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See (and recommend) this diary for the full story.

I have decided to use my diary today to pimp what should be one of the most important YouTube videos -- EVER.

- it is the most important issue facing Americans today
- it is a devastating video against these particular Diebold electronic voting machines that will be used by 10% of the electorate in November.
- it is an issue being ignored by the corporate media (for the most part)


1.  Go to the YouTube video I posted
2.  Write a comment (it will go towards counting for "the most discussed video")
3.  Rate it with 5 stars (it will go towards counting for "the most highly rated video")
4.  Link it to your blog if you can (it will go towards counting for "the most linked video")
5.  Add it to your "favorites" if you have an account (it will go towards counting for "top favorite videos"

Help make this one of the most successful viral videos in American history!

Video link below...

UPDATE 2: Diebold has made a rebuttal at The Chicago Tribune. Take a look and tell us what you think. The chief points are that the software was 2 generations old and the computers are not networked, so no need to worry.


Honors for This Video (so far -- I'll keep updating)

Views: 17,124

#6 - Most Discussed (Today)
#3 - Most Discussed (Today) - News & Blogs
#35 - Most Discussed (This Week)
#14 - Most Discussed (This Week) - News & Blogs
#35 - Most Discussed (This Month) - News & Blogs
#14 - Top Rated (Today)
#5 - Top Rated (Today) - News & Blogs
#60 - Top Rated (This Week) - News & Blogs
#45 - Most Viewed (Today)
#8 - Most Viewed (Today) - News & Blogs
#70 - Most Viewed (This Week) - News & Blogs
#2 - Top Favorites (Today)
#1 - Top Favorites (Today) - News & Blogs
#25 - Top Favorites (This Week)
#4 - Top Favorites (This Week) - News & Blogs
#10 - Top Favorites (This Month) - News & Blogs

Keep it up, guys!! There are also some Diebold supporters out there downrating this video. Don't forget to make a comment there, too.

(click HERE or on pic to go to YouTube)

I've now got this connected to the DIGG system, as well -- if you feel like "digging" it.

Originally posted to STOP George on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 02:43 AM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Spread the word... (150+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sharoney, xerico, Bob, coral, Rayne, gogol, AlanF, Christin, Blutodog, ScientistMom in NY, meg, bellatrys, Matilda, exNYinTX, bostonjay, Harper, Creosote, Plan9, kissfan, concernedamerican, ReneInOregon, Dazy, susakinovember, jeno mules, jerseyjoew, biscobosco, vmibran, Fe, maven98, thingamabob, splashy, jted, SensibleShoes, Eddie C, byebyeblinkie, Winnie, DeadB0y, Sycamore, ghostofaflea, Rico, niteskolar, Penny Century, lizah, Markg8, BlogDog, inclusiveheart, walkshills, bwintx, YetiMonk, Heartpine, kd texan, Renaldo Migaldi, bibble, BDA in VA, donailin, rapala, MichDeb, joanneleon, Bluesee, 3goldens, deBOraaah, bellevie, jdbrooklyn, Elise, lale, LisaZ, democracy inaction, PBen, Jersey Girl, station wagon, kaye, dynamicstand, dj angst, Ranting Roland, trinityfly, buckeyedem08, olivia, eyama, truebeliever, Karmafish, EconAtheist, sunbro, AnotherMassachusettsLiberal, tkmattson, flernk, wardlow, wiscmass, FindingMyVoice, sodalis, LivesInAShoe, sbdenmon, jm taylor, Young and on the air, Cory Bantic, begone, RiaD, Fruitcake, Denny in Seattle, martini, occams hatchet, Appalachian Annie, FrankFrink, MissInformation, methodishca, Keone Michaels, BlueInARedState, emeraldmaiden, quotemstr, Ellicatt, seefleur, theadmiral, Truza, sassysuzie, greenearth, reid fan, da5idfox, condoleaser, slandurgurl, Everest42, ilyana, means are the ends, kurt, betterdeadthanred, Tek Jansen, Darrell J Gahm, Picot verde, vernonlee, 73rd virgin, Craig Burnham, sea note, One Pissed Off Liberal, john07801, EclecticFloridian, Cronesense, uncomfortably numb, sistersilverwolf, Haningchadus14, Cat Whisperer, Bob Guyer, FWIW, possum, WryCynic, godislove, DrWolfy, kath25, flumptytail, voter for sale, Buffy Orpington, lizpolaris, Progressive Chick

    This is no cliche -- it is crucial to the integrity of American Democracy.

  •  All I can say is... (22+ / 0-)

    OH MY GOD!!!! What the fuck is going on? I read about this shit, but that demonstration you presented floored me! Shit...people wake the fuck up!

  •  done (11+ / 0-)

    Alot of these diaries on DKOS I miss. I hope this one makes the recommended diary.
    Thank you!

  •  Did it before I even saw your diary! (n/t) (10+ / 0-)

    Don't be an asshole. Vote Democrat.

    by YetiMonk on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 03:26:45 AM PDT

  •  Done (11+ / 0-)

    Thanks for the heads up.

    Citizen produced videos and service like YouTube are so important.  I imagine they'll be under attack but they have that "viral" characteristic that is pretty tough to squash.

    This is assymetric activism at its best.  

  •  Thanks so much for this (12+ / 0-)

    I hope we don't have to keep pretending that this can't/didn't happen.

    "Ordinarily he was insane, but he had lucid moments when he was merely stupid." Heinrich Heine (1797 - 1856)

    by maven98 on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 03:50:50 AM PDT

  •  And they only covered (33+ / 0-)


    What I ask is this: what will Americans do on November fifth when they discover that the GOP has "managed to keep" control of the house and senate?

    I say this because there is no way that boards of elections across the whole country are going to buy new machines or switch to provisional on such short notice.

    Will the American people just shrug it off again?

    I remember in 04 I was walking around for weeks with "my hair on fire" -- and BTW, I could not even TALK about a stolen election here at KOS.

    That's why I say, "What will Americans do this time when they steal it again?" Because people, even progressives are slow on the uptake.

    "Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God" -8.13/-7.03

    by donailin on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 04:04:28 AM PDT

  •  Was happy to rate the video (13+ / 0-)

    When I saw this it reminded me of Clint Curtis who had told of writing software just for this purpose before an election in Florida. And of Ion Sancho the elections official in Florida who first proved through a demonstration that these machines could be easily hacked.

  •  asdf (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gogol, bwintx, jfadden, LivesInAShoe

    Why do you think, with his favorability ratings in the 30's, that Bush still confidently talks about his agenda after the elections, including privitizing social security.  He KNOWS Republicans  will retain control, one way or another.

    •  Nah. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      All politicians need to project confidence.  They all say "when I'm president..." even if they're polling in single digits after Iowa.

      Bush is just being competitive and vindictive little prick.  SS is the one issue he was utterly defeated on, and he just wants to say it isn't over yet.  Kind of like a bully who loses a fight.

      Never play leapfrog with a unicorn.

      by Cream Puff on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 06:17:27 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  done. rated, comment left (actually two comments (4+ / 0-)

    'cause it's the first time I posted on YouTube and I got confused by how to do it.  Ah well.).  Thank you StopGeorge!

  •  Another way to help (7+ / 0-)

    is to support Clint Curtis for FL-24. His company was hired in 2000 by Tom Feeney (R-Abramoff) to write just such a program.

    Help Clint save democracy $5 at a time

    Register your vote at Vote Now 2006

  •  A rating and a comment (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    STOP George, LivesInAShoe, Dauphin

    for the video, and a Rec. for you. Thanks for posting this, STOP George.

    "I will make a bargain with the Republicans. If they will stop telling lies about Democrats, we will stop telling the truth about them." -- Adlai Stevenson

    by sbdenmon on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 04:42:42 AM PDT

  •  Constitutional Crisis (12+ / 0-)

    All e-voting machines need to be immediately de-certified.

    -6.5, -7.59. If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention.

    by DrWolfy on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 04:43:36 AM PDT

  •  Thanks for the diary (3+ / 0-)

    Commented and voted. Got to get this in the media.

  •  REALLY glad to see Princeton stepping up to the (9+ / 0-)

    plate on this.

    IEEE has been on this for some time, but Princeton is a household name.

    •  "Eastern elite liberal university professors" (7+ / 0-)

      Can't you just hear it now from the saliva-slinging wingnut radio hosts?

      -8.00, -2.92 All actions -- especially votes -- have consequences.

      by bwintx on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 04:58:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yep I can hear it now (6+ / 0-)

        "Eastern elite liberal university professors"

        I bet they all repeat the exact same words when they do it too.

        Dollars to donuts they had the script written to defend against this a long time ago, and just now took it out and dusted it off because they need it.

        Unfortunately for them, the name Princeton has tremendous clout everywhere.  It's the saliva slingers who are going to be perceived as rabid on this one.

        Also, the video demonstrates that it is incredibly easy for criminals to use their Electoral Express Cards (Don't leave the polling booth without it)to hack the vote.

        Even the most country of the country folk use a credit card to buy gas or something every once in a while.  Everyone knows how easy it is to slide a piece of plastic through a card reader.

        This is huge news.

        Democracy has a new champion, and its name is Princeton.

      •  Frist Center, etc. (0+ / 0-)

        Princeton gets a lot of bucks from Republi-cons.  The student center renovation is named after the Frist Family for example.  Rockefeller library, and Carl Icahn labs are just two others.  I even saw "W" signs in some dorm windows in 04.  

      •  didn't take long!! (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        nasarius, Shakludanto

        what would make me feel better is if this really was a trusted third party like UL or Consumer Reports. As it is it's two biased academics with an agenda.

        From one of the obvious Diebold/GOP shills in the comments section of Chicago Tribune's rebuttal from Diebold (see link in diary update).

        "Renaming French fries to Freedom fries was arguably this Republican congress' greatest accomplishment." -- Stephen Colbert

        by reid fan on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 03:41:12 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Since they started it... (3+ / 0-)

    Is it OK if we draw (or sticker) a great big GOP elephant on the damned machines when we vote?

    After all, if it's only counting the Republican votes, shouldn't the package match the product?

    How many miles per soldier does your SUV get?

    by kamarvt on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:01:51 AM PDT

  •  Does anybody know (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Elise, greenearth, reid fan

    if the security risk on these machines is greater or lesser than the security risk for previous voting technology (e.g., lever booths, butterfly ballots, paper and pencil) ?

    The whole time I was watching this video I was thinking to myself:  Yes, but we could make a similar video for every form of voting technology ever invented--all corruptable.

