Monday, November 22, 2010

Gropegate: TSA Bending To Not Break Their Union

In case you’ve been asleep for the past couple weeks, there’s been a wave of anger building in the public over the new security measures put into place by TSA to screen for terrorists. All signs now point to a policy shift. Why? I’d say it has everything to do with saving the unions. Seriously.

Gropegate began quickly when TSA introduced a new pat-down policy that requires TSA employees to do a police-style pat-down of airplane travelers. No sooner was this policy put into place than people began complaining about being groped by unfriendly TSA staff. As the number of complaints grew, so did the nature of the complaints. Soon we heard reports of TSA staff laughing at people’s genitalia as they went through the full body scan, of children being groped inappropriately, of a woman with a mastectomy being forced to show her prosthetic breasts, of passengers with false limbs being told to remove them, of a bladder cancer survivor ending up covered in their own urine as TSA messed with their medical equipment, etc. etc. Congressional offices were flooded with complaints.

By Sunday morning, pressure was building to the political breaking point, and by Sunday afternoon it had broken. Indeed, Sunday morning, TSA chief John Pistole struck a defiant tone when asked by CNN’s Candy Crowley if he would be willing to change TSA’s pat-down policy to make it less intrusive. He said he would not: “No, not going to change.”

But then Hillary Clinton was asked about the policy on “Meet the Press” and “Face the Nation.” She said that she understands “how offensive it must be” for some people to undergo such searches, and she said there is a need to “strike the right balance. . . to get it better and less intrusive and more precise,” a tacit admission that this policy needs to change.

Obama was asked too, and he said he “understand[s] people’s frustrations.” He then added that, “I'm constantly asking them whether is what we're doing absolutely necessary, have we thought it through, are there other ways of accomplishing it that meet the same objectives.” In other words, Obama is ready to make TSA a fall guy and his resolve to stand firm on this issue is withering under the pressure.

Thus, Sunday afternoon, when Politico asked John Pistole again if TSA might alter the policy, Pistole gave a very different answer: he said, the screening procedures “will be adapted as conditions warrant,” in an effort to make them “as minimally invasive as possible, while still providing the security that the American people want and deserve.” In other words, it’s time for a retreat.

So what brought about this change? More than anything, I would argue it was Obama’s fear that TSA was handing the Republicans an opportunity to crush their employee union.

When TSA was created to handle airport screenings, the Democrats won a substantial victory for government employee unions by ensuring that TSA employees would be unionized. This was supposed to guarantee that TSA got good employees. But of course, that’s not how unionization works. What TSA got instead was an insular culture lacking any oversight by the public. Indeed, its own Inspector General criticized TSA in 2004 for wasting half a million dollars in “unnecessary” award ceremonies at lavish hotels and for giving “lifetime achievement awards” to employees of an agency that had only existed two years. It also gave huge bonuses to its executives, averaging $16,000 more than other federal agencies, and it failed to justify those awards in more than 1/3 of the cases examined by the IG.

Enter Republican John Mica, the ranking member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. He criticized the new policy thusly: “I don’t think the roll-out was good and the application is even worse. This does need to be refined.”

What does Mica propose to do about this? He is proposing that airports nationwide drop TSA agents entirely and replace them with private contractors. Under a screening partnership program, 16 of the nation’s 460 commercial airports already have replaced TSA staff with private contractors. Reports are that the private sector staff are more courteous and more professional. They are also cheaper.

Right now, TSA employs 67,000 personnel. A shift to non-unionized private sector personnel would reduce the power of public sector unions by the loss of those members. That’s a huge hit that Team Obama cannot accept politically. But Obama can’t stop privatization because airports have the right to opt out of the TSA program. Thus, he needs to stop gropegate, which is handing the Republicans the perfect reason to push privatization. Consequently, I suspect Obama has decided that to save the TSA employee union, he must change the grope policy, even though he has repeatedly claimed that this policy is essential to protecting the American people.

But before you think I’m accusing him of undermining your safety, I’m not. I’m accusing him of fear mongering and hypocrisy, but not endangerment. The truth is that these gropes do nothing to improve airline safety. If you wanted to smuggle a bomb onto a plane, you could do it as an airport employee, without being groped. Or you could manufacture bombs out of everyday items that pass screenings, or mail them in a package that is likely to be put onto a plane. Or just drive near a runway and hit the plane with a missile. Any of these are just as effective. The point is that if a terrorist really wants to blow up a plane, groping the public won’t stop them. These searches are designed to give the public a false sense of security, to make people think that something is being done to protect them when very little really can be done to stop an intelligent and determined bomber. Thus, backing off on the grope-a-thon won’t lower our security at all.

