Let’s do a trip through time, back to the days of vote dumping in Chicago. You are offered a chance to vote early so the very same vote tossers you know for a fact will toss votes will also have more time with your votes. Good idea? Of course not. The best idea, if you even suspect there’s the slightest chance everything might not be on the up and up, is to give them as little time as possible to trash votes by swamping them.
I have worked with a group started by Bernie Ellis in Nashville called The Gathering, an inadequately named group in my opinion… only because it sounds more like a cult than a collection of people concerned with electronic voting and all the tricks used to limit voting. I know that outsiders often consider us cranks: tinfoil hatted conspiracy nuts. That always makes me chuckle because; despite all the evidence it’s pretty damn obvious it has happened: like many, many more votes than registered in a given voting district, totally out of sync voting patterns, obscure candidates getting massive amounts of votes, the easy hackability of electronic voting; such folks seem damned determined to see no evil and hear no evil. And you’d better not even mention it to them; or you have to wear a conspiracy hat dunce cap, sit in the corner where nothing you say: no matter how true, will be listened to. It’s an absolute fact that vote theft and things like caging have happened. It’s also true that the programming in voting machines is proprietary, owned by corporations with distinctly partisan political connections and has been proved easy to hack over and over again.
But let’s just do devil’s advocate.
Let’s just say; for argument’s sake, that a lot of the claims are “a little out there.” Would any rational person out there claim that vote theft is impossible? No, not really. Most would say “has happened and probably (to some extent) will happen.” So… why would you think giving anyone; corporation, politically-driven individual, politician, or corrupt official, more time to screw around with your vote is a grand idea?
I believe: make it as damn hard on anyone, any entity, who might consider screwing with the vote, as I can.
I understand. Making voting easier and more accessible is a noble goal. But let’s make it a national holiday: a paid one with government working hand in hand with business to achieve that goal. Despite my usual anti-any government money to business attitude, in this case, I say “Hell, yes.” More voting locations? As long as their as neutral as possible, yes. Helping people to the polls? Yes.
Giving anyone more time to alter or toss my vote?
Honestly? No way in bloody Hell. They’re should have to work their ass off and become just as obvious as possible in my opinion if they have any intent on stealing or screwing with my vote. Flipping votes gradually: over a long period of time, for example, would be less obvious than it would be all at once. However we run elections it should be in some way to make it as obvious as possible that someone, some thing, some corporation, is attempting this traitorous act.
A really, really bad idea.
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over thirty years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks and into the unseen cracks and crevasses that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.