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Airlines Have to Ask Permission to Fly 72 Hours Early 596

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the papers-papers-please dept.
twitter wrote to mention that the TSA (Transport Security Administration) has released a new set of proposed rules that is raising quite a stir among groups ranging from the ACLU to the American Society of Travel Agents. Under the new rules airlines would be required to submit a passenger manifest (including full name, sex, date of birth, and redress number) for all flights departing, arriving, or flying over the United States at least 72 hours prior to departure. Boarding passes will only be issued to those passengers that have been cleared. "Hasbrouck submitted that requiring clearance in order to travel violates the US First Amendment right of assembly, the central claim in John Gilmore's case against the US government over the requirement to show photo ID for domestic travel. [...] ACLU's Barry Steinhardt quoted press reports of 500,000 to 750,000 people on the watch list (of which the no-fly list is a subset). 'If there are that many terrorists in the US, we'd all be dead.' TSA representative Kip Hawley noted that the list has been carefully investigated and halved over the last year. 'Half of grossly bloated is still bloated,' Steinhardt replied."
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Airlines Have to Ask Permission to Fly 72 Hours Early

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  • say goodbuy (Score:5, Insightful)

    by russ1337 (938915) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:28PM (#20958691)
    Say goodbye to last minute business travel = say goodbye to important meetings = say goodbye to business dealings = say goodbye to the economy...
    • Re:say goodbuy (Score:5, Insightful)

      by igjeff (15314) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:32PM (#20958771)
      How about saying goodbye to flying to a funeral.

      They're really gonna expect people to get cleared 72 hours in advance to go to their mother's funeral (to pick an example)?

      Well, I guess they (TPTB at the TSA) continue to demonstrate how utterly clueless they are.
      • Re:say goodbuy (Score:5, Insightful)

        by walt-sjc (145127) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:49PM (#20959085)
        Or seeing your father one last time BEFORE he dies.

        Yep - totally clueless. And before someone suggests it, I should not have to provide the government a REASON why I want to travel on a moment's notice. We should not have to make exceptions for something so wrong.
        • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 12, 2007 @05:02PM (#20960173)
          Sir,

          You should have visited your parents frequently in order to avoid such last minute travel plans. Visiting your loved ones frequently builds stronger families.

          Thank you,

          TSA Rep
        • Re:say goodbuy (Score:5, Informative)

          by GlL (618007) <gil@net-ventu[ ]com ['re.' in gap]> on Friday October 12, 2007 @06:16PM (#20960923)
          From the Kent v. Dulles case in 1957, around the McCarthy era, at the Supreme Court, Justice William O. Douglas' wrote for the court:
          "The right to travel is a part of the 'liberty' of which the citizen cannot be deprived without due process of law under the Fifth Amendment. If that "liberty" is to be regulated, it must be pursuant to the law-making functions of the Congress. . . . . Freedom of movement across frontiers in either direction, and inside frontiers as well, was a part of our heritage. Travel abroad, like travel within the country, . . . may be as close to the heart of the individual as the choice of what he eats, or wears, or reads. Freedom of movement is basic in our scheme of values."
          If we cannot see the "watch lists", then there is no way for us to challenge our presence on such a list. That in my opinion is taking away someone's right to travel without due process.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by cyphergirl (186872)
            I second your thoughts and will add a snippet that I posted to my blog after returning from a last minute business trip today:

            "I had an o-dark-thirty flight home from Orlando this morning. When I got to the Southwest counter, there was no line which was a cool thing. I stepped up to a kiosk, and a guy about my age and with no baggage stepped up to the one next to me. I checked in and was handing my bags over when I heard the guy explaining that his flight doesn't leave until tomorrow morning but he was chec
      • by hkfczrqj (671146)
        When my mother passed away in January, I had to fly internationally to go to her funeral. You don't know how much shi^H^H^H screening I had to put up with just for paying at the counter, besides myself being emotionally distressed.

