By now you’ve probably heard about the porno body scanners now used in airports around the country as a screening method. The government says they are here to stay, and to get used to the groping by TSA agents, too. I mentioned a few instances yesterday.
“By buying your ticket you gave up a lot of rights.” That’s what a man was told when he opted out of a groin check at an airport. I get that we don’t have the right to bring a knife or a bottle of Diet Coke on a plane, but this is just crazy. Doesn’t Israel have the best airline security in the world? Are they sexually assaulting women who fly?
(Follow the links for the stories.)
I’ve been meaning to get to who is profiting from these full body scanners. Right Klik beat me to it. The TSA has contracted with Rapiscan Security Systems, which is a subsidiary of OSI Systems, Inc. Rapiscan has spent a fortune on lobbying in recent years, and Right Klik shows that the lobbying dollars were a very good investment for the company. And of course, some of Rapiscan’s lobbyists are well connected.
A blogger at ultra-liberal Daily Kos also smells something suspicious:
“Rapiscan’s lobbyists include Susan Carr, a former senior legislative aide to Rep. David Price, D-N.C., chairman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee. When Defense Daily reported on Price’s appropriations bill last winter, the publication noted “Price likes the budget for its emphasis on filling gaps in aviation security, in particular the whole body imaging systems.”Very convenient; very cozy!Rapiscan also has a financial relationship with former Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff (now a peddler of whole body imaging).
But there’s more. Guess who else is making money off of the virtual strip search? If you guessed George Soros you get a gold star!
The Washington Examiner reported:
As for the company’s other political connections, it also appears that none other than George Soros, the billionaire funder of the country’s liberal political infrastructure, owns 11,300 shares of OSI Systems Inc., the company that owns Rapiscan. Not surprisingly, OSI’s stock has appreciated considerably over the course of the year. Soros certainly is a savvy investor.
That’s not all. While doing my search I came across an interesting article in Canada Free Press that gives a pretty good history of Rapiscan, and how the naked body scanners weren’t used very much until after the attempted underwear bombing on Christmas day in 2009. Shortly after the incident, Michael Chertoff took to the airwaves to shill for the scanners. It’s worth reading in its entirety, but here’s what I found most interesting.
What has yet to be publicly disclosed is, in my professional opinion, most alarming.
Based on the instructions from Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, a directive was reportedly issued by the TSA on 29 October, 2010. That directive instructs all TSA screening agents to perform “enhanced” pat down searches that involve the actual groping of women’s breasts and the genitalia of all passengers, including children.
Upon learning of that directive, I conducted an interview with a trusted source working within the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on 12 November, 2010. According to the information obtained during that interview, the enhanced pat down directive was not in response to any intelligence or actionable threat. Instead, it was issued as a result of the number of airline passengers “opting out” of the body scans. The reasoning was that passengers would be more likely to select the more passive and less invasive of the two options. In other words, the directive was meant to “convince” people to choose the (ostensibly) less personal and humiliating scrutiny of a full body scanner instead of being groped by a TSA agent.
One might wonder why one option over the other would matter so much to the Department of Homeland Security. The answer might possibly be found in DHS documents described as “conceptual discussions” about trial deployments of the full body scanners to non-aviation public locations, such as sports stadiums, schools and malls. It appears that it is the intent of DHS to eventually install naked body scanners in these venues. But first, the public must be “conditioned” to accept their use at airports.
Meanwhile, Big Brother will stop groping you, your wife and kiddies as soon as their full body scanners are planted in your local schools, stadiums and malls.
Is that a conspiracy theory? Could be, but it sounds pretty plausible to me. I can tell you, after reading and hearing about the groping by TSA agents, I’ve thought that if I have to fly I’ll probably go with the scan over the grope. At least with the scan some stranger isn’t touching me. But I still don’t know if it will work. We’ve gotten used to quite a bit, but this might just be taking things a bit too far. Not since 9/11 have I seen Americans so united, only this time we’re united against this gross overreach by the government. Taking off our shoes and emptying our pockets is one thing, having our very persons violated quite literally by the hands of government agents is quite another.
Related reading: Invasion of the Body Scanners.
Update 2: Oh this is rich. CAIR is asking for an exemption for hijab wearing Muslim women. They want them exempted from the full body scan, and only want the pat down above the neck. In the alternative, they suggest the women pat themselves down.