REAL WORLD EVENT DISCUSSIONS

Reps Cheated again Voter fraud just didn't work this time

POSTED BY: PIRATEJENNY
UPDATED: Friday, November 17, 2006 09:55
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Wednesday, November 15, 2006 7:05 AM

SIGNYM

I believe in solving problems, not sharing them.


Quote:

And just for the record, neither Rue or Signym is williing to admit the possibility that both parties are guilty of election fraud, and believe that only the evil GOP is capable of such behavior.
No, actually, I know of many past instances where the Dems were accused of, and probably committed, massive (successful) election fraud, most famously in the Nixon/ Kennedy race. Chicago was notorious for that.

I'd be willing to bet dollars to doughnuts that SOME Democractic election fraud was committed in this past race. The reason why the GOP is getting smacked with the charge right now is because they happened to be in substantial power for almost a decade and they followed the Karl Rove "dirty tricks" playbook. But if left in power too long, ANY Party can be corrupted. That's why I'd like to take possible manipulation tools out of the hands of ANY politician. Just create a straight-up procedure that any boob can audit.



---------------------------------
Reality sucks. Especially when it contradicts our cherished ideas.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006 7:07 AM

SIGNYM

I believe in solving problems, not sharing them.


Quote:

Are you saying that I called her "chicken little"? If you had read the post, you would have seen that it was part of pitiful attempt at sarcastic humor and was not a direct reference to Rue in any way.
That's not the way I read it, and I suspect most people would have read it my way.


---------------------------------
Reality sucks. Especially when it contradicts our cherished ideas.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006 7:49 AM

SIGNYM

I believe in solving problems, not sharing them.


Speaking is statistics, studies, and polls.... I supervise a regulatory analytical section and I'm often called on to audit both internal and external reports. And I'm pretty good at looking at reams and reams of data and actually making sense of it, altho the work makes my eyes roll back in my head. Sometimes I use statistics (altho not my strongest area) and sometimes I dig very deeply into the rawest of raw data and find very obscure problems. I have to pat myself on the back for having been given a table of several hundred values representing about a dozen different analyses, and realizing that (1) the refinery used three different laboratories to perform the analyses and (2) one of those labs conistently screwed up one analysis (and I even know what the screwup was). Anyhoo, I happened to find this in my inbox this ayem... made me think of the whole exit poll controversy and how much scrutiny was behind the charge of vote fraud:
Quote:

Many of the medical research papers you read will be wrong, not as a result of methodologic flaws, poor design, or inappropriate statistics, but because of typing errors.

Exhibit 1
I was doing some research on sample size calculation and was reading up on how such calculations were reported in the very best journals. The very first paper I read was in the prestigious British Medical Journal: the authors stated that they were looking for the drug to improve pain by 16 points on a pain scale that had a standard deviation of 8. Now you may notice that this is a difference of 2 standard deviations, an absolutely massive effect (indeed, an adequately powered trial would require only 12 patients). When I emailed the authors, they apologized and said that they meant to give a figure of 18 rather than 8 for the standard deviation. The second paper I read, which was also published in the British Medical Journal, was also somewhat confounding: anxiety, depression, and fatigue had improved in the treatment group, but quality of life was worse. After investigating the issue with the authors, it turned out that quality of life was indeed better after treatment but that a minus sign had been omitted from the table of results.

Exhibit 2
I had provided advice to a researcher about a trial and promptly forgotten about it until he sent me a copy of the final manuscript: Could I read the final version and sign the copyright form before he submitted it with my name as an author? I told him that I usually do not put my name to a paper unless I had personally checked the statistical analysis and so asked for a copy of the study database. Although I reproduced the analyses described in the paper, something still felt odd, so I asked for copies of the actual questionnaires on which patients had reported their symptoms. My caution was vindicated: I found 4 data entry errors in the record of the very first patient I checked; I also noticed that the study codes had been handwritten on the questionnaires such that the data for Patients 14 and 19 were likely reversed. I suggested repeating the data entry from scratch. When the paper was eventually published, the results were very different from those included in the paper I had originally seen.

Exhibit 3
A colleague showed me a paper pointing out that I could conduct a secondary analysis that would interest me. The authors generously sent me the raw data, but when I started my analysis, I immediately noticed some anomalies. The results included data on 2 biomarkers that are inversely correlated -- that is, you normally see high levels of one or the other, but not both. Yet a small number of patients did indeed have high scores for both biomarkers. When I asked the investigators about this, they said that they had checked the records for these patients, had found the data to be correct, and that double-positives sometimes happened. So I finished my analysis and presented the results to my colleague. She pointed out that the results were difficult to interpret without information on clinical stage. Now it turns out that very few early-stage patients are positive for one of the markers, and when we received the stage data, we noticed that several early-stage patients were marker positive; in fact, these were exactly the same "double-positive" patients we had asked about previously. When we raised the issue again, the investigators wrote back saying that on further checking there had been data entry errors, and that the values of the biomarkers had been reversed in some cases. Note that this was an important National Institutes of Health-funded study conducted at a major university and that the primary goal concerned the impact of the biomarkers on outcome.

