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TSA Pats Down 3-Year-Old 1135

Posted by samzenpus
from the security-theater dept.
3-year-old Mandy Simon started crying when her teddy bear had to go through the X-ray machine at airport security in Chattanooga, Tenn. She was so upset that she refused to go calmly through the metal detector, setting it off twice. Agents then informed her parents that she "must be hand-searched." The subsequent TSA employee pat down of the screaming child was captured by her father, who happens to be a reporter, on his cell phone. The video have left some questioning why better procedures for children aren't in place. I, for one, feel much safer knowing the TSA is protecting us from impressionable minds warped by too much Dora the Explorer.

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TSA Pats Down 3-Year-Old

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  • I wonder... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by KyleJacobson (788441) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:14PM (#34257210)
    What would happen if there was a suicide bomber that was caught with a child, and the child was the one with the bomb... Would we willingly subject our children to being searched after an incident like this?
    • Re:I wonder... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by orphiuchus (1146483) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:32PM (#34257644)
      Its happened in places like Palestine. When people get desperate enough, or when their belief system gets twisted enough, people will try it. Its just that such a attack may happen once every decade in the west, and there is a point where it simply isn't worth the loss of privacy and freedom for hundreds of millions of people to save a few lives, maybe, one time in the next 10 years.
    • Re:I wonder... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by tmosley (996283) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:36PM (#34257722)
      What would happen if we stopped making up crazy situations in our heads to justify the total loss of our freedoms?
      • Re:I wonder... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by gknoy (899301) <gknoy@anaLISPsaz ... m minus language> on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:44PM (#34257916)

        Other people would make them up in their heads and foist their lunacy upon us anyway.

    • Re:I wonder... (Score:5, Informative)

      by countSudoku() (1047544) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:38PM (#34257792) Homepage

      Spoken like someone without the need to travel, nor children. Fail.

    • Re:I wonder... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by gurps_npc (621217) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @03:16PM (#34258496) Homepage
      Well, considering that the TSA is doing NOTHING at all to protect the US from real terrorists, I don't think this is worth it.

      In 1995, their was a terrorist attack on the Tokyo Metro. The technique used by them would work wonders on an airplane and the TSA has taken ZERO steps to prevent anyone from using it at US airports.

      In 2001 there was a mail terrorist attack using antrhax. In a controlled envrionment with recylced air, such an attack could infest literally every person on the airplane, killing them about 4 days later. If a faster acting disease was used, the plane would crash, for that extra dramatic boom. Again, the TSA has taken ZERO steps to prevent anyone from doing this.

      As of 2006 (don't know about now), the TSA had taken ZERO steps to preven Surface to Air missiles used against a commercial airlines.

      So NO, I don't think a terrorist would be stupid enough to do anything that the TSA would catch. The reason the 9/11 attacks worked so well was mainly because no one had ever tried it before. As soon as the U93 became aware of what was going on, they prevented the terrorists from using the 4th plane.

      The TSA has not caught a SINGLE real terrorist at the gate, ever. Instead they are engaging in illegal, unwarranted (in both senses of the word), unreasonable searches of US citizens. These searches would have stopped terrorist attacks that in the past failed. They quite clearly would NOT have stopped any of the most logical, fairly cheap potential terrorist attacks.

      Their searchs are simple sexual harrasments of legal citizens, they do nothing to make us safer.

      But the extensive and invasive nature of the searchs do reassure fools that trust the government with their safety, instead of questioning authority.

      • Re:I wonder... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by fredjh (1602699) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @03:35PM (#34258850)

        Great post, gurps_npc; yes, terrorism is a threat. So are drunk and distracted (cellphone using) drivers, but we put our lives at risk every day for the sake of convenience and saving time. I think people have lost all perspective.

        When they fortified the doors the cockpits, IMO, the problem was adequately solved.

  • by ShakaUVM (157947) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:14PM (#34257220) Homepage Journal

    Obligatory link to My First Cavity Search: A Children's Guide to Understanding Why He May Be a Threat to National Security.

    http://gizmodo.com/5688087/the-tsas-sense-of-humor-makes-me-nervous [gizmodo.com]

    (But seriously, TSA? Child molestation is cool now?)

    • by tmosley (996283) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:38PM (#34257768)
      I, for one, won't feel safe until we replace all TSA workers with members of the clergy. They are the only ones we can trust our children with.
      • by fahrbot-bot (874524) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @04:19PM (#34259660)

        I, for one, won't feel safe until we replace all TSA workers ...

