‘Why in the world does this take so long to do?’

Not-So-Secure Border Initiative

The $3.7 billion spent so far has bought a patchwork of sub-par technology that often can’t tell a terrorist from a tumbleweed.

Cameras and radars mounted on tall poles can be so shaken by the wind and blinded by the rain that they don’t see clearly. The radars report intruders where there are none. The cameras have trouble seeing and then transmitting images back to human monitors.

When it was begun in 2006, the Secure Border Initiative – called SBInet – was supposed to be completed early this year. But by the time that due date rolled around, the estimated date of completion had slid out to 2016.

This whole issue has always been a joke. I’ve certainly never been convinced than anyone calling the shots is at all serious about actually securing the border.

The new Block 1 SBInet needs a 70% identification rate to be deemed acceptable. That means that three in ten illegal crossers can get through unseen and it’s good enough.

That’s not the definition of “good enough” that I’m familiar with.

It’s clear that no one currently in power is going to do anything meaningful about this. That means different people need to be in power.


  1. The other option, of course, is for the people to secure the border themselves. Whenever the government is unable or unwilling to do those things for the people which need to be done, then it is incumbent upon those same people to take up the task themselves.

    I would think that, in this situation, the forming, training, and deployment of an armed militia would be exactly what is needed to secure our border(s).

  2. …Are you familiar with the phrase “Close enough for government work”?

    I doubt there was a significant competitive bidding process involved with any of these projects and the projects suffer as a result.

  3. The problem here is 100% political, not technical, and not because of bureaucratic implementation.

    We’ve had the technology to seal the borders (land at least) for 100 years.

    Put up a 12 foot tall hardened steel fence topped by razor wire, 20 yards of buffer land, and another fence with razor wire.

    Post a guard with a rifle (or a machine gun) in a tower every 200 yards. Just take a look at any county prison. We do it all the time.

    And if we REALLY wanted to seal it off, we would mine the buffer zone. Cheap and easy.

    But it ain’t gonna happen. Way too many people benefit from an easy flow of illegal immigrants.

    And those folks know how to exploit the good hearted, touchy feely people who worry about criminals getting cut on such a fence, thirsting to death in the desert, or God forbid, getting blown to bits after they cut their way through the first fence.

    And then there’s the suffering of all those innocent animals who could never adapt to such a barrier….

  4. jaymaster is right. I had many chances to study the “separation fence” in Israel while I was workng there. It’s actually a several yard tall concrete wall with manned guard towers space out along it, as well as automated electronic monitoring systems. Leaving aside the politics of building it, and it’s routing and location……………it works. Nobody, and I mean NOBODY goes through that bad boy. It’s been very effetive at it’s intended purpose.

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