Just when you think we got enough to worry about, along comes a big old raging controversy over airports utilizing full body scanning machines that can see through fliers' clothing all the way down to our naughty bits. Let me tell you where I stand on this brouhaha: I don't care. Haha. In the whole modesty versus safety argument, you can count on me to crawl behind the Kevlar couch with the Safety First! crowd every time.
All because of the underpants bomber. Yes, the underpants bomber. And no, it's not funny, but then again, yes, it is. Here's my theory, if the bad guys are willing to shove bombs up their butts, you know what, we're not going to win that war. Who can afford to pay the necessary costs to hire people to check for this? "More anal probes please." Because when we do come up with a defense for explosive suppositories, the terrorists will just develop some sort of kim chee, 1000 year old egg, garlic- onion paste resulting in murderous bad breath.
Another point as dependable as Tofu Corn Dogs at a Berkeley street fair, is these attacks always produce a surfeit of feigned media outrage leading to an equally transparent government overreaction. Pilots now have the option of restricting passengers from using rest rooms for the first and last hours of the flight. Battling terrorism with toity deprivation. And you thought those middle coach seats were grotey before. Captains have also been instructed not to point out landmarks along the way. And no peeking out the windows either. That would be cheating. Destination announcements- a thing of the past. From now on, guess where you're going.
Even though the fruit of the loom bomb didn't go off, conservatives are still screaming it's all Obama's fault. And one thing that hasn't changed with administrations is the Executive propensity for deflecting responsibility. Must be on page one of the White House primer they hand out with the keys to the front door. Raising an interesting question; do you get actual keys to the White House? And if so, did Obama go down to Ace Hardware to have spares made, or did he make the kids do it?
The official excuse reeked of recycling. "The information was there but nobody connected the dots." Connected the dots? This guy paid $3000 for his ticket with cash, didn't have a passport, flew sans checked baggage after the British tried to warn us and his own dad dropped a dime on him at the Nigerian embassy. Those aren't dots. Those are day- glo beach balls the size of weather balloons filled with concrete.
Not to mention Mister Abdulmutallab was flying from Amsterdam to Detroit. C'mon, people, think about it, who voluntarily leaves Amsterdam to go to Detroit? In the dead of winter? Without a frequent flyer number? Everybody on that flight should have been suspicious and subjected to a body cavity search with a defective chain mail glove. Boarding and deplaning.
But like our lame response to the shoe bomber (putting smiles on the face of sock manufacturers everywhere,) it's only a matter of time before the TSA refocuses on the new most dangerous airborne menace known to man: poo- poo undies. Going to be tough training 45,000 screeners in the speedy implementation of the dreaded two- handed wedgie. Aah, the TSA: you got to love them. Fighting today's security threats with yesterday's technology, tomorrow.
Will Durst is a San Francisco based political comic, who writes sometimes; this being a first-rate example.
Catch Durst in stand- up mode on the Places We Wouldn't Mind Living if We Didn't Live in San Francisco Tour, Friday, January 15th at The Kuumbwa Jazz Center in Santa Cruz. Saturday, January 16th, at The Center for the Arts in Grass Valley. And at Silo's in Napa on Sunday the 17th.
willdurst.com for more info.
And catch a fleeting glimpse of him on MSNBC's Chris Mathews special "Obama's America" on Monday January 18th.
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