Monday, June 27, 2011

Allahu akhbar!

I just figured I'd get in some practice saying that, since the terrorists have obviously won:
The Transportation Security Administration stood by its security officers Sunday after a Florida woman complained that her cancer-stricken, 95-year-old mother was patted down and forced to remove her adult diaper while going through security.
This happened in Florida, right? Does this poor woman have no young male kinfolk to handle the obvious necessary chore at hand? Because it seems to me that there are some serious ass whuppins that need delivering here. They laid hands all over your grandmama, fer gawd's sake!

Seriously, have we reached a point where we, as a nation, are so pants-pissingly scared of a bunch of self-immolating neolithic goatherds that we are willing to inflict any indignity on any citizen at any time rather than expose ourselves to the slightest bit of risk?

We should be ashamed of ourselves, each and every one of us.


B said...

So you have finally come around?


Enough outrage over time will do that.

Anonymous said...

Yep. We were watching one of the news shows yesterday and my wife and I looked at each other and said "we're f*@!ed" Oops! Ustugh fer allah!

Tam said...

Mr. B,

This is, like, the third or fourth time you've said that, so I ask you, what are you doing differently from me?

Everybody sits here whining impotently into the internet about how pissed they are with all the Stormtroopers everyplace and all the money being spent on the Death Star, and that new Lord Vader guy is such a prick, but I don't see you hopping into any X-Wings either.

Anonymous said...

No need for the X-wing, just cross thread the bolt holding the gyroscope on the Death Star.

Bob said...

I've said on my own blog that we need to get the Republican candidates to realize it would work wonders to whichever of them pledges to rein in TSA if elected. I don't know if it could be abolished at this point, but it could certainly be reformed and required to use more common-sense measures, i.e., profiling.

Anonymous said...

As long as people keep flying, the abuse will continue. Just stop, it won't take long to induce the airlines to pressure the government.

Unknown said...

Since the Administration, Congress and SCOTUS are supportive of the TSA behavior, what is to be done, other than violent revolution? Voting doesn't help. Letters and phone calls don't help. Internet griping doesn't help.

I figured that it was all over, even back before TSA, when the security folks at Phoenix grabbed on to Joe Foss' Medal of Honor because of the sharp points on it.

McVee said...

As I understood the article, once they determined She did not have a firearm but that it was Her diaper bunched up,they offered Her the choice; either lose the diaper or your not getting on the plane.

OK, why? Why was it necessary for Her to leave without the depends on?


I would hope that if enough of us have experienced even a tenth of the humiliation this poor Woman has that We would find what it is that would cause us to join in together locally and nationally and march to Washington and say enough. Had this been My Mother I know I would Be. Having heard the idiotic comments from Chicago's new Police superintendent I'm close.

B said...


(actually only the second time)...However,Your point is well taken.

What should we do? If I knew, I'd be doing it.

But at least your finally realize....

Tam said...

Mr. B,

I finally realized about the same time Desertrat did. And I've been using the phrase "we aren't voting our way out of this" intermittently on the internets for better than ten years now.

But, yeah, I'm just sitting on my hands, too. :o

Like you said, if I knew what to do, I'd have done it, and if I thought this was the kind of problem that could actually be solved by saddling up and busting caps, I'd have done that, too, but I just don't think it's that simple (and hasn't been, for over a hundred years.)

McVee said...

What can we do for now?


Deny them the opportunity to abuse the populace.

Tam said...


Don't worry. If you don't go to the TSA, the TSA will come to you.

Borepatch said...

I wonder if this is actionable under the Americans with Disabilities Act? As I read the TSA's lame excuse, "only 3% of passengers" undergo the pat downs because they don't go through the scanners.

The lady in question here didn't go through the scanners because her disability prevented it.

It's like saying "97% of visitors are happy to use the stairs".

But me, I'm happy to make the drive from Austin to Atlanta.

Newbius said...

And the last time I needed to be in California, I drove. From Virginia.

The airline that would have received my custom instead got a letter explaining why I no longer fly (short version: TSA). They didn't even bother to acknowledge receipt.

One person is a gadfly. One hundred thousand is a movement.