    As I understand it, the issue with Diebold is not the technology per se, but that the widespread adoption of the Diebold machine would put the voting system in the hands of one private company with a demonstrated conflict of interest (e.g., financial ties to the Republican Party).

    That much being said,  I am 100% in favor of electronic voting, but just not in this current form.

    •  Are You Kidding? (26+ / 0-)

      The combination of no paper ballot and using software to count the votes makes this unique.

      I am a software engineer. Trust me, you can't trust software.

      This is CLASS WAR, and the other side is winning.

      by Mr X on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:11:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  asdf (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        reid fan

        I think the problem is that most people are computer illiterate.  Maybe the person is looking for an explanation of why it is easier to detect fraud in a mechanical machine vs an electronic machine and therefore a mechanical machine is a much safer way to run an election.  

        •  The person is not computer illiterate (8+ / 0-)

          I think he's just asking a basic question.

          I believe the issue here is not the software, but the monopoly.  Put one company in charge of the voting--that's the problem.  There will always be teh potential for fraud in voting technology--whether we put sticks in a basket or electrons on a piece of silicon.

          But what is NEW in these Diebold machines is the CONTRACT between government and one company, thereby creating a monopoly with massive potential for conflict of interest.

          •  I believe there's an issue with both. (3+ / 0-)

            We're talking about a technology. So if your question is, what makes this different from traditional methods of vote counting, the answer would be the same as what makes any technology different from the one before it?

            The answer is that like any technology, this one's effect is to enable the doer to do what he was originally doing more effectively. It is inherently neutral- its effect depends on the manner in which it is used.

            But, once again, as with any technology, it does not change human nature, nor the potential for abuse. Just as the technology may aid in the counting of votes, it may also aid in their manipulation. This is not a new challenge, and potential abuse arises with the introduction of any new technology. If implemented without the proper safeguards, it can certainly do more harm than good.

            •  So this is about security, not softwarre (0+ / 0-)

              I agree with your point.  And in fact, the key issue I took from the video was not how easy it is to manipulate software, but  how easy it was to break open that lock and insert a disk--mechanical security issues, not electronic issues.

              •  Theft was always possible (8+ / 0-)

                but it was never so easy. For lever machines, for example, each one would have to be tampered with individually. Moreover, the simple mechanism cannot distinguish a test from a real election, so it would reveal itself as flawed if tested. Finally, these videos have not addressed the vulnerability of central tabulators, which aggregate votes from precinct DREs or optical scan machines, and report county totals. These machines are remotely accessible, and have laughable security. It has been demonstrated that reported totals for entire precincts can be altered at the tabulator level without leaving a trace. It takes a minute or so, and the right modem access phone #.  In the case of optical scan ballots, there is a precinct-level paper trail of ballots that could be matched against the reported tabulator total. With DREs, even this under-used safeguard is missing.  Many trustng souls around here see a coincidence in the fact that these stunningly inept security measures surrounding voting technology come from a company which strongly supports the GOP and which also makes highly secure ATMs. They dismiss the possibility that Diebold's corrupt influence over Bob Ney's HAVA could have anything to do with the way the company and GOP use the bill to attack state officials who dare to speak out about their corrupt, incompetent technology. (see Kevin Shelley, Ion Sancho, and Bruce Funk, among others).
                It is especially risky to suggest that otherwise unexplained exit-poll anomalies, or election results that diverge drastically from respected polling results have anything to do with voting technology controlled by one party.

                (please don't ban me for this)

              •  It is partially about software, (0+ / 0-)

                or more accurately, the development process. I think it is obvious from the problems that have been revealed that the company has a hostile attitude toward QA. No decent QA-er would have certified this machine. Perhaps they don't even have QA.

                I've also read somewhere that the database can be overwritten without leaving an audit trail. This implies to me that they have not implemented a secured API to their database. A secured system would have access to the data only through secured procedures that leaves an audit trail of all changes.

                "Carry my joy on the left, carry my pain on the right." -- Bjork

                by Nerdsie on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 08:54:09 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

          •  Do You Always Refer to Yourself in 3rd Person? (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            subtropolis, means are the ends

            The person is not computer illiterate ... I think he's just asking a basic question.

            This is CLASS WAR, and the other side is winning.

            by Mr X on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:17:00 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Diebold makes ATMs (0+ / 0-)

            They have papertrails. They are secure. You cannot tell me that they don't know how to make a secure voting machine with a papertrail.

            But I have said this all before.

            This is OLD NEWS!
            It is pure corruption and it needs to stop NOW.
            Dems need to raise holy hell.



            What, then, is one to make of the fact that the owners of the three major computer voting machines are all prominent Republican Party donors? Or of a recent political fund-raising letter written to Ohio Republicans by Walden O'Dell, Diebold's chief executive, in which he said he was "committed to helping Ohio to deliver its electoral votes to the president next year" - even as his company was bidding for the contract on the state's new voting machinery?

            Edward R. Murrow:We must not confuse dissent with disloyalty. When the loyal opposition dies, I think the soul of America dies with it.

            by digital drano on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 11:48:39 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

      •  It's not about the software (0+ / 0-)

        It's about participation and the distribution of responsibility.

        Politicians have been and will continue to steal votes as long as there is voting.  Sticks or software--makes no difference.  

        The problem is the monopoly of the voting by a single private entity, appointed by one party, and with a vested interest in that same party.

        We should talk about this technical glitch, absolutely.  But the problem with the new changes in the voting system is not the technology.  It's the monopoly.

        •  You Are Trying too Hard (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          litho, STOP George, Dauphin, PhantomFly

          to not see the difference between a ballot that can be seen and counted and an invisible vote.

          When ones and zeros come and go inside a computer, noone sees it. Mark an "X" on a piece of paper, there it is.

          This is CLASS WAR, and the other side is winning.

          by Mr X on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:47:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sure..."there it is" (0+ / 0-)

            until somebody throws it out.

            I went to vote, yesterday.  The person behind the table could not find my name in the book.  Ink on paper.  I even had a piece of paper sent to me by the people who assembled the voter registration book--still no luck.  

            So I filled out a paper ballot--marked an X on a piece of paper, stuffed it in an envelop.  Handed it to the same person who could not find my name in a book that I know was in that book.  Now, if someone can't find a name in a book, I'd say the odds are 50:50 at best that they can get a paper ballot where it needs to go to be counted.  Did I get a receipt?  No.  Do I have any idea how to judge if my vote was counted?  No.  End result:  confusion.

            Did my vote count, yesterday?  Who knows.  But there were about 50 different possible  ways that my vote could have been eliminated.  And this is paper and pens.

            That much being said, I did not panic because my local polling station is not in the hands of a single private company given a contract by the Republican party.  

            •  Jeffrey, WHAT monopoly? You are misinformed (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              STOP George, means are the ends

              Diebold is only one of many evoting vendors. ES&S, Sequoia, Microvote, Accenture, Hart Inter-Civic, and more.

              sorry, I really don't like being rude, but your continued misstatements (almost a highjacking it seems) just shows how little you've informed yourself about the situation, and about the REAL various problems with using proprietary software (i.e., software that is a trade secret, so testers and local jurisdictions aren't allowed to see what's in it) that was produced on the cheap, and released with inadequate testing. This is all leaving aside any possibility of hacking or malfeasance.

              and these aren't just theoretical problems -- problems with bad results have been reported in local papers by hundreds of jursidictions over the last 2-3 years. including simple failure of evoting vendors to deliver machines and/or election-specific software on time, and according to contract.

              of course individual jurisdictions award a contract to one evoting vendor, just like individual jurisdictions generally award a contract to, say, one cleaning service. that doesn't mean it's a monopoly.

        •  No, It is the machine and software at issue... (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gogol, digital drano, STOP George

 this case and there is almost zero chance of catching and proving the fraud...BY DESIGN.

          The system of paperless touch machines cannot be defended, it should never have been used and it never should be used again.

          Technology is not the issue here (don’t make it into a faux fuddy duddies verses the techenicaly educated debate) but trust in the electoral process certainly is the issue. Paperless systems and even some hybrid system are badly flawed, scores of technical experts have said so!

          Just because the traditional process can be violated doesn’t mean we should use flawed systems so that fraud is so hard to detect...and therefore it is not an issue?...please!. Old ballot box stuffing replacement schemes are not hard to detect and that is the point and all of the point. Do not defend these badly flawed systems especially with bad logic; that makes reasonably intelligent people doubt your motivations...understand?  

          Integrity is the doing what is right in the absence of witnesses and with no other gain in mind.

          by Bobjack23 on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 09:46:00 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, it IS about the software (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          STOP George

          quoted from Avi Ruben's study, which precedes the newest Princeton study (Ruben is one of the foremost researchers on electronic voting systems):

          It is impossible to estimate the probability of a successful cyber-attack (or multiple successful attacks) on any one election. But we show that the attacks we are most concerned about are quite easy to perpetrate. In some cases there are kits readily available on the Internet that could be modified or used directly for attacking an election. And we must consider the obvious fact that a U.S. general election offers one of the most tempting targets for cyber-attack in the history of the Internet, whether the attacker's motive is overtly political or simply self-aggrandizement.

          The vulnerabilities we describe cannot be fixed by design changes or bug fixes to SERVE. These vulnerabilities are fundamental in the architecture of the Internet and of the PC hardware and software that is ubiquitous today. They cannot all be eliminated for the foreseeable future without some unforeseen radical breakthrough. It is quite possible that they will not be eliminated without a wholesale redesign and replacement of much of the hardware and software security systems that are part of, or connected to, today's Internet.

          You are right that private and proprietary software has no place in our public elections.  But it is unclear if you understand that there are several voting machine companies serving the U.S.  Removing Diebold from the mix won't address the problems created by ES&S (Sen. Chuck Hagel's old company), Hart-Intercivic, Sequoia, etc., etc.  

    •  I don't see what the problem is (18+ / 0-)

      with paper ballots deposited in transparent urns and counted in public.

      All you need is a minimum of five volunteers per 1000 of population to act as pollwatchers/workers, and you have a nearly guaranteed open electoral system.

      Elections should be a civic holiday, so that people take them seriously.  The fallacy in diebold is that we can somehow make elections both foolproof and worry-free.  They are neither of those things.  They are THE moment when we the people decide who should lead our country.

      We damn well ought to take them seriously, worry about them, and watch over them...

      •  So you're saying (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        strengthANDwisdom, Timroff

        that voter stealing with the paper system is less of a risk.

        I don't believe that.

        The risk is not the technology.  The risk is placing the control of our voting system in the hands of one, private and interested party.  

