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Government Study Finds TSA Misconduct Up 26% In 3 Years

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the backed-by-strong-quarterly-growth dept.

Transportation 196

rullywowr writes "CNN reports that a recent government study found TSA misconduct has risen sharply in three years. Most have heard of the problems such as stealing, but the report also notes that some employees are sleeping on the job, taking bribes, and letting friends/family through the checkpoints without screening."

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Study of my own (4, Interesting)

morcego (260031) | about a year ago | (#44438325)

I'm conducting a "highly" scientific study of my own.

Please reply here if you are surprised by these news...

Re:Study of my own (4, Insightful)

pakar (813627) | about a year ago | (#44438393)

Yes, i thought it would be higher than 26%...

Re:Study of my own (-1, Flamebait)

i kan reed (749298) | about a year ago | (#44438437)

Because you're stupid. If the baseline is high, dramatic increases will still show up as relatively small percentages.

Sorry for calling you stupid; I just couldn't find a better way to point this out.

Re:Study of my own (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438517)

You're forgetting that if the baseline is high, dramatic increases will still show up as relatively small percentages.

How about forgetting the name calling entirely and just pointing out what they were not taking into account?

Re:Study of my own (0, Offtopic)

Rockoon (1252108) | about a year ago | (#44439253)

How about forgetting the name calling entirely and just pointing out what they were not taking into account?

Maybe the people that make such simplistic errors of substance while rushing to try to get their two error-laden cents in deserve to be called stupid?

Reward good behavior. Punish bad behavior.

Re:Study of my own (1)

Oligonicella (659917) | about a year ago | (#44439157)

"Because you're stupid."

Says "i kan reed".

Re:Study of my own (3, Funny)

houghi (78078) | about a year ago | (#44438769)

Nononono. It is UP 28%. As the whole thing was a misconduct in the first place, I am guessing they are now at 126% at least.

Re:Study of my own (4, Funny)

X0563511 (793323) | about a year ago | (#44438443)

I am very surprised. [youtube.com]

Re:Study of my own (0, Troll)

OzPeter (195038) | about a year ago | (#44438985)

I am not surprised [youtube.com]

All fine and good. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438383)

While not specifically mentioned in the report, notable cases of theft by TSA agents include a 2012 case in which two former employees pleaded guilty to stealing $40,000 from a checked bag at New York's John F. Kennedy Airport, and a 2011 guilty plea from an officer who admitted stealing between $10,000 and $30,000 from travelers at Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey.

And what does the poor schmoe who had his travel money stolen? Did the TSA make all those people whole?

Doubt it.

More then likely the local agent supervisor threw a from at them and told them to fill it out and mail it in and if they objected further, they would be threatened or at the very least, their balls busted by being "detained" and missing their flight. And for those who haven't flown in the last decade, flights are always booked to the max so good luck getting on the next flight - or the next - or the next - or the....

They are not all bad. It's just the 99% of them who make the other 1% look bad, is all.

Re:All fine and good. (1, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44438477)

Why would you check that kind of money?

Why not just put it in your carry on?

$10,000 is a stack of $100s thinner than a deck of cards. So $40,000 fits in a coat or even a couple pockets and no problem fitting it in carry on.

Re:All fine and good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438591)

It depends on how fresh your bills are and how they're packed-- last time I left a casino up, I couldn't get 3000 in hundreds to fit in a standard-size wallet and have it fold.

Having said that, if I was PLANNING to carry 40,000, I could easily manage it, and do so undetected, barring a random search.

Re:All fine and good. (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about a year ago | (#44438623)

Why would you check that kind of money?

Why not just put it in your carry on?

$10,000 is a stack of $100s thinner than a deck of cards. So $40,000 fits in a coat or even a couple pockets and no problem fitting it in carry on.

If you put it in your pocket, TSA will make you remove it and send it through the x-ray machine on its own, so not only will it be subject to theft by TSA, but by any passenger that gets through the scanner before you.

If you put it in your carry-on bag, TSA can open that bag too - nothing is stopping a dishonest employee from opening it away from your sight.

Re:All fine and good. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44438819)

That would all be on camera. Far safer than checked baggage.

Re:All fine and good. (4, Informative)

hawguy (1600213) | about a year ago | (#44438865)

Unless, of course, the agent bribes his supervisor to look the other way (and/or block the camera(s)) while he steals the cash:

https://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/tsa-agent-michael-arato-admits-stealing-passengers-security-checks-bribes-article-1.136272 [nydailynews.com]

Re:All fine and good. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44438997)

Still more work for them than stealing from your checked luggage.