So far, all they hear from are gadflies.

McVee said...

@ Newbius: I'm a gadfly too!
Tam: regarding the article, OH.JOY.

Love this: "This is a scheduled operation, not related to a specific threat." Like that's supposed to make Me feel better. (bronx cheer)

Anonymous said...

As for all the idiotic "don't fly" comments...really? Should I drive to my job in Iraq? That darned inconvenient wet part would get annoying.

Driving isn't a workable choice for lots of people, and I suspect the 95 year old woman was one of them.

If the Fed won't fix it, maybe we need to correct this at the State level - fire them all from our State's airports and use employees that are answerable to someone.

The airport this happened at is part of Eglin AFB (they share the runway with the civil airport). It's surrounded by loads of military bases of all branches and types. Flying is going to happen from that airport no matter what. And with AFSOC and the 7th SFG being in the area, they already see lots of "interesting" things coming through that airport.

Damned shame that a bit more common sense couldn't be applied to this particular situation. That's one airport that had always been very easy on the TSA issues previously. (Oh, and we're a small regional airport, so no body scanners.)

McVee said...

@anon: My choice not to fly has the immediate effect of shielding myself and my Family from the idiocy. And as far as the inconvenience of it, sometimes making a statement is inconvenient.

And your right, it is a damn shame a bit more common sense could not be applied to this particular situation but this is not a singular event. This is a lack of common sense on an administrative level. I suspect voting, whether at the National or State level will not remedy this failure.

Good Luck with the commute! ;)

Heroditus Huxley said...

Odysseus and I have small children. If we ever have to fly, we're going to save up and charter one. I will not permit my children to be molested in front of me without killing the perpetrator.

staghounds said...

"willing to inflict any indignity on any citizen at any time rather than expose ourselves to the slightest bit of risk?"

No, it is worse than that. No one in this whole event believed that this lady posed a risk of any kind to any one.

"willing to inflict any indignity on any citizen at any time rather than expose ourselves to the slightest bit of risk of being accused of basing any decision of any kind on someone's skin colour being darker than a #79 crayola?"

And the answer to that is "yes".

staghounds said...

TSA works for us. We created it, we can dispose of it. We- the people of the Republic- choose TSA.

What was the last time the people, through democratic means, after a thoroughly fought election, through the people's elected representatives- disposed of a big government intrusion?

Repeal of Prohibition, maybe?

(Courts and the Executive killed Segregation.)

The history of the American Congress, the branch closest to the People, is pretty much a consistent erosion and destruction of liberty.

And usually it would be even worse if the courts, feeble as they sometimes are, weren't in the way.

We- human beings- don't seem to like using democratic means to increase our liberties.

Getting elected is a more and more exact science. If "Kill TSA" were an election winner- like "Not a Republican" was in 1932- there would be plenty of candidates.

We aren't voting our way out of this because we don't want to.

leaddog said...

I have 1 more round trip flight planned in my life. It is in October. If it were not for the 7000 mile swim... Once I return, I will not willingly enter another transportation device that requires body scanners or groping.

This has NOTHING to do with security and EVERYTHING to do with control. It is the incremental boiling of the frog. Notice how the "security" is beginning to expand? I have not noticed any added threats or attacks that would justify these expansions. It is ALL about control and nothing else.

If it were only about security, someone with a shred of brains would say that 98% of the population is no threat at all and will be treated as such until we have reason to believe otherwise. This is the 2% that gets the attention and sorry if you fall into that category and are not part of the problem.

Firehand said...

One of the things that truly pisses me off about this is the response of the TSA weenie:
Doesn't matter if it made sense, doesn't matter that we should have done things differently, they followed Procedure so shut up.

Just like the SWAT weenies who kick in the wrong doors and shoot your dog that's cowering in a corner, you can't bitch and the department won't do anything because 'they were following Procedure'. And your outrage means nothing compared to that.

Caleb said...

