Don't blame us! We're only doing our job!

Amazing as it may sound, the government is trying to get people to feel sorry for the TSA screeners.

"Our concern is that the public not confuse the people implementing the policies with the people who developed the policies," said Sharon Pinnock, the union's director of membership and organization.
I love it.

"Don't blame me! I was just following orders!"

It would be nice if Ms. Pinnock could have at least provided a few names of those who deserve blame. As she says, "the people who developed the policies."

But of course, the "the people who developed the policies" are anonymous apparatchiks too.

Because they have created an insular and near-anonymous system, no one is really accountable and there is no one to blame -- as even members of Congress discovered when they tried ever so gently to ask TSA administrator John Pistole if he might consider backing off just a little.

The answer was NO!

In a hearing of the Senate Commerce Committee on Wednesday, November 17, TSA administrator John Pistole was pressed on changing security procedures in light of the continuing citizen revolt against TSA's increasingly heavy-handed Kabuki theater.

He said, simply, "No."

In other words, "let them be groped."

(Or irradiated in a naked body scanner. Or take Amtrak. Whatever.)

Take Amtrak? How long do you think it will be before the mindless, unelected, nameless "they" who run our lives do the same thing with Amtrak and every other public conveyance?

Pistole, too, is only doing his job. He is a mere functionary, and he is as replaceable as any of the rest of them.

He is only obeying his orders!

We have this fiction going that the elected officials are "in charge." That myth placates the little people, until they see that it makes no difference who you voted for. There is no one to complain to, as it is now been carefully been built into the system that no one is responsible:

As the power of the technician waxes, that of the politician wanes, until he is little more than a rubber stamp.

This is precisely what has happened at TSA, as the agency implements policies that Congress has not authorized but is also powerless to revoke.

The monstrous Leviathan into which TSA has quickly, albeit all too predictably, morphed is a textbook illustration of Ellul's thesis. Several elected representatives of the people politely suggested that a political technician, a bureaucrat, might possibly want to think about maybe giving, you know, just a bit of thought to not forcing American citizens to choose between being irradiated or groped, and he simply said:

"No."

That's a quote. He didn't mince words, he didn't equivocate, he didn't evade the question. He simply said, "No."

And the politicians did nothing, because they had no power to do anything. The technician had the power, and they all knew it.

In this same way, little by little and in virtually every nook and cranny of our daily lives, the role and extent of the bureaucrat -- the political technician -- extends to the point of near universality, and the seemingly endless, self-replicating rules that constrain and bind us become like white noise, unheard for its ubiquity.

In the old days, people didn't go for that "just going my job" crap." They held the guys who did things to people responsible for their actions and they resorted to things like tar and feathers.

What else could they do? Petition King George? A lot of good that would have done.

Might as well petition Congress, which lacks the authority to petition John Pistole, because after all, he is only doing his job, and he really isn't ultimately in charge. (As to who really is in charge, they're anonymous as well as interchangeable, and for their own safety you little people have no right to know who or where they are.)

At least King George had authority. And because people knew who he was, he might have even been more accessible.

But don't misread me. I'm only commenting on the irony, not making the case for monarchy.

UPDATE: Many thanks to Glenn Reynolds for the link, and a warm welcome to all.

Please bear in mind that I was not implying that TSA-dom is the moral equivalent of King George, because I think in some ways the present rulers are worse.(There is at least some comfort in knowing who is screwing you.)

Comments invited, agree or disagree.

posted by Eric on 11.22.10 at 09:24 PM










Comments

It is worse than that Eric,

There were quite a few cheering on the violation of rights when it was done to "them". And now the precedents have been set:

http://www.classicalvalues.com/archives/2010/11/it_is_way_worse.html

The complaint department was closed long ago.

M. Simon   ·  November 22, 2010 10:58 PM

"There is no one to complain to...no one is responsible."

You're wrong, Eric. I've been secretly given the names - and will reveal them here, now:

Wesley Mouch, Dr. Floyd Ferris, Eugene Lawson, Fred Kinnan, and Mr. Thompson.

They can be reach at the headquarters of The Unification Board in Washington, D.C.

Frank   ·  November 23, 2010 12:06 AM

I'm so glad the Marxist community has destroyed real history so these 'accredited' people will be 'surprised' when it repeats itself.

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

Don51   ·  November 23, 2010 10:41 AM

"Just following orders." I thought the Nuremberg Trials put that argument to rest as a defense.

And before someone tries to invoke Godwin's Law on me, I suggest a close examination of the TSA's behavior.

Frank, add Gloria Allred's name to that list. The link's in my name.

gus3   ·  November 23, 2010 10:46 AM

The thing is, the policitians do have the power to do some thing. They can gut its funding or eliminate the branch entirely. It's seems a bit redundant to me with the FBI, CIA, and US Marshals or any other actual law enforcement agency. Shoot, after what I've seen recently, I think some Border Patrol checkpoint people would be a better fit.

woofty   ·  November 23, 2010 10:55 AM

the agency implements policies that Congress has not authorized but is also powerless to revoke.

No molestation without representation!

HeatherRadish   ·  November 23, 2010 11:01 AM

O, come on, please. Congress isn't powerless to revoke these powers, if it wants to--but Congress doesn't "want" anything until 218 representatives and 60 senators say so. (Not 51 senators, because of filibusters.)

