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HR 3311: Vehicle Tracking Devices and Road Taxes

HR 3311: Vehicle Tracking Devices and Road Taxes

Noworldsystem.com
September 21, 2009

This is just one of many bills that is evidence that America is falling into an Orwellian police state, the eye of big government, tax slavery and despotism is becoming even more clear as the republic fades into the night.

Democratic Congressman Earl Blumenauer has introduced HR 3311, if passed the Senate would use $154 million of taxpayer money to fund the development of vehicle tracking devices and roadside RFID scanning devices that would record your everyday driving habits for the sake of creating a new taxation scheme and quite possibly help law enforcement penalize every mistake you make on the road. The money would also be used to research and study how to enforce this on a nationwide scale and how to present this scheme to the public as something necessary to fund failing infrastructures.

The bill will allow the US Treasury Department to establish this program which is called the “Road User Free Pilot Project” that was developed by Oregon legislators to impose a gas tax on Oregon motorists, the pilot program now studies the Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) tax instead, to better track and tax motorists. Within eighteen months of the HR 3311 passing the US Treasury would file an initial report outlining the best methods of adopting this new tax scheme on a nationwide scale.

Here’s what the bill’s sponsor, Congressman Blumenauer had to say about this insidious track and tax plan: “Oregon has successfully tested a Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) fee, and it is time to expand and test the VMT program across the country,”!

Just imagine all vehicles in the United States fitted with this federal tracking device, why don’t they just shackle us all and tax every footstep we make while they are at it!?! This is completely un-constitutional and threatens the 4th amendment of the United States constitution, I doubt that anyone would actually accept something this Orwellian to be used against them.. but of course I’m sure if this bill passes all new vehicles would be secretly fitted with these devices without anyone knowing about it.

Here is what we know the device is capable of recording:

1. The device can calculate miles driven based on GPS data
2. The device can store the number of miles driven
3. The device can determine when the vehicle has left certain states
4. The device can store the states the vehicle entered
5. The device can determine what time a vehicle was being driven
6. The device can store the times the vehicle was driven
7. The device can produce all data stored since its last reading

This device must be receiving precise positional data as an input from its GPS unit. It must also have a clock set to the real time and date as an input. This means that the device is getting data on the exact position of the vehicle at any moment, and that the control software is only storing certain data-points based on this. This is an adequate privacy safeguard, right? Probably not.

Considering this is a tax device, it will very likely need to be updated to reflect changes in the tax law. The need for this capability is clear. One year, the zone around Portland might incur a tax at any time of day, the next year only during rush hour. Oregon’s program might spread to other states, so now the control software in the device has to start recording miles driven in those states as well. If this is the case, then the control software could one day be updated in nearly any way, including complete tracking of movement and speed.

The other thing to consider is that the readers for these devices will be readily available, since every gas station in the state will need one. Even if the software stays the same, there’s nothing stopping a rogue police department from getting its hands on a reader and using it to gather info on people. More likely, though, if these devices became pervasive, law enforcement would push to have readers of their own.

Imagine this scenario: You’re driving a car with one of these GPS devices at the leisurely clip of 60 MPH on the highway leading into Klamath Falls. Like all highways in Oregon, the limit is still 55 MPH. A cop catches you going over the limit and pulls you over. You go through the normal rigmarole with him, except this time he checks your GPS devices and finds out that you’ve exceeded 55 MPH in the state of Oregon 22 times since the device was last read. You leave this encounter with 22 speeding tickets instead of one.

That scenario is possible with the hardware described in the device and minimal changes in the software. Only the good will of the Oregon state government is keeping it from being so. Should Oregonians really rely on that alone to protect their privacy? [Source]

Federal Proposal Would Spend $154 Million on Vehicle Tracking Tax

H.R. 3311 is an oxymoron

HR 3311: The Vehicle Tracking Bill

London drivers may face “pay as you drive” road taxes

 



Speeding drivers could be stopped by satellite

Speeding drivers could be stopped by satellite

Telegraph
September 15, 2008

Drivers could have their speed controlled by satellite to stop them from breaking the limit following a Government trial of new technology.

Cars fitted with the system would have their speed automatically monitored by satellites, which would also be programmed with the speed limits for different roads.

A motorist who tried to accelerate beyond the speed limit would find the system stopping the car from going any faster or issuing a warning instructing them to slow down.

The Department for Transport is set to back the system known as Intelligent Speed Adaptation. It follows lengthy trials conducted in Leeds in where cars have been fitted with the sophisticated satellite navigation system.

The Department for Transport said that the installation of the technology would be voluntary, but it is already in talks with the motor industry over how it could be made available for those who wanted to buy it.

Three types of the technology could be made available:

The first, known as “advisory”, would stop short of actually slowing the car down and would instead issue a voice alert reminding the motorist what the speed limit is.

A second version would either apply the brakes or cut the fuel supply to the engine, slowing it down to the speed limit, but a driver would be able to override the system – either by depressing the accelerator pedal firmly or pressing a button.

The third would take over complete control of the car and the driver would not be able to override the system at all.

