Lockheed Martin

There was a poll not long ago about petitions and surveys. 69% of you voted that serious, pressing issues should be welcomed, so I’m holding you to that today.

Lockheed Martin, the world’s largest military contractor and arms exporter, has been given a £150m contract to assist with the delivery of the 2011 UK census.

They were involved with Canada’s 2006 census, which was not popular if the Count Me Out campaign is anything to go by. There is similar opposition in Britain. They will also have considerable involvement with Canada’s 2011 census and, of course, with the USA’s (in 2010).

Should taxpayers’ money go to a weapons builder which has profited so handsomely from wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? Should sensitive, personal data be handed over to a company with a long history of working in American military intelligence?

Lockheed Martin produce land mines, which are illegal in many countries, as well as nuclear weapons. They also take part in interrogation at Guantanamo Bay.

In 2001, they were awarded the world’s largest ever weapons contract in a $200bn deal (which surely had nothing to do with the fact that the former Vice President’s son-in-law is a registered Lockheed lobbyist whose wife was serving as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs at the time).

Although the British government insists that “the confidentiality of personal census information is a top priority” and that “personal census data will not be shared with any other state or nation”, how comfortable would you be handing over your details to a company with such close ties to the US government?

You are legally obliged to complete census returns, by the way. Canadians who refuse face a maximum fine of $500 and three months in prison. Refusal to comply in Britain could cost you up to £1,000, $500 in the USA.

But there is some good news for the UK: apparently, you will still be able to state your religious persuasion as ‘Jedi’.

Author: FEd

Features Editor of David Gilmour’s official blog, The Blog (‘Features’ previously being its rather naff title), affectionately – or lazily – shortened to ‘FEd’.

75 thoughts on “Lockheed Martin”

  1. … as a German I obviously shouldn’t comment, BUT:

    – they are always the same gangs that try to cash in whatever administrations need
    – do British people trust their government that lost private data more than once?
    – I assume that citizens in Britain have to disclose already more than enough data to various authorities, what meaningful contribution can a census provide?

    I can imagine that the questionnaire will be quite difficult to understand and that therefore a lot of wrong answers will find their way in to that very important project. 😉

    Just my 2 Euro cents,

    Taki
    Mrs.
    (as Pythons used to sign their letters to BBC in Flying Circus)

  2. To kick off, I don’t think I am familiar with completing a Census but from what I understand I don’t see why any individual should have to give up personal information to a contractor particularly not of this nation and one that deals in arms.

    I won’t profess to know much about LM but I know enough to not support the award of a contract to a company who makes a lot of money from ‘explosives’ that both do and potentially can do harm to innocent people. And that’s just the start of the argument!

    Who in Government decides such a thing? 😡

  3. What additional details will be required other than the usual name, address, wages, shampoo preference, pin numbers, favorite Spice Girl?

    (Geri, BTW.) 😉

  4. I know I’ve heard that before, Jedi being a religion. LMAO! I want to be Jedi.

    Of course taxpayers money should NOT go to a massive weapons builder, as L.M. is, but it has and it will continue.

    I don’t believe that no personal information will be taken from anything that the government is involved in, and I know I’m not alone in that thinking. Like they don’t know everything anyway. That’s why I say really odd things on my cell phone to family. Who’s paranoid?! 😕

  5. Fed:

    Don’t want to be pedantic but wasn’t Guantanamo shut down? So that should really be took apart. 😛

    Bloggers:

    For those of us who don’t know – or haven’t been of age required to fill one out – what is the idea/reasoning of a census?

    1. In the US a census helps states determine how much funding it can receive from the federal government for social or economic programs such as schools roads etc. It can also determine how many representatives a state can send to Washington. The more people, the more representatives the state has.

      The down side to the census is a lot of the information is used for marketing research. It also finds out how much of the population is of age for military service, i.e. the draft.

  6. And in answer to your question – yes, it makes me very nervous that a US company should be hired to do the census.

    Surely we can do this within our own government?

    Why not employ the hundreds/thousands of people who have recently lost their jobs to retrain and be part of this?

    I would probably be more supportive of this kind of thing if the government were to use what little intelligence it has and not outsource something like this in a period where we need to stimulate our own economy.

    What is of more concern to me though at the moment is the ContactPoint Database from which parents will have no way of removing their child’s information.

