Good news: Government’s recording your conversations on the bus too

posted at 7:21 pm on June 6, 2013 by Allahpundit

A timely video from Reason TV on the surveillance state’s newest venture: Cameras and microphones on city buses, just in case Al Qaeda decides to plan its next attack on municipal transportation within earshot of other passengers. Not every city does this, but the practice is spreading — early adapters include San Francisco, Baltimore, and Hartford with funding from, you guessed it, DHS. It’s darkly amusing to think of someone on the bus in one of those cities, reading the news today about the NSA/Verizon warrant on their cell phone, and worrying that the state has their phone records. Who wants to tell that person that if they make a call while they’re on the bus, the government can also hear everything they say?

I don’t think this trend will turn around. I don’t think the public cares much about it, even if a video like this provokes an occasional shiver. Most people agree with Lindsey Graham, I suspect, that if you’re not up to no good, you have nothing much to worry about. They see how the Tsarnaevs were nailed in a few days thanks in part to surveillance video, they read stories about terrorists being tripped up by data-mining, they log onto Facebook/Twitter/Foursquare and volunteer personal information about themselves, and they conclude that if we’re already this close to a panopticon, why not go a bit further in the name of stopping criminals and saving lives? Maybe there’ll eventually be an abuse so egregious that it reverses the trend, or maybe some charismatic libertarian pol will change voters’ minds. I doubt it. Technology always wins.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Excellent.

Bmore on June 6, 2013 at 7:24 PM

I don’t think the public cares much about it, even if a video like this provokes an occasional shiver. Most people agree with Lindsey Graham, I suspect, that if you’re not up to no good, you have nothing much to worry about.

We were a little less bothered before the IRS targeting of conservatives. This regime is looking like the “fully operational DeathStar”.

indypat on June 6, 2013 at 7:27 PM

Given all the surveillance stories today does anyone doubt a database of gun owners doesn’t already exist?

Think the NSA, FBI, CIA, et al don’t have J Edgar Hooverish files on conservative leaders, bloggers, those who talk s e cession, bad mouth Obama and his capos?

It wouldn’t surprise me at all.

Charlemagne on June 6, 2013 at 7:28 PM

Could they at least put the NSA in charge of the Do Not Call list and drone strike Rachel from Card Services? There would be a lot of support for this!

rw on June 6, 2013 at 7:30 PM

Wouldn’t it be funny if we had a TV program that showed how we were all watched, all the time, by the government?

We could call it something clever, say, maybe, “Person of Interest.”

It could be how the government collects data on all citizens.

The program would unveil, slowly over several seasons, how it all started out in the interest of protecting citizens, but then somehow morphed into a nefarious program of the powerfully connected inside the government. Power for the sake of power.

If course, it would just be a TV show and could never happen in real life.

Grinch on June 6, 2013 at 7:31 PM

Does anyone know how to stop the pop ups on this site?

I have Pop Up blockers installed but they are no match for the constant assault this site puts on its readers.

Hot Air! Stop it!

Labamigo on June 6, 2013 at 7:31 PM

I don’t think the public cares much about it, even if a video like this provokes an occasional shiver. Most people agree with Lindsey Graham, I suspect, that if you’re not up to no good, you have nothing much to worry about..

That idiot Graham has no imagination.

I’m a very law abiding citizen but I can easily imagine the government creating a profile of me as part of a Big Brother/1984 attempt to identify future enemies of the state because I’m a limited government conservative.

Charlemagne on June 6, 2013 at 7:31 PM

Now that this can of worms is fully opened and they can watch and target us with drones etc… can we truly ever go back?

ldbgcoleman on June 6, 2013 at 7:31 PM

Labamigo on June 6, 2013 at 7:31 PM

Try this.

Rebar on June 6, 2013 at 7:34 PM

But they were able to help save 1 little old lady from missing her stop, so it was all worth it.

Flange on June 6, 2013 at 7:37 PM

Every tank has an anti-tank gun opponent. Eventually we’ll all be walking hardware stores as we attempt to retain some small measure of privacy.

Bishop on June 6, 2013 at 7:37 PM

I bike or walk everywhere.
I just dare those pricks to stalk my two-wheeler.
Bring. It. On.

annoyinglittletwerp on June 6, 2013 at 7:39 PM

“Buddy” by Adam Sandler (aka Homie Buddy Dude [on the bus])

http://youtu.be/PCn2B7LvGyU

derit on June 6, 2013 at 7:40 PM

I walk or ride my bike(as in two-wheeler) everywhere.
Bring It. On.

annoyinglittletwerp on June 6, 2013 at 7:41 PM

What are they doing about more likely scenarios than terrorism, like getting struck by lightning in the same spot twice?!

John the Libertarian on June 6, 2013 at 7:41 PM

Bishop on June 6, 2013 at 7:37 PM

Second look at PGP?

Rebar on June 6, 2013 at 7:42 PM

I know this is OT, but I’m disappointed that HotGas didn’t have a thread this morning in honor of the 69th anniversary of D-Day.

Let us never forget.

BacaDog on June 6, 2013 at 7:44 PM

Wouldn’t it be funny if we had a TV program that showed how we were all watched, all the time, by the government?

