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TSA Saw My Junk, Missed Razor Blades, Says Adam Savage 609

Posted by timothy
from the happy-24th dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The TSA isn't the most respected of governmental agencies right now, but at least it comes by the poor reputation honestly. The lack of standards, inconsistent application of searches and policies, and occasional rude agent all combine to make flying an unpleasant experience. It's often derided as 'security theater,' which describes the experience of Mythbuster Adam Savage before a recent flight. Savage was put through the full-body scanner, and while he joked that it made his penis feel small, no one seemed to notice the items he was carrying on his person. The video tells the rest of the story."
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TSA Saw My Junk, Missed Razor Blades, Says Adam Savage

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  • by illumastorm (172101) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:10PM (#34325442)

    Next, on TSA Security Theater we have the story of the man who manages to bring 12 inch razor blades through security checks. Coming up... Savage Blades.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      I flew on an international flight and transfered in LA to go to PDX. When I got home, I opened up my carry on bag and found a box cutter sitting in the front pouch. So much for security.

      • by LynnwoodRooster (966895) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @10:14PM (#34326432) Journal
        Even better, I just got back from Shanghai. I got bumped to business class from Tokyo to PDX, and dinner was sirloin steak. Complete with steak knife with a 5" serrated blade, a 9" total length metal butter knife, and a full-size metal dinner fork. Just given to me for sitting in the front section.

        .
        Who needs to smuggle on your own knife; buy a first class or business class ticket and get a nice, sharp, big knife given to you!

        • by flyingkillerrobots (1865630) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @10:39PM (#34326646) Homepage
          El-Al (Israel) gives knives to everyone, not just first class. They've been making fun of the other airlines about it for years. If everybody has knives, then a terrorist with a knife is no more dangerous than he'd be on the ground, assuming the knife cannot be used to somehow quickly down the plane.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by mellon (7048)

            This assumes that the cabin crew counts the knives when collecting the refuse. Otherwise, the terrorist can just palm it and wait for everyone else to be disarmed.

            • by GameboyRMH (1153867) <[gameboyrmh] [at] [gmail.com]> on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @09:04AM (#34330034) Journal

              And yet nobody is killed! How interesting!

              Seriously though, I would support giving every adult on a plane a box cutter as a security measure when boarding the aircraft. They don't even need to hand them back in, there can be a bin for you to drop them in as you leave the aircraft, but if you don't, so what? If anyone tries hijacking an aircraft, or blowing one up in an action that requires more than a second of suspicious activity, they'll look like a casualty of an anime action scene in under 3 seconds.

              Aircraft terrorism: solved.

          • by AGMW (594303) on Wednesday November 24, 2010 @04:51AM (#34328558) Homepage
            Of course Israel had quite a lot of trouble back in the days when hijacking meant "fly this plane to Beirut!" where ransom demands were made and their response was to publicly claim that all Israeli people were considered "troops" in such situations and at the earliest opportunity the Israeli special forces would storm the plane. This happened once or twice and the hijackers realised they would never succeed. I'm sure some Israeli people were harmed in those stormed planes but the number saved subsequently made it "worth it" for the society, if not the individuals.

            The same is true for current kidnappings and piracy (Somali pirates, etc). If the World could decide that paying off such people was now illegal and special forces would be deployed in all instances there would be some casualties but ultimately it would stop them doing it!
            I would also suggest helping the poor nations could also assist in making piracy a less attractive career prospect.

        • by MoonBuggy (611105) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @10:53PM (#34326736) Journal

          You don't even need to be up at the front - as I've said many times, until they stop allowing glass on planes (and even the lowly economy customers are trusted with that) I won't believe for a second that they're particularly concerned about blades.

          Not that I'm saying they should be concerned about blades; the threat from terrorism of any kind (in the US, at least) is minimal, and any hijacker nowadays would be taken out by 150 pissed off passengers before they could get anywhere near commandeering the aircraft anyway.

          What I object to is the classic security theatre, pretending there's a threat and then pretending to fix it. At least if they were honest and actually did prevent any possible attack vector, it would be so onerous that it might finally provoke some kind of sizeable backlash against the whole pointless process.

