I want to end my discussion on election issues with the article in the New York Times this weekend pointing to Maryland as leading the way to voter fraud. Remember, we already have election fraud in the captured media and campaign funding. We also have the most fraud and corruption in the country so with O'Malley running for President one would expect voter fraud. You will be standing by and watching as these incumbents in the Maryland Assembly literally steal your vote if you do not VOTE YOUR INCUMBENT OUT OF OFFICE!
I have for months spread the word about ridding the state of incumbents and with the election coming in just weeks it is up to you to shout loudly and strongly to vote a write-in for Sarbanes, Cardin, and Cummings!
We are hearing the numbers for Social Security increases this year calculated from inflation. People receiving social benefits have received almost no increase these three years and it is has never been allowed to fall below 3%. What is happening, as with the frozen minimum wage is that people are being allowed to fail into third world poverty. IT IS DELIBERATE. YOUR THIRD WAY DEMOCRAT HAD THE SUPERMAJORITY AND FAILED TO PROTECT THESE SAFETY NET ISSUES FOR YOU. IT IS MERELY A FACTOR OF CHANGING THE PARAMETERS USE TO CALCULATE THE COST OF LIVING RATIO (COLA) AS THE ARTICLE BELOW SHOWS. This one change would have allowed all social benefits including Social Security to keep pace with inflation. It seems food, health care, and fuel are important indicators of cost of living------not for your corporate Third Way Democrat....they follow Wall Street inflation! They intend to end Social Security just as the Republicans because corporations do not want to pay into the payroll taxes.
YOUR THIRD WAY DEMOCRAT IS LYING TO YOU WHEN THEY SAY THEY ARE FIGHTING FOR THE SAFETY NET......THEY WOULD HAVE MADE THAT A PRIORITY WHEN THEY HAD POWER.
Contact the ACLU - MD which has been silent on media capture and online registration/voting as perils to election freedom. We know these are as perilous as voter ID laws.
ACLU of Maryland Distributing 20,000 Maryland Voter Empowerment Cards to Groups Across the State
October 10, 2012Voters can report problems on Election Day by calling hotline: 1-888-496-ACLU
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: (212) 549-2666; firstname.lastname@example.org
Voter Registration Rolls in 2 States Are Called Vulnerable to Hackers
By NICOLE PERLROTH Published: October 12, 2012
Computer security experts have identified vulnerabilities in the voter registration databases in two states, raising concerns about the ability of hackers and others to disenfranchise voters.
In the last five years, Maryland and Washington State have set up voter registration systems that make it easy for people to register to vote and update their address information online. The problem is that in both states, all the information required from voters to log in to the system is publicly available.
It took The New York Times less than three minutes to track down the information online needed to update the registrations of several prominent executives in Washington State. Complete voter lists, which include a name, birth date, addresses and party affiliation, can be easily bought — and are, right now, in the hands of thousands of campaign volunteers.
Computer security experts and voting rights activists argue that a hacker could use that information to, say, change a person’s address online to ensure that the voter never receives a ballot in Washington, where voting is now done entirely by mail. In Maryland, hackers could ensure that a voter is not listed on the precinct register at a designated polling station. In that case, the voter would be redirected to another precinct, or asked to fill out a provisional ballot. In both cases, the person would not be able to vote in local, or possibly, Congressional races.
But the real concern, critics say, is that large numbers of voters from one political party, or demographic, could have their information changed by automated computer programs. A program that could change tens of thousands of voter records at once, they say, would require only a dozen lines of code.
Rebecca Wilson, co-director of Save Our Votes, a voting rights nonprofit, said her organization did not initially track how states set up their online systems. “We thought, ‘How badly could you mess that up?’ Well, we learned,” Ms. Wilson said. “Now, anyone in the world can write a computer program that commits absentee ballot fraud on a mass scale.”
Maryland and Washington are not considered swing states in next month’s election, but as other states move to online registration systems, security experts worry that they will follow Maryland and Washington’s example.
Officials in the two states say that concerns of a widespread cyberattack are exaggerated. Washington officials point out that voters who do not receive their ballots can still print them online, and they say, they have never received a complaint about an address being unknowingly changed.
In Maryland, officials say they consult with their own security experts to pick up unusual patterns in online traffic, like an effort to change thousands of addresses from a single Internet address. They point out that address changes require a confirmation letter be sent to the new address. If that bounces back, the change is deemed invalid.
Washington officials also cite their use of “captchas,” which are meant to help weed out humans from computer programs. Captchas — those puzzles used by e-commerce sites that require people to type in a set of distorted letters and numbers — are easy for humans to read and retype but difficult for machines to decipher.
“What is technically possible and what realistically could happen are very different,” said Ross Goldstein, the deputy administrator for Maryland’s Board of Elections.
But security experts say that these measures are not enough to prevent a determined hacker from disenfranchising scores of voters and influencing an election. Critics say that hackers could use botnets, networks of infected computers, to change voters’ addresses. And new machine learning technologies can beat captchas, or people can be paid to type them in, in real time, for as a little as a penny per captcha or less.
“They could influence an election with 20,000 votes for less than a penny a head,” said J. Alex Halderman, one of the computer scientists who first discovered Washington’s loophole. “That would be a great return on investment for them.”
In Florida last month, Republican state officials paid a company $1.3 million to register voters, but county election officials noticed several registrations contained unauthorized address changes and names of dead people. Laws in the state make it difficult to vote if an address is recently changed.
