No More Empty Fortune Cookies!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Faith vs Proof

Before I ramble on about what I read today that got me all riled up, let me just say that the place that I was supposed to interview with called me this morning and rescheduled for next week. It seems the interviewer was out sick today. So the Great Job Hunt of 2008 continues...

Now on to what got my goat.
In an article I read today in my local newspaper, Joseph Stalin is quoted as having said "Those who cast the votes decide nothing. Those who count the votes decide everything."
Eerily, it seems that the State of Tennessee Election Commission may have agreed with Mr. Stalin.
According to a Tennessee Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations report, all Tennessee counties could have had access to systems with paper ballots by 2006 if the Elections Commission had only certified the paper audits for use. That being said, why then do only 2 now count with me ... one...two of Tennessee's 95 counties have a paper trail? Kudos to Hamilton and Pickett counties. Voters in Chattanooga and Byrdstown can rest assured that their votes will not be digitally altered by a politically biased virus. I live in Nashville. The state capital, the epicenter of progress for this rural, backwoods-country state. Or so I thought. I have to use touch screen ballots. They're completely paperless, completely insecure. A report by Princeton University's School of Engineering found that a virus could easily be uploaded to machines like the ones we use here in Tennessee.

After the voting is complete and after the virus has altered the results to the desired outcome, the virus then eliminates all traces of itself. Spotless. Untraceable. Efficient and easy.
If it's true that the path of least resistance is what makes the river crooked, well, lets just say the river has met some long overdue resistance.
The Voter Confidence Act Study Committee approved 2 pieces of legislation last week:
1. THB1256 - this bill mandates that all paperless voting machines be replaced - the estimated cost is a controversial $25 million
2. THB1282 - this one states that all new voting machines purchased must have paper ballots.
These bills are now with the subcommittee for reconsideration. Apparently the major opposition is due to the $25 million price tag and an an expectation of trust or faith if you will, that there will not be tampering with our votes.
I say blind faith is great - for religion and religious folks- but as for me and my government and more specifically the electoral processes that establish my government, I require hard tangible evidence. Maybe I'm just asking for too much.

new voting machines ... $25 million
ensuring all votes are accurately counted ... priceless

3 cookies cracked:

Jay said...

What really kills me is the elimination of the scantron ballots. There was absolutely nothing wrong with them. In fact, they were the very best ones to use.

I'm not a big fan of having the federal gov't take over things that should be done by the states, but voting needs to be standardized and it needs to fall under one law.

The feds need to mandate paper trails, and the feds need to help fund the changes too.

No More Empty Fortune Cookies said...

I agree scantron ballots were the best, who couldn't figure them out??? ...and I am certainly not in favor of our already big govt. getting any bigger... but yes the feds need to help fund the changes to ensure that every citizen's vote is counted correctly.

The Lone Beader said...

Yea. Hopefully we don't have that same ballot mess we had in FL during the last election....

Also thanks for your comment on my blog. I hope you bought alotta beads at the bead shop! :D