        • by InlawBiker (1124825) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @11:31PM (#34327000)

          You don't really need a weapon at all. Just turn on any electrical device that gives off an RF signal while the plane ascends. Then watch that fucker go up in a firey fireball of death!

  • by cosm (1072588) <thecosm3@@@gmail...com> on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:10PM (#34325444)

    and while he joked that it made his penis feel small

    But how did it make him feel? Stop anthropomorphizing penises, they hate it when you do that!

  • by KublaiKhan (522918) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:11PM (#34325450) Homepage Journal
    The only measure which has successfully prevented a terrorist attack since the '01 hijackings is the increased vigilance and response of the flying public.

    The TSA's measures are worse than useless: they actually create a hazard, with long, slow-moving, densely-packed lines full of by-definition unscreened persons--lines that are about the ripest target for a bomb that you can find.

    Go back to pre-'01 screening procedures, and empower passengers with good-samaritan style legislation that exempts persons from prosecution for acts they genuinely believe to be in prevention of a terrorist incident.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:22PM (#34325560)

      The only measure which has successfully prevented a terrorist attack since the '01 hijackings is the increased vigilance and response of the flying public.

      The TSA's measures are worse than useless: they actually create a hazard, with long, slow-moving, densely-packed lines full of by-definition unscreened persons--lines that are about the ripest target for a bomb that you can find.

      You there, stop making sense. TSA policy isn't governed by common sense. TSA policy is governed by rules, and if you don't like the rules, you're free not to fly. Take it directly from the bastard who designed it. (No, not Chertoff. He's just in it for a quick buck.) I mean the other bastard, the one who said...

      "I tell you, freedom and human rights in America are doomed. The US Government will lead the American people - and the West in general - into an unbearable hell and a choking life." - The TSA Security Policy Architect [cnn.com], as interviewed on CNN in November 2001.

      He's not giving interviews on CNN anymore, just little photos and audio tapes. Here's a snippet from his 2010 interview [min.us].

    • by damburger (981828) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:23PM (#34325562)

      Oh, they are far from useless.

      They make an unreasonable request, you comply without thinking. They bark orders at you, you avoid eye contact and meekly take it. They are training you.

      • by tempest69 (572798) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @09:12PM (#34325988) Journal
        I wish you weren't right.
        But were just being conditioned to behave and accept that the government is in control. Somehow the government gets some undeserved awe. I remember having it, where the government and the laws were something greater, and noble.
        Now I see it as a home owners association that has gotten too large and is full of itself. This is a problem, it is putting people through screening that is unnecessary and ineffectual. The right to balk at being screened has been removed. While I understand the rational, I find it to be reprehensible. We are not subjects, we are citizens, and we need to act accordingly. That our liberties are more important than the convenience of the government.

        We are trained to behave as if the law is something crafted by masters of philosophy and reason. That the enforcers are going to be in the right and behave with proper restraint. uncorrupted by their authority. That the jurors will weigh that the defendant broke both the letter of law, and will ensure that the the law itself is appropriate. This is clearly not the case, laws are often made for the personal gain of those with access to power. Police misconduct videos are released at a rate that is truly alarming, a couple police ruining the name of the bunch is still the cry I see over and over. However the number of times this has been caught on video leads me to believe that this is something that is seriously undermining their credibility. After cases like Genarlow Wilson, it appears that the jury has been trained to disregard their primary purpose- determining if the defendant committed a crime that warrants the punishment being let out.

        I'm getting tired of all the training, it needs to stop

        Storm
        • by wierd_w (1375923) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @10:13PM (#34326422)

          Personally, I feel that this illusionment comes from the indoctrinated sense that being illegal == immoral. That it is NEVER justified to break the law. EG, that it is ALWAYS wrong to steal, or that it is ALWAYS wrong to refuse to 'help' a police officer with an investigation, etc. It is implied that by being so disobedient to the civil infrastructure, that you are an evil anarchist bent on destroying life as we know it, and that you are therefor "evil".

