Terrorism FUD wins again

I’m no big fan of EasyRyan but I think Ryanair have a point in threatening the UK government over the security hysteria that followed last week’s terror plot. In the aftermath of last week, it’s now becoming increasingly difficult to take hand luggage onto planes and this is helping to pander to terrorists everywhere. I sympathyise with the comments made today about how the UK government is dealing with the situation and even though I don’t think Ryanair have a legal leg to stand on, I hope they help to win some kind of backlash against the powers that be. The government need a large injection of realism to aid their “governance” of all the little people.

Either you allow baggage onto planes, or you don’t. Either you allow fluids or you don’t. What you don’t do is apply an uneven unstandardized set of “requirements” on to the traveling public in different locales and at different times. I have seen first hand just how they apply different standards at different airports and on different occasions and have seen the ineptitude of these security folks first hand. They don’t care about your security – they care about targets and getting a bonus from the company to whom the passenger screening has been outsourced to (probably to the lowest bidder, too). In turn, security companies care about making profit for their shareholders. You just don’t outsource security in airports and expect to be taken seriously – and some of us see right through all that farce.

But isn’t it brilliant how the US and UK have overreacted? Over the last week, we’ve had one plane diverted because a woman had a panic attack and an airport closed down after a pregnant woman of pakistani origin had some cream that might have been explosive. At the same time, we’ve had one passenger get back onto a plane and a 12 year old boy walk onto a plane without being checked by anyone (until he was on the plane itself). The right-wing media have had a field day with all their stupidly pointless animations and GIANT RED ALERT SIGNS on the screen and global terrorism has won the victory of making life just that little bit more miserable for the traveling public.

It is still safer to fly than to walk down many streets late at night. It’s safer to fly than it is to drive a car, or cross the street, or go into some banks, or do many other things that we take for granted. Heck, you’re almost as likely to win the lottery as get caught up in an incident – and when was the last time you won the lottery? But it’s still somehow necessary to go nuts and pander to extremists. And now we apparently need more profiling to take place and more ID cards and more <insert government surveillance here> to make our lives safer. I don’t feel any less secure than I did a week ago – just now I know about one more plot. Here’s a radical idea: let’s spend more money on curing disease and making cars safer. Let’s save a lot more people every day. Meanwhile, I’m still going to be flying.


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