Why Congress Isn't So Concerned With TSA Nude Scans & Gropes: They Get To Skip Them

from the so-that's-how-it-works... dept

Earlier this week, in holding a hearing with the head of the TSA, our congressional representatives didn't seem too concerned about the public complaints about TSA security procedures: the naked scans and the gropings. Want to know why? Perhaps it's because, on the rare occasions that they fly commercial, they get to skip security. The NY Times notes that Speaker of the House John Boehner (who does regularly fly commercial) got to walk right by security and go directly to the gate. In defending this, Michael Steel, head of the Republican party pointed out that this is true of all Congressional leaders -- which doesn't make it any better.


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  •  
    identicon
    BruceLD, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 5:38pm

    Subjects

    That's because they are special. We are not. End of story.

     

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    MarkL, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 6:04pm

    This is nuts

    So let me get this straight ... congressional leaders riding in the back are not subject to TSA scrutiny but the crew flying the plane is?

    The inmates are truly running the asylum.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 5:45pm

      Re: This is nuts

      So let me get this straight ... congressional leaders riding in the back are not subject to TSA scrutiny but the crew flying the plane is?

      The TSA just announced that pilots will be exempt too. The Airline pilots Association push for the exemption because they said the scanners were a health hazard and the hand screenings were demeaning. Apparently, it's OK to irradiate and demean passengers, but not pilots or congressmen.

       

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    Justin Olbrantz (Quantam), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 6:14pm

    Obvious thesis is obvious.

    Bad laws that are applied equally to lawmakers are quickly eliminated (or lawmakers are given exceptions).

     

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      BearGriz72 (profile), Nov 20th, 2010 @ 4:51pm

      Re:

      Proposed 28th Amendment to the United States Constitution:

      "Congress shall make no law that applies to the citizens of the United States that does not apply equally to the Senators and/or Representatives; and, Congress shall make no law that applies to the Senators and/or Representatives that does not apply equally to the citizens of the United States."

      (I wish)

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 6:20pm

    But...

    Didn't tonight on CNN Ron Paul and the (I think it was) Sec. of Homeland Security admit that they too had to go through this?

     

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      Blatant Coward (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 8:40pm

      Re: But...

      "Didn't tonight on CNN Ron Paul and the (I think it was) Sec. of Homeland Security lied and said that they too had to go through this?"

      FTFY.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 9:40pm

        Re: Re: But...

        "Didn't tonight on CNN Ron Paul and the (I think it was) Sec. of Homeland Security lie and say that they too had to go through this?"

        FTFY."

        Fixed it more for you. Don't really care about the Sec. but always thought of Ron Paul as an alright person.

         

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          Jay (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 10:39pm

          Re: Re: Re: But...

          Something seems off...

          If Napolitano and that other guy had to go through it, I'm sure they would have a Senator possibly go through with this... Right?

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 9:56am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: But...

            "If Napolitano and that other guy had to go through it, I'm sure they would have a Senator possibly go through with this..."

            You got it wrong; they tested it once when the rapiscan systems were being sold to the administration. Michael Chertoff has an investor interest in that company by the way, did you folks know that?

             

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            Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 5:47pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: But...

            If Napolitano and that other guy had to go through it

            HAD to go through it, or just did so for show?

             

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              Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 12:03am

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: But...

              Well, I'm not saying I'm going to take their word for it just because they say so, least of all any employee of Homeland Security. But Ron Paul, I suppose, never has (maybe once) been through either a scanner or a pa- gropedown, although he's made it pretty clear that he is against the rules TSA has set in place recently.

               

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      Sirk, Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 12:55pm

      Re: But...

      Ron Paul said members of the government SHOULD have to go through the screening. Currently, they do not have to, so it's no big deal to them if we, or our children, get irradiated or groped.

      Here's a telling statement:
      Republican Senator George LeMieux expressed worries about the degree of contact in the patdowns, which include touching of the genital region and breasts.
      "I'm frankly bothered by the level of these patdowns. I've seen them first-hand in airports in Florida," he said.
      "I wouldn't want my wife to be touched in the way that these folks are being touched. I wouldn't want to be touched that way. And I think that we have to be focused on safety, but there's a balance," he said.
      http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Senators-complain-about-rb-3326615803.html?x=0&.v=1

       

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    sethumme (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 6:28pm

    Shouldn't fair-play have been part of the constitution?

    There's a reason why congress isn't allowed to set their own salaries on their whim. So why is it that they have the freedom to exempt themselves from so many laws?

    I understand that certain differences between a congressman and the common man exist by virtue of the position they currently hold, and that some of these differences need to be handled in a distinct manner. But apart from issues related to their personal security, handling of state secrets their heads contain, and the limitations they must face as public personalities, elected government officials should have exactly the same rights and privileges as anyone else in their wealth bracket.

    Who do they think they are, foreign diplomats? They should be getting the exact opposite treatment under the law that foreign diplomats get. They made their beds, now they have to lay in them.

     

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      Coach George (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 7:48pm

      Re: Shouldn't fair-play have been part of the constitution?

      Except Nancy Pelosi. I think her image from the scan would do real damage on many levels.

       

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      Rez (profile), Nov 20th, 2010 @ 10:17am

      Re: Shouldn't fair-play have been part of the constitution?

