Thursday, October 22, 2020

'This U.S. Election Could Be the Most Secure Yet' says The New York Times 'Stressed Election'

I told my readers to "Stay tuned" to conclude The New York Times 'Stressed Election' visits Michigan to ask 'What's the Problem With Vote-by-Mail?' That's because "This video is part of a four-part series. Two other parts about voting rights and election security are already out with one more installment about disinformation still to come. I plan on posting about all of them." Last night's news that Iran and Russia obtained U.S. voter registration data in effort to influence the election itself influenced me to share something reassuring about the vote count, This U.S. Election Could Be the Most Secure Yet. Here’s Why.

With early voting underway, states are working to reassure voters that their ballots will be counted as cast. Our video shows how states’ responses to Russian hacking and the coronavirus crisis have helped make the election more secure than ever.
One of the producer-narrators left a comment that elaborated on the video.
Hello - I am Kassie Bracken. My colleague Alex Eaton and I produced this video looking at the recent history of our voting systems, and why some experts think this could be the most secure election yet when it comes to technology. It's also a journey showing how paper has come full circle in the past 20 years. Remember the chads in 2000 (if not, you'll learn more about them here)? Well, they set off a chain of events that still resonate in our security today. Voting technology is one important aspect of how we vote — please watch the other episodes in our series "Stressed Election" where we cover the impact of voting laws, voting by mail and the effect of disinformation on our elections.
The good news is that the vote count itself is probably more secure from foreign interference and other hacks. The bad news is that what Iran did was not hacking the vote count or election software. It was a disinformation campaign.
“This data can be used by foreign actors to attempt to communicate false information to registered voters that they hope will cause confusion, sow chaos and undermine your confidence in American democracy.”

Specifically, Ratcliffe said, Iran has been sending “spoofed emails designed to intimidate voters, incite social unrest and damage President” Donald Trump, who is facing former Vice President Joe Biden, the Democratic nominee, in the election.

“Additionally Iran is distributing other content to include a video that implies that individuals could cast fraudulent ballots even from overseas,” he said.

“This video and any claims about such allegedly fraudulent ballots are not true,” Ratcliffe said.

He added that “these actions are desperate attempts by desperate adversaries. Even if the adversaries pursue further attempts to intimidate or attempt to undermine voter confidence, know that our election systems are resilient and you can be confident that your votes are secure.”
That's exactly the message I want to reinforce tonight.

I have only two installments of "Stressed Election" left to post, one on voting rights, which came out at the end of last month, and the final one on disinformation, which I expect will be uploaded next week. I plan on getting to both. In the meantime, stay tuned for National TV Talk Show Day the day after tonight's presidential debate. Drink up!


  1. The Night Before Voting
    'Twas the night before voting when all through the land,
    Collectivists were clamoring to take command.
    Their platforms were posted on Facebook with care,
    In hopes that Control! soon would be theirs.
    Bernistas were nestled all snug in their beds,
    While dreams of “free” college danced in their heads.

    And the socialists of the left, and the protectionists of the right,
    Had a common enemy: free trade, to fight.
    When down in the market there arose such a clatter,
    They suspended debating to see what was the matter!
    Away to their telescreens they flew like a flash.
    Horror of horrors! Prols with cash!!

    The storefront displays and the new fallen snow
    Revealed Prols toting packages! How could it be so?
    When what to their statist eyes should appear,
    But imports from China and lands far and near!
    Happy people exchanging with opportunism,
    They hissed at each other: “capitalism!”

    More rapid than rats, the bureaucrats they came.
    They pointed and shouted, “Your greed is to blame!”
    Now taxes! Now tariffs! Now more legislation!
    It must be the state that directs all creation!
    Medicare without limits, and we must build a wall.
    Now tax away, tax away, tax away all!

    As party loyalists do when dear leader extols,
    Collectivists dutifully went to the polls.
    Then to campaign rallies, the followers they flew.
    For the promise of benefits and Saint Sanders, too!
    The scene at the rallies was like deja vu.
    Blind loyalty to party, flawed candidates, too.

    As I choked back my lunch and was looking to hide,
    To their respective podiums, the candidates did stride.
    Adoring acolytes cheered wildly and they soaked it all in,
    Each one convinced they’d make America great again.
    They gave well-rehearsed speeches designed to divide
    Along race, creed, and income, and national pride.

    Their vision, it twinkled! A future so sweet!
    But their vision’s foundation was The Fatal Conceit!
    Their faces were frozen in a permanent smile.
    And no one noticed that their words dripped with bile.
    Were they confident? Oh yeah! Each one full of themselves.
    And I laughed when I saw them in spite of myself.

    But the leer in their eyes and the ideas in their heads,
    Soon made me realize I had plenty to dread!
    They finished their words as confetti came down,
    And shook all the hands while bodyguards frowned.
    Our eyes met just briefly, but that was enough.
    My face said quite clearly, "I’m calling your bluff!"

    You’re no saint to the poor, no egalitarian.
    Your method is force, tending totalitarian!
    As you seek to direct every nook of the nation
    Your ideas produce rationing, misery, starvation!
    But I heard them exclaim as they drove out of sight,
    Collectivism hasn’t failed—it’s just never been done right!
    ~ Erik P. Brown

    1. *Snork* That's such an entertaining rhyme, even though I think it's misaimed and not original to you, that I'm letting it stay.

      By the way, not only are you better than a spammer, you provide a service; your comments tell me when my posts are linked over at Crooks&Liars. Thank you. Based on the comments, you apparently spend a lot of time hate-reading liberals. I know some liberals who do that with conservatives, but I don't understand the attraction beyond "know your enemy" and "keep your friends close and your enemies closer." If I don't like a person and don't like their ideas, I won't read them. I think it's a wasted of time.

  2. Welcome to all of you coming here from Crooks&Liars and Infidel753's personal blog (Thanks, Infidel)! You might also want to check out The New York Times 'Stressed Election' examines election misinformation and voting rights, which completes the series.