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Voting Machine Problem Reports Already Rolling In

Soulskill posted about 2 years ago | from the let-the-conspiracy-nuttery-commence dept.

Security 386

Several readers have submitted news of the inevitable problems involved with trying to securely collect information from tens of millions of people on the same day. A video is making the rounds of a touchscreen voting machine registering a vote for Mitt Romney when Barack Obama was selected. A North Carolina newspaper is reporting that votes for Romney are being switched to Obama. Voters are being encouraged to check and double-check that their votes are recorded accurately. In Ohio, some recently-installed election software got a pass from a District Court Judge. In Galveston County, Texas, poll workers didn't start their computer systems early enough to be ready for the opening of the polls, which led to a court order requiring the stations to be open for an extra two hours at night. Yesterday we discussed how people in New Jersey who were displaced by the storm would be allowed to vote via email; not only are some of the emails bouncing, but voters are being directed to request ballots from a county clerk's personal Hotmail account. If only vote machines were as secure as slot machines. Of course, there's still the good, old fashioned analog problems; workers tampering with ballots, voters being told they can vote tomorrow, and people leaving after excessively long wait times.

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Stupid. (4, Insightful)

Capt.DrumkenBum (1173011) | about 2 years ago | (#41901275)

It is called paper. It works.
Voting machines are a solution to a problem that doesn't exits.
Nothing beats a paper ballot and a #2 pencil.

Re:Stupid. (4, Funny)

Iniamyen (2440798) | about 2 years ago | (#41901301)

Maybe you should have mailed this comment to /. instead of posting it then.

Re:Stupid. (5, Funny)

Rockoon (1252108) | about 2 years ago | (#41901309)

A paper ballot and a black marker beats the hell out of the paper ballot and the No. 2 pencil.

Re:Stupid. (1)

Capt.DrumkenBum (1173011) | about 2 years ago | (#41901353)

#2 pencil is conductive. That makes it easy to read it by machine. I suppose you could do the same thing with a camera and a computer though.

Re:Stupid. (5, Insightful)

hawguy (1600213) | about 2 years ago | (#41901735)

#2 pencil is conductive. That makes it easy to read it by machine. I suppose you could do the same thing with a camera and a computer though.

Does any modern scanning equipment use electrical conductivity of pencil marks to read forms? I could see maybe back in the 60's when cameras and photo sensors were expensive, but I'd be surprised if anything built in the past 30 years doesn't use optical sensors.

Re:Stupid. (1)

craigminah (1885846) | about 2 years ago | (#41901767)

All the machines I've used to import test answers didn't require conductivity, it was optical so a #2 pencil or a black marker would work so long as the mark was dark enough.

Re:Stupid. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901393)

Markers can run out of ink, and papers can burn or be carried away by the wind. In my time we voted with rocks, and we never complained.

Re:Stupid. (5, Funny)

RoknrolZombie (2504888) | about 2 years ago | (#41901415)

I like this idea. The candidates get bussed from town to town over the course of a couple of weeks. People throw rocks at the candidates that they don't like. Whoever survives the trip, is elected!

Re:Stupid. (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901489)

I like this idea. The candidates get bussed from town to town over the course of a couple of weeks. People throw rocks at the candidates that they don't like. Whoever survives the trip, is elected!

We already know neither of them would survive.

Re:Stupid. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901543)

That doesn't sound like a defect.

Re:Stupid. (1)

Lokitoth (1069508) | about 2 years ago | (#41901739)

This also has the advantage in ensuring that only people thinking they have a decent shot at making it run.

Re:Stupid. (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about 2 years ago | (#41901533)

You had it easy! In my day, we had vote with our brain matter. Me old dad would drop us on our 'eads 'til our skulls cracked open and would scrawl an X on the ballot with our gray matter.

Re:Stupid. (4, Funny)

Sponge Bath (413667) | about 2 years ago | (#41901513)

A paper ballot and a black marker beats the hell out of the paper ballot and the No. 2 pencil.

