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View Diary: Christopher Hitchens thinks the OHIO VOTE WAS STOLEN (357 comments)

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  •  way to jump to conclusions. (2.72)
    Is there any hard evidence that MILLIONS of votes were illegally stolen this election? This is wild eyed conjucture.

    for your information my immediate family collectively donated four thousand dollars to the Kerry campaign. We drove from WA to Oregon to canvass for voters in Portland.  Don't bitch to me about my commitment or start making wild unwarranted assumptions about my opinions about Kerry. You know better.

    The Republicans didn't win this election by cheating at the polls. They cheated, but they didn't need to.  They wouldn't stand a fucking chance were we able to bring their activities to light in news. Any time in the past fifteen years, right? But we can't. And casting doubt on Bush's election requires the ability to do that. And we don't have it. We barely have the start of it, with this site and Media Matters and CAP and a few other organizations.  It's just not there.

    Maybe Kerry did win the popular vote. But Bush's margin is hard to ignore. I refuse to believe that this much of the country's election machinery is corrupt. Just look at WA state; The SoS, a Republican, is steadfast in his adherence to WA state law against the wishes of his party, and after two recounts Christine Gregoire is in office.

    Maybe there is a massive Diebold conspiracy. But it would be tough to keep it a secret.  The software IS vetted; they'd have to introduce flaws somehow (as is alleged occured during Cleland's election). Granted- the boxes ares also insecure, but obtaining a margin of millions nationwide would require a simply massive conspiracy that would not be able to maintain discipline. (Surely, they'd need one guy for every state they want to fiddle with, at least.) The most outrageous reports of voting machine failure were from PA- which did not involve Diebold machines. To me that adds up that their ability to defraud the election, while present, is also slim.  

    So fuck off with the ideological purity.

    There is a heaven, but ill never get there... i keep respawning...

    by Sandals on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 03:24:55 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  remember caging lists? (4.00)
      you don't have to prove that they rigged the machines to find credible that there was wide spread coordinated efforts to suppress the vote in Democratic districts.

      It was more than the failure to provision and distribute enough voting machines.  It was a concerted effort to challenge each and every voter - to obfuscate and confuse people with which precinct they were registered in.  It was throwing away valid voter registrations because someone failed to fill in a zipcode or a phone number.  It was making rule changes at the last minute that favored the incumbent.  It was moving polling places at the last minute and forgetting to tell people about it.   It was sending out fliers telling people their precinct was scheduled to vote on November 4th.

      It was death by bureaucracy and deception.

      Stolen or not, they should be held accountable for the outright goonery.

      Whether they actually changed the numbers is irrelevant.  

      The singlular proveable fact that you have compiled and distributed a caging list means that you are in felony violation of federal election law.

      •  AND THEY WILL DO IT AGAIN (4.00)
        Repeat.  If we fail to challenge the presidential elections for the obvious shenanigans the GOP employed, they will do it again.  

        In 2000, the GOP employed a caging list and illegally disenfranchised 3% of qualified African American voters in Florida.  In 2004, they produced another caging list, and went to such lengths as having private investigators film African American early voters as a means of intimidation.  We can only imagine what 2006 and 2008 will bring (it seems as if the worse the GOP has performed politically, the more serious and involved their electoral shenanigans are to retain power).

        It seems like many folks want to just "ride out" Bushism and figure that not making too many waves will somehow preserve Democratic credibility as well as preserve the illusion that the Bush-led GOP is not, as we speak, engaging in a soft coup.

        Guess what?  Just as the lack of outraged response to the 2000 presidential elections yielded the smelly 2002 and 2004 elections, lack of outrage to the 2004 elections will yield an even smellier 2006 set of elections.

        No one's going to be able to just "ride out" the GOP's Bushist political revolution; they've grabbed power and they mean to keep it by any means necessary.  We need to challenge that.