I have to agree that the "don't fly" comments are pretty silly. My job puts me in three different states in the last three days. How exactly am I supposed to get from Seattle to Virginia to Tennessee to Texas in a reasonable amount of time without an airplane? It's one thing for people that only fly for pleasure to get on their high horse and talk about how they drove from Virginia to Cali, but the reality of the situation is that there are thousands of people flying every day that don't have a choice. Opting out of airlines isn't an option, and we're certainly not votIng our way out of this, so what exactly is the solution for people like me and my fellow business travelers?

I wish there was a simple answer. Abolish the TSA? Great idea, not gonna happen. Dont fly? Comically foolish. I don't have the answer, but I know that what we're doing right now isn't it, and like Tam says, we're not voting our way out of this one.

JimB said...

Caleb.. You're right about having to fly because of the job. That leaves all of those folks who go through this crap to get on a plane for vacation or other leasure activity. If the all stopped flying it would definitely make an impact.

Anonymous said...

From a security viewpoint I can understand their reasons for concern. However, I think how they acted on those concerns was completely unnecessary. We know there's a better way than fondling Grannies Depends, Groping Special Needs Kids, or assaulting rape victims.

Jake (formerly Riposte3) said...

"We aren't voting our way out of this because we don't want to."

Sadly, I find myself starting to believe that the threepers are right about at least one thing - 97% of the population seems to be willing to lie back, close their eyes, and "think of England."

Like Tam said: "if I knew what to do, I'd have done it, and if I thought this was the kind of problem that could actually be solved by saddling up and busting caps, I'd have done that, too".

At this point, I think we’re still more likely to succeed in voting our way out of this than to succeed in shooting our way out. I just don’t think we’re very likely at all to succeed in voting our way out.

BTW, this has become my second Quote of the Day.

Anonymous said...

How would starving the airlines of business work when the airlines can just go to the .gov ATM and debit your bank account?


Bubblehead Les. said...

I voted, it didn't help.

I complained to my Congress People, it didn't help.

I haven't flown since the week after 9/11, but my lack of supporting the Airline Industry didn't help.

I'm down to Monitoring the News, keeping my Powder Dry, and Praying that it doesn't come down to a Sequel to 19 April, 1775. Too many Innocents would have to suffer to square away the Republic.

But something tells me that there is a Straw about to be loaded on the Camel's Back, yet nothing I can do will help prevent it.

Of course, one phone call from the Oval Office would have some heads rolling, and the Bullies that were hired by the TSA would have to find another Public Trough to feed from.

I wonder why Barry won't make that call?

Bob said...

In Defense of Mindless Government Drones. A must-read over at Reason magazine that summarizes TSA outrages.

Tam has summarized the dilemma pretty well. Where's the charismatic leader (Adam Selene, anyone?) to tell us what to do in this situation? Is it a situation requiring an Adam Selene? In this case, Adam Selene can still work within the system, being a presidential candidate prepared to bring TSA to heel, despite the reaction and lawsuits from the ACLU.

Failing that, at some point Simon Jester will have to start working behind the scenes, with acts of sabotage and even violence against TSA employees and leaders. Which brings the eternal question, who will bell the cat?

Velcro8ball said...

Welcome to Germany circa 1937. Most germans have figured out that they are not happy with the government, but what can or should they do to stop it. The ballot box isn't working, the people printing the truth are being drowned out by the propaganda media, the local government isn't the cause, and when the G-men come knocking no one is coming out to help the knockees. We've lost and history once again showed us exactly how it would happen. What do we do now beside gripe on the web in comment sections. I'm out of ideas. What's the latin for "who guards the guardians"?

Matthew said...

"Don't fly" is also full of fail once you realize that, regardless of what the map in your third grade classroom said, Hawaii and Alaska are not actually floating in the Pacific a short ferry ride southwest of Catalina.

Anonymous said...

Tam - [H]ave we reached a point where we, as a nation, are so pants-pissingly scared of a bunch of self-immolating neolithic goatherds that we are willing to inflict any indignity on any citizen at any time rather than expose ourselves to the slightest bit of risk?

No: we've reached a point where we're that afraid of fellow Americans (in principle, at least) who happen to wear a uniform, shiny badge, and a gun. We're afraid of going to jail - or worse - for resisting what can only be described as an outrage to our persons and morality. Imagine:

TSA goon (in response to beeping scanning machine) - Ma'am, please step over here, we have to pat you down.

