Emailed response regard TSA crimes/abuses masterlist press release

Discussion in 'Aviation Passenger Security in the USA' started by Mike, Jul 9, 2011.

  1. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    I received a response to the press release that is a great example of one mindset that we're up against. She cc:d to eight other people, so I don't feel guilty about not redacting all her identifying info (hint: link in signature :D):
    The article that she included rambles on for 11 pages about the various nefarious connections of the anti-scanner crowd.
  2. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    My response:

  3. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Okay, Mike, even though I clicked on the signature link (Jules Siegel?)I can't make out who wrote the original naysaying letter to her 8 friends. But here's my response. If I had her name/email address, I'd send it directly to her. Maybe in this forum her 8-plus-however-many-other friends will see it:

    First of all, she quotes in its entirety the now widely discredited article by Mark Ames and Yasha Levine that originally appeared in The Nation, wherein they attribute the collective anger against TSA abuse to a coordinated campaign by the rightwing Koch Brothers. So let's get her (expletive deleted) and my bona fides out of the way first.

    We on this forum come from all over the political spectrum. I'm far left of what's considered liberal in this country; I'd call myself a socialist. There are people here to whom that term is probably anathema. Yet we're all united in our objections to the gross abuse of our civil liberties by the TSA and, presumably, by all the other so-called security/intelligence agencies in this country. We have not been coordinated, encouraged, urged on, paid off, or otherwise prompted by the Koch Brothers or anybody else. We are here because we use our own eyes to see and our own brains to think, which is more than I can say for the millions of naysayers who, by their own admission, don't know what the TSA is doing.

    Second, I'm a longtime supporter of unions in general and proud member of one in particular -- AFTRA. So her garbage about "anti-union sources" is exactly that -- garbage. And shows her ignorance, above and beyond her admitted ignorance because she flies so rarely.

    I'm also willing to wager that I've put my (expletive deleted) on the line more often and for more political causes than she or any other naysayers have. I'm not afraid to take a principled stand, no matter how unpopular, and no matter how many others are too blind to see it.

    Her assertion -- "I'm confident that dramatic instances are not statistically significant" -- oh, really?? And what, pray tell, is the source of her confidence? Her heart? Her gut instinct? Her touching belief in the inherent kindness and benevolence of mankind? Tell me, Madame Naysayer, have you ever heard of Philip Zimbardo? Stanley Milgram? Do you know what their famous experiments demonstrated about human nature and the capacity of same for cruelty and abuse of power? These aren't abstruse or obscure experiments. And they produced results that are statistically significant.

    But if Madame doesn't wish to educate herself about them, perhaps she can tell me what exactly she would consider satisfactory in the way of empirical evidence, since she doesn't believe the thousands of accounts of abuse that have already been reported. Perhaps she'll take the TSA's word for it? Shall we conduct a little experiment of our own right here? Okay, then let's go, not with my nefarious suppositions, but with the TSA's own numbers:

    Two million people a day fly in this country. Out of those 2 million, the TSA, according to its own statistics, gropes 3%. That's 60,000. 60,000 innocent travelers, who haven't been accused of any crime, who aren't even suspected of any crime, getting pawed (and again, it's not frisking -- I've been frisked by the police -- the police don't do what the TSA does). How many of those 60,000 are getting excessively, inappropriately groped? We don't know, but let's shoot low. Let's not, in other words, go with what Zimbardo and Milgram proved -- which would be about 2/3 -- let's go with a deliberately, outrageously low number to ease Madame Naysayer's mind. So let's say 10%. That's 6,000 people. 6,000 people a day being fondled and otherwise abused.

    Is that "statistically significant"? How much abuse would be acceptable to Madame? Is it okay that "only" 6,000 people a day are getting molested? How about 4,000? How about 3,000? Would that be okay? After all, it's "only" 3,000 out of 2 million. What's to get upset about? As long as you're not in that number, who cares how many of your fellow passengers get the full treatment?

    Perhaps Madame can employ some logic and deduce that most people don't have the benefit of a reporter telling their story. Most people tell their stories only to family and friends. Therefore, contrary to her assertion, we aren't hearing about most incidents of abuse, we're hearing only a fraction of them.

    At what point would it be too much for her? Would every single passenger every single day have to be inappropriately touched before she and her ilk object? Or perhaps it would be much simpler: perhaps it would take only her, or her mother or father or son or daughter or whatever loved one, for her to wake up.

    I'd suggest she re-acquaint herself with Martin Niemöller, but why bother.
    FriendlySkies likes this.
  4. CelticWhisper

    CelticWhisper Founding Member

    I'm dreadfully sleep-deprived today but when my brain is functioning to capacity again I'm'na do up a response we can publish as an official TUG rebuttal.

    Unless Mike thinks I should focus on something else press-wise
  5. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    Something else. I gave Lisa her email address. KrazyKat is working to pull together info on TSA & rape/sexual abuse victims. I want to have one ready to go on the public health aspects of TSA, to coincide, perhaps, with the annual flu scare.

    For most future press releases, however, I think I want to focus on more general email addresses (e.g,. | This is too much like spamming to do it regularly to every journalist I can find an email for.