Read Full Article Here

 



London drivers may face “pay as you drive” road taxes

London drivers may face “pay as you drive” road taxes

David Millward
London Telegraph
August 18, 2008


A prototype road-pricing device: the scheme involves a satellite tracking a vehicle’s movements. Motorists will then receive a bill for their time on the road

Motorists are being warned they may face “pay as you drive” road taxes as ministers launch the first ever trials of a scheme that could see them charged for every mile they drive.

The Telegraph can disclose that the Government is pushing ahead with plans for a national road-pricing scheme, including testing “spy in the sky” technology.

Eight areas of the country have been selected by ministers for secret pay-per-mile trials which will begin in 2010 and are expected to pave the way for tolls on motorways.

Motorists face paying up to £1.30 a mile during peak periods on the busiest roads.

Gordon Brown was thought to be against national road pricing, a flagship policy of the Blair administration.

But the detailed level of planning now underway indicates the issue it set to become a key battleground in the next general election – which is likely to coincide with the trials beginning.

It will leave Ruth Kelly, the Transport Secretary, particularly vulnerable as she defends her marginal Bolton West constituency.

The Daily Telegraph has learnt that eight areas – Leeds, North Yorkshire, Milton Keynes and Buckinghamshire, south west London, Suffolk and Essex – have been selected for the trials.

Read Full Article Here

Drivers face higher parking charges under controversial new car tax band linked to engine emissions
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/ne..-car-tax-band-linked-engine-emissions.html

9 Million Brits to Pay Road Tax
http://noworldsystem.com/2008/07/12/9-million-brits-to-pay-road-tax/

 



RFID Chip Implants Cause Cancer in Lab-Rats

RFID Chip Implants Cause Cancer in Lab-Rats

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OOT8Of9HLjs

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_U7-s8JuZ8

 



Pentagon Will Buy More Spy Satellites

Pentagon Will Buy More Spy Satellites

AP
July 1, 2008


The Pentagon will buy and operate one or two commercial imagery satellites and plans to design and build another with more sophisticated spying capabilities, according to government and private industry officials.

The satellites could spy on enemy troop movements, spot construction at suspected nuclear sites and alert commanders to new militant training camps.

The Broad Area Surveillance Intelligence Capability (BASIC) satellite system will cost between $2 billion and $4 billion. It would add to the secret constellation of satellites that now circle the Earth, producing still images that are pieced together into one large mosaic.

A single satellite can visit one spot on Earth twice every day. BASIC’s additional satellites will allow the photos to be updated more often, alerting U.S. government users to potential trouble, humanitarian crises or natural disasters like floods.

The announcement of the BASIC program, expected this week, has been delayed for months, with Pentagon, Air Force, and National Reconnaissance Office officials fighting over who should be in charge of buying, building and operating the satellites. They have also debated whose needs the system will cater to: senior military commanders or policymakers in Washington, D.C.

At stake was not just money but power: billion-dollar budgets are up for grabs, and the agencies’ traditional missions and way of doing business have been hanging in the balance.

The National Reconnaissance Office ultimately won the right to buy and operate the satellites, besting the Air Force. And military commanders’ needs trumped the White House. They will, for the first time, have the power to dictate what satellites will photograph when they pass overhead. The concept is known as “assured tasking.”

Read Full Article Here

U.S. Uses Satellites To Spy On Iraqi Army
http://www.latimes.com/news/..02%2C0%2C1040691.story

 



Isikoff: Bush wants satellites for domestic spying

Isikoff: Bush wants satellites for domestic spying

David Edwards
Raw Story
June 29, 2008

http://youtube.com/watch?v=lEzzkBFE2Qk

MSNBC’s Alex Witt talked to Newsweek’s Michael Isikoff about a new proposal by the Bush administration to use satellites for domestic surveillance.

Isikoff told MSNBC, “The Homeland Security Department is talking about expanding the program to use military satellites really, for domestic purposes. They say the primary driver is natural disasters — like the recent flooding in the midwest — to pinpoint areas that are most hard hit and to help with responses, first responses. But they also leave open the possibility that this could be used for other purposes, law enforce many purposes. Tracking potential terrorists but also tracking potential drug operations.”

“And that is where the concerns about civil liberty abuses come in. First of all, there are strict laws about the act that limits the use of the U.S. military for law enforcement purposes. But the precision of these satellites, they can literally capture crystal clear images of your car as you leave the studio this afternoon. And capture them in computer databases — in the government computer databases. And it raises all sorts of concerns. To some degree, the administration is paying the price of what is for — what many in congress see as way over stepping — in the electronic surveillance era.”

DHS to give cops real-time satellite surveillance
http://noworldsystem.com/2008/04..-time-satellite-surveillance/

 



FBI Spies On IMs E-Mails And Cell Phones

FBI Spies On IMs E-Mails And Cell Phones

John Bryne
Raw Story
April 8, 2008

FBI also spies on home soil for military, documents show; Much information acquired without court order

The Federal Bureau of Investigation has been routinely monitoring the e-mails, instant messages and cell phone calls of suspects across the United States — and has done so, in many cases, without the approval of a court.

