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Friday, July 02, 2010
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I have long allowed off topic comments. However, after many complaints from folks who would understandably like to stay on the subject, I am providing this post as a place to comment things that are way off topic with the current post.

I’ve added a link to this post on our sidebar so people will know to post off topic comments here.

You now have the option of subscribing to posts, so you’ll be able to keep up with the comments here if you so choose. So it’s not as if your comment is being exiled to the land of forgotten comments. We’ll be paying attention, and you can stay up to date with an RSS feed.

As much as we’d like to hear about your synchronized swimming club, I ask that all comments posted here remain TSA focused and adhere to TSA’s comment policy.

Bob Burns
TSA Blog Team

Comments

Submitted by Rich Allen on

This is one of my favorite blogs ever, I didn't know where to leave my praise so I'm sticking it here. Great stuff, love the monkey head story!

Submitted by Anonymous on

its funny all the complaints about the full body scanners but at my airport everybody that comes through wants to know when we are getting them. It seems like people want to make a big deal about nothing. So how about everybody stop complaining and ask questions/ comments that are more relavent

Submitted by Anonymous on

i love the guilty until proven innocent menatality of this blog.

Submitted by RB on

Anonymous said...
its funny all the complaints about the full body scanners but at my airport everybody that comes through wants to know when we are getting them. It seems like people want to make a big deal about nothing. So how about everybody stop complaining and ask questions/ comments that are more relavent

August 7, 2010 1:13 PM
....................
Perhaps there would be fewer complaints if TSA had not stated that WBI Strip Search Machines could not store images (they can), had no network capability (it does) and showed the public the images as seen by machine operators (they haven't).

I have even offered to be screened, view the results and report the facts, good or bad.

TSA has not availed themselves of my offer.

Submitted by RB on

These were provided to TSA by the manufacturer of the technology, L-3. We asked L-3 to blur the facial features just like they are blurred when our officers see the images in Phoenix, Baltimore, LAX and JFK.

These are exactly what officers see

at airports today and will see in future deployments.

http://www.tsa.gov/blog/uploaded_images/TSA-Release-Images-2-050808-7264...


Why did we decide to put them up now? Because you've asked for it... Hopefully the editors of Reader's Digest will consider these for their next cover.

What do you think?

- Bob
...................................
You guys are killing me (and others) with this. These pictures were provided to TSA by the vendor.

I have never claimed they are the exact size and resolution that our officers see.

I have provided video examples showing what our officers see. I have requested the resolution and size and was told it was proprietary information that I could not release. I'm still looking into being able to get that info for you, but I can't promise anything.

Thanks,

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

February 3, 2010 1:22 PM
...............
Bob, if the WBI Strip Search images you posted are exactly what TSA employees see then how could the not be exactly what TSA employees see?

Want to clarify your conflicting statements or just admit you have been dishonest?

Submitted by Anonymous on

RB said
Friends, this is not the America I spent a career in the military defending. It more resembles governments like the old USSR and Red China, certainly not free societies.

I call on all patriots to disengage association from TSA.
-----------------------------------
RB I spent 15 years in the military and consider myself a patriot. But I consider the garbage that you spew to be detrimental to everyone. This is a free country. You are free to fly and you're free to drive. For both you have rules to follow get used to it. A ruleless society will never last.

Submitted by Anonymous on

When are you going to post a response to the woman whose daughter in a wheelchair was allegedly taken away from her? Did it happen or did it not happen?

Submitted by Jo Morris on

Ok this is completely off topic so this is where it should be I guess, although it all seems very politically active here i hope i won't be trolled for asking a real question!

I am travelling into the US from the UK via the middle east - as if that wasn't problem enough i am an amputee with a prosthetic right arm and hand, i am always in the habit of wearing these leather gloves on that hand at least and I guess my question is, should I be worried about flying in from the middle east, will the gloves (they really aren't sinister) present a problem as i am always mortally embarrassed removing them (i know its pathetic, most phobia's are). Would i be better flying back to London first before flying to USA to avoid trouble of a UK citizen coming from the middle east, i have heard so many scary stories about US airport security i dread the thought of my dignity being shattered. What would be best?

Submitted by RB on

RB I spent 15 years in the military and consider myself a patriot. But I consider the garbage that you spew to be detrimental to everyone. This is a free country. You are free to fly and you're free to drive. For both you have rules to follow get used to it. A ruleless society will never last.