I guess we should wait and see what excuse Obama gives for backing off?


patti said...

like minds brother. i posted the clip of a small boy having to take off his shirt at a security point. he looks all of 6 or 7. wth?!

i will refuse to fly as long as the legal assaults continue.

Tehachapi Tom said...

Just tell the TSA groper to grope faster and don't stop til I tell you when.

I stopped flying some time ago due to the potential of foot fungus being contracted.
I tried wearing baggies over my socks but with ridicule from the TSA and my wife I just stopped going on any conveyance where I had to remove my shoes to board.
As a result my aggravation levels have diminished to near normal.

With a little planning ahead trains can be a most pleasant mode of travel. As for going over seas I have not lost anything in any foreign country.

Tennessee Jed said...

You are absolutely correct that all the T.S.A. security measures have nothing to do with making us more secure. They are a false monument to political correctness and an calculated policy to increase the size of government.

I wonder if we could, in tea party fashion, get a ground swell going to opt out. I have unions, but I really, really, really, hate public sector unions.

It is amazing how politically attuned the Clinton's are, and how tone deaf the Bamster is.

Ponderosa said...

If that is the limit of his concern then BO is blind to his blindness.

...and these clowns will be in charge of healthcare?

A trip to the doctor will have the warmth of the IRS, the efficiency of the Post Office and the welcoming spirit of the DMV and now the TSA!

AndrewPrice said...

Patti, I saw that clip, unbelievable. Who the heck makes a child strip to be searched?

It's no wonder this thing is blowing up on TSA!

AndrewPrice said...

Tom, Unfortunately, not flying is not an option for most people. I looked into taking a train from DC to my parents when I worked in DC and it would have taken almost two days compared to 4-6 hours by air. Plus, they're talking about expanding these searched to trains.

What I find so frustrating about this whole thing is that the terrorist win when we start giving up our freedoms and changing out lifestyles. To do that for no reason -- because these pat downs do NOT do anything to make us safer, is ridiculous.

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, In term of growing government, TSA must hold the record. They were envisioned as a small agency that would (mainly) direct airport security. Within a couple years, they had 67,000 employees!!

Regarding unions, I am of the opinion that unions had their place in our history where they took us from a truly abusive form of capitalism (one where employees had no legal rights), to a much more sustainable form of capitalism, where employers recognized that they do need to treat employees like humans. BUT.... that was a long time ago. Since then, all they've done is grow fat and corrupt. Today they do nothing but make companies non-competitive and stifle innovation.

And public sector unions are a million times worse. They never endured the kinds of problems that coal miners or steel workers faced in the 1880s. And having spent time working for Club Fed, I can tell you that if every single one of them vanished tomorrow, our economy wouldn't miss a beat.

I also agree entirely about Clinton v. Obama. It's amazing how quickly the Clinton's hear what the public is saying and respond compared to how long it takes Obama to even notice there is a public.

AndrewPrice said...

Ponderosa, That's absolutely true. Putting health care under the control of the government is asking for brutal indifference, inefficiency, delays, and a total abandonment of customer care as well as employee care. I've worked for Club Fed and I can tell you that the environment is lazier beyond the understanding of private sector people and nasty beyond belief.

Obviously I can't say for certain what's in Obama's mind, but I see no other reason for him to change his mind except that the idea of privatization was catching on like wildfire and Obama seems to be the Patron Saint of Unions. Can you see any other reason he would have changed his mind?

AndrewPrice said...

Amazing, this morning Pistole is trying to use group (not grope) pressure to get people to submit. He's telling people that refusing to undergo body scanning will only server to "tie up people who want to go home and see their loved ones."

Good luck with that.

Writer X said...

I propose that we submit all elected officials to televised TSA pat-downs and then see if they still call them "love taps" like one idiot Democratic recently did. I do not feel safer watching toddlers being stripped of their clothing or elderly people being subjected to lame patdowns.

As someone who travels frequently, I can tell you that it's getting awfully ugly out there. If you don't have to be on a plane over Thanksgiving, avoid it like the plague.

AndrewPrice said...

Writer X, Two points. First, if these things work (and I don't think they do), then there is a reason to pat down everyone. Because it would be very easy to simply hand the bomb or weapon to the person who is not likely to be patted down. In other words, while they're strip searching the young Arab men, the real danger is the little old lady accomplice who rolls the bomb into the airport in the baby carriage that everyone thinks shouldn't be searched.