    1. Don’t you know the American government wants to rule the world?!! Or they already think they do… kinda, sorta, possibly maybe being sarcastic. :!

      God forbid!

    2. This debate is making me think of this:

      I have, therefore, chosen this time and this place to discuss a topic on which ignorance too often abounds and the truth is too rarely perceived — yet it is the most important topic on earth: world peace.

      What kind of peace do I mean? What kind of peace do we seek? Not a Pax Americana enforced on the world by American weapons of war. Not the peace of the grave or the security of the slave. I am talking about genuine peace, the kind of peace that makes life on earth worth living, the kind that enables men and nations to grow and to hope and to build a better life for their children — not merely peace for Americans but peace for all men and women — not merely peace in our time but peace for all time. I speak of peace because of the new face of war. Total war makes no sense in an age when great powers can maintain large and relatively invulnerable nuclear forces and refuse to surrender without resort to those forces. It makes no sense in an age when a single nuclear weapon contains almost ten times the explosive force delivered by 11 of the Allied air forces in the Second World War. It makes no sense in an age when the deadly poisons produced by a nuclear exchange would be carried by wind and water and soil and seed to the far corners of the globe and to generations yet unborn.

      Today the expenditure of billions of dollars every year on weapons acquired for the purpose of making sure we never need to use the is essential to keeping the peace. But surely the acquisition of such idle stockpiles — which can only destroy and never create — is not the only, much less the most efficient, means of assuring peace.

      I speak of peace, therefore, as the necessary rational end of rational men. I realize that the pursuit of peace is not as dramatic as the pursuit of war — and frequently the words of the pursuer fall on deaf ears. But we have no more urgent task.

      – JFK Commencement Address at American University in Washington, June 10, 1963

      I think in the times we live in, we should not be consorting with any kind of weapons producer.

  7. i was reading the sites you mention in your introduction fet ed and i can’t say i am happy with a firm that makes its money out of intelligence and war getting their hands on my personal details (if this applied to me).

    do remember too the brown government has lost CD ROMs with personal information of the citizens of its state on it before, how can they 100% guarantee privacy this time?

    don’t think the conservatives would do any better, they would do the same. privatisation is a big part of their policies.

    basically i would not trust the advice of any political party in any country as far as i could throw it .

    also with the economic recession as bad as it is, where will that 150 million pounds come from?

    i know that i am irish and really have no right to a say in this matter, but i wonder how long will it be before they come over here to try the same thing.

  8. It’s sad in times of crisis the only ones making money are those involved with war. Can’t the company just requalify and regain credibility with the new president? After all it’s an employer, unfortunately working for the wrong scope.

    Lockheed alone is/was an automotive parts manufacturer too. I just thought of my old Ford Consul Capri brake servo that is a pain to fix properly… I’m still struggling, the car runs OK but doesn’t brake…

  9. I want to know more about why our government wasn’t able to give this work to a British company. Perhaps there wasn’t one capable, maybe Lockheed Martin have given security guarantees, maybe it was felt the people wouldn’t trust a British organisation. I don’t feel able to criticise the decision to give the contract to Lockheed Martin until I know more. What does the work entail and all that.

    Sorry Fed. I’ll be interested to read what others say about this.

    In the meantime, may the force be with you. 🙂

    ash X

    1. I have to agree with Ash. I’m also a bit surprised, FEd. I would have thought you’d present something like this more objectively. In any case, I too would need to know more information before making a judgement.

      ~Erin

    2. As I clearly explained, apologetically, on 27 January, if you look up any definition of ‘blog’, you’ll see that it’s all about opinions and observations. Those are mine.

      You’re very welcome to shoot them down in flames when you have more information.

    3. I read a bit last night and a bit more today, all this damned reading takes forever. Why can’t we get together in a pub and discuss this!

      Anyway, I can’t find anything on the Office for National Statistics web site about who will be doing the work. From memory, it is postal, but nowadays you can do it online, completed forms are also collected by temporary staff who have had security checks. I can only guess that a company such as Lockheed Martin are appointed because of their electronics and information systems expertise.

      Fed, I appreciate people don’t want to give financial support to companies that make weapons. But in today’s world when so many technologies are interconnected, I can only guess that our government looked for who was most fit for the purpose. I don’t like everything our government does either, who does? But we elected them to do the jobs we can’t and they can’t have a referendum about everything. (Who would we trust to do a referendum!) :))

      ash X

  10. Actually this is a purely academic question. Let’s face it: everyone knows everything about me (you fed know my mail, at least… you pretend that) and I know nothing about no one.

