Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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January 19, 2007
By: Kevin Drum

FUNNY MONEY NOT SO FUNNY AFTER ALL....I'm pleased to pass along the news that you will no longer be viewed with suspicion if you happen to get a Canadian coin in your change:

Reversing itself, the Defense Department says an espionage report it produced that warned about Canadian coins with tiny radio frequency transmitters was not true.

The Defense Security Service said it never could substantiate its own published claims about the mysterious coins. It has begun an internal review to determine how the false information was included in a 29-page report about espionage concerns.

I guess that's one less thing to worry about, and a serious black mark erased from the security record of our friends up north. However, we do still have to worry about "hacker attacks, eavesdropping with miniature pen recorders and the case of a female foreign spy who seduced her American boyfriend to steal his computer passwords." So don't let your guard down.

Kevin Drum 12:14 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (39)

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Comments

That always was a weird story. Putting a bug in something almost guaranteed to circulate out of the target's hands doesn't make much sense.

Posted by: Jackmormon on January 19, 2007 at 12:29 PM | PERMALINK

The Pentagon seems to be far more candid about this silly and preposterous idea than the yellow-cake from Niger.

I've still not seen a valid/exceptable explanation as to how/why that "intelligence" got spliced into that infamous SOTU address B4 the Iraq debacle was unleashed via Shock and Awe.

Or how about them WMD?

Nah.....but we will retract our faulty intelligence on bogus spy coins from Canada.

Posted by: Tom Nicholson on January 19, 2007 at 12:33 PM | PERMALINK

Oh those dasdardly furriners...looking to steal our precious vital bodily fluids of our clean-cut red-blooded boys with them female spies, them Matawhories. Where is General Ripper when we need him?!

Posted by: Stewart Dean on January 19, 2007 at 12:34 PM | PERMALINK

Don't forget about those chip-implanted cats who...wait a minute!

It's Friday.

Where are the cats?

Posted by: Greg in FL on January 19, 2007 at 12:40 PM | PERMALINK

An overlooked security threat to the US is the foreign boy toys that many of the closeted homosexual politicians have hired to be their security advisors.

Posted by: Brojo on January 19, 2007 at 12:41 PM | PERMALINK

However, we do still have to worry about "hacker attacks, eavesdropping with miniature pen recorders and the case of a female foreign spy who seduced her American boyfriend to steal his computer passwords." So don't let your guard down.

I have some computer passwords.

Posted by: American Hawk on January 19, 2007 at 12:44 PM | PERMALINK

To make it work with current, commercially available technology -- I don't see how it could work

Considering the tremendous pressure that must exist to justify updating War Plan Red, I'm shocked that intelligence officers are willing to lowball a threat assesment. In fact, essentially saying: "I don't see how Canadian scientists could possibly do something that innovative" strikes me as fairly out of character for DoD researchers. Perhaps they should look into the possibility that their ranks have been infiltrated by Canucks, Eh?

Posted by: B on January 19, 2007 at 12:45 PM | PERMALINK

...the case of a female foreign spy who seduced her American boyfriend to steal his computer passwords."

Hey, I work in IT. Where the hell are these ladies?

Posted by: 2.7182818 on January 19, 2007 at 12:46 PM | PERMALINK

Well, I don't know. I received a Canadian nickle in change. It felt warm and seemed to hum Hail To The Chief so I tossed in into the back of a passing pickup truck. As it went down a freeway, a helicopter followed it.

Posted by: Mike on January 19, 2007 at 12:48 PM | PERMALINK

why do coins hate freedom so much?
If you have Canadian coins in you change jar at home then you a really helping the terrorists win, you America hater.

Posted by: cboas on January 19, 2007 at 12:58 PM | PERMALINK

One less thing to worry about? Don't be so naive. This is just evidence of how deeply the Canadians have penetrated our government. They can even make the DOD dance like a puppet on their maple-leafed string!

Posted by: vlad on January 19, 2007 at 12:59 PM | PERMALINK

Actually, the Canadian cash economy is probably one of the last loopholes in the Total Information Awarness network.

Our money is likely already bugged, but sleeper cells could easily evade detection in northern states like Vermont because of liberal-owned businesses that accept Canadian money.

Posted by: ex-communist plutocrat on January 19, 2007 at 12:59 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, but the threat to the US posed by Canadian comedians and actors is still very real.