Buffer - and NO NOT $10,0000 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438807)

When I travel, I like to have cash on me and cash in the bag.

Why?

Just in case.

Get pick pocketed - got your cash in the bag.

Lose your bag? Got it on you.

And travel sometime to places Latin America. NO CASH MACHINES.

Geeze!

AND in regards to the $10,000 in the bag - IF that happened that was stupid in many ways. For one, it raises immediate suspicion with the gun carrying and badge wearing grunts. You WILL be detained.

Secondly, just losing it.

Third, wire it.

You carry cash for cabs, food, and the little things. Not everyone in the World has a card reader on their person or have it in their business.

Re:Buffer - and NO NOT $10,0000 (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44438947)

I do the same, but I tend to carry large amounts of cash in sealed envelopes where a pick pocket will not get to it like my front pocket or zipped inside an inner pocket in a light coat I have zipped up. To me large is only 5-10% of the amount we are talking about here.

I am aware of this need for cash, I like to go to Mexico and outside the tourist traps or big cities not a lot of places had ATMs and precious few take Credit Cards.

I have never had trouble explaining it as vacation money, but i have never exceeded $5000 on my person in an airport. I normally split it between me and my spouse anyway.

Re:All fine and good. (2)

Rude Turnip (49495) | about a year ago | (#44438857)

That's a question that should not be asked of anyone in the first place.

Re:All fine and good. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44439019)

Why not?
If you want to carry cash, have fun I do it all the time. Checking cash is moronic, you are begging for it to be stolen.

Re:All fine and good. (1)

OzPeter (195038) | about a year ago | (#44438933)

Why would you check that kind of money?

2 years ago I was flying to Bolivia with a group that included a local journalist to cover the trip. The cheap arsed flight went through 3 intermediate stops in central america before getting to our destination. I didn't know it before we left, but the journalist had packed a brand new, high end, Canon DLSR in her checked luggage which was to be her main camera on the trip, and kept her back-up video camera in hand luggage. Guess what didn't make it to the destination? Some people just have no clue, and not even a clue enough to ask if what they are doing is reasonable.

Re:All fine and good. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44439067)

Ouch, including layovers in other nations just makes this scream of naivety on the part of that journalist. Hopefully she took this lesson to heart.

I check nothing of value, when hand over my bags at the airport I expect to never see them again. Each time they manage to arrive, much less on time I view as a blessing. I have had too much stuff "lost" to do anything else. Once they managed to "lose" beer bottles that were packed in a socks, two on each one over the base the other over the top. Magically they did not lose the socks. The thief left me those. I would have had that in carry on, as I used to do, but they no longer allow that. The beer is not exported to North America so I was pretty sad. Not surprised, just let down.

Re:All fine and good. (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about a year ago | (#44439133)

It's illegal to carry that much cash and the cash can be confiscated on presumption that you are committing a crime by having it. Why do you have that much cash? Who needs to carry that much cash? Have you paid taxes on it properly? I bet you haven't; guilty of tax evasion. It's probably drug money, since you have no real audit trail that can't be re-used for multiple sums of $40,000. Your audit trail is probably a single source from a money laundering scheme that you thought you could print out and show repeatedly for each instance of $40,000 you have. We're confiscating your money. We can't arrest you, but we can confiscate money from suspected criminal activities.

Re:All fine and good. (3, Informative)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44439191)

It is not illegal to carry that much cash. It is illegal to cross the border without declaring it, but that is all.

They can attempt to confiscate it, but they can do the same to your bank account.

Re:All fine and good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438497)

And what does the poor schmoe who had his travel money stolen?

You seem to have forgotten a very important part of your sentence, here.

I'm sure they do. What they do, I've no idea...

Re:All fine and good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438565)

OP was obviously talking about sex tourists, and the answer is: only the donkey does the poor schmoe who had his money stolen.

Re:All fine and good. (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about a year ago | (#44439181)

What the hell is a sex tourist? Is there a country called sex?

Re:All fine and good. (1)

OzPeter (195038) | about a year ago | (#44439239)

What the hell is a sex tourist? Is there a country called sex?

It's a tourist who goes to a country specifically in order to have sex with some one who is most likely a minor. Sex tourism [wikipedia.org]

Re:All fine and good. (0)

Scarletdown (886459) | about a year ago | (#44439275)

What the hell is a sex tourist? Is there a country called sex?

