TSA Defending Its Groin Grabbing Or Naked Image Security Techniques

from the so-next-we'll-have-someone-blow-up-the-airport dept

Following all the negative publicity about the TSA's scanning techniques, the TSA is now going all out to defend its practices. First, while announcing that it has started investigating the "don't touch my junk" case in San Diego, the TSA seems to be standing by its position, telling a reporter:
"What he's done, he’s violated federal law and federal regulations which states once you enter and start the process you have to complete it."
On its own blog, the TSA's pseudonymous blogger "Bob" has also defended both the procedure and the potential for a fine for backing out of the search:
AIT is optional for everybody. However, if you decide to opt-out of AIT screening, you must undergo alternative screening, which will include a pat-down. As I've said before, there is nothing punitive about it- it just makes good security sense. Obviously a passenger can't completely opt out of all screening if they opt out of AIT. That would not make good security sense. AIT is deployed to help us find non-metallic threats, so if you'e selected for AIT and choose to opt-out, we still need to check you for non-metallic threats. That's why a pat-down is required. If you refuse both, you can't fly. It is important that all screening procedures are completed. This ensures that terrorists do not have an opportunity to probe TSA's procedures by electing not to fly just as TSA's screening procedures are on the verge of detecting that the passenger is a terrorist.
This sounds logical for about half a second until you actually think about it (apparently the TSA is figuring you won't). That's because it's still letting most people in airports just go through the metal scanner. So, claiming that "all screening procedures" must be completed for all passengers is simply false. For the vast majority of passengers, they just go through the metal detector and are never screened for non-metallic items, contrary to the TSA's claims here.

As for that final claim, it's almost as if the TSA doesn't even think through the logical next steps. Let's say you're a terrorist with explosive underwear (the threat we're told this is designed to stop). You get selected for the backscatter naked scan, and refuse. Then you know you're about to be searched and you can't back out. What do you do? Your options are to get caught and arrested... or to blow the airport sky high right there with all the people around you. Which do you think is more likely?

The latest is that this debate has moved onto Congress, with Senator Lieberman asking a bunch of softball questions to TSA administrator John Pistole, where Pistole insists these techniques will actually help terrorist threats:
What I am concerned about, and I know many share this concern, is if we have an individuals who opts out of the advanced imaging technology--let's say Abdulmutallab had done that, if that had been the case in (inaudible). If he had opted out, thinking that, well, I'm not going to receive a thorough pat-down, so I can get on that flight, and if that had been successful on Christmas Day, I think we might be having a different dialogue here this afternoon and in the public.
Ok, let's just be clear here. Abdulmutallab -- last year's underwear bomber -- was successful in getting on the plane. What stopped him was not TSA security, but passengers on the plane seeing what he was up to. That brings up a separate question. Has the TSA ever caught anyone with a bomb with these procedures, ever? Security theater doesn't make people safer.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

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    Dan (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:30pm

    Acceptable risk

    "or to blow the airport sky high right there"

    The TSA {IMHO} considers that as acceptable risk. In the corporate view lives are cheap, planes aren't.

     

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      Benny6Toes (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:00pm

      Re: Acceptable risk

      perhaps, but what is the cost of damage to the airport? don't forget that, in addition to the cleanup and repairs, you'd have a reduced ability to screen passengers which would likely mean fewer outgoing flights (meaning less money). i'm willing to bet that people would also be more afraid of flying if a bomb went off in an airport because of the much higher chance that it could happen (once it does).

      honestly, i'm a bit surprised that that hasn't been attempted already (though i seem to remember some reporting about an abandoned u-haul a few years ago).

       

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        Dan (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:27pm

        Re: Re: Acceptable risk

        The airlines spends more money for lobbyists then LAX. Besides, the liability from a falling plane onto a populated area is several orders of magnitude above the potential cost of airport damage.

         

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          Jose_X, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 8:29pm

          Re: Re: Re: Acceptable risk

          They already allow most people not to get screened and clearly they can get through.

          For years people could get through and planes did not fall out of the sky. And those that were commandeered in 2001 obviously had a number of other vulnerabilities (that presumably have been fixed but could be "fixed" even further by putting planes into autopilot from the ground if an authenticated heartbeat signal from the pilot ends). In fact, 2001 surprised a lot of people. Had people believed the planes would have been crashed, none of them would have made it to their destination.

          There is also the issue of us not giving people a reason to be that angry. Our government can do a better job if they wanted to. Someone crazy will always attempt something, but you usually have to be really angry to risk your life and see innocents die.

          Would not the money be better spent in psychological training and other deterrents?

          As for not being able to back out of the security, if you are really in suicide mode and several of you get sent out around the nation, you will either swallow hard and keep quiet if you got unlucky or else create the spectacle and damage right then and there.

          And terrorists can't infiltrate TSA or get information from someone at some point in time?

          Something randomly falling out of the sky has a lot more places to miss than to hit.

          BTW, for all we know these machines are keeping full naked pictures of you and even selling marketing and biometric information based on this (ie, a plan to eventually photograph everyone). Are there laws to prevent this? Are we being conned into selling our bodies to corporations?

          And why doesn't the software only generate things that aren't flesh/muscles/etc? It could easily just show the material they look for or else a blank screen. There is no reason to show anything near the level of detail these show.

           

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        Big Al, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:31pm

        Re: Re: Acceptable risk

        Scotland a year or two ago. Two guys tried to ram a land-rover full of propane tanks through the front door.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 2:54am

          Re: Re: Re: Acceptable risk

          Glasgow airport 2007 And concrete blockers appeared all over england outside potential "targets" the next day.
          For this kind of reason Belfast airport used to have (I think it's now inoperative - havn't been there in a while) a perimiter checkpoint manned by soldiers.