          In reality, there ARE times when theft is the correct and appropriate action, or when refusing to assist police is the correct and proper thing to do. [due to risk of enacting Godwin's Law, I will avoid mentioning certain historical events, despite their obvious applicability.]

          The reality of the situation is that the civil infrastructure is only useful and good up until a critical threshold, and after that it becomes officious and destructive to the quality of life of the civilians it is supposed to be servicing. Examples are things like the difference between a home owner's association, and a simple lawncare ordinance. The former is officious, the latter is to maintain property values of your neighbors.

          Others would be things like enforcing sobriety while operating dangerous equipment (Including vehicles), VS enforcing "The war on drugs(tm)".

          The subtle lie that the government\civil infrastructure is ALWAYS good is what allows the civil infrastructure to cross that critical threshold. It is motived to do so, because it is run by humans, and humans LIKE to enforce their wills upon others. (AKA, being addicted to/attracted to power and authority.)

          This is further fascilitated by innate human laziness, and innate human weaknesses. Modern life would be impossible/highly impractical if there were no specialists; Doctors, Dentists, Lawyers, Politicians, Automotive mechanics, IT professionals, etc. This is imply because there are fundemental limits to what individual humans are capable of accomplishing themselves. The civil infrastructure provides the basic framework upon which specialists can employ their trades, and by which their customers can make reliable use of their services. In this respect, the social infrastructure of government is indeed absolutely vital to modern human existence, and pretty much everyone except sociopaths accepts this innately at some level. Part of the problem is that "Little people" have been so far abstracted from governance due to the increasing complexities of modern existence, that they realistically cannot engage in politics rationally, because that is becoming/has become a specialist discipline. As such, they are pressured naturally, more and more, to simply trust these specialists, since the natural demans of life make it more and more difficult to effectively engage in it. I strongly suspect that this is at least partially at fault for persons continually voting for an abstracted "Party line", VS actually researching issues, and engaging in government as intended.

          Likewise, the specialists (Politicians) have their own agendas, and become more and more abstracted/estranged from other demographics in society, and so the government becomes wierder and wierder, and more and more authoritarian; As the ordinary citizen understands the minutae of modern government less and less, they become less and less willing to capitulate, requiring ever escallating levels of control to ensure the reliable function of government.

          I personally consider this to be the euphamistically titled "Big Government" that Libertarians rail against. The government becomes bigger and bigger, as it takes on more and more responsibilities, as the average citizen delegates more and more duties to government, because they themselves become more and more specialized.

          Without reducing the complexity of the social infrastructure, the requirements on specialist knowledge, or increasing the free time of the average citizen in some fundemental way so that they can cope with dealing with government appropriately, there is really

          • by Kral_Blbec (1201285) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @10:50PM (#34326718)
            That sounds very logical, and well stated, but the over all gist of it is unfortunately incorrect. Your entire basis is on the claim that the common man is too stupid to understand the complexities of modern society and politics. The truth is rather than they have been told that there is no need to learn it, although they could if they tried. They have also been purposefully lied to and abused by the political leaders so that rather than the average citizen delegating more duty to the government, the government simply assumes control.
            I don't believe that society is such much more complex than in the past that peoples brain's are exploding. I still have faith in the potential of the average person to learn a vast amount more than they currently do. Its just a matter of them actively choosing not to and being told that they don't need to. Sports, movies, fashion etc all take up too much of their time that could and should be spent in more constructive pursuits.
            Pork barrels and earmarks also aren't the result of amateur politicians messing around with something they don't understand. They are the result of professional politicians knowing that they can get away with it because people have become accustomed to it.
        • I just imagined my home owners association running airport screening, and it sent chills down my spine. You know, maybe the TSA isn't so bad, after all.

    • by Black Parrot (19622) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:27PM (#34325614)

      The TSA's measures are worse than useless: they actually create a hazard, with long, slow-moving, densely-packed lines full of by-definition unscreened persons--lines that are about the ripest target for a bomb that you can find.

