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Reply #21: "all Hell will break loose" --GuvWurld asks a good strategic question. [View All]

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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-08-06 01:13 AM
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21. "all Hell will break loose" --GuvWurld asks a good strategic question.
This is a very useful question to think hard about: If there are major breakdowns and screwups, and lots of suspicious results, and especially if the Dems don't do very well (with Bush at 30-40% all year, and scandal after scandal after scandal): What may happen of itself--candidates filing lawsuits, anger, protests, what are the possibilities? What do we want to have happen? What can we make happen? And--backup in time to now--what can we do now to create the best outcomes, under the circumstances--the greater good?

The premise is looking like it's inevitable--major breakdowns, screwups, suspicious results and Dems losing. Our primary goal when this all happens, it seems to me, should be to aim all the energy of what we might term "yet another Bush regime disaster" at ELECTION REFORM. So monitoring results, getting evidence, analysis and getting the word out, in order to motivate reform, will be very important. We should push www.UScountvotes.org, which actually has a plan for gathering info and analyzing it quickly. WE should have a plan for getting their conclusions around the internet quickly. They need DONATIONS. We should start maybe a regularly repeated thread here, pushing for donations. I know Ron Baiman is about to tangle to Edison-Mitofsky and Febble, and they need money to send him there.

There may be other such monitoring plans we can plug into.

I'll start the ball rolling here by checking around at the recommended voters' sites, and see what's up as to monitoring plans. I'll report back to the Election Forum in about a week.

One pre-election activity for now (current time--pre-planning) would be a campaign to put massive pressure on the Dem Party to fund independent exit polls. These are critically needed. E/M cannot be trusted. A concerted effort, here at DU, asking all forums to help--to get the Dems committed. Need to survey candidates on what's happening locally on exit polls. Need to talk to DNC maybe. Anybody with contacts there?

There are other things to deal with--peoples' demoralization, feelings of disempowerment (and disempowerment itself), defeatism, despair. I've always thought that THE TRUTH is the antidote to all these. People NEED to know the truth--they need to know WHY what seems to be the majority view keeps losing. WE KNOW THE REASON WHY. Many don't. How do we get the word out at the height of the crisis, to the max number of people?

And what do we do about the Dem Party in this respect? Their concerns are MONEY, and, secondarily (alas) votes. I imagine SOME of their mind-boggling avoidance of this matter--a fraudulent election SYSTEM--has to do with not wanting to dampen donations or reduce voter turnout (due to feelings of hopelessness).

This really needs to be countered. I like my bumper sticker: "Help us beat the machines--VOTE!" This should be a campaign in itself. This bumper sticker educates, acknowledges there is a problem, addresses the problem, and provides the info that the machines CAN possibly be beaten by big turnout. But the voters need to know what they are doing--know the facts, be realistic in expectations, and help identify problems (and hopefully get active). We engage them in BEATING THE ODDS. Make it game--and convey the message that, as it is, cannot be treated as honest, as having integrity. It does not. But we might beat it anyway.

A lot of energy among campaign workers and candidates will be going to specific elections, and what went wrong there--and dealing with specific situations, with even campaign workers and candidates having uneven levels of knowledge of what they're dealing with. It would be good to choose ONE internet site to direct people's attention to, when "all hell breaks loose" (election system meltdown). www.votersunite.org might be good ("MythBreakers"--their pamphlet on electronic voting). A site with specific info about each state's systems would be good.

"All hell breaking loose" could be citizen revolt--large protests, small scattered protests, anger, lawsuits, refusal to accept the results--and it could also mean just "election system meltdown" itself--"all hell" being, in this riff, massively UNVERIFIABLE results, many computer breakdowns, long lines, gross disenfranchisement.

If there is revolt, we want it to be knowledgeable and focused. If there is just quiet despair, we want to stir something up, get people energized.

One form of protest might be: ABSENTEE BALLOTS. L.A. county and Calif., for instance, have had a big surge in AB requests. I'm sure it is a form of protest against the machines. It will likely grow bigger and bigger, and could become a "thing"--a focus for investigation, news stories, evidence for what the people want, usable in anti-machine campaigns. Even corrupt registrars will have to take notice (and are taking notice) of what is a big threat to their $$$ and professional investment in electronics. And it IS a PAPER BALLOT, after all. A countable thing. (--even if counts are then computerized). It shouldn't be sold as a solution (or not a full one) but rather as a PROTEST.

The states/county are very uneven in their rules for AB's and for paper ballot options. I don't have facts on the overall picture, but have the general impression that some form of AB is possible in most places, but in some places is very restricted. Calif has a paper ballot option (at the polls--thank you, Kevin Shelley!), but bad registrars have been known to withhold or make it difficult, or substitute "provisional" ballots, even though the voter is duly registered and is present. Need some research on this.

Well, my typing fingers are getting tired. And my mind. So I'll break off. Stuff to think about, for getting a plan together, and then deciding what we can do, what we can farm out, or what others are already doing that we can help with.

:think: :bounce: :think:
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