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Crime The Military Technology

Fighting Street Gangs With Military Counter-Insurgency Software 171

An anonymous reader writes "After every major war, technology developed for a conflict gets applied to civilian life. The BBC recently reported that Army researchers have adapted advanced social network analysis software used for counter-insurgencies in Iraq and Afghanistan to help law enforcement analyze the behavior of street gangs. With the growing problem of gang violence in major U.S. cities, this may provide a fresh perspective. 'Orca can figure out the likely affiliations of individuals who will not admit to being members of any specific gang, as well as the sub-structure of gangs – the gang ecosystem – and the identities of those who tend to dictate the behaviour of others. ... Having some knowledge of the links and affiliations between different gangs can highlight dangers that call for more focused policing. If a gang perpetrates some violent action on a rival gang, police will often monitor the rival gang more closely because of the likelihood of retaliation. But gangs know this, and so the rivals might instead ask an allied gang to carry out a reprisal. Understanding such alliances helps the police stay a step ahead.' The question is: will it work?"
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Fighting Street Gangs With Military Counter-Insurgency Software

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  • by rsilvergun ( 571051 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @07:53PM (#44232373)
    give them jobs, families and a hope for the future instead of absolute poverty and a 'nothing to lose' life style. But turning military tactics against a sizable portion of our populace works too I guess.
  • Better question (Score:5, Insightful)

    by girlintraining ( 1395911 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @07:53PM (#44232375)

    The question is: will it work?

    First; No. Technology doesn't fix social problems, it changes them. Take away guns and people use knives. Take away knives and they use big rocks. And so on. It's the same with any technology, for any social behavior. You can't fix relationships with technology, and fundamentally, all social problems can be expressed in relational pairings.

    That said, the better question is -- are we willing to allow the government to change its relationship with us, the citizens, and if so, what will be the new boundaries for such a change? There must be things that are in and out of bounds -- and there needs to be more discussion than is happening now. Otherwise, we're going to wakeup one day and find that we're all wearing the Emperor's clothes, not just with the government, but with each other as well!

  • by Pollux ( 102520 ) <speter@t e d a t a> on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @07:55PM (#44232397) Journal

    Just one more piece of evidence showing how our government is at war with its citizens.

  • by sabri ( 584428 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @08:03PM (#44232497)

    when gang members are identified, eliminate them. Simple and fully effective. let their worthless parents cry about how they were turning their life around blah blah blah.

    I don't think you fully understand the problems of gangs. In some neighborhoods, young kids almost have to join a gang in order not to become a victim. It is a matter of becoming a predator vs prey, and those youngsters don't always have the world view that adults have to distinguish right from wrong in that situation, and the potential impact on their future.

    Equally effective and simple would be to isolate these folks by taking them out of that situation. Move them to some flyover state in the middle of nowhere, where they can be drilled in a youth detention center. Not as a punishment, but as a form of education.

    While it would be unfair towards the parents who were unable to raise their kids, I'm sure they would prefer to have the state take care of them, rather than execute them. Not to mention the cost of the death penalty, or difficulties in proving gang affiliation.

  • by divisionbyzero ( 300681 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @08:18PM (#44232639)

    give them jobs

    Give them???? How many trillions of dollars have been transfered from the workers to the non-workers, and how effective has it actually been?

    Besides, why work mowing grass and digging ditches (what else are they qualified for, given their piss poor grades in their piss poor schools) when (a) that's "Mexican work", and (b) you can make more by selling drugs and living off the dole?

    Well, I'm glad we got the two most worn-out stereotypes out of the way so quickly. Now maybe we can have a useful conversation. How about legalizing or decriminalizing those things sold on a black market removing the financial incentives? How about early intervention through more funding for pre-schools in urban areas to provide the structure the kids' parents cannot? Or about a million other things that would be more effective than "hand-outs" or "policing the lazy".

  • by rubycodez ( 864176 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @08:21PM (#44232679)

    bullshit. people who are self-motivated work hard and get those things. Plenty of illiterate minorities have come to this country and made good lives for themselves starting with NOTHING but with hard work, yet we're to feel sorry for life long lazy welfare recipients who spawn more criminals on our dime and who whine "the man is keeping me down?" They have no one to blame but the one in the bathroom mirror

  • Very effective (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rsilvergun ( 571051 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @08:25PM (#44232727)
    I know you're trolling, but hey, the nonsense you spew is in the backs of people's minds for real. It's a 'Narrative'. A falsehood told to workers to make us fight amongst ourselves while the 1% laugh all the way to the bank with our time and money.

    Start by googling the phrase 'working poor'. Then try to get on food stamps if you earn any amount over the poverty line. If you're single, try to get free health care. Won't happen.

