Monday, December 28, 2009

Airport security gaga

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Security lines were so long that passengers were
forced
to queue up outside the terminal
at
Amsterdam Schiphol airport yesterday.

As I predicted in the last posting -- no, perhaps even more absurdly than I had imagined -- airport security officials have reacted to the crotch jihadi by punishing passengers. The New York Times, after leading off with a long account of a non-event (look! A Nigerian who wasn't a terrorist!), gets down to some of the latest screw-twisting variations:
Jodi Syens, of Holland, Mich., her husband, Marvin, and daughter Rachel were aboard a flight from London that arrived in Detroit several hours behind schedule Sunday. The Syens, who had arrived at Heathrow Airport three-and-a-half hours before their flight, said passengers were taken by their aircraft rows up to the gate, where carry-on bags were thoroughly checked and the travelers were patted down.
Uh-oh. Already up to three and a half hours. I'm betting that after the next incident it will be five hours.
Henry Chen, 48, a businessman who lives in San Francisco, said he was shocked to have a female flight attendant barge in on him in the restroom while he was washing his face during a flight from Seoul. “It was kind of weird, to have a lady try to get in,” he said. “She said that they had to watch people being in the restroom too long.” ...

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Joel Barnes and Bryan Duncan, both 27, were sitting in a Starbucks at Los Angeles International Airport, after a 13-hour flight from Brisbane, Australia. They were awaiting the arrival of a friend who had sent them a text message to alert them that his flight from Vancouver had been delayed for two hours because of heightened security measures at the airport there.

The men said their armpits and shoes had been searched before they boarded their flight, and Mr. Barnes said, “They rubbed their hands on the soles of our feet.”

Sort of a free massage, like I have read is part of the service in the front cabin on Virgin Atlantic. Who says flying isn't fun anymore?

They also recounted how an hour before landing an announcement had been made that no one could get up for the remainder of the flight.

“It was kind of funny,” Mr. Barnes said, “because the previous announcement had been about the danger of deep-vein thrombosis or strombosis or whatever you get from sitting for too long. We laughed.” ...

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The airlines said the new T.S.A. measures required an additional round of searches, including body pat-downs at airport gates overseas.

International travelers were also told that they could not leave their seats for the last hour of a flight, during which time they also could not use a pillow or blanket. They were also limited to one piece of carry-on baggage, including a purse or briefcase, and that piece had to be stowed in an overhead compartment for the last hour of a flight.

Airlines were ordered to turn off in-flight entertainment systems with maps showing a plane’s location, and pilots and flight crews were told not to make comments about cities or landmarks below the flight path.

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"Ladies and gentlemen, this is your captain speaking. You may have noticed that the flight-progress map channel has been disabled. I can't tell you where we are or how long it will be before we reach our destination. For your comfort and safety, you will be bound to your seat for the remainder of the flight. If you need to use the restroom, ring for a flight attendant who will accompany you. This is only temporary till we retrofit all our aircraft with lavatory cameras. All window shades must be in the closed position. Thank you for your cooperation, and enjoy the rest of the flight. You will be notified when we have landed."

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The mood of the passengers yesterday doesn't bear thinking on. But at least those whose responses were deemed news fit to print by the paper of record seem to have accepted it as necessary:

“Everyone just accepted that that’s what you have to do,” Ms. Woodhouse said. Paul Bidwell, her traveling companion and a fellow high school teacher, said: “I’m quite happy for them to do it. It’s peace of mind for everyone.” Priya Prasad, 32, an administrative assistant who lives in Oakland, Calif., said she was annoyed by the extra hour it took her to get through security when she boarded a flight in Mumbai. “They’re being extra cautious, which I guess is fine,” she said. “But I don’t understand what it is they’re looking for. They went through my bag three times, and still I got my scissors and tweezers on the plane.”

Wherefore is this degrading security process necessary? Because the alternative is a Forbidden Thought. It involves treating passengers unequally. It involves profiling (which doesn't mean, when done right, anything as simplistic as focusing only on people with Arabic names or coming from Muslim countries). The alternative is recognizing that Islam is at war -- mostly a "cold" war, through immigration and birth rates, but partly a "hot" war -- with those lands still in Dar-al-Harb.

Our passengers who are so naive as to imagine that all this extra patting-down and restroom exclusion means "peace of mind" for everyone, who whinge about being treated ill but accept it so as to avoid offending the enemy, don't deserve liberty. Even without officially living under the Crescent, they have made themselves into dhimmis.