But, as I note, I don't think the pat downs work at all -- I think they are for public relations purposes only.

And (second point) as a public relations gimmick, they have failed utterly because they are causing such problems.

I do like the idea of patting down members of Congress on live television! That's another reality show we could use to make money to pay down the Pelosi Debt! :-)

Anonymous said...

Andrew: The answer to your question about "who requires a strip search of a small child?" is: someone who is a member of two unions: The TSA union, and the Pedophiles union.

This gummint/union "security" measure is just more glorification of form over substance. Give the dull-normal a job, make sure he can't be fired for failing to perform the task that could be better performed by an orangutan, then when there's a public outcry against the worst of the measures, back down to the position you really wanted in the first place.

If this s--t genuinely made us safer, there would be no justifiable reason for doing anything less. But since they do next-to-nothing about genuine airport security, these "feel-good" measures (double entendre intended) can be modified as much as necessary to preserve the union jobs, mollify an angry public, and make the Obama administration look like it gives a hoot in hell about genuine safety for Americans.

Joel Farnham said...


I fear that just our outrage won't be enough to stop the groping. I mentioned it to my wife and she said if people don't like it, don't travel. I use her to gauge public reaction.

The good thing is that people are starting to figure out that profiling the passenger is the way to go. If the passenger travels in foreign countries that are inimicable to the US, they should get enhanced talking. As it is, I know the TSA doesn't even use no-fly lists to check out passengers.

Oh, there was a poll given the first week of Nov, which clearly shows the public is for the enhanced pat-downs and nudie pictures of people. The poll questions were never published and no one knew just what the enhanced pat-downs entailed. Yet 80% are touted as being for the newest security procedures.

You probably should add this to the election list of what Obama Admin has done to the American people.

CrispyRice said...

Interesting take, Andrew! (As always, LOL!)

I agree that this is ridiculous, and I certainly don't feel any safer because of it. I'd like to see it go away.

Flying back to the US from various international locales, the security Q&A time with the airlines is always much more in depth and harsh than it ever is here.

That all said, as someone who travels sporadically for work (and more frequently just because I love to travel) I'm still going to go. So far, I know how to avoid THOSE machines at my normal airports.

CrispyRice said...

Oh, and I heard this morning that they caught a TSA agent in Denver ummmm, "taking care of his own business" while watching a team of high school girls' volleyball go through the scanner. Not even in a back room somewhere, he was right out in the middle of the security area. EWWWWWWW!!

There may well be some union issues, but the TSA seems to have its share of perverts, too.

AndrewPrice said...

Lawhawk, The reason you would require a pat down of children, is what I mentioned to Writer X... if this really worked then you need to check everyone because otherwise children and little old ladies would be used by terrorists to get around security. But none of this works.

CrispyRice said...

And the other latest that I've heard is that terrorists are working on surgically implanting devices into their bodies now. A pat down isn't going to find that either.

We're always one step behind, it seems.

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, You raise a couple interesting issues.

First, unfortunately, the easiest way to get the public to accept something is to call it a security measure. Both left and right have abused this for years.

The public (in every country throughout history) has always willingly traded freedom for things they were told would make them more secure -- even when there's no evidence it would help. This is no different. It sounds good to say, "we're doing this to keep bombs off planes," so people accept its value. But it's really pretty pointless.

Only a couple people have ever taken bombs onto planes on their persons, and these enhanced "security measures" didn't catch them. Most bombs on planes have been snuck on board in luggage. And if you were an airport employee (like food services or a luggage jockey) you could do this without any problem at all.


AndrewPrice said...

The other issue you raise is profiling. I agree that a valuable first step in security should be profiling for certain behaviors -- flying to the wrong countries, one way trips, paying cash, known terrorist connections, etc. BUT.....

There is a huge problem with profiling in that it becomes an easy way for terrorists to trick law enforcement by picking terrorists who don't fit the profile. In other words, if you think the terrorists will have flown through Pakistan, you won't see the guy coming from France (the shoe bomber). If you think they will wear a turban, then they come clean cut. If you think they pay with cash, then they pay with credit. If you think they travel alone, then they travel in pairs. And so on. That's why generic profiling ultimately doesn't work.

Don't forget that the 9/11 guys lived in the US for some time before they boarded the planes. And they lived lives that few would consider consistent with fundamentalist Islam, as they freely visited strip clubs, rarely (if ever) when to a mosque, and the such. Suicide bombers around the world have been children and women. "Muslim terrorists" world-wide are more like to look black or Asian than they are to look Arabic. Chechens look European and they've killed the most people.