      I've been thinking about that for years, but never said anything because I didn't want to give anyone any ideas.

      Go back to pre-'01 screening procedures, and empower passengers with good-samaritan style legislation that exempts persons from prosecution for acts they genuinely believe to be in prevention of a terrorist incident.

      Post-911, an attempting hijacker wouldn't live a minute if the rest of us were carrying pointy things.

      Might not anyway, unless the TSA starts confiscating pencils and umbrellas. Almost anything will serve as a weapon in a pinch.

      • by KublaiKhan (522918) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:33PM (#34325672) Homepage Journal
        <quote>
        <p>I've been thinking about that for years, but never said anything because I didn't want to give anyone any ideas.</p>
        </quote>

        I've been -saying- that for years and it still hasn't happened. I figured that if I saw the possibility within five minutes of seeing the line, anyone else would be able to see it without too much trouble. I've been suspecting that either the so-called 'threat' is far, far overblown or these terrorists are complete and total idiots.

        Another of the obvious plots: shoot up (or toss bombs, or suicide-bomb, or carbomb, or...well, you get the point) a Black Friday opening line or three on the east coast at a big box store.

        Suddenly, everyone stays home rather than shopping; the economy is ruined for at least the last quarter. Much easier than trying to hijack a plane.
        • by Atriqus (826899) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:58PM (#34325886) Homepage

          Another of the obvious plots: shoot up (or toss bombs, or suicide-bomb, or carbomb, or...well, you get the point) a Black Friday opening line or three on the east coast at a big box store.

          That's not effective terrorism. No one will know if it was a terrorist attack or someone just wanted to thin the line to get to the linens department before the good stuff was picked over.

        • by Al Dimond (792444) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:59PM (#34325890) Journal

          I have a feeling bombing a store on Black Friday wouldn't stop people from shopping. At the Wal-Mart in suburban New York where the doors were literally "busted" and people trampled to death (this was Black Friday 2008 IIRC) the shoppers just kept shopping. The police tried to clear the store for an investigation and were unable to do it. Not one of humanity's brighter moments.

          Point being, if one of those crowds was bombed it probably wouldn't even stop people from shopping at that store. Enterprising family members of the dead would be out in the parking lot auctioning off their newly-unneeded vehicles. Black Friday is a scourge more evil, and more powerful, than terrorism.

        • by farnsworth (558449) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @09:28PM (#34326090)

          <quote> <p>I've been thinking about that for years, but never said anything because I didn't want to give anyone any ideas.</p> </quote> I've been -saying- that for years and it still hasn't happened. I figured that if I saw the possibility within five minutes of seeing the line, anyone else would be able to see it without too much trouble. I've been suspecting that either the so-called 'threat' is far, far overblown or these terrorists are complete and total idiots.

          Isn't this what happened at LAX in 2003 or so? It certainly happens in other places around the world. I was at a baseball game in NYC shortly after 9/11 with a friend who has spent time in Isreal, and the lines and crowds outside the security checkpoints at the stadium made him visibly upset.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Martin Blank (154261)

            It was 2002. In that case, a lone gunman tried to shoot up the El Al ticket line, killing two and wounding four more, but was himself shot dead by El Al security.

        • by Daniel_Staal (609844) <DStaal@usa.net> on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @09:47PM (#34326242)

          I try to give examples of things that are more likely than being in a terrorist attack. (The 'security' doesn't tend to change these materially...) Things like being hit by lightning. Twice. Or suffocating in your bedding while you sleep. Or if you want good luck: You'll likely win the lottery a couple of times before you are in a terrorist attack.

          There's almost no threat, realistically. Worry about crossing the road. That's more likely to kill you.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          The fact is that it's very easy to cause lots and lots of trouble and hurt/kill a lot of people with relatively little sophistication or effort. I'd go into details of some observations I make as a private citizen living and going about my business in a nameless American city, but I really *don't* want to give anyone ideas (or get a visit from men in dark glasses). This leads me to the following contradictions:

          Given how easy it is to cause trouble, the biggest thing that saves lives is that most people fr
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by PitaBred (632671)

        The TSA's measures are worse than useless: they actually create a hazard, with long, slow-moving, densely-packed lines full of by-definition unscreened persons--lines that are about the ripest target for a bomb that you can find.