      What you mean is, they made our bed, now they should be groped in them.

       

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      jpatten1oesoe0157, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 12:18pm

      Re: Shouldn't fair-play have been part of the constitution?

      One thingh you should know is that when Congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, it excepted itself. That's right - Congress can discriminate on the basis of race, religion and tbhe rest if it so chooses. So don't be too shocked when you find out that the Congressional leadership doesn't have to go through TSA searches.

      BTW, it does make some sense to run a plane's staff through the searches, since one way to set up a hijacking, or get a bomb on board, or whatever, is to either recruit or blackmail a staff person to do this for you. However, the same applies to Congressional leadership - and, God knows, they're more susceptible to blackmail than the average airline employee.

       

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        Christopher (profile), Nov 20th, 2010 @ 10:18pm

        Re: Re: Shouldn't fair-play have been part of the constitution?

        True. We have found a lot of Congressmen having sex with 'underage' people, doing illegal actions of other sorts, etc.

        They are more prone to being blackmailed than say.... I am!

         

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    ondigo (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 6:44pm

    The REAL danger

    Ask me who I think can do more real damage to America: terrorists or Congress. Go ahead. Ask me.

     

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      Eugene (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 6:51pm

      Re: The REAL danger

      How about a 2-fer: a terrorist who gets voted into Congress! If someone hasn't written that script yet, I'm totally on that.

       

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      Coach George (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 7:41pm

      Re: The REAL danger

      Seriously??
      Wake up and realize that congress is full of Idiots, however Terrorists are Killers.
      Whether or not you want to accept it, WE control Congress. No one controls the terrorists.

      Get Real!

       

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        Christopher (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 8:04pm

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        Actually, yes someone does control the terrorists: their own sense of 'morality'. We can all agree that their morality is extremely skewed.... but someone is controlling them.

         

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          Haapi, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 8:20am

          Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

          By acting so terrorized, we have validated the terrorists' behavior, methods, and ideology.

          Shame on us in the land of the sheeple.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 6:18pm

            Re: By Acting So Terrorized

            Yep, we've played right into their hands... and allowed to be strangled by our OWN government in the process!

             

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        Rekrul, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 10:31pm

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        Whether or not you want to accept it, WE control Congress.

        In what reality? Congress doesn't listen to the general public, they only pay attention to the lobbyists who give them the most money. Sure, you could argue that we have the power to vote them out of office, but for the most part, all politicians are equally corrupt. No matter who gets elected, they all willingly bend over for the special interests the minute the checkbook comes out.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 11:57am

          Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

          This is how the capitalist system works because the government only serves and protects the ones who control the means of production (the bourgeoisie who are the lobbyists throwing money around) actually from us (the working class).

          Welcome to Capitalism.

           

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            hegemon13, Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 9:33am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

            Wrong. Welcome to corporatism. Actual capitalism would have the government staying out of it, and only intervening to prevent anti-competitive business practices. Unfortunately, we haven't had that for a LONG time, if ever.

            Even if you disagree with that and hold to the idea that we are truly capitalist, your argument makes no sense. Is socialism or communism somehow less prone to corruption? Because I think the citizens of Russia, East Germany, North Korea, etc. would disagree quite heartily with you on that one.

            Power corrupts, not a specific economic system. There will always be those with access to wealth who will use it to influence those in power. Therefore, the less power we give to the government, the better.

             

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          coach george (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 2:36pm

          Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

          The reality is WE Elect Congressmen and Women as well as Senators and the President, At least those of us who VOTE!

           

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 12:59pm

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        Are you really claiming the terrorists are just a bunch of anarchists? Of course they are on someone's leach. Quid pro quo. Cui bono?

         

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          Coach George (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 2:43pm

          Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

          What I claimed is that WE, US Citizens, do not control the terrorists. WE, US Citizens DO control our GOVT. We just are too easily swayed by distraction.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 7:15pm

            Re: We DO Control Our GOVT

            While I admire your obvious patriotism, Coach George, I fear you're one of the many who've been successfully - in a word - brainwashed. If we, the people, actually controlled our government, we wouldn't be in near as big as sinkhole as we are today, would we? We'd actually be able to get the political results WE asked our Representatives for, instead of watching greed and dishonesty drive the way the bills are written and introduced.

            Capitol Hill trivia for you: Did you know that often times the actual Congresspersons don't even READ the bills they're scheduled to vote on? They're quite often foisted down to one of their ASSISTANTS to condense and give them some sort of "Reader's Digest version", which don't necessarily include discreetly slipped-in trinkets that are written in such a way that they are MEANT to be overlooked, and signed into law anyway...

             

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              Coach George (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 7:23pm

              Re: Re: We DO Control Our GOVT

              WE, US Citizens.
              The Electoral college aside, one person one vote, regardless of wealth.
              We, the US Citizens are however Too LAZY to give a DAMM and the politicians know this. WE, the US Citizens, have given control to the politicians. If We, the US Citizens, cared enough WE, the US Citizens, can take it back.