Grandson - Hey! What do you mean, 'pat her down'??? That's my grandmother.

TSA goon (official don't-f*ck-with-me-or-bad-things-will-happen-to-you-voice) - Sir, please step back.

Grandson - Then keep your hands off my grandmother (or mother, wife, daughter, child).

Airport police - Is there a problem here?

Grandson - Yeah, he's getting ready to grope my grandmother.

TSA goon - This guy's causing trouble.

Airport cop (who is, of course, well-armed) - Sir, I'm going to have to ask you to come with me.

OUTCOME: Grandma gets groped, grandson gets arrested and never, ever gets to fly again, TSA agent goes home fat, dumb and happy, cop gets a citation for stopping a potential security breach, government official preens about following their procedures, news media cover the story for a day, then return to coverage of Kim Kardashian's wedding or some such, the rest of us keep on flying and hope it never happens to us.

Jayson said...

No voting our way out.

But there is too much QQ and not enough Pew-Pew.

EnemyoftheState said...

I thought Texas would take a stand against the TSA. I just knew it would. Today I found out that Texas is a myth like the tooth fairy and the Easter bunny.

I'm so disappointed I may pull up roots and move to somewhere else.

Don't Mess With Texas, Pretty Please.

B said...

Until the TSA can no longer wear their uniforms in PUBLIC out of shame, and they require a police escort to and from work out of fear of reprisal, this will keep happening. When their families won't admit that their loved one works for the TSA, and their kids would rather tell everyone in class that daddy works in a gay strip bar as a tosser than admit that he works for the TSA,,,

Only then will this stop. And that will happen only when the MSM begins painting them in the true light rather than the spun image.

How likely do you think that that will happen any time soon?

Interesting, WV: assessess. How appropriate.

Anonymous said...

I like the just don't fly anymore idea myself,and i don't,which really cramps seeing some interesting things this marble offers! I certainly don't agree with the some people have no choice line. We always have a choice. Finances always figure in somewhere along the line for everyone to some degree. I've voted with my feet already as well.

We can do anything we want to if we just choose to change our individual lives i think! I've found great peace in simplifying life in general.


McVee said...

For the record comically foolish is Me at the company Christmas party talking to the bosses Wife. Or that time I mixed margarita's on the neighbors roof. Pitched roof.
But not my personal decision to boycott the airlines as long as the TSA is in existence.

Jayson said...

didn't you read the comments? not flying gains you jack and shit., seeing as they're searching everything now. Boats, trains, automobiles, and trucks.

Anonymous said...

Not everyone has to boycott flying, only enough to impact the revenue of the already struggling airline industry. Those of you who have made job choices that require it should reexamine your priorities. Those who fly for "pleasure" should examine their concept of pleasure. And by the way, Alaska is connected to the North American continent. You can drive there. I have done it.

Tam said...

"And by the way, Alaska is connected to the North American continent. You can drive there. I have done it."

Which provinces honor my IN LTCH?

Chris said...

Talking about this to a new colleague at work (30-ish), and she gave me the line about, "If we (her word) don't search people like that, the terrorists will put a bomb in some old lady's underpants." (paraphrased)

I had to literally bite my tongue to prevent a "hostile work environment" situation. Pointing out that the TSA regularly FAILS to detect test "bomb" and other weapons made no impression on her well-washed brain, so I gave it up for a bad job. And made a mental note to not discuss any topic more complicated than "some weather we're having, eh?" with her.

Unknown said...

Caleb, by the 1970s I was a fairly well established professional engineer with a pretty good track record. But I looked at what the government was doing with my tax money and said, "Screw this!"

I dropped out in 1979. I figured out tax laws and made my avocations my penny-ante entrepreneurial business. Did okay, and damned sure felt better by my version of "starve the beast".

Guess what? I won't fly. I'd change jobs before I'd fly. "There are things up with which I shall not put."

Anonymous said...

What goes around comes around:

Schadenfreude, anyone?

BS Footprint said...

