TSA brainiac pepper-sprays self, colleagues; 6 hospitalized

Ah, yes, the Brain Trust in Blue, as our writer Deborah Newell Tornello calls them — every time you think they’ve topped themselves, they prove you wrong.

In the latest episode of The Adventures of Darwin Award Candidates, a TSA agent at JFK (source of so many shenanigans) was “playing around” with a canister of pepper spray he found on the floor. Oops!

The Daily Mail tells the story:

An airport security worker who discovered a container of pepper spray at JFK sprayed five of his colleagues with the chemical as he was ‘playing around’ with the canister.

All six TSA screeners were taken to hospital, and security checks at JFK were said to have been held up for at least 15 minutes following the incident in Terminal 2.

Chris Yves Dabel is said to have told Port Authority officials he discovered the canister on the floor at a security checkpoint, and and ‘thought it was a laser pointer’.

That’s right, the brilliant “security” soldiers On The Front Lines In The War On Terrorthought a canister of pepper spray was a laser pointer. And these are the people who are supposed to be able to tell the difference between an insulin pump, a purse, a belt buckle, or a breast prosthesis, and a bomb.

The Gothamist also has a report on this latest escapade. And wait’ll you read the CYA statement by the TSA brass.

Oh, those wacky TSA agents — ya just can’t keep ’em down!

(Photo: babble.com)

  • Notice: our new commenter “Correct Facts” is posting from a DHS server. In other words, he works for the Department of Homeland Security, which oversees the TSA. Here’s his IP address:

    IP Address Details
    IP Address:
    Hostname: cbcp1.dhs.gov
    Reverse Lookup: cbcp1.dhs.gov
    ISP: Department of Homeland Security
    Company: Department of Homeland Security
    City: Springfield
    State/Province: Virginia
    Country: United States

    For now, I’m not going to reveal his email address. But I might still change my mind.

    • Johnny? Johnny Pistole? Please let it be little Johnny, please please please please pleeeeeeeze?

      • No, it’s somebody named Wes. The same Wes, probably, who used to (maybe still does) post at TUG — Travel Underground — a chat forum.

        • Drontil

          I’m fairly certain it’s not West.

          BTW, anyone who works for any agency under DHS, even TSA, will show up as using a DHS IP address.

    • Drontil

      Oh, oh – people have gotten in trouble for doing that in the past!

    • TSAisTerrorism

      I called it. I totally called it.

      It is so easy to spot these a*holes.

      Maybe I should be a BDO. I can spot terrorists, too. Only I can pick out the real ones. Booga Booga!

    • Should forward that info to DHS OIG.

  • Fisher1949

    It isn’t like this hasn’t happened before.

    Nine TSA agents accidentally doused with
    pepper spray at S.J. airport – SFGate‏

    One of these times the morons assigned to airport security are going to get someone killed and it might be a passenger.

    Attendant’s gun accidentally discharged at Philadelphia airport

    • TSAisTerrorism

      To be fair, the gun was discharged by a police office, who, by all accounts should have known better.

      But yeah, I’m pretty sure if TSA finds a real bomb, they’ll detonate it at the checkpoint. For your safety, of course.

  • Chris Bray

    What…the fuck…will it take?

    • I second that emotion. WHAT, exactly?

      • For people to wake up and fight for the 4th Amendment, which doesn’t have a lobby like the 1st and 2nd.

        • Daisiemae

          That’s because there’s no money involved. If any big corporations were losing money by our loss of 4th amendment rights, you can bet the baby’s milk money there would be a lobby.

          Oh wait! There IS a lot of money involved. Corporations that make all those scanners would lose a lot of money if the Courts suddenly reinstated our 4th Amendment rights. So there is a lobby…AGAINST 4th Amendment rights.

          • nveric

            Stop flying.

          • I have. Over two years ago. I’d like to see the airlines go under, because then things would change. But as I’ve said umpteen times, most people aren’t going to stop flying. And some people are forced to fly — for work or medical procedures.

          • I’ve stopped flying too. Haven’t set foot on a plane since mid-2009. You’re preaching to the choir here!

          • TSAisTerrorism

            I fly for free and pay instead to take the train.

  • Correct Facts

    Nice graphic… Lisa, did you create that on your own or did you “sample” that like you did for the rest of the article. Hey I am a journalist!…I will take what I want and simply interject my bias so conspiracy theorists will be my friend. BRILLIANT!

    • TSAisTerrorism

      I see that you are both clueless and stupid. Obviously a TSA plant.

      • Correct Facts

        Interesting that you would use the word “plant”. Keep smoking yours and make sure you wear your tin foil helmet.

        • RB

          Question Correct Facts, is it permissible to use government computers to blog or is that waste, fraud, and abuse? Perhaps you are paid to do this.

          • Susan Richart

            Notice he’s not been back. 🙂

          • Taking the cowards way out. Perfect fit for TSA airport security screeners.

    • Mr. or Ms. “Correct Facts” (ha!), as you can see, I credited the source for the graphic.

      • Correct Facts

        Lisa, obviously you missed my point. Yes, you did credit the source (your Freshman English teacher is having a prideful moment). I am commenting on your lack of substantial original thought or commentary.

