TSA Has Some Serious Problems Now

Discussion in 'Travel Security' started by Captain Oveur, Oct 24, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Captain Oveur
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    Captain Oveur Gold Member

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    It's about time....

    Gets even better....

    Source

    Always felt the TSA's demise would be in the form of an implosion. Now it looks like the scene is being set.
     
  2. Gargoyle
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    Gargoyle Milepoint Guide

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    Except that the Marx Brothers brought joy to millions. Unless he's referring to Karl Marx...
     
  3. uggboy
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    uggboy Gold Member

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    That's what we all suspected anyway!:):D:p
     
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  4. mlarso85
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    mlarso85 Silver Member

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    I guess the airlines should stop all air-travel until this is fixed and TSA can be trained better :p
     
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  5. paladin87
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    paladin87 Silver Member

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    Could be Karl Marx....his failure rate was about the same as well.
     
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  6. PhlyingRPh
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    PhlyingRPh Silver Member

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    Clearly, the way to proceed is to subcontract commercial aviation security to a real company that will focus on actual security vs. playing silly buggers with people's passports, conversational abilities, and the like. In the meantime, I'm sure the TSA troops can make themselves useful by practicing their dark arts at railway stations, stadiums, hotels, primary schools, conference centers, titty bars, car parks and at the entrance to subdivisions across suburbia. Of course I jest about the preceding sentence, lest someone should consider it a good idea.
     
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  7. paladin87
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    paladin87 Silver Member

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    Yeah I have never been sure how much my security is enhanced by trusting it to some barely high school graduates getting pverpaid government salaries and benefits.
     
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  8. mlarso85
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    mlarso85 Silver Member

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    Wait, didn't private companies run our airport security before? How about we ask the 2500+ people that died on September 11th how well the private security performed on that day. Or how about we ask the passengers on Northwest Airlines flight 253 that left Schiphol bound for Detroit on December 25, 2009 how well private airport security performed on that day. The truth of the matter is that while TSA has failed in the eyes of many Americans, they have succeeded in their main goal, which is stopping another attack. I hate to tell you this but even if TSA was replaced with private companies, the checkpoint would look much the same. It would just be non-federal employees patting you down instead. An example of this is the security at SFO, which is run by a private company (Covenant Airport Security), the checkpoint and employees look so much like TSA that many people (including myself at one point) confuse them for TSA .

    The government can not risk leaving Aviation security completely, so even if TSA was privatized, the government would still need to regulate it, meaning the AITs and pat-downs would clearly still exist.

    Just my two cents.
     
  9. Captain Oveur
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    Captain Oveur Gold Member

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    Yes.

    When you do ask them, make sure you you let them know that private screeners did nothing wrong on that day.

    What did the private security folks do wrong?

    Guess what? The GAO has said that even the scanners would not have stopped that passenger on 12/25/09.

    That is not a fact, that is merely your opinion (which you're entitled to).

    At the rate the machines are failing, both in terms of mechanics and detection rate, I wouldn't be so sure about that.

    The part about patting down may be true. But if the machines go bye-bye, and more Ma and Pa Kettles get their genitals rubbed, you can be sure that would not be SOP for much longer.

    You know that's all by design, right? Check their epaulets at SFO, they say "CAS," not TSA, and the badges are different.

    Not if the cost outweighs the benefits.

    Fact of the matter is, again, the private security screeners did NOTHING wrong on 9/11. The private folks simply executed the SOP The FAA told them to do. The U.S. Government decided to fall asleep at the switch, and now we get this billion-dollar knee-jerk reaction that would make our Founding Fathers absolutely cringe.

    Same here. I just choose to spend my two cents on facts.
     
  10. mlarso85
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    mlarso85 Silver Member

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    Thank you for your reply. Like you said, I'm entitled to my opinion, just as you are. I am not going to argue with you, nor will I address all your points. I don't know what you are basing your statement that screeners on 9/11 did nothing wrong. For one, the private company that ran security at Logan in Boston on 9/11 has been sued for shortcomings on 9/11. You can read about it here: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/mass_family_suit_questions_logan_9BziOq11mBFrnD8u8p5G5N

    Also, how can you say that it is not a fact that there hasn't been a terrorist attack on our aviation system? Sure, you can state that TSA has done little to contribute to that, and that would be your opinion but I find it crazy that you hate TSA so much that you can't even state that there hasn't been a successful attack on US Aviation since 9/11.