We could call it something clever, say, maybe, “Person of Interest.”

Grinch on June 6, 2013 at 7:31 PM

Sort of like a flip version of The Truman Show?

platypus on June 6, 2013 at 7:47 PM

The recorders on the bus
go record, record, record…

The cameras on the bus
go click, click, click…

ALLLLLL OVER TOWN!

Marcola on June 6, 2013 at 7:48 PM

It would be nice if they out ALLAHPUNDIT.

Salahuddin on June 6, 2013 at 7:48 PM

Who in their right mind would expect to have an expectation of privacy on a public bus? That’s just dumb.

Dukeboy01 on June 6, 2013 at 7:52 PM

I wasn’t aware so many conservatives rode the bus.

John the Libertarian on June 6, 2013 at 7:52 PM

“Hitchin` A Ride” by Vanity Fare

http://youtu.be/TIwnAs4iwaE

derit on June 6, 2013 at 7:52 PM

There really can’t be an expectation of privacy on the bus. I mean, it is a small victory if that bitch moves her bag from the seat next to her and allows one of the many people standing to sit there.

As to the mics? Who really talks on the bus??? You really think the Tsarnaev brothers were plotting strategy on the bus down to the Boston Marathon?

Fact of the matter is that we are constantly being recorded on cameras. Anybody who runs races would tell you about the most stupid thing a terrorist could have done is detonate a bomb within sight of the finish line of a major marathon. There wasn’t a square inch of that area that wasn’t being recorded. In fact the “enhanced” pictures of the terrorists actually came from a guy who looked at the pictures he took after the FBI released much less clear photos of the suspects.

Happy Nomad on June 6, 2013 at 7:59 PM

I guess Ron Paul is not not so crazy after all…

PatriotRider on June 6, 2013 at 8:01 PM

Holder says he won’t resign until he accomplishes all his goals. I guess there are still some amendments in Bill of Rights left unviolated…
— Senator Ted Cruz (@SenTedCruz) June 6, 2013

John the Libertarian on June 6, 2013 at 8:01 PM

I think an underlying purpose of all the surveillance is simply to get the citizens to understand that they are only trying to protect us and therefore we should all be quiet and do what we’re told. And it’s probably better to avoid those groups with “constitution” in their names.

Paddington on June 6, 2013 at 8:02 PM

…the present government doesn’t scare anybody?…(that’s a question)
…Lindsey Graham is a BIG AS$!…(that’s a statement!)

KOOLAID2 on June 6, 2013 at 8:03 PM

A good reason not to take the bus. The last time I was on a bus was at least 50 years ago.

Dasher on June 6, 2013 at 8:07 PM

Given the assumption of a law enforcement bureaucracy that applies the law in an unbiased and apolitical manner, this is not a problem.

But we can’t make that assumption any more, can we?

Socratease on June 6, 2013 at 8:08 PM

I know this is OT, but I’m disappointed that HotGas didn’t have a thread this morning in honor of the 69th anniversary of D-Day.

Let us never forget.

BacaDog on June 6, 2013 at 7:44 PM

Well I’m sure that Google sure had an awesome doodle for the day, right?

Honestly, I’m not sure what anybody would say on such a thread that wasn’t said better by Ronald Reagan in his Pointe du Hoc speech in 1984.

I actually had to give a speech to a veteran’s group the day Reagan’s death was announced. I ditched my prepared remarks for reading the Pointe du Hoc speech in tribute. It was perhaps Reagan’s best speech of his career.

Happy Nomad on June 6, 2013 at 8:12 PM

Given the assumption of a law enforcement bureaucracy that applies the law in an unbiased and apolitical manner, this is not a problem.

But we can’t make that assumption any more, can we?

Socratease on June 6, 2013 at 8:08 PM

That was Krauthammer’s point tonight. In and of itself, this wouldn’t be all that big of a deal. But in the wake of the other scandals where government is going out after citizens in unfair, biased, and political ways…. a bigger deal.

Happy Nomad on June 6, 2013 at 8:16 PM

The idea of “I have nothing to hide” is a false premise. We all have something; opinions, thoughts, finances, political views, which may or may not be the “proper” political correct views. As we have seen certain keywords; tea party, constitution, conservative, are all words that trigger the government busy-bodies.

The truth of the matter is there are too many people in government with not much to do except cause trouble for the rest of us.

What we don’t want is an efficient government, for efficiency would cause us many more problems, from loss of our rights to grinding down the economy.

We are truly living in dangerous times.

Dasher on June 6, 2013 at 8:19 PM

The cameras on the bus
go click, click, click…

ALLLLLL OVER TOWN!

Marcola on June 6, 2013 at 7:48 PM

AesopFan on June 6, 2013 at 8:23 PM

The idea of “I have nothing to hide” is a false premise. We all have something; opinions, thoughts, finances, political views, which may or may not be the “proper” political correct views. As we have seen certain keywords; tea party, constitution, conservative, are all words that trigger the government busy-bodies.

The truth of the matter is there are too many people in government with not much to do except cause trouble for the rest of us.