        • TSAisTerrorism

          Where’s your substantial original thought or commentary?

          All I see from you is a bunch of “I love TSA” trolling.

        • Daisiemae

          The TSA employee took care of the original thought by deciding that pepper spray was a laser pointer and then spraying herself and others with it.

        • ^^Troll. New kind, too! An Embarrassment-Deflection Troll: (Noun) online commenter, working at the behest of an employer or group and invariably posting as Anonymous or using a pseudonym, who fans out to watchdog sites and posts baseless ad hominem statements in a risible effort to deflect attention from recent embarrassing news about said employer or group.

          • Susan Richart

            TSA blog is full of those kinds!

    • For someone whose first name is Correct, your grammar sucks sourballs. (For next time: “..sample that like as you did for the rest of the article.”) Also, too: journalists and bloggers quote one another all the time, online and in dead-tree media. The link-thingies you see in online posts? Those are how we cite sources.

      Welcome to 2013, Brain Truster!

      • Correct Facts

        I am not a Troll by your definition. I have been critical of
        your editorial condemnation of an agency without an ounce of research or follow
        up. However, name calling is part of your style so I am ok with that.

        To give you a little somthing about me…I am a person that likes to read and determine the facts
        prior to making any knee jerk reaction on any issue.

        I ride the fence on several issues, understanding that the
        world is complex. I am not naïve to think that tough issues are solved by
        complaining about them. I still have hope that there are some individuals in
        the world that have balance in their lives and can see the whole issue before
        passing judgment.

        I believe that articles such as this one should have more
        editorial balance than a second grade playground tiff. “you’re a “poo-poo head”; “no, you’re a poo-poo

        Different levels of awareness are needed by journalists in
        order to open up discussion and dialogue on all issues. Climate change, Gay
        Marriage, Gun control and International relations are all areas where, if discussed
        in a positive way, we can build understanding and cooperation.

        The writing on this site builds nothing but hate,
        conspiracy, and contributes to the dumbing down of society. I know that this post will not truly be read
        and I will be called all kinds of names… All I can say is you should keep on pandering
        to your readers. I have better things to do.

        • Mr. or Ms. Correct Facts, this blog is loaded with facts. With logic, risk assessment, statistical analysis, and empirical evidence. If you can’t find it, you’re obviously not looking.

          All that empirical evidence, however, doesn’t mean we can’t also have fun, which we did in this post. And if you can’t see the dark humor in a TSA agent mistaking pepper spray for a laser pointer, well, different strokes.

        • Drontil


        • Sorry, “Correct Facts”, but you are precisely a troll by the definition of the word, and an Embarrassment Deflection Troll, by my definition of the phrase. Your ISP traces to the DHS. BUSTED!

          As for “the writing on this site [building] nothing but hate, conspiracy, and [contributing] to the dumbing down of society”, you’ve just ID’d yourself as a Tone Troll, too–someone who, rather than address the facts (yes, facts) and logic (that too) within any given argument or post, attacks the person’s tone: complaining loudly that he or she is hateful, mean, sowing conspiracy theories, name-calling, and so on.

          When thwarted repeatedly, the Logic-Bereft Troll Who Has Presented Not a Single Fact or Logical Refutation will usually engage in a move known as The Flounce: a figurative stomp of the foot accompanied by a declaration that this place is full of horrible, name-calling people who just tell their audience what they want to hear, and that he or she has better things to do.

          You hit the Troll Trifecta, Mr. or Ms. Correct Facts!

        • Looks like CorrectFacts wet their diaper and ran home to mommie.

  • RB

    A TSA Screener who can’t identify dangerous items and on top of that a TSA BDO.

    Blogger Bob, can you explain how this highly trained (TSA’s Claim, not mine) TSA screener was to stupid to identify mace?

  • Susan Richart

    ““Yesterday morning, out of an abundance of caution, six TSA officers at JFK Airport were transported to a local hospital after being exposed to pepper spray. Officers were examining an abandoned item to determine its contents and to move it out of harm’s way when it accidentally discharged. Travelers and other airport employees were not exposed to the spray.”

    “out of an abundance of caution”….thought they’d dropped that one quite some time ago.

    The asshats who played with this “abandoned item” and the other asshat(s) who tried to justify it……gave me a good snicker for this afternoon.

  • TSAisTerrorism

    Apparently this braniac is one of those amazing BDO types.

    For reals. You think someone who can’t tell the difference between a laser pointer and pepper spray is going to be able to “read microexpressions” and find the terrorist? BWAHAHAHAHAHA!


  • Incredible.

    I’m pretty sure pepper spray is a “prohibited item.” How can you search for prohibited items if you can’t identify them? What, exactly, do they teach in the 20 hours of intensive anti-terrorist training that new agents get? How to pin on your badge without stabbing yourself? And what does it say about the recruiter and the interviewers who hired this person?

    “Hand grenades? What hand grenades? It’s just a bag full of avocados!”

    • I’m dying here, Robert. “How to pin on your badge without stabbing yourself”! ROTFLMAOASTC (the last four are “and scaring the cat”).