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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 05:19 PM
Original message
Election Fraud Tip; The Doomsday Device for Democracy -- A How To
On March 31, a certain Air America Radio personality and comedian reportedly related a comment that it was "more likely than not" that 2004 Ohio presidential voting was not "hacked". He cited unspecified MIT professors that did an unspecified amount of work on this issue (perhaps none). In any case, it wasn't too dang funny.

Leaving aside the issue that only four counties in Ohio had touch screen voting machines and that the bulk of available methods of altering computerized election results illegally would not be fairly described as "hacks", and also leaving aside the various professors and computer experts who would beg to differ with or qualify this MIT statement, there's a very important realization that gets lost regarding the likely strategy of anyone contemplating election fraud:

******************************
WHEREVER it is more likely than not that something is innocuous or at least not deliberate, that is the VERY BEST place for a hacker or rigger to attack!
******************************

An insider rigger, in particular, has little to no barriers to action (they're "insiders", right?). Yet, election fraud is among the most intentional and planned of crimes. So the rigger will concentrate their mental efforts on planning defenses and deniability. That's why they attack particularly in places that look like "glitches", look like human error, that look like "voter error", or look like machine defects of a non-intentional nature.

Touch screen calibration problems are a great example. Miscalibration can happen naturally from vibration, it can happen from a attempted recalibration error, it can happen because of software "glitches", or IT CAN HAPPEN AS AN INTENTIONAL ATTACK, by a user, by an insider official, or by the source code.

But, in the event of such an actual intentional attack, it will be easy to find an expert who in good faith can state it's "more likely than not" that this is just _________________ (you fill in the non-intentional excuse from the list above). They won't be "lying", not intentionally.

Many things are MORE LIKELY THAN NOT non-intentional. Yet that very fact makes it the perfect place to attack. Journalists will almost never get beyond a fork in the road like this because they want "proof" not alternative possibilities, and investigators will similarly be either fooled by the seeming innocuousness or deterred from passing by this fork in the road by fears of going out on a limb. One necessarily IS going out on a limb and blowing past the innocent explanations.

But, once way out on the limb, you can pick up more facts that can help distinguish the non-intentional from the intentional. And, a good investigator NEEDS to do that, but few do. Among other things, piecing together facts to put together even a compelling VERY MUCH MORE LIKELY THAN NOT case is to be what we all know and are taught to distrust as "conspiracy theory". Because there's an alternative innocent explanation. Some also invoke Occam's Razor, saying the simpler explanation is the better one. But that also means that the slightly more complicated fraud is the BEST one of all, the one that doesn't get you caught.

I am definitely NOT suggesting that every mis-named "glitch" evasion or every "voter error" allegation is cover for election fraud. I'm saying it's attractive potential and even likely cover for election fraud. And I freely admit that it is quite possible that there is no actual intentional fraud in most given cases, so long as my opponent acknowledges that fraud can't be ruled out, either.

In any event, regardless of the presence of intent or not, the damage to democracy from "glitches" is almost identical between when the results are thrown off non-intentionally and when they are thrown off intentionally. In both cases, an inaccurate election result is being published as the gospel truth. Passing off a knockoff tennis shoe as Adidas is itself a form of fraud on the consumer, even if the storekeeper had no idea they were knockoffs and therefore lacks the knowledge and intent necessary for the type of fraud laymen usually assume is the only type of "fraud", the intentional type more precisely called "common law fraud".

So given that in most cases where multiple possibilities exist on the issue of intentional vs. nonintentional, a fair-minded person has to admit that it is at least POSSIBLE that it was non-intentional error, just as a fair-minded person has to admit that it is POSSIBLE that it is fraudulent or intentional error, in the classic sense. MAKING ONE OF THESE TWO POSSIBILITIES THE ONE THAT IS "MORE LIKELY THAN NOT" HARDLY SEEMS TO END THE ISSUE, because the key evidence is still being withheld under trade secrecy claims of the corporate vote counting vendors.

This is why TRANSPARENCY is so VERY important. It is indispenable, and in fact MORE IMPORTANT THAN ACCURACY (if we were forced to choose). This is so because All serious barriers to full election data, information and testing are doomsday devices for democracy that prevent us from knowing which of thousands of glitches and miscalibrations were covers for fraud and which were not. Therefore we can not adjust our course, or make any correction and lies are known as the truth.

There are many serious issues to choose from, global warming, war and peace, human rights, etc. But the reason election transparency is more primary and more important than the rest of these issues is because the only thing scarier and more dangerous than these runaway train issues is having the ability to correct course via legitimate elections taken away.

It's like putting blindfolds on the train engineer and all the passengers, who know they can't see well but none of whom are allowed to be fully aware of the nature and extent of the blindfold, limiting their ability to even try to remove it. Then, just like elections, those who've placed the blindfolds on say you have no standing to challenge the blindfold or ask a court for its removal because you can't prove that you've been damaged or that damage is otherwise imminent.

The barriers to information that are the doomsday devices for democracy are also the instruments of our collective terror, and that deceptively divide us passengers, even as we all act in complete good faith as passengers. This happens when the passengers argue amongst themselves as to what is happening to them on a "more likely than not" basis. The passengers are all themselves most likely acting entirely in good faith, but the arguments are part fact and part Rohrschach test, with no correct answer per se.

But there is one Answer that is clearly wrong. It is the Answer that says "because the data suggesting DANGER AHEAD, while present, is not Proven, and while these fellow passengers of course support transparency and taking the blindfolds off, they nevertheless strongly maintain that there's NO BASIS to accuse those who placed the blindfolds on us passengers of bad faith."

There most certainly is such a basis. Reckless endangerment to democracy, attempted democracide, and democracide itself, though we won't find the body of democracy until we realize that the act of blindfolding the passengers was the death of democracy, with the crime completed at that time. What happens after is the "collateral damage" to the passengers. Many passengers, unfortunately, tend to think that having been taught that they were born into a democracy, if they have not personally died or moved out of their country of birth, they must STILL BE in a democracy. And, all jailers have pretty much seen the wisdom of allowing television, so perhaps in this age of miniaturization it is not too far a stretch to imagine that the blindfolds look like shades, and the shades allow the passengers to watch virtual TV. With this TV, they think their field of vision has actually been expanded enormously.

Somebody should find out who placed the blindfolds on, and when that person is found, you will have found a true terrorist against democracy. Meanwhile, others will keep scouring the sands of the Middle East, for a similar purpose of finding terrorists against democracy. Perhaps you should have a little compassion for these rank and file Grand Old Passengers in support of the Middle East democracy threat hypothesis, for at least they understand or intuit that there's a danger, though they fail to appreciate much danger from within. Those that have a better idea what's happened to them can also fail to appreciate fully that what they are in fact trying to restore in democracy is a system that will continue to allow freedom, including the freedom to believe the TV, for freedom is meaningless if it doesn't include the freedom to do or believe unpopular or incorrect things. So, this freedom we are fighting for, includes the freedom and certainly must include the freedom for innocent rank and file to continue to believe as they do.

At the end of my blindfolded runaway train allegory, the passengers win. But they do so for somewhat surprising reasons:

1. They win because they convince a majority of passengers that if they do not admit to the significant possibility that someone would takeover the American Train and blindfold the passengers, then they must not think TrainAmerica is a very good train, because they don't think any one would truly covet her that badly. Our Grand Old Passengers were forced to admit on that because they loved their country, and thus the danger of election fraud was properly recognized as a serious threat.

2. They win because they agree to disagree with the Grand Old Passengers, acknowledging that both rank and file groups were out of luck if the overall situation continued, and that the condition to be restored retained all the rights of all political beliefs and that the officers of the train that had failed them included representatives of both parties. Our Grand Old Passengers were forced to admit that they didn't want to be disfranchised either alone or together with the activist passengers, and thus the shared values and interests were recognized.

3. They win because it became clear that it wasn't "cool" to have these kinds of "shades" on, train or no train. Our Grand Old Passengers were forced to admit that not being able to correct one's course at all was a most serious recipe for maximum unhappiness of all passengers, and thus the value of transparency in elections was suddenly clear.

The passengers removed the blindfolds and stormed the engine. The terrorists against democracy turned out to be more pathetic than the man behind the curtain in the Wizard of Oz.

It's just that, in returning to their seats and now enjoying the train ride much more than before, those of both political parties that see themselves as the Masters of Democracy or even the Masters of the Universe were already secretly preparing the next set of blindfolds. But this time, every compartment on the train had regular visual and audio reminders that said:

"Beware those who would deny you information. For in their heart, they see themselves your Master."

---Paul R Lehto
Attorney at Law
lehtolawyer@hotmail.com
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 05:33 PM
Response to Original message
1. Thank you, Land Shark! I have to sit with this for a while to make sure
I give your thought its due.

:kick:
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 05:51 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. you're welcome. That's really the best, honored to have your thoughts!
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papau Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 10:55 AM
Response to Reply #2
62. Franken is refering to the Hout study of Florida and Ohio

http://ucdata.berkeley.edu /
The Effect of Electronic Voting Machines on Change in Support for Bush in the 2004 Florida Elections

Professor Hout is an expert on statistical methods at the Berkeley Survey Research Center and a member of the National Academy of Sciences

"In Broward County, for example, the study found that Bush appears to have received approximately 72,000 excess votes.

Professor Hout explained that he was sceptical of the original idea, but that the findings had changed his mind. The study used a widely accepted practice of multiple-regression analysis, which seeks to eliminate errors to provide a valid statistical base.

The results in Ohio were also examined, but no discrepancies were found. In both Ohio and Florida the actual results cannot be counted as no paper receipts are issued."



==========================================================
other not on point links since the MIT/Cal Tech study has been shown to prove little - but still interesting reads:

http://www.bluelemur.com/index.php?p=405
http://www.mysterypollster.com/main/2004/11/exit_polls_...
http://fullerton.dailykos.com/story/2004/11/14/03617/39...
http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/nr/2001/VTP_report_all.pd...

===============================================================
http://www.vote.caltech.edu/Reports/Addendum_Voting_Mac... no significant correlation between voting methods and exit poll discrepancies.
============================================================

http://vote.caltech.edu/Reports/VotingMachines3.pdf

http://uscountvotes.org/ucvAnalysis/US/USCountVotes_Re_...

http://www.appliedresearch.us/sf/Documents/ExitPoll.pdf
http://www.mysterypollster.com /
http://www.appliedresearch.us/sf/
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mod mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 07:20 PM
Response to Reply #1
14. I burned a sauce over Landshark's post. DU is dangerous at dinnertime!
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 08:19 PM
Response to Reply #14
18. I'm sorry, I'll have to make you some sauce to replace
do you like Italian sausage in that? I'm not a big meat-eater, but love the Italian sausage in the spaghetti sauce. In fact, anyone from DU can come over, we'll have a feast! Then followed by a good movie and :popcorn:
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mod mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 08:57 PM
Response to Reply #18
21. Sorry, I'm a vegetarian. My sauce had my first crop of fresh basil
from my window basil plant. Blackened marinara-a DU creation!
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 09:06 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. Even better, there's probably some DUers that can finish the other sauce
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 05:52 PM
Response to Original message
3. REC. "I am autorank and I endorse this message..stronly." More later.
n
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NVMojo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:54 PM
Response to Reply #3
112. I'm with Autorank! I totally endorse this message!
and say "wtf?"!!!
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 03:28 AM
Response to Reply #112
130. Finally, for once I'm in good company;)
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mod mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 05:59 PM
Response to Original message
4. You so rock Landshark! rec'd.
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roseBudd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 05:59 PM
Response to Original message
5. Computers count the votes so no one can see, they claim **** won
I say prove it to me
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file83 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 11:02 PM
Response to Reply #5
35. The only way we can prove it, is to have several independent
Edited on Fri Mar-31-06 11:02 PM by file83
parties with FULL ACCESS to the voting records so they can run their own software to tally it and cross reference the data with some form of hash code or parity check.
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Ellipsis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:05 AM
Response to Reply #35
43. My little understanding on the hash table thing is
there are existing solutions where one can attach an external device to a drive for parity checks. It would be very cool if you could put this technology on a chip in a flash card. (memory card)
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BeFree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:15 AM
Response to Reply #35
59. That would be nice
Let us do an audit, a people's audit. Give our experts full access to the 2004 election numbers. Is that too much too ask? Hell No!

But they are afraid of what we will find. They know we will discover all kinds of glitches, mistakes, errors. Bad programming, hacked number crunching and millions of changed votes.

Only through an audit can they prove the election was not stolen. But we have quite a bit of evidence that the election was stolen.

So here we are, at an impasse. We, the people versus the secret, privately controlled computations. An audit would clear things up.

Justice demands we have an audit of the 2004 election and every election to come.
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reprehensor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 06:01 PM
Response to Original message
6. "Election Theft Denial"
It's not pretty.

It's pretty pathetic.