        While I strongly disagree with the current security theater here in the USA, I'd like to interject that the TSA *workers* are simply doing their job, legally. Granted some (many) seem to be power-enthralled dicks, but I digress. Perhaps it's a work-environment, pay-scale, education-level or HR issue. :-)

        In any case... The people we all should be and remain angry at are our elected representatives and, by deduction, us for electing them. They made the rules, we keep them in office.

        • by ekhben (628371) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @09:26PM (#34263604)

          Being asked to do something illegal in your job, like molest a child, doesn't grant you immunity from prosecution. Being asked to do something thoroughly immoral in your job, like intimidate people until they're more terrified of the security line than the flight, doesn't grant you immunity from social persecution. Needing to feed your family doesn't mean society will forgive you any action - consider whores, muggers, fraudsters, extortionists, and drug dealers.

          The people we all should be and remain angry at are every single person involved in the entire farce, including the lowlife scum who didn't hand in their notice the second they were trained in the "right" way to molest a child.

          Or better yet, refuse to do it, and see how a jury feels about wrongful dismissal for refusing to rub a child's genitals.

  • Profiling (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mark72005 (1233572) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:14PM (#34257232)
    People get up in arms about profiling, but this is what you get when you say it has to be completely random. 3-year olds, nuns, grandmothers being searched.

    Meanwhile people who are thousands of times more likely to be an issue can't be targeted even though it makes good sense.
    • Re:Profiling (Score:5, Insightful)

      by dkleinsc (563838) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:26PM (#34257518) Homepage

      So what you're saying is that if there's a 0.00001% chance that somebody who looks like a nun is a terrorist, and a 0.01% chance that somebody who looks like a young Arab male is a terrorist, we should search every young Arab male and miss the terrorist nuns? Oh, and there's also the not-insignificant problem that any terrorist who notices this sort of profiling will simply recruit a lighter-skinned female terrorist and dress her up like a nun.

      What I think you're actually saying here is "Go ahead and violate other people's rights, just don't mess the rights of people like me." They came for the communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a communist...

    • Re:Profiling (Score:5, Insightful)

      by h4rr4r (612664) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:32PM (#34257652)

      Considering most terrorist attacks on US soil have been middle aged white guys they are going to be searching lots of folks anyway with your system.

      • Re:Profiling (Score:5, Insightful)

        by D Ninja (825055) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @03:14PM (#34258450)

        No no no. There is profiling from a race standpoint - that won't work. There is also profiling from a "watch how a person acts and understand that they may be doing something wrong" standpoint. The second works very well. There's an article about the Israeli system that describes this in detail - I can't find it right now. It is a very effective system. Unfortunately, you have to have train people to be able to profile correctly. This, of course, would be too expensive.

    • Re:Profiling (Score:4, Insightful)

      by NeutronCowboy (896098) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:37PM (#34257750)

      Here's the issue: racial profiling doesn't work. Why? Because the terrorists will just send people through the checkpoints until they find someone who doesn't fit the profile. And then you can't stop them.

      Racial profiling doesn't make sense. Get that through your skull.

      • Re:Profiling (Score:5, Insightful)

        by stdarg (456557) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @03:09PM (#34258350)

        It's already well known that Muslim men attract more scrutiny than 4 year old white females, for instance. And yet terrorists don't seem to have been able to just draft a bunch of 4 year old white females to hijack planes. Why do you think that is, in your world view?

        I mean hell, why haven't terrorists just recruited a bunch of American pilots to become terrorists? They have a lot less screening, and anyway they are flying the plane so they don't need to smuggle anything onboard, they can just do it 9/11 style.

        Your argument just doesn't make sense. Muslim terrorists are going to work with what they have, and that's largely Muslim males.

  • by nweaver (113078) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:15PM (#34257242) Homepage

    "So let's see. Either I am seen naked by a pervert hiding in the booth or suffer a sexual assault.

    I'll take the first one, thank you"

    -Me, today, at airline security.

    To think we are paying ~$5/person in "Security fees" to suffer this shit that doesn't do any good.

    And I just hope the TSA personnel have dosimiters: The X-ray dosage per person may be low, but I'd not want to stand next to that thing for a year without wearing a dosimiter..

  • by Arancaytar (966377) <arancaytar.ilyaran@gmail.com> on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:16PM (#34257272) Homepage

    she refused to go calmly through the metal detector, setting it off twice

    Does she have some kind of mutant superpower where emotional distress causes her to manifest lumps of metal inside her body?

