The recent scandal of Russia’s incursion into the democratic processes across Europe and in America requires a response that secures the will of the American public over the undiplomatic processes of Putin to promote the new Russian geopolitical philosophy. In an age where there democracy is increasingly under assault, blockchain technology has arrived with the promise of more security and an approach to democracy and the administration of democracy that is more efficient.
In effect, the use of blockchain allows us the chance to take out the middlemen in elections and in doing so to creates more freedom for individuals over governments, corporations, and other entities. While it is not a panacea approach and will not solve every problem, its increasing use in financial, administrative and in the election process provides a blueprint for a future where democracy is more ubiquitous than ever.
So, what is blockchain? Well, you may have heard of bitcoin. Bitcoin was touted as the currency of the future, which still remains to be seen. Blockchain is the technology behind Bitcoin and other digital currencies. It is a secure way to create ‘blocks’ which link to old-fashioned currency. Really, it’s just an advanced ledger that connects two individuals to provide a secure way to communicate, whether that’s by transactions or in other respects.
The security of blockchain is really its greatest asset and why it may be essential to the security of elections in the United States and beyond. While America is far away from adapting blockchain for the administrative processes of government, the first adaptation may very well come in the form of securing an election. The process of creating a ledger where individuals vote by phone or a secure transactional process may be the first step towards securing the future of elections.
Democracy is built on a continuing process of designing increasingly free and fair elections and responding to undemocratic impediment through promotion of the power of democratic ideals in the face of irrational state actors. America cannot continue to be a democracy until it takes steps to protect its vote and denies the promotion of authoritarianism by irrational state actors trying to influence American elections. To both promote democracy and secure our elections from whoever wishes to influence America’s politics, blockchain elections may be the answer we’ve been looking for.