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“Think Outside The Black Box” Online Think Tank

“THINK OUTSIDE THE BLACK BOX” Online Think Tank


- Real People, Real Solutions – Free, easy access, AUG. 27-SEP 5, 24 HOURS A DAY.
http://www.blackboxvoting.org

Engage in brainstorming and problem-solving with some of the most effective experts and ordinary citizens. Here’s your chance to dialog one on one. Simply show up at http://www.blackboxvoting.org and you’ll be guided into the Think Tank.

To ask questions or join any discussion, find the link at the left of any discussion area on the Web site. Just log in (or register, if you are new). You can type your message into the box at the bottom of any Think Tank or guest area.

THINK TANK CATEGORIES – Low Tech solutions that can be implemented BEFORE the next election – Can we hand count – Minority rights – “Xtreme Citizenship” (Under 30 years old area) – Free thinking politics, independents, and non- dominant political parties – How to attack the HAVA problem. Click here to find out more: http://www.bbvforums.org/forums/messages/9903/9903.html

SPECIAL GUESTS: Hit the Think Tank at the times below to ask questions and put your heads together with these experts and patriots:

Sat. Aug. 27 10-1 Pacific time (1-3 Eastern): ROB COHEN

Sun. Aug. 28 2-4 Pac. time (5-7 Eastern) RUSSELL MICHAELS

GUEST TOPIC: “THE BIG PICTURE”

Votergate filmmakers Rob Cohen and Russell Michaels have been filming on the front lines for two years. Get the eagle's overview from these producers. After covering the issue intensively for an upcoming feature length documentary on voting problems, they can share some unusual perspectives on America's problems with elections. Ask them anything.

Sun. Aug. 28 2-4 Pacific time (5-7 Eastern): LYNN LANDES

GUEST TOPIC: COURAGE FOR REAL REFORM

Landes is one of the first journalists and activists on electronic voting. An articulate advocate of hand-counted paper ballots, she has filed a federal lawsuit to block the use of voting machines. Whether or not you agree with her views, we guarantee she's up for the debate.

Sun. Aug. 28 3-5 Pacific time (6-8 Eastern): JEFEMIAH AKIN

GUEST TOPIC: ELECTION OBSERVER’S HOUSE OF HORRORS

Akin, a computer programmer, first gained notoriety when he ventured into a Riverside, Calif. L&A test, and wrote the report of its absurdities covered in WiredNews.com. He has analyzed the Sequoia central tabulator software, uncovering stunning flaws in its design. Akin has been instrumental in exposing problems with citizens' right to observe, untruths told by elections officials, and logical flaws in the current voting system.

Sun. Aug. 28, 5-7 Pacific time (8-10 Eastern): LEONARD SCHMIEGE / GYAN HARDMAN

GUEST TOPIC: CITIZEN STRATEGIES – YOU CAN DO IT TOO

Schmiege and Hardman operate effectively on many levels. They set up their own citizen tests for the Sequoia touch-screens in Pinellas County, Florida, videotaping 12 hours of citizen touching to test machine functionality for themselves. Schmiege made the news when he dumpster-dived Pinellas, finding shredded absentee ballots which the elections supervisor then had to explain to the local newspaper. These two activists have many creative ideas for improving election integrity.

Mon. Aug. 29, 1-3 Pacific time (4-6 Eastern): VICKIE KARP

GUEST TOPIC: THE BULLSHIT-FREE ZONE

Texas straight-shooter Vickie Karp, a BBV board member, understood the direction we were going with no-ballot voting right away. She took creative action by making voting machine issues a Toastmaster topic, hitting the speaking circuit and communicating with everyone who would listen, even before the topic of election reform was "cool." Also a key person with the Coalition for Visible Ballots, Karp is an idea person -- positive, and creative. Jump in for some tough love.

