Amateur radio 'conspiracy theory' ?

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jparks29

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I was browsing the state laws (WA), as I frequently do, looking for oddball stuff... and I found this..


___________________

RCW 46.16.340
Amateur radio operator plates — Information furnished to various agencies.


The director, from time to time, shall furnish the state military department, the department of community, trade, and economic development, the Washington state patrol, and all county sheriffs a list of the names, addresses, and license plate or radio station call letters of each person possessing the special amateur radio station license plates so that the facilities of such radio stations may be utilized to the fullest extent in the work of these governmental agencies.

_____________


What, praytell, does the department of the military, county sheriffs, department of trade, etc need the address, license plates, names, callsigns, etc of those who get an amateur radio plate? No other license plate has these qualifications/restrictions/laws,etc.

The creepy parts are..

1. "shall furnish", not 'may furnish', not 'can furnish', but "..shall furnish.."...

2. Why did the legislature need to make a law DEMANDING that these records be sent to multiple agencies?

3. WTF do they mean by "..so that the facilities of such radio stations may be utilized to the fullest extent in the work of these governmental agencies."

There's only two reasons why I can think the department of military would need a list of radio communications equipment operators in the state... Neither are good..

I emailed my local/state legislators about it, I'll see what their reply is (5$ says it's a canned response).


I understand the SHTF clause, a huge reason for the existence of the amateur radio service is for emergency communications, so I could understand a law if it was ONLY the department of emergency management, or something similar, but WTF does the department of commerce, trade and economic development need with amateur radio operators licenses/addresses/etc.? County sheriff? Seems ripe with potential for abuse.

And still, if the government is knocking on MY door wanting to use MY equipment (or any joe blow amateur radio operators equipment) We're ALL FU@(#D anyway, lol.


Can you imagine a law saying that .. 'anyone who has a Doctors only license plate will have their information forwarded to the department of health, and the department of game and wildlife, so that their skills can be utilized to the fullest extent of those governmental agencies..' ? It would make it sound like you'd be rounded up if the SHTF to 'volunteer' your services....
 

n5usr

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The WTF to me is that they figured it would actually be useful to get a list of those who get plates. All they have to do is troll the FCC database, and they can get a nice list of everyone with a license - whether they bothered to get ham plates or not - in a given area.

Sure, one could use a PO box for an address or just an address that isn't really theirs, but then you are supposed to be reachable at that address which pretty well satisfies their need to find "available hams".

For that matter, if they really need radio communications that badly, they can just drive around and knock on the door of a house with antennas in the air!

Expecting to find "usable" equipment based simply on having a license plate is reaching pretty far anyway. I've seen "gung-ho" ham types with plates whose total radio allocation is a handheld, and I've seen hard-core types with world-class stations who wouldn't dream of having ham plates on their vehicle.
 

Sixty

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My feelings about why they would want the list is in case they decide to do something that isn't quite what you or I would consider to be a proper function of their position, they don't want anyone giving out warnings to the general public (us) to be on guard.

Now if you are truly curious about government agency functions, ask yourself why you cooperate with the census takers? There is no laws saying that you must answer anything more than the number of people living in your home. That's right, nothing about age, sex, education, income, race, religion, sexual preference, birthplace, Social Security number, or how long you have lived there. All the 'other' questions are just data gathering for government agencies.

Read "Molon Labe" and you will see where we are headed.
 

trace1

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jparks29 said:
Amateur radio 'conspiracy theory' ?
I really doubt it...

Code of Alabama Title 32 Chapter 6 Division 2 Amateur Radio Operators Generally.

Section 32-6-72

List to be furnished to sheriff.

The State Department of Revenue shall, on or before the first day of January of each year, furnish to the sheriff of each county of the State of Alabama an alphabetically arranged list of the names, addresses and license tag letters of each person to whom a license tag is issued under the provisions of this division, and it shall be the duty of the sheriffs of the state to maintain and to keep current such lists for public information and inquiry.