    As for the rest of this, yeah, this shit is sick. Pat-downs were invasive even before, and now they've turned them into non-consensual erotic massages.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by smashr (307484)

      she refused to go calmly through the metal detector, setting it off twice

      Does she have some kind of mutant superpower where emotional distress causes her to manifest lumps of metal inside her body?

      As for the rest of this, yeah, this shit is sick. Pat-downs were invasive even before, and now they've turned them into non-consensual erotic massages.

      If you touch the side of the detector, it goes off, and you have to walk through again. I suspect this is what happened.

    • Re:Metal detector (Score:5, Insightful)

      by fahrbot-bot (874524) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:37PM (#34257752)

      Pat-downs were invasive even before, and now they've turned them into non-consensual erotic massages.

      Perhaps people should start tipping their TSA agents after the pat-down, perhaps with a "here's $10 dollars, that was nice, but slower next time - like you mean it".

      I'd easily give $100 dollars to the first person who clearly, loudly, publicly asks their TSA pat-down agent, "how much for the happy ending" and gets audio/video. Or fakes a convulsion and blackout while getting scanned - that would put a spike in the "opt-outs" for the day.

      Perhaps someone can organize a non-profit to reward people who embrace civil-disobedience.

  • by eflester (715184) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:16PM (#34257278)
    If Osama is alive he must be laughing his skinny ass off.
  • by Spectre (1685) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:17PM (#34257292)

    The policy has recently shifted from "mild frisking" to more invasive frisking for those that opt not to succumb to AIT (Advanced Imaging Technologies).

    Genitals and breasts are vigorously groped instead of the older method of using the backs of the hands only.

    Even the TSA has stated that the recent methods are likely to be uncomfortable for many, especially those who have been victimized by molestation.

    Is this because somebody, somewhere thought these frisking methods would be more effective, or is it a means of discouraging people from "opting out" of AIT?

    I don't know, but I suspect the latter.

  • I don't get it (Score:5, Interesting)

    by imadork (226897) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:18PM (#34257300) Homepage
    I just read on Ars that the head of the TSA testified to Congress that children under 12 were not subject to enhanced pat-downs. I'm shocked, shocked to find that he may have been lying!

    http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/news/2010/11/tsa-boss-our-patdowns-turn-up-artfully-concealed-objects.ars [arstechnica.com]
    • Re:I don't get it (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:49PM (#34258012)

      NPR interviewed him recently about the pat-downs. His comment about the controversy started with a statement to the effect of, "Reasonable people can disagree." He then went on to talk about the balance of security and privacy and security and safety. It was very noticeable that he did not say they would listen to disagreements. His statement, in summary, was "Disagree all you want, but we will decide what the line is."

  • by Shadmere (1158007) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:18PM (#34257332)
    Honestly I hope that happens. I really, truly hope that full cavity searches will be required to fly.

    It's my last hope that the people in this country will have any sense and stand up to this kind of asinine "security."

    If the American people accept cavity searches every time they fly, and they just shrug and say "Well, what are you going to do?" Well, then this country has lost everything that made it special.

    This will happen as long as people let it happen. By shrugged their shoulders and going along with it, they're letting the government and the TSA know that we will give them absolute free reign in this. It doesn't matter how many angry articles there are decrying the new procedures -- if people continue to fly, then the procedures will stay. And eventually they'll get worse. Again.
    • by Wolvenhaven (1521217) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:46PM (#34257948) Homepage
      At the risk of people making fun of me for watching Jackass. They had a skit where they put a hotwheels car in a condom and shoved it up one guy's ass, then he went and got Xrays done because he had an "unknown pain" and wanted to get checked out. The absolute best part was the doctor's reaction when he saw the plates.

      When the full body scanners came out someone commented that sewing words into shirts using metallic thread would be a good protest because they will wind up saving the images; sew in a quote of the 4th amendment or "You enjoy this don't you? Pervert".

      Combine the two and I'm sure we can find enough people who would be willing to internalize something that would show up on an Xray/Sonogram. Creep out and disturb enough TSA employees and even they might start complaining.
  • by commodore64_love (1445365) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:19PM (#34257348) Journal

    Your American odds of dying in an airplane bombing (either on-board or in a skyscraper), are 1 in 500,000. That is about the same as your risk of drowning in a tsunami. And of course if you move to the mountains or don't fly, the odds drop to near-zero.

