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<nettime> Democracy divided by Corporations = US Elections
Are Flagan on Wed, 15 Oct 2003 10:51:48 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> Democracy divided by Corporations = US Elections

Anyone interested in expressions of democracy and computers may find this
thorough overview very interesting. The facts and figures have been bouncing
around for awhile in different features, but The Independent, today, finally
put many of them together on the front page online -- as the computerized
revolution of US democracy. One of the more astonishing facts is that the
voting systems and software solutions are protected by trade secrecy acts,
making independent review and checking, well, a felony. And there are, in
many cases, no paper trails or verifiable back ups. Anyone who has ever
written a single line of logical code to run on an insecure computer would
question the checks and balances -- and many computer scientists are doing
just that, loudly. One line of audited code, lifted from an open FTP site
used to distribute a patch for the deeply flawed Diebold (one of three major
players) software, included an inexplicable instruction to divide the number
of votes by 1. You do the math for 2004.


+ + + + +


All the President's votes?

A quiet revolution is taking place in US politics. By the time it's over,
the integrity of elections will be in the unchallenged, unscrutinised
control of a few large - and pro-Republican - corporations. Andrew Gumbel
wonders if democracy in America can survive.

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