DHS proposes a national tracking database for … license plates

posted at 8:41 am on February 19, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

Let’s see if this sounds familiar. A federal agency with national-security responsibilities wants access to a vast database that tracks the actions of citizens, but promises only to use it when they really really really think they need to do so. Even though it intrudes on privacy and collects data without warrants, the agency swears it will be necessary to keep Americans safe.

The NSA and phone data? Well, sure, but now we have the DHS asking to track our license plates, too. What could go wrong … Winston?

The Department of Homeland Security wants a private company to provide a national license-plate tracking system that would give the agency access to vast amounts of information from commercial and law enforcement tag readers, according to a government proposal that does not specify what privacy safeguards would be put in place.

The national license-plate recognition database, which would draw data from readers that scan the tags of every vehicle crossing their paths, would help catch fugitive illegal immigrants, according to a DHS solicitation. But the database could easily contain more than 1 billion records and could be shared with other law enforcement agencies, raising concerns that the movements of ordinary citizens who are under no criminal suspicion could be scrutinized.

A spokeswoman for DHS’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) stressed that the database “could only be accessed in conjunction with ongoing criminal investigations or to locate wanted individuals.”

A few years ago, I would have accepted that. Today, I’m not as sanguine. Would that require a warrant? Who gets to access the data, which would be collected and stored by a private company? What constitutes a threat to public safety that would justify the mass collection of data on all Americans just to provide data-mining capabilities to DHS?

The Electronic Frontier Foundation raises the obvious point:

But civil liberties groups are not assuaged. “Ultimately, you’re creating a national database of location information,” said Jennifer Lynch, a staff attorney with the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “When all that data is compiled and aggregated, you can track somebody as they’re going through their life.”

It’s the same as strapping a GPS locator on every vehicle in America and collecting the route information from it in perpetuity. Sure, this would help solve a few crimes, and maybe find illegal aliens, which is the reason why DHS asked for this in the first place. But it also gives government a powerful store of information about everyone else. Perhaps at some point, DHS might want to look at the movement of a critic or a potential whistleblower to see whether there’s anything embarrassing in their routine, as a means of applying pressure. Those trips to the mistress’ house would just remain our little secret, comrade … as long as you keep ours, no?

Paranoid? Yes, probably, and I’m being deliberately hyperbolic — to make a point. Why put that tool in the hands of government at all, especially one that seems to have grown increasingly in love with its own unilateral power, even where it lacks authority? At this point, we should be looking for options at limiting executive-branch power rather than expanding opportunities for its abuse.


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What happened to, say, a phone call to the issuing state, should license info be needed? This is intrusive and useless.

Sekhmet on February 19, 2014 at 8:44 AM

would help catch fugitive illegal immigrants

Who will them immediately be given citizenship, along with membership in the Democratic Party.

How does a license plate tip off police that the driver or passenger is an illegal alien?

Stop this now before we have internal passports.

rbj on February 19, 2014 at 8:45 AM

A few years ago, I would have accepted that.

Not me. Never. This is an Orwellian nightmare that will not end well.

ClownsToTheLeftOfMe on February 19, 2014 at 8:46 AM

Can anyone doubt that this administration has exploited the intelligence community and their capabilities to levels previously thought unimaginable by an American president? How can democrats continue to remain silent about all of this? Especially given the amount of violent uprisings the world over for abuses that all began with this type of government tyranny. Their like bait fish volunteering to get on the hook.

BKeyser on February 19, 2014 at 8:47 AM

Their They’re like bait fish volunteering to get on the hook.

BKeyser on February 19, 2014 at 8:47 AM

…but promises only to use it when they really really really think they need to do so.

Why the Constitution puts the limits up front on the searches and seizures themselves. What the State says it plans to do with the ill-gotten information is entirely irrelevant.

forest on February 19, 2014 at 8:48 AM

After that guy was stopped in Maryland because they somehow knew he has a concealed carry permit, I think it’s time we get tired of being useful. They need to focus. The Husband won’t use our car’s GPS, we still use a stand alone. I’m sure
they could still access it if they want but at least I’m not paying for it.