          As I undertand it (2nd hand experience not personal), during the height of "the troubles" these searches could be quite invasive - and they may in this case have contributed to security since there was a direct and specific threat rather than a nebulous one, but I think many irish people would say that these kinds of tactics prolonged the hate and so the conflict.

          By generating FUD and anger in people in response to "terror" attacks you give the attackers the win.

           

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        PT (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 11:36am

        Re: Re: Acceptable risk

        It would be especially acceptable, because it would result in the purchase of a new scanner. And let's face it, this is all about selling scanners, not security.

         

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      DogBreath, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:07pm

      Re: Acceptable risk

      But now, that same bomber might be able to take a few of those new high priced body scanners out with him/her. What will the corporate bean counters who make said products think then? I'll tell you: "Mo' Money, Mo' Money, Mo' Money!", because they now get to sell the government even higher cost replacement scanners (now bomb-proofed).

      So, the truth is finaly revealed. The scanners aren't there for the safety of passengers, they really just protect the multi-million dollar plane. Reminds me of the hidden truth of an old Bill Cosby story on the album 200M.P.H. when referring to fast cars, "Now I know why they make safety belts. They're not concerned with my safety. The ambulance driver is too lazy to look for the body."

       

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    Ima Fish (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:33pm

    "he’s violated federal law and federal regulations which states once you enter and start the process you have to complete it."

    According to the article linked above the agents told him,
    he could either submit, or leave the airport and not fly. Tyner chose the latter option and was escorted to the American Airlines ticket counter to get a refund.

    Let me get this straight, he violated federal law for following the orders of the agents. He violated federal law because he allowed himself to be escorted out by armed agents. Wow, so much for the land of the free.

     

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      :Lobo Santo (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:41pm

      Re: Land of the Free

      That's free as in "Freedom Fighters" not free as in "Liberty."

      Also, the "Land of the Free" has more people per capita in prison than any other country in the world.

      Obviously, the name is satirical.

       

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      Gabriel Tane (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:06pm

      Re:

      Actually, in the original story (and the audio recordings), Tyner would have been subject to a CIVIL lawsuit and penalty... I'm no lawyer, but that seems a far cry from a FELONY (which is breach of a Federal law). Am I wrong on that?

       

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      Hugh Mann (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:13pm

      Re:

      I think the more straightforward argument for him here is that he DID complete the process. The TSA agents told him he was done and dismissed him. They released him from their authority (whether they properly followed their own procedures or not) and essentially then tried to start a NEW screening based merely on his presence at an airport (as opposed to his intent to board a plane).

      HM

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 3:35pm

        Re: Re:

        Tyner couldn't have gone back in anyway. He'd been refunded his ticket and no longer had a valid boarding pass.
        The airline was right to refund it, too. The TSA blocked the carrier contract (that's what the ticket is, a contract) between Tyner and the airline. The airline could have just said, "Eh, tough cookies, it's non-refundable." But they did the right thing by giving the money back.
        So at this point Tyner turned the ticket back in and got his money back. What was he going to do; ask for the ticket to be un-refunded? The airline agent would've looked at Sport Coat Guy and said, "Make up yo' dam' mind, Foo".

         

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 8:23am

      Re:

      "Ima Fish",


      That is exactly right, and that is what the TSA is hoping people will not catch with this "Lawsuit" that they are continuing with. Also, he was already out of the screening area, which he was escorted from by police and TSA officials, so he did not leave on his own. Because of this, it is clear why the TSA official was trying so hard (in a fake nice way) to get him BACK to the screening area, where he would have lost his rights again. A smart lawyer is going to see all of this before it even goes to court and put a stop to it. TSA is still trying to frighten people into not repeating what this guy did.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:42pm

    The bigger problem is Trust

    What's not being discussed is how not respecting passenger dignity breaks the bond of trust between TSA and passengers. TSA DEPENDS ON PASSENGERS.

    So while AIT might bring some debatable benefit, it seems clear that we are by far less secure since TSA is now treating passengers as potential enemies and alienating the most important part of airline security - passengers!

    You can't focus exclusively on technology, you have to take the human factor into account when it comes to security!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:48pm

    Would a bomb big enough to (properly placed) cause a plane crash necessarily be big enough to cause a significant number of deaths if detonated at a security checkpoint?

     

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      Shawn (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:54pm

      Re:

      Actual number of deaths in either case is irrelevant. One person killed in an explosion in a security line would run the news cycle for a month at this point in the game.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:56pm

      Re:

      First, any death beyond the terrorist's own death is significant.

      Second, It's airport security. At the right time, there can be hundreds of people there.

       

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      Whatis42? (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:20pm

      Re:

      Yes, and the panic/stampede that follows would likely kill many more

       

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      ac, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:05pm

      Re:

      in addition to the panic/stampede, an event like that in a major airport like O'Hare would close, at minimum, the entire concourse. The ensuing backup of travelers and re-routing of planes would wreak havoc on an already strained air travel infrastructure. Done during the busiest air travel day, I think an event like that would cause "terror" and thus achieve the objective of a terrorist.

       

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        Jose_X, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 8:37pm

        Re: Re:

        I assume at some point many have realized this.

        I wonder if the goal isn't instead to scan everyone casually for future use of that data?

         

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    Malodorous Intent (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:52pm

    Why would a $10,000 fine deter a suicide bomber?

    It's not like a suicide bomber will care if they die with a $10,000 unpaid bill to the US government.

     

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      Yaniel (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:53pm

      Re: Why would a $10,000 fine deter a suicide bomber?

      beat me to it. This fine does not deter a potential suicide bomber from leaving. It only serves to screw the honest person. Big shock there...

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:36pm

      Re: Why would a $10,000 fine deter a suicide bomber?

