Newest Air-Travel Threat: Sock Monkey Puppets And Their Tiny, Toy Guns

TSA Confiscates Sock Monkey Puppet’s Toy Pistol – Real Clear Politics

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Even sock monkeys aren’t allowed to fly with toy pistols these days! A Transportation Security Administration agent at Lambert-St. Louis Airport confiscated the toy gun belonging to “Rooster Monkburn” the cowboy sock monkey last week because of the government’s no-weapons on flights policy.

“Rooster Monkburn,” who is billed as a “take-off on the John Wayne character “Rooster Cogburn” from the 1969 western “True Grit,” is one of the many sock monkeys owned by Phyllis May of Redmond, Wash. May runs a small business which sells unique sock monkey dolls, and was flying from St. Louis to Sea-Tac airport and had a couple of monkeys and sewing supplies packed away in her carry-on bag.

She told KING-TV, the local NBC affiliate, that she was ”appalled and shocked and embarrassed all at the same time” over the incident.

May and her husband were going through the screening process at the airport when she noticed that one of her bags was missing. A TSA agent had taken it off the line for inspection, and it was when the agent searched the bag and the sowing supplies she spotted the two-inch long pistol.

“She said ‘this is a gun,’” May told the station. “I said no, it’s not a gun it’s a prop for my monkey.”

The TSA agent then told May that she would have to confiscate the gun and was supposed to call police on May, as the agent believed someone wouldn’t know if it “was real or not” if it was held up to one’s neck.

“I said well go ahead,” May continued. “And I said really? You’re kidding me right, and she said no it looks like a gun.”

At least May has been able to keep a sense of humor about the debacle.

“Rooster Monkburn has been disarmed so I’m sure everyone on the plane was safe,” she said. “I understand she was doing her job but at some point doesn’t common sense prevail?”

All turned out OK in the end, as the agent ended up not calling the police and May was able to get her other sowing supplies back.

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TSA Spent $900M On Behavior Detection Officers Who Detected 0 Terrorists

TSA Spent $900 Million On Behavior Detection Officers Who Detected 0 Terrorists – CNS

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) spent approximately $900 million over the last 5 years for behavior detection officers to identify high-risk passengers but, so far, according to the General Accountability Office (GAO), only 0.59% of the passengers flagged were arrested and among those not one was charged with terrorism – zero.

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In 2003, the TSA started testing its Screening of Passengers by Observation Technique (SPOT) program, which was then fully deployed in 2007. About 3,000 behavior detection officers (BDO) “had been deployed to 176 of the more than 450 TSA-regulated airports in the United States” by fiscal year 2012 (Oct. 1, 2011 – Sept. 30, 2012), according to the GAO.

Those BDO officers are trained to “identify passenger behaviors indicative of stress, fear, or deception and refer passengers” and their baggage for additional screening, reported the GAO in its Nov. 8, 2013 report, Aviation Security: TSA Should Limit Future Funding for Behavior Detection Activities.

Since 2007, the TSA has spent approximately $900 million on the SPOT program, said the GAO.

During the SPOT screening, the TSA’s behavior detection officers are supposed to look for and identify “high-risk passengers based on behavioral indicators that indicate mal-intent,” said the GAO. The BDOs can refer the passengers to a law enforcement officer (LEO) for further investigation. From there, if warranted, a passenger (or passengers) can be arrested.

In a statement for the Subcommittee on Transportation Security, Stephen M. Lord, the director of homeland security and justice issues at the GAO, said that in fiscal years 2011 and 2012, for the 49 airports the GAO analyzed, there were 61,000 SPOT referrals, meaning that many passengers apparently displayed “behavioral indicators that indicate mal-intent.”

From that number, 8,700 (13.6%) were referred to a LEO. And from those LEO referrals, 365 (4%) “resulted in an arrest,” said the GAO.

That 4% of 61,000 SPOT referrals is 0.59%. In other words, for the SPOT referrals, 99.41% were not arrested. For the 0.59%, none were arrested for “terrorism.”

