Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

 
Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

 
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He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

 
Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit.
 

Adventures in TSA fantasyland

Another airplane journey, another idiotic example of the stupidity of the Transportation Security Agency (TSA).

I am in the airport in Panama City, Florida, waiting for my flight home. As I was putting my shoes and belt back on at the security conveyor belt, I watched as an older couple was having their carry-on bags opened and inspected. The woman was wearing an Islamic scarf. (Despite this I am sure neither posed any threat, because both were somewhat elderly, and had been given passes that I think signified this, since anyone over 75 years old is allowed to keep shoes and belts on.)

What was amazing to me was what happened when the TSA officer discovered that the women had brought a take-out lunch with her, as well as a full set of metal silverware to eat it. The officer hardly glanced at silverware, seeming more interested in her lunch in a plastic food container. While he inspected this the woman put the silverware back in her purse, and after the officer was satisfied that the take-out food was not dangerous, he allowed them to leave, silverware and all.

As they left I was right there, putting my wallet and keys back in my pockets, with that officer only about two feet away. I couldn’t help it. I said, “Excuse me, it is now permissible to bring metal silverware, forks, knives, so forth, on an airplane?”

The officer was friendly. “Was there a knife in there? I don’t think so.”

I said, “I am sure there was.”

He grinned. “No, I don’t think there was a knife.”

I responded, “But the TSA considers a metal fork okay?”

“Well, as long as there was no knife, it’s okay. Forks and spoons are no problem.”

Think about the absurdity of the situation. The woman was clearly Islamic. She was going to get on a plane carrying a metal fork and (I think) knife, both of which could easily be turned into deadly weapons. And the TSA says sure, why not? A fork isn’t a knife y’know. And besides, it’s the lunch we were really more worried about!

I am not calling for the TSA to start confiscating more stuff. If anything, this story reinforces my belief that we should dump the entire charade and allow Americans to walk freely onto their planes, even carrying concealed weapons for their personal defense. This is how the country functioned for its first 150 years, and it worked very well in both protecting us as well as honoring our freedom.

I just find this absurd anecdote another example of just how pointless this whole TSA airport travesty is. They really don’t know what they are doing. Their priorities have nothing to do with preventing any airplane hijacking, but on putting on a show. In fact, since the TSA’s responsibilities and power was expanded after 9/11 they have never prevented an actual hijacking attempt. Instead, passengers and crew on the airplanes themselves have at least twice tackled and stopped a terrorist attack. In both cases the terrorist had gotten past TSA, with no problem.

Moreover, this corrupt system is teaching everyone the wrong lessons, weakening the freedom of Americans while strengthening the power of their government. For example, after I passed through the electronic screening, it as usual showed that I needed to be patted down anyway in several places. This always happens. And I deeply resent this unconstitutional very personal invasion of my personal space. As stepped into position for the officer to pat me down, I said calmly, as I always do, “Okay, come on, get your jollies so I can get on my plane.”

The officer stepped back. “I don’t appreciate that.”

I responded, once again very calmly. “Well, I don’t appreciate this whole charade, let’s get on with it.”

I wasn’t objecting to the search, and I was staying calm and cooperative. The officer had no right to do anything but “get his jollies.” He did his thing, and I went on my way, only to see another officer allow a woman in an Islamic scarf carry metal silverware onto her plane.

The officer patting me down felt it inappropriate and improper for an American citizen to tell him his actions were morally wrong. He felt privileged and immune from criticism, and resented that criticism. And he was also taken aback because so few Americans today have the courage to object to his actions. He expects us to be diffident and submissive to him, and almost always Americans submit meekly. They no longer act as free human beings, but as servants to this powerful government agency that makes feeling up Americans part of its regular routine.

This must change, or our free country is doomed. Though I do not believe I am alone in these opinions, it seems to me that I am generally alone in expressing them, especially at the airport. Until Americans begin to once again forcefully stand up for their rights, those rights are going to continue to evaporate away, as they have been doing for the past half century.

