Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Hacked

So, you go into the polling place and you find that it's filled with electronic voting machines made by Diebold, that nice Republican company whose CEO guaranteed Bush the state of Ohio back in '04. You get your little ballot card and stick it in the slot and do the touchscreen thing and then go to confirm your vote, but it comes up different than how you voted. So you call the ancient poll worker over and she ends up having to unplug your machine and plug it back in so you can vote again...

Meanwhile, the voter next to you is yelling to the poll workers that her touchscreen isn't working. So a brawny poll worker comes over and tests things out. Apparently he can't feel her touch, either. But he jiggles the cord on her voting machine and then it seems to work.

So you vote again, and this time the confirmation screen comes up with the lesser of two evils you voted for, rather than the greater one who showed up last time. So you pop out the ballot and hand it to the ancient poll worker, and neither one of you knows what's on it, or what happens when it gets carted off and put into another machine that adds up the tally.

But we do know that there's software on the ballot itself, and that this software can be hacked, and that the people at Diebold lied about that. How do we know? Because a few people were worried enough about it after the 2000 election to go out and do a documentary on electronic voting machines. If you have HBO, you too can get terribly depressed by watching "Hacking Democracy." This link is actually to a story about the documentary, with a clip or two.

When did this country become the Soviet Union? It's really hellish.

Anyway, vote! It may or may not count!

3 comments:

Tina said...

Wha—? Next you're gonna tell me something CRAZY, like that Halliburton has a vested interest in war. Nah...

Wow, so all that happened? For real? No one jiggled my cord this morning. Now I'm just jealous.

There was a super-cute old man handing out stickers who looked so happy to be there helping...and a super-cute old woman taking our names, and she had big American flag earrings and she looked happy too. So I think I may try to work there when I'm old, they were all so happy. Maybe they drink.

I had to call Paul on the way to the voting place, because even though I thought I was all set, I passed a bunch of "YES on the SCHOOL BONDS!" and "NO on the SCHOOL BONDS!" signs on the way there and realized I didn't know anything about the school bonds in question. So I sheepishly called the Mr. and said, "Um, hi! What am I voting on the school bonds?" I got my small disgusted "you-didn't-read-about-them" sigh, and then I got my answer. So all is well.

penny said...

The fusty old lady who helped me smelled like Cool Ranch Fritos, which did nothing to boost my patriotic mood. But thanks for the cord-jiggling news, darling huzboy. That fits perfectly with my suspicion that our computer voting cards are filled with nothing but John Denver songs.

djayt said...

We're seriously considering a cool ranch once the kids move out.