    We have a privacy law in Italy, right? But in EVERY paper EVERYBODY asks your CONSENSUS to use your data and they PROMISE they will keep my data secret… Yes, yes. Sure.

    I think that Big Brother knows everything. I would be more radical in my “rebellion”, if I have to. There should be a revolution to change this shit we are living in these days. Profit is the only fucking GOD. And we people are only expenses. We are “human resources”… not people. We are controlled, we are told to work, we are told everyday that it can’t be different than it is, right? Crisis? Let’s give money to bankers, multinationationals, etc, and leave people home. They say there’s no other cure… And while I am upset for my personal problems which I consider relevant there is country in Africa which is literally dying of Cholera and a continent with only 800 million people dying. United States sucks it all, then Europe, then Japan… all the others, the remaining.

    I think a revolution is the only thing that maybe changes this. Otherwise humanity is doomed to a slow death.

    1. Yes, a great privacy law: or you give your consensus or you can’t do anything! They should call it by its right name… blackmail.

  11. Money is power and so is information. To place blind trust in the words of politicians that our private information will not be used to spy on us is naive. Wire tapping, “traffic cameras”, all used to track the whereabouts and habits of the unsuspecting public. So why not give the most powerful weapons manufacturer in the world the private information of people who live in free nations? I mean, we can trust large corporations, right?

    BTW, I’m looking to purchase a 500K home on a 40K salary, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac maybe? Hee hee!

  12. Isn’t the British Post reliable in delivery?

    But more seriously, I just find it odd. When I need my shoes fixed, I take them to the shoe repair, suit hemmed – I go to the tailor, etc. But assistance with a census going to a military contractor? I don’t get it. I had no idea that LM does consulting on anything other than military related.

    My brother worked on a U.S. census years ago. He was a clerk that just did some follow-up phone calls and general office stuff. It employed him for a short time until the census was over. So I imagine that some of the local U.K. folks will be employed in the process as well. I can’t see how LM can do the whole project in-house. So some of the 150m should flow back into the U.K. economy. That is good, no?

    I still scratch my head as to how this was decided. Maybe FPM Tony Blair was involved? Maybe it was the work of the Queen? Maybe she was looking for some new fireworks and the census was just part of the package?

    I don’t get it.

    Thanks.

    Andrew

  13. I find this disturbing on so many levels. 8|

    Why would a weapons/defense contractor be the best entity to conduct a census, whether in the UK, Canada, the US, or anywhere else in the world??

    “In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.” – Presidient Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961

    Whether American, British, Chinese, or any other nationality, I don’t feel that a corporation that exists primarily for the purpose of producing new, improved ways of destroying lives and property should be the contractor for conducting a census!

    Peace!

    1. Gabrielle:

      Interesting comments coming from one of the great military leaders. Thank you for posting it.

  14. I didn’t know what “census” was, until I looked it up. I didn’t know that existed anymore, thought is was something Biblical! (We haven’t had any “census” here in my lifetime, I think). Why is this taking place in our modern world? Doesn’t the government already know everything about us? (In this country they do – we are registered in both ends, heads and…). What is the purpose of a census? Do they expect illegal immigrants to fill out the forms? “Hey, I live here illegally and don’t pay taxes”!

    That said, I don’t usually suffer from paranoia, but that Lockheed Martin story you are telling, makes the alarm bells ring.

    There is an expression in Danish called “civil disobedience”. That must be the solution here? :/

  15. As someone not from the UK I have not really a right to comment on this, but I find it disturbing. The reasons for this choice could be harmless after all but even then nobody knows for sure what this company (considering their connection to the US military) will do with the data.

  16. Well it is a bit chilling indeed, but if it were anybody else but Lockheed there wouldn’t be much notice. The scary part though is that if it weren’t Lockheed it would be some other international uber conglomerate.

    There is a reason that movie “The International” is coming out when it is; no matter which way you turn things are starting to generally speaking get a bit Orwellian.

    The pigs have been on the wing for quite some time and now we’re finally being able to catch a glimpse and it is horrifying.

    Thank you very much indeed, good night to you.

