Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Now Searchable: The MnDOT NASCO NAFTA Superhighway Document Stash


Improving the presentation of one of the strangest Minnesota state government document batches we've ever run across, PIM staff has released a more complete version of the massive MnDOT doc dump about the rather mysterious plan hatched by the North American Super Corridor Coalition (NASCO) to implement a military-style RFID-powered shipping container tracking system on Interstates 35 and 94. We first reported this last July, and provided additional documents obtained by lawyer Nathan Hansen in December.

Now you can get the 598 pages in one PDF file, (a more svelte 43 MB) and we used optical character recognition to make it fully searchable. The rest of the media has still overlooked this strange story about yet another federal boondoggle; in this case, it's been proposed by NASCO's backers at Lockheed Martin, which would collect revenue from building the system, and mine the data it would generate.

To recap: they want to set up monitoring centers dubbed "Total Transportation Domain Awareness Centers of Excellence," which appear to be 'data fusion' centers that would likely turn perpetual profits for contractors supporting the facilities. A system called NAFTRACS, which is based on the military's existing shipping container tracking system, would primarily use RFID tag-based tracking stations to keep an eye on shipping containers, and feed this information into a 'data warehouse' system, which in turn would support some type of supply-chain management system.

[Sidebar: the "Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act" bill also promotes other "centers of excellence" data fusion centers that would monitor America, so apparently this sort of Big Brother proposal is all the rage in Washington.]

Interestingly, the NASCO plan specifies that their NAFTRACS system would generate shipping container supply-chain data that Lockheed's business unit in Eagan would market as a business product. It appears that NASCO's plan has now become illegal under state law, because this year's (vetoed and overridden) transportation finance bill specifically banned privatizing the management of Minnesota's highways:

A road authority may not sell, lease, execute a development agreement for a BOT
facility or BTO facility that transfers an existing highway lane, or otherwise relinquish management of a highway...
No one at the Legislature seems to know about this: is anyone going to check out what the heck is going on? Stay tuned...

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

New Documents Representing Only Propaganda from MN DOT, RIP Alexander Solzhenitsyn

And how we burned in the camps later, thinking: What would things have been like if every Security operative, when he went out at night to make an arrest, had been uncertain whether he would return alive and had to say goodbye to his family? Or if, during periods of mass arrests, as for example in Leningrad, when they arrested a quarter of the entire city, people had not simply sat there in their lairs, paling in terror at every bang of the downstairs door and at every step on the staircase, but had understood they had nothing left to lose and had boldly set up in the downstairs hall an ambush of half a dozen people with axes, hammers, pokers, or whatever else was at hand. The Organs would very quickly have suffered a shortage of officers and transport and, notwithstanding all of Stalin’s thirst; the cursed machine would have ground to a halt!

–Alexander Solzhenitsyn, b. December 11, 1918, d. August 3, 2008

When I was in the fifth grade at Cedar Island Elementary School in Maple Grove, Minnesota, someone who was from what the powers of google has shown to be likely from International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War came to my class to speak for some time about the Military Industrial Complex (I see from IPPNW's website that I could not disagree more with their view of small arms, and my mention of this organization is not an endorsement of their views). I recall him reviewing in great detail the nuclear capabilities of the United States and the Soviet Union. This was in the sunset of the days of "air raid drills" where we would hide under our desks to protect us from tornadoes and ostensibly nuclear bombs. The most important part of his little lecture was a warning he repeated again and again and wrote on the chalkboard: "BE SKEPTICAL, QUESTIONING AND DOUBTFUL about anything told to you by the government and/or the military industrial complex."

As time went on and I read more and gained more knowledge over the years, this lesson came back to me. It was always there, but just lying dormant. The very things this man was talking about were very real indeed. I now tell people to be skeptical, questioning and doubtful about anything the people in the government/military industrial complex/media tells them.

While I was taking this class over twenty years ago, Iran Contra was being exposed and Soviet dissident Alexander Solzhenitsyn was in exile from his native Russia in New Hampshire. He was a tank officer for the Soviet Army in World War II. He was taken captive by the German Army during a battle. After the war, the reward for nearly every Soviet soldier who was taken captive by the Germans was a "fiver" at the minimum. A "fiver" was a five year sentence in the Gulag, a system of work camps set up by Joseph Stalin and his cohorts.

A thorough description of the Gulag system is far beyond the scope of this article, but I commend the reader to the English translation/abridged version of The Gulag Archipelago and the English version of the novella One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, both by Mr. Solzhenitsyn. After being released from (and surviving, for that matter) the Gulag system, he worked as a math teacher in exile in Kazakhstan and subsequently traveled around while writing and avoiding authorities, who were perpetually displeased with his writing. While on the run, he was writing The Gulag Archipelago, a book not entirely based on his experience, but directly on the experience of hundreds of people who were only a sampling of the millions who suffered under the Gulag system and the tyranny of Joseph Stalin. We should recall that the United States allied itself with Stalin in World War II. Stories relating to this are recounted in Mr. Solzhenitsyn's writings, and his complaints about Allied treatment of Soviet soldiers doomed to return to death camps are outlined in his writings.

The bottom line here is that things are not always what they seem, and that government tyranny is for real. Government was the number one cause of non-natural death in the twentieth century.

The simple step of a courageous individual is not to take part in the lie. One word of truth outweighs the world.

In our country, the lie has become not just a moral category but a pillar of the State.

