TSA Administrator John Pistole to Speak at National Press Club, March 5

Discussion in 'Aviation Passenger Security in the USA' started by Lisa Simeone, Feb 22, 2012.

  1. Doober

    Doober Original Member

    My question e-mailed this morning:

    Not well worded but I need to get to work - not that it is going to see the light of day anyway.
    KrazyKat likes this.
  2. Caradoc

    Caradoc Original Member

    Unless you stop to wonder at the presence of hand lotion and Kleenex at TSA checkpoints and in the porn-o-scan booth...
    Lisa Simeone likes this.
  3. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Sent to the press club just now, with my full name and address:

    Why does John Pistole describe as "one-offs" or "bad apples" the thousands of instances of theft, bullying, intimidation, and physical assault that TSA agents continue to perpetrate all over the country? I have documented these accounts. They aren't few and far between; they are legion:

    If he doesn't know about them, why doesn't he know about them? Why does he allow this to go on?
    KrazyKat likes this.
  4. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Also at TSA News. Maybe more people will see it and submit questions.
  5. KrazyKat

    KrazyKat Original Member

    On CSPAN-2.
    I asked about Abdulmutallab and contracts to Chertoff.:D
  6. RB

    RB Founding Member

    Even if by some chance a real hard hitting question makes it past the censors does anyone really expect an honest, straight forward answer from Pistole?

    If so I have some ocean front property for sale in Arizona.
  7. KrazyKat

    KrazyKat Original Member

    Oh, but it's a perverse form of entertainment to watch people squirm and lie.
  8. RB

    RB Founding Member

    Have you noticed that Pistole doesn't squirm when lying? I think there is a term for his type in the medical books.
    Lisa Simeone likes this.
  9. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Am watching it now. He is, predictably, simply repeating everything we have already heard. All the usual (expletive deleted) about "our officers are detecting numerous weapons every day and keeping them off planes," "AIT scanners have been tested and found to emit safe levels of radiation," "we're protecting privacy with ART," "efficiency," "winning formula for all travelers," "multi-layered security approach," "risk-based, intelligence-driven processes," "Blogger Bob goes a great job in that area," "use of expanded behavior detection techniques," "pre-check," blah blah (expletive deleted) blah.

    Every single active member at TUG could write and deliver his speech.

    Can't wait for the question-and-answer period.
  10. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    So far 5 piss-poor pointless questions.

    "I have a daughter who traveled the other day and she always gets nervous cause she gets motion sickness - but the BDOs are looking at those physical manifestations that may be of concern -- I have an FBI background," etc.
  11. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Oh, god, here we go with the "we start every day with an intelligence briefing . . . worldwide . . . Yemen toner cartridges . . . " blah blah blah. "We evaluate threats every day." "We recalibrate every day." Blah blah blah.
  12. Sunny Goth

    Sunny Goth Original Member Coach

    You must have read the same article that I did! :) Here's the prototype.
    Lisa Simeone likes this.
  13. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    How much air cargo is being screened?

    "It's difficult to say precisely, but working with industry, we believe over 80 perhaps 90% of cargo is currently being screened. We're working with industry, as I said, and our goal is to have 100% by end of this year ."

    What constitutes high-risk air cargo?

    "Well, of course we don't define it."

    How do you balance intrusiveness and inconvenience against risk?

    "We have to make sure that everybody who gets on every screen has been thoroughly screened blah blah risk-based model so how can we afford them expedited screening -- my background as FBI again -- blah blah -- I always flew armed -- pre-check."

    SOMMER GENTRY'S QUESTION - I RECOGNIZE IT -- How can passengers give informed consent when we don't know SOP?

    Blah blah blah "we don't want to publish exactly what they do -- last summer terrorists" again with the (expletive deleted) printer cartridges -- "surgically implanted devices -- bombs -- balance every day while respecting privacy and dignity of everyone involved -- 1.8 million passengers a day -- we don't always get it right --we strive for everyday welcome feedback -- i hear from travelers we work with them to address their needs -- we did phone number TSA CARES if you are elderly or have medical condition - hotline" blah blah blah

    TSA sometimes in headlines for reasons -- breast pump -- inappropriate patdowns of elderly -- bad PR respond to public anger?

    "So the challenge is with those millions of passengers it is a challenge to provide 100% total customer satisfaction & recognizing many days we don't do that, we have to engage public every day, no other businesses have 100% customer satisfaction, so it really comes down to better informed passenger can be before they get to airport helpful suggestions at TSA website how to pack, etc. what can go into checked bag for example, guns protocol," blah blah blah blah blah -- totally avoiding the question, putting the onus on "informed travelers."

    Why four 3 oz bottles okay but 12oz bottle not?

    Another (expletive deleted) answer; you know the drill. BDO again, pre-screening again, he avoids answering again.