Paper also beats rock. But watch out! Here comes the scissors.

Re:Stupid. (0)

dpidcoe (2606549) | about 2 years ago | (#41901311)

Until your scanning machine gets out of alignment, the people you hired to do hand counts get bribed, or someone loses the ballots on the way to be counted.

Re:Stupid. (4, Insightful)

Goaway (82658) | about 2 years ago | (#41901677)

You don't use a machine, and you don't hire people. You take multiple volunteers who count in public.

Re:Stupid. (5, Informative)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 years ago | (#41901715)

Speaking as a Canadian here, who has actually worked for Elections Canada in the past three times now, let me clarify just how paper ballots work just fine up here:

Until your scanning machine gets out of alignment

Won't happen. Ballots are counted by hand.

...the people you hired to do hand counts get bribed

As the ballot counts are done in pairs, and even then are subject to being witnessed by the candidates or their representatives, you'd have to bribe one heck of a lot of people... up to and possibly even including the candidates themselves. Ballots with any writing or other identifying marks on them other than the voter's selection, which must be marked as described by the illustrated posters near each voting station, which might distinguish them from other ballots are considered "spoiled" and are not counted.

... or someone loses the ballots on the way to be counted

This is also can't happen, since the ballots are counted right there, almost immediately after the polls close.

The only real danger is if there is some sort of natural disaster which threatens one of the polling stations. I'm not sure what the recourse of EC would be in such a case... possibly a revote for people in that area.

Re:Stupid. (2)

amRadioHed (463061) | about 2 years ago | (#41901827)

That's exactly how they work fine in large parts of the US too. Voting is a solved problem, and yet people still insist on innovating which always causes more problems than it solves.

Re:Stupid. (0)

Belial6 (794905) | about 2 years ago | (#41901757)

Voting machines are an easy fix. After voting, the machine should spit out a printed ballot that is on the same card stock that many states use for paper ballots. The paper (mail in) ballots can easily be scanned in. This way, whether the ballot was submitted electronically or by paper, there is both a computer record for fast easy reporting AND a paper ballot that is both human and machine readable.

Any third party auditors should be able to go to the place that the printed ballots are stored and run the printed ballots through their own scanning equipment. This would quickly verify whether the count was accurate or not. If the third party scanning doesn't match, it would be trivial to rerun ballots through the official counting equipment. If a match still cannot be made, batches could be run to narrow down the discrepancy to a small enough pile that having humans read them by hand makes sense.

The problem with hand counting paper ballots is that there is no reliable way to hand count 90 million ballots. The problem with electronic voting is that the government is allowing systems to be used that have no real audit trail. Electronic voting is failing not because the basic premise is bad. It is failing because the machines are poorly designed and those with a say don't feel it is important to fix.

Re:Stupid. (3, Informative)

AK Marc (707885) | about 2 years ago | (#41901821)

5000 extra votes get slipped in. And in the US, they are more worried about making sure your votes are cast than eliminating bad ones, as "officially" there are no bad votes, so that they don't throw out ballot boxes when there are 1000 eligible voters and 10,000 votes cast. But, fi they ever start, just make sure you drop the 5000 favorable ballots into a box in a district usually won by "the other guy" so that if they count them, you win, and if they throw them, you still win. And, with the vote system used now, there's no way to validate any single vote in a spoiled box.

Re:Stupid. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901349)

My scissors and a #2 pencil beats your paper ballot and a #2 pencil.

Re:Stupid. (1, Insightful)

fm6 (162816) | about 2 years ago | (#41901481)

A problem that doesn't exist? How about the high cost of counting ballots by hand? The fact that it's extremely hard to do a proper audit trail on dead tree media?

Paper ballots aren't even that reliable. Elections have turned on judgement calls over how sloppy a ballot can be before it's ignored.

And one more time: they are not a safeguard against fraud. Where do you suppose the term "stuffing the ballot box" comes from?

Re:Stupid. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901601)

Tradeoffs.