Documents released under the Freedom of Information Act and given to the Washington Post — which stuck the story on page three — show that the FBI’s massive dragnet, connected to the backends of telecommunications carriers, “allows authorized FBI agents and analysts, with point-and-click ease, to receive e-mails, instant messages, cellphone calls and other communications that tell them not only what a suspect is saying, but where he is and where he has been, depending on the wording of a court order or a government directive,” the Post says.

But agents don’t need a court order to track to track the senders and recipients names, or how long calls or email exchanges lasted. These can be obtained simply by showing it’s “relevant” to a probe.

RAW STORY has placed a request to the Electronic Frontier Foundation for the new documents, and will post them upon receipt.

Some transactional data is obtained using National Security Letters. The Justice Department says use of these letters has risen from 8,500 in 2000 to 47,000 in 2005, according to the Post.

Last week, the American Civil Liberties Union released letters showing that the Pentagon is using the FBI to skirt legal restrictions on domestic surveillance.

Documents show the FBI has obtained the private records of Americans’ Internet service providers, financial institutions and telephone companies, for the military, according to more than 1,000 Pentagon documents reviewed by the ACLU — also using National Security Letters, without a court order.

The new revelations show definitively that telecommunications companies can transfer “with the click of a mouse, instantly transfer key data along a computer circuit to an FBI technology office in Quantico” upon request.

A telecom whistleblower, in an affidavit, has said he help maintain a high-speed DS-3 digital line referred to in house as the “Quantico circuit,” which allowed an outside organization “unfettered” access to the the carrier’s wireless network.

The network he’s speaking of? Verizon.

Verizon denies the allegations vaguely, saying “no government agency has open access to the company’s networks through electronic circuits.”

The Justice Department downplayed the new documents.

A spokesman told the Post that the US is asking only for “information at the beginning and end of a communication, and for information “reasonably available” by the network.

The FBI’s budget for says the collection system increased from $30 million in 2007 to $40 million in 2008, the paper said.

 

Homeland Security invokes nuclear bomb, as Bush quietly links cybersecurity program to NSA

John Byrne
Raw Story
April 9, 2008

Department of Homeland Security Michael Chertoff has dropped the bomb.

At a speech to hundreds of security professionals Wednesday, Chertoff declared that the federal government has created a cyber security “Mahattan Project,” referencing the 1941-1946 project led by the Army Corps of Engineers to develop American’s first atomic bomb.

According to Wired’s Ryan Singel, Chertoff gave few details of what the government actually plans to do.

He cites a little-noticed presidential order: “In January, President Bush signed a presidential order expanding the role of DHS and the NSA in government computer security,” Singel writes. “Its contents are classified, but the U.S. Director of National Intelligence has said he wants the NSA to monitor America’s internet traffic and Google searches for signs of cyber attack.

The National Security Agency was the key player in President Bush’s warrantless wiretapping program, which was revealed by the New York Times in 2005.

Sound familiar? Yesterday, documents acquired by the Electronic Frontier Foundation under the Freedom of Information act showed the FBI has engaged in a massive cyber surveillance project that targets terror suspects emails, telephone calls and instant messages — and is able to get some information without a court order.

Last week, the ACLU revealed documents showing that the Pentagon was using the FBI to spy on Americans. The military is using the FBI to skirt legal restrictions on domestic surveillance to obtain private records of Americans’ Internet service providers, financial institutions and telephone companies, according to Pentagon documents.

Chertoff sought to calm those who worry that Homeland Security will begin to take an invasive Internet role.

“We don’t have to sit on the internet and prevent things from coming in or going out,” Chertoff said, which Singel says refers to China and other countries that censor what web sites their citizens can see. “That’s not what we are going to do.”

Bush wants $42 million more for program
But Chertoff may have had another reason for hyping threats of cyber terrorism. Money.

Congress appropriated $150 million in funding for the program this year, Singel notes. The administration has sought $192 million for 2009.

Speaking of threats, Chertoff remarked: “Imagine, if you will, a sophisticated attack on our financial systems that caused them to be paralyzed. It would shake the foundation of trust on which our financial system works.”

Remarked Singel wryly, “That digital mushroom cloud scenario means the government’s role in computer security must extend beyond federal networks, and reach to shared responsibility for financial, telecommunication and transportation infrastructure, Chertoff said. “The failure of any single system has cascading effects across our country.”

Which recalls another quote by a senior administration official.

Speaking of the alleged threat of Saddam Hussein in 2003, then National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice remarked, “We don’t want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.”

