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About the Enhanced Airport Security Screening

When I flew to Salt Lake City and back last week, I didn't experience any physical and emotional abuse from the TSA.  Maybe it was so traumatic that I've blocked it out of my memory.  More likely, Midland and SLC hadn't implemented the more aggressive pat-downs and body scans.  Maybe if they had and I experienced them first-hand I'd have a better understanding of why everyone seems to be in such an uproar over the new TSA policies...but I doubt it.

I'm as embarrassed by my body as the next guy, but I really don't care at all if a TSA employee has a peek at my kibbles and bits for the sake of safer air travel.  Am I worried about the potential danger due to scanner radiation?  Nope.  You subject yourself to 1000 times more radiation during a transcontinental flight than you do during the scan.  Wouldn't I feel violated by the enhanced pat-down?  I don't feel violated when my doctor touches my junk in a strictly professional manner.  I'm not sure why I should feel any different if a TSA employee were to do so.

On TDS last night, Lewis Black put it this way (video embedded below):

...the one thing people won't stand for: the government interfering with our travel plans.  I see.  So in the name of fighting terrorism we're willing to start wars, waterboard people, and kill civilians with unmanned drones...but the one line we won't cross is our waistline!

Reader Comments

This morning a 15-year-old allegedly stabbed and killed a 17-year-old and critically injured an adult man and two other children in his foster home.  It's not the kind of thing that happens around here very often.  I think this is the first time that I've read a story like this in the local newspaper (link) and paid attention to the "Reader Comments" section.  It's very strange...comments from the biological mother of the victims, from friends of the alleged murderer, etc.

Miscellany May 13, 2009

» While conservatives understandably are exercised about the apparent double standard of Wanda Sykes filleting Limbaugh while Obama sat by grinning (what if it had been a Republican president and a liberal being attacked?), we should also try to imagine how conservatives would react to a liberal former VP enjoying his retirement by attacking the sitting conservative president.  Well, we don't have to imagine.  In today's article skewering Cheney, Dowd gives several examples of how conservatives responded in similar situations when the tables were turned.  So, which way do I prefer it?  I guess I'd lean towards everyone feeling free to speak their minds...but let's have some consistency.  Don't freak out over a conservative making a joke in poor taste if you don't do the same when a liberal does it.  Don't freak out about a liberal ex-leader criticizing the actions of a sitting president if you don't do the same when a conservative does it.

» Timothy Noah makes the case for why he thinks Republicans are sore losers in presidential politics.

» Real Life Twitter (h/t Mike Todd)

» Stewart impales Pelosi:

Miscellany 6 May 2009

» Who ever said America was on the road to perdition?  Surely we've got things turned around now that we're getting tough on "fleeting expletives!"

» If you make a big deal about transparency regarding the ~$800 billion stimulus and about how every dime will be track-able at, you really ought to deliver...and if you don't, at least have the sense not to blame your failure on inadequate data storage capacity.  This is 2009! (h/t WSJ)

» "Obama takes Jesus' advice: "when you pray, go into your room, close the door & pray to your Father, who is unseen"" Surely no one will take a dig at him for that, right? (link) (h/t Jimmy Shaw)

Miscellany April 27, 2009

» This recent news story (about a 23-year-old resident of our town being hired by his uncle to kill his aunt but aborting the mission when one his cousins was also in the house when he arrived to do the deed) really got me somehow.  You hear about stuff like this all of the time on TV and in places far the way, but it felt strange thinking about someone in my community being hired by his uncle to kill his aunt and acting on it.

» What little confidence I had left in the financial guys calling the shots in the current and previous administrations is dwindling quickly (e.g., this and this)

» I don't accept that whether or not torture "works" is the main issue in determining whether or not we should torture, but if you do: how bothered would you be if it was true that the real "...ticking time bomb was not another potential Qaeda attack on America but the Bush administration’s ticking timetable for selling a war in Iraq; it wanted to pressure Congress to pass a war resolution before the 2002 midterm elections" (link) ?

» Unless you're a Marine, please stop with the "Ooh-rah!"


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