Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

End, don’t mend, the Transportation Security Administration

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The Christian Science Monitor

With a name like that, no-one is going to accuse them of favouring terrorists. But they have printed what I suspect a lot of us knew, but no-one else in the media seemed willing to publish

The TSA has always been a political, not practical, response to 9/11. It hassles us at checkpoints not because of penetrating insights on security or some brilliant breakthrough, but because politicians handed it power. Specialists in security didn’t invent the TSA; the Bush administration imposed it on us. So we might hope the incoming president would abolish this absurd agency.

In fact the TSA has not achieved anything except a boost for employment for people who would have a hard time getting any  sort of job elsewhere.  The only thing it has done is prevent people who present no threat at all from travelling by plane. The “no-fly” list is a gross abuse of power, and quite indefensible. There seems to be no appeal – no way to correct the inevitable cases of mistaken identity. And a niggling suspicion that it is a very easy way for the officious to make life difficult for those who would cast a stronger light on this make work project.

Mr Obama, please listen to the common sense of the CSM. You don’t need the TSA. The US never did. A land which calls itself “the land of the free” cannot tolerate this bumbling beuraucrcy any longer. Scrap it now.

Written by Stephen Rees

December 7, 2008 at 6:39 pm

Posted in Air Travel

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