    How do you justify TSA more than 60,000 employees, more than all these other [named] agencies combined?
    "Well, it's a huge job, air, rails, subways, trains, buses, boats, that's our responsibility, too, enabling legislation that Congress passed. What we do in terms of efficiencies, yes we have 10s of thousands of emps, but % are veterans, % are part-time, provide most effective blah blah blah.

    Your wish list -- how much bigger your budget and how would you allocate money?
    "We asked less than we did last year. I think we are well sized right now. I think there are additional things we could do particularly in surface transportation and international cargo."

    Air Marshalls good use of taxpayer dollars?
    "Yes, I'm a firm proponent. Extra layer of security." He mentions the latest FBI phony sting operations (we call them entrapment). He mentions See Something Say Something, non-metallic bombs, marshalls last line of defense, valuable."

    See Something Say Something campaign is working?
    "I think it's a lot of common sense -- Times Square bomber -- incumbent upon all of us as Americans." Again with his FBI experience.

    Still not a single question on the gropes.
  14. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Does TSA have any protocols for biological weapon on an airplane?
    SSI of course, "but short answer is yes."

    VIPR teams -- and questioner adds "and tell us about some of their recent successes." (god help me)
    He answers by talking about suicide mission in London tube and CCTV. "Whole purpose of VIPR teams are to try to throw off terrorists who are doing pre-operative surveillance -- dogs, armed law enforcement -- deterrent -- with local police always -- visible deterrent."

    No-fly list better organized?
    "Based on intelligence, derogatory info from some credible source gets you on that list." Oh give me an (expletive deleted) break. "Civil liberties/privacy blah blah we can't tell you it's detrimental to national security."

    SOMMER'S QUESTION AGAIN: Over 500 screeners have been arrested for theft - if someone can take something out, someone can put something in.

    "Not sure where the 500 number comes from, it is a problem, also a security concern, that's why we use CCTV extensively particularly in checked bag area - we've been able to rebut some of those allegations - others criminally prosecuted."

    Govt vs. privatization?
    TSA core purpose prevent another 9/11. Philosophically at its core US-govt-run org with national security as its purpose. Cost effective with TSA, not with private because private still has to follow TSA procedures and protocols. We have 16 currently privatized, San Fran being the largest, we've had 2 new airports apply since new FAA reg, so we'll look at those closely and work with Congress."

    Do you worry your reporting system causing paranoia?
    "No, I don't worry about that. It's just common sense. We get poison pen letters sometimes. But just common sense. It's all of our responsibility to look out for national security." Blah blah blah.

    Highway transportation and what are TSA accomplishments?
    "We work closely with over-the-road buses and also with commercial truck drivers particularly hazmat loads, risk-assessment model, training, resources, equipment, and some regulatory authority for who is working as commercial drivers, we work closely with industry."


    One last question coming up says moderator -- oh, god, she just presented him with a Press Club mug.

    Last question: Have you ever submitted to patdown doing thru airport security? PUFF QUESTION!!!

    "Oh, multiple times." He tells story about Europe, he received thorough pat-down, complimented security officer.

    Everyone laughs and now round of applause.


    The Press Club is, as usual, one big suck-up to power.
  15. Sunny Goth

    Sunny Goth Original Member Coach

    I think DHS says this every year. This was first brought up in the late '90s as an issue. Maybe it's an even older issue than that, but that was the first time I became aware of it.

    This was not an answer (we all know this, of course.) He probably wouldn't know a real risk assessment if it bit him on the face.

    Surface transportation???

    Nothing like trying to turn us all into spies.

    The man is a menace.
    Lisa Simeone likes this.
  16. KrazyKat

    KrazyKat Original Member

    "It made me stand up straight." [AUDIENCE CHUCKLES]:td:
  17. Sunny Goth

    Sunny Goth Original Member Coach

    Okay, time for my rude observation of the day.

    This reminds me of the stories about high-powered CEO types who love ordering people around and generally making life unpleasant for those around them -- but in private...... in private...... these same CEOs love the old BD/SM. Now they're on the receiving end ("thank you sir, may I have another?").

    Now I'm off to get the bleach for my eyes so that I can get that image out of them. ;)
    Lisa Simeone likes this.
  18. Wow, Sunny, an interesting point, and that makes it absolutely sexual, no way around it. It's textbook Foucault.

    Coincidentally, I'm reading Exit to Eden right now. But, you know, all those people choose that situation.
    Lisa Simeone likes this.
  19. Sunny Goth

    Sunny Goth Original Member Coach

    And then add in Pistole's brand of repressed authoritarian Christianity.....

    It's been awhile since I read that -- Anne Rice? I remember it being a fun read.
  20. Lisa Simeone

    Lisa Simeone Original Member

    Okay, this footnote, from Wikipedia, is too funny:

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