We just don't have the votes. Pistole has, and he knows it. For this and worse.

R.   ·  November 23, 2010 11:09 AM

You don't have to get the pat down if you go through the screening. Now suppose we weren't talking about the full body scan but the metal detector. Wouldn't you have to be patted down if you set off the metal detector? Wouldn't security pull you aside if you refused to be screened?

Half the videos on youtube that supposedly show TSA agents molesting people have extenuating circumstances. On redstate they have one video they describe as another molestation and on the video the mother is sitting right there talking calmly with the TSA agent. She even says "good job" when the kid complies with security. She, at one point, even helps the TSA guy out so that he can, I guess molest her kid.
In another one, there is outrage that the kid had no shirt on. THE FATHER TOOK THE KIDS SHIRT OFF to make the screening go quicker! And he only was patted down because he set off the metal detectors.

Are you now saying that we can't even pat people down if they set off metal detectors or refuse to go through securty? Surely they shouldn't be able to set off metal detectors, and not even be patted down, and then still be allowed to get on planes right?

If security guards are genuinely molesting kids, there mother is not going to be standing there letting it happen, and the fact that she isn't suggests that some of this characterization is hyperbolic and an overreaction.

Yes, we dont want to be needlessly patted down, but only a small percentage are and thats only if they dont go through security or they set off alarms. And if we didn't have the new digital scanners and they refused to go through security or set off the metal detector, they would similarly be patted down. Even if they were older grandmother types or young kids.
You shoulnd' have an expectation that you can not comply with airport security and still be able to get on a plane.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 11:25 AM

M.Simon, long live Alissa Rosenbaun!!!!

Allencarguy   ·  November 23, 2010 11:55 AM

It's all a precise plan to stop AQ attacks while they laugh their heads off as Grammy gets groped.

bandit   ·  November 23, 2010 12:13 PM

This is the death of a thousand cuts that AQ promised us. They didn't mention we would be cutting on ourselves. Asymmetrical warfare wins again.

Sheesh - let's just shut down the airlines now - it'll be cheaper.

Bill Johnson   ·  November 23, 2010 12:26 PM

@R: What if I can't be exposed to radiation? What if I work for the airline or travel a lot? What if I just plain don't want to be exposed to it? This brushes by, of course, the indignities and objections to the imaging system itself, which shows naked images of me to an inspector. (and saves - yes, they're lying to you)

What if I'm a rape victim, or was sexually abused, or have another psychological condition? What if I have kids with me, who I don't want to expose to radiation or fondling? Laugh if you want, but combinations of many or all of these cases are not absurd, they're a statistical certainty.

"You shoulnd' have an expectation that you can not comply with airport security and still be able to get on a plane."

You're right. That's why we have to throw your toe-sucking cowardly statist mindset into the harbor, along with the "airport security" it has spawned. Allow weapons to be declared and carried and turn off the metal detectors altogether.

hitnrun   ·  November 23, 2010 12:40 PM

God I wish Bush were still in charge. No, no, I get it, he created this TSA monstrosity, and bad on him. He tried to make it a contractor function with government oversight so we would have some accountability, but lost that battle to the union enthusiasts.

What I mean is, if Bushco were still in charge, then we would have the civil liberty fetishists of the Left allied with us in the effort to reign in the TSA. And lord knows after 8 long years of their endless caterwalling at every real and imagined excess employed by Republicans in the GWoT, they and their henchmen in the media and academia are quite effective when they sense partisan advantage. Now with their boy in charge, not so much.

I wonder what they are doing now?

Vanguard of the Commentariat   ·  November 23, 2010 12:45 PM

R, you don't know what you're talking about. It is entirely possible to get scanned, and *still* be pulled aside for the gov't grope. Gloria Allred got both, as the link I provided above demonstrates.

"If security guards are genuinely molesting kids, there mother is not going to be standing there letting it happen, and the fact that she isn't suggests that some of this characterization is hyperbolic and an overreaction." -- Or the mother understands that if she protests in the slightest manner, she'll end up behind bars, the kid will be taken from her and put into foster care based on this flimsy excuse, and it will cost her every big-ticket item she owns to get the kid back.

If you think that excuse is too flimsy, I suggest you ask the new mom who got "busted" for a positive drug test, because she ate a poppy-seed bagel.

"we dont want to be needlessly patted down, but only a small percentage are" -- First they came for the flyers, and I didn't speak up, because I don't fly...

Go back under your bridge, you worthless troll.

gus3   ·  November 23, 2010 12:47 PM

Congress really insn't powerless to respond to the TSA...it can do something that will grab the attention of every bureaucrat in DC...simply DONT FUND IT IN THE COMING FISCAL YEAR.

That would certainly get their attention. Sure, you can have this nameless, faceless unaccountable bureaucracy...but we're not going to pay for it.

Rich Vail   ·  November 23, 2010 12:58 PM

The politicians damn well COULD do things about it; IF they had the balls/integrity/gave a damn enough to do so.

I noted on another site the TSA weenies were telling people "Please don't cause problems tomorrow, you're only hurting other travelers!", presumably by letting the TSA do what it wants without protest is somehow helping people. Some idiot editorial pleaded "Don't hold up the lines, write a letter to TSA!" As if he believes WE believe TSA gives a crap what we think.

