After watching events unfold in Florida, I now know what to do to win the Ohio Lottery jackpot: Next time the jackpot gets big, this is what I'll do:
Go to the store and turn in a request for numbers. With my new strategy, I'll only need to buy $1 worth of numbers. Wait for the drawing to take place. When the numbers that I want don't come up, then my plan can be set in motion:
Step 1: Complain to the store that the selection card was confusing and swear that I picked the winning numbers, not the numbers on my card (that were obviously a mistake). It doesn't matter that the number selection was my doing or that it is my responsibility to check that I got the right numbers before I left the store. Personal responsibility is not relevant.
Step 2: Insist that the numbers on my card be checked again to correct this obvious error that prevented me from getting what I want and what I am entitled to.
Step 3: If I am still not declared the winner, insist on a new drawing, as the confusion with the selection process obviously tainted the lottery drawing. I can keep complaining that fairness is most important, even though I really mean that I'm not getting what I want so we need to keep doing this again and again until I win.
Step 4: Threaten legal action if I can't be declared the lottery winner.
After all, there is much at stake here so I should be allowed every means to justify the end.
Step 5: Do whatever it takes to win!
So, do you think I can get a win in the next lottery?
I'd have a whole lot more sympathy for the alleged “confused” voters in Florida if it weren't for the following facts:
1. The ballot was designed by a Democrat.
2. It was sent out for public comment, and none was received.
3. It was approved by both parties. Democrats said, “OK!”
4. The form itself has arrows from the person's name to the right punch hole; mispunching a hole is living proof that the more you idiot-proof something the more ingenious idiots will become.
5. Florida law says that if you make a mistake, you can ask for another ballot - ignorance of the law is no excuse.
Being free implies being responsible. In this case, when the ballots are sent out for comment, do so. When in the voting booth take your time to understand what you're doing. And know what the policy is should you err.
What the protesters in Florida and the crybabies across this country are doing is complaining because they didn't accept the personal responsibility inherent to voting beyond that simple voting act itself. Instead of whining about confusing ballots, people should educate themselves about the process.
One oft-repeated statement during this messy election end game is that one of the candidates (usually Al Gore) should follow the gracious example of Richard Nixon in 1960 when he selflessly accepted the possibly flawed results of the election despite the extreme closeness of the Illinois vote, thus sparing the nation from a contested election fight. This viewpoint revises history.
John Kennedy had won the popular vote, and would have won the electoral vote even if Illinois had gone to Mr. Nixon.
The myth of Nixon's “statesmanship” also ignores the fact that despite his early concession to Mr. Kennedy, his party and members of his campaign continued to contest the election results by demanding recounts in 11 states.
Multiple state and federal lawsuits were filed in Illinois, Texas, and New Jersey. Using U.S. attorneys and FBI agents, they also investigated many of the local results and impaneled several grand juries in an effort to overturn results. Mr. Nixon and his allies did everything they could to contest the results right up to Dec. 19 when the Electoral College finalized Mr. Kennedy's win.
If today's candidates decided to be like Mr. Nixon, they would be far more aggressive than they have been to date.
So a few thousand people in Florida couldn't punch out the proper hole in a paper ballot. This type of ballot had been used before and sample ballots had been published before the election.
As an experiment, I printed out two of these ballots from the Internet, which made them much smaller than the actual ones used. We gave them to my 8-year-old grandson and a friend of his, who is also 8. They were given instructions to vote Al Gore, by filling in the proper circle with a pencil. They were sent to separate rooms to make their selections and returned in a couple of minutes.
Both of them had made the correct selection, without ever having seen the ballots prior to that time.
I'm not sure what this tells us, but there are thousands of people in Florida, whining and crying and blaming others for their own stupidity. They probably never bothered to look at the published sample ballot, so that they never saw it until they got into the voting booth. Our whole country must look like dolts to the rest of the world, because of the stupidity of people in Palm Beach County.
Even Cuba is suggesting that if the whole state of Florida has another election it would be happy to send over observers to see that it is conducted legitimately. What a fiasco!
WILLIAM E. GALL
Your arrogant Nov. 10 editorial “Gore must press the fight” was emblematic of The Blade's twisted thinking. Citing rumor and innuendo, you produced a simplistic and selfish review of the facts. As you have learned at the feet of your master, Bill Clinton, if you don't like the rules of the game, in his case the rule of law, thumb your nose at them and change them.
Your candidate apparently loses the election for president and your biased editorialists, along with other Democrat lackeys, smear the process. Sue until we win. Now there's an all-American thought! Please put down your hysteria before you pick up your pen.
What is the irony here?! The Bush campaign is crying out against the Gore campaign for prolonging the voting outcome by threatening lawsuits. This is the same party that started the Whitewater investigation that led into all sorts of unrelated investigations. All this took literally years with millions of dollars spent only to have the President still in office and no prosecutions. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black!
It seems that the cost of being involved in politics has grown too high. When a person has to spend $60 million to get elected to the U.S. Senate, something is wrong.
Just imagine the good that could be done with even half that amount to reduce poverty, fight disease, improve our schools, etc. It almost seems criminal to allow that much money, and even more in presidential races, to be spent on TV ads people mute and on literature they throw away.
What public support would a candidate get in the next election if he asked his contributors to also make a financial contribution to a worthy cause such as the schools, medical research, the United Way, or some other worthwhile cause? It would certainly turn some heads, and have a positive impact on our community.