        Sticks, paper, software--all will be equally at risk for corruption if the entity that ultimately controls them is private, beyond public control, and invested in one of two parties.

        •  There is no way (5+ / 0-)

          to put the counting of paper ballots in the hands of one person.

          Yet the video makes a persuasive case that one individual with sufficient programming skills could single-handedly change the outcome of an election.

          Show me how one person, acting alone and undetected, could do that with paper ballots.

          I'll come back, though, to my broader point.  The best security against voter fraud is an informed and engaged citizenry, one that takes elections seriously and takes the time to care about both the process and the outcome.

          There's no magic bullet fix.  There's just the hard work of people talking to each other, and watching what's going on.

          •  exactly (0+ / 0-)

            Whether or not a person could do widespread  damage would depend on the context.  

            Elections have been stolen many times by both parties.  By definition,  it goes undetected.

            Does this make it easier or harder?  I don't know...that's why I asked my original question.

            •  Yes, the election was still stolen, but (10+ / 0-)

              At least it was stolen messily. At least everyone knew it was stolen. At least both sides were doing some stealing, and both had an implicit agreement that the outcome would go to the one who could steal it the best. There were your machines, and there were my machines. There was no pretense.

              But not this time. This time, there will be no precinct captains busing people in. No five dollar bills slipped under the table in apartment backrooms. No men in smoke-filled rooms. No alphabetical lists of dead people. No riveting accounts, unopened boxes, and court orders. No book chapters written by guys with access to library files 40 years later.

              Instead it will be 20,000 votes flipped on magnetic charges in a memory disk, which are then erased as the space is overwritten a few weeks later. No Supreme Court challenges. No Robert Caro. No Means of Ascent.

              It will be neat. It will be clean.

              Like the difference between Attila the Hun and Hitler.

              •  exactly (0+ / 0-)

                Which is why I say the problem is not the technology, but the monopoly.

                You made my point better than I did.

                •  Read it again, Jeff (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Mr X, means are the ends

                  I think you're missing the distinction.

                  •  I'm not missing any point (0+ / 0-)

                    The problem with the Diebold machines is not the technology.  All technology is fraught with problems.  This technology has bad problems. Terrible problems that need to be fixed.   Nobody is questioning that. The old technology had bad problems, too.  

                    The issue is the elimination of the system of accountability through corrupt privatization (e.g., awarding of the contract to a company with ties to one party).

                    The monopoly on the voting technology needs to be avoided.

                    My point is obvious and is true:    If we want to stop Diebold, we will need to do much, much better than videos that show that an electonic machine can be hacked; we will need to show that our Democratic voting system has been handed to one private company with vested interest in the current ruling party.  

                    That's it.  All the other arguments are interesting, but they miss the point.

                    •  Jeffrey, please give it up (6+ / 0-)

                      You have an idee fixee that you can't stop repeating. It's clear that you understand neither security nor software, but instead of learning you keep trying to cram the information you are given into your own wrong conclusion.

                      Electronic voting has inherent problems that are unique to software.

                      It offers no mode of verification by an independent method. An optical scanner can be fiddled with, for instance, but the paper ballots remain and can be recounted.

                      It offers no method of independent observation. If a county develops a history of election fraud, it can ramp up the number of bipartisan observers. They can watch the initial count, they can examine the ballot storage facilities, they can conduct the recount publicly, and much more.

                      It offers no method of voter verification. I can at least see that my ballot is marked correctly on paper, whatever happens later on. So I know that at least the original record of my vote is correct, if that record ever needs to be re-examined.

                      Its security rests in the hands of a tiny number of people. It has been demonstrated elsewhere how few people are required to hack a Diebold election. Corrupting a paper election requires a much broader conspiracy.

                      The fundamental thing you need to understand about security is that no one safeguard is ever enough. Multiple methods of authentication, etc., increase security. Electronic voting does not allow for these redundant failsafes. Paper voting does.

                      •  Even a knuckle dragging idiot like me (0+ / 0-)

                        can find his way over to wikipedia to look up all he needs to know to participate in this discussion.   The 'black box' problem is certainly not very difficult to understand.  The problem with failsafes even less so.

                        Eeek!  Disagreement on dKos.  I guess if I dissent, though...that must mean I am the stupid one in this discussion.

                        It ain't pretty, but I can handle that without being offended ; )

            •  Ballot stuffing (7+ / 0-)

              and other kinds of open fraud in paper ballot systems, is usually well-known at the time it occurs.  You need lots of people to make it happen, and not all of them will be 100% silent about what they have done.  At times, the openness itself of the fraud is a key element in its political effectiveness.

              Or are you suggesting that Mexicans believed they had an open and honest electoral system for 70 years of PRI government?  Did Chicagoans under Daley trust the election results to faithfully report voter sentiment?

              People acquiesce to that kind of fraud, just as they acquiesce to all kinds of oppressive political systems.  "You can't fight city hall."

              What I'm trying to say is that paper ballot fraud isn't exactly insidious; it's more bare-knuckle, in-your-face abuse of power.  Diebold, however, pretends to accurately record our wishes while secretly and silently making sure the "right" people exercise power.  It is the very essence of insidious -- and right in line with neo-con thinkings about how political power should be organized.

              •  I agree (0+ / 0-)

                But to make that case we need to do much more than just show how the software and the pandlocks can be hacked.

                We need to show the ties between Diebold and the Republican party.  That's the key.  

                To make this a debate about bad software will not get the job done.

                •  I guess where we differ (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  means are the ends

                  is whether or not the technology itself is a key part of the problem.

                  I would say it is.  Diebold has created a black box, within which the most important decisions of our society can take place -- completely hidden from our view, in a totally inaccessible way.

                  Now you might be able to find a software engineer who would tell you that it's possible to develop unhackable hardware.  Personally I wouldn't believe them, but I don't have the technical knowledge to say whether or not that is true.

                  And that is the essence of the problem with the Diebold technology.  You need a tremendous amount of technical knowledge to understand in depth the fundamental points of the debate.

                  You don't need any technical knowledge with paper ballots -- except of course, how to count.  Most of us master that skill at age two...

                •  Your argument (3+ / 0-)

                  will be singularly unappealing to Republican voters.

                  The argument about the inherent unreliability of software is not.

                  •  And you really believe that (0+ / 0-)

                    software has 'inherent unrealiablity'?  Our entire economy is run on software, but you want to argue that in this case--it's 'inherently unrealiable.'

                    You better be prepared to explain why we should keep ATM machines, grocery cash registers, email, cell phones, airplane guidance systems, GPS, heart monitors, etc., etc.  Because if you're putting all your chips in that software argument, you might want to have at the ready the general explaination why all these other systems seem just fine with you.

           could just accept that this is not fundamentally about software, but about monopoly and conflict of interest.  

                    •  ATM etc. software has accountability to End Users (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Jeffrey Feldman

                      evoting software does not.

                      that's the quick and easy general explanation.

                      a customer will notice a bad result from an ATM transaction right away or when he checks his balance -- and the bank will hear about it, and as Smallbottle said, any bad ATM software would be off the market, pronto. (and vendor maybe would be sued).

                      same thing with your other examples. But when the voter pushes that button on an evoting machine, he has no way to know that his vote will later be counted improperly by the central vote tabulation software, or that the election-specific coding was so badly written (and so inadequately tested) that although his vote looks OK on the screen, it is actually being awarded to the wrong candidate.

                      These are not hypothetical examples, they're real-world examples of problems found after the fact by local elections officials -- again, not by the voter, who has no way of knowing about them. And no guarantee that bad results will be noticed by local elections officials -- unless the bad results are so bad as to be impossible -- reporting twice as many votes as are voters in the district, or whatever -- there is no assurance they will be noticed.

                      When the problems get bad enough, local elections officials may get pissed off enough (despite their  counties' financial and time investments in these evoting systems, and their own "investments" in the systems that they themselves recommended their counties purchase) to cancel evoting vendor contracts -- but up until that point -- which has been reached in a number of instances -- do a google, you'll find them -- there is no accountability.

                      •  I googled, I wiki-ed, I get it (0+ / 0-)

                        I get it, I really do.  Please have a little faith in my ability to understand these issues. The point I am raising is about the efficacy of the argument as it is presented--which I believe is weak.

                        The voting machines in use in my district, for example, are mechanical direct recording machines from the 1960s. Supposedly they have an error rate that's as high as 25%.  They suck.  I don't know if they can be  manipulated easily, but I suspect it's not that hard.

                        The problem I have with these arguments about the 'black box' dynamic is that they all assume some kind of imaginary condition in which verification processes in a paper based system go off without a hitch. But we have seen in the past decade multiple paper verification processes get fouled up.  It seems to me that all verification systems ultimately come down to who controls election boards.  

                        I imagine in a case where someone questions the outcome of an EVM, the case would go forward if it had sympathetic backers at the level of the district, the city,the county, the courts, etc.  Remarkably similar to what happens with paper systems.  Courts deal with new issues all the time.  This would be a new issue.

                        This Diebold system is bad.  That does not mean that every other system is better, nor does it mean that software can never be used in a voting system--even in a fairly central function (e.g., not just as a system for saying "Thanks for voting!")

                        The Diebold system sucks!!!!  Everybody catch that?  I HATE THE DIEBOLD SYSTEM.  Hate it, hate it, hate it.  Ptew!  Get 'em away from me.

                        But simply pointing out that software can be hacked in a video does not solve the problem--the multiple problems that we need to solve, most of which are the product of corruption and imbalance in government.

                        Obviously, time will tell if this software story gets picked up and becomes a factor in 2006.  There seems to be enough of an historical record from other countries that electronic voting causes concern, that some journalists might pick up on it and call Diebold into question using the argument of the video.  We'll see, I guess.

                        •  Jeffrey honey normally I love ya (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Jeffrey Feldman, geejay

                          But you're way off on this one.

                          But lets just look at your examples/arguments:

                          (1) The monopoly aspect is the bad part, has nothing to do with technology. Ok, lets test with a little analogy. If paper ballots were all printed at the same print shop, a total monopoly between the govt and one Republican print shop, would that be a problem? No. Clearly, software IS different from other voting technologies, inherently and in ways that cause big problems. More on that later.

                          I went to vote, yesterday.  The person behind the table could not find my name in the book.  Ink on paper.

                          Right, ok, think about it--the very fact that you can tell this story at all, proves the point that software is less safe!! Something strange happened, and you noticed it! Now, maybe nothing will ever come of it, so in that sense the "fraud" (assuming it is) will be successful. But at least it is in some way visible to some person. There is NO test, NO research, NO anything that can show an e-vote fraud.


