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The case for abolishing the TSA

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It's worth remembering that the inconvenience and injustice of the TSA's activities exists for literally no reason. If the agency's privacy violations and annoying carry-on regulations were merely the price we paid for reducing the incidence of terrorist attacks, that'd be one thing. But, as security expert Bruce Schneier likes to note, there's no evidence that the TSA has ever prevented a terrorist attack, and there's some research suggesting it could serve to… (www.vox.com) 기타...

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WtfWtf
WtfWtf 10
Armed pilots, air marshals and passengers who were alive and or affected during 9-11 are the reason hijackings are a low likelihood anymore. Not my shampoo and toothpaste aiming for the trash can.
sparkie624
There are already several hijackings since... 2 were taken care of by pax in the air, and one was by a crew member who exited via a cockpit window upon landing and quickly apprehended. I do not right off hand remember the airlines.
WtfWtf
WtfWtf 1
Attempted hijackings, and actual hijackings are 2 different things.. Think about it, if you were on a flight and some A-hole's decide to try to storm the cockpit, are you just going to sit and watch? Maybe before 9-11 (because you wouldn't think of suicide as being an option.. perhaps their motivation is simply money or political), but now, definitely not. Even with a laptop, you can bust someones head open if you had to, and I know I would. Now, it is assumed that anyone attempting to hijack is going to kill themselves and everyone else in the name of whatever whacko religion they happen to be brain washed by.
sparkie624
2/17/14 - Ethiopian Airlines Flt 702 hijacker of Flight 702 was Hailemedhin Abera Tegegn, 31, who was the co-pilot - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethiopian_Airlines_Flight_702_hijacking

6/29/2012 - Tianjin Airlines Flt 7554 captain heard confirmation from a flight attendant that the events in the cabin were indeed an attempted hijacking and not just a fight, he turned the aircraft back to Hotan


The first was a full HiJacking, the 2nd attempted HiJacking... here was a 3rd, but cannot find it right now. I agree that they are highly reduced, but not gone away.
WALLACE24
I am of the opinion that here in the US the trained and skilled terrorists are kinda past the airline deal. I think the cells are forming all over the country and the next event will be coordinated and probably beyond 911 results. We have made it easy for them by not enforcing laws and bowing to PC. IMHO
WtfWtf
WtfWtf 1
I hope you are wrong, and while I agree with you on the PC aspect, give me liberty, or give me death. Self defense laws are way too burdensome on the law abiding citizens, and that's a big problem as well. But it's hard to stop a well planned attack, whether or not you use racial profiling, or non-PC methods, etc. If they want to kill, they will find a way, regardless of laws imposed on the law abiding citizens. (In reality, that's all it affects.. those who want to do harm don't follow laws anyway.. it's such flawed logic)
WALLACE24
And that is the best argument for abolishing TSA. Terrorists will always find a way to kill. The best defense lies with the citizens. Same argument for mass shootings. Always be ready to take care of yourself and know your neighbors.
preacher1
I am in agreement on the serious side. People have been lulled into a false sense of security as it has been a little over 12 years since 911. They forget about the shoe bomber and the underwear bomber. Had those devices not malfunctioned it would have shown folks that the threat is still out there, nor do they equate the times square lone wolf and Boston bombings. Measuring to themselves, they vastly underestimate the patience of these people, and then there is that PC thing that keeps us from profiling anybody so we don't violate their civil rights or offend anyone. IMHO
donhun1313
In both the instances you refer to, the flights did not originate in the USA. TSA had nothing to do with them.