        •  how do you build an outraged response? (none)
          sure as hell by not yelling that they stole the election, because we've got jack and Bush is already president again.  

          you get people talking on the shows about how we need to insure accountability, responsibility next election, etc. etc., you can easily make any republican who objects look like a total douche.

          first order of business! ability to get people on shows. eh?

          There is a heaven, but ill never get there... i keep respawning...

          by Sandals on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 08:13:19 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  But why not? (none)
            Why shouldn't we yell that the Bush-led GOP has such a disregard for the Constitution that this political party has incorporated election shenanigans into its general campaign strategy.  I remember a few days before the election seeing GOP shills boldly pronounce that "lower voter turnout will favor Bush."  What kind of banana republic are they trying to create in which the GOP is literally and admittedly trying to keep voters from exercising their Constitution right to choose governmental representatives?

            I, for one, will continue to emphasize the stolen election(s), for no other reason but that continued emphasis and pressure may prove helpful in avoiding a repeat performance of 2000, 2002, and 2004.  Although I get where you're coming from, I just don't think that giving in to the comfortable feeling of just going along with the status quo is the right attitude to take.  We've had myriad indications (the torture memos, the Patriot Acts, the GOP's shameful propensity to lie to Congress) that the modern Bush-led GOP has little to no respect for the Constitution.  What is wrong with screaming this truism to the high heavens, irrespective of the corrupt GOP's insistence that the left is "radical" or "shrill."  

    •  The software IS NOT vetted (4.00)
      Pul-ease, see California.  That is the entire issue,  Diebold can't even verify Diebold.  And we had some pretty dangerous voting machine failures here in NC.  So much so that we're having another election.

      How's this?

      Guess who runs the machines in Gaston County, NC?  "The county pays a technician from Diebold to operate its systems on Election Day. That person was in charge of transferring early votes from electronic storage to the counting computer."

      The number of recorded votes and voters from the 2004 Election don't match in more than half of the precincts in Gaston County.

      Does this sound vetted to you?

      "Officials have said 4,438 ballots were lost in Carteret County when touch-screen voting machines failed to record some votes -- a number that could change the winner in the Troxler-Cobb race."

      "The maker of Carteret's push-button voting machines, UniLect Corp., acknowledges it told county officials the machines would hold more than 10,000 votes. The machines actually held 3,005 because the computer software had not been updated."

      From a North Carolina Republican IT Security professional:

      "I personally don't have conclusive evidence that voter fraud was perpetrated, but I can tell you as an Information Security professional that it would have been very, very easy to do. If I had to choose between someone conspiring with exit poll workers nationwide or someone changing values in an Access Database as the cause of the difference between the poll numbers and the "actual" results, I'll go with the easier, more effective option every time. Why choose the hard way when it's more trouble and you're less likely to succeed? Again, I'm staying clear of making specific allegations - I'll leave that to the activists who are gathering data - but I would be much more surprised if the election weren't hacked than to find out that it was."

      "It was too easy, the companies were too partisan and unethical, and there was too much at stake for them NOT to hack it. It looked like Bush was going to lose, and they had this tool available to pull out a victory."

      •  right (3.00)
        you show what i'm talking about- the most egregrious errors were not diebold machines, they were unilect, and the errors were nuts as all let out.

        but...

        there's no such easily verifiable evidence with diebold-

        we have motive
        we have possible ability

        what we do not have is evidence they committed the crime. ESPECIALLY not any evidence that the tilting leaned to the millions.

        any nationwide push presumes a conspiracy of quite a lot of people. one Diebold technician per county doesn't sound like alot, but it is when you're screwing an election and have to keep it secret. there is just no way they could maintain silence on such a massive scale. the rewards for speaking out are too great.

        There is a heaven, but ill never get there... i keep respawning...

        by Sandals on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 08:11:00 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I am tired of this (4.00)
          it really irritates me.

          You just don't understand.