None that I am aware of. However, there are cities and towns in the world called: Pune, Bangkok, Intercourse, and Fucking. And let us not forget Lake Titticaca.

Re:All fine and good. (1)

nospam007 (722110) | about a year ago | (#44439349)

"What the hell is a sex tourist? Is there a country called sex?"

It's far away, only reachable by Tripper-Clipper.

Re:All fine and good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438607)

What's interesting is that the sentence seems wrong, but I can't figure out how to explain how it's wrong. For instance "What drives the poor schmoe who had his travel money stolen?" is clealy proper English. So why does "What does" require repeating "do" at the end?

Re:All fine and good. (1)

Chris Mattern (191822) | about a year ago | (#44438793)

Because in "What does", "does" is a helping verb, a very common construction in English grammar. "What does he drive?" "What does he eat?" "What does he wear?". The only different here is that the main verb is, by coincidence, the same word as the helping verb, only doing different duty: "What does he do?"

not stealing/sleeping != not bad (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438749)

they're ALL bad, they just aren't all thieves!

one thing I've always wondered - what do their family/"friends" say about them? I'd be less ashamed of my kids if they were in prison - hell, I'd be less ashamed of them if they joined AQ (at least they'd be motivated & have principles, even if horribly misguided)...

Re:All fine and good. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438917)

They are not all bad. It's just the 99% of them who make the other 1% look bad, is all.

Actually, if you look at the numbers in the article, there were nearly 10,000 incidences reported in the two year period between 2010 and 2012. Also according to the article, there are 56,000 TSA employees. So really, it's more like 20% make the other 80% look bad (not a whoosh, I wanted to make it clear that you weren't exaggerating all that much).

Re:All fine and good. (1)

PRMan (959735) | about a year ago | (#44439189)

I think the bad agents may have as many as 50-100 incidences before they are caught. So the number is probably much lower. (Can't believe I'm defending the TSA here.)

Re:All fine and good. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44439221)

How many bad agents never get caught?
I if we define bad agent as having ever stolen from passengers the number is much higher.

Re:All fine and good. (2)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#44439289)

That's not really a defense of the TSA. If they're missing that many incidences before they finally get rid of the employee, that's pretty serious incompetence and definitely negligent.

Re:All fine and good. (1)

OzPeter (195038) | about a year ago | (#44439077)

And what does the poor schmoe who had his travel money stolen? Did the TSA make all those people whole?

Years ago I was flying into the US with a locked Pelican case full of expensive camera equipment. Sometime after I entered the US, the TSA cut the locks off and searched the case (and thoughtfully put the remains of the locks back inside the case along with a pamphlet explaining what had happened). They made no attempt to re-secure the case. When I finally received the case a camera was missing (*) and I have no idea if it was the TSA or someone else who stole it, but the TSA definitely empowered the thief. I looked into making a claim on the TSA/Airline etc but it was difficult to the point that I just gave up in the end.

* Out of a camera case with $2500 of SLR film cameras and lenses (including my fav 80-200mm lens) the thief stole an old compact digital camera that was probably only worth $75 at the time.

Re:All fine and good. (3, Informative)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44439247)

Travelers in the USA with that kind of gear will often check a starting pistol or flare gun, as those have to be properly locked.

Obviously international travel makes this harder. You should consult your lawyer, doctor, priest, rabbi, mullah and several small children before you attempt this. I am not a lawyer nor have I ever pretended to be one to sleep with women.

Broader problem (5, Insightful)

intermodal (534361) | about a year ago | (#44438395)

I think we could probably just say this across the board in our government...

Re:Broader problem (1)

i kan reed (749298) | about a year ago | (#44438471)

Because, you know, your assumptions are obviously true without having any sort of data backing like the story.

Re:Broader problem (2)

intermodal (534361) | about a year ago | (#44438515)

They're at least as reliable as anything coming out of the NSA's publicity arm, the past four administrations, and various other elements of the government. Sure, there are good agencies here and there, but the norm is corruption.

Re:Broader problem (1)

jklovanc (1603149) | about a year ago | (#44439021)

I think we could probably just say this across the board in humanity

FTFY. TSA employees are human too.

Re:Broader problem (4, Funny)

hedwards (940851) | about a year ago | (#44439305)

I think we could probably just say this across the board in humanity

FTFY. TSA employees are human too.