The Israelis have the best airport security and it does not consist of strip searching passengers. It relies on a few well trained individuals not thousands of people standing around on the government dole just to give people a false sense of security.
preacher1
I realize that as far as their origin. My total intent was simply to note that we have been lulled into that false sense of security. I think we are on the same page. People nowadays don't realize the patience these people have nor how simple a trigger it can take to set off a lone wolf. The TSA is just too visible to be an effective deterrent, yet our penchant for being PC will keep anything similar to ElAl from coming into being.
WALLACE24
You are right of course UNTIL people get tired of getting killed by Muslim extremists. How many have to die before that happens is the question.
Musketeer1
The case for not abolishing the TSA: The federal government never gets smaller.
preacher1
Well, I'll put my 2cts worth in: I am in agreement that a bullet hole would not cause explosive decompression; inconvenience and anxious moments, probably. BUT, getting back on subject about the TSA, In the beginning it may have been the right thing to do. Most of us can remember the days after 911 but before TSA, having military with loaded M16's in most terminals. The biggest problem with the TSA is that it was allowed to expand and get it tentacles into everything, many places it's not needed. As it is now a full blown government entity it will be hard to dismantle, if not impossible. The whole problem with government these days is that there is no 1 single entity that can be put away and reduce our national debt. It's gonna have to be a million here and a million there. Those millions will add up to billions.
Moviela
There are two main problems with the TSA. First is they are only concerned with what is above the deck. Freight passes through almost unhindered.

The second problem is it is run as a security operation. It should be run as a guest services organization. They should be charged with getting as many passengers on the plane as quickly as possible. It would not hurt to use El Al tactics and profiling Muslim males between 17 and 41 for secondary inspection. If they don't like it, have them read the Constitution. There is nothing in there that would allow anyone to blow up airplanes.
benin
benin 3
I'm almost wondering if this is a work of satire. Either way, It's very vague; Being an AP Statistics student makes me question the claims made. They say Studies were done; Is it a study, or an experiment, because that's a big difference.
PhotoFinish
It's an article referencing a literature review of published studies of what 'might have happened'. There's some process to this. But what you must remember is that all this published studies that the reviewers looked over were written by people. These people had to model what 'might have happened'. In doing so they had to make judgements, assumptions and suppositions.

The reviewers also had to create a way to balance the divergent views of the published studies. They either had to give more weight to some studies over others based on their own judgements, assumptions and suppositions, or they just took a mathematical average of the assertions of all the reviewed studies.

As you can tell from from my comment, all these studies and the referenced review are all dealing with the fantasy land of what 'might have happened'. While I stop short of saying that there is no value in academics making guesses about a world with or without TSA, there is value in just discussing the situation, and considering the alternatives in making policy. But the guesses by academics of what 'might have happened' or even a big average of many academics guesses of what 'might have happened' are all just that - guesses. Maybe educated guesses, but guesses nonetheless.

If there was conclusive proof that TSA screening directly foiled even one attempted skyjacking or attempted destruction of an airliner, we'd all know about it.

There are many reasons why we haven't had terroristic attacks on airliners post-9/11. TSA is only one reason among many, and possibly not even the mist important factor. Remember, there are also air marshals on many flights, flight manifests are reviewed prior to departure and prior to arriving in US airspace, baggage that goes into the belly is screened for explosives and other dangerous substances. Also passengers are more aware now and willing to step up to assist the cabin crew and to defend their plane from unruly passengers and/or potential hijackers.

I can see the value of screening for explosives, guns and long knives. But throwing away millions of nail clippers and half finished tubes of toothpaste isn't making our skies any safer.

Plus, there are the many studies of TSA effectiveness, in which all kinds of dangerous objects get past the screeners. That's truly sad. The TSA encumber so many millions of fliers. But then don't even succeed at doing their job properly - the screening.

The question of whither TSA, or how much TSA, or what methods TSA are certainly questions worth asking, even if all don't agree, or especially because all don't agree. The questions themselves are valuable. It reminds us that we have values and expectations. And we can measure TSA against our vision of what society we want to be and what service we would want from TSA or not, and whether we even want the TSA doing the job.
STEELJAW
STEELJAW 1
That was beautiful and well though out. However, It's not entirely true.
RE:"But throwing away millions of nail clippers and half finished tubes of toothpaste isn't making our skies any safer."

How do you know this? Remember,you said "But the guesses by academics of what 'might have happened' or even a big average of many academics guesses of what 'might have happened' are all just that - guesses. Maybe educated guesses, but guesses nonetheless."

My case in point is that; "Toothpaste bombs are not new either. This particular combination of explosives with everyday objects was used by anti-Castro Cuban militants in 1976 to bring down an aircraft over the Caribbean Sea, killing over 70 people."

