Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Expediting Screening for the Traveling Public


As TSA has announced and has been widely reported, we are using a number of programs to allow travelers to receive expedited screening when they travel, improving their traveling experiences by allowing them to keep their shoes, belts, and coats on, as well as their computers in their bags, when going through TSA screening.

The TSA Pre✓™ program is now available at nearly 100 airports nationwide – and will allow passengers who apply through TSA for this program to undergo a simple background check and be eligible for expedited screening at these participating airports. To date more than 18 million passengers have enjoyed expedited screening as a result of the TSA Pre✓™ program.

Using the same information that passengers have provided at the time of flight booking for years – name, date of birth, gender – TSA is also providing certain passengers, even without enrolling in TSA Pre✓™, the same expedited screening benefits of TSA Pre✓™.

You may have heard from friends or family who have recently enjoyed these benefits, the feedback we at TSA are hearing is very positive. We know it’s good for the traveling public, and it also allows TSA to focus its resources on more high risk individuals.
Prescreening of passengers is nothing new, and we are not using any new data to determine low risk passengers. Unfortunately some have confused these programs, so we wanted to take this opportunity to make clear what we are not doing:
  • We are not expanding the type of information we use – again we rely on the same security information passengers have been required to submit at time of booking for many years.
  • We are not using car registrations or employment information.
  • We are not using “private databases” – the info we rely on is the same info that passengers have provided for years when they book their flight.
  • TSA does not monitor a passenger’s length of stay in any location.
Let’s also remember that when it comes to TSA Pre✓™, passengers are choosing to apply for this program – having determined a small fee and a background check is worth expedited screening when they travel.

TSA has a very high bar when it comes to protecting the civil liberties of the traveling public. Our job is to make sure that passengers are able to travel safely, and the programs we have undertaken are designed to meet this goal while at the same time making your traveling experience a more positive one – moving from a one size fits all approach of security to one that provides a much larger part of the traveling population the opportunity to move through security faster and with less hassle.

We believe, and we hope you agree, these are exactly the right types of steps to be taking to meet these important goals.
TSA Blog Team
If you have a travel related issue or question that needs an immediate answer, you can contact us by clicking here.


69 comments:

RB said...

" To date more than 18 million passengers have enjoyed expedited screening as a result of the TSA Pre✓™ program."

If 1.6 million people fly daily then that 18 million only represents about 12 days of flying. Not something I would want to hang my hat on TSA.


So why is a military member in uniform more trustworthy than a military member out of uniform? They both have ID's stating they are part of the military.

Why is the same military member in uniform more trustworthy than they would be the next day if they retired after a full career? They both have DOD ID's showing their connection to the military.

Why are some people being charged for this Pre Check boondoggle if others are not?

Why is TSA only able to do the PreCheck boondoggle at less than 25% of the airports that TSA screens passengers at?

TSA screening should be Pre Check level for everyone until cause is shown to go into a more detailed screening.

Stop treating people like criminals for no other reason than they decided to fly somewhere.

Anonymous said...

so a one-time reprieve from your intrusive and ineffective security theater procedures is now a "benefit." nice 1984 spin there, Big Brother ...

Anonymous said...

Does this reduce the effectiveness of the protection normally offered?
One person may be clean one day and become mad the other day. The background check won't help identifying the person who passes on the dark side of the force.

Anonymous said...

Oh - I have a comment, but you wouldn't allow it through your moderation process any way.

Anonymous said...

I would like to point out that the fee for the application process is consistent with other fees for similar applications, Passports, Firearms Licenses, etc. It is not considered income for TSA, it is to offset the expense to the public for work performed to and for the benefit of an individual. There is a long held misconception due to the fact that work performed by public employees should generally benefit the public, not individuals. Very old concept that still applies.

Anonymous said...

I have both a TWIC card (a credential issued by DHS/TSA) and a DOD-issued security clearance, both of which involve criminal background checks. The latter of which also involves FBI interviews with friends, neighbors, acquaintances, former colleagues, etc.

I am on the Precheck list, but only for flights on the airline where I have most of my status.

The point to all of the above is that, if I'm flying on any airline other than my usual, I don't qualify for Precheck.

Silly, huh?

RB said...

Anonymous said...
I would like to point out that the fee for the application process is consistent with other fees for similar applications, Passports, Firearms Licenses, etc. It is not considered income for TSA, it is to offset the expense to the public for work performed to and for the benefit of an individual. There is a long held misconception due to the fact that work performed by public employees should generally benefit the public, not individuals. Very old concept that still applies.

