I am thinking a lot about the concept of revolution, these days. At this point, most people in the United States can agree that something has gone terribly wrong. We may disagree about when it started to go that way (my personal contention being “with Teddy Roosevelt”), or how far away from our original promise we have come (I would contend “a long, long frickin’ way”), but we all know that something’s amiss. In spite of the assurances we keep getting that the economy is fine, in spite of the assurances that people are happy, in spite of the assurances that things are going to get better…we all know that none of this is the case. Our government is a trainwreck happening in interminable slow motion, and most of us feel powerless to stop it. The tool we were given to change the system was voting, and the powers that be have effectively neutralized that. So now what?
Well, the only other option is revolution.
We are two elections in to the Presidential primary races, and already it has begun: conspiracy theories that the votes have been tampered with. And now, thanks to Dennis Kucinich we’re starting to get some evidence that, indeed, something is not quite right with the way we conduct elections. Now, you don’t have to believe that someone deliberately hacked the machines. It’s possible that the optical scan machines are simply not always scanning. The results are speaking for themselves, though. The original vote was not accurate.
We have had plenty of evidence for seven years that our electoral system is shot through with flaws. The 2004 Presidential election merely underscored this point. And here we are again, after years of neglect and head-pats, facing an election that no one in their right mind is going to believe accurately reflects the votes cast. No matter who wins the 2008 Presidential election, if the system is not fixed, there will be many who question their right to hold the title of President of the United States. Why, in a country where we hold the democratic process in such high regard, has so little effort been made to ensure that election results are valid? Why have our Congressmen not demanded careful oversight of elections (in order to ensure that no one is unfairly disenfranchised or discouraged from voting), and proof of security and 100% accuracy from the voting machines our tax dollars purchase? For that matter, why have the American people, as a body, not been demanding more from our representatives?