by: the Common Constitutionalist
Homeland Security recently completed an internal investigation of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) to see if they were performing proper airport security screenings.
DHS Red teams were dispatched to various airports to attempt to smuggle banned substances through security checkpoints. These substances included mockups of bombs and other weapons, such as fake plastics explosives laden with ball bearings, pipe bombs and a fully assembled, scoped M-4 assault rifle.
Of the 70 smuggling tests conducted, 67 made it passed the TSA screeners. That’s a failure rate of 95%. DHS issued a statement to MailOnline
saying: “The numbers and these reports never look good out of context, but they are a critical element in the continual evolution of our aviation security. Today, all air travelers are subject to a robust security system that employs multiple layers of protection, both seen and unseen, including: intelligence gathering and analysis, cross checking passenger manifests against watch lists, screening at checkpoints, random canine teams screening at airports, reinforced cockpit doors, Federal Air Marshals, armed pilots and a vigilant public.”
Really! Someone actually had the stones to write that after such an abysmal performance.
“In one test a man with a fake bomb strapped to his back set off a metal detector, but was allowed to go on to the plane boarding area after a pat-down didn’t find the device,” writes the Daily Mail.
A TSA spokesman “did not answer questions about whether those who allowed the weapons to get through were punished in any way.” Gee, I wonder why that is?
But I thought making the screeners government employees was supposed to better their performance.
Prior to 9/11 there were 16,500 private airport screeners. After 9/11 they were quickly replaced with 40,000 government employees and today the TSA employs over 62,000 people, 53,000 of which are screeners. Yet the well over 300% increase in manpower still is unable to do better than a 5% success rate.
9/11 was a national tragedy to be sure, but it was also a crisis that didn’t go to waste. Within a few months (November 2001), Congress crafted knee-jerk legislation that created the TSA and shortly after, in 2002, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
And then, because of the crisis, they did what they always do – spent like drunken sailors. My apologies to any drunken sailors.
The DHS initial budget was $18 billion in 2002. Now, just 13 years later it is over $61 billion. In 2004 the TSA budget was around $3.5 billion. Today it is around $8 billion.
Yet with all these employees and money, they still can’t find a guy with a bomb strapped to his back, even after setting off a metal detector. It’s the height of incompetence.
“Nationalizing airport screening was a mistake, as one of the principal architects of the 2001 TSA legislation, Rep. John Mica (R-FL), now recognizes. As chairman of a House committee overseeing TSA during 2011 and 2012, he was scathing in his criticisms. The agency is a ‘bloated bureaucracy’ and has a ‘track record of security failures.’ It also has a ‘penchant for bungling aviation security and wasting taxpayers’ money’ and is a ‘bureaucratic nightmare.’”
I couldn’t have said it better myself.