Posts Tagged ‘TSA’

Buying Trust

Tuesday, July 19th, 2011

Looks like the days of getting intrusive pat-downs and backscatter radiation are over with. Well…for a price.

The TSA is looking to roll out Known Traveler Passenger Screening this fall, where people can “opt-in” to divulge an enormous amount of personal information in order to expedite the screening process for flights.

If we can confirm a person’s identity and learn a little more about them through information they opt to provide, and then combine that information with our other layers of security, we can strengthen air travel security for all Americans while at the same time speeding up the screening process for those participating in the pilot.

Okay, so it’s an attempt to refocus resources and help the process. I’m inclined to say it’s a decent idea, though I’m cocking an eyebrow at its execution. It smells pretty heavy of the schoolyard bully saying, “If you give me fifty cents in the morning I won’t have to take a dollar at lunch.” Except, you know…it makes us safer…I guess.

How To Beat The TSA

Friday, July 1st, 2011

Apparently all you need to do to beat the TSA is be a Nigerian and have an old boarding pass under someone else’s name.

Olajide Oluwaseun Noibi reportedly boarded Virgin America Flight 415 at New York’s JFK International Airport bound for Los Angeles on Friday … Noibi apparently went through and cleared the physical screening process, but no one caught the invalid travel documents.

Great job, TSA. I feel much safer. Make sure you strip search that 95 year old and that 6 year old.

I Made You, I Can Destroy You

Wednesday, April 20th, 2011

Looks like Rep. John Mica, the man who wrote the TSA legislation, now wants to get rid of the project. Could he be coming to his senses? Could he realize he created a monster? Well, except that he’s not trying to destroy it, he’s trying to privatize it. Because they’re threatening to unionize.

Baby steps, I guess.

It’s A Start, I Guess

Tuesday, January 25th, 2011

Finally, a politician has found the intestinal fortitude to stand up to the TSA and sue them for violations of a citizen’s right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. Well…”politician.” Well…specifically “a (singular) citizen’s right.”

[Jesse] Ventura is asking a federal judge in Minnesota to issue an injunction ordering officials to stop subjecting him to “warrantless and suspicionless” scans and body searches.

He had a hip replacement and now he will always set off a metal detector, and thus always get a pat-down. Okay, so it sucks that he’s doing this for himself and because of the TSA’s widespread abuse of power. That being said, it’s a step in the right direction. Legal precedence in this case would go a long way for the other American citizens that are offended and violated by these scans and pat-downs.

A Gift from Cracked

Saturday, December 25th, 2010

The 7 Dumbest Things Ever Done By Airport Security

Just for you guys to enjoy on Christmas.

More Body Scanners

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

The House just bought a whole bunch more body scanners. This being the real world, I can only assume it cost a whole lot of money.

The Transportation Security Administration would get $5.26 billion for aviation security…slightly more than the $5.21 billion it received last year.

$.05 billion* ($50 million) isn’t that much money, right? I’m glad that budget is nice and balanced, and now we can start spending the nation’s money on important things. Like the illusion of security.

*originally a typo, thanks Pitt

TSA: Come for the Rights Violations, Stay for the Gropings.

Tuesday, November 30th, 2010

So I flew to Chicago yesterday. I departed GSP airport, which, since it’s relatively small, doesn’t have a full body scanner. What they do have, however, is an abundance of overpaid, gorilla-like TSA employees.

My bag set off some sort of alarm; apparently the machine doesn’t like small laptops and stacks of mechanical drawings. The screeners then informed me that a) they were going to search my bag, and b) they were going to search _me_. I’d been patted down at airport security before, but this time…it felt different. I stood on the foot markings, while the uniformed officer checked me out. _VERY_ thoroughly. He felt up my leg- all the way up. He reached around inside my trousers- all the way around. And every other part you can think to name. And some you might not.

After he’d finished, a woman who was apparenty in charge came over to watch them go through my bags. She said something to me (I honestly can’t recall, but it was fairly moronic) and I told her, idignantly, that I had just been felt up. She said “I bet you it wasn’t as bad as you thought it would be.” I was enraged. I had just been felt up- I mean, felt up, everywhere. I had been treated like a criminal, presumed guilty, been unreasonably searched, and this woman has the gall, the absolute gall, to stand there and tell me it probably wasn’t that bad?? I choked out “I’m not going to reply to that.” and she recoiled slightly, and scurried off.

I. Hate. Flying.

The Money Trail

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

So, turns out Michael Chertoff, the former Secretary for the Department of Homeland Security that’s been going on TV brow-beating the American people about how safe and needed body scanners are, runs a security and risk management firm and one of his clients is one of the biggest manufacturers of body scanning machines in the country.

No shit. That’s all I have to say about the entire happy coincidence. No shit.

Americans should be angry because the $25 million in stimulus funds that were used to order the first 150 of these body scanners could have been used to create jobs. The taxpayers could have avoided what’s akin to martial law being implemented in the airport.

Yep. We damn well should be angry. Too bad we can’t vote any of the Homeland Security or TSA mafia bosses out when elections come. Maybe we should get an overseeing group to oversee the overseers. More government always seems to be the right answer.

We have always done this

Thursday, November 4th, 2010

A writer for the NY Times details his experience opting out of a full body scan. He talks about the yelling accompanied by shame shame shame of everybody staring, then followed by getting groped by somebody with rough hands.

Matt’s been malcontent about this for a while, so I’m not going to pretend I discovered all this. But what did hit me was what the TSA agent told him when he asked for an explanation for the new process.

We have always done this.

No. No you really fucking haven’t.

The process has always been the same, at every airport.

Jesus shit it really hasn’t. Now they’re not just singling you out, making you feel like a good cow that does what is told. Now they’re after your damn memories. The TSA is going to insist that they aren’t encroaching on your right to privacy or your right not to get felt up because it’s always been this way. All those times you flew on a plane before 9/11? No, we still fondled you.

I was going to say this reminded me so much of 1984, but sadly I’m a bit more of a nerd.

Wasn’t there something about not changing our lives too much, or the terrorists win? I suppose it wouldn’t take much for someone to erase that from memory too.