August 8, 2010 6:12 PM

.........
Anon, exactly how is it detrimental to everyone to require accountability from a government agency? One that seems willing to ride roughshod over citizens while violating everyones civil rights?

Seems like our Constitution provides means to hold in check the federal government.

Why do you object to holding TSA accountable for its actions?

Submitted by Anonymous on

"and when I find out what I thought were facts are wrong, I apologize and corret the information I give."

Really? How many countries require all passengers to remove their shoes, and what are those countries?

Submitted by Anonymous on

The people with the most security are in prison. That’s why it’s called ‘MAXIMUM security.’

The more security you have, the less freedom you have.

Submitted by GSOLTSO on

Anon sez - "Really? How many countries require all passengers to remove their shoes, and what are those countries?"

If you are referring to my earlier discussion, I indicated that the only country that requires all passengers to remove footwear is the US. I also stated that at least Canada, and the UK require all passengers transitting to the US to remove them.

But to answer your question directly - to my knowledge the only country that requires all passengers to remove their footwear during the screening process is the US.

West
TSA Blog Team

Submitted by Anonymous on

"But to answer your question directly - to my knowledge the only country that requires all passengers to remove their footwear during the screening process is the US."

Prior to admitting this, you claimed that multiple countries require passengers to remove their shoes. What information did you base this incorrect claim in your initial response on?

Submitted by Anonymous on

Sooo...several folks on the firearms thread asked the sensible questions of a) how many of the people carrying the 10 firearms Lynn talked about were arrested and charged with crimes, and b) how many people since TSA's inception have been arrested, charged, and convicted for having firearms at the checkpoint. Since you've decided to stop responding to questions on that post, are they now off-topic and appropriate for you to ignore on THIS thread as well as the earlier one?

Submitted by RB on

Doesn't that say something about
TSA's policy of requiring everyone to remove their shoes?

I think it does!

Submitted by GSOLTSO on

Anon sez - "Prior to admitting this, you claimed that multiple countries require passengers to remove their shoes. What information did you base this incorrect claim in your initial response on?"

Actually I admitted I had erroneous information in a previous set of comments. I misread something and corrected myself, isn't that what you are supposed to do when you make a mistake?

West
TSA Blog Team

Submitted by BlogGuy on

blog troll said...
"Anon, exactly how is it detrimental to everyone to require accountability from a government agency? One that seems willing to ride roughshod over citizens while violating everyones civil rights?

Seems like our Constitution provides means to hold in check the federal government.

Why do you object to holding TSA accountable for its actions?"

Is that what your are doing? I think the rest of the world calls it trolling.

Submitted by Bubba on

Bob,

How is the response to the detailed analysis in the top scientific journal Nature saying there is no science behind the SPOT program, printed May 26th, coming along? Despite what you said in the past, it still seems to me like you are ignoring that article. Or is it just that you can´t justify the unjustifiable?

Submitted by RB on

http://www.denverpost.com/headlines/ci_15723115

NO: They are both an intrusion and a health risk
By Becky Akers

"Currently, the TSA pretends that submitting to the scan is voluntary. But the agency threatens those who refuse to pose naked with a groping. And even this charade of a choice may disappear in 2013: the Senate introduced legislation in June requiring the TSA to replace metal detectors with these contraptions at all checkpoints by then.

Fortunately, there's a third option: abolish the TSA. Let airlines provide their own security, as other industries do. Why should aviation alone stick taxpayers with its costs? For eight years, the TSA has bullied, abused, humiliated and delayed passengers. What it hasn't done is find a single terrorist."

Submitted by Ayn R Key on

RB wrote:
Friends, this is not the America I spent a career in the military defending. It more resembles governments like the old USSR and Red China, certainly not free societies.

I call on all patriots to disengage association from TSA.

Anonymous wrote:
RB I spent 15 years in the military and consider myself a patriot. But I consider the garbage that you spew to be detrimental to everyone. This is a free country. You are free to fly and you're free to drive. For both you have rules to follow get used to it. A ruleless society will never last.

Anonymous TSO, I spent 10 years in the military and consider myself a patriot. And I consider dissent to be the highest form of patriotism, and therefore RB to be a true patriot. When those who enforce the law are unaccountable we have the exact ruleless society you claim to want to avoid. As long as the TSA is an unaccountable rogue agency, then we have a ruleless society that cannot last. If you want the country to be a free as you say it is, then you will join RB and myself in opposing the TSA.

