Despite receiving little attention from the Left or the Right during the election...

Our nation’s drone warfare program continues to inflame anti-American sentiments across the world – particularly in volatile nations like Pakistan. And we ignore this semi-covert drone war at our own peril, because in the near future, those same drones will be flying over U.S. skies, too. In fact, they already are – assisting in law enforcement and anti-immigration missions. And this week, the Department of Homeland Security announced it plans to double its fleet of Predator drones flying inside the United States.

Already, DHS has spent $250 million on a fleet of ten surveillance drones to fly U.S. skies – but according to the group California Watch, DHS signed a contract worth nearly $500 million to purchase an additional 14 drones to spy on us. DHS is also encouraging local police forces to purchase their own drones – and has dished out $4 million to local agencies to “accelerate” the purchase of unmanned surveillance drones.

According to estimates from the FAA, we might have as many as 30,000 drones patrolling American skies by the end of the decade. If the countless dead civilians from our drone strikes abroad don’t affect you, then the complete disappearance of your privacy rights at home will.

Comments

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 31 weeks ago
#1

Drones flying overhead with High Def cameras and facial recognition systems that have a 98% accuracy with a recognition and identification response time of just seconds.

Yup, we're in for a very scarey time ahead. Some articles and blogs I've read suggest that these facial recognition systems can be beaten...if you want to walk down the street and everywhere you go by tilting your head 15 degrees or disguise your face with something that would throw the computer recognition system off...like a mask or, perhaps, even if you scowl or grimace...wear a fake nose? But if you are carrying a cell phone, especially the newer, fancier ones, even one that is powered off, you can still make a very good target for these drones.

These organizations like the FBI, Homeland Insecurity, etc. are spending huge amounts of our tax dollars on all of these things....to spy on us...not so-called terrorists...THEY are the terrorists who are spying on us!

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 31 weeks ago
#2

"inflame anti american sentiments" I hate to break the bad news to you but Pakistans nasty thoughs about us where inflamed already. Remember thats who was hidding Osama Bin laden. I feel a lot safer knowing those little birds are watching those nut cases.

John Defalque's picture
John Defalque 9 years 31 weeks ago
#3

Why don't they have fire fighting drone aircraft-they would have been useful in cooling the Fukishiima reactor? Why do we put firefighter's lives at risk? Why are there not search and rescue drones? Why can't this technology be used more usefully and lucratively in civillian applications? Why was there no water spraying helicopter when the Twin Towers were in flames?

akunard's picture
akunard 9 years 31 weeks ago
#4

Under the guise of "Homland Security" our rights under the Const. are being rapidly striped from us.

Both sides of the isle are in this camp.

What better way to remove an enimy of the State, drone missle.

ScottFromOz 9 years 31 weeks ago
#5

If you think about the fact of drones flying around that can monitor our every move, and then consider the military's call to start developing completely autonomous "killer robots", it's beginning to look like "Judgement Day" (a-la Terminator) is not that far off. SkyNet here we come.

klentz's picture
klentz 9 years 31 weeks ago
#6

Conservatives always get off on the "immigration problem" but they fail to realize that undocumented immigrants are actually more anonomous in our country than citizens are.

Think about it - If anyone in the gov wants to locate you - they can do it within hours. Yet there are thousands of non-citizens in our country, both undocumented and on visas, who could be anywhere.

We do a great job keeping an eye on us, but have no clue where the bad guys are.They could save a ton of money by focusing just on the threats and leaving the rest of us alone.

dowdotica's picture
dowdotica 9 years 31 weeks ago
#7

i was just thinking that!

ken ware's picture
ken ware 9 years 31 weeks ago
#8

We have been under constant observation in many of the larger cities and especially in areas that are mostly Latino or African American that have a high crime rate. In Southwest L.A. (a poor minority area) a few years ago one of their eyes in the sky helicopters came crashing down due to a malfunction. Eventually they will switch from choppers to drones to keep an eye on hot spots of crime. I have not heard anyone cry out with complaints of losing our privacy when it occurs in those areas in our major cities across the nation. Now people are concerned because the eyes in the sky may start watching their homes and neighborhoods in predominately white middleclass areas. Like most events in our society it is never an issue to people until it may happen near them. I personally could careless whether it is a drone or helicopter if it helps prevent crime and hopefully domestic terrorism. Our civil rights started slipping away decades ago when it was alright for the law enforcement agencies to spy on poor neighborhoods, and what is good for the goose is good for the gander. Corny I know, but I think you get the point. If it is good for one group to be watched, than why are we white folks in the middleclass neighborhoods beyond being monitored by big brother. Perhaps we should have raised our voices and spoke up a lot sooner than now. Get used to being monitored because it has been going on for the last decade with the installation of cameras on every stop light and with high recognition software privacy is a thing of the past....Smile your on candid camera!!

sltack's picture
sltack 9 years 31 weeks ago
#9

I keep thinking that it won't be long until Iran or Packastan or some other country that doesn't like us will get the technology to build these things and then won't we have fun.