        72 hrs is just, well... no need to repeat what most /.ers are saying now.
    • Re:say goodbuy (Score:5, Insightful)

      by griffjon (14945) <`GriffJon' `at' `gmail.com'> on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:47PM (#20959033) Homepage Journal
      First, you can still book on short notice; this 72 hour lead time is just to get the bulk of the clearance out of the way (claim the TSA):

      ...unless the individual makes a reservation within 72 hours of the scheduled flight departure time, changes a flight within
      72 hours of the scheduled flight departure time, or requests to enter a sterile area upon arrival at the airport.

      In such cases, TSA would require covered aircraft operators to send the required information to TSA immediately. TSA, in coordination with the TSC where necessary, would compare the passenger and non-traveler information obtained from each covered
      aircraft operator to information contained in the watch list.


      but they did manage to sneak in additional papers-please wording:

      Not issue to an individual a boarding pass or authorization to enter a sterile area or permit an individual to board an aircraft or enter a sterile area if the individual does not provide a verifying identity document when requested under circumstances described above, unless otherwise authorized by TSA.


      It's still bad, and hasslesome, and invasive of privacy, but not outright bullet-in-foot material.
    • by SuperKendall (25149) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:52PM (#20959119)
      If you read the actual PDF, the requirement is 30 minutes before the flight for the TSA to clear. They just want the airline to send what they have 72 hours before, and require a full name (and only a full name) to make a reservation.


      Hardly the ball-buster everyone is making it out to be.

      • by dgatwood (11270) on Friday October 12, 2007 @04:05PM (#20959315) Journal

        Okay, either A. the TSA really needs three days for clearance because they do hand checking, or B. they do an automated check and don't need that time. Let's examine each case.

        If it really takes 72 hours to check someone out thoroughly, then they can't realistically let people be added to flights after that. Otherwise, the terrorists will just book at the last minute and will be checked more quickly and will have a much greater chance of getting missed in the rush.

        If it doesn't really take 72 hours to check somebody out, then the TSA is just bullying the airlines into doing extra work, thus raising the cost of travel for everybody with no actual benefit.

        I fail to see the upside here.

  • Your payperz, plezz (Score:5, Interesting)

    by TrentTheThief (118302) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:28PM (#20958701)
    Back when I was young, the Soviet Union required internal passports... Seems to me that things are rapidly progressing that way here.... Maybe it's time to emigrate to Russia now that they're freer than Americans in America.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:30PM (#20958751)
      It's gonna get posted 50 times, so I might as well get it out of the way. (Posted AC for no karma whoring.)

      Capt. Vasili Borodin: I will live in Montana. And I will marry a round American woman and raise rabbits, and she will cook them for me. And I will have a pickup truck... maybe even a "recreational vehicle." And drive from state to state. Do they let you do that?
      Captain Ramius: I suppose.
      Capt. Vasili Borodin: No papers?
      Captain Ramius: No papers, state to state.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by cashman73 (855518)
      You must be new here,... the correct response for your statement should have been phrased beginning with, "In Soviet Russia,..."
  • oh boy (Score:5, Insightful)

    by NiceGeek (126629) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:29PM (#20958709)
    Knowing exactly when and where someone is traveling to with 72 hours notice...naw this will never be abused.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Knowing exactly when and where someone is traveling to with 72 hours notice...naw this will never be abused.


      Look at the upside. I would love to have 72 hour notice before my manager sends me somewhere. Hell, I'd settle for 24 hours..
  • by Dusty00 (1106595) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:29PM (#20958711)
    Clerk at Airport: "I'm sorry Mrs. Clinton, there seems to be a mix up, you're not clear to fly, don't worry we can get it fixed and have you on the same flight in three days. What? Oh the presidential debate is tonight? Hmm, well I might be able to get you on tomorrow..."
  • by jandrese (485) <kensama@vt.edu> on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:29PM (#20958729) Homepage Journal
    I guess last minute flights are out the window then huh? It's not like people don't have emergencies that require them to be across the country by tomorrow. I'm sure the counterargument is that "it does us no good to discover that someone 'suspicious' was on a flight that landed two days ago, he might have been a bomber!", but frankly I don't think the extra security is worth the inconvenience in this case. I know that is a rather cavalier thing to say, but in essence all security measures like this are a tradeoff vs. convenience and I feel this one goes way too far.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:30PM (#20958749)
    All American citizens who wish to retain their freedom of movement should immediately begin informing their local authorities whenever they travel, no matter the distance or means of transport. Imagine how quickly the police, FBI, CIA, TSA, et cetera will get tired reports filed by self-reporting citizens explaining in detail that they need to go to work, stop by the grocery store, or visit their cousin in Roxbury....
  • by CodeShark (17400) <ellsworthpcNO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:31PM (#20958767) Homepage
    So, if one of us techie types has a client whose information infostructure is downed hard for some reason, my company can no longer just put me on a same day flight to fix it? Or my dad (who is nearly 80) has a heart attack and I need to get there immediately or he dies first...Aside from the Airlines and Travel agents pitching a fit, business interests won't tolerate it, personal interests won't tolerate it - in fact no-one I can think of will tolerate it.


