Re: Urgent Call for Comments

From: Arlene Montemarano <mikarl_at_starpower_dot_net>
Date: Mon Nov 12 2007 - 06:39:36 CST

Well, Barbara, here is one example:
>
>
> A Rigged Report on U.S. Voting?
> <http://www.oregonvrc.org/2007/08/a_rigged_report_on_u_s_voting>
>
> Submitted by Deb <http://www.oregonvrc.org/user/deb> on Fri,
> 08/31/2007 - 5:14pm. Election News - NATIONAL
> <http://www.oregonvrc.org/general_forum/election_news_reference_library/election_news_national>
>
>
> By Tova Andrea Wang
> Thursday, August 30, 2007; A21
> click here for original article
> <http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/08/29/AR2007082901928.html>
>
> After the 2000 Florida election debacle, Congress established a body
> called the Election Assistance Commission to improve voting and
> democracy in this country. Two years ago, the commission approached me
> about doing a project that would take a preliminary look at voter
> fraud and intimidation and make recommendations for further research
> on the issues.
>
> Because my approach to election issues tends to be more closely
> aligned with Democrats, I was paired with a Republican co-author. To
> further remove any taint of partisanship, my co-author and I convened
> a bipartisan working group to help us. We spent a year doing research
> and consulting with leaders in the field to produce a draft report.
> What happened next seems inexplicable. After submitting the draft in
> July 2006, we were barred by the commission's staff from having
> anything more to do with it.
>
> What was the problem? In all the time we were doing our research and
> drafting the report, neither the staff nor the commissioners, who were
> continually advised of our activities and the substance of our work,
> raised any concerns about the direction we were going or the research
> findings.
>
> Yet, after sitting on the draft for six months, the EAC publicly
> released a report -- citing it as based on work by me and my co-author
> -- that completely stood our own work on its head.
>
> read more
> <http://www.oregonvrc.org/2007/08/a_rigged_report_on_u_s_voting>

Barbara Simons wrote:
> Hi, Nancy. What are the names of the "hubris-filled technologists
> sitting on guidelines development committee" and what have they done
> that makes you use such rhetoric when referring to them? Please be
> specific about who they are and what they have done.
>
> Also, what basis do you have for saying:
>
>> 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.
>>
>
>
> Furthermore, it would be a helpful if you could avoid vague generalities
> and RESPONDING IN CAPITAL LETTERS. You may feel that the use of caps is
> not yelling, but for many of us who have been using email for years and
> years, the use of capitals is in fact equivalent to yelling. Frankly, I
> think it would help your arguments if you would simply use a standard
> font for your email and allow your arguments to speak for themselves.
> If your arguments are sound, you won't need to use caps or italic or
> bold fonts.
>
> I look forward to your response.
>
> Barbara
>
> Nancy Tobi wrote:
>
>> 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
>> <mailto: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 23:17:16 2007

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