Read that headline again. Slowly. Surely nobody thinks that shooting criminal suspects with trackers from a sniper rifle in Australia is a good idea, right? Wrong: Meet Ray King, the Liberal Party candidate for McMahon who thinks it's a great idea.
The Sydney Morning Herald uncovered a report authored by King in his time as a former police commander entitled "Microchipping of human subjects as a productivity enhancement and as a strategic management direction of NSW Police". Catchy.
The crux of the paper advocated the use of microchip technology in law enforcement. Now that's not a terribly crazy idea: sex offenders are often required to register their location, while others are monitored real-time by state officials making sure they don't stray too close to where they shouldn't be. The crazy idea comes from how King wants to use the microchips in his context.
According the the Herald, King wants to use the microchips to "obtain information" via "legitimate means" to prove a case before the courts with "microchip technology similar to that used in controlling the activity of domestic animals". King believed (and perhaps still does) that the microchip operations will "quantifiably enhance the success of law enforcement".
Sure, because illegally bugging potentially perfectly innocent individuals has no downside, right?
The most interesting and terrifying aspect of the plan however is how the microchips were to be deployed: via a "long-distance injector". A patent exists for a sniper rifle-style deployment tool, but it doesn't exist yet.
Let's be fair: King might have changed his mind since the paper was submitted in 2011. Let's certainly hope he has, for our sake. [SMH]
Sniper rifle image via Shutterstock