–Alexander Solzhenitsyn

In this writer's opinion from my experience working in government for five years, and as an attorney in the trenches for the past five years, we are experiencing a merger of the the former Soviet system with our system. I have witnessed this personally in the erosion of the application and substance of our laws (including the application of the rules of evidence and other procedural rules routinely ignored or perhaps, forgotten), and this is further demonstrated by the "Department of Homeland Security" hiring former East-Germany Stasi Chief Markus Wolfe and former KGB General Yevgeni Primakov.

Tyranny is old and commonplace, freedom is the exception. The new tyranny metastasizing before those of us with our eyes and minds open is rather sophisticated, and requires constant vigilance and study to begin to comprehend it. One part of this tyranny is the odd merging of the state governments, federal government, a "non-profit" (NASCO) and the military industrial complex. I commend the reader to other portions of this blog for a more thorough explanation of this seemingly obscure but prescient issue. Contrary to NASCO's claim that "THREE OF THE EIGHT PIONEER ICM SITES chosen by US DOT for the below ICM program over 2006-to-2011 reside upon the NASCO Corridor backbone Interstate Highway 35 at SanAntonio and Dallas, Texas, and in Minneapolis, MN, respectively," MN DOT claims to have no knowledge or documents whatever relating to this proposed site in Minnesota.

The documents I received in response to my data practices act request consist entirely of e-mails relating to potential attendance of MN DOT bureaucrats at a convention in Winnipeg, Manitoba and propaganda from NASCO. On its website in connection with announcing the new NAFTRACs (Orwellian Control Grid, read supra) locations, NASCO further states that NAFTRACs is: "addressing congestion, empowering travelers, and improving travel time reliability." Of course, this is nonsense. If you read elsewhere in this blog, you will see that NASCO, Lockheed Martin, Savi Networks, US DOT, and various other state Departments of transportation are involved in the implementation of an important portion of a control grid that would be the envy of, and most certainly of interest to Joseph Stalin and anyone with similar plans. Such a tool as NAFTRACs would be indispensable to anyone or anything interested in imposing a more perfect tyranny. Here is something to consider, the U.S. Secretary of Transportation, Mary E. Peters, has a bachelor's degree from the University of Phoenix - Online (link is to US DOT bio).

After I received the documents I have posted here as links, I was concerned that absolutely nothing in them mentions the NAFTRACs sites in Minnesota that NASCO boasts of on its website. I contacted the Staff Attorney for MN DOT, Peter Zuniga, via telephone and asked him about this seeming contradiction in information between MN DOT and NASCO. During the conversation, he agreed to further look into the issue, and I agreed that for his role, I would be satisfied with an assurance in writing that MN DOT had no further information relating to the issue. Such a response was provided, and confirmed that either 1) MN DOT is not telling the truth or 2) NASCO is not telling the truth or 3) there is a combination of lies between them. The official story appears to be that NASCO is entirely lying about plans for NAFTRACs in Minnesota and that the Minnesota Department of Transportation has no idea that such plans exist (it is remarkable that a simple review of NASCO's website boasts of these plans, but they entirely evade the review of the MN DOT Bureaucrats!). This leaves one to wonder about why Minnesota would pay $50,000 a year for membership in such a mendacious organization.

Quite some time ago, I was told by a reliable source at MN DOT who shall remain anonymous, that efforts to avoid the substance of my data practices act requests were afoot. The responses I have received appear to be the culmination of such plans. There are complaints in the first documents posted on this blog and still extant here (but the exact location here on this blog evades the writer right now), in which Tiffany Melvin, Executive Director of NASCO, expresses concerns about people obtaining information about NASCO and Lockheed Martin's plans relating to NAFTRACs via state data practices/open government laws. Should any governments' dealing with private companies for such an ongoing tax and comprehensive tracking scheme be secret? Absolutely not. I have not yet decided if I am going to sue MN DOT for more information. It's difficult to prove a negative. If I were to speculate, I would imagine that they are just telling the polite Peter Zuniga to just tell me whatever and get rid of me. I am not satisfied with the documents I have received. It's highly unlikely that MN DOT has no documentation relating to the installation of NAFTRACs in Minnesota. If they don't have any idea, why do they talk do much about NAFTRACs in general, but never offer any details? If a site has been selected, as NASCO boasts, where is it? MN DOT has maintained it has no idea whatsoever. It appears to me that the Government is lying to myself and all of us.

Unfortunately, most people are still getting their news from the mainstream media on the television. This is not a good place to get news people. This is nothing but software updates for our brains from the Military Industrial Complex. Have you ever considered that General Electric owns NBC and Raytheon? Give that some thought and wonder why in the world that may be.

Awhile ago, I received an e-mail from the Deputy Chair of the Republican Party telling everyone to start blogs. I would submit to her that one has to have some original thoughts and information to produce anything that anyone might read. I lost interest in regurgitations of mainstream news lies and obfuscations several years ago.

We have a more modern battle for liberty on our hands than has perhaps been manifested in the past. Please support liberty and liberty issues. I encourage you to read the "NASCO Speaks Out," in which Tiffany Melvin writes that there has been "confusion" about what NASCO is up to because of "complex issues that are not easy to explain, and various events taking place, in isolation, that have been strung together in a manipulative way."

There is no manipulation here, the only people who are manipulating people are NASCO, various components of government, Savi Networks, Lockheed Martin and and other enemies of freedom. Who is writing propaganda letters for the people in government to sign on their behalf? Not me. NASCO.

Please stay tuned. I will write more about more things in the future. I do not write these entries in a haphazard way, it takes me several hours to piece one together to my satisfaction.