Another reason to avoid the MOA

Go read this article about the “Terrorism Industrial Complex” at work in the Mall of America..

I was listening to this story about the Terrorism Industrial Complex in the car yesterday…

The gist of the story is that the federal government is significantly increasing spending on intelligence.  This is happening because the work is being contracted out — and sold back at a profit for the private companies.  Folks with appropriate security clearances are leaving the CIA, being paid for a year by contractors (the CIA tried to stop the brain drain by imposing a 1 year ban), and then selling back their expertise at a much higher cost.

At the same time, local government aid is being cut — and the cuts are being felt by police and fire departments.  So, the companies are giving money to these departments and in return, they are being expected to produce intelligence information on local residents.

The result — as we can see at the MOA — is local cops making reports on people who do innocent things like leave a cell phone in a mall food court, or “look at us funny” — which lead to questioning…Also mentioned in the NPR story was the fact that the federal government can get demographic data on folks — in particular where they’ve lived and phone numbers associated with them — without a warrant, whereas the local authorities cannot.

I’m all for increased intelligence, but this is a bit too much.

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