October 22, 2013 at 12:35 PM
............................................
Everyone who purchases an airline ticket is already charge an security fee. Why is another level of fees warranted.

TSA gets EIGHT BILLION DOLLARS each year to screen passengers. Given the quality of TSA's screening that is to darn much alreay.

Anonymous said...

Why does the general public need to PAY for the privilege of Expedited Screening? This should made available a NO COST to ALL citizens of the U.S. who apply and pass pre-screening requirements. The general public does not pay for pre-screening to enter public buildings, drive on a public road, enter a public bus or rail car system. Metal detectors and munitions sniffers are sufficient devices to expedite passenger safety.

Anonymous said...

"TSA has a very high bar when it comes to protecting the civil liberties of the traveling public."

If that's the case, [b]why are you seeking to exempt PreCheck from the Privacy Act of 1974[/b] via http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=DHS-2013-0041?

Susan Richart said...

Bob wrote:

"Prescreening of passengers is nothing new, and we are not using any new data to determine low risk passengers. Unfortunately some have confused these programs, so we wanted to take this opportunity to make clear what we are not doing:

We are not expanding the type of information we use – again we rely on the same security information passengers have been required to submit at time of booking for many years.
We are not using car registrations or employment information.
We are not using “private databases” – the info we rely on is the same info that passengers have provided for years when they book their flight.
TSA does not monitor a passenger’s length of stay in any location."

That's NOT what the NY Times says, Bob, and for some reason I trust that newspaper more than I trust the TSA.

http://tinyurl.com/kedc2x7

You might also want to read the proposed rule making statement w/r/t expansion of "Secure Flight":

http://tinyurl.com/kcjmhkm

For example:

(b) Records containing information from an individual's form of identification or a physical description of the individual;

Hopefully, you will publish this comment and not censor it as you did my initial comment that referenced today's NY Times article.

screen shot/DHS OIG statement

Anonymous said...

"As TSA has announced and has been widely reported, we are using a number of programs to allow travelers to receive expedited screening when they travel, improving their traveling experiences by allowing them to keep their shoes, belts, and coats on, as well as their computers in their bags, when going through TSA screening."

This should be the default level of screening, for ALL passengers. Anything else, including your obsession with invasive, inefficient, and untested naked body scanners, is idiotic. You people should be ashamed of yourselves.

RB said...

Noticed that no one at TSA had the spine to put their name on this bag of lies.

Anonymous said...

I think if you went back to pre-9/11 screening methods and restrictions with random additional screening and random liquid testing, you could screen passengers more efficiently with minuscule added risk to safety. Another 9/11 style attack will never happen due to the hardened cockpit doors and changed passenger attitudes towards hijackers.

As a comment mentioned above, only a week's worth of passengers have been screened this way. That doesn't seem like something to be proud of considering virtually 100% of travelers are not a threat.The Pre-Check screening methods are currently being used worldwide. Since I haven't heard of anyone blowing up a plane with their shoes, their level of security must be just as good at the TSA, so why are we still removing out shoes?

Since 99.999999+% of travellers are not a threat to security, they should be treated as non-threats. Implement some random additional screening and we will be just as safe.

Anonymous said...

Way to go...take something that was working great and make it inefficient and a disaster. Those of us who travel 100,000+ miles a year like myself loved TSA Precheck the way that it was. Now you are bringing in completely clueless people and clogging up the lines. Congratulations, big government. "I'm from the government, and I'm here to help."

Chris Boyce said...

Bob, does your "high bar" include armed-to-the-teeth federal air marshals who use their government-issued smart phones to take pictures of women's private areas under their skirts?

Anonymous said...

Why is an unopened jar of Smucker's strawberry preserves, in its original sealed jar, a threat for carry-on luggage?

Anonymous said...

As long as the line moves quickly, who cares what information is gathered on flyers? Anyone with nothing to hide needs fear nothing. The very act of checking travelers should weed out not only terrorists but other criminals.

Anonymous said...

I am a federal employee with a government high security clearance. (higher than TSA staff)I have undergone extensive background checks and work in a sensitive environment.I carry a Federal ID badge. Myself and about 25,000 other such Persons are not included in the TSA Pre✓™ program..Does this make sense to anyone.?

Anonymous said...