          One person who had the IP addresses for the central tabulators for, say, Triad tabulators nationwide could have both swung the election by 3 million votes and swung the election in several swing states.

          ONE PERSON at ONE of the voting companies.

          Bush wouldn't have to know, the President of the company wouldn't have to know, the guys girlfriend wouldn't have to know.

          Now, it is more likely, if such a thing happened, that it involved more than one person.

          In some cases the tabulators were not remotely accessible.  To hack into those tabulators you might have to have a wireless connection and be in close physical proximity to the machine.  Hacking of this sort would require lots of feet on the ground, a large budget, and an unlikely conspiracy.

          Even Hitchens discards your argument about a large conspiracy in the article, which I cited.

          IT DID NOT REQUIRE A LARGE CONSPIRACY.

          In fact, its entirely possible that the whole thing could have been done without Bush even knowing about it.  

          WE HAVE TO SEE THE MACHINES.

          Group Captian Mandrake: Very fine, sir, now if I could just have the keys and the code.

          The Oval Office: Because there are no corners, there is nowhere to make the President sit when he has shamed the nation.

          by BooMan23 on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 01:19:26 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Thanks, BooMan23, (4.00)
            for continuously explaining to people who apparently know nothing about systems, software, communications, and software maintenance/updates about the hazards of our current voting systems and the ease with which the final tallies could be manipulated [all without a conspiracy, to boot!!] to produce the small margin in favor of Bush.

            Really, these people who keep insisting that it would take millions of people to manipulate the counts across the nation must have this picture in their heads that the voting machines and tabulators are set up exactly the same as their own personal pc.  It's as if they have no knowledge of anything beyond their own pc and it's capabilities.

            I just want to pull my hair out when someone says things like, "it would take a technician in each county to pull this off," or "the election judges would have to be in on it," when it wouldn't.  

            Please keep up the good work--maybe some of what you say will sink in someday.

            Bush's presidency is now inextricably yoked to the policies of aggression and subjugation. Mike Whitney

            by dfarrah on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 05:50:13 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Boo (none)
            I'm sick of it too. The left is fragmented in their response to election theft, looking at different parts of the elephant and denying it's an elephant. And I do mean elephant.

            We have been fucked and will be fucked again by none other than Turd Blossom who smiles down at us from the window of his new White House office right by Ws. If we want to continue our nap that's fine with him. Pax Romana!

      •  also (none)
        the software IS VETTED.  Practically, most counties lack the technical expertise to do this, but that does not mean that noone does it.

        There is a heaven, but ill never get there... i keep respawning...

        by Sandals on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 08:18:52 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  vetted? (4.00)
          Vetted before or after they applied the unauthorized updates days before the elections?  Vetted before or after the machines were accessed by Deibold technicians on election day itself?  Vetted when the phone lines connected live to the machine were active even through election day?  Vetted before or after vote tally results were leaking from ES&S corporate before the Secretary of State of Ohio?  Vetted when the machines were running Microsoft Windows unpatched?

          Nope.  No matter what attempts were made, the machines were not really vetted.

          •  my thoughts (none)
            in how many cases were unauthorized updates applied? mainly, Clelands...which was not this election.

            how many technicians would it take to access large numbers of machines on election day? just how large of a conspiracy are you alleging?

            There is a heaven, but ill never get there... i keep respawning...

            by Sandals on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 08:43:29 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  One (4.00)
              I am alleging one person with a list of phone numbers or some war dialing software, but I am also pointing out that there were so many other points of entry that to say that the software was "vetted" is absurd.
              •  Or... (4.00)
                Or a small handful of people on the development teams at a few Republican operated software companies.  Heck it even could have been one person contracting for several of them at once.
                •  the developed software (none)
                  was exactly what was vetted. the software would need to be patched- by diebold technicians, in the county in question.