Jesus, do we have to get Charlie Sheen to talk about this too?
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 06:13 PM
Response to Original message
7. Does he mean the MIT Professors funded by right-wing thinktanks?
Here's a blog entry with links to plenty of info. Sorry, this is a long one:

http://www.commongroundcommonsense.org/forums/lofiversi...

lawnorder
Nov 19 2004, 10:13 AM


QUOTE
More Caltech/MIT VTP Connections to Right Wing Think-tanks
by dennisv

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2004/11/19/44333/049


Kudos to lawnorder 's excellent diary, Keith Olbermann: It's Berkeley vs Caltech http://dailykos.com/story/2004/11/18/1859/7077


And thanks, lawnorder, for making reference to my own diatribe against the the November 11, 2004 Caltech/MIT Voting Technology Project (VTP) report entitled Voting Machines and the Underestimate of the Bush Vote" http://www.dailykos.com/story/2004/11/14/03617/399


QUOTE
There are three associations connected with the Caltech/MIT VTP that I find unsavory.

1. MIT political scientists Charles Stewart and Stephen Ansolabehere both received Fellowships at the rabidly right wing Hoover Institution freeper factory, funded by just about every rich wingnut foundation in existence.

2. Caltech political scientists Ramon Michael Alvarez and Jonathan N. Katz received John M. Olin Foundation Faculty Fellowships. The Olin Foundation spends millions a year to promote conservative programs in the country's most prestigious colleges.

3)David Baltimore is a member of the powerful and mysterious Council on Foreign Relations

Now grab your tin-foil hats, we're going for a ride!


The information about the political scientists is readily available in their online Curriculum Vitae:
http://web.mit.edu/cstewart/www/vita.pdf

Charles Stewart was a 1989-1990 National Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University

http://web.mit.edu/polisci/research/ansolabehere/sda_cv...

Stephen Ansolabehere was selected a National Fellow by the Hoover Institution in 1993.
He was also awarded Olin Research Associate, Graduate School of Business, Stanford University 1987-88.

He was also awarded Carnegie Scholar 2000-01

http://www.hss.caltech.edu/vitae/alvarez.pdf

Ramon Michael Alvarez was awarded:

U.S. Department of Defense, "Evaluation of the Secure Electronic Registration and Voting (SERVE) Project", DASW01-02-C-0027, ($236,140), May 2002 - October 2002, Principal Investigator.

Carnegie Corporation, co-principal investigator, 2000-2001. Project title: "MIT-Caltech
Voting Technology Initiative" ($450,000).

He was also awarded a John M. Olin Faculty Fellowship, 1994-95 ($45,000).

http://jkatz.caltech.edu/documents/jk_cv.pdf

Jonathan N. Katz received a John M. Olin Foundation Faculty Fellow, 1999-2000 ($110,000).

Now lets take a lok at the Hoover Institution and The Olin Foundation:

About Hoover Institution

http://rightweb.irc-online.org/org/hoover.php


Founded in 1919 by Herbert Hoover, the Stanford University-based Hoover Institution is one of the country's oldest research institutes. With eight fellows on the Bush administration's Defense Policy Board (DPB), as well as several current and former associates like Donald Rumsfeld and Condoleezza Rice serving in the country's highest policy-making posts, the influence of Hoover is difficult to overestimate. Hoover DPB members include Richard Allen, Martin Anderson, Gary Becker, Newt Gingrich, Henry S. Rowen, Kiron Skinner, and Pete Wilson. (7)
Hoover's connection to the Bush administration and its hardline defense policies has been a source of continuing controversy at Stanford. According to journalist Emily Biuso, in early 2003, various campus groups organized a series of protests calling for Hoover's ouster from the university, which donates about $1 million to the institution every year. (3)
According to the Foundation Center, Hoover's $25 million annual budget is funded largely by a mix of conservative and corporate foundations, including Archer Daniels Midland, Bradley, Earhart, Donner, ExxonMobil, Ford Motor, General Motors, Proctor & Gamble, and Scaife.

http://www.mediatransparency.org/search_re...cipient.ph...


The Media Transparency's list of private foundation donors who pumped in $ 19,112,746 from 1995-2002 reads like a Who's Who of the right wing bagmen with Richard Mellon Scaife leading the charge having singlehandedly donated almost $9,000,000 over that period.

http://www.mediatransparency.org/search_re...feaggregat...


About Richard Mellon Scaife
http://rightweb.irc-online.org/ind/scaife/scaife.php

Hoover Institution: Board member
Heritage Foundation: Trustee
Scaife Foundations: Chairman
Tribune-Review Publishing Co., Inc.: Owner
In his hilarious 2003 book Lies (And the Lying Liars Who Tell Them), Al Franken argues that the abusive tone of rightwing zealots like Bill O'Reilly and Ann Coulter can be traced back to Scaife, and in particular to one episode in 1981 when Scaife verbally assaulted a reporter. When the reporter, Karen Rothmeyer of the Columbia Journalism Review, asked Scaife about his funding of conservative groups, he replied, "You "expletive deleted"ing communist "expletive deleted", get out of here." Franken writes that Scaife "went on to tell her that she was ugly and that her teeth were 'terrible.' Of Ms. Rothmeyer's mother, who was not present, he said, 'She's ugly, too.' Sensing that it was time to wrap up the interview, Ms. Rothmeyer thanked Scaife for his time. He bade her farewell with a cheery 'Don't look behind you.'" (4)
"That's the funny thing about tone," Franken continues, "It's so subjective. Usually, I find it's enough to call someone a '"expletive deleted"ing communist "expletive deleted",' without having to gild the lily by disparaging her teeth and issuing veiled threats."

http://www.mediatransparency.org/funders/s...foundation...


Scaife Foundations

Financed by the Mellon industrial, oil and banking fortune. At one time its largest single holding was stock in the Gulf Oil Corporation. Became active in funding conservative causes in 1973, when Richard Mellon Scaife became chairman of the foundation. In the 1960s, Richard had inherited an estimated $200 million from his mother, Sarah. Forbes magazine has estimated his personal net worth at $800 million, making him the 138th richest person in the U.S. He controls the Scaife, Carthage and Allegheny foundations. In 1993, Scaife and Carthage reportedly gave more than $17.6 million to 150 conservative think tanks. As of December 31, 1992, Scaife assets were $212,232,888 and Carthage assets were $11,937,862.

http://www.mediatransparency.org/search_re...feaggregat...



Top 12 Recipients by amount granted by the
Scaife Foundations

Name Total
Heritage Foundation, The 20,696,640
Free Congress Foundation, Inc. 15,662,000
Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis, Inc. 9,336,000
Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace 8,818,900
Center for Strategic and International Studies 7,603,000
Intercollegiate Studies Institute, Inc. 7,479,800
Carnegie Institute 7,176,375
Judicial Watch 6,740,000
Brandywine Conservancy, Inc. 6,442,000
Landmark Legal Foundation 5,260,000
Center for the Study of Popular Culture 5,250,000
American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research 5,201,000
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FogerRox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 06:32 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. Nick & Land Shark are a TAG TEAM
Right ON NICK,
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:02 AM
Response to Reply #8
57. Thanks. Isn't it amazing what one can find with a little digging?
:evilgrin:
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 06:49 PM
Response to Reply #7
9. There's more. Rebecca Mercuri rebuts MIT/CalTech voting systems analysis:
http://www.commongroundcommonsense.org/forums/lofiversi...

lawnorder
Nov 21 2004, 10:16 AM

QUOTE
I was forwarded the following press release from MIT/CalTech from a source at IEEE Spectrum http://pr.caltech.edu/media/Press_Releases/PR12284.html > and am seriously concerned about the conclusions they have drawn regarding the recent Florida primary election. The MIT press release is here in its entirety, followed by my analysis/rebuttal. R. Mercuri.

NEWS RELEASE, September 24, 2002

Rebecca Mercuri rebuts recent MIT/CalTech voting systems analysis and calls for moratorium on new electronic balloting equipment purchases

After reviewing the press release issued September 19 by MIT and CalTech, electronic voting system expert Rebecca Mercuri revealed that "the conclusion that MIT/CalTech researchers has drawn, that Florida's new voting technology shows a 35% improvement, is based on a flawed analysis and is likely erroneous." She goes on to state that not only are the researchers comparing "apples to oranges" in terms of the types of technologies surveyed (punch-cards versus optically scanned and DRE machines), but they have misleadingly compared Gubernatorial general election results to Gubernatorial primary results (and only for the Democrats in the 2002 primary).

It is well known that voters in general elections turn out in far greater numbers (in Florida it is estimated that the November election will show a 400% increase or more) than in primaries, putting greater strain on the performance of systems as well as on poll workers and voters. The balloting style of the typical primary voter (usually a party insider, and certainly a partisan with a larger interest in selecting candidates for each race on the ballot) is quite different from the general election voter, where independents and other non-declared or minority party affiliation citizens are permitted to cast ballots. Thus, only in November will we be able to ascertain whether the residual vote rate has actually "improved." Hence, Dr. Mercuri asserts, "the conclusion is premature, as well as flawed."

Laudatory statements made by Stephen Ansolabehere, Charles Stuart and R. Michael Alvarez regarding Florida's new voting systems are also sorely misleading, and do not support their conclusion of 35% improvement. MIT Professor Stuart's comment that "most of the problems covered by journalists...did not concern equipment malfunctions" is not based on an analysis of the numerous and severe voting system problems that occurred throughout the state, but rather on the media reports that surfaced. Many equipment malfunctions were reported by the Associated Press and other news bureaus, but these were obfuscated by the public interest stories that alternatively showed voters "pleased with the new equipment" or being "turned away from the polls in droves."

A lot of the media attention focused on press comments by Governor Jeb Bush and members of his staff who erroneously characterized the problems as being based only in two counties (Miami-Dade and Broward) and blamed the poll workers and election officials there for the situation. In actuality, Miami-Dade and Broward could not have purchased the ES&S machines had they not been pre-certified by the state for use. Sadly, this certification failed to provide the counties or their poll workers with sufficient notification as to the fact that the voting machines would take 10 minutes to start up, with the ones outfitted for the visually impaired taking an astonishing 23 minutes. Some machines also contained a "safety feature" that did not permit them to be turned on before 6AM on election day. Since each unit is activated sequentially, simple math shows that a polling place containing 10 voting machines, with one outfitted for the visually impaired, would not be fully operational until nearly 8AM (an hour after the polls opened) under the best conditions. Mercuri states: "I certainly do not see how this can be blamed on the poll-workers, nor how it constitutes an improvement. I'm hard pressed to think of any computer equipment manufactured after the 1970's that takes 23 minutes to be started, especially those deployed for use entirely in time-critical operations. The failure by MIT/CalTech to raise serious concerns about the engineering of these products is remiss."

MIT's Ansolabehere stated that "the machines used showed clear gains over the technologies used in past elections." To which Dr. Mercuri replies: "Yes perhaps, if one considers declaring a state of emergency (under threat of lawsuit by a major candidate) and extending the election day by two hours a "clear gain." How about in Union County, Florida, where 2,700 optically scanned ballots had to be hand counted, because the computers were erroneously programmed to only tally votes for Republican candidates? At least there, the ballots could be recounted because they were on paper. What about the precinct in southern Florida that showed a 1200% voter turnout (12 times as many voters as were registered) because the DRE activation cards permitted voters to cast ballots on machines in the same building that were not in their precinct? And what about some precincts in Miami-Dade and Broward where the vote cartridges reflected over 40% residual votes (lost or missing) and data had to be "extracted" from back-up memory inside of the machines (one wonders how trusted the reconstructed results can be)?"

CalTech's Alvarez states "we are learning important lessons about how to make such important changes in voting technologies" and Mercuri asks: "Is it fair to allow Florida and other states and communities to feel pressured to replace their voting systems while being treated as guinea pigs? Is the United States prepared to reimburse communities for defective and obsolete equipment once new standards are in place (since all election equipment is still being inspected by the National Association of State Election Directors testing authorities to the outdated 1990 Federal Election Commission guidelines)? Is it acceptable to certify voting equipment that can be reprogrammed internally via a portal on the device (as some were, only weeks before the election in Palm Beach County as well as elsewhere in the state)? These new technologies are playing a role in electing government officials - the confidence citizens have in the democratic process is at stake."

Mercuri, who has testified before the U.S. House Science Committee regarding the need for involvement of the National Institute of Standards and Technologies in establishing criteria for the procurement and testing of election equipment, feels that congressional election reform is sorely needed. But, she notes that many of the laws proposed at federal and state levels, or enacted since 2000, have been weakly worded so as to permit the production of election equipment that does not provide an independent means whereby voters can verify human-readable ballots that are secured and available for recounts. "Real election reform," Mercuri says, "is only possible within a context of adequate and enforceable standards for construction, testing, and deployment of voting equipment."

But Mercuri worries that the trend to full automation of the voting process could be used to conceal election fraud. She warns, "It is entirely possible that Florida and other states may smooth out their election day problems such that it appears that the voting systems are functioning properly, but votes could still be shifted or lost in small percentages, enough to affect the outcome of an election, within the self-auditing machines. Whether this occurs maliciously or accidentally, it presents a frightening prospect. Thankfully, new products are being developed that provide the voter with a way to determine that their ballot has been tabulated correctly, without revealing the contents of their vote, but deployment of such systems is a few years down the road."