It may be tough to audit paper, but it's virtually impossible to audit electronic.

read: http://www.schneier.com/essay-133.html [schneier.com]

Re:Stupid. (2, Informative)

Velex (120469) | about 2 years ago | (#41901609)

I just cast a paper ballot an hour ago. There are bubbles I fill in next to my choices, and then a scanner reads the ballot for instant reporting. Then, if there are any problems, the paper ballot, minus any way to identify who cast it, remains to be recounted by hand if necessary.

Paper ballots aren't perfect with regards to fraud. They still beat the pants off any electronic system, though. At best, electronic systems that print a paper trail that the voter can visually inspect are still vulnerable every way paper is to fraud. Any electronic voting machine that doesn't produce a paper trail should be presumed to be aiding in fraud.

Any perfect solution to fraud would be to eliminate anonymity.

I'm not sure why mechanical voting machines ever were used.

Re:Stupid. (1)

ugliness (325797) | about 2 years ago | (#41901623)

We seem to get away with it in Australia.

Paper ballots, scrutineers, etc, etc.

Re:Stupid. (2)

khallow (566160) | about 2 years ago | (#41901631)

The fact that it's extremely hard to do a proper audit trail on dead tree media?

I must admit that it's a lot easier to do proper audit trails on electronic media. Whoever controls the media pretty much decides who gets elected. Can't get much simpler than that.

Re:Stupid. (5, Informative)

Goaway (82658) | about 2 years ago | (#41901691)

How about the high cost of counting ballots by hand?

What high costs? You volunteer to do it.

And one more time: they are not a safeguard against fraud.

Having multiple volunteer workers from all sides of the political spectrum is.

Online Voting (0)

starworks5 (139327) | about 2 years ago | (#41901505)

I actually propose online crypto voting in addition to the traditional sorts of voting, of course utilizing an audited record open to everyone based on uid, and follow ups on random samples of those voters.

Re:Online Voting (1)

Goaway (82658) | about 2 years ago | (#41901699)

That is subject to coercion, and thus not usable as a voting method.

Re:Online Voting (1)

starworks5 (139327) | about 2 years ago | (#41901737)

Anymore coercion than having to wait in line for hours on a day that you have to normally work? That, and an audit would be able to detect the amount of coercion.

Re:Online Voting (2)

Goaway (82658) | about 2 years ago | (#41901791)

Having the vote on a workday is completely insane to start with.

And why audit to detect something when you can just prevent it in the first place?

Re:Stupid. (2)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41901591)

Voting machines are a solution to a problem that doesn't exits.

Vote count delays? Issues with recounts? The ease in which paper votes can be "lost" in transit to the counting facility? The ease with which paper ballots can be tampered with? The fact that there are plenty of people who can easily screw up a paper ballot (aka hanging chads)?

Re:Stupid. (4, Informative)

Goaway (82658) | about 2 years ago | (#41901713)

Vote count delays?

If done right, it doesn't take more than evening by hand.

Issues with recounts?

What issues?

The ease in which paper votes can be "lost" in transit to the counting facility?

They are to be counted on location, not transported anywhere.

Re:Stupid. (2)

CHIT2ME (2667601) | about 2 years ago | (#41901671)

Here in Missouri, we use a paper ballot that you just darken a box for your selection. It is then read by a machine and tallyed. Pretty simple! Also, there is a paper ballot to fall back on if there is a recount or any problems. Until electronic voting becomes more secure and foolproof, I think this is the best possible procedure.

Re:Stupid. (1)

MtViewGuy (197597) | about 2 years ago | (#41901673)

Better solution: mark-sense paper ballots that are filled out with a _permanent_ marker. That way, they can be both machine and hand counted.

Re:Stupid. (1)

i.r.id10t (595143) | about 2 years ago | (#41901823)

There were similar probs with paper votes in Athens Tn in 1946. Had a much more serious outcome. google "battle of athens"

Disgraceful (3, Insightful)

fox1324 (1039892) | about 2 years ago | (#41901289)

One day we'll figure out how to vote like a civilized nation. Today is not that day.