HalFonts's picture
HalFonts 9 years 31 weeks ago
#10

$250-million for 10 model helicopters -- Whooboy, I shoulda stuck to my hobby rather than career. I had this idea 30-40 years ago. in a simplified way, it was becoming very do-able back then. What took them so long? Maybe just the gall, to ignore other countries air-space. Just wait until pissed-off low-budget folks bring the technology back here. (... and it sure won't take $25-million each for rogue-drones).

HalFonts's picture
HalFonts 9 years 31 weeks ago
#11

I date "Loss of Privacy" to the Clinton Impeachment Hearings. That was when my body-fluids had become the property of my employer and our major clients; and when my financial and healthcare records had become the property of the Finance and Insurance Industries. How long ago was that -- 1998?

flyguy8650's picture
flyguy8650 9 years 31 weeks ago
#12

Well is this not ironic....the left worried about the left....Obama is in the White House, don't worry, he is one of us is he not? He cares, he wants to bring us all "together". Drones protect us, the middle class, the peeps, we are one.....are we not? No need to fear, our government wants only to protect us and our children. Imagine if Romney was in the White House? Or Biden? Or Newt? At least Obama, is a kind, peaceful man, who has a cadre of staff that also feel our pain and want us to prosper. The Drones, wire taps, internet control, media love fest, Home Land Security, Etc. Is all to protect us from "Those Evil Doers"....Republicans's, Tea Party, Evil Corporations, Islamic Terroists, Skin Heads, Lions and Tigers and Bears! FEAR them, not our own government lead by progressives. They only want us all to be equally employed, paid, healthy, strong, and contributing to the cause of the masses.

OK, UTOPIA next stop.......Oh wait have we not bee here? JFK, Camelot, What a wonder ful time that was. Churchs, Christmas, Freedom....or was there? I just saw a new coin. 1$ coin with In God We Trust removed. What next in the Government We Trust. History repeats....Histort Repeats again....All successufll government turns on its citizens eventually then collapses. I wish to be dead before I see this happen here. I hope you young people can make the changes with out violence.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 31 weeks ago
#13

"In God We Trust" removed from the $1 coin? What a fantastic idea! It is about time! We need to remove that phrase from all of the money and stop violating the principle of "separation of church and state". But, alas, it hasn't really happened yet.

Some of the fairly new US dollar coins had the "In God We Trust" inscription moved to the outer edge instead of on the face. And if you have seen photos of these coins showing only the faces, and not the edges, then you are not getting the whole picture.

In some cases this made it easier for some people to remove the wording and in other cases there have been mint errors...in which case collectors usually snapped them up.

The newest coins have returned the motto to the face of the coins again. The one traditional word "Liberty" was missing for a while but it was argued that the image of the statue of liberty was symbolic of "Liberty" so the printed word was not really necessary. I'd say that the missing word "Liberty" was way more important an issue than "In God We Trust". With "In God We Trust" everyone is forced to abide by it's existence...with "Liberty" everyone can believe in any idiotic, nonsensical, superstitious idea or belief they want...including God....the tooth fairy...Leprechauns...or the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

This country isn't all bible thumping believers...we all don't believe in God and that superstition has no place being sanctioned by a government that is supposed to be neutral on that issue...let alone preaching it.

With the lack of separation of church and state, as in various Muslim countries, your "liberty and freedoms" will gravitate toward "forced assimilation" to whatever religious norms becomes the dominant one.

http://www.snopes.com/politics/religion/dollarcoin.asp

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 31 weeks ago
#14

I just watched the movie "Argo"...I know...it's been playing in theaters for some weeks now. The beginning of the movie helps put things into perspective...the history of the CIA overthrow of the very well liked, democratically elected, Mossedegh Prime Minister of Iran who dared to return control of THEIR oil to the Iranians from the US and British who, pretty much, were stealing it. And then the US installed the ruthless and hated Shah of Iran. The Shah and his wife lived lavishly (Shah flew into the country, via SST (Super Sonic Transport), hundreds of gallons of milk for the Shah's wife to bathe in while most of Iranians families went without sufficient food...insufficient milk for the babies and children. The Shah, with help of the CIA, had his hated and feared secret police force, SAVAK, terrorized the population into submission.