Submitted by Blogger Bob on

We take situations like the one described by INCIID Mom very seriously. Our Customer Support Manager at DCA has reached out to INCIID Mom and spoken with her personally. As a parent I can completely understand how emotionally charged we can get when a child is upset. It’s human nature.

If anything can be learned from this event, it’s that we all need to communicate a little better. When it comes to screening any passenger, it is imperative that TSA inform the passenger regarding what the screening process will entail. By the same token if the passenger has a disability, it is equally important that they or their family or travel companion, clearly inform the officers about their needs. The more informed everybody is, the smoother it will go.

Did you know if you have a disability or if you’re traveling with someone with a disability that involves special screening, you can contact one of our Customer Support Managers at the airport with Talk to TSA and coordinate your screening? The Customer Support Manager can let the checkpoint know you’re coming and what to expect along with any special instructions our officers might need to complete the screening. We’re very sorry that INCIID Mom and her family had a bad experience and we’re committed to working with her as well as others to make sure screening goes more smoothly in the future.

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

Submitted by Anonymous on

So Bob has responded regarding the child who was allegedly abused by the TSA at DCA.

While I don't supposed, this question will get me an answer, I'll ask anyway:

Are you saying, Bob, that both the TSA and the parents were at fault? If so, what mistakes did the TSA make and what mistakes did the parents make?

Your response was so nebulous that only a mindreader could determine exactly what the issues were.

Submitted by Anonymous on

P.S.

Bob, what were the results of the meeting TSA had with ACA regarding screening of amputees. We never heard anything about that either.

Submitted by Anonymous on

"Actually I admitted I had erroneous information in a previous set of comments. I misread something and corrected myself, isn't that what you are supposed to do when you make a mistake?"

You did, but you continue to ignore this question: What information did you base the incorrect claim in your initial response on?

Submitted by RB on

Did you know if you have a disability or if you’re traveling with someone with a disability that involves special screening, you can contact one of our Customer Support Managers at the airport with Talk to TSA and coordinate your screening? The Customer Support Manager can let the checkpoint know you’re coming and what to expect along with any special instructions our officers might need to complete the screening. We’re very sorry that INCIID Mom and her family had a bad experience and we’re committed to working with her as well as others to make sure screening goes more smoothly in the future.

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

August 11, 2010 1:30 PM

...........
I contacted TSA's Talk to TSA asking about the reports of TSA not honoring Opt Outs at ESP.

Haven't heard anything from anyone at TSA.

Apparently TSA's "Talk to TSA" is as ineffective as the rest of TSA!

Submitted by Blogger Bob on

I've looked into the ELP issue through their regional public affairs manager and have found what I suspected. Everybody has the option to opt out of the screening at ELP just as they do at any other airport.

Help me out a little. I was on vacation for a while. Where did all of this come? Are there links you can provide me from people who have had this happen to them at ELP?

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

Submitted by Anonymous on

Blogger Bob said:

"If anything can be learned from this event, it’s that we all need to communicate a little better."

What the TSA needs to learn from this is that they do not have a highly trained nor professional workforce and they need to take immediate steps to start the process.

The first step is holding people accountable for the actions and to stop blaming blaming the victim.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Bob--
Please update us on TSA's response to the Nature article.

Submitted by Anonymous on

"The first step is holding people accountable for the actions and to stop blaming blaming the victim."

And you have seen the video? You know this how? Thought so.

Submitted by Anonymous on

"And you have seen the video? "

I'd love to see the video.

When will the TSA release it?

What do they have to hide?

It would be a step to accountability.

Submitted by RB on

Blogger Bob said...
We take situations like the one described by INCIID Mom very seriously. Our Customer Support Manager at DCA has reached out to INCIID Mom and spoken with her personally. As a parent I can completely understand how emotionally charged we can get when a child is upset. It’s human nature.

If anything can be learned from this event, it’s that we all need to communicate a little better. When it comes to screening any passenger, it is imperative that TSA inform the passenger regarding what the screening process will entail. By the same token if the passenger has a disability, it is equally important that they or their family or travel companion, clearly inform the officers about their needs. The more informed everybody is, the smoother it will go.

