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December 2, 2012

The Anonymous Save

The 2012 presidential election may have been salvaged by a coalition of online patriots

There are so many local things I ought to be talking about. I’ve even started writing about them. This is, after all, supposed to be a local blog. But I’m still thinking about the presidential election this past November 6.

Yeah sure, for the past three weeks all these high paid important pundits have said all kinds of this that and the other and we’re all tired of hearing it. But a lot of people seem to have been left with a funny feeling about the election, like something important happened that didn’t get explained, something under the surface. I sure felt that way.

Photo That Accompanied President Obama's Nov. 7 Victory Tweet
Photo That Accompanied President Obama's Nov. 6 Victory Tweet

We’ve been hearing a lot of chatter from the corporate media about The Demographic Shift. They keep telling us that the White People, if you exclude Hispanics in that category, have statistically been reduced to the status of the major minority. That is the reason, the paid pundits tell us, why that social climber Mitt Romney and that nasty peckerhead teabagger Paul Ryan lost to the incumbent’s brilliantly conducted campaign that “reached out” to the non-white minorities.

Whatever. The truth is that a lot of the White People in this country, such as me, ceased to think of White as “normal” a long time ago. As a famous comedian pointed out, Mr. Obama fits the accepted standard template of a White Person almost precisely, while his lily white challengers came off looking like a bizarre freak show. “If you want a white president,” said Chris Rock, “I’ve got a polo-wearing, Hawaii living, home beer brewing, league bowling guy for you.”

But shortly after the election I heard about something utterly extraordinary... could it be true? Did a group of hackers swoop down at the precise right moment and set things right, thus allowing the majority to assert itself in the voting booth? Was The Empire saved from destroying itself by a voluntary association of true patriots?

Does Barack Obama owe his re-election to Anonymous?

Spokesperson From Anonymous Delivers A Pre-Election Warning To Karl Rove
Spokesperson From Anonymous Delivers A Pre-Election Warning To Karl Rove

About a week before the November 6 election Anonymous issued a video warning to Republican Party Boss Karl Rove. “We are watching you, we know that you will attempt to rig the election.” The spokesperson in the video then declared that “If we catch you we will turn over all of the data to the appropriate officials in the hopes that you will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

I’m sure that Rove was less than impressed with the threat of informing the authorities of his scheme to subvert the voting tallies on Election Day. After all, he is the authorities. True, back in 2008 his vote rigging scheme was exposed and stopped by court order a day before the presidential election, but he was never prosecuted. (Personally, I think he should have been executed for treason with a bullet to the head - after a fair trial of course. Not kidding about that.)

But consider that neither the extreme right-wing Democrats nor the Anti-American Republicans have ever done anything on a federal level to combat electronic vote rigging. Ever. That’s the consequence of having a one party system in this country, the two subsidiaries of the Ruling Party are not allowed to seriously compete with each other. As a result neither branch of the ruling party can challenge fundamental corruption by the other.

Now, is what I’m about to tell you a conspiracy theory or an elaborate hoax concocted by a bunch of jokers? Maybe. We’ll probably never quite know for sure. But I’ll just say that this account is not only very, very plausible, it’s the only explanation that fits the available observable facts.

Boss Rove Still In Denial Late In The Day (11:43 EST)
Boss Rove Still In Denial Late In The Day (11:43 EST)

We all remember what happened late in the evening on November 6 around 11:13 PM. Karl Rove, live and on the air in Rupert Murdoch’s FOX “News” studios had a complete meltdown. It seems that FOX was the very last corporate network to call the State of Ohio for Mr. Obama, a call which more than clinched the victory for the President. In response Rove displayed what could only be described as a hissy fit, declaring that a batch of uncounted votes from the southern precincts of Ohio would suddenly change the predicted result. Say what?

It was close to midnight when Mitt Romney finally emerged from hiding to face the world and give a less than gracious concession speech between clenched teeth. Paul Ryan reportedly wandered about shellshocked. Both of their Stepford spouses blubbered conspicuously, not with despair but with what looked to me like rage.