                          I imagine in a case where someone questions the outcome of an EVM, the case would go forward if it had sympathetic backers at the level of the district, the city,the county, the courts, etc.  

                          (I assume EVM = E-Voting Machine?) You're wrong. How would that happen? In your personal example, you go to your registrar and say, hey, this weird thing happened. Maybe she shrugs and you're SOL. But if millions of people say, hey, I had to vote provisional for no reason, that is something that could be followed up by a sympathetic system. How would that happen in evoting? Everything checks out because the software deleted itself. Then what? How would a court POSSIBLLY deal with that? Even a court that was willnig to be the most sympathetic and activist court ever?

                          (4) But we trust computers for other important stuff like Banking, Medical, etc Your examples of the heart machine and ATM are not analogous. We don't rely on those things because we believe them to be bug-free or tamper-free. I write software, I can tell you WITH CERTAINTY they have bugs and are tamperable. We trust them NOT because they are trustworthy, but only because flaws will be detectable, thus hopefully quickly mitigated. That is all. If a heart machine has a bug and the patient dies, we will know that the heart machine had a bug. We trust heart machines because lots of people use them and are manifestly not dead. THAT is your paper trail. THAT is your trust. Empirical trust, not inherent trust. ATMs also connect to a physical reality outside of the software itself. If you don't get a physical $20 out of the machine, you know something is wrong. A detectable error. If the ATM machine hands you a $20, but doesn't deduct from your account, the bank will notice a whole bunch of missing money in its ledger at the end of the month. A detectable error. Because things outside of the machine itself are impacted by what the machine does.

                          Because voting is supposed to be anonymous, there is no evidence. There is no dead body, there is no missing $20. There is no connection to a physical reality outside of the little software counter for each candidate. There is no ledger that doesn't match at the end of the month, because the software is the only ledger. This is UNIQUE to voting, compared to anything else we use computers for, again, because of the anonymous aspect of voting. If voting machines kept track of your name and how you voted, if there was a question, they could put the results on the internet, you could look up your name on the list, and see if what they have matches what you did. THEN E-VOTING WOULD BE SAFE AND NOBODY WOULD BE COMPLAINING. Because there is a verifiable connection to the outside world. But we can't do it that way, because of the anonymous thing.

                          E-Voting IS different. Different from other voting technologies. And Different from other 'e'-applications. It just is. Apples and oranges.

                          One way that evoting could be made safe, and probably better than any other technology (paper punch, machine, etc), is if the machine generates a paper ballot. This exists and has been advocated by computer people from day 1, but is resisted by companies, maybe it is less profitable. After you vote on the machine, it prints out everything you did on paper. You view the paper through a glass window. If the paper matches what you wanted, it gets dropped into a ballot box attached to the machine. If not, it gets dropped down another chute to the trash (or overwritten or something). Now if you question the software's total, you open the box and count manually. Best of both worlds. Plus, since the machine can mark paper more precisely than people, you don't have as much problem with hanging chads, etc.

                          "Renaming French fries to Freedom fries was arguably this Republican congress' greatest accomplishment." -- Stephen Colbert

                          by reid fan on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 12:04:19 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  yeah, yeah, yeah (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            reid fan

                            If Diebold was a well-known Progressive corporation that supported Democrats and the argument was that we wanted to get as many of these machines out as possible by 2008 because their ease of use had been shown to increase voter participation--if that were the case, there would be no Diebold-must-die diaries.  Kossacks would be saying, "Put better locks on there!"  "Create a virus monitoring system!"  "Design multiple pirate software failsafe systems!"   Then, the diaries about stolen votes would all be over at RedState/  As things stand right now, I doubt there are very many Diebold diaries on the right-wing blogs.  And logically so, because this is really about imbalance of Republican power and lack of oversight in our election system.  

                            Sure, the software issue is bad for all the reasons listed.  No doubt.  I've had that explained to me know by about a dozen people and I agree with everything that's been written (almost everything).  But the debate is not about software.  It's about politics, corruption, imbalance.    Today, the software is the black box.  But last year the black box was Ken Blackwell, and before that the black box was Katherine Harris, and before that the black box was...etc., etc.   All of those had paper trails. None of them were ever resolved effectively.  Not even close.  

                            And yes, if one Republican company was suddenly in charge of making all paper ballots and those ballots were shown to cause confusion (e.g., what happened in Florida), and there were enough ballots in some districts, but not in others,  then we would be in this exact same debate--just swap out the word 'software' for the words 'printing' and 'distribution' and the outcry would be the of same order.  Only, instead of software experts telling me I was an idiot (which I probably am), it would be graphic designers and ink experts.

                            So machines that rely entirely on software have security problems.  So what?  Just design a machine that draws on as many advantages of the an electronic system as possible, blanced with as many advantages of a paper and human monitored system as possible--all of which have security shortcomings.    But I'm willing to give anything a try at this stage because the system as it stands is ridiculous.   We cannot have a 100% paper system without a drastic overhall of voting in our culture (e.g., an election day holiday with tens of thosands of paid workers), which is not going to happeh.  And we cannot simply convert over to an optical system because--from what I understand--that is prohibitively expensive.  So we come up with some kind of integrated solution.   Electronic with enough checks to give us more confidence in the system.  I mean...the real problem here isn't the machines, it's the fact that we've never had a national discussion about reform in our system of voting, a federal panel of experts, an R and D group convened, multiple test phases, slow roll out and implementation, tweaking, etc., etc., etc.

                            I'm all for it.

                          •  sigh (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Jeffrey Feldman

                            Electronic with enough checks to give us more confidence in the system.  I mean...the real problem here isn't the machines, it's the fact that we've never had a national discussion about reform in our system of voting

                            I think the real problem with this entire exchange and why you're driving everyone to distraction is that you have a false dichotomy. "isn't the machines, it's the fact that..." It's BOTH!!! Nobody is saying the other things aren't a problem.

                            But we actually believe that even if everything else were fixed, completely paperless voting would still be unacceptable. The only "enough checks" that would ever be acceptable is a paper trail. But then, it wouldn't be what most people mean by "e-voting." Anything that has no paper trail is unacceptable, no matter who the vendor, no matter if it were open source, written by Paul Wellstone, no matter nuthin'. Unacceptable. And, truly, trust me, it isn't a partisan issue in the computer science community.

                            It's all about Diebold=Satan on the liberal blogs, and I'll grant you that has to do with Diebold's politics more than a logical comparison of error rates. But don't let that fool you that there isn't more "there" there in the complaints from actual experts.

                            "Renaming French fries to Freedom fries was arguably this Republican congress' greatest accomplishment." -- Stephen Colbert

                            by reid fan on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 03:24:12 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  ah, here is our problem: (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Jeffrey Feldman

                            blanced with as many advantages of a paper and human monitored system as possible

                            Yes, this is EXACTLY what we want to happen. This is what computer people have been asking for from the beginning. That is the dream of the anti-Diebold folks.

                            But then we just have a terminology misunderstanding. This isn't "e-voting" in the sense that we use it as shorthand for "no paper trail." I and mamy other computer people fully endorse touch-screen voting that has a voter-verified paper, or as you say, "with as many advantages of a paper...system as possible."

                            "Renaming French fries to Freedom fries was arguably this Republican congress' greatest accomplishment." -- Stephen Colbert

                            by reid fan on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 03:31:46 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  LOL AHAH! (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            reid fan

                            So someone is actually reading my comments.  That can't be healthy.

                            I do not believe, by the way, that the paper trail is the solution.  I believe the software is the solution.  This of course, is why this reform needs to be a team effort.  We already have a paper trail--it's called our crappy voting system.  Paper out the wazzoo and it all sucks.  Corruptable to the core--easily so, no mass conspiracy required.  But I see the point being made here by the techxperts and agree.

                            It may seem mundane, but a touch screen system which eliminated all the nonsense of the overly complicated ballots, and somehow spit out a florida-senior-citizen-proof receipt (e.g. "Congratulations Mrs. Morgenstein, you did not accidentally vote for Hitler!") that would be a miracle on wheels.  And the electronics would deliver it.

                            But again, I see how the names are very specific, here.

                            In my voting reform fantasy, everyone who registers to vote would get a special voter ID card with a smart chip.  During voting "week" (e.g.), a registered voter could go to any ATM maching in the world and vote for candidates in his/her state. The dream system would also generate a paper trails, would be failsafe, monitored by an impartial third party, upgradeable, and 100% better than what we have now.  People who could not get to ATM machines could use dedicated machines that would be located in grocery stores, public transportation, post offices, etc..  The machines would be manufactured by public-private enterprise funded like a New Deal civil engineering project and monitored constantly by an impartial entity. That's the fantasy.  Now make it happen!

                            LOL!!  We are just on the opposite side of the raft, here, but floating down the same river.  

                          •  um, ok, we'll get on it :*) (0+ / 0-)

                            We computer people only THINK we're superhuman, don't let us fool you!

                            Seriously though, you have a good point about touch screen interface--you can change languages more easily, make the text huge for old people, etc. That is the baby in the paperless bathwater, and I hope it doesn't get thrown out.

                            "Renaming French fries to Freedom fries was arguably this Republican congress' greatest accomplishment." -- Stephen Colbert

                            by reid fan on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 03:50:56 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

              •  You Can Only (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                'Game' the system when you have a large majority, or control of a given area.  In a city like Chicago, the old machine controlled the entire election process so oversight was limited.  Plus, you can only do this in places where you have a majority of voters of the same party.

                This works well for cities and/or rural areas where you have large one party majorities.  For the GOP, this mostly plays out in rural area, such as small counties, etc.

                With electronic voting, its easier to control the process from a central source, meaning you don't need boots on the ground in the given area.  You can just make the adjustments to the vote totals from a central site.  Which is why places like Florida in 2000 and Ohio in 2004 made the charges carry weight since the GOP controlled the central process.  Again, its all access in this case.

                You can bet that if there is a way to fudge the numbers, Bush and his boys are on top of it.  My personal thinking is that they did that in Ohio last election.  Turnout numbers there were very strange, especially in the rural areas where Bush carried with large, sometimes over 80% turnout in them, majorities.  In Chicago, for example, Daley played the precincts where Dem registration was over 90%, and he could just add votes based on that alone, since you figure 9 out of ten voters there would vote for him.  The GOP probably did the same thing in those rural Ohio counties with large GOP numbers.  Add that in with a lot of slowdowns in heavy Dem areas and you got a win.

