Monday, May 16, 2011

Has TSA surpassed IRS as most hated gov't agency?

This last week, the Texas House passed a law telling TSA to keep its damned hands off our genitals and other areas of the body they have no business groping.

And TSA is pissed about it.

I remember a time when the Internal Revenue Service was the most reviled and despised agency in the government arsenal. Don't worry, IRS, you're still up there near the top--but now you have some serious competition.

The sheer invasive aspects of an agency that, to date, has not caught one terrorist has infuriated most of America. Yes, there are still sheep out there who would gladly trade all of their rights and freedoms for safety--or at least, they think they would. But for most, enough is enough.

The Texas House said enough and passed a bill that would make it a criminal offense for the gropers to grope in certain areas.

The response from Texas citizens has been overwhelmingly positive, as has response from most of the rest of the country.

But TSA doesn't like it, and even blogged about it, throwing in some highly questionable facts and innuendo.

Must have learned that from the IRS.

At least the IRS does their damndest to screw everyone equally. Not so with the Transportation Safety Administration. Little old ladies, young children, attractive college-aged students--primarily all Caucasian, mind you--seem to get the most amount of attention from the agents.

Meanwhile, I remain convinced that a Muslim sporting a beard and turban with an AK-47 in one hand and a Playboy magazine in the other would be able to walk right past the metal detectors so as not to be "offended" via profiling.

That has been a singularly volatile complaint since virtually Day One of these airport screenings for the TSA--similar to the complaint against the IRS how large corporations skirt the tax collector's attention due to politics.

So middle-America gets screwed.

We rarely fly commercial. Most of our flying is via the Cessna. But last year, we got too good of a deal via Air Tram to take us right into Portland, Maine that we couldn't say no. We couldn't have flown ourselves for as cheap as Air Tram flew us. (However, we might could've made it faster given the length of layovers and duration of time spent getting to DFW International and then from Portland Jet Center to my sister-in-law's house.)

The TSA debacle at DFW tested every molecule of my being. The line, at 6:00 a.m., was already incomprehensible. Having traveled a lot during my advertising agency years, I've become adept at scooting through the metal detectors. Everything that can go "beep" goes into a clear ziplock bag, which goes into my laptop computer case for x-ray. Wanna search the case? Be my guest. Everything is in a clear bag. My Tony Lama boots come off and go in the basket, as does the Apple laptop.

Fortunately no pat downs for us, because if there were, I would never had made it to Portland. My policy if asked for a pat down from anyone other than my wife or a police officer who is arresting me is not to submit to one. Period.

When we were departing Portland, we were at the airport at 5:00 a.m. Portland is a small airport, but the line for the TSA checkpoint was beyond comprehension. By the time we got up to the gropers, my wife had cast me a number of evil, warning looks. She knows me too well.

It was then that I first began wondering who was hated more--IRS or TSA? After watching a sixty-something year-old women get groped, I figured it was a toss-up.

Both agencies basically stick a microscope up your butt looking for anything they can nail you on.

Washington. It's out of control, people.