Did you know if you have a disability or if you’re traveling with someone with a disability that involves special screening, you can contact one of our Customer Support Managers at the airport with Talk to TSA and coordinate your screening? The Customer Support Manager can let the checkpoint know you’re coming and what to expect along with any special instructions our officers might need to complete the screening. We’re very sorry that INCIID Mom and her family had a bad experience and we’re committed to working with her as well as others to make sure screening goes more smoothly in the future.

Blogger Bob
TSA Blog Team

August 11, 2010 1:30 PM
.......................
When will TSA post the video of this screening?

TSA seems happy to do so when it fills a need to make TSA appear not at fault.

Submitted by Bubba on

Bob,

I hope you had a nice vacation. Now that you are back, how about an answer to that Nature article debunking the SPOT program? Or are you going to continue to ignore the World´s most respected scientific journal?

Submitted by Anonymous on

" you can contact one of our Customer Support Managers at the airport with Talk to TSA and coordinate your screening? The Customer Support Manager can let the checkpoint know you’re coming and what to expect along with any special instructions our officers might need"

If only someone had thought to do this for Nadine Hays.

It now seems like it was not enough to drag Nadine Hays through the courts. The judge is dismissing the charges if she stays out of trouble for a while.

Nadine Hays is now facing a $2,500 fine from the TSA.

"In the letter, dated May 12, 2010, the TSA accuses Hays of reaching into a cooler that had been confiscated by a screener at the airport and grabbing a can of soda. TSA officials claim Hays "attempted to drink a beverage in a sterile area."

They had the authority to confiscate her possessions?

And someone at TSA is merciless enough to keep going after her after the crap you have already put her through?

Submitted by Anonymous on

Hi there,

I am participating in a study for hair growth. I need to apply the foam daily.

I need to know if I could take a 2 oz foam container with the medication as a carry on?

Do I need a prescription for it?

If so please let me know, so I can call the doctor and get a prescription for it.

Thanks,

Cristina

Submitted by GSOLTSO on

Anon sez - "Hi there,

I am participating in a study for hair growth. I need to apply the foam daily.

I need to know if I could take a 2 oz foam container with the medication as a carry on?

Do I need a prescription for it?

If so please let me know, so I can call the doctor and get a prescription for it.

Thanks,

Cristina"

The 2 oz container should present no problem as long as it is clearly marked "2 oz". Please place it and other liquids, gels, aerosols in a 1 quart zip top styled baggie, and present it separate from your carry on when you enter the checkpoint. Have a nice trip!

West
TSA Blog Team

Submitted by Anonymous on

"Please place it and other liquids, gels, aerosols in a 1 quart zip top styled baggie, and present it separate from your carry on when you enter the checkpoint. Have a nice trip!"

And remember, liquids pose zero threat to aircraft! TSA is lying to you!

Submitted by Anonymous on

We know liquids are a threat.
We know ceramic knives are a threat.
We know pat-downs are a pain and don't save lives.
We know Nude-O-Scopes invade privacy and give us unnecessary radiation.
I give up - The terrorists win!
What TSA is succeeding in keeping off of airplanes is the most dangerous item - people.
More and more of us are refusing to fly. Short hauls are all but dead - down 40%.
They will succeed in putting marginal airlines out of business, and pretty soon we will have Government Airlines.