[citation needed]

Re:Broader problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44439071)

Yeah, if it had been in private enterprise it would have been a "business model" instead...

Que surprise? (1)

Chas (5144) | about a year ago | (#44438469)

You mean the US Government's attempt to corner the market in minimum wage, untrained rent-a-cops in airports is a spectacular cluster-fuck?
But look at all the good they've done!
Like the economy!
Oops!
Err...Like the budget!
Uhh...
Social Security! ...
Yeah. I'll just shut up now...

Re:Que surprise? (4, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44438505)

What is wrong with social security?
It is fully funded for decades and simply upping the cut for contributions with inflation would extend it even further.

Collecting from folks who take $1 salaries and get stock instead would help even more.

Not sure if serious. (1)

Chas (5144) | about a year ago | (#44438559)

Seriously.

Re:Que surprise? (1)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#44438567)

Because it's provided by "duh gubmint" so it's evil and wrong. Duuuh.

Re:Que surprise? (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about a year ago | (#44439207)

It's effectively a pyramid scheme that relies on an expanding population as well. It relies on more people joining to fund the smaller number of people at the top, but in this case *everyone* joins and so you need population expansion.

Re:Que surprise? (2)

perceptual.cyclotron (2561509) | about a year ago | (#44438647)

Not to mention it has, over the years, produced billions in surplus. It's not the fault of social security programs that all that money gets skimmed off and rolled into the rest of the budget to pay for things that *aren't* sustainable...

Re:Que surprise? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438657)

>> What is wrong with social security?

Seems like half the people on it for "disability" aren't disabled...?
http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/04/10/too-tired-to-work-but-not-too-tired-to-play-utah-ag-busts-alleged-social-security-fraudsters/

Or, if you look at it purely as a retirement plan, where's the option to opt out and invest the money in your own 401K instead?

Re:Que surprise? (1)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#44438711)

368 allegations of which 157 claims were denied by SSA is not even remotely the same as your ridiculous claim that half of all people claiming SS disablity benefits aren't disabled .

Re:Que surprise? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438789)

Or, if you look at it purely as a retirement plan, where's the option to opt out and invest the money in your own 401K instead?

You start from a flawed premise. What you pay in is not like making a contribution to a 401(k). You are laying for current benefits. Not paying in to a fund holding money for yourself.

Re:Que surprise? (0)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44438799)

The same place as the magic no risk 401k.

If we did that you would opt out and then still want us to pay for your retirement if you 401k failed.

SS is a retirement vehicle of last resort. It is basically insurance.

Re:Que surprise? (2)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | about a year ago | (#44439391)

I don't retirement fund.

I'm investing in my debt. Going to pay off my mortgage in 3 years. I make $65k/year. I'm paying off a full mortgage on a house in 3 years.

Going to invest in savings after that. You know, have $500/mo expenses, put $2000/mo in bank. Keep some, spend some. I'll spend enough to live a life of luxury (I do now, but I'm very good at maximizing the effectiveness of my spending), because youth is wasted on the young and I don't want to save up enough money being miserable my whole life to spend the end of my life being miserable struggling with health issues trying to not die. It's like people who hurry up and get married when they're 18 because girls are like... "I don't want to be an old maid stuck with kids!" You are going to have kids when you're like 19, then when you're 38 they'll get out of the house. You'll be almost in your 40s, you'll be married or divorced and struggling, your college years will be gone, your youth will be gone, you'll have missed all the time to party, and the best you can do is maybe spend that time being a cougar--which you could have done with a couple teenagers in the house anyway. Good job, idiot.

Economics dictates that retirement is essentially cheating. The system will continuously try to derive as much money from you as possible. Most people are too dumb for this and so are easy, so the smart ones of us can totally escape in impossible ways. If everyone was this smart, they would invariably decide that they need $X for their retirement goals and take that as a fixed expense, and so the entire system would still facilitate saving money. Instead, people are dumb and invest in index funds in 401(k) thinking it'll "grow", when that's not how it works; the funds managers take a percentage in any case, so they're happy with this.

