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Why?

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Wednesday, November 19, 2008
why

 

Starting today, the Ad Council will launch the “Why?” campaign . The campaign will explain the reasons behind some of TSA’s most controversial security procedures. The goal of this public awareness effort is to reach the largest audience possible explaining to the traveling public what TSA does and why we do it.

Launching just before the take off of the busy Thanksgiving holiday travel season, videos and Web banners will be posted online and complemented by national radio messages. Travelers will find bits and pieces of the campaign when they visit major travel and airline Web pages. They will also see “Why?” at TSA.gov.

More than 23 million passengers were screened at our checkpoints last year during the holiday season, and many of those passengers travel infrequently. Those are the travelers we’d most like to reach. Passenger feedback has shown us that people are more willing to comply with security procedures if they understand the “why” behind the measure. It’s true that for every security protocol there is a relevant security concern. TSA uses its partnerships with law enforcement, global allies and with other federal agencies to review and update security measures based on current information.

As a former Transportation Security Officer, I can attest to the fact that the novice or infrequent travelers slow down the lines a great deal. So by combining the “Why?” effort with the expanded Family/Medical Liquids lanes, TSA is working to increase security while improving the passenger experience. The family lanes will enable families, first time travelers to go through a line where they won’t be rushed or pressured. We are also encouraging people with larger medical liquids in tow to use this lane as well so we can inspect these larger liquids.

TSA’s partnership with the Ad Council will cover a variety of measures. During Thanksgiving the focus is on some of the common pain points: why must I take off my shoes?, why limited liquids in a baggie?.

The bottom line is TSA wants passengers to know that we are on your side and you play a role in security by being ready and cooperative at the checkpoint.

Check out the Videos:

The videos feature one of our very own Transportation Security Officers.
EoS Blog Team

Comments

Submitted by Phil on

Without even viewing your videos, I can see that you are again misleading the public.

There is no way to answer the question, "why do I have to show ID?" because people do not have to show ID in order to cross your checkpoints. It's not a requirement, and it never has been.

--
Phil
Add your own questions at TSAFAQ.net

Submitted by Phil on

Why are you again posting videos -- publicly funded and aimed at the public -- in a proprietary format (Windows Media)?

We discussed this in March. Then, I wrote:

"You, part of a government of the people, by the people, and for the people, chose (unintentionally, I assume) to supply a video not in a format that is free for anyone to use for any purpose without permission, but rather in a proprietary format that, although seemingly not a problem to use, is restricted by a for-profit corporation. The ability to compile Windows Media playback software is restricted by Microsoft, and thus it doesn't happen unless they allow it. Though it's relatively simple for most computer users to acquire such software today, this might not be the case tomorrow. All of this could be alleviated by using open standards.

"Alternatives to Windows Media Video that are free as in "free speech" not just free as in "free beer" include Xvid, H.264, and Ogg Theora. These video codecs can be used in a variety of container formats, including AVI, Quicktime, OGM, Matroska, MP4, and 3GP."

Windows Media players are now available free-of-charge to those who have paid Microsoft or Apple to use their operaring systems. Some Windows Media can be played on other operating systems, but only becuase of the efforts of others who reverse-engineered it. Our ability to view these videos you have produced for us depends entirely upon cooperation with a commercial entity.

Why are you collaborating with Microsoft to make public property less free?

--
Phil
Add your own questions at TSAFAQ.net

Submitted by Anonymous on

How much of my tax money are you wasting to lie to the public like this?

Submitted by Earl Pitts on

I'm disappointed to see the Ad Council spots being used for propaganda. I don't think that spreading propaganda and misleading the public is a worthy use of the Ad Council. If anything, it diminishes its credibility.

I guess TSA figures it doesn't have any credibility left so it's trying to borrow from an organization that still has some.

Submitted by Khurt on

I have decided that most awareness campaigns are actually spin.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Phil said...
Without even viewing your videos, I can see that you are again misleading the public.

