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First Automated Poll Election Options
Bushido
Posted: Wednesday, March 31, 2010 12:07:02 PM

Rank: Newbie

Joined: 3/28/2010
Posts: 7
Neurons: 21
Location: Philippines
Our country is about to have its first Automated Polling System. Many of the people here are quite skeptical about the idea. Any views, tips, comments are welcome. Just wanted to get some outside opinions from you guys. Thanks
rbn
Posted: Wednesday, March 31, 2010 2:10:37 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/21/2010
Posts: 112
Location: United States


What? no more Chad? no hanging tabs from a ballot? no ballot cards and pen or pencil? less opportunity to stuff a ballot box as some politicians including Lyndon Johnson did in Texas one year? less likelihood for dead people voting? less likelihood of questionable ballot counts as occurred in Florida a few years ago?


My opnion, Vote, be thankful you live in a country where you have that voice.

Isaac Samuel
Posted: Wednesday, March 31, 2010 2:36:09 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 4/2/2009
Posts: 674
Neurons: 1,222
Location: United States
I like it very much because you can read the pulse of the country in one snapshot like referendums—although it won't be fully franchised and tamper-proofed.

Unfortunately, a technically advanced country like USA will always eschew implementing it
because the politicians will have to face the facts and act on them publicly; which may run against their obfuscated policies.

On the other hand,the so called "public polls" appropriated by various interest groups, can be manipulated to be
congruent with their policies—electronic or otherwise. it is a no win situation for Democracy. Hope you are able to pull it off.
Geeman
Posted: Wednesday, March 31, 2010 2:48:08 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/2/2009
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Location: Whittier, California, United States
I'm a technologically oriented person, but the security of electronic voting systems seems very dubious to me. There needs to be a paper trail in order to verify data that might be lost, hacked or otherwise tampered with. Purely electronic systems that don't register the vote in any material form stike me as highly vulnerable to attack/manipulation.
TL Hobs
Posted: Thursday, April 1, 2010 1:17:20 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 4/16/2009
Posts: 1,397
Neurons: 5,591
Location: Kenai, Alaska, United States
My sister, the politician, had an interesting experience with electronic voting machines that do not leave a paper trail. By chance, the error was discovered and later corrected. Otherwise, she would not have been elected.

The voting machines in one precinct listed her and her opponent on the screen as candidates for the state legislature. Yet, when someone made their choice, the vote was recorded against a race for sheriff for two other candidates. The incumbent votes went to her opponent and the challenger's votes went to her.

When the votes were counted, she lost the election by 8 votes; close enough to entitle her to ask for a recount at her expense. Her Republican challenger was in the room and verbally attacked her while she was trying to decide what to do, in an attempt to intimidate the clerk. Then, they discovered 3 canisters of ballots behind the door to the clerks office where the counting was being done that had been overlooked and not counted. The Republican Clerk immediately tried to certify the election and declare a victor saying that the number of votes in the 3 cannisters was insignificant and could not change the outcome. With an 8 vote margin?

My sister immediately exercised her right to a recount and requested a delay until 8:00 a.m. the next morning so that her legal counsel could be present for it. She didn't have legal counsel at the time. Her request was granted by the election board. She went home at 11:00 p.m. and got on the phone calling for a lawyer somewhere to be there the next morning. Hillary Clinton's former law firm offered their support and were there the next day.

During the recount, it was discovered that the electronic voting machine from one precinct was *incorrectly* programmed, either on purpose or by error. When the votes were reassigned, she won by 22 votes. Her opponent refused to challenge the results.

By chance, the error was discovered. Otherwise, she would have been cheated out of office. A paper trail could have avoided this. In the US, we have used paper ballots for over 200 years without a problem. As long as electronic voting machine manufacturers have a bias, the outcome is subject to subversion. A paper trail is the only guarantee against it. It is the only sure way to have an accurate recount.
Geeman
Posted: Thursday, April 1, 2010 1:21:32 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 10/2/2009
Posts: 1,788
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Location: Whittier, California, United States
Thanks for the info, TL. Nice to have an anecdote to support the argument a lot of folks have been making for a long time.

Honestly, I just don't even understand the logic of going to an electronic system. Surely, people know the vulnerabilities of computerizing things and not letting... Oh, wait. I get it. That's the point. Easier to defraud. Sure. I should have seen it all along.
rbn
Posted: Thursday, April 1, 2010 1:55:23 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/21/2010
Posts: 112
Location: United States
There are numerous issues with paper ballots in the US. I fail to see how you may conjecture that there has never been a problem with paper ballots in United States. Please explain the numerous instances of ballot box stuffing and people supplanting votes for deceased individuals. Let alone the acts of intimidation at polls and people purchasing votes. Please explain how chad in paper punch cards was never an issue. Please explain how your filling in a circle or marking an X on a paper card that is essentially scanned by a computer is any better than 'electronic balloting'.