Zombie Computers Called National Threat
http://blog.wired.com/27bstroke6/2008/04/zombie-computer.html

Cyber Security Efforts Like Manhattan Project
http://www.ajc.com/business/content/..ebsecurity_0408.html

New Documents Detail FBI Eavesdropping On Americans’ Emails, IMs and Phone Calls
http://infowars.net/articles/april2008/080408FBI.htm

DHS Wants to Install Permanent Checkpoint in Vermont
http://www.wcax.com/global/story.asp?s=8117897

Hillary Supports Expanded Police State
http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/l..r12,0,2210184,print.story

3-Years For Laser Pointer Assault On Helicopter
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,347932,00.html

Anti-Terror Laws Used To Spy On Family
http://www.independent.co.uk/n..sed-to-spy-on-family-807873.html

100 Officers Raid Car Show To Give Tickets
http://www.thenewspaper.com/news/23/2302.asp

D.C. police set to monitor 5,000 cameras
http://www.washingtontimes.c..9/METRO/769331158/1004

CCTV could be used in exam rooms
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/education/7342432.stm

Police officers to be microchipped
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pag..article_id=558597&in_page_id=1770

 



DHS to give cops real-time satellite surveillance

DHS reckons US cops’ access to sat-surveillance is go

Lewis Page

The Register
April 3, 2008

US Homeland Security overlord Michael Chertoff has told reporters that he believes plans for increased use of satellite surveillance by American law-enforcement agencies are ready to move forward. However, Democratic politicians remain unconvinced that adequate privacy and civil liberties safeguards are in place.

“I think the way is now clear to stand NAO up and go warm,” said Chertoff, briefing journalists about the proposed National Applications Office.

NAO would allow US police, immigration, drug-enforcement and other officials to have access to data from various US satellites passing above America. It is understood that the information would be supplied mostly by spacecraft which at the moment are used for meteorological and geological surveying, or other scientific tasks. Satellites of this type can often deliver high-resolution images which would also be useful to law enforcement.

Purpose-built US surveillance satellites operated on behalf of military and intelligence agencies also pass above the US frequently. However, even the location of such spacecraft is often deemed to be a secret – for all that it may be well-known to amateur skywatchers. The capabilities of the true spybirds are even more jealously guarded, but realistically this information would soon become common knowledge if ordinary coppers were able to get such imagery.

Therefore, the new NAO probably won’t offer very wide access – if any – to America’s proper sky-spies. But it could provide a wealth of information all the same, and some US legislators are concerned about the implications.

Chertoff pooh-poohed such worries, saying that detailed assessments had been done and that Congresspersons had been briefed. The DHS chief believed that there’s a “good process in place to make sure there aren’t any… transgressions”. The DHS has also pointed out that various feds including the Secret Service* and FBI have used satellite imagery of the US in various previous investigations on a case-by-case basis.

Even so, plans for warm erection of the NAO could face a bumpy ride from Democrat-dominated committees on Capitol Hill.

 

State “Fusion Centers” And Pentagon-Run FBI Programs Spy On Americans

Steve Watson
Infowars.net
April 2, 2008

Fresh revelations of state and Pentagon run terrorist surveillance programs that “skirt legal restrictions” serve to remind the American public that they are now the prime suspects in the post 9/11 panopticon society.

Separate documents obtained by the ACLU and the Washington Post have created similar headlines on the same day about two new freedom eroding processes that have been in full swing for some time.

“Fusion Centers”

Intelligence centers run by states across the country have access to personal information about millions of Americans, including unlisted cellphone numbers, insurance claims, driver’s license photographs and credit reports, according to the Washington Post.

Dozens of the organizations known as fusion centers were created after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to identify potential threats and improve the way information is shared. The centers use law enforcement analysts and sophisticated computer systems to compile, or fuse, disparate tips and clues and pass along the refined information to other agencies.

The centers received $254 million from the Department of Homeland Security between 2004 and 2007 and also work in conjunction with the military arm of the DHS, NORTHCOM.

Read Full Article Here


Police To Get Real-Time Spy Satellite Data

Police To Get Real-Time Spy Satellite Data

AP
February 12, 2008

Fbiiraqisbein_mn

A plan to use U.S. spy satellites for domestic security and law-enforcement missions is moving forward after being delayed for months because of privacy and civil liberties concerns.

The charter and legal framework for an office within the Homeland Security Department that would use overhead and mapping imagery from existing satellites is in the final stage of completion, according to a department official who requested anonymity because the official was not authorized to speak publicly about it.

The future of this program is likely to come up Wednesday when Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff goes to Capitol Hill to talk about his department’s spending plan.

Last fall, senior Democrats on the House Homeland Security Committee asked the department to put the program on hold until there was a clear legal framework of how the program would operate. This request came during an ongoing debate over the rules governing eavesdropping on phone calls and e-mails of suspected terrorists inside the United States.

The new plan explicitly states that existing laws which prevent the government from spying on citizens would remain in effect, the official said. Under no circumstances, for instance, would the program be used to intercept verbal and written conversations.

The department currently is waiting for federal executive agencies to sign off on the program — called the National Applications Office — and will share the details with lawmakers soon.

Domestic agencies such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency and Interior Department have had access to this satellite imagery for years for scientific research, to assist in response to natural disasters like hurricanes and fires, and to map out vulnerabilities during a major public event like the Super Bowl. Since 1974 the requests have been made through the federal interagency group, the Civil Applications Committee.

These types of uses will continue when the Homeland Security Department oversees the program and becomes the clearinghouse for these requests. But the availability of satellite images will be expanded to other agencies to support the homeland security mission. The details of how law enforcement agencies could use the images during investigations would be determined in the future after legal and policy questions have been resolved, the official said.

