Wizards of Oz

"Life is fraughtless ... when you're thoughtless."


Super Fat Tuesday

Thanks to the early Easter this year (due to the close proximity of the full moon to the vernal equinox), we get to celebrate (quite appropriately, IMHO) "Super Tuesday" simultaneously with "Fat Tuesday / Mardi Gras". So tomorrow morning, as ashes from the palm fronds from last year's Palm Sunday are imposed on the foreheads of the Christian faithful, will we also have a definitive presidential candidate from each party?

Having just left the polling place, I can say unequivocally that "electronic ballots" remain trapped in the Luddite past of paper-driven industrial age process. After arriving at the polling place at 8:30am EST, I discovered that our local polling places did not actually open until 9:00am. After the polls officially opened (at 8:00am one county to the west of us, in the Central Time Zone), I had to:
  1. Complete a "Voting Application Card" in red ink. (I told the pollsters that it was considered bad luck in China to inscribe a name in red; they didn't seem to care.) Note that though the line of waiting voters was now more than 30 people, there was only one (1) small table for completing this "Voting Application Card" -- rather than distributing them (with red pens) to the waiting voters.
  2. Present the "Voting Application Card" along with a photo ID to the kind lady with the "A-D" catalog of registered voters in that precinct.
  3. Let said lady compare the signatures between my digitized Voter Registration and the "Voting Application Card", then check some boxes and sign where indicated.
  4. Present my "Voting Application Card" to a third polling place worker, who wrote my name (in longhand) on a roster.
  5. Go to a fourth worker, who took my "Voting Application Card" and provided me with a four-digit "PIN" to activate the voting machine.
  6. Proceed to vote for one (1) candidate for President of the United States, as well as twelve (12) "Delegates-at-Large" and three (3) District delegates. Since my candidate of choice had only two "Delegates-at-Large" who had professed fealty to him, I decided to vote for all eight "uncommitted delegates". This meant I had to spin my "selection wheel" no fewer than fifteen times for each delegate, since the cursor reset to the top-left corner after each selection and the "uncommitted delegates" were at the bottom-right. (My attempts to outsmart the machine by rotating my selection wheel counter-clockwise sent me to the previous section of the ballot.)
BTW, the image at the top of this is provided courtesy of al Jazeera (found via a Google Image search for "Super Tuesday").

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At 5/2/08 08:36 , Blogger Dan tdaxp said...

What an awful experience!

At 5/2/08 08:58 , Blogger deichmans said...

Dan: Yes, it makes me yearn for the tidy system the British use. When they decide to dissolve government, their elections are held within just a couple of weeks -- with the new occupant of 10 Downing Street moving in just three days after the election. Brace for NINE MORE MONTHS of ceaseless campaigning....

At 5/2/08 18:04 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did you get to participate in the exit polling?

At 5/2/08 18:52 , Blogger deichmans said...

Trina: No, I didn't see anyone doing exit polls. Did you see anyone polling outside the Club?

At 5/2/08 19:06 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I didn't get to make it. I was thinking you were in the same precinct - if so, I'm assuming you didn't see them there?

At 5/2/08 19:09 , Blogger deichmans said...

Trina: Correct, I did not see them there (but they could have arrived after I left around 9:10am).


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