Speaking on terrorism thinking and how to prevent another terrorist attack, without regard for causal arguments, Steven Levitt offers up a little gem that might cause believers some concern:
Beyond this, I think there are a few more prospective things we can do. If the threat is from abroad, then we can do a good job screening risky people from entering the country. That, too, is obvious. Perhaps less obvious is that we can do a good job following potential risks after they enter the country. If someone enters on a student visa and isn’t enrolled in school, for instance, he is worth keeping under close surveillance. Another option is one the British have used: putting cameras everywhere. This is very anti-American, so it probably would never fly here.Oops:
The Bush administration is funneling millions of U.S. dollars to local governments nationwide for purchasing high-tech video camera networks for street surveillance ....You might want to reassess some of those assumptions, Dr. Levitt. The terrorists haven't attacked, perhaps because they can see that they don't need to. We're doing the work for them.
The move could accelerate the rise of a "surveillance society" in which the sense of freedom that stems from being anonymous in public will be lost, privacy rights advocates were quoted by the report as saying.
Since 2003, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has doled out millions of dollars on surveillance cameras, transforming city streets and parks into places under constant observation.
Why look over here, China and Zimbabwe are following our lead. Admirers, no doubt.