That airline pilot could be a terrorist. Better make sure he doesn't have a butter knife!

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  • Nigel Watt||

    If America is to have an armed revolt, it will start at a TSA checkpoint. Those things are infuriating even to normally outwardly calm people like me.

  • TallDave||

    I've noticed far too many people have access to butterknives, which is a totally unnaceptable threat to public safety.

    Why would someone need a knife to cut butter? A fork or spoon should work just as well.

    I'm proposing a ban on all such illegitimate, unnecessary weapons thinly disguised as eating utensils. Together, we can make America safe again!

  • ed||

    TSA checkpoint. Those things are infuriating even to normally outwardly calm people like me.

    I've never had a problem. Put stuff in a basket. Walk through a little gate. Retrieve stuff on the other side. Oh, the humiliation, the agony!

  • daveylee||

    Sporks for America!!

  • Nigel Watt||

    I've never had a problem. Put stuff in a basket. Walk through a little gate. Retrieve stuff on the other side. Oh, the humiliation, the agony!

    Right, all you have to do is take out your laptop with one hand, your keys with another, take off your jacket with another, and then you still have to remember your shoes.

  • ||

    I went to Wal-Mart and I was shocked I tell you, SHOCKED!... They had stacks of these "butter knives." (Read: terrorist weapon of mass destruction) I saw stacks I tell you. There must have been 15 different kinds too. Oh the humanity. I will not feel safe until everyone's cutlery is registered with their local sheriff.

    Come now, when is the last time you actually saw someone cut butter with a so called "butter-knife."

  • DADIODADDY||

    and here it is...wait for it, wait for it


    they can have my butter knife when they pry it from my cold dead fingers

  • the innominate one||

    daveylee beat me to it, but what the hell

    sporks for some, miniature American flags for others

    the ridiculous thing is that they're going to give him another butter knife when he gets on the plane. if they're so dangerous, maybe the airline should only supply pre-liquified butter in 1 oz packages

  • ed||

    I don't disagree that many of the TSA regulations are silly and ineffectual, but going through a checkpoint is hardly the shower-room scene at Auschwitz.

  • ||

    If I avoid the libertarian issues and just stick to the Joe Traveler issues, the biggest problem is not the indignity, but the additional delays. I've had a time where I've shown up 75 minutes before my (domestic) flight leaves that the lady behind the counter indicated that I had less than a 50-50 chance in making it through security in time, so she wasn't going to put my luggage on my flight. It took me so damn long to get through security that I had to run at a dead sprint (I'm a triathlete) once I cleared it and I got to the gate AS they were closing it. I talked the gate attendant into letting me on, but damn, that WAS less than 50-50. My luggage did NOT make it on that flight. And I haven't flown out of that airport since.

    Now ask, was my (or anyone else's) safety improved for the 55 minutes it took me to get through security? Not one iota.

  • ||

    You guys are missing the real danger - the butter knives are just a diversion. The terrorists are gonna use the BUTTER on you!!! - use your sick, twisted imagination!
    (Oh yeah, and I really ticked that I didn't get to say, "they can have my butterknife when they pry it from my cold, buttery, fingers")

  • Matt Moore||

    Right, all you have to do is take out your laptop with one hand, your keys with another, take off your jacket with another, and then you still have to remember your shoes.

    Now say you're a mother of an infant traveling alone. When you called the airport before your flight you were assured that there was a wheelchair line they'd let you push your stroller through, but now that you're actually there the TSA jackasses seem a little pissed off that you'd even ask. You were also assured that the TSA would help take the stroller apart if it had to go through the scanner, but they don't... instead they stand there looking annoyed that you're holding up the line while you try to detach the car seat and fold up the stroller with one hand while holding a 15 pound sack of cry in the other.

  • ||

    I don't disagree that many of the TSA regulations are silly and ineffectual, but going through a checkpoint is hardly the shower-room scene at Auschwitz.

    Lots of things aren't "the shower-room scene at Auschwitz." That doesn't make them not bad.