Mon. Aug. 29, 5-7 Pacific (8-10 Eastern): HARRI HURSTI

GUEST TOPIC: ‘ASK ME ANYTHING’

Finnish computer expert Harri Hursti came to the U.S. to see, as he puts it, "How deep is the rabbit hole really?" He has traveled to Leon County, Florida twice to conduct red-team tests of the Diebold voting system, quickly penetrating security to manipulate the Diebold system, and he has now looked into the systems produced by other vendors. Hursti has a fascinating world-view of how the corporate and political world works, and also has creative ideas for technical solutions.

Tues. Aug. 30, 4-6 Pacific time (7-9 Eastern): JIM HOGUE

GUEST TOPIC: ‘JUST DO IT’ – CITIZEN LEGISLATION

Hogue, from Vermont, was one of the first citizens to successfully push through state legislation to protect the paper ballot. Hogue is proof that a single citizen can make a real difference. He was off, running, and achieving success before the national movement was even formed.

Tues. Aug. 30, 4-6 Pacific time (7-9 Eastern): BRUCE SIMS

GUEST TOPIC: ROLLING THE BIG BALL UPHILL

San Diego citizen Bruce Sims has immersed himself in the election issue, and can provide a wealth of knowledge about how to engage in day to day watchdog actions, researching state and local laws, and most important -- the kinds of obstacles you will face on the local level. He takes a licking and keeps on ticking, and will share articulate tips about what he has learned and what to expect as you join this movement.

Tues. Aug. 30, 5-7 Pacific (8-10 Eastern): BRUCE O’DELL

GUEST TOPIC: RISKS AND COUNTERMEASURES

O'Dell, the director of the Election Audit Institute (ElectionAuditInstitute.org) will provide expertise on identifying risks to the integrity of the vote, and countermeasures. A 'numbers guy' who speaks plain English, he can help you separate the wheat from the chaff in statistical studies and audit techniques.

Tues. Aug. 30, 5-7 Pacific (7-9 Eastern) ARMEN YOUSOUFIAN

GUEST TOPIC: HOW TO GET ACTION WITH PUBLIC RECORDS & FREEDOM OF INFORMATION REQUESTS

We call Yousoufian “The King of Public Records.” Yousoufian made public records history by taking King County, Wash. to the state supreme court to force it to turn over public records -- and was awarded over $100,000 in punitive damages from King County. He can offer wonderful insights for strategic public records access -- a critical component to watchdog the elections process.

Wed. Aug. 31, 11-1 Pacific (2-4 Eastern): FREDDIE OAKLEY

GUEST TOPIC: MEET AN ELECTION OFFICIAL WHO’S ‘ONE OF THE GOOD GUYS’

Oakley is beloved by California citizens for her courage and feistiness in protecting the paper ballot and insisting on transparency and citizen access. For citizens frustrated by obstructive local officials, here's a Registrar of Elections who will be happy to answer your questions, without evasions or spin. She is committed to openness and transparency in elections.

Wed. Aug. 31, 1-3 Pacific (4-6 Eastern) THERESA AMATO – NADER CAMPAIGN MANAGER

GUEST TOPIC: BALLOT ACCESS

As the campaign manager for Ralph Nader (2000 and 2004), Amato is intimately familiar with problems like ballot access, campaign finance shenanigans, and the like. One of the most important election reforms is to open up the ability for qualified candidates to get on the ballot and compete on an even playing field. Ask questions, and learn about these issues from one who's been on the front lines.

Wed. Aug. 31, 4-6 Pacific (7-9 Eastern): THOM HARTMANN

GUEST TOPIC: CORPORATE FIRST AMENDMENT RIGHTS?

Hartmann, author of "Unequal Protection" -- the pioneering book exposing the problems that have resulted from 'corporate personhood' -- has become a well known radio talk show host. Hartmann brings a wonderful sense of history to the issue of election reform, and his insights are of critical importance for questions of campaign finance reform. He has been at the forefront of examinations of the breakdown in our electoral process, and was also one of the pioneers in reporting on problems with voting machines.

