Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Y'know, I was just wondering about these guys, ...

When Preparing Your Family gave me a link...

TSA screenings aren't just for airports anymore
Rick Vetter was rushing to board the Amtrak train in Charlotte, N.C., on a recent Sunday afternoon when a canine officer suddenly blocked the way.

Three federal air marshals in bulletproof vests and two officers trained to spot suspicious behavior watched closely as Seiko, a German shepherd, nosed Vetter's trousers for chemical traces of a bomb. Radiation detectors carried by the marshals scanned the 57-year-old lawyer for concealed nuclear materials.

When Seiko indicated a scent, his handler, Julian Swaringen, asked Vetter whether he had pets at home in Garner, N.C. Two mutts, Vetter replied. "You can go ahead," Swaringen said.
This is the LA Times, which isn't exactly the Daily Freedomista, and even they can't take VIPR seriously. But DHS has political turf to protect: Those budgets don't increase themselves, you know! At least, not enough to suit a bureaucrat.
"We are not the Airport Security Administration," said Ray Dineen, the air marshal in charge of the TSA office in Charlotte. "We take that transportation part seriously."

The TSA's 25 "viper" teams — for Visible Intermodal Prevention and Response — have run more than 9,300 unannounced checkpoints and other search operations in the last year. Department of Homeland Security officials have asked Congress for funding to add 12 more teams next year.
And even the TSA admits this isn't doing a damn bit of good...
TSA officials say they have no proof that the roving viper teams have foiled any terrorist plots or thwarted any major threat to public safety. But they argue that the random nature of the searches and the presence of armed officers serve as a deterrent and bolster public confidence.
Serve as a deterrent to what, exactly? Terrorists? The only people at Amtrak stations who seem to hate America are the Amtrak execs. If they ever go to train stations. And bolstering public confidence there would be better served by getting a few of the trains to run on time, clearly an impossible task.


DonkeyBuster said...

WTF... and it sounds like they're getting poser dogs. Alerting to the scent of another dog!!!??? I've trained SAR dogs & that's an immediate FAIL!

Here puppy, here's a cupcake.

Anonymous said...

But, but, but,

The TSA protects scared, wimpy, little us from

"potentially" exploding cupcakes!

and- - - -

They didn't need a specially trained doggie.

Dire straits, folks.

Tam said...

Any doubt of the un-seriousness of the TSA should have been dispelled by the recent announcement that they will no longer be feeling up little children or forcing them to remove their shoes.

If any of this was really about security, all Mohammed has to do now is to stuff the Semtex into little Achmed's Underoos, and we've announced that on national TeeWee, so why not just admit that the whole thing was a feelgood sham in the first place?

Craig Cavanaugh said...

"Public confidence"?!!! How about public OUTRAGE! At least among the more intelligent folks. Anyone who's confidence is "bolstered" by this bunch of SS wannabe fffffffff.... arts is a blithering idiot, not worthy of having their heads pissed on if they were on fire.

MamaLiberty said...

My confidence will ride high just as soon as I see even a few my fellow passengers appropriately armed and alert to their surroundings - as I would be.

TSA? Epic fail. Sick joke.

On my last trip, I forgot to take a small bottle of water out of my carry on. OH MY GOD! My luggage was removed from the conveyor belt and taken to another area to be "searched."

Groping through the bag, the man removed my book and a ziplock bag that had a plant cutting rolled in a paper towel. He did not open that, just looked puzzled. Then he "found" the bottle of water and snidely asked if I wanted to take it out of the area or "give it to him." I said he could keep it.

Then he returned the other things to my bag, never looking any farther and not even opening the larger bag.

Yes indeed... we are all being protected from that seriously dangerous bottled water.