October 18th, 2003


Kids, Road Rage is not cool.

So we had an enjoyable evening watching Kill Bill for the second time tonight with friends. And then on the ride home, for no reason, being in no hurray at all, driving a mere 3 miles, our driver went into a mad road rage and started driving like an asshole and threatening (verbally and physically) other drivers. The roads were flooded with drunken inexperienced drivers due to the local high school homecoming and the odds were very high that someone would have done something really stupid and we would have ended up in an accident.

This is the third time that this driver has put my life in danger by driving recklessly and I will never ride in a car that he is driving again. I don't care if he's a really good driver or a normally really nice guy, he was a fucking psychotic tonight. I'll walk, thank you.

I can't believe how much an adrenaline rush like that does to frazzle ones nerves. I came in the house and I was SO on edge. I cranked up the new Patty Griffin album super loud and drank some of herbivorous's Relaxing Tea and lit a TON of candles in a dark room and just chilled. Then I played some Awari with Tony and now I feel much more calm (and exhausted) and ready to sleep.
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Diebold Crushing Free Speech - Indymedia Fights Back

So Diebold, the folks who make the proprietary voting machines that are being shown over and over again to be horribly flawed (probably purposely so), has been issuing cease and desist letters to ISPs and content providers all over the net to take down copies of and links to leaked documents that may provide evidence to Diebold's awareness of the flaws in their system.

The ISP of one indymedia center is fighting back with the EFF.

Here's the text of the Indymedia article that Diebold tried to have taken down (simply for linking to the memos and PDF files of a book containing the leaked memos which are now available all over the net).

This set of emails has been posted all over the place and shut down all over the place. Webmasters - especially those out of the reach of the DMCA - are encouraged to take a full copy of the memos at the above link.

For background.... the following summary was posed on DU when the Italian set of files was posted...

"In the support link, check out October 2001 for the "alter the audit log in Access" memo, April 2000 for memos that refer to transmitting vote data from optical scan machines by cell phone, April 2002 for a Tab Iredale (senior programmer) memo that urges folks to avoid getting Windows CE certified by anyone, and January 2001 for a memo from Ken Clark (principal engineer) talking about how pointless it is to attempt a recount on a touch screen.

Then, bear in mind that GEMS programs 1.11.14 and 1.17.17 are certified -- and check out how many times they are installing 1.14.xx and 1.15.xx series and using them in elections! (Totally illegal: what this means is the software used in these elections was never looked at by ANYONE except a handful of programmers in Canada.) Pretty much throws the whole certification and testing argument out the window.

There are a few "gems" (pardon the pun) about blaming problems on the customer; one where they find that they upgraded software for the optical scan and now it won't work on some optical scan machines in Virginia. They discuss giving them new optical scans, but decide to instead find a way to blame it on the customer and make them pay for new machines.

Also look for one in Colorado Springs (El Paso County Colorado) where they discuss the fact that they can't pick up a check until they do a demo of what they sold, but they don't have software that does what they sold, so they discuss a way to fake the demo, mentioning they've faked it before...

Boring reading, but productive for anyone who wants to head directly into your attorney general's office and demand that we put a stop to using Diebold optical scan and touch screens."

This Dielbold stuff and the theft of democracy by a bunch of big money corporations making faulty, proprietary, unverifiable voting machines ought to be the biggest story ever. Hanging chads are a mere distraction compared to this.