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« Stand Your Ground – Some Thoughts | Main | Courtroom Evidence – the Z/M case (updated 28apr12) »

23 April 2012


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I am embarrassed to say that I have a relative that sells aerial surveillance information to municipalities for 'income generation'... put in a pool without buying a permit? WHACK! Cut down a tree without paying a tax? BAM! Put on a new roof without buying a permit? KABOOM!

His business is booming.

Earl Crabb

More and more of our business must now be conducted online, where it has been shown that any email or transaction can be retrieved and used as evidence against you or be stolen by hackers. Just wait until some genius determines that we should get rid of all currency except your plastic card. It's for transparency, they'll say, to stop crime in the underground economy. The 21st Century sucks.

billy T

I can see clearly now why Obama received the Noble Peace Prize. Finally it makes sense.

George Rebane

And moreover, Obama also got the Nobel Peace Prize ;-)

billy T

Dr Rebane, excellent last post. Next thing you know you will be saying Hitler was TIME Magazine's MAN OF THE YEAR in 1938, :)

George Rebane

Mr Tozer (740pm), I wouldn't dare because they'll demand more proof than pictures of the cover (some claim that he also made it in 1933). I am now looking forward to Van Jones getting that recognition for all his good work.

Douglas Keachie

Anyone can be man of the year, sometimes even several times:

Who has been named time man of the year twice?

George Bush Jr, Ronald Reagan, Richard Nixon, Lyndon B Johnson, Harry S Truman, Gen George Marshall, Dwight D Eisenhower, Winston Churchill, Joseph Stalin, and Franklin D Roosevelt (3 times).

Douglas Keachie

With good wind and a simple kite, you can get astonishing photos. All it takes is an auto timer set to one picture per second, a 16 gig chip. and away you go.

billy T

Professor Keachie: didn't you read Mr. Juvinall's link? NO KITES

billy T

No Kites on other post "Downward Spiral", to be more precise.

Russ Steele

Environmental groups are using drones to spy of companies that they do not like, meat packers for instance, or activities they do not like, bird hunting for an example. In Texas an environmental group decided to spy on bird hunters on a private reserve. The helo drone came over the tree line only to be met by a hail of gunshots and it augured in. Then the wackos called the police, but when they arrived nothing could found of the drone.

If just one terrorist were to be discovered using a drone to spy on a power plant, civilian use of drones would be banned. Stay Tuned!

Steven Frisch

Yeah, and you know what else? Engineering firms are using aerial photography to do land use analysis, like siting buildings, determining drainage plans, and determining soils composition and seismic risk, and they have done so since man could fly. I have an idea, let's just go back to the stone age and we can build our huts wherever we darn well please.

Todd Juvinall

SteveF says,

"I have an idea, let's just go back to the stone age and we can build our huts wherever we darn well please."

That statement shows the schizophrenia of a eco liberal nut. On the one hand the ecos want humans to give up technology and return to the caves and on the other hand they want to control humans free choice to own land and live where they please in our free country. His head must hurt with the internal schizo conflict.

George Rebane

ToddJ's 740am does point out another serious conflict in the progressive mindset as evinced by StevenF's 720am. The latter's logical leap into the notion that this post and related comments abrogate decades of civil aerial surveillance, while confusing that with the rapid adoption of new miniature UAV technologies by a growing list of government agencies including the police, is either masterful mangling of the discussion or represents a shallow understanding of the points raised in my post.

Steven Frisch

Actually Todd and George, a careful reading would show I think just the opposite. I believe that we can use and harness technology very much to our benefit. If I had one serious critique of the modern environmental movement (and I have many) it is that it does not adopt technology as an ally in reaching its aims, including making energy cheap, health care universally available and food more abundant. But just like any other community, there are many in the environmental community that fear the adoption of technology.

I am merely pointing out the inherent inconsistency in both of your arguments; that the use of technology to our benefit when it pleases us and the opposition to the adoption of technology when it displeases us is anything but a consistent social condition, leading its use to be perceived differently by different people. In short, you guys are supporting the idea that in private hands controlled by people you probably like these technologies are just fine, but in public hands they are a threat. That may be one of the most "shallow understandings" of the issue I have ever seen. If you fear loss of privacy from the technology, that loss is there regardless of whose hands it is in.

Todd Juvinall

SteveF has outsmarted himself once again. Liberals are just too easy to disprove and their schizophrenic positions are not hard to see. While SteveF is a self proclaimed supporter of Agena21 and its goals on land use and government ownership of property, he tries to make us believe otherwise. No, the eco "return" to the cave, that is, the lifestyle without technology is what has been their mantra for 40 years. Yet, those same eco nuts, SteveF included, reap the benefits of the hard work of regular folks to make money and use the technologies. Computers, etc. Sorry to burst your schizophrenic bubble but when I hear a eco nut double talk like I have heard for so long, I think, Orwellian. Adopted so well by the ecos.

George Rebane

SteveF 839am - you correctly point out (at least) my belief that the disposition of technology and its impact on the citizens of a country are likely to be positive in free-market capitalist hands and likely to be misused "in public hands". (Do not misinterpret this as a blanket proscription of government use of technology.) But all that just circles back to the fundamental debate between us of the proper role of government, which according to my lights is limited in scope as prescribed in the Founders' interpretation of the Constitution. Thank you for highlighting this difference.

