Wednesday, July 09, 2008

The world is officially nuts - Part 2

You'll recall, of course, the illumination of BC Ferries security pamphlet, which is a verbatim adoption of the US Homeland Security policy of spying on your neighbour and turning her/him in for engaging in typical tourist behaviour.

Before I go on, and believe me we're going to go beyond BC Ferries, let me point out that BC Ferries is not a "cross the river" operation. It is a provincially-owned corporation (no matter what Gordon Campbell may think) that operates some of the largest ships in the Canadian merchant fleet. With ships exceeding 21,000 tons and an annual passenger complement of over 21.6 million passengers, BC Ferries is a mammoth Canadian shipping company.

What you need to know, whether you hail from British Columbia or not, is that your Nickle is helping to pay the way for BC Ferries. The British Columbia ferry system is a part of the Trans-Canada Highway and it receives federal funding to maintain that link to Vancouver Island. And that security pamphlet they published? Yeah. They got federal money for that too. You may be from Ontario, Quebec, the Maritimes or the Prairies, but you helped pay for that pamphlet.

I digress.

Things could be worse. In fact, they could be much worse. A different Canadian company has attracted the attention of the US Department of Homeland Security and not what most would consider to be in a good way.

This is from the Washington Times: (Yes, it's a Bush administration cheerleader. Which should tell you something.) Emphasis mine.
A senior government official with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has expressed great interest in a so-called safety bracelet that would serve as a stun device, similar to that of a police Taser®. According to this promotional video found at the Lamperd Less Lethal, Inc. website, the bracelet would be worn by all airline passengers (video also shown below).

This bracelet would:

• Take the place of an airline boarding pass

• Contain personal information about the traveler

• Be able to monitor the whereabouts of each passenger and his/her luggage

Shock the wearer on command, completely immobilizing him/her for several minutes

The Electronic ID Bracelet, as it’s referred to, would be worn by every traveler “until they disembark the flight at their destination.” Yes, you read that correctly. Every airline passenger would be tracked by a government-funded GPS, containing personal, private and confidential information, and would shock the customer worse than an electronic dog collar if the passenger got out of line.

Clearly the Electronic ID Bracelet is a euphemism for the EMD Safety Bracelet, or at least it has a nefarious hidden ability (thus the term ID Bracelet is ambiguous at best). EMD stands for Electro-Musclar Disruption. Again, according to the promotional video, the bracelet can completely immobilize the wearer for several minutes.
What some clown from Sarnia Ontario is proposing, and some donkey in the US government thinks is really cool, is that you, an airline passenger, will agree to wear a bracelet that has the complete details of your travel and personal history, can geographically locate you anywhere and can do to you what a police-fired electroshock weapon does. In short, take you down, inject muscular disruption and, (even though it doesn't exist), give you a case of Excited Delirium. If you die, that's what you died from. If you live, it was for the good of all.

The terrorists lose and, so, by the way, do you.

If this gets past the few sane heads left in government, what somebody is proposing is that every airline passenger, having given up everything about their life including the lifespan of the vibrator batteries, is going to voluntarily wear the probes of a fucking electroshock weapon on their arms.

The Last Man in Europe (Orwell's 1984), didn't go that far. Even Star Trek didn't venture there beyond the fact that it might have happened on an alien world.

And if you think this is going, you know, nowhere, take a look at this.

These goofballs are serious! They really believe that your freedom is worth absolutely nothing. Security is everything.

This little reassurance means zip.
The bracelets remain inactive until a hijacking situation has been identified. At such time a designated crew member will activate the bracelets making them capable of delivering the punitive measure - but only to those that need to be restrained. We believe that all passengers will welcome deliverance from a hijacking, as will the families, carriers, insurance providers etc. The F-16 on the wing-tip is not to reassure the passengers during a hijacking, but rather to shoot them down. Besides activation using the grid screen, the steward / stewardess will have a laser activator that can activate any bracelet as needed by simply pointing the laser at the bracelet - that laser dot only needs to be within 10 inches of the bracelet to activate it.
I have a hot flash for you sweetheart. In about six minutes some 12-year old will break into the software you've developed and "drive stun" every passenger on an airplane halfway between Vancouver and New York. Won't that be a fucking laugh?!

You know what's scary? Brother Stockwell, dinosaur walker extraordinare, is unable to resist this kind of shit.

Let's face it. If you have done nothing wrong, you have nothing to fear.... right?

Those willing to give up a little liberty for a little security deserve neither security nor liberty.

Benjamin Franklin

Hat tip reader Cat.

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