    I don't feel bad about this specific one because Bill & Lisa's lists can help them put their TSA reporting into a larger perspective. Some of them, hopefully, will start asking not only what but how often & what else. With the Google Analytics data showing thousands of page views with several page views & several minutes of contact time per visitor, I think we can conclude that they are taking a good look.
  6. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    Her response to my response. She's an ideologue, leaping to completely unfounded (& incorrect) conclusions about what I've read & what I think on related issues. It's not worth any further exchange. Maybe I should add "dupe of union-busting propaganda" to my signature line?

    Apparently it's OK to molest women at the checkpoints since it never happens to her.

    I did read the article. The Onion couldn't have done it any better.

    They should be wearing dosimeters. In fact, the anti-scanner crowd that she detests as "dupes of union-busting propaganda" WANTS them to wear dosimeters.

    I'll be concerned about their decent treatment when they start treating us decently. Until then, their discontent is our advantage.


    PM me for her email address if you want to take a crack at it. :D


    ROTFL!!! This is hilarious! It's almost as good as having the Onion dropped off at my door.

    I'm not hitting reply all on this because I don't want to bother the others on your list (several of which bounced). I will be happy to publish your serious reply. But please don't hand me this kind of stupid adolescent crap about the Onion when you haven't even read the article.

    TSA earned my ever-lasting wrath when they felt up my 56-year-old Swedish American wife from northern MN under her bra at the St. Louis airport.

    I'm sure she suffered mightily. Why, it was like being raped, wasn't it? Did you report the incident? Did the agent evidence any prurient interest, or was s/he/it just doing a job?

    If you actually traveled much ("two trips in the past few years" isn't), you'd likely have very different picture. We used to travel approximately 125,000 miles annually for each of us until we quit cold Turkey last year after her sexual assault. And then there was the time they spotted her prescription medications (injections) and proceeded to investigate their big drug catch without referring it to law enforcement. I could go on (lots of fun sessions with the smurfs in blue when you fly 30-40 trips a year), but I'll spare you. American citizens should not have to endure such indignities, and it IS going to end.
    Thank you for brightening up my Saturday morning. This should be some entertaining reading.

    I can share your concern about the indignities to which American citizens are being subjected. Instead of indulging yourself in hilarity, how about considering the statistical significance of the number of documented incidents in which TSA agents exceeded their authority or applied the rules in an arbitrary and capricious manner?

    Are you concerned at all about the screeners' complaints about working conditions? Should they be required (never mind allowed) to wear dosimeters? Is being seen naked for a few seconds in a low quality image all that shameful?

    Be serious. Otherwise, I have to write you off as just another dupe of union-busting propaganda.
    -- JULES SIEGEL "If it ain't fixed, don't broke it." Newsroom-l, news and issues for journalists
  7. Fisher1949

    Fisher1949 Original Member Coach

    The name says it all. Oddly they have a Big Brother section but fail to make the connection. No accounting for stupidity.
    KrazyKat likes this.
  8. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Yeah, I checked out her website. I'm going to ignore her.
  9. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    On the other hand, someone who's found a way to live in Cancun for almost 30 years must be doing something right. :D
  10. Doober

    Doober Original Member

    That she posted and therefore apparently believes this:

    from the Ames/Levine article immediately negated any credibility she might have had.
  11. KrazyKat

    KrazyKat Original Member

    I've pulled togther what I can stomach for now. The best story I found so far addressing this issue came out last fall when the enhanced groping was announced:

    As I joked in a conversation, I'm aparently one of the few rape victims foolish enough to have subjected themselves to this, (or willing or able to admit it--sigh). In my defense, the event was a LONG time ago, and the last thing I was thinking about at 5:30 AM after a 2hr drive, was self-defense; (I was thinking about 90 minutes of shut eye). Just the easy quarry the pervs were looking for...:eek:

    Not sure the general editor@ is the best place to send PR, but I understand the problem. I'm confident I can help with some "women's-press" connections to push this story. Confirmed for another Castillo-style TSA assault victim (non prior rape victim) to be a press contact in August.

    Attached Files:

  12. Doober

    Doober Original Member

    I don't think much support is going to come from the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, RAINN, (mentioned prominently in both articles that KrazyKat linked to) as they talk a good line but, for the most part, are a government agency, the majority of their funding is from the government (the Department of Justice), and they are certainly never going to back calls for the cessation of assault at the airport.

    However, if you go to this page of their website:

    you will find a list of their "Program Advisory Board" members. That might be a good list to mine.
  13. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    But RAINN is a national group. I would try to develop a network of local groups to reach out to. RAINN is just one tool to use.

    I don't think federal funding is an issue. Look how far off the track ACORN & CAIR managed to wander before they got cut off. We're only talking about some basic human-dignity issues here.
  14. Doober

    Doober Original Member

    local groups: then the list of their advisory board members should be helpful. However, it would be great to get some national organization on our side also.

    We're only talking about some basic human-dignity issues: Yes, but there is a lot of educating to be done re: the fact that none of the TSA's dignity-less searches are doing anything to improve safety in the skies.

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