RE: "Unbelievers are allowed to depart"

From: <clintcurtis_at_clintcurtis_dot_com>
Date: Mon May 23 2005 - 09:32:40 CDT

Kind of testy. Have you considered that possibly others may have
opinions that you will not be able to unilaterally dictate. If you are
the final word on this matter then I will depart. If you are not then
expect my resistance to anything which gives vote fraud comfort.


> -------- Original Message --------
> Subject: [OVC-discuss] "Unbelievers are allowed to depart"
> From: Edward Cherlin <>
> Date: Mon, May 23, 2005 5:04 am
> To:
> There have been a number of people on this list (and several
> others that I have received) who are remarkably resistant to
> facts. For example, it does no good to refuse to recognize that
> the law is as it is, however much we may wish it to be
> different. We can argue that the law *should* be different if we
> are also willing to discuss whether we are likely to be able to
> convince people to change it. However, insisting that settled
> principles of law and human rights are invalid gets us worse
> than nowhere.
> One of the leading principles of democracy is the secret ballot.
> If you don't believe in the secret ballot, you have no
> credibility in voting matters. This is not our private opinion
> on this list. It is established fact nationwide and beyond. If
> you would rather argue for a non-secret ballot than work on
> securing the secret ballot, we are not the people you want to
> work with.
> We can argue for laws permitting, encouraging, and even requiring
> Free/Open Source Software and paper ballots with an electronic
> audit trail. We cannot argue for publishing ballots in a way
> that allows anybody to determine routinely whose ballots they
> are. This is a thorny issue, because publication of all ballots
> does allow some voters to be identified, while not publishing
> them prevents independent analysis and detection of fraud.
> Denying either of these plain facts is not helpful.
> What we need is more facts. Perhaps someday we can secure
> ballots, using open software and a robust audit capability, to
> the point where the results are not routinely called into
> question, without having to provide for routine outside
> analysis. Perhaps this is not that day, and we have to take some
> risks with privacy in order to secure accountability. And then,
> perhaps, we will have to choose where we come down along that
> axis, and explain to others why that is the best choice in the
> circumstances. But we certainly cannot just dismiss either
> privacy or accountability.
> I have faced this issue many times in my work on spam. There are
> people who believe that spam should be legal, and should be
> fought by technical rather than legal means. They can believe
> what they like, but we didn't let them come in and interfere in
> the workings of a group devoted to creating laws against spam
> and getting them passed.
> If any of you think the rest of us at OVC (or any of us in
> particular) are blockheads for not seeing the brilliance and
> inevitability of your ideas, you have your reward. Please don't
> try to foist it on the rest of us.
> --
> Edward Cherlin
> Generalist & activist--Linux, languages, literacy and more
> "A knot! Oh, do let me help to undo it!"
> --Alice in Wonderland
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Received on Tue May 31 23:17:45 2005

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