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 Post subject: How to steal an election by hacking the vote
PostPosted: Sun Oct 29, 2006 6:19 pm 
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Greetings,

Here's an article with a link to a PDF file that outlines, how a person (or a few people) could hack into the Diebold electronic voting machines, and steal an election -- and not be detectable. You can read it for yourself, and they are encouraging you to download the PDF, and to send it to your congressional representative and/or senator.

http://arstechnica.com/articles/culture/evoting.ars

The link for the PDF directly.

As the author points out, if someone had warned you about all the damage that one person can do with a computer virus, who would have believed them?

This is a bipartisan issue, and it might threaten the core of our democracy if this is not fixed!

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 8:15 am 
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What's worse than an increase in fixed elections? An increase in people believing there's an increase in fixed elections. :lol: US democracy is designed to control the people.

Restore Black Box Voting

While we're at it, let's install Instant Recall Voting to give voters a choice... or is it bad to not choose their candidates for them?


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 12:44 pm 
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I saw a bumper sticker the other day that said - Vote Republican, the other votes aren't counted anyway!

In Canada somebody spray painted the wisdom - If voting could change the system it would be outlawed.

I guess the former may explain the latter.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 4:56 pm 
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Even Buchanan who got a lot of the votes in Florida said something fishy was going on down there. He doesn't think he deserved the votes and has said so :lol: This coming from a man who believes he has loyalties to the GOP while taking near opposite stands on most every honest stance of the GOP. He supported Dubya in 2004 because he was right on judges and taxes while Kerry was identical save those two issues. On every other issue Kerry and Bush were the same at least relative to folks like Buchanan who differ considerably yet remain loyal. Heh, it's sad.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 7:11 pm 
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Trip, the Buchanan issue was with good old-fashioned 18th century technology paper ballots, and is not a case of election vote tampering. No one, not even the Dem. campaign, complained that votes in Florida were stolen. They claimed that the ballot system was intentionally confusing to the poor-eyesight senior citizens, barely literate poor, and non-english reading immigrant populations, (the majority of whom just so happen to vote Democrat) This despite the fact that that ballot system was designed under the previous Democrat secretary of state, and used in previous elections throughout the state without incident or protest.


But at least with that technology there was a persistent 1-for-1 record of every single vote, with some of the electronic voting machines, there's no record of your vote other than what the machine has recorded.

The old system simply wasn't broken. There's no need to "fix" it with electronic voting.


Having said that, the old system was just as liable to "fixing" as electronic elections are. Both sides of the political spectrum have manipulated election results over the years, sometimes on a pretty grand scale. (Think Tammany Hall, etc. )

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2006 8:02 pm 
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Quote:
it wasn't fixed
oh yea good point... Y'know I knew it was the way the cards were written and not intentional fixing I just wrote the post before I thought about it.

There's been election fraud in SC though not recently.

I looked up black box voting to be sure it was paper ballots and I'm surprised to see it refers to
Quote:
"Any voting system in which the mechanisms for recording and/or tabulating the vote are hidden from the voter, and/or the mechanism lacks a tangible record of the vote cast."
...So, I guess what I meant to say was a return to paper ballots hand counted at the election site which I thought black box balloting meant. I thought black boxes were the boxes stuffed with anonymous votes.

Computers can be used to print out a paper ballot that is double checked and then deposited in the ballot box. That'd perhaps be the best of both worlds: clear selection and accountable.

It's also important to mark when abstaining from a vote so that a vote for someone can't be added in.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 7:06 am 
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In Sweden we only use paper ballots, one for each party/alternative, that are put in an envelope where only the colour (which signifies which election it is for) can be seen. This could probably get out-of-hand if you have more than 15 or so choices for a particular election. These are then put in a box under supervision of volunteers, who also check ID and check off your name on the list. This list means that you're limited to your particular place for voting, although you can also vote at post offices or similar, a couple of weeks before the election. There they just check ID and registration card.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 8:54 am 
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It seems risky to me to allow for absentee voting. I guess absentees don't usually alter the outcome though.