Firehand   ·  November 23, 2010 1:07 PM

jr565 - you seem to think that the parents who "help" the TSA show by their actions that they approve. How do you know? Could they not just be wanting to get it over with as soon as possible? Could they be thinking if they are not obsequiously subjective themselves that they might be separated from their child during "inspection"? Or that none of them will get on the plane?

You do have a point about this not being restricted to times and places where the porno scanners are used. You've also left out any discussion as to whether those scanners are justifiable.

I well remember some authoritarian thugs at airport security BEFORE 9/11 and the TSA. I've also witnessed some humanitarian common sense from some TSA agents. (Such as letting families of soldiers heading to Iraq accompany him to the gate so they could spend as much time with him as possible.Some have been allowed to meet returning soldiers at the gate also.)

I've never been a frequent flyer and I'm thrilled I don't have to be for a job. As such, I stopped flying a few years ago because the increased hassle just wasn't worth it. I also happen to like driving.

But during the relatively few times I flew after 9/11, I always managed to carry on contraband. It's extremely easy and my method wouldn't be foiled by any of the enhanced screening methods. I almost always got my carry-ons searched... and they still never found them. It. Whatever :-)

My first flight after 9/11 was before the TSA was created. There were certainly enhanced security measures. And, if these measures (which were not all that intrusive, but rather time-consuming) were still being used, my method would not work.

It really is security theatre, much like it is at the border patrol checkpoints I've been through.

Donna B.   ·  November 23, 2010 1:39 PM

Indeed, it's the triumph of the permanent bureaucracy. The primarily-Democrat permanent bureaucracy, oddly enough.

Dick Stanley   ·  November 23, 2010 1:52 PM

There is one argument made in favor of accepting all this that drives me up a wall for it's sheer stupidity. "You don't have to fly. Flying is a privilege, not a right". For all you people out there that think this makes sense, I have one question.

What is the first thing they taught you in Driver's Ed?

That's right. Driving is a privilege, not a right.

By rolling over and accepting a violation of your fourth amendment rights in order to get on an airplane, you have granted the government the authority disregard your rights whenever you travel in any form of transportation. No slippery slope involved. Grant it for one form of travel, grant it for all. The precedent is set and agreed upon.

Notice, I didn't say public transportation. All transportation. Remember, it's a privilege, not a right.

Lehmamaki   ·  November 23, 2010 2:09 PM

This is the logicial progression of the Democrat's preferred policy of treating terrorism as a "police matter" rather than as a military matter the way President Bush did. Nor, if we allow the Democrats and their TSA cronies the last word on this, will it even be the final step for there is no limit as to how far things can go in the name of internal security when the intermediate "police matter" steps fail.

Towering Barbarian   ·  November 23, 2010 2:13 PM

I guess we'll finally see the efficacy of this TSA approach when they finally catch a terrorist. If I was fishing as hard as they are, after a million or so casts, I might move to a more likely fishing hole (or procedure). Nope. They'll fine us $11,000 (or pesos?) for refusing their tender attentions. Isn't it amazing that the progressives are so concerned about second-hand smoke but not primary exposure to ionizing radiation.

SenatorMark4   ·  November 23, 2010 2:32 PM

you seem to think that the parents who "help" the TSA show by their actions that they approve. How do you know? Could they not just be wanting to get it over with as soon as possible? Could they be thinking if they are not obsequiously subjective themselves that they might be separated from their child during "inspection"? Or that none of them will get on the plane?

You do have a point about this not being restricted to times and places where the porno scanners are used. You've also left out any discussion as to whether those scanners are justifiable.


Which is why I think this whole argument posed by you libertarians is fundametally dishonest. If you watch the video of the women helping out the TSA agent, she is not outraged that her son is being harmed by the TSA guy nor thinking that her son is being molested. She is thinking "Is all of this really necessary?" But it's not a case of the mere pat down being SEXUAL ASSAULT. So, if it's not SEXUAL ASSAULT libertarians and conservatives shouldn't make a case that it is. Or at the very least provide a video that shows that.
Where you are fundamentally dishonest though is that this is basically libertarians saying that they should be able to dictate that airlines have no security. Any scan would be too much for you. Let me ask you, do you own the airlines? If an airline is brought down do you lose the money that an airline would have to pay to replace IT'S property? can a company protect itself from harm and or protect it's property from harm? If it can, then it sets up the security system that it needs to protect itself. So what justification do you have to say that a scanner is unjustifiable or that if you set off their scanner that they can't pat you down to make sure you're not going to do something to damage their property. If you own an airline then you can say what security is or isn't necessary. But if you are going to an airline and they've set up a metal detector and you want to get on the plane you go through their security protocol. If you go to a bar and they have bouncers carding people you get carded. If yo are meeting the president and they pat you down you accept that you are going to be patted down. Or you don't meet the president.
Who cares if YOU don't that an xray machine is feasible.You're not responsible for security (though I bet if you were you'd have x ray machines) nor do you own the company.
AND if you refuse to go through security as setup by the airlines or by the bar, they can refuse you service. No shirt no shoes no service. No walking through the x ray machine, then don't get on the plane. If you don't like that airports have xray machines then don't fly.
But do you really think it's realistic to expect that you should be able to not walk through an xray machine and still get on a plane? Do you really tthing that it's realistic to literally set off the alarms and not have security check you out? Where are you getting this sense of entitelment from?
I know you guys want to do the smart security like the have in El Al, yet even they have xray machines. Are you going to ask what the justification is of those machines are too? They'll tell you if you don't walk through the machine then don't get on our plane. And if you don't want them to check your bag, don't get on our planes. Not your planes. Their planes. So it really boils down to you think that airlines should have no security whatsoever that inconveniences you in any way.
I would argue, if you set off an alarm that can't be explaned by removing an item from your pocket that you will be patted down. If that's too much for you, then again, don't fly.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 2:53 PM

