Try to enjoy today's holiday. If you've been invited to a family gathering which threatens to seat you near a loud and pushy Trumper, consider calling out sick. Even if you end up at Denny's, you'll be much better off. 2016 was bad enough; you don't need more angst at the dinner table.
I chose the wrong day to get all hung up on an art project. Things are moving fast on the election fraud front, and I simply don't have the time right now to write about all of it.
I never thought I'd say this, but thank God for Jill Stein
, who is filing for recounts. The process will cost a few million, so I beg everyone to be as generous as possible. (She has already raised enough for Wisconsin
, but that's not the only state.) You can also donate your time
, if you live in one of the affected states.
To my mind, the important goal is the "forensic analysis" of the voting tabulators and actual voting machines. We have already seen (in a previous post) that a machine can be infected -- fairly easily -- with malware even if it is never connected to the internet. An analysis can look for signs of malware. Most important of all, I would think, would be an analysis of the jump drive or SD card used to program the machines.
If hacking did occur, then we may expect the miscreants to seek ways to cover their tracks. Be very wary if the equipment suddenly goes missing.
Let's zip through some important links...
Nate Silver's response to all of this is singularly unpersuasive. Please read what he says here
, and then compare to the data on display here
. Silver simply refuses to address the real issues: There are counties where the number of votes for Trump exceeds the official totals of cast ballots.
We can't expect much else from someone in Silver's position: He has to be extremely careful about his reputation.
Brad Friedman is, as always, doing the very best work in this field. I beg you to catch you with his "Bradcasts," here
. Brad is always careful to keep his focus on the process, not on partisan politics. At any other time, I would agree with this approach. Unfortunately, I am not sure if it is wise to focus on the next election, since I am not sure that Trump will allow another election to occur.
This Kos diary
offers some interesting data about PA:
Pennsylvania has 67 counties. 11 counties supported Clinton, while 56 supported Trump. While that sounds overwhelming for Democrats, it only represents a small change from 2012, when 13 counties supported Obama. The difference is truly in the margin of support in each county. 42 of the counties that supported Trump, supported him with a record percentage of support for a Republican for that county, at least dating back to 1976. Still, that’s astounding, considering the Reagan landslide of 1984 is included in that data. Oddly enough, there were actually 3 counties that had record percentage support for a Democratic candidate. All three were Philadelphia Suburb counties (Montgomery, Chester and Delaware). While that should bode well for a Democratic candidate, the margin of victory for Trump outside of Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and the Philly Burbs, ranged from ridiculous to absurd. The most absurd being Luzerne County (Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton) where Trump won by 20% after Obama won the same county twice by margins of 9% and 5%.
What would be an explanation for a county that voted so overwhelmingly for Clinton in the 2008 primary, finally getting their candidate 8 years later, and then abandoning her and the party in absurdly record numbers? I actually added this county to the database on a precinct by precinct basis for both the 2012 and the 2016 elections in hopes that it would yield some valuable information. I thought I would see the city precincts hold steady or lose a little Democratic support and see a huge shift in the more rural precincts. There was really nothing like that. It was almost a uniform shift from Democrat to Republican in every single precinct by anywhere from 10% to 20%, with many of them in the very high teens. Clinton only got 4,000 more votes here (52,000 vs 48,000) than she got in the 2008 primary. Obama and Clinton got a combined total of 64,000 votes in the 2008 primary. Obama got 72,000 votes in the 2008 general and 64,000 votes in the 2012 general.
That’s all I’ve got for now. I would love to say I have a great explanation for what my fellow Pennsylvanians were thinking, but I can’t. I have no idea what to make of this.
To me, these results are consistent with the theory that the rural machines were subtly hacked to add an extra 10 percent to Trump's total. The important point is that the hacker cannot go too far
. As Jonathan Simon says in his important new book Code Red
This is of course the hustler’s challenge: figuring out the maximum that can be taken while still keeping the mark in the game.
I'm about a third of the way through Simon's book, which is extremely well-written; you wouldn't think a work about election theft could possibly be such a zippy read, but it is. I understand that there is some pro-Bernie stuff in the latter sections of the book; I'll let you know later what I think of that
. (Brad Friedman says that he hasn't seen any convincing evidence backing the oft-heard claims that Bernie was robbed -- and I know that Brad would tend to favor Sanders' politics over those of any mainstream Democrat.)
Simon's book is worthy of your dollars, but if you can't make the investment -- for example, if you feel tapped out after your donation to Jill Stein's effort -- you can read Code Red
for free. It's available for $0.00 via Amazon's Kindle Unlimited program, which offers you one free month of membership. Simply cancel your membership on Day 30 and you've beaten the system. But do make sure to read the book within that month, because it will disappear on you once your account lapses.
Finally, I urge you to check out this Kos Diary
Last week UC Berkeley statistician Phillip Stark and MIT professor and cryptographer Ron Rivest called for an audit to double-check and ensure hackers didn’t manipulate our American election results. UC Berkley News reports Stark and Rivest, who are both advisors on the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, argue that there are good reasons to conduct a “risk-limiting” audit of the presidential election.
In that USA Today piece, Stark and Rivest write:
“There are reasons for concern. According to the director of national intelligence, the leaked emails from the DNC were “intended to interfere with the U.S. election process.” The director of national intelligence, the Department of Homeland Security, and the National Security Agency concluded that the Russian government is behind the DNC email hack and that Russian hackers attacked U.S. voter registration databases.”
Stark and Rivest go on to write that “the national results could be tipped” by manipulating the vote count in a relatively small number of jurisdictions — a few dozen spread across a few key states.” They add that the vast majority of local elections officials don’t have the adequate resources to detect or defend against cyber attacks.
Oh...and just to remind you of the stakes: Donald Trump was thinking of making Jerry Falwell Jr. The head of the Department of Education
. But then he picked Betsy DeVos, of the utterly evil family that gave us scAmway. She supports the Acton Institute, which advocates the return of child labor
Like most others, I presumed Trump to be an opportunist, not an ideologue. Wrong
. He's turning out to be far worse than imagined -- certainly worse than Dubya.