Paper Ballots

Armed Liberal over atWinds of Change has a good article on the problems with voting machines. The answer to me seems perfectly obvious. Machine countable paper ballots. They use them here in Australia and in several smaller states in the US…Alaska I am pretty certain is one. Anything the machine can’t read gets kicked out and can be evaluated by humans. And you still have all the ballots and can hand recount every one in front of a committee representing all interested parties if you absolutely have to. The original is the original, not a paper trail. The only problem I can see is that this solution may be prohibitively more expensive. Nonetheless it would appear to be a scalable solution. More reading machines in high population areas. The ratio of voters to machines should stay the same and so should the cost. I remember voting in NYC with machines in the 60s. They opened them and read off the numbers – you had to just trust the witnesses who swore that all the numbers started off at zero and that the machine worked correctly. An electronic machine that makes a paper record is acceptable if it can’t be diddled. But no electronic only ones. There is no way to really know if they have been gotten at. Its common sense. Keep ballots in the physical world where you can see them. You can’t see if your computer has a virus just by looking at it, but you sure can tell if your car has been whacked.


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