This statement, although quite detailed and often somewhat technical, is well worth reading. If you can get to Albany tomorrow to help out, please do so.
From Andi Novick:
To those of you who care about the people’s right to honest elections I am sharing my initial response to the latest effort of the DOJ to force NY to vote on theft-enabling machines. Tomorrow at noon is the regularly scheduled State Board of Elections meeting– anyone who can get to Albany tomorrow for this should be there because the pressure on the SBOE to cave into the federal government’s demand that NY buy any non-certified, failed, non-functional, corrupt, piece of junk voting machines in time for the 2008 election was just turned up to high (see below).
Attached is the Memo of Law I just received this morning that was submitted by the DOJ in response to NY’s not yet having complied with the feds’ plan to steal elections on a national basis. I have read the memo very quickly and wanted to put this out now- while I’m thinking about it, so others might share in the deliberations of what is to be done. I welcome all comments and ideas and contributions. I should say up front that I have done something I don’t usually do. I have included among the recipients of this email people representing a broader range of the spectrum so to the extent I have stated the obvious for some, that’s why. And to the extent I have pissed off some people because we’re not all on the same page here, that’s why.
I am fed up with pretending that the DOJ isn’t the political tool that it is seeking to impose any number of the 14 characteristics of fascism, in this case the 14th on the list- see http://ellensplace.net/fascism.html. I am not willing to act as if the DOJ should be given legitimacy when we all see the evidence – the attorney general firings, voter ID laws, replacement of anyone in the department who would actually protect the rights of voters and of course Mr. Tanner’s recent admissions, if anyone needed more proof. Notwithstanding our differences I have not included any recipient on this email who doesn’t believe we should have honest elections. Therefore the DOJ- which is insisting in this Memo of Law that NY purchase the very machines which have been shown to be hackable in minutes and which cannot and will not produce accurate, reliable election results and ensure that we’ll never know what the results are because all the counting will be done in secret– is the enemy of us all and perhaps we can find some common ground.
In essence what the DOJ memo says can be summarized as follows- the part in parentheses being my reading between the lines and the rest is really what the DOJ says:
We (that would be Mr. Tanner and friends) don’t really care that you in NY are having a problem because Microsoft won’t give you its source code (cause we don’t have a problem with secret vote counting); nor do we care that you have stricter laws than HAVA and therefore there are no computers that comply with your stricter NY Laws (nor any computers that comply with the VVSG 2005 guidelines altho Mr. Tanner and friends conveniently doesn’t mention the federal guidelines and that little problem). It’s just great that you have stricter laws, but it’s really not our (the corrupt tool of the criminal administration’s plan to remove people from the voting process’s) problem. You still have to buy the computers being sold by the (highly corrupt) private vendors because we the DOJ say that’s good enough to satisfy HAVA (because how else are we going to be able to control New York’s electorate unless you cooperate NY).
For those of you familiar with my inability to edit and my rather long articles- I personally want to commend myself on boiling down a 30 page brief into a couple of sentences.
According to the DOJ, NY has to buy any old non-certified machines or any of the machines recently decertified by the state of California because they were found to be unable to provide a means of conducting a reliable, secure election –so we can probably get a really good deal if we call someone in California or maybe Florida where they are literally looking to sell their failed machines as junked parts! Why should NY be in a better position than the rest of the states:
As John Gideon reported on October 31, 2007:
Ciber Labs teamed with Wyle Labs to test voting system code while Wyle
New York also used CIBER and when it was revealed that even under the requirements of the EAC, CIBER couldn’t qualify, we got rid of them and had to start all over, which according to the DOJ’s memo of law, is also only “allegedly” part of NY’s problem for not having commenced certification testing and therefore not having complied with HAVA, but in any event, the fact that CIBER was exposed as incompetent and the machines it certified, not really certified, is not the DOJ’s problem either, according to the memo.
tested hard and firmware. Under the NASED run voting system
qualification process Ciber inspected and tested about 70% of the voting
systems presently in use. Ciber Labs has not been accredited by the
Election Assistance Commission (EAC) to test voting systems under the
EAC’s voting system certification program because the EAC found that
Ciber did not do tests that they had claimed to do and did a lousy job
of documenting those tests they did do. So we have no idea if the code
used on about 70% of the voting systems presently being used in the
United States meets the voting systems standards. In fact, we know in
many situations that the code violates the standards and those are only
the systems that have been tested or inspected by other labs or by
Universities. States and counties are using untested voting systems that
violate the voting systems standards. Let’s just recall all voting
systems qualified by NASED and start over with good standards and labs
that will do their jobs.
