Monday, September 03, 2007

Like a Trolling Stone

We still can't get blood from a stone, but we can get testimony from a rock. A Stafford County, Virginia company called McQ has a $100,000 contract to develop a "smart rock" for the Department of Homeland Security. The price tag is expected to reach one million dollars by this fall, and the idea is to create a rock with enough motion and noise sensors to tell if people are crossing the border illegally. So, if the wall doesn't work, Robostone will... well, sense that it's not working. Incidentally, we're talking about the southern border- there's less concern with guarding the border near Claire and me; we can call this one the 'white border'.

Andrew Cockburn details the latest attempts at creating a high-tech border, which are expected to run to $7.6 billion and save the country tens, if not hundreds of dollars in something or other, as well as keeping the country safe from landscapers. Cockburn ties this all to the military industrial complex (Not that again!) and its ongoing campaign to scare the shit out of taxpayers. Here's where I disagree a bit- lefties are always talking about how the media, the military, and the government are whipping up frenzies among the populace. But, I think the public doesn't really need much help in the mass hysteria department. Humans are just prone to weird mass panics about really stupid shit. Does anybody remember when people were terrified that the Japanese were coming to take us over? Happily, hysterias don't generally last very long. But, I suppose, if your job is in developing million dollar pet rocks, they're a godsend.

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