Protect and serve (you with a crotch-grab)
For a bunch of people in snappy uniforms patting down crotches, the TSA is remarkably unpopular. Nobody likes going through security at the airport, but you probably figured most of it had a point. All those hours spent in line with other shoeless travelers are a necessary precursor to safe flying. It's annoying, but at least it wards off terrorism.
That's all bullshit. The TSA couldn't protect you from a 6-year-old with a water balloon. What are my qualifications for saying that? My name is Rafi Sela, and I was the head of security for the world's safest airport.
Remember those full-body scanners that leaked naked pictures of random citizens all over the Internet? The last ones were removed earlier this year, but did you ever wonder how those things were approved in the first place?
Blame Michael Chertoff, former secretary of Homeland Security and head of the Chertoff Group, which in 2010 represented a little company named Rapiscan. In addition to sounding like "Rapey-Scan," Rapiscan was in the business of making full-body scanners. Chertoff stood in front of Congress (his friends and former co-workers) and explained that these scanners were the future of security ("and," he neglected to add, "the future of ME getting very, very rich and horrible"). Congress listened, and for the first time they mandated a piece of equipment for use in American airports. Remember: These were politicians with no security credentials. They decided Chertoff was an honorable man and went along with everything he said.
Of course, after a little while it came out that these scanners were useless. I could strap a bomb capable of taking down a 747 to my body and walk right through a body scanner. Nobody would catch me. I'd rather not explain exactly how, but this German man was able to sneak a fake bomb through the same scanners without being caught. And he did it in Germany, a country where "airport security officer" isn't a synonym for "failed Walmart cashier."
The TSA treats each traveler the same because of some stupid idea that everything needs to be fair. Security needs to be done due to risk -- and risk means that in Israel we don't check luggage, we check people. And I'm not talking about racial profiling here; that's a product of poor training. Regardless of race or creed, people with bombs strapped to their body behave in similar ways. The TSA claims thatfinding IEDs at the checkpoint is their number one goal. But it's the people who mean us harm that we should look out for. Instead of checking intent, they check luggage.
And they don't even do it well: I have orthopedic insoles in my shoes made from composite material. On the machines, that composite looks identical to plastic explosives. I put them on the belt every time, and no one -- NO ONE -- ever questions my shoes. Some security experts suspect that the TSA has never once caught a terrorist at a checkpoint. And we know that at least 16 of them have flown into U.S. airports since 2004.
Safety from external danger is the most powerful director of national conduct. Even the ardent love of liberty will, after a time, give way to its dictates. The violent destruction of life and property incident to war, the continual effort and alarm attendant on a state of continual danger, will compel nations the most attached to liberty to resort for repose and security to institutions which have a tendency to destroy their civil and political rights. To be more safe, they at length become willing to run the risk of being less free.Or, to put it more succinctly:
A nation which can prefer disgrace to danger is prepared for a master, and deserves one.One can only conclude that the Americans, along with most of the rest of the Western world, are indeed ready and waiting for a master.