by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
failure, john mica, tsa

Guy Who Created The TSA Says It's Failed, And It's Time To Dismantle It

from the say-that-again dept

One of the politicians instrumental in creating the TSA, Rep. John Mica, who wrote the legislation that established the TSA, has apparently decided that the whole thing has been a failure and should be dismantled. He notes that "the whole program has been hijacked by bureaucrats."
“It mushroomed into an army,” Mica said. “It’s gone from a couple-billion-dollar enterprise to close to $9 billion.”

As for keeping the American public safe, Mica says, “They’ve failed to actually detect any threat in 10 years.”

“Everything they have done has been reactive. They take shoes off because of [shoe-bomber] Richard Reid, passengers are patted down because of the diaper bomber, and you can’t pack liquids because the British uncovered a plot using liquids,” Mica said.

“It’s an agency that is always one step out of step,” Mica said.

It cost $1 billion just to train workers, which now number more than 62,000, and “they actually trained more workers than they have on the job,” Mica said.

“The whole thing is a complete fiasco,” Mica said.
There's a lot more at that link. Now, one could (and perhaps should) note that when Mica wrote the legislation, his particular political party was in power, and now it's not. So the cynical voice might say that his words are somewhat politically motivated. And one can (and probably should) ask how it was that Mica didn't expect this kind of result. This is what the government does. It creates agencies that are then "hijacked by bureaucrats." While it's nice to see him realizing this now, it's too bad he didn't see it back then.

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  1. identicon
    MattW, 15 Sep 2011 @ 11:59am


    @Anonymous coward - we had terrorists and we had airport security long before the TSA, and people still flew. We would have them after the TSA was abolished.

    I would be MORE willing to travel with the TSA gone. I'm far more scared of my 9 year-old daughter being scarred for life by some overzealous TSA groper than I am of terrorists.

    The TSA is an example of a political reaction. Without a clear way to respond, the government created an agency with no good plan and no goals, metrics, or accountability, and it has become a complete failure.

    The TSA has never intercepted any terrorist plot in progress. They tout finding drugs or swiss army knives as "success". Likewise, they HAVE failed to prevent multiple attackers from boarding planes (see: shoe bomber), and, as Mica points out, they are entirely reactive.

    At some point in the future, with or without the TSA, an attack will succeed. Oh, well. That may sound flippant, but life has risks. You get in a car, you risk dying. You eat a burger, you risk dying. (3000 people die per year to foodborne pathogens.)

    What won't happen again is another 9/11; aware passengers, hardened cockpits, etc, mean that the best you can do on an airplane is take an airplane down. That's something we lived with for decades with terrorists attacking airplanes, long before 9/11.

    Meanwhile, while we waste our money on the TSA in airports trying to prevent "another 9/11" that cannot happen, we are neglecting port security, infrastructure security, and computer/network infrastructure security, all of which are dramatically more vulnerable and could have a much, much larger impact.

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