Re:Disgraceful (0)

TimeOut42 (314783) | about 2 years ago | (#41901477)

Yeah, terrible that 99.99% of the country isn't have problems. I guess we should throw the whole thing in the trash for the .01% of idiots that can't press a button or show up to work on time.

Come on, don't fall for the press' coverage of only negative news and then paint the entire picture that color.

Re:Disgraceful (1)

Osgeld (1900440) | about 2 years ago | (#41901639)

you mean the idiot in the video showing a clear selection of Obama and the machine choosing Romney?

Re:Disgraceful (1)

slew (2918) | about 2 years ago | (#41901711)

FWIW, it apparently happens both ways...

http://www.krdo.com/news/Pueblo-GOP-Machines-switched-Romney-votes-to-Obama/-/417220/17252566/-/qpcqxr/-/index.html [krdo.com]

There's likely no conspiracy, just a few crappy uncalibrated voting machines out there. Nothing like a hotly contested election to get the spotlight out on something that probably nets out to nothing in the end.

Re:Disgraceful (1)

tofubeer (1746800) | about 2 years ago | (#41901793)

Paper and pencil require no calibration, and pretty much everyone can put an X. Easy and quick to count too.

What happened to those election monitors? (2, Informative)

Liam Pomfret (1737150) | about 2 years ago | (#41901291)

I recall that several countries wanted to send election monitors to oversee the vote, and that at least one Republican AG was trying to prevent that happening. What happened with that?

Re:What happened to those election monitors? (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901379)

they said it was stupid that we didnt require ids to vote then media ignored them

http://thecable.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2012/11/06/foreign_election_officials_amazed_by_trust_based_us_voting_system

Re:What happened to those election monitors? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901443)

So what is someone going to do drive around a city to every polling place pretending to be somebody else and taking their spot? what happens when the real person shows up? this is ridiculous paranoia. if you really want to commit election fraud just get your cronies to count the votes or even better hire your cronies to provide electronic voting machines where there is no pesky paper trail!

Re:What happened to those election monitors? (1)

iluvcapra (782887) | about 2 years ago | (#41901479)

I agree, it's stupid that the US doesn't have free compulsory national photo IDs.

Re:What happened to those election monitors? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901567)

We have state level photo IDs, that in most states adults are required to obtain if they don't have a driver's license.

Re:What happened to those election monitors? (1)

Liam Pomfret (1737150) | about 2 years ago | (#41901583)

That story talks about observers from the developing world, with very different circumstances for them back home. What about the observers from more developed nations?

Re:What happened to those election monitors? (1)

starworks5 (139327) | about 2 years ago | (#41901515)

Apparently texas wants to put them in jail!

E-votes (5, Insightful)

Citizen of Earth (569446) | about 2 years ago | (#41901295)

"Those who cast the votes decide nothing. Those who count the votes decide everything." -- Joseph Stalin

Re:E-votes (1)

mark-t (151149) | about 2 years ago | (#41901751)

Those who count the votes might decide everything, but they are still accountable to anyone who might be witness to them doing said counting.

All the more reason to follow Oregons lead (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901297)

Move to all mail voting, or in Ca at least I understand you can apply for permanent vote by mail status. Why the need to show up in person. Lets avoid the electronic and internet voting and use a well proven method. You actually have paper that if need be can be hand counted as well. As with many things best is the enemy of good enough in this issue as well as in a lot of tech things. Keep it simple stupid needs to be rule #1.

Re:All the more reason to follow Oregons lead (1)

gander666 (723553) | about 2 years ago | (#41901395)

Arizona too. I travel a lot, so as soon as they gave the option for permanent vote by mail status, I signed up.

