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Thread: Arizona 'virtual fence' to get final OK

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    WASHINGTON - A 28-mile "virtual fence" that will use radars and surveillance cameras to try to catch people entering the country illegally has gotten final government approval.

    Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff on Friday was to announce approval of the fence, built by the Boeing Co. and using technology the Bush administration plans to extend to other areas of the Arizona border, as well as sections of Texas. These projects could get under way as early as this summer, officials said.

    The virtual fence is part of a national plan to secure the southwest border with physical barriers and high-tech detection capabilities intended to stop illegal immigrants on foot and drug smugglers in vehicles. As of Feb. 8, 295 miles of fencing had been constructed.

    The virtual fence already is working.

    On Feb. 13, an officer in a Tucson command center — 70 miles from the border — noticed a group of about 100 people gathered at the border. The officer notified agents on the ground and in the air. Border Patrol caught 38 of the 100 people who tried to cross illegally, and the others went back into Mexico, a Homeland Security official said.

    The virtual fence system includes 98-foot unmanned surveillance towers that are equipped with an array of sophisticated technology including radar, sensor devices and cameras capable of distinguishing people from cattle at a distance of about 10 miles. The cameras are powerful enough to tell group sizes and whether people are carrying backpacks that may contain weapons or drugs.

    Last year the government withheld some of Boeing's payments for the system because technology the company used in the test project did not work properly. Boeing also was late in delivering the final product, known as Project 28. Because of this, the department received a $2 million credit from the company to go toward maintenance and logistical support of the system, the Homeland Security officials said.

    The government paid Boeing $15 million of its initial $20 million contract before determining that there were glitches in the test project. The department gave a conditional acceptance in December.

    Lawmakers have been skeptical of the product Boeing delivered.

    "This is not the end of the Project 28 story," Rep. Christopher Carney, D-Pa., said in a statement Thursday. "We need to understand what went wrong with Project 28 to ensure that the mistakes of the past are not repeated and taxpayer dollars are not squandered."

    Carney chairs the House Homeland Security management subcommittee.

    ___

    On the Net:

    Homeland Security Department: http://www.dhs.gov





    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20080222/...dHwDCcTg.s0NUE

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    It doesn't really matter. The federal government has made their intent to ignore their constitutional duty to defend our borders and protect our sovereignty very clear to We, The People. The many states have already started taking action. Within a few years we will be able to easily find all the illegals because they will be in the few states where We, The People where not able to convince the bed-wetters that the rights of US citizens, the rule of law and rights of legal immigrants trump the economic wants of foreign nationals who commit criminal acts to even be here.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    What Deepdiver said. A minefield would be cheaper, honestly, and Mexico does it to their borders with their southern neighbors. It's our land, walk on it, you die. Simple.

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    Schofield wrote:
    What Deepdiver said. A minefield would be cheaper, honestly, and Mexico does it to their borders with their southern neighbors. It's our land, walk on it, you die. Simple.
    Throw in tall, razor wire-topped fences on each side with sensors that trigger automatic machine guns, plus the occasional guard tower and some seismographs to detect tunnelling, and you have a proven barrier that stops even very determined people. The escapes from East Germany are legendary precisely because it was so difficult.

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    This is way different than East Germany though because this fence/wall is to keep the uninvited and non-citizens out, not to keep anyone in. If someone wants to leave the US I don't want to see anything other than a, "Ok, ba-bye". East Germany's fences and walls were to keep people in which is what made them abhorrent. It created a national prison. Even with all our problems, we still have far more people wanting in than wanting out and for those wanting out (aside from declared visitors), I think all patriots offer a hearty good luck and good riddance.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    deepdiver wrote:
    East Germany's fences and walls were to keep people in which is what made them abhorrent.
    That was part of what made them abhorrent.

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    Better start up those presses. Gotta print some more money that we don't have...

    I'd try to make an intelligent response, but too many people are wrapped up in their war on immigrants to hope for a receptive audience...

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    imperialism2024 wrote:
    <SNIP>I'd try to make an intelligent response, but too many people are wrapped up in their war on immigrants to hope for a receptive audience...
    Begging your pardon, it's not a "war on immigrants" as you have stated. Rather, it is a war on illegal entry into the country. I don't think you'll find anyone here against legal immigration, at least not to the point to justify the use of the word "war".

    If someone wishes to enter, then they should follow the established procedures for legal entry. If instead they choose to sneak across in defiance of our laws, then they are simply common crimminals and do not deserve to be here. My $0.02 on this OT subject.