        I've been thinking about that for years, but never said anything because I didn't want to give anyone any ideas.

        You think you're that much smarter than someone who is intentionally thinking about how to cause mass destruction?

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by SatanicPuppy (611928)

          Well, it's not like they've tried strapping explosives to themselves and walking into a big crowd of people, so he doesn't want to give them that idea.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by sjames (1099)

          I think it's a strong indicator that there just aren't that many terrorists and they're really not all that interested in blowing up Americans.

          Or perhaps they're worried they might distract the government from destroying the country.

      • by MightyMartian (840721) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @09:49PM (#34326248) Journal

        I agree that 9-11-style attempts (or even the more mundane "take me to Cuba" attempts from days gone by) would probably see a hijacker crushed to mush before they had much of a chance to do anything. However, using luggage and cargo in the cargo holds is still vulnerable (as the latest attempt out of Yemen demonstrated). Mind you, all the penis imaging machines in the world wouldn't stop that sort of an attack. What stops that sort of attack, as the Israelis know from long experience (and a rather extraordinary record) is intelligence work and smart people who know how to recognize suspicious packages and activities. That saved that cargo plane coming out of Yemen, good old fashioned detective and intelligence work, not some espresso-overdosed guy demanding to see your dink on an X-ray, with the threat that he'll have to feel it if you don't go along with the policy.

        It's long been pointed out that low-wage security workers is not going to cut the onions, but there seems to be this belief that if we can image penises and breasts, we will all end being so much safer. I listened to an expert on Israeli counter-terrorism who suggests the TSA is wasting incredible amounts of time and money on a technological solution to what is fundamentally a psychological problem.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by MichaelSmith (789609)

          Yeah I saw this working in Malaysia once. The first team inspected carry on luggage. They checked out a bag of toys we had for my son because it was full of little bits of metal. The second (larger) team stood in the gate lounge watching all the passengers. No big deal for the majority who were dealing with their kids or catching up on work. But very hard for anybody with nothing to do except follow a script and hope the Guys with the Eyes hadn't caught on.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by gman003 (1693318)

        Almost anything will serve as a weapon in a pinch.

        Including, of course, nothing. It's not terribly difficult to kill someone with your bare hands - some muscular strength is needed to do so quickly, but a few months of training in any real martial art will be enough. With proper training and a bit of luck, an unarmed person can even defeat an armed soldier - there's a whole series of techniques in Krav Maga for disarming someone of various weapons.

        And, naturally, the TSA will soon only allow wheelchair-bound passengers aboard. At least until someone develo

    • by khasim (1285) <brandioch.conner@gmail.com> on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:28PM (#34325622)

      The TSA has not yet caught a single terrorist attempting to get on a plane.

      The TSA is NOT the "last line of defense". The last line of defense will be the other passengers on the flight.

      If the TSA really thought that your bottle of water was a bomb then why don't they treat you like a person who just attempted to smuggle a bomb onto the plane?

      The TSA is useless at their stated mission.

      • maybe some day we can go back to probably cause. [time.com]
      • by lightbox32 (1903946) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @09:14PM (#34326002)
        If the TSA really thought that your bottle of water is a threat, would they have you chug it into a container not 5 feet from them?
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by TheLink (130905)
          Yeah imagine a dozen people chucking bottles containing explosives into that container, then someone detonates them...
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by shoehornjob (1632387)

        The TSA is NOT the "last line of defense". The last line of defense will be the other passengers on the flight.

        Yeah... I know a few Air Marshals that might disagree with that statement. The training they put these guys through is ridiculous.

      • by suomynonAyletamitlU (1618513) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @09:26PM (#34326078)

        If the TSA was keeping us safe, they would have some leniency in their methods.