      Because the real purpose isn't security. The real purpose is to train the populace to unquestioningly submit to government authority. Airport "security" screening is a good way to screen for those that haven't yet learned that lesson and teach it to them. If you fine the average citizen $10,000 every time they get "uppity", they'll soon change their attitude.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:53pm

    Often a big deal is made about "same-sex" screeners. What if I'm a gay man who doesn't want a strange man's hands on my "junk?"

     

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      Another Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:08pm

      Re:

      For that matter, what if I'm a straight man who doesn't want the possibility of a gay screener's hands on my "junk"?

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:22pm

        Re: Re:

        That's not PC.

        Seriously, though, still a good point. TSA needs to employ only eunuchs.

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:20pm

        Re: Re:

        My question would be, if I'm a straight man and for some reason get 'excited' when that stranger puts his hands on my "junk".... can I sue for the mental anguish that the confusion cost me????

         

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      Josh, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:09pm

      Re:

      Or a sraight man who doesn't want a gay man molesting him?

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:41pm

      Re:

      Often a big deal is made about "same-sex" screeners. What if I'm a gay man who doesn't want a strange man's hands on my "junk?"

      Maybe TSA screeners should be "de-sexed" (castrated, etc.). Ancient societies used to do that to harem guards and so forth. I would imagine that it might make recruitment a little more difficult, though.

       

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    Robert Ring (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:55pm

    Mike's so gonna get arrested for just writing the "sky high" thing.

    Just kidding.

    Half way.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:59pm

      Re:

      I'm from the government, and have traced your comment and Mike's comment. Were sending the TSA to check your junk and issue a $10,000 fine.

       

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      A Dan (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:12pm

      Re:

      Something tells me that's a reference to the recent UK conviction over someone saying he was going to blow the airport sky high in a tweet.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 12:56pm

    The government finally admits it...

    All your parts are belong to us.

     

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    crade (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:14pm

    Now I don't agree with US airport procedures, I think they are lame, but I don't think the holes you are trying to point out in the TSA's story make much sense.

    I don't see anywhere that claims that all screening procedures must be completed for all pasengers. As I understand the extra screening, it is both for pasengers regarded (for any reason) as suspicious, as well as random screening used as a deterent (if you want to smuggle stuff on the plane, you risk being one of those randomly screened even if you have a good poker face).

    Anyone who is chosen for the extra screening and refuses it is obviously suspicious, and saying "no problem, you don't have to then" would be completely reckless, since they will just try again, with the odds in their favour that they won't be selected next time.

    While trapping the bomber might cause them to attempt to detonate right away (although, it seems like these things take some time to prepare anyway) blowing up the airport at the location they flying from probably does little if anything to further their agenda (so they would have to just be plain suicidal rather than kamikaze). Plus, this situation always exists when security uncovers security threats and ignoring them means they get another try at their real target (rather than just a random bomb somewhere) plus if they wanted to blow up the area before going through security, they already could.

     

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      Gabriel Tane (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:34pm

      Re:

      "Anyone who is chosen for the extra screening and refuses it is obviously suspicious, and saying "no problem, you don't have to then" would be completely reckless, since they will just try again, with the odds in their favour that they won't be selected next time."

      Yeah, because Mr. Don't Touch My Junk was OBVIOUSLY a terrorist and should have been shot in the head the moment he hesitated to comply with instructions.

       

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        crade (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:37pm

        Re: Re:

        I said obviously suspicous, not obviously guilty.

         

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          The Infamous Joe (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:01pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          You feel it is *suspicious* to not want a male stranger to touch your frank and beans?

          Where I'm from, it's suspicious if you *do* want a male stranger to touch your frank and beans.

          Reality check: It's not suspicious to want to keep your dignity.

           

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            crade (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 6:39pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Obviously, if I already know the reason and it is an innocent one then it isn't suspicious. Unfortunately, the reason you want to avoid security so badly (relative to everyone else) is unknown. You have moved from the large group of travelers to the smaller group of people who were trying to get through security either not knowing these security checks were a possibility or hoping they could sneak through without getting picked.

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 4:21am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              Unfortunately, the reason you want to avoid security so badly (relative to everyone else) is unknown.
              Very true. And I'll tell you another thing:
              If you drop someone in a tank of water and they drown it means they weren't a witch.

              It's also true that if you point a gun at me and demand my wallet, one of the myriad reasons I might not want to hand it over is because I have an embarrasing picture in it. That doesn't make it the most likely reason.

              Which is more likely, given the zero number of terrorists caught by this method? Someone refusing because they are a terrorist, or someone refusing because of 1 of 20 or 30 possible personal reasons - hapnophobia or gymnophobia for example.
              Ever heard the phrase "If you hear hooves think horses not zebras"? Why would you assume the least statistically likely reason for a refusal?

               

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                crade (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 7:02am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                I knew someone would bring this up. Dude, we aren't talking about punishments or condeming anyone here, we are talking security checks. I'm sorry, but getting extra attention from police and security because of suspicious behavior is a fact of life and not a violation of your rights.

                If a security scan is a violation of rights, or a punishment, that is a seperate issue and no one should be subjected to it, and security scans must be abolished entirely. Thats fine, but it doesn't change the fact that it completely undermines the idea of having random extra checks if the person who *is* trying to smuggle something has such a simple way to avoid them as to just keep trying over and over with no worry of being caught.

                 

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                  Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 7:50am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  Dude, we aren't talking about punishments or condeming anyone here, we are talking security checks. I'm sorry, but getting extra attention from police and security because of suspicious behavior is a fact of life and not a violation of your rights.

                  Dude, you're very ignorant about the Bill of
                  Rights if you think it only applies to "punishments" or "condemnations".

                   

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                    crade (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 8:29am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    As I said, if it's a violation of rights, then it needs to be taken out entirely. Keeping it there and allowing people to opt out is worse than not having it at all.

