- When I was younger, the red states were Democratic and the blue states were Republican. At some point since 1997 the color convention got reversed. I still think of it the old way, and it bugs me when the new system is used.
- I still prefer old-fashioned paper ballots over the electronic machines. Would you trust your vote to your personal computer? But really, if the Diebold machines are so error-prone, then that tells me that the market is wide open for a better designed competing product. I’m sure there’s a lot of Democratic precincts out there who would by them. C’mon inventors of America, it’s time to build a better mousetrap!
- Speaking of voting machines, have you heard about the ones used in India? Maybe if we used those machines, we’d have fewer of these problems.
- Remember the Iraqi elections in January 2005? Remember that purple finger dye? That was a good idea, and I’d like to see it done here. Andy Looney tells of its benefits better than I: "[It’s] easier to prevent multiple visits to the voting booth […] you have this lovely purple reminder of being part of a democracy on your hand for the next few days [and] you can see who the non-voting slackers in the community are, and chide them for not voting." It would work a whole lot better than those childish "My vote counted" stickers they hand out.
- I hate those campaign signs all over our roads. When they are in private citizens’ yards, that’s okay. It shows me who supports who and helps me get to know my neighborhood. But when they are on road medians it’s only a matter of money, who can afford to cluster 30 or 40 signs in as many places as possible. It’s rude, unsubtle, irritating, an eye-sore, and damages my respect for that candidate. And as a conservationist, it sickens me how much litter and waste those signs create.
- My thoughts on ‘Republican vote stealing’ and throwing votes out on legal technicalities: it’s a symptom of a weak voter registration system. I don’t blame the exploiters of technicalities and loopholes as much as having a system with so many technicalities and loopholes. After all, when the bus is on a bumpy road, should you blame the bus driver for the bumpy ride? It’s time we had a less bureaucratic and more streamlined voter registration system. (You’re guess is as good as mine on how to do that, though.)
- I heard no candidate talking about Congress taking back its exclusivity on committing US troops abroad, something that both Republican and Democratic presidents have done since 1950, leaving Congress stuck with the bill. Doesn’t Congress care about its own sovereignty? It’s time to give back to the legislative branch the power that has been slowly usurped from it.
- Did you find yourself staring at the ballot this year, looking at those two names and asking yourself, "7 million people in this state, and these are the best two clowns we could come up with?" You don’t have to decide between the lesser of two evils. You have more options.
Okay, enough politics for today.
In other news, Evelyn and I held a Hitchcock film festival for Halloween. We and friends watched Psycho and The Birds. Psycho was better. Evelyn’s car had $1900 of work done to it to remove carbon deposits and replace some values and sensors. The car vibrates at rest a lot less than it used to, and it runs much quieter.
Nifty Wikipedia Thing: the Hands of Victory
What I’m reading: "Lost Chance in China" by John S. Service