    Did you really post a link about a GAO report from NPR? Why not go to the report itself? Well, I did some "fact checking" for you and went to GAO's website and found the said report. This is from page 20 of the January 2010 report (emphasis mine):

    Now, eliminate all preconceptions and look at the words of the reports in context. All GAO is stating is that TSA has not made public how effective their AIT machines are, perhaps for security reasons. What it does not say is "The GAO has said that even the scanners would not have stopped that passenger on 12/25/09" as you said it did. Now, you can find example AIT images on Google and they look pretty invasive to me, leaving nothing to the imagination as you can see genitals and clothing pretty easy.

    So, you are free to form your own opinion on "facts", but I would suggest you get all the "facts" before you base your opinion on them. Don't trust what someone else says or what is written on a website, do your own research.

    Believe me, I hate TSA as much as most (but maybe not as much as those on this board ;)) but I respect DHS as a whole (and with that TSA). You have to give credit where it is due and to me that is to our intelligence community and DHS, who have succeeded in keeping us safe.
     
  11. Jimgotkp
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    Jimgotkp Gold Member

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    Three words. Budget cut. Privatization.
     
  12. sfo1
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    sfo1 Silver Member

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    If as suggested TSA was to be privatized, would not most of those that are now employed as TSA screeners just end up working for the private companies? Until their attitudes etc are changed they won't change and I don't believe that just working for a private company vs the Federal Government will be a positive step until the person changes and in so many cases the old saying "you can't teach an old dog new tricks" is probably true of many of them.
     
  13. Captain Oveur
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    Captain Oveur Gold Member

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    In that article you linked, it says that the private security folks didn't know there was a threat from AQ. THAT is the crux of why I do not fault them.

    Again, The FAA had control over how the private security folks operated pre-9/11. Argenbright, Wackenhut, Acme Security....whoever....they're not going to learn of an imminent plot through USA Today or any other periodicals on sale at Hudson News. It was The Government that failed us, not the private security folks.

    While I sympathize with the family that's suing, they're not going to win this one.

    I responded to your opinion that the TSA has stopped a terrorist attack.

    I think the TSA is stellar at catching 4.2 oz tubes of toothpaste, but they haven't stopped a terrorist.

    The TSA stops at nothing to beat its chest about morons bringing cocaine to the airport, being "tipsy" at the airport (5th paragraph), someone carrying five credit cards and an additional driver's license (4th paragraph), and finding a knife in a shoe (even though it wasn't his fault)

    If they're going to hang a "Mission Accomplished" banner in their office over those petty offenses, don't you think they would hold a ticker-tape parade if they actually caught some terrorist?

    Don't forget the Times Square bomber breezed by the JFK TSA.

    Yes I did, for brevity.

    ABSOLUTELY. I give the credit to the people such as the CIA, FBI and NSA. But, in light of zero evidence from an agency that shamelessly beats its own chest, to say the TSA has stopped a terrorist is comical, at best.
     
  14. FlyingBear
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    FlyingBear Silver Member

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    Private contractors are already being used in a bunch of airports, but what is the evidence that it's any better? The only definitive part is that for now they are cheaper, but that's hardly a measure of safety in itself.The metrics for airport "safety" are still centered on security theater and reactive screenings AFTER some sort of (luckily) failed attempt.
     
  15. Captain Oveur
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    Captain Oveur Gold Member

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    Actually, the metrics are the success rate in the Red Team getting stuff through. As mentioned in the linked article in the first post, those numbers are now super-secret (but Google "TSA Red Team failures" and you can see that the TSA's failure rate has regularly been, on average, about 75%).

    There is no evidence it's getting better, as common sense and about five seconds of thinking will tell you that.

    Specifically, the TSA still uses the same 2D x-ray machines at the checkpoints that the private screeners used. The only "improvement" on that is a program that puts a random gun or grenade image on the screen to keep the screeners awake (I have seen it in action, the gun image appeared on the lower left of the screen, then the screener calls in a supervisor to alert them of the finding, presumably to log it).

    If I were John Mica, I would ask Pistole: how many times have you overhauled the x-ray machines at the checkpoints (zero) and how many times has the TSA updated its uniforms (four). Then when you see the TSA's line at airports saying "your safety is our priority," you know it's all crap.
     
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  16. FlyingBear
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    FlyingBear Silver Member

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    Obviously that's not the only metric, otherwise everyone would go through mandatory body cavity searches for security purposes, wait time at checkpoint be damned. But then we know that customer satisfaction is not an important metric either, as the many news stories can prove.

    That's a bit of a rough way to establish common ground, but okay. I was, however, referring to actual metrics (however flawed), besides "private is cheaper!" that quite a few people support. I think even independent of equipment there wouldn't be any significant difference over time in performance.

    In all fairness (and that's very challenging), there have been a bunch of other new and fancy equipment installed in airports around the country to look for guns and see you naked. I am personally more concerned with the fact that training does not appear to be a priority for new or old equipment, which really makes any upgrades rather useless.
     

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