Stupid easy too. I moved from Tucson to Phoenix (both in AZ), and when I changed my Drivers license address (on the web), I was able to register to vote, and get the permanent vote by mail. Ease peasy

Re:All the more reason to follow Oregons lead (2)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about 2 years ago | (#41901405)

Move to all mail voting, or in Ca at least I understand you can apply for permanent vote by mail status.

The Suffragettes would be terribly upset, we'd never hear the end of it.

Re:All the more reason to follow Oregons lead (1)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | about 2 years ago | (#41901519)

I just wanted you to know that this was a very nice sliver of comedy gold and that someone else got the joke.

Re:All the more reason to follow Oregons lead (1)

starworks5 (139327) | about 2 years ago | (#41901531)

I live in oregon, and not only can you vote by paper, but if your disabled you can vote online! It makes it very easy to vote, you dont even need postage (considered a "poll tax".

Re:All the more reason to follow Oregons lead (1)

Obfuscant (592200) | about 2 years ago | (#41901669)

Move to all mail voting,

Why yes, there's certainly no failure modes for that. Not at all.

I like having a polling place. It means that you actually know that your vote entered the system, unlike vote-by-mail where it can be thrown out for any number of reasons without you ever having a chance to contest them. If your right to vote is contested, you know it, and if you've provided sufficient proof that you can vote your vote goes in the same box with everyone else's. If the clerk throws your vote-by-mail ballot out at 9PM on election night because the signatures don't look like they match, you're SOL.

Re:All the more reason to follow Oregons lead (1)

starworks5 (139327) | about 2 years ago | (#41901799)

Unless you have a tabulated database of the envelope / voter status (accepted / error), that voters are able to refer to before the election ends, because the early voting period is 2 weeks long.

Re:All the more reason to follow Oregons lead (2)

Goaway (82658) | about 2 years ago | (#41901731)

Anything that is not voting in person is susceptible to coercion, and thus not a reliable method for democratic voting.

Thank Goodness! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901331)

I'm glad this is the USA, where nobody would try to exploit these kinds of situations for political gain.

How hard is this to do? (0)

gelfling (6534) | about 2 years ago | (#41901339)

Harder than an ATM machine? Harder than a nuclear power plant control room? Harder than a 787 Dreamliner fly by wire system?

Re:How hard is this to do? (1)

gravyface (592485) | about 2 years ago | (#41901455)

My thoughts exactly. What's the use case for a voting machine? I think the Ruby on Rails blog demo had more fields than a typical vote screen.

Re:How hard is this to do? (1)

Velex (120469) | about 2 years ago | (#41901471)

Yes. The challenge is to rig elections in plain sight. That's what's so hard about it.

Re:How hard is this to do? (4, Insightful)

sl3xd (111641) | about 2 years ago | (#41901499)

Harder than an ATM machine? Harder than a nuclear power plant control room? Harder than a 787 Dreamliner fly by wire system?

The key problem: Price.

Your examples can be counted on to be in use pretty much all of the time.

Not so with voting machines, where they sit unused in warehouses for months on end.

As a result, it's hard to justify to "fiscally responsible" election committees that your more expensive device is the best for the job.

One of the easiest things to cheap out on is the touchscreen. The touch sensors on your iOS or Android device are generally top of the line capacitive sensors - and even they have trouble from time to time.

If you go for a cheap resistive touch sensor, you can be pretty screwed. I know my office's HP DeskJet all-in-one has an extremely low-end touch screen - it's best described as "touch the screen, and get anything except what you intended to press.

I'm far more willing to chalk it up to deprecated, cheap-ass touch sensors than I am to call it fraud.

Frankly, we need the guys designing slot machine or video poker to do our voting machines - with the same regulations too (ie. full source code disclosure, full schematics, and so on). I think it's criminal that we require casinos to prove their machines aren't hacked, and require full source code and schematics -- but the same standard doesn’t exist for voting machines.

mod parent up (1)

starworks5 (139327) | about 2 years ago | (#41901829)

mod parent up

Re:How hard is this to do? (2)

Mitreya (579078) | about 2 years ago | (#41901729)

Harder than an ATM machine? Harder than a nuclear power plant control room? Harder than a 787 Dreamliner fly by wire system?

