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    The hanging chad has gone digital and put Direct Democracy on life support.

    The election process has been gamed. Yet all that remains is a big social media circus pointing fingers and ranting about false claims. Show me someone who says this was the most secure election in the history of our nation and I will show you someone who has not done enough homework or is not thinking critically or is hiding a lie. Fair elections left the building at the turn of the century. 

    Gerrymandering games the result. 

    Gerrymandering is a practice intended to establish an unfair political advantage for a particular party or group by manipulating district boundaries. There are two principal tactics used in gerrymandering: cracking and packing. 

    An example would be the 2010 cycle of redistricting. A decade ago and the country is still reckoning with the impact. Last May, the Center for American Progress published a report that found that unfairly drawn congressional districts shifted, on average, a whopping 59 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives during 2012, 2014, and 2016 elections. That means that every other November, 59 politicians that would not have been selected based on statewide voter support for their party won anyway because the lines were drawn in their favor—often by their allies in the Republican or Democratic Party.

    To help put this number in perspective, a shift of 59 seats is slightly more than the total number of seats apportioned to the 22 smallest states by population. It is also more than the number of representatives for America’s largest state, California, which has 53 House members representing a population of nearly 40 million people.

    The Electoral College games the result,

    The Electoral College gives more weight to some voters in small states than those in more populous ones. Every state gets a minimum of three electoral votes. So take Washington, D.C., as an example. More people live in D.C. than in Wyoming, the least populous state in the union, yet they both get three electoral votes. 

    The biggest problem with the Electoral College is that it encourages voter suppression. South Western states have an advantage in the population count because electoral votes are appointed based on population. The count includes unauthorized populations. In effect giving these states extra representation for people, they do not represent. And yes, if a person is in the United States unauthorized, he or she should not have a vote. There is a system for Naturalization, which is also severely flawed. Two wrongs do not make this right. 

    The electoral college does not provide a straight forward process for selecting the president. Instead, it can be extraordinarily complex and has the potential to undo consensus at many points in the long journey from the selection of electors to counting their votes in Congress. 

    Faithless electors may fail to vote as the people who elected them wish. Congress may find it difficult to choose justly between competing slates of electors. It is even possible that a state legislature could take the choice of the electors away from the people altogether. 

    My guess is this is not what the founding fathers intended. In a few years, I could probably site the 2020 election cycle here. Stay tuned for more to come.  

    Social Media games the result,

    In the 2020 election, the American public became extremely polarized during the campaign cycle. A recent Stamford study found people’s usage of Facebook correlated with how polarized they are and how open they are to understanding the views or ideas of the opposition party.

    Facebook had internal research pointing to the same conclusion, “Our algorithms exploit the human brain’s attraction to divisiveness,” said one slide, from a 2018 presentation. This idea isn’t new. Much of social media in 2016 wasn’t about introducing new ideas or controversy but instead was about furthering racial and political divides already present in American culture. This was exacerbated in the 2020 cycle. More people spending more time on the platforms where this takes place will likely mean even more attempts at amplifying divisions and stoking discord.

    You could point to Fact-Checking here as a solution, however, there’s research to suggest that the very act of seeing a headline, even if it’s notated as false by the platform or by a fact-checker, can still contribute to people believing its claim.

    Fact-checking is predicated on the assumption that people will change their minds when confronted with correct information. As we have seen, this ignores a wide variety of social and cultural factors and is not supported by empirical evidence. In fact, fact-checking may have the opposite effect of making stories ‘more sticky.’ 

    Cyber Insecurity 

    While DHS and CISA claim this was the most secure election in history, it may be time to revamp that statement. While they deny it, Dominion Voting Systems interfaced with Solar Winds compromised networks. Did other actors use multiple back doors to access Dominion? The Dominion CEO lied under oath claiming they never used SolarWinds. Except they recently hid the Solar Winds link which is still in source code along with a custom SolarWinds HTML tag. Arguably with the access penetrators had to the Government Infrastructure, getting access to Dominion would have been possible. 