Cindy Munford on February 19, 2014 at 8:49 AM

The national license-plate recognition database, which would draw data from readers that scan the tags of every vehicle crossing their paths, would help catch fugitive illegal immigrants

So illegal immigrants drive vehicles registered to them? Really? No licence. No ID but they have registered vehicles that the government can track. Riiiiight. Only an Obama voter would fall for that load of crap.

HotAirian on February 19, 2014 at 8:49 AM

A few years ago, I would have accepted that.

Depending on how many years ago you’re talking about I have to ask “Why?”

It’s the government we’re talking about here. No matter how benign and “For your own good” a government program is it’s still the government. The government is made up of people. In a short time it’ll be different people. Somewhere along the line it’ll be people who forget the original intent of any program, rule or law and will twist it for their own ends. People will pervert anything in pursuit of their own agenda, even supposedly good people. A couple of years out of high school and you should realize this unless you’re a liberal. If you think more government is the answer then you obviously don’t understand the problem. The last time I accepted anything from the government at face value (any administration including Reagan’s) was in 1964.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 8:50 AM

States issue license plates, and it’s up to the states to go after any fraud involving the license plates they issue. If the Feebs need to know license plate information, they can call the issuing state.

Sekhmet on February 19, 2014 at 8:50 AM

Big brother…. where is the outrage GOP?

Geez

Will they use the same folks who developed healthcare.gov or are they another Obama donor?

cmsinaz on February 19, 2014 at 8:51 AM

We are ONE, just one big terror attack from being an out in the open police state.

It’s quite the Republic we’ve allowed to be created. It’s a mix of a high tech Sodom and Gommorrah, with a little sprinkling of “Minority Report” type government, with just a hint of 1984 oppression thrown in the mix.

Then you add in a generous helping of corruptocrats running D.C. and a side of lazy serfs content to enjoy generational dependence on someone else.

Bon Apetit Muricah, eat your Minnie Pie.

PappyD61 on February 19, 2014 at 8:52 AM

They’ll ding you if you attend a gop event?

cmsinaz on February 19, 2014 at 8:55 AM

What about when criminals steal license plates? It’s not like they are so securely locked on vehicles in the first place – it’s a situation that is begging to increase – and put innocent people in a very bad position.

tru2tx on February 19, 2014 at 8:56 AM

I don’t know how true the allegations are, but if so, this is what we have employed at the NSA. Not making me feel any warmer or fuzzier about the people that make up the behemoth called the Federal (Central, really) government. How about everyone else?

ClownsToTheLeftOfMe on February 19, 2014 at 8:56 AM

Just in time for the Primaries……it’s a battle between the two big government loving groups in the Ruling Class.

The Democrat Ruling class filled with Acorn / Soros / Union groups and the republican rulers whoring it up with the Chamber and their Healthcare and other buddies.

In Tejas, it’ GROUND ZERO for the future of the country.

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2014/02/19/O-Keefe-Battleground-Texas-is-the-New-ACORN

Battleground Texas is a Political Action Committee founded by Jeremy Bird, who was the national field director for President Barack Obama’s re-election campaign, with the intention of turning Texas “blue,” cutting off one of the Republican Party’s most important sources of presidential electoral votes and power.

Viva Gigantic government, with a teat for all.

PappyD61 on February 19, 2014 at 8:57 AM

DHS 1: Do you think those teabaggers will object to the proposal if we include this throw away line about targeting illegals?

DHS 2: Brilliant!

blammm on February 19, 2014 at 8:58 AM

I can see two sides to this…

On the one side: NO!