Then, the people finally kicked the Shah's butt out of Iran and the US continued to spy on Iran through their embassies. The people of Iran, often thought to be largely the students (often reported, in Western propaganda news sources, as Islamist Students and militants), overran the US embassy. The embassy workers had tried in vain to destroy all of their spy material but failed. About 6 American spies (oops..I mean diplomats) escaped to the Canadian Embassy and this is what the movie was largely about...the escape of these 6.

The plan, called the Canadian Caper (because of the Canadian participation in the plan without whose extraordinary assistance would not have worked) was to send over a CIA spook, Tony Mendez, under the cover of Director of a Canadian movie called "Argo" and how they would give each of these 6 people a cover (as Canadian actors) under the guise of making the new movie. It was a pretty intense movie...close calls...etc. The CIA spook that went in, Tony Mendez (played by Ben Affleck) had previous successes at exfiltration.

“If I was making a political movie I’d say it but this is a movie about imperialism, about democracy and the tyranny of totalitarianism,” says Affleck, who studied Middle Eastern affairs at university.

After having lived in the Middle East (Saudi Arabia) for a couple of years I know what it is like (sort of...) to be subjected to a crushing religious tyranny. The only way to live under such conditions is to keep one's mouth shut and jump through their hoops. But I sure wouldn't want to spend my whole life like that. So I look forward to total separation of religion and state...including removing all religious symbols and mottos from our money, pledge of allegiance, etc. Religion has been nothing but trouble.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 31 weeks ago
#15

One thing the movie "Argo" didn't mention was that Reagan had made a deal with the Iranians to supply them with weapons if they would hold off on releasing the remaining hostages after the elections. This would hurt Carter's chances of re-election especially in light of the helicopter crash attempt to rescue hostages...which, itself has some very questionable circumstances.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 31 weeks ago
#16

29 Signs That The Elite Are Transforming Society Into A Total Domination Control Grid
November 20th, 2012..Michael Snyder (worked for a number of the largest law firms in Washington DC).

--an article on Market Daily News

"We are like cattle that need to be penned in for our own good. This is how the elite actually think. I spent many years being educated by them and rubbing shoulders with them. They should not be trusted. Once our liberties and freedoms are gone, they will be nearly impossible to get back. And once the elite have total control, we will be faced with a tyranny unlike anything humanity has ever seen before."

Lookout Southern California..pay special attention to sign # 2. Oh, and #6 too! Oh, and San Francisco...look out! #21 mentions the "pre-crime surveillance cameras" being installed "all over San Francisco".

Facial recognition surveillance systems, spy drones, kitchen appliances that spy on you, RFID chips everywhere, Trapwire everywhere, pornoscanner vans scanning us in the streets, cell phones spying on you...

http://marketdailynews.com/2012/11/20/29-signs-that-the-elite-are-transf...

Kend's picture
Kend 9 years 31 weeks ago
#17

250 million so it wouldn't look like Obama is going to war. We all know how well it went for the Republicans when they did. It is bad enough Obama sent 30,000 troops to Afganastan. Little planes don't look like war.

Harry Kellogg's picture
Harry Kellogg 9 years 31 weeks ago
#18

It's way past time for Isaac Asimov's Three Laws of Robotics.

The Three Laws are:

  1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.
  2. A robot must obey the orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.
  3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Laws.

It's amazing to me how the science fiction writers keep proving themselves every day.

Skynet is coming just a little later than predicted. Just like 1984 it's about 40 years late but it seems to be coming true. Amazing that we keep letting it happen and yet we've been warned well aheaf of time just like climate change.

