The FBI states that this is not a secret program. It's been going on since the 1980's. Nothing to see here. It has registered it's clandestine fleet of spy planes under the names of dummy corporations supposedly for the pilots' protection. Protection from what? From whom? By some accounts it flies 2000 surveillance missions per year not over ISIS territory or the Rio Grand Valley but over American cities. Are we the enemy? It's all on the up and up. The FBI uses all tools and equipment, and conducts all investigations, in accordance with the Attorney General Guidelines they assure us. Oh boy! Would this be the same Attorney General who signed off on the wire tapping of Fox reporter James Rosen and his parent's phones? Would this be the same Attorney General who learned of the ATF's Fast and Furious fiasco in the newspaper and was found in contempt of Congress or did the new AG rewrite the rules?
This is mass surveillance pure and simple. A plane tracking a single person of interest would not fly over the entire city of Los Angles for hours. With Stingray or similar cell phone tracking devices that identify the user whether or not his phone is in use the FBI can identify all cell phone users in a single city and match the numbers to names.
Okay that's fine. Bill O'Reilly never does anything wrong so it fine if the feds have his metadata. Does he ever do anything embarrassing or have medical problems he would just as soon not share with government bureaucrats. His personal secrets are as safe as a tax return or the donor list of not for profit groups that backed Mitt Romney.
If you trust the FBI you have sticks in your head. Yes, as of late they enjoy more respect than the Secret Service or the DEA as they don't get drunk and hang out with hookers as far as the public knows. They are the good guy who investigate excessive force used by local police forces. The fact is they kill with impunity and that is no exaggeration. They have yet yo explain the death of Ibragim Todashev although they closed the case. He was shot 7 times including a shot through the top of the head. He was in the custody of at least four FBI agents and Massachusetts state police and with a body weigh of 154 pound posed a lethal threat.
In the instance of Ruby Ridge Sammy Weaver, age 14, was shot to death. Accounts differ and yes he was armed but there was testimony that the federal agents never identified themselves before they shot him in the back. Vicki Weaver who once worked as a executive secretary for John Deere was sitting in her home holding her infant daughter when agent / sniper Lon Horiuchi shot her through the head. During the stand-off, the government force, which numbered 350 to 400 men, had named their temporary camp "Camp Vicki". The negotiators who later claimed they did not know Vicki was dead would call out in the morning 'Vicki, we have blueberry pancakes.'
Horiuchi was indicted for manslaughter in Idaho but the case was moved to federal court because of the Supremacy Clause where it was dismissed at the request of the US attorney. That is killing with impunity! Why worry when the FBI tracks your cell? Hey, these are single engine Cessna aircraft not black helicopters which means paranoid right got it wrong.
Obviously the FBI didn't just rush out and buy its fleet of spy planes out of petty cash. They had and have congressional enablers. It is certain a limited number of Senate and House members knew of this program. They need to be voted out of office and quick.
Through two world wars Americans felt safe in their homes so why now does the US Army feel the need to terrorize the residents of Flint Michigan?
It was a peaceful afternoon, and then residents said it seemingly turned hostile.
"I was standing there, and all of a sudden, boom!" Jean Glenn said.
"I mean it was loud, it blew up the whole sky or whatever, it was like four or five big bangs," Annette Humphrey said.
Explosions you'd expect in a war zone echoed through Flint. People's homes shook and those inside were caught off-guard. It all went down Tuesday at the shuttered Lowell Junior High on the city's east side.
The blasts are just an Army exercise.
This probably part of the same training exercise that upset the people in Texas. Yes, the Army is training for urban warfare. Against whom? It did not have the courtesy to warn residents but preferred to surprise them. If the Army wanted to keep the exercise secret setting off explosions is a strange way of keeping it quiet. Again you can bet select Republican members of Congress are privy to this outrage. Damn national defense act like you got some goddam sense. This is how the Beltway treats the population.
Being on the federal payroll means you are special even if you kill 8 people. If you were observed driving twice the speed limit just before an accident that killed 8 and injured over 200 people you would be arrested on the spot and your bail would be half the solar system yet Amtrak engineer (train driver to the media) Brandon Bostian was not questioned about the accident until two days after the accident a per agreement with the railroad union and while he may eventually face charges he has certainly been treated far better than a mere citizen.Call it government assisted obstruction of justice.
The word "administration" as in Obama Administration is a misnomer. It is not the "performance of executive duties or management" as Merriam-Webster defines the word. It is a haphazard concatenation of decisions, some good and most bad, all hampered by colossal incompetence, overweening hubris, prejudice, partisanship and mendacity. It's not policy in the sense there is coherence. There is no method to the madness. The President seemingly wakes up in a new world everyday oblivious to the mess created yesterday. Small wonder people confuse their letter carriers for homeless people or the FBI for domestic spies or the DEA for drug dealers. This is not the country we want to live in.