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Time: 9:07:36 PM
In my last letter to you, I asked about testable propositions. I urged you to look at the difference in the vote for President in Florida from a statistical, mechanical and ergonomic point of view and to make the tests. Such tests would put a 537-vote margin where it belongs - in the Political Fiction section of our library of collective consciousness.
In no universe of real space-time events can the real difference between the candidates be less than five or six thousand votes. That's a tiny margin, but one that at least covers some of the phony ballots and honest mistakes that are bound to creep into an imperfect system of people and machines on a six million voter scale. You can't put that many votes on a balance beam and have a rational discussion about what it means without allowing for a realistic margin of error. 537 votes give you an error margin of .006. How realistic is that?
When you see what caused so many overseas ballots to be tossed out, you know that the improperly executed ballot request tossed out by the Democrats were not the fault of the voters and Republicans were right about having them counted. When you learn about the expired patent on the punch machines in Palm Beach County and the design flaw in the newly ordered machines that replaced them, you know that Democrats were right. You know that the undercount was real and that it was the fault of the machine, not the voters.
The media focus on a mythical margin of victory looks to me like a game of trying to keep a beach ball bouncing in the air. If all of the faithfully executed ballots in the state were counted, I don't know who would win. I do know that the margin would be far more than 537 and the question of whether thousands of African-Americans were illegally bared from the polls would be a much bigger issue than it has been. The same thing goes for the decision in various counties not to do a hand recount where it was clear that their count could be decisive and they would have to take individual responsibility for the outcome.
Haven't you noticed how reluctant everyone but the most committed of partisans has been to do anything that would give a timely, definitive count? The decision to count or not to count votes in various counties is where the real margin of victory would have been found a long time ago if the spin-doctors weren't so evenly matched and everyone wasn't so afraid of dropping the ball. --Jasper