ken ware's picture
ken ware 9 years 31 weeks ago
#19

Palindromedary - I have a question for you or anyone else who accepts the writings of these individuals on various blogs or newsletters. The first thing I noticed was a disclaimer on the Market Daily News that they are in no way responsible for or support the information written on their web site by various people. Who is checking to validate the conspiracy theories and general info that is written by these individuals claiming what they have stated is factual? They appear to claim the information they provide is factual, yet they do not give any information on how they obtained these so called conspiracy threats or how to verify the information. We all know or should know that the government and corporations have kept information on us from day one. I needed a top secret N.A.T.O. clearance to do the work I performed for the U.S. Air Force in the early 70's.They checked my history from the time I began school and everything about my family for a security clearance at that level. Every time I (we) purchase anything with my credit cards or fill a warranty card the corporation who runs the store knows our buying habits, address and other needed information. The insurance companies know my health through my medical records when they are billed for services. There are no secrets about us in the information age we live in. Anyone who has kept up on what the government is doing realizes the C.I.A. has had its hands in the governments of other nations to promote America's so called best interest. I do not agree we should, but anyone older than 50 is aware of the fact we are an Imperialist country and have been for a century. I accept the fact the government is watching everything in the name of national security and as technology advances they will use that technology for or against our best interests. To think we can roll back the clock to a time when these things were not necessary is just kidding yourself. I do not feel threatened over the fact the wealthy try to control us for their advantage, because that has been going on since the inception of the concept of society. Starting with the earliest societies on Earth they have used information to control other people for their own greed and lust for power. This is not a new concept for mankind. And for the government, corporations and super wealthy their desire to control us by the use of information is not a new phenomenon. Whether we like it or not we will continue to be watched by Big Brother for both good and evil proposes. The important thing is to make sure we are aware of this and to know what they do with this information as best we can. And equally important, we need to know what we read has been fact checked and we do to hastily accept claims from others without verifying these claims first. The ability to not be monitored is no longer in our hands as long as we use technology that gathers and shares information about us in our daily lives. We live in an era where Facebook and Twitter share info about us within seconds of typing it and we seem to have a need to share! And, yet we worry about Big Brother, somewhat ironic wouldn't you say. What would we do without our ability to Google when we want info about something or someone! SMILE YOU'RE ON CANDID CAMERA!

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 31 weeks ago
#20

And I had a top secret clearance when I was in the military and a top secret crypto clearance when I got out of the military and serviced automatic digital communication networks in the Pentagon, the CIA, NSA, and many of the Military and Federal systems around DC. That was way back when I didn't question the system or make any noise...just did my job. You wasn't one of those guys down in the silos with your fingers on the button..were you? We had a number of very close calls. We needed people who didn't freak out and lose one's temper...we needed people who were relatively sane and calm...not prone to hurl insults and name calling at people.

Who is checking to validate the conspiracy theories on various web sites? Who checks the validity of what YOU say on this web site? Who checks the validity of what our own government says about such things as 911...most people realize by now that you can't trust what the government or military tells us. They have no credibility due to a long history of lies and deceit. What do you need to make what you read credible? LA Times? Washington Post?

I have read other blogs on that web site and don't agree with some of them...some sound kind of right wing...but I make my decisions based not just on one web site but many, many web sites...including this one...and books and other articles I've read....networks like FSTV...LINK...RT...oh, and occasionally the more major networks (with critical scrutiny...looking for obvious contradictions...brazen lies..and glaring omissions..and there are many).

I never, ever, watch Fox Snooze...have boycotted them since their beginning. I boycott the whole channel..won't watch anything even if it sounds like a very entertaining program or movie. It really ticks me off that the Cable and Dish networks put up the Fox channel at the lower subscription rates but you have to pay a premium to get channels like MSNBC...which has some liberal content. I'm really surprised that they let FSTV, LINK, and RT on for the lower rates. No wonder so many people are steered against their best financial interests...especially the ones who can't afford to pay the increased rates....or those who just won't pay them out of being frugal.

One thing I know is that if you just shrug your shoulders and accept the criminal bullying and spying on us..saying.."oh, there is really nothing we can do about it anyway..just accept it"..then you will always be subjected to their animosity and disrespect. They will easily take away all of the things we have worked hard for and programs that we have spent our lives contributing to...like Social Security and Medicare. That's their goal!

Truth? You don't want the truth! I think part of the truth comes from web sites like:
http://ae911truth.org/

and watching documentaries like:

911: Explosive Evidence - Experts Speak Out
This was aired on PBS recently but you can see it here.
http://video.cpt12.org/video/2270078138

or this older film:
911 Blueprint for Truth
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LBG-i2SbVgs

No Fraud's picture
No Fraud 9 years 31 weeks ago
#21

I'd say any one who reads between the lines can connect the dots......Centralized Banking.....One world power....Who will it be???

