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1. DEMOCRACY DESTROYED: Free Speech Squelched (forcefully silenced or suppressed)
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Democracy at risk: Voting machines might be hacked
Description: Election Day is less than a week away, and with early voting underway many Americans have questioned the security of the voting process. According to an article by The Christian Science Monitor, e-voting machines are hackable and can be easily manipulated and could potentially alter the outcome of who takes the White House in 2023. Brad Friedman, investigative journalist for BradBlog.com, joins us to discuss how vulnerable the election process really is.
Why Ireland scrapped their voting machines- and American Vote Connection
Ron Paul electronic voting machines are rigged! here's proof
Ron Paul 100% proof of Maine Election fraud!
Ben Swann Reality Check WXIX FOX 2/15/12
Uploaded on Feb 15, 2012 This is not the only discrepancy in the Maine Caucus. Its not just 6 or 7 votes Paul lost from one Caucus.. Many of the caucuses in the Counties don't show any count. 2 of the Counties showed the report of 1 caucus only. See there has to be at least 1 caucus from the County to call a winner of the County. So even though many caucuses were canceled in the county they made sure they had at least one so they could claim the entire county for Romney. In the Belfast caucus Ben talks about here, Romney didn't win any of the caucuses in the county! They changed the numbers of it and that is the only Caucus they reported from the entire county and thus claimed the entire County as a Romney win.. And in Washington county which Paul won in 2008 the GOP postponed every Caucus and told the Caucus chairs their vote would still count. The Caucus Chairs are coming forward and saying they were told this when the GOP canceled their caucus. they said if they had been told their vote wouldn't count they wouldn't have let them postpone them.
Disclose.tv - Hacking Democracy - Full Length
Congress objects to W Bush but Gore + senate won't support it
The documentary follows Bev Harris and Kathleen Wynne, director and associate director for nonprofit election watchdog group Black Box Voting, as they attempt to discover the extent to which it would be possible to alter results on the electronic voting machines of Diebold Election Systems (now Premier Election Solutions).
Andy Stephenson, an employee of Black Box Voting from July-December 2004, assisted with comparisons of audit documents in Volusia County and obtained a secret videotape of Harris interviewing a voting machine testing lab.
Kathleen Wynne captured live video of Harris finding voting machine records in a Volusia County trash bag, and captured video of Cuyahoga County elections workers admitting that the initial 3% recount ballots had not been randomly selected during the 2004 presidential election.
Harris and Wynne then embarked on a series of five voting machine hack tests with Dr. Herbert Hugh Thompson and Harri Hursti in 2005 and 2006. During the course of the documentary, multiple methods of tampering with the votes are shown.
The first is through editing the database file that contains the voting totals. This file is a standard Microsoft Access database, and can be opened by normal means outside of the encompassing voting program without a password. Some jurisdictions have disabled Microsoft Access, making it more difficult to alter the database, but this protection was shown to be bypassed by Dr. Herbert Hugh Thompson through a Visual Basic program which searched for a string of text and edited the file through external means. However, alterations of the results in either of these fashions would be caught if a vigilant elections official compared the results with voting machine tapes.
Another hacking technique was demonstrated through hacking the actual computer code used in the Diebold Accu-Vote memory cards. This method was discovered by Finnish computer security expert Harri Hursti and is known as "the Hursti Hack". In this hack, Harri Hursti rigged the Diebold optical scan voting system to make the wrong candidate win by adding negative (minus) votes to one race. This resulted in that race having votes literally subtracted from its vote total. These methods were tested by the Leon County Supervisor of Elections, Ion Sancho, on the actual Diebold optical scan voting system used by Tallahassee, Florida in all their prior elections. This method demonstrated, contrary to a previous Diebold statement, that a person attempting to rig the votes of a precinct would need access to only the memory card, not the optical scan voting system or tabulation software. This method, when cross-checked between the optical scan voting system and tabulation software, appears legitimate, and further produces a false zero-vote print-out to verify that the memory card has no votes inside it before voting begins. Following this historic hack Ion Sancho stated: "If I had not known what was behind this I would have certified this election as a true count of a vote."
The Last HOPE: Hacking Democracy
An In Depth Analysis of the ESandS Voting Systems
Background history and current explaination of Documentary posted directly above
(for computer experts)
Uncounted: The New Math of American Elections
Robocalls Scandal: Court Hears Council Of Canadians Case On Contested Election Ridings
By Steve Rennie, The Canadian Press 06/25/2012
OTTAWA - A bid to overturn the federal election results in a handful of tightly contested ridings should be tossed out, because the cases were filed too late, the Federal Court heard Monday.
The Council of Canadians is backing applications asking the court to review the May 2011 election results in seven ridings where Conservative MPs narrowly won their seats.
The council alleges misleading or harassing phone calls in those ridings kept some people from voting and may have affected the outcomes.
But Conservative party lawyer Arthur Hamilton told the court Monday the legal applications to overturn the results, by law, should have been filed within 30 days of the election outcome being certified. That would have been by early June of last year.
Hamilton argued that since the applications were only filed in March, it is far too late for the court to consider them.
"These applications simply cannot be allowed to leave the starting gate," Hamilton told the court.
He argued that allowing the cases to be heard could cause a "free-for-all," setting a precedent in which anyone could challenge the results of an election at any time, meaning MPs would always be looking over their shoulders, never certain when their election win might be called into question.
But Garry Neil of the Council of Canadians said the clock starts ticking on the 30-day window when someone first realizes the fraudulent calls could have affected the outcome of the election.