Just because the tube says Crest or Colgate doesn't make it toothpaste.

Also, you forgot to mention that TSA screening policies are based on intelligence received from the intelligence community. TSA policies are established by the intel received from various Homeland Security channels including, the CIA, FBI and other spy agencies. So, TSA policies are really Homeland Security policies.

RE;"If there was conclusive proof that TSA screening directly foiled even one attempted skyjacking or attempted destruction of an airliner, we'd all know about it."

Surely you don't believe that the US government is going to tell you everything. If you don't believe me, next time you are in a Airport, causally strike up a conversation with a TSA officer and asked if they have ever found anything that was not reported on the local News. You will be shocked.

One last point; regardless of if the TSA is abolished or not, the privatized screening agencies will still have to abide by Homeland Security policies. Their equipment and training are even provided by Homeland Security.
donhun1313
Just remember that you can make and given set of statistics support both sides of any argument equally well.

If you haven't learned this yet hang in there you will.
BeechSportBill
....every pressurized aircraft has an adjustable leak- the Pressurization Outflow valve - that lets out excess airpressure to maintain a set cabin pressure at cruise altitude - usually 6-9,000 ft. Inlet air pressure comes from the engines and varies as the engines throttle up and down, and the outflow valve adjusts to maintain a constant cabin altitude. If there was a small hole from a bullet, the outflow valve would adjust (close slightly) to maintain the set cabin altitude. Then, if you were bothered by the whistle, you could stuff a handkerchief in the hole.
davegoldthorp
The sooner the US abolishes the TSA, the sooner the rest of the world can get rid of the ridiculous security measures that plague us every time we want to fly.
iflyfsx
iflyfsx 1
People are too stupid and irrationally afraid, and they get the government they deserve. If you want a better government, you have to have better citizens.

"in the last five years you were four times more likely to be struck by lightning than killed by a terrorist."
http://reason.com/archives/2011/09/06/how-scared-of-terrorism-should

The tsa has killed more people than the "terrorists"
http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-11-18/how-airport-security-is-killing-us

At least the "terrorists" don't charge us $150 billion every year, on top of those deaths.

Anti-Terrorism Spending 50,000 Times More Than on Any Other Cause of Death
http://thinkbynumbers.org/government-spending/anti-terrorism-spending-disproportionate-to-threat/

But that's the real world, and stupid people don't live in the real world. They live in a fantasy world where they just want to "feel" safer, even if they are at much greater risk. Morons.
jdriskell
The trouble with believing anything Ranl Paul or John Mica says or supports will get you into trouble quickly. Just went thru DCA TSA screening today. Didn't jib with SEA's earlier in the week. Seems there's no standards. But to dump the TSA is the wrong approach. The current head of the TSA need to look elsewhere for work. The organization need someone that will kick ass and take names to ensure that it uses common sense I doing there jobs.

James M driskell
preacher1
Your last line will be a good start but there must be an incentive in there for size reduction as well.
jdriskell
Sorry about the typos. Should have said "in doing their jobs".
WALLACE24
There are a gazillion cops in the US but people keep getting murdered, robbed, raped, etc. There is no cure all that delivers safety while maintaining our freedoms. If you feel safe because the government is protecting you then you are living a fantasy.
donhun1313
The police are here to investigate crime not prevent it. any one that believes differently is DEAD wrong.