Then we want everyone to pitch in to pay for old people, but then we want better health care to extend life from about 35-45 years (medieval lifespans) to 60, 80, 90 years, and then half the population is between 55 and 82 because the mean lifespan is 82 and nobody wants to put 50% of their paycheck into social security (twice as many old people as young people) and so the retirement age gets raised. Then people go, "Why I have to work until I 70?!?!?!?!" (if there's 1 person of retirement age for every (n) people working, you need to pay 1/(n+1) of your income into social security PLUS overhead; that means, for a stable mean lifespan (L) and retirement age (R), you need to pay (1/(R/(L-R))) of your paycheck into social security payout to keep it afloat. This would be absurd, except that people keep buying houses and now are going to have mortgages until they die and so aren't going to get to retire on 1/5 of their living income).

Re:Que surprise? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438809)

Wow, I love it when people post "evidence" from theblaze.com.
That website is awesome, you totally won't get spyware from that site.

Re:Que surprise? (1)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#44438817)

Especially when the story doesn't even prove his claim.

Re:Que surprise? (1)

Wookact (2804191) | about a year ago | (#44439389)

I find it interesting that someone would post this as AC. I mean the Blaze is highly credible, and the claims are well founded! /sarc

Re:Que surprise? (1)

TheCarp (96830) | about a year ago | (#44438827)

How about that it is being run by a trustee that broke the trust by using it to write IOUs so that it could use the trust fund like a slush fund?

I have far less problem with SS which is implemented as a segregated tax all its own for a single purpose, than I am with with a fake segregated tax that really just siphons out into the main pool....they very one it was supposed to be segregated from.

If any other trust fund trustee operated the fund the same way that the federal government has operated the SS trust fund, we would be talking about how many lifetimes they should spend in jail.

Re:Que surprise? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44438891)

Sure but even using this flawed methodology it will be sound for many decades.

A politician once suggested such a lock box, the american people mocked him and elected an anti-intellectual pretend cowboy. Mind you since he has degrees from the same elitist schools he was railing against he was clearly just acting for the cameras.

Re:Que surprise? (1)

TheCarp (96830) | about a year ago | (#44439319)

Talking Carter/Reagan? If so, then I would also like to point out that the anti-intellectual pretend cowboy also used rather treasonous tactics to influence the election in his favor.... the same tactics that were recently revealed as having been used over a decade earlier by Nixon.
(that is, colluding with an external entity to sink negotiations, while promising the same a better deal under the new administration of he gets elected)

Re:Que surprise? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44439355)

Think later, but much the same setup.

Gore/G.W.Bush.

Re:Que surprise? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438851)

Social Security today is basically a Ponzi Scheme. There is no lock-box or anything; Congress-critters got to treat it as current revenue for their grandiose plans, then just write IOUs to themselves that they'll pay it back later. And once the amount coming in from FICA is less than that going out in payments to people, then you're in the red. In the coming years, the baby boomers will get to retirement age. Once they do retire that means their FICA taxes drop to zero. And they actually get paid from Social Security, thus moving funds from the IN side to the OUT side. Even if young people of 20 years are hired to take their place, one-to-one, actual wages paid (and thus taxed) will be much lower, simply due to the difference in 40+ years of business experience versus zip.

I repeat: they already spent the money. They're also spending other money we don't actually have in the federal budget, which creates that huge block we know as the Deficit.

So, no, it's not fully funded. There are IOUs that the government is responsible for. But there is no law, nor constitutional requirements, stopping them from passing a law abolishing Social Security (and those IOUs that are being saved up for it). They would have to deal with 'angry' constituents (angry being a gross understatement), but they could cut or get rid of it all.

Re:Que surprise? (4, Insightful)

Baloroth (2370816) | about a year ago | (#44438867)

What is wrong with social security?

Absolutely everything? To start with, there is the fact I'm going to pay tens of thousands (or hundreds of thousands, probably) of dollars into it and won't see a single dime of it back, because it will be bankrupt a decade or more before I'll even come closer to considering retiring. The system is inherently and utterly broken in a world were people are living longer and having fewer children. It cannot remain viable unless there are far fewer people retired than working, which, with the modern birthrate and age of living, is impossible. The only people who will benefit from the system are those who are already retired or relatively close to it. People under 30 or so? Won't see a dime from it. People in their 40s are likely to retire, only to discover the money drying up soon after.

Social Security was devised in a world with radically different demographics than the current one. Unless our society undergoes a massive reversion (which would have negative impacts in other areas), it's a totally non-viable system.

Re:Que surprise? (4, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44439099)

It will be paying out 71% in 2047 so exactly how young are you?

Re:Que surprise? (0)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | about a year ago | (#44439105)

Two words:

  Ponzi Scheme.

