Saturday Morning Security Theater

Discussion in 'Aviation Passenger Security in the USA' started by Mike, Dec 8, 2012.

  1. Mike

    Mike Founding Member Coach

    Great editorial piece ..

    B.S. Kalafut: Saturday Morning Security Theater


    As in McGann's case, the offending article was a homemade work of art made up of electronics bits. Simpson's blinkenlights didn't even have a timer, but there were a few exposed wires. Breadboarded electronics always have exposed wires. Bombs on TV also have exposed wires. And blinkenlights.

    McGann's and Simpson's cases are upsetting on two levels.

    We forget how much we are at the mercy of stupid people, how easy it is for someone to ruin our day because we failed to predict and plan for his own bizarre shortcomings of comprehension. We forget how much the benefit of the doubt is given to stupids if they occupy the right place in the organizational structure. Any number of people involved in McGann's case could have said "quit being an idiot, just let the guy through", but nobody did. In Simpson's case the police didn't have to take her in, and the prosecutor didn't have to follow through with the case. (His bar association's rules forbid prosecuting charges the prosecutor knows aren't supported by probably cause!)

    Real bombs do not always or usually have a haphazard collection of wires and bits hanging out. Real bombs aren't going to have the Saturday morning cartoon countdown timer. They're hidden. The most famous, the one that brought down Pan Am Flight 103, was hidden inside a boombox. Ramzy Yousef's Philippine Air 434 bomb was in a bottle of contact lens solution. "Shoe bomber" Richard Reid's device was an ordinary shoe with an explosive midsole. That TSA agents (and the Boston police) think homebrew electronics that obviously not bombs are bombs suggests that they don't know what a bomb looks like, and when confronted with the real thing, they'll miss it.​
    Caradoc likes this.
  2. Caradoc

    Caradoc Original Member

    No kidding. You should see how they react to camera equipment that includes a breadboarded Arduino controller (intervalometer, optical gate trigger, multi-purpose gadget - see for details).
  3. Doober

    Doober Original Member

    Premise of the article is good but it's very poorly written which subtracts a great deal from its value.
  4. KrazyKat

    KrazyKat Original Member

    I agree. Good for the cartoon peril idea only.

    A MUCH better and very short Op-Ed/Letter is:

    It's time to reform the TSA
    This is from a Current blogger and merits reprinting broadly.
  5. Frank

    Frank Original Member

    In all fairness, there were Wackenhut stupids long before there were Freedom Fluffer stupids. Every time I flew, my BP cuff was considered a bomb.
  6. John Cotton

    John Cotton Member

    That site's layout can make decent writing look bad.

  7. Caradoc

    Caradoc Original Member

    But the Wackenhut stupids never demanded to juggle your junk over that, did they?
  8. RB

    RB Founding Member

    I don't recall one story of people being molested, property being stolen, or any other checkpoint/airport incident until TSA came on the scene.

    In all fairness we have a problem, that problem is TSA!

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