"Joy and pleasure are as real as pain and sorrow and one must learn what they have to teach. . . ." -- Sean Russell, from Gatherer of Clouds

"If you're not having fun, you're not doing it right." -- Helyn D. Goldenberg

"I love you and I'm not afraid." -- Evanescence, "My Last Breath"

“If I hear ‘not allowed’ much oftener,” said Sam, “I’m going to get angry.” -- J.R.R. Tolkien, from Lord of the Rings

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Getting Ready For November

And practicing on New York Democrats: Can you say "election fraud"?

In the lead up to the New York Primaries this past week, an alarming situation was discovered when hundreds of thousands of Democratic voters found themselves unable to vote for the candidates they wished. Some found themselves listed as Republicans or Independents, while others were removed from the voting rolls entirely. This voter purge hit the hardest in the borough of Brooklyn, traditionally a stronghold of Democratic values and a strong base of support for the party. That this voter purge, which affected people across the state, happened at all was a shock to elected officials and observers alike. And the voter purge happened so quickly, it was impossible to address in time before the election, demonstrating a coordinated plan behind it.

As the stories came in, what was revealed was something far more insidious than some kind of voter purge used to eliminate voters who had died or moved out of the area. Instead they found fraudulent documents with forged signatures. And when the voter purge was looked at carefully, it became clear that the purge was being very specific, targeting people by street and apartment building. And there were only a handful of people with access to the data and tools needed for performing such a well-coordinated voter purge.

This has a history, and guess who was involved?

In 2012, Mitt Romney with Karl Rove developed a voting tool the likes of which had never been seen before. This tool, called Orca, was a database so massive and finite that, using it, they could identify people on a street by street, or building by building basis. Orca worked in part by collecting data gathered by poll watchers, which would be funneled into a central database for processing. As a result, Orca gave the Romney campaign a tactical ability to target people not only who Romney wanted to show up to the polls, but to deny access for people who Romney did not want to show up to the poll. Unfortunately for Romeny in 2012, the hactivist collective Anonymous killed that plan, by overloading and crashing the central servers.

However, the data collected remains intact, and available to GOP insiders – insiders such as Diane Haslett-Rudiano. With access to such data, such a voter purge becomes trivial to perform.

The GOP Secretary for the district is the only one implicated so far, but I'm sure that's just the tip of the iceberg. I just wonder how far up into the party hierarchy this reaches.

This is just a hint of what we can expect in November, unless something happens to disrupt it -- the Republicans have gotten as crooked and venal as the Democrats in Chicago used to be. Where's Anonymous when you need them?

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