Computers are far more efficient and verifiable and easily traced than a 'paper trail'; most especially with something so simple as an election, which in and of itself is usually a yes, no or write in on a ticket.

I find it humorous that one would desire an old fashioned paper trail when most people do commerce by internet. I find more humor in your conjecture since your 'paper ballot' in the US is probably scanned by a computer in any event.

Oh, there maybe exceptions, such as gnomes in Alaska running around selling fish and oil and shooing away polar bears while said shucksters kill moose for sport by heliocopter and their teenage daughters are getting pregnant and sharing House and Garden magazines with the Russians next door across the back yard. Fathom this, Alaska doesn't want to be part of the US anyway, give it back to the Inuit.



TL Hobs wrote:
My sister, the politician, had an interesting experience with electronic voting machines that do not leave a paper trail. By chance, the error was discovered and later corrected. Otherwise, she would not have been elected.

The voting machines in one precinct listed her and her opponent on the screen as candidates for the state legislature. Yet, when someone made their choice, the vote was recorded against a race for sheriff for two other candidates. The incumbent votes went to her opponent and the challenger's votes went to her.

When the votes were counted, she lost the election by 8 votes; close enough to entitle her to ask for a recount at her expense. Her Republican challenger was in the room and verbally attacked her while she was trying to decide what to do, in an attempt to intimidate the clerk. Then, they discovered 3 canisters of ballots behind the door to the clerks office where the counting was being done that had been overlooked and not counted. The Republican Clerk immediately tried to certify the election and declare a victor saying that the number of votes in the 3 cannisters was insignificant and could not change the outcome. With an 8 vote margin?

My sister immediately exercised her right to a recount and requested a delay until 8:00 a.m. the next morning so that her legal counsel could be present for it. She didn't have legal counsel at the time. Her request was granted by the election board. She went home at 11:00 p.m. and got on the phone calling for a lawyer somewhere to be there the next morning. Hillary Clinton's former law firm offered their support and were there the next day.

During the recount, it was discovered that the electronic voting machine from one precinct was *incorrectly* programmed, either on purpose or by error. When the votes were reassigned, she won by 22 votes. Her opponent refused to challenge the results.

By chance, the error was discovered. Otherwise, she would have been cheated out of office. A paper trail could have avoided this. In the US, we have used paper ballots for over 200 years without a problem. As long as electronic voting machine manufacturers have a bias, the outcome is subject to subversion. A paper trail is the only guarantee against it. It is the only sure way to have an accurate recount.
skyrings
Posted: Thursday, April 1, 2010 8:53:24 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/19/2010
Posts: 64
Neurons: 146
Location: Philippines
hmmm electronic voting...let's wait and see the result for this.. bushido .. i know you. hehehe..let just wait and see what's the outcame of this electronic voting..
TL Hobs
Posted: Thursday, April 1, 2010 1:41:05 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 4/16/2009
Posts: 1,397
Neurons: 5,591
Location: Kenai, Alaska, United States
I don't claim that there aren't issues with paper ballots. Obviously nobody has devised the perfect voting method, yet. But, as I stated, a paper ballot leaves a trail that is useful in a recount. In the instance I described, an electronic recount would have resulted in the same erroneous outcome.

Doing commerce and voting are not quite the same thing. In Alaska, when we aren't shooting bald eagles and moose from airplanes, or chewing muktuk in our igloos, we do a great deal of commerce via the Internet. I hate to think of the money I have to spend in shipping charges in a year. But, that's life in a sparsely settled place. I have lived in big cities before; New York, Chicago, Dallas, and I have lived in small towns. I would not trade where I live for anyplace else in the US. That's MY preference. Whether Alaska remains in the US or not is for others to decide. If other states don't want to either, that's their issue. They can give the northeast back to the Algonquin, for all I care. It has nothing to do with paper ballots or voting machines.

I lived in Indiana for awhile. There were no public buildings in the township in which I lived to use for a polling place. We voted one year in Mr. Jones dairy barn. At least in Alaska, we have community owned places to go vote and don't have to go to Nanook's igloo. Dancing

If you have a perfect voting method, you could become very, very wealthy. The whole world is looking for one.
skyrings
Posted: Thursday, April 1, 2010 2:42:55 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 3/19/2010
Posts: 64
Neurons: 146
Location: Philippines
all i know the reason why they remove the ballot's voting policy here.. we all know and the whole world know how dirty is the election here.. when the ballot box is on they way to municipality to count it.. a group of people will hijack the vehicle that transport the ballot box and they will replace it by new one for that particular candidate.. it happens here most of the time specially in rural area's or far away province.. so im just waiting for the outcome of this electronic voting.. and we have issue's here some candidates hired IT hacker's and trying to manipulate or sabotage all the votes..the goverment using the web to sent all the vote via internet..
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