    And the meat packing plants are happy to hire you. Oh wait, you're a citizen? You can sue us if our dull knifes cause you to lose a finger? You want a steady food supply and health care for your kids? $4/hr isn't enough? 60 hours a week is a bit much? You want overtime? Sorry, you're just not what we're looking for.
  • by rsilvergun ( 571051 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @08:30PM (#44232779)
    And plenty have died horrible deaths in thresher machines. A few outliers doesn't make the average. Most of them live life slaves with no hope for advancement. We remember the ones that made it big, we occasionally read about the ones who were cut to pieces, but we ignore the everyday misery the bulk live in.

    Christ, just look up on google what working in a meat packing plant is like. Or look up that article that says a 'temp' agency is America's second largest employer (Walmart's first). You can fall back on your nonsensical capitalism all you want. Reality doesn't work that way. That's just not what happens in the real world. The real world is a horrible place where everything is stacked against all but a lucky few, who use their privileges to the detriment of the rest of us.
  • by benjfowler ( 239527 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @09:10PM (#44233115)

    I have to wonder why people are so anti-government, that they live with the idea that while they themselves make a net contribution to society, there are plenty of people who simply lack the ability to manage their own chaotic lives and make everyone else's lives hell.

    The libertarian conceit of the middle class, is that everyone else is just as clever, motivated, drug-free and mentally healthy as them, and that the useless are somehow "morally inferior" to their betters. Worse, this conceit goes as far as blaming the useless amongst us, saying they deserve to be dead or rot in jail.

    One day, we'll have something between jails (for rehabilitation of criminals) and open society, where people who are too stupid and useless to manage their own chaotic lives can live reasonably well under a highly controlled environment where they can be made to do something useful with their lives and have structure imposed upon them until they can prove that they can properly exercise the rights and responsibilites of citizenship. This may include being compelled to train and work (for pay), and also involve drug rehab, and losing their automatic right to have children.

    The "trash" (as people who say) who spawn kids who join gangs belong in sheltered facilities, not on the street.

  • by Samantha Wright ( 1324923 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @11:22PM (#44233945) Homepage Journal

    Lazy is not just one racial or ethnic group, it's every racial or ethnic group: the lazy rich whites steal money from the lazy black and Native American poor, while the lazy Chinese steal inventions and secrets and destroy the environment, and the lazy Indians and Hispanics steal jobs instead of fixing their own countries, and the lazy Africans accept aid instead of doing the same. "Lazy" is the ultimate, omni-purpose slur; it even transcends boundaries of race and nationality: lazy men expect the world on a platter from lazy women who can't compete on their own merits; lazy youngsters can't land the jobs that the lazy boomers who selfishly destroyed the economy demand they get; lazy atheists, Christians, and Muslims parrot rhetoric they don't really understand while making broad moral declarations they don't really adhere to.

    So, y'know. Take your pick.

  • I know this one! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Okian Warrior ( 537106 ) on Wednesday July 10, 2013 @12:22AM (#44234249) Homepage Journal

    give them jobs, families and a hope for the future instead of absolute poverty and a 'nothing to lose' life style.

    Wow, how exactly do you do this? It's an example of something easy to say, but hard if not impossible to implement.

    Ooh... ooh... I know this one! Teacher, pick me!!!

    Start by increasing business opportunities in this country. Businesses start from innovation on infrastructure, so start by improving these.

    A national internet and phone service that's fast and cheap. This is trivial to accomplish, just fix the maximum price that the telcos/providers can charge for usage and mandate that there can be no other restrictions. If you choose the price right, the telcos would make the same amount of money under the new rule... but now to make more profit they have to compete for coverage and price. (No early termination fees, no access fees, no roaming charges, choose provider at the time of phone call.)

    National health care. Healthy people are happier and less likely to revolt, are less likely to turn to crime, are less likely to be bankrupt from health care bills. This is easy to implement - just copy one of the existing better systems, such as Canada or UK.

    Repeal drug laws, get rid of the DEA, put 1/10 the money into education and treatment. (Education and treatment are more effective anyway.) Reduce our prison population by pardoning and/or paroling all non-violent drug offenders. Retroactively downgrade their offense to non-felony, so that they can get jobs. Do this in a graduated way, so as not to raise unemployment.

    Revamp patent and copyright law so that creators can profit from and protect their works by starting businesses.

    Free schooling through advanced degree for citizens (like Finland). An educated population is more likely to be innovative and take advantage of opportunities. Get rid of H1B visas altogether.

    Revamp the tax code so that all businesses pay the same proportional tax with no exceptions. When big corps such as GE pay no taxes it's harder for people to start new businesses. Remove the personal income tax altogether and get revenue from businesses and economic growth (by printing more money, to keep inflation down). Keep inflation a close to zero as possible, so that people can save for big purchases instead of going into debt.

    I could go on, but you get the picture. Government has to stop coddling special interests and start benefiting the general population, or else deal with an angry, armed revolt.

  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Wednesday July 10, 2013 @02:27AM (#44234845) Journal

    As our testing in Afghanistan and Pakistan has demonstrated, you can't make an omelette without breaking some eggs; but you can break a fuckton of eggs without making an omelette...

If you think nobody cares if you're alive, try missing a couple of car payments. -- Earl Wilson