I had a frightening revelation on Jan. 8. It is possible that dj vu can serve as a precursor to reality.
Just as I watched the presidential election win torn from Al Gore in 2000, I watched what appeared to be a guaranteed win for Barack Obama turn into a narrow defeat. Before the polls had closed in the New Hampshire primary early this year, rumors of foul play had already begun to surface on the Internet.
One woman, whose family voted for Ron Paul, even claimed that after they had voted, the Web site Politico.com still showed the representative as having received no votes from their polling place. This easily could have been because her family's precinct had not reported in yet, but by the end of the day, Dr. Paul still had not received a single vote.
Isolated events such as this prompted Congressman Dennis Kucinich to publicly support a recount, stating there are “serious and credible reports, allegations and rumors” about the legitimacy of the primary. Internet banter is not, of course, a reliable source of information; nor is it grounds for a recount.
But when enough coincidences about an event appear, common sense tells us that something is wrong.
For example, on the day of the New Hampshire primary, Zogby polling numbers had Senator Obama winning the state with 42 percent of the vote, but Clinton eventually took the state by 3 percent. And it is especially disconcerting that in the precincts where electronic voting machines were used, the former first lady received a 7 percent swing over Barack.
Considering computers counted 80 percent of the state's votes, we cannot afford to ignore that staggering figure.
Especially since investigations into the private company who provided the machines, Diebold, have yielded the following disturbing truths:
- It is possible to change the results of an election on these computers without leaving a trace.
- A group of programmers discovered that the software does not have any referential integrity (meaning that it is vulnerable to hacking).
- The corporation had been storing 40,000 of its files on an open Web site that would be available to ambitious hackers around the world.
And if that is not enough, in August 2003 the former chief executive of Diebold admitted to being a top fund-raiser for George W. Bush's re-election and had promised to deliver his home state of Ohio for the president.
It kind of gives the statement, “It is not the people who vote that count; it's the people who count the votes” new meaning, don't ya think?
Regardless of hearsay and Internet rumors, this information should make us very nervous. We are in the late stages of picking the next president of the United States, and a look back at this incident makes it even more painfully apparent that Americans are going to be helpless in preventing the inauguration of another handpicked candidate.
From the presidential election in 2000 to the present, Americans have found themselves in an intense and unnerving process of questioning the validity of their voice. However, the idea that voting in our country could become a pointless gesture is something else entirely, and that is something I am not going to watch happen.
That is why I called my U.S. Representative and urged him to do anything within his power to make sure the presidential primary in Illinois is a fair one, and I urge anyone similarly disturbed by these events to do the same. The number for the U.S. Capitol switchboard is 202-224-3121, and all you have to do give the operator your zip code and ask him or her to connect you to your representative's office.
As small a gesture this may be after losing the battle for hearts and minds to a candidate who stands for true change like Ron Paul, we still have two tools at our disposal: a telephone and a collective desire to keep our democracy from slipping through our fingers.
Then again, there is always the option of a second tea party…Tweet
Latest posts by Aaron Wolfe (see all)
- The Ron Paul Factor - July 18, 2008
- The sins of the father - July 18, 2008
- Be wary of holes in the polls - July 16, 2008
- In and out with unChristianity - July 15, 2008
- Snakes behind glass - July 14, 2008
- A quiet death - July 14, 2008
- Digital Burn Heats Up Isolation - July 12, 2008
- The phenomenon of patriot games - July 10, 2008
- Ron Paul could fix the dollar - July 10, 2008
- 9/11 documentaries challenge America - July 10, 2008