First, we simply have corporate welfare going on with the Feds underwriting
the purchase of this technology — along with all the military gear police now use. Second, we have a population growing used to always
being watched — and perfectly fine with that. mjh
Surveillance Cameras to Small Towns
Village in Vermont Has Almost as Many as D.C.
By David A. Fahrenthold, Washington Post
This snowy village [of Bellows Falls, Vt. — population 3,050] , in the shadow of Fall Mountain and alongside the
iced-over Connecticut River, is the kind of place where a little of anything usually suffices. There are just eight full-time police
officers on the town’s force, two chairs in the barbershop and one screen in the theater.
A little of anything — except
surveillance cameras. Bellows Falls has decided it needs 16 of those.
Using federal grant money, police plan to put up the
24-hour cameras at such spots as intersections, a sewage plant and the town square. All told, this hamlet will have just three
fewer police surveillance cameras than the District of Columbia, which has 181 times Bellows Falls’s population. …
Maryland’s Eastern Shore, for example, Ridgely Police Chief Merl Evans got a homeland security grant, funneled through the state, to pay
for five cameras apiece in Ridgely, population 1,300, and Preston, population 573. The cameras went up on water towers, at water-
treatment plants and in the two small downtowns.
“It was difficult to be able to find something to use the money
for,” said Evans [mjh: because the Congress makes sure you can only spend it on things that enrich their
contributors.], who is also temporary chief in Preston. He said because the grants needed to be used on “target hardening” —
protecting infrastructure — “the cameras fit in real nice.” …
“What you do in
public, you’ve got no expectation of privacy,” said Police Chief Rick Clark.