  •  Only 800 views so far? (6+ / 0-)
    What's up with that? It needs more views to get up into the viral consciousness. LOTS more, say 100,000+ more, to reach critical media mass.
  •  thank you for posting this (3+ / 0-)

    The MSM will only cover election theft (grudgingly) if we hammer away at it.  It was hard enough to get the people on this site to take this issue seriously.  Hopefully the video and the attached prestige of Princeton will get people to take a second look.  

  •  Viewed 3177 times, heres the link to the video (5+ / 0-)

    Time for guerrilla warfare..Register to vote as Republican, then Vote Democrat!

    by fadingTruth on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:07:56 AM PDT

  •  Rated! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    STOP George

    It's great you are getting the word out and supporting the Princeton folks.  They're really trying to inform people.  This has been known for some time - maybe this video and paper will finally get some attention.

  •  Talk to the other departments at Princeton. (5+ / 0-)

    The IT guys should talk to the communications people about presenting their case with more polish. And maybe someone from a law school, about how to establish the foundation for evidence, and how to use it to establish proof (which is a very different thing from evidence).

    I got the point of the video, but I still came away thinking that unless you already believed the vote was hackable, this video isn't that persuasive.

    What they're missing is information that's outside of their expertise as IT people. Someone needs to work into it the information about who has access to the machines, when, and for how long. Sure, someone can unscrew the cover, open it up, swap the memory cards, etc. But how likely is it to happen undetected? That particular operation obviously has to be executed by poll workers. (And wouldn't poll workers have a key, anyway?) But they present no information even hinting that poll workers would have the opportunity or even the motive to do so. We know they might, but this video doesn't say so, and in that sense, it's got a gaping hole in it.

    Unfortunately, the video by itself demonstrates nothing more or less than the fact that it's possible to make such a video. Just like black box voting itself (ironically), we don't know what's on those memory cards, what's in that machine, or who's programming it to do what.

    The Princeton IT folks may have provided the basic grounds upon which a much more convincing presenation can be made, but that presentation is not evident in this video.

    •  And this should not be taken to mean... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      STOP George

      that I think the video has no merit, or that hacking the vote is not possible.

      It merely has to be integrated into a more comprehensive presentation, if it's going to become a "one stop shop" for election security awareness for the general public.

    •  good suggestions (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      STOP George, means are the ends

      one beauty of this video, tho, is that it shows how easy it is to change the programming

      everyone is familiar with card readers.  it's not rocket science.

      •  Well, that's the problem... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I think what this video shows is how easy it is to make a video that convinces the already convinced how easy it is to change the programming.

        What this video purports to show is that the programming of an actual machine has been changed.

        What this video actually shows is that a bunch of computer science professors (although even that is something we take for granted) can program a computer to perform as if it were an electronic voting machine that has been reprogrammed.

        The problem is that we're trying to illustrate how easy it is to manipulate computer software, but it's precisely because of how easy it actually is that it's almost impossible to actually document its manipulation. Add to that the fact that we're trying to document it on videotape, which is itself also an easily manipulated medium.

        If the audience is the unconvinced (let alone the openly hostile), a video demonstration is going to have to jump through an awful lot of authentication hoops.

        What needs to happen is something like a national television news magazine program documentation of a live demonstration, in which the hosts and producers vouch for the veracity of the video footage, and we actually see (say, through "time lapse" type video) hundreds of volunteer voters casting their ballots, then see the results come out wrong, then see the voters reassembled and polled, the votes counted by show of hands, and the total "proven" wrong.

        But even more important, I think, is some better demonstration of how the tampering is done. And by that I mean that if the tampering is done by switching the memory cards, we need some evidence about who might be doing this, when, and why.

        •  Play me an effing record... (0+ / 0-)

          The central points of that little and simple video are crystal clear to anyone but someone who doesn’t want to be convinced or doesn’t want others to be convinced that the problem is real and a clear and present danger to our democracy. Attacking the messenger blatantly or subtlety is old hat high school Harry fare...and a flag/tell.

          Integrity is the doing what is right in the absence of witnesses and with no other gain in mind.

          by Bobjack23 on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 06:59:48 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  With the buzz this has already created (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      STOP George, means are the ends

      I would think they could get whatever help they need from other Princeton groups.  Go Princeton!

      •  I'm sure they can. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tikkun, means are the ends

        Someone will help them take the next step. And hopefully, the type of suggestions we make here will be incorporated into the next round.

        This is the right direction, but election security activists should not be surprised or frustrated into giving up if this isn't "the smoking gun." The case can be made, we just have to work out how to make it.

    •  I think the video is just a teast to read (0+ / 0-)

      the actual paper. I watched the video and sow no compelling evidence that they had changed a vote. In fact, the most damning part is how easy it is to break into a machine.

      Now couple that with the story of the voting officials that took the macines how with them in Florida(?), now you start to make a sinister story.

      With all this in mind, if Maine switches to these machines, I will vote absentee.

      17. Ne5

      In chess you may hit a man when he's down -- Irving Chernev, on Przepiorka v. Prokes, Budapest, 1929

      by Spud1 on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:57:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  What the video says to me (0+ / 0-)

      Is that:
      -The lock can be picked
      -The audible signals can be muted by putting headphones in a jack
      -Malicious software can be loaded with a new memory card and
      -The original memory card can be replaced
      -With no software trace of the entire operation
      -All within a minute.

      This suggests that it is possible for anybody - not necessarily a poll worker, but any one of the voters who is in a closed booth with the machine for a minute - can perform this hack.

      Personally, I agree with those who think the best proof of concept would be application.  How about making Michael Berg Delaware's newest Congressman?

  •  New Video - Very Old News (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gogol, STOP George

    We've had years to do something about this. Demonstrations of hacking Diebold machines are nothing new.

    Electronic voting without a paper trail is for chumps.

    It's Germany, 1937, folks. Only with better technology.

    This is CLASS WAR, and the other side is winning.

    by Mr X on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:22:29 AM PDT

  •  For years people who questioned (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    coral, miriam, tikkun, STOP George, sodalis

    the integrity of elections, on this website, were shouted down...
    I love Daily KOS,  but as a community it has had it's blind spots.
    I am glad this video made it to the recommended list.

    I'm also glad  Clinton Curtis won in the primary down in Florida 24'th... He ran primarily to fight this danger to our democracy..

    "Let us not be conservative with compassion. Be generous with compassion."

    by ilyana on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:24:02 AM PDT

  •  The Slashdot Effect(tm) (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    retired, means are the ends

    I think it would be a good idea if everybody who's registered on Slashdot submits a story with the link in it.

    That'll bring in a lot of hits.

    Eco: -4.88 / Soc: -5.38

    by Absit invidia on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:27:22 AM PDT

  •  For what its worth (6+ / 0-)

    For what its worth, I'm emailing this link, and an exhortation, to Countdown, The Newshour, ABC, CBS, NBC, 60 Minutes & my local news stations.  

    "If Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it will be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy" - James Madison

    by Hotspur18 on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:31:16 AM PDT

  •  Suggestions for diary (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    STOP George
    Add a text link to the video, because when you surf with images turned off (as I do), you can't see the link to the video. Please add a text link also.
    Text link to youtube video

    And, we might use Digg and delicious and metafilter to spread it around more. Can you put links to each networking site to submit the video to?

  •  If you want (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    means are the ends

    to be taken seriously, someone must change the typo in the headline of the video. I'm sorry, but when these breathless "breaking" type posts or videos come along and the eagerness of the poster to get this up and running (with typos) overpowers the message itself, it's like air coming out of the balloon.

    Two words: No One. Not Noone.

    "It's the Supreme Court, Stupid!"

    by Kestrel on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:49:16 AM PDT

  •  Done and emailed to everyone (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    STOP George, means are the ends

    Including my Sec of State (Kansas) since these are used in parts of Kansas (Johnson county).

    "You must be the change you wish to see in the world" Mohandas Gandhi

    by baracon on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:50:50 AM PDT

  •  Sort of a corrolary to (0+ / 0-)

    the phrase "just because you are paranoid doesn't mean they are not out to get you"  is the one "just because you think there is something to conspiracy theories doesn't mean there aren't any conspiracies"!!!!

  •  This Problem Only Goes Away (0+ / 0-)

    when an outrageous result occurs in an election.  So far, as far as we know, the GOP hasn't been effected by their election tampering.  What would happen if suddenly, voter fraud in the form of 5,000 to 1 occurred and they were the ones on the down side?  

    One, they'd be bitten by their own games, right?  Two, the result would be so outrageous that electronic voting reform would have to be addressed, right?  How would the Board of Elections handle a result that was so far outside the standard deviation?  

    I'm not advocating any of these methods, I'm just asking a question... just like Cavuto on Fox...

    "Now if people got problems and they got problems with people oh yeah I know what it is to be there." - DW

    by ScantronPresident on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 05:52:46 AM PDT

  •  They know they're going to lose in Nov, so (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    they'll let the virus go wild then try to invalidate the election.  I say let 'em, they built this mess, let them get buried by it.  

    Tin foil hat question: Is there a chance that this Princeton dude is a GOP front to do exactly that, invalidate an election that will definitely go against them?  Just asking.

  •  I voted, but damn, that's dull (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    coral, gogol, tikkun

    I mean, it's a vitally important subject and it's great that you're doing this, but 9.5 minutes of a monotonous drone does not make for compelling viewing; and I'm really interested in the subject.  It's going to be hard to persuade anyone who doesn't already know about this to watch it.

    Is there anyone here who can help these guys to zap up their presentation?  At a minimum, a snappier voice-over is really important.

    Best of luck guys.


    The President is not my master. He is Chief among my servants.

    by DemCurious on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 06:05:44 AM PDT

  •  Glitches? We've got glitches. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    coral, tikkun, means are the ends

    Check this out from today's USA Today:

    Problems range from delayed delivery of new equipment to an insufficient supply of trained technicians to fix anticipated problems, voting experts say.
    Already this year, glitches have occurred in Arkansas, California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas and West Virginia. Maryland became the latest on Tuesday, when technical problems, human errors and staff shortages led officials to keep some polls open an extra hour.

    Vote early.  Vote often!  :-)

  •  Wrong tactic (6+ / 0-)

    Americans are immune to this stuff because they see it so much.  Identity theft, warrantless wire tapping, nude britney viruses.  The republlicans know what really scares people so I suggest you sit yourself down and learn some lessons.  

    For example, it would be much scarier if late on election day, a video of a dancing male stripper in a wedding veil came up on the screen, and while the video played the hard drive was wiped and software for a touch screen version of pong with village people background music was installed.