    I think I'd rather take that infinitesimal risk, rather than take the 1-to-1 risk that some TSA officer will be playing with my penis, touching my wife's boobies, and/or fondling my kid's pussy. (Sorry for the frank language but I believe in speaking the brutal truth.)

    I also think the US Transportation Secretary can go eat a bullet.
    "This is okay," he says.
    No. No it is not.

    • by w0mprat (1317953) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @04:14PM (#34259570)
      Try more like 1 in TEN MILLION, the 1 in 500,000 statistic you quote comes from a misquoted infographic, which points out 1 in five hundred thousand is the odds of being struck by lightning in the continental united states. Somehow people are repeating 1 in 500k? Refer to: http://boingboing.net/2009/12/30/odds-of-being-a-terr.html [boingboing.net] It's a eye-opener.

      Internationally it's even less likely, consider international airlines like Qantas who have never had a airborne single fatality let alone a terror attack.

      I'm starting to wonder ...
  • by digitaldc (879047) * on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:20PM (#34257380)
    People always forget this fact.

    For now, I am going Greyhound...
  • Video link (Score:4, Informative)

    by Amorymeltzer (1213818) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:22PM (#34257414)

    Tribune had the original video taken down, but the news report is still viewable here, with most of the actual footage:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJNY_PTULO4 [youtube.com]

  • Vid offline new link (Score:5, Informative)

    by santax (1541065) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:22PM (#34257418)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7yshc_ez6tg [youtube.com] Footage from it... Lol I wonder where that copyright claim came from... It's fucking news, there is nothing to claim!
  • What do we expect? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by orphiuchus (1146483) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:26PM (#34257508)
    Unless we make TSA Security a 6 figure career we are not going to have good decisions and professionalism out of these people. They are mostly high-school graduates with a few weeks of training. The kind of people we can trust not to pat down every hot chick, or hold up every rude businessman, or occasionally do something moronic like this story reports, simply do not work in this sort of pay. Either we need actual doctors and nurses assigned to the pat downs, or we need to give up this little bit of safety for the sake of privacy.
  • by fermion (181285) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:35PM (#34257714) Homepage Journal
    Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) has stated on multiple occasions that illegal aliens come to the US to have babies which they then raise to be terrorists, or use as human bombs that will pass security checks simply because the baby has a US papers, even though the parents are from terrorist countries, for instance, to choose a random country that is so dangerous that US citizens are prevented travel, Cuba. Recall that n the later part of 1962 Cuba tried to nuke the US out of existence. While we might suspect a Cuban adult, and do a virtual strip search, who would suspect that a Cuban baby was filled with plastique. Clearly, we must search babies, because, as was said in congress, if given a choice people would chose a thoroughly screened plane than an completely unscreened plane.

    And if we think this anchor baby threat is to be taken lightly, realize that we have at least on anchor baby in congress. This anchor baby has access to the top leaders of the US and all our security plans. In one step, he could give Cuba, who is still under the same government that wanted to kill every man, woman and child in US, the means and opportunity to kill every man, woman, and child in the US.

  • by Vinegar Joe (998110) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:36PM (#34257738)

    I simply wear a kilt and go commando.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:38PM (#34257786)

    http://www.ustravel.org/about-us-travel/contact-us [ustravel.org]
    http://www.tsa.gov/contact/index.shtm [tsa.gov]

    Write politely and literately. Don't rant, and explain your position as briefly as you can. But let them know that you are no longer travelling by air as long as this security theatre is in place.

    You can also write to your representatives with the same message, but I cannot give you that contact info.

    (I know I'm an AC, but I hope someone mods this up, and people take the advice to heart)

  • by Applekid (993327) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:40PM (#34257832)

    With all the TSA stuff in the press, I'd been thinking. Anyone sufficiently security minded should know that there's no such thing as perfect security. Maybe if all they ever did was transport dead people then you would know they wouldn't cause trouble. Even if you're not a pro, anyone could derive the law of diminishing returns from security theater.

    But pre-9/11, shit happens on planes. Hijackings, bombs, whatever. They were pretty rare but they happened. But WHEN they happened, nobody pointed a finger at the president and said that he dropped the ball. Nobody cried about someone "not connecting the dots" and "intelligence failures" and all that stuff. It was just something tragic, pointless, but essentially a fluke of living in the modern world with the crazies.