"They didn't suspect that it affected the outcome of the election until it became public knowledge that this was a very, very widespread campaign," he told reporters outside the court.
In court documents filed earlier this year, the Conservatives claimed the council is more concerned with attacking them and raising money than getting to the bottom of the so-called robocalls affair.
Party lawyers called the council's conduct improper, unseemly and a clear abuse of the court's process.
The seven Conservative MPs targeted in the council's court action have asked the court to toss out requests to review the results in their ridings.
The council has countered that the Conservatives are attempting to delay the cases and drive up legal costs.
The law lets voters legally challenge the results in their ridings. If a judge finds anything that would have changed the outcome, a new byelection can be ordered.
Such decisions are extremely rare. But this spring, an Ontario judge ruled that enough suspect votes were cast due to clerical errors to warrant overturning last year's election result in a Toronto riding, where Conservative MP Ted Opitz beat Liberal Borys Wrzesnewskyj by a mere 26 votes.
If the decision stands, a byelection will have to be called in Etobicoke Centre.
The Supreme Court of Canada has agreed to hear Opitz's appeal of the ruling in early July.
Commissioner of Canada Elections William Corbett announces surprise retirement: Ex-justice department bureaucrat named federal elections commissioner as major investigations continue: By Stephen Maher and Glen McGregor,
Postmedia News and The Ottawa Citizen
June 26, 2012
OTTAWA — With the complex and politically-charged robocalls investigation still under way, Commissioner of Canada Elections William Corbett has retired and been replaced a former justice department bureaucrat.
Since last year’s election, Corbett has been overseeing the probe of fraudulent pre-recorded calls and misleading live calls reported by voters in 200 ridings across the country. It is believed to be the largest investigation the commissioner’s office has ever conducted.
But in a surprise announcement Thursday, Elections Canada said Corbett had retired and been replaced by Yves Côté, the former associate deputy minister of Justice.
A former officer with the Judge Advocate General’s office, Côté was appointed as ombudsman for Canadian Forces in 2005. When he left that post, Esprit de Corps magazine wrote that Côté “made it clear that he was not going to take the high-profile, often-adversarial towards the chain-of-command stance of his predecessor,” André Marin.
Côté issued reports critical of the military, complaining in one report that “the Canadian Forces continue to treat military families like second-class citizens,” but on Thursday Esprit de Corps publisher Scott Taylor described Côté’s time as ombudsman as disappointing.
“Unfortunately he failed to maintain the same sort of profile for the office which Marin had laboriously built as the inaugural incumbent,” said Taylor. “While it is true that Marin had raised the bar quite high, Coté passed well below it during his tenure.”
In December 2007, halfway through Côté’s mandate as ombudsman, Prime Minister Stephen Harper appointed him as associate minister of Justice, where he worked closely with federal Justice Minister Rob Nicholson as the government prepared bill C-10, an omnibus bill that imposed mandatory minimum sentences for many crimes, including marijuana cultivation.
People familiar with Côté’s career described him as low-key and competent, safe and methodical, but not a fighter.
Politically dangerous investigations have a long history in official Ottawa of posing challenges to investigators and prosecutors, and prosecutions in the uncharted waters of telephone voter contact could put pressure on Elections Canada.
Taylor, who was a close observer of Côté during his tenure at the Canadian Forces, expressed doubts on Thursday about his willingness to tangle with powerful interests in the robocalls investigation.
“Given that Coté was unwilling to make waves during the tumultuous period in which he served as the CF Ombudsman, it is unlikely he would be willing to swim upstream against the political current in his present post,” he said.
Elections Canada denied that the change in mid-stream would affect the robocalls or related investigations.
“There will be continuity,” said spokesman John Enright. “There is a new commissioner, but the work of the Office of the Commissioner continues. It’s not going to impact their work at all.”
Chief among Côté’s responsibilities will be to decide whether to what charges, if any, he will refer to Director of Public Prosecution Brian Saunders over the robocalls allegations.
By law, the Commissioner of Canada Elections is appointed by the Chief Electoral Officer, not by parliament or cabinet. Chief Electoral Officer Marc Mayrand chose to use a competition process to fill the job, the same way many public service jobs are filled, with applicants assigned points for various qualifications.
It was up to Mayrand to decide how to fill the job, Enright said.
“The process that was chosen was a competitive public process based on merit, the same way you would appoint any other senior official.”
Elections Canada said the job opening was published in the spring. The text of the advertisement specified someone with significant experience with legal or regulatory decision making, but made no mention of investigative experience.
“The successful candidate must have proven experience in handling sensitive and complex matters,” the ad said. “He or she must be able to build and maintain effective relationships with parliamentarians, senior government officials and other stakeholders.”
Corbett led the five-year investigation into the so-called “in and out” scandal, the Conservative Party’s scheme to shuffle the costs of $1.3 million in radio and TV ads between its national campaign and local candidate campaigns to avoid spending caps in the 2006 campaign.
Four Conservative Party officials, including Senators Doug Finley and Irving Gerstein, were charged in the case, but those charges were dropped last year when the party pleaded guilty and paid $52,000 in fines.
At the time of Coté’s appointment, Corbett’s staff were also investigating allegations of election financial impropriety in the 2008 election by Conservative MP Dean Del Mastro, the prime minister’s parliamentary secretary and member of the House of Commons ethics committee.
Corbett’s going away party was held Wednesday. Côté’s begins work July 3rd.
Enright said Corbett wasn’t available to speak publicly about his role.
“Interviews at this time are graciously declined,” he said.