    Just because something doesn't rise to the level of "greatest evil of the past 100 years," that doesn't at all mean we should just suck it up and take it.

    The second-greatest and third-greatest evils are still plenty evil, as are the fourteenth-greatest evil and even the seven-hundred-thirty-ninth-greatest evil.

    They're all evils. They're all bad. They should all be stopped now, if not sooner.

  • Matt Moore||

    I don't disagree that many of the TSA regulations are silly and ineffectual, but going through a checkpoint is hardly the shower-room scene at Auschwitz.

    And ed goes Godwin very quickly! Because, as we all know, unnecessary intrusions on our time and freedom aren't worth complaining about unless genocide is the result.

  • Episiarch||

    The airlines aren't crying about this, even though it hurts their business, because they know they can count on yet another bailout from the government if they tank. After all, they are too big to fail.

    Nothing will change this situation as long as people think security screening actually does something.

  • tarran||

    You know, the TSA is superior to other forms of welfare in that the recipients are confined to airports for most of their waking hours. Thus TSA employees are far less likely to terrorize neighborhoods by burglary or armed robbery than other welfare recipients.

    Of course, by concentrating them in one location and encouraging them to threaten innocent people who go through those locations the U.S. government has created a bit of a monster. However, unlike the traditional petty crime waves perpetrated by bored welfare recipients, this crime is easy to avoid.

    Just don't fly.

  • Abdul||

    I found this story a little preposterous. What airline uses metal cutlery? Hadn't they all switched to plastic even before 9/11?

  • ||

    Hey! Let's all think of things that government agents could do to annoy and delay ed that he'll gladly put up with since they don't involve gas chambers!

  • ||

    Abdul said:

    What airline uses metal cutlery? Hadn't they all switched to plastic even before 9/11?


    Remember, this was an International flight. Could've been BA.

  • Nigel Watt||

    Because, as we all know, unnecessary intrusions on our time and freedom aren't worth complaining about unless genocide is the result.

    I'm going to appropriate that quip for use in debating people, if it's all the same to you.

  • ||

    So how is an outspoken pilot like Patrick Smith allowed to keep his license in this day and age? You think he'd at least be on some kind of watch list.

  • DADIODADDY||

    Dan K
    it was saturated fat & cholesterol that killed me...mmmmm...I was spread to death

  • yoshi||

    I found this story a little preposterous. What airline uses metal cutlery? Hadn't they all switched to plastic even before 9/11?



    Earlier in the year I had a first class flight on NWA. Metal knife. Also a glass for the wine. And a small bottle of wine. And a dozen other objects provided by the airline I could of used as a weapon.

  • ||

    Meh...I'm driving back to Missouri from Oregon. It takes about two days of hard driving. But with a three hour drive to the airport from where I live and another 3 just ot get on the frickin' plane and then another three hour drive to get to my parent's house...it's worth it, plus I am not crammed next to strangers and hoping I don't miss the peanut toss as the flight attendant passes by.

    My husband has a ponytail, we got pulled aside all the time when we flew...some profile or other. Screw that.

  • ||

    I'm not as offended by the TSA as I am in awe that such a high-profile organization can be so incompetent that positively nobody has a good opinion of them.

    Do you remember right after 9-11 when you'd go through the check points and you'd hear people thank the TSA agents when they pulled them aside for an individual screening? "Thank you for doing your job to protect us" they'd say. You don't really hear that anymore...

  • ed||

    And ed goes Godwin very quickly!

    Nah, I just thought it was a good line.
    Like Mel Brooks, I find nazi references funny and useful.

  • Paul||

    I found this story a little preposterous. What airline uses metal cutlery? Hadn't they all switched to plastic even before 9/11?

    Abdul, you've never flown first class, have you?

  • ed||

    Now say you're a mother of an infant traveling alone.

    Anything that keeps infants off planes has to be a good thing.

  • Paul||

    My husband has a ponytail, we got pulled aside all the time when we flew...

    And you still married him? Holy crap.