                     

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                      crade (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 8:42am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      It's like if you set up a checkstop for drunk driving, and anyone driving through it has to be checked by police, but if someone stops right in front of the checkstop and turns around in the middle of the road, they aren't allowed to go and check that driver because they chose not to go through the checkstop.

                      If having the checkstop at all is a violation of rights, fine, remove it entirely, but don't leave it there to harrass everyone except the people who are willing to go out of their way to to avoid it. Whats the point in that?

                       

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                Killer_Tofu (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 7:16am

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                While I have nothing to add past what you said I just wanted to say that you said it very well.

                 

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      Jim O (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:47pm

      Re:

      From my experience they seem to put as many people through the naked scanners as they can. If there is not a long line when you roll up, they direct you over there. I'm sure there is some additional criteria... according to one pilot part of the criteria is being easy on they eyes.

       

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        crade (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:59pm

        Re: Re:

        Well, I won't argue that they couldn't be corrupt, might not follow the process, or that the process isn't mostly useless anyway; I just didn't think the specific arguments used here to try to poke holes in the excuses given by the TSA make much sense. :)

         

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      IshmaelDS (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:28pm

      Re:

      Flew out of SLC recently and it was the naked scanner or the full grope. No choice, no random, you either flash someone or get molested.

       

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    Xanius, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:17pm

    it needs to be changed...

    We really need to switch to the system isreal uses for airport security. They don't put up with this bullshit and they're targeted by terrorists all the time.
    Until we pull our heads out of our asses and use a real security system/procedure I'm going to make this fun for the TSA. I'm going to refuse the backscatter scan and I'm going to think about my wife naked before I get felt up and moan when the agent gets to my crotch. That'll screw his day up.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:45pm

      Re: it needs to be changed...

      We really need to switch to the system isreal uses for airport security.

      That's a lot more work and therefore "not the way we roll here'.

       

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    DCX2, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:19pm

    Underpants bomber

    Abdulmutallab got onto the plane from outside the US. Our domestic body scanners wouldn't have found him. The new domestic grope-down wouldn't have found him, either.

    These procedures would not have stopped him.

     

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    Rob, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:26pm

    Time

    Has anyone seen the naked scanners in action? Looks like it takes 20-30 seconds to get the victim lined up, the scan run and to get the results back from the man behind the curtain. In contrast, it takes about 2-3 seconds to walk through the magnetometer. In either case, this could be longer if you have to do it again.

    Perhaps we could get the per-passenger time down a little as victims get better at "assuming the position". But the main delay is waiting for the data to be transmitted and reviewed and the results returned.

    The naked scanner seems to have about the same staffing requirements as a magnetometer.

    So, if we are gonna try to replace magnetometers with naked scanners, how many more will we need? How many more TSA employees? Or are we gonna save them for "randomly selected" passengers and continue sending most thru the old way?

     

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    interval (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:26pm

    Not one, according to NPR

    I was listening to an NPR report on this the other day and the reporter let loose some facts figures, among them was that since the these procedures have been started the number of potential in-flight threats uncovered by them is zero. Even so, there have been a handful of incidents; all have been stopped by other passengers in-flight. Ain't nothing going to stop in-flight terrorism like an air marshal and a few pissed-off passengers.

    I don't know whose fault it is, perhaps the usual "you and me", but as a society we've either somehow agreed or had taken away our responsibility to ourselves to defend ourselves from those who would harm us. I frankly don't look at the phone and feel safe after hearing about recent home invasions that have happened around the city I live in.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:27pm

    It seems to me that anyone who really wanted to get past security only has to get on a flight from outside the United States...
    ...or charter a plane
    ...or kidnap John Travolta

     

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    Rob (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:31pm

    Even Israeli security, the best in the world, thinks full-body scanners are a waste of money: http://www.vancouversun.com/travel/Full+body+scanners+waste+money+Israeli+expert+says/2941610/story. html - THAT's the guy who should be talking to Congress.

     

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    Gabriel Tane (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:31pm

    Abdulmutallab

    "What stopped him was not TSA security, but passengers on the plane seeing what he was up to."

    Actually, from everything I've read on it, it sounds like the only thing that stopped him was his ineptitude. He caught his pants on fire after spending 20 min in the bathroom and returning to his seat. Sounds like the detonator failed or the chemicals were mixed incorrectly and combusted without explosive force.

    But either way, I can't find anything about whether or not he was subjected to an AIT scan.

    So here's a question: if the explosive materials were sewn into his underwear, would the 'grainy and non-detailed' image have shown that? What if the entirety of my underwear were packaged with evenly-distributed material? Would it show up different? If so, what about the TSA's claim that you can't really see details so it's not 'pornographic'? Where's the lie here?

     

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      Richard (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:11pm

      Re: Abdulmutallab

      Actually, from everything I've read on it, it sounds like the only thing that stopped him was his ineptitude.

      No - our long existing, basic security measures forced him to adopt a bizarre mechanism which then was bound to fail.

       

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        Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:22pm

        Re: Abdulmutallab

        The “explosive” he used was only capable of doing substantial damage ... to himself.

         

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      Jose_X, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 8:49pm

      Re: Abdulmutallab

      >> if the explosive materials were sewn into his underwear, would the 'grainy and non-detailed' image have shown that?

      Well, eventually people will find ways around this.

      Do these machines see things you have swallowed and can later regurgitate or pull out (eg, with a string)?

      X-Rays were fun to play with for a while. I really wonder about health hazards if they eventually try to plug holes by making everyone go through them all the time.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 9:05pm

        Re: Re: Abdulmutallab

        Do these machines see things you have swallowed and can later regurgitate or pull out (eg, with a string)?

        The next generation scanners will supposedly have higher power that will allow agents to see all the way through the body to also detect internal contraband. Refusing to be scanned by these new machines will result in full body cavity examinations (except for govt officials and certain others). You can never be too safe.