The best answer is intense intelligence and human infiltration, followed by asking cops to watch for suspicious behavior, with an enhancement (but no reliance) on specific behavior profiles, the compilation of no-fly lists, and the introduction of expensive bomb sniffing machines.

Joel Farnham said...


I hear you, but the profiling I was referring to is the profiling performed by Israeli Security. They use no-fly lists, profiling of people who "visit", not just come from a certain country, and simple rapid questions that are designed to trip up a potential terrorist.

TSA doesn't use the no-fly lists because the panty-bomber was on one, and Senator Kennedy before he died complained because he was on one.

AndrewPrice said...

Crispy, I hadn't heard that, about the volleyball team, but it's not surprising. The problem with going from 0 employees to 67,000 employees almost overnight is that you have little chance to screen people and you get all kinds of people who should never have been hired. And adding the union protections immediately makes it impossible to get rid of people like that once you start to suspect the problem. Look at NYC where they seem to be unable to fire teachers who commit crimes or who have sex with students!

I agree about security being much tighter overseas than it is here. And frankly, what they are doing overseas seems to make more. When I was last in Germany, for example, they had explosives dogs roaming the airport sniffing everything. I have only rarely seen that in the US. Also, they opened suitcases and searched them, which I've never had done in the US.

I am all for decent security measures, and if I felt that these would work, I would probably support them. But I see no reason to believe that these will do anything more than make people feel like something is being done, when really nothing is being done.

AndrewPrice said...

Crispy, Security will always be one step behind criminals. And I'm not surprised that they would learn to surgically implant explosives. I also suspect they will learn to make prosthetic limbs about of explosives, wheel chairs, suitcases, working laptops, etc.

And if that isn't enough, then they'll figure out how to infiltrate fuel companies and "poison" the jet fuel. Or, like I said, sneak in a bunch of rockets and shoot planes down as they take off or land etc. etc.

This isn't the kind of war you can win with a pat down.

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, I totally support that. The Israelis have learned (because they need to) how to spot the most likely terrorists. But, at the same time, they haven't let their guard down with regard to other terrorists because they haven't fallen for the idea that all terrorists fit the profile.

They also haven't fallen for the rather stupid idea that many are advocating that we should limit our searches to Muslims or Arabs.

Not only does that offend me as an Americans ("judge a man by the content of his character, not the color of his skin") and talk about unreasonable search ("I searched him because he was an Arab"), but it's completely wrong on so many levels.

As I note above, most terrorists world wide don't look Arabic, they look black or south-east Asian, or Indian or white. Secondly, profiling just Muslims is as silly as profiling Christians just because some supposedly-Christian cult is out to hurt people. You end up wasting vast amounts of manpower searching people who have done nothing wrong except share a religion with the bad guys. And you end up missing the people who don't fit the profile.

What needs to be done, when you make a profile, is to look at behaviors. Where have these people been, do they belong to groups that are sponsors of terrorists, do they go to mosques (or churches) that have been producing terrorists, are they associated with known terrorist or extremists, are their travel patterns suspicious (e.g. no luggage), etc. And even then, it's just a beginning.

And you're right about no fly lists -- those are important, yet we don't use them. You're also right about the rapid questions. The same way credit card companies ask for account details when you call them, security should be verifying that these people are who they claim, and asking whatever other questions are needed to get at whether or not this particular person should be looked at more closely.

DUQ said...

A think the best solution is to privatize the whole deal. Let each airline decide how they want to deal with security. The government can mandate a bare minimum for safety, but then make the airlines responsible for their own plane and passengers.

What other industry abdicated the safety of their patrons to the government? Not football games or rock concerts or anyone.

If everyone knows that Southwest doesn't do anything, but United fiercely watches who boards their planes, then who is everyone going to choose to fly?

AndrewPrice said...

DUQ, Excellent point, I agree.

It's rather strange that airport security is run by the government but everyone else runs their own security. Part of the reason is that airlines don't want to pay for the security, so they got the taxpayer to take it over. They also don't build airports or pay for air traffic control, or pilot training (most are ex-military pilots).

I think it may be too late for the unions in this one. With budgets strained and this gropegate giving a huge excuse/justification, I think it's like that we'll see a wave of privatization, which will probably make this issue go away.

Game Master Rob Adams said...