On the other: H**L NO!

philosoph0123 on February 19, 2014 at 8:58 AM

How long until we are Ukraine?

gophergirl on February 19, 2014 at 8:58 AM

Will they use the same folks who developed healthcare.gov or are they another Obama donor?

cmsinaz on February 19, 2014 at 8:51 AM

In this case that would be a good thing. Because it would never work and could never be used to nefarious ends. It would simply be a huge waste of our money….but then that’s par for the course anyway.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 8:59 AM

+1 Hotairian

Excellent point

cmsinaz on February 19, 2014 at 8:59 AM

And naturally from one of the commenters at WaPo, this is Boooooooosh’s fault.

coolcal71
8:48 AM EST
Bush should rue the day he signed off on the establishment of the DHS abomination.

Rimfire
8:51 AM EST
The database is being asked for now though, not when Bush was in office.

coolcal71
8:51 AM EST
Remind me again who signed the department into existence?

Flora Duh on February 19, 2014 at 8:59 AM

What happened to, say, a phone call to the issuing state, should license info be needed? This is intrusive and useless.
Sekhmet on February 19, 2014 at 8:44 AM

Could Pharaoh be anticipating future no. Co operation from some of the Several States?

ConstantineXI on February 19, 2014 at 9:00 AM

Quick, everyone swap cars!

OldEnglish on February 19, 2014 at 9:00 AM

FBI: “Hello, Texas, we have a fugitive seen driving a car, Texas license QQQ 464. What can you tell me?”

TX DPS: “Well, it should be a blue Honda Accord, issued to Betty June McCready of Granbury. Is Betty the fugitive?”

FBI: “Nope, it’s Lecter. Maybe you want to get the Granbury PD to do a welfare check on Ms McCready”

FBI: “Hello, Texas. We’ve been busting a lot of illegals with Texas plates in Colorado. Just faxing you the list now.”

TX DPS: “I’ll call you back once we have the information.”

*****30 minutes later****

TX DPS: “Yeah, all those cars were registered to one guy. The local PD popped him, and Homeland can have a shot once they’re done. Thanks.”

HOW is this database supposed to improve on that?

Sekhmet on February 19, 2014 at 9:00 AM

Didn’t dhs just make another big ammo buy?

Kissmygrits on February 19, 2014 at 9:00 AM

But of course Flora

cmsinaz on February 19, 2014 at 9:01 AM

HOW is this database supposed to improve on that?

Sekhmet on February 19, 2014 at 9:00 AM

It goes to 11.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:01 AM

Don’t they already have us on enough databases? It’s never enough for them. Can each state say no?

crankyoldlady on February 19, 2014 at 9:04 AM

Stop this now before we have internal passports trackable, implanted microchips.

rbj on February 19, 2014 at 8:45 AM

Never underestimate fascists

bigmacdaddy on February 19, 2014 at 9:04 AM

End times

cmsinaz on February 19, 2014 at 9:05 AM

Amazing how this is all happening while the Democrats are in power.

And double amazing that it is being done by the same generation of Democrats who as teenagers were protesting against big, bad government in the 1960s and 70s.

albill on February 19, 2014 at 9:05 AM

+1 albill

cmsinaz on February 19, 2014 at 9:08 AM

People will pervert anything in pursuit of their own agenda, even supposedly good people.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 8:50 AM

Indeed. This is why a lot of good cops (not all, by any means) are favorable to gun control measures. If they kick in the wrong door by mistake in executing a warrant, they don’t want a panicked homeowner to have a gun in his hand. That’s understandable, but that doesn’t make it counsel that society should follow. If we gave up our Fourth Amendment rights there is no doubt that more crimes could be solved. I don’t think I ever could have happily accepted this kind of plan, but it certainly is true that as I’ve grown older I am increasingly skeptical of such things.

SacredFire on February 19, 2014 at 9:09 AM

I foresee a booming business in green lasers for blinding these sensors one by one by one.

To track and catch illegal immigrants? What a load of shiznatch, these fascists invite illegals to the SOTU, we know exactly where they are now.

Bishop on February 19, 2014 at 9:11 AM

Don’t they already have us on enough databases? It’s never enough for them. Can each state say no?

crankyoldlady on February 19, 2014 at 9:04 AM

Some would probably try. Then the administration will dangle the carrot of cutting off all federal funding in front of them, and then…

Flora Duh on February 19, 2014 at 9:11 AM

Why ask? With the terms of usage for cell phones, they get the call metadata… merely have the state DMVs incorporate the same language on the renewal application.

This also works well this the cop-cameras taking photos of every license plate…http://cironline.org/reports/license-plate-readers-let-police-collect-millions-records-drivers-4883

socalcon on February 19, 2014 at 9:14 AM

I don’t think I ever could have happily accepted this kind of plan, but it certainly is true that as I’ve grown older I am increasingly skeptical of such things.

SacredFire on February 19, 2014 at 9:09 AM

For what it was worth I was vehemently opposed to the creation of DHS and don’t even get me started on the Patriot Act. Always seemed too Orwellian to me. Reminded me of thought police and at the risk of stirring Godwin The Gestapo and the SS. We are no safer now than before either of them and we are less free. Somebody once said that those who would trade freedom for safety will achieve neither but lose both. I think that was Ben Franklin.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:18 AM

Some would probably try. Then the administration will dangle the carrot of cutting off all federal funding in front of them, and then…

Flora Duh on February 19, 2014 at 9:11 AM

States need to push back on that by threatening in return to hold all federal taxes collected from their citizens.

ConstantineXI on February 19, 2014 at 9:19 AM

States need to push back on that by threatening in return to hold all federal taxes collected from their citizens.

ConstantineXI on February 19, 2014 at 9:19 AM

I’m curious as to how you think that could be accomplished. I don’t think federal taxes go through the states. They’re paid directly to the feds.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:23 AM

So … the NSA and Federal Law Enforcement want access to local “tag” readers for tracking purposes, but promise never, never, never to use the information in a manner that might jeopardize our civil liberties …

What could possibly go wrong?

In other news: a demorat congressman has proposed a “mileage tax” be imposed on all vehicles. GPS tracking devices would be required on all vehicles and the information sent directly to the IRS for tax purposes. He promises that the information would never, never, never be used in a manner that might jeopardize our civil liberties.

What could possibly go wrong?

“I love my country, but I FEAR my government!”

r27cj on February 19, 2014 at 9:23 AM

“I love my country, but I FEAR my government!”

r27cj on February 19, 2014 at 9:23 AM

When a government fears it’s citizens you have freedom but when the citizens fear their government you have tyranny.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:24 AM

I’m curious as to how you think that could be accomplished. I don’t think federal taxes go through the states. They’re paid directly to the feds.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:23 AM

The states can interpose themselves as the only tax collection authority within their borders.

That is well within their sovereign rights, and something I think they should do anyway.

ConstantineXI on February 19, 2014 at 9:25 AM

Step 2–a national mileage tax.

Barnestormer on February 19, 2014 at 9:27 AM

The Department of Homeland Security wants a private company to provide a national license-plate tracking system

…cmsinaz said it for me…another Mooch classmate?

maybe find illegal aliens, which is the reason why DHS asked for this in the first place

…this administration is letting them go anyway!…so they will look for the actions and movements of the opposite party…and co-ordinate with the IRS and the other departments?

KOOLAID2 on February 19, 2014 at 9:27 AM

So we are supposed to believe that the Feds who won’t allow deportations of illegals who do not have active indictments of felonies will magically allow and deport illegals if we just waive the Fourth Amendment, further.

jhnone on February 19, 2014 at 9:28 AM

When a government fears it’s citizens you have freedom but when the citizens fear their government you have tyranny.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:24 AM

I don’t fear Pharaoh Obama himself because he is a farcical parody of a dictator strongman. He’s actually insignificant and easily disposable. What I fear is the actual power that is handling his puppet strings.

