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problems with electronic voting

early voting has begun in florida, and there are problems already.

people’s votes for democratic candidates are being recorded for their republican opponents. of course, election officials are assuring people that the errors can be fixed on the spot.

if, of course, you are savvy enough to catch the mistake, and aggressive enough to alert the people in charge, and persistent enough to make sure your vote is recorded properly. sure. lots of elderly voters are going to have the wherewithal to go through that.

right.

and why is it that, when we read these stories, the error never favors the democrats? i certainly try to avoid paranoia, but you have to wonder.

here’s the quote from the linked story that strikes fear into my heart:

Broward Supervisor of Elections spokeswoman Mary Cooney said it’s not uncommon for screens on heavily used machines to slip out of sync, making votes register incorrectly. Poll workers are trained to recalibrate them on the spot — essentially, to realign the video screen with the electronics inside. The 15-step process is outlined in the poll-workers manual.

the 15-step process.

here’s a true story: on one of my relatively recent visits to the polls, i went up to the proper table and the poll worker asked my last name. she then looked at a copy of the alphabet she had written on an envelope, so that she would know where in the book to find my registration information.

you read that correctly. she didn’t know the alphabet well enough, and had to write it down for reference.

i have other new york voting horror stories, and i assure you that this is not an isolated incident–it’s a typical incident.

and these are the people that are going to initiate a 15-step process to calibrate an electonic voting machine?

i’m really angry about this.

and if you really want to get completely frightened, here’s an online guide to stealing elections. the guide was assembled to make the point that stealing an election is now easier than ever, due to the “improvements” implemented after the 2000 election.

this country is going to hell in a handcart. we need to get the u.n. in here to monitor the elections. like they do in fledgling democracies, countries that seem to be doing a better job of having elections than the united states.

i’m really afraid for what will happen to this country if there are widespread problems with electronic voting. it could be the push over the edge into some really widespread, destructive protests, and we don’t need that.

or, maybe we do.