It is possible that in the future an agency might request infrared imaging of what is inside a house, for instance a methamphetamine laboratory, and this could raise constitutional issues. In these instances, law enforcement agencies would still have to go through the normal process of obtaining a warrant and satisfying all the legal requirements. The National Applications Office also would require that all the laws are observed when using new imaging technology.

Requests for satellite images will be vetted even more than they were when the requests went through the Civil Applications Committee. All requests will be reviewed by an interagency group that includes Justice Department officials to ensure civil rights and civil liberties are not violated.

This new effort largely follows the recommendations outlined by a 2005 independent study group headed by Keith Hall, a former chief of the National Reconnaissance Office and now vice president of the consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton.

Pentagon reveals plans to shoot down spy satellite over Ireland
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article3372001.ece

Experts: Rationale for Satellite Shoot-Down “Comedic Gold”
http://blog.wired.com/defense/2008/02/fishy-rationale.html

US plans to shoot down satellite
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/7245578.stm

 



NORTHCOM: Constitution Not Important

NORTHCOM: Constitution Not Important

Lee Rogers
Rogue Government
December 21, 2007

The United States government is now actively directing the attention of the U.S. military towards the American people. Using the phony war on terror, the Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Northern Command (NORTHCOM) are creating a militarized control grid specifically to enslave the American people. One thing is clear, neither of these agencies abide by the Constitution. In fact, both agencies by themselves are unconstitutional and should be abolished. Despite this, it is expected that they would at least try to follow the supreme law of the land which is the Constitution regardless of the unconstitutionality of the institutions themselves. Amazingly, NORTHCOM is now openly admitting that they do not follow the Constitution. NORTHCOM recently issued a press release talking about how they handle intelligence oversight and they stated that their goal in conducting intelligence oversight includes ensuring that presidential directives and executive orders are abided by during intelligence gathering operations. Of course, they don’t specifically mention anything about abiding by the Constitution. This is disturbing considering the hundreds of unconstitutional executive orders issued by George W. Bush, Bill Clinton and others. In fact some even argue that executive orders by themselves aren’t constitutional. If NORTHCOM is saying that the oversight of their intelligence gathering operations consist of ensuring these executive orders and directives are followed, than they are not concerned with following the Constitution.

The following is taken from NORTHCOM’s press release on a recent intelligence oversight conference.

Safeguarding the privacy rights of U.S. persons is critical to the Department of Defense agencies that conduct intelligence activities in support of the nation’s homeland defense and homeland security.

To ensure the rights of all U.S. persons are protected, DoD established an Intelligence Oversight program to ensure that all military intelligence, counterintelligence, and intelligence related activities are conducted in accordance with applicable laws, presidential executive orders and DoD directives and regulations.

In its continuing effort to ensure compliance with the DoD IO program, North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command sponsored the 1st Annual World-Wide Intelligence Oversight Conference Dec. 4-6 at Joint Task Force North Headquarters on Fort Bliss, Texas.

They admit that intelligence operations will be conducted in accordance with applicable laws, presidential executive orders and DoD directives and regulations. There are countless unconstitutional executive orders, so this admission means that they are not concerned with following the Constitution. If applicable laws include the Constitution, than how can they follow the Constitution and the many executive orders that are unconstitutional and unapplicable as it applies to the supreme law of the land?

NORTHCOM has already admitted that their goal is to form a militarized police state by the year by 2020 that will likely be used to control the domestic population of people within the United States, Canada and Mexico. They describe an apparent martial law apparatus for the coming North American Union superstate. NORTHCOM has also already conducted various martial law type exercises in preperation for a potential domestic insurrection. NORTHCOM has also stated that these exercises will continue and that they will become more sophisticated.

As reported by Blackanthem Military News, NORTHCOM is already starting to integrate their operations with various U.S. and Canadian federal agencies including with the Department of Homeland Security.

U.S. Northern Command is cementing a vast network of relationships critical to protecting the homeland against attacks or natural disasters and providing a unified response should one occur, its commander said today.

Since it was established a year after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, Northern Command has formed critical partnerships with the Department of Homeland Security, about 60 other U.S. and Canadian federal agencies and the states, Air Force Gen. Victor E. “Gene” Renuart Jr. said.

This is all very bad news for the American people who simply want the government to follow the Constitution. Not only is NORTHCOM admitting that they do not follow the Constitution but they are working to destroy the sovereignty of all three North American countries by integrating and forming partnerships with institutions within the different countries. Combined this with the fact that the Department of Homeland Security is attempting to implement a multi-billion dollar domestic spy satellite system along with all sorts of other unconstitutional surveillance programs and there is little doubt that a militarized control grid is being built around the American people.

NORTHCOM and the Department of Homeland Security should be abolished immediately. These institutions themselves are unconstitutional, they perform unconstitutional activities and NORTHCOM now has admitted that they don’t follow the Constitution. These institutions will no doubt be used to further descend this country into absolute tyranny.

What is the ‘North American Union’?