For that 0.59% arrested, the GAO stated the following in a footnote: “The SPOT database identifies six reasons for arrest, including (1) fraudulent documents, (2) illegal alien, (3) other, (4) outstanding warrants, (5) suspected drugs, and (6) undeclared currency.”

CNSNews.com asked Director Lord if it were accurate to report that of those 365 persons arrested, not one was arrested for “terrorism”? Lord answered by e-mail: “This is accurate for the arrests but please see footnote 98 and 99 on page 45 of the full report (GAO-14-159) as TSA believes that some of these referrals to law enforcement might be related to terrorism but has no supporting documentation or system to track the basis for these referrals.”

Footnote 98 says: “TSA was unable to provide documentation to support the number of referrals that were forwarded to law enforcement for further investigation for potential ties to terrorism.”

In his statement, Director Lord said, as explained in the November 2013 report, “TSA cannot demonstrate the effectiveness of its behavior detection activities, and available evidence does not support whether behavioral indicators can be used to identify threats to aviation security.”

The report concluded by recommending that “TSA limit future funding for its behavior detection activities,” but “DHS did not concur with our recommendation.”

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TSA Air Marshal Removed From Flight, Arrested After Taking Pictures Up Women’s Skirts (Video)

TSA Air Marshal Removed From Flight And Arrested After Taking Pictures Up Women’s Skirts – Gateway Pundit

A TSA air marshal, Adam Bartsch, was removed and arrested after a passenger noticed the air marshal was taking pictures up women’s skirts. The passenger confronted Adam Bartsch but did not know Adam was a TSA air marshal at the time. The passenger confiscated Adam’s cell phone (used to take pictures) and Adam attempted to escape but was apprehended and arrested.

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The TSA responds to the media reports with claims that such behavior is not tolerated. But keep in mind that there are plenty of articles documenting how TSA not only hires criminals, but the TSA encourages the hiring of criminals due to the fact that they want employees with aggressive tendencies, thus they refuse to investigate the backgrounds rigorously of those hired. The people we should be searching as criminals at airports – are the TSA agents themselves.

Also consider that a similar hiring practice is being applied to those implementing Obamacare, and these criminals misfits are gathering our personal information.

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WTOP reports the following:

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A federal air marshal has been arrested and accused of taking cellphone photographs underneath women’s skirts as they boarded a plane at Nashville International Airport.

Assistant Supervisory Air Marshal in Charge Michael Pascarella told The Associated Press that Adam Bartsch was immediately removed from duty and is in the process of being suspended or fired.

Nashville police say Bartsch was on duty on Southwest Airline Flight 3132 on Thursday when a witness noticed he was taking the photos and grabbed his cellphone. Police say the witness notified a flight attendant and Bartsch was taken off the flight and charged with disorderly conduct.

Pascarella says TSA is assisting with the investigation.

“TSA does not tolerate criminal behavior,” Pascarella said.

The arrest was first reported by Nashville station WKRN-TVWKRN-TV . […]

Bartsch is due in court Nov. 14.

Read more here and here.

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TSA To Permit Tiny Knives, Wiffle Bats And Up To Two Whole Golf Clubs On Planes… Whoopie!

TSA Will Permit Knives, Golf Clubs On U.S. Planes – Bloomberg

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The U.S. Transportation Security Administration will let people carry small pocketknives onto passenger planes for the first time since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, along with golf clubs, hockey sticks and plastic Wiffle Ball-style bats.

The agency will permit knives with retractable blades shorter than 6 centimeters (2.4 inches) and narrower than 1/2 inch at the widest point, TSA Administrator John Pistole said today at an aviation security conference in Brooklyn. The change, to conform with international rules, will take effect April 25.

Pistole, the former No. 2 official at the Federal Bureau of Investigation, has stressed the use of intelligence and “risk- based” security during his tenure leading TSA. The agency is moving away from uniform procedures that apply to every passenger and toward efforts to perform background checks on passengers before they arrive at an airport.

