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Old 11-27-2010, 12:17 AM   #391
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When I talked about "acceptable risk" and flying, I wasn't talking about taking away all security measures. I'm suggesting, as many others are, that they've become unreasonable and are reactionary.
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Old 11-27-2010, 01:32 AM   #392
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But the willingness to be assaulted in the name of "safety," the willingness to allow a Constitutional right to be continuously violated, and the willingness to "sacrifice certain personal liberties" IS fear...You keep defending the policies that allow those women and men to be assaulted.
No one's defending overly-invasive treatment or over-zealous security guards assaulting people. At the same time, railing against airline security and saying that security practices are an automatic invasion of privacy (and, hence, liberty) is flying in the face of reality, particularly if you believe that the government is in any way responsible for the safety and well-being of its citizens.

There is always an inherent tension between personal liberty and public safety, isn't there...
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Old 11-27-2010, 12:49 PM   #393
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YouTube - TSA Breast Milk Screening Harassment Updated

Another lovely TSA story. Basically (and based on the TSA agents' own words and actions, they were fully aware of their actions and what they meant), this woman was singled out for retribution because of the simple fact that she filed a complaint, due to their lack of professionalism in handling a perfectly reasonable and legal request, stated clearly in TSA's own rules and regulations. She was held in the screening area for over an hour (causing her to miss her flight), clearly told by police that she was being held as revenge, and was told specifically by a TSA manager that the TSA's own rules didn't apply to her, and threatened with arrest for not complying with their petty revenge plot.

What. The. Fuck.

When people are subjected to unwarranted searches and prevented from freely traveling within their own country, there's something seriously wrong with the direction our airport security is heading in. When people are singled out for retribution because they happen to know the TSA regulations better than actual TSA agents... that's bordering on police state tactics.

Granted, this is - hopefully - an isolated incident and not representative of all TSA managers and agents, it's still extremely troubling.
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Old 11-27-2010, 04:22 PM   #394
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pentaerythritol tetranitrate (PETN).

PETN is a plastic explosive that was used by so-called shoe-bomber Richard Reid and is considered by terrorism experts as the weapon of choice of Al Qaeda bombers.
They only have PETN in Yemen, is there any of this stuff in the U S?

It seems this stuff can get through a metal detector, but not as easily through the new screening measures.
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Old 11-27-2010, 11:40 PM   #395
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Another lovely TSA story.
wow.
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Old 11-28-2010, 02:23 AM   #396
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Has anyone on this board travelled lately?
I have. On Thanksgiving, and I'll be traveling again tomorrow.

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Are most travellers at airports cowering in fear -- or looking over their shoulders, or worse, turning in Muslim travellers out of suspicion?
In my experience,no.

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Or are most travellers simply annoyed by the inconvenience, but focused on primarily getting to their destination?
This. I'm more fearful of traveling nine hours with a two and a half year old who usted his lip tonight and so can't suck his thumb to self-soothe and who might be coming down with pink eye. Now THATS scary!

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I think the fear of Americans is overrated.
I would agree. What I'm missing from most of the objections to this latest round of restrictions is reasonable alternatives. I actually agree that the latest changes are reactionary and not very effective, but I think that's been true of most of the other changes they've made too--the liquids, the removal of shoes etc. Apparently, Israel's approach is absolutely untenable here. So what are the alternatives? We've heard people eloquently decry these new techniques, so about some equally eloquent alternatives. Because right now, most of the opposition I'm hearing here sounds a lot like the Republican opposition to "Obamacare"--a lot of dire predictions no alternative solutions.
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Old 11-28-2010, 02:20 PM   #397
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I would agree. What I'm missing from most of the objections to this latest round of restrictions is reasonable alternatives. I actually agree that the latest changes are reactionary and not very effective, but I think that's been true of most of the other changes they've made too--the liquids, the removal of shoes etc. Apparently, Israel's approach is absolutely untenable here. So what are the alternatives? We've heard people eloquently decry these new techniques, so about some equally eloquent alternatives. Because right now, most of the opposition I'm hearing here sounds a lot like the Republican opposition to "Obamacare"--a lot of dire predictions no alternative solutions.
Sean and Nathan, so all of us who have pretty serious objections to all this are only allowed to object when we have "alternatives"? I believe I posted an editorial from CNN that I agreed with. I guess I'll have to explicitly agree with kramwest instead of silently nodding whilst reading his posts so I can continue to post in this thread. Sean, the dire predictions are happening; have you been reading the accounts posted here? Or are you willing to write them off as isolated incidents? What would amount to prosecutable sexual assault is fine if it's just a few dozen people a day?