There is no way to answer the question, "why do I have to show ID?" because people do not have to show ID in order to cross your checkpoints. It's not a requirement, and it never has been.
_____________________________________________________

You seem to be a sad person who just wants to find confrontation in everything. Everyone wants their questions answered, they ask over and over again. When answers are given they still are not happy. But I have read this site enough times that I know it is the same sorry 5, 6 or 7 people complaining, complaining, complaining. Traveling is, what it is, get over yourself. There are so many people who are happy to comply with TSA's rules. Your complaints are not ganna get you anywhere. All's they are going to do is hold you up in front of your computer all the time not having a life because you are too worried about things that the general public does not even think twice about.

Submitted by Jim Huggins on

First ... kudos for trying to get out front on answering questions.

Now, to the nitpicking. :)

I viewed the "Why ID?" video ... and, frankly, TSA missed the point here. As many have pointed out here, presenting valid identity documents doesn't tell you anything about a passenger's past actions or future intensions.

And TSA almost understands that ... because I noticed the quick line that said that electronic boarding pass scanning (and, by implication, verification) is coming soon. Why do you include that in the video? Of course, because that's the missing piece of the loop: the connection of a passenger's identity documents with the selectee/no-fly lists (which are used in the granting of boarding passes).

TSA would've done much better if it would've addressed the issue directly. TSA asks for and validates IDs in order to compare them against boarding passes, which have been compared against the selectee/no-fly lists. Boarding passes are currently unauthenticated, but TSA is working on that.

Wouldn't that have been a better answer?

Submitted by Jim Huggins on

I also viewed the "Why Liquids" video, which answers the question, "Why are my carry-on liquids limited to 3 ounces?"

[ahem]

PASSENGERS ARE NOT LIMITED TO 3 OUNCE LIQUIDS. THEY ARE LIMITED TO 100 ML LIQUIDS!

When you say that over 80 countries have adopted your standards, you're incorrect. 80 countries adopted the 100ml standard.

Seriously, would it be all that difficult just to say 100-1-1 instead of 3-1-1 ... ESPECIALLY on a brand new video that you just made?

Submitted by Anonymous on

Those videos are not closed captioned nor are transcripts provided. Good going, TSA. Thanks SO much for leaving a Deaf guy who genuinely wants to know what's going on, out.

Andrew

Submitted by Anonymous on

Nice vids... hope they work.

Submitted by Anonymous on

"Nice vids... hope they work."

I hope not, since "working" would mean "convincing the public to believe the lies TSA is trying to shovel down our throats."

Submitted by Mr Gel-pack on

Your answer to "why" is "Just because TSA thinks so." Everything else in the videos is "How."

On "Why ID?", you say boarding pass scanners are the next step. Are you going to have them in place by this holiday season? Until you do, checking IDs is security theater. You still have the problem of not being able to verify that the boarding pass the potential terrorist presents that matches their ID is the one that the airline issued.

If you encourage people to ask "Why?" with these Sesame Street videos, they might soon get to the more important question "Why TSA?" Why spend 6B$/yr to, at best, divert some terrorists to blowing up some other target, like one of your conveniently crowded checkpoints. We should spend the money on your "global partners" instead.

BTW, in your liquids video, it looks like you get the 3.4oz/100ml thing wrong again. Why?

Submitted by Tomas on
Anonymous wrote...
Those videos are not closed captioned nor are transcripts provided. Good going, TSA. Thanks SO much for leaving a Deaf guy who genuinely wants to know what's going on, out.

Andrew

Per federal regulations, the video (and all on-line pages) put out for the public by DHS/TSA MUST be accessible per http://www.section508.gov/

From that site: "Section 508 requires that Federal agencies' electronic and information technology is accessible to people with disabilities. IT Accessibility & Workforce Division, in the U.S. General Services Administration's Office of Governmentwide Policy, has been charged with the task of educating Federal employees and building the infrastructure necessary to support Section 508 implementation. Using this web site, Federal employees and the public can access resources for understanding and implementing the requirements of Section 508."

Tom (1 of 5-6)
Submitted by Adrian McCarthy on

None of these videos actually answer "Why?". "Because identity matters" is not an answer.

The videos are factually incorrect. For example, the liquids rule is 100 mL per bottle, not 3 ounces.

Why is there no warning to people not to wear shoes with electronic gadgets like pedometers? Twice I've been stuck behind athletes trying to demonstrate to TSOs that they gizmo in their shoes link wirelessly to their iPod in order to motivate their exercise regimen.

Ad Council has been turned from a respectable public service organization to a propaganda mouthpiece. So sad.