    But 9/11? People were chomping at the bits to blame Bush for SOMETHING, ANYTHING. And why not? A tight race that ended essentially via court order and Al Gore's withdrawing (read, not perusing additional legal action). Bush seemed to be setting the stage to frame his presidency as the The Vacationing President. Yeah, 9/11 was an act of terror with the goal of global effects, but even if it was just another random bomb the freshly brewed vitriol unlike anything I've seen before in my lifetime (Reagan and those after) would have had similar effects.

    The upshot is that now random violent acts of terror now need to be defensible by politicians. It didn't happen because "shit happens," it happens because "Government Official Soandso screwed up." Protecting lives is secondary to protecting against SCANDAL. It's so politically important to make sure no random accidents or malicious acts of violence occur on their watch that politicians just can't afford to have anything happen on their watch.

    As much as I hate to think this way, we really do need to have a random act of terror happen involving a plane and loss of life to show that these crazy TSA regulations are really just theater. That a dedicated individual, or group of individuals, can do what they feel they need to do and cannot be stopped just because we're afraid, and that, in the end, if it's your time, it's your time.

    • by CyberKnet (184349) <slashdot@cyberknetTWAIN.net minus author> on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @03:04PM (#34258274) Homepage Journal

      You seriously think that a random act of terror will make the security measures show for the security theater they are? Please. Any self-respecting politician will merely point out the security measures are just *inadequate*, and now you will have to strip prior to getting to the air line check in gate, and wait in the security line naked... or some other atrocious invasion of privacy that seems too laughable to mention now but in a short time will be "the next logical step".

      I no longer fly, and it's not for fear of terrorism. The cost of flying has gotten too high, even if the financial burden has never been lower.

  • by fahrbot-bot (874524) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:46PM (#34257956)
    ...is that pilots are also required to be scanned or patted-down. PILOTS. Two, three times a day, every day - from a practical standpoint. That's a lot of scanning or touching.

    Of course, it's critical to ensure their identity is correct - that they are who they are suppose to be - but then screening them? Um... Even *if* they were "bad guys", they don't need weapons or explosives; they're flying the plane.

  • by pavera (320634) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @02:58PM (#34258168) Homepage Journal

    I've made this point repeatedly to my friends... I'll state it here now. The problem with America today is that we suck so badly at math.

    As an example, 200 people get sick eating tomatos.... Suddenly 300 million people stop buying tomatos... All because no one can do that math in their head and figure out that they only have a 0.000000667% chance of getting sick eating tomatos.

    I routinely perform this kind of math in my head, if there are more than 3 zeros after the decimal point, I generally don't have to worry about it. The sensationalist media doesn't help, but if people could do a little fact checking on their own, then we could avoid 99% of the problems caused by overreaction.

    Terrorism falls into a very similar place. Everyone is OK with this insane security system because its protecting us from a "threat" unfortunately, no one is good enough at math to realize your likelihood of dying in a car accident is way way higher than being killed by a terrorist. You can probably be killed 10 times over in car accidents on the way to the airport before you will be killed by a bomb on a plane... Where are the enhanced pat downs and mandatory breathalizer tests for everyone before they operate a motor vehicle? Not to mention why don't we turn cars into faraday cages to keep people off cell phones? And we really should look at automatic governors on cars to limit their top speed to 55mph, and limit the weight/hp ratio in all cars to something that will barely allow acceleration... Well... no lets just ban cars all together, they're way too dangerous.

    • call it our point (Score:5, Interesting)

      by dreamer.redeemer (1600257) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @11:09PM (#34264492) Homepage
      I'm a USAmerican and while I'll admit to sucking at math, I think it's a stretch to say I suck "so badly." I'm not exactly sure what The Problem with America Today is, but if I had to guess I'd say a lot of it has to do with extremely large organizations motivated solely by profit (AKA news media) manipulating the international discourse in ways that are profitable, which has nothing to do with a sane representation of reality. It's probably not even that satisfyingly conspiratory, unfortunately, but I do know that I've never seen anyone ram together a few legitimate data points like I have in this blog post (which I'm reproducing in entirety here to save everyone the effort of having to click through to a foreign environment):

      In the style of Harper's Index, if with so much less elegance...