 



Chertoff Attacks Bill of Rights, Corporate Media Ignores Story

Chertoff Attacks Bill of Rights, Corporate Media Ignores Story

Kurt Nimmo
TruthNews
December 21, 2007

Do a Google news search on “National Applications Office.” As of this morning, the search engine returns a measly ten results, never mind that the National Applications Office, described as a subset of the Ministry of Homeland Security, will “coordinate access to spy-satellite data for non-military domestic agencies, including law enforcement,” according to Nick Juliano of Raw Story, citing a recent article published in the Wall Street Journal.

“Chertoff insists the scheme to turn spy satellites — that were originally designed for foreign surveillance — on Americans is legal, although a House committee that would approve the program has not been updated on the program for three months,” in other words there is no “legal framework,” but then the neocons don’t need no stinkin’ legal framework.

Even so, Chertoff said not to worry, because “warrants will be obtained when required before collecting satellite intelligence, and the program won’t use technology to intercept verbal communications.”

Of course, capturing verbal communications is not the job of the Ministry, but rather the NSA. Chertoff takes us for morons — and, apparently, a lot of us are — when he promises to obtain warrants and obey the Constitution, sort of the same way Bush’s massive snoop program obtains warrants. Chertoff is simply attempting to mollify us, not that the corporate media is following this story. Naturally, this makes perfect sense, as there are other, more important stories to report on, for instance the pregnancy of Britney Spears’ sixteen year old sister.

But wait a minute. Chertoff wasn’t finished. In addition to the eye in the sky, our Lavrentiy Beria of the neocon commissariat promised “a cyber-security strategy, part of an estimated $15 billion, multiyear program designed to protect the nation’s Internet infrastructure,” according to the Wall Street Journal. Replace the words “cyber-security strategy” with “cyber snoop strategy” and you’ll get a better idea of what Chertoff and the Ministry have in mind. “The program has been shrouded in secrecy for months and has also prompted privacy concerns on Capitol Hill because it involves government protection of domestic computer networks.” in other words, “domestic computer networks,” that is to say the network you are using to read this, will be protected from thought crime.

“Both areas put Homeland Security in the middle of a public debate over domestic spy powers, kicked off by the revelation two years ago that the National Security Agency had been eavesdropping on some conversations in the U.S. without a warrant.”

Some? As we know, the NSA is employing a vacuum cleaner approach, grabbing everything going over domestic networks, both telephonic and internet, and running keyword algorithms on it all to ferret out al-Qaeda associations. Of course, in this context, al-Qaeda is anybody who disagrees with the government, not strictly a couple mythical guys in a CIA constructed cave complex in Afghanistan.

Back in April, the Ministry demanded Verisign hand over the “master keys” to the internet, an effort that drew about as much attention from the corporate media as the current “cyber-security strategy” and the Ministry’s eye in the sky.

“If it succeeds, the US will be able to track DNS Security Extensions (DNSSec) all the way back to the servers that represent the name system’s root zone on the Internet,” Nick Farrell wrote at the time. “Effectively it would mean that US spooks could snoop on anyone in the Worldwide wibble and place control of the Interweb tubes firmly in the paws of the US government.”

If the U.S. and the Ministry controlled the DNS root zone, they would be able not only to snoop more effectively, but would be able to control DNS lookups. Put in layman’s terms, this means the Ministry would be able control a wide range of internet activity, from email delivery to surfing the net. Imagine a “no-fly” list for the internet.

As for the Ministry’s “satellite surveillance tools,” operated by the newly created National Applications Office, it’s all about real-time snooping.

“The spy surveillance satellites are considered by military experts to be far more powerful than those currently available to civilian officials,” notes Wikipedia. “For example, they can take color photos, see through cloud cover and forest canopies, and use different parts of the light spectrum to locate traces left by chemical weapons. However, the full capabilities of these systems are among the most carefully held governmental secrets.” In October, Congress filed an injunction against the NAO, fretting over civil liberty issues, that is to say at least some of our Congress critters are worried about the Ministry using secretive government technology to further erode the Constitution.

Bureaucrats and underwear drawer snoopers fear not. Because, as should be expected, Congress will flip somersaults like a well-trained dog, afraid of being seen as rolling out a red carpet for al-Qaeda.

“If the plan goes forward, the NAO will create the legal mechanism for an unprecedented degree of domestic intelligence gathering that would make the United States one of the world’s most closely monitored nations,” writes Tim Shorrock. It has nothing to do with Muslim miscreants and everything to do with keeping tabs on the sort of people who hand out sandwiches to Halliburton employees.

In fact, dropping Halliburton’s name in here is entirely appropriate, as the NAO effort will be subcontracted. “The intelligence-sharing system to be managed by the NAO will rely heavily on private contractors, including Boeing, BAE Systems, L-3 Communications and Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC),” Shorrock continues. “These companies already provide technology and personnel to U.S. agencies involved in foreign intelligence, and the NAO greatly expands their markets. Indeed, at an intelligence conference in San Antonio, Texas, last month, the titans of the industry were actively lobbying intelligence officials to buy products specifically designed for domestic surveillance.”

Finally, recall Donald Kerr, principal deputy director of National Intelligence and the National Reconnaissance Office, instructing us to surrender any antiquated reverence for the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. “I think all of us have to really take stock of what we already are willing to give up, in terms of anonymity,” declared Kerr in October.

