Monday, January 21, 2008

Government Voting Machine Waste - Scanners, paper, all of it!

Make no mistake about what all this "voting machine" chaos is about: getting more of your money to move from your wallet to the various vendors and special interests that each want their "turn" to sell our government agencies a "voting system" or "voting solution", whether that is manual (paper ballots and manual counting), semi-automated (paper ballots with electronic scanners or punch-card machines to tally results), or fully electronic / computerized voting systems and software.

We, the American public, are being played like a fiddle. Thanks to everyone's paranoia about vote tampering, now it's the automated, electronic, computer-based solutions that are under attack, after we just recently paid BILLIONS to implement these solutions since they were so much faster, better, accurate, etc.

Then, along comes the rumors that the voting machines can be hacked. Sure, it is possible, but is it likely? Let me explain this to all of you computer-phobes out there as clearly as I can: if I wanted to alter a vote-counting mechanism, I'd be much more inclined to:
  1. have humans tamper with physical voting records. "Social Engineering" as it is referred to sometimes, is the EASIEST path to cracking any system. Fact is, people have their own desires (including greed or political motivations) that are much easier to appeal to than that of a computer! If you think the humans involved throughout the entire manual-vote-counting system are faultless, you are simply living in a dream land. People constantly manipulate things to suit their own ambitions. Sad, but true.
  2. alter the old punch-card counters than the new machines. It'd be SO easy. Don't you all get it? Punch-card counters ALSO USE PROGRAMMING and computers to tally what is "punched". Sure, you can do a manual recount, but that typically only happens in close elections anyhow. And then, see #1 (above)!
  3. And, why can't I alter the scanner results? Again, there is software involved here too!! I guarantee that the counting algorithms in that type of system can ALSO BE ALTERED.
So, to summarize: Wake up boneheads!!!! ANY SOLUTION CAN BE MANIPULATED - COMPUTERIZED OR NOT. Whether you realize it or not, computers have been involved in counting votes for many many years. Only now that you see a touch-screen computer sitting there at your local voting station are you suddenly concerned with the security of the voting data and such. If there was any massive computer-based voting fraud, guess what, it's already been done by manipulating the counting software that read all those punch cards and shaded-circles, etc. This supposed opportunity for "hacking" the vote is nothing new - the opportunity has been there for a LONG time. Just because the machines, computers, and software involved were not where you could see them does not mean they were not tampered with or that they couldn't be tampered with.

The fleecing of us all!
If you love watching your hard-earned money go down the toilet with these insane voting-system "improvements" year after year (of recent), just get involved with the public argument and "outcry" over voting issues and problems. Raise your voice loud! Make sure when the local County officials say they'll be spending another $100 million to address shortfalls and security concerns, that you don't mind funding it. I guarantee corporate America is loving this. Where else can you sell a set of machines for millions, have them replaced by the customer, and then have a new wave of machines purchased that addresses the issues of the first round, over and over and over, for something as simple as counting votes!?

I happen to live in one of the Counties and States affected by the current wave of organized ripping-off of the American population by our Government. First we used paper voting method, then we switched to electronic (fully electronic machines, with a paper-trail mechanism built in). But, that just wasn't "good enough" for people - the rolls of paper supposedly bunched up on occasion. So, what are we doing... yep, going BACK TO PAPER ballots, and now there is some new expense for something like $26 million dollars for the new scanners.

When did it become acceptable to have this constant flow of cash going towards voting systems? Gee, about the same time the government and corporations got the public to start arguing about which method of voting machine is better, safer, more secure, reliable, easier to use, etc.

The Baltimore Sun just had these quotes to offer about their State's situation (yet another example of this madness)!:
Making good on a campaign promise to overhaul Maryland's suspect electronic voting system, the governor there proposed an initial outlay in the state budget toward the purchase of scanners to replace its $65 million touch-screen voting systems.

The new machines would end up costing the state $20 million, the Sun reported, though meanwhile it would continue to pay off the remaining bill for the $65 million worth of touch-screen voting machines the state would evidently retire. That bill is being paid off on an installment plan that expires in 2014.
Thing about this: how the heck did our parents and their parents ever manage to vote!!?!

Amazing! Amazing what this country (and the cronies running it) have done to us all. They've made us all willing pawns, and we sit back and give them a blank check to rip us off over and over and over.

Since you are paying for all those machines (or their removal and replacement), you best darn well get out and VOTE THIS YEAR (and, vote against taxes too - it's your only chance to slow this mess down,... presuming your vote actually counts).

No comments: