Toby: Defender Of Democracy 

Do you love this country? I sure do. Did you vote..? Me neither (I have an excuse).
Read more for my wacky adventures.


I cannot vote.
So how do I take part in the process? We make a lot of noise about the integrity of this democratic process. Hell, we just overthrew a couple of governments to show them how much fun it could be to do it our way, quick aside here
"Not Me?" - Sorry Charlie
You're reading this, you're thinking, that wasn't me, that's not MY war... truth is, it is. You see the President (name escapes me but he's on TV all the time) he works for you, on your behalf, in your name (collectively, your name, our name, 'We The People...' ring a bell?) so the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and To Be Announced are YOUR WARS. Provoked or not, the wars are yours, the mistakes and the successes are yours too, congratulations you are an American.

I do what I can to be a part of the process, the system. Mostly I urge my friends to vote, and vote informed, but sometimes something comes up where I really get to take part... and even get paid.

California has been engaged in a dubious flirtation with electronic voting machines for a few years now. Opinions are mixed, with most of the fans being the guys who sell them. Personally, I like them in principal, in action I think they're a bit 'in beta' right now.

Redding, CA 11/01/2004
Redding in a quiet town in Northern California, Andy C. and I are watching the town roll up it's sidewalk. After 9:00 in Redding you don't have to look before you cross the street, everyone went home already. Tomorrow, while America selects it's leader for the next 4 years, Andy and I will be babysitting the latest in voting technology.

The Deal
You can't videotape real people making real votes. So the Secretary of State runs a parallel "control group" test that is staged, scripted and videotaped. They try to break the machines or get them to fail or find weaknesses on the process before it really hoses the election turn-out.

Redding, CA 11/02/2004
Holy crapola it's early. Andy and I have to be at the polling center by 5:30am. We make it and the first thing we do is tape them setting up the machine. They open the poll at 7:00am (just like a real one) and we were pretty much on autopilot for the rest of the day. It was a long day. We decided that it would be bad form to fall asleep when there was so much on the line. We were back at the hotel by 9:15pm - your democracy was well defended.

Redding, CA 11/03/2004
5:00am again?? Now Andy and I have to race 150 miles south to Sacramento to catch our flight home. The good news?

The wrong guy won.

Toby Wallwork
November 2004 

Posted: Tue - November 2, 2004 at 10:06 PM       @ toby