I recently had the surprise of being PreChecked on a return trip out of Fort Worth TX, and it was great! I hope I qualify for PreCheck again on my next trip in January!

Also, on the departure leg of the trip, the TSA officers were very helpful in guiding me through correctly getting my luggage through the screening equipment.

Thank you, TSA. Not everyone hates you.

Susanna said...

How can I apply for the Pre check that expedites security? I fly a dozen times a year or so, it would be useful.

Also, I'm surprised at the tone of some of the comments. In a business like the TSAs,there will be errors and some bad decisions, along with a lot of hard work and good decisions, but let's remember that the people who work for TSA are human beings like the rest of us, trying to do their jobs -- and not deliberately trying to annoy passengers. I don't think they universally deserve the caustic comments on this blog. I've always been treated respectfully and even kindly by TSA agents at the airports I've been at; am sorry if you've have a different experience.

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...

"...it is to offset the expense to the public for work performed to and for the benefit of an individual."

Except there is no benefit to the individual, other than the POSSIBILITY of regaining some of their lost rights by giving up some of their hard-earned cash and hard-won privacy.

Anonymous said...

Although International Travellers are required to provide a large amount of information, they are not allowed access to Pre.

@SkyWayManAz said...

Anonymous said . . .

"Why are some people being charged for this Pre Check boondoggle if others are not?"

My credit card paid for mine. I'd say which one but it might make this post hit the delete-o-meter. I suspect many frequent fliers are taking advantage of the same card holder benefit though.

Susanna said...

"How can I apply for the Pre check that expedites security?"

If you have a passport I highly recommend applying through globalentry.gov it is $100, instead of TSA $85. You still get TSA Pre Check but the extra $15 is worth it because US Customs jumps you to the head of the line too. Also check with your credit card if it has other travel benefits and a premiere color branding to see if they will pay for it.

Melissa Newman said...

how future proof can this be? how sure are you that someone will not, in the future, change and become a threat?

Susan Richart said...

"RB said...

Noticed that no one at TSA had the spine to put their name on this bag of lies."

I have a suspicion that this thread was prepared in advance of the publication of the NY Times article. There are currently 459 comments to the Times article and only a tiny thimble full support the TSA.

screen shot/DHS OIG statement

tramky said...

What does any of this prescreening have to do with airline flight security. The TSA is one-stop shopping for every law enforcement agency in the world. What's next? Matching every passenger against all cold-case files of all police jurisdictions in the US? The world?

Frankly, so what if a known terrorist boards a flight after passing through TSA checkpoint screening. No weapons, no threat , isn't that the entire rationale behind airport checkpoints with X-ray, body scanners, groping/frisking, taking off shoes, belts, jewelry, liquids, gels and all the rest?

Anonymous said...

"I would like to point out that the fee for the application process is consistent with other fees for similar applications..."

But why pay any fee at all? If the default level of screening is what PreCheck gives you, there is no need for a fee or any of the expenses of the PreCheck program.

Anonymous said...

"As long as the line moves quickly, who cares what information is gathered on flyers? Anyone with nothing to hide needs fear nothing."

Prioritizing personal convenience over hard-won Constitutional protections is one reason why America is on the decline.

I suggest you also spend some time researching the value of privacy.

Anonymous said...

"Thank you, TSA. Not everyone hates you."

No, just most everyone. Even Congress has a 9% approval rating.

Anonymous said...

Let's give TSA a break. They are only following procedures. These procedures may be right, may be wrong, but are probably the best that can be developed in an imperfect world.

Anonymous said...

Your equipment and staff can adequately screen a computer while it is still in a bag. This is true, otherwise it wouldn't be protocol for those in Pre✓™.

Does it really matter WHO is the person in possession of the bag as it goes on the conveyor belt into the x-ray? You are still checking all items for abnormalities, including computers in bags, right?

Please explain your logic why computers can't stay in their bags for all travelers.

The requirement that non-Pre✓™ people need to take the computer out of the bag is pure theater, harassment, and obedience training.

The same idea also applies to shoes, belts, coats.

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...
"As long as the line moves quickly, who cares what information is gathered on flyers? Anyone with nothing to hide needs fear nothing. The very act of checking travelers should weed out not only terrorists but other criminals."

The "...if you have nothing to hide..." argument isn't even worth debunking anymore, but I'd also like to point out that weeding out "other criminals" is not part of the TSA's purview.

Wintermute said...

Susanna said...