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    jimwyant wrote:
    I don't think you'll find anyone here against legal immigration
    So you'd like to open the borders and allow lots of new legal immigrants? People don't come illegally because they'd rather do it that way, they come illegally because they can't come legally.

    Opposition to illegal immigration implies support for the laws that restrict the flow of legal immigrants. It doesn't make sense to oppose illegal immigration unless you actually want to keep most potential immigrants out.

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    swillden wrote:
    jimwyant wrote:
    I don't think you'll find anyone here against legal immigration
    So you'd like to open the borders and allow lots of new legal immigrants? People don't come illegally because they'd rather do it that way, they come illegally because they can't come legally.

    Opposition to illegal immigration implies support for the laws that restrict the flow of legal immigrants. It doesn't make sense to oppose illegal immigration unless you actually want to keep most potential immigrants out.
    My wife just became a naturalized US citizen. The road to that point was long (7+ years) and expensive ($25,000+). I simply believe that folks need to obey the law - we did.

    How does it not make sense to oppose illegal activity under almost any circumstances?

    Maybe I'd like to go back to the time that there were no immigration laws and everyone was welcome. Then again, maybe I'd like to completely seal our borders, eject all the illegals and those whose status came by way of "anchor babies", and forbid all immigration for the next 20 years including wet foot/dry foot and asylum cases. However, my opposition to lawbreakers does not imply either.



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    jimwyant wrote:
    My wife just became a naturalized US citizen. The road to that point was long (7+ years) and expensive ($25,000+). I simply believe that folks need to obey the law - we did.
    My wife has a good friend who is originally from Nigeria, but now lives in Italy. We spent several years and thousands of dollars trying to help her immigrate. We failed. Her only legal option, realistically, is to travel to Nigeria every year and put her name into the immigration lottery at the US Embassy. Her odds each year would be about one in 200.

    At one point the staffer in our congressman's office -- who had been working with us for over a year -- finally said in frustration that maybe we should just bring her over on a tourist visa and let her stay; no one would notice. I also spent a good chunk of money working with an attorney who specializes in immigration. He also failed (but kept the money, of course).

    It is very, very difficult to immigrate legally to the United States unless you have a particular skill that a business wants to sponsor you for. Your case is a good example: your wife is married to a US citizen and it still cost you $25K for her to obtain citizenship. That's crazy.

    jimwyant wrote:
    How does it not make sense to oppose illegal activity under almost any circumstances
    It doesn't make sense when the law in question is very arbitrary and arguably goes against the principles upon which our nation is founded, and when breaking it harms no one but brings significant good to someone.

    In this case, a man who comes looking for a job to feed his family, harming no one, is not an evil man just because he broke a fairly arbitrary law to do it. More importantly, in no way does this crime warrant the death penalty. Minefields are a tool of warfare, not of peaceful border control. And we really, really don't want to get into a "War on Immigration". The damage to our civil rights done by the "War on Drugs" and the "War on Terror" is nothing compared to what we'll suffer trying to wage war against illegal immigration.

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    imperialism2024 wrote:
    Better start up those presses. Gotta print some more money that we don't have...

    I'd try to make an intelligent response, but too many people are wrapped up in their war on immigrants to hope for a receptive audience...
    I think you mean the illegal invaders, as well asthe criminal miscreants..

    Article IV sec. IV of the US constitution is being violated everyday and it bothers me just as much as the 2nd amendment being violated. Our laws, values, language, traditions, history, economy, and citizenry are being slapped in the faceand we are justfied to question the judgement of our elected represenatives and speak nagatively about this atrocity.
    Peace through superior firepower

    Luke 11:21
    "When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are undisturbed.

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    Flintlock wrote:
    SNIP...we are justfied to question the judgement of our elected represenatives and speak nagatively about this atrocity.
    I think that at a certain point, one can safely say he isn't being represented anymore.

    The old Founders' concern about maintaining the forms of liberty without maintaining the substance can be applied--form without substance. Essentially, when the government maintains the form that goes along witha representative government without actually working for theirbest interests, you can pretty much just declare that people aren't being represented anymore.

    The oldcry "taxation without representation!" becomes "governing without representation!"


    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Regular Member Flintlock's Avatar
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    Citizen wrote:
    Flintlock wrote:
    SNIP...we are justfied to question the judgement of our elected represenatives and speak nagatively about this atrocity.
    I think that at a certain point, one can safely say he isn't being represented anymore.

