Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Deep Thought

When Arte Moreno bought the "Los Angeles" Angels, the first thing he did was to lower the cost of beer at Angels Stadium. This move immediately won him the hearts of skeptical fans, and for a year or so after that, he could do no wrong in their eyes.

In a similar vein, I think Barack Obama's first move as President should be to remove the idiotic "no liquids" rule on commercial airline travel. Think that would convince some McCain voters that he's a pretty good guy?

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! If you have travel plans, I hope it all goes well.


The Law Talking Guy said...

I don't know if that particular rule change is the best, but I think Bell Curve is absolutely correct that a terrific thing to do is to make an immediate, tangible, positive impact on people's lives.

Pombat said...

That particular rule change would be fantastic. It's an absolutely dumb rule - you're still allowed up to a litre of stuff, along with a handy sealable bag to mix it all up in. I'm sure any number of chemists could make some very nasty stuff with that allowance.

And it's made even dumber by the fact that the general security regulations on internal US flights (like the ones that were successfully hijacked for 9-11) are so lax compared to international standards - if you fly from Canada to the US, you're not even allowed a pair of tweezers, however if you're on an internal US flight, scissors with blades up to four inches long are absolutely fine!

Given that so many people fly within the US, and/or know people who do / hear stories about it, and given that removing this rule would not have any financial impact on the government (as reducing a tax would), but would in fact make air travel quicker and more efficient, probably requiring less staff (could even be safer if the same number of staff were maintained, but redeployed elsewhere), and given that the media would run tons of stories on it (hopefully positive!), it'd be a great move.

USwest said...

Not to mention that it was determined the claim by the British that these guys were going to make liquid bombs was found groundless.

Time to lift it. The only looser would be Ziploc.

Dr. Strangelove said...

When first heard that, for fear of liquid explosives, they had banned liquids altogether, I said sarcastically, "Well thank god nobody has ever invented a solid explosive."

Despite what USWest wrote--that it was all groundless--people still say, "Well, you can't be too careful!" Um, yes you can. Apparently, TSA = CYA.

The Law Talking Guy said...

Canadians can do a lot of damage with tweezers. Maybe that's it...

I guess I don't really know what's behind the no-liquids rule. It certainly appears idiotic to the outsider, but maybe there's some peculiar threat that we don't know about - for example, maybe a ton of liquid explosives were stolen from US forces in Iraq and nobody wants to talk about it, or Tom's toothpaste becomes volatile at 10,000 feet.

Pombat said...

It's not just Canadians - it's all international flights, despite the fact that the real threat is hijack of internal US flights. Which is why I find it so idiotic.

Even if there is a peculiar threat that we don't know about, it's still a dumb rule - one terrorist, with one litre of liquid explosives, would still be enough to do a lot of damage to a plane, if not blow it up completely. A larger group could manage to blow it up completely, or split up and take several planes, or use a little of their explosives to get into the cockpit in order to hijack the plane, etc.

If there really is a credible liquid threat, the only sensible response would be to ban all liquids from every flight.

Anonymous said...

One thing I've noticed is that TSA agents seem more and more uninterested in enforcing the no liquid rule. I'll have my little Ziploc bag all packed and they barely glance at it. My lipstick stays in my purse and they don't even notice.

That being said, I do print out all of the TSA rules just in case I need to argue with them over baby stuff...though I must admit they have become somewhat more rational about milk and formula.

-Seventh Sister

Raised By Republicans said...

I have a pen knife/mini swiss army knife on my key ring. If I forget and take it with me on a trip it gets confiscated. I've lost two of these things that way. The idea seems to be that I could possibly use the inch long letter opening blade as a weapon. I once asked a retired military badass type guy about the logic of the rule. I asked him if he could use my little swiss army knife to serious injure someone. "Sure." He said. Then I asked if he could do the same with the car keys attached to it. "Oh, sure."

So why don't they ban keys too?

USWest said...

Hey, in a movie, I once saw a guy killed when the flight attendant jabbed a metal fork into his heart.

After India, I think we have way more serious possibilities than planes.

Those guys ran that terrorist attack like a special ops mission preformed by a professional military force. That should worry all of us in a big way.