Re: Urgent Call for Comments

From: Nancy Tobi <nancy_dot_tobi_at_gmail_dot_com>
Date: Sun Nov 11 2007 - 16:38:17 CST

Actually, it is not clear to what extent the EAC has listened to the vendors
on these guidelines. The guidelines represent software and hardware
specifications for equipment that will be immensely complex and expensive to
develop and then to market.

Given that their target market is publicly funded municipalities, a market
without deep pockets, and given that there is plenty in these requirements
that will be next to impossible to produce in any kind of marketable
reality, it is actually a mystery to me what and who is really driving this
new round of specifications.

Watching the hubris-filled technologists sitting on the guidelines
development committee, you kind of think they are sitting in a wonderland of
their own making, oblivious to election realities or the requirements of
democratic elections, most specifically, those being CITIZEN OVERSIGHT and
OBSERVABLE VOTE COUNTING. You might think they are just airily spinning off
their piles of gold under the magic spell of some hidden and unbidden
Rumpelstiltskin.

The vendor reps that I met at these guidelines committee meetings seemed to
resemble shell shocked deer gazing into the blinding headlights of an
oncoming and inevitable collision. Slightly spooked by what they were seeing
and hearing, and openly remarking on the impossibility of it all.

Whoever is behind this boondoggle, the goal is clear: complexify elections
to the point where there will be no citizen oversight whatsoever and nobody
will understand what is going on with the elections other than a handful of
"qualified" people (as Congressman Holt liked to call the elite few who
would be granted access to the keys to the kingdom).

And whoever is behind handing off the verbiage directly from the EAC
guidelines to Congressional staffers like Michelle Mulder in Rush Holt's
office, seems to be determined to make this complexified technoelection
paradigm the law of the land.

The anonymous, unseen hand behind all this is way ahead of all of us. I
suppose, in general terms you can try to trace the breadcrumbs to the
source. In this case, we know that the EAC reports directly to the Oval
Office.

Ultimately, the only solution to rescue our democracy from this nightmare is
to abolish the EAC, innoculate against its deadly virus by killing its
little cottage industry of federalized voting system design, and to swiftly
and with finality eradicate its technoelection kingdom from the land.

Best,

Nancy

On Nov 11, 2007 4:54 PM, Richard C. Johnson <dick@iwwco.com> wrote:

> Folks,
>
> Now is the time for a concerned activists of whatever persuasion to
> engage in public comment about the EAC's proposed Voluntary Voting System
> Guidelines. These guidelines are not truly voluntary; the states may adopt
> them and require them by law; California, for example, incorporates these
> guidelines into its requirements for voting systems.
>
> The EAC has listened to Diebold/Premier, ES&S, Sequoia and other vendors
> in formulating these guidelines. If you trust the vendors, fine. In not,
> please register your comments via the online tool provided at:
>
> http://www.eac.gov/vvsg
>
> The Glossary is the worst section, defining terms (Paper Trails are
> equivalent to Paper Ballots: see CVR in the Glossary) in strange and
> unusual ways to set the default for any arguments and confuse the public.
> Truly, this is WAR=PEACE time.
>
> Note: when you comment, cite the target subject of your comment in the
> text, since they lump all comments under gross categories (like, all
> Glossary comments are gathered under "g".
>
> We may not all have money, we may not have relatives who are in Congress,
> but all of us who are aware enough and have access to the internet can
> comment. It is a lot of work, but just look at the Test section and see
> if you think a White Box Test is just a spec with Black box modules. Some
> of us don't think you can do much White Box testing without Open Source; the
> EAC would have you believe that White Box testing has a great deal of Black
> in it, but they still want to call it White rather than Grey. What it is
> not is transparent!
>
> IMHO.
>
> -- Dick
>
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Received on Fri Nov 30 23:17:14 2007

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