And what's with the new comment form not working from Firefox?

Submitted by Sandra on

When an organization has to release this kind of propaganda, it is often because the organization in question is making an attempt to legitimatize its own procedures.

To the apologists here, the TSA is being met more and more often from travelers of all levels with total skepticism regarding "security" procedures.

When I first began to take note of the security circus, the majority of the flying public was still accepting of TSA procedures. About the only people who saw through the smoke screen were participants at FlyerTalk. That has now totally changed.

The majority of the flying public now sees security "procedures" for what they really are and does not believe that any of the dog and pony show at checkpoints does anything to make us safer.

Unfortunately, TSA has "done good" at one thing: instilling fear into the flying public should they choose to protest checkpoint procedures. Therefore, the majority of people are afraid to speak up about maltreatment at the hands of the TSA. They are afraid they will miss a flight, that their name will get on some list some where or some other form of retribution for speaking out will fall down upon them.

So, folks, this is nothing but another attempt by the TSA to justify its existence. Only the sheep will accept and believe.

~~

Thank you, Phil, for being so dogged in your attempts to make the TSA take responsibility for its actions. I, for one, truly appreciate your tenacity.

Submitted by Sandra on

Andrew wrote:

"Those videos are not closed captioned nor are transcripts provided. Good going, TSA. Thanks SO much for leaving a Deaf guy who genuinely wants to know what's going on, out."

Yes, Andrew, one would think that someone at TSA would be intelligent enough to realize that not everyone viewing their videos can hear, but as with everything else the TSA does, that is not the case.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Why? That is SSI. You do what the TSO wants you to do regardless. Do you want to fly today? Better toe the line.

Submitted by Anonymous on

"one would think that someone at TSA would be intelligent enough to realize that not everyone viewing their videos can hear"

Why, after the last however many years of shoe carnivals and security theatre and the war on liquids, would one EVER expect ANYTHING resembling intelligence from TSA? TSA is nothing but an arm of al Qaeda at this point.

Submitted by Anonymous on

How about answering the real "whys?"

Why does TSA insist on banning liquids when independent scientific/engineering analysis indicates that the liquid-explosives threat is not credible, particularly compared to the solid-explosives threat which TSA is abysmal at detecting?

Why does TSA think it is OK to use a secret blacklist with no due process or means of redress to deny basic freedoms to innocent American citizens?

Why does TSA want to collect information on our flight numbers, seat assignments, destinations, and connection points, with "Secure Flight" if the only purpose of the program is to match names with the blacklist?

Why does TSA think a USSR-like "papers please" society where a passenger must present his internal passport to a government agent in order to request permission to travel is consistent with the letter and spirit of the Constitution and legacy of the founders?

Why does TSA refuse to enforce accountability and discipline on power-tripping TSOs who violate the SOP, confiscate/steal non-prohibited non-threatening items, and abuse children, the disabled, the pregnant, and the elderly?

Submitted by Anonymous on

Summary of all the videos: "Why? Because we said so! Now here's what you had better do if you want to fly today."

While I wouldn't quite call the videos propaganda, they're misleadingly titled. They explain what's expected of travelers at airports, which might serve a useful purpose. But they do nothing to explain the rationale behind the mysteriously arbitrary rules and procedures. The assumption seems to be that everyone already buys in to the "fact" that the rules and procedures are necessary and highly effective, it's only a matter of telling inexperienced travelers how to be good docile sheep.

Since it doesn't actually say "Why," it might be better titled "What?" or "Obey!"

Submitted by Anonymous on

Anonymous said...
How about answering the real "whys?"

Why does TSA insist on banning liquids when independent scientific/engineering analysis indicates that the liquid-explosives threat is not credible, particularly compared to the solid-explosives threat which TSA is abysmal at detecting?

Why does TSA think it is OK to use a secret blacklist with no due process or means of redress to deny basic freedoms to innocent American citizens?

Why does TSA want to collect information on our flight numbers, seat assignments, destinations, and connection points, with "Secure Flight" if the only purpose of the program is to match names with the blacklist?

Why does TSA think a USSR-like "papers please" society where a passenger must present his internal passport to a government agent in order to request permission to travel is consistent with the letter and spirit of the Constitution and legacy of the founders?

