e-Voting Fiasco – Some Questions

The electronic voting machines are being scrapped because they don’t work.

They don’t do their job.

The results can’t be verified, the machines are vulnerable to hacking and the system doesn’t adequately reflect the single transferable vote system operated in this country.

Therefore the machines and software are not fit for purpose.

They don’t work.

So here’s my question.  Did NEDAP fulfil its design brief or did it not?

It’s a very simple question.

If NEDAP did everything set out in the brief, yet produced a voting system that didn’t do what it was supposed to do, then the brief was fatally defective.  Who drew up this brief, how was it checked and who signed off on it?

Conversely, if NEDAP did not meet the criteria set out in the design brief, why was it paid?  Once the commission of investigation discovered that NEDAP’s system was a crock of shit, why didn’t the government immediately institute legal proceedings to recover the money that had been obtained by NEDAP fraudulently?

The implications of this question are very worrying.

Knowing that NEDAP had failed to deliver on its contract, and had produced a system that would inevitably be scrapped, did this government take a conscious decision not to issue proceedings?

Did this government decide instead to write off €50 million so as to avoid the embarrassment of admitting it had made a mistake?


Previously on Bock:

Electronic Voting To Be Scrapped

16 thoughts on “e-Voting Fiasco – Some Questions

  1. Bock, do we know the cost of the software that doesn’t work as opposed to the cost of the machines that don’t work? And was it all bought from NEDAP? Just asking..

  2. I believe the machines were bought from NEDAP but it could have been from a travelling fairground for all I know. In fact, it probably was a travelling fairground.

    But whatever NEDAP were paid was too much. Their system didn’t work, here or in any other European country where it was tried.

  3. I reckon the machines were made by a crony buddy of some dick in FF and the previous manufacturing experience of that crony was probably limited to making bedside lockers for nursing homes, or perhaps; tinned pet food!

  4. Cullen the bastard must have signed off on them but we’ll never know who tested them.
    I mean .. would you buy a lottery ticket if you didn’t get a printout?

  5. I might see if I can buy the lot for a fiver. We sometimes have a vote in work to determine, from our team of five, whose turn it is to drive to lunch.

    Overkill to use 50 million worth of automation for such a menial vote? Sure, but we may as well get some use out of the bastard things.

  6. Fair questions Bock – fifty million yo-yos worth of glorified door stoppers deserve an explanation. I always appreciate when you go after the protagonists, just to see their stuttering, mumbling replies, or to have my suspicions confirmed that the overriding policy is stonewall the citizen. Is there anyone you can write to?

  7. If they didnt fulfil the contract, the Government didnt spot it, it had to be pointed out to them after the machines had been in use for a while = embarassing mistake. If they did fulfil the contract, then the government ballsed up the contract = embarrassing mistake. Unless of course, as unstranger says, a crony got the contract, in which case its probably corruption rather than a mistake.

    What galls me most is that, having had to shelve the machines, they signed a 25 YEAR lease, apparently to a crony, to store the things. 25 years?? And apparently the lease has heavy penalty clauses for cancellation. So some buddy of Cullen’s is now going to make a nice few bob of our money off the back of the Governemnts incompetence and arrogance. These guys can certainly think outside the box when it comes to enriching themselves and their mates at our expense.

  8. This is a scandal but small compared to p-pars for the HSE which has run into 100’s of millions
    The HSE has buildings on Mallow street,Cathrine Street, and Henry street, in Limerick AT least six buildings it total What do they use them for?

  9. Anyone other than a fair-minded person might think EssoDee’s comment is defamatory of a person or persons charged with the care and storage of the e-voting hardware, either because in doing so they are fulfilling a statutory function or because they succesfully tendered for a contract for that purpose.

  10. King’s Bard — You wouldn’t buy a pack of instant mash in SuperValu without a receipt.

    Begrudger — You could use them to fling at passing track-suited knackers or political canvassers.

    Arag0rn — Ask your local FF representative when he comes looking for your vote.

    EssoDee — If they deliberately didn’t fulfil the contract, it’s fraud. If the government decided to let the €50 million quietly pass, it’s criminal negligence.

    de fan — I hope to have a post shortly from somebody a bit more expert in the area.

  11. Conan — Indeed. If he had identified the individual, an unfair-minded person might jump to that conclusion.

    I might try to see if I can obtain a list of people providing this service, and perhaps see if they have any relationship with politicians. In the interests of fairness, to exclude the possibility tha anyone might be maligned in the wrong.

    I might also try to find out how many returning officers are storing the machines in their own areas, or whether any members of their families won a contract to provide the service.

    I don’t know if there was a tendering process, by the way. I think it was all based on ad-hoc local arrangements.

  12. Bertie did know the difference between a cash
    register and a voting machine.
    Question is whose cash register did the cash
    go into.
    Some one had to approve the NEDAP tender.
    Wonder who was responsible for that.

  13. Okay…heres the thing. On every street in this country you can find a machine which dispenses money. Often times their are attempts to corrupt their purpose by thieves or scammers. Sometimes they break or run out of money. However the thing is that for 25 years or more this system has dispensed almost all of the cash in circulation. It is for all intent and purpose bullet proof.

    The banks certainly do not store these machines at a cost of almost a million a year. They certainly wouldn’t dream of scrapping them and indeed cash machines are everywhere worldwide and I can use my Irish Laser or Visa card in a machine in London or Tokyo… it is safe as houses with very very minor security issues.

    If a private bank can dispense over a million from a single machine on a weekend and trust the machine why then is there such a head scratching over something as silly as a VOTE! With the current system votes end up kicked across the floor, miscounted, put in the wrong pile. This is evident as each time there is a recount there is a different result. If I asked the hole in the wall to recount my money it would probably only fail once in a few hundred times!

    So, since the machines to count votes (which lets face it is a simpler task) why don’t we just put such a machine online… send everyone three letters from their constituency returning officer. A Code letter, a username and a password (after they register) and let them vote online….

    In fact you know what…. if I had the time…and money I’d build it anyway and send out the letters myself… even though its not for real. In fact one could expand it to ask all sorts of quwetions…indeed the users could ask questions… perhaps we could even run our own country without the need for politicians… lets face it, if we had something like that we could hook it up to the civil apparatus and bypass the government!

    PS: polling stations could have laptops or something…

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