The TSA’s so-called “behavior detection program” is an expensive, risible failure. Or as we like to call it, voodoo.
TSA’s program, Screening of Passengers by Observation Techniques (SPOT), which now has 2,800 workers, began in 2007 and has so far cost $878 million. The program’s goal is to spot potential terrorists through behavioral clues, but it has been criticized for possible racial profiling.
The Department of Homeland Security’s inspector general said in a 41-page report released Wednesday that the TSA doesn’t effectively assess the program or have a comprehensive training program.
No, Virginia, say it ain’t so!
Meanwhile, TSA Administrator John Pistole is, of course, downplaying the report and continuing to spout mind-numbing PR pabulum about the many-times-discredited program. Honestly, you can’t make this stuff up:
TSA doesn’t reveal what suspicious behavior will trigger additional screening. But security experts say shifty eyes and sweating are among the traits that raise suspicions.
“Shifty eyes and sweating.” Really? Really?? And “experts say”? Who writes this shit?
But the TSA — and the media — have a history of doing this.
Never mind that the voodoo program has zero credibility and relies on the most crude kind of racial profiling that has resulted in abuse of innocent passengers again and again. Never mind that this abuse and lack of credibility have been publicized again and again.
We all know it doesn’t matter. None of it matters. Because facts don’t matter. And as long as facts don’t matter, the TSA and its idiocy will be with us.
(Photo: JD Hancock/Flickr Creative Commons)