Truth, Lies, & Politics

When is a coincidence too much of a
coincidence to be one?

Election Conspiracy
at the Moosylvania Gazette
_______________
In Conspiracy Theorist!, author Josh Mitteldorf’s asks why the “veil of
silence” in the media. I’ve my own theories on that one. If there is no
conspiracy, well, the answer’s obvious. Or when someone steals a
truckload of ballots, that’s an easy get. But a high-tech geek invading a
tangled maze of computers?  Not so easy. Even the GAO’s investigation
into Florida’s 2006 fizzled in a flopped finale of no conclusive evidence in
their final thrust of testing two working machines. If the GAO didn’t get
it … Besides, where’s the sound bite? (1)

Still, perhaps one answer to Mitteldorf’s “veil of silence” question can
be found in the Moosylvania Gazette’s Theory of Kerfuffle. Consider
the following three scenarios in which your friends commit crimes. Which
ones hit the news?

  • You and three pals from Wossamotta U. remain close over the
    years even though your careers took off in separate directions.
    You’re a reporter for the Moosylvania Gazette while two of your
    friends work at local banks. Your other friend works with
    computers, which is okay because he rarely talks about it.
    Although, he does jabber a bit much about his antique gun
    collection.
-
    Last month your friends’ banks were both robbed. Ingeniously
    cleaned out, vaults and all by some guy wielding a Colt .45 and
    wearing a Wossamotta U. cap. This week all three friends are
    driving shiny new Corvettes. You’re intrigued, right?

  • In the next scenario, your friends live in different states. Ohio,
    New Jersey, Florida. Again the banks are robbed. Do you even
    take notice?

  • In final scenario, your banker friends are politicians in Ohio and
    Florida. And your gunslinger doesn’t just work with computers, he’
    s a genius computer geek. He’s as foreign to you now as that
    finicky computer of yours. This November your political friends
    score big upset wins in landslide victories. Nice! Perhaps you’ll
    interview them when they come to town for their big homecoming
    victory bash. Everyone will be there, maybe even your computer
    geek friend. Wonder what he’s up to these days.

Okay, so that’s all bunk. But does it demonstrate how easily we grasp
the concept of a gun slinging bank robber? Not so easy when the weapon
of choice is a computer and the valuables stolen are our votes. And
downright convoluted when the theft is “Kerfuffled” by a separation of
states, counties, endless parades of candidates, and the dueling red and
blue teams. Throw in a plethora of computers, parts, and pieces and
again where’s the sound bite, let alone the complete and accurate story?
Not only does this actual scenario present a complex ricocheting target,
but often takes so long to wallow through the legalities, by the time we
get solid answers, most of us are indeed tired of the question and the
election is last year’s stale news.

Consider though, how many times your bank system has failed. You
swipe your card, poke a pad and grab your money. Considering the
complexities, interactions and mega usage of your bank system, do you
wonder how banks can get it right, but voting systems can’t when all a
voting system has to do is tally the votes? Do you wonder?

Do you know that one voting machine vendor, Sequoia, implicated in
rigging 2000’s punchcard ballots (2), is responsible for election failures
in at least nine of the seventeen states in which it counts or miscounts
your votes. While another vendor, ES&S, considered in a previous
article (3) counted or miscounted 50 percent of the votes in the last four
major U.S. elections and is responsible for voting failures in 34 states?
(4)

So the next time your hear about some renegade voting machines
botching the votes in Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado,
Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Indiana, Kansas,
Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi,  
Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio,
Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee,
Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, or Wyoming (5) … consider a
failure to unscramble the geeky stuff doesn’t necessarily make it not so.

It may be easier to believe all the vote fraud ruckus is just more fodder
from that lunatic fringe of poor losers wasting taxpayers’ money than it
is to consider the possibilities of a big bad voting conspiracy. But
conspiracy or no, whether the wholesale destruction of our votes is by
intent or shoddy vendor practices, our votes are stolen from us
nonetheless and the end result is the same.


References:
1. GAO’s investigation into Florida’s 2006 touchscreens fizzled in a
flopped finale of no conclusive evidence after testing two working
machines in their final “search” for the screen hardware malfunctions.



2. Vote-Rigging' Scandal via Dan Rather Report on Sequoia's Gaming
of Florida Punchcards in 2000, Bradblog.com, 8/28/2007.)

3.
Conspiracy, coincidence, or skullduggery. When is a coincidence too
much of a coincidence to be one?

4.  http://www.essvote.com/HTML/about/dyk.html, http://www.
sequoiavote.com/about.html

5. http://www.votersunite.org/info/ES&Sinthenews.pdf

Fiction Stops Here
Conspiracy to Skulldubbery
2008 Florida Primary Eerily Familiar
Mistakes Flip the Win
Payola
Government Accountability Office GAO
GAO Summary of Articles
No Smoking Gun Not if but when
Articles A Potpourri
Election Conspiracy at the Moosylvania Gazette
Conspiracy Theory OpEd Headline
Election officials 4 years to get it right -  Not just a NY Problem
Kurt Browning: The dog ate my ballot.
Peeling the Onion
ES&S Monopoly
Letter to Election Assistance Commission
Other Assorted Articles Part 1
Pther Assorted Articles Part 2
Press Release