Why does TSA refuse to enforce accountability and discipline on power-tripping TSOs who violate the SOP, confiscate/steal non-prohibited non-threatening items, and abuse children, the disabled, the pregnant, and the elderly?

November 20, 2008 9:00 AM
_____________________________________________________

All of these questions are answered over and over again. Just because you do not like the answers doesn't mean that they have not been covered. Quit wasting space!!!!

Submitted by Phil on

Someone anonymously suggested that TSA answer "the real why's" and provided a list of good questions (TSA has not responded).

In response, someone anonymously copied the entire list of questions, then wrote:

"All of these questions are answered over and over again."

No, they haven't. If you disagree, please cite your sources.

Somewhat humorously, this person -- who copied the entire list of questions that he claims have already been answered -- also wrote:

"Quit wasting space!"

Sir or madam, we're laughing at you, not with you.

--
Phil
Add your own questions at TSAFAQ.net

Submitted by Anonymous on

Wow. This is stunning propaganda, even for you guys.

A tip: "Because I said so" only works when you're a parent. As the government is neither my mommy nor my daddy, it doesn't work here.

Submitted by Anonymous on
All of these questions are answered over and over again. Just because you do not like the answers doesn't mean that they have not been covered. Quit wasting space!!!!

Those questions have not been satisfactorily answered by anyone from either DHS or TSA. They've fed some stock answers out like:

That's SSI.
Trust us.
Remember 9/11.
Because we have your best interests at heart.

Give us some real answers and we might go away. Until then we will 'waste space' with our valid complaints.
Submitted by Anonymous on

You have to resort to tax-payer funded propaganda now? How sad.

Submitted by Alex on

First,congrats for the post.

Then,I think that these rules,are way too high.

And finally,could you please let us know,some blacklists rules?What rules do you have to blacklist people?

Warm Regards,
Alex

Submitted by Anonymous on

Sir or madam, we're laughing at you, not with you.

--
Phil
_____________________________________________________
Phil I bet you are a real hoot to be around (Snore).

Submitted by Anonymous on

No, they haven't. If you disagree, please cite your sources.
____________________________________________________
I read this blog, while at work. Just stating the fact that I have never gone home and wasted my own personal time on this garble. I have seen these questions answered. For one example the ban on liquids and ID checks.....
The answers are right here in this blog. The videos at the top of this page. Like I said, if you don't like the answers you disregard them. Just like those two examples, all of the other questions have been answered.
That is all for sources. I am not waisting my time looking for the sources to stuff I don't even care about.

Submitted by Anonymous on
I hope not, since "working" would mean "convincing the public to believe the lies TSA is trying to shovel down our throats."

Maybe TSA should include tin foil hats with the ad campaign. That way everyone will be happy. Not just the majority.
Submitted by Anonymous on
@ Phil
Sorry Phil... I'm going to have to join the other person. Your post don't help(me) and fill up the blog. Make it hard to read.

@Blog team
Problem: I do believe Phil's opion matters and I'm sure some people want to read them. Others don't want to read them as they are mostly the same stuff over and over again. I also don't like to scroll past them(they are quite long).

Solution: I don't want to limit Phil's post in any way. How bout placing a feature where there is a plus or minus sign next to comments. I can hit the plus sign and it would just hide the comment. If I want to read the comment later I could just hit the minus sign and the comment would show again. That way I can keep up on TSA changes without having to read a TSA thesis by blog lawyers. Just a suggestion.
Submitted by Ayn R Key on

Is there a video that will answer why you think you have legal grounds to conduct MMW searches on people not attempting to access the sterile or secure areas of the airports, as described in blog entries at the end of August or the begninning of September?

Submitted by Anonymous on

Okay, a big why. I dare TSA to try and tackle this question sans-spin. Give it a go Paul, Bob... whoever dares! Somehow I doubt there will be any takers...

Why are exceptions to 3-1-1 made only for medically necessary liquid? If a bad guy is trying to get bomb juice through the check point, does it really matter what the label on the bomb juice container says? Your equipment should be able to detect any/all threatening liquid for exceptions to be safely made, therefore it stands to reason that you could just as easily screen a bottle of coke as you could a bottle of liquid codeine.

