Do You NOT Miss Me Yet?

November 29, 2010

Let’s be honest, Arizona owes an apology to the rest of the country. We knew how ugly things get when Janet is in charge, but quietly letting her leave AZ for DC without a stern warning was a big mistake. Now it’s too late for that, but there’s still time to remind everyone just how poor of a track record this “public servant” has.

During what was an obvious bubble in the Arizona economy due to real estate prices skyrocketing, then Governor Napolitano decided it would be a great idea to spend every single dime possible and put Arizona on the hook for years to come with terrible budgeting. When it was time to pay the tab, she put spy cameras all over our freeways, in an attempt to “make $90 Million” in her own words, not ours. That program was a complete and utter failure, but Janet didn’t care because she had left the nightmare she created behind.

Unfortunately, now the entire country is reaping the whirlwind of this woman who makes decisions on a whim and covers up obvious failures with laughable lines like “the system worked” – when referring to last year’s attempted “underwear bombing.” The man with the bomb in his pants was only foiled by an alert passenger after easily passing through security. What exactly worked there Janet?

Maybe she was referring to things working out quite nicely for Michael Chertoff, then head of the Transportation Security Administration, now commonly called TSA, who used the underwear bomber as an excuse to order the very expensive so-called backscatter x-ray machines which show very graphic images of the genitalia and body composition of every person passing through them. Chertoff is now sitting pretty as the head of the company whose main client, Rapiscan, manufactures the machines and is making a fortune.

What has ensued since the main stream media grabbed  a hold of this story has been nothing less than a complete embarrassment, the likes of which a Federal Agency may have never seen before. Images mocking the TSA for being perverted are long in supply all over the internet and growing in numbers. The catalyst for the story moving so quickly in to center focus was the accompanying controversy over the new and highly invasive pat downs, in which a TSA agent is trained to grope innocent airline passengers, feeling once off limit body parts like breasts and genitalia.

Even Congressman Ron Paul, who visited Arizona this month, described a situation in which a TSA agent touched his privates while mocking him for being subject to the search in the first place. This is really a sick situation and frankly, Americans have had enough. The Drudge Report picked up the TSA body scanner/groping story first from a mainly online radio show hosted by Alex Jones of Austin, TX. Jones had been warning for months that the new procedures were coming to an airport near you.

Because of Drudge repeatedly pushing this story and creating so many hits on related search terms, it went “mega viral” and could not be ignored by the likes of CNN, Fox News and MSNBC along with every other legacy media conglomerate.

What has Napolitano, now frequently referred to as “Big Sis” had to say about all this? She continues to act as if there is nothing wrong with naked images and groping. That’s fine for a producer of pornographic films, but Big Sis is supposed to be a serious leader who is in charge of The United States Department of Homeland Security which presides over the TSA. She seems to think the 4th Amendment of the United States Constitution is forfeited with the purchase of an airline ticket. It’s tough to say it about someone in such a high post, but she comes across as completely clueless.

Maybe we Arizonans should have fought to keep her from going to D.C. but it was just too tempting to wave goodbye and hope for the best. Calls  for her resignation are once again surfacing, just as they had after her ridiculous comments about the system working on the underwear bomber.

The TSA has quickly fallen out of favor with millions of Americans and several airports may seek alternatives. Some airports in California are being patrolled by Police who are looking for TSA agents that commit what is being called sexual assault during the groping pat downs. They have been ordered to arrest these agents if their conduct is inappropriate. The notion that the TSA keeps us safe is a false premise if they need Police officers constantly watching them.

Just as we in Arizona had to do with the photo radar spy cameras littering our freeways, Americans are learning to stand up against ridiculous “safety measures” that are only designed to use fear to sell expensive equipment and make money for a private company on the backs of taxpayers and travelers.

The parallels are unmistakable and the next move is clear. Send Janet packing.

Tide Turning Against Automated Ticketing

April 3, 2009

lolcat6166331The tide is turning against photo enforcement/radar faster than we can report on it. Despite a global economic downturn, cash-strapped municipalities are declining to add or are rethinking the revenue-generating devices.

Case in point:

The French National Assembly is starting to think it might just be a bad idea to allow automated ticketing vendors to certify their own equipment:

At issue is the practice of allowing the private, for-profit company responsible for the ticketing programs to self-certify its own hardware as accurate. “It appears that the automated radar speed control devices are not completely reliable or completely transparent,” National Assembly Member Rudy Salles said in an exchange with the Interior Minister.

Colorado lawmakers have killed a planned expansion of automated ticketing introduced by Sen. Bob Bacon, D-Fort Collins (Bacon huh… insert pork jokes here). Before being killed completely, a provision was added to exempt out of state tourists from the profitable system to prevent a loss of tourism:

Rep. Bob Gardner, R-Colorado Springs, amended the measure to exempt out-of-state motorists from having to pay the camera-issued tickets. He did this partly because interstate compacts don’t allow effective enforcement of the law and partly because he was worried about hurting tourism, he said.

Also in Colorado, trustees in Orchard City killed the idea of photo enforcement faster than a speeding ATS executive:

“Some cities use it mainly for red lights. Others do it for speed, and others do it for safety… and money, quite honestly.”

Back in Arizona, DPS has continued their high-profile show trial arrests of those accused by a machine of criminally speeding despite a clear message from the County Attorney that he won’t pursue the cases:

On November 8, 2008, photo radar captured Reeves traveling at 130 mph on southbound SR 51 near Bethany Home road in Phoenix, according to DPS.

Obviously, real public safety has now taken a back seat to politics and profit as it took DPS a whopping five months to locate a person who was accused of speeding by a machine, only to likely have the charges dismissed by the County Attorney. Meanwhile, even assuming this person really did drive anywhere close to the speed he’s being accused of, he was allowed to continue to endanger drivers for months because DPS has outsourced their duties to Redflex in the name of the all-mighty dollar and the ever-increasing surveillance state.

Photo Radar Ticketing Ends in Pinal County

January 2, 2009

Exclusive – Moments after being sworn in as Pinal County Sheriff, Paul Babeu spoke with CameraFRAUD regarding the fate of photo enforcement in his jurisdiction.

CF: Do you think Pinal County is going to be safer without photo enforcement?

“Yes. We actually met with Redflex, and through some of our discussions they knew very clearly that we were going to end photo radar in Pinal County.

I am against it, not only because I’m a strict Constitutionalist, but I believe… it’s driven to create money for the government. It’s corrupting law enforcement for us to be partnered with a private entity that creates revenue—clearly that’s their interest.”

Babeu continued, “I’ve never… seen a photo radar camera arrest a drunk driver or arrest a person with a warrant, see if someone has insurance, or to just simply give directions to somebody…

So I’m against it, we have ended photo radar for speeding. Photo radar’s last days are now behind us, because they ended on the 1st of January.”

CF: How do you feel about the Department of Public Safety putting their roving… speed vans in Pinal County? Do you have any plans on trying to restrict them…?

“They are allowed to do that, that is their purview, but I am going to continue to speak out publicly. I’m hopeful that our new governor Jan Brewer will see this issue as it is…

I’ve seen in the last two, three weeks, not only because of [CameraFRAUD’s] efforts but so many citizens that have been speaking out. They’ve had enough.

We’re in a tough economy and at the same time the government is trying to create more revenue— people are trying to pay their bills and go to work so yes, this is an additional tax on hard working men and women.

So I’m hopeful that Jan Brewer ends photo radar statewide.”

Babeu did express support for red-light cameras, but did not mention any plans to implement such a system or expand any current deployments.

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