If y'all have more than 2 candidates, how are votes counted? E.g. one right wing candidate with 40% beats two left wing candidates with 30% each yet a majority of the voters truly preferred either of the left wing candidates to the right wing candidate. In America's system, this can happen which is partly why we only have two main parties. Is this a problem for Sweden?


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 10:34 am 
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An interesting contrast to the Swedish system is the current controversy here in the US about states requiring ID to be shown when voting. Leftist groups say that requiring ID to vote is discriminatory against the poor, the non-english speaking, and the immigrant population. Which is, of course, a total smoke screen. If these populations tended to vote Republican instead of Democrat, these same groups would be silent on the potential disenfranchise issue. Requiring ID would cut down on vote fraud and vote buying, which is not something the Democratic Party wants to see..they've relied upon systematic vote fraud by their city-level campaign offices for decades.

Absentee can actually be much more secure than the current in-person voting, at least as long as the ID requirements are being blocked by lawsuits. Absentee ballots mailed to the voter's registered address are each unique...you have a record of each one, and one person can't go from precinct to precinct claiming to be a variety of different people.


@Trip's comment:

The American two-party exclusive (essentially) system is really very rare among democracy's. Nearly everywhere else in the world a democratic government is fragmented in multiple factions, guaranteeing that one party never has a true majority. The result is coalition governments, where a group of parties bands together to form a majority post election. Ultimately, this is a much healthier system. It distributed the power more broadly, and encourages dialog and negotiation between the parties, rather than our system, which encourages a "us vs them" attitude, where comprise is seen as a sign of weakness. (and often results in the polarized base of the party removing the "compromiser" from office)

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 11:52 am 
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Yeah, we have a proportional system for our elections (except in cases of a referendum with yes/no, of course), where all votes are counted and seats distributed accordingly. In your example, the two leftists would probably join together to govern, although it gets quite ridiculous with such low numbers. A better example is voting for a local government (think county). The equivalent organ to a parliament here usually has in the range of 50-90 seats (odd, don't want any ties), and are are distributed proportionally among the parties who get enough votes.

This means that we vote for parties instead of individual candidates, although recently we have introduced the possibility of selecting individual candidates from a party's ballot, and if they get selected by at least 5% of the voters for that party they are moved to the top of the list, the one with highest percentage on top.

As for requiring ID, wouldn't registering as a voter be more trouble to those in not-as-good circumstances?


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 12:26 pm 
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Hello,

The problem with voter ID's as I understand it, is that while it may or may not cost a fee for the ID (which would be an unconstitutional poll tax) -- if someone does not have the required papers to get the ID, they have to go through a lot of hoops, and it definitely does cost money to get them.

Older folks often have never had a birth certificate, and many/most legal immigrants don't have them either. Divorced women have to go through the legal steps to "prove" their name changes. People in rural areas might have to travel large distances to get the documents, and/or to go to where the ID's are made. Homeless people don't have addresses, or bills to prove residency. These are some of the issues that come up in the real world.

The thing about voter fraud, is that it is most likely to be onesies and twosies. The much greater problem with the DRE, is because they cannot be audited, and the votes can never be recounted -- the temptation to do wholesale vote manipulations is too great. Also, it is too easy for the perception that the vote could be manipulated, because there is no way to prove, or to disprove what actually happened.

Computers do bring some real benefits to the process, but we must have a verifiable audit trail, otherwise the benefits are overwhelmed.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 12:37 pm 
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Rusty, I'll have to ask if there's corruption in SC. My uncle knows pretty much everything that goes on in SC... I dunno that I agree with him on much anything, he's a Republican, but I do know he'd know of any fraud.