For these reasons, Dr. Mercuri has requested a moratorium on the purchase of any new voting systems that do not provide, at minimum, a voter-verified, hand-recountable, physical (paper) ballot while appropriate laws, standards, and technologies are developed that will provide accurate, secure, reliable, and auditable voting systems. She urges MIT, CalTech, and other concerned scientists, public officials and private citizens to join her in this cause.
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:17 AM
Response to Reply #7
60. Also: CalTech/MIT VTP Anonymous report REFUTED by CalTech Dean
Did ya happen to notice that this famous CalTech/MIT report wasn't even signed?
Kinda like the bush v Gore decision by the traitorous Supremes.

Another blog entry on the same webpage:
The CalTech Dean not only disagreed with the findings of this report, he even stated that "an investigation is warranted".

http://www.commongroundcommonsense.org/forums/lofiversi...

lawnorder
Nov 22 2004, 06:20 PM

Cal Tech / MIT VTP Anonymous report REFUTED by Cal Tech Dean

QUOTE
An investigation is warranted says Dean

In a little unnoticed paragraph on today's MSNBC -(Keith Olbermann)'s blog we see that SOMEONE at Cal Tech decided to say something about that pitiful "Anonymous" report issued to repeat the Rovian tag line of "no fraud indications found"

...said "an investigation is warranted"


The Dean is PART of VTP too!

MIT Arts and Social Sciences Dean Charles Stewart - said more than that. "There is an interesting pattern here that I hope someone looks into."

Stewart is part of the same Cal Tech/MIT Voting Project that had earlier issued a preliminary report suggesting that there was no evidence of significant voting irregularity in Florida. Dean Stewart added he didn't necessarily buy the Berkeley conclusion .. and still thought there were other options...


He, he, he... I knew that an unsigned report meant no one at Cal Tech's / MIT VTP dared to publicly stand behind that pile of bushite! -- law

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6533008/#041121a
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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 06:52 PM
Response to Original message
10. Brilliant. Proud to know you man. K & R nt for now
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AtLiberty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 06:56 PM
Response to Original message
11. I heard the interview on AAR by Al Franken...
Franken said that the number one question he is asked at book signings is about electronic voting fraud.

You'd *think* he catch on...
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Joe for Clark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 07:17 PM
Response to Original message
12. One of the best threads I ever read -
Strongly kicked.

I do not want to close off any avenue of how this election theft happened - That anyone could make claims that they "probably know" - makes many of us sick to our stomache, especially some comedian that barely graduated high school.

You should read this thread twice.

Joe for Clark (or Gore at this point)

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understandinglife Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 07:18 PM
Response to Original message
13. "Beware those who would deny you information. For in their heart, they ...
Edited on Fri Mar-31-06 07:18 PM by understandinglife
... they see themselves (as) your Master."

And the single most important tidbit of information you need to know is that your vote was recorded exactly as you intend.

Recommended. You've created a strong educational missive, Paul, and I'll certainly do all I can to spread it to others. I would hope you can convince Arianna Huffington to allow you to blog it at Huffington Post, and that Brad Friedman will post it at Brad Blog, for starters (Brad can perhaps help get Arianna to have it appear at HuffPo). Do send it to Congressman Conyers, as well.


Not one line of software between a voter and a valid election.
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 09:20 PM
Response to Reply #13
24. Thanks UL that would be great. I don't have any rolodex of blog contacts
or know how to reach people like those at Huffington Post. I can rewrite it slightly with a more general audience in mind.
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understandinglife Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 09:54 PM
Response to Reply #24
28. If you re-write it, as you indicate ...
... then I can certainly email it to Brad and David and ask them to have you guest blog it at Brad Blog and ask Brad if he'd send it to Arianna.


Peace.
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Sinti Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 07:42 PM
Response to Original message
15. Excellent Post!
Of course, if some extremely clever, and not GOP-affiliated hacker decided to hack the machines ...
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 08:07 PM
Response to Reply #15
16. Thanks Sinti! And Welcome to DU !!!!
Have fun! :party: til you :puke:
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Bill Bored Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 08:07 PM
Response to Original message
17. This is why conspiracy and coincidence theorists alike should agree:
A federal voting systems standard that allows a 10% failure rate is un-fucking-acceptable!

See this thread:
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 08:23 PM
Response to Original message
19. Runaway Train is exactly right, but I would make the allegory a lot...
simpler.

I did this riff on it. Just for laughs.

-----

The Vote on the Runaway Train

Passengers are on board a brand new, super-duper electronic wonder of a train, in which everything including the engine is controlled electronically, and in which there are no engineers and no porters or ticket takers or human persons of any kind to answer questions. Passengers begin noticing they are on the wrong route--somehow they'd gotten onto the wrong track. The scenery is wrong. The train speeds up until the scenery becomes a blur--they are going hundreds of miles an hour, barreling through street crossings, with the ding-ding warnings whizzing past them. Someone has a compass--the direction is wrong. The train is going much too fast, past the wrong scenery, along the wrong track, in the wrong direction.

The passengers approach the car divider door, to try to find someone to tell them what the hell's going on. The doors are locked. When they rattle the doors, a sweet recorded voice is heard over a speaker, and says, "Step back from the door, please. Do not shake the door." They break the glass. Alarms go off, and canisters of tear gas are automatically emitted. They try to bash the computer connections, but back-up computers come on line, and big steel bars go down between the cars--just after they've broken the second glass window and gotten through to the next car. They alert the other passengers. All move forward in the train, breaking windows and suffering tear gas, until someone figures out how to shutdown the computers before they emit tear gas and cage them in. They fight their way to the engine, which is heavily barricaded with automatic defenses, but they finally get in.

Since the train is all computerized and automatic, there are no obvious communication devices. Passengers start dialing 800 numbers for the train company, on their cell phones, and are having to navigate elaborate automatic phone message systems that never get you to a human being, and have no category for reporting emergencies. They cry out in frustration.

The train speeds up further, and passengers are falling all over the place, trying to hold onto things to keep steady. There are cries of pain and cries of fear.

A couple of computer tech passengers start looking over the engine console, for ways to shut down the train. They consider unplugging it from the power source, but are concerned that the train will just continue at current momentum, to their deaths. They want to put on the brake, but how to do that is not obvious.

Meanwhile, one of them figures out a way to send an email message to the Central Control computer. At first, it seems like they are communicating with a human being. The questions and answers seem reasonable. But then Central Control asks that a vote be taken among the passengers as to how many think that the train is out of control, barreling toward disaster. Although this seems like an insane question, Control is insistent; so they take a vote. 628 passengers aboard, and 627 agree that the train is rushing them to their deaths. The holdout is a crazy guy, drunk as a skunk, who thinks it's all an hallucination.

Given this vote information, Control replies, "Let me speak to the 'no' vote." The drunk guy is given access to the electronic messaging system. Control tells him, "You are in charge."

Through the drunk guy, Control requests the name of every passenger and the name of their insurance company. At this point, the passengers obtain heavy objects and begin smashing the computer console. A techie manages to disconnect the power source while this is happening. The train eventually comes to a halt, a hundred miles later, out in the middle of nowhere, luckily having hit no major obstacles along the way, and not having derailed, but passengers had nevertheless suffered broken legs and arms, banged their heads, suffered heart attacks (no fatalities), suffered tear gas effects, and were emotionally traumatized. They step off the train in a daze.

Eventually they are found, restored to their loved ones and their lives, and file a lawsuit. In the course of the lawsuit, through lies and skulduggery and deceit, the train company manages to convince the court that the train was operating at its normal high speed, that it was following an alternative, roundabout track and eventually would have been going in the right direction, that the passengers panicked, and, when they damaged the first computer (that emitted tear gas), they damaged the main engine computer as well, and it was only then that the train went out of control.

Powerful financial interests are of course tied up in this new train's reputation. The train's lawyers manage to push all liability off onto the passengers' personal insurers, and they also countersue the passengers for damage to their train--but, through some bizarre turns of events in the courtroom, it all hinges on whether or not the passengers apprised the company that an emergency was in progress.

The passengers had told stories about the vote that Central Control had insisted on. 627 = pro-emergency, 1 = no emergency. The train's lawyers say this was a fantasy, a delusion, among panicked passengers--no train company computer in its right mind would demand a vote of the passengers in an emergency situation. The techie passengers say that there should be a record of the communication in the Central Control computer. The train company could find no such record. And the smashed up train engine console had, of course, been cleared out by the train company and smashed into dust by a smashing machine--after a quick sign-off by all ruling authorities--so there was no record of the vote at either end of the communication.

Most of the passengers suffered financial ruin. The court ordered them to pay tens of thousands of dollars to the train company. They lost their insurers and their businesses and homes. Some even ended up committing suicide. It was BushWorld and the courts gave no credence to ordinary people, even 627 of them. They were not "experts." They were not "professionals." Their perception of the train's speed, or the danger they were in, could only be judged by specialists and the state-of-the-art computer system that trained and certified engineers had created.

The drunk guy made a fortune, however, selling the story of the insane passengers to Faux News.

Lesson: Never trust your vote to a computer.

:rofl:

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McCamy Taylor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-16-06 11:54 PM
Response to Reply #19
174. Good story! This should be animated or done in comic strip form.
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Stevepol Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 08:24 PM
Response to Original message
20. K&R. I heard the AAR interview too. Somebody needs to confront Al
and ask him who this unnamed MIT prof is, and somehow it would be good if this very fine Land Shark article could be shown to Franken. Franken is more amenable to the election fraud thesis now than he used to be, but he just hasn't read enough about this or been influenced enough by those around him in the know.

I also wonder about the OH example, which is a good example for those who want to deny that computer fraud has played a role because there weren't that many places where electronic voting machines were used. But isn't the critical point not the voting machines but THE CENTRAL TABULATORS??

I believe the central tabulating was done at least partly thru Triad it seems to me and there were many stories were there not that strongly suggested that these were where the results were flipped?

The 05 referendums in OH were blatantly fraudulent, so however it's being done, it's being done easily without leaving a trace. In the referendum, the results were completely flipped, from 65% in favor to 65% opposed. That only happens with a kind of Harri Hursti type of operation.

I think the central tabulators are what we should focus on in pointing out the machine fraud. The individual machines are at fault in many parts of the country, such that there's a definite Republican "tilt" of maybe 3% or so all across the country. But in OH there had to have more than that so were forced to use the central tabulators I feel sure.

Anyway, this Land Shark article is well worth the reading.
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 09:18 PM
Response to Reply #20
23. I'll clean up a couple typos and send it via express mail to Franken
if someone else (1) gets a good address for him and (2) organizes a petition and letter writing compaign so we send along with the piece, say, 100 short letters asking Franken to read these 4 pages, please. Otherwise he might not at all. I'm sure he gets a hundred letters a day from people.
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Votergater Donating Member (91 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 09:25 PM
Response to Original message
25. Other than a whistleblowing vendor CEO or programmer
what physical or written documented evidence could realistically constitute proof of election rigging on an electronic voting system?



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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 09:28 PM
Response to Reply #25
26. Well, now that is the $3.8 billion question. HAVA 'nother good one?
Edited on Fri Mar-31-06 09:36 PM by Land Shark
such a good question, worth asking in ten different ways:

Excuse me but you mr election official, you've thought about security a lot, right?

Right.

And you're concerned to spot election fraud if it happens, right?

RIght.

So you're keeping your eyes open at all times right?

Of course

What specifically are you looking for, in terms of smoking guns?

:wtf:
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Votergater Donating Member (91 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 09:53 PM
Response to Reply #26
27. Exactly the problem.
Edited on Fri Mar-31-06 10:06 PM by Votergater
Ion Sancho could not have detected Harri Hursti's memory card hack unless he hand counted the eight hand-voted paper Optical Scan ballots. The Hursti Hack election was rigged to produce a win for the 'yes' vote by 7 to 1... Not a close election, so no recount, so no suspicion alerting the election supervisor anything was wrong.

So the answer has to be to have a mandatory random hand count.

But the re-count in Ohio 2004 was largely rigged to ensure the Nov 2nd result was never challenged.

So the answer has to be better laws.

But the laws that are already there are being ignored and broken.

So.... so... :nuke:
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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 09:57 PM
Response to Reply #26
29. Well, in the Ukraine they used exit polls, as does most of the civilized
world.

But the rest of the world doesn't have quite the gang of war profiteering corporate news monopolies that we have here.
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 12:47 AM
Response to Reply #25
121. Darn goog question! A really good audit procedure is about the only
thing...and even then, what's to prove it's rigging as opposed to just a "glitch?"
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yowzayowzayowza Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 05:23 AM
Response to Reply #121
132. At least an audit procedure will...
identify the problem. We've gotta stop trusting the machines by default. The election process should assume failure, not perfection, on the part of the machines. Otherwise, we're not just blindfolded, but really truly blind.

Thx LandShark.

:kick:
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 02:01 PM
Response to Reply #132
143. maybe instead of jumping thru all these hoops, we should just get rid
Edited on Sun Apr-02-06 02:02 PM by Amaryllis
of the damn machines and use paper ballots, like in Oregon and VT! Novel idea...
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 02:07 PM
Response to Reply #143
144. OR and VT use OpScan.

Not as bad as a DRE, but no less hackable.

In some ways, I think OpScans are MORE vulnerable (Hursti's findings aside), but I don't like pointing that out too emphatically.

