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June 10, 2004
Charm City Is Watching You
From the Inner Harbor to the Bay Bridge, local and state homeland security authorities are beginning to build a regional network of 24-hour surveillance cameras that will first go live this summer in Baltimore.

The closed-circuit video surveillance system of public spaces will begin in the Inner Harbor by summer's end, and a $2 million federal grant accepted by the city yesterday will expand the cameras into downtown's west side by early November.

"We're trying to build a regional network of cameras," said Dennis R. Schrader, director of homeland security for Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr.

What of privacy concerns raised by groups opposed to cameras constantly monitored by retired police officers or college students?

"We're at war," Schrader said.

Baltimore Sun


Listen; saying, "We're at war" is not a good justification for doing whatever you want and taking a big shit on all that we hold dear. Okay? Freakin' idiots.

Speaking of freakin' idiots, John Ashcroft was called before the Senate Judiciary Committee the other day, where he flatly refused to turn over the torture memo, citing as his reason, "I don't want to." Okay, that's not a real quote, but you get the idea. He said he was refusing to turn over the documents not on the basis of any law but because he "believes" that the executive branch must be able to rely on secret information being given to the president.

Now, this is true, in a sense, but it's called Executive Privilege, and Ashcroft didn't invoke it. In fact, he was very specific in saying that he was not invoking executive privilege, or any other law (Jon Stewart suggested perhaps a "Writ of Douchebaggery").

Senators Biden, Kennedy and Durbin tried to explain to Ashcroft -- the Attorney General -- that you can't just refuse to answer questions from Congress because you don't feel like it. You either have to plead the Fifth Amendment, invoke Executive Privilege, or something. Otherwise, your in contempt of Congress, something the Senators mentioned as a possibility for Ashcroft.

Man that would be sweet.

UPDATE :: Luke posts a link to the Daily Show clip about this whole thing. Very funny, very scary, I was very lazy for not digging it up last night.


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