Which are supposed to be illegal except when the government does it apparently

I'll probably be down-voted for stating the obvious truth but instead of shooting the messenger people should focus on the message:

        The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people's money.

The problem is two-fold:

1. If people are too stupid to save for themselves then the rest of society should not be (financially) burdened to literally pay for their stupidity.

2. If the taxes are > 10% then guess what: We have a government spending problem. No wonder people can't save when an additional 23% of their money is stolen.

Of course it would help if the government didn't profit off of people dieing with bullshit "Inheritance Tax". https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inheritance_tax [wikipedia.org]

When greed permeates the whole system all sorts of half-baked and half-assed solutions look viable.

Re:Que surprise? (2)

geoskd (321194) | about a year ago | (#44439233)

What is wrong with social security? It is fully funded for decades and simply upping the cut for contributions with inflation would extend it even further.

Social security is not properly funded. The Social security administration has (by congressional decree) taken a very sizable position in Special US government bonds. There is no Cash in those accounts, just US government iou's. If congress decides to welch on those debts, then social security is bankrupt. These are not small amounts of money. By most estimates the debt is as large as 4 Trillion dollars. With our current "discretionary" budget this would take the U.S. approximately 40 years to repay not including interest due, and not spending any money on any other discretionary expense like infrastructure maintenance, or NASA, etc... This debt is cripplingly high, and the debt maintenance on the bonds alone is high enough to cause a massive budget deficit every year. Congress spent the money over two decades starting in the early 80's, and all thats left are the iou's. Social security is bankrupt in all but name. They made bad loans to the US, and congress wants to welch on those debts.

Re:Que surprise? (2)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#44438555)

The security screeners make between around $23000 to $35000 plus locality pay. That is not minimum wage. 40 hour per week minimum wage job pays only $15000 a year.

Re:Que surprise? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44438837)

It is damn low though. It is mall rent a cop pay.

Re:Que surprise? (2)

Desler (1608317) | about a year ago | (#44438913)

Sure. But their point was to impugn the TSA agents by mocking them as mininum wage earners which they aren't. Now a number of themdefinitely deserve criticism but not based on something so silly.

Re:Que surprise? (4, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44438969)

You don't think the fact that they are paid like mall security is something to mock?

They are supposed to be this professional force of protection for our nation's airports and we pay them like the guy guarding the Orange Julius. One of these things is not like the other.

Re:Que surprise? (3, Informative)

L4m3rthanyou (1015323) | about a year ago | (#44438695)

Hey now, calling them "rent-a-cops" is a unfair... to security guards.

I prefer to refer to airport screeners as "TSA-holes".

Re:Que surprise? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438777)

I prefer to refer to airport screeners as "TSA-holes".

but that is unfair to aholes!

Re:Que surprise? (1)

Conspiracy_Of_Doves (236787) | about a year ago | (#44438939)

I'm actually very surprised that they allowed this report to be released.

Recently in an airport. (3, Interesting)

flogger (524072) | about a year ago | (#44438529)

I traveled via plan; I went through the security checkpoint..

. It was the typical experience that everyone has come to expect. But once it is over, you're free to roam the "Secured" area of the airport. I don;t know how often this happens, but as we were getting ready to board the airplane, Three TSA agents showed up in their hands of blue, (One too many for a good firefly reference.)

Anyway, it was announced that the TSA would be doing random luggage checks as we boarded the plane. I watched what was happening and the "random" checks were that they stopped everyone with a backpack and/or large purse. No one with a regular wheely-carry on luggage was randomly checked. I observed about 30 people board the plane and "predicted which people ahead of me were randomly selected. As my turn to board the plane approached, I stepped in line and said to the agent, "Some back at the regular checkpoint not doing his job and taking a nap?" The TSA guys scowled at me, physically pulled me aside, and went through every article of clothing and compartment of my regular luggage carry-on. At least he attempted to fold everything back and put it in the way it came out.

I should have asked him for a piece of paper saying my luggage was checked by the TSA,

I wonder if they are trying to police up their "faults" by doing even more checks past where we are used to them happening?

Re:Recently in an airport. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438611)

Are you sure your anus wasn't sore after? Makes you think GB and BO should both be sharing a jail cell by now. And to the hipster crying over SS, stop crying and keep working baby. Just keep taking it American fools.

Re:Recently in an airport. (3, Interesting)

hawguy (1600213) | about a year ago | (#44438791)

I traveled via plan; I went through the security checkpoint..