As Kim Zetter told us earlier this week, http://blog.wired.com/27bstroke6/2007/10/tell
the federal government is now assuming oversight over the process of testing and certifying voting machines. To that end, the Election Assistance Commission has released a draft of new technical guidelines that voting systems must meet before they can be sold in many states and is seeking public comment on them. (Since states are allowed to individually determine the requirements for systems used in their borders, not all of them require that voting systems used by their voters adhere to these guidelines).
This is crucial to the election process since the guidelines determine, among other things, the level of security that will be required of machines. Previous voting machine guideliness have been criticized for requiring little security and for allowing parts of voting systems — such as commercial off-the-shelf software used in the systems — to bypass the testing process and source code review. Windows CE is an example of COTS that is used in some of the systems.
But according to the DOJ’s memo of law, New York better use that money the feds are dangling in the hungry faces of New York officials who seem to think that’s what needs to be protected (as opposed to say, our elections) and buy these old machines now while we still can get our hands on the money!
The Attorney General’s office now has to respond to the DOJ’s motion to get NY to purchase the machines that will enable the future theft of elections. They’re not insisting on which theft-enabling machines we should purchase- DREs or PBOSs- which should be a clear message to all those who support PBOSs secretly controlled by these vendors because at least they’re not DREs. According to the DOJ memo- it’s fine with them if we buy PBOSs or DREs- just so long as we have one of them in place in time to manipulate the 2008 elections. Why is the DOJ going to all this trouble to make sure New York at least gets PBOSs by 2008? Why would the DOJ insist NY purchase machines that the feds’ own guidelines have made obsolete? And some of you might also ask, why are we being forced to buy machines that have been found to not be capable of accurately providing a reliable vote tally, but have been found to be very capable of rigging the election in a way that is not detectable by the people.
No citizens have been permitted to intervene in this litigation because the court ruled that the people’s interests were sufficiently protected by the Attorney General. Hmmm let’s see, the feds are arguing they’re just trying to protect us New York voters “who are the ultimate beneficiaries of needed improvements in the voting process” and the Attorney General, on the people’s behalf of course, will argue what? – I’m working as hard as I can to get those theft-enabling machines installed in NY, but I’m trying to make sure that the secret vote counting can also be observed by just a couple of people in the government who of course will agree to keep how the votes are counted, or not counted, a secret from the people, but I need more time to work this out with Microsoft.
And the handwriting is on the wall. In a number of places in the DOJ’s memo, the feds rely on Eliot Spitzer approvingly. Is that because they know that not only the AG’s office, but the Governor’s office can be relied on to cave when the pressure is applied? What about the people’s interests that our state and federal government are just falling over themselves to protect?
How shall we tell our governments that we don’t think any of them are protecting our interests? What part of our interests are protected when the government permits secret vote counting (I don’t care if the secret is with the partisan private vendor or the government, if we can’t know how the votes are being counted that’s fascism). What part of our interests are protected when we are forced to vote on machines that have been repeatedly demonstrated to be easily rigged? What part of our interests are being served by machines which deprive citizens of the right to observe the casting and counting of our votes and see that the count is accurate?
The feds have argued that NY better get a HAVA-compliant system installed by 2008 or else. NY has argued we can’t possibly certify machines in time. The Feds have now shot back- that’s OK, don’t certify them- just get those machines in place for 2008. There is now only a single solution to the deadlock our respective governments find themselves in. How ironic that that solution is the only one that actually protects our interests and yet neither of those governments working so hard to protect our interests is advocating it. Not only aren’t they advocating for hand counted paper ballots- the only solution that can be in place by 2008 that is HAVA compliant (along with automarks or other means for the disability community to vote independently) – they are both opposing the one solution to the problem that would enable our interests to be protected.
Not all of you agree with my analysis that concludes with hand counted paper ballots as the only solution, but you gotta admit- it’s the only solution that works given where NY and the feds are now at in this litigation! But all of you will agree that it’s critical the pressure being exerted on NY and specifically on the SBOE to capitulate to Microsoft and the vendors is met by our opposition. Tomorrow is the SBOE meeting in Albany. Everyone who can make it should be there to represent our interests because it’s clear no one else will be.
As for what to do about the AG’s office who will be representing our interests in this litigation and what to do with the Governor’s office, who has not seen fit to take a position on our interests since before he was asking for our votes in order to become governor, I await your comments.
TOMORROW’S STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS MEETING IS AT NOON TOMORROW, WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 7 TH
go to the SBOE’s site for more information: http://www.elections.state.ny.us/portal/page?_pageid=35,1,35_8617&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL and for those of you in NY- Please notify your
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American fascism will not be really dangerous until there is a purposeful coalition among the cartelists, the deliberate poisoners of public information… Vice President Henry Wallace