Blog Flux Directory Subscribe in NewsGator Online Subscribe with Bloglines Blog directory
And, yes, I DO take it personally: An expectation of serious domestic social unrest - surveillance by drone and, coming soon, weaponized drones
Mandy: Great blog!
Mark: Thanks to all the contributors on this blog. When I want to get information on the events that really matter, I come here.
Penny: I'm glad I found your blog (from a comment on Think Progress), it's comprehensive and very insightful.
Eric: Nice site....I enjoyed it and will be back.
nora kelly: I enjoy your site. Keep it up! I particularly like your insights on Latin America.
Alison: Loquacious as ever with a touch of elegance -- & right on target as usual!
"Everybody's worried about stopping terrorism. Well, there's a really easy way: stop participating in it."
- Noam Chomsky
Send tips and other comments to: /* ---- overrides for post page ---- */ .post { padding: 0; border: none; }

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

An expectation of serious domestic social unrest - surveillance by drone and, coming soon, weaponized drones

glenn outlines a very serious - but, unfortunately, totally expected - problem with the increasing militarization of domestic law enforcement, in this instance, responding to this la times story...
Police employ Predator drone spy planes on home front

glenn [emphases added]...
For those dismissing concerns about drones by claiming (falsely) that they are the equivalent of police helicopters, won’t those same people dismiss concerns over weaponized drones by arguing: there’s no difference between allowing the police to Taser you or shoot you themselves and allowing them to do that by drone? This is always how creeping police state powers are entrenched: one step at a time. For those who are perfectly content with having stealth, hovering drones over U.S. soil for sustained surveillance purposes — based on the reasoning that the police can already engage in surveillance so why not let them do it more efficiently? — what possible objections will there be to having the police use weaponized drones? After all, the police can already Taser, pepper spray and shoot people: why not let them do it with drones?


The fact is that drones vest vast new powers that police helicopters and existing weapons do not vest: and that’s true not just for weaponization but for surveillance. Drones enable a Surveillance State unlike anything we’ve seen. Because small drones are so much cheaper than police helicopters, many more of them can be deployed at once, ensuring far greater surveillance over a much larger area. Their small size and stealth capability means they can hover without any detection, and they can remain in the air for far longer than police helicopters. Their hovering capability also means they can surveil a single spot for much longer than military satellites, which move with the earth’s rotation... .


It’s beyond obvious that policy planners and law enforcement officials expect serious social unrest. Why wouldn’t they: when has sustained, severe economic suffering and anxiety of the sort we are now seeing — along with pervasive, deep anger at the political class and its institutions — not produced that type of unrest? Drones are the ultimate tool for invasive, sustained surveillance and control, and one would have to be historically ignorant and pathologically naive not to understand its capacity for abuse.


No matter one’s views, the escalating addition of drones — weaponized or even just surveillance — to the vast arsenal of domestic weapons that already exist is a serious, consequential development. The fact that it has happened with almost no debate and no real legal authorization is itself highly significant. One thing is for certain: this is a development that is going to continue and increase rapidly. It needs far more attention than it has thus far received.

i just emailed a friend that i sometimes wish i wasn't such a hopeless news junkie... it really doesn't do much for my mental and emotional well-being...

Labels: , , , , ,

Submit To Propeller

And, yes, I DO take it personally home page