         

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          ltlw0lf (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 10:38am

          Re: Re: Re: Abdulmutallab

          Refusing to be scanned by these new machines will result in full body cavity examinations (except for govt officials and certain others).

          Being a govt official, or even a member of the US Armed Forces in uniform travelling on official business (though most members of the military do not travel in uniform any more unless they are on honor-guard duty,) does not mean anything to the TSA, nor does being a pilot who has direct control of the airplane and can crash it into a building themselves instead of bringing weapons on the plane. TSA even scans their own people on a regular basis. And sometimes, they use these scans to belittle their own employees who are accidently scanned during the course of their jobs. No one is immune to getting scanned by the TSA, except, apparently until recently, those who have religious objections.

           

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      Almost Anonymous (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 8:56am

      Re: Abdulmutallab

      I don't feel like looking up the citation, but it seems that I recall the TSA admitting that the backscatter scan would not have revealed the 'bomb' that the underwear bomber was carrying.

       

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      Maria, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 7:35pm

      Re: Abdulmutallab

      > So here's a question: if the explosive materials were sewn into his underwear, would the 'grainy and non-detailed' image have shown that?

      Presumably the guy could have opted out of the scan and had the pat-down. Could the explosive material be detected through a thick pair of blue jeans?

       

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    Benjamin, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:36pm

    If we want to combat this kind of ridiculous nonsense and trampling of individual liberties, we should do it intelligently. Criticisms should be ACCURATE.

    1. No, TSA doesn't care about airplanes, they don't own a single one (except for ones that their own employees use). They do not have a "corporate view", only a government view. Corporations are dependent upon profit to function, and must therefore please and appeal to their customers. Governments can just take what they want from their citizens. This is an important distinction.

    2. A bomb detonated during a pat-down would likely kill primarily TSA agents, so no, they are probably not fans of that either (if any of the rent-a-cops manning the scanner stations have even thought of that. They are just following orders).

    3. No, TSA does not depend on passengers. TSA is funded only by tax payers, who have no choice at all about where their money goes or even if they will give it. They will stand there all day even if not a single citizen comes through to be screened, and they will remain in place even if every single plane contains a bomb which goes off. They are not accountable to anyone, and there are no "customers", only subjects. This is why all our protests will not matter at all unless we can get congress or the courts or (least likely yet) the president involved.

     

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      btrussell (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:55pm

      Re:

      "They are just following orders"

      Would they jump off of a cliff if told to?

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 7:20pm

        Re: Re:

        Maybe not, but I'm sure they would all shove you into the showers if told to.

         

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          btrussell (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 3:03am

          Re: Re: Re:

          I believe there have been war criminals for whom the excuse of "following orders" doesn't cut it.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 7:44am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            I believe there have been war criminals for whom the excuse of "following orders" doesn't cut it.

            It did as long as they were in power and it was only afterward that it didn't "cut it". I don't see the US govt falling any time soon.

             

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              btrussell (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 11:29am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

              http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Calley

              Was there no Government from 1969-71?

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 10:13pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                Was there no Government from 1969-71?

                Was Calley following govt orders?

                 

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                  btrussell (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 2:36am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                  I guess you didn't read the link I provided.

                   

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                    btrussell (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 4:40am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    I guess that isn't fair. I don't like it when someone directs me to a page and expects me to read the whole page to find a little bit of info. So:
                    "Taking the witness stand, Calley, under the direct examination by his civilian defense lawyer George Latimer, claimed that on the previous day, his commanding officer, Captain Medina, made it clear that his unit was to move into the village and that everyone was to be shot for they all were Viet Cong. 21 other members of Charlie Company also testified on Calley's defense corroborating the orders."
                    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Calley

                    Scroll down to "Murder Trial." 1-2 screens depending on monitor & resolution.

                    Also, make it 1968-71.

                     

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                      Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 7:14am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      "Taking the witness stand, Calley, under the direct examination by his civilian defense lawyer George Latimer, claimed that on the previous day, his commanding officer, Captain Medina, made it clear that his unit was to move into the village and that everyone was to be shot for they all were Viet Cong. 21 other members of Charlie Company also testified on Calley's defense corroborating the orders."

                      You conveniently left out this: "Medina was acquitted of all charges relating to the incident at a separate trial in August 1971." And this: "Medina publicly denied that he had ever given such orders and he had meant enemy soldiers, while Calley took the assumption that his orders, "kill the enemy" meant to kill everyone." And this: "Calley took the assumption that his orders, "kill the enemy" meant to kill everyone."

                      In other words, Calley tried to twist his orders to justify murdering women and children. The court didn't buy it and it's sad that there people running around today trying to justify what he did.

                       

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                    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 7:00am

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                    I guess you didn't read the link I provided.

                    On the contrary, I don't think you read it yourself. Calley took it upon himself to do what he did and your attempts to justify his actions reflect upon yourself as well. You make me sick.

                     

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                      btrussell (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 8:53am

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                      "You make me sick."

                      My good deed for the day done.

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 7:11am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        "My good deed for the day done."

                        Calley probably said something similar.
                        Yes, I know your type.

                         

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                          Anonymous Coward, Nov 23rd, 2010 @ 12:26pm

                          Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                          You must some kind of Obama loving liberal. Calley was a hero. The only good good gook is a dead gook. Those gook women were just breeding more of those little gooks to grow up to be anti American commies. When you want to stop the enemy, you have to go to the source. It's just too bad that Calley stopped with just one village.

                           

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                        Gabriel Tane (profile), Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 6:29am

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

                        bt, you really shouldn't play with the trolls like that. It's not nice ;)

                         

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      The Infamous Joe (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:10pm

      Re:

      Well, since we're being accurate, it seems airports are allowed to opt out of using the TSA and can, instead, use private security.

      This needs to happen.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:49pm

      Re:

      They do not have a "corporate view", only a government view.