Exhibit 4
I was asked to help a surgeon conduct an analysis of the effects of obesity on complication rates. The very first line of the spreadsheet he sent to me described a female patient who was 6 feet tall and weighed 135 pounds, roughly the anorexic look favored by the typical fashion magazine. Yet her body mass index was given as 49, which puts her in the category of the super-obese. It turned out that the surgeon had typed numbers from the surgical charts into a Web-based body mass index calculator and then cut and pasted the results back into the spreadsheet; inevitably, mistakes had occurred.

Was that boring? YOU BET! But that's why we have detail-oriented statisticians and reviewers to do the work for us.



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Reality sucks. Especially when it contradicts our cherished ideas.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006 8:14 AM

RAZZA


Quote:

Originally posted by SignyM:
Quote:

And just for the record, neither Rue or Signym is williing to admit the possibility that both parties are guilty of election fraud, and believe that only the evil GOP is capable of such behavior.
No, actually, I know of many past instances where the Dems were accused of, and probably committed, massive (successful) election fraud, most famously in the Nixon/ Kennedy race. Chicago was notorious for that.

I'd be willing to bet dollars to doughnuts that SOME Democractic election fraud was committed in this past race. The reason why the GOP is getting smacked with the charge right now is because they happened to be in substantial power for almost a decade and they followed the Karl Rove "dirty tricks" playbook. But if left in power too long, ANY Party can be corrupted. That's why I'd like to take possible manipulation tools out of the hands of ANY politician. Just create a straight-up procedure that any boob can audit.



Signym:

Good, now we are making progress. What we both agree on so far:

1) Both political parties are responsible for election fraud both now and in the past
2) We should make our election process more transparent and accountable

It's amazing! Even two people with highly divergent points of view can manage to agree on something once and while. Maybe there is hope for our future afterall.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006 9:52 AM

PIRATECAT


I agree with ya Dems are sore winners. Boy I can't believe a browncoat board would have politics. My oppinion is the same people who watch firefly and rave on think confederates are racists and republicans are nazis. Joss Whedon and Richard Dean Anderson must of went to the Jane Fonda pr school of bull. Both of them on dvd box sets go on about how they appaul the use of firearms. But of course thats how they make their paycheck. In NM the biggest registered republican precinct had 4000 reps but was delivered only 120 ballots. The dems run Albuquerque and the state yet we have graff. Luckly the congresswoman won for the reps it was close though. Every soldier I have talk to and I am from NC has said were doing good in Iraq and need to stay. I see Dems who don't fight for nothing so they are not browncoats to me.

Shepherd Book preaches and then shoots.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006 2:30 PM

DREAMTROVE


Evidence of republican cheating can always be found, as can evidence of democratic cheating. As long as the stakes are high, there will be people cheating for their side to win. My own grandmother bought votes for JFK in Illinois in '60 for $5 a piece, which led to the defeat of Richard Nixon. The result was a disaster for america and the world.

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Thursday, November 16, 2006 11:28 AM

CREVANREAVER


This image was on Newsbusters.org a few days before the election:



Even when Dems win, you claim you were cheated. This libertarian finds that pathetic. At least the Republicans aren't out crying about voter fraud and their base being disenfranchised.

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Thursday, November 16, 2006 11:32 AM

RUE

I have a vote and I'm not afraid to use it!


Wouldn't you want a good electoral check-up? For heaven sakes - why not ?

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Thursday, November 16, 2006 12:27 PM

RUE

I have a vote and I'm not afraid to use it!


http://www.nytimes.com/2006/11/16/opinion/16thur1.html

In a Congressional race there (Florida) between Vern Buchanan, a Republican, and Christine Jennings, a Democrat, the machines in Sarasota County reported that more than 18,000 people, or one in eight, did not choose either candidate. That “undervote” of nearly 13 percent is hard to believe, given that only about 2.5 percent of absentee voters did not vote in that race.

Partisan secretaries of state continue to skew the rules to favor their parties and political allies. States are adopting harsh standards for voter registration drives to make it harder for people to register, as well as draconian voter identification laws to make casting a ballot harder for poor people, racial minorities, the elderly and students. Some states have adopted an indefensible rule that provisional ballots cast at the wrong table of the correct polling place must be thrown out.