“Anonymity has been important since the Federalist Papers were written under pseudonyms,” explains Kurt Opsahl, a senior staff lawyer with the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “The government has tremendous power: the police power, the ability to arrest, to detain, to take away rights. Tying together that someone has spoken out on an issue with their identity is a far more dangerous thing if it is the government that is trying to tie it together.”

Indeed, it is all about people speaking out. It has absolutely nothing to do with al-Qaeda, now a perennial boogieman used to scare school children and intellectually flabby adults alike. The Ministry, NRO, NAO, working with the likes of Boeing, BAE Systems, L-3 Communications and Science Applications International Corporation, are dismantling the Constitution and erecting a high-tech control grid.

But never mind. Didn’t you know that MTV’s Tila Tequila is bisexual? I mean, who has the time to worry about the Bill of Rights when we are offered such lurid spectacles?

DHS Finalizing Spy Satellite Program To Watch Americans Without Congressional Oversight
http://www.infowars.net/articles/december2007/201207Satellite.htm

 



Homeland Security Spy Satellites to Watch Americans

DHS Finalizing Spy Satellite Program To Watch Americans Without Congressional Oversight
Plans also include “cyber-security strategy” to “protect” domestic computer networks

Steve Watson
Infowars.net
December 20, 2007

The Department of Homeland security is forging ahead and finalizing plans to use a network of spy satellites for domestic surveillance despite the fact that the Congressional committee supposedly overseeing the program has had no update on it for over three months.

A report in today’s Wall Street Journal suggests that Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff is in the process of finalizing a charter for the program this week, regardless of the fact that it is supposed to be suspended.

The DHS had declared that the program was “on hold” after its existence was made public in August, prompting an outcry amongst civil libertarians and lawmakers.

Demands to justify the congressional legality of the satellites, which were originally mandated for foreign surveillance,followed the revelation that a new department branch called the National Applications Office would oversee the program and be responsible for providing images from the satellites to non military law enforcement agencies.

Critics have called for cuts to DHS funding, stressing that the program is in direct violation of the Posse Comitatus act, which prevents the use of military for domestic law enforcement. It also violates the fourth amendment as the satellites are capable of seeing through the walls of people’s homes.

Domestic intelligence and security agencies are now receiving more funding for spy satellites than the military.

“We still haven’t seen the legal framework we requested or the standard operation procedures on how the NAO will actually be run,” House Homeland Security Chairman Bennie G. Thompson told the WSJ.

In addition to the satellites, the surveillance program also includes new forms of internet monitoring:

Mr. Chertoff also plans soon to unveil a cyber-security strategy, part of an estimated $15 billion, multiyear program designed to protect the nation’s Internet infrastructure. The program has been shrouded in secrecy for months and has also prompted privacy concerns on Capitol Hill because it involves government protection of domestic computer networks.

Essentially the program would allow the DHS to regulate and control access to the internet in the name of “protecting” national security.

The news comes on the back of separate revelations that another military spy agency, the NSA has increasing control over SSL, now called Transport Layer Security, the cryptographic protocol that provides secure communications on the internet for web browsing, e-mail, instant messaging, and other data transfers.

In other words the agency is capable of intercepting and reading your emails and instant messages in real time.

We also learned this week that the lawyer for an AT&T engineer has alleged that “within two weeks of taking office, the Bush administration was planning a comprehensive effort of spying on Americans’ phone usage.” That is BEFORE 9/11, before the nation was embroiled in the freedom stripping exercise commonly known as the “war on terror” had even begun.

We shouldn’t be surprised obviously, Government surveillance programs targeting Americans are legion and have been in place for decades.

Ministry of Homeland Security Developing X-Ray Snoop Device
http://www.truthnews.us/?p=1366

Homeland Security Cameras Scan License Plates at Mall
http://www.news10.net/display_story.aspx?storyid=36386

 



Congress to Probe Domestic Spy Satellite Use

Congress to Probe Domestic Spy Satellite Use

Nick Juliano
Raw Story
August 28, 2007

The Department of Homeland Security’s top intelligence, privacy and civil rights officials will be called before Congress next week to explain the Bush administration’s plan to dramatically expand the domestic use to spy satellites that can see through clouds, buildings and underground bunkers.

The House Homeland Security Committee will examine whether privacy rights will be violated by the DHS’s creation of a new office to grant expanded access to spy satellite data to a variety of local and federal agencies, including law enforcement.

Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS) wrote to Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff earlier this month inquiring about the spy program.

Under a program approved by the DHS and Office of the Director of National Intelligence, detailed imagery from powerful satellites will be available to domestic security and emergency preparedness agencies to deal with threats ranging from immigration and terrorism to hurricanes and forest fires, the Washington Post reported.

Access to the data will be controlled by a newly created office within DHS, the National Applications Office.

In his letter, Thompson said Congress was not informed of the new program until its existence was revealed in media reports a few weeks ago. The office is expected to begin granting expanded access to the spy-sattelite data Oct. 1; images from the spy satellites were previously limited to domestic use for environmental and geographic purposes, such as creating topographical maps or monitoring volcano activity.