I like IRV system better than the Swedish system because it seems voters ought to vote for candidates not parties. I'm glad you prefer a multiparty system, which I obviously prefer as well, but I'm annoyed by the fact that most US third party candidates are half mad :lol: I saw the Florida gubernatorial debate recently and the Reform party candidate whose ideas seemed similar to my own was acting childish. He kept speaking out of turn etc. All too often they make themselves look bad.

The AFP, my little party, says
Quote:
We favor the repeal of Motor Voter laws and all laws, which enable non-US citizens to register to vote and fraudulent voter rolls to be created.
I'm unfamiliar with this though Neil you prob support this bc it registers more Dems, right? Not to create conflict but rather to just bring something that might be of interest out. I'm not sure how else to word this...

Neil, the blackboxvoting site mentions a Bill for Presidential votes to be hand counted at each poll.

Vote Fraud on blackbox.org article (Lyndon Johnson mentioned)

Blackbox's Chapter 5 is longer (10 pages) but on electronic and new tech vote fraud. list of chapters


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 1:40 pm 
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NeilBlanchard wrote:
The problem with voter ID's as I understand it, is that while it may or may not cost a fee for the ID (which would be an unconstitutional poll tax) -- if someone does not have the required papers to get the ID, they have to go through a lot of hoops, and it definitely does cost money to get them.

Older folks often have never had a birth certificate, and many/most legal immigrants don't have them either. Divorced women have to go through the legal steps to "prove" their name changes. People in rural areas might have to travel large distances to get the documents, and/or to go to where the ID's are made. Homeless people don't have addresses, or bills to prove residency. These are some of the issues that come up in the real world.


AFAIK, every state offers free ID card programs. It seems reasonable that there be a certain level of minimum requirement in order to protect the validity of the vote. The voters would have literally years to get their ID cards. Government identification is virtually essential to modern life. Do you personally know anyone that doesn't have a SS number? In most states, that's all you need. Yes, you can live without one, but that means no driving, not paying taxes, not having a job, not owning any property, not having a bank account, etc, etc. At the homeless shelter I used to volunteer at everybody had a SS card and a State ID...they were free to get, as an address is not required, and they helped the guys get medicare and VA benefits. I've never seen any real, hard numbers for exactly how many legitimate voters having ID as a requirement would disenfranchise, but I'd be willing to bet that it is actually a pretty tiny number. EU countries have had it as a requirement for years, and their turnout is still higher than ours.


NeilBlanchard wrote:
The thing about voter fraud, is that it is most likely to be onesies and twosies. The much greater problem with the DRE, is because they cannot be audited, and the votes can never be recounted -- the temptation to do wholesale vote manipulations is too great. Also, it is too easy for the perception that the vote could be manipulated, because there is no way to prove, or to disprove what actually happened.


Agree completely on the potential for electronic fraud. I don't understand the motivation behind the push for it. Even if it worked perfectly, is it really that much more efficient than machine-counting paper ballots?

Don't discount the potential for old-fashioned voter fraud. It's not a matter "onesies and twosies", its a matter of highly organized, well funded fraud. Like the 1960 presidential election, where 40,000 dead Chicago-ans turned out to vote. They all voted Democrat, oddly enough. And it was enough to swing the election. If it wasn't for Daley's well-organized politcal machine turning out the "votes" Kennedy never would have been elected president.


Trip: The issue with Motor Voter creating "fraudulent voter rolls" is actually pretty interesting. The trouble isn't with the validity of the voters being signed up...the security for registering at the DMV is the same as it would be anywhere else. The trouble is that by making it more convenient more people would re-register when they move (and have to go change their drivers licenses). But their old addresses frequently stay on the precinct rolls at their old registration, leading to one voter being registered to vote in two different places. For a variety of reasons, this favors Democrat voter fraud much more than Republican. That's why whenever there is a more to purge the voter rolls of duplicate entries, its inevitably the Democrats that protest, like just happened in Florida.

