READER COMMENTS ON
"'Daily Voting News' For June 20, 2007"
(6 Responses so far...)
COMMENT #1 [Permalink]
said on 6/21/2007 @ 4:34 am PT...
John, I read the Bancroft article. I favor all movements to improve any and all voting areas so I favor the article.
But I have criticisms of it. For instance he says:
I am not a lawyer, nor a politician. I am neither an anchorman, nor a journalist. My qualifications to write this are few, it would seem.
Hogwash. Consider this little story:
Two experts on the same subject get up on Monday to go to court to testify in a life and death case.
One expert testifies one way, the other expert testifies just the opposite.
A farmer gets up at 5 AM, milks the cows and feeds the hogs, as do the other 11 folks on the jury, then goes in to court to hear those two experts testify.
Then the farmers decide which expert got it right.
That is the jury system of the legal system of the United States. Our way is based on common sense and common honesty ... not technical prowess.
He goes on to say (tremble with suspicion as you read this quote):
Based on secret code, the machine translates what is on the screen into binary data, unknown and unreadable to the human voter.
So? That happens exactly the same way in a touch screen ATM machine which we all know works just fine. All the fear mongering about secret binary this or that is counter productive if not framed honestly.
What we need is honesty. The jury system is framed upon a notion that people out of power are more trustable because they have not been exposed to power and thereby possibly tainted.
Yes, the paper ballot system is more in accord with our traditions. And I prefer such a system.
However, lets not forget that Stalin used paper ballots and still always won by a very wide margin.
He focused on the counting of the ballots rather than focusing on the construction and marking of the ballots.
Bancroft goes on to say:
This new Commission, comprised of four individuals appointed directly by the President
Wrong. The President can only nominate. The Senate can reject or approve each and every nominee. The members are not "appointed directly by the President", just as judges and cabinet members are not.
That is why Gen. Pace went away recently. Senators would not approve his nomination.
As you know I bemoan the less than
honest accurate rhetoric by members of the movement often. I do so because it hurts the movement.
We can be more careful when we speak and write.
COMMENT #2 [Permalink]
said on 6/21/2007 @ 5:20 am PT...
1. Voting devices must remain secure. This means no wireless, no infrared, and no internet connection, anywhere in the process. It also means that voting data cannot be transmitted via the internet either.
Hmm, not looking deep enough I am afraid. Should add, no telephones, telephone lines, no vaults, switches, and the Totals are HAND DELIVERED FACE TO FACE.
3. Open source code is required for voting software. The process by which the votes in our democracy are counted can never be a trade secret. In exchange for over a billion of the taxpayers’ dollars, programmers of voting software must accept this fact, as must our lawmakers realize it.
It makes no difference what software is used, (Use what ever works for the particular JOB.) But have we already forgotten the fact of electronic parts potentially booby trapping the whole of the logic at the doping level. You can't really know WHAT is in that piece of silicon, unless you look at it under an electron microscope and destroy the actual part! Who is to say there ain't some RF receiver to delete complete parts of the logic remotely.
What are you going to do stand around with a spectrum analyzer watching the whole floor of every frequency at every polling place where there is an electronic box?
Not to mention parts burn up all by themselves. What then?
This bill is just another piece of "perceived diligence" garbage crap by these corrupt dictators.
They want to look like they care but when it's time to carry the can, they shit on us every fucking time!
For the 99% of Americans that are not disabled, they can and should vote on a piece of paper that is manually counted, with PUBLIC oversight, and all these EAC fucks need to get the fuck out! For the other 1% of disabled Americans a frigging glorified printer connected to a laptop with an airhose, and other specialized accessibility software for the blind could be used to print a ballot that gets counted manually like the other 99% with public oversight. The disabled could also vote EARLY at a SPECIFIC LOCATION!!!
And again all these other creepy ass useless fake "perceived diligence" oath breaking agencies need to get the fuck out of our elections. All they are doing is TAMPERING WITH OUR FUCKING ELECTIONS!
Only then can we out these Oath Breaking Domestic Terrorists! Nothing less than this is going to restore America. You don't need to be a Journalist to understand this! You only need to understand electronics!
COMMENT #3 [Permalink]
said on 6/21/2007 @ 5:32 am PT...
Any god damned Senator or Public Representative that wants to Author another fucking bill on electronic voting should be FORCED to take a BASIC COURSE ON ELECTRONICS and a BASIC COURSE ON DIGITAL LOGIC
COMMENT #4 [Permalink]
said on 6/21/2007 @ 11:55 am PT...
First I want to thank you for your critical reading. I think you bring a certain intellectual candor to the table that would be valuable to anyone.