. It was the typical experience that everyone has come to expect. But once it is over, you're free to roam the "Secured" area of the airport. I don;t know how often this happens, but as we were getting ready to board the airplane, Three TSA agents showed up in their hands of blue, (One too many for a good firefly reference.)

  Anyway, it was announced that the TSA would be doing random luggage checks as we boarded the plane. I watched what was happening and the "random" checks were that they stopped everyone with a backpack and/or large purse.

I've been through that too, and the most ridiculous part is that they announce it ahead of time and in an open boarding area, so anyone that was planning on carrying contraband on board would just skip that flight and call the airline to say their car broke down so they need to cancel their ticket and rebook on a later flight.

What's the point of the additional screening if people are allowed to opt-out by skipping the flight?

Re:Recently in an airport. (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44439123)

Or just go to the bathroom, miss the flight and get on the next one. A simple case of travelers diarrhea would be totally believeable.

Re:Recently in an airport. (2)

TheCarp (96830) | about a year ago | (#44439061)

Of course its not just the TSA. Normally I charge my phone in the car and turn on the gps with waze because I like reporting speed traps, and it has saved my bacon a few times by routing me around traffic.

Anyway today, of course, I left my phone at home, which is too bad because when reporting police/accidents whatever, there is an option to take a picture, and I totally saw the detail cop sitting in his cruiser, with his bubblegum machines going and taking a nap at the wheel.

But hey, details keep us safe they say.

Re:Recently in an airport. (1)

OzPeter (195038) | about a year ago | (#44439201)

Anyway, it was announced that the TSA would be doing random luggage checks as we boarded the plane.

I have also seen TSA agents taking samples of drinks as people lined up at the gate and then testing it on the spot for who knows what.

TSA ? (5, Insightful)

vikingpower (768921) | about a year ago | (#44438549)

TSA is the main reason I have been refusing to fly to and within the US for years now. Colleagues, friends and acquaintances reporting the same. The security craze is costing the US money.

Re:TSA ? (2)

Cosgrach (1737088) | about a year ago | (#44438989)

That's why I stopped flying as well.

Re:TSA ? (1)

shbazjinkens (776313) | about a year ago | (#44439353)

TSA is the main reason I have been refusing to fly to and within the US for years now. Colleagues, friends and acquaintances reporting the same. The security craze is costing the US money.

I've flown through most regions of the USA, some 80k miles maybe through too many airports to mention. Been to foreign airports in London Heathrow, Frankfurt, Bucharest, Hong Kong, Singapore and Dubai. All of them seemed pretty similar to TSA style screening, with some having stricter screening practice pre-board and upon departure. For my connecting flights through Frankfurt and Hong Kong, my luggage was searched again, even though I was simply deplaning and re-boarding the same plane. The main difference I've noticed is that the nude-o-scopes are absent, but people are still around to feel me up and rifle through my luggage in most countries. So what's different, from your perspective, in your home country?

Misguided punishments? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438569)

I found this piece ridiculous and am hoping there simply was more to these than the article summarized...

"The report details one case of a TSA agent suspended for seven days after trying to carry a relative's bag past security without screening. A supervisor interceded and the bag was found to contain "numerous prohibited items," according to the GAO report. It didn't say what the items were.

In another case, a TSA agent was suspended for 30 days after a closed-circuit camera caught the officer failing to individually examine X-ray images of passenger items, as required by agency policy."

So failing to look the xrays gets you 30 days, but knowingly trying to smuggle prohibited items through security gets you 7 days suspension? Am I missing something here or is that insane?

Re:Misguided punishments? (3, Informative)

x181 (2677887) | about a year ago | (#44438633)

these all should be grounds for immediate termination and prison time.

Re:Misguided punishments? (1)

Cosgrach (1737088) | about a year ago | (#44438971)

Agreed.

What did they expect? (1)

hawguy (1600213) | about a year ago | (#44438685)

What did they expect when they replaced private security agents with government workers? When security was run by private companies, the government could make surprise inspections and fine the companies for violations -- who in turn would fire the employees responsible because fines eat into profits.

When the government employs the workers *and* does the inspections, everyone knows what happens when you let the fox guard the hen-house.

Re:What did they expect? (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about a year ago | (#44439149)

If the article timeline is correct, things would have started turning bad about the time when the TSA started the unionization process. Originally they weren't unionized. Hard to believe government unions could be a negative influence.

