Our need to abolish the TSA is getting mainstream attention.
Granted, it was a guest editorial, not a publication of the Washington Post editorial board itself. Still, it is a hopeful sign that C. J. Ciaramella of the Washington Free Beacon was able to print his argument with the newspaper: “Abolish the TSA.”
The article begins with the recent discovery that TSA agents molested men by tampering with the screening equipment so that a male agent had an excuse to fondle/search them.
This is a raw deal. The federal government heaped a mountain of farcical security measures on the American public after 9/11, and now we’re supposed to give them a thumbs up for no longer taking nude photos of us and stealing pregnant ladies’ insulin.
Mind you, this is an agency that regularly employs kleptos and perverts, an agency that handed out security badges to criminals and on at least one occasion a dog. It does not hire the best and brightest, and those with any critical faculties understand that their job—confiscating snow globes and nail clippers—is a bad joke.
And yet the agency keeps finding new and innovative ways to expand its mission and waste money in the process. Since 2007, the TSA has deployed Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response (VIPR) squads. These roving VIPR teams, apparently named by an ‘80s action movie screenwriter,protect such homeland locations as bus stations, music festivals, trolleys, ports and rodeos. The program’s budget rose from $30 million in 2009 to more than $100 million by 2011, a pace that could be more accurately described as mission-jog than mission-creep.
Since 2007, the TSA has also spent more than $900 million on a behavior detection program that has never been independently verified by researchers to be effective. But it was hard to learn more about the program, since TSA kept the particulars of how it worked a closely guarded secret. (National security, naturally.) It was only until someone leaked documents to The Intercept that the public learned what the TSA was on the look out for. It turns out TSA behavior detection officers are trained to detect such suspicious actions as “exaggerated yawning,” “excessive complaints about the screening process,” and “face pale from recent shaving of beard,” among other signs.
There is a lot more material in the article. Is there any presidential candidate who is willing to promise to abolish this agency?