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12.29 We're possibly all getting a little tired of reading about the controversy surrounding the "suspect," Mr. Abdulmutallab, whose underwear is temporarily more in the public eye than Madonna's. But I cannot let pass the article in the Washington Post by Margaret Talev, who is indignant that Senator Jim DeMint is holding up the vote on a nominee for TSA Administrator because of his opposition to unionizing the TSA.

While it's arguable that our security agency couldn't devolve into anything more slipshod than it already is, he is correct that a Latex Glove Workers union is a bad idea. I'm not anti-union in general -- it's fine for bolt-tighteners and truck drivers. But public employees are (or should be) professionals, not nest builders.

A good part of the fumbling that has been associated with the TSA since day 1 is that it is run by a lumpenproletariat on the front lines answering to bureaucrats, probably mostly politically connected, above them. It can't be said too often: if we are serious about protecting the flying public, like everyone from the president to his dog insists we are, then we should be staffing the TSA with professionals on a par with airline pilots. People like they have doing the job in Israel.

Expensive? Of course. Things that work right often are. But I bet it could be done with a drop of the money we are spending to keep Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in business, when they should be discontinued.

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11 comments:

Anonymous said...

"Coffee? Tea?...but you may not pee."

This phrase is now an instant relic:
"If there's anything we can do to make your flight more enjoyable please do not hesitate to ask any of our flight attendants."

Rick Darby said...

Right. "If there's anything we can do to make your flight more enjoyable, please hesitate to ask one of our flight attendants."

Marcus said...

Both you and Larry Auster have your heads in the sand. Do you really believe it's political correctness that prevents profiling at airports and liberalism that motivates mass Muslim immigration? Please! This entire project has been an orchestrated coup of the Western world by a disembodied ruling class and ancient financial interests intent on creating, yes, a new world order. Liberalism is simply the ideology that best serves that project by weakening society, emasculating men, deconstructing the family, isolating the individual before the state and disinheriting man from his ancestors, traditions and political culture. Why do you think the CIA pumped millions into the feminist movement? This ideology is but a tool, not a cause. Mass Third World immigration is a way of electing a new people, a more compliant, less politically aware people. Race, gender and all the rest are mechanism to keep us fighting and distracted as the currency is devalued, the middle class is looted and the consolidation of our world into "blocs" goes unnoticed. The government profiles when it needs to, e.g. gun owners, Ron Paul supporters, End the Fed rallies, militias, etc. This is WELL understood by people like Marc Faber, Jim Rogers, Jim Sinclair and even myself who work in investment banking and finance. What is happening in the West is no longer an issue of political philosophy (something I studied in college and graduate school - Plato, the classics, ancient Greek, Machiavelli, Nietzsche; I was once a sort of Straussian at Chicago). The game has changed. To understand this you need to study what has happened to countries like Argentina and Wiemar Germany. America is being looted - literally. They let in these people on purpose knowing it will lead to terror or they facilitate the terror (http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=10e_1261972165) knowing the people themselves will call for a police state and control grid. By looking at this through the Left-Right paradigm, you are missing the woods for the trees. This is not about liberalism; this is about a revolutionary financial coup that has willfully de-industrialized America, stupefied its people and now means to throw her in the gutter like a virgin who's been gang raped to death. If you think 2001-2009 was bad, wait for the next decade. We will live to see things worse than Auschwitz and Stalin - in Iowa.

Liberalism? If only!

DP111 said...

It is We in the West, who are now incarcerated in our own Gitmo, fashioned by our own leaders.

DP111 said...

Marcus

The AGW scam is in my view a means to install world government, and a new world order.

Rick Darby said...

Marcus and DP111,

I'll admit it is sometimes tempting to believe in a conspiracy by an international oligarchy to restyle the world into a high-tech serfdom they can control and exploit.

I'll even go so far as to say that if such a conspiracy existed, the big-picture social and political trends we see are consistent with it. The "orchestrated coup" would be like an invisible planet whose existence astronomers discern only because of its effects on other bodies.

So I can't absolutely say your theory is mistaken. But while I believe there are elements of truth there, as a whole your assumptions seem over the top. And while I can't speak for Larry Auster, I have never said that liberalism is the only cause of the threat to the Republic. Economic interests are definitely a factor.

