Free and Fair Elections

Yesterday I mentioned EU Elections Inspectors busy at work in the Congo to oversee democratic elections there. I have also discussed in previous posts the question of "democracy" "promotion" both in the U.S. and in other nations, such as Iraq or Afghanistan. There is an interesting article pertaining to the subject on Salon.com today, regarding a documentary meant to be aired on HBO (of international "Sopranos" and "Sex and the City" fame) in the US this evening, November 2. The article is entitled "Hacking Democracy" and the introduction and link to the full article are below.

"Hacking Democracy"
On Tuesday, 40 percent of voters will cast ballots on electronic touch-screens. If you're not worried already about the dangers of paperless voting, this HBO documentary will blow your mind.

By Farhad Manjoo

Nov. 2, 2006 | "When people see what is really going on, there is no way we will allow this to continue," the crusading election-reform activist Bev Harris declares at the beginning of "Hacking Democracy," a documentary film about the flawed American election system that premieres on HBO on Nov. 2. It's a nice thought, one you want to believe: If only Americans could be made to understand the true, gut-sinking atrociousness of just about everything involved in U.S. elections -- from the gerrymandered districts to the undemocratic distribution of electoral power to the enormous influence wielded by partisan officials to the underfunded, overwhelmed local offices to, finally, the insanely dangerous technology we use to run the whole thing -- well, then, maybe folks would actually do something about the problem.

...it continues...

Some other interesting reading on the subject would include Noam Chomsky's "Manufacturing Conscent" regarding the current incumbents' (in their first run under Reagan) views on democracy abroad, specifically elections in Nicaragua, Guatamala, and El Salvador.

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