What we don’t want is an efficient government, for efficiency would cause us many more problems, from loss of our rights to grinding down the economy.

We are truly living in dangerous times.

Dasher on June 6, 2013 at 8:19 PM

Not only that, but what might be acceptable today always becomes thought-crime tomorrow with the Left running the show.

What, you mean to tell me that you were against human-squirrel marriage in 2013?! THOUGHT-CRIME! I denounce you, you bigot! I’m going to report this to the Diversity Commissar and make certain you lose your job over this!

Punchenko on June 6, 2013 at 8:33 PM

I’m not going to worry until I see the Squirrels out back have little teeny, tiny video cameras.

trigon on June 6, 2013 at 8:45 PM

You know, it’s kind of ironic that the only people who know who Allahpundit really is are from the government.

trigon on June 6, 2013 at 8:48 PM

Allah’s cats probably inform on him.

Cats have no loyalty.

They’d sell him out for one of those little mouse toys on a string.

trigon on June 6, 2013 at 8:49 PM

Could they at least put the NSA in charge of the Do Not Call list and drone strike Rachel from Card Services? There would be a lot of support for this!

rw on June 6, 2013 at 7:30 PM

You, too?

Small world.

GrannyDee on June 6, 2013 at 8:53 PM

Could they at least put the NSA in charge of the Do Not Call list and drone strike Rachel from Card Services? There would be a lot of support for this!

rw on June 6, 2013 at 7:30 PM

You, too?

Small world.

GrannyDee on June 6, 2013 at 8:53 PM

I wouldn’t mind if they snuffed the Nigerian Scam Letter people and the guys selling what I like to refer to as ‘Pecker Pills’.

trigon on June 6, 2013 at 9:12 PM

I saw the original video when it was presented at a professional conference. This is much more about stopping fraudulent claims and stopping routine crime than it is about homeland security.

If you live near a big city, you’ve probably heard stories about 50 people suing the transit agency after a bus gets in an accident, when there were only 20 people on the bus, or the people rushing to get on the bus after the accident so they can claim they were hurt and try for a jackpot in court. If they’ve got these videos, the company can turn the tables and prosecute the claimants and the lawyers for fraud.

There are cameras on passenger and freight trains too. They help the companies defend themselves when some idiot drives around the crossing gates and gets whacked by a train. They claim the lights and the gates weren’t working, but then the video proves they’re lying.

Otto Zilch on June 6, 2013 at 9:29 PM

Honestly, I’m not sure what anybody would say on such a thread that wasn’t said better by Ronald Reagan in his Pointe du Hoc speech in 1984.

Happy Nomad on June 6, 2013 at 8:12 PM

I love that speech. Rush played it today. By the way, did you know it was written by Peggy Noonan?

Brat on June 6, 2013 at 9:45 PM

I saw the original video when it was presented at a professional conference. This is much more about stopping fraudulent claims and stopping routine crime than it is about homeland security.

Otto Zilch on June 6, 2013 at 9:29 PM

In my city that’s half the reason and the other half is for when a member of the underclass starts something on the bus and the cops have to be called. You would not believe how much that one dinky camera improves the behavior level, though it’s still wise to carry an “idiot filter” and a good pair of headphones. The things people babble about in public…at the top of their voice no less…

MelonCollie on June 6, 2013 at 10:57 PM

I guess Ron Paul is not not so crazy after all…

PatriotRider on June 6, 2013 at 8:01 PM

Oh no. He’s still crazy.

There Goes the Neighborhood on June 7, 2013 at 12:55 AM

The creation of the DHS is far and away Dubya’s biggest folly. This is an entity that will only continue to grow — gorging on our dollars, our rights and our privacy. (I know, WHAT privacy?)

Anyone who thinks this can’t end horribly need only to look at history, and at the book 1984. Big brother is truly here to stay, it seems to me. Next up? Realtime surveillance via so-called Smart TVs.

There is no end in sight to this nightmare. All it takes is one bad actor in the wrong position of authority for this to turn into something of which Himmler would have been proud.

My God, how have we fallen so far from our noble beginnings and our Constitution?

hillbillyjim on June 7, 2013 at 2:50 AM

Oh no. He’s still crazy.

There Goes the Neighborhood on June 7, 2013 at 12:55 AM

Yeah, so crazy he’s the only one pointing out that we cannot afford “occupy Islam and babysit Europe” as a foreign policy.

MelonCollie on June 7, 2013 at 7:44 AM

This is like a modern version of ‘This Is Your Life’.
o/t: Esther Williams died yesterday at 91. She was a swimming champion from the 40′s who starred in some entertaining, love story kind of movies.

Kissmygrits on June 7, 2013 at 8:38 AM

Back in the early 60s on the ABC Television Series The Outer Limits there was an episode called “OBIT” about machines that would allow the user to tune in on anyone and view what they were doing even if they were alone in a room with no one watching. It demonstrated how humans developed at first an interest then an obsession on viewing other people’s personal lives at all time. The machines were brought in by aliens from outer space to destroy the moral fiber and structure of human society. How prophetic was this episode? You tell me.

logicman_1998 on June 7, 2013 at 2:24 PM