              I hope my point is clear now.
              Nuff Said

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 8:52pm

                Re: Electoral College Aside

                What a laugh! Sorry, Coach, but you CAN'T just sweep the College aside and call it good, for the sake of trying to make your stance the correct one. The Electoral College is how the ones actually placing their political chess pieces do it, and has been for decades. Your collective votes really don't count for much, as it was pointed out another "Anonymous Coward" (as this site likes to label us). It's amazing how often the majority votes for "Other", and yet someone "other" than "Other" takes home the crown. On that note, there's a great explanation of just how little voting actually matters in Robin Williams' flick "Man Of The Year", given by a character played by Jeff Goldblum to Laura Linney's character... Very enlightening, if you're willing to flip the switch.

                 

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                Anonymous Coward, Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 4:00am

                Re: Re: Re: We DO Control Our GOVT

                Now how many times in your life you saw a politician honor his word?

                It is so rare that I can't remember any, but I'm sure some promises where kept but the majority just isn't.

                Besides the public doesn't have a plan, a clear vision of what they want and that is in spite of having the means to do it now, people can organize and find the common ground they want and write draft for laws they want still nobody did it.

                People could do a shadow government that would gather together all people that want to change something and give them a clear path to do it.

                We could make a website "Draft your laws" and make another website "Vote for your laws" and get empirical data to show what people want and don't want.

                Yet we do nothing of the kind why?

                How to make sure people would vote only once? sell(for a very low price) cards with encrypted keys, no one can use the card twice and that is good enough for trial runs of voting or mock up of said voting.

                 

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              Coach George (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 7:27pm

              Re: Re: We DO Control Our GOVT

              "Capitol Hill trivia for you: Did you know that often times the actual Congresspersons don't even READ the bills they're scheduled to vote on? They're quite often foisted down to one of their ASSISTANTS to condense and give them some sort of "Reader's Digest version", which don't necessarily include discreetly slipped-in trinkets that are written in such a way that they are MEANT to be overlooked, and signed into law anyway..."
              This is one reason I stopped watching C-Span. It was obvious the Senators and Congressmen didn't read the bills and amendments. Another other reason is that it was blatantly obvious that they want power and the only way for junior representatives to get it is to blindly Kiss the A$$'s of their leadership.
              I live inside the beltway and it makes me sick.

               

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                Coach George (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 7:29pm

                Re: Re: Re: We DO Control Our GOVT

                "Another other reason is that it was blatantly obvious that they want power and the only way for junior representatives to get it is to blindly Kiss the A$$'s of their leadership."
                Correction:
                Another reason is that it was blatantly obvious that they want power and the only way for junior representatives to get it is to blindly Kiss the A$$'s of their leadership.

                 

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        PRMan, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 2:49pm

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        Thank God you can control them.

        Can you please ask them to repeal these ridiculous, ineffective security measures?

        Please have it done within the week. Thanks.

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 3:27pm

          Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

          One more time without tripping the HTML code out:

          You missed the mark by *THIS* much. Congress too is filled with terrorists. Both congress and the low-life terrorists are out of control!

           

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 3:25pm

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        You missed the mark by >

         

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 5:53pm

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        Whether or not you want to accept it, WE control Congress.

        Only if by "WE" you mean the wealthy.

         

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        Jay (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 6:20am

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        We control Congress? Yeah... I got a bridge to sell you too.

         

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          Coach George (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 2:48pm

          Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

          WE, US Citizens.
          The Electoral college aside, one person one vote, regardless of wealth.
          We, the US Citizens are however Too LAZY to give a DAMM and the politicians know this. WE, the US Citizens, have given control to the politicians. If We, the US Citizens, cared enough WE, the US Citizens, can take it back.

          I hope my point is clear now.
          Nuff Said

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 3:07pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

            If We, the US Citizens, cared enough WE, the US Citizens, can take it back.

            I care. How do you propose I control congress? Just asking, because I have yet to find a way.

             

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              Coach George (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 7:34pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

              You, WE, control Congress by our Votes.
              Plain and Simple. Congressmen are up for re-election every two years, the Senators have 6 year terms.
              Build coalitions on line, the beauty of the internet.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 8:19pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

                You, WE, control Congress by our Votes.
                Plain and Simple. Congressmen are up for re-election every two years, the Senators have 6 year terms.


                I've got news for you, then: It doesn't work. I don't vote for them, yet they keep getting reelected and doing things I don't want them to do. Your theory is, in a word, bunk.

                 

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                  Coach George (profile), Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 7:47am

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

                  We, the US Citizens are Too LAZY to organize and give a DAMM and the politicians know this. WE, the US Citizens, have given control to the politicians. If We, the US Citizens, cared enough WE, the US Citizens, can take it back.

                  I hope my point is clear now.

                   

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                    Jay (profile), Nov 23rd, 2010 @ 1:20pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

                    Unfortunately, this rings hollow. Look at all the ways that a Congress(wo)man ensures reelection. Gerrymandering, splitting of the vote, and enforcement of the two-party system by little to no representation of other parties. Other parties can't really get steam going because of the electoral system. Congressmen can draw up lines of voting parties to favor themselves. Honestly, if voting were the ONLY way we could win this battle, we'd have a much better society right now.

                     

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                  Coach George (profile), Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 8:37pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

                  Do what Labor Unions Do, BOYCOTT!!
                  Boycott the airlines!
                  If you have to travel, try the bus or train.
                  If you have to fly, Boycott the scanners.
                  Blog it up, spread the word.
                  With enough peaceful dissent, the airlines will force a change.
                  This is one way we can effect change.

