Tuesday, November 23, 2010

CRASH: "Profiling" Versus Fixed Fortifications

George S. Patton is reputed to have said something like, "Fixed fortifications are a monument to the stupidity of man".  By that Patton, a very astute student of military history, meant that in the modern battle-space, pouring resources into a fixed fortification was not efficient.  Motivated people of considerable genius would find a way to defeat them, by-pass them, or even use them against you.
(linked at, DOUG!)

The TSA specializes in building fixed fortifications...which are all false front buildings like you would see on a movie set.  They are not even real defenses.  Not even for the LAST terrorist attack.  Motivated people of considerable genius are working to defeat them, by-pass them, and even use them against us.

Like movie sets, they are part of an illusion.  In this little melodrama, they are give the flying public some semblance of security that the flying experience is safe.  This is gilding the lily, and at enormous cost.  Flying is is the safest mode of travel of which I know.  One of the paradoxes of the police-state TSA practice is that it is forcing more Americans to drive, and more of us will be killed.  And that will happen to no good end.

The cost/benefit ratio is completely askew.  The smart play would be to do as the Israelis and many Europeans do.  It is not "profiling"--it is way more than that.

The Israelis do not pull Middle-Eastern-looking men (or women or children) out of line...mostly because so many Israelis are Middle-Eastern-looking people.  Duh.  Rather, they use the several meanings of that provide a telescopic process of evaluation applied to only certain passengers.  Race has very little to do with it, just as race has very little to do with good police work on the streets of your town or city.

An Israeli-Arab passenger will receive hardly a look, where my passport might flag me as someone who needs special attention.  That special attention does not (from all I can read) include making me strip down to my underwear.  It DOES involve having to answer some questions, put by very sharp people who only do that a few times a day.

Most importantly, it works.  It is not a sham.  It fluidly responds to fluidly changing threats.  It is only minimally invasive...and not at all invasive for the vast majority of passengers.  It is, most importantly, not a stupid kabuki that kills the very people it pretends to protect.

No comments:

Post a Comment