Just for Trip, because I know you'll ask: "Why does Motor Voter fraud favor Democrats?" A: Urban areas tend to vote Democrat. Rural areas vote Republican. The more urban an area, the more frequently its residents tend to change addresses. The more times you change addresses, the more duplicate entries Motor Voter registration creates. So right there you have a democrat fraud advantage. Plus, fraud easier to get away with in urban areas. The polls are busier, and the poll workers are less likely to recognise personally the people voting, so it's easier to have shills vote mulitple times in the same precinct. It's also easier for block captains to establish lists of which voters are still registered but have moved away in denser areas. And, its always easier to commit fraud if you are already the party in control of the precinct, like democrats are likely to be in urban areas. You hire the poll workers, and you control when an investigation starts if there's irregularities reported. That's why dem. fraud tends to be in urban areas, and reb. fraud in rural.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 3:09 pm 
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Thanks :)

All I have to show at my voting place is a drivers license. I believe passports work as well. They have my SS # on file.

We switched to computer voting in 2004 as I recall. Admittedly computer voting is more convenient than the previous hole punch method, but I'm less certain my vote is counted now.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 3:29 pm 
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You're welcome. :lol:

Eventually ID-required voting will be the norm. The courts are gradually throwing the anti-ID cases out. It's only logical..if you have to show ID to register to vote, why wouldn't you be able to produce that same ID when it comes time to actually vote.

And just to clarify, I don't want to make it sound like I think Dem's are the only ones fixing elections. it definitely goes both ways, its just that the examples we were talking about are mostly Dem-led at the moment. The electronic voting fraud issue certainly seems to be GOP dominated. (although its hard to tell how much so for sure...most of the reporting of it is from left-field online bloggers..not exactly unbiased sources) And the Republicans are certainly guilty of some of the grandest historical examples of voter fraud. The Republican legistrature created entire new states to ensure that Lincoln would get re-elected during the Civil War, and then disenfranchised nearly every white male southerner for more than 20 years during Reconstruction to make certain that reform minded Republican politians would stay in southern offices until the post-war constitutional changes took effect.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2006 4:24 pm 
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Arizona was recently in the news because AZ is requiring you to show ID to vote in person. It was contested, fast-tracked to the US Supreme Court where it was ruled constitutional.

On the subject of ID's costing money, um, this isn't a free country. You have to pay just to live here in the form of property taxes, income taxes, medicare taxes, sales taxes, social security taxes, fees and things of all sorts. I see no reason why anything should be "free" since there's no such thing as free anyway, just the redistribution of wealth. For every one person that gets something for "free" somebody else had to pay twice.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 1:13 am 
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Rusty075 wrote:
Eventually ID-required voting will be the norm. The courts are gradually throwing the anti-ID cases out. It's only logical..if you have to show ID to register to vote, why wouldn't you be able to produce that same ID when it comes time to actually vote.

This was my beef with that case, since I was pretty sure you have to prove who you are (a citizen, in the first place) to be able to register, and this same method could be used to check at the polling station.

As for the Swedish system, every person who has a SS number (well, we call it 'personnummer' but same thing really) is in a register that includes an adress, and a month or so before the election this register is used to make the lists used at the polling stations, where everyone is assigned one station, if you move before the election you'll have to do absentee voting.

It feels like a safer system to me, but it seems some people in the US would take offense to the government having a register of people and their home adresses (which are these days incredibly hard to find anyway :roll:)


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 1:48 am 
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AZBrandon wrote:
I see no reason why anything should be "free" since there's no such thing as free anyway, just the redistribution of wealth. For every one person that gets something for "free" somebody else had to pay twice.
And then so many of you just don't seem to be concerned at all about big corporations constantly getting all kind of "free passes"...


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 3:05 am 
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Trip wrote:
I like IRV system better than the Swedish system because it seems voters ought to vote for candidates not parties. I'm glad you prefer a multiparty system, which I obviously prefer as well, but I'm annoyed by the fact that most US third party candidates are half mad :lol: I saw the Florida gubernatorial debate recently and the Reform party candidate whose ideas seemed similar to my own was acting childish. He kept speaking out of turn etc. All too often they make themselves look bad.