In the next few days it became well known that all of the top Gops and their corporate sponsors were absolutely open mouth shocked by Romney and Ryan’s failure to win. Cyberspace was choked with comments and videos from devastated Republican Party voters who had picked up on that top of the heap confidence. All this certainty in the outcome despite pre-election polling that showed the President leading handily, or at least slightly ahead. Disappointment, yes, but why would anyone be shocked and surprised?

The Phony Brooks Brothers Media Riot In 2000, Numbers In Photo ID Re-pub Politicians And Paid Staffers Demanding Florida Stop Counting Votes.  Why?  To Buy Time? For What?

The Phony Brooks Brothers Media Riot In 2000, Numbers In Photo ID Re-pub Politicians And Paid Staffers Demanding Florida Stop Counting Votes. Why? To Buy Time? For What?

Funny thing about that. Independent minded people with long memories will recall that the top Gops displayed the same sort of confidence in the outcome on Election Day in 2004 and again back in 2000. Late in the day after the polls closed they confidently declared that a batch of mysteriously uncounted votes would turn up in certain key “battleground” states that would favor the Re-pub candidate, Dubya. By golly these votes appeared exactly as they said they would, and in 2000 and 2004 those bad boys smirked their way into the White House and hardly anyone complained.

In 2008 we found out how the vote total fraud worked in 2004. The vote totals from most of Ohio’s voting precincts were transmitted over the web to the Secretary of State’s office in Columbus to be tabulated. Supposedly this transmission over the web was secure from hackers, but there was nothing in place to prevent a partisan like Rove from diverting the transmission into a fraudulent server.

Rove had set up an alleged “back-up system” for electronic vote counting after the polls closed, run by a supposedly private contractor called Govtech Solutions LLC, which in turn contracted for Smartech Corp. of Tennessee. Well sure enough there was a brief outage during the vote count, GovTech came on line and soon all those favorable votes appeared and tipped Ohio into the Re-pub column. Very simple classic vote manipulation gone cyber.

In 2004 this received zero coverage from the corporate media. But a group of outraged voters from Ohio sued in Federal court citing the RICO criminal conspiracy statute, a case called King Lincoln Bronzeville v. Blackwell. It seems that GovTech was owned by Rove’s personal IT guru, a fellow named Michael Connell. It was, as a lawyer put it, “an outrageous conflict of interest,” to put it mildly.

Michael Connell's Plane That "Ran Out Of Gas."

Michael Connell's Plane That "Ran Out Of Gas."

The complex case dragged on for three years, but the upshot is that on the day before Election Day 2008 US District Judge Solomon Oliver agreed and ordered the “backup system” be taken offline for the next day election. Mr. Connell gave the star testimony, from a later interview it appears that after a lot of soul searching he decided that rigging elections was not the best way to get into heaven. From McClatchy newspapers:

A 2004 election-night computer architecture map for Blackwell's office appears to suggest that as many as 51 of Ohio's 88 counties periodically sent their results to the secretary of state's office... SMARTech appears to have had the ability to intercept election returns before they were publicly disclosed... Connell's appearance, on the eve of the 2008 presidential election, culminated weeks of jockeying over his testimony, amid unsubstantiated allegations that he's been subjected to threats of retaliation if he tells all he knows.

About a month later Michael Connell, an experienced pilot, was killed when his plane mysteriously “ran out of gas.” His cell phone, which he constantly used and carried, was never recovered from the wreck. A lifelong evangelical Protestant, we can only hope that his final act of confession was enough so that his God has forgiven him for having served Karl Rove so well for so many years.

The ORCA Smartphone App That Didn't Work

The ORCA Smartphone App That Didn't Work

For the 2012 election the Republican Party had virtually unlimited amounts of Citizen’s United money to spend, cash contributed by America-hating billionaires like the Koch brothers and Sheldon Addelson. But how to spend it? You can buy only so many TV ads and besides, the number of aging Baby Boomers and other media idiots who watch and believe TV ads is rapidly shrinking.

So the Re-pubs, or rather the Romney campaign, came up with a fabulously expensive web based information platform called Project ORCA. The name is not an acronym, it was chosen to mimic Mr. Obama’s reliable Narwhal system that was introduced in 2008. The idea of these systems is to nationally centralize vote pulling, that is, volunteers going door to door on Election Day then report to the national database who has voted and who hasn’t. That way pressure to go vote can be applied to stragglers late in the day.