"In a business like the TSAs,there will be errors and some bad decisions, along with a lot of hard work and good decisions, "

Except TSA is a government bureaucracy, not a business.

"..but let's remember that the people who work for TSA are human beings like the rest of us, trying to do their jobs -- and not deliberately trying to annoy passengers."

Except that "just doing my job" is no excuse for violating the rights of the flying public.

"I don't think they universally deserve the caustic comments on this blog."

For agreeing to violate our rights day in and day out, yes, they do.

"I've always been treated respectfully and even kindly by TSA agents at the airports I've been at; am sorry if you've have a different experience"

Regardless of how politely the specific agent is, they are still violating crimes against the US Constitution. Or should I be able to get out of speeding tickets as long as I'm polite about my speeding?

Anonymous said...

What qualifications does a TSA screener have to determine how much LGA type medicine (or any other medicine) a person may need?

Teddy B. said...

It is obvious from the comments that most of the individuals making caustic comments are not in touch with reality. The world is a dangerous place and airline safety is not their priority. There are many individuals that are capable of committing catastrophic terrorist acts. Just look at the extreme violence at our schools and other public venues. Many of the perps never had a criminal backround. Anyone is capable of taking down an aircraft with a homemade device found on the internet. Lets not be naive ladies and gentlemen.

Anonymous said...

Ask anyone being processed through TSA for a flight whether they want to move through quickly of have privacy. Quick processing will win every time.

Anonymous said...

To Susan Richart's comment "That's NOT what the NY Times says, Bob, and for some reason I trust that newspaper more than I trust the TSA"

I guess there's no reason for you to demand any explanations from him, since you are NOT going to believe what he says anyway.

Bubba said...

I don´t qualify for Pre because I don´t live in the US. Will I qualify for the unpaid Pre experience, or is that only for persons who don´t use a foreign passport as ID? If it is still unavailable to us, please explain why we are allowed to fly into and over your country without removing our shoes, but must remove our shoes to fly within the country or out of it.

Anonymous said...

Does this mean that the bullies at the check point are out of a job? The officers already treat us like criminals; what ever happened to freedom from unreasonable searches?

Anonymous said...

The TSA obviously needs to spend more time doing background checks on its own workforce. It's sad that law-abiding Americans have to surrender their privacy to a disgraced organization like the TSA. The TSA is a national disgrace!

Susan Richart said...

"Anonymous said...

To Susan Richart's comment "That's NOT what the NY Times says, Bob, and for some reason I trust that newspaper more than I trust the TSA"

I guess there's no reason for you to demand any explanations from him, since you are NOT going to believe what he says anyway.

October 24, 2013 at 3:13 PM

Read this and you will understand:

http://tinyurl.com/mkfohyy

"The false claim that “The Secretary of Homeland Security has exempted certain records from this system from the notification, access, and amendment procedures of the Privacy Act”, when in fact the Secretary has not done so, appears to be intended to mislead individuals about what rights we have, and to dissuade us from attempting to exercise our rights."

SCREEN SHOT/DHS OIG STATEMENT

GSOLTSO said...

Susanna asked - "How can I apply for the Pre check that expedites security? I fly a dozen times a year or so, it would be useful."

While the program is not 100% up to speed, the participation page is found by following this link:

http://www.tsa.gov/tsa-precheck/how-participate

More options on how to participate will come online in the near future. Thank you for the kind comments as well!

West
TSA Blog Team

Anonymous said...

I like how the bloggers that complain about the rights of passengers are now okay with it as long as they get through lines quickly. As long as the other passengers whose rights are being violated dont get in their way and slow things down. This place is too much. As previously stated opinions of TSA are slanted to whatever is soots the bloggers thoughts even if it contradicts what they previously posted, even good ol' RB

SSSS for Some Reason said...

"...Anonymous said... Anyone with nothing to hide needs fear nothing. The very act of checking travelers should weed out not only terrorists but other criminals."

You are welcome to give up your information and your privacy. You will not, under any circumstances, be giving up my information and my privacy. I am not a criminal, I have nothing to hide, but that does not mean I want to show everything I have.

Bubba said...

West,

I´d appreciate an answer to my question.

Anonymous said...

No one should have to go through a background check to travel in the US. The TSA's new policy of selling back our rights and expecting us to be grateful(!) is disgusting.