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 9 years 31 weeks ago
#22

Many Empires have fallen before when the people finally said "Enough is enough!" They too had what seemed like insurmountable odds against ruling regimes so powerful that it would be foolish to challenge them. But the people had numbers on their side. The ruling elite knows how important it is for them to keep their subjects dumbed down and mollified. The Roman Emperors tried to do it with games at the coliseum but that only worked for a while. The starving French mobs beheaded their King and aristocrats because the aristocrats thought all the taxes should be paid by the people and the King went along with that idea. The Russian Tzar and aristocrats fell to the wrath of the mobs and were overthrown. The highly idealistic (now vainly corrupt) experiment in democracy is failing to keep the masses believing in their corrupt system of government. Just as the KGB spied on their people, and "disappeared" citizens who spoke out against the corruption of their rulers, it is happening on an ever expanding measure right here in the US. There can only be one outcome as they tighten their grip on the people...despite all their drones and failing propaganda.

There are many conspiracy theories...some more believable than others...some seem to be pretty far fetched. Some are actually created by the capos of the ruling elite to discredit all ideas that counter the official party dogma/propaganda. But other conspiracy theories are more believable. In many people's minds "conspiracy theory" has become something to ridicule and laugh at. Largely because of all of the efforts of those who wish to control the masses through official dogma. But there is one conspiracy theory that is so full of holes, fallacies, and lies that is accepted and believed by many people who cling to the official propaganda...the "official 911 conspiracy theory"...where 19 box cutter Muslim/Arab terrorists were solely (along with the mastermind OBL) the cause of hijacking and guiding those aircraft to their targets. Never mind all of the hundreds of eyewitnesses who have spoken out about what they experienced that contradicts the "official government conspiracy theory". Never mind all of the non-sequiturs, the proven government lies and obvious attempts at cover-ups. Never mind all of the hard evidence that contradicts the "official government conspiracy theory". To seek the truth which leads down the path that wealthy and powerful insiders were the masterminds and cause of 911 is too much for many people to bear and they will seek refuge in the very same corrupt dogma that is put out by our government. Truth!? You don't want the Truth! You want to continue to believe in the lies our government tells us because the truth is too hard to accept.

Obrien: 'How many fingers am I holding up, Winston?'
Winston: 'Four! five! Four! Anything you like. Only stop it, stop the pain!'
Obrien: 'No, Winston, that is no use. You are lying. You still think there are four. How many fingers, please?'

"Abruptly he was sitting up with O'Brien's arm round his shoulders. He had perhaps lost consciousness for a few seconds. The bonds that had held his body down were loosened. He felt very cold, he was shaking uncontrollably, his teeth were chattering, the tears were rolling down his cheeks. For a moment he clung to O'Brien like a baby, curiously comforted by the heavy arm round his shoulders. He had the feeling that O'Brien was his protector, that the pain was something that came from outside, from some other source, and that it was O'Brien who would save him from it."

--George Orwell...1984

megalomaniac's picture
megalomaniac 9 years 31 weeks ago
#23

Drones flying overhead or corporate franchise vehicles loaded with listening devices operated by secret agencies to find out information about law breakers. All seems patriotic.

Or in contrast those that are seeking honest people trying to find out about government law breakers, to suppress or oppress each other to win power.

Fly float or on wheels, or just walking around pointing a gizmo to creep into your life is the new age. Either way somebody is going to get caught committing a crime. And to add the coined phrase the taker or the maker will be the target.

Also, the information age data abundant and able to pin down just about anyone for any reason. A reasonable book by Alasdair Roberts a Canadian, wrote Blacked out, Government secrecy in the information age. He gives a good presentation of the issues of our time.

The drones a neat high tech way to advance science. Here the alarms should go off if NASA type technology is pointing to you or me. That’s what bugs me. America we paid for this technology. Educated and trained engineers in university projects funded by the military many secret and likely interned by highly connected siblings of Congress Senate judicial, and the American medical and Banking industries.

You who did you get that.

Yes we do say a huge imbalance of not only free money from our Federal Reserve to individuals we don’t know or to who for unknown reasons are secret stuff hidden suppressed because the moral authority is rank to disgusting or a total breach of the Constitution.

Also inside track to the best of the best education path for Pelosi grand kids or Rockefeller choices. One can get so angry one prays to be the right hand of God at judgment day. We know who is not going to get through the pearly gates. Yes this is the final American tragedy, the Pearly Gate conspiracy. Who held the door open for those 911 hijackers is still the primary question ditched by the media especially Limbaugh, Fox, and the hate radio clan totally are connected with many of Congress Senate judicial and banking etc. which is the real reason it is not investigated openly and publicly. MSNBC is already trying to show the need for improvement in our penal institutions every weekend. Likely half of the ownership of media should be there permanently by committing treason by not representing true facts to the public. Most should have their license revoked for lies. Hell this past election was lies, upon lies, upon lies. America these electromagnetic journalist people are insane.

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