DP111 said...

Rick

No conspiracy. COP-15 had all the necessary policies to establish a world order. They even talked of a "framework", the very mechanism that dragooned European states into the EU. Lord Monckton has more.

There had to be other aspects to this AGW scam apart from money, else it would never have got so far. For a start it had to have political objectives, over and above financial gain. In fact the West was going to lose financially, therefore there had to be political objectives.

1. First it was a matter of money. Huge amounts of money, looted from the middle-income taxpayer in the West, under the guise of issuing certificates in a false commodity - CO2, to be financed via ever increasing energy bills.

2. To supra-national governments such as the EU, it provided an excellent opportunity to control all industry, agriculture and transport from Brussels. It would be a lock on the Lisbon treaty that no future nationalist European government could break.

It was also an opportunity for the EU to extend its reach globally – PM Brown could hardly utter a sentence without “global” this or that cropping up.

3. To national governments in the West, it provided an opportunity to exercise control over their own people far beyond what they normally could.

4. To the Left and socialists, in government or otherwise, AGW was the ideal vehicle to advance the start of global government. The fact that capitalists were to financially gain, was a small price to pay, and in any case, would be dealt with later. In a global government, there would be no place to run and hide.

5. A global government would also be the vehicle by which local governments could be controlled via money to its leaders, particularly in Africa, where a rapidly rising population and resulting food shortages, could lead to huge movements of population to the West.

COP- 15 at Copenhagen, was to be the start by which AGW policy, with its lock hold on all uses of energy in industry, agriculture and transport, was to be implemented globally. This would be a global government in all but name.

It is ironic that China, a supposedly socialist state, put a stop to this enterprise. The Chinese, a pragmatic people, were never going to hand over their governance and economy to a bunch of international bureaucrats at the UN.

Marcus said...

Thanks for your reply.

I agree my assessment was over the top, but done on purpose (Stalin?). However, this is not a "conspiracy." I never used the word, you did. This is not even a hidden history. It's all in the open if you care to look. If you piece together mainstream news stories, contextualize them historically and apply some healthy cynicism (not ugly nihilism), it can be pieced together. I do not think it is purely financial (though from my perspective in i-banking, that's what I see most). I know the power of ideas - and Islam is a genuine threat.

But at least entertain that the immigration issue has occurred entirely on purpose and liberalism is but the tool. A former Blair speech writer explicitly admitted as much.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/politics/lawandorder/6418456/Labour-wanted-mass-immigration-to-make-UK-more-multicultural-says-former-adviser.html

Enjoy your website - more on spirituality and paranormal!!!

Rick Darby said...

DP111 and Marcus,

Let us suppose that you are exactly right about the forces arrayed against us.

Then what are we to do? Are we facing hopeless odds? And if not, what strategy makes sense to you?

Marcus,

I have often lamented my failure to write more about spirituality and the paranormal. They were originally intended to be central to this blog.

Alas, to say anything meaningful about either subject involves a great deal of research, thought, and intuition. The promptings of spirit are subtle, hard to grasp, even harder to put into words. I have found that's a tall order for someone working full time and mostly posting during lunch hour or at odd free moments.

One day, perhaps when I am retired, I will rebalance the contents of this blog to give more weight to spirituality and the paranormal.

Meanwhile, as one who considered himself apolitical until a handful of years ago, I cannot ignore what seems to me a crisis for my country and civilization. I have to do what I can. The spiritual reality is eternal: it cannot be overcome: it will always be available, and does not need me to speak for it.

"Marcus" said...

Your comments are very fair. There is a crisis right now that needs to be addressed. Perhaps the reason I long to read on those permanent issue is because I've recourse to meditation lately to hold it all in: work, the political and economic crisis, etc...

I don't think the situation is hopeless but I do know the future will be less fun and less free, whatever happens. What bothers me most are not macro-global matter but the diminished quality of everyday life. I'm 36 and old enough to have noticed a joyless creep in and an impoverishment of our experiences. There is no political solution or salvation. Our quest for one has been part of the problem. We must tend to our garden, etc...

Anyway, your site is very interesting and your writing insightful.

henrylow said...

There's a movement to radically change California government, by getting rid of career politicians and chopping their salaries in half. A group known as Citizens for California Reform wants to make the California legislature a part time time job, just like it was until 1966.

www.onlineuniversalwork.com