I’m going to throw out a few thoughts about the automated election call scandal here in Canada. To recap, the last Canadian elections saw the use of automated telephone systems which were used to phone up voters in certain areas, pretending to be Elections Canada so as to give them false information to try and prevent them from voting.
Let me start by mentioning a few things which I really don’t consider relevant to this issue. True, the fascist/socialist media would not be giving 10 seconds of broadcast time to this if the perps had been allied with one of the leftist parties in this country (for the purposes of this post I am pretending that the Conservatives are not a leftist party since that is the universally accepted delusion we have all agreed to work under). In fact, this sort of thing goes on to a much larger degree on the left domestically and globally; rooting it out and shining a bright light on it would be a far more valuable use of time and energy (and wouldn’t involve telespam). Remember when those Black Panther thugs were stalking a few American poling stations for Obama? How much would it have cost to have their pictures printed on a few tens of thousands of T-shirts and handed out for free? They wouldn’t have needed a caption, just let the picture start some conversations.
Many of the robocall complaints are fake and others are dubious. This would be very relevant if ALL complaints were fake. But if that’s not the case, it’s not relevant. The results of the malfeasance weren’t that effective or influential. Not only is that not relevant but it is insulting to even see that brought up. People don’t do things like this if they don’t think they will influence outcomes. We are supposed to give them points for being overly ready to stoop to this crap when it wasn’t really needed or for being inefficient at their attempts? How about we all stuff that excuse right back up whatever orifice it fell out of and pretend it never happened?
Now let’s turn to what is relevant. Election fraud is nothing new. I have a relative who remembers that in the region he grew up in, $2 bills were viewed with disrespect since that was widely known as the going price for a vote. That or a bottle of cheap hooch. He recalls someone trying to cheat the candidate and being refused his reward. This prompted the individual to have a look at the ceiling of the building where the voting was held. Predictably, little holes were to be seen above where the voting booths were. The cat and mouse game has likely gone on since the earliest attempts at anonymous ballot voting. What is new, or at least is trending upwards in recent decades is that the number of ways in which democracy can be subverted is growing and the methods are becoming more effective.
There’s the Vladimir Putin/Hugo Chavez/all Western leftist media methods of absolute media control. There’s the method of controlling candidate eligibility. There’s voting machine manipulation; bribing/intimidating illegal immigrants into voting for your party; having henchmen in front of the polling station to intimidate potential opposition votes; passing false information (say, by automatic telephone systems) to suppress voter participation in key areas. Don’t be mislead by my mention of Putin and Chavez; this is mature Western democracies where this trend is taking off. Places like Russia and Venezuela are just ahead of the curve.
There are two paths that can be taken:
Make any attempt at election fraud an act of high treason–whether it’s selling or buying a vote, voting twice, spreading false polling info or anything else that might get added to the list–punishable by nothing less than death. Reread that last sentence please. But wait, you may say. Countries like Canada have banned capital punishment. True, and whether that is a positive or negative development is outside the scope of this post. The fact remains that the Ban on capital punishment is an act of a democratic (relatively) society. Election fraud is not only a rejection of that society, it is an act which places the perpetrator outside of the protection of that society.
Or take the other path. Consider a little election tampering to be unpleasant but no great attack on democracy. Let everyone “level the playing field” as best they can and use their common sense and public sentiment to tell them when they’ve gone too far. For a while anyway. Once voter participation falls below a reasonable level we can then just admit that the system is no longer credible and begin using private militias to help determine which warlord rules (and really, all a head of state is–and all it ever was is–a warlord who exists in a system requiring very little of the traditional duties of a warlord).
Frankly, I’m good with either path. The first path ends up devolving into the second path anyway but lengthens the timeframe a bit. Any long-term solution involves defeating human nature (viciously and without pity or mercy) and removing it from sovereignty over intelligence but that’s for another post.