Submitted by Anonymous on

The pat-down option to a naked body scan will soon be removed:
see 'Body Scanners Q&A - With An Alternate Solution', July 16th 2010
One of the questions to TSA spokesman, Joe Allen was:
Q. Can you decline a full body scan?
A. Yes, FOR NOW, but you must submit to a full body pat-down.
That could not be clearer - a TSA spokesman is clearly stating that the pat-down option is soon to be removed.
Proof of what most of us already knew.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Why is it that you turn over to contractors confiscated items to dispose of them except alcohol. They collect it and take it to their office and say that they empty the bottles. As in any company you have acholitics and since TSA doesn't check their personal when they leave including managers they can take out anything they want. and since a lot of airports are open 24 hours the employees could take any confiscated itens they want. At night there are no managers there so there isno control over the confiscated items. The keys to the lock boxes are on thr checkpoint so because they have background checks they must be honest.Since they are not checked when they enter or leave and since there have been many cases of TSA employees stealing and convicted so why do we trust them. The managers are just as bad. And if the managers have a lot of complaints against them they move
them to different locations unless
what they have done isso bad that they let them resign instead of firing them. Many have been accused of sexual improprities where they whould be labled sexoffenders if they resign they are not labled sex offenders.
Since our congessmen and senators don't want to deal with this so it isanother reason to vote out members that have spent their life in Washington. They don't care what the voters of their states that they know what isbest for us.
I know people don't want to hear this but we are worse off now after spending billions of dollars than when the airlines ran security because they had a finational reason to do it right. The goverent has never done anything right except spend our childrens money.
And refering to the rules of passengers going thru the checkpoint or baggage unless passengers know what the rules of going thru the checkpoint or what should be in chrcked baggage you can never do it right. Most of what will cause you to be pulled over by TSAor the police could be prevented by information. If you yhink the bad guys already know the rule and how to get around them but not the passengers. But this causes the Govt. to hire more officers than are really nrrded. Beside having more officers than we need but they have no control on overtime. There are officers that make over 50+ dollars a year and thatsnot what the managers make.
Anyway sorry to go all over the place but I believe the public needs to know.Many good employees have left TSA because of the way the TSA operates.

Submitted by Ayn R Key on

Anonymous wrote:
The pat-down option to a naked body scan will soon be removed:
see 'Body Scanners Q&A - With An Alternate Solution', July 16th 2010

So very soon everyone will be able to play the "charge the TSO with being a sex offender" game. I hope the front line agents like handcuffs and not being able to live near parks and schools.

Submitted by HappyToHelp on

Ayn R. Key said...
"So very soon everyone will be able to play the "charge the TSO with being a sex offender" game. I hope the front line agents like handcuffs and not being able to live near parks and schools."

I’m not going to lie, but it is really hard to take you seriously sometimes. Your scare tactic is not going to work. Shame on you. :(

Tim
TSA Blog Team

Submitted by Anonymous on

Blogger Bob
Hi, I'm Bob, and I started with the TSA in September 2002. I worked at the Cincinnati-Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG) for 5 years and am currently residing at TSA headquarters. I started as a Transportation Security Officer (TSO), and have since been promoted to a Management Analyst with the Office of Strategic Communications and Public
I noticed you didn't have the where with all to post the mailing address or a e mail address so people can write to you.
This blog is a waste of time because you won't answer any questions that would help passengers, you just hide behind the SOP and I am willing to bet the enemy already has the latest version because after listening to reports hacking into our systems that are much safer than TSA by other govts. seem to happen all the time.You act like working
in the office makes you something special.You seem to dimiss uslittle people. you seem to think we are safer since TSA took over but why do the officers at TSA fail the Red team test at a very high percentage.If they can't catch items that we test them with, why would you think the bad guys can't and won't at some future time attack us again. Just an obsevation because I do hope it never happens again but it won't be TSA who stops it. The security theater will end when the smoke clears and the mirrors break so the flying plublic see TSA as just another jobs program that is worthless.

Submitted by Ayn R Key on

You should take it seriously, West. My goal is to publicize to many people that the TSA plans to strip search children.

That should scare every TSO. All that is needed is a few people who still love the constitution to make a cell phone call from the other side of the screening booth.

Everyone knows your signage is inadequate. It will be entirely believable if a few dozen people say "I thought it was a metal detector, I would never have sent my kid through it." It will be up to the TSA to prove they knew ahead of time that it was a peep show booth.

Submitted by Anonymous on

The TSA never answers the questions that are asked here, and they never address the concerns that passengers have. They could not care less. Pure and simple.

Submitted by Anonymous on

"The pat-down option to a naked body scan will soon be removed:
see 'Body Scanners Q&A - With An Alternate Solution', July 16th 2010
One of the questions to TSA spokesman, Joe Allen was:
Q. Can you decline a full body scan?
A. Yes, FOR NOW, but you must submit to a full body pat-down."

Will never happen because there are people who CANNOT go through WBI due to physical issues.

Submitted by Anonymous on

Anonymous said "Will never happen because there are people who CANNOT go through WBI due to physical issues."

I predict that there will be an increase in passengers with physical issues in the not-too-distant future. ;-)

Submitted by Max on

what is the ebay account name, where you sell the stolen notebooks and mobile phones? i need new cheap stuff!

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