Greg Palast and Black Votes

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On C-Span's Washington Journal program this morning Greg Palast, journalist and author of the book, "The Best Democracy Money Can Buy", was interviewed. One of his central topics was voting in America and how the Civil Rights Commission has produced damning reports about trashing American votes. One million Black votes were thrown into the trash in 2000, and nowhere near that number of white votes were thrown out.

His facts, figures and critique on voting were relatively bi-partisan. He noted in Chicago a minority white government and its election organization insures that the majority black community is not represented by simply not counting their votes. Democrats are involved there. In Florida it has been discovered that 180,000 votes were thrown into the trash bins. What was damning was the fact that in Republican and white voting districts, if a voter messed up the ballot, they are given another one. Whereas, in predominantly black districts lacking ballot readers on the premises, the Jim Crow system simply threw them out.

It should be clear here that the wealth of the district is an integral component of 1/2 of all trashed votes belonging to Black voters. It has nothing to do with intelligence or ability, it has to do with wealthier voting districts being able to afford real time ballot readers. With a ballot reader, if a voter makes a mistake, the ballot reader picks most of them up and the voter is given a new ballot. States like Florida, have no intention of equalizing the capacity and fairness of voting technologies among the voting districts, hence, the Jeb Bush, Jim Crow state fully intends to continue disenfranchising Black and poor Florida Americans.

Another example he reported occured in my home county of Comal, Texas, where 3 different Republicans ran for 3 different positions and got exactly the same number of votes per candidate to confirm their win. The odds are astronomical against such a coincidence.

His book, "The Best Democracy Money Can Buy" is full of detailed reviews by commissions and government groups who have analyzed the voting systems in America, and points to the severest of warnings about electronic voting machines. It would appear the 2004 election has the potential of blowing up in America in November and December. The disenfranchising American voting system is likely to be glaringly worse in 2004 by electronic machine tampering and no paper trails to reconcile really lopsided and demographically unrepresentative wins.

Palast's book should be a worthwhile read.

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This page contains a single entry by David R. Remer published on May 5, 2004 3:58 PM.

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