One Small Voice. A Lot of Big Ideas. Let Freedom Ring!

Gov’t Spies in our Skies. FAA Issues Drone Permits.

I warned you months ago that the Drones were coming to a government entity near you.

This week, the FAA is issuing permits to local law enforcement, US Military, universities and federal agencies across the country, granting permission for drones to be used in US airspace. Thanks to a Freedom of Information lawsuit filed by The Electronic Frontier Foundation, the FAA released this preliminary list:

Arlington Police Deparment, Arlington, TX

California Department of  Forestry & Fire Protection

City of Herington, KS

City of Houston Police Department

City of North Little Rock, AR Police Department

Cornell University


Eastern Gateway Community College, Steubenville, OH

Gadsden Police Department-Narcotics, Gadsden, AL

GA Tech Police Department

GA Tech Research Institute

Kansas State University

Mesa County Sheriff’s Office,  Grand Junction, CO

Miami-Dade County Police Department

Middle Tennessee State University

MS Department of Marine Services

MS State University

Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department, Montgomery County, AL

NASA Ames Research Center, Moffet Field, CA

New Mexico Institute of Mining & Technology

New Mexico State University, La Crucus, NM

Nicholls State University, Thibodaux, LA

Ogden Police Department, Ogden, UT

Ohio University, Athens, OH

Orange County Sheriff’s Office, Orange, TX

Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Winter Haven, FL

Seattle Police Department

Texas A & M University, Corpus Christi, TX

Texas Department of Public Safety, Austin, TX

Texas State University-San Marcos, San Marcos, TX

University of Alaska, Fairbanks, AK

University of Colorado, Boulder, CO

University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT

University of Florida, Gainsville, FL

University of Michigan-Ann Arbor, Ann Arbor, MI

Utal State University, Logan UT

Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, VA

VA Tech, Blacksburg, VA

Washington State Department of Transportation, Olympia, WA

University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI

US Airforce

US Army

Department of Homeland Security

Department of Energy, Idaho Falls, ID

National Energy Technology, Morgontown, WV

Department of Agriculture-US Forest Service

US Forest Service

US Department of Agriculture

US Navy


Drone use by local law enforcement has already begun. In Lakota, ND, Rodney Brossart was arrested by a local swat team, assisted by a Predator Drone, on loan from the DHS, for stealing six cows. (The case hasn’t gone to trial yet, so I don’t know if he’s guilty of cow hustling or not…but that is REALLY BESIDE THE POINT).

Take a close look at that list above. Every one of the entities that is being issued a permit is a taxpayer-supported institution. You can argue the point for firefighting. You can maybe argue the point for agriculture (but couldn’t spotted beetle be spotted just as easily from a helicopter?)

No doubt the universities have all kinds of programs in mind for predator drones, including educating students in the new technology. But it begs the question: Do you trust a 20-year old with a spy camera on campus where your child attends?

There is no doubt in my mind that DHS and local law enforcement will abuse drone technology. Look how well they use other forms of technology control, such as Tasers and airport screening.

What’s the average American to do?

At the local level, demand answers from your local officials about drone use–raise a stink.

At the federal level, demand that our representatives stand up for our 4th Amendment Rights and limit the use of predator drones on American soil against Americans.

The list above is just the beginning…of the end of privacy.

Related Articles:

First One to Shoot Down a US Drone will be a Folk Hero, Boudica

Drone Use Takes Off on the Homefront, Wall Street Journal

Cameras in the Skies over your neighborhood...,waynsumthn

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40 comments on “Gov’t Spies in our Skies. FAA Issues Drone Permits.

  1. roxannadanna
    May 14, 2012

    wow just wow…

  2. neenergyobserver
    May 14, 2012

    Tup, I could argue the point on several area; firefighting, SAR, and such but then the permits should be to those organizations not LE. Privacy, you don’t need no stinkin’ privacy, we know better.

    • Freedom, by the way
      May 14, 2012

      Unfortunately, too many folks don’t know better, which is why drones, like Tasers and TSA screenings will become a part of our everyday lives.No more sitting on the porch in your bathrobe.

