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There are some questions we don't ask

By   Follow Me on Twitter     Message Josh Mitteldorf       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     Permalink

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We all got it exactly wrong. Every politial pollster, exultant consultant and sage agent, every two-bit pundit and anodyne analyst is rushing to apologize. We misjudged America, and missed the larger truth about the tenor of the times that was staring us in the face.

Hacking democracy
Hacking democracy
(Image by Engadget)
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We question ourselves, our assumptions, our peers and our competitors, our political allies and our opponents. But we don't question the tabulation of the votes that was presented to us in the wee hours of Wednesday morning. We don't ask about computer bugs or malicious interference or just plain stuffing of ballot-boxes, 21st-century style from the basement of a political operative.

There are some things we question and other things we don't. The last time an op-ed columnist at a mainstream newspaper wrote about the possibility that American elections could be hacked, he found himself on a 3-month leave of absence. That was 2004, and Paul Krugman has been wise enough to avoid the topic ever since.

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There are Americans organizing Trump protests at every level. There are schemes for reversing the electoral college, to petition the House of Representatives to refuse to certify the election results, for state legislatures to compel their delegations to go with the winner of the national popular vote, or with anyone whose initials are HRC.

Is anyone asking for a hand-count of the votes? Or even a spot-check of the paper ballots?

In England, every village and hamlet has a see-through plexiglas box in full public view, empty in the morning, where people deposit their folded paper ballots all day long. In the evening, the box is opened, the ballots removed and counted, every step of the process open to public inspection.

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Many states have archived scanned images of the paper ballots, and my colleagues in election integrity have tried letters, lawsuits and FOIA requests to let the public look at these photos that show how they actually voted. Results have ranged from stonewalling to insults to changing the definition of "computer" so that the ballots are part of it! (This latter reported by Bev Harris of Black Box Voting, in the state of Washington.)

In Computers We Trust.

 

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Josh Mitteldorf, a senior editor at OpEdNews, blogs on aging at http://JoshMitteldorf.ScienceBlog.com. Read how to stay young at http://AgingAdvice.org.
Educated to be an astrophysicist, he has branched out from there to mathematical (more...)
 

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