Month: December 2012

Show me your papers

Arkansas Police Chief Proposes Random ID Checks By Armed Patrols

[Chief Todd] Stovall told the group of almost 40 residents that beginning in 2013, the department would deploy a new street crimes unit to high crime areas on foot to take back the streets.

“[Police are] going to be in SWAT gear and have AR-15s around their neck,” Stovall said. “If you’re out walking, we’re going to stop you, ask why you’re out walking, check for your ID.”

[ Snip ]

“To ask you for your ID, I have to have a reason,” he said. “Well, I’ve got statistical reasons that say I’ve got a lot of crime right now, which gives me probable cause to ask what you’re doing out. Then when I add that people are scared…then that gives us even more [reason] to ask why are you here and what are you doing in this area.”

The Reason’s Hit & Run Blog has this article on random ID checks. Apparently, according to the article, this is not completely new and that a few other cites have been doing this type of thing for a while now.

Gun Control Tipping Point?

Mashable has this article Gun Control Petition is Most Popular Ever Posted to White House Site

A petition asking the White House to immediately press Congress for tighter restrictions on gun ownership became the most popular ever posted to the White House “We the People” website after less than 48 hours online Sunday.

The petition was filed in the hours following an elementary school shooting in Newtown, Conn., on Friday that left 27 people dead, including 20 children. More than 120,000 people had signed the petition as of 1 p.m. Sunday.

Have we reached the tipping point on Gun Control? What do you think?

Because they need them. That’s why.

Since Congress passed legislation in February ordering the Federal Aviation Administration to fast-track the approval of unmanned aerial vehicles—more colloquially known as drones—for use by law enforcement agencies, police and sheriff departments across the country have been scrambling to purchase the smaller, unarmed cousins of the Predator and Reaper drones which carry out daily sorties over Afghanistan, Yemen, and other theaters of operation.

Ars Technica has this article on law enforcement agencies buying and using drones to help spy on American Citizens. The article is called California law enforcement moves to buy drones, draws controversy and you can read the whole thing here.

Black Box Society

Ars Technica has this article on a federal mandate coming our way that would require black boxes in every car by 2014.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has proposed a new unified standard for event data recorders for cars, commonly known as “black boxes.”

Such devices, which are already in use in 96 percent of 2013 model year cars, record various types of data that can be accessed in multiple ways. The agency also estimates that 92 percent of 2010 model year cars have “some EDR capability.” The NHTSA estimates that requiring EDRs would add just $20 in manufacturing costs to each car.

Read the rest of the article here.

3D-Printable Guns Face Federal Ban

Mashable has this story on how there is a federal ban in the works for 3D printable guns

No fully plastic guns existed when Congress first passed the Undetectable Firearms Act in 1988. But grassroots efforts to create a 3D-printable plastic gun have alarmed one congressman enough to call for renewing the law before it expires in December 2013.

Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y) made his plea for renewing the federal ban on plastic guns just days after members of the “Wiki Weapon” project tested a 3D-printed gun part in a live-fire test. The “Wiki Weapon” members — organized under the name Defense Distributed — aim to begin testing fully 3D-printed guns by year’s end.

“Congress passed a law banning plastic guns for two decades, when they were just a movie fantasy,” Israel said. “With the advent of 3D printers these guns are suddenly a real possibility, but the law Congress passed is set to expire next year.”

Gun enthusiasts have already begun experimenting with 3D printing’s ability to turn countless digital designs into real objects. The futuristic technology could allow anyone with a 3D printer to make replacement gun parts or eventually entire guns on demand.

As a side note this story was put out prior to the Connecticut shooting. I don’t see anyway this ban doesn’t happen now. Read the whole thing here.

An update to the Only 3? post

There has been some updates to the Only 3? post 

  1. Congress declares opposition to UN takeover of the Internet
  2. Authoritarian regimes push for larger ITU role in DNS system
  3. Ambassador says US “cannot sign the ITU regulations in their current form”
  4. Unexpected Controversy Erupts at UN Internet Conference
  5. United States Refuses to Sign UN Internet Treaty
  6. Controversial UN Internet Treaty Approved After United States Walks Out

Only 3?

The 11-day conference is billed as a gathering of the world’s top nations to discuss ways to update rules last touched in 1988 on oversight related to telephone networks, satellite networks, and the Internet at large. Proponents of the conference say that the Internet has changed so radically since the 1980s that it is now time for others to have greater say in how it’s regulated and controlled.

But if you peek under the covers of this debate, the majority of these voices tend to be concentrated in countries that already express some of the nastiest forms of Internet censorship to date. They have fully vested interest in using the veil of a UN conference to push their own agenda of restricting Internet freedoms further for their own citizens, and giving other like-minded nations a better standing to unleash the same kind of oppression on their own netizens.

Read the whole thing: 3 big reasons to oppose any UN attempt to rewrite rules of the Net. And then Mashable.com has more on this subject here Why Internet Advocates Hate Russia’s Proposal to Change the Web