So yes, "we should just get rid of the damn machines". All of them.

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yowzayowzayowza Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 03:03 PM
Response to Reply #144
147. Oh gawd, more luddite "blame the machines" garbage.
n/t
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 03:25 PM
Response to Reply #147
148. And your suggestion is...?
I agree that appropriate auditing is a very helpful component, particularly with OpScan. With DRE's however, I have little faith that auditing will be of much value in that it seems unlikely the voter will really check VVPAT (if they have it).

I'm no luddite (and hold a patent to help back that up! ;) ). I refer to myself as an anti-technology technologist. My engineering background informs that position.

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yowzayowzayowza Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 03:44 PM
Response to Reply #148
150. Simple:
Edited on Sun Apr-02-06 03:52 PM by yowzayowzayowza
1. Bring the automated electoral process quality control level up to that of the manual process. We would not trust any one person to count the votes unaudited. We certainly should not trust any one device to count the votes unaudited. No amount of certification or testing can earn that trust. EVERY Opscan device should face QC audits in EVERY election. "Trust, but verify"

2. Minimize automation to the most basic Opscan device: count and print totals. PERIOD. No memory, no automated tabulation.

DREs are vote stealing machines. Too many loop holes. Nuf said.

...an anti-technology technologist. My engineering background informs that position.

Me too.
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 08:02 PM
Response to Reply #144
154. Yes, OR uses opscans to count the ballots. AND one of the main
hurdles in OR and VT is to get people to understand that paper is just the first step; that the absolulte minimum if opscans are going to be used to count the paper is rigorous audits and open source software.

ONe of the issues that gets me on my soapbox is taht we don't talk nearly enough about the vote counting even when paper ballots are used becasue of the emphasis the problems of DREs.And yes, opscans are just as hackable, but at least you have paper to count, which is useless unless you live in a state where you actually can get audits and recounts.
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helderheid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 10:05 PM
Response to Original message
30. K & R EXCELLENT!!!
:yourock:
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rateyes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 10:34 PM
Response to Original message
31. K & R.....
We'd better wake up in this nation. Time to march in the streets.

:kick:
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AndyTiedye Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 03:42 AM
Response to Reply #31
49. We've Been Doing That. The Press Ignores It. Nobody Notices.
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 04:06 AM
Response to Reply #49
50. I fully understand, but we got to stop tv/press as determining The Real
The demo is real, and powerful, because X hundred or Y Thousand did that, and they are the tip of the a larger iceberg.

Of course, everybody wants the magnification effect of media. yet we all know the media is farther and farther from being either real or fair and yet we still want it's approval so badly

I'd suggest doing events, but not doing events that either are, or appear to be, designed or courting press attention. People intuitively now see that as fake,
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 12:48 AM
Response to Reply #50
122. So what kinda events, then?
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rateyes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 07:39 AM
Response to Reply #49
54. I'm not talking just marching....
I'm talking MLK type non-violent civil-disobedient resistance. I'm talking "Declaration of Independence" time to throw off the tyranny.
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AndyTiedye Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:41 PM
Response to Reply #54
73. That's Why They are Moving Towards a Theocracy.
Can you find a single instance in all of recorded history
of a theocracy being removed in this way? I can't.
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rateyes Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #73
76. Israel...70 C.E. nt
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rumpel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 10:36 PM
Response to Original message
32. Great post, yet again.
:)

On "Intent or no intent" a human being can be questioned, however any kind of machinery poses problems in making such determination. This directly leads to the issue of transparency, the fact that many, if not the majority of voters have absolutely no idea or care, how computers work, how software works, even in basic terms is the culprit of:

a) the non existing debate among the general voter ( I don't understand it anyway, I don't have the time to check the controversy, all I know is it is high tech it just works, whatever that is -mentality)
b) polls being manned by volunteers being "trained" to work and attend the machines they could not possibly learn inside and out in 4 weeks time, when even election officials have no clear understanding of the machines
c) transparency can be veiled at any time in the process until the total tallying, even observers just see the exterior of the machine, could they assure or "prove", no beams were directed at or beamed out of the units...

How do you prove what is by nature invisible to the naked eye?

Transparency can not exist under these circumstances.

Yes, the trains engine needs to be stormed, I surely hope the Grand Old Passengers will join.
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vanboggie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 10:48 PM
Response to Original message
33. Excellent approach to take with the naysayers
Thank you Land Shark. Our state is being set up for theft in 06. We have the son of a huge donor running for gov - it will happen unless a miracle occurs to stop it.

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file83 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 10:58 PM
Response to Original message
34. Great post. Government has NEVER been about TRUST. It's about
Edited on Fri Mar-31-06 10:58 PM by file83
CHECKS AND BALANCES. That's all we want - a system that CAN'T be TAMPERED WITH. We want transparency. Is that too much to ask for?

Don't answer that.
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kster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-31-06 11:51 PM
Response to Original message
36. Let me guess the comedian that said this
"more likely than not that 2004 Ohio presidential voting was not hacked". Which by the way didn't sound too dang funny to me neither.

The information about these vote stealing machines is in books and on the web, maybe just maybe Al isn't much of a reader, but yet he sure loves to write books.




Great thread Landshark... K&R..........
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 12:40 AM
Response to Reply #36
37. Franken gets up to the fork in the road and he CAN'T GET PAST IT
And many times going past it and "looking under the rock" might show nothing, but sometimes or even oftentimes it WOULD. But in either case Franken can't go there.

Look at the subtitle of his book "LIES and the Lying Liars Who Tell them". This means that Franken especially if running for office but even if not, has to be especially careful not to open himself up to the charge that he himself is "lying".

Forks in the road are free-fire zones and cross fire zones. So, no can do for Franken.
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kster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:08 AM
Response to Reply #37
39. As Stevepol said up thread
Somebody needs to confront Al.

Because if Al avoids telling ALL the truths about these vote stealing machines it is pretty much the same as ( Sorry AL ) LYING.
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kster Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 02:38 AM
Response to Reply #37
126. I'm sorry, I don't get
this post, why can't "Franken go there"? Or"Franken no can do"? I'm sorry I just don't get this post.

One question, is Franken Lying, or does he avoid telling the truth, so that he doesn't appear to be lying?
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 02:56 AM
Response to Reply #126
127. The calculation is that it's safer to do what he does, plus
one can appear to defend that position.

It is in the nature of plausible deniability that the position taken by Franken is,... plausible. UNTIL you start looking at the totality of a whole lot of facts at the same time. But how many people have that level of education?

every public figure isunder a lot of pressure to conform. So much so that it ought to be a scandal, that's most of what I mean by "no can do"; the perception of risk is very high when it comes to talking about this subect publicly, but it is loosening up.

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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 12:52 AM
Response to Original message
38. Great post! Will have to read again tomorrow when I am not so tired, but
I reallly noted this:
"This is why TRANSPARENCY is so VERY important. It is indispenable, and in fact MORE IMPORTANT THAN ACCURACY (if we were forced to choose)."

Without transparency, there is no way to know if we HAVE accuracy.
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:37 AM
Response to Reply #38
41. and, without transparency, THERE'S NO FEEDBACK MECHANISMS
to either (1) correct the course of the state or federal government that the elections concern -- against the wishes of anyone controlling the election and (2) there's no informational feedback loop to force corrections in the SOFTWARE.

Thus, (talking about nonintentional "glitches" here) while the "glitches" that are visible to us may get corrected eventually, the "glitches" that are invisible will be highly likely not to get corrected. And the invisible areas are much larger than the visible areas.
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AuntiBush Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:12 AM
Response to Original message
40. Excellent Post.
A must read, even if you have to re-read it several times over just to "get it."
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Ellipsis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:49 AM
Response to Original message
42. A couple of things
Franken has always hedged on this issue and while he states it is unlikely... unlikely does not mean it did not happen. He does not rule it out. I can understand his position in looking forward to his potential senate run, rather then cling to the past as an effort for the greater good. It is not for him to rock the vote but for us. Given real facts I am sure he would be the first to report it.

I am in Agreement with Stevepol the focus should be on the tabulators and I am surprised that more focus has not been given to the TRIAD equipment, and even possibly abuse of the voter registration databases. If there was a concerted effort in election fraud the tabulators would have been the QC to guarantee the outcome.

Some things to consider:

After the votes were actually counted in Florida in the 2000 election it was shown that Al Gore won and should have been President.
The rules are clear. Once the electoral college votes thats it, game over, no going back.

There is a limited time between November 4th and the recount window. Why did Ohio drag it's feet?

Why did the exit polls computers crash in 2000 and then again in 2004? One would think after 2000 adjustments would have been made to prevent this from happening again.

The combination of problems in Ohio, lack of equipment in heavily democratic areas and other such shenanigans, the lock down of one county under false pretenses containing a central tabulators, the fact that technicians, were left alone with tabulating equipment and encouraged writing recount numbers on a wall, the random non random selection of the counties to be recounted, individuals now under incitement for scandal of missing funds DOES point to the potential fraud.

Why are we not allowed now to go in and do an actual physical count of the actual votes?

How can anyone feel comfortable given the problems of the 2000 and 2004 and the current climate of our country as we go into the 2006 election and not want use physical ballots given what is at stake?



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Peace Patriot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:18 AM
Response to Original message
44. K&R!
:applause: :patriot: :applause:
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:24 AM
Response to Original message
45. Underneath every DECEPTION scheme is contempt.
"The passengers removed the blindfolds and stormed the engine. The terrorists against democracy turned out to be more pathetic than the man behind the curtain in the Wizard of Oz.

It's just that, in returning to their seats and now enjoying the train ride much more than before, those of both political parties that see themselves as the Masters of Democracy or even the Masters of the Universe were already secretly preparing the next set of blindfolds. But this time, every compartment on the train had regular visual and audio reminders that said:

"Beware those who would deny you information. For in their heart, they see themselves your Master."

The Masters have failed, they are no longer necessary because they can't function to protect our country. In fact, they've become a menace to the world. They've constructed a society in which 3% of the world's population produces 25% of the pollution leaiding the destructive parade heading toward global oblivion.

The passengers had better storm the engine soon or the shades obscuring the view of our beloved country will be replaced by so much soot there will be no view capable or worthy of observation.

Time is running out.
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Breeze54 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:26 AM
Response to Original message
46. Thank You!
:kick:
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:57 AM
Response to Reply #46
47. You're Welcome, come by and post even more next time ; )
Thanks for the kick. I'm hoping that this will be my #1 personal best on that level
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GuvWurld Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 03:42 AM
Response to Original message
48. This post is very insightful into meta-framing
It is not enough just to be adept at framing issues. We must also be conscious of how others are framing things so that at times we can choose not to validate or reinforce an unwelcome frame. But then there is more still, to framing, which Land Shark excels at and which I think can fairly be called meta-framing.

This is where red herrings, or false alternatives, are identified and cast aside. This is where arguments which should never be allowed are tagged for irrelevance, or labeled as the intentionally divisive efforts that they are. It takes a mentor to our movement to write something so instructive as to steer us around these needless points of contention.

It is surely not realistic to think one could win every single argument in one's lifetime. The growing, maturing, evolving human learning this lesson is not picking up the finer points of rhetorical flourish so that a non-perfect record could at least be a little better. No, learning to overcome the human nature tendency of self-sabotage requires understanding when to exercise patience, when to (and not to) turn the other cheek, and ultimately how to avoid unnecessary battles in life.

I commend Land Shark for taking on this role, for offering us the educational value that makes the difference between an essay on framing and one about meta-framing. I suspect, too, that Land Shark would attach a similar description to my many efforts aimed at discouraging endless, no-win debates about historical election data (see: Why Old Election Numbers No Longer Matter).

When you get down to it, we are all concerned about the conditions under which our elections are currently held. If we are honest with ourselves then we conclude that there is no rational basis for confidence in current election results and we are instead being asked to accept them on blind trust. Any discussion of candidates and campaigns, just as any discussion of election outcomes or recounts, suggests that we have lost some of our framing discipline. To venture into any of these topics is to concede that current conditions allow for a legitimate election capable of producing a sound basis for discussing these topics. We know that is a dishonest premise, and from Land Shark's teachings here we are reminded to avoid such futile exchanges or at least to re-frame them to bring others into debating on our terms.
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 05:08 PM
Response to Reply #48
99. Youre right about the meta framing. He is so skilled at picking up
others' frames that obfuscate the issues, as well as coming up with his own frames.
I just was struck once again by how many really smart people hang out here...
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eridani Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 05:57 AM
Response to Original message
51. Yes, transparency is even more important than accuracy
The following David Dill quote says it all--
http://www.tompaine.com/articles/2006/03/07/making_demo...

The election fraud debate frames the problem incorrectly. The question should not be whether there is widespread election fraud. It should be: "Why should we trust the results of elections?" It's not good enough that election results be accurate. We have to know they are accurateand we don't.




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livvy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 06:48 AM
Response to Original message
52. Nice post! K&R.
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stellanoir Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 06:57 AM
Response to Original message
53. great analysis Land Shark & not to derail (no pun intended)
Your train analogy reminded of another one albeit loosely related.