        They (by which I mean the mangers and policy-setters rather than the incompetent, cheap-ass laborers) should not be permitted to use these methods in order to be lazy. If they were serious--if they were even pretending to be serious--there are people they could learn from. "Terrorists" are not a myth, you do not ward them off with superstition and half-assed attempts to look good, which is what security theater is. There are people with experience. There are ways to test the solution. Science can be done upon it. Engineering can be done upon it. It can be made better.

        And yet it's clear to me that America does not understand that, nor similar things like public opinion (here or abroad). They are in fact approaching it as though it were superstition--as though these patdowns and screenings were an offering to The God of Public Opinion to say "Look, we're competent! Don't stop flying!" And they're viewing the feedback as though it's Their God Public Opinion saying "that offering isn't good enough"--they're upping the ante, not changing their methods.

        And it is "method;" they're trying to prevent something. Their efforts won't work. It won't work in the same way voodoo wasn't medicine and hallucinogens didn't give you contact with gods. It seems like they don't understand that, on a fundamental level, the figurative blood sacrifice that is TSA security isn't going to appease anyone, and people continue to be in danger (however much or little danger actually exists). Or maybe they just don't understand that there are in fact effective methods out there, or maybe they don't care.

        And it's that incompetence, whichever form it takes, which is going to kill American citizens some day, when someone actually goes out of their way to prove the complete idiocy by means of a bomb.

        • by mabhatter654 (561290) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @10:43PM (#34326666)

          exactly, the recent case of the guy who had to live with peeing in a bag. He tried to request they be careful, or even ASK what they wanted.. until they squeezed his bag of piss all over him. The entire point what that THEY didn't want to be told what to do, THEY didn't want to pay attention, they wanted to prove a point... and they did... he inconvenienced them and they made him miss his flight and embarrassed him in public. The whole thing is a clear example that THEY DON'T CARE WHAT YOU THINK, they are going to do this ANYWAY especially BECAUSE you don't like it.

          If the TSA and FAA was really serious, they would do like the medical centers and consult with Disney and the amusement park industry for how to handle large volumes of people quickly, safely, and respectfully. Getting a few hundred people an hour on a plane should be a piece of cake. Amusement parks put thousands of people per day into tiny carts standing in the hot July Sun, quickly and safely. Why can't multi-Billion dollar airlines? Because they don't have to CARE that's why. There is no excuse for the deplorable mess mass transportation is right now, especially because airports have near complete control of passengers... it's their own petty bureaucracies they can't control.

    • by jcr (53032) <jcr@@@mac...com> on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:30PM (#34325640) Journal

      The only measure which has successfully prevented a terrorist attack since the '01 hijackings is the increased vigilance and response of the flying public.

      Exactly. The perps have given up on attempting to hijack aircraft, the last two attacks (shoe bomber and underpants bomber) only tried to destroy the plane. The cockpit doors have been reinforced.

      I'm convinced that the whole purpose of the TSA is one big Milgram experiment to find out just how far we can be pushed before we resist. I'm rather disappointed that it got this far.

      -jcr

    • by Kazymyr (190114) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:36PM (#34325694) Journal

      Mod parent up.

      Very true. The lines at the entrance to security checkpoints must be a terrorist's dream. A suicide bomber could rake up hundreds of casualties there.

  • by girlintraining (1395911) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:12PM (#34325464)

    Okay, first -- I'd like to roast the TSA in every way possible for this joke security scheme. That said, the problem is that you just turned a bunch of people loose looking at naked bodies full time when until now they've had very little exposure. It takes awhile to desensitize yourself to the constant nudity and and have it stop distracting you.

    Ask any bouncer at a strip club: The first few weeks they couldn't stop looking, but after awhile, a naked woman can walk right past them and it barely registers because it's not new anymore. Happens all the time. And they are focused on the job now.

    • by mirix (1649853) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:16PM (#34325498)

      I'd like to think that the women in a strip club are slightly more distracting than the average flying American.

      Hell, I'd be trying to look away from the scanners, not stare at them.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        As much as you'd like to stop looking, you can't turn away. The horror!

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by Dragonslicer (991472)

          As much as you'd like to stop looking, you can't turn away. The horror!

