Neither Democrat nor Republican, I’m an independent. I’m not happy if I can’t equal-opportunity offend all parties. But damn, these days some of the high-profile players egregiously push their way to the front of the ignoble queue. That old saw “Where there’ smoke…” invariably ends with, “…someone’s fanning flames.”
But I’m not here to talk about partisanship, but to address two major theories enjoying unwarranted attention. They gain traction because rumour mongers depend upon an absence of science and technical knowledge. (For the litigious sort, kindly note this is an opinion piece.)
For example, my friend Sharon forwarded an email acclaiming Chinese-designed dancing robots in Shanghai Disneyland. Although these were clearly not automatons, many, many people willingly suspended disbelief.
Same with politics. As Alice’s Red Queen might say, we’re asked to believe six impossible things before breakfast. Psychologists have noted the biggest lies can be the easiest to accept.
As the above-mentioned smoke about massive voter fraud begins to clear (with a portion of the credit going to the incumbent’s attorneys), conspiracy oriented talk hosts have turned their attention to data manipulation. The first brings to life two decades of concerns about voting machines. The other centers around government computers reassigning millions of votes.
Hypothesis 1, Voting Machines
Grab a coffee. I can’t believe I’m defending Dominion, née Diebold, aka another half dozen company names. I’ve been highly critical of their technology and its lack of transparency. I’ve also proposed a solution, open-source code. That way anyone can peek at its internals searching for flaws.
Twelve to twenty years ago, Democrats worried problematic voting machines at best lost votes and at worst, threw elections. Part of their concern was the company’s Republican CEO, a good friend of George W Bush. According to sources, the CEO ill-advisedly told Bush he’d help win his election. Some stretched that to mean he might use his product, voting machines, to disfavor Democrats.
When Florida’s Secretary of State Glenda Hood ordered error-prone Diebold machines, Senator Bill Nelson questioned the wisdom. She told him to mind his own business… which of course he was. If memory serves, Sarasota County that year lost 20,000 votes. The county’s seemingly baffled Supervisor of Elections said 20,000 people had obviously shown up and chosen not to vote.
Diebold’s reputation was so checkered, they underwent a series of name changes: Diebold ➡︎ Premier Election Solutions ➡︎ Election Systems Services ➡︎ Sequoia Voting Services ➡︎ Dominion Voting Systems.
Over time, they have improved, but one thing is clear. Neither individual machines or networked clusters are capable of diverting anywhere in the range of numbers hinted at: a half million to a suggested two-point-seven million or even seven million votes. Some accusers hinted at machine glitches in Michigan and Georgia, while Q-Anon outright claimed hundreds of thousands of votes were deliberately deleted. Apparently audit trails aren’t widely studied on 4-Chan.
One might wonder the motive of a company board to lose this election, a corporation considered reliably Republican, historically regarded with caution and even suspicion by Democrats. Hey, don’t ask me… I raise the question, but I don’t know. (See? I told you I’d offend both sides.)
Hypothesis 2, The Giant CIA Supercomputer Conspiracy
This is a two-coffee problem, so pour another cup as you’re asked to take an ever bigger leap from the improbable to the nearly impossible.
The short version claims that the CIA (and possibly CISA) deployed a Bush era supercomputer originally used by the despot Obama to surveil and enslave Americans. Called HAMR, affectionately nicknamed The Hammer by techno-savvy, Marvel-reading politicos, it was seized by Biden’s nefarious agents to subvert the election by diverting Trump votes to Biden. A Bannon-Breitbart correctional recount proved Mr Trump won 98% of the popular vote, nearly 140-million total, the largest in history.
(How Mr Trump wrested this antique computer from Hillary’s election hands in 2016 isn’t clear.)
This vote-rigging supercomputer was engineered by a genius superprogrammer, Dennis Montgomery– both this amazing computer and the accompanying conspiracy theory. Already, I see you have questions.
I left my own amazing computer career a few years ago and haven’t consulted for the DoD even longer, but that name, Dennis Montgomery, rings no bell. I checked with colleagues, all with the same answer: Who? Actually that’s a question.
LinkedIn lists a Montgomery Dennis, which may or may not be a hit, but I suspect it is. This entry describes a guy with amazing computer, management, and top secret intelligence skills, who has the Director of the CIA, Secretary of the Air Force, and the US President on speed dial. He claims to have given intelligence briefings to the white house… yup, lower case. We shouldn’t judge him. Maybe he meant something like a white clapboard house in Terre Haute.
If that is his résumé, he’s awfully modest. Certainly he’s much better known in scam and conspiracy theory circles. Since his curriculum vitae is weak and poorly worded, I whipped up a supplement for him. Mr Montgomery may pick and choose as needed, no charge.
Dennis Montgomery (aka Montgomery Dennis?)Superduper all around computer expert and geopolitical action figure.
($29.95 on AliExpress) Pinocchio nose sold separately.
- Studied under Michael Milken at Drexel Burnham Lambert.
- Operated American Report web site specializing in conspiracies of the day.™
- Investigated tunnels under a Washington daycare pizzeria. Conclusively proved pepperoni contained meat byproducts.
- Demonstrated, using advanced computer analysis of birther certificate, Ted Cruz not born in USA.
- Invented catchy names like Scorecard and The Hammer for programs that, uh, don’t actually exist.
- Scammed Bush administration into paying several million dollars for pretend programs to decode secret al-Qaeda radio messages that, uh, didn’t really exist.
- Conducted anti-terrorist scam. Fake security alerts caused the US to ground some flights and reportedly caused the Bush administration to nearly shoot down airliners. That was a rush.
- Falsified emails to implicate gubernatorial candidate and Congressman Jim Gibbons in bribery scandal that, uh, didn’t exist.
- Conned Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio into forking over more than $100,000 of taxpayer money so he could reveal a conspiracy plot against Sheriff Joe… which, uh, didn’t actually exist.
- Faked federal wiretapping evidence that, um, didn’t exist.
- Dabbles in presidential elections for fun and profit. Like the emperor’s clothes, evidence doesn’t exist.
In my personal opinion, I believe Mr Dennis Montgomery enjoys conning important people and, with the 2020 election, he’s hit the jackpot with the coteries of the candidates, and the attention of the two most powerful men in America.
- The claim is that the performers are Chinese designed robots, a leap ahead of US, European, and Japanese robotics. As it turns out, Snopes has done the leg work, determining it’s a clip from the British television show “Strictly Come Dancing” that aired on BBC One in 2013
- Seagate, the hard drive manufacturer, has coined the acronym HAMR, meaning heat-assisted magnetic recording.