2008.01.06

Can you count on these machines? by Clive Thompson

When I watched people on TV voting with levers inside booths with curtains, I thought this was supposed to be funny. I thought they were referencing a time in the past to make a joke. I didn’t think this was how people voted in the United States.

2000 introduced me to the punchcard and now they’re using computers, ‘cause we know how reliable and safe those are. In Canada, you find your name on a list. You sign your name next to it. You take a ballot to a table behind a cardboard screen. You mark, with a pencil, beside the person you give your vote. You fold the piece of paper and put it in a locked box. I may not always like the guy in office, but he has a box of pieces of paper behind him, and that’s worth more than all the voting machines.