There’s a new saying in town these days; “If you can’t beat them, adopt-a-highway around them in order to keep tabs on them.”
While the NSA is busy gathering up everyone’s, and I mean everyone in the world, communications and sending that data to their new storage facility in Utah, “anti-Big Brother activists have figured out a way to keep tabs on the NSA in probably the greatest way ever: by exploiting the Adopt-A-Highway program.”
According to the Daily Caller:
As reported by the Salt Lake Tribune, Restore the Fourth-Utah, a group opposed to the National Security Agency’s [NSA] civilian surveillance programs, successfully applied to adopt the highway around the NSA’s Utah Data Center, where email and phone records are reportedly being stored by the government. The Fourth Amendment advocacy group hopes to carry anti-NSA signs as it fulfills it responsibility to clean litter on its 2-mile parcel of highway.
“We’re happy there are people applying to keep litter off the roads out there,” said a spokesperson for the Utah Department of Transportation, which is now required to put up signs marking the territory as belonging to Restore the Fourth.
The Utah Data Center, a $1.2 billion, 1.5 million square foot behemoth in Bluffdale, Utah, outside Salt Lake City, has had 10 “meltdowns” or power surges in the last 13 months.
The Salt Lake Tribune reports the 2-mile section of Redwood Road, also known as State Road 68, the group will adopt includes the main entrance to the NSA Utah Data Center and Camp Williams. This move by Restore the Fourth will place the group’s “protest oriented name on signs outside the spy building.”
NSA spokesperson Vanee Vines responded in an email, “Highway adoptions are not part of the NSA’s federal mission,” when asked for a comment.
According to the Salt Lake Tribune:
The agreement calls for Restore The Fourth-Utah to pick up garbage at least three times a year. UDOT would provide trash bags, orange vests and a sign representing the group that has adopted
the highway. Redwood Road is also known as State Road 68.
Restore The Fourth started earlier this year in cities and states across the United States. The group maintains the NSA has illegally spied on Americans without warrants.
The group held protests on July 4. The Utah chapter started its protest on Redwood Road outside the data center, but Utah Highway Patrol troopers told them they were on NSA property. The protesters moved to the Utah Veterans Cemetery & Memorial Park in Bluffdale.
Lorina Potter, representative of Restore the Fourth-Utah, said “she doesn’t object to the NSA’s existence, but wants the agency to use public courts to apply for warrants to obtain records on specific individuals rather than using the secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to obtain bulk data.”
“This is a daily invasion [of privacy],” Potter said. “This isn’t something that has gone away.”
While the group fulfills its three times a year obligation to pick up garbage on their section of the highway, members are planning to carry picket signs while they work.
Frequently asked questions about the NSA facility were published by the Salt Lake Tribune. What is interesting in the FAQ is the disclosure of other NSA storage facilities in Georgia, Texas, Colorado and Hawaii along with the headquarters in Fort Meade, MD. The interesting factor of why the million square feet metadata house center was chosen to be located in Utah boils down to one factor – cheap electricity; this is ironic considering the wasteful nature of Washington. Bluffdale did receive a bonus in that the NSA “installed new utility lines from Bluffdale through the currently-open desert to the Utah Data Center.” It has been identified that “city planners have discussed using those lines to facilitate new home and business construction.
Two things stand out regarding the new utility lines installed by the NSA to support its billion dollar facility. First, those lines were identified as being installed “from Bluffdale through the currently-open desert” to the NSA data storage facility. Being identified as currently-open suggests that suspicions are high the desert area will be developed by the city or the government could eventually “close” the open desert preventing any development around its superstructure. Second, the local government is under the impression it will be able to develop along the area where those utility lines travel from Bluffdale to the NSA facility using those lines paid for by the NSA, which is a federal government agency, thereby getting a federal government “freebie.” If the cost of running those utility lines had been within a reasonable cost, city planners would have already developed that currently-open desert. It would be inconceivable the federal government would “allow” a city to utilize anything it paid for in order to facilitate any type of growth as this is the same federal government who tossed people from their homes located on federal land because the national parks were closed by Obama. This same federal government also forcefully shut down a private business alongside the Blue Ridge Parkway, which ironically, has remained open.
Members of Restore the Fourth
With the importance of that data center to the NSA and the federal government, it is beyond reasonable to assume the government would want to avoid having John Q. Public as a nearby neighbor or an outdoor sportsman facility such as Cabelas located nearby. One can also intimate it as being highly unlikely the NSA would want conservative Christians near the facility since this group has been identified, unjustly, as being terrorists by the federal government. One only has to take a drive in the other direction to the Dugway Proving Grounds to see the lengths the government will go to in order to secure its activities. Yes, I am aware the video hints at UFOs, but the point is to watch the extent to which security goes to insure no one is close enough to possibly ascertain the activities occurring there.
The entrance to the Dugway Proving Grounds only has one building near it with the entrance itself being a simple guard house. The perimeter is monitored closely to ascertain who is outside its secured perimeter and what their purpose for being there might be. One has to drive approximately 15 miles or more inside the installation in order to reach the area where unidentified government activities are ongoing along with the activities of private contractors. No one gets past the gate unless they have proper identification granting access to the facility. Even if you have an escort who has one of those identification badges, you do not go in unless you have authorization. Not surprisingly, there is no development around or near the Dugway Proving Grounds.
Make no mistake, this anti-spying group has found a loophole through which to make their opposition to the unconstitutional monitoring of US citizens by the NSA known to the federal government. Let’s see how long it takes the NSA to shut down the Restore the Fourth adopted section of Redwood Road.
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