      • neenergyobserver
        May 14, 2012

        Might be OK if your porch is screened in but, the end of nude sunbathing for sure.

        What’s available on Google is bad enough, particularly since the county assessors are using it.

        I want my DeLorean, cause I want to go back to America.

        • Freedom, by the way
          May 14, 2012

          And to what year should we set that time machine? We’ve been on the wrong path so long, I’m thinking we need to go back to the constitutional convention.

          • neenergyobserver
            May 14, 2012

            That I haven’t figured out, I have to confess. My thinking runs to about 1900 but I’ll admit that I would miss a lot of the technology, even with its problems. But, maybe with our knowledge of the future we could do some course correcting.

          • Freedom, by the way
            May 14, 2012

            And get very rich in the process :)

          • neenergyobserver
            May 14, 2012

            Yeah, That’s the ticket, and we have 12 years to work against the income tax.

      • Rejane
        June 13, 2012

        I can’t understand why the Americans are in Afghanistan. Is it oil.., a steairgtc positon in the vicinity of their rivals China and Russia or is it a hatred towards the religion of muslims or, mayby all three options? Or is the American government really concerned about the welfare of the Afghan people?It is general knowledge that most of the Afghans don’t want foreign (American) troops on their soil.I think that the rulers of the USA had better look to the problems in their own country, like homelessness, crime rates, discrimination and the general decline into moral bankruptcy.

  3. samiam60
    May 14, 2012

    This is disturbing on so many levels.

    Now were going to have Russian Troops in Colorado for Anti Terrorism exercises with American Troops.

    We also have serious acts of violence taking place across our country from OWS without nary a condemnation from this President.

    I smell Martial Law coming and if the poll numbers show Obamwow Losing you can bet it will happen before the election thus cancelling it.

    If by chance we do have elections and Obamwow loses expect to see Rioting unlike anything ever before seen in these United States of America.

    Rome is Burning my friends and I hope everyone of you has a Fire Extinguisher

    • Freedom, by the way
      May 14, 2012

      If one fears rioting when Obama loses (and it’s when, not if) then I suggest those who live in the major cities to plan to be on the road after voting.
      I see the government making preparations for martial law, too, Sami.

  4. Conservatives on Fire
    May 14, 2012

    We will soon reach the point where Americans have more to fear from their government than they do from criminals and terrorist. The government will argue that the drones are like the patrol cars that we like to see patrolling our neighborhoods. Don’t you believe it! These are not beat cops.

    • Freedom, by the way
      May 14, 2012

      I already do fear the government more. I know that I spend much more of waking hours worried about what the governmentis doing to us than whether I will be robbed or blown to bits by a terrorist.

  5. Bob Mack
    May 14, 2012

    Our so-called “representatives” have a lot for which to answer. I think I’m in favor of initiating citizen’s tribunals.

    • Freedom, by the way
      May 14, 2012

      I sent my congressman an e-mail today informing him (which he should know, but…) that two of our universities have permission to fly drones, as well as our military and DHS over American air space and I asked him what laws were in place for how they could be used, how the information they gathered could be used and shared and how the 4th Amendment, personal property rights and privacy of Americans were going to be protected. They better scramble.

  6. samiam60
    May 15, 2012

    Reblogged this on The Twilight's Last Gleaming and commented:
    This is far too important not to re-post. Hat Tip to Freedom for this First Alert Report

  7. samiam60
    May 15, 2012

    I’ve re-posted this my friend at Twilight’s Last Gleaming:

  8. Pingback: America Gets Droned: Gov’t Spies in our Skies. FAA Issues Drone Permits. « The Twilight's Last Gleaming

  9. righthook38
    May 15, 2012

    Reblogged this on Right Hook.

  10. Pingback: Freedom, Going,Going,Gone…..Drone Wars Begin | Village of the Banned

  11. John Malcolm
    May 15, 2012

    Reblogged this on John Malcolm.

  12. rjp
    May 16, 2012

    These things do much more than just take pictures ……

  13. eof737
    May 24, 2012

    TY for the update… I have read a bit about it and I’m not overly concerned… unless it is abused as you mentioned.

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