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37 comments

  • Phill O

    If you had had the cutlery, I would not want to be in your shoes Bob.

  • Jerry Greenwood

    Shortly after the liquids restriction was implemented I was admonished by a TSA screener for having my travel size toothpaste and a hotel shampoo in a gallon size bag when the requirement clearly stated a quart size bag was required. She graciously let me go with a warning.

  • Edward

    Robert wrote: “Moreover, this corrupt system is teaching everyone the wrong lessons, weakening the freedom of Americans while strengthening the power of their government.

    This brings up a question that has been kicked around for a long time:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4oW9IgGpoAQ#t=1041 (“Born Yesterday” (1950), watch only the next few seconds)
    I said to Sam only last week this country will soon to have to decide if the people are going to run the government, or the government is going to run the people.

    It’s looking like the decision has been made for us.

    Robert also wrote: “In both cases the terrorist had gotten past TSA, with no problem.

    TSA. Just as useless as all the rest of our government’s tyranny, running our lives as though they know how we should live.

    Robert also wrote: “He expects us to be diffident and submissive to him, and almost always Americans submit meekly.

    Isn’t this just what the Democrats are trying to do to Trump right now? Haven’t they been wildly surprised that Trump has not submitted meekly to Democratic Party attacks like most Republican politicians do?

    What is that word that means “submission?” Oh, yes. “Islam.”

  • Robert Pratt

    Sounds like a Pratt trip. I’ll read this on the air tomorrow.

  • Jim Davis

    The officer had no right to do anything but “get his jollies.”

    Really? He has no right to respond to your remark? Or any remark at all? He just has to silently take whatever you choose to say to him no matter how insulting?

    The officer patting me down felt it inappropriate and improper for an American citizen to tell him his actions were morally wrong.

    He told you that, did he? In those words? Or did you infer that because he had the colossal effrontery to tell the great Bob Zimmerman that he didn’t appreciate being insulted?

    Bob, no one likes the TSA. I share your frustrations. I share your assessment of the absurdity of many of their procedures. But taking umbrage at a TSA employee who said he didn’t appreciate your insult is just childish.

  • Jim Davis: And when he feels me up, which is exactly much of this pat down routinely is, I am not to feel violated?

    Bah. Go ahead, take this obscene trespass of your personal space, with no justification, none, as meekly as you wish. I won’t. The Constitution is very clear: no searches without reasonable cause, requiring a warrant. What the TSA does is a violation of this. And then it expands it in a most disgusting manner.

  • Cotour

    A little perspective:

    Patriot Act written and waiting in a draw / 9-11 / execute plan.
    (Is the TSA just a neccessary counter balance to what has been executed as a part of a larger world wide American political stratgey and agenda? American agenda or Globalist agenda?)

    The man or woman executing the search are but front line pawns now doing an obnoxious and probably un Constitutional job. Is this about neccessary and true security because of the push back to the agenda? Or is it the trainning of the public to be complacent to authority? Choose one, probably a bit of both.

  • Jim Davis

    And when he feels me up, which is exactly much of this pat down routinely is, I am not to feel violated?

    Go ahead, take this obscene trespass of your personal space, with no justification, none, as meekly as you wish. I won’t.

    Oh, listen to you! Did you refuse the pat down? Did you let yourself get arrested and then defend yourself in court by claiming the the pat down was unconstitutional expecting a jury of your peers would find in your favor? No, you didn’t, that would have taken some degree of courage.

    Instead, you meekly submitted. And then, perhaps because you lacked the courage of your convictions, you behaved like a jerk, lashing out with a childish insult. And when the target of that insult said he didn’t appreciate it, you played the victim.

    And now you post about how your pettiness is some heroic act of resistance, instead of the boorishness it was.

    You are often too full of yourself, Bob.

    The Constitution is very clear: no searches without reasonable cause, requiring a warrant.