During the summer of '04 when Kerry was getting "swift boated" mercilessly I heard an older journalist say that in the past a story would be researched for days if not weeks or months before going to press for the morning & evening papers. He furthered that with the advent of the 24/7 news cycle in depth research went out the window. He referenced a train with the first flash of info being the locomotive of a train. He said once a story comes out, some still dig for details and the truth unltimately does come out. It's in the caboose. By the time it passes no one is paying attention anymore.

K&R-ed
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Votergater Donating Member (91 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 07:41 AM
Response to Original message
55. There have always been 'backdoors' in America's voting systems
... I don't believe they were ever supposed to be secure. The counties are the primary customers and they have always wanted their own ways into the system to over-ride problems, or erase vote totals.

Diebold's earlier touchscreen machines have an invisible over-ride button on the screen. The question with things like that is - who knows it is there?

Harri Hursti came into this from the outside, and his first assumption was that of course the voting systems would be at least as secure as the major telecomunications technology he is familiar with. He assumed wrong.
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acmejack Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:02 AM
Response to Original message
56. This is one of the finest threads on DU yet!
And that's saying a mouthful. It's also placing it up there in the rarefied atmosphere with some mighty fine company, the very finest IMO.

Thank you for this wonderful and illuminating post Land Shark!
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mom cat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:13 AM
Response to Original message
58. Great post Land Shark! the only possible explanation for the
"anomoliies that TIA found was that there was a systematic fraud campaign going on!
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:35 AM
Response to Original message
61. Here's a link for the controversial CalTech/MIT report re: 2004 election.
http://vote.caltech.edu/media/documents/VotingMachines3...

This report, just like the bush v. Gore decision in 2000, was unsigned -- apparently the only unsigned paper on their site in 2004.
The report was refuted by Rebecca Mercuri -- and even the Dean of CalTech, who stated that "an investigation is warranted"

(More in reply #60 up-thread)
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wtmusic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 10:57 AM
Response to Original message
63. Good analysis Land Shark
Edited on Sat Apr-01-06 10:57 AM by wtmusic
Unlikely that Franken knows enough about the issue to make a comment like that, but it seems where two election-related conditions are met:

1) the race is critical
2) the race is close

it's very easy (for either side) to slip into a "crisis of confidence" when anomalies surface.

Bruce Schneier, one of the world's most respected authorities on computer security, has said that computerized voting is a "horrendously dangerous idea" and I agree. Even with paper copies the idea that they could ever be practically used as a backup (most people would throw them away) is not realistic.

Answer? Stick to punch cards, or even better, PVV (Publicly-Verified Voting), where every vote is publicly verified yet anonymous.

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troubleinwinter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 11:00 AM
Response to Original message
64. I hope MANY eyes see this.
Without transparency and verification, we have no idea if we have a democracy or not.

If there is any question of whether the count is accurate or not accurate; inaccuracies or fraud likely or unlikely; miscounts or hacking intentional or unintentional, we might just as well let the candidates simply flip a coin.

Thank you, Land Shark.
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 12:31 PM
Response to Reply #64
65. Thank you, troubleinwinter, acmejack, and everyone else that's posted
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Nothing Without Hope Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 12:41 PM
Response to Original message
66. Important insights that need to be shared widely. K & R!!!
You might want to make a statement (perhaps you already have - I haven't read the entire thread yet) that what you wrote can be posted in its entirety (with link) on other people's blogs. If anyone can come up with a powerful editorial cartoon or even a simple image to match the message, that might be helpful in getting people to read it too.

Thank you for this. I'm so glad to have you fighting to retrieve democracy in this country.
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annabanana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 12:47 PM
Response to Original message
67. How to get the Proof on the other foot?
How do we demand proof that these machines are fair and accurate? Why shouldn't that be the standard? Why is it up to us to prove that there have been failures?

And how did it get to this point?
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Chi Donating Member (921 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 12:50 PM
Response to Original message
68. Oh Hell Yes!! Very nicely done Land Shark. K&R
Think I may just start using the 'blinders' terminology on those who
consistently stick their heads in the sand.
........ :applause: :applause: :applause:
... :applause: :applause: :applause: :applause:
:applause: :applause: :applause: :applause: :applause:
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FogerRox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:01 PM
Response to Original message
69. I dont think Franken fits in with all the other AAR hosts Randi, Malloy,
Laura Flanders, et al.

Franken screwed up twice this week, he said Globalism is here to stay. Anyone who has read Kevin Philip's "Wealth & Democracy" knows he (Franken) is wrong. Globalism is a construct of the corporatists, who relish having a Feudal society.

Part of the plan to install the corporatists hegonomy is to contro; the largest military in the world, the US military. AS LS has cited, this includes control of the media, as a central foundation for other take overs. Such as the electorial process.

Land Sharks post deals with Franken stating the MIT researchers claim no touch screen voting machines were hacked in Ohio in 2004. The MIT researchers Franken allude to are funded by a number of right wing-nuts such as the Olin Foundation.


I dont think Franken's doleing out of this brand of Kool aid should be tolerated. Franken needs to be taken to the wood shed.

Please recommend Land Sharks post, this is big and deserves much attention. SO please lets send his post to the top of the greatest page. Please.
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freedomfries Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:19 PM
Response to Reply #69
70. doomsday devices: "glitches," and ... yes, TYPOS!
thanks for your masterful essay, Landshark!
Well, what could be less intentional than a typo?
Well, as voter registration databases are now beeing forcefully added to the arsenal of the doomesday vote-eating machinery, even typos can turn into potent weapons capable of purging scores of voters off the stage of active democracy!
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:33 PM
Response to Reply #70
71. quite true freedomfries, future post may be on pollbook fraud tips
your most welcome, freedomfries, and would you like fries with that? (otherwise, it's just cake for you and all of us)
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WhiteTara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:36 PM
Response to Original message
72. Thanks LandShark
for pointing me to your great article. I have such strong feelings about our democracy being stolen through voting machines and every article that addresses this the most serious of all issues is a big Yeah! moment for me. Our county elections supervisor is speaking to the democratic club in our area and I intend to grill her.
Keep up your great work
LBN
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stillcool Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:41 PM
Response to Original message
74. Human nature has quite a track record....
but it seems the road of life's lessons is one-way. You can't understand what humanity is capable of until it is witnessed first-hand.
"The struggle of man against tyranny is the struggle of memory against forgetting." Milan Kundera

"Anti-conspiracists insist that, unlike the rest of us, the rich
and powerful do not act with deliberate intent."
Michael Parenti

In a roomful of smoking guns, they demand a smoking cannon.

The well-known term "conspiracy" may not actually serve us very
well, since it suggests an arcane aberration rather than the
normal workings of our ruling class.


The trivialization of conspiracism may itself be a conspiracy.

Humpty-Dumpty was pushed.

With the JFK assassination we gave up part of our democracy and
we're not going to get it back unless we find out who did it.
Prof. Peter Dale Scott sees the JFK assassination as an "internal
adjustment".


http://www.killinghope.org/
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Jack Rabbit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 01:57 PM
Response to Original message
75. The possibility of fraud in these machines in astounding
Edited on Sat Apr-01-06 02:39 PM by Jack Rabbit
EDITED for typing.

I wrote computer programs for 25 years and know what I am talking about. Anybody who has ever taken and received a passing grade in a basic lower-division programming course would be expected to have the skills to rig an election, especially in an environment where the voting software is the property of the manufacturer and beyond public scrutiny.

To write a module for counting a vote in pseudo-code, it would look like this:

MODULE CountVote (iTotalVotes AS INTEGER, iVotesCandidateX AS INTEGER, iVotesCandidateY AS INTEGER,
. . . . . . . . swVoteX AS LOGICAL, swVoteY AS LOGICAL):

DECLARE n CONSTANT INTEGER 100.

ASSIGN iTotalVotes = iTotalVotes + 1.

IF iTotalVotes < n THEN DO:
. . ASSIGN iVotesCandidateX = iVotesCandidateX + 1.
ELSE DO:
. . IF swVoteX THEN ASSIGN iVotesCandidateX = iVotesCandidateX + 1. ENDIF.
. . IF swVoteY THEN ASSIGN iVotesCandidateY = iVotesCandidateY + 1. ENDIF.
ENDIF.

RETURN iTotalVotes, iVotesCandidateX, iVotesCandidateY.

END MODULE.

The first 100 votes are recorded for Candidate X, regardless of for whom the vote was actually cast. If there is a verification module, one who voted for Candidate Y may still be informed that he voted for Candidate Y, yet the vote still counted for Candidate X. Paper trails are little assurance against voter fraud in this kind of environment.

This, of course, would be no accident.

The only assurance we have against these machines being used fraudulently is not to use them. Votes should be recorded on paper and only the paper ballot counted. Electronic machines may be an aid in voting, but they should not be the vote recorder under any circumstances.

There are some things that should be pointed out about computers that make them wholly unsatisfactory for the purpose proposed, even excluding willful fraud.

Another thing to point out about computers is that damaged hardware can make the software do some very funny things. What happens when coffee is spilled on your keyboard? I have also worked with a computer whose memory nodes melted after the air conditioning in the room in which it was stored failed. This, too, can happen.

Who among us has not had the experience of data being lost in a power failure? I've had hours of work lost under those circumstances. Could one's right to vote be canceled by a lightning storm? Yes, it could.

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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:34 PM
Response to Reply #75
78. yes, manuals from vendors confirm that ballots WILL be lost onpowerdown
Edited on Sat Apr-01-06 02:41 PM by Land Shark
not that it "could" happen, so you are understating the case, but thanks for your info above, it's great!

the ess manual tells us that even in a "graceful" powerdown the ballot will be lost.

on edit: for a specific example see post 81 below, with link and excerpted text for ballots lost
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tom_paine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:28 PM
Response to Original message
77. K & R -- facsinating post, nice allegory
To carry it a bit further, it's not unlike the semi-fictitious tail spun about Flight 93.

What concerns me is that, like their friends and possible employees the 9/11 hijackers, will the Busheviks rather see the plane go down in flames rather than have us break through the cockpit door and into the "engine".

Halliburton Homeland Detention Camps a-buildin' and the utter ineptidtude (perhaps purposeful?) of the Busheviks in securing our ports, chemical/nuclear plants, etc. suggests this as a possibility.
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livvy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:35 PM
Response to Original message
79. Just read through one or two of these sets of directions.
These are directions for some of the commonly used machines:
Diebold OS
ESS AutoMARK
ESS iVotronic
ESS M100, etc.
The ways to intentionally or accidentally mess up the results are quite evident. What should be a fairly simple process becomes a tangled confusing mess with these machines.

Here's a sampling of some of the directions from a couple of the PDF's:

12. Press START. If there were election totals saved to the election
definition Zip disk, the M650 will automatically load them as well. If
this is the case, this message will be displayed:
Totals Present in Database
Zero Totals or Press Start to continue
**If you did not receive this message, proceed to step #15.

23. Set the appropriate SORT options by pressing BLANK, OVERVOTE,
SPECIAL, and/or WRITE-IN. The word, ON will light up. The
election staff decides which of these ballots to sort for and what to do
when the scanner identifies one of them.

41. CAUTION! Press NO. Pressing yes will cause the election results to be erased. Be very careful when answering this question. After pressing NO, the scanner displays the message, ELECTION CARD INSERTED, OPEN POLLS NOW?

NOTE: Perform Steps 32-35 to manually transmit results from your location to election headquarters.
32. Ensure the scanner is connected to the correct telephone cord.
33. From the POLL CLOSED menu, press SEND RESULTS. The scanner automatically dials the phone number programmed into the scanners modem and transmits the election results.
34. If the transfer fails, attempt to send results again.
35. If the transfer fails again, call election headquarters for instructions.

Cast/Cancel the Vote for the Voter Who Walked Away If a voter leaves without casting their own ballot, the ballot will have to be Cast or Cancelled according to state or local law. If the ballot has not been selected, the only option is to cancel the ballot. An open ballot left unattended (no screen activity), will begin chirping after 10 minutes. The poll worker should have someone return with them to the terminal, preferably someone of a different political party, to perform the following steps.
56. Reinsert the Supervisor PEB.
57. The screen displays Last ballot was not cast. Options are Cast Ballot or Cancel Ballot. As mandated by state or local law, select either Cast or Cancel.
58. The next screen will ask to confirm the previous choice and select either YES or NO.

The files are PDF's.
http://www.in.gov/sos/elections/workers/training/
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:40 PM
Response to Reply #79
81. here is the exact text on what happens on power lost
Adding Votes to the Scanner
NOTE: If there is a power failure, results from ballots scanned since
the last save to the internal hard drive will be lost. Those ballots will
need to be scanned again. If you are not completely sure which ballots
need to be re-scanned, you may need to start back at the point of the last
save to the external zip disk. This point should be accurately
documented with your zip disk as well as your processed ballots.
Another instance may be if you mistakenly zero the totals on a scanner.
Perform Steps 47 -53 to reload the scanner with the last totals saved to a
Zip disk.

--------------------------
Land Shark

the link to the info above is page 6 on this document:
<http://www.in.gov/sos/elections/workers/training/ESS%20... >

Note that a likely scenario involving the above procedures is clearly a glitch (power down) with ballots lost followed by human error in failing to improperly scan the ballots again. No story here.... and a good explanation of "discrepancies"
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livvy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:47 PM
Response to Reply #81
82. Just another "innocent" mistake. n/t
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BrklynLiberal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:38 PM
Response to Original message
80. Kicked and recommended and bookmarked..
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bleever Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 02:52 PM
Response to Original message
83. This is superb.
K&R for now; more thoughts later.

:thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup: :thumbsup:
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flyarm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 03:11 PM
Response to Original message
84. incredible !!!!!!!!!!! this is the best piece i have seen on vote stealing
kick & r!!!!!!!!

keep up the great work Landshark...you amaze me!!

and how greatful i am you are working for truth and honesty in voting!

fly
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FogerRox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 03:30 PM
Response to Reply #84
85. kickin for the truth to power by LS
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 03:37 PM
Response to Original message
86. Random collection here. I don't understand how Franken
Edited on Sat Apr-01-06 03:58 PM by sfexpat2000
can maintain his "evenhandedness" on this issue when his producer seems very interested in how elections work. Ben Wikler was on one of Mr. Conyers' panels last year, with other members of the media. He gave a very astute analysis of the youth vote in 2004. He seems to work very closely with Al on the show but also on the books.

- There are all kinds of blinkerings. I notice that country elections officials seem to be kept in a state of constant crisis as they try to implement HAVA. They don't get the promised Fed funds, they are worried about meeting deadlines, they are struggling unfamiliarity -- with the new equipment AND now, with the required databases. When do they have a moment to simply ask themselves, do these things work?

- Why is the more complicated fraud the best one? Aren't there more steps that I could fumble and so, be caught? I don't think I really understand this point.

- This sentence fuzzes me up at "just like elections" because the comparison is a bit buried for my old brain. "Then, just like elections, those who've placed the blindfolds on say you have no standing to challenge the blindfold or ask a court for its removal because you can't prove that you've been damaged or that damage is otherwise imminent."

- I think the blinkers would work just as well the fiction of being a "television news" consumer -- if the loud speaker keeps announcing you're fine and on time and that there's nothing so see, you become accustomed to not looking. (This might simplify the allegory. Might. As it is, it's clear.)

- I won't ask anyone to explain calibration to me. Today. But, I don't really know how it works (as a reader of this essay) and it sounds terrible. :scared:

And that's what your test lay consumer thought as she read.

It's wonderful, Land Shark. :hi:

/my grammatical glitch

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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 03:53 PM
Response to Reply #86
87. a couple quick responses
complication is more difficult, by definition, but the election fraudster has the advantage of a lot of time to plan. but actually it may not be all that hard for them. they stumble on a brilliant plan by accident, then just implement it. but anyway, i'm just saying that if the plan happens to be a bit more cimplicated or if it is more hidden or even conspiratorial, those things are each individually defenses that make it less likely to be detected based on how investigators and journalists think and act.

good observation on the rushed complication of hava. also a feeding frenzy at the govt trough all by itself suspends judgment, for a time. we will have to wait til that frenzy is over, then many will wake up with a hangover

"Just like elections". this is a point related to the law, perhaps too esoteric. I'm just saying that if one sues as a member of we the People, the obejction will be one of "standing" which means that one hasn't been sufficiently injured to bring a claim. $5 of injury will do it, but your country taken away?? not priceless, but worthless, say the courts often times. So standing is a way for people like the passengers on the train who become aware to have their cases bounced out of court. It's like the government, having been birthed by the people, saying "Who the hell are you? Get lost!"
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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 03:57 PM
Response to Reply #87
88. I'm very familiar with that "who the hell are you" situation, lol.
As the sentence stands,lol, it reads as if you are comparing elections to the people imposing the blindfolds. It's just a grammatical glitch.

Now, I'll go glitch myself. ;-)
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 04:31 PM
Response to Reply #88
93. Madame of grammar, yes, kindly glitch off
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 12:53 AM
Response to Reply #88
123. She's right, LS! I got hung up the same way on that sentence. :) .
Edited on Sun Apr-02-06 12:54 AM by Amaryllis
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 01:15 AM
Response to Reply #123
124. Nobody said she was wrong. Just said "glitch off" is all, To explain
when I'm rendered defenseless and speechless from now on, i'm simply going to use some form of the word "glitch". what's good for the goose is good for the gander.
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 11:29 AM
Response to Reply #124
139. You rendered speechless? I didn' t think that ever happened! :)
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JudyM Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 03:59 PM
Response to Original message
89. Fear of being discredited or criticized is poison to dem leaders.
We need to stand up for our democracy unflinchingly. Good post.
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Pastiche423 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 04:04 PM
Response to Original message
90. Kicked, recommended and bookmarked
for further digestion.
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greatauntoftriplets Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 04:18 PM
Response to Original message
91. It is nice to see Andy Stephenson's legacy live on....
:bounce:
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SOteric Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 04:22 PM
Response to Original message
92. Amazing post, LS. Kicked & Recommended!
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Time for change Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 04:40 PM
Response to Original message
94. My favorite part of this is your last sentence
Never in the history of our country have we been denied so much information by our own government, and they do indeed see themselves as our Masters. And with our corporate news media doing so little to address this problem, we need to get out the information ourselves.

Unfortunatley, I have seen a good deal of evidence that even many of the good guys are in denial about the problems we face. Though I haven't followed closely Al Frankin's views on this issue, I have seen it time and time again in various writings on the subject, where it is said that a stolen 2004 election does not seem likely from the available evidence, and yet the reasoning that is presented is seriously flawed, as I have discussed here and here. A stolen Presidential election is simply something that is not kosher to talk about in this country, and many intelligent people have a hard time even considering it.

The DNC report on the Ohio election seriously considered only one major type of election fraud in coming to the conclusion that the Ohio election was not stolen, as I pointed out in my letter to Howard Dean. That is very unfortunate IMO. One thing that tends to throw us of the track regarding the Ohio election is that, whereas there is a great deal of evidence that vote switching fraud was used in 2004, in Ohio there is much more evidence IMO that the election was stolen via voter registration fraud.

Whereas some may point to the vote switching incidents and say that it is just as possible that these incidents were simply "glitches", I would like to know how they explain the fact twelve times as many of these "glitches" favored Bush than Kerry. As you say, Land Shark, they have used a method for which they can claim plausible deniability.

But none of their excuses provides a good reason for not fully investigating what happened in 2004, including a full recount of Ohio, and for making our elections fully transparent.

The only thing that I disagree with you about, if I understand what you're saying correctly, is that I don't believe that inadvertant mistakes in an election are as bad as intentional fraud. Intentional fraud, which I believe is what we are dealing with here, has much greater potential to change the results of an election IMO than inadvertant mistakes.

We are indeed facing a great crisis in our democracy. So, thank you above all, Land Shark, for the lawsuits that your pressing in an effort to expose what happened in 2004.
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 04:53 PM
Response to Reply #94
96. Thanks TFC, my response is as follows
Inadvertant v intentional mistakes. I presumed they are of the same size but didn't make that clear. If so, the damage to democracy and the inaccuracy is the same. When investigating elections we often, though not always, have an idea of the size of the discrepany BEFORE we have an idea of whether intentional or not. We are invited to seek out that evidence of intentionality. I'm just saying, if we know what the size of the discrepancy is, the damage to democracy is just as much, and the election results inaccurately portrayed as truth.

Of course, intentionality makes a great deal of difference in terms of potential criminal charges as well as in political fallout. But not from the perspective of democracy.

But from your perspective, yes the damage or discrepancy from an intentional alteration is probably on average larger. But not always. TRULY RANDOM and inadvertant errors BY COMPUTERS will often be of a HUGE number that makes no sense because the computer can't really "think" or use common sense. So in that even it takes a computer to TRULY foul things up big time. But the errors we are dealing with are all within the "believable" range becuse in the event a machine reports a preposterous number, even an election official will spot that and try to correct it.

So, what we are left with is errors within the range of credulity, even if strained, combined with INVISIBLE errors that occur in the secret software we can't see and have no information on
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eppur_se_muova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 04:46 PM
Response to Original message
95. As with murder, the safest theft looks like perfectly plausible ACCIDENT.
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Rainscents Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 04:55 PM
Response to Original message
97. OMG Land Shark, this is great!!!
You did excellent job breaking this down for everyone can understand! Thank you!

K & R !!! :kick:
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 05:05 PM
Response to Original message
98. Land Shark, you continue to impress me with your ability to cut to the
heart of the matter and reduce issues to their "lowest commom denominator".
Another brilliant treatise that frames the issue in a way that all can understand and no one can argue.
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Greyskye Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 05:08 PM
Response to Original message
100. Well reasoned and argued. K & R!
:kick:
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Kurovski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 05:09 PM
Response to Original message
101. I can't say enough about how grateful I am to Land Shark, Truth is All,
and others in the Election Reform Forum here on DU.

I remember the days when a mention of election fraud brought a cascade of criticism upon ones head.

I remember how posts asking "what on earth is going on?" would slip away unanswered.

They were horrible days. They were worrisome days. And now thanks to the brilliance and dedication of bold and steady individuals such as Land Shark, we are on a path that will lead to one place and one place only: our restored Democracy.

Thank you.
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fooj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 05:31 PM
Response to Original message
102. DANGER AHEAD...
the only thing scarier and more dangerous than these runaway train issues is having the ability to correct course via legitimate elections taken away.

Truth is our most powerful weapon.

Peace.
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CornField Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 06:05 PM
Response to Original message
103. Kicking it and wish I could recommend it too.
I believe the children are trying to kill one another, so I'm bookmarking & will come back later.
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fooj Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 06:44 PM
Response to Original message
104. California's runaway train...
Edited on Sat Apr-01-06 06:46 PM by fooj
Something was brought to my attention that I think Californians need to seriously consider. Land Shark--do you know anything about internal/state polling? I understand it's when you hire an independent to poll the state.....maybe we should be using it here in CA. The repubs can't do a thing to block that, right?

Think about it. Ahnuld is proceeding as if his "in the toilet" #'s are rising. The #'s have reportedly risen from the teens to 40%! How the hell can that be? He hasn't done a stinking thing since at least Christmas or before. He's hired Little Lord Pissypant's people for his campaign. WTF??? We've got to keep a CLOSE eye on the rat bastard, eh?

They already started with the "California is turning RED" BULLSHIT last election! That's a real hoot until you seriously think about who the hell is saying it. These rat bastards will stop at nothing.

So...do you have any info on the internal polling issue? I'm extremely concerned.

Peace.
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 07:49 PM
Response to Reply #104
106. i can't see that there is any problem with internal polling at all,
campaigns do it. the only question is money or a volunteer professional pollster
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mdmc Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 07:22 PM
Response to Original message
105. nice
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shenmue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 07:51 PM
Response to Original message
107. Of course it's a fraud
It was last time.

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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:00 PM
Response to Reply #107
108. You'll have to prove that.

And you probably can't (no fault of your own, nor not necessarily because it isn't true).

I don't blame you for holding that belief. I hold it as a belief, myself. But I can't prove it either.

What is apparent to me is that if I tell someone to share my concern about e-voting by sharing my belief the election was stolen, I'll lose their interest in the majority of instances.

If, however, I frame the issue along the lines outlined in the OP (you read the entire OP, right?) it tends to capture attention in a majority of instances. And in many of those cases, the person I'm speaking with will question if the election was stolen.

Isn't that easy?

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EFerrari Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:10 PM
Response to Reply #108
110. It's simple and brilliant. nt
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 11:26 PM
Response to Reply #108
118. although you CAN talk about evidence of fraud LATER ON
it's just not always a good topic right out of the gate. It's not something you can "lead" with. For the simple reason that if you're writing, for example, you don't put a counter-intuitive conclusion or thesis at the very beginning of the piece, because you'll likely lose the reader's belief. But after you've marshalled all the facts, then you reach the counter-intuitive thesis at the end, then the reader realizes and agrees with you (if you've made the case)
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mirandapriestly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:02 PM
Response to Original message
109. Yes! If I hear one more person talk about "getting the vote out"
for democrats in the next election, I'll scream. We did get the vote out, and we have to do it again even more, but it doesn't make any difference if the outcome is questionable. WHO would be against a transparent election?? As for Al Franken, he won't talk about anything really important, IMO. None of the other issues matter, if we don't have democratically elected leaders. Why don't they get this? I wonder if he is one of the so-called "gatekeepers".
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FogerRox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:46 PM
Response to Reply #109
111. 82 votes for greatest, not too shabby......
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Benhurst Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 08:54 PM
Response to Reply #111
113. Thanks for the good post, Land Shark.
Edited on Sat Apr-01-06 08:56 PM by Benhurst

It looks as though most of the major points have been cover.

Now, what do we do?

I see no easy solution to the take-over which has taken place. It would be interesting if a patriotic hacker exposed the vulnerabilities of the whole system by throwing elections not to either the Dems or the Repubs, but to figures such as Mickey Mouse. I would love seeing the corporate media explain how cartoon characters were swept to victory in various races.