In all of the cases you describe, a contractor that screws up will be fined and sued into oblivion (ATM machine spitting out money, nuclear power plant meltdown, 787 falling down from the sky due to faulty wiring)

What we desperately need is to sue the contractors responsible for delivering malfunctioning voter machines into non-existence. Not "take machines offline" and probably buy from the same contractor next year.

Of course an even better solution is to go back to paper...

Nevada has it right (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901351)

Well, I think all of Nevada has it right. At least here in Las Vegas the voting machines here are held to the same standards of slot machines. I could be wrong, but I think the gaming commission goes over them too, but I could be wrong. The rest of the nation has it wrong sadly :-(

Embarrassed (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901359)

As an American I am embarrassed by these problems. Is this due to incompetence? Not enough people caring? How can we expect government to grow and manage things like disaster relief, healthcare, and retirement when we simply can't get a working election system. This morning I went to vote in DC. I waited 60 minutes in line to get inside a church that had one working machine. Really? In the middle of a city we have a voting station with a single voting machine. Should I expect a single nurse for my flu shot?

Re:Embarrassed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901509)

Yes. Only one nurse is required for a flu shot.

Re:Embarrassed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901561)

You must be in charge then One nurse can handle 2000 people in line just as one voting machine can.

Re:Embarrassed (1)

TimeOut42 (314783) | about 2 years ago | (#41901517)

Your kidding you had to wait a whole 60 minutes, that's almost an entire hour. Well, I hope you recover from your trauma.

How many nurses do you need for your flu shot? One to hold your hand, one to process your insurance paperwork, one to tell you everything will be okay and then one to give you the shot?

TWP

Re:Embarrassed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901659)

It has nothing to do with my 60 min wait. It has to do with people trying to get to work, people with children, and people who are on crutches (there were 2 in line with me). Its not ok to wait when we don't have to. There are better solutions. The problem is people who blindly accept the status quo like sheep.

Re:Embarrassed (2)

aXis100 (690904) | about 2 years ago | (#41901571)

I'm embarrased for you too. It's not that hard to get voting systems right and they scale with population perfectly fine - the fact that America can make a complete arse of it is a sign of how far you guys have fallen.

20 years ago - "leaders of the free world"; Today - broke, unemployed, corrupt, and cant even hold simple elections.

Re:Embarrassed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901695)

Bro, DC is filled with black people, nobody wants to encourage those people to vote. Are you new to America or something?

Re:Embarrassed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901705)

It happens because the people responsible for fixing it are the ones attempting to rig the system. See also voter id requirements in GOP states.

And yet you don't need observers (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901361)

This is the sort of shit that encourages OSCE observers to be present at your polling stations.

How many times (1)

future assassin (639396) | about 2 years ago | (#41901369)

can you keep on walking into the wall. Year after year all you hear is problems with voting machine. Who is paying whom to keep having those thing year after year instead of paper?

Re:How many times (1)

Desler (1608317) | about 2 years ago | (#41901637)

Because paper ballots are just as bad. Ballots get "lost", they get tampered with, you have the "hanging chads" problem, etc. The thing is, there has probably been more rampant voter fraud during the days of paper ballots than anything happening with these machines.

Re:How many times (1)

Mitreya (579078) | about 2 years ago | (#41901783)

The thing is, there has probably been more rampant voter fraud during the days of paper ballots than anything happening with these machines.

Ignoring the fact that you have absolutely no data to backup your assertion...

The difference is, with electronic machines NO ONE WILL EVER KNOW. It is possible (even if difficult) to find lost ballots, get evidence of ballot tampering, etc. But good luck doing that without physical evidence.

And it doesn't even have to be malicious tampering. Do those thing run RAID storage? What if someone brings a magnet into the voting booth?