    The attackers had remote access into the entire US Government environment and a foothold in the network, which can be used to obtain privileged credentials

    Here is a technical analysis, mainly by Picus Labs which revealed the Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures (TTP) used in the SolarWinds breach. Attackers used 20+ MITRE Attack techniques.

    https://www.picussecurity.com/resource/blog/ttps-used-in-the-solarwinds-breach

    Some of the built-in SolarWinds Orion functionality accessible to the Backdoor hackers:

    – Execute arbitrary HTTP requests 

    – Download arbitrary URLs to Disk 

    – Install NPM Packages 

    – Execute arbitrary VBScript 

    – Execute arbitrary Local and Remote Programs 

    – Add nodes to be managed. 

    Decompiling the SolarWinds Orion software with the embedded SUNBURST backdoor used to hack nearly the entire. Gov, the first obvious thing: <enforceFIPSPolicy enabled=”false”/>

    The payload contains a series of DLLs in binary format, including an embedded D3D compiler that makes RPC calls. RPC is a protocol that one program can use to request a service from a program located in another computer on a network without having to understand the network’s details. RPC is used to call other processes on the remote systems like a local system.

    Officials from the 68th caucus precinct overlook the results of the first referendum count during a caucus event on Feb. 3, 2020 at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa.

    More and more, this looks like an NSA? rootkit, malicious software that is extremely difficult to spot and very hard to remove. One of the most dangerous rootkits was Stuxnet. It targeted Iranian nuclear facilities and was created by the USA and Israel and who then lost control of it.

    Details here http://www.capecharlesmirror.com/news/solarwinds-orion-hack-how-compromised-are-dominion-voting-systems/

    Also, no argument that if the air gap around the Dominion Voting system was closed, the theft, or destruction, of anything is possible and most likely probable. We have voting systems that were designed to be air gaped that were not. We have USB sticks where there should not have been. We have a two-party monitoring system that both sides were not given access to. I don’t think you can logically assume that that level of activity was intended to move 1500 votes. 

    With the current system and 155MM votes cast it is impossible to say that every single one of them was legitimate. Yet we have systems in place with much more accuracy and much more transparency that protect systems of far less value. 

    The current system can will, and was gamed. The wisdom of the crowd has been diluted and gamed. Forensics is very difficult at this point without transparency. We need to fill the holes. and reduce the opportunity to game the system for future election cycles. 

    Gerrymandering and redistricting benefit specific organizations, the electoral college has become antiquated and no longer serves a purpose except to game the system, databases that exist on servers and not DLT have no authority in today’s cyber insecure environment. 

    If we were smart, this would serve as a bellwether to the crucial need for a system that provides analytics in real-time with open-source verification. Tabulation that cannot be gamed, if you voted, you should be able to see your vote in the tabulation real-time, while you are at the poll. 

    If you are a Legal participant in the system, you should have a vote, if not then sorry. If you voted late, sorry. The Just world hypothesis, is a fictitious cognitive bias. If you are dead, sorry no vote. If you need to mail in a ballot, you should do so in a manner that gets your vote counted first not last. 

    In the meantime, this Hunger Games mentality is destroying democracy from the inside out. Democracy has been replaced with Divisiveness. Both sides have slid into debating the merits of the outcomes. One day the decision will be final, I pray that we can then begin to discuss solutions. Only then can trust be restored in the Democracy we all hold so dear. 

    Sources : 

    https://web.stanford.edu/~gentzkow/research/facebook.pdf

    https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/electoral-college-flawed-alternatives/story?id=74708394

    https://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt1npxbp

    https://www.npr.org/2020/05/27/860369744/social-media-usage-is-at-an-all-time-high-that-could-mean-a-nightmare-for-democr

    https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/solarwinds-and-dominion-voting-systems/id1112194905?i=1000502545085

    https://www.picussecurity.com/resource/blog/ttps-used-in-the-solarwinds-breach

    https://www.picussecurity.com/resource/blog/ttps-used-in-the-solarwinds-breach

    https://www.migrationpolicy.org/programs/us-immigration-policy-program-data-hub/unauthorized-immigrant-population-profiles?gclid=CjwKCAiA25v_BRBNEiwAZb4-ZQB6iFT9SbFrd_l7yf_Cz9Gyj_G2cK3aIkWFLvu6q9SeeEy32ybKLRoC4OYQAvD_BwE

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