With regards to appointment to the EAC:
"The Commission shall have four members appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate." HAVA, SEC.203.(a)(1) So, it is correct to say that members are appointed by the President. But I agree with you; the word "directly" is probably misleading. I certainly stand by the underlying point, however. With a Congress as compliant as that which our President enjoyed at the time HAVA was written, he was, for all intents and purposes, making direct appointments.
To get the flavor of the problem, consider President Bush’s relationship with the FEC. Take a look at this. Here you have the FEC asking for only $5.5 million a year, which it felt would be necessary to conduct proper oversight of elections. Bush not only denied the request, but cut the FEC's budget by an additional $1.4 million. This was in 2001. In 2002, Congress dismantled the mechanism by which the FEC performed that oversight altogether, replacing it with a new version, funded to the tune of $10 million a year. Why? I'm looking into that. I think there is a story to be told there.
Fast forward 2 years, and you see the political campaign of the President involved in litigation with the FEC. Putting it as gently as I can, the entire arrangement is awkward. You have an agency, ostensibly to ensure fairness in federal elections, intimately interwoven with those same individuals they are tasked to oversee. The potential for mutual back-scratching makes me itch.
I take your point, I'm going to consider an edit, but I absolutely stand by the overall message, and the conclusions that I draw.
Now, with regards to ATM's and receipts, I believe your comparison is misleading:
First, understand that ATM's incorporate a 100% audit rate. The cash is always counted. By contrast, S.1487 proposes to count the vote that you verified only 2% of the time. The slightly more robust HR.811 will count your "vote" up to 10% of the time, but the rate is lower under most circumstances. The rest of the time, the "vote" that you verify will not be counted, at all. If you wish to add a provision that requires a 100% audit of DRE records, then you might convince me to sign on. At 2% I say, “No, thanks.”
Second, remember that ATM transactions can be subject to any number of independent verifications, including video records of what happened, and when. Most of these forms of audit are expressly precluded in an electoral process, because the secrecy of the voter's identity must be protected. And so, for example, a voter could not retain a copy of the receipt, bring it to a polling station a few weeks later, and ask them to compare their digital record of that specific vote with the printed receipt.
Third, realize that the opportunity for remedy in each case is quite different. Money can be debited or credited to an account without much trouble. It isn't so easy to "debit" the office of President after the fact, though. Therefore the integrity of the vote must be held to a significantly higher standard.
Speaking of standards, did you know that under current EAC regulations, machines are allowed to completely break down once every 163 hours? I'd like to see someone research accepted benchmarks in the ATM industry, and let me know how that compares. I'm told that my VCR is expected to go about 70,000 hours without a failure, though. The dysfunctional EAC has told us it may be a few years before they get around to establishing a more reasonable standard.
Bottom line? The law entitles me to independently and privately verify my vote. The law does not say to independently and privately verify some third party's characterization of my vote, which is all that a printout is. Therefore it is my position that all DRE voting machines are, in fact, illegal.
Regardless, Dredd, I cannot imagine what gives you such a degree of confidence in the paper trails of these machines, given the terrible track record that they have. Did you look over the study from Ohio? The findings are far from unique or peculiar. The point is not to express some phobia of technology, which I can assure you I do not possess. The point is simply that I want to verify my vote, and I want my vote, the one that I verified, to be counted, each and every time.
I assume that your closing remarks were in no way designed to imply that I am dishonest, and again thank you for the feedback.
COMMENT #5 [Permalink]
said on 6/21/2007 @ 1:28 pm PT...
These electronic voting machines are UNCONSTITUTIONAL!
You can't have public oversight on something that HUMANS CAN NOT SEE PHYSICALLY.
They deny MY right to vote. Prove my vote counted!!!
COMMENT #6 [Permalink]
said on 6/21/2007 @ 3:21 pm PT...
Keep writing Bob. By my standards you are much better qualified than most I have read. My standards require that the logic make sense or I'm gone. Your logic speaks well for you.
I posted this early today on an older thread.
SEC. 301. > VOTING SYSTEMS STANDARDS.
(a) Requirements.--Each voting system used in an election for
Federal office shall meet the following requirements:
(1) In general.--
(A) Except as provided in subparagraph (B), the
voting system (including any lever voting system,
optical scanning voting system, or direct recording
electronic system) shall--
(i) permit the voter to verify (in a private
and independent manner) the votes selected by the
voter on the ballot before the ballot is cast and
If as you claim ballot means exactly what it says does that not leave the use of any VVAPT's incompliant with the requirements of HAVA? Does not HAVA also require under (i) above that the ballot (paper trails or whatever) be cast and counted? Are most “ballots” ever cast or counted as required by HAVA above? "
As you can see it aligns quite well with what you just posted.