Cracklin' Oat Bran and the TSA

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What I'd like to know is whether using a cardboard Cracklin' Oat Bran box was part of this couple's political statement, or just an effort to reuse and recycle.

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  1. It sounds like somebody in security got pissed off at the message and decided to drum something up to cause trouble for the author.

    I’m the kind of person who keeps a copy of the “To Serve Man” cannibal cookbook in my desk drawer at work, just to upset somebody who’s snooping where they shouldn’t. I can understand leaving a message for people pawing through my luggage.

    Building a fake bomb, however, is not cool. Still, no one of those items is very suspicious by itself. I imagine the TSA will argue that the note makes the bomb-like arrangement of shapes more likely to have been intentional and therefore a crime. Then again maybe his bags get opened every time he has an electrical power strip in them and this pisses him off so he wrote a note.

    I suppose the truth depends on what “a snow boot with batteries, wires and an electrical power strip arranged in a suspicious way” turns out to be.

  2. Oh, no, Mark; you miss the true brilliance of the satire!

    Please note the last sentance of the article:
    “Don’t force our screeners to waste their time playing political games.”

    Lovely, truly lovely. No, let’s force THE BLOODY GOVERNMENT TO DO IT FOR US.

    This is irony that only a Shakespeare could write upon his own. Truly life is stranger than fiction…

  3. Casey,

    My thought was that maybe Johnson of the TSA (“Don’t force our screeners to waste their time”) is secretly Applegate of the Port of Portland (“Thousands of people go through the same process every day and don’t get upset enough to get arrested”). But then, all bureaucrats are basically the same under the skin.

    I’m always amused, too, at how official types claim you’re “wasting their time” whenever you make them do anything they didn’t want to do (like think, or expend energy). So the searchers would have gone home early if the couple hadn’t brought their fake bomb? I doubt it. They would have searched other people, whom they had to let go because they were too busy with a ski boot? I doubt that even more; I’m sure everyone still got searched that day. They would have gotten other important work done? But standing there searching people is their job! Maybe other people’s time was wasted as they were held up waiting while the searchers all fussed over the boot…but you notice that Johnson doesn’t say that? No, he’s concerned about wasting the feds’ time, not the citizens’. Heck, if one were of a sufficiently flippant bent, one could say that not bringing a bomb into the airport was a waste of the searchers’ time, because then they spent their time searching you for nothing…

  4. While I agree with the protest, I don’t agree with the methods. I don’t see how intentionally placing items in a suspicious manner to simulate a bomb provides this couple with any credibility.

    I have had enough of “civil disobedience”. It is nothing less than lawbreaking to make a point. We could have made our point in elections at any time we chose. We continue to put the same people in power and blame it on who the other guy voted for.

    Gimme a break. We get what we want AND deserve.

  5. A question arises. Were the boots in question indeed, “arranged in a suspicious way”, or rather were the boots wired for heat (nice toasty toes, never bought them myself)? As to the note, it goes into the column of “joking” and we all know that the screeners do not have a sense of humor.

  6. JD: good point. Maybe someone should bring one in, just to make their day. :))

    Steve: “I have had enough of ‘civil disobedience’. It is nothing less than lawbreaking to make a point.”

    Well, gee, Steve, that’s the working definition of “civil disobedience”. Durrr. Heh.

    Considering that we’ve only had ONE round of elections after 9/11, I find your remarks about “making your points during elections” disingenuous, at the least… 🙂

  7. Casey:

    Point taken regarding CD.

    Regarding elections, we NEVER make our point during elections. We’d just as soon bitch about some other guys’ pork while being happy about the jobs opur guy brought to our community.

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