Bill Johnson wrote:
What if I'm a rape victim, or was sexually abused, or have another psychological condition? What if I have kids with me, who I don't want to expose to radiation or fondling? Laugh if you want, but combinations of many or all of these cases are not absurd, they're a statistical certainty.

That you should expect security to not conduct security measures because you had something done to you in the past is absurd. If you are getting on a plane with your kids you are exposing them to radiation, because the mere act of flying exposes you to radiation. and how is a company supposed to take account of your past sexual abuse in their security protocol? Thats like saying the roller coaster ride says you have to be 5 feet tall but I'm 4'10" can you redesign the rollercoaster to suit me? And I have motion sickness so can you make the ride less bumpy?
or, a store closes at 5 but you always run a bit late so could you keep the store open till 5:15pm. If you can't make it to the store on time then theyr'e not going to hold the door open. The store is not there for you. You can either abide by the rules or not abide by the rules.
If you are averse to being touched beuase of some sexual problem in the past and are claustrophobic so don't want to walk through an xray machine, should they not make you go through one? That makes no sense whatsoever. That is a requirement to get on their plane and you either decide that that requirement is someting you will go through or not. And what if you go through and an alarm goes off. Will the fact that you don't like being touched means that a security guard can't do his job and make sure you aren't a danger before you get on board an airlines plane? HE has to account for why you are setting off an alarm. why do you think that your being overly sensitive to touch should mean he has to put all other passengers on a plane in jeapordy becuase he can't pat you down? Again, where is this entitlement coming from?
In nearly all the cases where people have been patted donw, its been because they didn't go through the scanner. The alternative is to be pat down. BUt it would be the same if there were no scanners and just the metal detector. That scan is what they're determining whether you should or should not get on the plane. And if you refuse to go through the body scanner, they still don't know, therefore have to pat you down. and if you refuse to go through an xray machine theyd ahve to pat you down.Or if you went through the xray machine and it went off they'd then have to verify why you are setting off alarms, and they would pat you down. You don't get on planes unless they determine that you are safe to get on a plane. That is basic security.

Anonymous   ·  November 23, 2010 3:07 PM

DonnaB wrote:
By rolling over and accepting a violation of your fourth amendment rights in order to get on an airplane, you have granted the government the authority disregard your rights whenever you travel in any form of transportation. No slippery slope involved. Grant it for one form of travel, grant it for all. The precedent is set and agreed upon.

Ok but was the xray machine and the metal detectors also a violation of your 4th amendment rights? Considering we have had xray machines in airports for years, do you think that maybe you're wrong about your interpretation of your 4th amendment rights when it comes to airlines.
And I will say regarding the pat-downs- we've always had them. Whatever security airlines use, whether it's the old way with the xray machines or the new way with the digital scanners, the only reason they would pat you down is if you refused to go through security or you set off an alarm. So, forget the new scanners. Suppose they want you to put a bag through the xray machine but you don't want to. If you want to get on that plane they are going to have to determine that you are safe to fly. But you refuse to follow security protocol, what do you think is going to happen? You're not going to get on the plane, that's for sure. And if you set off an alarm at the xray machine what do you think isgoing to happen? That you wont get a patdown? Does that patdown become sexual asault? How else are they going to check you out so you can get on that plane since you set off the alarm?
You have no right to assume that you can bypass airline security and not have them view you as a threat or assume that you should still fly.
Or say you live in an apartment building. Should someone coming to the building assume that they should simply be able to walk through the lobby and not have the doorman check them before sending them up? What if they don't want to sign in their names? Then they don't get in.

Anonymous   ·  November 23, 2010 3:30 PM

With apologies to Mr. Godwin and his law, it seems to me that the more accurate historical reference would be Nazi's cramming innocents into cattle cars, with the whole apparatus later claiming innocence because "I was just following orders". Except I don't think the Nazi's groped and sexually assaulted the people heading for the death camps so the current example of mass stampeding the public is even worse than what the Nazi's initially did.

It takes me to a very happy place to close my eyes and imagine Michelle Obama having these indignities done to her own august self.

NanGee   ·  November 23, 2010 3:33 PM

@jr565

It is almost too much trouble to even engage a troll like you. But, when you say:

"I would argue, if you set off an alarm that can't be explaned by removing an item from your pocket that you will be patted down. If that's too much for you, then again, don't fly."

I have to take exception. I have a pacemaker and cannot go through the metal detector. I had a so called "pat down" in Newark in April that was close to what they are doing now. the only difference is they used the back of the hand. I have not flown since. I found having some guy feeling up my genitals in public to be quite perplexing.

