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Major U.S. Airports Consider Ditching TSA

Sixteen airports, including San Francisco and Kansas City International Airport, have already made the switch since 2002. One Orlando airport approved the change but still needs to select a contractor, and several others are reportedly seriously considering privatization. ( More...

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David Ford 0
HOORAY!! Best news of 2010. Worth waiting for!! Arrogant TSA bureaucrats.
jimkim 0
You get what you pay for! Common sense should be the number one rule.
TTail 0
the unions are full of crap, THE government workers union say that it wont work like that, they are the one that are full of CRAP.
@David: Except what the TSA keeps crowing is that it doesn't matter who the bodies are doing the screening - it is still every policy, procedure, technique, invasion that the TSA decides it will be. Basically, the TSA is saying "fine, have your non-government TSA workers, but they're still our puppets"

I don't see this as a good thing, honestly. Here is why: MCO dumps the TSA, hires private contractor. Private contractor follows all same TSA rules & procedures (because TSA tells them to). Now, the government can happily point at third party and say two things a) we aren't the ones violating your rights b) the successful terrorist plot wasn't our fault, he flew out of Orlando. All of this despite that they're doing exactly what the TSA people would be doing, because Homeland is run by Clueless "The System Worked!" Big Sister.

I want TSA out of my junk, out of my stuff, out of my airports (they're coming for small/GA fields - just a matter of time). We should hire private contractors to do the airport screenings. They're tested just like the TSA is tested right now - fake weapons, fake explosives, etc. Except right now, there is ZERO accountability. Eh, 70% failure rate? psh. If the contractor fails a certain threshold of penetration tests, they're fired.

Within the confines of the 4th amendment (which DHS is blatantly, flagrantly ignoring), they should be allowed to employ any amount of behavioral, racial, whatever profiling they need to keep the bad guys off the planes. This reactive BS of trying to screen for bad things instead of people who want to do bad things isn't making us any safer.
Ronald Padgett 0
"But federal officials at the 457 TSA-regulated airports are unparalleled." Uhhh.. Noone can grope as good as we can?

"U.S. aviation security technology and procedures are driven by the latest intelligence and give us the best chance to detect and disrupt any potential threat, given the tools currently available" -- Meaning that since we don't have brains of our own, we have to use equipment?

"It's unclear whether privant screeners cost the TSA more. One independent report fount that private security contracts were 9 to 17 percent higher than the TSA's costs." -- But that 9to17 percent is being paid now... unlike union pensions which don't get factored in until it's too late (think UAW and government workers).

Ok... I'm tired of reading this crap and I'm sure you're tired of reading my rants. :)