Rush Limbaugh said "Grope and Change" and he's absolutely right. Replacing the TSA would be a good first start. When I go to the airport I feel like cattle and watch as people are manhandled and mistreated. It's high time TSA goes away and the airlines start respecting us as customers!

AndrewPrice said...

ACG, "Grope and change" -- that's awesome! That's also the reason Rush easily remains the best in the business!

I totally agree, it's time that the airlines took responsibility for their own security and that they started to respect the customers -- something they don't do in any facet of their business.

Airlines are some of the worst run companies on the planet and it's no surprise that they are so closely tied to the government.

Ponderosa said...

"If it saves one life..."

And when that one life could be yours (or mine) almost no amount of logic can over come that argument at least not for a "group".

Sure I find the risk to my life to be acceptable, but it is very difficult to "risk" the life of another even a stranger. Add peer pressure.

What is "hot" for the frog on a hot plate.
There are no hard and fast rules, no bright lines.

A 55 MPH limit saves lives and gas.
Then certainly a 25 MPH limit saves more of both. Well a 10 MPH limit with cavity searches at checkpoints will be even better!

If you disagree - you are a horrible person!

AndrewPrice said...

Ponderosa, That's exactly how they make the argument: "but if we could save one life, then it's worth it!" But that's ridiculously stupid reasoning.

First, we could always save more lives by getting more extreme. What if we just banned flying? Then no one would die from a plane blowing up? So what makes the life we don't save by not banning flying worth less than the life we save by patting people down?

Also, there is a second side to this equation that needs to be considered. The more we obsesses about safety, the more likely we are to make life harder, more expensive, and more dangerous. So we order that all cars be made out of pillows and soft-cheese, and we end up destroying car companies, making it impossible for people to get food, wiping out whole countries that export materials, and who-knows-what. You can't just do things without undergoing a counter-reaction. Life doesn't work that.

This is pure illogic brought on by paternalistic people who just want the government to "fix everything" that they think is wrong with the world. They need to be laughed out of the public square, not listened to. But sadly, our politicians use these idiots to justify grabbing power and raping the Treasury.

Tehachapi Tom said...

Our government won't use available existing Intel to identify potential threats.
Example; the underwear bomber's father had warned us his son was a threat and the Fort Hood killer of 13 had in his personnel folder info on his potential instability .
When such information is available and won't be acted on the American predisposition to trust all till proven wrong is wrong.

If some of the Muslims who claim to be moderate would stand up and condemn the radicals I could agree they do not fit a profile. Until then if it barks like a dog it is a dog.

AndrewPrice said...

Tom, I agree about the need to track these people and I think it's despicable that the government ignored this.

When you have intelligence that someone is a danger, you have an obligation to investigate and/or do something about that. If the police are warned that someone is about to be a danger to themselves or someone else, they will pay that person a visit. If a doctor is warned, they will call the police or seek to have the person committed. Yet, somehow, when the federal government has this information. . . it blows it off?

That's an outrage, and it needs to change. They need to reform the system to let this kind of information be passed around between agencies and other necessary parties, and to make sure that the government follows through on investigating this type of information and doing something about.

In terms of profiling, it just doesn't make sense to profile 2 billion people based on the actions of 1000 people anymore than it makes sense to put a Catholic church under surveillance in New York just because some cultists in New Mexico decide to blow something up. Not to mention the morality issues. In fact, I find it strange that people are upset about "Americans" being patted down, but then advocate profiling Muslims.

Tehachapi Tom said...

The 9/11 terrorists were all young male Muslims. The underwear bomber was a young male Muslim. The Fort Hood Shooter was a young male Muslim.

What is the common denominator here?

The attempt to bomb Times Square was made by?

When I am in town and a shaved headed tattooed baggy fellow with pants with the belt below his crotch is not provided the same disregard or passing glance as some youth leaning on the wall smoking a cigarette.
Does that mean I am profiling?

Ponderosa said...

Regarding Club Fed you nailed it.

Government = monopoly. But worse,

Much worse - efficiency, timeliness, customer care, etc. do not even exist as concepts, much less as goals for the government(s). That is external data. They have no accountability, little oversight and negative feedback is ignored or proves they are afflicting the right people.

“We did an internal audit and found ourselves to be in compliance with our own interpretation of the procedures we created.” Ummm…OK.

A program is successful – increase the budget. A program fails – increase the budget.

Governments only exist to grow.

“Government is like a baby. An alimentary canal with a loud voice at one end and no responsibility at the other.” – Ronald Reagan

AndrewPrice said...

