Have you heard of Diebold? If not, you might want to check out this story. This is just part of a much larger story, but here is the basic background. Diebold makes “black box” voting machines that have been used by our government. Now, if you don’t know what I mean by black box, well, I don’t have enough time to explain here, but basically it means that the way the machines tally votes is not done in an open manner, meaning there is no audit trail, no information to make sure the machine is counting votes correctly. Most would argue that this is a requirement for a democracy. More below…….Regardless. Some time ago, some internal Diebold memos were leaked that indicate there are a lot of problems with the Diebold voting machines that the company is trying to cover up. A bunch of people start putting these memos on the internet so that the issue will get more press. Diebold gets mad and uses the DCMA (a horrible piece of legislation) to force these websites to remove these incriminating memos. Unfortunately for Diebold, two more sites pop up with the memos for every one that they cease-and-desist.
Recently, some students from Swarthmore decided that they were going to practice some “Electronic Civil Disobedience” by continuing to post these memos depite the cease-and-desists they were sent. But it looks like Swarthmore itself doesn’t approve of such actions, and the school is taking some very draconian measures to stop this behavior. Apparently, students can’t even link to the why-war.com protest page that details much of the Diebold scandal.
What is highly ironic is Swarthmore’s own mission statement, which says:
” Foremost among these principles is the individual’s responsibility for seeking and applying truth and for testing whatever truth one believes one has found.
A college draws strength from tradition and energy from the necessity of change. Its purposes and policies must respond to new conditions and new demands. By being open to change, Swarthmore tries to provide for its students, by means appropriate to the times, the standard of excellence it has sought to maintain from its founding.
The purpose of Swarthmore College is to make its students more valuable human beings and more useful members of society.”
But don’t take my word on all of this. Check out why-war.com
and see all of the information and links that they have up on this issue.