    Actually, Bob, freedom from a search is what is known as an alienable right, you can willing give it up in exchange for a consideration (which you did), in your case the convenience of flying on a commercial airliner. It is similar to freedom of speech in this regard. We all have the constitutional right of free speech including all manners of vulgarity. But we can willingly give up that right for a consideration, in this case the privilege of being allowed to post on your blog. Your ban on profanity is not unconstitutional.

    Look, Bob, I don’t like the TSA any more than you do but acting like a jerk accomplishes exactly nothing.

  • Jim Davis: You are welcome to your opinion. However, being polite has gotten conservatives nothing for the last half century. I didn’t like Trump’s rudeness during the campaign, but because of that rudeness he has actually repeatedly won his battles.

    Moreover, how come I am the jerk (according to you), when it is these fake cops feeling me up? And without cause.

    Also, you are being intellectually dishonest to claim I could simply choose not to fly. Bah. Either way, my rights as an American are being infringed. If I fly I must subject myself to an unreasonable search, without a warrant or reasonable cause. If I don’t fly I am denied my right as American to freely travel.

    Your niceness is why we are losing our freedom.

  • Phill O

    The unfortunate part of this is that there are American citizens who hate America. This Canadian is more patriotic to the American flag (and the constitution it stands for) than most democrats right now.

    The TSA is doing a needed job; but badly. That a clearly muslin woman can do, what a patriot like Bob can not, is very much to be pointed out to higher ups (and the real media).

  • Jim Davis

    Moreover, how come I am the jerk (according to you), when it is these fake cops feeling me up? And without cause.

    Fine, Bob. The fake cops were “feeling you up”. When that happens next time, punch him in the mouth, just like you’d do to anyone else who felt you up. You’ll be arrested and brought to trial. Explain in detail to the judge and jury why what this fake cop did that was so egregious and without cause. Surely they’ll see your side of things. If you’re acquitted and enough people follow your example the pat downs will stop very quickly.

    Not willing to do this? Your niceness is why we are losing our freedom.

    Either way, my rights as an American are being infringed. If I fly I must subject myself to an unreasonable search, without a warrant or reasonable cause. If I don’t fly I am denied my right as American to freely travel.

    Fine, Bob. Here’s what you do. Buy a ticket. Walk right through the TSA checkpoint, refusing to be searched. You’ll be arrested and brought to trial. Explain in detail to the judge and jury that the TSA search is unconstitutional. Surely they’ll see your side of things. If they do, TSA will disappear.

    Not willing to do this? Your niceness is why we are losing our freedom.

    There is a difference between standing up for a principle and acting like a jerk. Lacking the courage to do the former is not an excuse to do the latter.

  • Steve

    I will not willingly walk through the irradiation machine. I always opt out for the pat down in the open. Never had a problem. TSA agent always polite and professional. Do I like it? No. The real question is, that I’ve never heard answered, is why we aren’t doing what the Israelis do, which appears to work.

  • Jim Davis: You remind me of the Jews in the Warsaw ghetto, who played along entirely in the hope only some of them will be killed.

    I am at least trying to make a point. You submit.

  • Steve: I did that for the first few years because those irradiation machines represented a further unnecessary abuse in their power over us. They were also part of a corrupt Democratic deal funneling a contract to friends of the Obama administration.

    Also, there was some hope that if everyone refused those machines they would suddenly discover a major revolt that would require them to back off. Unfortunately, people are unwilling to do it, instead submitting meekly. The result is that the government pushes forward, grabbing more power with every step.

    I eventually gave up, submitting to the machines, because getting padded down was worse. I might go back to that however, since I have found in the last year that they still pat you down now, even after you go through the machine.

  • Cotour

    Your talking about the effect and those in the front line executing the effect, but your not identifying the cause.

    Where does all this come from and why?

    You can not fix something if you are not identifying and understanding where it comes from.