      Same thing in a corpocracy.

       

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        Jose_X, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 8:52pm

        Re: Re:

        Yes, the government is responsible for much corporate wealth.

        For all we know, these companies scratch the government's desire to "bodyprint" everyone and in return they get to sell and use that data.

         

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:36pm

    Mike, you need to go check your car right now. that "blow the place skyhigh" comment is more than probable cause to get you lo(l)jacked.

     

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    sivad (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:43pm

    The idea that it would be illegal to refuse to submit to a patdown, simply because you have started the process of screening is unimaginable to me. What happened to personal rights? I agree, if someone doesn't get screened, escort him or her away from the terminal. But to force a search of them because they got past a certain point? That's beyand crazy. It's unconstitutional.

     

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    out_of_the_blue, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 1:47pm

    Be even clearer: Abdulmutallab was *walked through* security.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:08pm

    "This ensures that terrorists do not have an opportunity to probe TSA's procedures by electing not to fly just as TSA's screening procedures are on the verge of detecting that the passenger is a terrorist."

    I want to know how many terrorists actually probe security wearing a full suicide-vest? or carrying a bomb?

    If it was me I first go through the airport security a dozen times with nothing and see what they do and only then I would try something else, so it is hard to accept that it makes "good security sense" to force people to complete the whole process if they are not going onto the plane, if they want security to be really tight they should put the verification on the front door of the airport, at which point terrorists would try to plant people inside to handle the baggage or as flight attendants and so forth.

     

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    SLK8ne, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:11pm

    Tactical blind spot...

    I agree that blowing up the security line would be a perfectly legitimate target in a terrorists eyes. Anyone remember the bus bombings in the UK? They had a relatively small blast radius, yet they had the desired effect: making the populous feel the government was incompetent. Further a bomb for this purpose could be in a carry on bag and have a much larger blast radius than "body bomb." And it would be detonated just BEFORE the guy hit the screening point.

    The biggest problem is that the government is assuming that the terrorists are idiots and are going to use the same tactic again. So, they funnel more and more resources into counter-measures for a tactic that's probably not going to be used again. More likely next time they'll load up a twin engine prop plane with either explosives or drums of fuel and fly it into a stadium, maybe of a local high school football game. Say an old DC-9 can carry a LOT of explosives. Even a twin engine commercial plane could carry a couple of hundred pounds of C-4 easily. And if that happened, there wouldn't be much left of the stadium. (depending where they hit)

    Their whole mentality is reactionary, which means the initiative is still with the terrorists, and not with the counter-terrorists.

    People forget the terrorist idea is to make us feel unsafe and destabilize society to make way for their revolution. Unless you understand the objective of their tactics, you'll never understand their tactics at all. They don't care if it's 30 people or 3,000 people, if it achieves their end of producing terror, it's worthwhile from their point of view.

     

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      RandomGuy (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 7:26am

      Re: Tactical blind spot...

      "The biggest problem is that the government is assuming that the terrorists are idiots and are going to use the same tactic again."

      The biggest problem is that the government is using terrorism as a means to their own ends. As has already been mentioned, the 'underwear bomber' seems to have been set up in order to push through these invasive new 'security' measures.

      "People forget the terrorist idea is to make us feel unsafe and destabilize society to make way for their revolution. Unless you understand the objective of their tactics, you'll never understand their tactics at all."

      That statement seems more applicable to the government at the moment.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:19pm

    He should counter sue. We have a constitution and rights.

     

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    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:27pm

    So, To Go Anywhere, You Will Be ...

    greeted at the gate by this gaggle of groin-grabbing government goons. Gah!

     

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    Noel Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:30pm

    Freedom Free Loaders

    Get real, you can't have it both ways.

    Freedom is NEVER free, only to the nit picking free loaders
    who whine about any cost to them, or any slight inconvenience at the Airport check in.

    Freedom like love is a sacrifice, of which the self centered fail to see. Nothing worth while in this world ever comes free, and if it appeared that it did, someone else paid the cost for you. So, BE THANKFUL!

    Trust you infantile, went out the door when Islamic extremists decided to wage war on the infidels of the west [ thats you ]. And though you may think whining will bring back the good ol days, your seriously mistaken.

    Nobody likes the invasion of privacy, but when you enter a system of transport that is PUBLIC, there is liability. Not just cost of lives, but many types of assets and not just monetary ones you bitter cynic.

    When your mother gets blown out of the sky, you be screaming revenge against those who should have provided security. Not to mention, you'll want to sue for the insurance money and damages. Anyone who says different is a liar.

    I challenge you to come up with a better solution, then lobby your government. But that's unlikely to happen, since you spend most of your time complaining. Me thinks you have something to hide, no?

    No system is perfect, as its implemented by humans.
    But with some patience, good workable solutions can be found. Give it time, and give them CONSTRUCTIVE feedback. Not petty jibes. As this security problem won't go away. Not even if ALL the countries pullout of Islamic hot spots all around the world.

    Last but not lest, the initial blast of such detonation devices kill less people in an airport scenarios than in an Airplane. As the blast requires confinement to amplify damage to targets. Any explosives technician or expert with rudimentary surveying of the materials to be used can attest to this.


    P.S. The land of the free came at a great cost to your founding fathers. But given you have little respect for their sacrifice, I dare say you'd have much for your own.

    Apologies if my tone sounded harsh or convicting.
    Nothing personal.

     

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      DCX2, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:45pm

      Re: Freedom Free Loaders

      Mr. Coward,

      We managed to survive the Cold War against a super power without resorting to this sort of privacy invasion. You're telling me that a bunch of psychos hiding in caves are a greater danger?

      If you want your absolute security, go hide in a bunker. The rest of us have lives to go on with, and we would rather not let the terrorists win by letting our government strip us of our dignity.

