A simple solution to voting corruption: The following came from the Baltimore Sun 2/6/2005
Color the Iraq election deep purple
Annie LinskeyTHE BALTIMORE SUN February 6, 2005
Last week’s news was saturated, indelibly, in purple ink.
First there were images of Iraqi men and women leaving polling stations, waving freshly stained purple fingers to prove they’d cast a ballot.
Then, at Wednesday night’s State of the Union address, the cameras briefly focused on Iraqi human rights worker Safia Taleb al-Suhail while she stabbed the first finger on her right hand proudly in the air. The tip was as purple as a pinot noir.
Some lawmakers in the chamber held up their own index fingers. A group of them had inked their own fingers in a show of solidarity with Iraqi voters.
In the snap of a finger, the stained digit has become the new icon of Iraqi freedom, the Lance Armstrong bracelet of fledgling democracy.
Perhaps most surprised at this turn of events is the man behind the ink, Robert Dyck.
Reached for comment at his Ottawa office, Dyck called out to a colleague: “Hey! This is a big story in America!”
Dyck (pronounced Dick) heads a firm called CODE Inc., which has supplied election materials to developing countries since 1988. Haitians, Ethiopians, Liberians and Yugoslavs have all dipped digits in his indelible ink. All told, the 59-year-old entrepreneur has been involved with 106 elections in 62 countries. None, though, has ever brought his humble product this kind of attention.
The ink, mixed in Ontario, includes a secret ingredient that binds it to human skin and nails. “Nobody’s figured out a way to get our ink off yet,” he said. A few days after exposure, the dyed skin sloughs off, but the nail must grow out completely before the stain is gone. This takes between two to three weeks.