Note: It should be remembered that when this was written the bloodshed in the illegal invasion of Iraq was at its high point, both the blood of Iraqis and Americans and others.
We might get a crook in an honest election, we are certain to get one from a crooked election.
Let me be clear, I am not being coy or ironic or clever. This is it folks, this is real, as real as we are going to see it in our lifetimes.
The Rolling Stone article by Robert F. Kennedy jr. and the headline article by Greg Pallast posted today on Buzzflash.com lay out the evidence that Ohio was stolen by the Republicans. Anyone reading them who says they don't believe the 2004 presidential race was stolen would have to have some conclusive evidence or they are lying. If they do, they must lay it out in its entirety for the world to see now or be forever judged as liars. But if that evidence was there they would have shown it already. They haven't so it isn't there.
We can't ignore this any longer. It's not exciting, it's not trendy, it's not sexy, it's entirely clear how it could be fixed so no one is going to gain a reputation for brilliance and become the toast of the scribbling class over it. It's only a question of whether the United States is a nation of laws and not of men, a democracy or a despotic oligarchy.
- We need one national ballot form for the national constitutional offices, President, Vice-President, Senator, Congressman. These are the only four offices that have a direct impact on us all. The citizens of the entire country have a right to these four offices being filled in a completely honest way. Everyone has a right to know that every congressman was chosen honestly, even in the district farthest from where they live. There is an overriding interest in the citizens of the entire country having an honestly chosen government strong enough to overcome constitutional objections. This is THE question of national integrity, not a detail of petty federalism.
- We need one form of ballot for those offices, no butterflies, no esthetic tampering. One form that a child learns in fourth grade and that doesn't change for as long as our form of government doesn't change. President, Vice-President, Congressman, Senator. One ballot for each office if there are that many candidates in a district but one form that is as familiar to a voter as a Lincoln penny.
- We need those ballots to be on paper, marked clearly by hand with an X or a check mark, either a valid mark. One ballot form, one thing for the voter to do. Both have worked for decades and there is no reason to fool with it.
- We need them to be counted by hand with observers from all parties. Those ballots are to be counted honestly, everywhere, every time. If local officials can't run a clean election it will be run by a higher level of government. If you don't like that, look at those clean, honest, simple and quick elections they've got in Canada run by Elections Canada. You can go to their web site and see how those practical people have managed simple methods for dealing with problems of disabled voters. Look now before the Conservative government starts trying to copy cat the United States to steal elections for themselves.
No electronic voting for the federal constitutional offices is to be tolerated. We have seen that electronic voting and vote tabulation is certain to give an inaccurate count and that's even when it isn't rigged to steal the election.
The results of two stolen presidential elections in a row are all the proof anyone needs that a crooked election gives us a crooked government. We might get a crook in an honest election, we are certain to get one from a crooked election. The elections of 2000 and 2004 have given us the disaster of Iraq and will produce at least one more disaster, probably in Iran. The Republicans who stole these elections are costing us in blood, in honor and in money. We cannot afford to nickel and dime democracy, the cost is staggeringly high if we continue to cheat ourselves out of honest elections.
Computers and modern research have allowed the Republican Party to destroy the last and best hope for a free people to govern themselves. We aren't living in an age where genteel comity and a bit of indulgence of petty theft can be smiled at. If the DC-NY scribblers and the law professors had the blood of their children and themselves at risk they might see it more clearly. There is nothing ironically amusing about it.