Election reform has tended to be a partisan issue, with Democrats arguing for reform and Republicans resisting it. It shouldn’t be. Congressional Democrats should make fixing this country’s broken system of elections a top priority, and Republicans should join them.

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Thursday, November 16, 2006 1:13 PM

SOUPCATCHER


Quote:

Originally posted by Rue:
Election reform has tended to be a partisan issue, with Democrats arguing for reform and Republicans resisting it. It shouldn’t be. Congressional Democrats should make fixing this country’s broken system of elections a top priority, and Republicans should join them.


Spot on.

Any time you have an entrenched majority in power there will be corruption. Rigging the system to maintain power is one manifestation.

It has happened. It happens. It's going to happen in the future. But it shouldn't be easy. We should make it as hard as we possibly can to rig elections (and, by rig, I'm including all efforts from limiting who can register to vote all the way through to stealing votes with electronic machines). How is that not an American value?

Fighting voter fraud shouldn't be a Republican or Democratic issue. There are posts in this thread that basically are saying, "Both sides do it. So just be happy when your party wins." That's a defeatist attitude.

I agree that both parties engage in voter fraud. I think you need to look in different areas to find the fraud: local big city for Democratic, statewide for Republican. There are certain Democratic machine politicians that are absolutely corrupt (William Jefferson comes to mind). There are certain recent Republican Secretaries of State who are absolutely corrupt (Katherine Harris comes to mind). If there is any difference it is that the Democratic Party has different local pockets of corruption in some of the big cities while the Republicans are working on a broader scale (going after entire states). The Republican efforts to tip the balance are, in my opinion, part of a broad nationwide strategy.


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Friday, November 17, 2006 9:45 AM

SIGNYM

I believe in solving problems, not sharing them.


This was just sent to me by a colleague..

Major Miscount of the Vote in 2006 Election: Reported Results Skewed 4 Percent Toward GOP; Election Defense Alliance Calls for Investigation

BOSTON, Nov. 17 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Election Defense Alliance, a national election integrity organization, issued an urgent call today for an investigation into the 2006 election results and a moratorium on deployment of all electronic voting equipment after analysis of national exit polling data indicated a major undercount of Democratic votes and an overcount of Republican votes in congressional races across the country. These findings are an alarming indictment of the American election system in which 80 percent of voters used electronic voting equipment.

As in 2004, the Exit Poll and the reported election results do not add up. But this time there is an objective yardstick in the methodology that establishes the validity of the Exit Poll and exposes the inaccuracy of the election returns. These findings are detailed in a paper published today on the EDA website.


The Edison-Mitofsky media Exit Poll, posted Election Night on CNN.com, had a sample base of more than 10,000 voters, and showed Democratic House candidates winning over Republicans by an 11.5 percent margin.


The reported vote count showed Democrats winning by a 7.6 margin, 3.9 percent less than the Exit Poll and far outside the poll's +/-1-percent margin of error. This discrepancy entailed at least 3,000,000 votes.

The Exit Poll was then adjusted, by a process known as "forcing," to match reported election vote totals. The final result, posted at 1 p.m. Nov. 8, showed Democrats winning by a 7.6 percent margin, exactly mirroring the reported vote totals.

The objective yardstick was the proportion of respondents who indicated they had voted for Bush or Kerry in 2004. The sample in the already weighted Election Night Exit Poll had 47 percent Bush voters and 45 percent Kerry voters, a valid sample given the very conservative assumption that Republicans and Democrats turned out with equal enthusiasm in 2006. However, after the forcing process, the sample contained 49 percent Bush voters and only 43 percent Kerry supporters. This 6 percent gap is more than twice the size of the 2004 Bush win of 2.8 percent. It indicates a significant over-sampling of Republican voters in the adjusted 2006 Exit Poll.

Such a gross oversample of Republicans was necessary to match the actual vote counts, which therefore could not have been an accurate count of the actual electorate. Had the intended votes been accurately tallied, this election would have produced a Democratic landslide of epic proportions.


http://www.ElectionDefenseAlliance.org.

Rue and I idependently had thought that the reason why Republican candidates didn't demand a vote recount in close elections was because the national committe told them sotto voce "Ixnay on the ecountray" knowing that a full recount would only expose the bias.

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Reality sucks. Especially when it contradicts our cherished ideas.

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Friday, November 17, 2006 9:55 AM

RUE

I have a vote and I'm not afraid to use it!


My favorite line:

"Had the intended votes been accurately tallied, this election would have produced a Democratic landslide of epic proportions."

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