Why should you vote for canditates? it's not like the president governs the country alone... in any case either way, its really the same damn thing, if you vote for bush you know you're voting for the republican party, whereas in germany for example if you voted CDU you pretty much knew you were voting for Merkel. so if you can't have one without the other, whats the difference?

and as for the 3rd party candidates in the us? it's because they know they have no chance of winning anyway, and even with a second place they still have no say at all. realistically you can (on a larger level at least) only have 2 choices, since otherwise the system stops working, and you can get 100% of the power with 30% of the votes. and the 3rd parties who really want to do something moderate their views and join one of the 2 bigs, since being able to implement a watered down, adjusted version of your views is better than being some crazy guy who got 15% of the peoples votes, but can change nothing.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 6:54 am 
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To be fair to the first-past-the-post system, the UK has 3 major parties and a number of smaller ones, even if the parliament seats are pretty unevenly distributed (Labour 352, Tories 196, Lib. Dem 63, the rest 35). I still prefer the Swedish way though, it also negates any effect of gerrymandering.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 7:05 am 
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"and as for the 3rd party candidates in the us? it's because they know they have no chance of winning anyway, and even with a second place they still have no say at all. "

Above a certain percentage of the vote they receive funding, and they can affect who actually wins in a close race, so the 2 parties pay attention to the third party.

"Leftist groups say that requiring ID to vote is discriminatory against the poor, the non-english speaking, and the immigrant population"

Well the only thing that shocked me in Fahrenheit 9-11 was the number of Florida citizens that were not allowed to vote and nobody stood up for them either. How many were rich and white? Take a guess.

"But at least with that technology there was a persistent 1-for-1 record of every single vote, with some of the electronic voting machines, there's no record of your vote other than what the machine has recorded."

Which is why I absentee vote. Who would trust a Diebold machine? Not only is there no audit trail but states have legally demanded the code that runs these black boxes and Diebold refuses to provide it. Why Diebold officials are not in jail is beyond me. The same reason Nixon never went to jail?

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2006 11:07 am 
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floffe wrote:
Rusty075 wrote:
Eventually ID-required voting will be the norm. The courts are gradually throwing the anti-ID cases out. It's only logical..if you have to show ID to register to vote, why wouldn't you be able to produce that same ID when it comes time to actually vote.

This was my beef with that case, since I was pretty sure you have to prove who you are (a citizen, in the first place) to be able to register, and this same method could be used to check at the polling station.

As for the Swedish system, every person who has a SS number (well, we call it 'personnummer' but same thing really) is in a register that includes an adress, and a month or so before the election this register is used to make the lists used at the polling stations, where everyone is assigned one station, if you move before the election you'll have to do absentee voting.

It feels like a safer system to me, but it seems some people in the US would take offense to the government having a register of people and their home adresses (which are these days incredibly hard to find anyway :roll:)
I understand why many illegal immigrants and those relying on their votes oppose the IDs. For example illegal African immigrants are adviced to "lose" their IDs before they go to a country, because if recieving country doesn't know the country of origin, they cannot send them back.

Iirc Belgium passed a law that allows illegals to vote (or at least people without citicenship), because the socialists were afraid that a right wing party would win the elections. Socialists know that most immigrants are dependent on social wellfare and income transfers, so increasing the number of immigrants also increase their voter pool.
Trip wrote:
If y'all have more than 2 candidates, how are votes counted? E.g. one right wing candidate with 40% beats two left wing candidates with 30% each yet a majority of the voters truly preferred either of the left wing candidates to the right wing candidate. In America's system, this can happen which is partly why we only have two main parties. Is this a problem for Sweden?
Not really a problem in Sweden or Finland. But this is pretty common in our presidential elections. This year we had presidential elections. On the first round our standing president got 46% of all votes, while Sauli Niinistö got 24% of all votes. So we had a secound round of voting. Which resulted in Tarja getting 51.8% of all votes and Sauli getting 48.2% of votes... So Tarja kept the majority and started her second term as president, I think her first elections were won by equally small margin... Not quite the example that Trip had, but these elections were close to turning around for someone who had a clearly in minority after the first round.

