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NSA invades Utah

The most recent spy center that we know of is in Bluffdale, Utah.

Of course few of the neighbors have a clue as to what they do there, and people farther away don’t even know it exists.

About a decade ago, Edward Snowden was so alarmed at what his employer was doing to the liberty, integrity and honor of the people in this country that he gave up a very comfortable position within NSA for a strong chance of death and an absolute certainty of losing the easy life he had.

He not only knew his enemy, he courageously challenged their omnipotence with his own wit, wile, honor and integrity. I am totally impressed that he not only attempted it, but pulled it off.

Look at what his and our mortal enemies built in arid Utah. See photo to right. wham-bam-thank-you-mam.

This place has illegally stored every phone call you had, every website you visited, every download you made, and every e-mail you sent or received… not to mention whatever your smart phone has heard or seen as well as your doorbell, television, vacuum cleaner, and refrigerator… not to mention UPS, Amazon, and the US Postal Service data collection partnerships.

No, they cannot Constitutionally do that, but … well … that’s just a piece of paper. If we The People do not enforce it, there is no meaning in therein.

If they wanna SWAT you, the SWAT team is eager to blindly follow orders … as long as those involve attacking unaware, unarmed victims.

Current information is challenging to collect, but this sample from a police state run amok from a decade ago gives a hint as to where we are today.

The Praetorian Guard, supplied almost to infinity by the federal police state will send armored cars, tanks, snipers, machine guns, grenades, or whatever they can to quell any hint of liberty.

A little reminder to them and to you, each and every one of those weak-willed empowered bullies lives somewhere. They are not always surrounded and protected by their gang colors.

Last summer, Vicki Baker woke up one morning to every homeowner’s worst nightmare: the night before, a fugitive had taken refuge in her second home, and after a standoff, the police SWAT team used tear gas grenades, explosives and an armored vehicle to utterly destroy the home. They called it “shock and awe.”

The incident left Vicki in shock, too. When the smoke cleared, the home—which her daughter was living in and which was under contract to sell—was uninhabitable. The only living thing that survived the raid was her daughter’s dog, which was left deaf and blind from the explosions.

Vicki, who had recently moved to Montana to retire, was left holding the bill. The city of McKinney and her homeowner’s insurance company told her that police had “immunity” and wouldn’t pay for a dime of the damage. A few days later, the buyer walked away and the sale fell through.

There are Over 50,000 SWAT Team Raids Annually in America
July 14, 2013 by Michael Krieger
Yesterday, Salon published a fantastic interview with Radley Balko, author of a new book, Rise of the Warrior Cop. The interview focused on the fact that the number of SWAT team raids has soared from a few hundred annually in the 1970’s to more than 50,000 per year by 2005. To make matters worse, most of these raids are focused on non-violent crimes. Radley identifies three main forces behind this disturbing trend. The “war on drugs,” the national overreaction to 9/11, and the creation and massive funding behind the Department of Homeland Security. Moreover, once these SWAT teams are in place, the individual police departments feel pressured to use them in order to justify their existence. More from Salon:

Radley Balko’s new book, “Rise of the Warrior Cop,” details how America’s police forces have grown to look and behave more like soldiers than neighborly Officer Krupkes walking the beat. This new breed of police, frequently equipped with military weapons and decked out in enough armor to satisfy a storm trooper, are redefining law enforcement.

Since 9/11, the newly formed Department of Homeland Security has distributed billions in grants, enabling even some small town police departments to buy armored personnel carriers and field their own SWAT teams.

Once you have a SWAT team the only thing to do is kick some ass. There are more than 100 SWAT team raids every day in this country. They’re not chasing murderers or terrorists. For the most part they go after nonviolent offenders like drug dealers and even small time gamblers. As you’d expect when there is too much adrenaline and too much weaponry, there have been some tragedies.


Military grade weaponry now available to police departments: Grenade launchers,
 M16 submachine guns
, sniper rifles, military bayonets, Humvees and other armored vehicles.

Sources: Megan Twohey, “SWAT Under Fire,” National Journal (January 1, 2000);

Radley Balko, Rise of the Warrior Cop, p. 209.