However, if I follow your line of reasoning, anyone who objects to these pat downs and has some physical handicap, should not fly. Congratulations, you have just won the "I don;t give a crap about you award". And, I'll bet you consider yourself a compassionate and caring liberal. Now, there is an oxymoron.

Rick Caird   ·  November 23, 2010 3:42 PM

With apologies to Mr. Godwin and his law, it seems to me that the more accurate historical reference would be Nazi's cramming innocents into cattle cars, with the whole apparatus later claiming innocence because "I was just following orders". Except I don't think the Nazi's groped and sexually assaulted the people heading for the death camps so the current example of mass stampeding the public is even worse than what the Nazi's initially did.

Except jews weren't riding cattlecars by choice. Jews were forced into cattlecars. You have a choice to ride in a plane, they aren't forcing you to buy a ticket. But if you buy the ticket you abide by the rules. If they say you have to walk though a machine and check your bag through a machine then you either accept that that is the requirment to get on the plane or say it's too much and don't accept it.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 3:45 PM

Rick Caird wrote:
I have to take exception. I have a pacemaker and cannot go through the metal detector. I had a so called "pat down" in Newark in April that was close to what they are doing now. the only difference is they used the back of the hand. I have not flown since. I found having some guy feeling up my genitals in public to be quite perplexing.

With all respect, While I understand that you have a pacememaker you are flying on a plane with others and your unique situation should not allow you to bypass security. Yes, they shouldn't force you to go through an xray machine but they should still and must still dtermine whether you have metal objects on you that they have to clear. And because you are bypassing their security means they have to find another way of doing it. Which in your case was the patdown. See, they had patdowns prior to Obama taking over the TSA.
But the fact that you don't like going through metal detectors OR getting patted down are not reasons that you should be exempted a security clearance to fly. They don't have that many options other than that screen and/or that patdown to clear you to fly. And if you wont submit to either, then don't expect to fly. It's that simple.
Same thing if a business closed at 5pm but you didn't get out of work till 5:30PM. So? Why does your inconvenience mean they have to change their store hours. You either find a way to make it to the store when its open or you don't go to the store.

Anonymous   ·  November 23, 2010 3:58 PM

The correct spelling is Alissa Rosenbaum.

M. Simon   ·  November 23, 2010 4:02 PM

Except I don't think the Nazi's groped and sexually assaulted the people heading for the death camps so the current example of mass stampeding the public is even worse than what the Nazi's initially did.

The Nazis were kind enough to save that indignity (which included rape and mass rape) until the "offenders" got to the camps.

BTW you gave up your rights when you pissed in a cup for a job. This airport deal is just mopping up.

M. Simon   ·  November 23, 2010 4:05 PM

If security guards are genuinely molesting kids...

We've all seen the footage of TSA agents physically searching children, while not subjecting the parents to the same.

There is no rational justification for such conduct. The only way small children would ever have contraband is if the parents were directly involved.

Therefore the searches were totally unwarranted and an excessive intrusions on the person of the child.

That qualifies as molestation.

ThomasD   ·  November 23, 2010 4:09 PM

Rick Caird wrote:
However, if I follow your line of reasoning, anyone who objects to these pat downs and has some physical handicap, should not fly. Congratulations, you have just won the "I don;t give a crap about you award". And, I'll bet you consider yourself a compassionate and caring liberal. Now, there is an oxymoron.

No, I consider myself a conservative. And yes, if you object to the patdowns and being screened you should not fly. Airlines should try to accomodate people who have disablities by building them ramps etc. but the infirmity itself should not negate the need to still check you through security. If you come to an airline and want to get on a plane you follow the security protocols or don't fly. This doesnt mean that you need to be patted down. Most people simply go through whatever screening is required be it a full body scan or an xray machine. Except YOU are special. You don't think that such machines apply to you. If you dont apply by their procedure they will still have to clear you, which requires them then moving to another procedure, like a patdown.
But if the though that to get on an airplane means you get screened for weapons is too much for you then you have every right to not get on a plane. Flying is a luxury not a right. You could also object to them charnging you for your carry on luggage. However, if you want to carry luggage on you either bite the bullet and pay the fee or you decide that it's not worth the cost and change your plans accordingly.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 4:10 PM

jr565 a troll? Works for the TSA more likely.

M. Simon   ·  November 23, 2010 4:22 PM

First - the poster's name is UNDER the comment here.

Second - no one seems concerned about how easy it is to get contraband through security even with metal detectors, x-raying of shoes and other items carried on the plane, porno scans, and "enhanced" pat downs.

Ignore it all you want, but I proven that all this "security" does not work. I have carried on contraband every single time I've flown since TSA was created. Every. Single. Time.

Through 11 different airports and 30 flights.

One thing I've carried through security twice really should have been at least questioned, but is not even on the contraband list as far as I know: rocks as big as my fist. I was prepared to lose them and somewhat surprised that they weren't even mentioned.

One of man's most ancient weapons (and the only one that I've actually used in self-defense) is perfectly allowable.

All of you defending these "security" practices because you think they are making you "safer" are suffering from delusions.

As for those trying to smear anyone objecting to being porno-scanned or patted down with enchancements as merely being "libertarians" and think that there's a partisan issue in the protests, you are simply trolls.