  17. Hmmm… Reminds me of a song lyric… “Mother should I trust the Government?”

    The Census is little more than glorified accounting, useful in knowing, for example, a given city’s population. So, why should this task be handed over to a company who specializes in weapons? Can we be sure that this collected information will be processed in an accurate, unbiased, uncorrupted manner, without infringing on our privacy? Is this called “Getting to know your victims”? What’s next – Halliburton takes over Health Care?

    My Race? Neptunian. My Religion? You Gotta Be Crazy. My Income? Less in one year than LM makes in 15 seconds.

    Cheers;
    Bill C

  18. Hi FEd,

    (It’s been a long time since my last post here.)

    Great topic – Lockheed Martin’s involvement in the census-activities in several countries is certainly a deplorable issue. But while reading this latest blog, I remembered a quite stunning connection between another big weapons-manufacturer and a field we all love and know: I hope you don’t ban me from the blog if I mention this.

    How many of us are still aware that good old EMI, home of our beloved heroes, in 1979 merged with Thorn Electrical Industries, one of the biggest defence contractors in the UK, to form Thorn-EMI. This merger lasted until 1996…

    For further information click here.

  19. In the U.S., there are auditing firms that manage the data for lotteries, and I’m sure there are other such firms that count the votes for American Idol (or Pop Idol in the U.K.) that are up to this. Of course it makes sense for a native (U.K.) firm to handle this, given the nature of the endeavor; hopefully (since the concern is so high) someone is putting these questions to the British government (who is responsible).

    Although I too wonder about the administrative strengths of an arms manufacturer, I don’t share the “big bad wolf” concern – remember that this blog would be written in German (if at all) if not for the weapons and bombs in the hands of the stout-hearted Brits that kept that from happening (good intentions and “give peace a chance” rallies don’t win wars).

  20. Some of the pictures you see on the news of kids having lost limbs due to landmines are very distressing… if Hyde Park was full of land mines, I’m sure a lot more would be done to clear the place… not support those who planted the feckin’ things!!!!!

    Peace & Love etc.
    Paul

  21. Is it really true that you will be FINED if you refuse?

    I have to say that I’m 40 and a US citizen all of my life and have never filled out any census in the US. Should I be looking over my shoulder for a fine? That is ridiculous to have to submit that info to any private enterprise against one’s will. That is an outrage!

    Off topic… I thought it snowed in London all the time. I have never been to Europe (dying to go) but I just thought that you guys had the same weather as what is in our New England (no, not because both locales have the same name.), where I have spent a great deal of time. I’ll have to google London weather.

    Also, DG is standing in snow at his home on the back of his 1st solo record… which reinforced that belief.

    You learn something everyday. I know it rains a lot.

    Sorry to take this discussion down a few IQ points.

    Blake in Nashville

  22. Hi FEd,

    I don’t live in Britain and I don’t know which is your precise situation about personal data protection and privacy.

    I just would like to say that it’s very unjust that the people could be forced by their governments to give their personal informations to a company such as Lockheed Martin. I think it’s a shame.

    I wonder if everyone in Britain and other countries could find the way to know who will really receive their personal data. I really hope so.

    I live in a country where is going to be harder and harder to know who’s behind every single aspect of our lives (political parties for first) and that’s something that makes me feel upset every time I have to give my personal data to someone.

    I really can’t stand it anymore.

  23. All that sounds shocking, very disturbing and inadmissible.

    But who am I to ‘judge’, to criticise, to even comment? How does it work here? I have always been convinced that the census was made by an independent organisation, by scientists, l’INSEE (= National Institute Of Statistics and Economic Studies), but now I have my doubts…

    I have found nothing else but that, click here. and then click ‘Anglais’.

    Interesting topic, that can’t leave anyone indifferent.

    Michèle

  24. I would like to add that as a result of lobbying on the part of many politicians, Lockheed Martin will no longer be involved with the management of the data itself and will not have access to any of our info.

    Good stuff, eh?

    1. So they say… But, yes, that would be something.

      That still leaves the small matter of using taxpayers’ money to reward a company whose success and (vast) wealth has been built on killing and maiming and destroying, though.

    2. Fed, I’ve had a look at what else the company does. I am not trying to defend weapons construction, I would hope to make you feel less angry about it all. Technologies the company have developed also have many peaceful and beneficial applications.

