Big Brother is watching you... from above
If a kite appears to be following you in La Plata, Md., it very well may be. The Charles County Sheriff's Office recently monitored a gathering of motorcycle riders by launching a remote-control aerial camera to watch for emergencies or troublemakers. An official said yesterday the battery-powered spy plane was launched as a test run and that he's not sure whether the agency will buy the craft ? but the results were good.Of course the results are "good"; it's a new way for the State to spy on its
"I was quite impressed with how easy it was to launch and how well it monitored the area," he said. "Besides crowd and traffic control, I see law enforcement using the CyberBug in a multitude of applications especially when it comes to crime fighting and homeland security."Crowd and traffic control, huh?
A base-model CyberBug costs $7,500 and can be placed in a stationary position or controlled with a joystick device. It can stay in the air for more than three hours and comes with a variety of features ? including the camera, a global positioning system and an explosive trigger for qualified customers.A spy device that comes complete with its own optional assassination capability!
This sort of police capability comes from the doctrine that activities performed in public are not subject to any Constitutional privacy protections. There's no "expectation of privacy" and apparantly that makes it OK. But if I don't have an expectation of privacy when I venture out into public, I also don't have an expectation that my every move will be videotaped for later examination, particularly if I am participating in protected activities -- like, say, assembling to petition for a redress of grievances.
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