ConstantineXI on February 19, 2014 at 9:28 AM

There are simple ways to defeat license plate readers. I use a very simple one to mess with speed cameras (dull coat model paint). The next step will be RFID chips in our tags. From there it’s only one more step to start tagging our children like we do our pets. To protect them from predators and from being lost. It doesn’t stop until we stop it.

Capt Blasto on February 19, 2014 at 9:29 AM

I don’t fear Pharaoh Obama himself because he is a farcical parody of a dictator strongman. He’s actually insignificant and easily disposable. What I fear is the actual power that is handling his puppet strings.

ConstantineXI on February 19, 2014 at 9:28 AM

You did notice that my post did not specify any particular administration, party or person but stated “Government” generically didn’t you? I don’t trust any government, none and the less power it has over me the better. Power corrupts.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:31 AM

It makes me feel warm and snuggly knowing how easy it will be for our government to track down “enemies of the State”.

lel2007 on February 19, 2014 at 9:32 AM

The DHS is an affront that should be dismantled. What a total POS that illegal agency is.

How anyone could have taken the recommendations of that insane, inept, and moronic 9/11 commission seriously is quite beyond me. If they had just put Jamie Gorelick behind bars it would have served our security better than any of the BS that laughable commission proposed.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 19, 2014 at 9:34 AM

A spokeswoman for DHS’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) stressed that the database “could only be accessed in conjunction with ongoing criminal investigations or to locate wanted individuals.

LMAO. Wanted for what, pray tell?

Dusty on February 19, 2014 at 9:34 AM

You did notice that my post did not specify any particular administration, party or person but stated “Government” generically didn’t you? I don’t trust any government, none and the less power it has over me the better. Power corrupts.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:31 AM

That’s why the Founders created a government that had very little actual power over citizens. And neither party supports a return to that concept.

ConstantineXI on February 19, 2014 at 9:34 AM

Our government’s totalitarian proclivities never cease to astound me. “Keeping us safe” seems to be the go-to excuse for these hideous actions.

Royal Fizzbin on February 19, 2014 at 9:36 AM

To protect them from predators and from being lost. It doesn’t stop until we stop it.

Capt Blasto on February 19, 2014 at 9:29 AM

Here there be dragons, and some very sage words.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:36 AM

would help catch fugitive illegal immigrants

So people who allow, and want, immigrants here illegally expect us to believe that they would use the technology to apprehend those illegal immigrants??! Do they really think we are stupid enough to believe that?!
It’s as if they think that millions of conservatives are going to see that little statement and say, “Hey, that’s great that they are finally doing something to catch illegal immigrants. I can sleep well tonight, by george!”

Sterling Holobyte on February 19, 2014 at 9:36 AM

And neither party supports a return to that concept.

ConstantineXI on February 19, 2014 at 9:34 AM

Precisely! That’s why there is no outcry from establishment Republicans over the IRS targeting TEA partiers. They want them targeted to shut them up.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:38 AM

LMAO. Wanted for what, pray tell?

Dusty on February 19, 2014 at 9:34 AM

Mocking Pharaoh? Criticizing the Junta? Making an anti islam parody video? Or (GASP!) making a movie that criticizes Pharaoh?

All of the above is a crime these days, as people have found out.

ConstantineXI on February 19, 2014 at 9:39 AM

The Husband won’t use our car’s GPS, we still use a stand alone. I’m sure
they could still access it if they want but at least I’m not paying for it.

Cindy Munford on February 19, 2014 at 8:49 AM

I use a paper map. They can’t access that.

…yet.

Sterling Holobyte on February 19, 2014 at 9:43 AM

would help catch fugitive illegal immigrants, according to a DHS solicitation

Yeah… cuz they’re all about tracking and catching illegal immigrants…

Incidentally, “fugitive illegal immigrants” seems a tad redundant, no?

dpduq on February 19, 2014 at 9:43 AM

DHS has proved an expensive mistake. Time to abolish it – and with it, the TSA, returning their functions to the airlines and airports with a hint to ask the Israelis how they do it.