If a solution is not found quckly, the Republic is dead.
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FogerRox Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 09:57 PM
Response to Reply #113
115. ya know BEN thats a good idea
This is C N N. & I am Wolf BLitzer. With 76% of the vote counted in the Senate race in FLorida, C N N is calling this race for Mickey Mouse. While in Ohio it appears the new Governor will be Gomer Pyle. And Tammy Duckworth has just conceded to Daffy Duck.
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Cookie wookie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 11:24 AM
Response to Reply #113
137. For anyone wondering "what do we do?"
-- if you're not already a member of a voting activist group in your state, please join one. A list is posted on the Georgians for Verified Voting website at: http://www.gaforverifiedvoting.org/docs/voting_activist... .

If no group exists in your state, start one or if you can, contribute to one of the national groups like Verified Voting (http://www.verifiedvoting.com ) Voters Unite (http://www.votersunite.org /) or VoteTrustUSA (http://www.votersunite.org /)

These groups really need members who help share the workload.

Note about the GAVV voting activist group link above: If anyone knows of voting activist groups that are not listed, please use the link on that page to notify GAVV.
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-03-06 09:41 PM
Response to Reply #137
162. Great suggestions, but votetrustusa.org is the correct website
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Cookie wookie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-03-06 10:00 PM
Response to Reply #162
163. Thanks for the correction! n/t
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Melissa G Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 09:51 PM
Response to Original message
114. The real trick of the' how to' steal an election
Edited on Sat Apr-01-06 09:55 PM by Melissa G
is to have a political arm to the administration who just does politics... This person or person plus staff spends most of their time on the govt job messing with laws to disenfranchise voters.

There are many ways to do this and it is best to employ as many ways as possible because A, they can... and B, after they do it, it's hard to point to all of the various methods without sounding like a crazy conspiracy theorist...

The next thing to do is STEAL BIG! Then write laws with quick time frames for the losers to prove how and where you did it. There have to document each of the gazillion ways you stole it and do it fast and prove that each of them might have changed the outcome of the election..Remember make them have to do it Fast and make it Expensive for them while you are at it...

The other problem for this ruling class is that they are a minority..so if there are transparent verifiable elections..They usually lose..
The other problem in my experience is a good number of them believe that even though they are in the minority..They are RIGHT and so they should rule because the world would be better with them in control.
This is a historical update on the doctrine of Manifest Destiny that did not work out so well for the previous majority ... Native Americans...

edit typo
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loudsue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 10:33 PM
Response to Original message
116. WOW, land shark...just WOW!!!
:applause: Thanks so much for this wonderful post. :loveya:

I'd follow you anywhere!!

:kick: :kick: :kick: :kick: :kick: :kick: :kick: :kick: :kick: :kick: :kick:
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 11:30 PM
Response to Reply #116
119. First let's go to the local watering hole, i've not had a drink in 3 weeks
would be nice to have a relaxing Sat evening talking with friends, no?
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loudsue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 02:56 AM
Response to Reply #119
128. Pick me up at 8!
I'm on!

:kick: :kick: :kick: :kick: :kick: :kick:
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 02:59 AM
Response to Reply #128
129. ok, it's a long drive to rural NC from WA, are the crickets singing yet?
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Patsy Stone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 10:41 PM
Response to Original message
117. Excellent post.
I only wish I had been here early enough to recommend it. This was a great paragraph:

"Many things are MORE LIKELY THAN NOT non-intentional. Yet that very fact makes it the perfect place to attack. Journalists will almost never get beyond a fork in the road like this because they want "proof" not alternative possibilities, and investigators will similarly be either fooled by the seeming innocuousness or deterred from passing by this fork in the road by fears of going out on a limb. One necessarily IS going out on a limb and blowing past the innocent explanations."

It's always easier to believe the worst didn't happen. Most of the time we convince ourselves it's because it couldn't possibly happen. That's when we get into trouble.

Also, it wouldn't hurt if we could get Detective Superintendent Jane Tennison on the job:




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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-01-06 11:32 PM
Response to Reply #117
120. Is she on TV? (we don't have tv); Looks like a good investigator tho
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Patsy Stone Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 02:22 AM
Response to Reply #120
125. She's a fictional TV detective from the BBC
on a series called Prime Suspect, and she's a great investigator. Helen Mirren is the actress. :)
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Blue_Tires Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 10:35 AM
Response to Reply #117
134. i'm a huge fan of that series as well!
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Raksha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 04:20 AM
Response to Original message
131. Excellent post, Land Shark..
I've just read it for the second time and I'm going to print it out and read it again.
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 07:14 AM
Response to Original message
133. 
of those, who know that the problem is really fraud, that these glitches benefit rethugs at an impossibly high percentage?

Isnt it statistically impossible for these anomalies to be attributed to blameless glitches when they benefit one party 99% of the time, or whatever the rate has been?

Maybe the Grand Old Passengers dont care, unless Hugo Chavez is known to own the company?
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 11:25 AM
Response to Reply #133
138. Well, no it doesn't help "the case" in the Original Post above
because, in terms of the train allegory, the argument that the glitches have an overwhelmingly partisan and non-random effect or appearance has the *primary* effect of enhancing the debate between passengers, all of whom are still blindfolded and headed toward destruction, sooner or later, due to the inability to perceive the proper time to change course.

The argument does have a strong effect in favor of the Democratic passengers or the activist passengers. But it sets the dynamics up such that instead of just needing to take off blindfolds and seize control of the engine car, as a result of the more "partisan" arguments the Democratic/activist passengers NOW have to overpower the Grand Old Passengers BEFORE they can even start a move toward the engine car.

And that means a form of civil war between the passengers is set up by the dynammics of the blindfold as an intense defense of the interests of the blindfolders. In fact, the blindfolds are INDEFENSIBLE in and of themselves, but they nevertheless obtain a de facto HUGE defense (and all for "free" or at no cost to the blindfolders) because of the partisan debates that naturally erupt.

So the way out of the dilemma is to say to the Grand Old Passengers "hey, we don't know who's stealing, we both disagree, but we do totally agree that "without procedural integrity in elections, we have nothing", so let's storm the engine room and get our democracy back, and then later on we can settle our debates with full information."

But even more fundamentally, if the conditions do not exist for a valid election, is there anybody but a tyrant who accepts office under those conditions? Under such conditions, a truly ethical person is prevented from winning, because they will eliminate themselves or refuse to take the oath of office.

Until the dilemma is transcended, it is not "Republicans" who cheat/benefit or "Democrats", both of these parties in their normal form at least are fully within the republican traditions of democracy in the USA and therefore accepting of transparent fair elections as a process to achieve legitimacy. The "winner" is instead some kind of anti-democracy force.

See, the blindfolds prevent us from perceiving even the full and true nature of the "winner". Though we can surely make profoundly interesting and insightful speculations, which may turn out to be dead on. But we need not resolve that either, at least not if one's goal is to storm the engine car and get democracy back.

In another thread probably a couple months ago, I wrote something to the effect of:

While we don't know absolutely for sure that the ELECTION was stolen, we DO KNOW that democracy has been stolen.

So why be so worried about the disputable results of a single election when it's logically indisputable that Democracy has been stolen, and that this very insight that democracy has clearly been stolen away via nontransparency would be a powerful basis for a multipartisan coalition that could rapidly restore transparency in democracy (i.e. by the rank and file of all parties storming the engine car)?
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 12:16 PM
Response to Reply #138
140. Let's face it, LS.

This forum is not called "Non-partisan Underground".

DU had a forum called "Voting Systems" (or something like that). Then this forum emerged under the name of "2004 Election Results" (or something like that), since changed to it's current name.

At that time (I arrived in late December 2004) the results of 2004 were being questioned in hopes of preventing certification of/by electors and inauguration. It was understandably an extremely partisan discussion.

Apparently, many of the posters who regularly participated in the Voting Systems forum began posting on the new forum, but were dismayed when DU eliminated the original forum. I think their feeling was that they wanted a forum to discuss voting systems sans the rants about 2K4.

They did not prevail. And many of them stopped posting here. A true loss.

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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 01:27 PM
Response to Reply #140
141. Oh, I'm facing that, head-on. The question is whether we can face
Edited on Sun Apr-02-06 01:33 PM by Land Shark
something new: democracy disabled means partisanship paralyzes. (because it works against fixing the damaged democracy)

-- In order to be effective, but without giving up any "partisan" positions, we make common cause with other partisans ---

It's all about realizing that democracy is more important than partisanship for a lot of reasons.

One is, you'd in all likelihood have no right to your partisan opinion, without democracy.

But most importantly, the partisanship becomes self-defeating unless the allegory of the train is taken into full account (This does not necessarily apply to fully "internal" discussions, if DU can be considered such).

Even the person who gets up on the train and angrily tells everyone to quiet down and stop fighting and being partisan just adds to the stress.

Instead of saying "You stole the Election" (hotly contested) you say "Democracy's been stolen" (a very strong case, if you make it)

The partisan energy is never to be defeated permanently, it is to be directed elsewhere for a time. (storm the engine car)

Then, the conditions exist in which the procedures of democracy can work.
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 02:38 PM
Response to Reply #141
146. I take it you're suggesting it stressful to admonish partisanship.
I'm sure many partisans would feel that way.

You recommend not saying "You stole the Election", instead suggesting one says "Democracy's been stolen".

All well and good. Except that when a partisan says "Democracy's been stolen", they often add or imply "by the Repubs". As such, we're back to square one.

Of course, "partisan energy is never to be defeated permanently". It's defeat would define Democracy absent.

But Democracy's absence could also be defined as partisan election administration (which we indeed and reasonably fear). Partisan sentiment, similarly, is of questionable value when applied to election reform efforts.

For some, the truth is what sets them free. For others, it's a source of irritation.

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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 03:31 PM
Response to Reply #146
149. For democracy there is no truth, it's only a process

to determine the consent of the governed, after a public exchange of information. Democracy doesn't ever promise a just substantive result of an election, which is why if you don't have procedural integrity in the elections, you have nothing. Democracy, without procedural integrity in elections has no claim to political or moral legitimacy if it gives up the ONLY thing it ever claimed legitimacy from: a procedure called elections.

Ironically, the more you believe in substantive truth, the more likely you are to hack, rig, or cheat in an election. How can you sit idly by and watch injustice inflicted upon innocents because of an ill-informed election result, right? Better to adjust the election results to the cause of justice.

I'm not saying it's "stressful" to admonish partisanship, I'm saying that under these unique conditions, and with respect to this one meta-issue only, the more there is *argument* among the passengers including the admonishment of argument, the more the ropes tighten, so to speak, like in the cartoons (or was it Batman?) where every bit of energy put into escaping the ropes is reversed and makes the ropes tighten.

Every little fight or exchange forces people to take their eyes off the prize, IF it gets to the point where it confuses the identity of the biggest problem-maker in elections.
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 03:56 PM
Response to Reply #149
151. Then perhaps it's semantics.
Or an inappropriate reliance on my part on the "truth" of the idea that a non-partisan approach would serve election reform better than a partisan approach.

Because I completely concur with your post.

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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 08:14 PM
Response to Reply #151
155. truth is indispensable, but
Edited on Sun Apr-02-06 08:16 PM by Land Shark
the paradox is that the solution to getting out of THIS great dilemma requires relativism, or suspension of ideological warfare, in order to focus on the more fundamental problem.

I AM SAYING that a non-partisan approach is better, but the paradox is that lecturing or demanding such an approach can just add a third or a fourth or a twentieth "camp" of "ideologues" in the blindfolded train lurching towards hell.

We need a peace treaty approach to obtain the nonpartisanship. It can not be demanded or even advocated in the usual way. I am not evaluating whether you Wilms are succeeding or failing in this regard, but at the same time, I'm just trying to make this dynamic clear and I also think there's little or no risk in maximizing the peace treaty approach.
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Wilms Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 10:11 PM
Response to Reply #155
157. I am evaluating whether I'm succeeding or failing in this regard
Edited on Sun Apr-02-06 10:17 PM by Wilms
On DU, it seems hit and miss.

In my neighborhood, it's a slam dunk. But I must qualify. I recently moved from a BoHo turned Gentrified area to one of the red dots in LA County's sea of blue. Admittedly, it seems a bit more purple of late as the yellow ribbons have been fading and removed without replacement, but I remain sensitive. (One of my neighbors told me the US is the only Democracy!)

So I shined up my non-partisan-isms and went to work.

Results: The jaws drop a lot further here as I outline the vulnerabilities, unReliability, inadequate audit-abilities, and the non-transparencies of our current and emerging voting systems--as opposed to the jaded responses I've received from my ex-neighbors of BoHo descent when I've pronounced my belief that 2K4 was stolen using the electronics in combination with other means.

Perhaps my BoHo buddies would respond better if I approach as I do here in Purpleville. (That I should experiment with.)

While I appreciate the need, and even partake, myself, in venting on DU, given my ultimate aim, and the successes/failures I've had off this board, I've hoped we could convene more to hone our presentations and create an environment a bit less prone to dissuade participation. FogerRox's poll in GD awhile back received a comment likening, in uncomplimentary fashion, the ER Forum to the 9/11 Forum. Shit! I'm MIHOP, but I didn't want to see the tinfoil wrapped around ER.

Additionally, we have a drastic situation here in CA, if only because of the size of the prize. My perception is that reform efforts have been/are blunted because partisans of the other stripe have found it easy to label reformers as disgruntled.

