I agree with you to a point, and that point ends at the paper trail. Yes, every system has its pitfalls, and thus the cry of fraud can and will go up, by each side depending on the result.
My only point is that, if we accept that mistakes and pitfalls will happen, then we need to be open to an audit trail. I don’t much like the voting machines, but I would be much more accepting of them if there were a paper receipt/vote verification system in place that would make a recount at least possible, if not necessary.
There may always be some moppets who will complain about any system, I agree, but what the heck was wrong with putting a great big X on a page beside your chosen candidate? And then having local volunteers count the posted ballots?
So what if you don’t get the result until a day or two later - at worst it is poor TV election ratings and less funky graphics for presenters to mess with. But at least if anyone queried the result you could point at the pile of marked ballots and say “count them yourself if you have a problem with the result.” It is there, it is verifiable, it is physical. It is recountable if within a certain percentage. A candidate can also maintain the legal right to a vote recount which is denied with other methods of vote collection. It’s not, like any system, foolproof, but it undeniably better than the machines.
I sound like a total technophobe, but this is definitely one instance where the introduction of technology is not proving to be better, at least not yet.
Would somebody please tell me what kind of a world we’re living in where a Pit thread can degenerate into a civilized discussions of the issues that spawned the thread in the first place? Take it back to GD, people. We’re trying to flame, here.
I am shocked. rjung should be posting MORE about the Diebold scandal. Every national newscast should lead with this story until there are some indictments handed down. Any attempt to interfere with the integrity of our electoral process deserves all the scrutiny and outrage that we can muster. Keep up the good work, rjung.
So some bunch of fringe lunatics complain about the results of the election. So what? I fail to see how this is even slightly relevant, since there’s always someone who’ll start a conspiracy theory over anything the government does. Look at the Area 51 crowd and the “moon landing was a hoax” nutjobs.
If you mean the Democrats in particular, given how quickly and pathetically Gore folded in 2000, I doubt they’ll cause too much of a stink no matter what happens. Let’s face it, the Democrats are wusses nowadays.
And besides, there should be people checking on the validity of every election. I fail to see how any amount of scrutiny here could possibly be harmful. And if a few people get their jollies by complaining that the election was stolen (assuming the rest of us can agree it was fair) then let 'em have their foaming-at-the-mouth good time.
Amen to the latter posters! It is impossible for too much attention to be paid to this issue! Bravo, rjung, and the others who keep raising it to our attention.
If you’re sick of hearing about it, I suggest you write your state congress persons and demand that they require a paper trail for all ballots. How anyone could be against this simple solution, unless they want the potential for fraudulent or erroneous results is beyond me!
Bruce, I don’t normally have anything against you, but this was a stupid pitting. The only good thing about it is that, despite your best efforts, it turned into a rational discussion.
This thread: Diebold machines, scary or not, start by rjung is just fine with me. Think there is something fishy going on with voting machines, let’s talk about it. rjung, however, is apparently obsessed.
Poster1: I’m getting a pony for Christmas
Poster2: Hey, that’s awesome!
rjung: Not if Diebold has anything to do with it!
I mean, it had to be a pattern for me to notice it, and I don’t frequent GD.
That’s my issue. Let’s have a reasonable discussion/debate, fuck this constant drive by shit.
Means nothing. If the casinos ever have a security issue of any kind, they’re damn sure not going to tell the public about it.
Do you know of any system that is hacker-proof? Or of one that would be a more tempting target? What could be as safe, or as inexpensive for that matter, as a paper ballot, even if it takes a day or two to count them? Is that worth sacrificing credibility?
The problem with paper is it’s ease of duplication, destruction, alteration, etc.
I think you’ll have lots of people complaining about forged documents.
Each one could have a unique bar code specific to each person, but again that relys on software, computers, and human interface. We’re nearly back to square one.
I think a machine that would have a seperate reciept that the voter would then take and enter into another machine to verify the vote would work. IOW - you vote, get an encrypted reciept feed it into another machine to verify your vote. Both machines would keep track of the votes and you eliminate the possibility of one machine or the other screwing up. The first machine would have a screen that would verify your votes, “You have voted for Nader, would you like to stop voting and recieve your receipt” You click yes and remove the receipt.
The second machine would accept the receipt and the screen would say, “Your vote was cast for R Nader, click yes to end voting” If you click NO then you need to vote over again to make it official. The second machine keeps the receipts, both machines track the voting data and everything should come out EXACT.
If you fail to do both machines properly then you get a chance to repeat the process otherwise your vote is void. Each vote will have a specific ID so that no two votes will get crossed or left out.
At the end of the night, when the votes need to be counted and verified, the two machined will be connected together and the data compared, verified and counted. The receipts can be collected and stored for future reference or hand counting.
All of the districts in Minnesota I’ve voted in have had a similar thing as to what you’re proposing. You go to the booth with the sheet with all of the candidates on it and a pen. You fill in the gap between the arrows for the candidate you want like so:
After all of that is done, you take it over to the optical scanner in a concealed open ended envelope. You feed it into the scanner that registers your votes and you get a sticker. So, it’s recorded by a computer as well as a paper trail. Seems to be the best of both worlds to me.
In your view, maybe. I’ve been reading all the links, and to me this is a smear campaign equivalent to what the Republicans are pulling on Kerry with their “Swift Boat Veterans for Truth”. Just as in this case, a little truth couldn’t hurt.
Instead of insinuating that Diebold, a long respected company noted for its security products, is in the back pocket of the Republicans and is therefore throwing the election to Bush, could you provide some actual proof of that? Like smoking gun proof? Because until then you’re just doing the old monkey-flinging-feces thing, and that really gets tiresome.
So have at it. PROVE that they are “interfere(ing) with the integrity of our electoral process”.
Diebold’s CEO pledges to deliver Ohio for Bush. Sort of like the umpires union vowing to deliver the World Series to the Yankees. That’s enough for me to not believe they are a “long respected company.”