When DHS is involved in raiding theaters to prevent illegal copying of movies, the threat to the “homeland” is being overstated by somebody.

Adjoran on February 19, 2014 at 9:44 AM

“Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value.”

Thomas Paine

The majority of people in our country today have been given freedom. They have not paid for it nor earned it. The generations that came before them handed it to them as a present. This was not in the best interests of our nation. The citizens of this country take their freedoms for granted and because of that they will lose that very freedom. In a lot of ways they already have. It will get worse before it gets better. There will be blood.

Oldnuke on February 19, 2014 at 9:46 AM

would help catch fugitive illegal immigrants

Why, so DHS could have them released again the next sequester or budget reduction.

antipc on February 19, 2014 at 9:48 AM

What Democrats have handed to them on a silver platter by the media is one thing; dirt on Republicans and Conservatives. What Democrats do when in power to get and share dirt on opponents is another thing. Giving these people the instruments to do things as the thread reports scares me to death. License tracking, milage tracking. Whatever. I think back to the event that even put obama in power with sealed court documents being made public. Or local bureaucrats making Joe the plumbers tax records public.

This country would be in another no crap civil war with people getting hurt if the media ran the appropriate level of coverage had Republicans used the IRS to target Emily’s List or MoveOn.org and other progressive political opponents. It’s all good now.

hawkdriver on February 19, 2014 at 9:54 AM

Good point old nuke@8:59

cmsinaz on February 19, 2014 at 9:57 AM

The only thing that will ever stop the spying and lying (by both sides)is the people taking to the streets by the tens of thousands for sustained demonstrations. Until then the politicians will just keep doing what they’re doing-incremental totalitarianism. The frog in the pot scenario. Domestic spying is an issue that could draw Tea Partiers, Occupiers and those in between, especially young people. As has been mentioned in previous posts “It doesn’t stop until we stop it”. I’m sorry to say that the ballot box ain’t going to do it.

Jackson on February 19, 2014 at 9:59 AM

Making an anti islam parody video?

ConstantineXI on February 19, 2014 at 9:39 AM

Just a point of clarification, “Innocence of Muslims” wasn’t really a parody. It was pretty faithful to the koran and muslim tradition. Seriously. Just sayin’ …

Carry on.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 19, 2014 at 10:00 AM

I think this new step towards 24/7 surveillance state might be a swell idea, but before we rush into expanding it any further, we ought to test it by creating a program wherein a smaller segment of the Americans, i.e., anyone who works in government, and see how it works out.

The government can fund programs in 50 states and one central like one federal one, all located as far from their respective seats of power as possible, which set up to information collection on all activity of government employees (and yeah, that includes all politicians.) They’ll all be required to wear GPS and wires to collect the locations and conversations 24/7. This information will be managed and accessed only by civilian commissions and their staff (all having the unique experience of never having been a government employee) set up to oversee and run the program.

I’ll stress right now there should be a strongly worded provision in the program creation legislation which stresses that this database will only be accessed in conjunction with ongoing criminal investigations.

Dusty on February 19, 2014 at 10:01 AM

would help catch fugitive illegal immigrants, according to a DHS solicitation

To think … you could just catch the illegals when they get the license plates, instead …

Most of the treasonous dirtbags in our various governments (feral, state and local) need to be deported so they can go be illegal in some other nation help them out. The third world needs these dirtbag bureaucrats and politicians more than we do. “Have them as gifts from us. Eat them. Whatever. They’re yours.”

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 19, 2014 at 10:05 AM

Maybe this is their underhanded way for the “geniuses” in charge to get us to riding bikes and give up our wheels. You know like they do in China. Then next up, uniforms! Just sayin’…

Smart Blonde on February 19, 2014 at 10:08 AM

that could draw Tea Partiers, Occupiers and those in between, especially young people.