Donna B.   ·  November 23, 2010 4:29 PM

jr565,

A true conservative (well OK maybe only a libertarian) requires probable cause.

But that standard was given up long ago when conservatives acquiesced to peeing in a cup to get a job. The Drug War put the tools in their hands. Which was fine as long as they were only going after dopers. They now have precedent on their side.

But we sure had a good long run beating the crap out of the dopers didn’t we? Beating the crap out of…… Uh. Oh.

M. Simon   ·  November 23, 2010 4:31 PM

Another example. The lady who wanted to wear a burkha for her drivers license picture. No, that's not the protol. It's reasonable tthat someoene needs to see your fae on a license so your desire to wear a burka doesn't negate the states need to use identification that actually identifies people. BUt if that's too much and you have to waer a burka then don't expect to get a license. Am i wrong?

The states need to be able to identify people on identification cards is the security protocol. Your desire to not have to wear the burkha despite the protocol that says otherwise is the libertarian at an airport.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 4:37 PM

M.Simon wrote:
A true conservative (well OK maybe only a libertarian) requires probable cause.
Probable cause is the standard by which a police officer can make an arrest, or obtain a warrant. and it prevents peops from unreasonable searches and seizures not any searches and seizures. reasonableness would be if someone doens't follow a law or refuses to adhere to security procedure that its reasonable to at the very least prevent them from getting on a plane.
Would you have that same attitude on a military base? If they say, if you want to get on base you have to be cleared first? That's somehow unreasonable? Well how would they clear you? You'd have to go through their security protocol. and if you didn't why are you expecting they should make exceptions and let you on anyway. It woudl be reasonable for an MP seeing someone who refuses to show id for example to not let them in, or to detain them. why would you have any expectatoin otherwise? If you don't follow protocol or show why you should be there then you don't belong there. So get out or follow the protocol.

Anonymous   ·  November 23, 2010 4:51 PM

I love the way the proponents of this insult to human dignity simply call it a "pat down" (let alone the blatant assault on liberty).

They're cupping groins and squeezing breasts. Are you going to tell me that it's going to stop there at the airports? It's not stopping there.

J Milam   ·  November 23, 2010 4:58 PM

Donna wrote:
One thing I've carried through security twice really should have been at least questioned, but is not even on the contraband list as far as I know: rocks as big as my fist. I was prepared to lose them and somewhat surprised that they weren't even mentioned.


if something isn't on the contraband list they're not going to locate it in their search (or they will locate it but just wont care). Should certain things be added to the contraband list? Have someone bash someones head in with a rock and it probably will be going forward. But why, if you are saying we shouldn't have these screening processes are you saying should have been at least questioned. isn't that suggesting that there are things that shouldn't be brought on planes that might require questioning about? so how do you propose to do that other than scaning what you bring abourd (be it through a scanner or an xray machine or a metal detector or checkig your person via a patdown.
If you're surprised they didn't take your rocks I'd be even more surprised they didn't take the bomb strapped to your waist. And I'd hope they'd have a procedure in place whereby they could find said object so as to question you about it (since I would be flying on the same plane as you and would prefer that you aren't bringing something on board to kill me with. While you may be put out note that I too had the same scanning procedures done to me so that you didn't have to worry about the questionable rocks or guns in my pants

Anonymous   ·  November 23, 2010 5:22 PM

jr565 and anonymous at 4:51 are confusing identification with security. I haven't heard any complaints from people about being asked to offer ID at airport security checks.

It's disingenuous to offer as comparisons to the security theatre of TSA such things as "no shirt, no shoes, no service" in restaurants and requirements of proof of identity and reason for visiting a military installation.

For one thing, the military provides a system to get "pre-vetted". Under that system, pilots and flight attendants would not go through any security beyond presenting ID.

The reason for visiting thing is taken care of by purchasing a ticket, isn't it?

It's a helluva lot easier to get on a military base than it is a commercial airliner.

As for the "no shirt, no shoes, no service" rule, it's the exact opposite that people are complaining about with the TSA!!

Donna B.   ·  November 23, 2010 5:27 PM

jr565 and anonymous at 4:51 are confusing identification with security. I haven't heard any complaints from people about being asked to offer ID at airport security checks.

It's disingenuous to offer as comparisons to the security theatre of TSA such things as "no shirt, no shoes, no service" in restaurants and requirements of proof of identity and reason for visiting a military installation.

For one thing, the military provides a system to get "pre-vetted". Under that system, pilots and flight attendants would not go through any security beyond presenting ID.

The reason for visiting thing is taken care of by purchasing a ticket, isn't it?

It's a helluva lot easier to get on a military base than it is a commercial airliner.

As for the "no shirt, no shoes, no service" rule, it's the exact opposite that people are complaining about with the TSA!!

Donna B.   ·  November 23, 2010 5:27 PM

Driving is a privilege, not a right

Last I checked, riding as a passenger in a car did not require a license.

It's just one more BS argument from the TSA apologists.

Fatty Bolger   ·  November 23, 2010 5:33 PM

I have no idea why my previous comment posted twice... oh well!

@anonymous 5:22 - you have (probably unintentionally) brought forth a VERY good point! If something has not ever before been used for something, it should not be included on the contraband list!!