                   

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              Coach George (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 7:37pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The REAL danger

              Look at the statistics of how few American's vote in each general election.
              "American usage

              In U.S. politics, some parallels can be drawn between the general election in parliamentary systems and the biennial elections determining all House seats"

               

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        Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 5:47pm

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        if WE control congress, then who's controlling you?

         

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        Sirk, Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 1:00pm

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        WE definitely DO NOT control Congress. Corporations control Congress. (Or were you kidding?)

         

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        Coach George (profile), Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 8:36pm

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        Do what Labor Unions Do, BOYCOTT!!
        Boycott the airlines!
        If you have to travel, try the bus or train.
        If you have to fly, Boycott the scanners.
        Blog it up, spread the word.
        With enough peaceful dissent, the airlines will force a change.
        This is one way we can effect change.

         

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

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        Eliot, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 5:54pm

        Re: Re: The REAL danger

        Get real; most of the people working at big-city airports are now Muslim and they don't have to go through any security checks before they go onto planes for maintenance, even the crew cabins. If there really were a serious terrorist scheme to take planes down, they wouldn't have to do it as passengers, they could have complete access to the inside of the planes as employees! How many planes have been brought down by bombs planted by terrorists posing as employees? Not one. This TSA cr*p is pure theater. If they were serious, they would screen the employees, too, but they DO NOT. I have to conclude, therefore, that they know very well that there is NO terrorist threat, and the post 9/11 so-called terrorist attempts have been staged by the govt. to make us put up with this garbage.

         

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 6:26am

      Re: The REAL danger

      "Can do"??? Dont you mean "HAS done"

       

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      Andri, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 7:06am

      Re: The REAL danger

      Consider yourself asked.

       

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    Jake, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 6:59pm

    In all fairness, if there's a realistic prospect of one of your elected representatives perpetrating a terrorist atrocity, excessively zealous security procedures before boarding an airliner are the least of your country's problems.

     

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      Coach George (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 7:44pm

      Re:

      While I agree, 99.9% of the American public are not going to perpetrate a terrorist act yet we are subjected to the search.

      They make the laws, they should follow them.
      Nuff Said

       

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        Christopher (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 8:05pm

        Re: Re:

        That is the reason why these scanners SHOULD NOT BE USED! It is treating ALL passengers as potential criminals, and violates the Fourth Amendment.

        Our security on 9/11 was good enough. The FBI KNEW who the 9/11 hijackers were MONTHS before 9/11. Bush ordered the FBI to NOT pursue these people and wouldn't give them the necessary means to pursue these people.

         

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          Mike, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 8:50am

          Re: Re: Re:

          Naah, no 4th amendment violation here. We do not have a constitutional right to fly. Taking a flight is an elective procedure. If the scans offend you, drive. I went through a scan AND a patdown last time I flew. It was irritating, but thats only because it was early and I wanted to get through so I could get a cup of coffee.

           

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            Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 11:24am

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            You might want to re-read the 4th Amendment. It doesn't matter if the flight is elective or not, since the 4th describes search and seizure. I certainly find this security theater to be unnecessary.

             

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            Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 3:21pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Naah, no 4th amendment violation here. We do not have a constitutional right to fly. Taking a flight is an elective procedure.

            Ahh, I suppose you're one of those authoritarian apologists that agrees with the Supreme Court that the 4th amendment doesn't apply within 100 miles of the border either. If you don't want to loose your 4th protections, just don't go within 100 miles of the border, right? In fact, maybe we should just say you have no rights whatsoever if you leave home at all? Yeah, that's the ticket!

            Everyone would do well to remember that the US govt has military propaganda units whose job it is to troll discussion boards and post comments like the one above. Your tax dollars at work.

             

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            Dan, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 8:43pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Are you kidding? It's a clear cut, blatant 4th amendment violation since it's TSA (read Feds) doing the searches. Your statement "We do not have a constitutional right to fly." is irrelevant as that is not the subject of what is in the constitution; the "search" part is.

             

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            Popples bounce, Nov 23rd, 2010 @ 11:18am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: driving

            I'd love to drive home and back for Thanksgiving. I just don't have the time and there is the little issue of there being no road from Brisbane Australia to Chicago Illinois. When you solve that dilemma, then say you can drive. (Boat is 30 days and $4000 each way. Toss in the three day car ride each way and the problem gets worse. )

             

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            Anonymous Coward, Nov 23rd, 2010 @ 12:45pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re:

            Taking a flight is an elective procedure.

            My employer requires that I fly, it's not "elective" despite what apologists like yourself may try to claim.

             

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 3:51am

      Re:

      That is only because they are already doing those things in Congress.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 7:20pm

    You must be a bit desperate for stories. This is news? Snore.

     

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    abc gum, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 7:39pm

    Similar to health care ... if congress critters had to endure the same as common folk - things might change???

     

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    Anonymous coward, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 7:40pm

    Put down the torches and pitchforks, people. As the article points out, the exemption applies to congress critters escorted by the capitol police, who - presumably - have verified that the critter is in fact in congress and his luggage is secure.