  • ||

    capelza -
    you are probably one of those lucky million on the TSA's watch list, I bettcha

  • Paul||

    I don't disagree that many of the TSA regulations are silly and ineffectual, but going through a checkpoint is hardly the shower-room scene at Auschwitz.

    Jew #1: What the hell? I'm not doing it!

    Jew #2: Oh come on, it's just a little yellow star on your lapel.

  • kinnath||

    So how is an outspoken pilot like Patrick Smith allowed to keep his license in this day and age? You think he'd at least be on some kind of watch list.

    Now that the Machinist is gone, Patrick Smith is the only reason go to Salon. I was a paid subscriber the first two years after they started the program. It's sad how far they have fallen.

  • ||

    Reinmoose, yeah, most likely...maybe they think people with Czech names are spooky or something. If it's the ponytail, then that's just stupid.

    Paul, why wouldn't I marry him? I like hair and buckle at anyone who feels the need to conform. Plus, he grew it after he got out of the Marines...and Vietnam, it was his personal "fuck you", now it's just a habit.

  • Paul||

    Paul, why wouldn't I marry him? I like hair and buckle at anyone who feels the need to conform.

    Capelza, I'm just teasing. At least I guessed his age right.

  • ||

    Now ask, was my (or anyone else's) safety improved for the 55 minutes it took me to get through security? Not one iota.

    Let's round it to an hour. Multiply that by 50% of the 667 million passengers* per year (I'm guessing that half of travel is business based, but I bet it is more). Figure that anyone traveling for business is making at least $20 per hour, that's 6.67 billion dollars in lost productivity. The charade of "security" has its costs, and they are not insignificant.

    Or take the example of removing shoes. Since that idiot from the UK and his shoe bomb in December 2001, we've removed about 10 billion shoes for inspection and found exactly zero bombs. Real security would recognize that the terrorists have moved on, but I'll bet we'll be removing shoes from here to eternity.

    *(http://www.transtats.bts.gov/)

  • kinnath||

    I've never had a problem. Put stuff in a basket. Walk through a little gate. Retrieve stuff on the other side. Oh, the humiliation, the agony!

    As someone that collected over a million frequet flyer miles between '94 and now, I can assure you that the TSA has made travel so unbearable for a frequent flyer that I changed jobs to avoid travel.

    I've seen heavy duty security before in Amsterdam where there were security gaurds with automatic weapons in the gate area. The TSA is unmitigted bullshit that provides no enhancement to security.

  • ||

    Right, all you have to do is take out your laptop with one hand, your keys with another, take off your jacket with another, and then you still have to remember your shoes.

    Don't forget your fucking belt. And your watch. And any change in your pocket.

    I hate it, to the point where I won't fly to anywhere I can drive to in less than 10 hours.

  • kinnath||

    Figure that anyone traveling for business is making at least $20 per hour, . .

    That would be salary, fully burdened labor rate would be at least double that.

  • ||

    Don't forget the nipple rings either!

  • ed||

    Such horror stories. I must be going to the right airports. Through security in two minutes then cooling my heels for an hour wondering why I got there so early.

  • Matt Moore||

    Anything that keeps infants off planes has to be a good thing.

    Smell the freedom!

  • ||

    Don't forget your fucking belt. And your watch. And any change in your pocket.

    And the lines and delays. And the broken luggage locks. And the rifled through luggage. And the cost of repackaging everything.

    I hate it, to the point where I won't fly to anywhere I can drive to in less than 10 hours.

    Sounds about right.

  • ||

    I must be going to the right airports. Through security in two minutes then cooling my heels for an hour wondering why I got there so early.

    ed apparently lives in Bangor.

  • ||

    Such horror stories. I must be going to the right airports. Through security in two minutes then cooling my heels for an hour wondering why I got there so early.

    ed, I'm in New York and I fly mostly out of JFK. Usually to security hellholes like Atlanta. I take the train whenever practical.

