Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
The caption above is frequently attributed to Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin. Hat tip to urbanlegends.about.com for this source:
A historical source has been found for one variant of this quote. The source is Boris Bazhanov's Memoirs of Stalin's Former Secretary, published in 1992 and only available, so far as I know, in Russian. The pertinent passage, which appears near the end of chapter five, reads as follows (loosely translated):
You know, comrades," says Stalin, "that I think in regard to this: I consider it completely unimportant who in the party will vote, or how; but what is extraordinarily important is this — who will count the votes, and how.
So with what the media villagers tell us is a "tied" election based upon their unscientific polling and media narrative, it should raise concern that many of the voting machines in several critical "battleground" states are owned by a subsidiary of Bain Capital. All Voices:
Romney family buys voting machines through Bain Capital investment
Tagg Romney, the son of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, has purchased electronic voting machines that will be used in the 2012 elections in Ohio, Texas, Oklahoma, Washington and Colorado.
"Late last month, Gerry Bello and Bob Fitrakis at FreePress.org broke the story of the Mitt Romney/Bain Capital investment team involved in H.I.G. Capital which, in July of 2011, completed a "strategic investment" to take over a fair share of the Austin-based e-voting machine company Hart Intercivic," according to independent journalist Brad Friedman.
But Friedman is not the only one to discover the connection between the Romney family, Bain Capital, and ownership of voting machines.
Truth out reports:
"Through a closely held equity fund called Solamere, Mitt Romney and his wife, son and brother are major investors in an investment firm called H.I.G. Capital. H.I.G. in turn holds a majority share and three out of five board members in Hart Intercivic, a company that owns the notoriously faulty electronic voting machines that will count the ballots in swing state Ohio November 7. Hart machines will also be used elsewhere in the United States.
In other words, a candidate for the presidency of the United States, and his brother, wife and son, have a straight-line financial interest in the voting machines that could decide this fall's election. These machines cannot be monitored by the public. But they will help decide who "owns" the White House."
Both The Nation and New York Times confirm the connection between the Romney family, Solamere and the Bain Capital investment in the voting machine company, Hart Intercivic, whose board of directors serve H.I.G. Capital.
"Mitt Romney, his wife Ann Romney, and their son Tagg Romney are also invested in H.I.G. Capital, as is Mitt's brother G. Scott Romney.
The investment comes in part through the privately held family equity firm called Solamere, which bears the name of the posh Utah ski community where the Romney family retreats to slide down the slopes." Truth out added.
There are also political connections between Solamere and the Romney's. "Matt Blunt, the former Missouri governor who backed Mr. Romney in 2008, is a senior adviser to Solamere, as is Mitt Romney’s brother, Scott, a lawyer," according to the New York Times.
Hart Intercivic machines have famously failed in the past, and is tied to Mitt Romney and Bain Capital. Check out this video from the David Parkman Show discussing this issue.
UPDATE: I consider Chuck Todd among the worst of the Beltway media villager trolls. I can't stand his media villager "conventional wisdom" reporting on what all of his Beltway media villager friends talk about at their Georgetown cocktail parties. So this should come as no surprise. Karoli at Crooksandliars.com reports Chuck Todd's Sunday False Equivalence Follies - Updated:
[Sunday] morning, this happened.
I cannot think of anything less equivalent than the controversies over voting machines and the birther theories, and it did not go unnoticed, mostly because it may be one of the dumbest things Chuck Todd has ever uttered from the keyboard of his BlackBerry.
* * *
've heard a lot of false equivalencies from the Villagers, but this one might just take the cake. There are very real concerns about technology proven to be easily hacked without any trail, reports in every election about machines recording votes which are proportionately different from votes cast, and more. In 2008, Tennessee officials went to jail for jacking around with voting and election integrity. In other words, concerns about voting machine technology are real. They're not some whacko, out there conspiracy theory, and they should be addressed[.]
* * *
On the other hand, the birther conspiracy theories have been widely investigated, debunked over and over again, and now are the province of people living their lives in a constant state of denial in order to soothe their racist feathers over the fact that a black guy is in the White House.
Simply put, Chuck, there is NO equivalence. None. Zero. For you to try and flip it around to a larger conversation about voter access laws and what you didn't say is just smoke for what you did say, which was stupid and unworthy of someone reporting on this election.
Update: Brad Friedman has written a powerful answer to Chuck. Will attention be paid?
While you are at it Chuck, let's talk about how the multitude of Republican pollsters who use unscientific "likely voter" screens to improve the performance of Republican candidates for whom they are conducting their polls gets factored into the polling averages that you incessantly talk about to feed the media villager narrative that this is a close or tied election. This is another form of election manipulation which media villager tools like Chuck Todd are aiding and abetting and are complicit in. If the public believes the polling is tied, then the media villagers can argue later that it was plausible for whomever wins the election, even if there is evidence of vote counting fraud, circa 2000.
UPDATE: Henry Blodget at Business Insider reports Here's The Truth About The Story About The Romneys Investing In The Company That Makes The Voting Machines:
So, let's review.
A private-equity firm that is run and controlled largely by the Romney family, Solamere, sometimes co-invests with a "partner" private-equity firm, H.I.G., run by former colleagues of Mitt Romney and key fund-raisers for the Romney campaign.
The Romney's private-equity firm, Solamere, says it has not invested in the H.I.G. fund or entity that made the investment in the voting machine company.
But Solamere has invested in other H.I.G. funds that are run by the same H.I.G. partners who manage the H.I.G. entity that invested in the voting-machine company, many of whom are former Romney colleagues and current Romney fundraisers.
So Solamere may not have a direct or indirect investment in the voting machine company. But its partner H.I.G. does. And the partner, H.I.G., is run by executives who actively support the Romney campaign.
Now, of course, the only way any of this matters in reality is if someone tampers with the voting machines in a way that gives Mitt Romney an edge.
Is there any evidence that anyone has tampered with the voting machines?
But you've got to admit... The connection here is close enough that it creates, if not the appearance of impropriety, at least the appearance of the potential for impropriety.
Electronic voting machines are controversial. And in the past, at least, they have blamed for some mysterious voting results, in Ohio and elsewhere.
The close connection between the Romneys, the Romney campaign, and the voting-machine company, therefore, looks bad, regardless of whether the Romney family-linked fund actually has a "direct or indirect" investment in the voting machine company.