Paul Emery


I don't see you complaining about aerial flyovers analyzing what plants we grow in our backyard?

Todd Juvinall

PaulE, do you? And what would we be growing?

Steven Frisch

I am not "a self proclaimed supporter of Agenda 21". Never stated that. What I have stated is that many concepts similar to those included within Agenda 21 have come organically, from the community level, by ordinary people trying to address local issues, many of them long before anyone even thought of or heard of Agenda 21--and that their similarity to Agenda 21 is nothing but a big, fat, stupid propaganda campaign.

Steven Frisch

Of course; business and individuals are benign, or beknighted and canonized, but government is inherently evil. What a nice simple black and white world we live in.


No Steve. When a business or individual commits a crime or a tort, one can expect disinterest from the municipal, state or federal court charged with hearing the case. The police, too.

There is no natural disinterest when it's a government entity that is involved.

George Rebane

Administrivia - Got a gmail notice that our beloved DougK claims on his blog that I've banned him from RR because I have been "losing" to him in these comment streams. I'll let the readers decide whether he deserves any kind of a victory lap. In any event, all of us have noticed that it often takes DougK three or four or more short comments to get a message across that is managed as a single comment by others. I have no idea whether that problem is psychological, or has to do with some idiosyncrasy in his equipment or its use.

For the record, I've done nothing to banish him and just heard about it right now after returning from the flats. Can someone please advise the man how to get back on RR before his absence makes us inconsolable?

Douglas Keachie

Test one two three. well guess what, George switched it back on again. It suddenly stopped working last night on a machine that had been logged in and not switched off earlier in the day, and which continued to work just fine at Crabb and Pelline's places (both of which use the same Wordpress software, TTBOMK), and Facebook and Google. Same issues this morning and into this afternoon. Not orthogonal to the topic, pot will be legalized the day after Obama is re-elected, and surveillance of pot gardens will be moot. Let it grow in the ditches, until it's more of a problem than star thistle.

George Rebane

SteveF 1255pm - the distributed implementation of Agenda21 tenets was well covered in these pages. Although the US, along with many other countries, are signatories to the 1992 UN agenda, I have no evidence that there is a 'conspiracy' to implement this (subrosa?) national policy. And since the progressive ('smart growth', 'sustainable', 'earth friendly', 'AGW, 'gun confiscation', ...) activists already embrace all Agenda21 tenets, there actually need be no conspiracy to implement. However, the referral to these efforts under the label of Agenda21 is convenient, concise, informative, and alerts the reader to the broader implications of compacting human activity within our borders and around the world.

The interested reader is referred to the 'Agenda 21' category of RR in which are collected the postings relevant to this issue. This is the seminal piece that lays out the landscape -

And googling 'Agenda 21' will provide an education.


I confess, I've been using my voodoo to induce Keachie to press the wrong keys at the wrong time, and to interfere with his understanding, despite his status as a recognized expert in the computer education field, of the operational differences between a wordpress and a typepad blog.

I am truly ashamed. Please do not assume Keachie's problems have anything to do with either blithering idiocy or paranoia.

George Rebane

Gregory 453pm - So noted.

George Rebane

DougK 440pm - Welcome back. And your calling me a liar, even if by implication, is of a piece. But rest assured that your hubris about the reason for your short absence serves to comfort only you.

Douglas Keachie

Typepad has never in the past allowed me to type in an entire selection, and then refused to post it, unless I wait an hour after starting, repeatedly, at least three times without changing anything. Then I experimented with logging out and logging in again. Then I exited the program, after logging out of all social networking programs, and then I did a complete cold boot. I came back in again and ran into the same problem using my wpress log in. So then again complete shutdowns for Google and Facebook. None of them worked, all using Firefox. Then I tried IE, again same results. I don't take lightly making such roundabout pronouncements, but when the same situation continued into the next morning, with others posting normally. I looked for an email to contact Mr. rebane, but was not willing to pay 29.85 to get it. At that point it seemed reasonable to make the post on Farstars, and on FB, as I knew several folks who do have more direct connections, would probably rattle George's cage. Suddenly, when I checked 30 minutes after George accused me of lacking the necessary skills to log in, the program worked fine again. It was a rather long and thoroughly explored glitch, giving George the benefit of the doubt. I use Zone Alarm for protection, both the software and the hardware box, and the desktop machine is essentially idling when running Firefox, as I use it for video editing.

George Rebane

DougK 847pm - I don't know what to tell you about your experience, I am at a loss. Maybe other readers who don't have such problems can offer some advice. But rest assured that I don't play games with these comment streams. Their integrity is the foundation of RR's service as a forum for an open discussion of a fairly eclectic range of issues.

As you and other readers know, the only comments that have been deleted have been the announced ones involving ad hominem mudball fights.


I'm sure the voice print analysis will be a key piece of evidence against Col. Mustard on this one.

Douglas Keachie

Test, going glitchy again are we? First attempt at posting, FAILED!

I'm sure than as long as the temperature on the thermometer does not go up, it does not matter that a lot of ice at 32 degrees is being converted to water at 32 degrees:

Move along, there is no evidence here.


Well said! That certainly proved Canada's stupid foreign policy and the minister shut his wide mouth after hearing all other countries attending the CHOGM. Canada is promoting terrorism to be a close ally to US. This is very wrong and they just want to grab the Tamil votes which are mostly Liberal.

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