    Apparently the TSA has forgotten that this is America and we go where we like when we like and how we like (unless we're in prison, of course) without Uncle Sam knowing where we are. Like the commercial says, " we are free to move about the country."

  • Missed flights? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by WPIDalamar (122110) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:32PM (#20958789) Homepage
    How many people have missed their flight and caught a later one the same day?

    Imagine being stuck 3 days before you can go home.
  • by coug_ (63333) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:33PM (#20958809) Homepage
    My grandfather died a few years ago, and I was on a plane the next day to visit with family. Now, it ended up that he wasn't buried until the following week, but if he had been buried sooner and I had had to wait 3 days prior to flying out, I would've missed his funeral.
  • by jtroutman (121577) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:38PM (#20958879)
    This'll never fly.
  • by G4from128k (686170) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:38PM (#20958893)
    The TSA seems to be doing all it can to kill the U.S. economy by making travel even more of a nightmare. I know plenty of business travelers that don't know their schedule 72 hours in advance -- they go where ever they are needed when ever they are needed. The more red tape a country throws down at the border, the less business that people will do here.

    I'm sure bin Laden is laughing in his cave right now. He's used a classic martial arts move -- using the strength of the opponent against the opponent. Bin Laden wants to the isolate the U.S. from the world and the TSA is doing a great job of that.
  • by amcdiarmid (856796) <amcdiarmNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:39PM (#20958903) Journal
    The Government in general, and specifically this administration, seems to want to be Orwellian in what it knows about everyone.

    I remember in the 90's when the Secret Service first started closing off traffic near the White House. The easy North/South move on the West side got bogged down from the traffic problems: Penn Ave N of the White House is shut down; E Street S. of the White House is shut down. There is now an area of eight blocks where you can't go West without going North, or South. Under Clinton, the street got opened - for about a week until some bombing far away.

    It's not that I object to security. It's just I object to security that pushes attacks onto innocents & away from those who "incited" the attacks in the first place.

    I also remember being able to get onto planes without any time consuming security screening. Now we have to wait for everything to be checked forever. The screening does not make us any more secure*, it just takes longer.

    Go big propaganda fear-mongering! we didn't need the free time to get to anywhere anyhow. If we did, we'd all be rich enough to have our own planes.

    *: The airline screening does not really make us more secure, as there are still ways to get shit on a plane: Metal Detectors test for guns sold in the US, not guns sold outside the US with lower metal content. Or Ceramic guns. Or Knives without metal (say those nice expensive Kyoceria ceramic knives).

    If you like: 2/3rds of a passenger planes cargo is other than passengers and their baggage: It's Air Freight packages. Those packages could easily hold a bomb. Or a passenger could check a bomb with a wireless control that can be carried in the cabin.

    the only thing that has been done in the name of security that makes planes more secure was making real security doors on the Pilot's compartment.

