Tuesday, January 15, 2008

KHUM Humboldt Review Review, EAC and Ron Paul Too

The .mp3 archive of last Thursday's KHUM Humboldt Review finally became available yesterday but I didn't have time to listen and thus no blog post. Having listened now, I can accurately quote the top highlight, by far, which was my introduction, now a permanent part of the WDNC blog template*:

"Dave, you're like the conscience of our electoral process."

--Kevin Hoover, Editor, Arcata Eye; Host KHUM Humboldt Review
I was on the show for two segments, the first starting about 20:34 into the .mp3 above. Hoover's great compliment is around 27:35. Click here and look for Arcata's 150th/Voter Information Day to see the rest of the guests. If you aren't here in Humboldt this may give you a few distinct flavors of our community, including celebrating the start of a year-long 150th anniversary for Arcata, and the hot button rail/trail issue. Hoover also interviewed Registrar of Voters Carolyn Crnich. It was so pedestrian that I don't have any other comment on it.

On the other hand, tonight the Registrar convened the monthly meeting of the Election Advisory Committee. The top story there was the announcement of Kelly Sanders as the new Election Manager, effective 1/1/08, filling the position vacated by Lindsey McWilliams last June. The Registrar said this promotion for Sanders, who has worked in the Humboldt Elections Department for years, most recently as Administrative Analyst, is known to other election administrators in the state, but not yet in the local media. A rare scoop here for WDNC.

With Supervisor Jimmy Smith present, the Registrar described two pieces of equipment she said she hoped she could buy from the County General Fund. First is a new DIMS server, which she said contains voter registration info. She also described the regular office scanner as being near death, slyly suggesting that perhaps its replacement would be suitable for the Transparency Project. Acknowledging it could be costly, the Registrar gave a maximum cost of $60,000. I think there was an audible gulp from Smith.

Also of note, I thought, was the approximate number 100 - absentee ballot requests per day. Early voting began on 1/7 with paper ballots and one eSlate available at election department HQ. There is a need for about 8-10 more pollworkers, and the Registrar recommended anyone interested use the application contained in their sample ballot and bring it to HQ.

Another budgetary matter that came up was the Governor's reneging on his promise to reimburse Humboldt County for this February's primary. This was held up as an example of an unfunded mandate. I jokingly suggested we refuse to hold the November election just to spite Arnold.

More seriously, the Registrar said she would be on a conference call tomorrow morning with other Registrars and Secretary of State Debra Bowen. One topic for that call is the "trusted build" program that Bowen implemented following the Top To Bottom Review. According to the Registrar, this involves wiping old memory cards and newly programming them with code supplied directly by Bowen.

The last thing I'll mention from the EAC meeting is the observation panel the Registrar said she wanted to form. If you are interested in this, I think you want to drop by HQ, perhaps Monday at 2pm when the Logic and Accuracy (aka Smoke and Mirrors) dog and pony show will be conducted.

Finally, right after I got home, David Kaftal, my Ron Paul contact, wrote to invite me to talk about election integrity at an "emergency meeting" the local Meet Up group has called for Thursday night at 6pm at the Humboldt Bay Municipal Water District, 828 7th St., Eureka. More details at the link above.

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* Karen Renick, co-host of Vote Rescue Radio also just added a sweet new permanent testimonial to the WDNC left sidebar: "Ultimately, we MUST change the way our votes are being counted - or not counted - and Dave is one of those individuals who is making this a reality."

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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, BradBlog.com; Co-Founder, VelvetRevolution.us


"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


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— Elizabeth Ferrari, San Francisco, Green Party of California


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— 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."

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