As an example, in Warren v. the District of Columbia the court ruled that; “fundamental principle that a government and its agents are under no general duty to provide public services, such as police protection, to any particular individual citizen.” (Warren v. District of Columbia, 444 A.2d 1, 4 (D.C. 1981). This is just one of many court rulings reaffirming that the police have NO obligation to protect individual citizens from ANY crime.
WALLACE24
They are a reactive force. The best response time is too late to save you unless you get VERY lucky. As the saying goes "police carry weapons for their protection, not yours".
preacher1
Time for some El Al training
WALLACE24
That would take common sense.
preacher1
yep, and a bureaucrat that had an incentive to reduce and reorganize. Don't hold your breath. LOL
aknorris
aknorris 1
The creation of the TSA Was, IMHO, one of the top 5 most egregious errors of the administration of that time.
The agency's continued existence, and now growth into other areas (the TSA is now also setting up interstate highway checks, train checks, etc, citing the "Transportation" part of their charter) is appalling.
It should be abolished.
sparkie624
The TSA was nothing more than a "Knee Jerk Reaction"... I agree we needed to do something, but the TSA was not it.
davisbound
I don't travel by flight anywhere near as much as years gone by simply because of the hassle of the TSA. I remember the days when I could catch a last minute seat, pack my bags, and head to the airport for a quick flight to a clients location. Now as we all know, that is an immediate red flag for the TSA to basically do a full body cavity search because I might be up to something. We have gone completely overboard and unfortunately now that they are under the Federal umbrella it will never go away.

[This poster has been suspended.]

THRUSTT
THRUSTT 2
El Al did shoot a hijacker.
donhun1313
Yes they did and because they shoot hijackers there has only been ONE successful hijacking of an El Al aircraft and that was over 45 years ago.
Neil49
Neil49 3
Re:"If you wanted to command a U.S. airliner, you HAD to be armed"

Utter nonsense, I'm afraid.

[This poster has been suspended.]

Quidnon
Quidnon 5
The armed pilot rule went into affect in 1961 and was rescinded in July of 2001. No one had to be armed. It was optional. That is probably the nonsense part Neil was referring to.
sparkie624
I like you point of view.... Everyone thinks that there is going to be a big explosion at 40,000 feet... but that is not the case....
STEELJAW
STEELJAW 1
I said I was going to be quite and just let ignorance prevail, but SPARKIE624 opened the door. This happen 17 years before TSA. No armed pilot, flight marshal or passenger prevented this from happening. You are right, it didn't happen at 40,000feet, it happen at 31,000feet. There were NO survivors! June 23, 1985: At 7.13 (a.m.) GMT, Air India Flight 182, cruising at an altitude of 31,000 feet lost radar contact with air traffic controllers at Shanwick, Ireland. The flight disintegrated at altitude and the wreckage was scattered along a nine-mile swath of the ocean. The voice recorder showed there had been a loud bang aboard the aircraft. It also picked up the hissing sound of the fuselage opening up and a scream. The data recorders showed everything was normal on the aircraft until the explosion. The data recorder also showed a momentary control input by the pilot as he desperately tried to re-configure the aircraft. All 329 aboard were killed, including 60 children aged below 10. Also killed were 22 Americans, 160 Canadians and more than 100 Indian nationals along with others. Yes, it was a BOMB. That is the case! All DHS intelligence outlets shows that Al-Qaeda is still fascinated with bringing down a US commercial airliner.
sparkie624
Look, you have no clue what you are talking about... Air India Flight 182 was a BOMB EXPLOSION, not a gun shot.... The subject here is guns in the aircraft. A Gun being fired onboard the aircraft at any altitude is not going to cause the plane to explode.. It will however poke a hole and enable pressure to escape from the cabin where it is not supposed to. There is the possibility that it could hit a control cable, wiring harness, or hydraulics that could cause issues in the cockpit, but not explosive decompression. STEELJAW, you need to go find a STEELTRAP. Your entire comment is correlative to the conversation from all view points... If you want to see a real ignorance prevail, just look in the mirror

Before posting a reply, please go back and do some real research and get some relevant facts...

Also, Please note that Southwest Airlines Flight 2294, had a tear strip to blow out at 34,000 feet. They made an emergency landing at KCRW. No one died or was even hurt. They were however inconvenienced. This happened due to improper maintenance due to the fact inspection missed a spot on the eddy current inspection. This whole was much worse that that of any bullet hole (even if it was a 50 caliber). Ref: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southwest_Airlines_Flight_2294
STEELJAW
STEELJAW 2
Sparkie624, I stand corrected. My apologies to you.
sparkie624
Apology Accepted... and thanks.
sparkie624
Correction to: "Your entire comment is correlative to the conversation from all view points..." Due to spell check... Supposed to read: "Your entire comment is er-relative to the conversation from all view points..."

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