Saturday, December 01, 2007

An Excellent Day in the Humboldt Nation

Friday may have been the most fun day I've had since the last time Peter B. Collins broadcast live from Humboldt. This time the location was the Eureka Theater. The Voter Confidence Committee (VCC) had a table in the lobby featuring the items in our hand-count campaign tool kit, all of which is linked on our home page.

Clockwise from back right: George Hurlburt, Aryay
Kalaki, Ruth Hoke, Dave Berman
I'm pointing to the
hand-count spreadsheet tool
on Peter's computer

Last time, I had the honor of sitting beside Peter as co-host throughout the entire show. This time Aryay Kalaki and I were on for the final hour, along with Brad Friedman via phone. Earlier in the show Peter interviewed Arcata Mayor Harmony Groves, Eureka City Councilmember Larry Glass, and 2004 Green Party Presidential Candidate David Cobb, who lives here in Eureka. You can hear the entire show as an .mp3 here. We're all grateful to Tom Sebourn of KGOE for making this all happen, and for being a generally cool dude.

During the third hour we talked about why the VCC is organizing on behalf of hand-counted paper ballots and how we are going about it. The VCC website now has a sign-up form which relieves some of the pressure for us to be doing outdoor tabling in adverse weather, so we were happy to get that message out, as well as soliciting the help of a webmaster.

We also talked about the hand-count cost estimator (.xls) and the diagram comparing the sequences for electronic vote counting and hand counting, both resources developed not only for our own local purpose but with sharing nationally in mind.

In the last few minutes of the show, Humboldt Registrar of Voters Carolyn Crnich called in, prompting Peter to forgo some comments from the live audience. In particular, it was really too bad that he didn't have time for Verbena who wanted to talk about Redwood Curtain CopWatch and the epidemic of citizens dying near police officers. Peter invited Carolyn to return to the show for a longer discussion and she said she would in the near future. I encouraged Peter to also make time in the near future to come back to Verbena.

There was a great energy all afternoon, and you can hear the crowd cheering at the start and end of the segments of the show. I mentioned on the air, for the first time, that we have already collected roughly 200 names of willing hand counters. In the next few days I'll get an actual count.

I also tried out a new talking point. We have roughly 80,000 registered voters in Humboldt County. We will need roughly 800 hand-counters to get the job done on election night. That means only 1% of registered voters are needed to participate. All of a sudden it sounds like a much lower bar to clear.

After the show I went to the Redwood Peace and Justice Center (RPJC) annual dinner at the Arcata Community Center. I attended last year at the Bayside Grange and I eagerly looked forward to the warm and wonderful vibes I encountered tonight. Peter even made the scene. We were seated together and discussed, among other things, the Project-Based Format, the radio talk show idea I've written about periodically for the past five years, most recently this past week. I told him I didn't expect to be able to pursue this fully until at least the spring. He said, when I'm ready, let him know and "I will conspire with you." Very encouraging.

Big thanks to Tom Pinto of our local 911 Truth group for treating me as his guest tonight. I also got to talk to several of my friends from Vets For Peace Chapter 56.

I didn't get any really great pix at the dinner, but here is a decent one of two men I admire. Peter is on the right, talking with Dave Meserve, board member of the RPJC and former Arcata City Councilmember. I'll always be grateful to Dave for casting one of the three votes in favor of the Council adopting the Voter Confidence Resolution.

'Twas an excellent day in the Humboldt Nation.


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As shown on
Dave's new blog,
Manifest Positivity

We Do Not Consent, Volume 1 (left) and Volume 2 (right), feature essays from Dave Berman's previous blogs, GuvWurld and We Do Not Consent, respectively. Click the covers for FREE e-book versions (.pdf). As of April 2010, paperbacks are temporarily out of print. Click here for the author's bio.

Back Page Quotes

"Give a damn about the world you live in? Give a damn about what you and I both know is one of the most shameful and destructive periods in American history? If so, do something about it. You can start by reading We Do Not Consent."

— Brad Friedman, Creator/Editor,; Co-Founder,

"If in the future we have vital elections, the "no basis for confidence" formulation that GuvWurld is popularizing will have been a historically important development. This is true because by implicitly insisting on verification and checks and balances instead of faith or trust in elections officials or machines as a basis for legitimacy, it encourages healthy transparent elections. It’s also rare that a political formulation approaches scientific certainty, but this formulation is backed up by scientific principles that teach that if you can’t repeat something (such as an election) and verify it by independent means, it doesn’t exist within the realm of what science will accept as established or proven truth."

— Paul Lehto, Attorney at Law, Everett, WA

"Dave Berman has been candid and confrontational in challenging all of us to be "ruthlessly honest" in answering his question, "What would be better?" He encourages us to build consensus definitions of "better," and to match our words with actions every day, even if we do only "the least we can do." Cumulatively and collectively, our actions will bring truth to light."

— Nezzie Wade, Sociology Professor, Humboldt State University and College of the Redwoods

"Dave Berman's work is quietly brilliant and powerfully utilitarian. His Voter Confidence Resolution provides a fine, flexible tool whereby any community can reclaim and affirm a right relation to its franchise as a community of voters."

— Elizabeth Ferrari, San Francisco, Green Party of California

"This is an important collection of essays with a strong unitary theme: if you can't prove that you were elected, we can't take you seriously as elected officials. Simple, logical, comprehensive. 'Management' (aka, the 'powers that be') needs to get the message. 'The machines' are not legitimizers, they're an artful dodge and a path to deception. We've had enough...and we most certainly DO NOT consent."

— Michael Collins covers the election fraud beat for "Scoop" Independent Media

"What's special about this book (and it fits because there's nothing more fundamental to Democracy than our vote) is the raising of consciousness. Someone recognizing they have no basis for trusting elections may well ask what else is being taken for granted."

— Eddie Ajamian, Los Angeles, CA

"I urge everyone to read "We Do Not Consent", and distribute it as widely as possible."

— B Robert Franza MD, author of We the People ... Have No Clothes: A Pamphlet for every American