Tuesday, April 12, 2005
And speaking of election fraud, via Buzzflash, Fairness and Accuracy in Media reports that America's system of elections is broken, and you can just stop whining about it right now. Let's cut to the chase:
"During the period FAIR studied, six editorials in this series appeared, including information and recommendations on “New Standards for Elections” (11/7/04), “Improving Provisional Ballots” (11/21/04) and the need for a verifiable paper trail for electronic voting machines (12/20/04, 12/27/04). (The latter topic was mentioned only in passing in the rest of our sample, despite the open invitation to vote fraud posed by such uncheckable technology—Extra!, 5–6/04.)What, me worry? No way. As long as we've got Rumsfeld setting the Iraqis straight on government corruption, I know all's well here in Mudville.
Unaddressed electoral system problems will continue to plague us, regardless of who won the White House last year, and the press would do well not to wait until 2008 to notice them again. Democrats and bloggers aren’t the only ones paying attention: A November 4 report by international observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe expressed concern about “significant delays at the polling station” that were “likely to deter some voters from voting and may restrict the right to vote,” as well as “considerable confusion and varying approaches from one state to another regarding the use of provisional ballots.”
Also, as BBC reporter Greg Palast argued in In These Times (12/13/04), the more than 90,000 spoiled ballots in Ohio—mentioned nowhere in our sample but in the New York Times (11/7/04, 12/24/04)—nearly make up the 118,000-vote difference between Bush and Kerry. That fact alone suggests that, just as in 2000, the White House’s occupant may be there due to system failure rather than any mandate. The leading media should not have dismissed this crucial issue of democracy—regardless of how much they, like Senator Kerry, craved closure. "