  • ||

    I have similar experiences to ed, about 7 times out of 8 I breeze through security - and then yes, it gets horribly boring when you sit there watching the same news cycle for 2 hours while you listen to some kids screaming.

  • kinnath||

    Such horror stories. I must be going to the right airports.

    Let's see, my home town airport serves a community of about 200K. I can get through security in under 5 minutes most days. The airport is also a training facility for the TSA, so there is about double the staff that our size airport should normally have and most of these people haven't figured out yet that they can fuck with everyone.

    As for the rest of the world.

    International flights coming into the US have the double whammy of whatever security that orginating country use to impose, plus all the new bullshit imposed by the TSA. Inbound flights to Minneapolis are merely annoying, Chicago and LA are hideous.

    Domestic flights at major hubs airports (where business travellers tend to wind up on travel if not beinng their home airports) are fucking miserable.

    So I have no idea where you fly ed, but you clearly aren't experiencing the full joy of the TSA.

  • ||

    to follow-up, it doesn't mean it's not a pain to pack and have to remember what I'm allowed to put in my carry-on and what I'm allowed to put in my checked luggage.

    It used to be that you couldn't bring batteries in your carry-on that weren't in a device. Now you can, but you CAN'T bring them in your checked bag.

    You'd think from all the security regulations that have been repealed that people would realize that they were basically admitting that you were not, in fact, safer because of those measures when you were flying several years ago. So why trust their current measures to be effective?

  • Abdul||

    okay, I should get out more and fly first clash.

    Sheesh, bunch of fancy-pants commenters flying first class here. Bet you light your cigars with 500 Euro notes too.

  • kinnath||

    Sheesh, bunch of fancy-pants commenters flying first class here.

    You really want to aspire to first class (or at least business class) on a Singapore Airlines intercontinental flight. That's friggin cool.

  • ||

    Sixstring: Or, alternatively, divide your figure by 24, by 365 and by 70 (life expectancy). Yep, equivalent of 550 human lives wasted by TSA annually. 20 bucks sez "evil terrists" off fewer people per year worldwide.

    ...is it the case of cure being worse than the disease? Rhetorical question, mind you.

  • Paul||

    Sheesh, bunch of fancy-pants commenters flying first class here. Bet you light your cigars with 500 Euro notes too.

    Let me assure you, Abdul, I have never paid for first class. I flew first class once. I was bumped from a flight and the only seat available on the next flight out was first class. They apologetically asked if that would be ok. Guess what my answer was?

    That was when I discovered you ate on real dinnerware: porcelain plates, metal silverware, and the darn cutest little salt and pepper shakers. The free booze didn't hurt, either.

    You know if you take those plates into the bathroom, you can break them up and with a little tape make some damned fine shivs with them. You know, if you were into that sort of thing.

    mp:

    I must be going to the right airports. Through security in two minutes then cooling my heels for an hour wondering why I got there so early.

    Nantucket air?

  • Paul||

    The airport is also a training facility for the TSA, so there is about

    So their jobs aren't Union protected, yet. No wonder.

  • ||

    It's clear by now that the real intent of the 9/11 terrorists was not that they kill us all outright, that would be bloody and protracted, taking many years and costing millions of jihadists' lives, but instead that we'll quickly bury ourselves in a paranoid delusion of travel restrictions and regulations, slowly strangling ourselves on the unending delays and red tape.

    Once our civilization collapses, probably in only a few more years, they just drive right in and set up shop. No fuss, no muss.

  • ||

    Stupid joke name....

  • DJ Voton||

    I've never had a problem. Put stuff in a basket. Walk through a little gate. Retrieve stuff on the other side. Oh, the humiliation, the agony!
    You're right, but my problem with this procedure isn't inconvenience, it's that there's no probable cause. The fact that I'm travelling by air isn't sufficient reason to assume there's a good chance I'm about to commit a terrorist act, any more than the cops should be able to pull me over at a DUI checkpoint just because I'm out driving right after the bars close.
    Profiling, people. It's worked for El Al for decades.

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