      Don't be fooled. TSA has never caught a terrorist. They likely never will. And you will rue the day a terrorist tries to smuggle a bomb onto a plane in his rectum.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:46pm

      Re: Freedom Free Loaders

      The TSA agents are the weakest link in security. A bribe or threat is all it would take to get them to look the other way. The only thing xrays and groin grabbing will do is destroy the airline industry, but maybe that's the governments ultimate goal.

       

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      The Infamous Joe (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:18pm

      Re: Freedom Free Loaders

      The land of the free came at a great cost to your founding fathers. But given you have little respect for their sacrifice, I dare say you'd have much for your own.

      Honest to god, I'm tired of typing this:

      "Those who would give up essential liberty for temporary security deserve neither." -- Ben Franklin

      Seems like at least one of them would be against this, yes?

       

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      Any Mouse, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 6:09pm

      Re: Freedom Free Loaders

      Here's the problem with that: Personal security is the responsibility of YOU, the Free, not the Government. If you are unwilling to take your responsibilities seriously, then you have no place to whine when something bad happens, right? Think of it another way. We all know there is a danger in flying. There is also a (greater, upheld by statistics) danger in driving across the country. This is why we are complaining about 'Security Theatre.' These measures are more for the visual benefit of people such as yourself who take the government's word as gospel fact.

      I am sorry that you are not willing to stand up for your own rights. Do not ridicule those of us who stand up for our own.

       

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      Gabriel Tane (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 6:01am

      Re: Freedom Free Loaders

      Time to feed the trolls...
      "When your mother gets blown out of the sky, you be screaming revenge against those who should have provided security. Not to mention, you'll want to sue for the insurance money and damages. Anyone who says different is a liar." "Apologies if my tone sounded harsh or convicting. Nothing personal."
      No, it IS personal because you just called me a liar. One of my biggest soap-boxes is personal responsibility. If my mother got on a plane that was blown up, I'd be very grief-stricken, but I'd know that it's not the fault of the security... except of course, that the TSA is a farce and is ineffectual at actually catching anything... except maybe a case of gonorrhea from these fun little gropes.

      But I would not sue anyone or cry for revenge from anyone except the extremists who did this.
      "Freedom is NEVER free, only to the nit picking free loaders"
      I love how this is a rally-cry for government sheep... that's right, just let the government do whatever they want because, hey, it's just the cost of freedom! Yay! Dumbass.

      I'd go on grabbing quotes from your post, but let's summarize the real point here...

      We're not 'whining' about losing some personal freedoms here... we're arguing (quite correctly) that our freedoms are being taken for absolutely nothing of value. The 'safety' that we're being given in return is a sham. And it's all being done by a government that has REPEATEDLY in the past shown that it is corrupt, on the payroll of interests and corporations, and doesn't give a DAMN about our rights or the American Way.

      Hmm... let's think about that for a second... corrupt government, unfair actions, being told what to do against what we think is right... I think I remember a group of people that suffered that and rebelled. Damn... who were they?! OH! That's right! British Colonists who eventually became the United States of America.

      I my opinion, anyone who just goes along with the government without asking questions is about as UN-American as you can get.

      So in closing, since you deigned to tell me who I am and then call me a liar: go fsck yourself... nothing personal.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 6:36am

        Re: Re: Freedom Free Loaders

        I my opinion, anyone who just goes along with the government without asking questions is about as UN-American as you can get.
        Indeed and I think for example Aaron Sorkin would agree - this from The American President":
        A. J. MacInerney: The President doesn't answer to you, Lewis!

        Lewis Rothschild: Oh, yes he does A.J. I'm a citizen, this is my President. And in this country it is not only permissible to question our leaders it's our responsibility!
        One of the things I think you yanks got right when you started.... shame you (collectively rather than personally) seem to be c*cking it up so right royally now isn't it?

         

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      Almost Anonymous (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 9:00am

      Re: Freedom Free Loaders

      *golf clap*

      Incredible satire. You win an interweb.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:33pm

    Wow, did the federal government just open the door for legalized prostitution? Charging someone 10 grand for it is the biggest crime...

     

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    Michael Long (profile), Nov 17th, 2010 @ 2:43pm

    We're doing it wrong. Here's a great article on how Israel handles security at their airports. Note the emphasis on training PEOPLE as opposed to buying and trusting multi-million dollar machines to do the job.

    http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/744199---israelification-high-security-little-both er

     

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    Joshua, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:05pm

    All this talk about the bomber detonating himself at the moment of discovery seems to miss one crucial detail. Why doesn't he or she just walk away, accept the $10,000 civil suit, and come back in a week and try again? What does a suicide bomber care if the government is filing a civil suit against him or her?

     

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      Jose_X, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 9:10pm

      Re:

      And if they are being bankrolled, then not a prob at all.

      Maybe this security is intended to deter the non-serious under a worse case assumption that many angry folks will attempt this at some point in time.

      People in the public spotlight take security much more seriously than you or I do because they are bigger targets and live in a world where this issue comes up more frequently. If we don't appear to care too much, they will keep pushing more and more. As someone else implied on a youtube comment (to the video linked from here I think), maybe this is just another step along the way to adding security everywhere.

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    Vince, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:16pm

    TSA screening

    'My left nut itches, you mind gettin that for me since your there?'

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 3:30pm

    Just Good Security Sense

    As I've said before, there is nothing punitive about it- it just makes good security sense.

    That's probably also why the Houston Chief of Police advocated putting police cameras in private homes too.
    http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2006-02-15-houston-cameras_x.htm
    It just makes good security sense.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    TDR, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 4:08pm

    I wonder what would happen if people started going to airports and stand in the security area holding picket signs and telling everyone there what really goes on and why. Might be interesting to find out.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 7:07pm

    Hmmm, can I request to be patted down by a female TSA agent, even if I am a guy?