          See, the terrorists have won.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        I'd like to think that the women in a strip club are slightly more distracting than the average flying American.

        Average looking strippers make more money than highly attractive ones for one simple reason: The observer is more inclined to believe s/he has a chance.

    • by 0100010001010011 (652467) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:41PM (#34325740)

      What about the biker that was asked to get redressed so that he could be patted down. [examiner.com]

      “But that wasn’t enough for the TSA supervisor who was called to the scene and asked me to put my clothes on so I could be properly patted down.”

      The statement by the TSA goes to show that it is a complete joke. It's probably the largest single employer of non-HS graduates outside of Walmart. All they know how to do is follow a mental checklist, anything that deviates from that confuses them.

      When I flew to India they had just as much (and more) security. The actual threat of a bomb was much greater but they probably had 1/3rd as many workers and numerous faster checkpoints. In America there is 1 'do or die' scanner and then another check for a ticket at the gate.

      In India they won't even let you in the building unless your flight leaves within the next 3 hours, don't bother showing up early. Every door is staffed by military. Full gun and uniform, you don't get into the building unless you have a ticket. (Sorry hopeless romantics). Then there is the main body/carry-on scanner. Your carry on gets a tag stamped. You get passed through. But you're still in Purgatory. You have to got through another scanner / ticket check to get out to the gates. Then at the gate they check for the carry-on stamp & ticket. Finally, they won't let you OFF the plane and into the airport unless you have your ticket.

      The whole process went so fast, I don't think I waited for more than 3-4 people before I went through. Every single person was military. In shape and carrying a weapon, military.

      Compared to O'Hare. Where walking up and down the promenade were a group of 3 TSA "Employees" talking about their boyfriends. Walking 3 wide they had to take up 1/2 the aisle. When we asked a simple question (Can we get food without going through security again) they had no clue. I got better help out of someone that barely spoke English.

      TSA is a joke, there are better methods out there implemented by countries where terrorism is a REAL threat (Israel, India, etc).

      • by RenHoek (101570) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @09:15PM (#34326012) Homepage

        Well I don't know about you but I was in India several years ago when they bombed Jaipur. Even then, returning at Delhi airport to go home, the screeners were shocked I took off my boots and put them on the conveyor belt. Also _everybody_ had a few 1 liter bottles of water. You can't really go long without water in the summer in India. Just to illustrate, at the same time, the USA and Great Britain were confiscating toothpaste and nail clippers.

        Also, as an engineer, I can come up with 10 super effective ways to commit terror acts at the airport without even going through the screening process. Because as an engineer it's my job to find solutions to puzzles. And I'm not the smartest cookie in the jar. That means that any person who'd want to do real harm can just as easily come up with the same things I can come up with.

        It's 100% theater. And knowing this, still being forced through the procedures just pisses me off as a law abiding citizen.

    • by fishexe (168879) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @09:59PM (#34326338) Homepage

      Ask any bouncer at a strip club: The first few weeks they couldn't stop looking, but after awhile, a naked woman can walk right past them and it barely registers because it's not new anymore. Happens all the time. And they are focused on the job now.

      If only TSA screeners displayed as much professionalism as bouncers in strip clubs.

  • by Fluffeh (1273756) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:13PM (#34325466)
    Here at the TSA, we dislike the way that you are focusing on our mistakes. Yes, we make mistakes, but so does everyone else.

    We just happen to be in a position that allows us to have X-Ray vision and check out all the bits that people cover up. I mean seriously, how many times as a kid did you wish to have a pair of X-Ray glasses to check out your neighbor? Well, it's just like that! But we can!

    So, please, stop focusing on the bad, just because WE have a toy that you DON'T doesn't mean that you should try to take it away from us!

    Now, excuse me, there is a hot chick coming. I need to check her very carefully for explosives and hidden things.

    *sips coffee*
  • by Oriumpor (446718) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:16PM (#34325504) Homepage Journal

    Missed an open bottle of mouthwash, missed my wallet pickset and totally did nothing about the oversized shoe inserts in my shoes... something that looks an awful lot like the device that caused the whole "Take of your shoes please sir" bullshit.

