A Rabbi, a Priest and a Duck walk into a bar. The barman says, “what is this a joke?”
According to the braniacs of the Transportation Safety Authtority (TSA), the American flying public has had to endure preflight screening to prevent explosive devices from boarding airplanes. Thus millions of hours of productivity lost to the odd fixation with removing shoes and banning all liquids over 3 ounces. Now what are they going to come up with?
Sewn into the underwear of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was a powerful plastic explosive, the authorities say.
Had Mr. Abdulmutallab, sitting in seat 19A of Northwest Airlines Flight 253 on Friday from Amsterdam to Detroit, been able to set off the explosive, it might have blown a hole in the side of the airplane and caused it to crash, experts believe.
Mr. Abdulmutallab, 23, a Nigerian citizen, was charged in a federal criminal complaint on Saturday with the willful attempt to destroy an aircraft with an explosive device.
The complaint identified the explosive as pentaerythritol tetranitrate, or PETN.
PETN, according to the same NYTIMES article is the same explosive Richard Reid, the shoebomber, used in his in attempt to blow up an American Airlines flight bound from Paris to Miami. And we know what happened shortly thereafter, passengers hoping to fly any airline in the US had to remove their shoes and not cary liquids over 3 oz. Except if the bottles are labled saline solution, then you can haul in any sized bottle. Ludicrously this led to many instances of bizarre TSA behavior, infant formula confiscated, peanut butter deemed a gel and the otherwise uselss exercise of removing shoes to have them ex-rayed when ex-raying can’t detect chemical explosives. And do they check saline solution bottles? No.
So now the TSA is saying that passengers must remain seated during the last hour of flight? Now Only one carry on? Now no electronics for the first hour of flight? What’s next, all passengers have to take ambien and remain comatose during flight?
“Only two things have made flying safer: the reinforcement of cockpit doors, and the fact that passengers know now to resist hijackers, ” according to security expert Bruce Schneier. The rest is theatrics.
Northwest Flight 253 proved those points brilliantly.