    OTOH, what if a terrorist kidnapped the congressman, replaced him with a body double and sent him to the airport with a fake police squad? Starring Denzel Washington as the airport security officer who figures out the hoax and averts near-certain disaster!

     

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      abc gum, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 7:43pm

      Re:

      Did you miss the part where the pilot has to be screened? That really makes a lot of sense doesn't it.

      Pick up the pitch forks people, this is BS and we all know it.

       

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        anon, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 7:17pm

        Re: Re:

        actually.. pilots union got them off the hook with their logic being that they can take the plane down without bombs whenever they want

         

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          Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 3:40pm

          Re: Re: Re:

          actually.. pilots union got them off the hook with their logic being that they can take the plane down without bombs whenever they want

          Actually, the pilots' union argued that the scanners were a health hazard and the hand examinations were demeaning and that's why they should not have to go through it. But it's OK to irradiate and demean passengers.

          Another exception is for people who can afford to fly charter. If a terrorist wants to charter a jetliner and then fly it into a building, nothing is really stopping them.

          Another exception is for private aircraft. If John Travolta has a Scientoloogy meltdown and decides to fly his fully-fueled Boeing 707 into a building, what's stopping him? Not the TSA, that's for sure.

          No, these procedures are for the poor, scheduled airline sheeple who can't afford to say no and fly one of the alternatives.

           

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    DOlz (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 7:49pm

    They also have a reserved parking lot at the front of Washington National Airport. After all it's only fair that our public "servants" get treated better that their bosses.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 8:10pm

    So why do you take over Congress. People need to stop talking and take action.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 8:10pm

    dont*

     

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    anonymous, yeah, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 9:15pm

    for what it's worth...

    my dad's been in congress for around 20 years, and he's never skipped lines at reagan national. I don't know anyone except Boehner who has (and I know quite a few other congress-folks).

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 3:42pm

      Re: for what it's worth...

      my dad's been in congress for around 20 years, and he's never skipped lines at reagan national.

      Is that voluntary or does he just not rank very high in Congress?

       

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    Atkray (profile), Nov 19th, 2010 @ 10:56pm

    while we are syuck with hatch for 2 more year...

     

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      Overtkill (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 6:40pm

      Re: while we are syuck with hatch for 2 more year...

      Indeed. This is one rep who has had to deal with the TSA even though they knew who he was.

       

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    Dohn Joe, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 11:58pm

    Boner!

    John Boehner? No wonder he got to skip the line...imagine the surprise they'd find if they strip-searched John Fucking Boehner!!

     

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    Dohn Joe, Nov 19th, 2010 @ 11:59pm

    Boner!

    John Boehner? No wonder he got to skip the line...imagine the surprise they'd find if they strip-searched John Fucking Boehner!!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 12:48am

    I think congress doesn't care because those scanners actually don't work LoL

    http://www.americablog.com/2010/01/german-tv-highlights-failings-of-body.html

    ps: The German physicist eluded the T-Ray machine with all the components to make a bomb.

     

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    Selby LeBert, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 3:08am

    I understand

    Being military I can kind of understand this. I'm allowed to go through security in less than a minute if on orders, even for international flights. and if I'm in uniform I've been allowed to get on public transportation for free. It's not so much a rule or a law, but just courtesy I guess. because we have a place to be.

     

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      ofb2632 (profile), Nov 20th, 2010 @ 6:31am

      Re: I understand

      Being military, you are SERVING our great country and should be put first in line or be able to bypass it. That is one of the many ways we should be thanking our military. Congress on the other hand, no. Let them get a rifle and serve some time in Iraq. Then they can bypass security.
      I trust our men and women in uniform, not congress.

       

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      abc gum, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 7:04am

      Re: I understand

      "because we have a place to be"

      ... and all others are walking around aimlessly - and no one in the military would ever harm fellow troops or civvies.

       

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      ltlw0lf (profile), Nov 20th, 2010 @ 7:54pm

      Re: I understand

      I'm allowed to go through security in less than a minute if on orders, even for international flights.

      Recently? You've been extremely lucky, I guess.

      I fly on orders and have to deal with security. The last time I flew on orders I was sent through the rapiscan machine.

      And I know military folks serving as honor guard (those escorting soldiers/marines who gave their lives for this country,) who have had to deal with secondary inspection (and had to remove their class A jackets, shoes, and submit to a grope check.) I guess it may depend on the airport, but the ones in the US I've gone through have pretty much the same policy.

       

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    Trish, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 4:00am

    ok...

    people who make the laws shouldn't be able to make laws giving them special permissions. What are they, kings and queens? "Democracy". Yeah right.

     

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    The Devil's Coachman (profile), Nov 20th, 2010 @ 5:15am

    Congress teabags donkeys!

     

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    WG (profile), Nov 20th, 2010 @ 5:33am

    Here's an idea

    FIX CONGRESS!
    **********************************
    Congressional Reform Act of 2010

    1. Term Limits.

    12 years only, one of the possible options below..

    A. Two Six-year Senate terms
    B. Six Two-year House terms
    C. One Six-year Senate term and three Two-Year House terms

    2. No Tenure / No Pension.

    A Congressman collects a salary while in office and receives no pay when they are out of office.