Posted by: Disputo on January 19, 2007 at 1:01 PM | PERMALINK

I'll tell you who is on my radar - that damned Red Green. I don't trust him, nor any of his buddies at the Possum Lodge.

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka Global Citizen) on January 19, 2007 at 1:03 PM | PERMALINK

I'm so poor, I'd take *any* money, bugged or no!

Posted by: Cat lover on January 19, 2007 at 1:13 PM | PERMALINK

It's scary how much like a Peter Sellers movie the Pentagon has become.

I mean, the Keystone Kops running TSA is one thing, but these guys have tanks, and nuclear weapons, and stuff.

WTF?

Posted by: bleh on January 19, 2007 at 1:13 PM | PERMALINK

As a Canadian I apologize for the radio transmitters in the coins. I will also offer to take them off your hands. Just let me know and I can give you an address to ship them to (postage paid of course).

I also understand that some Canadian bills have mini-satellite links so feel free to send them along as well.

Blue Girl: We want you to worry about Red/Green. Then you won't notice how Canadians have infiltrated the entire US entertainment industry!

Posted by: Yelling in the fog on January 19, 2007 at 1:35 PM | PERMALINK

Why would Canada need to put radios in our money when we've already got operatives like Charles Kaufhammer, David Frum and Mark Steyn actively working to destroy America from within?

Where was Cheney when he decided to head Haliburton? Fishing in New Brunswick.

Face it. Canada finally has the US exactly where we want it. You guys just got snookered.

Posted by: wsam on January 19, 2007 at 1:36 PM | PERMALINK

Yelling: That Nephew Earle, I'm convinced, is the Kim Philby of our time!

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka Global Citizen) on January 19, 2007 at 1:38 PM | PERMALINK

Remember when Furbys were banned because of a supposed (incorrect) espionage potential to record conversations and learn words?

Posted by: Bob R. on January 19, 2007 at 1:41 PM | PERMALINK


:) American Hawk cracked a joke! Good for you, AH. Maybe that's the ticket to biparticanship, get a few good-looking fem Dems, the Reps would be crossing the aisle in droves! No offense, Hil, Nance.

[New congressional pick-up line: Hi, I'm Bob and I'm bipartican.] Maybe it would come off better if one doesn't email it.

Posted by: Zit on January 19, 2007 at 1:47 PM | PERMALINK

I still don't trust 'em. 80% of Canadians live close to the border - WHAT ARE THEY GATHERING FOR??

Posted by: BeingThere on January 19, 2007 at 1:57 PM | PERMALINK

I'm envisioning an underground complex near Great Slave Lake, where Canadian intelligence interns spend hours listening to transmissions from coins sitting motionless in cash drawers and bags in bank vaults. "Nothin' now, eh?" "Still nothin', eh?" "You? No, me neither."

Brilliant enough to build coin transmitters, stupid enough to think they would be worth having... sounds like the Pentagon, not the Canadians.

Posted by: biggerbox on January 19, 2007 at 1:59 PM | PERMALINK

WHAT ARE THEY GATHERING FOR??

Warmth?

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka Global Citizen) on January 19, 2007 at 1:59 PM | PERMALINK

Those would have to be some tough little transmitters, given the abuse the average coin is subject to. I wonder how many times this 1986 nickel I am looking at has been through various washing machines?

This is one of those ideas that someone had in passing in a battle lab somewhere (yes, there is such a thing) and it was so stupid it took on a life of it's own.

Somewhere there is a 2Lt. catching no end of crap over this from his peers in-shop.

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka Global Citizen) on January 19, 2007 at 2:04 PM | PERMALINK

I always thought there was something rather suspicious about Canadian insistence that British monarchs appear on their currency. But then again, such suspicions may well be the result of my cat's afternoon naps on top of my tinfoil hat.

Posted by: Donald from Hawaii on January 19, 2007 at 2:37 PM | PERMALINK

"the case of a female foreign spy who seduced her American boyfriend to steal his computer passwords."

Yannow, back in the late 60s when I was in the Army doing low-level intelligence work in what was then called West Berlin, they kept warning me about that female foreign spy who would seduce me to steal my secrets. I was there for almost 3 years and never met her. And I WANTED to meet her ... or, more precisely, I wanted to meet a female foreign person who would seduce me for ANY reason. Damn!