      Number of deaths in the USA due to fundamentalist Islamic terrorists in 9/2001: 2,996
      Estimated number of those that were US citizens: 2,669
      Number of deaths in the USA due to traffic accidents in the same month: 3,303
      Number of deaths in the USA due to fundamentalist Islamic terrorists between 9/12/2001 and 12/31/2008: 0
      Number of deaths in the USA due to traffic accidents in approximately the same period: 303,841
      Total approved, as of 12/2009, for the three military operations initiated to combat terrorism in response to 9/11 (excluding funds for CIA, FBI, TSA, Homeland Security, etc.): $1,086,000,000,000
      Estimated budget for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration over the same period: $6,520,000,000
      The NHTSAs budget, expressed as a percent of the amount allocated for these military operations: 00.
      Estimate, in 2008, for the final total cost of the Iraq war alone: $3,000,000,000,000
      Amount allocated to the military per terrorism related US citizen death in the USA since 9/11/2001: $406,893,967.78
      Amount allocated to the NHTSA per traffic related death: $21,458.59
      Amount allocated to the military per terrorism related US citizen death in the USA since 9/12/2001: Undefined
      Percentage of causes of death in the USA that kill more people than terrorism: 100
      Percentage of causes of death in the USA that receive more public money for prevention than terrorism: 0
      Percent change in gross federal debt between 2001 and 2010: 232.97
      Percentage of gross federal debt in 2001 that would have been eliminated by 1.086 trillion dollars: 18.8
      Amount each US household would receive given 1.086 trillion dollars evenly distributed: $9443.48
      Rank of defense, excluding expenditure on active military operations, among all categories of federal spending: 1
      Percentage of federal spending in 2009 that went to defense: 23
      Percentage of federal income in the same year that came from individual income tax: 43
      Percentage that came from social security/social insurance tax: 42
      Percentage that came from corporate income tax: 7


      Sources: http://www-fars.nhtsa.dot.gov [dot.gov] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casualties_of_the_September_11_attacks [wikipedia.org] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NHTSA [wikipedia.org] Global Terrorism Database, with specific query used [umd.edu] The Cost of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Other Global War on Terror Operations Since 9/11, by the Congressional Research Service (pdf) [fas.org] The three trillion dollar war [timesonline.co.uk]
  • by 140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @03:08PM (#34258332) Journal
    ... in no time the terrorists will use children to smuggle the bombs aboard. The terrorists have absolutely no moral qualms. So what should we do?

    We should not start frisking children, we should accept that once in a while a terrorist would get a bomb aboard and kill a lot of people. We should state up front, "we know it is easy to kill unarmed civilians. There is no fight, no glory in killing innocent people. But if you do kill a few of us, we can take the loss, and we will take our revenge. Living well is the best revenge, that is what we will do mostly. Also we will show how much we value our lives by the strong support and sympathy we show to every last one of us killed by you. Then we will spend as much money and effort it takes to hunt you down and bring you to justice."

    Instead if we go down the path of, "we will not let you kill even one of us", their definition of success has been changed. All they have to do is to kill one American and claim victory. We should not allow them to define victory and success that way. Surest way to lose the war on terror is define success as, "not a single American could be killed by Terrorists".

    It is a fact Islamic terrorists kill more muslims than non-muslims. We should repeatedly draw the contrast showing how we never say, "if we kill one terrorist it is worth 100 or 1000 American lives". But the terrorists repeatedly say, "killing one American is worth sacrificing XX or YY number of muslims".

    The surest way to win the war on terror is, simply refuse to be terrorized.

  • by CHK6 (583097) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @03:37PM (#34258884)
    I say offer two forms of flying, safe and unsafe. Safe, you have a separate terminal and building and go through TSA security and screening. Unsafe, there are no checks or screening. You just hop on board and hope for the best, that's what many third world countries do, so why not?
  • by thebiss (164488) on Wednesday November 17, 2010 @03:47PM (#34259104)

    For those of you without kids:

    I've traveled domestically and abroad 14 times in the last 4 years, with a 1 through 4 year old, plus gear. At 1, they don't notice. At two and three, she would reliably freak out at security. My conclusions: The wait tests her patience. The packing/unpacking, undressing/dressing, unstrollering/strollering, takes away all of her comfort. Then, her mother walks away, through a big machine, towards a person with a wand.

    We've learned it's best if mom goes first carrying nothing but a boarding pass, so that my daughter walks through the machine, to her mother. Then I follow, with absolutely all the gear. Often there is a meltdown, but then one parent is 100% focused on it, while the other worries about stuff, repeat scans, etc.

    Now three of those twelve times, security has helped us a lot. In JFK, Hong Kong, and Beijing, they pulled us aside, and screened us in the priority/first-class lane. There's fewer people, a more enclosed space, and less overall distraction.

    This post is just about kids and travel trouble; everyone else has the body-cavity-searches-sucks thread covered.

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