      I will admit to being aghast at what humanity did with the discovery of nuclear power. Instead of using it only for cheap energy we invested heavily in making bombs out of it! This truly is a mad world. (I feel the need to leave the planet sometimes.)

      ash X

    3. My dear Ash, you should know by now that it would be terribly dull if we all agreed all the time.

      Thanks for bringing something new into the equation.

    4. Ash:

      On another note, your comment made me think of an old British musical ‘Stop The World I Want To Get Off’. I believe by Anthony Newley.

      Jan

  25. Lockheed Martin employs 140,000 people worldwide. The Company operates in four segments: Aeronautics, Electronic Systems, Information Systems and Global Services and Space Systems. 8)

    Lockheed is familiar with protecting high security information and is one entity that can handle such a task. Would you rather have a group of small fragmented and undocumented organizations handle your information? :!

    In the US, a census determines the amount of social services an area may receive and how monies are allocated to each city and county. Our State and Federal Congressional Representatives are also determined by this data. It’s important to get an accurate count so everyone is equally represented.

    Personally, I don’t care if the US Government has my census information because I think they already know everything anyways. If you have nothing to hide, no one will bother you. That’s the hope anyways. If not we are all doomed and not much can be done. 😮

  26. This is obscene. I am a Canadian and this is the first that I have heard of this issue.

    I can tell you that my opposition will be vocal in 2011 and beyond.

  27. Having a census is not a bad thing, in fact it can play a key roll in providing how many persons are working in a given area. That may be an important bit of information for determining the level of depression your entering into.

    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t know why any country would use an outside source even if it was the company making froot loops in America. The fact of the matter is, it’s just a waste of money, your country already has most of the info, go ahead and hire some bodies to go door to door and ask how many are living there… yes! That’s what they do every 10 years or so here in America.

    There was something mentioned about the ex-Vice President; you meen the one that was on the board of Haliburton? The Haliburton that was given “NO-BID” contracts to rebuild Iraq? The billions of dollars in “NO-BID” contracts that were then subcontracted back out to local contractors in Iraq, at a tiny amount of the money awarded to Haliburton to do the job? That Vice President you say? Good god man, associated with a lobbyist, heavens no! I shudder to think.

    To be honest, I can’t think of any information in a census that would be any new news to the CIA or Lockheed Martin. It would pretty much be like looking in a big phone book, unless there are those who are going to say “My religion is Al-Queda”, which isn’t going to happen.

    Contact Twinings, see if they will take the job.

    1. If we go that far most of German companies, and Americans and from other countries, that are now rich and big multinationals made their way into industry providing instruments of death, poisons (zyklon, the gas to kill people in the camps, was produced by a company which eventually changed its name to Bayer) and other amusing products.

      The highest and fastest technical development is during wars. Look at Europe in 5 years of WWII. Aeronautics, pharmacy, automation, automotive……

      We human beings are most of the times a bunch of bastards. I am losing hope that humanity will survive as a whole. I will die before seeing that but there will be only decay. The good that we can do has been forgotten. We are humanoids most of the times. With our little job, little house, iPod. The ideal of a fair world, the high values and ideas we can produce in our mind never turned to reality. Things are very very good for the few of us and getting worse and worse for the others. We are like mould on the surface of earth, growing like rats, consuming everything we find in our way. We are still at the sentence “homo homini lupus”.
      And while I firmly believe that human race will disappear in a little time like dinosaurs did, well the world will survive much more, earth will regenerate itself and new forms of life will grow.

      Folks, we spend our life like shit if you think. Instead of living we care about things like power, status, money… and eventually we die. Many people don’t even spend the money they get…

      Depressing isn’t it? Sorry… 🙁

  28. The 2020 census contract will be awarded to Google… pretty much anywhere in the world. All you will need to provide is your IP address.

  29. In Canada we had to respond or be fined as mentioned. Okay.

    Now that Lockheed is involved. Why? Are they going to send smart bombs upon us if we don’t comply? Not!

    I agree, people that need jobs can help this census (nonsenses) and get paid.

    Here’s my census: I like this Blog, DG, Pink Floyd and the Fed who actually works at this site. If you don’t like it, shove it up your A..E.

    Thank You, Citizens!