  • Edward

    Jim Davis wrote: “freedom from a search is what is known as an alienable right, you can willing give it up in exchange for a consideration

    Actually, preventing the government from exchanging our freedoms for some form of consideration is exactly why the Bill of Rights was created.

    http://constitutionus.com/#x4
    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

    “shall not be violated” does not mean “except in exchange for a consideration,” such as the ability to use a ticket for a conveyance for the public.

    It is all part of that giving up liberty for security thing. Liberty was surrendered, but the security was not purchased. Someone warned of this consequence.
    https://techcrunch.com/2014/02/14/how-the-world-butchered-benjamin-franklins-quote-on-liberty-vs-security/

    The government gets to run the people, and Jim Davis thinks we should not have a say about it. There goes yet another right of We the People.

    Jim Davis also wrote: “Did you refuse the pat down?

    Perhaps Jim Davis gets his own jollies from a pat down, but I have started turning down this procedure. I fly far less than I used to, and I enjoy flying. I just don’t enjoy the phony baloney charade that we are safer by being herded into huge crowds of potential targets as we wait our turn for the nipple squeeze or porn-o-vision violations of our persons as well as the stripdown that we have to go through. Hold onto those pants after the belt comes off!

    Here are two examples of the safety that we (don’t) receive for our lost liberties:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2016_Atat%C3%BCrk_Airport_attack

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2016_Brussels_bombings

    At LAX, a lot of passengers would have been killed, but the bad guy was only after TSA agents, so he bypassed a lot of terrorist targets:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2013_Los_Angeles_International_Airport_shooting

    This was shocking news, at the time. It is no wonder that we don’t trust those incompetent TSA buffoons:
    https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/tsa-fails-identify-73-employees-terror-watch-lists-n371601

    The last time that I flew was two years ago for my cousin’s funeral in Hawaii. My hands were even swabbed — twice — just to make sure that I hadn’t been to the firing range before going to the airport. When I told the second swabby, farther down the harassment line, that I had already been swabbed, he suggested that that was the day I should buy a lottery ticket. Yeah, right. Flying in a bad mood is not the fun that flying in a good mood is.

    How is the presumption of guilt even after proof of innocence not an insult to the flying public? This isn’t American. It isn’t British, either. It isn’t even French, because at least in France they don’t continue harassing you after you prove your innocence.

    Less flying is a liberty that I have lost in order to be secure in my person — in order to avoid being violated by the government during the preboarding safety pretense.

    When that happens next time, punch him in the mouth

    Violence is the better solution than exercising one’s right to free speech? Violence, not speech, is the only way for someone to “see your side of things?” Jim Davis lost a lot of credibility, and failed to answer Robert’s reasonable question: “how come I am the jerk (according to you), when it is these fake cops feeling me up?

    Meanwhile, the Muslims still get to carry on steel cutlery, but can the rest of us?
    https://www.justanswer.com/law/5zjwy-want-silverware-forks-spoons-carry.html
    As per TSA regulations forks are not allowed on the plane as they fall under the category of sharp objects.

    This has a different answer, see item 9:
    https://www.rsatravelinsurance.com/travel-tips/trip-advice/travel-vaccinations-vacations-are-stuff-daydreams-fact-its-easy-get-caught
    If you’re planning a picnic straight off the plane, feel free to bring along metal or plastic forks and spoons.

    So with that confusion in mind, what does the TSA say?
    https://tsatraveltips.us/can-i-bring-it-on-an-airplane/

    Let me know if you find a reference to forks.

  • Jim Davis

    I am at least trying to make a point. You submit.

    I submit? You’re the one who let’s TSA agents feel you up because air travel is too much of a convenience to stand up for your rights. I would never let a TSA agent or anyone else feel me up and none has ever tried. I would react violently if one tried to feel me up. I think they understand (you’re particular agent was an unfortunate exception) that most people are like that (you’re apparently an exception) and conduct their pat downs in a professional manner.

    Jim Davis lost a lot of credibility, and failed to answer Robert’s reasonable question: “how come I am the jerk (according to you), when it is these fake cops feeling me up?”