Tarja has done pretty decent job as a president, but I am dissapointed on how she got the be the president. But it has more to do with the image that was created for the public, lack of perspective and stupidity of voters and how women turned their coats to their own political party just to get the first president with tits. But thank god it's the last time in country that a women wins elections only because she's a woman. I'm sure our next female president will be more qualified, now that the female president issue is out of the way...

Parliamentiary elections are a different matter. Like Floffe said, people usually "vote for parties", even if the most suitable candidate is in another party. Much of this depends on personal values. In Finland all the biggest parties have so much in common, that it really makes no difference to me which one is ruling, so I vote for person, not a party. Our system is even more "equal" then Sweden's because we haven't had any true ruling party. For example in 2003 elections, our biggest party got 24.69% of all votes, second got 24.47% and third 18.55%, the rest 33% were split with 15 smaller parties, 4 of those parties got enough votes to get people in the parliament. President usually appoints the leader of the biggest party as a negotiator to form a new government. This usually means that the party leader of the biggest party is also the prime minister, but it's not always necessary. And the negotiations usually result in us having a goverment formed by at least 3 parties, usually even more. For example between 1995-1999 we had a goverment, which left our second biggest (Centre party) party out to form a "rainbow-goverment" formed of 5 different parties, which included both our left and right wing parties.

Things aren't always as democratic across the sea in Sweden. Iirc Sweden has had a minority goverment where Swedish Social Democratic Party held all offices of the goverment, because the left wing and the green party supported the minority goverment, eventhough they were left out. One could argue, that this qualifies the example Trip gave, but in reality it doesn't, because these goverments have had support of the majority even if the governments themselve were minoritys.

Couple of months ago the Swedish Social Democratic Party "won" the elections in Sweden. They were the single biggest party with 35% votes agaisnt 26% of the Moderate Party. But Moderate party had formed a bigger alliance that got 48% of the votes opposed to 44% of the Social Democrats alliance, that included the Left Party and the Green Party... That's how the democracy works in the Nordic countries. I for one think, that our system is as good as possible for a democratic system. I just don't believe that everybody should have the right to vote...

Your electric voting sounds interesting. But I think it's really sad that people in USA don't have enough faith /cannot trust, that there will be no foul play in your elections.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 06, 2006 1:42 pm 
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i saw the hbo documentary "hacking democracy" today and it pissed me of. can't imagine what you north americans must feel like. made me wanna audit our own system here in sweden.

regards, kent.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 06, 2006 6:57 pm 
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I finished my NY absentee ballot today. To deal with the normal (more like abnormal) 2 party system:

1. I sent all republicans packing.
2. With one exception did I vote democrat, because the republican, independant, conservative choices were all the republican dude.
3. I voted for Spitzer, but no way in hell as a democrat, only as one of the other parties(I forgot which one). 3 other "democrats" as well, I refuse to pull the miserable 2 party levers.

A friend told me I wasted my vote. I said "well that's your version of the truth and it's unfortunate, because everyone thinks like you and we're always stuck with the 2 theiving parties. It's a self fulfilling prophecy."

And before I forget - a paper ballot, so $%(^%()*& you Diebold and the horse you rode in on.

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Last edited by aristide1 on Tue Nov 07, 2006 7:02 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 06, 2006 7:28 pm 
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I'll vote electronically tomorrow. Since I live in a Republican state, the Republicans are usually better. However, I absolutely vote for the individual. If I don't like either candidate, I often abstain from voting for that office.

