Webster G. Tarpley, Ph.D.
November 5, 2012
On the eve of the US elections, many signs point to a close contest between Wall Street Democrat Barack Obama and plutocratic Republican Mitt Romney, with the fight for control of the US House of Representatives and Senate likely to repeat the status quo.
This year is different from 2008, when mass hatred for the George Bush neocon regime of war and depression gave Obama an advantage which was widely recognized before the vote. This year’s election will resemble those of 2000 and 2004, when the presidential candidates were evenly matched. This is the kind of an election in which election fraud, carried out by electronic voting machines and computer networks, can be decisive.
Looking back to 2000 and 2004 should remind us of the superior capabilities of the reactionary Republicans when it comes to stealing elections, either through election fraud, corrupt judges, or other manipulations. In 2000, voters likely to support the Democrats were systematically purged from the Florida voting rolls, and then the recounting of the votes was ordered stopped by a reactionary majority of the US Supreme Court who obviously cared nothing about the rule of law and everything about installing George W. Bush in the White House. In 2004, the center of election fraud was Ohio, where suspicion centered on Republican Ken Blackwell, the then Secretary of State, and thus the official who organized the state elections.
This year, the threat of large-scale election fraud carried out through the proprietary and thus secret software of voting machines and the privately owned computers which count the votes in many localities hangs over the swing states or battleground states, and especially once again over Ohio.
Does Tagg Romney Control the Ohio Vote Count?
The most obvious danger comes from the fact that Tagg Romney may control voting machines in Ohio. Tagg, a hedge fund hyena in his own right, and the eldest son of the Republican candidate Mitt Romney, together with a group of investors associated with Mitt’s vulture operation Bain Capital, acting through a company called HIG Capital (the HIG is believed to stand for Hart Intercivic Group), reportedly seized control of Hart Intercivic, the second or third largest voting machine company in the United States, well over a year ago. This news was first reported by veteran activist Dr. Bob Fitrakis, the editor of The Free Press, an Ohio online alternative news source which has taken the lead in fighting election fraud in Ohio since 2004.
According to Brad Blog, “the Austin-based Hart company… supplies electronic voting machines and paper ballot tabulators that will be used to tally votes in the presidential election this year in all or parts of California, Colorado, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, and Washington.”
Fitrakis is focusing on the threat of vote fraud by pro-Tea Party officials in Hamilton County, Ohio, which includes the area around Cincinnati on the southern edge of the state. These officials are actively recruiting protofascist Tea Party fanatics to intimidate and harass minority voters on election day, leaving no doubt about where they stand. The obvious conflict of interest inherent in having Mitt Romney’s son and his friends controlling the machinery of the Ohio vote count has attracted the attention of Forbes magazine, Business Insider, Investors’ Business Daily, and United Press International, none of which is noted for hostility to the interests of the 1%. But establishment flagships like the Washington Post and the Cleveland Plain Dealer have attempted to minimize the gravity of this scandalous situation, alleging that Hart Intercivic was simply selling off some old voting machines.
And what of the Democratic Party? Fitrakis reports that the Ohio Democrats are doing everything possible to hide and ignore the reality of imminent vote fraud, fearing that voters who are told about the danger will simply give up on the elections in despair and stay home. Obviously, this reflects a sober estimate of the low enthusiasm for Obama, who has repeatedly betrayed his 2008 supporters. But it also reflects the structural inability of the Democratic Party to fight back. Many individual Democratic officials may also be bribed.
The Free Press is currently documenting a series of possible steps toward vote fraud, evidently in support of Romney. A few days ago, Fitrakis and his associates confirmed the “installation of untested and uncertified election tabulation software” in the form of “experimental” software patches installed on Election Systems and Solutions Inc. voting machines in 39 Ohio counties. This tampering was done in secret. The Free Press also reports that Ohio’s current Republican Secretary of State, John Husted, continues to silently remove thousands of registered voters from the voting rolls on the eve of the election.