    1. I wanna see the bootlegs. 😀

      Yeah, thanks for doing it David. 🙂

      Dunno about anyone else, I’m also really pleased that David gets to do some normal everyday things without getting mobbed. (NOT I hasten to add, that David plays guitar in any kind of normal way.)

      ash X

  30. Bush’s fascism at its worst. The repugnicans took our bill of rights and threw them out the door. All we need is military rule throughout the world (wait, I must regurgitate at this point) to make the dogs of war happy.

    The only thing worse than a religion controlling a country is the military controlling the country. You can believe there is no “boy scout” innocence in this action.

    Help us, Obama!!

  31. Maybe we should have the government just hand over all our money (well, what’s left after we bail out the bankers) to arms suppliers.

    If we spent as much money on saving lives as we do destroying them the world might just be a better place.

    I’ve never quite understood why there’s a finite amount of money for the health service and what seems (to me anyway) like a bottomless pit of the stuff when it comes to blowing people up.

    Then again, drugs companies aren’t averse to making a profit too.

    On principle, no – I wouldn’t let Lockheed have anything to do with the census but given that most companies have shareholders do we ever really know who’s pockets we’re lining anyway?

  32. Maybe the first “Census” the “Doomsday Book” aptly named. It’s a good read and as always time will prove censuses to be very useful.

    Ian

    1. Well said, Ian. I’m glad someone mentioned that.

      The study of history, sociology and genealogy, for example, would be quite dull without these invaluable sources of information. Too much history is about the rich and royal as it is. Without a census, our appreciation of ‘commoners’ would be thread-bare in parts.

  33. Privacy is a joke!!!

    Anyone been following the Bernie Madoff securities fraud story? For those that don’t know, Madoff was arrested for running a $50 billion dollar ponzi scheme. Well, the court just released a list of names of all the clients that he had. You can access this list online, no problem. It includes name and address. Over 160 pages of information. Mind you, for the most part these are (or were) all very wealthy people. So all that is missing on this list is a phone number and exactly how much each of them invested with this guy.

    And here people are worried about giving up some benign information to a census?

    Thanks.

    Andrew

  34. Reading between the lines, what I find really sad is that the contract should have been awarded to a UK company – whether this is due to political pressures or the UK’s track record of incompetence when it comes to delivering any form of information technology.

    Furthermore, how many insecure USB sticks or DVDs have been left in the public domain as a result of slack policy or people in the UK?

    Don’t get me wrong, Lockheed are no angels – but when it comes to delivering the census service I have no doubt that they are able to provide a better, more secure service than any UK company or organisation (on time, on budget, as specified)… and if it were you making the decision on the census you’d want competence, not excuses.

    That’s why I find it sad. We should be more competent than we are but this country is sliding down so fast on so many scales that the credit crunch is merely coincidental.

  35. It never ceases to amaze me, how many of these non-military contracts go to organizations from the military-industrial complex. I wonder about these things. Does this mean the Census is really a military tool?

    I once had the chance to work with Lockheed Martin at its E-Z Pass office. E-Z Pass is a device that allows users to pass through toll roads more quickly. In the process, it tracks user’s use of such roads. Why would they be interested in who is using a toll road, including the exact time that you entered and exited the road?

    I know that this technology has been used in court cases to help establish the accuracy of claims that a person is in a particular place and time. Big brother truly is watching. It’s terrifying.

  36. G’day FEd.

    Would it bother me? Yes. Is there anything I can do about? No. Does it affect us downunder? I hope not.

    Cheers,
    snow.

  37. What a scam.

    Like all military contractors, Lockheed Martin should stick to what it does best — building grossly inflated; over-priced; over-budget; over-time; tax payer funded lethal devices that only meet a fraction of the expectations of the original contracts specifications. Weapons and systems that spend more time being repaired and gathering dust/waiting for upgrades; only to be superseded by the next so called great technological advancements in death/destruction. And on a planet where dying is already the simplest of achievements. The contractors deliberately incorporate weaknesses/flaws of both material and construction in their designs so that they can make a MK.2,3,4,5 etc. The failure rate far exceeded reliability — despite the literature/propaganda. It’s outrageous that any “corporation” should be subcontracted to do the work that should be the sole responsibility of a government run institution. Why even have governments?

