From the April 2002 Idaho Observer:

$Multi billion surveillance infrastructure being built

By Vic Bernstein

Government justification for fixed-position cameras at the nation's intersections has been to increase the efficiency of traffic control and the ticketing of traffic law violations. However, the fixed position cameras are being replaced with cameras that have pan and tilt capabilities. These cameras represent the transition from traffic control to open video surveillance on the public.

I have been in the electronic security business for over 20 years. To be competitive in that rapidly changing industry one must stay current with the latest in technological advances. The camera capabilities mentioned above are just the beginning of my observations of equipment that is in place at this time all over the northwest and, probably, all over the country.

Pictured at left is a lightpost with pan/tilt cameras. Notice also that beside each camera is a cylindrical device. I suspect that these are laser devices that can be used to monitor conversations that are taking place inside vehicles. I have called the various authorities and suppliers to question them about these devices. To a person, all deny that equipment being installed is for surveillance purposes. But they are lying. I took a photo of a box that I presumed to be connected to tag readers attached to an overpass on I-90 east of Spokane. The box had a model number and a manufacturer name “Sinclair Technologies (pictured at right). Sinclair honored my request for information on that particular product by sending me the most shocking admission of the surveillance state to date. The device is a 500-watt antenna. Tag readers and radar devices used to monitor speeders use 1/2-watt antennas. Microwave ovens operate at 600 watts. There are only two reasons for a 500-watt antenna: They are in place to either cook something or see through it. Not one public official will discuss the subject of surveillance with me.

Though it may seem paranoid to claim that traffic control has given way to surveillance, it is not. The Spokane Police Department admitted publicly on the Clear and Corker talk radio show on KGA a few years ago that the department owns a device that can look through walls to “see what's going on.”

As we begin our investigations we find more questions that government officials and their surveillance device vendors refuse to answer. There is little doubt that the surveillance infrastructure is being built. Who is paying for it? Who is monitoring the data and where are the data-monitoring facilities? The investigation continues...

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