The TSA themselves say in recently revealed court documents (that they redacted to the point of ridiculousness, but an unredacted copy was posted on a court document website) says that they have known for YEARS that there are NO current, viable terrorist threats to aviation safety, but they still take naked pictures of men, women, and teens (and children up til recently), confiscate everyday harmless items, and force Americans and visitors to the US to jump through hoops, including background checks(!) to sit on a plane.

It is gross how willing some people are to sell their rights and privacy to save a few minutes and live in constant, unnecessary fear, for what truly is SECURITY THEATER.

GSOLTSO said...

Bubba I am guessing this was the question you were wanting answered, I will do my best - "I don´t qualify for Pre because I don´t live in the US. Will I qualify for the unpaid Pre experience, or is that only for persons who don´t use a foreign passport as ID? If it is still unavailable to us, please explain why we are allowed to fly into and over your country without removing our shoes, but must remove our shoes to fly within the country or out of it."

The only information I have found puiblicly posted by TSA on non-citizens being able to particpate in Pre is here - http://www.tsa.gov/tsa-precheck/tsa-precheck-expedited-screening

That specifically names Canadian Nexus holders as eligbile. I have seen some news stories that indicate there may be more availability, but I have no official information I can post to answer that question better with.

As for the shoes, it is a simple answer, each country has their own threat matrices that they address their own way, currently the US has requirements on shoes, while some other countries do not.

West
TSA Blog Team

Anonymous said...

Link to NY Times article that spells out how TSA does background checks on Americans, how having a "dispute" with a screener or (private company) airline employee can put you on the "Precheck disqualification list," that TSA allows itself to give our data to (private company) debt collectors, and that you don't need to waste $85 to get pulled into the "privileged" line.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/22/business/security-check-now-starts-long-before-you-fly.html


Screenshot

Susan Richart said...

Is the TSA going to be collection "physical descriptions" of individuals with medical anomalies in order to allow them expedited screening?

Or are such individuals still going to be subjected to be groped, humiliated and degraded at checkpoints?

screen shot

Anonymous said...

"As for the shoes, it is a simple answer, each country has their own threat matrices that they address their own way, currently the US has requirements on shoes, while some other countries do not."

And by "some" you mean "all other," right, West? Or can you name a single other country that requires all passengers to remove their shoes?

Anonymous said...

To those of you who flame this blog everytime it posts;

You have to have some concept of history to understand that if an insurance co. will not cover an airline, it will slowly kill capitalism. (By undermining the strategic interest of the United States; protecting capitalism and liberty as a way of life.) If it takes certain guaranteed protections (secured by the insurance and airline lobbies)from the US government to get insurance companies to insure airlines fly again, then capitalism moves forward again.

Merchants and government leaders in our early founding days understood that, go ask (by reading american history) Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and Albert Gallatin and all those sailors and merchant mariners who were imprisoned in Tripoly (1785-1805). We didn't start this fight, it was started for us.

When Osama Bin Laden decides he is going to strike the west as unrelated payback for a defeat against the Ottoman Empire in September of 1683, hundreds of years before 2001, how is any of it a modern american's fault?- It is not. If you have no idea of what I am talking about, then I suggest you stop posting nonsense and stop attacking that which you do not understand. Learn yourself some history and then you can do your part to move America towards a better future because right now, you aren't helping anyone but your own ego. I certainly haven't read any better ideas posted.

Mike Toreno said...

"As for the shoes, it is a simple answer, each country has their own threat matrices that they address their own way, currently the US has requirements on shoes, while some other countries do not."

Clerk West, this isn't a simple answer; it's no answer. What you are saying is that the US requires shoe removal because it requires shoe removal. The question is, why does the US react in this specific way to its "threat matrix" especially since the delays and congestion caused by the Shoe Carnival present the greatest danger to aviation. The greatest danger to aviation is caused by the concentration of passengers at the checkpoint, which presents a large, vulnerable target to potential wrongdoers. The Shoe Carnival is the greatest single factor contributing to this congestion.

So, can you answer this question:

Why is the US needlessly endangering passengers by requiring shoe removal?

Wintermute said...

Anonymous said...
"As for the shoes, it is a simple answer, each country has their own threat matrices that they address their own way, currently the US has requirements on shoes, while some other countries do not."

And by "some" you mean "all other," right, West? Or can you name a single other country that requires all passengers to remove their shoes?


Not only that, can he name a single VIABLE threat posed by shoes? (hint, even the moron who caused the shoe circus wasn't a viable threat.)

Bubba said...