Tom, That's cherry picking examples to reach a conclusion you've already decided. The majority of bombers in the US are white males. The bombers in Russia were Chechens. The terrorists arrested in Miami were black Muslims. About 20% of the people arrested on terrorism charges in the US in the past decade were women. The 1960s terrorists were snotty white college students (male and female) who went to elite schools and thought they were better than everyone else.

You only see a pattern leading to young Arab men because you are looking for examples to support the conclusion have already reached and you ignore all the evidence that doesn't fit the conclusion you want to reach.

Not to mention that you've given me 5-10 suspects compared to 1 billion Muslims. Those are horrid odds to base a general prejudice on.

Also, your example of the tattooed smoker is comparing apples to oranges. In your claim about seeing a pattern in Muslim bombing, you are saying, "I suspect this guy because he's an Arab" or "I suspect this guy because he's a Muslim." But in your example about the smoker, you change the basis of your suspicion to the subject's conduct. The two statements are inconsistent.

AndrewPrice said...

Ponderosa, That's very correct -- government exists to grow. Once a program comes into existence, it is very hard to kill the program because the people who are interested in keeping the program going have a much stronger incentive to fight to keep it going than others have to kill the program.

And once these things get to the point where they can't be killed, they become entirely unnresponsive to the public because they draw their budgets from the Treasury and not from having to please their customers.

Add in the unionization of the labor, meaning you can't fire people no matter how little they do or how poorly they do it, and it just keeps getting worse and worse.

Tennessee Jed said...

I agree unions could serve a purpose, particularly for skilled labor. What I don't like are thugs who beat up scabs, "closed shops" malfeasance with union dues, trying to convince people taking away secret ballot is fair, and forcing benefit levels which drive the company out of business.

AndrewPrice said...

Jed, Don't get me wrong, I don't support modern unions at all. I don't think they serve much of a purpose anymore. People (labor) has gotten smarter and more mobile, is now more valuable, and has more options than every before. The days of being able to tell people "these are slave conditions, but take them or leave them" are over.

Not to mention that modern management theory understands the need to keep employees happy to keep the business working.

So I'm not sure what unions add today except regulations that protect the corrupt or incompetent?

BevfromNYC said...

So am I the only one who has gone through the "procedure"? Sadly, I did not get groped. I was hoping for some big hunky Adonis, but no, so I opted for the x-ray. Just have to stand there and raise your arms over your head. I didn't see anyone being patted down. HOWEVER, I used to think if it made people "feel" safer then I don't mind. THIS did not make me feel safer, it made me feel violated and like a criminal.

But here is an interesting statistic I just read. That since TSA was put in charge of Airport security in 2001 - 4.5 million guns and knives have been confiscated!! How does someone forget they've packed their gun?

AndrewPrice said...

Bev, Maybe you had to have a first class ticket to get groped by an Adonis? Did you book ahead? ;-)

Also, did you ask for your x-ray? It could be like a free check up?

The gun statistic is interesting and frankly doesn't surprise me. I actually know someone who made it all the way to security with a gun before he realized he had it on him. So he went to the security officers and told them what had happened and asked if he could take it to his truck. They guy said he was supposed to arrest him, but since he volunteered the information, they let him take it back out to his truck.

Ed said...

Call me crazy, but this doesn't bother me that much. You get frisked at rock concerts sometime and I feel like I get worse from my bank every time I try to get money out of my account.

@Bev, Very funny! I'm glad you have a good sense of humor about it.

Joel Farnham said...


This article is from an expert on the scanners. It seems the TSA and Obama are going to have egg on their collective faces. :-)

AndrewPrice said...

Ed, My position is that if it actually did something, then I would be much more willing to accept it. But I see no evidence that it does anything.

AndrewPrice said...

Joel, Thanks! Great article. Here's the link: Link

I'd never heard the term "Security Theater" but that is exactly what this is! This is purely for show. It's interesting too that he says that nothing can stop a well planned Al Qaeda attack. I say the same thing in my article, because that seems kind of obvious to me. History has shown that you just can't stop someone who is rational and determined. But our government doesn't seem willing to admit that, probably because people don't want to hear it. So we end up reshaping our society for no reason whatsoever. And, as usually happens when you do that, we will end up causing way more problems than we solve. Sad.

Kurosawa said...

I don't travel in the US much anymore, so I haven't experienced the aggressive TSA pat-down yet. But last week I got felt up in Korea, at the Incheon airport. Yuck...

AndrewPrice said...

Kurosawa, Getting groped at Incheon sounds like a good time? ;-)

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