Re: Shamos Rebuttal, Draft 3--error versus fraud, other items

From: Ed Kennedy <ekennedyx_at_yahoo_dot_com>
Date: Tue May 10 2005 - 20:34:10 CDT

Hello All:

    On the incompetence versus fraud issue I think a good test would be to
examine in who's favor these 'errors' trend. Being mindful of Jim March's
feelings, I'll just say that I get the impression that these errors tend to
more favor Republicans than Democrats. One could argue, in my partisan way,
that a consistent error in favor of one party or the other or possibly even
just in favor in incumbent office holders, would suggest fraud is a more
likely explanation for these errors. If incompetence were a more likely
source, I would expect the errors to be more randomly distributed. As I've
mentioned before, I've always suspected that incumbents are less likely to
leave elections to chance.

    Still, I'm sure that incompetence explains a lot of the problems we've
seem. As part of the specifications for the EVM system has to be user
friendly for election officials and poll workers. I'd assume an eight grade
education and an age of at least 60 years for our target audience of regular
users and poll workers. 'Power Users' would more likely have at least two
years of education past high school. I assume we are contemplating three
levels of access to the software?

Thanks, Edmund R. Kennedy
Always work for the common good.
10777 Bendigo Cove
San Diego, CA 92126-2510
I blog now and then at: <>
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Ron Crane" <>
To: "Open Voting Consortium discussion list" <>
Sent: Tuesday, May 10, 2005 4:06 PM
Subject: Re: [OVC-discuss] Shamos Rebuttal, Draft 3
> On May 10, 2005, at 3:14 PM, Edward Cherlin wrote:
>> On Tuesday 10 May 2005 13:23, Ron Crane wrote:
>>> On May 10, 2005, at 11:59 AM, Edward Cherlin wrote:
>>>> On Sunday 08 May 2005 18:13, Ron Crane wrote:
>>>>> On May 8, 2005, at 2:11 PM, Edward Cherlin wrote:
>>>>>> It is proverbial in the computer business (unlike
>>>>>> politics) that incompetence is to be suspected before
>>>>>> malice...
>>>>>> So we should not focus only on the malicious vendor. The
>>>>>> known incompetent vendors together with the known
>>>>>> malicious/corrupt politicians with the money to hire
>>>>>> corrupt programmers and other technical people are here.
>>> Incompetence has been a huge problem. However, I think you're
>>> treating some events as evidence of incompetence when they
>>> could just as well have been evidence of fraud.
>> "Once is happenstance, twice is coincidence, but three times is
>> enemy action."--Gen. George Patton
>> No, I don't make such a judgment. It would not surprise me in the
>> least to see it proved that a vendor committed election fraud,
>> and I would be delighted for the evidence to come out, if so.
>> The point at issue is whether we should emphasize fraud alone,
>> or point out that Shamos is guilty of overlooking incompetence,
>> and hit the vendors hard on it. Even though he mentions errors,
>> he does not follow up on the point, and this is the greatest
>> failing of his paper.
>> Fine with me.
> Good. I'm glad finally to be writing the paper that Alan asked me to 
> write.
>> [snip]
>> Please edit your posts to avoid unnecessary verbiage.
> You too.
> -R
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Received on Tue May 31 23:17:33 2005

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