West,

Basically you are stating what I already suspected - foreigners for the most part do not qualify (you think, but aren´t really sure...).

What you have not clarified from a security standpoint is why my shoes are dangerous when flying within or out of the US, but not when flying into the US. You just state different countries have different policies. If thousands are allowed to fly into the country (and over it) without taking off their shoes, taking off shoes is not important to security, and therefore should be practiced at all times (and not just for the select few who qualify for Pre). Taking off my shoes after I already entered the US (and sometimes just to be able to leave the airport) is ludicrously ridiculous and exposes how your security measures are nonsensical.

GSOLTSO said...

Bubba sez - "Basically you are stating what I already suspected - foreigners for the most part do not qualify (you think, but aren´t really sure...).

What you have not clarified from a security standpoint is why my shoes are dangerous when flying within or out of the US, but not when flying into the US."

I was merely giving you the information I have that has been published by TSA, and I am not certain which foriegn nationals are eligible for Pre, and which are not - so rather than guess, I gave you what I had.

I will give you some links on the shoe removal process and hopefully it will shed some light on the subject.

http://www.tsa.gov/press/releases/2003/07/10/tsa-homeland-security-move-make-shoe-screening-policy-consistent-travelers

Here is a video with the basics:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SwUk5ZVDR1A&feature=youtube_gdata

And a link about how they are employing Risk based changes to the shoe removal program here:

http://www.tsa.gov/press/news/2013/01/07/need-removal-shoes-checkpoint

Essentially, TSA still considers shoes a possible threat vector at this point.

West
TSA Blog Team

GSOLTSO said...

Wintermute sez - "Not only that, can he name a single VIABLE threat posed by shoes? (hint, even the moron who caused the shoe circus wasn't a viable threat.)"

Reid was a viable threat, some things just worked against him in the process. The shoes he had (if things had not worked against him), would have killed some people. Based on what I have read, the shoes contained approximately 10 ounces of explosives, which is enough to (at the least) blow a pretty good sized hole in the side of the plane. I am not an engineer, but expert opinion in the case indicated that there was a chance that the explosion could have caused a catastrophic failure, resulting in the loss of the plane and all on board. I personally would deem that a viable threat.

West
TSA Blog Team

RB said...

GSOLTSO said...Wintermute sez - "Not only that, can he name a single VIABLE threat posed by shoes? (hint, even the moron who caused the shoe circus wasn't a viable threat.)


"Reid was a viable threat, some things just worked against him in the process. The shoes he had (if things had not worked against him), would have killed some people Based on what I have read, the shoes contained approximately 10 ounces of explosives, which is enough to (at the least) blow a pretty good sized hole in the side of the plane. I am not an engineer, but expert opinion in the case indicated that there was a chance that the explosion could have caused a catastrophic failure, resulting in the loss of the plane and all on board. I personally would deem that a viable threat.WestTSA Blog TeamOctober 29, 2013 at 8:12 AM

?.......................?

How many shoes has TSA screened since TSA started requiring travelers to remove their shoes?

How many shoe bombs has TSA found in that same time interval?

GSOLTSO said...

RB asked - "How many shoes has TSA screened since TSA started requiring travelers to remove their shoes?

How many shoe bombs has TSA found in that same time interval?"

Billions.

None that I am aware of.

Which could be used to point out that it is probable that TSA has some deterrent effect in this regard.

West
TSA Blog Team

bubba said...

West,

Again, if the TSA considers shoes a threat, why does it allow hundreds of airplanes to enter its airspace full of thousands of people who did not get their shoes X-rays? There is no internal consistency here. You are printing words here, but not providing any answers.

I will not comment on the fact that a TSA employee cannot obtain definitive information about Pre eligibility for a large portion of the flying public. It is just too unbelievable to be true.

Wintermute said...

GSOLTSO said...

"Reid was a viable threat..."

Funniest thing I've read here in a LONG time. Reid was NOT a viable threat because the thing that worked against him the most was himself. Had he been halfway competent, maybe he would have been a viable threat.

Anonymous said...

West,

Billions of shoes searched and ZERO evidence that anyone has bothered to use the lame and unviable "shoe bomb" means TSA's stupid shoe policy is a DETERRENT EFFECT?!!!!!!

Hahhahahahahahahahahahaha!

Um, I mean, that is illogical and unrealistic. Man, I thought you were the "smart one."

The only thing TSA never fails is to disappoint.

Mike Toreno said...