Jackson on February 19, 2014 at 9:59 AM

You’re crazy. The Occupoopers are anti-western, anti-human sacksOS that have no business in any civilized society. I wouldn’t want them anywhere near me. They are sh!t. Douchebags. America-haters. They are not the kinbd of sub-humans anyone with a brain would associate with in any way, no matter the cause. The Occupoopers are actually the domestic terrorists that these DHS azzwipes are intentionally ignoring while going after the conservatives.

Occupoopers are enemies of everything decent. They are lowlife scum who should be put on a boat to the third world with these DHS scum.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 19, 2014 at 10:11 AM

The national license-plate recognition database, which would draw data from readers that scan the tags of every vehicle crossing their paths, would help catch fugitive illegal immigrants, according to a DHS solicitation.

Since WHEN has DHS been “looking for illegal aliens”?

Hell, they show up at press conferences and plainly state they are in the country illegally.

And NOTHING happens to them!

GarandFan on February 19, 2014 at 10:11 AM

Since when did the DHS care about catching illegals?

Pure, Grade A, 100% baloney.

Dumb all over, and maybe even a little ugly on the side…

dinahmoehumm on February 19, 2014 at 10:19 AM

they won’t do anything with illegal aliens today so why even try to use that as an excuse?

dmacleo on February 19, 2014 at 10:29 AM

The national license-plate recognition database, which would draw data from readers that scan the tags of every vehicle crossing their paths, would help catch fugitive illegal immigrants, according to a DHS solicitation.

And what would they do with these fugitive illegals?

Nada…

workingclass artist on February 19, 2014 at 10:36 AM

Given the President’s current lack of interest in Constitutional Law and his sweeping view of Executive Authority we would be stupid to assume he would not use this as a means to hold power over his domestic political enemies. He already does it with the IRS. Do we really need more proof?

The IRS and EPA are now enforcers for the DNC. We have no idea the extent the NSA uses the data they have much like the IRS or EPA does. Don’t think for a second this new system won’t become the same thing.

Funny, these guys want all this technology and access to our information and activities, yet DON’T want to require people to produce ID to vote. What an f’n joke that they get away with this logic.

goflyers on February 19, 2014 at 10:37 AM

If enacted, it will be abused, just like the IRS is used. No doubt about it. I am not paranoid but we must be very circumspect about taking this kind of action. Any warrant-less search is unlawful I say.

jake49 on February 19, 2014 at 10:42 AM

Why the Constitution puts the limits up front on the searches and seizures themselves. What the State says it plans to do with the ill-gotten information is entirely irrelevant.
forest on February 19, 2014 at 8:48 AM

The founding fathers intended an element of “sanctuary” in that the govt is restrained from being able to catch any and all lawbreakers by whatever means necessary and puts the onus on them to prove guilt. National databases of everything subverts this principle and flips the burden to prove innocence onto the citizen. Better 10 escape justice than one innocent wrongly or illegally punished.

AH_C on February 19, 2014 at 10:45 AM

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 19, 2014 at 10:11 AM

OK. My bad. Strike the Occuscum. The point is that while we’re sitting around waiting for the primaries and the midterms totalitarianism will continue its march and the ONLY way to let the politicians know we’re mad as hell and aren’t going to take it anymore is to do it in the streets and I don’t mean for an afternoon outing then going home and congratulating ourselves for leaving a clean area and hoping we don’t get called “racists”. Been there, done that.

Jackson on February 19, 2014 at 10:45 AM

A few years ago, I would have accepted that.

Are you kidding me?

besser tot als rot on February 19, 2014 at 10:58 AM

Didn’t dhs just make another big ammo buy?

Kissmygrits on February 19, 2014 at 9:00 AM

I am certainly NOT defending DHS, but no, the amount of ammo that DHS has been buying is not a big deal and amounts to about 1000 rounds per armed agent per year.

As most avid shooters will tell you, 1000 rounds per year isn’t very much. Lots of recreational shooters will expend that in a single month or less. For some, it’s only a good weekend!