Wed. Aug. 31, 6-8 Pacific (9-11 Eastern) ECHO STEINER & SUSAN VAN HOUTEN

GUEST TOPIC: WHAT’S HAPPENING IN THE HOTBED OF CONTROVERSY – PALM BEACH COUNTY FLORIDA

These women have been at the forefront of election reform in troubled "Butterfly Ballot" country. Steiner fought a battle for early voting records, and captured Nov. 2, 2004 Palm Beach police blockades on videotape. Van Houten and Steiner have shown consistency and courage in the fight to regain election integrity in one of America's hotbeds of controversy, and they’ve got surprising updates.

Thurs. Sep. 1, 11-1 Pacific (2-4 Eastern): ION SANCHO

GUEST TOPIC: MEET THE LEON COUNTY SUPERVISOR OF ELECTIONS

Ion Sancho is an example of what we WANT in an elections official. He will answer your questions and set a public example of openness and honesty in elections administration. Sancho, originally from New York, took over elections in Leon County, Florida about 15 years ago, and has become one of the most popular elections officials in the state with citizens. He's gone head-to-head with Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris. Sancho authorized the security tests of the Diebold system by Dr. Herbert Thompson and Harri Hursti, receiving threat letters from Diebold attorneys for his efforts.

Thurs. Sep 1, 12-2 Pacific (3-5 Eastern): CATHERINE ANSBRO

GUEST TOPIC: DECAPITATING NATIONAL E-VOTING

In 2004, Ireland committed over 50 million euros (more than US $60 million) for paperless touch-screens, and the citizens of Ireland took action. Ansbro was involved in the group that killed the golden goose for vendors hoping to push touch-screens into Ireland. The decision to ditch the touch-screens caused a shakeup among Irish officials, and new watchdog entities were formed in response to the fiasco. Ansbro captures a wealth of hands-on knowledge, and imparts it with warmth and wisdom.

Fri. Sep. 2, 7-9 a.m. Pacific (10-12 Eastern): KEVIN ZEESE

GUEST TOPIC: THE POLITICS OF DEMOCRACY REFORM

Rise and shine, this one’s a.m. – Zeese worked with the Nader campaign, and before that, spent years a consumer protection litigator. How to challenge those who oppose paper ballots by any means necessary – including running for office against them. How to truly engage in democracy. How to run for office on an election integrity platform – raise money, organize, educational campaigns, and parallel electoral campaigns.

Fri. Sep. 2, 3-5 Pacific (6-8 Eastern): DAVID COBB, 2004 PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE (GREEN PARTY)

GUEST TOPIC: PROPORTIONAL REPRESENTATION SOLUTIONS, AND HOW POLITICS REALLY WORKS IN AMERICA

Green Party presidential candidate David Cobb was instrumental in kicking off auditing in Ohio. He has important information to share about proportional representation, and alternate ways to choose political leaders. Cobb can address problems with ballot access, election anomalies in Ohio, and other shenanigans. Cobb will provide straightforward answers to your questions about how politics really works in America.

Fri. Sep. 2, 4-6 Pacific (7-9 Eastern): DR. TOM RYAN

GUEST TOPIC: CITIZEN ORGANIZING

Dr. Ryan is with Arizona Citizens for Fair Elections. He’s been effective in many areas, ranging from strategic use of public records, to convincing local mainstream reporters to write tough-minded articles exposing hacks and flaws in the voting machines. Find out how to not only agitate, but activate real change.

Sun. Sep 4, 2-4 Pacific Time (5-7 Eastern): SHAR 7 JIM HAMILTON

GUEST TOPICS: LOCAL ORGANIZING AND SETTING UP EVENTS

The Hamiltons have been at the forefront of many election reform actions, including organizing local events to build public awareness, taking action on legislative issues, and motivating others to excel. If you are considering organizing a community event, but would rather not lose your mind trying to put the whole thing together, start by getting advice from Jim & Shar, former educators who know how to break it down into achievable steps.

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BLACK BOX VOTING is a nonprofit, nonpartisan national watchdog group for elections. 330 SW 43rd St Suite K, PMB 547 Renton, WA 98055

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