    Up to the comment above, I’m wasn’t convinced Bob really was felt up. I thought he was exaggerating a standard pat down for rhetorical effect. His passive acceptance of what he described as being felt up is remarkable and tended to support this conclusion. But I wasn’t there and I can’t read Bob’s mind. If he insists he really was felt up I have no choice but to take him at his word. So I was forced to shift gears and wonder why he would accept such an indignity with so little fuss. Apparently, the convenience of air travel was too great and/or the indignity so slight that he didn’t feel it worth making a principled stand on the matter.

  • Jim Davis: As far as I am concerned, practically everything TSA agents do when they pat people down is a form of physical abuse, which to me is another way of saying they are “feeling someone up.” Thus, you have been felt up, only you think it is some TSA agent acting “professionally.”

    A really professional TSA would approach this problem like the Israelis, who treat the passengers with remarkable respect, pat almost no one down, but at the same time do not let suspicious people board planes carrying metal knives and forks.

    Some perspective: I cannot for a second imagine anyone of my parents’ generation tolerating this so silently, as most Americans today do. Most would have likely done what I do, try to make life hell for anyone who wants such a job. The press would have been on this as well, screaming bloody murder to the politicians behind it. This pressure from so many would have quickly forced a change in policy.

    Not today. We are jerks if we protest this abuse of power, and so, afraid to be ostracized, as you are trying to do to me, people keep their mouths shut.

    As I say, you are welcome to your opinion. I will tell you that this TSA policy only erodes my respect for law enforcement. They should know better.

  • Lee S.

    It seems to me that this is one hell of a storm in a tea cup!
    When I was a teenager it was standard procedure to be patted down on enterance to nightclubs, concerts, etc… This was in the UK, and in the times of terrorism from the IRA…. We took it, and were actually pleased… Look up “the Birmingham pub bombings” to understand what it really means to live under the threat of terror. ( I went nightclubbing in Birmingham)… A pat down from a friendly doorman was a small price to pay for a great night of dancing, drinking and pretty girls.
    The current system at airports is no different….
    Yes… It is mostly theatre… Yes, it is occasionally uncomfortable, but comming from residents of the country that has suffered the worst terrorism attack in history, I find the objections strange.

  • Lee S

    When I traveled to the US last year, the grilling I got from the passport control guy was far more intrusive than anything I experienced from security…. I actually thought “this is the Israeli model “, I was repeatedly questioned about the reason for my visit, my stay length, where I was staying, etc…. ( I had a ticket for 1 week )
    On my last visit back to the UK, my 14 year old son was swabbed, (I asked if he was being swabbed for drugs or explosives, the security guy laughed… Apparently it was for explosives), and my 11 year old daughter was asked if I was her father …
    We are all blond with blue eyes..( well, mine is more grey ), and obviously not terrorists, and I would imagine I do not seem like a child trafficker, but given the PC world we live in, I understand they cannot just pick the obviously “dodgy” looking targets, but I’m pretty sure they do screen anyone that fits the profile of “a terrorist” as well.
    An elderly lady with a dinner set in her bag obviously was not a reason for concern…. I was once caught out on a security check with a tiny lock knife I had overlooked, in my hand luggage… (1.5″ long, used at work, and I was traveling with my kids.. )… I apologized, and asked them to throw it away… They let me keep it.
    These guys and girls are trained to spot suspicious passengers, but must keep up the appearance of being random for PC reasons…
    Angry and belligerent passengers must annoy the heck out of them… They are just doing their job… And I for one feel safer flying… Entering nightclubs ( not that I do that these days ), or going to concerts, for it.
    These guys are tasked with keeping us safe… Giving them a hard time for doing their job is just petty.

  • Lee S. wrote, “I find the objections strange.”

    This is because you have never really lived in a truly free place, as I almost did when I was very young. And that wasn’t even as free as the America that existed fifty years earlier.

    In fact, almost no one who reads my webpage or my comments here has ever experienced true freedom. I myself only became aware of how far the U.S. has declined from the free nation it once was when I became an historian and began to dive deeply into the past.