It's not a big problem. (5, Funny)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | about 2 years ago | (#41901433)

Look guys, it's a few glitches. There are what, 350 million people in the US, half are eligible to vote, so 175 million voters. A couple of thousand counted wrong is tops a few VOTE RECORDED: MITT ROMNEY

Re:It's not a big problem. (4, Funny)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | about 2 years ago | (#41901463)

The fuck happened there? I swear I ERROR: VOTE ALREADY RECORDED.

Re:It's not a big problem. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901555)

a few glitches......are you kidding me?

Inevitable? (1)

fm6 (162816) | about 2 years ago | (#41901437)

inevitable problems involved with trying to securely collect information from tens of millions of people on the same dayk

Some problems are inevitable. But most of the ones we have are avoided by other major democracies.

http://www.cnn.com/2012/11/05/opinion/frum-election-chaos/index.html [cnn.com]

Yikes... (1)

H3GS (2763571) | about 2 years ago | (#41901545)

The Republic of Wadiya had similar problems in their voting process...

What happened in SC (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901457)

In South Carolina they just kept most of the competition off of the ballot. Plenty of races for which I saw the D's signs... the Ds were not on the ballot, you had to write them in. There was a "vote R" and a "vote D" button, but the "vote D" button filled in only 3-4 options. Most races showed Rs running "unopposed".

Re:What happened in SC (1)

dr2chase (653338) | about 2 years ago | (#41901523)

This happens in other places, for example, Massachusetts.

Re:What happened in SC (3, Informative)

slew (2918) | about 2 years ago | (#41901657)

FYI: In House District 2 in South Carolina, apparantly no democrat registered to oppose incumbant Joe Wilson [wikipedia.org] (yes he was the same person that shouted out "you lie").

The democratic party isn't doing so great in SC. According to the wikipedia [wikipedia.org] ...

The South Carolina Democratic Party controls none of the statewide offices and holds the minority in both the South Carolina Senate and the South Carolina House of Representatives. Democrats hold one of the state's six U.S. House seats.

But, Bush said we could export democracy (1)

tekrat (242117) | about 2 years ago | (#41901485)

Our number one export apparently, in terms of money spent. And yet, we can't actually have democracy at home. How much of a banana republic do we need to become before the UN starts to intervene and forces us to be monitored by their people to make sure we have a fair election?

Re:But, Bush said we could export democracy (1)

c0lo (1497653) | about 2 years ago | (#41901789)

Our number one export apparently, in terms of money spent. And yet, we can't actually have democracy at home.

After loading so much democracy in them drones, of course there's too little left for the internal market.
Anyway, democracy is overrated... long live the free market.

</sarcasm>

Re:But, Bush said we could export democracy (1)

tftp (111690) | about 2 years ago | (#41901803)

Our number one export apparently, in terms of money spent. And yet, we can't actually have democracy at home.

Of course. You exported it all; nothing remains for domestic use. Besides, who said that the US government wants democracy for the USA? All US Presidents in last century ruled like kings. Temporary kings, but kings nevertheless - with their own court, with their own budget for fun vacations, with their own Praetorian Guard, with their secrets, and with their complete lack of responsibilities. And with the army that obeys them.

How much of a banana republic do we need to become before the UN starts to intervene

Lower than Zimbabwe [abc.net.au] . The USA will be already aflame by then, so the UN will not have a chance to save the country (not that they could anyway.)

and forces us to be monitored by their people to make sure we have a fair election?

*Forces*? Hmm. I can't think of too many americans who would cheerfully embrace such a development. The reaction is likely to be somewhat different.

Why isnt voting Compulsory? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901493)

other countries have compulsory voting.

What doesnt the USA?

An Americans right to free speech should make it compulsory to vote and compulsory to include on all forms "None of the Above". That way Americans can voice thier displeasure with all parties.

or am I missing something...

Re:Why isnt voting Compulsory? (3, Informative)

MightyMartian (840721) | about 2 years ago | (#41901629)

Compulsory voting tends to favor the incumbent. Besides, if you're too fucking lazy to make sure you're registered and come down to a poll, who the fuck cares what you think anyways.