Now, that being the case, why don't you roll out this wonderful liquid detection technology to every lane at the checkpoint, screen all liquids coming through, and get rid of 3-1-1 which has harmed and inconvenienced thousands of people?

This is simple logic. I get paid way less than you TSA brass and it makes perfect sense to me both from a security standpoint and from a public relations standpoint. You guys see how everything you post is just torn to pieces here right? That's because most of your posts are either defending TSA's latest screwup, pure propaganda, or attempts to "reach out to the community" that are just, well, fake. It doesn't help that you ignore questions you find difficult or inconvenient, that you've never responded to a TSA snafu by saying "We screwed up, this is what we're changing as a result", and that your representatives on the blogosphere (I'm looking at you Bob) enjoy being snarky.

You guys need to get it together. Bold changes need to be made and we're just getting more of the same. This blog isn't a look into the TSA, it's a look into the TSA PR machine, and if you don't see what's wrong with that there's no helping you.

Submitted by Anonymous on

"Maybe TSA should include tin foil hats with the ad campaign. That way everyone will be happy. Not just the majority."

It's a plain and simple fact that there is no threat from liquids or shoes, that TSA cannot verify identity with its current procedures, and that verifying identity contributes nothing to security. When TSA claims that these things are true, as it does in these videos, it is lying.

As for anyone being "happy" with TSA, a quick look at how fewer and fewer people fly with each pointless, groundless TSA layer of nonsense puts that notion to rest.

Submitted by Phil on

In light of recent complaints about lengthy comments and repeated questions, here are several helpful suggestions for EoS staff:

1. Thoroughly cover an issue when posting about it. The more information you provide up-front, the less your readers will feel the need to tease out of you.

2. Link to supporting information in your posts. This is the World Wide Web. Learn to hyperlink. (And don't respond to a request for a link to a newspaper article that is the topic of your post with "Phil, Phil, Phil... for somebody with a technical background, you sure have a hard time finding information on the web..." Bob, your attempt to avoid bringing attention to an article that cast DHS in a bad light was lame.)

3. When related information that your readers are interested in but that you didn't anticipate when composing your post shows up in the comments, update the post to include that information so readers don't have to wade through the comments to find it.

4. Don't ignore questions from your readers, because we'll just keep asking. If you find that people are frequently asking the same questions, assemble a list of frequently-asked questions along with answers to those questions (perhaps using the community TSA FAQ if you can't accomplish it internally). Link prominently to your FAQ. When a question that comes up in the comments get added to the FAQ, note such in the comments. There are plenty of us here who would be happy to police the comments and refer people who didn't bother to read the FAQ to it when we see a question asked for the 100th time. This problem was solved decades ago with discussions on Usenet.

--
Phil
Add your own questions at TSAFAQ.net

Submitted by Mr Gel-pack on

Thank you Phil, for refusing to take "Because we said so" as an answer.

And to the folks who think that a "because we said so" is a good enough answer from someone in our government to one of our citizens, you are being dangerously un-American. A boring "because Title X USC Section Q, Part Z, Subparagraph n.17.ix says moistness is terrorism" is much more American. That way, we can know our rights.

Submitted by Robert Johnson on
Quote from Anonymous: "Solution: I don't want to limit Phil's post in any way. How bout placing a feature where there is a plus or minus sign next to comments. I can hit the plus sign and it would just hide the comment. If I want to read the comment later I could just hit the minus sign and the comment would show again. That way I can keep up on TSA changes without having to read a TSA thesis by blog lawyers. Just a suggestion."

Better solution: provide the public with real answers and not hiding behind "we say so", "it's SSI" and "it's critical that ..." and I'm sure he'll stop answering.

The one thing that people who complain about the repeated posts don't get is that if TSA would just answer the questions instead of giving nonanswer answers (those don't count), there wouldn't be a need to repeatedly ask.

All we're asking for is real justification and a list of information where everything we need to know can be found. TSA refuses to do either.

As to the other propaganda, does TSA really believe that shoe bombs are the #1 threat to aviation security as the shoe video states? Please. Richard Reid was the only one to EVER attempt this. There have many attempts (and successful ones) at cargo bombs ... Lockerby, Scotland anyone? Maybe TSA thinks that threat rank is like a golf score - the less it's tried the bigger the threat. So do you really think when the videos are filled with information like this that they really answer the question of Why? I don't.