    3. Congress (past, present, & future) participates in Social Security.

    All funds in the Congressional retirement fund move to the Social Security system immediately. All future funds flow into the Social Security system, and Congress participates with the American people.

    4. Congress can purchase their own retirement plan, just as all Americans do.

    5. Congress will no longer vote themselves a pay raise. Congressional pay will rise by the lower of CPI or 3%.

    6. Congress loses their current health care system and participates in the same health care system as the American people.

    7. Congress must equally abide by all laws they impose on the American people.

    8. All contracts with past and present Congressmen are void effective 1/1/11.

    The American people did not make this contract with Congressmen. Congressmen made all these contracts for themselves!


    Serving in Congress is an honor, not a career. The Founding Fathers envisioned citizen legislators; you serve your term(s), then go home and back to work.

     

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    ofb2632 (profile), Nov 20th, 2010 @ 6:19am

    lots of perks

    Congress can walk around security. They also can show up minutes before a flight and get on the plane on time. Why should they care for all the security measures when they can bypass them.
    Health care for Congress is paid by the Govt and continues after they leave office. Why should they care about health care, they and their families always get it.
    When Congress is voted out of office, they still receive pay. If you get fired, the company that fired you will not give you your full paycheck forever. Why should Congress worry about unemployment benefits, they will never be forced to use them.
    Mabe Congress is the real reason why we are in this situation. Start forcing them to comply to the same rules and laws we all are forced to follow.

     

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      Eliot, Apr 15th, 2011 @ 6:01pm

      Re: lots of perks

      All government employees should be forced to comply with the X-rated security theater we have to put up with. My brother-in-law is a lawyer with the State Department, and all he has to do is show his diplomatic pass and he breezes right through without dealing with security at all. He has no idea why the public is outraged.

       

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 7:24am

    Cool! now all we have to do is get our suicide bomber elected to Congress. That's getting easier and easier to do as more and more representatives have absolutely no credentials. Actually it's debatable if any of them even took a Civics class.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 7:46am

    Somebody please tell the NY Times that Boehner isn't speaker yet. The name they were searching for is Nancy Pelosi.

     

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    Michael, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 8:26am

    it's already covered:

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government,

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 10:17am

    "How about a 2-fer: a terrorist who gets voted into Congress!"

    Well, considering we already elected a terrorist as president, why bother with Congress?

    You are surprised that Congress doesn't have to go through the things they mandate us to go though? And you wonder why Charlie Rangal bothered to pay any taxes?

     

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      lover, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 1:59pm

      Re:

      [QUOTE]"How about a 2-fer: a terrorist who gets voted into Congress!"

      Well, considering we already elected a terrorist as president, why bother with Congress?[/QUOTE]

      I think you might find that George W Bush is the terroist.
      He has no morales, he's gave permission to torture suspected terroists only after his lawyers gave him the green light.
      And he's always banging on about God and Christianity, cant wait till he meets his maker. It will be really hot where he will be spending eternity.

       

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      shameless (profile), Nov 20th, 2010 @ 2:14pm

      Re:

      [QUOTE]"How about a 2-fer: a terrorist who gets voted into Congress!"

      Well, considering we already elected a terrorist as president, why bother with Congress?[/QUOTE]

      I think you might find that George W Bush is the terroist.
      He has no morales, he's gave permission to torture suspected terroists only after his lawyers gave him the green light.
      And he's always banging on about God and Christianity, cant wait till he meets his maker. It will be really hot where he will be spending eternity.

       

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    ts, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 11:19am

    "Well, considering we already elected a terrorist as president, why bother with Congress?"

    Come on man.. that's just stupid. Did McCarthyism not teach you anything? I'm no fan of Obama, but he is not a terrorist. I think Obama genuinely wants to do what is best for our country... even though I don't agree with most of his policies. But that certainly does not make him a terrorist.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 11:50am

    Here's reality: It is because Congress are members of the bourgeoisie and we're just subjected exploited working class slaves/serfs to be used & abused and treated accordingly.

    Karl Marx and Fredrick Engles is certainly starting to make sense if we became class consciousness.

     

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    Markle, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 12:31pm

    Boehner won't be Speaker until January. We'll see if he keeps his promise in March when the first "home" visits start.
    Let's also remember that Bush gave Dennis Hastert the keys to the Gulfstreams back in 2001. Pelosi didn't just march into the Pentagon and demand it. She inherited the privilege.

     

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    Angry Voter, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 2:08pm

    When will people understand that government is a tool to ensure preferential treatment for connected people and keep everyone else down?

    Congresswhores are also exempted from insider trading laws. It should come as no surprise then that the average congresswhore has over 2x the return as a full time market professional.

     

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    Nancy Pelosi, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 2:30pm

    Silly peons...

    I find this hilarious that you think you should be equal to us. TO US! I wouldn't even rank you all on the same level as my cat.

    Now stop your clamoring, peasants, and get back in line. Or I'll get my gavel.

     

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    bruce r., Nov 20th, 2010 @ 2:53pm

    TSA full body scans...

    I guess the law is above the law..... And that's all I have to say about that!!!