Posted by: bob on January 19, 2007 at 2:39 PM | PERMALINK

Blue Girl, Red State: "WHAT ARE THEY GATHERING FOR?? Warmth?"

I'm pretty certain that it's not for American beer.

Posted by: Donald from Hawaii on January 19, 2007 at 2:40 PM | PERMALINK

ex-communist plutocrat: "Our money is likely already bugged, but sleeper cells could easily evade detection in northern states like Vermont because of liberal-owned businesses that accept Canadian money."

You now, I never thought of that. Furher, with the notable exception of California, why are most of the blue states so close to the Canadian border.

Posted by: Donald from Hawaii on January 19, 2007 at 2:45 PM | PERMALINK

...why are most of the blue states so close to the Canadian border.

The bracing cold air is good for the mental faculties.

The humid heat of the south puts the mind to sleep and turns people into Republicans.

Posted by: Joe Canuck on January 19, 2007 at 2:53 PM | PERMALINK

Two and a half hours and no one has linked to this?

C'mon! You've all been singing it since you read Kevin's post, just like I have!

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka Global Citizen) on January 19, 2007 at 2:56 PM | PERMALINK

Ok, this one was a false alarm, but you still can't trust Canucks (at least the anglophones). Truth is that they're after Canadian World Domination! (eh, how do you say that in French?).

Heck, some of them have even infiltrated NORAD. We should have taken them out a long time ago. Ok, we failed during the Revolution and the War of 1812, but they weren't really Canucks then (just outcasts from Britain and America). Besides, third time's a charm. Destroy Canada!

Posted by: alex on January 19, 2007 at 3:01 PM | PERMALINK

Does no one remember Farley Mowat's kafka-esque adventure with U.S. Immigration back in the 80s, which he immortalized in his great book "My Discovery of America?"

If you want to know just how dangerous Canadians really are, the precise stupidities from which the U.S. federal government has yet to recover, and the essential good sense and goodness of Americans in the face of suicide-inducing nonsense - not to mention laugh your ass off non-stop from beginning to end - READ IT!

If you can find it. I discovered a dozen paper copies in a tiny used bookstore outside Tamagami, Ontario (north of North Bay) a few years ago and bought every single one.

No, you can't borrow them.

Posted by: Yellow Dog on January 19, 2007 at 3:04 PM | PERMALINK

Yellow Dog! I have been trying to email you, and it keeps bouncing back. I need to ask you something.

Posted by: Blue Girl, Red State (aka Global Citizen) on January 19, 2007 at 3:09 PM | PERMALINK

"IT personel are warned that female spies may be attempting to ferret secrets and passwords out of you through seduction. Do not fall for it! You are IT guys - attractive women are not interested in you. If an attractive woman approaches you, stammer in befuddlement or tell her about your 20th level Paladin until she has been repulsed, then inform your supervisor."

Posted by: Mysticdog on January 19, 2007 at 3:09 PM | PERMALINK

Crap eh!!- they're on to us!! Looks like operation
'Infinite Tundra' will have to be put on hold. Damned you yankeeeeeeeeeees!!!!!!!!

Posted by: True North on January 19, 2007 at 4:15 PM | PERMALINK

Don't forget the USB thumbdrives with password-stealing trojans, distributed at trade-shows to IT executives.

And don't forget the group of Japanese hackers that was doing remote hacks of peoples' webcams - INCLUDING disabling the little red light that tells the user it's taking footage - then they tried to blackmail the victims based on the footage (not stolen footage - the camera was used as a covert monitoring device).

IOW: never trust a USB thumbdrive.
and, always keep the lens of your webcam COVERED when not in-use.

Posted by: Extradite Rumsfeld on January 19, 2007 at 6:43 PM | PERMALINK

I, for one, welcome our new Canadian overlords.

Posted by: Rob W on January 19, 2007 at 8:18 PM | PERMALINK

It's American change which has a suspicious sandwich construction, supposedly to cut down on silver usage but really to hide the transmitters inside.
BTW, Canadian "silver" coins are magnetic due to their high nickel content. The nickel is mined from an old meteorite impact, so yes, Canadian coins DO contain SPACE ALIENS.

Posted by: doug r on January 21, 2007 at 5:03 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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