Since the ’70’s, S.W.A.T. deployment has increased more than 937%


Sources: Radley Balko, Rise of the Warrior Cop; and study from Peter Kraska (Criminologist at University of Eastern Kentucky) from 1970-1995

There are approximately 50,000 S.W.A.T. raids in the United States annually, and there are more than 100 S.W.A.T. raids a day.

Okay, I digressed … again. I tried to focus on the NSA super spy agency, but they are NOTHING without the enforcement arm. Those arms are like octopus. We can only defend against what bits are within our reach.

Do that.

– Ted –

Bluffdale City provided the numbers to FOX 13 under a public records request. The city initially would not release the information claiming it would harm security at the data center. A state records committee ruled the information is public after an appeal by the Salt Lake Tribune.

The Utah Data Center is gargantuan: it stretches miles on Camp Williams. FOX 13 has previously reported the facility will house data halls storing vast amounts of information gathered by the spy center. That much data requires a lot of cooling — and water to cool the storage devices.

Initial estimates are that when fully operational, the Utah Data Center will use as much as 1.7 million gallons of water per day.

“By delivering water at a discounted rate, the city of Bluffdale is subsidizing a federal agency’s daily violation of our rights, which we consider unacceptable,” said Connor Boyack, the president of the Libertas Institute, a Libertarian think tank.

“Utahns, who live in a desert where water is a scarce commodity, should reject — and not assist — efforts to spy on innocent men, women and children.”

Data flows and water woes: The Utah Data Center

Using a new materialist line of questioning that looks at the agential potentialities of water and its entanglements with Big Data and surveillance, this article explores how the recent Snowden revelations about the National Security Agency (NSA) have reignited media scholars to engage with the infrastructures that enable intercepting, hosting, and processing immeasurable amounts of data.

Focusing on the expansive architecture, location, and resource dependence of the NSA’s Utah Data Center, I demonstrate how surveillance and privacy can never be disconnected from the material infrastructures that allow and render natural the epistemological state of mass surveillance.

Specifically, I explore the NSA’s infrastructure and the million of gallons of water it requires daily to cool its servers, while located in one of the driest states in the US. Complicating surveillance beyond the NSA, as also already imbricated with various social media companies, this article questions the emplacement and impact of corporate data centers more generally, and the changes they are causing to the landscape and local economies.

I look at how water is an intriguing and politically relevant part of the surveillance infrastructure and how it has been constructed as the main tool for activism in this case, and how it may eventually help transform the public’s conceptualization of Big Data, as deeply material.

7 Stats to Know About NSA’s Massive Utah Data Center as It Nears Completion

This June 7, 2013 file photo, shows a military no trespassing sign shown in front of Utah’s NSA Data Center in Bluffdale, Utah. The nation’s new billion-dollar epicenter for fighting global cyberthreats sits just south of Salt Lake City, tucked away on a National Guard base at the foot of snow-capped mountains. The long, squat buildings span 1.5 million square feet, and are filled with super-powered computers designed to store massive amounts of information gathered secretly from phone calls and emails.

Now if you wanna know what the NSA has to say about their spying, lets hear it directly from them (under the camouflage of their fully owned subsidiary: Utah Data Center From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Utah town gave NSA a deal on water
Utah Data Center • The city wanted infrastructure and new waterlines, passed savings onto spy agency.

But Connor Boyack, president of the libertarian Libertas Institute and who has written an opinion column calling for shutting off the water to the Utah Data Center, said it appears Bluffdale is subsidizing both the water and what he called “the NSA’s extra-constitutional activities.”

“I come from the line of thinking that government officials should be protecting our rights and not be economic developers,” Boyack said.

Details of the agreement between the NSA and Bluffdale are discussed in three years’ worth of emails the city disclosed earlier this month in response to a public-records request. Bluffdale allowed the NSA to redact large portions of the correspondence, but the emails still demonstrate how Bluffdale persuaded the NSA to buy what eventually may be more than 1 million gallons of water a day from the city rather than from four other bidders.