     

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    bumblefoot2004 (profile), Nov 20th, 2010 @ 3:38pm

    Stupid TSA policy... There are many

    I'm glad the TSA makes pilots go through their security, because that totally guarantees that they are not terrorists and that they are not guilty of bad intentions. The obvious fact that a suicidal/homicidal pilot could simply crash the plane after passing through this totally useful and effective security process seems to have escaped the TSA's logic process. I'm afraid of the TSA agents, not pilots and air crews.

     

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    Redditworld, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 4:31pm

    Stop tsa groping!!!!

    Hahahaha stop getting groped by TSA with the flightcup!!!!

    Check out the site and the video!!!

     

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    Daedalus, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 4:40pm

    Think like a terrorist.

    Would you bother striking where you've already won? These policies are demonstrating that they've succeeded in scaring people to the point of being willing to have their freedoms taken away in favor of practices that do no more than degrade us in the name of assumed security.

    What their next goal would be is to make us not feel safe going about our business, and that would be pretty easy to accomplish with plain ol' gasoline or combinations of household products, there's no restrictions on buying those. If the government reacted to that in the same manner as things on planes we'd likely be living in a police state in short order.

    This sort of thing isn't just a violation of privacy and decency, it's letting the terrorists hold sway over our lives more than they ought to.

     

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    vanessa, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 5:08pm

    So that's how I get around this. I guess I will be running for congress asap. My running mate will be bacon, because everyone loves it.

     

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    Tommy V, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 9:40pm

    Weird Complaint

    The purpose of security is for security. The law is not there to abuse everyone "equally". He's not cutting in line to get the last piece of cake for goodness sake.

    I would hope they continue to send through as many non-threats as possible. Any member, let alone leader, of Congress should be sent through, and anyone else that's identified as a non-threat.

    This is a silly politically motivated complaint that misses the point of security in the first place.

     

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      abc gum, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 7:59am

      Re: Weird Complaint

      "non-threats" - like the three year old?

      "This is a silly politically motivated complaint that misses the point "

      I believe it is you who have missed the point. Please excuse my complaining, but I get tired of the 'Do as I say, not as I do' crap. Congress is not above the law, there is no reason to exempt them from it. In fact, if congress were treated like common folk more often you might see legislation which actually addresses the issue rather than their bank account. In case you are unaware, congress routinely exempts themselves from that which they foist upon the rest of us.

       

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      Almost Anonymous (profile), Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 11:18am

      Re: Weird Complaint

      I... You... It's just...

      I don't even know how to begin explaining to you how stupid that post was.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 23rd, 2010 @ 2:18pm

      Re: Weird Complaint

      Where are you from? As far as I'm concerned there is no greater threat to this country than a congress critter, except for a congress critter and a lobbyist together....

      That kinda homeless looking, somewhat scruffy bearded semi-islamic looking individual, he's not really a threat, he's just headed out to buy another quicki-mart in the neighboring state....

      OH, I get it. He's a threat to the congress critter's lobbyist's corporate backer who was also looking at purchasing the same quicki-mart, obviously he needs to have naked porno scans taken, be groped repeatedly by 'bubba', and then taken out back and water-boarded for a while...

      Sure I'm kidding.... sort of

       

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    Jayce, Nov 20th, 2010 @ 10:41pm

    Vote Bubbles the Chimp

    Please, next election, for all races, write in Bubbles the Chimp. He may fling poo, but he can't possibly be as bad as these assholes.

     

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    Dunlop (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 1:53am

    We are not. End of story.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 6:02am

    Is this a far greater security risk than us peons being able to get through with a potential device? These people have access to actually important and sensitive locations and information and are in a prime position to be blackmailed and manipulated

     

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    Bradley Stewart, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 6:27am

    Big Surprise

    OK I am pretty sure that most of the members of Congress are not interested in blowing up a Jet Airliner especially one they are on but lets face it at least half of the members are crazy as Loons. Just to be sure I have an idea that will pretty much make us feel just a bit safer just in case one of them goes a little funny in the head on travel day. How about sticking them in caged dunk tanks. The public could throw baseballs at a mechanical arm outside of the tank and drop them into a tank full of water. That should do it for most explosives and more important it would make us all feel good.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 3:53pm

      Re: Big Surprise

      OK I am pretty sure that most of the members of Congress are not interested in blowing up a Jet Airliner...

      Neither are most members of the public.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Nov 23rd, 2010 @ 2:30pm

      Re: Big Surprise

      Who said that they had to be aware that they were going to blow up the plane?

      Lets say 'Ajihadonyou' gets a friendly lobbyist to arrange a meeting with a congress critter for business discussion (aka, getting a bribe, being 'lobbied', etc). As part of the 'discussion' a gift is presented to the congress critter, a personalized gucci briefcase, or product sample, etc. Now lets say that the 'gift' is really a small altitude triggered explosive with a chemical payload (not enough to bring down a plane, but enough to kill everyone on board). What happens when said congress critter bypasses security on his flight home?

       

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    Georgann Marks, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 6:50am

    chidren of privilege exempt as well.

    It's much worse than that. I understand from a Southwest Employee at LAX that the families of privilege don't go though this either.

    Do you think Chelsea Clinton gets felt up?

    The Bush twins?

    cheney's daughter?

    Not on your life. This kind of stuff makes people so mad - we should be worried about domestic terror from ordinary citizens!!

    EVERYONE hates the US government - and with good reason.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 8:25am

    ""non-threats" - like the three year old?"