Re:Why isnt voting Compulsory? (1)

khallow (566160) | about 2 years ago | (#41901745)

other countries have compulsory voting.

What doesnt the USA?

Because we're not quite as stupid?

An Americans right to free speech should make it compulsory to vote and compulsory to include on all forms "None of the Above".

As long as we make suicide compulsory for people who come up with such dumb ideas. Rights aren't obligations.

in the UK (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901539)

In the UK we put an x on a piece of paper

works pretty well

psychological terrorist attack (0)

tekrat (242117) | about 2 years ago | (#41901551)

Something to think about: the partisan divide is mostly media driven, and most of the blame falls squarely on the shoulders of Fox News. Our country is being ripped apart because of Fox.

The second biggest investor in Fox is Prince Alwaleed bin Talal. While I'm not against Arabs or Muslims, I don't believe Prince Alwaleed bin Talal is a friend of the US. Not when he is holding fundraisers for the families of suicide bombers, giving poor middle easterners a reason for what they do. I just can't vote for anyone endorsed by Fox.

He has boasted he gets Fox to change their programming. So much of the division and hate in the US comes from Fox News. Seems to be a reflection of the owners. The percentage of Fox owned by Prince Alwaleed bin Talal keeps Rupert Murdoch from a hostile take over. That gives Prince Alwaleed bin Talal a lot of power over Fox.

It also makes me believe that Fox News is a psychological terrorist attack, and that the GOP has fallen for it.

huntshootfish.com (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901563)

All our items carry a manufacturers warranty. We (Huntshootfish.com) are not a warranty repair center. Please contact the manufacturer first. Questions, please email us throught the contact us page.Our site uses SSL encription for secure shopping. We DO NOT store your credit card information. We are PCI compliant for industry safeguards. huntshootfish.com [huntshootfish.com]

Hashtag (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901619)

#thirdworldproblems

Touchscreen video is a fraud (0, Troll)

tomhath (637240) | about 2 years ago | (#41901643)

I voted with one of those machines today. It's not a touchscreen, you use a trackball to select the candidate. The guy is obviously trying to make it look like the machine doesn't work by touching the screen and not showing the trackball being moved.

Why use touchscreens (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901687)

put a column of 15 buttons along each side, 30 candidates should be a good maximum. If more fit, put more on.

Dumb screen displays choices, button selects. Keyboards can sit a long time unused and still work so buttons will survive.

This is if you have to do it electronic. paper and a black marker is pretty foolproof.

Re:Why use touchscreens (1)

raind (174356) | about 2 years ago | (#41901811)

Had a good old paper and marker ballot, show id - sign, attach sticker, in and out under half hour. this in MI.

I hear that niggers are complaining (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41901709)

They said it's unfair not to have a picture of who's the white guy and who's the black guy. To quote Tyrone Brown "I has to read dat shit? Do they think I be a college professor?"

Yelled at by an old lady; still managed to vote (4, Interesting)

Just Some Guy (3352) | about 2 years ago | (#41901773)

I live in a small town outside San Francisco. It seems that two local districts vote in the place I went this morning, so a guy at the door routed voters to table A or table B depending on our street addresses. The problem was that competing teams of little-old-lady election volunteers were engaged in a turf war over who "owned" which voting booths. When I got my ballot from table A, the booths closest to it were occupied and the volunteers directed my wife and I to the ones nearer table B.

You would have thought I had peed all over the table B volunteers' Thanksgiving turkey.

Little Old Lady: Sir? Sir! These are for table B! You're supposed to use the booths over by table A!
Me: Umm, is there a difference?
LOL: Yes! These are for table B! If they're all filled up, table B people won't be able to vote!
Me: Well, table A's booths are all filled up and I'd like to vote, too.
LOL, whining and angry: But these are for table B!

Man. Hell hath no wrath like the elderly women proudly doing their quadrennial duties.

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