Skip to main content

Outsourcing Democracy - How an Election is Being Stolen as You Read

New Orleans parishes are in the process of choosing the planners that will guide the rebuilding of the city. These are people who will be tasked with urban planning, clean-up, and spending millions of dollars in federal aide money.And they're choosing these people via an online poll. You read that right, an online poll. It gets better. Want to qualify to vote in this election? Guess what, since you're online, you already do! Oh yeah, the only qualification to vote is a valid email address.  And, the kicker, the poll is being run by a local architectural firm. Hm, wonder if they stand to gain by, say, having one of their own become the planner for the old French Quarter?

This is a travesty of a election, hardly worth the use of the word. Between this website, my ISP, work, and Google, I could easily vote over 50 times in an election for New Orleans. No one would ever be able to verify that I was, in fact, a resident of Michigan. No one would ever be able to verify that onlinepollssuck@youknowwhatpart.com isn't being used by a legitimate New Orleans resident (hey, I just host email accounts for displaced residents). And worst of all, the poorest and hardest hit of residents aren't likely to have email addresses, internet access, or even computers. Where is their voice in this process?

This is your money, your tax dollars, that are going to be spent to rebuild New Orleans, not just the residents of Louisiana or New Orleans.

The word needs to get out. Tell a friend, call a paper, submit this to every political site you can. Digg the story, it's been submitted to Slashdot, hell, go read the original article yourself.

Comments

  1. Ryan save us! move to New Orleans

    ReplyDelete
  2. I bow to the wisdom and dedication of Alan Gutierrez (thinknola.com); he's stirring up the locals better than I ever could.

    So, unless that was sarcastic, thanks for the invite. I would love to come down sometime.. just gotta get that ole vacation thing settled.

    ReplyDelete
  3. No not sarcastic. Karen, is off for a much needed vacation from rebuilding and community involvement.

    We are seriously considering you for the Community Support Organization, which will be formed as soon as they decide how many people need to sit on it to have it stuffed correctly. Heh.

    Seriously, thanks for stopping by, thanks for Digging, and thanks for showing people in New Orleans that people in a far off place called Ann Arbor are engaged and paying attention.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Y'all are making me blush. You're welcome, but I'm hardly doing anything remotely on the scale that the two of you are doing. I'm flattered that you're considering me for anything, but I will publically wonder how much I can do from over a thousand miles away.

    Not that I won't do what I can; I get angry every time I see the state of your city after a year. It's criminal, or should be, especially that Walgreens cum industrial dump Karen blogged.

    Too bad the busy-bodies in Ann Arbor can't direct all that righteous anger somewhere it deserves to go; this Green Belt BS is so meaningless in the face of, you know, real problems.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

RIP Tom Petty

Tom Petty died today, aged 66. I won't claim to be a huge Tom Petty fan, but I've bought an album or two and sang along in the car to one of those songs everyone knows. I'll  stream a lot of his catalog today to remember the songs I've heard once or hundreds of times.

I also owe Petty credit for a singular moment in my life, and one I never expected to last in my mind.

Nearly 20 years ago, I was a fresh-ish faced transplant to Ann Arbor, MI by way of my first "real job" out of college, working for a software company in Dexter. I was renting a house with some other folks who'd also been displaced as a result of a fire at my first apartment. I was the only family member East of Lansing, which made me a contact point for anyone going through Detroit Metro airport.

Which is how my uncle Dean came to spend a few hours with me one evening. At the time, my grandparents (his parents) were wintering in Texas. My grandfather had health problems most of his life and…

Google Inbox: A classic Google product

My work domain (an EDU) recently had Google Inbox enabled so I had a good chance to try it out. My personal email is relatively quiet and, I believe, doesn't provide a good Inbox experience. Work is more active and requires actual management, something I've tossed many a tool at over the years. As part of my work life, I supported the Google Apps for EDU installation here and took a pretty extensive presentation to campus about how to manage large amounts of email.

Inbox is a classic Google product: the distillation of a number of excellent ideas into a set of half-complete features built for a use case most people don't meet. We've seen this in the past in products like ChromeVox, Google's Chrome extension for accessibility. ChromeVox works great on ChromeOS devices, but completely ignores the point that most users of accessibility tech (AT) don't have or want ChromeOS devices and come to services with their AT in tow. ChromeVox also ignores decades of convent…

Evernote

Evernote, for better or worse, is the best note-taking service for my needs. It works across all my devices/computers/modes. It's fairly easy to get stuff into it. Hell, they even have 2-Factor authentication. The Windows app is a little clunky and my girlfriend and I have never been able to get shared notes to work properly (conflicted note! three times in the same grocery trip!), but what service is perfect? At least they have nice socks.

Everything, in fact, is pretty good as long as you don't screw up. And screw up I did. I'm not very regular about making backups, but I do make them every month or so. Once you figure out how to create a backup, that is.

There's a helpful Export Note option (which turns into Export Notes when you select multiple notes HINT). The export process is essentially opening All Notes, selecting every note, and then choosing Export Notes. Or something like that; Evernote never tells you, you're left to figure it out on your own. The file…