It’s a sad day when Gary Kasparov has ended his bid for the Presidency of Russia. Does this prove that chess skills cannot translate to the real world, or does it indicate that politics is so vile, so dirty, so absent clear rule of conduct that every technique, no matter how perverse, is exercised in the quest for election?

I would like to think that Kasparov gave up from a fight of despair, there was no hope to oppose Putin. Not since Stalin has Russia seen a leader with such a shrewd understanding of power and how to consolidate it. How could the chess master not see 40 moves into Putin’s bag? Because nothing Putin did mattered. His party controls the polls, and ultimately, the count.

What can this teach the United States? Transparency. We cannot have a company operating voting machines without a verifiable paper print out. The right to vote, in this technological era, where technology is almost synonymous with glitch or fuck up, that it can hardly be relied on to count this most precious of rights. Do you actually trust the Democratic or Republican party? Why?

Please feel free to contradict my arguments:

1.) Both parties engage in gerrymandering – a process of re-districting to allow the ruling party to receive more votes during the next election.

2.) Both parties engage in dirty politics. All politicians are corruptible – even the Ron Pauls, Barack Obamas, and the Mike Huckabees.

3 .) Trusting the political process is akin to trusting someone else knows better – solution, the popular vote.

UPDATE 12/17 – If you still believe voting machines are accurate, please take the time to do a simple internet search – or, checkout this article in today’s NY Times.


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