Nathan is very consistent in his selective application of Constitutional rights to differing groups of Americans; but I'm surprised at you, Sean. You seemed to be one of those who felt that the Constitution applied to all. I would never have suspected that you'd be one of those willing to suspend the rights you have for the illusion of safety.

One more word on "alternatives": do these machines find PETN? Was the Underpants bomber already a suspicious person who should never have been allowed to board that plane in the first place? Did we have metal detectors and rules about what could be carried on to planes in September 2001? So maybe we already have procedures in place; perhaps they just need to be followed?

Guys, please let me know if I have met the criteria for further discussion of the Constitutionality of unwarranted sexual assault TSA searches and the unproven safety of machines that may not be of any use, but sure have a powerful lobby in Congress backscatter x-ray machines.


If I haven't, I'll just bend over like the rest of you and slowly watch whatever rights I thought I have get taken away in the name of terrorism.
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Old 11-28-2010, 06:35 PM   #398
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^Martha.

Of course you have every right to object without providing alternatives. And I have the right to express my wish for some. I just think objecting without a solution is not very productive or helpful.

For the record, I do believe that the Constitution applies to all. I don't necessarily agree with "suspending rights for the illusion of safety." I don't agree that any of the changes made since 9/11 including the most recent have made us any safer or are particular effective. As corianderstem pointed out earlier, the changes are reactionary and the terrrorists have already moved on to the next scheme to inflict harm. I think the main difference between you and the rest of the exercised posters on this thread and me is that I'm not as convinced as you are that this is the slippery slope that leads to the end of our constitutional rights. I do believe the incidents reported in the news are isolated incidents. The fact is pretty much everything that is reported in the news are "isolated incidents." That's why they are news in the first place. The problem is that with our constant stream of media hype, these things--like a lot of things--get blown way out of proportion. I'm NOT saying these new policies are good. I am saying that they are ineffective and ill-conceived and for people who work in the airline industry possibly problematic. I do not however believe that they are the pernicous, creeping evil that you are making them out to be.

And I'll be honest, I'm surprised at you, Martha, that you would employ those kinds of straw man argument.

I'll post more later. I'm inflight right now, using Delta's free wi-fi and my laptop is about to run out of battery.
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Old 11-28-2010, 06:45 PM   #399
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I don't agree that any of the changes made since 9/11 including the most recent have made us any safer or are particular effective.
If you believe that then what possible argument is there for continuing to support this invasive, ineffective and expensive procedure?
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Old 11-28-2010, 07:00 PM   #400
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If I haven't, I'll just bend over like the rest of you and slowly watch whatever rights I thought I have get taken away in the name of terrorism.
I fly at least once or twice a month. I guess the main reason I'm not more up-in-arms about this is that I think of flying like I do driving: it's a privilege, not a right.
I think there are similar arguments about sobriety checkpoints on the road as there are about pat-downs before flying. Technically, no one has to fly or drive (Yes, our modern society will beg to differ, but there are alternatives to both, and neither is guaranteed through citizenship.).

I don't disregard the indignities and actual abuses that have gone on with the pat-downs so far. Those are bad training, bad employees and bad management, but mandating pat-downs is not necessarily bad policy.

Do I think it is keeping us safer? Maybe a tiny, tiny bit.
But, as I said before, I think the media have driven a lot of this frenzy, coupled with the busier holiday travel season, and it all distracts us from the real shit that is happening:

-Corporate lobbyists are convincing our government to buy shit that we might not need.
-Our security policies are reactionary instead of forward-thinking.
-A single person probably cannot bring down an airplane with what they are able to smuggle on-board without access to the cockpit. Groups of terrorists trying to board a flight should be easier to find if our security people are doing their jobs.
-NOTHING our government can do will keep us 100 percent safe from terrorism, and someone should admit to that to the American public soon, and in very serious and honest terms.
-The indignity of a pat-down is most likely temporary for the average person, but yet another source of radiation is being aimed at our bodies with the cumulative consequences unknown.
(Scenario: I drive to the airport following my GPS that is beamed from a satellite, talking on my cellphone. At the airport, I go through a mild x-ray machine. I sit at the gate with my WiFi-enabled laptop on my lap, talking on my cellphone. Once in the plane, I fly above some of the protective layers of our atmosphere and am exposed to mild cosmic radiation. Each of these things is considered safe by our government, but is there anyone who is tallying the long-term consequences of all of them combined? And for some people, these things are a daily occurrence.--Just a thought, but possibly a more realistic threat to your life than terrorism.)
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Old 11-28-2010, 07:08 PM   #401
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So, here's a forward-looking security question:

Airplanes are tight aluminum bundles of wires, hydraulic lines and fuel. If terrorists are serious about bringing down a plane, are there any places on the plane where critical components are so close to the passenger cabin such that a tiny bomb or fast-working guy with a screwdriver can fuck with them?

Probably.

Are we going to tell Boeing, Airbus, Bombardier and Embraer to reconfigure their passenger planes?

Probably not.
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Old 11-29-2010, 01:12 AM   #402
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Mark, the last post of yours there was FANTASTICALLY put .

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Is it hypocritical that some who raised no objections to the Patriot Act are screeching now, sure, but that's predictable since that directly inconvenienced far fewer people, and if anything it illustrates how important organizing the opposed to fight back in a maximally concerted way is.
Too true. Not to mention, hypocrisy is always going to show up in any situation, unfortunately. We just need to start calling it out a hell of a lot more often.

(For the record, I think BOTH the Patriot Act and this new security measure are dumb as can be)

I'm confused, I guess, because I read this...

Quote:
OTTAWA—Canadian airport screeners have no plans to introduce the kind of “provocative” pat-downs that have sparked protests and riled passengers at airports across the United States, Transport Minister Chuck Strahl says.

“Canadians obviously have a right to expect to be treated properly and respectfully at airports,” Strahl told reporters Wednesday.

“While the Americans have instituted a more intensive ... pat-down technique, that's not happening in Canada. ... They have no intention of doing that,” he said in the House of Commons' foyer.
...and wonder how it is they manage to get by without going overboard and panicking. Sure, their country wasn't the one attacked on 9/11-had they been, who knows, they might be reacting differently, but they are our neighbor and did help us that day in terms of air traffic. And many of our allies that have experienced terrorist attacks don't seem to be going the same route we are. Why are they seemingly able to deal with this better and more rationally than we are? Why can't we follow their mindset?

I haven't flown since 1997, and I've had fears related to flying long before 9/11 and any of this stuff. And I'm not likely to be flying anytime in the near future. So on a personal level, this isn't affecting me much, if at all. But I still oppose the idea because I do not understand where those who came up with the idea think it's a logical solution to our problems. We've tried everything else imaginable thus far and it hasn't seemed to work, why exactly do those who thought this up and those who support it think this will be any different? I've yet to hear an explanation to that question, or at least one that would seem to make any sort of sense.

Angela
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Old 11-29-2010, 01:17 AM   #403
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NOTHING our government can do will keep us 100 percent safe from terrorism, and someone should admit to that to the American public soon, and in very serious and honest terms.
I often wish they would, but of course the problem for them isn't that the average American actually believes our government could ever keep them 100% safe. It's that if the government acknowledges that it can't, that statement WILL be seized out of context and used against them sooner or later--like, say, the next time there's a terrorist attack (or nightmarishly close call) and the public is still reeling from shock. As the IRA once told Thatcher, "You have to get lucky every time; we only have to get lucky once." It only makes that worse when the enemy has no clear face.
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Old 11-29-2010, 10:03 AM   #404
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And that was only a pantyliner

Super maxi puts you on the terrorist watch and no fly list

Now there's a guy who was allegedly plotting to bomb the Portland, Oregon Christmas tree lighting. Talk about a war on Christmas. They'll have to do pat downs and scans at those too.
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Old 11-29-2010, 01:25 PM   #405
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the thing i still can't get over re: the outrage over the pat downs is that if you'd just go through the machine then you won't get a pat down.

soooo why isn't all the moral outrage about the machines? or do we only have the attention to be outraged over one thing at a time these days?

door #1... a non evasive, mild dose of radiation that is less than that of the average cell phone, which will take a picture of your body that your own mother wouldn't be able to recognize

door #2... someone who hates their job, has to deal with all the miserable shits who travel every day, who probably gets yelled at, harassed, sneezed on (or worse) all day long grabbing my junk.


door #1, please.
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