TSA Shows Us Who the Real Terrorists Are: Bloggers?!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009 , , , , , 3 Comments


As the government reviews how an alleged terrorist was able to bring a bomb onto a U.S.-bound plane and try to blow it up on Christmas Day, the Transportation Security Administration is going after bloggers who wrote about a directive to increase security after the incident.

TSA special agents served subpoenas to travel bloggers Steve Frischling and Chris Elliott, demanding that they reveal who leaked the security directive to them. The government says the directive was not supposed to be disclosed to the public.

Frischling said he met with two TSA special agents Tuesday night at his Connecticut home for about three hours and again on Wednesday morning when he was forced to hand over his lap top computer. Frischling said the agents threatened to interfere with his contract to write a blog for KLM Royal Dutch Airlines if he didn't cooperate and provide the name of the person who leaked the memo.

"It literally showed up in my box," Frischling told The Associated Press. "I do not know who it came from." He said he provided the agents a signed statement to that effect.

In a Dec. 29 posting on his blog, Elliott said he had told the TSA agents at his house that he would call his lawyer and get back to them. Elliott did not immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment.

The TSA declined to say how many people were subpoenaed.

So it isn't enough for them to pat you down, subject you to humiliation in front of half of the 9:30 flight to Atlanta, and make you yell out obscenities like "That's MY 'Crap! Obama is a Marxist' netbook!" (or was that just me?), now the TSA wants to know where bloggers get their leaks. Since when can the Air Gestapo demand a direct violation of journalist/source privilege?

Why in the hell is the TSA chasing down the bloggers when the terrorists are probably in Wal-mart AS WE SPEAK getting their Fruit of the Booms for the next planned attack?

Way to fail, asshats. Oh wait, I better shut my big mouth before I get branded a terrorist. Shhhhh...

Jr Deputy Accountant

Some say he’s half man half fish, others say he’s more of a seventy/thirty split. Either way he’s a fishy bastard.


I have a brilliant idea because I'm a brilliant person: get ride of the FBI, ATF, and Secret Service and let the TSA take over! Seriously this is brilliant; then unionize it so that the Teamsters is actually in control! Man it will make the USA Detroit nirvana on a stick! And we won't have to worry about terrorists because what's worth blowing up in Detroit....oh right...why was he going to Detroit anyway? Why would anyone go to Detroit? That should have been the first tip off.

Economicon said...

Bruce Schneier has been screaming about this for years, as have I, and every other sane and intelligent security professional in the industry. What we have isn't security, it's the "appearance" of security, and politically, that's all that matters. here's Bruce:

Separating Explosives from the Detonator

Chechen terrorists did it in 2004. I said this in an interview with then TSA head Kip Hawley in 2007:

I don't want to even think about how much C4 I can strap to my legs and walk through your magnetometers.

And what sort of magical thinking is behind the rumored TSA rule about keeping passengers seated during the last hour of flight? Do we really think the terrorist won't think of blowing up their improvised explosive devices during the first hour of flight?

For years I've been saying this:

Only two things have made flying safer [since 9/11]: the reinforcement of cockpit doors, and the fact that passengers know now to resist hijackers.

This week, the second one worked over Detroit. Security succeeded.

EDITED TO ADD (12/26): Only one carry on? No electronics for the first hour of flight? I wish that, just once, some terrorist would try something that you can only foil by upgrading the passengers to first class and giving them free drinks.


Anonymous said...

The best ideas that I ever saw about this topic came from the movie Team America: World Police.