Erssa, I must have forgotten to reply.

Quote:
I'm sure our next female president will be more qualified, now that the female president issue is out of the way...
We'll have the first black president running in 2008 I suspect. I have no problem with a black or a woman being president of the US (though Finland is less diverse so I wouldn't want a minority president there was I Finnish), but he will gain support just for being the first... I don't like his (Obama's) stances. He's smart and left wing; the next FDR I fear though perhaps more certain of his ideological stances.

I'm glad to read you don't think everyone should vote.

Your system is better than ours, but Instant Runoff Voting for individual candidates would be ideal I believe. In such a system you vote your first, second, and third choices and if the first doesn't win your vote goes to the second and so on. It's more difficult to count, but it's a better system I believe. 3 options should be enough. If it can be run effectively, I think it would be ideal. If not, then the party system you speak of might be best. Our electoral system might have been a poorly conceived attempt at your system.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2006 12:37 am 
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Quote:
A friend told me I wasted my vote.


I take it that he considers his vote not to have been wasted. So ask him what he thinks his one vote means, what difference that one vote will make. Ask him whether he thinks his party will do either what they have said they will do or what he wants them to do.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2006 6:31 am 
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vertigo wrote:
Quote:
A friend told me I wasted my vote.


I take it that he considers his vote not to have been wasted. So ask him what he thinks his one vote means, what difference that one vote will make. Ask him whether he thinks his party will do either what they have said they will do or what he wants them to do.


I agree with that. Later he said he wouldn't vote the way I did for an unknown. I asked "Why not? You said he can't possibly win anyway? What difference does it make what he thinks if he can't possibly win?"

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2006 8:46 am 
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Trip wrote:
We'll have the first black president running in 2008 I suspect. I have no problem with a black or a woman being president of the US (though Finland is less diverse so I wouldn't want a minority president there was I Finnish), but he will gain support just for being the first...
We have our minoritys aswell, even if they don't differ from us by skin color, they can be a minority on their native language. For example 12 years ago we almost had our first female president. She was the candidate for Swedish Peoples' Party. A party that usually get's around 5-10% of all votes in parliamentary elections. Yet she managed to get 22% of all votes on the first round of the elections and lost on the second round with 46% of the votes. I think these elections were a sign of the future, women voting for female candidate even beyond party borders. In 2000 presidential elections she had only 8% of all votes, when women had found a new prime candidate in Tarja Halonen, who got over 40% of all votes just on the first round. You could compare it to 26% of votes President Ahtisaari's got on the first round 6 years before that. Ahtisaari and Halonen both represent the same political party.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2006 4:17 pm 
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All that matters is identity I suppose and someone of an alien ethnic group is going to be less likely to work in the nation's best interest as I see it. Less likely doesn't mean 100% of course.

To be honest, I know so little of Finland and Sweden that I just think of y'all collectively as Nordics.

Why would women care if a candidate is female? That almost never crosses my mind, though I think it is more natural for males to be leaders in general.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 07, 2006 5:42 pm 
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Trip wrote:
To be honest, I know so little of Finland and Sweden that I just think of y'all collectively as Nordics.
I think most Swedish and Finnish people would be insulted by your statement ;), but I think it's a fair thing to say. I don't think Canadians would be too happy either, if I called them Americans.
Quote:
Why would women care if a candidate is female? That almost never crosses my mind, though I think it is more natural for males to be leaders in general.
This might be a non issue for the candidate itself. But there are so many people, who try to find hidden meanings and make up power struggles that don't exist. I'm sure that this will happen again, when we have the first openly homosexual/black/muslim/pick your issue president candidate. These issues that have nothing to do with the persons abilitys to do his job, are brought up by some advocates and these stupid people will vote based on this. And I call it stupid, because I believe that any person who voted for Halonen only because she is a woman is idiot, likewise those who voted on her opponent, only because he is a man are idiots.

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