Re:What did they expect? (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44439153)

As if they ever did.
The whole thing is a show, when you are paying for rent a cops that is what you get. Either they want security and will pay professional LEO wages or they don't.

No Follow-Up (2)

ks*nut (985334) | about a year ago | (#44438805)

The glaring fault that I found in scanning the GAO report is that there is no plan to follow-up on any of the cases where TSA employees are reprimanded. So they can issue letters of reprimand or whatever and there is no review process to make sure that the agent does their job correctly. And their job is to provide security?

Flying for years, never any trouble (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44438821)

I've been flying for years, regularly, never any problems with the TSA.

I've had a dozen tubes of oil paints, multiple laptops, tablets, MP-3 players, never a problem.

So my conclusion is the people having all these issues are just looking for trouble and when you look for trouble, you will find it.

Re:Flying for years, never any trouble (1)

Jaysyn (203771) | about a year ago | (#44439251)

Yeah, all 10000 of them, you fucking dumbass.

Not bad (4, Informative)

jklovanc (1603149) | about a year ago | (#44439001)

Misconduct cases involving TSA employees -- everything from being late to skipping crucial security protocols -- rose from 2,691 a year in 2010 to 3,408 in 2012.

I would bet that any company as large as the TSA would be happy to have only 3,408 misconduct cases. There are about 55,600 TSA employees.

About a third of the cases involved being late or not reporting for work, the largest single category of offenses.

That would be about 1100 shift late or missed. Considering that there are 55,000 employees * 5 shifts per week * 48 working weeks/year = 1.32M shifts per year that would mean that the late/absentee rate was 0.008%. Any company would love that late/absentee rate. Most companies have rates upwards of 10%.

About a quarter involved screening and security failures -- including sleeping on the job -- or neglect of duty offenses that resulted in losses or careless inspections.

So about 852 incidents are security related. That would be 1 incident for every 64 employees. Considering that most offenders will repeat and some of the incidents are mistakes rather than willful that is less that 1% of employees being an issue.

TSA employees are humans not robots ans they screw up some times; give them a break.

The numbers rose from 2,691 a year in 2010 to 3,408 in 2012. That is an increase of 717 incidents. That is about 2 more incidents per day. Not bad for a company that has 55,000 employees covering hundreds of locations. That's the problem with small numbers; even small increases seem big.

The TSA took my freedom away (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44439007)

I don't like the actors in this production of security theater.
It is an army of mall security guards given real power without real training.

President McCain strikes again (1)

Kohath (38547) | about a year ago | (#44439033)

They told me if I voted for John McCain we would see this kind of escalating government abuse. And they were right! [pjmedia.com]

Posting to remove moderation accident (0)

crashcy (2839507) | about a year ago | (#44439223)

That is all.

Well, it keeps (1)

Thrill Science (2845693) | about a year ago | (#44439249)

Well, it keeps bloggers like http://www.shinybadge.com/ [shinybadge.com] (Tracking TSA Abuses) in business!

Excuse me, sir, but you're doing that wrong. (2)

AdamThor (995520) | about a year ago | (#44439271)

From TFA:

"I think John Q. Traveler should not so much be concerned, but take an active role in security," he said. "As they are willing to point out things we do wrong, we should be ready to report on the failure in their security operations, as well."

Yeah, that'll work out well...

Tracked down the report (4, Informative)

hey! (33014) | about a year ago | (#44439311)

Available here [gao.gov] .

A quick scan indicates it does not say exactly what news reports are claiming it does. The title gives a hint: "TSA Could Strengthen Monitoring of Allegations of Employee Misconduct".

The media (including /.) has seized on one fact out of the report, that the number of misconduct investigations has increased about 27% (not 26% as reported), and erroneously concluded that the rate of misconduct at the agency has increased by 26% (e.g. the title of this /. piece). This conclusion is not necessarily *wrong*, mind you, but the data in the report simply doesn't give us any basis for drawing it. For one thing, one of the main criticisms of the report is that the TSA is not tracking the *outcome* of investigations. For all we know the increase is the result of a higher rate of investigation, or even the increase in the agency's head count.

The whole point of the report is that the TSA has been so slapdash at tracking investigations of employee misconduct it doesn't know the degree which employees are violating policies or even the law. Consequently nobody really knows whether the rate of misconduct has gone up or down. That's damning enough to be going on with.

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