    Much to learn you have, young Jedi, much to learn

  •  I wonder if this is somehow related to the Ohio (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    coral, gogol, mrblifil, means are the ends

    recount in 2004?  There were reports of Triad "service technicians" coming into BOE's prior to the day or recounting to service or work on some of the machines.  Although the reports were not related to Diebold equipment or Diebold technicians, could it be possible that Triad could have similar weaknesses in their systems?

    Is it over yet???

    by dnn on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 06:49:29 AM PDT

  •  Hack Back the vote (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    since no one actually cares about this issue isnt it a waste of time to try, yet again, and make them care

    instead why dont we take a page from the gop and rehack back the hacked votes

    seems princeton has a way we can do that....

    "if all the world's a stage, who is sitting in the audience?"

    by KnotIookin on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 06:50:34 AM PDT

  •  Tin foil on sale this week? (0+ / 0-)

    It's one thing to show that Diebold machines CAN be attacked and turned into fradulent vote-stealers; it's quite another to allege that this is a problem.

    If this were a third world country with a corrupt government, fraying or missing institutions, polarized electorate and so on, it might mean something. But only screaming liberal wine-guzzling terrorist-loving traitor-weasels would actually believe something like this.

    Truth is not proof, folks, and proof is not convincing. And Bush is keeping us safe, so what difference does it make?


    But really, this is not too dissimilar from comments I have read or had thrown my direction by folks afraid that focusing on the possibility of fraud somehow cast an unflattering light on this site, on the Left and on Democrats.

    As I have said for two years now, the proof is proof that fraud is possible, not that it occurred. And as I have also said for two years--THAT IS ALL WE NEED. Once we can throw election results in doubt, no one needs to prove that fraud is occurring; the results are nevertheless still in doubt.

    Does this mean Kerry was not an ineffective waffler during the campaign, or that he didn't let the ridiculous swift-boaters get away with their smears? Nope. Perhaps on some level he deserved to lose. Perhaps on another level, the accurate result is that he polled fewer votes than Bush.

    But we can't know.

    Why on Earth would anyone want to continue having elections where one can't be certain of the result?

    The video is great, but frankly, it doesn't show anything new.

    -8.38, -4.97 "...there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so." Hamlet, Act II, Scene ii.

    by thingamabob on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:02:46 AM PDT

  •  Another action item? (0+ / 0-)

    Do I understand how YouTube does its tallies? Will my link be counted as an appearance on the web? If so, would including it in my sig line also count?

    "In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is."

    by Wee Mama on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:05:42 AM PDT

  •  On the other hand... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    voter for sale

    I just posted a snarky comment essentially asking why we continue to put up with an insecure voting system.

    It also occurs to me that, in the short term, perhaps all we need to do is have better vote-stealing software than the GOP. That way we can avoid all of the messy accusations and counter smears, and ensure a Democratic landslide.

    Of course, that's a bit messy, but then democracy can be messy, can't it? Heck, it can even be a lot like fascism--as long as you remember it's really "democracy".

    -8.38, -4.97 "...there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so." Hamlet, Act II, Scene ii.

    by thingamabob on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:05:49 AM PDT

    •  We could try to counter-hack the next election... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      but "we" would inevitably get caught.
      You can be darn tootin sure there'd be viedo of "us" doing it and the whole nine yards.
      Oh, the hue and cry ! The indignation from politicians, the press, and the guy on the street!
      How could those scoundrells - those Democrats - do such a thing ! Time for a congressional investigation!
      24 hour wall to wall news coverage ! Let no rock go unturned...

  •  Stalin had it right in a totalitarian govt (4+ / 0-)

    Those who vote decide nothing. Those who count the votes decide everything.


    Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity. Horace Mann (and btw, the bike in kayakbiker is a bicycle)

    by Kayakbiker on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:09:44 AM PDT

  •  Nary a mention of this (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    WisVoter, means are the ends

    In the Philadelphia Inquirer this morning. Just sent the editor an email with links to both the AP story and the YouTube video.

  •  this isn't front page Kos news why? (0+ / 0-)

    why isn't this front page stuff?

    Osama Bin Bathtub. Slip and Falls injuries kill many, many more americans each year than terrorism. Should we be afraid of the tub as well?

    by voter for sale on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:22:49 AM PDT

  •  Paper ballots are essential (4+ / 0-)

    Any system that does not have paper ballots which can verified by the voter and be hand counted after the election is unacceptable.

  •  I fear for the OH Governor's and Senate races (0+ / 0-)

    I just see no way that they won't hack those elections. It really may be time to fight fire with fire.

  •  I think this is a conspiracy diary (0+ / 0-)

    I call for an all out attack on it.

    Seriously, it's the only politically related information I've sent my Dad.  He's in California, and I seem to remember that they are using those there. I'll bet he's voting absentee though.  

    The one thing worse than a press that is "out of control" is one that is under control.

    by otto on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:40:53 AM PDT

    •  yeah (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      yeah how many times did we have to be attacked by the "geniuses" who thought such things were just the fallacy of us lunatics.  You would think they would learn.

      Osama Bin Bathtub. Slip and Falls injuries kill many, many more americans each year than terrorism. Should we be afraid of the tub as well?

      by voter for sale on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:45:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Can there really be any doubt any longer? (4+ / 0-)

    Very important project and video.

    Watched it, rated it up, posted a comment, and told 4 friends.

  •  Also, send the original story to your (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    STOP George, means are the ends

    state rep's - I sent it to mine, and he wrote back the next morning:

    That was a very interesting video.  Thank you for the alert.  I will look into it.

    And if you live in an area where these machines are used, vote via absentee ballot, encourage everyone else you know to do so, and write a LTE suggesting it.


    17. Ne5

    In chess you may hit a man when he's down -- Irving Chernev, on Przepiorka v. Prokes, Budapest, 1929

    by Spud1 on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:52:41 AM PDT

  •  I've been a busy bee (3+ / 0-)

    emailing the link and vid out to anyone I know.  Also, been posting it on other sites that sometimes hang at online.  

    I'm passing the word.  This is the most obvious indictment against electronic voting in this country that I have ever watched.  I've known (as someone who has tinkered with software), for awhile not to trust these machines, now there's video to show just why.

    Thanks STOP George.  

    End the US occupation of Iraq now!

    by smugbug on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 07:57:24 AM PDT

  •  Still nothing on about this story (3+ / 0-)

    I've searched for "diebold princeton" and looked everywhere on the site including the Lou Dobbs area, and this story doesn't appear to be on  Let them know that you think this is important:

  •  Added "election integrity" tag (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    elfling, means are the ends

    which is the tag of choice for following such issues.

    See the dKosopedia Voting Rights page for more information on election integrity.

    Must read: MLKJ's "Letter from a Birmingham Jail." It will surprise you.

    by AlanF on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 08:04:15 AM PDT

    Recommended by:
    WisVoter, greenearth

    Here's how one gem puts it:  

    There is something fascinating about science.  One gets such wholesale returns of conjecture out of such a trifling investment of fact.  (Mark Twain.)

    Thank goodness for Diebold in November

    The scary thing is these people vote.

    "People should not be afraid of their governments. GOVERNMENTS should be afraid of their PEOPLE." V - Alan Moore

    by thelonegunman on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 08:05:25 AM PDT

  •  It still says "Links to this video: none" (0+ / 0-)

    Aren't you linked to it above?

  •  Well, sort of ... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    While it is disturbingly easy to corrupt these machines, a few simple procedural guidelines can easily thwart the scenarios presented.

    Scenario 1: Malicious software avoids detection by removing itself after conducting a "real" election.

    Procedural Solution: Run the machines through the mock election test described in the video, then through a pseudo-"real" election cycle complete with printing the results, reset, rinse, repeat as many times as desired, then proceed as originally intended in the setup for the actual election.

    Scenario 2: Malicious software spreads via exchanging memory cards between machines.

    Precedural Solution: Don't swap memory cards between machines without completely erasing them first, especially on an election day and after completing the procedural solution for #1 above.

    A better solution, obviously, would be to provide better techniques for detecting mischief in the first place via checksums on the original software, or even better by only allowing software to execute from certified ROM cards which are prepared and distributed prior to the election.

    The best solution, of course, is to keep a written record of all of the votes cast which are then self-verified by the voters themselves.

    This really isn't anything new, BTW.  This type of fraud (intentional miscounting via computer program) was possible ever since the introduction of the punch card ballot which has been used to elect Republicans and Democrats alike.

    •  So they just come up with another hack. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Leila, DrWolfy

      The only solution, really, is your "best solution" - a voter-verified paper record.

      And this must be accompanied by a random-sample recounts.  Even then, the machines themselves must be secure, and open-source, and...  well I'm not an expert.

      •  While there may be many ... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        ways to hack these machines, all such hacks must necessarily rely on the two fundamental scenarios that they addressed: detection avoidance and self-propogation to be truly widespread and effective.

        My point is that appropriately defined procedural activities can go a long way towards limiting the ability of any such hackery to steal an election even with the existing machines.  So let's make sure that these types of procedures are defined and followed in November.

      •  Paper BALLOTS, not paper "trails"! (0+ / 0-)

        Please please please don't fall for the false sense of security created by paper "trails", or receipts.  A computer can be programmed to internally record one set of data while externally printing a different set of data -- the total number of votes and voters stays the same, but the only way to verify the votes themselves will be if a recount is ordered, or if a statistically significant portion of the "receipts" were mandated for random audit.  

        A paper "trail" can be compromised when the printer fails, jams, or otherwise malfunctions.  If a printer malfunction isn't noticed immediately, there is no way then to go back and retrieve votes.  

        The ONLY way to have a verifiable, easily countable, untamperable paper record is to use paper BALLOTS as the legal ballot of record.

        DEMAND PAPER BALLOTS, not paper trails!

  •  In California (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    reid fan, Leila, dotcommodity

    In California the best thing we can do is elect Debra Bowen for Secretary of State.  With Bruce Mc Pherson guarding the hen house all the results of our blue state can be turned red.  I know, I know, that's for next election's results - this time we've all got to scream loudly, go to streets, etc.

    •  this matters to non-Californians too! (0+ / 0-)

      California often sets the standards the rest of the country follows. Just look at all our ballot propositions (good and bad) that have been exported to other states. And how California and Texas together often dictate what is in school textbooks by their sheer buying power.

      Bowen has the guts to bring this issue to the forefront in a major way. If she demands additional safeguards from vendors, those features will go out on products nationwide. If she demands media attention for this issue, people around the country will be educated. She can change the way things are done EVERYWHERE.

