Monday, January 28, 2008

Election Fraud is Alive and Well

Mark Crispin Miller wrote an article for Harper's Magazine back in 2005 titled "None Dare Call it Stolen" documenting voting irregularities in Ohio which gave Bush a second term. That article is here.

That article has been expanded into the book, "Fooled Again: The Real Case for Election Reform." One main conclusion is there is no way to be confident of the 2000 and 2004 reported election results. The book is now out in paperback and prompted Harper's blogger Scott Horton to interview the author. A summary of what they talked about:

The book contains a quote about how dictators deliberately confuse true and false so that a challenge to their power can be taken for a lie. That quote is here.

When that is put on a book about election fraud what does that imply about Bush? Unlike others Bush's inversion of truth is in a large part based on what he actually believes. And he believes it because he is paranoid. As a lot of people leading crusades over the centuries (including modern religious conservatives) see themselves as victim, outnumbered, and fighting back while their opponents as evil and relentless, full of fury.

Perpetrators of fraud in Ohio are being prosecuted and when the subject comes up the GOP unleashes a storm of ridicule so that the Mainstream Media won't take it seriously. Fortunately, the GOP is looking stupid and the press is beginning to wake up. Alas, they don't call it fraud, merely "irregularities" and meaningful reform isn't likely until the word "fraud" is used. While electronic voting machines are now generally discredited, optical scanners are being shown to be open to manipulation. They also have the drawback that a recount can't easily be done in public view. Just because the GOP lost by a lot in 2006 does not mean they are done with voter fraud. In the recent New Hampshire Dem primary Hillary won by 6% in precincts that used optical scanners and Obama won by 6% in precincts that used hand-counted ballots. The GOP wants to run against Hillary.

Continued points of vulnerability: (1) Voting systems and voter registries of any kind that use a computer. Lots of Dem voters are disappearing from rolls. (2) Voter ID laws. (3) A politicized Department of Justice that has no interest in pursuing issues of voter rights. (4) Media's silence on election fraud and their insistence on calling elections before all votes are counted (or even accounted for). The latter stifles audits and recounts, allows the charge of "sore loser."

Some of the fixes mentioned: (1) Repeal the Help America Vote Act. (2) Use only hand counted ballots. (3) No computerized rolls. (4) Prohibit declaring a winner until the counting is complete. (5) Get rid of voter registration by automatically registering voters as they turn 18. (6) Get rid of voter ID rules. (7) Put polling places under video surveillance. (8) Make election day a holiday so we have time to vote. (9) Ban Secretaries of State from working on political campaigns. (10) Make voter fraud a felony.

Very little of the news of the scandal of the fired U.S. Attorneys a year ago has discussed that all the dismissals were over voter fraud (the dismissed attorneys wouldn't participate). The Media has been bullied into providing balance. Since there is no comparable Democratic voter fraud there is no way the media can be "balanced" so they ignore the story. Yes, that means the media, the watchdogs of democracy, have been asleep.

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