We're doomed: someone posted the pattern for Superman's cape and a link to the manufacturer of its magic fabric on the net. That means bad guys with sewing machines and the desire to leap tall buildings in a single bound probably can after 15 minutes of cutting and stitching. Heck, the capes may even endow them with X-ray vision so they can peer through our clothing.
Oh, wait, bad guys already do that. And now they're wiping egg off their faces after publishing online a classified manual detailing the highly hush-hush rigmarole for "airport security screening." Supposedly rife with "sensitive security information," these 93 pages confirm what we all know: anyone wearing a badge or one of the State's unfashionable outfits glides past checkpoints without hassle from the Transportation Security Administration's (TSA) goons. So do "foreign dignitaries equivalent to cabinet rank and above," though these are the most dangerous sociopaths on the planet: they lie, steal, and start wars. Indeed, were you listing threats to the public's safety, you'd begin with them and bubonic plague. Not the TSA. It grants these liars, thieves, and murderers a pass so LaWanda and her blue gloves can spend more time groping innocent taxpayers and passengers.
Evidence that the TSA's checkpoint charade is just that — a charade — is as extensive as it is compelling. Screeners routinely fail to find weapons smuggled past them in tests, whether the TSA itself, the Department of Homeland Security [DHS], other bureaucracies or college kids administer those tests. Even if screeners could find contraband, there's no reason they should: neither studies nor common sense say that disarmed passengers are safer than those who can defend themselves. So the "secrets" this manual divulges are about as critical as the prototype of a certain cape. Judge for yourself: the TSA's crackerjack management posted the manual months ago, yet even with its information available to "the world," as Senator Joe Lieberman (I-Conn) moaned, no planes have crashed into buildings since.
Then there's the TSA's own testimony. The agency excused its leak by admitting that neither the manual nor the procedures it discusses are significant: "Although the document was described as containing ‘security sensitive information,' a TSA statement said the traveling public had not been endangered." This isn't the first time the agency has inadvertently confessed its futility. It said pretty much the same thing when "federal transportation officials" discovered managers helping screeners cheat on the aforementioned tests: "At no time was the security of the airport in jeopardy." If cheating on tests and leaked manuals matter so little that they don't compromise security, why bother with the TSA at all?
Regardless, the usual morons are caterwauling. Rep. Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.), who never seems to tire of his role as the TSA's outraged overseer, feigned astonishment as he does each time more of the agency's incompetence hits the headlines. As always, he swore the TSA will fly straight hereafter or — or — um…
Poor Bennie. He can't threaten the agency into reform because he'd never, ever consider abolishing it or even cutting its budget — goodness, no! Passengers can suffer and die so long as Bennie reigns as head of the House Committee on Homeland Security. Ergo, he dug out his dog-eared script to declaim, "We are deeply concerned by this incident, as it appears to demonstrate some challenges that TSA faces in the handling of security-sensitive information …" Yo, Bennie: ya think the "challenges" they faced two years ago mighta been a clue?
Then there was "U.S. Senator Susan Collins (R-Me), the ranking member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, [who] called [publishing the manual] ‘shocking' and ‘reckless.' ‘I intend to ask DHS how this security breach could have happened, what specific actions will be taken to prevent this type of reckless dissemination from ever occurring again, and how it will remedy the damage that has already been done,' said Collins, in a statement."
Actually, the only shock here is Susie's ignorance. Everyone knows that "security breaches" are a way of life at both the inept TSA and its incompetent parent, the DHS; too bad the penalties for bungling among bureaucrats aren't as draconian as those for confusion and forgetfulness among passengers. Nor does Susie seem to realize that "TSA manuals are shared widely with airlines and airports and available in the aviation community," according to a "former homeland security official." Yet Senator Simpleton is one of the dunces allocating our money to the TSA while decreeing the abuse it may dish out at airports.
Still, perhaps she's wising up: "This manual provides a road map to those who would do us harm."
Yep. We serfs have known that for years.
December 12, 2009
Becky Akers [send her mail] writes primarily about the American Revolution.
Copyright © 2009 by LewRockwell.com. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit is given.