There have been a lot of conspiracy theories about government agencies buying up ammo to intentionally cause shortages, but it isn’t THEM behind the shortages, it is US.

climbnjump on February 19, 2014 at 11:18 AM

This is an abomination. Did you ever think you would seriously wonder what they have on the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court? I didn’t. But now I do. If we permit this license plate business we are crazy.

tngmv on February 19, 2014 at 11:27 AM

And let me guess- this can’t be stopped by the courts unless someone has standing by being hurt by the policy but by then it’s do ingrained in law enforcement that liberals will scream we’re some ” ist” for wanting it undone?

hopeful on February 19, 2014 at 11:30 AM

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 19, 2014 at 10:11 AM

Then sink the boat!

tngmv on February 19, 2014 at 11:38 AM

Can anyone doubt that this administration has exploited the intelligence community and their capabilities to levels previously thought unimaginable by an American president? How can democrats continue to remain silent about all of this? Especially given the amount of violent uprisings the world over for abuses that all began with this type of government tyranny. Their like bait fish volunteering to get on the hook.

BKeyser on February 19, 2014 at 8:47 AM

The REB has thoroughly corrupted the IRS via greedy government unions, and are using the IRS as a tool of political oppression. Why would anyone doubt that the NSA is being used the same way?

Why silent? Because Democratics and especially the Progressives are very different than you and I. We put the Rule of Law over our own victory in politics, and they don’t. Socialists have always believed that the cause of international socialism comes first, before ANYTHING ELSE.

slickwillie2001 on February 19, 2014 at 11:39 AM

Dusty on February 19, 2014 at 10:01 AM

At one time I suggested that Obamacare be trialed first, with federal employees being the obvious test subjects.

slickwillie2001 on February 19, 2014 at 11:43 AM

It’s been a few years, but…

when I was a beat cop, I could run a license plate through dispatch from any state and get all the info I needed. Pretty sure it was accessed through NCIC.

NavyMustang on February 19, 2014 at 12:12 PM

Democrats and Republicans who refuse to admit that the NSA and the Department of Homeland Security is getting out of hand should be voted out of office.

SC.Charlie on February 19, 2014 at 12:26 PM

Don’t count on Republicans coming to the rescue. The current GOP leadership are a bunch of inside the beltway, big government twerps. They’re salivating at the prospect of having this power when/if they ever retake the White House.

StoneColdSmark on February 19, 2014 at 1:08 PM

Democrats and Republicans who refuse to admit that the NSA and the Department of Homeland Security is getting out of hand should be voted out of office.

SC.Charlie on February 19, 2014 at 12:26 PM

Add the FCC to the list. FOX just reported they want to monitor news stations.

31giddyup on February 19, 2014 at 1:28 PM

Would that require a warrant?

Hmmmm – like, say, the warrant that was issued by a judge that allowed the LA County Sheriffs to perform a home invasion in the middle of the night and execute a totally innocent 80 year old man?
Those kinds of warrants?
Color me skeptical….

dentarthurdent on February 19, 2014 at 1:33 PM

I didn’t waste time on any sort of statistical analysis, but my sense is, reading the comments before mine, that there’s going to be a surge in need BS-detector repairs.

My concern is not that the story they’re retailing about illegal immigrants being the reason for this is inept. It’s utterly inept – but the problem is that they think so little of us that we’re expected to believe it, somehow.

Patton on February 19, 2014 at 1:36 PM

Goebbels is mighty happy.

Schadenfreude on February 19, 2014 at 1:47 PM

It’s illegal. If they start doing that, I’m going to cover up my license plate. I have the right to my privacy and keeping my personal information private is guaranteed by the constitution.

If I get a ticket for doing that, I’ll go to court with my lawyer and then if possible, I will sue for violating my constitutional rights and damages.

BikerGuy57 on February 19, 2014 at 1:54 PM

Unbelievable.

The sheer arrogance of this administration is mind boggling.

How about we propose a bill that requires public GPS tracking and public microphones to all elected and cabinet officials and see how they like it.

dominigan on February 19, 2014 at 5:38 PM