Robert
Submitted by Anonymous on
It's a plain and simple fact that there is no threat from liquids or shoes.

I wish that the problem was really that simple. Fact: IT'S NOT. Why aren't your worried about shoe bombs. Whats wrong with you? Seriously. Its well documented that terrorist(real terriost) use shoes as concealment for bombs.

Terrorist use liquid explosives pretty often. Uhhh HTP comes to mind.

Sure you have many reasons not to trust TSA or the government(so scary). Come on. Don't let your hate and mistrust for the government lead you into self enchantment. Come do a tour with me in Iraq and I will show you first hand what liquids can do to you and how dangrous they are.

Hope this helps.

@blog team
and I'm glad to hear that the liquid policy will be gone in late 2010.
Submitted by Tomas on

Yes, Phil's repeating the same requests for the same information is tiresome, but I do not blame Phil for it, in fact I congratulate him for continuing.

The folks "answering" questions really do need to understand, somehow, that that a "Why?" question is not satisfied by a "Here's how we do it" reply.

When one asks why, asks for a legitimate, rational, factual, and official justification for seemingly nonsensical actions by the folks who work for us, what is wanted is the basis for the activity.

When gaping holes on the process are pointed out, we quite honestly need more than "it's multiple layers" or "we are working on it."

When serious suggestions are made we need to have those suggestions at LEAST acknowledged.

When very specific errors in the documentation are pointed out, we need to see those errors corrected without delay - by close of next business day would be reasonable - still there after TWO YEARS is not.

In other words, honest, complete as possible answers are desired and needed, not "go away, kid, you bother me" type answers.

Even some of the simple, direct questions I have asked (for example about handicapped access and planning) have gone unanswered.

This blog is a great idea, and a great opportunity, but it needs to be treated with at least the same dedication and attention to detail as goes into keeping 3.5 ounce liquid containers from passing a federal chokepoint.

Tom (1 of 5-6)

Submitted by Bob on
Andrew Said

Andrew,

Sorry about the delay, but I should be able to post links to the individual scripts sometime tomorrow.

Thanks,

Bob

EoS Blog Team
Submitted by Flight_Medic on

Bob

Sorry doesn't cut it in court, and it doesnt either in regards to violations of ADA rules, especially when taxpayer funds where wasted on this project, that causes more questions then answers

Submitted by Anonymous on

@Robert Johnson
Better solution: provide the public with real answers and not hiding behind "we say so", "it's SSI" and "it's critical that ..." and I'm sure he'll stop answering.

begin sarcasm
Ohh.. okay. The root of the problem is not phil posting long comments its TSA's fault phil post long comments.

Hmm.. so if TSA just disclosed unauthorized SSI.

Then they would be in violation of the law.(§ 1520.17)

but who passes the law?

ohhh yeah... congress.

So the root cause of phil's long comments is congress and I have no doubt the president was involved.

There seems to be alot of people involved. I think I just stumbled upon a government conspiracy.
end sarcasm

I think phil offered good alternative solutions to mine(the plus or minus solution). I wish some of your would offer good solutions as well.

Just food for thought

Submitted by Tomas on
Blogger Bob wrote...
Bob said...

Andrew Said

Andrew,

Sorry about the delay, but I should be able to post links to the individual scripts sometime tomorrow.

Thanks,

Bob

EoS Blog Team

November 20, 2008 6:09 PM
________________

YOUR LINK ABOVE DOES NOT WORK, BOB.

The blog's links are so broken that even the bloggers can't post a link that works.

This has been complained about by comments and e-mails for many months and IT IS STILL BROKEN.

This isn't rocket science, folks - fix your blog.

Tom (1 of 5-6)
Submitted by Anonymous on

"I wish some of your would offer good solutions as well."

Good solutions:

Liquid cannot harm an aircraft. Therefore, end the liquid ban.

Shoes cannot harm an aircraft. Therefore, end the shoe carnival.

ID does nothing to affect security. Therefore, end the minute-long ID checks.

There! Three good solutions that will speed screenings, make citizens traveling by air happier, and do nothing to make air travel less safe!