(Acts 1951, No. 359, p. 646, §2.)
As an Amateur Radio Operator you should be ready, able, and willing to help in your community when trouble strikes.

Traditionally, trained volunteer Amateur Radio operators have provided communication support services to government and private relief agencies in times of major local and national disaster. Amateur Radio operators are organized through two primary organizations: Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES), and Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Services (RACES). In addition to assisting local authorities and emergency relief operations with radio communication services, amateurs also organize "health and welfare" networks to relay messages from victims in the affected area to loved ones in other locations.

Amateur Radio emergency communications in the wake of the World Trade Center terrorist strike made the country aware of the emergency communications Amateur Radio operators have been providing for decades. See World Trade Center and Pentagon terrorist attacks. Even before the WTC attack, ARRL was already working on preparations for the Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Courses which help train Amateur Radio operators as how to best use their skills in emergencies through the ARRL Certification and Continuing Education Programs. These courses have trained thousands of amateurs. This is why the Department of Homeland Defense called Amateur Radio operators the "first of the first responders". ARRL is now an official affiliate of the Citizen Corps, an initiative within the Department of Homeland Security to enhance public preparedness and safety.


President Jim Haynie, W5JBP, signed the formal Statement of Affiliation between DHS, President Bush's Citizen Corps and ARRL during the ARRL 2003 National Convention June 21. Chief Operating Officer of the Emergency Preparedness and Response Directorate (FEMA) Ron Castleman represented Under Secretary for Emergency Preparedness and Response Michael D. Brown at the signing. Citizen Corps Liaison to the White House Liz DiGregorio called ham radio operators the "first of the first responders."
If, as an Amateur Radio Operator, you're not inclined to allow your special amateur radio station to be utilized to the fullest extent by any of those governmental agencies then a new hobby may need to be found.

Emergency Communications

The concept behind Amateur Radio use in Emergency Communications dates back to around 1913, when amateurs at the University of Michigan and Ohio State University, in conjunction with numerous individual amateurs in and around the region, successfully bridged the communications gap surrounding a large isolated area left by a severe windstorm in the Midwest. In these early days, such emergency work was spontaneous and without previous organization of any kind.

Sence that era of 1913, some 90 years have past and Amateur Radio Operators are still providing that very service...However, better organized.

Today's volunteers have more advanced equipment, such as portable laptop computers, multi function multi-band radios, space satellite communications, image and data communications and real-time tracking communications via GPS just to name a few. All conducted by Amateurs, on Amateur Radio frequencies at no charge to the served Agencies.

Amateur Radio Emergency Communicator have always been in the forefront of emergency situations when they happen, where they happen. During hurricanes, floods, snow storms, and countless Other incidents when and where normal communications systems fail. The volunteer services of the U.S. Amateur Radio Service is in fact, a service mandated by Federal Law under the Communications Act of 1934.

With the turn of events which occurred on September 11th, 2001, the U.S. Amateur Radio Service is again utilized by government agencies...as it was in the past...so it is today. Higher level of technical skills, no-cost training courses offered by Federal, State and Local level Emergency Management, and more opportunities for competent Radio Operators who are willing to be part of an extraordinary and valuable group of Emergency Service volunteers.
 

mjthomas59

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Sounds pretty interesting to say the least. However you have to realize, and using hurricane katrina/rite as an example, that the "department of emergency management, i.e. SEMA and FEMA" were no where to be found until long after the storm had hit. What do you do for the days and weeks it took for those "official" organizations to get on scene and get communications up and running again? Call on hams and anyone else with the equipment to help anyway that they can.

As far as doctors go, it kind of comes with the territory that if you are there, and you have the skills needed to help, that you are all but required to assist in anyway that you can. Most states have good-samaritan laws for this reason. And in many ways, having communication in times of crisis is just as critical and life-saving as having a doctor there to do CPR.