“In theory, the same scenario is possible online, where it is much easier to do,” said Charles Stewart III, a political scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Last week, Mr. Halderman, David Jefferson, a computer scientist at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories, and Barbara Simons, a retired IBM computer scientist, sent a letter to Washington and Maryland election officials with seven recommendations for security, including authenticating voters with nonpublic information like the last four digits of their Social Security numbers and setting up disaster plans that would let them shut down their systems during an attack.
Shane Hamlin, Washington’s co-director of elections, said that the state’s registration closed last week, but that his team planned to review transaction logs for unusual activity. “Their suggestions are all reasonable and doable,” Mr. Hamlin said. “Some we have in place and can build on, some are longer term.”
The computer scientists say that they have yet to receive a response from Mr. Hamlin’s counterparts in Maryland, where online registration remains open.
“We want to make voting as accessible as possible,” Mr. Goldstein said. But “there’s always risk in all systems.”
TWO YEARS AGO MARYLAND REMOVED THE CAPABILITY OF CANDIDATES OF USING SOCIAL MEDIA FOR CAMPAIGNS. THE PEOPLE NEEDING TO USE SOCIAL MEDIA FOR CAMPAIGNS ARE THOSE WHO CAN'T AFFORD PRINT/NEWS MEDIA......THAT'S RIGHT.......CHALLENGERS TO THE INCUMBENTS. THIS IS DELIBERATE FOLKS!!!!! THESE PEOPLE ARE NOT WORKING FOR YOU AND ME.
DID YOU HEAR MAGGIE MCINTOSH, JOAN CARTER CONWAY, BARBARA ROBINSON, CATHERINE PUGH, CHERYL GLENN, KURT ANDERSON, MARY WASHINGTON, SHAUN TARRANT, AND JILL CARTER.......MY POLITICIANS........ SHOUTING LOUDLY AND STRONGLY AGAINST THIS?
Maryland lawmakers pass new election law restricting Facebook today
July 20, 2010
The new regulations go into effect in just two weeks.
Del. Michael Smigiel, a Republican from the Eastern Shore, was the sole lawmaker in the 12-member committee to oppose the regulation that requires campaigns to add a disclosure sentence to their social-networking sites that mirrors the one they are required to put on their printed campaign literature.
Smigiel said he feared the regulation would have a "chilling effect" on the free speech of candidates, according to the Baltimore Sun.
Last month when elections officials decided to regulate candidates' use of social networking sites some felt the regulation was overdue, but others believed enforcing the new law could be a nightmare and that it unfairly hurts new candidates with little cash and limited access to media coverage. To such candidates social networks had become a great equalizer.
A step toward regulating the Internet?
One of the problems some have with the new regulation is that they see it as a back-door way for the state to regulate the Internet piece meal. Other critics say that election officials should concentrate on aggressively enforcing laws being violated that are already on the books and eliminating existing campaign contribution loopholes.
Still, others who believe the new election regulation has merit say it would be impossible to enforce. How can you track every social network site launched by an anonymous individual or groups? It would take an army of state workers to accomplish this -- at a time when there are state and city hiring freezes.
More cynical observers argue that the the board of elections is simply focusing on the Internet to get the spotlight off of its glaring deficiencies and lack of transparency
Corporate bankruptcy laws that shed private worker pensions, bank savings interest rates at almost 0% making people go into a criminal market, medicaid and medicare becoming public health programs, and social security slowly being decreased to nothing. THESE ARE ALL SAFETY NET ISSUES LEFT UNPROTECTED BY A SUPERMAJORITY OF YOUR INCUMBENT THIRD WAY DEMOCRATS ONLY FOR THEM TO PRETEND TO BE FIGHTING FOR THEM NOW. They are working for corporations which do not intend to pay taxes so there will be no payroll tax contributions. THAT IS THE SHORTFALL FOR WHICH THESE POLITICIANS ARE PREPARING.
Social Security Benefits Will Get Small Cost of Living BumpBy Chris Isidore | CNNMoney.com – Tue, Oct 9, 2012 4:20 PM EDT
NEW YORK -- Social Security recipients will get less than a 2% increase in their benefits next year to account for a rise in cost of living, according to an estimate published Tuesday. That's less than half the increase in benefits they received in 2012.
(Courtesy of CNNMoney)The American Institute for Economic Research, a private think tank, estimates Social Security checks will increase between 1.5% and 1.7% in 2013.
The Labor Department will release its September inflation reading on Oct. 16, which is the final of 12 readings used to calculate the cost of living adjustment made annually to benefits. The Social Security Administration will announce the 2013 benefit increase at that time. Benefits increased by 3.6% in 2012, when inflation was higher.
Steven Cunningham, director of research and education for AIER, said that the increase will not be enough to cover the actual rise in costs faced by many seniors, who receive the overwhelming majority of Social Security benefits.
Seniors don't typically have the same spending patterns as younger workers, whose purchases are more closely tracked by the government's inflation reading.
Cunningham pointed to larger increases in items more important to senior's spending, including food and beverages, which increased 2%; motor fuel, which rose 1.9%; and medical care, which jumped 4.1%. The AIER's estimate of the cost of every day items purchased by seniors showed a 2% increase over the last year.
"They're falling behind by about a half percentage point a year or so. It's not a huge amount, but over time that adds up," said Cunningham.
In 2009, benefits increased by 5.8% following a sharp rise in gas prices in 2008. But social security recipients saw no increase in 2010 and 2011, when spending dropped due to the recession and prices remained low.
This calculation doesn't only affect those receiving Social Security benefits. It is also used to raise the ceiling on wages subject to payroll taxes. This year's maximum is $110,100, but a 1.7% increase would subject an additional $1,872 to the 6.2% tax.