Wednesday, May 16, 2012
The Arizona governor could deploy an armed, volunteer militia to respond to natural disasters and patrol the Arizona-Mexico border for illegal immigrants and drug-traffickers under a legislative proposal to fund a state guard.
The bill calls for a one-time cost of $500,000 from the general fund and an additional $1.4 million each year from a gang task-force fund.
While there’s an anticipated budget surplus, lawmakers must deal with long-term debt and the May 2013 expiration of the 1-cent-per-dollar sales-tax increase, so it is unclear how much support this bill would have.
Arizona would join 23 other states and territories with active guards, but experts say the state would stand alone if its militia was focused on border enforcement and “combating international criminal activity.”
Most state guards serve as auxiliaries to state National Guards and assist in disaster preparation and response, recovery efforts and protection of infrastructure. State guards typically augment National Guards, a federally recognized reserve military force.
Most often, state governors control the state militia, and the state’s senior military commander directly oversees them.
In some instances, state-guard members have access to weapons, which are otherwise locked away in armories for safekeeping, one border expert said.
Three years ago, California National Guard troops were activated and sent to garrison the Mexican border to cut down on smuggling and other problems there.
And it was hardly the first time.
Almost 96 years ago, Pomona’s National Guard troop was shipped to the border at a time when outright war with Mexico was a real possibility.
Fortunately for all concerned, the crisis never reached the shooting stage, but it came close.
An article reveals that Never Say Anything (NSA) boss Gen. Keith Alexander believes the hacktavist collective Anonymous may soon have the capability to take down the power grid in the United States through a cyberattack.
Alexander has peddled his theory at White House meetings and in other private sessions, according to people familiar with the gatherings, WSJ reports.
“While he hasn’t publicly expressed his concerns about the potential for Anonymous to disrupt power supplies, he has warned publicly about an emerging ability by cyberattackers to disable or even damage computer networks,” writes Siobhan Gorman.
It’s not easy to disrupt the power grid in the United States. Most systems use proprietary operating systems and applications that are “not readily available for study by your average hacker,” writes Michael Tanj.
Power grid or drinking-water systems and networks are not connected to the public internet.
In other words, it would take more than the efforts of an internet meme scattered across imageboards and forums to disrupt this complex system. It would take the concerted resources of a nation-state like China or Russia – or more likely the NSA itself.
“Even in places like the United States, where there isn’t much you cannot find online, you’re not going to be able to get the depth and detail you need to turn off the lights with a simple network connection. You’re going to have to deploy national-level resources,” writes Tanj.
The NSA knows this. It is exploiting the minimal threat poised by Anonymous as part of a propaganda campaign designed to extend the reach of its “Perfect Citizen” program.
Perfect Citizen is being developed by defense contractor Raytheon and consists of sensors that would report public utility anomalies to the NSA via a partnership with Homeland Security, according to Ryan Singel. A Raytheon employee described it as a “Big Brother” system.
The NSA has over the years specialized is slurping up mega-amounts of private data in violation of the Fourth Amendment. The resultant database is the largest in the world. It only makes sense the NSA will do the same with the data it will now collect from utilities and the public infrastructure.
Anonymous is being used as an excuse by the government as it rolls out increasingly draconian surveillance programs under the aegis of “cyber security” and terror prevention.
Anonymous’ “electronic civil disobedience” – primarily consisting of denial service attacks on government and corporate websites – and sensationalistic media coverage feed into the plan to not only lockdown and eventually modify the free-wheeling character of the internet, but turn the medium into the most pervasive and effective surveillance apparatus on the planet.
It is becoming increasingly obvious that Anonymous itself is either an NSA op or functioning as a useful idiot.
“The power of this group is unprecedented,” Rob Johnson wrote. “On the day that the feds shut down MegaUpload.com, Anonymous responded by bringing down the websites of the US Department of Justice and the FBI, as well as the sites of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), Warner Music Group, Universal Music and the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in the largest-ever cyber attack.
Anonymous went on another spree assuming control of Senator Chuck Grassley’s Twitter account and shutting down the websites of CBS and Universal Music. Who could do all of this more effectively than the cyber special ops already in place within the government?
It’s called United States Cyber Command (USCYBERCOM), led by General Keith B. Alexander.”
Assume for a moment that you’ve been installed in the role of the maintenance manager of the Great American False-Choice Spectacle. Your prime directive would almost certainly be to keep hidden the fact that outcomes matter little.
Thus, as we are repeatedly informed via popular media, you may strongly consider hiding the truth in plain sight, as there are few better places.
And so, that seems to be the case now more than ever as the strategy is executed through the chain of command and control that expertly utilizes mass media.
The elitist, crusading cowards in the media execute their marching orders with gusto. They seem to manage the coverage of the race and the races within the race more skillfully with each successive production.
This time around, it appeared that any one of more than a half-dozen Republican candidates wore the Leader’s Jersey with an inside track to the nomination during the early trials.
Skeptics might note that the shelf life for each front-runner was limited and that most were eventually undone by gaffes and/or surprise revelations much in the same way that suspects become tripped up in those curiously popular procedural crime dramas.
The thing is though, we need not worry about the skeptics, as they are but few, so let’s get back to the race because it’s the race that matters.
Odds greatly favor establishment candidate Mitt Romney to be installed as False Choice #2, much to the surprise of many, apparently.
Almost as if by design, ole Mitt contrasts strongly when compared to the know-nothing, never-done-anything Community Organizer who was anointed as “This Is the Guy!” in 2008.
Despite the alarming track-record of our lamentable incumbent, his appalling ignorance, arrogance and incompetence aside, the race to become the next Grand Puppet appears to be a dead-heat on paper, and that should almost guarantee a barn-burner come this November.
Yes, it would appear that the big race will be decided by a nearly perfectly divided electorate yet again. Soon, perhaps, it may become fascinating to the passionate across the land that half of their fellow citizens very strongly agree with their viewpoints while the other half remains in strong opposition. Or maybe not.
Intentionally lost in all this is what some of us like to call reality. We won’t hear much about reality or even the mention of anything of true significance, but we will hear phrases like “on his watch” and “what he inherited” and “broken promises.”
Good luck to you, my friends, finding an in-depth, non-politicized discussion of substance.