In short, I've found little or no risk in maximizing the peace treaty approach with my neighbors. In fact, they may not be aware of the war at all.

They instead walk away wondering if the Revolution brought by our Founders has been lost. And as one of them called out, "I want a paper ballot!".

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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 10:20 PM
Response to Reply #157
158. Believe US "IS" the only democracy? Won't stay that way UNdefended
Edited on Sun Apr-02-06 10:21 PM by Land Shark
you can say that even to the toughest neighbor. Sounds like you're doing well.
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 08:47 PM
Response to Reply #141
156. Which is exactly why I started this thread. If we frame it as a partisan
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nicknameless Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-03-06 07:36 AM
Response to Reply #138
160. 
Outside of your train illustration, the world I see is much different. There are some on the right, like Chuck Herrin, who ARE idealists and are whole-heartedly opposed to election fraud.

The idealists wont put partisanship over nationalism. They do value democratic (lower case d) principles.

But then, there are the ones waving the #1 foam fingers.

The foam finger crowd is very much ends-oriented. You claim that we can tell them that we dont know who is defrauding us, but isnt that a little disingenuous? Look at the ultimate outcome -- believe me, the foam finger people will be.
Theyll see: Hey, my guy won. Get over it. Were number one. *belch*

I can only speak from my experience, but its my observation that the those with the foam fingers really believe that their guy is representing them -- rather than screwing them (which of course is whats really going on). The blindfolders arent just using those blindfolds to conceal their election shenanigans; theyre also using the opportunity to pick the pockets of 99% of the passengers.

If we could alert the foam finger people to their now-empty pockets, they would be more likely storm the engine room with us. That wanders a bit from the purpose of your train illustration, but we need motivation for the passengers who dont exactly idealize democracy.

In any case, I agree completely that the current winner is the anti-democracy force.

Why be so worried about the disputable results of a single election when its logically indisputable that democracy has been stolen? Well, if its your kid who just got killed in Iraq, or your grandmothers body that was just discovered 7 months after Katrina, and you KNOW that those responsible for the policies that lead to their deaths were in office due to election fraud, that single election takes on a greater significance.

Its true, in your train allegory, that democracy is the larger picture, and Im hoping thats what most people care about rather than partisanship. Still, I dont think we can really afford to maintain a too-lofty or overly-idealistic perspective of those other passengers. Some are undoubtedly as you describe them. But those foam finger guys ....
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-03-06 08:51 AM
Response to Reply #160
161. it's an appeal to pragmatism and democracy, with best chance success

Ask yourself the question: Do you think democratic process has been corrupted, or not? It sounds like you think it has been.

If so, then why would you try to fight a democratic battle THROUGH the partisans on the other side? Even if you gain your 51% or 60% support after some long bloody battles, there's no reason for your democratic victory to have any force because it's not a democracy, right? Are we pulling out of Iraq right now? If you win by defeating the other side, you probably haven't won enough and the expectation of the defeated will be simply that you will control the machines or whatever election process there is and rig it your way to even the score.

But with bipartisan 80% support, even kings and dictators will find that difficult to resist for too long.

So, even in undemocratic situations, the most realistic way to think about it is that it imposes a supermajority requirement in order to achieve change. Nobody knows the exact number needed, but it's not just numbers but INTENSITY of feeling that counts too, and the intensity of the minority opposition can also set off against some of the support, or even stalemate a smaller supermajority from doing anything.

Under these conditions, if you try to fight THROUGH what you call the "foam finger guys" you are working against yourself. You'd have to defeat them, and under current political conditions you might do so with a 65% support IF THE MECHANISMS WERE WORKING FAIRLY, but in the mean time you've agitated the foam finger guys and they may be able to neutralize even your 65%.

While I do invoke democratic ideals, I would respectfully submit that you've not completely considered the task here, and that you're still acting as if democracy still works while arguing that it has been corrupted.

Much better to announce that the tent is big enough for everyone who believes in democracy, and it's called the America tent. Nobody need be outside that tent, but if they choose to be then they are truly both anti-democratic and therefore anti-American. At that point, things will be highly educational for all concerned.
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Amaryllis Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-05-06 09:11 PM
Response to Reply #161
169. It's the framing thing again. How do you frame it so you bring the most
people in?
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Blue_Tires Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 10:37 AM
Response to Original message
135. don't forget that these 'glitches', when added to
active and blatant voter intimidation or suppression in surefire dem communities can easily sway the results even in 'safe' districts.
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MelissaB Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 10:44 AM
Response to Original message
136. Outstanding post!
People across the country need to read this (or have it read to them). I hope Frankin or some other Air America will read it on the air.

Land Shark, do you post at Daily Kos? That's another place I'd like to see this appear.
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Joanne98 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 01:38 PM
Response to Original message
142. We need to make vote fraud a death penalty offense....
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Wrinkle_In_Time Donating Member (664 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 02:13 PM
Response to Original message
145. Excellent! K&R. One other idea for "Doomsday riggers"...
... A clever rigger will not use just one device or method to affect the outcome as that would be much easier to spot (blindfold or no). It is better for them to use multiple methods with small effects that can each be dismissed as a "glitch", but accumulate to a greater result. e.g., manipulating the voter roles; biasing the number and quality of voting machines available in opponents' districts; intimidation of voters; misinformation campaigns; registering voters for your party without them knowing it*; etc.

*I must admit that this tactic used by the Republicans puzzled me, as I couldn't see how that would give them an advantage since the voter was going to vote Democratic anyway. Then I realized that it gives them cover to switch the vote to Republican and say something like: "well, we had a huge growth in the number of registered Republicans since last time, which explains this unprecedented swing".

However, trying to introduce this idea would complicate your nice runaway train analogy.
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Crazy Guggenheim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 05:04 PM
Response to Original message
152. Wonderful! Sorry I couldn't Rec. since it's over 24 hrs. As an IT person
Edited on Sun Apr-02-06 05:08 PM by Crazy Guggenheim
I so agree with your statements!! I have even found security flaws in security software!! How in the heck can the MIT professors say it probably wasn't?!?!
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lonestarnot Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 05:53 PM
Response to Original message
153. Wooooodamn whooo Landshark! Too late to recommend damn it!
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midnight Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-02-06 11:03 PM
Response to Original message
159. I agree .
Take those blindfolds off, find the culprits, and let's start enjoying the ride.
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Lostnote06 Donating Member (161 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-04-06 07:26 PM
Response to Original message
164. "Equal Amendment Clause"......throw it back in their faces
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-04-06 07:43 PM
Response to Reply #164
165. Not sure what you mean, can you explain? eom
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Lostnote06 Donating Member (161 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Apr-04-06 09:07 PM
Response to Reply #165
166. I'm Not Sure As Well...lol
......We have an "Expectation"(citizen/goverment covenant) in voting that however soiled the process there is a "Truth" to be arrived at/much less-persued....The "Franchise" such as we are "demand" proprietary inclusion into the numbers racket of counting votes(RICO).....within my reasoning its a classic corporatehood arguement....we are "equal" participates w/i the vote process in which "Truth" is a reasonable expectation....proprietory rights w/i the counting process preclude a prejudice to "Truth", upon which a covenant exists rendering the "Franchise" null.....Oh Well, I betcha sorry you asked....lol
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-05-06 03:57 PM
Response to Reply #166
167. Makes sense, that's another way of saying there's no basis for confidence
in the results, but a more philosophical way to say it.
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Lostnote06 Donating Member (161 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Apr-05-06 06:04 PM
Response to Reply #167
168. and w/o a Title Of British Nobility in front of my name..lol
........I have followed EV since 2000........I have concluded that the burden of proof does not fall upon the BBV citizens, quite the opposite,it rests upon the Government franchise.....the irony is that the equal amendment clause could exonerate the 5-4 decision that started this mess because it would provide a historical "out" for the assholes that gave the green light to the cabal....
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garybeck Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Apr-06-06 12:08 AM
Response to Original message
170. Hear the now infamous radio interview here::::>
http://www.solarbus.org/election/audio.shtml

Al Franken is a big fat idiot.

in fairness, I will say this - he did sound like he learned something from Bowen and he said he was pretty PO'd about what he learned and maybe he'll be more active on this issue in the future.
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emlev Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-08-06 01:07 PM
Response to Original message
171. Thoughts on the whole "can't prove it, nyah, nyah" attitude
I haven't read all the responses to LS's post, and I know I'm coming into this conversation very late, but for what it's worth...

I think we've collected a tremendous amount of evidence about the theft of 2004, particularly given that we've gotten basically no access to the majority of the evidence that exists AND that much was done to make sure there'd be no evidence.

This method of stealing elections where every act has more than one "plausible" explanation is the same method used to increase the "Bush body count," by which I mean the people who I believe have been killed on orders of the government because they knew too much or did too much. The cause of death is one that would be believable for that person: a suicide for one recently divorced, a heart attack for one who's over 60, a car accident...

It makes me think of cancer, how corporations have escaped paying for the cancers their products and processes cause because no one can prove where a specific case of cancer comes from. It seems to me that the cancer analogy could be very useful here to someone who's better at developing analogies than I am (LandShark? Amaryllis? GuvWurld?).

I suppose that if we end with a bang and not a whimper, our ghosts will be arguing over all the possible explanations for that second bang.
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Land Shark Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Apr-08-06 08:50 PM
Response to Reply #171
172. Hmm, not sure they are quite that strong and efficient
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McCamy Taylor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Apr-16-06 11:48 PM
Response to Original message
173. When Blackwell tried to ban exit pollsters in election morning....
Edited on Sun Apr-16-06 11:50 PM by McCamy Taylor
...everyone in America with an ounce of sense knew that the GOP planned election fraud of massive proportions. Massive enough that accurate exit polls would uncover the fraud.

Al Franken is very funny, but he obviously is not Sherlock Holmes. Aka he is not too bright, as we would say in the south to be polite. Or maybe he is suffering from Marlowe Disease, as in he is in serious denial like the narrator from "Heart of Darkness" in which case he is doomed to haul that Albatross (cause Heart of Darkness owes a lot to the Ancient Mariner) down a long, lonely road until he finally sees the light. John Stewart, nobody's fool, is definitely suffering from Marlowe's Disease. "It would be too dark. Too dark," to admit that the American electoral system has been corrupted like a two dollar whore.

Those exit poll results were leaked during the day, because Blackwell attemped to ban exit pollsters, and as a result, everyone with an ounce of sense was on the look out for exit poll results which would show one thing as compared the the "final tally".

Anyone who was not looking out for election fraud in Ohio after what Blackwell that morning did is a moron who needs to go take remedial Politics 101 class. The news media for sure was on top of it, because they had to get court orders to get their exit pollsters in place. The only reason they did not release the exit poll results was because Michael Powell was still promising to appeal the SCOTUS ruling that had overturned the Federal Media ownership rule changes that the news media wanted. Powell plaeyed "backsies" with that promise the DAY AFTER Bush was sworn in for his second term.


I have so much documentation of this at my site, Grand Theft Election Ohio:

http://www.grandtheftelectionohio.com/index.htm

It all is cute comic strip/ mixed media form, but it is all serious. Check out Exit Polls Explained, Smoking Guns, Medea, Dieb-throat, Phone Bank to name just a few.

But seriously, why the hell would SOS Blackwell go out on a limb on election morning and do something as suspicious and unprecidented as try to ban exit polls in his state unless the GOP planned election fraud? Wjy make himself look suspicious unless he had something really important to hide?
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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Apr-17-06 06:35 AM
Response to Reply #173
175. problems with this
Although I have no problem with the view that it was smart to look for fraud in Ohio. But I don't think the conclusions about Al Franken's intelligence are warranted.

Lessee... Blackwell did not attempt to "ban" exit pollsters, but he tried to keep them 100 feet away, at the electioneering distance. That might be suspicious, but it wasn't unprecedented: both red-state and blue-state officials have tried to ban or to obstruct exit polling in the past. According to the E/M report, in 2004, six other states attempted to impose distance restrictions of more than 50 feet.

Also according to the report, Blackwell gave this instruction to the county elections officials five days before the election -- not on election morning. The court ruling overturning Blackwell came at 10:30 pm the night before the election. The start of interviewing was delayed in some Ohio precincts (apparently about 1/3 of them) because local officials had not been apprised of the ruling.

The exit poll went forward in Ohio, as elsewhere, and CNN.com posted preliminary tabulations based on the interviews as the polls closed. (I've never bothered to figure out what other media outlets did with preliminary state tabulations in real time.) In other words, the Ohio exit poll results (or more precisely, initial tabulations reflecting early projections, based on exit poll interviews and pre-election polls) were released -- there really is no debating that, because a lot of us saw them ourselves.

Also, exit poll results were leaked from several states during the day, and have been in past elections; and complete responses for about 70,000 interviews were posted in January 2005. So the idea that the exit poll results (1) were leaked during the day because people were suspicious, and (2) weren't released because the media was hoping for a favor from Michael Powell, doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me.

(As far as I can tell, some people interpret the exit poll discrepancy in Ohio as proof of fraud because they believe there was fraud in Ohio -- but they generally completely ignore the larger discrepancy in New York, because, well, they aren't that interested in exit polls? in New York?)

Blackwell did plenty of outrageous things, so you certainly have some material to work with.
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