    There was once a time when government had almost nothing to do with anything Americans did. No one had the right to impose almost any rules upon them, and they were loath to allow it if anyone tried. There was almost no police presence anywhere, but society was not an anarchy because it was also a very moral religious one. The government didn’t set the rules, the social framework taught at church and synagogue did so, but it also had no legal standing to enforce its rules, directly. Instead, the majority of all citizens voluntarily did so, because they understood that freedom carried responsibility to act like adults.

    I mourn daily for the loss of freedom that I have discovered. And I mourn even more for the coming oppression that will make today’s strict regulatory society seem gentle by comparison.

    All because no one can conceive of a society where individuals are given the freedom to choose their actions freely. No, today we insist on a government regulatory framework, in everything we do. And a government police presence to protect us from ourselves.

  • Lee S

    One final note….
    “but at the same time do not let suspicious people board planes carrying metal knives and forks.”
    This comment shows a remarkable amount of racism….
    I’m guessing that these pensioners did not hijack the plane…. So your preconceived notion of “suspicious” was wrong.
    The lady in question was obviously a bit silly for taking a dining set in her hand luggage… But security made the right call.
    Being brown don’t make you a terrorist.

  • Lee S

    Bob…. I love the fact that you are willing and more than able to argue your side of an argument in a polite and intelligent manner…
    I have the date and time for your next aperance on the Space Show set in my calendar…. and I’m looking forward to calling in and introducing myself ( with a couple of space related questions ) in person!
    You keep me informed, and mentally sharp… Thank you!

  • Lee S: The reason the Israelis are so successful at security is that they profile, intelligently.

    Read my post again. I made it very clear that I myself profiled the couple and decided they certainly were no threat, despite her headscarf. The Israelis would have done the same for sure. But they also would not have allowed the silverware to go on the plane in her carry-on.

  • Micai Askauss

    When I first saw these body scanners show up in airports, I thought there was no way the American people would accept it. The people of the greatest nation in history would value their constitutional rights too much to allow them to be trampled on like this. I had so much faith. Unfortunately I was wrong.
    I still think we should organize action against it.

  • Cotour

    Micai:

    IMO like other people commenting on this subject you are seeing things in absolute terms and not in the context of our times. Of course no one wants to be personally violated or inconvenienced by these security measures. But there they are all the same.

    The people of America have been introduced to extreme actions by terror groups / “Terror groups” and reasonably understand that something must be done to secure the general public as they go about their business and their travels. And these attempts at securing their safety by these government agencies although result in certain violations of their rights seems reasonable to them for the most part.

    To my thinking the why or how the people were introduced to this reality is more interesting rather than the effects of that reality.

    Where does it all come from is the more interesting question? And I think we have established that some questions are not asked by some people for reasons that remain unexplored.

  • Robert Pratt

    Terrorized into Absurdity: The Creation of the Transportation Security Administration. https://www.independent.org/publications/tir/article.asp?id=68

    The Absurdity of the TSA – https://americanfront.wordpress.com/2010/11/19/the-absurdity-of-the-tsa/

    The TSA Is in the Business of ‘Security Theater,’ Not Security – https://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2014/01/tsa-business-security-theater-not-security/357599/
    A sample: “Jason Harrington, a former TSA agent, explained in Politico the everyday ridiculousness of the job, a fact that all agents simply accepted as a fact of life. Yes, TSA agents are ogling or making fun of your naked physique in the full-body scans. Yes, they are racially and politically profiling certain people for extra screening (“So it was mostly the Middle Easterners who got the special screening,” he writes.) Yes, the body scans are ineffective and can be easily manipulated. (“They’re shit,” a scan instructor said.) So despite being invasive and annoying, the TSA still has some major problems in its security.”

    “But Harrington recognizes the job’s clearer purpose — to create the illusion of security.”

  • Cotour

    Ah, 9-11.

    It served so many purposes. Strategy Over Morality (S.O.M.) ?