    The three-year old himself is a non threat, unfortunately, he also sounds like a pretty good mule to me. Who is escorting the three year old?

    "In case you are unaware, congress routinely exempts themselves from that which they foist upon the rest of us."

    You're not going to get me defend Congress. I dislike the TSA, and I dislike the Congress. I think it is mostly a corrupt institution and I suspect someone is making a great deal of money with the budget of the TSA. Who is selling those machines again?

    But smartly choosing who will bypass the stupid TSA lines is what I want!!! I want them to show more discretion of who they let through quickly and who they search. I want them to better use their resources.

    I'm going to complain when they actually do that? I want them to do it more!

     

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      abc gum, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 8:54am

      Re:

      "he also sounds like a pretty good mule to me"

      Given your requested exemption, a congress critter would make a fine mule - no?

      Maybe congress would be given more respect if they did not exempt themselves from that which is a burden upon everyone else. At least that would be a good start.

       

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      Thebes, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 12:29pm

      Re:

      If the government has become bloated with mission creep to the point even a FREAKING 3-year-old is a potential terrorist;

      Then it should be clear to all that it is the US Federal Government which is the real threat to America.

       

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    Shel10 (profile), Nov 21st, 2010 @ 8:30am

    Elected officials could be terrorists!

    How do we know that some of the individuals we are electing to public office aren't terrorists?

     

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      abc gum, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 8:58am

      Re: Elected officials could be terrorists!

      I thought it was a well established fact that some of them are, they used fear to drive votes.

       

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    Rachel, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 10:49am

    During the final years of Communism, what pissed off normal people most was that there were rules for them... and entirely different rules for the party and leadership members. The party had become so arrogant they had lost all contact with the realities common people were facing, and did not even understand why people were so pissed off.

    Also, the system had become random. You could no longer predict what consequences your actions would have. Tiny transgressions might result in severe punishment -- while big ones might be ignored.

    Random porn scans/sexual harrassment for some, while those infront of or behind you in line are spared, are an example of random enforcement of punishments.

    I doubt the US can get out of this by anything short of a brutal tyranny. The next president of the US is going to be a brutal law and order man.

    BTW, Germans are by now openly laughing at our fearmongering politicans. All respect for authorities is gone.

    "Be scared! Be very scared! Immediately! If you refuse to be scared, you will get sent to your room! And no ice cream!"

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 2:59pm

    Bankers Too!

    This reminds me of when the Clinton administration was trying to outlaw strong encryption. Clinton wanted to make an exception for bankers and someone asked him why bankers should be exempt. He answered, "Because bankers are good citizens". Obviously, the rest of us were considered bad citizens.

     

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    David G, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 3:24pm

    The time is at hand

    Time to start disseminating the names of TSA agents. Pedophile, molesting TSA agents, yet another violation of our rights. Add it to the list of gov’t violations of our right:
    They violate the 1st Amendment by placing protesters in cages, banning books like “America Deceived II” and censoring the internet.
    They violate the 2nd Amendment by confiscating guns.
    They violate the 4th and 5th Amendment by molesting airline passengers.
    They violate the entire Constitution by starting undeclared wars for foreign countries.
    Impeach Obama and sweep out the Congress, except Ron Paul.
    (Last link of Banned Book):
    http://www.iuniverse.com/Bookstore/BookDetail.aspx?BookId=SKU-000190526

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 3:53pm

    Great! Now all they gotta do is find a normal person who hates the government and get them in the government so they can dodge the government and wreck our country. Oh wait...

    CURRENT STATE OF AFFAIRS

     

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    VancouverDave, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 7:27pm

    Laws don't apply to lawmakers.

    Never have, never will.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 8:13pm

    assclowns

     

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    Ken, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 8:33pm

    I am totally and completely against this. It infuriates me, it's unreasonable and completely unamerican.

    .... unless I am ever elected to congress, then it's a good idea....

     

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    Androgynous Cowherd, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 10:42pm

    What is this, TSA Week at Techdirt? :)

     

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    Yomama, Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 1:00am

    We, the people deserve this. After all, We elected them into office-most for multiple terms. There should be a term limit because they do get out of touch with their constituents.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 6:17am

    pigs

     

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    Thomas (profile), Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 6:33am

    Congressmen never...

    worry about what happens to citizens. The one and only time Congress cares about voters is when it's election season. They know that voters are stupid and don't remember what happened last week.

    Do Congressmen ever even ride on commercial aircraft anyway? I thought they all had private planes provided by their sponsors.

     

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    Jack Roper, Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 6:40am

    TSA scanning machines

    Congress was elected and now again they elect themselves out of the humiliating TSA body scanning machines.The power of power shows itself again. We the public eye can see through noncompliant politicians. Their actions blind them. The last election proved our point.

    Jack Roper
    Milwaukee

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Nov 22nd, 2010 @ 8:38am

    It's good to be the king!

     

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    Jimbo, Feb 21st, 2011 @ 10:18pm

    What to do about it?

    What to do about a Congress that's bought and paid for by the investment-banks? Well, to stop paying taxes would be illegal. Plus, Congress really really needs the money.

     

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    shiny, Jan 25th, 2014 @ 5:00am

    We are not. End of story.

     

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