"TSA works for us. We created it, we can dispose of it. We- the people of the Republic- choose TSA."

I'll split a few rhetorical hairs here:

The TSA doesn't work for me. I didn't create it. I didn't hire them. I didn't 'choose' it. I didn't hire the ones who created the TSA.

OTHER people elected the four-star clowns running that particular circus. I can't fire the TSA. I can't find an electable 'representative' to vote for. Apparently those other people WANT the TSA and other crazy stuff like that.

Yet here I am, stuck in a world with the TSA. Funny, huh?

Yep, that's the game we're forced to play. Hope you like it. I don't.

BS Footprint said...

To the commenters who say they can't stop flying because of their jobs: if that's the case, they you should get used to the groping. And worse.

You're not willing to give up your (current) paycheck in order to escape creeping tyranny? Then how the heck do you expect to defeat the tyrants when they really crank up the grope-o-matic?

Did you think you'd be able to stand up to them and keep your job? Really?

As @docjim505 pointed out, if you make a stink, you'll probably be blacklisted anyway, so there goes your precious job. So that leaves shutting up and taking what they're dishing out.

Homework assignment: Go watch _Fight Club_. Only this time, you might want to take it seriously:

You're not your job. You're not how much money you have in the bank. You're not the car you drive. You're not the contents of your wallet. You're not your f*cking khakis. And it's only after you've lost everything that you're free to do anything.

Karl said...

Did you know you get two TSA gloves with every purchase of a Commie Obama hat?

staghounds said...

BS Footprint:

I don't like it, but we are stuck with it until we change it. That was my point, that the only way to change thinbgs is to change the minds of our fellows who, like Chris' fellow worker, think this is a good state of affairs. That's what being a citizen means.

Calling our fellows "those other people" has the same effect on them as saying "Those other people want to have pistols in their houses" does on us.

Talking about killing TSA employees isn't helpful either.

If you don't like it enough, then opt out by not flying, opt out by moving, opt out by revolution.

But I was trained as an historian, and I work in the "justice system". I admit I'm out of ideas too.

BS Footprint said...


I never talked about killing TSA employees (or anyone else). Not sure what you're talking about.

Regarding "being a citizen": I understand where you're coming from.

My post was intended to point out the massive divide between those who cherish liberty, and those who simply don't.

I wasted (yes, wasted) more than a decade of my life trying to raise awareness among friends, family, cow-workers, etc. The usual result: mostly blank stares, rolled eyes, and a definite sense that I was wearing out my welcome.

So I decided that things needed to get a lot worse than they were, in the hopes that J6P would start to get the message based on personal experience.

Well, things are a lot worse, and yes, more people are figuring it out, but it appears that a solid majority still want nothing more than to be safe and well-fed.

Message received. Over and out.

I'm sorry to have to say it, but I *am* different from other people. Really different. I hold views that are so far out of alignment with the vast majority of my fellow "citizens" (and that includes some of those who comment here) that I expect there may soon come a time when expressing my views publicly may put me in mortal danger. And I'm not the only one who is coming to this conclusion.

You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink. Similarly, you can try to help awaken those under the influence of the state religion, but you can't force them out of their slumber. In fact, you might get a violent reaction if you startle them.

So I've adopted a live-and-let-live approach. The fools want their folly; who am I to disturb them?

In fact, it might be strangely titillating to watch the New Titanic as it approaches the iceberg, if you watch with a certain detachment, like it was a cheesy horror film.

Anonymous said...

In fact, it might be strangely titillating to watch the New Titanic as it approaches the iceberg, if you watch with a certain detachment, like it was a cheesy horror film.

It would be for me, but unfortunately, my kids are on that ship. I'm with Tam, though: fresh out of ideas. In the meantime, I'm evangelizing liberty as best I can.


BS Footprint said...


To be sure, we're all on the ship to some degree.

It's just that some of us see clearly where it's heading. You can run around the deck trying to warn the other passengers (and most of them react like you're some kind of madman) or you can spend your energy preparing yourself and your loved ones. Which one makes more sense?

Anonymous said...

Is it an either/or proposition?