      "Renaming French fries to Freedom fries was arguably this Republican congress' greatest accomplishment." -- Stephen Colbert

      by reid fan on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 01:29:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  In SF this morning at 9.30 MMOB is suing Diebold (0+ / 0-)
      •  Mainstreet Moms (0+ / 0-)

        MMOB \its mainstreet moms: organise or bust

        mainstreet moms

        MMOB Countdown (1.25) Newsletter  
        San Francisco Superior Court Building,
        400 McAllister Street (At Larkin), Dept. 302

        Greetings Bay Area MMOB --

        We've gotten this news from our friends at VoterAction, and John Eichhorst and his team at the law firm of Howard Rice:

        The court case many of you helped along is being heard this Thursday morning in San Francisco, and we're all invited. This is a show of strong support for the case, not a protest, so "Dress up and don't roll your eyes" are the basic instructions from VoterAction. More details below.

        The case, Holder v. McPherson, is against Secretary of State "Diebold" McPherson, and the Diebold holdout counties. It's a worthy read, available at, and lays out a devastating case against these remarkably bad electronic voting systems.

        While at least eight of the named counties did decide to drop Diebold as a result of the case, the Attorney General's office has been successful in delaying the overall hearing until now. Please consider coming, if only to pay grateful tribute to the hours and hours and hours of smart, tireless pro bono work put in by the Howard Rice team and VoterAction on behalf of California's voters.

        SUFFRAGETTE ALERT: This court case is all about the franchise, the vote, our suffrage. If you're game, and you're a chick, please join those of us wearing white dresses in homage to the suffragettes, their splendid parades, their persistence.

        Very best,

        Mainstreet Moms Organize or Bust (
        Please note the official name of the MMOB, refined to suit our non-partisan commitment to more people, more engaged, year-round, urgently.


        Hearing for the Motion for Preliminary Injunction
        Dear Friends,
        The hearing for the Motion for Preliminary Injunction for the California Diebold Case (Holder v. McPherson) will be held next Thursday, September 14th at 9:30 a.m. The hearing, presided over by Judge Ronald Quidichay, will be held in Dept. 302 is on the third floor of the San Francisco Superior Court building, which is at 400 McAllister Street (cross-street Larkin).

        The amazing legal team at Howard Rice – John Eichhorst, Jason Takenouchi, Michael Gallo and D'Lonra Ellis-worked overtime through the Labor Day weekend on the reply brief filed on September 8th. The reply papers will be available beginning this weekend on our web site.

        What is a Motion for Preliminary Injunction?
        The Motion for Preliminary Injunction in the Holder v. McPherson lawsuit ( to review, is seeking a preliminary ruling to block the use of the Diebold TSx prior to the November 2006 elections before the case is ready for a full trial. Plaintiffs' attorneys contend that the egregious security risks of the TSx, its inadequacy for reliable audits, and its lack of adequate accessibility for voters who are blind, low vision, or have dexterity or cognitive impairments make their use in this election unacceptable. The delays created by the defendant’s tactics in removing the case to federal court are working against us. There are, however, many options available to the judge short of a flat prohibition on use of the TSx in November that would acknowledge the legitimacy of plaintiffs' case and provide meaningful remedies. Regardless of the outcome of the hearing, the case should continue into 2007. (At the hearing, the attorneys will also be requesting a writ of mandate to require decertification of the TSx and prohibit further purchases.)

        What is appropriate for a court room? We know many people feel passionately about the issue of election integrity. However, certain protocols need to be observed in a court room. For example, it is not helpful to make noises, roll eyes, sigh, etc. in reaction to anything that is said by attorneys or the judge. Please dress appropriately--no jeans, t-shirts or similarly casual wear. It is also a good idea to keep your voices down even when outside the doors of the courtroom, as sound carries and can disrupt the proceedings inside.

        Voter Action is a project of the International Humanities Center, a not for profit, 501c3 organization. Donations are tax deductible to the full extent of the law. We rely on your support to do our work!

  •  Damn it STOP George (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    STOP George

    I did not want to open an account at YouTube. I've been avoiding it forever. Why'd you have to post something so important I had to sign up? Seems like no matter what you select, you end up increasing the spam with every site you join. I'm up to about 1 piece per second. I can't imagine what Elise gets. Ah well, a very good cause. Lots of comments and ratings. Great job! Seriously, thanks.

    Such an incredibly easy solution, it's ridiculous that this is even an issue. Of all the damn things to worry about in the world, elections held in a democracy should not be one of them.

    •  Denny: (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Denny in Seattle

      Yeah, I just did too, but about yrspam, I used to get spam from every new site but there's some email sites on the web that can really truly reduce it to 1 or 2 a day, and you can train those easily to recognise themselves as spam and go right in the trash,  mine is runbox.comrunbox and they are terrific. When I had Microsoft outlook it was so terrible we just disconnected it.

      •  Thanks, Dot (0+ / 0-)

        I'll check it out. I admit that the Yahoo account I use for political sites does a decent job of filtering out spam, but it's still a lot more than 1 or 2 a day. Plus, some important stuff gets marked as spam so I find myself sifting through the spam file anyway. Thanks for the info.

  •  I Watch More YouTube Than I Watch The Real Tube (0+ / 0-)

    Tells you how much good stuff is really on TV--not much.  YouTube's basically the real "Indie Network" for the rest of us!

    I thought that was a great video...though using the term "criminal" to the person breaking into Diebold machine is really pretty light.  "A criminal involved with organized crime" is really more accurate as there is most certainly an active Republican mafia right now!

    Item #1 for Jan. 2007--impeachment!

    by westcornersville on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 09:34:21 AM PDT

  •  I wonder why Jr. Bush is so sure Repukes will win (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gogol, Blutodog, ohcanada, greenearth
    in November?

    When Jr. said that, the smirk... the knowing look on his face...

    he knew. And I knew he knew.

    Jr. Bush isn't a smart man. I personally can read him like a book. I've always been shocked that others couldn't see him for what he was in the way he talked and the way he presented himself.

    Jr. stole our elections.

    And he should be rotting in an 8x10 in Leavenworth.

    •  Explains their arrogance: (0+ / 0-)

      The fact that this gang has destroyed our democracy with these machines must be a source of almost un-limited pleasure to these criminals. The HAVA act really means HELP AMERICA VOTE (REPUBLICAN) ACT. This is why Bu$h and his gang is so cocky all the time. They know no matter how big a majority of voters hate them they can always use  Diebold style Democracy to turn things their way and nobody will dare challenge them because they leave no fingerprints behind on the safe.    This story is one of the greatest crimes in American history and hopefully someday it will be revealed from inside.

      "It's better to die on your feet then live on your knees" E. Zapata

      by Blutodog on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 06:46:03 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  They haven't written a virus yet... (0+ / 0-)

    ...that can stand up to a Louisville Slugger #32.

    Or as the old Zen Koan goes: "If you meet the Diebold Machine on the road, Smash the Diebold Machine".

    However, make sure you smash them in the Rethug district too.

    [ Anyone who thinks my bark is worse than my bite, has never seen me bite. ] -6.63 | -5.38

    by dj angst on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 09:58:42 AM PDT

  •  surprise surprise (0+ / 0-)

    another diary by stop george telling americans what the number one issue facing Americans is.

    No surprise that the lack of suggestions how to fix the problem.

    Also no surprise that stop george does not explain the true nature of the threat.

    This is nothing new. We have known that these machines could steal votes if procedures aren't put in place to mitigate KNOWN risks like this one.

    Hey Stop George.... the election is just over a month away, other than making people feel their vote won't count what are YOU doing to help mitigate the risks?

  •  Hysterical! Check this Out! (0+ / 0-)
    I don't know if I mean hysterically funny, or that we should all be hysterical

    You've gotta check this out:


    Separation of Church and State AND Corporation

    by Einsteinia on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 11:09:22 AM PDT

  •  Hacked? (9+ / 0-)

    I don't really like the way this is framed. The Diebold's were not hacked, they were designed to have no security and designed to allow easy election fraud.

    I can not walk up to a Diebold ATM at my bank, insert a new memory card or USB device or blast it with some code using a wireless uplink, and make the machine spit out a million dollars. Yet those machines are 20 years old with green monochrome monitors, they are secure, and they work.

    Somehow a modern machine made within the last few years by the exact same company was built to allow election results to be changed. That's not hacking, that's fraud by design.

  •  Diebold's rebuttal (9+ / 0-)

    Among their objections to the Princeton study was "A virus was introduced to a machine that is never attached to a network."

    Well ... yeah, but if I understand correctly, the Princeton researchers were saying that the virus could be spread not by a network but by using the same memory card, containing the virus, to do maintenance (or something) on a number of machines.

    Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but I think that Diebold statement is completely irrelevant.

    •  network (5+ / 0-)

      Yes, that's how I understood it. The main card gets programmed with the virus and infects other machines each time it is used. No network needed.

      Say no to hate, bigotry, and the author of the Fed. Marriage Amendment, Marilyn Musgrave. Please donate to Angie Paccione.

      by OLinda on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 12:18:09 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  I read that 'networked' bit and (5+ / 0-)

      ... thought exactly the same thing.

      According to the presentation (did the people at DIEBOLD actually watch it??), the virus is spread by introducing a memory card into the machine. All of the machines can be free-standing and still get the virus, although it would require "less than one minute"s worth of effort per machine to get the virus in there, according to the people at Princeton.

      If they're networked, one can assume the virus could be distributed more quickly. That's it. The virus does not require networked computers.

      Furthermore, which version of the software was used in 2004? Is it the version the Princeton folks are using?

      So -- let's just say for argument's sake that only one or two of these machines is given the virus (the "old fashioned" way, vs. being distributed over a network) in each of a few large urban precincts in a state like, oh, say, Ohio.

      In a close election, that's all they'd need.

      "...hope is not the equivalent of optimism. Its opposite is not pessimism but despair. So I'm always hopeful." William Sloane Coffin

      by mxwing on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 12:29:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  yep (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Doc Allen, STOP George, reid fan

        yep Diebold just thinks and hopes that most people are too stupid to understand what a network is.  Their rebuttal was nonsense, but with a populous that either is
        a) not paying attention
        b) ignorant to the subject matter
        c) too bias to see the big picture

        sometimes just flapping your gums is good enough.

        It's a fucking sad country we live in.  We fight wars for democracy, we fight wars to spread democracy, but we can't be bothered to even insure the validity of our own vote.  Fucking pathetic.