    “By any means neccessary”? It works for both political ideologies you know.

    It all depends on which side you find yourself and what the definition of “Neccessary” is.

    Whether this perceived level of security and violations of privacy at major airports and other places was the intent from the start as a form of mass control of the population, or whether it was just the result of an executed political agenda that was conceived as a neccessary strategy to reorganize the world, I.E. Middle East, this is what we have to now deal with.

    How or when will it be turned back? The usual answer to such a question is that once an agency is created in the federal government it exists in perpetuity. And that is a hard cold fact.

    So maybe in 50 or 100 years, when AI can read your brain and your intent it will go away. But by that time and eventuality what will the purpose to being alive be?

  • Lee S

    Bob….. I have no doubt that the Israeli method of security is the best there is…. It’s kinda related… I was a bar keep for a decade…. I could “smell” a trouble maker before he had even bought a drink…..
    But I was still obliged to serve them a beer… But kept an eye on them, and was almost always right. And they got escorted from the bar when they inevitably became trouble .
    The security at airports have much higher stakes….
    You are peed off because you got patted down…. Get over it…..
    Would you rather have the opposite?

  • Lee S: I would rather be able to carry my concealed weapon and freely enter the airport as a free adult, and then be able to defend myself if necessary.

    This approach I know is alien to you, and also probably appalls you. No need to say so. We are of different minds. My approach however built the most wealthy and powerful nation in the world, in only 100 years.

  • Micai

    Cotour:

    I agree, we were victims of terrorist attacks that killed thousands of Americans by openly sworn enemies of the country, and measures should be taken to prevent the same from happening again. So what do we do in response? Prevent the culprits from entering the country? No, we import them at unprecedented rates, subject the native population to further scrutiny that strips them of their rights and force them to accept and like it. If that doesn’t sound like lunacy, I don’t know what does.

    http://michellemalkin.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/09/nunfrisk.jpg

  • Edward

    Lee S. wrote: “When I was a teenager it was standard procedure to be patted down on enterance to nightclubs, concerts, etc…

    Well, that is what happens when you don’t live in a free country. In fact, it was the abuse of basic human rights by its former king that led the young United States to create its first ten amendments to its new Constitution.

    Yes… It is mostly theatre… I find the objections strange.

    We are supposed to give up our protected freedoms for mere theatre? Not even for security? He who would give up his liberty for a mere show is an idiot.

    They are just doing their job… And I for one feel safer flying…

    Didn’t many NAZIs use the “just following orders” excuse, and wasn’t that deemed insufficient?

    Feeling safer flying is not quite the same as being safer flying. If we are to give up rights, freedoms, and liberties, it had better be for more than just a feeling.

    These guys are tasked with keeping us safe… Giving them a hard time for doing their job is just petty.

    If they were competent at keeping us safe, then we would have less complaint. Instead, we are supposed to meekly submit in order to feel safe because there is some sort of play acting at competence to keep us entertained in crowded lines that are subject to terrorist attack.

    ‘but at the same time do not let suspicious people board planes carrying metal knives and forks.’ This comment shows a remarkable amount of racism….

    What? Does Lee S. think that there is a race that is naturally suspicious or one that is naturally above suspicion?

    Being brown don’t make you a terrorist.

    Keep in mind that the complaint was the sharp and pointy objects that someone was being allowed to carry onto the airplane. The suspicion is why someone would be allowed the privilege of carrying onto an airplane some utensils that are useful to terrorists.

    I could “smell” a trouble maker before he had even bought a drink….. But I was still obliged to serve them a beer… But kept an eye on them, and was almost always right. And they got escorted from the bar when they inevitably became trouble .

    This seems to be TSA modus operandi, too. Except that escorting a terrorist off a flying plane is not as much of an option, and once he becomes trouble — well — the trouble has already started for the innocent passengers who had their rights, freedoms, and liberties violated in order for them to be virtually helpless as the only ones available to stop the terrorist(s) that TSA let on board.