I personally think centralization is a bad idea. Vote pulling by local volunteers is a necessary technique for winning elections that goes back to the days of George Washington. Of course the vote pulling begins long before Election Day when the volunteers campaign and find out which voters will support their candidate.

The idea is to establish direct personal contact between the local party and the actual voters so that on Election Day the volunteers who show up at your door are not rank strangers. However, a national reporting system run by a particular campaign breaks the ties between the voters, the volunteers and with the local party. Breaking local connections greatly reduces local representation and thus is ultimately self-defeating for the party and for the candidates.

Some Of This Year's Lawn Signs In Albany (From AOA)

Some Of This Year's Lawn Signs In Albany (From AOA)

Riding around town a month before the election I was puzzled by the near absence of presidential campaign lawn signs for either candidate. So I stopped by Albany County Democratic Headquarters on Colvin Avenue to pick up a few Obama/Biden signs and was told that they weren’t expecting any. The only way to get signs, I was told, was to find the Obama headquarters and buy them for five dollars apiece.

I thought they were making some sort of sour joke but they weren’t. It seems the Romney organization had a similar deal, a separate headquarters that did not communicate with the locals and sold lawn signs instead of giving them away. Successful in the short term or not I see the establishment of these systems as the planting of the seeds of failure for both halves of the Ruling Party.

Some Of This Year's Lawn Signs In Albany (From AOA)

Well, massive organizational failure is exactly what happened to the Romney campaign in this 2012 election. It is well known how the ORCA vote pulling platform failed miserably on the day when it was needed the most, and somehow the Romney campaign didn’t have the technical expertise to deal with the crisis as it was happening. Only in a few local precincts that had somehow avoided subservience to ORCA did vote pulling proceed smoothly. In most of America the Re-pub Party machine plunged into election day chaos.

That didn’t seem to matter much to the Republican Elite because all that vote pulling stuff apparently was a cover for the real reason for ORCA, a method of rigging the vote totals so that they could “win” close elections. But their lack of technical expertise (along with their arrogance) appears to have allowed certain members of the public to outsmart smart boy Karl Rove and subvert the scheme.

Famous Idiot Donald Trump Tweets

Famous Idiot Donald Trump Tweets

A few days after the election on November 9, Anonymous issued a press release describing what they did to ORCA:

We coded and created, what we call, The Great Oz. A targeted password protected firewall that we tested and refined over the past weeks. We placed this code on more than one of the digital tunnels and their destinations that Karl’s not so smart worker bees planned to use on election night. We noticed that these tunnels were strategically placed to allow for tunnel rats to race to the server sewers from three different states... We watched as Karl’s little boys and girls confidently ran their tests while Karl told his barons to smoke cigars.

Basically, the Anonymous patriots are saying that they changed the passwords on the firewall of ORCA by replacing the firewall, the locked door that was supposed to conceal the “tunnels to the server sewers” that weren’t supposed to be there. Any programmer can tell you that such “tunnels” are literally child’s play to build, the hard part is hiding them. It sounds like Rove’s “worker bees’ depended on a common generic firewall for protection and nothing else.

But protecting your firewall with passwords is like putting a standard bolt lock on the door of your house, it will stop most thieves but will only slow down a skilled lock picker for maybe twenty seconds. But you would never expect a lock picker to replace your locked front door with another door that looks identical to the original but has a different lock so you can’t get into your own house. That’s apparently what happened. Rove’s servants couldn’t get inside to change the vote totals and they couldn’t figure out why. Again from Anonymous:

We watched as Karl’s speared ORCA was beached... We watched as Karl’s weak corrupters repeatedly tried to penetrate The Great Oz. These children of his were at a loss - how many times and how many passwords did they try - exactly 105.

And Rove went bananas on live TV and Romney is said to have gone into a characteristic rage as it became clear that the scam was jammed and their servants were helpless. In retrospect one may wonder how Rove could have been that stupid, but understand that Rove’s grasp of modern technology is limited to carrying out his schemes. In his selfish Baby Boomer arrogance he could not possibly have respected a leaderless coalition of 4chan graduates as an important political force in modern America.

