Homeland Security

Fly Safe, Fly Without ID

This is an old one, but because I’m in the air again today it’s worth digging up this up. Defense Tech long ago pointed out The Identity Project‘s position on showing ID for air travel:

If a 19 year-old college student can get a fake ID to drink, why couldn’t a bad person get one, too? And no matter how sophisticated the security embedded into the ID, wouldn’t a well-financed terrorist be able to falsify that, too? The answer to both questions is obviously ‘yes’.

Honest people, on the other hand, go to Pro-Life rallies. Honest people go to Pro-Choice rallies, too. Honest people attend gun shows. Honest people protest the actions of the President of the United States. Honest people fly to political conventions. What if those with the power to put people on a ‘no fly’ list decided that they didn’t like the reason for which you wanted to travel? The honest people wouldn’t be going anywhere.

Homeland Security: Now Policing Porn?

The Washington Post reports two men in uniforms bearing “Homeland Security” insignia walked into a Bethesda library in early February, announced that viewing of internet pornography was forbidden, and began questioning patrons. The men asked one library user to step outside just before a librarian intervened. Then…

the two men [and the librarian] went into the library’s work area to discuss the matter. A police officer arrived. In the end, no one had to step outside except the uniformed men.

As it turns out, the men were legitimate homeland security officers, members of the county’s force, though it seems nobody was quite clear about why they were there.

Montgomery County’s chief administrative officer, Bruce Romer, issued a statement calling the incident “unfortunate” and “regrettable” — two words that bureaucrats often deploy when things have gone awry. He said the officers had been reassigned to other duties.

Thing is, regardless of your feelings about porn, please tell me how it relates to homeland security? Perhaps they’ve given up policing copyright?

Things Go To Hell

DefenseTech’s Noah Shachtman writes:

Organizing thousands and thousands of people, in hellish conditions and in a hurry, is tough work. Let’s take that as a given. But still: We’re now a work week into a natural disaster that had been forecast for years, and New Orleans “is being run by thugs,” the city’s emergency preparedness director tells the Times. “Some people there have not eaten or drunk water for three or four days, which is inexcusable.”

In another post, Shactman asks how the DHS could fail its job so badly?

Meanwhile, Pravda declares George W. Bush has abandoned Americans and it turns out that FEMA is directing donations to Rev. Pat Robertson, yes, that same Pat Robertson who put a fatwa on Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and is now wanted as an international terrorist.

Extra: Earl Hutchinson explores How to Create a Crisis.