The reason so many people want the info, i.e. military, federal agencies, local and state law enforcement, is so they don't have to search fevorously through the FCC database to find people who are qualified to help. You don't know who will be first on scene of a major disaster and the first ones on scene are very rarely if ever prepared to address all the needs. Further, in the event of a hurricane, earthquake, or other natural disaster, a lot of these records could easily be destroyed or otherwise unaccessible. The fact that there are many places the information is available IMHO is a better option. Imagine seeing on the news "Emergency personnel have no way to communicate, and they have no records to help them find amateur radio operators to help with this need.... i can't believe they didn't have this written down somewhere, after all of our DHS dollars, they still didn't have this critical and life-saving information written down?!?!".
 
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icom1020

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trace1 said:
I really doubt it...



As an Amateur Radio Operator you should be ready, able, and willing to help in your community when trouble strikes.



If, as an Amateur Radio Operator, you're not inclined to allow your special amateur radio station to be utilized to the fullest extent by any of those governmental agencies then a new hobby may need to be found.
The fullest extent these days may just get you a door in the face..


Washington State here... I'm guessing it's a worse case scenario and was quietly passed without much discussion years ago. Not sure why "Community, Trade and Economic Development" needs to have that info. I have no doubt most would be willing to help out but few are trained to take traffic re ARES or RACES protocol.

I did it for a few years and found a EM in one county had a buddy buddy deal with the local ARES coordinator in which all the equipment was at his house, not at the local EOC. She was later RIF by the county sheriff and they put in a new person later on. Some states do a good job of emergency communications, Oregon is one that utilizes hams a lot. We were told that the big FEMA communication trucks would render the use of amateur operators in an emergency less likely, but most didn't foresee FEMA turning into FUBAR after New Orleans.

I believe the State of Washington Emergency Management is a division of the state National Guard as it's based at Camp Murray (Ft Lewis)

I think a lot more people have a problem however with an edict like this in which most in government have no clue what amateur radio does. It is also possible that most are less likely to open their door to Johnny Law these days than when this Revised Code was passed. I have some feeling here that it is a database without a plan to utilize hams so what good does it do?
 

k8tmk

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In Michigan, you can obtain an amateur radio license plate without having any ham gear in your vehicle (or anywhere else, for that matter).

Conversely, you do not need to have an amateur radio plate on your vehicle in order to install ham gear.

So, a list of amateur radio plates issued would be meaningless.

Randy, K8TMK
 

Zaratsu

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n5usr said:
The WTF to me is that they figured it would actually be useful to get a list of those who get plates. All they have to do is troll the FCC database, and they can get a nice list of everyone with a license - whether they bothered to get ham plates or not - in a given area.

Sure, one could use a PO box for an address or just an address that isn't really theirs, but then you are supposed to be reachable at that address which pretty well satisfies their need to find "available hams".

For that matter, if they really need radio communications that badly, they can just drive around and knock on the door of a house with antennas in the air!

Expecting to find "usable" equipment based simply on having a license plate is reaching pretty far anyway. I've seen "gung-ho" ham types with plates whose total radio allocation is a handheld, and I've seen hard-core types with world-class stations who wouldn't dream of having ham plates on their vehicle.

This would be interpreted as being a contingency if the federal government (hence FCC) would not cooperate and disclose information to the state of that matter.
 

Zaratsu

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"THERE GONNA COME FOR YOUR RADIOS!"

"THEY ARE GONNA HAVE TO PRY MY RADIO FROM MY COLD DEAD FINGERS!"

LOL OMG! On the other hand, this is a whacker dream come true.

Twinkie Timmy is sitting at home jawboning on 40 meter about the civil unrest in the area, when a knock at the door is heard. It is the guy from 24 and he says to Timmy "the govonor has been captured, we need your radios, are you a bad enough dude to save him?"