    The old Founders' concern about maintaining the forms of liberty without maintaining the substance can be applied--form without substance. Essentially, when the government maintains the form that goes along witha representative government without actually working for theirbest interests, you can pretty much just declare that people aren't being represented anymore.

    The oldcry "taxation without representation!" becomes "governing without representation!"

    I don't disagree with yourcomments at all Citizen. I personally haven't been "represented" at the federal level for quite some time... :X
    Peace through superior firepower

    Luke 11:21
    "When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are undisturbed.

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    Flintlock wrote:
    SNIP I personally haven't been "represented" at the federal level for quite some time... :X
    Me, neither.

    Gosh, isn't it fun to read upon theFounders' writings? So much hard-won wisdom there.

    By the way, there was a threadhere yesterday with a link to a blog essay or pamphlet about governmentand how to be an activist or something. I came across itat a point in time that I couldn'tread it, but couldn't later remember the threadorfind the link. One of the points in the linked blog/pamphlet was that politics is the adjudication of power--deciding who rules who.Can anybody point me to the thread or the linked blog/pamphlet?
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

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    Campaign Veteran deepdiver's Avatar
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    Yeah, I knew it. Fence delayed 3 years because our government really has no interest in protecting We, The People as required in the constitution.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...nav=rss_nation


    And they also aren't making sure that muzzies who are part of the crowd that wants to kill every man, woman and child in America aren't the pilots of that airplane you are flying on tomorrow:
    http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/story?...991&page=1


    But you can be sure that your 4th Amendment rights will be violated all to hell by TSA next time you fly anywhere. The sheep are fully in charge at every level.
    Bob Owens @ Bearing Arms (paraphrased): "These people aren't against violence; they're very much in favor of violence. They're against armed resistance."

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    deepdiver wrote:
    Yeah, I knew it. Fence delayed 3 years because our government really has no interest in protecting We, The People as required in the constitution.
    Bah, sanity has prevailed, if accidentally. The fence, whether virtual or physical, would be an expensive boondoggle, a huge waste of taxpayer resources. Ignoring whether or not our immigration policies should be as they are, the main problem with the fence is that its effect would be negligible. The vast majority of illegal immigrants enter the country legally, on valid State dept.-issued visas, and then simply don't leave when their time is up.

    If we were able to build an absolutely impenetrable barrier, the minority of illegals who come across the border would just change their approach. Our billions spent would do a lot to reduce illegal immigrant deaths by forcing them to take a safer, if slightly costlier, route, but it wouldn't reduce illegal immigration significantly.

    This is similar to our War on Drugs: It doesn't keep drugs out, or even significantly reduce the supply. It just raises the prices.

    deepdiver wrote:
    And they also aren't making sure that muzzies who are part of the crowd that wants to kill every man, woman and child in America aren't the pilots of that airplane you are flying on tomorrow:
    (a) Passing an accredited flight school and receiving a pilot's license is the first step on a very long road to becoming a commercial pilot. One of the last steps is an extensive background check performed by the TSA on behalf of the pilot's potential employer. This is mandated by the FAA. Anyone who can pass that background check could pass any check you might want to apply before allowing them into flight school. If your commercial pilot is a terrorist, then he's a sufficiently adept terrorist that there's almost nothing we could do to stop him.

    (b) The real defenses against a repeat of 9/11 are: The locked flight cabin doors, and the accompanying policy that the flight crew will not open the doors during flight for any reason and the passengers. Flight 93 was the first one to show that passengers understand the new reality of hijacking, and there have been a couple of incidents since. There was a Malaysian Air flight a couple of years ago where the passengers beat a pair of would-be hijackers nearly to death (one may have died -- I don't recall the specifics).

    (c) There's also the issue of whether it's in any way right to restrict the job options of peaceful people just because they happen to believe in the same religion as a small band of radicals. Timothy McVeigh claimed to be a Christian and was certainly a 2A right supporter, and I can tell you I don't think it's reasonable to restrict my access to fertilizer based on his actions.

    deepdiver wrote:
    But you can be sure that your 4th Amendment rights will be violated all to hell by TSA next time you fly anywhere.
    And the hassle and invasion of privacy is useless. It's trivial to carry a boxcutter onto a plane, even now.

    deepdiver wrote:
    The sheep are fully in charge at every level.
    I wish. The peope in charge aren't sheep, they're wolves. They want us to believe they're sheepdogs, but failing that they're happy if we call them sheep. The Wars on Drugs, Terror and Immigration are the best tools they've found for convincing us to be afraid and to hand over our rights in exchange for an illusion of increased safety.

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