At a hearing next Thursday, Sept. 6, Homeland Security Committee members will question DHS’s chief intelligence officer Charles Allen, chief privacy officer Hugo Teufel and civil liberties officer Dan Sutherland.

“I need you to provide me with an immediate assurance that upon its October 1st roll out, this program will be operating within the confines of the Constitution and all applicable laws and regulations,” Thompson wrote to Chertoff.

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Bush Approved Use of Spy Satellites on Citizens

Bush Approves Use Of Domestic Spy Satellites
Law Enforcement Getting New Access To Secret Imagery

Joby Warrick
Washington Post
August 16, 2007

The Bush administration has approved a plan to expand domestic access to some of the most powerful tools of 21st-century spycraft, giving law enforcement officials and others the ability to view data obtained from satellite and aircraft sensors that can see through cloud cover and even penetrate buildings and underground bunkers.

A program approved by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Department of Homeland Security will allow broader domestic use of secret overhead imagery beginning as early as this fall, with the expectation that state and local law enforcement officials will eventually be able to tap into technology once largely restricted to foreign surveillance.

Administration officials say the program will give domestic security and emergency preparedness agencies new capabilities in dealing with a range of threats, from illegal immigration and terrorism to hurricanes and forest fires. But the program, described yesterday by the Wall Street Journal, quickly provoked opposition from civil liberties advocates, who said the government is crossing a well-established line against the use of military assets in domestic law enforcement.

Although the federal government has long permitted the use of spy-satellite imagery for certain scientific functions — such as creating topographic maps or monitoring volcanic activity — the administration’s decision would provide domestic authorities with unprecedented access to high-resolution, real-time satellite photos.

They could also have access to much more. A statement issued yesterday by the Department of Homeland Security said that officials envision “more robust access” not only to imagery but also to “the collection, analysis and production skills and capabilities of the intelligence community.”

The beneficiaries may include “federal, state, local and tribal elements” involved in emergency preparedness and response or “enforcement of criminal and civil laws.” The “tribal” reference was to Native Americans who conduct semiautonomous law enforcement operations on reservations.

“These systems are already used to help us respond to crises,” Charles Allen, the chief intelligence officer for the Department of Homeland Security, said in a telephone interview. “We anticipate that we can also use it to protect Americans by preventing the entry of dangerous people and goods into the country, and by helping us examine critical infrastructure for vulnerabilities.”

Domestic security officials already have access to commercial satellite imagery, including the high-definition photographs available from Google and other private vendors. But spy satellites offer much greater resolution and provide images in real time, said Jeffrey T. Richelson, an expert on space-based surveillance and a senior fellow with the National Security Archive in Washington.

“You also can get more coverage more often,” Richelson said. “These satellites will cover during the course of their orbits the entire United States. They will be operating 24 hours a day and using infrared cameras at night.”

Other nonvisual capabilities can be provided by aircraft-based sensors, which include ground-penetrating radar and highly sensitive detectors that can sense electromagnetic activity, radioactivity or traces of chemicals, military experts said. Such radar can be used to find objects hidden in buildings or bunkers.

One possible use of the technology would be to spot staging areas along smuggling routes used to transport narcotics or illegal immigrants, officials said. In a handful of cases, security officials have requested — and obtained — similar help, but only on a case-by-case basis.

Allen said the agreement with the DNI grew out of the general impetus for wider intelligence-sharing in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, when administration and intelligence officials began examining the possibility of increasing officials’ access to secret data as a means of strengthening the nation’s defenses.

The program was formally authorized in May in a memo by Director of National Intelligence Mike McConnell to Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff. The two officials have been coordinating for months, as recommended in a 2005 study headed by Keith Hall, then the director of the National Reconnaissance Office.

Hall’s group cited an “urgent need” for expanding sharing of remote sensing data to domestic groups other than scientific researchers. “Opportunities to better protect the nation are being missed,” the report said.

Under the new program, the DHS will create a subordinate agency to be known as the National Applications Office. The new office, which has gained the backing of congressional intelligence and appropriations committees, is responsible for coordinating requests for access to intelligence by civilian agencies. Previously, an agency known as the Civilian Applications Committee facilitated access to satellite imagery for geologic study.

Oversight of the department’s use of the overhead imagery data would come from officials in the Department of Homeland Security and from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and would consist of reviews by agency inspectors general, lawyers and privacy officers. “We can give total assurance” that Americans’ civil liberties will be protected, Allen said. “Americans shouldn’t have any concerns about it.”

But civil liberties groups quickly condemned the move, which Kate Martin, director of the Center for National Security Studies, a nonprofit activist group, likened to “Big Brother in the sky.” “They want to turn these enormous spy capabilities, built to be used against overseas enemies, onto Americans,” Martin said. “They are laying the bricks one at a time for a police state.”

Steven Aftergood, director of the Project on Government Secrecy for the Federation of American Scientists, said that the data could be useful but that oversight for the program was woefully inadequate. Enhanced access “shouldn’t be adopted at all costs because it comes with risk to privacy and to the integrity of our political institutions,” he said.

 

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