On October 26, Fitrakis and Harvey Wasserman wrote: “Electronically, this election is over. Mitt Romney has won… Unless you act now and are prepared to fight this out for years to come, whatever remains of American democracy is done. Finished. Over. No nation that suffers the theft of three out of four consecutive national elections can harbor the illusion that it is run by the will of its people.”
Beware the Red Shift
In 2004, election observers were surprised when the actual vote totals reported in a number of states, including Ohio, had shifted significantly and suspiciously in favor of Bush and the Republicans in comparison to the last round of public opinion polls conducted by telephone, and even in comparison with the exit polls in which persons leaving the polling places were questioned. This was the infamous “red shift.” All the mass media rely on exit polling by the National Election Pool Inc., which gets its data from other private firms, Edison Research and Mitofsky International, who send out workers to buttonhole those who have just voted. In the end, the exit poll results which are announced have been pre-cooked and pre-massaged by the polling firms. Some observers have demanded that the exit pollsters release their raw and unadjusted data down to the precinct level, but this request has been stonewalled. In the words of one expert, “our great, free, and open media are concealing data so that it cannot be analyzed.”
NBC Politics Boss: Election Fraud Concerns Are “Conspiracy” “Garbage”
The attitude of capitulation is shared by the entire Obama machine and its left liberal supporters. No US network is more favorable to Obama than NBC/MSNBC, but even so NBC news political director and alleged elections expert Chuck Todd, responding to the reports of Tagg Romney’s control over voting machines in so many states, dismissed these concerns out of hand on October 21, tweeting, “The voting machine conspiracies belong in the same category as the Trump birther garbage.” In this cycle, the Republicans have attempted to frustrate the popular will through oppressive voter identification requirements, constant purges of the voting rolls, limitations in time for early voting, inadequate numbers of voting machines, and a general climate of harassment and intimidation. One wonders what planet Chuck Todd goes home to each day. Is it the Mormon planet of Kolob?
Michael Moore, Noam Chomsky, Rachel Maddow Refuse to Fight Vote Fraud
An excellent summary of recent and current machine-generated and electronic election fraud patterns in the United States is provided by Victoria Collier in her article entitled How to Rig an Election: The GOP Aims to Paint the Country Red, which appears in the November issue of Harper’s Magazine. She shows that Jonathan Simon and Mark Crispin Miller of New York University, among others, have been attempting to alert Democrats to election fraud, but with very limited success. Miller has dedicated two books to this topic — Fooled Again and Loser Take All. Much responsibility for enabling the Republican fraud machine goes to the corrupt and craven leaders of left-liberal opinion. “I know Michael Moore, Noam Chomsky, Rachel Maddow,” Miller says. “I’ve tried for years to get them to concede that possibility, but they won’t even do that. There is clearly a profound unease at work. They just can’t go there.” The left-liberal bigwigs, Miller concludes, are in terror of being branded as “conspiracy theorists.” Of that and of losing their precious funding one suspects.
Some months before the election, Harold Meyerson of the Washington Post warned of the prolonged crisis that would result from a successful Republican attempt to steal yet another election, asking, “…what should Democrats do if Romney comes to power on the strength of racially suppressed votes? Such an outcome and such a presidency, I’d hope that they contend, would be illegitimate — a betrayal of our laws and traditions, of our very essence as a democratic republic. Mass demonstrations would be in order. So would a congressional refusal to confirm any of Romney’s appointments. A presidency premised on the racist restriction of the franchise creates a political and constitutional crisis, and responding to it with resigned acceptance or inaction would negate America’s hard-won commitment to democracy and equality.”
Well spoken, but nobody in their right mind believes that the weakling Obama and his Wall Street Democratic Party are actually capable of leading a struggle of this nature. Gore and Kerry both collapsed in the face of determined election fraud. And the post-partisan Obama does not want to be seen fighting an attempted GOP coup — that would not fit his agenda of bipartisanship! This weakness is one of the powerful factors inviting the reactionary Republicans to steal as many elections as they can with impunity. The result may be a permanent austerity dictatorship with Mitt Romney as figurehead, funded by the ultra-reactionary Koch brothers, and managed by Karl Rove of Salt Lake City.