Submitted by Al Ames on

@Anonymous: "I wish that the problem was really that simple. Fact: IT'S NOT. Why aren't your worried about shoe bombs. Whats wrong with you? Seriously. Its well documented that terrorist(real terriost) use shoes as concealment for bombs."

So one nut tries something once and it becomes a threat forever that we must throw billions of dollars at and waste millions of hours of time?

"Terrorist" is right ... there is was only one. Many would say Reid wasn't a real terrorist.

"Terrorist use liquid explosives pretty often. Uhhh HTP comes to mind.

Sure you have many reasons not to trust TSA or the government(so scary). Come on. Don't let your hate and mistrust for the government lead you into self enchantment. Come do a tour with me in Iraq and I will show you first hand what liquids can do to you and how dangrous they are.

Hope this helps."

And how much of that is in a stable form that could be brought on a plane by the average person and be undetectable by explosive equipment?

No one's saying that liquid explosives don't exist ... clearly they do. What's being said is that the threat as TSA makes it out to be is overblown and borderline impossible.

Besides, this stuff wasn't just invented in 2006 ... it existed for years. Why did it all of the sudden become a "threat"? Because a few nutjobs with a pipedream came up with a plot they'd never be able to pull off?

Meanwhile, TSA has largely ignored cargo bombs by not screening for it (though limited quantities are screened now ... about time) despite the fact that they have been used FAR more in REAL incidents that have brought down planes. Think Locherby, Scotland, and the Unabomber.

What was so special about Reid and the liquid bombers that didn't actually do anything (though granted, Reid was a single attempt) when I just gave two examples that actually SUCCEEDED and TSA largely ignored for years?

Food for though.

Al

Submitted by Robert Johnson on
Quote from Anonymous: "begin sarcasm
Ohh.. okay. The root of the problem is not phil posting long comments its TSA's fault phil post long comments.

Hmm.. so if TSA just disclosed unauthorized SSI.

Then they would be in violation of the law.(§ 1520.17)

but who passes the law?

ohhh yeah... congress.

So the root cause of phil's long comments is congress and I have no doubt the president was involved.

There seems to be alot of people involved. I think I just stumbled upon a government conspiracy.
end sarcasm"

Save your sarcasm. TSA and DHS are widely known for overclassifying documents to avoid sharing them or disclosing them thru FOIA.

While there is certainly some information that is sensitive (remember, everything that a screener does is SSI and is NOT classified), SSI should not be used as a be-all-end-all excuse when a valid answer can be given.

Unfortunately, TSA and DHS both tend to abuse this.

Hence pardon my skepticism when I see "it's SSI."

For example, it's shouldn't be SSI to tell me the rules I need to follow to get thru the checkpoint. Not guidelines. Not suggestions. The actual rules I am expected to follow. SSI is a cop out.

Robert
Submitted by Trollkiller on
Anonymous said...

You seem to be a sad person who just wants to find confrontation in everything. Everyone wants their questions answered, they ask over and over again. When answers are given they still are not happy. But I have read this site enough times that I know it is the same sorry 5, 6 or 7 people complaining, complaining, complaining. Traveling is, what it is, get over yourself. There are so many people who are happy to comply with TSA's rules. Your complaints are not ganna get you anywhere. All's they are going to do is hold you up in front of your computer all the time not having a life because you are too worried about things that the general public does not even think twice about.

In the future please attack the argument not the person. Makes for a nicer blog.

Yes everyone wants their questions answered, those of us that make up the 5, 6, or 7 DEMAND our questions be answered satisfactory.

Travel is not "it is what it is" and if you look at history you will see many examples of people who were happy to comply with the authorities rules.

Segregated water fountains and other Jim Crow laws spring to mind. When the civil rights movement started the majority of people did not say "you know what segregation is wrong", instead they had the same reaction that you have, "Why are you uppity people complaining? It is what it is. Your complaints won't change anything."

History shows that complaints WILL change things. You can even look at the history of this blog to see that is true.

The illegal forced ID verification was complained about on this Blog by those 5,6 or 7 you loath. The TSA's stance was that the law was perfect and indisputable the way it was written and yet they still felt the need to change the law October 28 in an attempt to legalize the illegal forced ID verification. That attempt was in vain because I have already proved the updated law still does not allow the TSA to force ID verification as a criterion for entering a sterile area.