    This is what we get when all we have is a theatre that only gives us a feeling of security rather than the security that we deserve and pay for.

    Lee S,
    You are wrong, once again. As you say: “Get over it…..

    Robert Zimmerman wrote: “There was once a time when government had almost nothing to do with anything Americans did. No one had the right to impose almost any rules upon them, and they were loath to allow it if anyone tried.

    Alexis de Tocqueville wrote two volumes describing America during that time, hoping to convince France to operate in the same fashion. It was the liberty to do what we wanted and the civic mindedness to not violate other people that led to the greatness, the prosperity, and the desirability of America.

    It is because some people do not truly believe in freedom that they fail to either understand it or to live it. For people like Lee S., as he has stated in the past, it is government that should care for its people, not the people who should watch out for a tyrannical government. Those people do not believe that they or others are mature enough to run their own lives, so the government should run their lives for them. Thus, all they get is what their governments think they should have, not what they want for themselves.

    It is in America that we are (still) able to do for ourselves and to produce what we and others want, not just produce what government allows us to. For the most part, we get what we want, which is far more than the government is willing to provide. It was because government was doing so little in space that America now has several startup space companies that are doing so much more, yet using so much less resources.

  • wayne

    In Our Hands:
    “How to Lose What We Have”
    (1950)
    https://youtu.be/8UFYluWMDiM?t=308

  • Lee S

    Sorry I’m so late in responding…. Work, and enjoying the fall weather with the kids ( picking mushrooms mostly, in the never ending forest…. Did I ever mention here in commie Sweden, citizens have unrestricted access to undeveloped land, on the condition we cause no damage, and leave no litter…. The berries, fruit and fungus which grow “wild” are for all to enjoy..)
    I still wonder why it is, that whenever I make a comment on pretty much anything political, I am instantly leaped upon, and told by readers (who I’m guessing have never visited Europe), that I am wrong, and they are right.
    My position has always been… “I like the system I live in, and ditto for you guys over the pond”.
    Bob, regarding your comment about being “the most wealthy and power nation”…
    Powerful, certainly…. The amount of GDP you spend on “defence” ( which is a joke in itself!), Certainly ensures the US is powerful… But your comment that it is wealthy doesn’t fit with my visits to small towns in NC and WV.
    I went out of my way to speak to locals, and to a man or woman they were polite and dignified, resigned to their towns dying, and aghast when I asked if they were getting any help from the government.
    I believe… ( And I mean believe) that it is the job of government to look after the weak and disadvantaged… In my world these people would be helped and the town’s helped to fire up again after the heavy industries had left town.
    https://qz.com/879092/the-us-doesnt-look-like-a-developed-country/
    Gives a good counterpart to the whole “wealth country” fallacy.

  • Cotour

    If true, a clear abuse of power by a TSA employee.

    https://www.stamfordadvocate.com/entertainment/article/Journalist-says-a-CBP-officer-withheld-his-14493931.php

    “Propaganda” all depends on who’s ox is being gored.

    These TSA empoyees / agents should be as objective as possible, just do your job. And it clearly appears that in this case the agent was harrassing this American citizen because of his profession. I wonder how some other journalist who was treated the same who’s wife was not circling the airport for 20 minutes might have acted? Get into a confrontation with the agent about what someones subjective definition of what propaganda is or is not? And possibly spend hours locked down?

    I supose that the agent made is point and feels as if he has struck a blow for what is “Right”, figuratively and literally in his abuse of his very narrow sphere of control and power? The nature of man and how it is expressed as it relates to power is very interesting to observe in these little peeks into the mind of the perpetrator. And we are all perpetrators at some point. And we are fortunate that we have the governmental structure and mechanisms in place that do not allow this agent and his subjective, narrow empowerment over a citizen to just lead away this journalist and keep him from his family for weeks or months, or worse.

    The truth is neither an absolute black nor an absolute white, but some shade of constantly adjusting shade of gray. In America anyway.

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