    • Excellent point. I just wanted to mention that Clinton had three assassination attempts in his first year. To quote the New York Times "Since Mr. Clinton moved to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, the White House has come under assault by a small plane that crashed under the President's bedroom last September and a deranged gunman who was recently convicted of trying to assassinate the President a month later when he fired shots that struck the building but did not injure anyone. In December, the mansion was struck
  • by tjstork (137384) <todd.bandrowsky@NOSpAM.gmail.com> on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:39PM (#20958911) Homepage Journal
    These guys do not deserve to have a budget. If a terrorist tries to take over your plane, you get up and kick his ass. No need for all this fear mongering and travel inconvenience. It's just make work for security contractors that does absolutely nothing. The best guarantee of your safety are your fists, and not someone elses forms.
  • by Knight of Shadows (1163917) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:40PM (#20958919)
    They can have my privacy when they pry it out of my cold, dead, fingers. It's simple, folks. Don't fly. I know, I know, we all want to line up at the gates to the abattoir like good little government programmed automatons, but this will do nothing but show them we deserve jackboots kicking in our doors. Do the right thing. Just don't buy their crap. Don't fly. When the airlines start losing money out the ass, then maybe they'll see we're not to be made victims due to idiot fundamentalist extremists, or government abuse of power, or to said government's inability to protect anyone. Hit them where it hurts, folks: in the pocketbook. I'm willing to bet that if over 200 million Americans decided not to fly for a few months, you'd see them scramble to change things.
  • by BenEnglishAtHome (449670) * on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:40PM (#20958927)
    I've always dreamed of having enough money and spare time to pack a small suitcase, go to the airport, look at the departure boards, figure out what's leaving in the next couple of hours, and buy a first-class ticket to a destination I've never visited before.

    What? I have to know three days in advance everywhere I want to go?

    Shit.

    I guess I'll just have to dream about having enough money to have my own Gulfstream, since once you get to that level of wealth, the rules that apply to the little people are no longer a problem.
  • Faster to drive (Score:3, Informative)

    by devnullkac (223246) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:40PM (#20958931) Homepage

    If you can keep up the pace, you can drive by car between any 2 points in the continental US in 72 hours: 60mph * 72h = 4320 miles. If you've got an emergency, you're better off driving, no matter how far.

  • by SuperKendall (25149) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:40PM (#20958935)
    From the PDF for the PROPOSED rule changes (not even final yet, still in public comment phase!):

    "Additionally, for reservations made within 72 hours of scheduled flight departure time, covered aircraft operators would be required to transmit Secure Flight Passenger Data as soon as possible."

    The TSA is just asking airlines to send what they have 72 hours prior to the flight, so they can correct false alarms earlier and do a better job of identifying problems.

    RTFPDF.

    Sounds good to me.
  • by RaigetheFury (1000827) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:41PM (#20958937)
    I hate laws like these. They promote the current trend of being afraid. That's the whole goal of terrorists. It costs so much more to operate an airline now. Millions upon millions of people fly ever year. You have more of a chance of dying in a car crash than dying in a plane. But you never hear that statistic when you see a "Horrible plane crash!" news line.

    I refuse to be afraid of this. I refuse to support any measure that would protect me 1% more if it took away my rights. This does that. I refuse to live my life afraid of dying when it takes me 2 hours to get through airline security when it should take 20minutes max.

    I don't travel by plane at all anymore because of this. I go to Canada once per year and now I HAVE to get a passport because of paranoid people.

    Stop being afraid, start defending your rights or we're going to end up needing permission to travel between states.
  • by Slashdot Parent (995749) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:41PM (#20958947)
    So let me get this straight. There are 500,000 to 750,000 suspected terrorists in this country, yet we haven't had a major attack since 9/11/2001?

    There are 300M people in the US. Are you seriously telling me that at least 1 in 600 is on a terrorist watch list?

    Something tells me that getting onto a terrorist watch list involves something other than being a terrorist. Otherwise, this just doesn't make any sense.
    • by GodfatherofSoul (174979) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:54PM (#20959143)
      Lots of people with no business on the watch list ended up on it without clear guidelines for getting yourself removed. Lots of vocal opponents of the Bush administration like Senator Ted Kennedy, a real terrorist name if ever I heard one ;( and Randi Rhodes, the screaming liberal radio host. Of course, if you complain then not only are you a terrorist sympathizer, you must hate freedom too. Reading conservative blogs, you see how funny they seem to think this is.
  • by RichMan (8097) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:43PM (#20958983)
    What sort of computers are the TSA using if it takes 3 days to match a name to a database.

    What century are we living in?

    1 hour before boarding is reasonable. Allows data entry and organization for response.
    Anything more is just a sloppy system.
  • by smooth wombat (796938) on Friday October 12, 2007 @03:58PM (#20959211) Homepage Journal
    Yeah, yeah, mark me troll. Whatever.