        I knew this country was over when the supreme court basically ruled that actually counting votes was too much of a hassle.

        I am so glad I'll be dead in 30 to 40 years.

        Osama Bin Bathtub. Slip and Falls injuries kill many, many more americans each year than terrorism. Should we be afraid of the tub as well?

        by voter for sale on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 12:38:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  The rebuttal is a joke (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      RichM, STOP George, reid fan

      Along with the presence of trolls for commentators, it's a total farce. They even go as far as to question that the machine was ever in an election as if the problem was somehow just related to one version of their machines. It's just a matter of time before a current generation machine's software is available and the same demonstration is done with different code. What will be the excuse then? I'm sure we will be told that the version tested was old, flawed and that the machine in question might never have been used in an election. That defense, if it works now, will work later. I read nothing at all dealing with the possibility of insider tampering. The chain of custody means nothing if someone is an unwilling accomplice to the introduction of a compromised memory card or securing infected units. Nothing in the Princeton group's  video implied that the machines needed to be cracked open. If anything they implied just the opposite. Cracking open was the last of the options given to get to a memory card. The first two were quite simple.

      •  seconded, rebuttal is a joke (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        RichM, STOP George, DrWolfy

        The Diebold employees or Karl Rove or whoever it is in the comments are hilarious. Bill is my favorite:

        Jethro, what would make me feel better is if this really was a trusted third party like UL or Consumer Reports. As it is it's two biased academics with an agenda.

        As I said numerous times in the original post where Frank James one-sided the story, where is the proof that this machine is one of the ones used in ANY election in America? Where's the academic honesty in a study that can't even guarantee that the machine is in use ANYWHERE in America? Or even ever WAS used?

        This thing is a complete mess and Princeton (and Frank James) has been left with egg on its face because they introduced a virus into a computer that's designed to never be networked. Security tape and screws that are used in every election were conveniently removed to allow the "researchers" to get the results they wanted. Whew, that's some scientific honesty, isn't it?

        Just in general, how accurate can any research study based on a sample of ONE (1!) machine that doesn't make an attempt to mimic real world voting standards really be? This is such a joke. If the Princeton guys were serious they'd get the latest machines from around the country (including the ones used here in the last Stroger coronation) and test them all scientifically under real world conditions.
        Posted by: Bill | Sep 14, 2006 12:57:22 PM

        The sample size of 1 machine part is the best. So, is he saying that every machine behaves differently when somebody casts a vote--isn't that the definition of a non-working voting system?!! Bwhahahaha what an idiot. A willfully deceptive misapplication of scientific jargon if ever I've seen one.

        And his call, in the last paragraph, for them to test actual current machines from across the country is totally laughable given that DIEBOLD WOULDN'T ALLOW IT!! What a tool. How does it feel to look in the mirror, "Bill"?

        "Renaming French fries to Freedom fries was arguably this Republican congress' greatest accomplishment." -- Stephen Colbert

        by reid fan on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 01:20:22 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  "security tapes and screws"? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          STOP George, reid fan

          Security tape and screws that are used in every election were conveniently removed to allow the "researchers" to get the results they wanted

          Well ... if the researchers could remove the security tapes and screws, what's to prevent a hacker from doing so?

          They don't get it -- their software (and hardware) HAS to be checked out by reputable and knowledgeable computer scientists such as the Princeton group in order for voters to be reassured.

          And as for the researchers having an "agenda" -- you're damn right they do!  Every tester of software or hardware has an agenda -- to try to get the product to fail!  THAT'S WHAT THEIR JOB IS!!  If they try their damnedest to get it to fail and it DOESN'T fail, that's the BEST indication possible that it's a TRULY robust and secure product!

    •  I comment below... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      STOP George, reid fan

      With out seeing this comment thread.  But as I state below:

      1 - You did not need a network in order to spread a computer virus.  There was a virus for the Mac 17 years ago that was very effective and could be used on machines that are not networked.  In fact, virus' first got their start on bogus programs spread by floppies.

      2 - The computers update and boot the operating system off of the memory cards.

      3 - The Princeton study demonstrated the virus propagation WITHOUT A NETWORK.

      This at best a strawman and at worst (and most likely) a lie.

      "[A] 'Sharecropper's Society' [is] precisely where our trade policies, supported by Republicans and Democrats alike, are taking us." - Warren Buffet

      by RichM on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 01:49:00 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Completely irrevelant indeed! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      STOP George

      Spreading a virus does not need a network and Diebold knows this damn well. Their playing on public ignorance about computer viruses and networks. Viruses can easily be spread by floppies, CDs, thumb drives, memory cards etc. Diebold continues to give the public the finger.

      "It's better to die on your feet then live on your knees" E. Zapata

      by Blutodog on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 06:34:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Mexican people are fighting a stolen election now (4+ / 0-)

    (Apropos pimpin')

    The recent Mexican election was awfully fishy, going to the conservative candidate, Calderon, after it initially appeared the liberal, Lopez Obrador ( aka AMLO), would win.

    The Mexicans are putting up a spirited protest. AMLO is starting a shadow government.

    We're following this story in the Mexico News Roundup. It's fascinating, and barely covered in the MSM.

    Do you digg important stories? If not, why not?

    by joel3000 on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 12:34:54 PM PDT

  •  There is a bogus claim (OK, lie)... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    STOP George, meowmissy, joyful

    That is being propagated by the Diebold officer and the commenters in the article that the diarist linked to.  The lie is that computers require a network in order to spread a virus.  Categorically and completely false.  If the computers boot from the memory card, then that card is the mechanism for spreading the virus.  The video clearly demonstrates this and makes no mention of the computers being networked AT ALL.  This clearly a strawman set up by the company and re-enforced by the commenters in the article.

    About 17 years ago, there was a nasty virus on Mac computers.  You see, at the time, every time one would insert a floppy into a Mac, it would execute a hidden application so that the windows that you had open when one ejected the disk would be displayed like they were before they were ejected.  A virus was written to attach itself to that program.  When a disk was inserted that had the virus, the virus would copy itself into the hard drive version of the program.  Then every disk that was inserted into that machine would then catch the virus and propagate.  It was very viral and very effective.  And there was no network.

    "[A] 'Sharecropper's Society' [is] precisely where our trade policies, supported by Republicans and Democrats alike, are taking us." - Warren Buffet

    by RichM on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 01:39:05 PM PDT

    •  computers are not networked - so what? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      STOP George

      To reiterate what RichM said above:

      You can get a virus from a disk - in this case a memory card, which was clearly demostrated in the video.

      Diebolds "rebuttal" is pathetic.

      A slip of the foot you may soon recover, but a slip of the tongue you may never get over. - Benjamin Franklin

      by meowmissy on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 04:16:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Does anyone test software on election day? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    STOP George

    Is there anyone (FEC?) that can show up on election day and perform a checksum test on these systems? Is there any random testing of machines to ensure that they're running the "approved" code?

    It seems to me that the threat of random testing is essential if there is to be any deterrent to hacking.

    •  Checksum tests are easy to beat due to the nature (0+ / 0-)

      of file construction. That's why anti-virus programs stopped relying on them years ago, and began comparing files to strings in their virus definition files that are based on know viruses and regularly updated and downloaded. I, while no expert at programming, write some assembly and given what I know about the machines believe I could write a vote altering program with some rather easy subroutines I have on hand and some simple if then calls and my x86 address book.  Had I a voting machine to play with I'm sure I'd eventually get it done. I shiver to think what a real computer guru could do.

      Integrity is the doing what is right in the absence of witnesses and with no other gain in mind.

      by Bobjack23 on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 02:45:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  why not push the other end of it? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Most of the wingnut fringe is willing to believe Dems are 'traitors'  why not use that FOR us?

    start calling radio shows like Limbaugh, O'Reilly, Hannity, and Boortz and start suggesting that since most of the hacker typers are liberal, this will ensure the Democrats win! It's already a given with the audience that Princeton is full of 'effete, Liberal people who want to destroy America' -- Use that to spoil the fright wing on the idea of paperless ballots as much as WE are!

    Why doesn't someone try to write (And distribute) a code for these things that set their vote counts to zero -- and use it?

    Its out there...lets fight fire with fire!

    We have no desire to offend you -- unless you are a twit!

    by ScrewySquirrel on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 02:31:27 PM PDT

    •  Let's HACK THE FUCKING MACHINES ourselves! (0+ / 0-)

      Or at least, let Limb-O-Reilly know we're planning to - this is a great, great, great idea...

      Somebody write the code and tell me how to get it, I'm on it like a banshee. I wonder if that's why they wrote the training video? :)

  •  I think the point is not that of the specific (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    STOP George


    however, that it can be done in a number of ways.

    This is the central message.

    We can't let Diebold to twist the message that IN GENERAL, ELECTONIC VOTING IS NO GOOD

    -6.5, -7.59. If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention.

    by DrWolfy on Thu Sep 14, 2006 at 04:00:55 PM PDT

  •  a new unit of measure - a Diebold (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Blutodog, Fishgrease, STOP George

    Diebold(n) - a unit of measure used to indicate how flagrantly fraudulent an election turned out.  Graded on a logarithmic scale so that a 1 is close to fair and a 10 is Florida 2000.
    Example: The recent Mexican election fiasco was rated at magnitude 8.5 diebolds.

  •  According to the video, they ARE networked (3+ / 0-)

    by means of the oldest network known: Sneakernet. (For you non-techies, that's our old name for walking a floppy -- or in this case, a memory card -- from one computer to the other to share files.)

    As for the software being two generations old, I don't trust that to equate to "these vulnerabilities aren't there any more."

  •  the msm... (0+ / 0-)

    has not talked about this at all. it is grave evidence on how our democracy has been, and continues to be compromised. yet,it will never reach the mainstream unfortunately.

  •  Sent a copy to Lou Dobbs at CNN (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    STOP George, greenearth

    Lou Dobbs has been reporting at length about the Diebold machines and electronic voting problems. I sent a copy to him and maybe CNN will run a report on it. Maybe a bunch of us need to send this to him to get the gravity of the situation across. When CNN reports on it, other networks (can we say Olberman?) will pick it up and go with it too -- except for ABC who will wax eloquently about the security of the new electronic voting machines.

    I agree. We NEED to get this out to as many places as we can. When I voted in primary in NJ in June, I asked poll workers if the new electronic machines would have a paper record and they said no, they were perfectly safe and accurate. I replied, 'Oh, just like in Ohio in 2004, eh?' We can win this election if we can only make sure ALL of our votes are counted and counted accurately.

    SPread the word!

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