TSA Is Good At One Thing At Least: Drug Smuggling

“While these arrests are a disappointment, TSA is committed to holding our employees to the highest standards.” – Randy Parsons, the head of TSA services at Los Angeles International Airport

Parsons is disappointed in the arrests. It’s too bad that he’s not also disappointed in the actual crime – TSA agents were smuggling drugs through the screening process.

At no point have I seen TSA agents being held to any kind of highest standard, either. 70% failure rates. Abuse of 4 years olds (that’s an article from today, by the way). Bribes. Theft.

I fly from Seattle to San Francisco a lot. TSA handles Seattle and it’s a mess. TSA agents are joking around, not paying attention, and get angry quickly. In San Francisco, where they use private security at a much lower cost, things are much more sane and much more professional.

It’s time the government got out of the business of abusing travelers and smuggling drugs through airports.

8 thoughts on “TSA Is Good At One Thing At Least: Drug Smuggling

  1. meadorbd says:

    Six months after 9/11 I’m sitting in a quiet corner of DFW trying to get some work done between flights. A guy a couple of seats over is loudly talking on his mobile. He’s very happy to be out of jail, but his parole officer is a real pain in the butt. When I look over I realize he’s a security screener. True story.

  2. Not remotely surprised that this is what hides behind the TSA security theatre. I cannot be the only person who has significantly cut travel just because its become such a miserable experience, with no small part of that down to the idiocy that is the TSA.

    When it was first being created, my initial thought was that objections to setting up the TSA as a government agency were just a knee-jerk anti-government reaction. However, the TSA has shown that the government bureaucracy hires badly, manages poorly and is virtually completely unaccountable in this area. Security theater at its worst. As you say, get government out of this business.

  3. cittaslow says:

    Well, Obama has to get the deficit down somehow…

  4. mattconvente says:

    The TSA is the sole reason I choose to continue using paper boarding passes even if the airport I’m flying out of accepts mobile ones. I simply don’t trust that the TSA agents are up to speed on these technology advancements.

  5. Border and air port security in the US and their politeness issues actually deserve one article of their own. I have travelled to the US (from Germany) quite a few times and rarely have I had the chance to speak to a polite officer. And this is me, a caucasian guy travelling to the US. Basically everybody I have seen at the US border controls who remotely looked like an indian or arab got treated way worse.

    I migrated to Canada (again from Germany) a year ago and now constantly travel between Canada and Germany and I have not met one even remotely impolite CBSA officer. In fact most actually smiled, wished me a warm “Welcome to Canada” and a nice stay, joked, answered questions etc.

    I remember reading a post about you having trouble at the Canadian border once… but that must be because of your US citizenship. Grinnnnn. Can’t replicate the experience.

  6. John Vejnoska says:

    I travel often, and always opt out of body scanners after several doctors explained how they are unsafe and may cause cancer. This year alone, three times TSA security has lost count of me in the line, so I just continue through to my terminal, having not undergone a pat down or any other form of clearance. TSA is a complete and utter joke for security, I can only imagine the efficiency increase should it be privatized and security owned by the airlines.

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