Complaints about the liquid ban/limits on this Blog caused a change. Granted it is not the rapid change that most wanted but it is progress. If those 5,6 or 7 had not complained there would be no reason for the TSA to make the change.

Complaints about removing all electronics on this Blog caused a change. If those 5,6, or 7 had not complained there would be no need for change.

Do you see a pattern?

Will I keep complaining about the illegal forced ID verification, insecure luggage, and other issues of importance, you bet. Why? Because it is "ganna" change things.
Submitted by Trollkiller on
Anonymous said...
A tip: "Because I said so" only works when you're a parent. As the government is neither my mommy nor my daddy, it doesn't work here.

"Because I said so" works for you? My kids expect logical reasoning for my decisions. Of course I respect my children's intelligence enough to not to even attempt the "because I said so" explanation.
Submitted by Trollkiller on
Anonymous said...
I read this blog, while at work. Just stating the fact that I have never gone home and wasted my own personal time on this garble. I have seen these questions answered. For one example the ban on liquids and ID checks.....
The answers are right here in this blog. The videos at the top of this page. Like I said, if you don't like the answers you disregard them. Just like those two examples, all of the other questions have been answered.
That is all for sources. I am not waisting my time looking for the sources to stuff I don't even care about.

So what you are saying is you are a thief and you steal money from you work by spending time on this blog instead of working.

I SPEND my time on this blog and I SPEND my time looking up sources so I can be intelligent in my complaints. You should try it sometime, you may find you learn something. Remember your School House Rock. Knowledge is power.
Submitted by Trollkiller on

Blogger Bob I am sure that you were taught how to read body language when you were in BDO training.

For fun watch the videos and see when your spokeswoman shakes her head "no". Shaking the head when saying something positive is a negative signal and may indicate the person does not believe what they are saying.

Food for thought.

As for the lack of closed captioning, Bad Blogger Bob, no tie for you. ;-) I understand that it was an unintentional omission and I am sure that you won't make it again.

The closed captioning complaint reminded me of something that will be useful to you as a parent. At home turn on the closed caption on all the TVs. Your children will learn to read earlier and will be more willing read as they grow. As they are watching SquareBob Spongepants or their favorite shows they will learn to read without even realizing it.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Robert Johnson said...
For example, it's shouldn't be SSI to tell me the rules I need to follow to get thru the checkpoint. Not guidelines. Not suggestions. The actual rules I am expected to follow. SSI is a cop out.

The rules you need to follow to get "thru the checkpoint" are not SSI. For example, 49 CFR Part 1540.107:
"No individual may enter a sterile area or board an aircraft without submitting to the screening and inspection of his or her person and personal property in accordance with the procedures being applied to control access to that area or aircraft under this subchapter".

49 CFR Part 1540.111(a): ...an individual may not have a weapon, explosive, or incendiary, on or about the indiviudals person or accessible property, when performance has begun of the inspection of the individuals person or accessible property before entering a sterile area, or before borading an aircraft for which screening is conducted".

Now where would you find what is a weapon, explosive, or incendiary prohibited from carry? On the TSA website, where the list of prohibited items is publically displayed.

You, and most of the rest of the posters are not concerned with the why... you want to know the how. The above regulations give you a good start into why you need to be screened, the "rules" you need to follow (and yes, CFRs are rules created by Federal agencies you (or corporations) need to follow, backed by laws enacted by Congress and signed into law by the President).

So, "Robert", the rules you need to follow are: you must submit youself and your property to be screened (or inspected), and you cannot carry a weapon, explosive or incendiary into a screening checkpoint. The Administrator of the TSA determines what is deemed a weapon, explosive, or incendiary, and that list is posted for the public to see.

How the TSA screens you and your property, or the methods and procedures used, are not public knowedge, just as you would not post the type and make of the lock on your house door, the times and places your dog sleeps, or the fact that your handgun is unloaded on a billboard on your front lawn.

The public (you) are protected from the government (TSA) from abuses when keeping non-public information by oversight agencies, such as the GAO, Inspector General, etc.

As to why liquids are banned, that has been discused in detail. If you fail to believe that liquid explosive is a threat to US commercial aviation, then good for you. In the meantime, the TSA, who has access to information that you do not, has deemed it a threat, big enough to hassle you.

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