Of course, rocks have been used for centuries to bash heads but that's beside the point. It's nothing compared to the number of nail clippers that have been used to bring down airliners.

Oh, and that strawman about me saying we shouldn't have "these" screening processes? You haven't even managed to burn it with your arguments.

However, I do not say there should be no screening process. I'd just like to have one that made sense and work.


Donna B.   ·  November 23, 2010 5:39 PM

I'd like to point out that this exact problem was built into the health care plan.

For example, Obama promised that health care money wouldn't be paid for abortions. He lied, or at least mislead... his plan put a untouchable panel of 'crats in charge of determining "standard of care"... which means what the government pays for.

So, in the future when when your senator asks an unimpeachable 'crat to stop funding abortions and the 'crat says "No"...

Ryan Waxx   ·  November 23, 2010 5:43 PM

"jr565 and anonymous at 4:51 are confusing identification with security."

No, they are drawing a comparison. That does not indicate that they are confused as to which is which.

They are also making a point that even the identification processes we have in this country are being infected and corrupted by political correctness.

"For one thing, the military provides a system to get "pre-vetted". Under that system, pilots and flight attendants would not go through any security beyond presenting ID."

Pre-vettingjr565 and anonymous at 4:51 are confusing identification with security. I haven't heard any complaints from people about being asked to offer ID at airport security checks.

It's disingenuous to offer as comparisons to the security theatre of TSA such things as "no shirt, no shoes, no service" in restaurants and requirements of proof of identity and reason for visiting a military installation.

For one thing, the military provides a system to get "pre-vetted". Under that system, pilots and flight attendants would not go through any security beyond presenting ID.

Pre-vetting sounds like a good idea for flight crew and maybe frequent fliers, but I suspect it would prove impractical to implement en masse.

If you register everyone, then you can reject no one, because it will become an equal protection issue, which is vulnerable to special interest assault, as illustrated by examples like the burqua ID and the flying immam incident.

Anonymous   ·  November 23, 2010 6:00 PM

"jr565 and anonymous at 4:51 are confusing identification with security."

No, they are drawing a comparison. That does not indicate that they are confused as to which is which.

They are also making a point that even the identification processes we have in this country are being infected and corrupted by political correctness.

"For one thing, the military provides a system to get "pre-vetted". Under that system, pilots and flight attendants would not go through any security beyond presenting ID."

Pre-vettingjr565 and anonymous at 4:51 are confusing identification with security. I haven't heard any complaints from people about being asked to offer ID at airport security checks.

It's disingenuous to offer as comparisons to the security theatre of TSA such things as "no shirt, no shoes, no service" in restaurants and requirements of proof of identity and reason for visiting a military installation.

For one thing, the military provides a system to get "pre-vetted". Under that system, pilots and flight attendants would not go through any security beyond presenting ID.

Pre-vetting sounds like a good idea for flight crew and maybe frequent fliers, but I suspect it would prove impractical to implement en masse.

If you register everyone, then you can reject no one, because it will become an equal protection issue, which is vulnerable to special interest assault, as illustrated by examples like the burqua ID and the flying immam incident.

Ryan Waxx   ·  November 23, 2010 6:01 PM

Sorry about the confused and duplicate post. Something clearly went horribly wrong.

Ryan Waxx   ·  November 23, 2010 6:03 PM

I wouldn't say that Congress doesn't have the power. They have the power to strip John Pistole and the TSA of their authority. But Congress won't do it because they don't want to responsibility of what comes with it.

But Pistole's telling Congress to go f* itself is a symptom of the much larger problem that Congress has created since the New Deal era. Our Founding Fathers vested the power to "make the rules" to Congress alone and ensured that Congress will be directly accountable to the people for the rules it makes. If the people did not like a rule, they knew who to pretension to change or eliminate the rule. And if the Congressman was unwilling to change rules, the Congressman would be "replaced" during the next election.

But since Congress was convince that certain governmental issues were "too complicated" for a political body like Congress to handle, they created this alphabet soup of "agencies" (FCC, FDA, EPA, TSA, ICE) to create and implement rules on Congress's behalf. And since these "agencies" are not run by elected officials, but career bureaucrats and political appointees, they cannot be held accountable by the people of the United States.

Farix   ·  November 23, 2010 7:03 PM

J milam wrote:
I love the way the proponents of this insult to human dignity simply call it a "pat down" (let alone the blatant assault on liberty).

They're cupping groins and squeezing breasts. Are you going to tell me that it's going to stop there at the airports? It's not stopping there.


Could you ever find any reason whatsoever whereby a security guard could give you a pat down? Like suppose you ran through the security gates? Would that pat down be construed as a sexual assault

Anonymous   ·  November 23, 2010 7:16 PM

Fatty Bolger wrote:
Last I checked, riding as a passenger in a car did not require a license.

It's just one more BS argument from the TSA apologists.

Not really sure where you're coming from on this except to point out that you dont need a license to ride as a passenger true, but you do need the drivers permission. And the driver might say, if you want to drive in my car don't smoke. If that's too much of an inconvenience you don't drive with him. You as the passenger, wouldnt tell him the terms by which he should let you into his car.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 7:21 PM

From Classical Values website:
In an effort to curb malicious comment posting by abusive users, I've enabled a feature that requires a weblog commenter to wait a short amount of time before being able to post again. Please try to post your comment again in a short while. Thanks for your patience.

