Thursday, August 28, 2008
ARE YOU READY FOR A "POLICE STATE"?
Recent News stories appear to be showing a disturbing trend.. The move toword a POLICE STATE in which on a gloabl scale all human rights would be removed so that individual rights and freedoms are replaced by "overseers" who monitor every move in order to establish some "Orwellian" version of safety and security.
Here are just a few of the stories that show this disturbing Trend:
August 21, 2008
New Guidelines Would Give F.B.I. Broader Powers
By ERIC LICHTBLAU
WASHINGTON — A Justice Department plan would loosen restrictions on the Federal Bureau of Investigation to allow agents to open a national security or criminal investigation against someone without any clear basis for suspicion, Democratic lawmakers briefed on the details said Wednesday.
The plan, which could be made public next month, has already generated intense interest and speculation. Little is known about its precise language, but civil liberties advocates say they fear it could give the government even broader license to open terrorism investigations.
Congressional staff members got a glimpse of some of the details in closed briefings this month, and four Democratic senators told Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey in a letter on Wednesday that they were troubled by what they heard.
The senators said the new guidelines would allow the F.B.I. to open an investigation of an American, conduct surveillance, pry into private records and take other investigative steps “without any basis for suspicion.” The plan “might permit an innocent American to be subjected to such intrusive surveillance based in part on race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, or on protected First Amendment activities,” the letter said. It was signed by Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, Richard J. Durbin of Illinois, Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts and Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island.
As the end of the Bush administration nears, the White House has been seeking to formalize in law and regulation some of the aggressive counterterrorism steps it has already taken in practice since the Sept. 11 attacks. (MORE)
Satellites track Mexico kidnap victims with chips
Thu Aug 21, 2008 7:50pm EDT
By Mica Rosenberg
QUERETARO, Mexico (Reuters) - Wealthy Mexicans, terrified of soaring kidnapping rates, are spending thousands of dollars to implant tiny transmitters under their skin so satellites can help find them tied up in a safe house or stuffed in the trunk of a car.
Kidnapping jumped almost 40 percent between 2004 and 2007 in Mexico according to official statistics. Mexico ranks with conflict zones like Iraq and Colombia as among the worst countries for abductions.
The recent kidnap and murder of Fernando Marti, 14, the son of a well-known businessman, sparked an outcry in a country already hardened to crime.
More middle-class people also are also seeking out the tiny chip designed by Xega, a Mexican security firm whose sales jumped 13 percent this year.
The company injects the crystal-encased chip, the size and shape of a grain of rice, into clients' bodies with a syringe. A transmitter then sends signals via satellite to pinpoint the location of a person in distress.
Cristina, 28, who did not want to give her last name, was implanted along with seven other members of her family last year as a "preventive measure."
"It's not like we are wealthy people, but they'll kidnap you for a watch ... Everyone is living in fear," she said.
The chips cost $4,000 plus an annual fee of $2,200.
Most kidnappings in Mexico go unreported but independent analysts say there were 6,500 abductions last year, many of them "express kidnapping" where the victim is grabbed and forced to withdraw money from automatic cash machines. (MORE)
Scientific American Magazine - August 21, 2008
How RFID Tags Could Be Used to Track Unsuspecting People
A privacy activist argues that the devices pose new security risks to those who carry them, often unwittingly
By Katherine Albrecht
If you live in a state bordering Canada or Mexico, you may soon be given an opportunity to carry a very high tech item: a remotely readable driver’s license. Designed to identify U.S. citizens as they approach the nation’s borders, the cards are being promoted by the Department of Homeland Security as a way to save time and simplify border crossings. But if you care about your safety and privacy as much as convenience, you might want to think twice before signing up.
The new licenses come equipped with radio-frequency identification (RFID) tags that can be read right through a wallet, pocket or purse from as far away as 30 feet. Each tag incorporates a tiny microchip encoded with a unique identification number. As the bearer approaches a border station, radio energy broadcast by a reader device is picked up by an antenna connected to the chip, causing it to emit the ID number. By the time the license holder reaches the border agent, the number has already been fed into a Homeland Security database, and the traveler’s photograph and other details are displayed on the agent’s screen.
Although such “enhanced” driver’s licenses remain voluntary in the states that offer them, privacy and security experts are concerned that those who sign up for the cards are unaware of the risk: anyone with a readily available reader device—unscrupulous marketers, government agents, stalkers, thieves and just plain snoops—can also access the data on the licenses to remotely track people without their knowledge or consent. What is more, once the tag’s ID number is associated with an individual’s identity—for example, when the person carrying the license makes a credit-card transaction—the radio tag becomes a proxy for that individual. And the driver’s licenses are just the latest addition to a growing array of “tagged” items that consumers might be wearing or carrying around, such as transit and toll passes, office key cards, school IDs, “contactless” credit cards, clothing, phones and even groceries. (MORE)
The term "police state" is a term for a state in which the government exercises rigid and repressive controls over the social, economic and political life of the population, potentially by means of a secret police force which operates outside the boundaries normally imposed by a constitutional republic. A police state typically exhibits elements of totalitarianism and social control, and there is usually little or no distinction between the law and the exercise of political power by the executive.
The inhabitants of a police state experience restrictions on their mobility, and on their freedom to express or communicate political or other views, which are subject to police monitoring or enforcement.[Source: Wiki)