All of a sudden its Captain Chaos from cannonball run, with cape, mask,HF, codpiece, and no one can stop him for running all the blinking colors of the rainbow on his whackered-out 9C1 94 caprice claptrap.

I can hear all the whack pack now " OOHH OOOH PICK ME PICK MEEEE!!!" while raising their hand harder than the next guy like a 1st grader that knows the answer to a hard question.
 

zz0468

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You guys need to actually read the back of your amateur licenses, and then familiarize yourself with Section 706 of the Communications Act of 1934. There is no conspiracy. *eye roll*
 

elk2370bruce

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There is , in every state, strange laws that were enacted way back when. One state clearly legislated that you cannot beat your wife or dog on Sundays. New Jersey made a law, not to many years ago, against sunny-side eggs (the drippy egg rule). And the list goes on...
Amateur radio operators are supposed to be good citizens and be a productive member of their community - especially in an emergency. Read the above quoted sections of the Federal Communications Act of 1934. Many states also permit amateur radio operators to have scanners in their car (while the average Joe Scannist can't). Conspiracy Theory? A theory is nothing more than a personal perception in vain search of hard facts to back it up. Conspiracy? There are a lot more current plausable threats to your freedoms and liberties (and mine) than this one that is, at best, a long reach.
 
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N1BHH

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When they need backup communications capability, they can call on all amateur radio operators and put them to good use. There is nothing funky about it. They want resources, they've got resources. At least they will know they have actually passed some sort of test.
 

KR4BD

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During WWII, those with ham licenses were often given good positions in the military as well as civilian jobs due to their skills in electronics and communications. Just go back and look through the January, 1942 issue of "QST" (which was recently reprinted) and see all the ads begging for radio operators to join the military. Those who did, were often given some of the best jobs available during that time of war.
 

N1508J

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Not allowed...infraction.
We got a TRS, go away!

N1BHH said:
When they need backup communications capability, they can call on all amateur radio operators and put them to good use. There is nothing funky about it. They want resources, they've got resources. At least they will know they have actually passed some sort of test.

In my county the local "authorities" pooh-poohed our Amateur club's offer for emergency communications should a disaster occur. The “don't call us we'll call you” attitude displayed by the Director of Communications seems to be based on the perceived infallibility of their new TRS. The Director implied that ALL contingencies would be adequately served, and our conventional equipment would not be advantageous.

Our club president reported that he and our representatives got the impression that the director thought we were a bunch of CB whackers. The arrogant perception by local authorities is that once they acquire a TRS i.e., all communication problems magically disappear, may be more disastrous than the disaster itself.
 

Raven95150

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N1508J said:
In my county the local "authorities" pooh-poohed our Amateur club's offer for emergency communications should a disaster occur. The “don't call us we'll call you” attitude displayed by the Director of Communications seems to be based on the perceived infallibility of their new TRS. The Director implied that ALL contingencies would be adequately served, and our conventional equipment would not be advantageous.

Our club president reported that he and our representatives got the impression that the director thought we were a bunch of CB whackers. The arrogant perception by local authorities is that once they acquire a TRS i.e., all communication problems magically disappear, may be more disastrous than the disaster itself.
That's funny, my county has amateur radio operators who are actually volunteer members of the Sheriff's Dept, complete with a mobile command post.

http://www.hennepinsheriff.org/volunteer/#MARC
 

Zaratsu

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N1BHH said:
When they need backup communications capability, they can call on all amateur radio operators and put them to good use. There is nothing funky about it. They want resources, they've got resources. At least they will know they have actually passed some sort of test.

I think the part that is alarming to people is the line that the govt can take your equipment and put you to work with no mention of compensation or ability to decline the mandate. There is a national disaster and you want to GTFO of dodge, and some guy from the "govt" wants you to coordinate the shipment of body bags on your Yaesu HT?

