Archive for March, 2012
As if feeling safe at airports, train stations, bus stations and sporting events was not enough, now we have the Ponch and John version of the TSA blue shirts who just cannot get enough of making us feel safe. No matter how hard we try not to.
From Forbes: (this is a commentary from Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN))
VIPR teams which count TSOs among their ranks, conduct searches and screenings at train stations, subways, ferry terminals and every other mass transit location around the country. In fact, as the Los Angeles Times has detailed, VIPR teams conducted 9,300 unannounced checkpoints and other search operations in the last year alone. The very thought of federal employees with zero law enforcement training roaming across our nation’s transportation infrastructure with the hope of randomly thwarting a domestic terrorist attack makes about as much sense as EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson’s Environmental Justice tour.
Doing 70 in 65MPH road? The Blue Shirt will pull you over. Trying to pay a toll and have a “NEWT 2012” bumper sticker on your car’s bumper? The Blue Shirt will demand a full inspection of your car. Have Rush Limbaugh on the radio? The cuffs will come out. (even though no TSA agent has any more authority than a mall rent-a-cop, for now, that is)
Or, it could be a lot worse:
As TSOs continue to expand their presence beyond our nation’s airports and onto our highways, every American citizen has the right to know that they are not dealing with actual federal law enforcement officers. Had one Virginia woman known this days before Thanksgiving she may have been able to escape being forcibly raped by a TSO who approached her in a parking lot in full uniform while flashing his badge.
Is there anything being done to counteract this? Well, a little.
In order to help rein in the TSA I introduced H.R. 3608, the Stop TSA’s Reach in Policy Act aka the STRIP Act. This bill will simply overturn the TSA’s administrative decision by prohibiting any TSA employee who has not received federal law enforcement training from using the title “officer,” wearing a police like uniform or a metal police badge. At its most basic level the STRIP Act is about truth in advertising.
While I applaud Rep. Blackbrun’s efforts to rein in the TSA on this front, it is truly like giving aspirin to someone who has terminal cancer. The only true solution to this ever-intrusive and massive violation of the Constitution, is the total and utter dissolution of the Department of Homeland Security itself. Seeing that the TSA is just one of the many hydra heads of a totally out-of-control and unaccounatble agency, whose creation was never needed in the first place, Blackburn and any others who have an ounce of spine will need to draft a bill doing just that. And put to a vote, however many times it takes. (I know, fat chance there)
Not to mention, as one commenter mentioned on the Forbes site, this could actually end up empowering the TSA.
Rep. Blackburn is not calling for getting rid of the TSA as she ought; her bill calls for MORE training and MORE authority if they are going to do their jobs properly.
Unfortunately, congressional “solutions” to government’s inherit inability to govern itself usually just makes the situation worse in the long run. Just so.
Here is the main body:
With a terrible feeling of pain and loss we announce the passing of Andrew Breitbart.
Andrew passed away unexpectedly from natural causes shortly after midnight this morning in Los Angeles.
We have lost a husband, a father, a son, a brother, a dear friend, a patriot and a happy warrior.
Andrew lived boldly, so that we more timid souls would dare to live freely and fully, and fight for the fragile liberty he showed us how to love.
I will admit both shock and skepticism over this, especially seeing the word “draft” is in the URL. Which in WordPress and other publishing platforms, like Drupal, means a post that has not been published for the public and for search engine/indexing. So, until there is 100% confirmation of this story, I will stay skeptical that this might be nothing more than a hack.
UPDATE: Seeing that FOX News is posting this as their top story and no word from Breitbart, it would appear that this very, very sad story is true.
RIP Andrew, you were at the very top of the heap of true patriotic, citizen journalists who did it the right way.