RB asked - "How many shoes has TSA screened since TSA started requiring travelers to remove their shoes?

"How many shoe bombs has TSA found in that same time interval?"

Billions.

None that I am aware of.

Which could be used to point out that it is probable that TSA has some deterrent effect in this regard."

Clerk West, it isn't the TSA that has deterred shoe bombers, it is the combination of:

(1) the fact that in the whole of human history before Richard Reid, and in the 12 years since Richard Reid, there hasn't been anyone who wanted to bring a shoe bomb on an airplane and

(2) I bought a shoe bomb repellant rock after I found out about Richard Reid

Tell me how many shoe bombs have been brought on airplanes in countries that don't screen shoes. What deterrent effect has the TSA had there?

And:

How many bags has the TSA screened for liquids in quantities over 100 ml?

How many containers of liquid over 100 ml has the TSA found during that time?

So, the TSA has no deterrent effect there, right? Because hundreds of oversized liquid containers are brought to the checkpoint every day, and the vigilant clerks confiscate and discard not only prohibited liquids, but also medical liquids specifically allowed under the TSA's rules. Yet the dastardly cupcake eaters and nursing mothers are not deterred, but continue to bring their prohibited (and allowed but confiscated anyway) liquids to the checkpoint. And, of course, given the TSA's 30% success rate in stopping prohibited items, thousands of illicit liquids get through every week. The only thing stopping an explosion in the air is the fact that there never was any danger from liquid bombs.

tcox said...

I have implemented my own solution to TSA's commercial airline "security" procedures. I simply refuse to use the services of commercial airlines.

In most cases when traveling between non-airline serviced cities or when the distance is less than 500 miles, it is faster to travel on the surface than by air and you arrive at your destination with your person and your baggage uninspected. You also have your own surface transportation without having to hire a cab or rent a car.

After the USA has disbanded the TSA, I will reconsider commercial air travel. Until then . . .

Anonymous said...

"You have to have some concept of history to understand that if an insurance co. will not cover an airline, it will slowly kill capitalism...."

So let the airlines implement security, not the federal government! Let the market (not bureaucrats and special interests) determine what flyers will deem to be acceptable security.

"Merchants and government leaders in our early founding days understood that, go ask (by reading american history). ...I certainly haven't read any better ideas posted."

Maybe you need to do more reading yourself. There are ideas all over the world for more effective security--including ideas from reputable security professionals. There are ideas posted in response to earlier blog posts in this forum.

Wintermute said...

GSOLTSO said...
"Which could be used to point out that it is probable that TSA has some deterrent effect in this regard."

And the lack of tigers in my neighborhood could be used to point out the rock on my coffee table has some deterrent effect in this regard. In other words, correlation does not imply causation. (And don't try the "but tigers aren't common where you are" counter-argument, as, by some crazy twist of fate, tigers "in the wild" in central Ohio are, indeed, at least as common as terrorists on airplanes...)

Anonymous said...

This is very confusing to travelers who have been told they are not eligible and need a known traveler number to participate. Why should I buy a number now?

Anonymous said...

"Maybe you need to do more reading yourself. There are ideas all over the world for more effective security--including ideas from reputable security professionals. There are ideas posted in response to earlier blog posts in this forum."

The legislative branch of this country did not create TSA because it wanted to, it did so because it was lobbied to.

Founding days- Merchants= Airlines; If they wanted something different then why did they go to the government for security? Because the insurance company (=different merchant)decided it needed LOWER RISK which it did not trust the companies they were insuring to provide. I don't see the point of disputing whether anyone is trustworthy here; only that they mutually decided that pinning liability on the government instead of private business was the better option, which they succeeded in doing. If they WANTED to for ONE second take back the security function of the aviation industry in America, they would do so in an instant. The truth is they don't want to. The model is the same as it was in the founding days as it is now. I doubt the few folks out there who calculate risk for the insurance companies are advising that it is financially smarter for the airline to absorb all the risk of security unto themselves because if they were...what do you think the representative lobbies would be working on? Go figure, really, it's not all a big conspiracy to deprive rights to anyone, it is simple mathematics and business. The founding fathers argued that to promote capitalism is to insure the survival of the constitution and therefor business became a "STRATEGIC INTEREST OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA"

laneese17 said...

I agree.

Anonymous said...

Great thinking but now, and especially at Midway, so many regular passengers are diverted to PreCheck that PreCheck waits are as long - or longer. Help!