    Know any airports with hot female TSA agents?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    Ryan Diederich, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 7:49pm

    Ive flown many times

    And to many a crappy airport (Newark anyone? they shut off the escalators at night...).

    I have ONLY gone through metal detectors. Several times, I forgot to take my belt off. I built my belt from a bike tire and some bent copper wire (like 4 gauge). If the metal detector misses my huge copper belt buckle, what else is it missing.


    If you dont want trouble, think smart. On a business trip to tucson, AZ, I had brought back several thick books and several heavy rocks
    I brought the rocks on the plane
    Before I placed my carry-on on the belt, I split the contents into three layers, thin enough for x-rays to get through

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    Griffon, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 9:09pm

    probe

    I find the logic around the security probing to be pretty shaky. Basically he argues that no bad guys could ever be smart enough to send unarmed people through the systems multiple times and in multiple ways to maps things out before executing a plan.
    I mean seriously? These are the same people that spend time documenting how troops respond to sniper fire so they can most effectively steer them into IAD's (bastards), yet they can't plan ahead, or even a one man operation can't scout ahead, enough to know the program?
    That is a ridiculous argument on the face.
    I generally just won't fly anymore it's not worth the aggravation and getting my blood pressure up over the wast involved in this kind of theater. Not everyone is so lucky though to have that option.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 17th, 2010 @ 11:01pm

    Security Theater: Howto Sell Expensive Piracy-Evading Junk

    First off, I find the timing real weird. It's the busiest
    part of the travel season, and right after the election.

    If someone wants to do some cross-referencing to determine if it's politically motivated (which it probably is), look into these pieces of info.

    First, here are the major manufacturers/models are these companies.

    *American Science and Engineering (device name: Smartcheck)
    *Rapiscan Systems (a subsidiary of OSI Systems Inc.) (device name: Secure 1000)
    *Tek84/SAIC (formerly Spectrum San Diego Inc.) (device name: AIT84 Body Scanner & Castscope)


    I used http://www.OpenSecrets.org and found that SAIC had quite a few political contributions this last election cycle. I'm sure ASE&E and RapiScan made more contributions, i just found SAIC more interesting.

    SAIC probably has a bunch of neat, shiny, expensive privacy evading stuff they want to sell to the government.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SAIC_(company)
    http://www.traffictechnologytoday.com/ne ws.php?NewsID=18530

    So here's a tentative list of lawmakers that received money from one of these 3 companies in the last election.

    House:
    * Bennie G Thompson (D). (Outgoing Chairman of Homeland Security)
    * Hal Rogers (R, KY- Homeland Security), Incoming Chairman of Homeland Security
    * John Carter (R, TX- Homeland Security)
    * John Culberson (R, TX- Homeland Security)
    * Ken Calvert (R, CA- Homeland Security)
    * Jerry Lewis (R, CA- Homeland Security)
    * Bennie G Thompson (D- from American Science and Engineering.)
    * Rep Daniel Inouye, Chairman of Appropriations received a contribution from AS&E.
    * Frank R. Wolf, Thad Cochran, also on the Appropriations.
    * Steve Rothman on Homeland Security; SIAC

    Senate:
    These people are on the Armed Services "Emerging Threats" committee and accepted campaign contributions from
    one or more of the 3 contractors in the last election.
    * Bill Nelson, Chairman
    * Ben Nelson
    * Evan Bayh
    * Jeff Bingaman
    * Roger Wicker
    * Scott Brown (Yes the Tea Party guy)
    * Richard Burr
    * John McCain

    I'm sure there are more people.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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      Gabriel Tane (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 6:04am

      Re: Security Theater: Howto Sell Expensive Piracy-Evading Junk

      Impressive research!

      But you're illustrating a point that we all have accepted... the people who profit off this are the ones who are pushing it into the TSA, who doesn't really want to solve a proble, just to look like they are.

      No suprise, but still some damn good info!

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    Some Ohio guy..., Nov 17th, 2010 @ 11:02pm

    Wow. I shall never fly again. These "security" checks are just getting to be ridiculous. I would rather drive or take a bus. At what point does one say "Enough"?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 8:35am

    Re: Security Theater: Howto Sell Expensive Piracy-Evading Junk

    Level3 or L3 is a Fourth manufacturer of X-Ray machines called "ProVision". L3 also made a number of political contributions in the last few election cycles.

    http://www.opensecrets.org/pacs/pacgot.php?cmte=C00347385&cycle=2010

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    Chris in Utah (profile), Nov 18th, 2010 @ 1:31pm

    Devils Avocation

    Well if worse comes to worse I wonder if they'll put all of us in booths, make you drop your drawers and cough. Maybe they need to implement it at the borders as well.

    Pure insanity.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 18th, 2010 @ 10:25pm

    What about people with medical conditions which would prevent exposure to radiation...actaully it's not safe for anyone... AND the same person can't have a physical pat down either due to diasbabilty limitations? What then?
    Children over 12 may get pat downs? Like hell! Your not going to Pat down my 14 year old daughter with anxiety and sensory issues and she can't have a screening because of her personal history with precancerous skin issues.
    They are just not thinking!!!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    CK, Nov 23rd, 2010 @ 6:58am

    Harassing pregnant woman about bringing through breastmilk!

    Its sad that we have become terrorists of our own citizens, in the name of 'national saftety.' What part of abusing and disregarding the guidelines you are there to uphold indicates they are 'doing their job?' They aren't. Plain, simple and oh so obvious in this instance. I am a mother and I know the difficulties of traveling with a child that is nursing. TSA needs a wake up call and all those people who took part in this situation and so many others should be ashamed of themselves. Very, very ashamed. They are there to uphold the guidelines that woman was simply asking them to follow. Their job is to FOLLOW THEM, even if it means more work and more effort. Their job is NOT to harass the people who ask them to do their job the RIGHT WAY!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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