    Little by little the corporations are categorizing/grading us like potatoes for use in their grand schemes; teaching us how to play their games; doing the bidding of their masters — fuelling the insatiable delusional greed of the ruling/power class. The “NSA” keeps a vast database on every known entity on the planet — no secret is made of this fact. All in the name of a word called freedom… An ideal; an abstract concept that has no grounding in physical reality…

  38. The horrible deeds that have been perpetrated in the name of this slogan are incalculable. The people that claim to be “free” have almost every aspect of their lives controlled and completely regulated. You have the right to do what you’re told… OR ELSE. You have the right to think what everyone is told to think… OR ELSE…

    We have advanced well beyond our mental capacity to control what we have created and will suffer the natural fate of any creature that exceed its boundaries on this planet — inevitable extinction. We are not expendable in the infinity of space — we are just a incalculably minuscule part of it. We destroy more than we create — it’s an inherent part of human nature. Space will not judge us for our actions but will benefit from our mistakes — our mistakes will be recycled and made useful again. When you consider all the factors that have got us to this moment in time it’s absolutely astonishing that the human race made it this far. We are a bunch of delusional fools that have convinced ourselves of our superiority based on our perception that we control something that we actually have no control over.

    Lockheed Martin should have absolutely nothing to do with the UK census, but it’s just another example of a cycle that begun decades ago and will continue — bank on it, unfortunately.

    1. Good to hear from you again, FEd. I really like what you’ve done with the blog; you must have worked really hard to achieve all the new features and functions — looks and works great. A+

  39. Nice to see you again HP! I’d give you my thoughts but I don’t think anyone wishes to hear them.

    As far as I’m concerned, the only reason governments have a census in the first place is so they can draw up plans on who to exterminate during the next civilisation changes (which are imminent). France (millions executed), Russia (millions executed), China (millions executed), Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, Rwanda – the list is endless – and America is the next big fat target. The UK is just an accident waiting to happen.

    But you won’t get me! I’m out of this world!

    1. Keep talking, George. Throw nuclear weapons into the equation and anything is possible.

  40. Having read The Private Eye for years, I am appalled that there are so many Knighthoods for these arms dealers. 😮

  41. FE’d:

    It seems that the cause of most of the world problems are greed and a loss of moral compass.

    On the matter of Lockheed and the census. I can see why you would rather your own country performed this job. You have a feeling of some sort of control on the issue of privacy.

    The census I was involved with was done by mail. It was pages and pages of information to be filled out and then followed up by a phone call. Much of the information did not apply and some seemed unnecessary.

    1. I actually have no issue whatsoever with it being conducted by a company which is not based locally. Lockheed Martin just so happen to have many UK offices (click here, if you care to know where they are located) and therefore employs a considerable workforce right across the UK.

      Indeed, as has been pointed out, it’s not as though the British government’s own agencies haven’t made some shameful errors in losing sensitive personal data in recent memory.

      My personal distaste, I’m sorry to say, stems from knowing that it’s one so closely linked to the US government (which, let’s hope, we might all start trusting a bit more now that a certain gibbon has climbed down from his tree) and that taxpayers’ money will be given to this vast, hugely influential arms dealer that is obviously responsible for incredible death and destruction – and has done very, very well out of it financially.

      That said, I’ve been fascinated by just how many people have focused largely, if not solely, on the fact that – gasp – it’s not a British company.

      Thanks for making an interesting topic all the more interesting, everyone. I really have enjoyed sharing your opinions on this.

  42. FEd,

    Didn’t know where to post this but wanted to bring this to your attention as well as the community here. Figured this string is as good as any since LM is also involved in space exploration.

    Basically the question is, do you enjoy your cell phone and the convenience of having it? An interesting article that I just read was that two satellites collided in space. The collision resulted in hundreds of pieces of debris. Now relatively speaking you may think that is not a big deal but check out this paragraph from the article:

    “Litter in orbit has increased in recent years, in part because of the deliberate breakups of old satellites. It’s gotten so bad that orbital debris is now the biggest threat to a space shuttle in flight, surpassing the dangers of liftoff and return to Earth.”

    Think about that for a minute. Space is so vast yet we have so much crap floating around up there that it potentially puts people in danger. Another example of the excess we live in and let’s not just peg this one on the Americans as cell phones are worldwide.

    I found it to be quite amazing. I am all for progress and improvements but why can’t we clean up our mess as well? So think about that the next time you use your cell phone.

    Thanks for letting me share.

    Andrew

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