Seriously? Homeland Security–the New Cash Cow

New Jersey strikes again! Last year, practically in the darkness of night or while the N.J. Transportation Authority was hacking down all the native trees on the Garden State Parkway (a whopping $5.9 million-dollar project), the Homeland Security erected an 8-ft. high, anti-terrorist barbed wire fence.

While this scenario may appear to be plausible to you, to us who live in the area and are accustomed to viewing the beautiful bay and salt marshes when driving over this section of parkway, we find it aesthetically objectionable and perplexing for the reasons N.J.T.A. explained away yet another ridiculous and absurd ($7.1 million) expenditure. 

First of all, the fencing is supposed to deter terrorists from getting onto the bridge with bombs–I guess. Homeland Security, whoever the eejit was, failed to realize that:

  1. a suicide bomber could easily walk onto the bridge and blow it up
  2. a car loaded with bombs could be left on the bridge
  3. a small boat or kayak loaded with bombs could be left under the bridge
  4. the bridge is so easily accessible and low from beneath, even a middle-schooler could attach a bomb to the underside

The fencing does not, in any way, deter anyone from causing harm to N.J. motorists. And why would terrorists target such small bridges where there are probably only twenty-four cars on it at any one time during peak season?

As another writer put it, Homeland Security has become “the new sacred cow.” Apparently, Sanzari, Inc., whose company contributed $100,000 in campaign dollars to PACs in the past, reaped the benefits of destroying our beautiful views.

Below is a sampling of Homeland Security spending by state:

  • California –  Madera County couldn’t produce for inspectors adequate paperwork proving how it spent $1.4 million. Placer County spent $47,000 on a computer software program for local police that wasn’t used. Another county attempted to buy a lawn mower with grant cash, and a university campus police department purchased a $2,300 plasma TV.
  • Colorado – A 30-foot trailer costing $54,000 in Hinsdale County, Colo., “did not appear to have been used” four years after it was purchased with homeland security grants.
  • Kansas – Kansas spent at least $342,000 on high-tech robots equipped to neutralize bombs.
  • Missouri – According to the report by the House Select Committee on Homeland Security, authorities in Missouri used $5.2 million to buy 13,000 chem-bio warfare suits costing $400 each. 
  • Idaho – $3.4 million on vehicles listed as equipped to defeat or provide protection against CBRNE, a common acronym in preparedness circles for chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear and explosive devices.
  • Vermont – $5.7 million worth of federal bioterrorism grants
  • Oklahoma – Blanchard, Okla., estimated population 8,000, acquired a $50,000 security system for its police and fire departments using homeland security grants, according to records. 
Had enough? Check out the link above or here if you want to be an informed citizen in your state.

Daily Gratitude: signing the papers on my retirement packet

© Teresita Abad Doebley All rights reserved 2009-2012.


10 thoughts on “Seriously? Homeland Security–the New Cash Cow

  1. The “Cash Cow” are the American people who’s taxes pay for this crap. Here in Michigan, they used a Homeland Security grant to buy sno-cone makers! The “reasoning” was that the sno-cones would be a nice treat for first responders if there was ever an attack here during the one week a year it is hot here in Michigan.

    • Westwood,
      They want to widen the road for the tourist season which only lasts 3 months a year but come to find out, they didn’t need to remove the ones that they did cut down!

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