Monday, October 02, 2006

The US is losing the war on weeds

While the US goes ahead with a plan to build a fence along the border with Mexico experts are saying the whole idea is impractical. The very same idiots who voted overwhelmingly to create their very own version of the Berlin Wall have also strongly suggested that something similiar be built along the northern border with Canada.

The construction of a physical barrier along the Canadian border "is very much needed," said Rep. Candice Miller, a Michigan Republican whose district borders southwestern Ontario and parts of Lake Huron.

"Every day smugglers are bringing drugs, people and other contraband across our northern borders, which is met with little or no resistance," Miller said during heated debate Thursday on the legislation. "Terror cells that have been rounded up in Toronto, which is literally only a three-hour drive from my district."
She failed to mention, however, that the Sept. 11th attacks originated in the United States and that, well, the US seems to have the same kind of homegrown terrorist cells.

Not that any of that matters because, for want of a good stock of Weed-Eaters™, the US is unable to locate some good chunks of its north-east and north-west border.

The United States wants to better secure its border with Canada, but it might have trouble finding it in some areas, an official with the agency that maintains the border said.

The U.S. and Canada have fallen so far behind on basic maintenance of their shared border that law enforcement officials might have to search through overgrown vegetation for markers in some places, the official said.

"If you can't find it, then you can't secure it," said Dennis Schornack, the U.S. commissioner of the International Boundary Commission, the intergovernmental agency responsible for maintaining the U.S.-Canada border.

The commission has warned that it has fallen far behind in clearing fast-growing brush and trees, especially in the United States' Northwest and Northeast - between Washington state and British Columbia and between New England and Quebec and New Brunswick.

The Boeing Co. has been awarded a three-year, $67 million contract to implement the first part of a plan to reduce illegal entry along thousands of miles of border with Canada and Mexico using better technology, including cameras, sensors and even unmanned airplanes.

But commission officials say their budget of about $3.6 million is insufficient and insist that if they are not given more money to buy basic machinery to beat back the weeds, bushes and trees that threaten to overtake parts of the border, all those high-tech gadgets could prove useless.

"I've talked and talked, and we don't seem to be getting anywhere," Schornack said. "Yes, it's not glamorous. It's not high-tech. It's chain saws and weed whackers. But if you don't get that basic job done, all I know is cameras won't work."
It sounds like somebody who's never actually seen the border believes that technology trumps boots on the ground. Where have we heard that before?

These guys really can't be taken seriously, can they?

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