Secret Police Raid And Loot A House In Brooklyn During The Failed FBI Drive To Shut Down Anonymous In 2011

Secret Police Raid And Loot A House In Brooklyn During The Failed FBI Drive To Shut Down Anonymous In 2011

At this time nothing can be proven, of course. But you watch what happens. I’m not a gambler but I’m willing to make a small wager that over the next year an ungrateful President Obama will send his secret police out in full force to infiltrate and entrap Anonymous by any means necessary. And expect Anonymous to do more of the same sort of patriotic police work, enough that eventually no one will doubt that they stopped Rove back in 2012.

Meanwhile Barack Obama is still Barack Obama, the corporate ideologue trying to affect a peaceful transition to corporate dictatorship. Once again our extreme right-wing president is about to let his Re-pub comrades raise my taxes, shrink even further the returns I get from my taxes, and give more of the taxes that I pay to a bunch of undeserving traitorous b-hole One Percenters. This time they are marketing another bogus government shutdown austerity crisis as “The Fiscal Cliff,” but even the corporate media appears to have grown weary of this particular set of lies.

But how can it be that Mr. Obama, who is extremely intelligent and has extraordinary political skills, has not acknowledged or confronted this electronic vote fraud crisis? Surely he has seen and understood what Rove has been doing. Perhaps Mr. Obama does not think he can challenge Rove, or perhaps he has not been given permission to do so.

Exactly.  Right On.

Exactly. Right On.

Since November 6 I’ve heard variations on this same conversation over and over, “I’m glad we stopped Romney but it’s too bad we still have Obama.” The President still doesn’t seem to realize that in 2010 Congress passed into the dirty hands of the Teabagger Fringe because of his blatant corporate giveaways, his stupid useless wars and his all out assault on the Bill of Rights. His supporters in 2008 simply refused to vote in 2010. (Foolishly, in my opinion.)

But I’m delighted to see that my prediction was essentially correct, that Mr. Obama could not get reelected in 2012 without at least some of his youthful former supporters from 2008 showing up at the polls. According to various analysts, that’s exactly what happened in Ohio, for example. Anonymous may have ensured that the election was counted fairly, but their timely intervention at a crucial moment wouldn’t have mattered if the incumbent had not managed to attract a majority of voters.

Top Gop John Boehner And The President Discuss How Best To Serve The One Percent

Top Gop John Boehner And The President Discuss How Best To Serve The One Percent

So now what do we do with the lesser of two evils in the White House? How can we defend out Constitution and our Bill of Rights from the array of corporatist politicians who overwhelmingly dominate our nation? And how do we fix our problems when the guy in charge wants most of those problems to persist, and the worst problems to grow worse?

Well, Anonymous may have provided an answer to those questions. If they really did what they said they did, and I believe it really happened like they said, then right there is the same old but still powerful lesson for patriotic Americans. Anonymous stepped in and did the right thing at the right moment and put things right and they didn’t ask anyone permission to do so. They just did it.


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Posted by:Roger Green
Posted on:12/09/2012
Here's what I think: there were a bunch of people who were disenchanted with Obama [raises hand] who might have not voted, or voted for a third party candidate [I practically had my pen poised for Jill Stein] except that we were SO convinced that Koch brothers and other forces would steal the election (Florida 2000, Ohio 2004) that we voted for Obama, even in "safe" states.

Posted by:Barbara
Posted on:12/09/2012
Roger, I think it's some of what you said, but I also think that Pat Buchanan had it right when he talked about the lack of jobs being the reason. He differs from other Republicans on that, that he recognizes that there is something wrong here in Corporate America. The other Republicans made some clueless remarks about welfare before they went back to attacks on Social Security and the urgent need to stop women who are raped from having abortions.
I don't think Obama won so much as Romney lost. He couldn't distance himself enough from the flakes and he is out of touch with regular people on economic issues.

Posted by:Dan Van Riper
Posted on:12/11/2012
Barbara, last night I was talking to a fellow whom I know to be intelligent and well-informed. He told me, "I can't wrap my head around the thought that this is how our elections are decided."

I think this fellow was articulating a widespread almost universal attitude. That right there is how and why creeps like Rove keep getting away with their crimes. And that explains why no major politicians dare speak up about this issue of vote manipulation. Who wants to believe it?

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