I would think that most hams would be enthusiastic or even over enthusiastic to assist in any regional emergency. But when it comes to brass tacks here, your family and your well being comes first. Take your gear with you, and leave the govt an old Cobra CB to play with.
 

zz0468

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DanTSX said:
I think the part that is alarming to people is the line that the govt can take your equipment and put you to work with no mention of compensation or ability to decline the mandate. There is a national disaster and you want to GTFO of dodge, and some guy from the "govt" wants you to coordinate the shipment of body bags on your Yaesu HT?

I would think that most hams would be enthusiastic or even over enthusiastic to assist in any regional emergency. But when it comes to brass tacks here, your family and your well being comes first. Take your gear with you, and leave the govt an old Cobra CB to play with.
What should be alarming is not so much that the government CAN do it, but rather, the circumstances under which they WOULD do it. Have any of you actually read the communications act of 1934 like I previously suggested? People, the whole reason those laws are in existance is specifically allow the President to use resources in a war emergency. If they come knocking on your door to use you and your radios, you have a LOT more things to worry about than that. And you'll probably be more than glad to help. BTW, Sec 706 specifically authorizes compensation for the use of someones facilities and even spells out how to handle payment if the amount offered by the government is deemed insufficient by the person owed the payment.

This entire thread is a tempest in a teapot because none of you have read the pertenent rules and regulations.
 

kb2vxa

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Oh don't get your undies all knotted up about an old law years out of date. The intent was to enlist the aid of Amateur Radio operators in times of national emergency when other means of communications are overloaded, unavailable or inoperable. With more recent technical advances Amateurs have taken a back seat (although the EMCOM "survivalist" propaganda says otherwise) these days and no longer being on the front lines handle mostly health and welfare traffic. The FCC hasn't issued a communications emergency in a long time and in my memory no hams have been "conscripted" to active duty. In WW2 however they were (but not their stations which were shut down) since before the "dumbing down" of licensing requirements AR was a pool of highly skilled and trained radio engineers, technicians and operators the government drew from.

As for the DMV and DOT sharing information how do you think you get called to jury duty for one thing? Federal, state and private institutions all share your personal information, even your bank accounts and medical records are no secret. Even you can get the dirt on someone if you know how it's done, ask any lawyer, LEO, bail bondsman, bounty hunter, repo man, the list goes on.

"People, the whole reason those laws are in existence is specifically allow the President to use resources in a war emergency."

I direct your attention to the War Powers Act. Besides shutting down Amateur Radio operations during WW2 you may be surprised to learn what our broadcast facilities were surreptitiously used for and how tight the security around our communications infrastructure was. That's not a fire lookout tower, that's a GOON tower that directed machine gun fire protecting one of the key stations, WLW in Cincinnati.

"This entire thread is a tempest in a teapot because none of you have read the pertinent rules and regulations."

10-4 good buddy and let me add that none have been "in the system" at one time or another either so they don't know how it operates.
 
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Zaratsu

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zz0468 said:
What should be alarming is not so much that the government CAN do it, but rather, the circumstances under which they WOULD do it. Have any of you actually read the communications act of 1934 like I previously suggested? People, the whole reason those laws are in existance is specifically allow the President to use resources in a war emergency. If they come knocking on your door to use you and your radios, you have a LOT more things to worry about than that. And you'll probably be more than glad to help. BTW, Sec 706 specifically authorizes compensation for the use of someones facilities and even spells out how to handle payment if the amount offered by the government is deemed insufficient by the person owed the payment.

This entire thread is a tempest in a teapot because none of you have read the pertenent rules and regulations.
I tried to look it up, but since they didnt have internets in 1834 I couldnt find it.:wink:

If I could find it, I will probably be mad that they did not have a provision to enforce that operators know CW first.;)

Oh, and because of this government lunacy, I will not be obtaining my HAM licsence or my HAM vanity plate. Instead I will operate a rouge 40 watt CB transmitter so the govt doesnt know about me.:wink:


good lord its late!:D
I hope you had your "grain of salt" ;)
 
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