Sunday, January 13, 2008

DEMAND HAND COUNTS - Or Diebold Decides

From Sludge Report #154

Bigger Than Watergate!
The story you are about to read is in this writer's view the biggest political scandal in American history, if not global history. And it is being broken today here in New Zealand.

This story cuts to the bone the machinery of democracy in America today. Democracy is the only protection we have against despotic and arbitrary government, and this story is deeply disturbing.
Imagine if you will that you are a political interest group that wishes to control forevermore the levers of power. Imagine further that you know you are likely to implement a highly unpopular political agenda, and you do not wish to be removed by a ballot driven backlash.

imagine further that you:
- install a backdoor, or numerous backdoors, in the vote counting systems you have built that enable you to manipulate the tabulation of results in real time as they are coming in.
Such a system would enable you to intervene in precisely the minimum number of races necessary to ensure that you won a majority on election night. On the basis of polling you could pick your marginal seats and thus keep your tweaking to a bare minimum.
Such a system would enable you to minimise the risks of discovery of your activities.
Such a system would enable you to target and remove individual political opponents who were too successful, too popular or too inquisitive.
And most importantly of all, such a system would enable you to accomplish all the above without the public being in the least aware of what you were doing. When confronted with the awfulness of your programme they would be forced to concede that at least it is the result of a democratic process.

How To Rig An Election In The United States
So how would such a system actually work?
Well one way to run such a corrupt electoral system might look like this.

- Each voting precinct (or booth) could be fitted with electronic voting systems, optical scanning systems, punch card voting systems or the more modern touchscreen electronic voting machines;
- At the close of play each day the booth/precinct supervisor could be under instructions to compile an electronic record of the votes cast in their booth;
- They might print out a report that contains only the details of the total votes count for that precinct/booth, and then file via modem the full electronic record of votes through to the County supervisor;
- The County Supervisor could be equipped with a special piece of software and a bank of modems that enables all these results to be received and tabulated in the internals of the computer;
- The County Supervisors themselves could be assured that their system was bullet proof, certified and contained tamper-protection mechanisms par excellence;
- The Country Supervisor could be given a range of tools for looking at the data within this software, but nothing to enable them to directly manipulate the results;
- But unbeknownst to the County Supervisor the software could actually create three separate records of the voting data;
- Meanwhile - also unbeknownst to the County Supervisor - these three tables of voting data could be in fact completely insecure and accessible simply through a common database programme, say Microsoft Access; (Diebold uses Microsoft Access)
- Having the three tables would enable you to keep the real data in place - so the system could pass spot tests on individual precincts and booth results (should a precinct supervisor be particularly astute) - while simultaneously enabling you to manipulate the bottom line result;
- Finally you might also enhance the election hacker's powers by including within the software a utility to enable them to cover their tracks by changing the date and time stamps on files and remove evidence of your tampering.

...The above description of a corrupt voting system is not the result of an overactive imagination. Rather it is the result of extensive research by computer programmers and journalists working around the globe. Principally it is the work of investigative Journalist Bev Harris, author of the soon to be published book "Black Box Voting: Ballot Tampering In The 21st Century".
And most important of all it is the result of research focussed on investigating the actual software distributed by one of the largest voting systems companies operating in the recent U.S. Elections.

We need look no further than the New Hampshire Primary where Hillary Clinton a Democrat (the preferred winner by Republicans) was behind Barack Obama by a ten point spread in polls yet pulled off a miraculous comeback ONLY in districts where DIEBOLD machines did the count. COME ON mainstream media why are you not all over this story?

I know why mainstream media is not covering it..the same reason they did not cover the Bush placment in the presidency and members of the Supreme Court who placed him were not only Republican but had relatives working for the Bush campaign.

I have two words for the Democrats, Republicans and Independents HAND COUNT or it doesn't count.


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