STUMP » Articles » Pink Helicopters Coming for Me.... » 19 March 2014, 05:39

Where Stu & MP spout off about everything.

Pink Helicopters Coming for Me....  


19 March 2014, 05:39

So I saw this amusing post at Hogewash and then this thing via Instapundit and got ready to write a screed about how politicians only take certain things seriously when it targets them specifically and yadda yadda…..

….and then I looked at the specific details.

Let’s take this in order. Sen. Feinstein wants drones regulated. This was her stated motivation

“When is a drone picture a benefit to society? When does it become stalking? When does it invade privacy? How close to a home can a drone go?” Feinstein said, listing questions she would like to see answered in the complex regulation process.

“I’m in my home and there’s a demonstration out front, and I go to peek out the window and there’s a drone facing me,” she recalled.

Demonstrators from Code Pink who were protesting government surveillance at the time, said the device was merely a toy helicopter, but Feinstein used the instance to sound off about the importance of controlling the technology through government regulation.

“It’s going to have to come through regulation— perhaps regulation of size and type for private use,” she said. “Some certification of the person that’s going to operate it … some specific regulation on the kinds of uses it can be put to.”

Wait a second. Let’s check that out

In an interview with CBS’s “60 Minutes” Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) was unhappy with the lack of regulation of unmanned aerial vehicles which was brought to her attention by a demonstration outside her home, where the senator claimed she faced a “drone.”

In fact she faced a toy helicopter that crashed so many times outside the senators home during the Code Pink protest the group resorted to dangling it from a string. An Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) or drone, is controlled at different times both remotely by a pilot and autonomously or computer-controlled while a Radio-Controlled Aircraft (RCA) is completely pilot controlled with a handheld radio transmitter.

Here’s the thing. I could strap a little camera to an RC toy copter and fly it around. How are you going to stop me (or anybody else, for that matter) from making something like that?

Heck, Stu has been a subscriber to Make since issue 1, which had an aerial photography project, using a kite — and do I have to tell you how many drone project kits and parts they sell — and it’s quite affordable and easy to assemble. Here’s a nice little copter plus camera rig for under $100

So pass your stupid laws.

Oh, and the “Pelosi bit”:

In response to Senator Dianne Feinstein’s speech last week calling out the CIA for spying on her staffers, Rep. Nancy Pelosi was asked to comment and gave what might be the most revealing comments to date as to why Congress is so scared of the CIA:

‘“I salute Sen. Feinstein,” Pelosi said at her weekly news conference of the chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee. “I’ll tell you, you take on the intelligence community, you’re a person of courage, and she does not do that lightly. Not without evidence, and when I say evidence, documentation of what it is that she is putting forth.”

‘Pelosi added that she has always fought for checks and balances on CIA activity and its interactions with Congress: “You don’t fight it without a price because they come after you and they don’t always tell the truth.’

A few months back, the ACLU had posted something questioning whether or not the intelligence community might be blackmailing Congress. And, quite frequently when we write about the intelligence community, we see suggestions in the comments that certain politicians probably cover for the NSA and CIA because they know what those agencies “have on them.” I’ve always dismissed those kinds of claims as being a bit far-fetched, even if they have plenty of historical precedent. So far, there’s certainly been no direct evidence of that happening.

Yes, it has happened before, but Pelosi et. al. have been doing all their shenanigans publicly for quite a while without worry. I suppose the “dirt” that might be on Pelosi would be her saying on a phone conversation that abortion was evil. That would pretty much have to be it, if she were really scared of the NSA having her conversations recorded.

But I doubt that she’s scared. The statement is the kind of back-patting mutual-admiration society congratulations politicians do to each other. Whenever they start going on about courageous stands, you know it’s just moral preening.

So back to Hoge — the one thing I can salvage from that post is his link to this Larry Niven story about an experiment in anarchy (and basically how it’s stupid). One gets the feeling that Niven got a bit tired of listening to somebody like Ron Cole and wrote this story to show the dude (or others watching) what an idiot this guy was.

Also, linking to Niven’s site gives me the opportunity to point out that something I wrote is on there: Building a Modern Hell

…and now you know why I wrote this post. To name drop that I’ve emailed with Niven & Pournelle about Inferno and Niven’s put something I wrote on his site (or, rather, one of the fans who run the site put it up, but it was with Niven’s approval).

Don’t mind me, I’m just preening.

Related Posts
Taxing Tuesday: Don't Blame the SALT Cap for the Pain of High Taxes, Also: The Quest for Trump's Tax Returns in Tweets
Divestment and ESG Follies: Mandating Women on Corporate Boards
SCOTUS Doings: Public Employee Union Dues and Justice Kennedy Retiring