Monday, November 14, 2005

The 2004 Election

Was the 2004 election stolen?

Some people would say 100% yes. Others would say 100% no. I would say a 100% maybe. I would certainly put it within the realm of possibility, but as to where it fits (a high possibility? A low possibility?) I cannot say.

Farhad Manjoo, who had written a bit about the potential for election fraud before the election and who had then been taken a lot of crap for declaring the 2004 election more or less clean. Or, to be more precise, he took a lot of crap for suggesting the proof that the election was stolen was much less the an solid.

Well it looks like he's preparing for another batch of crap with his latest article, a review of Mark Crispin Miller's "Fooled Again: How the Right Stole the 2004 Election and Why They'll Steal the Next One Too (Unless We Stop Them)."

Mr. Miller claimed last week to have presented a copy of his book to Kerry, who blurted out that he believed that the election was stolen. The Kerry camp has since denied this memory as a half truth at best. So take that for what it is worth.

Anyway Manjoo's take on the book is that it makes a lot of claims, but when it gets down to brass tacks, it's claims aren't supported by the evidence. Rather Miller is more interested in proving that the Republicans are so driven to seize power (and to keep Liberals out of power) that they wouldn't' hesitate to rig an election.

Manjoo quotes Miller's appearance on Democracy Now!; a quote I find quite interesting.
This is not a criminal case, OK? We don't have to prove guilt beyond a shadow of a doubt. This is our election system, right? This is a system based on consent of the governed. If many, many millions of Americans are convinced that they got screwed on Election Day and couldn't vote, or if 3.4 million more Americans claim that they voted than the actual total of voters -- this is what the Census Bureau told us last May -- this is grounds alone for serious investigation ... We have to have serious investigation.
As Manjoo points out, we do need to have a serious discussion about these issues; certainly there are necessities like Paper Trails that need to enacted in every county in America (and to hell with the expense, this is our Democracy we are talking about).

But to suggest that actual proof doesn't matter, because people think there is a problem? That's not a good standard on which to build a movement or on which to build a Democracy. Rather we should insist on a scrupulous researched, airtight case, before we make accusations of this nature.

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