                  There is a heaven, but ill never get there... i keep respawning...

                  by Sandals on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 03:47:53 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  The software could be patched (none)
                    remotely, depending on the capability of the Diebold machines.  And since they have nationwide ATM software capabilities, I'm just betting that when they update or maintenance the software on those machines, they do it remotely rather than send a technician to each and every ATM machine.  

                    Bush's presidency is now inextricably yoked to the policies of aggression and subjugation. Mike Whitney

                    by dfarrah on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 05:57:52 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

        •  Vetted?!?! HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! (4.00)
          Do you mean vetted like this?(emphasis mine)

          California Secretary of State Kevin Shelley had a simple question: Had a new electronic voting machine been approved by an independent testing lab?

          State law requires such approval before the device could be used by California voters. It guaranteed the machines counted votes accurately and would work reliably during an election. As the state's top election official, Shelley figured he could get a quick answer
          He figured wrong.

          Wyle Laboratories of El Segundo refused to discuss the status of its testing of the AccuVote-TSx machine made by its client, Diebold Election Systems. The information was proprietary, Wyle said, and could be revealed only to Diebold.

          And so the secretary of state was introduced to the looking-glass world of voting-machine regulation. Over the years, repeated references to "federal testing" by election officials have given the impression that the government oversees the certification of touch-screen voting systems. While there are guidelines for the machines, no federal agency has legal authority to enforce them.

          Instead, state officials rely on what amounts to a privately operated testing system -- a small group of for-profit companies overseen by a private elections group to ensure the integrity of elections increasingly dependent on electronic voting machines.

          No official oversight.

          Neither the testing procedures nor the testing results are considered to be public information, and these testing laboratories have not traditionally been subject to direct oversight by election officials. For years, the testing system was managed by a private center that also accepted donations from voting-equipment manufacturers.

          "I was shocked," Shelley recalled. "Everyone seemed to be in bed with everyone else. You had these so-called independent testing authorities floating out there in an undefined pseudo-public, pseudo-private status whose source of income is the vendors themselves."

          Recent testing by states and university scientists has shown that these labs, called independent testing authorities, or ITAs, are signing off on some software with serious flaws.

          Yeah, I got your "vetting" right here . . .

          The polls don't tell us how a candidate is doing, they tell us how the media is doing.

          by Thumb on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 09:43:15 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Kevin Shelley learned his lesson (4.00)
            he was lynched out of office by a smear-mob. Only the wealthy or corrupt can afford the legal costs of defending themselves against the raft of BS charges thrown at him after he stood up to Diebold.
        •  You are asserting a positive (4.00)
          That Diebold's software was vetted.  Give me proof.  Are you going to cite the convicted hacker felons Deibold employs as top programmers as official vetters, or an independent source?

          Diebold doesn't let anybody look at the source. They do however leave access to it unguarded if that makes you feel any better.

          I'll be waiting.

        •  no it's not (none)
          a majority of states received waivers from the inspection requirement of HAVA.

          it's in the Ohio report.

          If the people lead, the leaders will follow.

          by Georgia Logothetis on Wed Feb 09, 2005 at 08:47:06 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  8 simple steps to rigging an election (4.00)
      Actually in just two steps...you can skip down to number 7 on this list.

      Which you can read about in detail here.

      Now while you're thinking about how easy it would be to modify votes after/during the election, keep in mind that these systems can be dialed into. And a SINGLE techniction can change the outcome from a secure location...and  NO ONE would ever know...(paper voting receipts? who needs 'em...)

      Looks like it's a lot easier to cover up than you think...

    •  Reason To Believe (none)
      "I refuse to believe that this much of the country's election machinery is corrupt."

      Who built the machines?  Who programmed the machines?  Who sold them to the states and counties?  Who profited from the sale of the machines?  Who installed the machines?  Who serviced them?  Who tabulated the votes?  Who reported the vote tabulations?  

      Diebold and ES&S.  Owned and operated by Republicans, many of them criminals.

      I refuse to believe that anyone can fail to see that our electoral process has been profoundly compromised.

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