Overseas passengers will no longer have to check the qualifying knives as they pass through the U.S. The agency will still prohibit some knives, including those with locking blades or molded handles, Pistole said. Box cutters, like those used by the Sept. 11 terrorists, and razor blades will still be banned.

The agency will relax its prohibited-item list in other ways, Pistole said. Passengers will be allowed to carry on sticks used to play lacrosse, billiards and hockey, ski poles and as many as two golf clubs, he said.

Sporting Goods

The agency is also carving out two exceptions to its ban on most baseball and softball bats. It will allow souvenir, novelty baseball bats less than 24 inches long and will permit lightweight plastic bats even if they’re more than 2 feet long (61 centimeters).

The sporting goods have been deemed acceptable based on recommendations from a TSA working group that’s trying to weed out commonly confiscated items that don’t present a security threat, agency spokesman David Castelveter said.

“These are popular items we see regularly,” Castelveter said. “They don’t present a risk to transportation security.”

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TSA Assaults And Traumatizes Three-Year-Old Girl In Wheelchair (Video)

TSA Assaults And Traumatizes Three-Year-Old Girl In Wheelchair – TSA Blog

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I wish I could say that this is a new low for the contemptible thugs in blue for whose equipment and “services” taxpayers pay billions of dollars every year.

Sadly, it isn’t. It’s just par for the course; another Day in Despotism here in the Land of the Meek, Home of the Afraid.

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In case you couldn’t bring yourself to watch this indisputable display of abuse – this disgusting mistreatment of a little girl and her family about which her mother (Annie Schulte) and father comment “look at her all dressing like a potential terrorist/drug trafficker; people who roll in on hot pink wheelchairs, wearing a gingerbread coat and clutching a stuffed baby lamb, are just begging to be harassed” – let me itemize the violations and absurdities at hand (perhaps you can identify more; as a mother myself, I’m too upset by what I just watched to further research the laws, statutory and logical):

First, there is the obvious Fourth Amendment violation against unwarranted search and seizure. I don’t care what kind of pretzel logic the TSA twists itself into parroting in order to justify groping a three-year-old in a wheelchair who’s on her way to Disney World: it’s a violation of her Constitutional rights. Period. Full stop.

And this should not stand. Not in the country that calls itself the United States of America. Citizens and residents who accept otherwise should not only be ashamed of themselves, but should, in my opinion, be constantly, and in strenuous terms, be made aware that they’re engaging in a kind of treason against the very freedoms the nation’s founders established (and countless fought for and died to protect), and thus, by extension, debasing the idea of America itself.

Second, travelers are indeed permitted to photograph and/or videotape the so-called “screening procedure” (more accurately, security theatre), including aggressive pat-downs that would be defined as sexual assault in any other context and nude photography of their bodies. The only subject matter exempt from passengers’ freedom-to-document are the screening machines themselves. As shown in the above video, these TSA screeners try to claim otherwise and keep harping on their imagined rule that the passengers can’t record the incident, even as the parents ask them to cite the actual law pertaining thereto.

Third, the tactics here are insensitive and unkind on their face, as well as pointless. Not only is this little girl so obviously terrified to the point of crying out loud, and desperately upset that her comfort toy – her stuffed animal – is being taken away, she is distraught that her parents’ attempts to protect her are being summarily ignored. Imagine how frightening that must be. If indeed the child “alarmed,” the screeners could have resolved the matter by allowing one of the cleared parents to carry her through the metal detector in their arms while they checked her wheelchair for hidden bombs, machetes, or fuselage-piercing grenade launchers.

What will it take for the American public to recognize how wrong this is, all of it, and demand that our so-called leaders put an end to it? Why are citizens not carrying out a full-on economic boycott of the airlines for all non-essential travel? What will it take, if not the unconstitutional persecution of a little child in a wheelchair?

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*VIDEO* The TSA-Nazis Are At It Again