Nobody knows more about getting into your junk, pants and pants-pockets than unions and government.
David Ford 0
Richard, excellent points, and I concede that private contractors may be worse based on your astute arguments. I was speaking out of vengeance. I hate the government intrusion and violation of rights. Good response.
Jim Woelber 0
Private contractors is NOT a good idea, u want TSA and uncle sam standing around and blaming third party? NO WAY. Airports and public need "buck stops here" mentality and that is TSA. @ Richard regarding profiling, how does that work on Fed Ex or UPS? it doesnt. TSA is doing best it can to keep up with world of terrorists and extremists. Here is my philosophy. Two planes going to same destination leave at same time next to each other. 1 line has pat downs & screening, other line does not. Which line and plane do you go to? Im more than happy to get felt up for free knowing that my plane is more secure. And hopefully my pat down will eventually come from a hot blond that is worth tipping!!
Troy Raiteri 0
Darren Shields 0
There are benefits and detriments to both arguments. Keep TSA and we are stuck with the same Department of Homeland security attitude that Janet revealed which seems to be, We're gonna do what we think is best and the rest of you suck it up. Go private screeners and you then have to be aware that you get what you pay for. Personally I think it would be a great opportunity to get a force trained up on the behavior observation model of preventative security. Pay the people what they're worth, train the dog crap out of them, and use the backscatter machines for those who are suspicious as determined by casual questioning. If they fail that also it goes without saying that they're in for an invasive search but in that case there is probable cause.
dakotadoc 0
I finally get it! It's just an another anti-union tactic by right-wingers. Privatize the work to non-union shops. But won't they have to comply with the same security standards as TSA, or can the private security firms just ditch it all, at their discretion? If they have the same standards, have to use the total body scanners, etc., then what's difference?
Steve Jasper 0
Timothy Decker 0
You had contract screeners on 9/11. That worked out well, didn't it.
TheSkipster 0
Dudes! There's nothing you can do about any of this. The only way to get out of total government control is to unelect the Black Clown in 2012. The EPA and FCC are already promulgating rules that the Congress specifically rejected in the past. Who the hell do ya think ordered such actions? It's not gonna get better; it's gonna get worse.
for me most of the problems are not tsa,but the people being screened.look at how much baggage they have with them
Larry Gordon 0
The TSA is becoming another U.S. Postal Service - top heavy, bloated and highly inefficient. Are you serious??? 67,000 TSA employees??? Wow, that IS an army. Give it over to private companies. When has the government running a business EVER been more effective or efficient than private industry? And you just know Uncle Sam is promising every one of those TSA'ers a nice, healthy pension at the ends of their otherwise short careers. At whose cost!!
Steven Meyer 0
Privatizing TSA is not the answer. We privatized security in Iraq and see where that got us..........
a bunch of undisciplined, unqualified, uncontrolled sub-contractors who went wild. Improving the performance of TSA agents, when necessary, IS the answer.
Larry Gordon 0
I'm sorry, but I cannot reconcile the subcontractors in Iraq with the private sector running or taking the place of the TSA. The Iraqi sub's were thousands of miles from home, in an extremely lawless land, with no more oversight than soldiers wishing they could do to the enemy what their private counterparts were doing. I think TSA replacements would have far more supervision, be under greater scrutiny and be under a slightly less combative environment.
Ed Taylor 0
I used to be a buisness frequent travelor. My wife is still one. Having security contracted out to a vendor was how this was done before 9/11 and TSA. And, we know what happened back then. So, why does it make sense to go back. It doesn't. I'd rather have someone at whatever airport I pass through be part of the same orgainzation, have the same reporting structure, same rules and procedures, and ultimate the same top dog (and, ultimate, the citizens) be the ones who inspect my luggage or pat me down. Does it need to be improved? Yes! Private contractors are NOT the answer.
mattbna 0
Strange that they mention SFO and MCI as having gone to private security... I've flown through both of them in the past month and saw nothing but TSA "agents" working the checkpoints. On that note, I didn't notice any private (non-TSA) security of any kind in the checkpoint areas.
Bob Packett 0
Private contractors simply means non-union workers and profit for the corporation. Demonizing those who work every day for us has become a mantra of the righties.
Mike Sharrer 0
Here in LAS the TSA is helpful, cheerful and waaayyy overstaffed. I can't say the same for ABQ.
Paul Lascari 0
This is really the best news I've heard. The extemely arrogant power of Janet must be curtailed. Of course she outright rejected the proven methods for anit-terrorism used in Israel when she was there without even having someone study them for usefulness in US. <arg>
Philip Muth 0
@petaylor One problem is they don't adhere to the same rules and procedures. Out of one airport, I was able to board with a butane lighter in my pants pocket that went undetected threw the scanner. But at another, my Zippo, packed in my checked luggage, was confiscated.
mattbna 0
@Philip - As of August 2007, lighters are permitted in carry-on baggage but are not approved for transport in checked baggage unless they are in an "approved DOT case". See this page:
turtle0221 0
Private companies will have to adhere to the same policies as TSA. The company will need to make a profit which means lower pay and lower hiring standards. At some level TSA will have to be overseeing the private company which means the upper level of management who is mostly to blame for each airport employee attitudes will still be in control. So as I see it those who hate TSA will just have another company to hate.
Ronald Padgett 0
I don't hate TSA; they have a job to do. It's the methods that are at issue, TSA/gov't is just the perpetrator.
Bob Goodright 0
You get what you pay for and don't you think that private contractors will be paid less. At least TSA employee's are well paid and seem to be responsive.. Nothing is going to change except the front line personnel and where will they come from (Off the streets) Get real. If getting patted down makes my flight safer for me and my family , Have at it..If all you cry babies don't like, take the train...
Ronald Padgett 0
Bob, I have been. :) And charters, but they're a little harder to justify cost-wise, of course.
Ed Taylor 0
pamuth... I don't understand how the example gave shows that don't follow the same rules and procedures. An item in your pocket that doesn't set off the scanner doesn't mean that it's authorized. It just means that the scanner didn't detect it. Next time, try putting it in the tray with your keys and other metal objects and see if you get it back. I bet you don't.
Why don't officials from US airports check out how Israel handles their security???
Ronald Padgett 0
ACLU won't allow it. Profiling of mentally ill patients, race, nationality. That kinda thing. There's been too many instances of baby's smuggling dynomite in their dolls and granny's with trace elements of this and that in their wheelchairs. Can't wait for my lead-lined pencil to set off an alarm. TSA: Excuse me sir, why do you need a radiation shield aboard an aircraft?
Joe Brandt 0
I'm always for competition, but this strikes me more like the beginings of a new sector for companies like Blackwater. I'd rather be up against some government TSA than a Blackwater thug, who can't be touched because he/she is a subcontractor.
Ronald Padgett 0
I fail to see the difference between the two. We all know that it's the same system which doesn't work. A union thug is a union thug and either way it's my tax money they're wasting.


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