movement does not belong to any organized party, much like democratic movements within the democratic party.
As you know, I have been trying to urge the voting movement to take a look at its results. Over the last 40 years up to HAVA, the mover and shaker Ney is dong time now. And I urge us to ask why the machines only get worse as the faith-based election system movement "gets stronger".
I have posited the notion that it is because there really is no valid movement, only folks who want to have "the one true election religion". It is like the worship of one's own sacred opinion for heaven's sake.
The rhetoric is self-massaging, canard ridden, and is doing absolutely nothing except making things worse.
Even the Holt bill went from worse to worser, and now may be heading for worst, to put it in Olbermann terms.
All under the watchful eye of "activists" seeking to press the flesh with celebrity and swim in fame. While things get worse on the election scene.
Hell, while we slept Rove-bots were placed into key powerful positions as US Attornies who could take us out at any time we began to become successful.
The election movement is in a very bleak condition IMO, and needs to learn to embrace contrasting approaches, opinions, views, and concerns. To unify for progress instead of bicker over sacred opinion.
Above all there is a need to stop rejecting some progress while demanding ultimate progress.
Our nation is very, very, very far away from being able to achieve ultimate progress (100% paper ballots counted by 100% honest and transparent election officials). But we are not too far away from some progress, and could get there.
The original Holt HR 811 would have offered some progress (the beginnings of open source and the beginnings of the increase in the use of paper ballots).
And when combined with S 559 could have outlawed state-wide partisan manipulation of the Karen Harris and Ken Blackwell type, by outlawing the top election official from being part of a partisan campaign at the same time.
But all the furor about whose election argument panties are the cutest has downgraded Holt to a much weakened version.
And far worse looms on the horizon as the "movement" scrambles for the next photo op.
Grass roots activism is stronger than that and I suggest that we do as you have been doing here lately and consider both sides of issues to find the better ground.
We have to get rid of secret source code, partisan electronic voting machine companies, and faith-based election systems ("we wouldn't do anything wrong, trust us").
COMMENT #3 [Permalink]
said on 6/14/2007 @ 11:26 am PT...
Dredd - Not sure who your comment is meant to be criticizing precisely. But just in case it's me, and my position on EI, I feel it necessary to respond to at least one small point.
I am not a "my way or the highway" kinda guy. I have focused on the need to get rid of DREs, based on the (well-supported premise) that they simply cannot be used safely, at any speed, and further, can be used to undermine all the other good elements of the Holt bill (example, they can be gamed to create a "perfect audit" that will show DREs to be accurate and paper based systems to not be, when the truth is actually the opposite of that, in general).
Even if a DRE ban was added to the Holt bill (and others) tomorrow, it would still be a decidedly imperfect bill. But I'd be inclined to seriously considering supporting it, even with all of those flaws, for the greater good on the notion that the rest of it could be fixed locally or later, and that there were enough protections in there to give citizens something real to work with.
The Holt bill is flawed in tons of different ways, but that's the nature of legislation, and I understand that well.
But some things, the allowance of the use of DREs in this case, are simply beyond the pale and can ultimately prove to make things worse instead of better.
Hope that clarifies my position, at least, a bit more.
COMMENT #4 [Permalink]
said on 6/14/2007 @ 12:08 pm PT...
Yes, I am aware of your positions and concerns. This is why I blog here and not another blog. This one is the best over all. I don't demand perfection in anything I take part in. Like you, I think reasonable progress will do.
I considered and blogged about one aspect of your position on Holt and pointed out that my understanding of how statutes are construed will bear out your take on in.
In other words there is an ambiguity in Holt's original language, which is also in S. 559, that will mean all hackers have to do is make sure the election is within 1% or 2% and those "paper ballots" will never be considered.
There is other language concerning the Audit Board that goes to the opposite conclusion, but I think that the clear language would prevail over that and your position would be found to be correct.
My acceptance of progress would have me dancing with the Ewoks if we got open source code and no communications with any other device in the system. And getting rid of the Karen Harris and the Ken Blackwell syndrome as S. 559 would do, adds more good.
But I agree, as the link shows, that random unannounced audits talked about in Sec. 321(a), if required regardless of the closeness of the race according to the electronic tally, would start out a process that could help america vote.
I would have raved about the original Holt if the audit flaw had been fixed by amendment. Instead, the second Holt is going the wrong way very fast. But the Senate version is still workable.
COMMENT #5 [Permalink]
said on 6/14/2007 @ 12:46 pm PT...
I think the whole thing could be solved in minutes, if we had some real leaders.
Hell what would you do if you had to vote say for 6 blocks in your own neighborhood? Could you set it up without expensive glitched ass electronics? Would you need to "pull an all-nighter" printing ballots at your local kinkos before the election?
The main problem is local. and that there is the crux of the problem. How do you link local to local without a network? Iron Horse / Pony express? It has to be face to face with trusted people. Even a phone call tabulation report could be socially engineered.
Back to just local, I am sure locally folks could figure out a way to vote transparently, honestly. Then what? drive from local point a to local point b with public oversight?
We all know what these machines have cost. Money, Civil Rights, War, Economy, Abuse of power, Broken Oaths of Office.
How would you stop that at a local level?
I know part of the answer is to rid the system of invisibility. The only thing that is invisible, is electronics and it's use of electricity, which by physical definition is invisible.
So pull the power plugs. And vote in daylight with oversight of anyone that wants to be involved. Obviously if someone is going to get abusive, the whole local precint is in question. And at that point it needs more oversight.
The only way we are going to nip these bastards in the bud, is to put the proverbial monkey wrench into their lying, cheating, murdering, evidence destroying gears!
Much love to everyone at Bradblog, I been feeling down, but I think we can open a can of whoopass on them if we just use our heads. And that makes me feel hell of better knowing that.
Let's quit thinking that we are failures. We are not failures. We are disenfranchised citizens, who have no representation because the representation is corrupt or don't understand physics of electricity. And since we said or told their ass about the physics, then there is only one thing left, corruption.
Let's stop the corruption.
COMMENT #6 [Permalink]
said on 6/15/2007 @ 7:42 am PT...