U. S. Government

U. S. Government

Question One

Electronic voting machines are used when casting the vote and for counting them. They are of three types: the optical scan voting system, the punched cards and the direct recording electronic voting system. They are not as effective as they are cut out to be. Like any machine, they are bound to have some flaws that can affect the voting process. One such machine is the Diebold AccuVote-TS. This machine is prone to attack. A person can manipulate the system and use it to steal votes. The machine can change all the information relating to voting such as logos and other records. Therefore, the electronic voting machine is not good for democracy. The machine door can be opened by a widely available key. A candidate can access the machine or send someone else to do it for him and add votes that were not meant as his.

 Other machines interfere with the totals. One way through which some of these flaws can be corrected is by changing the hardware and the software such that there is no one who can be able to tamper with it. Another reason why they are not good for democracy is that some of them are not secretive. The whole idea of people voting secretly is so that they can be confident in the choice they make because they will be hidden. A candidate does not need to know the number of people in a polling station who voted him. Polling stations are small and in areas where the population is not high, this can be a real threat to that community. It can bring about tension and possible conflict in that area. Those responsible for the elections could choose methods where everybody can see what is happening both during the Election Day and after they have voted during the counting process. The companies that make these machines could hire programmers to make improvements on the machine. Since technology keeps on changing, they too must come up with better programs.

Question Two

The media does an important job of informing the public about politics. However some of the media sources do not take the time to enquire about the authenticity of their reports. Some of them report untrue information. Several cases have been reported against the media by the affected candidates. Some have claimed that the main intent of the media’s reports was to destroy them as well as their families politically and socially. Some of the journalists may have a personal vendetta against a particular candidate or political party. They may not agree with some of his beliefs and they will therefore try to do anything to discredit what they say.

Some powerful politicians have been known to buy off time and space in selected media houses. They do this so that they can get the most coverage. This practice is common especially during the campaigning period. They do this so that they can have the most representation and the public sees them often. The other reason why they take up much space is because they do not want the other candidates to be fairly represented. The media houses may be in favor of a particular candidate not because he has money but because of the influence that he holds. They will therefore disregard anyone who has differing opinion. Therefore, though the media is influential and very important, it can be used in a wrong way by the politicians. They represent one side of the story which is usually not true.

With the technological advancements, news becomes easy to report and it spreads widely. People receive information as soon as it is known meaning that there is no time for verification. The freedom that has been accorded to the press makes it harder to stop such information from spreading. It is not an unusual thing for politicians to claim that they did not do what they are being accused of. Media graphics software such as Photoshop have also been used to manipulate information and hence making it more credible though it might not be.

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