Please correct the error in the form below, then press Post to post your comment.

Interesting. they are setting terms and conditions on our postings.That isn't fair. I should be able to post whenever I want without any delays. However, the website makes the protocol and I either abide by it or not. It's reasonable for this website to restrict my postings in this way,if my excessive posting could cause the website issues.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 7:24 PM

And though only some of us might be malicious posters this website implements a policy that will effect everyone the same way,even non malicious posters. Interesting. And even though this will not stop any and all malicious posts and even though this might inconvenience perfectly innocent users.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 7:35 PM

Neither private cars nor blogs fit as a comparison because the airports are a public facility staffed by publicly funded screeners running under government rules.

Even so, I doubt the webmaster would be able to require you to let him grope you in order to comment.

Ryan Waxx   ·  November 23, 2010 7:42 PM

Donna B wrote:
However, I do not say there should be no screening process. I'd just like to have one that made sense and work.

A screen that shows what's in your bag works (for the most part) beause it will see most things in your bag, and can at the very least point out potential threats to someone looking for them. and if necessary someone could then take the bag and make you unpack it. A body scanner can show things you might try taping to your body that you would otherwise not see. And will find different types of objects, though not necessarily everything. Makes sense to me. If you are bringin stuff on a plane it's etiher going to be in your bag, your shoes or somewhere on your person.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 7:55 PM

Ryan Waxx wrote:
Neither private cars nor blogs fit as a comparison because the airports are a public facility staffed by publicly funded screeners running under government rules.


so they should have no security? Goverment buildings like the Pentagon run by govt employees should have no security protocols?

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 7:57 PM

Even so, I doubt the webmaster would be able to require you to let him grope you in order to comment.

No, but if I was particulary egregious he could ban me from commenting. And at any rate please answer the question about what security can do if you violate the security protocol and set off an alarm (like a metal detector). If you can't explain why the metal detector went off aren't they going to have to check you with the hand scanner,and if THAT goes off, arent't they going to then have to "grope" you? is that "grope" a sexual assault? If you hadn't set off the alarm it wouldnt'be necessary, and if you had gone through the scanner they want you to use, it similarly woudlnt' be necessary.
They are simply running through the various means of checking you out to make sure you don't have weapons on your clothes. Figure out the lesat inconvenient way for them to do, within their security protocol.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 8:04 PM

It's a helluva lot easier to get on a military base than it is a commercial airliner.


Not if you don't have clearance.

jr565   ·  November 23, 2010 8:21 PM

No, but if I was particulary egregious he could ban me from commenting.

And then I could run around saying how classical values denied people the right to freedom of speech one of our core rights, and how dare he tread on our precious freedoms, he's a totalitarian monster! Or, I could be realistic and say, someties ya get banned. Wouldn't have happened if I didn't step over the line, and if I don't like it I can either try to appeal to the network gods, or post at other sites.

Anonymous   ·  November 23, 2010 8:31 PM

jr565 thinks one has to have some kind of "clearance" to get onto a military base.

Just another example of his confusion-based thinking.

Donna B.   ·  November 23, 2010 9:02 PM

> so they should have no security? Goverment buildings like the Pentagon run by govt employees should have no security protocols?

Could you please point out where I said or implied anything of the sort? I'd hate to think you are merely flailing at strawmen.

Ryan Waxx   ·  November 23, 2010 9:12 PM

if I was particulary egregious he could ban me from commenting

I could but I won't. If possible I'll stop spam when I see it (simply because it isn't real and can create mechanical problems with the ISP) but I let actual commenters speak for themselves, and say whatever, they want, whenever.

What commenters say will stay there as a memorial to whatever it is that was said. If possible, forever, like these gems here:

http://www.classicalvalues.com/archives/2006/01/cartoons_your_n.html

Because I love free speech, I love all comments, whether I read them or not. Not having to read them makes them more enjoyable, and actually helps build suspense. I never know what I'm not reading, and with any luck, I might find myself in trouble for what I never read!

And if I am really lucky, some legalistic asshole can demand that I remove a comment I've never read, and I can refuse!

If you think about it, surely I can't be legally penalized for my hands-off policy of deference to the rights of commenters to say anything they want, and surely no one has a right to make me read them!

What an imposition that would be. After all, since I do not and cannot require anyone to read this blog, it follows that I am not required to read each and every comment, no matter how much I love them collectively.

Eric Scheie   ·  November 23, 2010 11:20 PM

jr565, you wrote "Where you are fundamentally dishonest though is that this is basically libertarians saying that they should be able to dictate that airlines have no security."

When it was pointed out to you that this is nonsensical, since the security measures are (to the contrary) decrees imposed by the federal government on private companies, you proceeded to ignore the point and carry on regardless.

This makes you either clueless, or, to use your own standards, "fundamentally dishonest."

Plonk.

Bob   ·  November 24, 2010 1:05 AM

Of course, we could just replace TSA with a volunteer sky marshals program and have 2% of the passenger pool be screened, trained, and armed to resist terrorists.

Michael Kochin   ·  November 24, 2010 5:49 AM

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