    The security policies of the TSA are a bunch of horseshit. I had a pair of nondescript headphones wrapped around a "strange" looking (pico projector) device that wasn't even questioned. (Point of fact I had so much electronic shit in my carryon I was already down the hall of the terminal out of view of the screener as he was still looking at my shit.

    Oh right, and the scanners themselves weren't isolated from the general public (they were in a raised Kiosk in a 3 point monitor setup, so if you walked up to "ask a question" 2 of the 3 displays were visible at all times. Fuck you TSA.

  • by Anonymous Freak (16973) <[prius.driver] [at] [mac.com]> on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:29PM (#34325630) Journal

    It was at w00tstock in Seattle. That was in May.

  • by Greyfox (87712) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:31PM (#34325650) Homepage Journal
    Distracted by his remarkably tiny penis, they didn't notice the razor blades and other hardware he had on him. The message here is quite obvious, if you want to sneak something onto a plane, just use someone with a freakishly small (or probably freakishly large) penis to do it.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @08:37PM (#34325704)

    An illegal search is admissible as evidence when a 'private entity' has conducted it.

    They are looking for drugs, because a cop can't without probable cause.

    This is the same reason they wanted to set up a program to have postal employees peeking in your windows.

    The fourth amendment is seen by LEO as a roadblock to 'unlimited' revenue based on property seizure.

    Pistole, the other day, in bragging about the effectiveness of the scanners, couldn't help mentioning the drug seizures and heroin needle it had detected.

    Cop makes his bust, LEO gets his seized house, car, boat, etc to auction. At the very worst, some minimum wage high school dropout nobody of a TSA agent takes any possible legal heat.

  • by careysub (976506) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @09:18PM (#34326034)

    Replacing hourly wage untrained rent-a-cops at security checkpoints, with employed professionals with actual management, was a good idea. Before 9/11 airport security was designed to be cheap and not impede the paying passengers. Having training, standards, etc. was a real step up.

    Then things began going horribly, horribly wrong.

    It is fundamentally impossible to keep every conceivable bomb or potential "weapon" off every plane. There are already gaping security holes (unscreened cargo from abroad, all those goods brought in for sale at the little airport shops, etc., etc.) that are completely unaddressed. Body cavity bombs have already been used and the naked videos and grope sessions won't detect them.

    We need someone with some sense running this show. Instead we have Michael Cherthoff.

    Did you see this story from the beginning of the year: http://www.infowars.com/chertoff-linked-to-body-scanner-manufacturer/ [infowars.com] ? Cherthoff, while serving as a key government official, also runs a private consulting company one of whose clients is - the body scanner manufacturer.

    Again we see the government being used as a means to stuff the pockets of well-connected, while your tax sollars are sued to physically abuse you for no benefit.

  • what's junk anyway (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Cederic (9623) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @09:40PM (#34326178) Journal

    As someone that isn't in America, I found the over-exhuberant, unnecessary and pain-inducing whooping on the video was so fucking annoying I stopped watching it.

    Was there any actual content or did it just continue in masturbatory appreciation of the cult of celebrity?

  • by gurps_npc (621217) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @10:03PM (#34326360) Homepage
    1. Swiss army knife in carry on.

    2. My keys, including a key chain bob that included a 3 inch blade.

    ------------

    Things the TSA make ZERO attempt to find:

    1. Poison Gas containers (like Sarin gas used in the 1995 Tokyo Metro terrorist attack - 13 dead)

    2. Plutonium powder = dirty bomb.

    --------------

    Things the TSA take away:

    1. Nail clippers (even from US soldiers carrying assault rifles - that the TSA agents were told were unloaded - they did not check)

    2. Our dignity

    3. Any reasonable definition of the words "reasonable search"

    4. Our ability to stand up to government and say THAT'S UNCONSTITUTIONAL.

  • by Rhodri Mawr (862554) on Tuesday November 23, 2010 @10:09PM (#34326390)

    ...they are a cutting edge technology after all.

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