    The fact remains that the very thing we keep hearing those 'trrists' hate, freedom, is essentially dead in this country. For all the talk of how we're supposedly spreading freedom to an occupied country, it's just that, talk, since this administration is hell bent on destroying those very same freedoms in this country.

    Between this newest revelation to track when people go on flights, requiring a national ID card, listening to our phone conversations without a warrant to preventing people from paying their bills [shns.com] until the source of their money is ok'd, we no longer live in a truly free society.

    Oh sure, I can write this without fear of being arrested, but can I go on a flight without being classified as a threat? What does the file the FBI (and at least one other three-letter agency) have on me (and they do) say?

    Bin Laden and his cohorts are probably laughing* in their cave at how they've succeeded in their first goal of undermining our society. How many times a week do we hear about law enforcement going into apoplectic seizures when someone thinks they saw some shifty character hanging around somewhere or an innocent package left behind shuts down some place?

    It's a sad state of affairs when the people of this country don't care that their right to be free has been taken away from them. After all, there's those un-reality shows to watch. That the people who only a decade or so ago were crowing about how America is the greatest country on the planet, with all kinds of freedoms not enjoyed by many other countries, are now so willing to go along with this administration's excuses about why the rights enshrined in the Constitution must be taken away to protect them.

    The quote about give them an inch and they'll take a mile certainly applies to this administration. Even worse, whoever comes into power next won't have the balls to undo the vast majority of wrongs being perpetrated against society but will instead be more concerned about getting re-elected than serving the people.

    The rights of the Constitution had a good run of what, over two hundred years? Not bad all things considered. Now though, we are moving into a new era which will require citizens to involuntarily give up rights which have existed since the founding of the country in an effort to defeat terrorism. It will be a long, never-ending battle but by giving up our rights and acquiescing to the newest form a facist police-like-state, we can be assured that we will be safe and secure in our wiretapped, surveillanced, dwellings.

    * I'm assuming that like most leaders, the rules they want to impose on others does not apply to them

  • by netsavior (627338) on Friday October 12, 2007 @04:58PM (#20960097)
    The US is still in the 19th century as far as rail travel goes compared to the rest of the world. Maybe this will help us realize that there are other options.
  • by dottyslashdottydot (1008859) on Friday October 12, 2007 @06:13PM (#20960887)
    This was all over the Canadian news [www.ctv.ca] last night, as they also want the passenger lists of any flights merely flying over American airspace, for example, Montreal to Mexico City. They were originally going to have this rule apply to domestic flights that happen to cross American airspace (which is common with a flight like Toronto to Vancouver), but have thankfully backed down. Oh yeah, and people now have 10 days to comment about these new rules.
  • balance (Score:5, Interesting)

    by drDugan (219551) on Friday October 12, 2007 @06:35PM (#20961095) Homepage
    On a long enough time scale, most everything balances out.

    The premise of the libertarian movement is small governement. There is a reason that a candidate like Ron Paul is getting so much press and support now - the actions of the government are becoming onerous and encroaching on basic human freedoms.

    What the world needs now is a large group of people to collectively tell the state (Read: US FEDERAL GOVERENMNET) to "Back the fuck off" and stay where they belong: defending the country against known threats, domestic and international and creating real domesitc security (not this fake, fear mongering/engineered solution cycle).

    "Watch lists" are part of LAZY POLICE WORK. If there is a person that is planning something - investigate them, charge them, arest them. Follow the laws we have now. All the rest of this crap in the name of security is just plain ineffective, lazy behavior driven by the need to cover their asses and assauge their fears that they will be accountable if any thing happens.

    The reality is that there is no way to stop terrorism, and people have to get OK with that. If some sicko wants to kill a bunch of people, he or she will. If some sicko wants to fill a truck with fertilizer and gas, and drive into a building, they will. Tough shit. Somebody should have listened to their pleas for help long ago. Living is a world that makes it impossible for someone to bring down a plane is not a world that I want to live in, becuase it means draconian crontrols on freedoms. Those same freedoms we fought for and won hundreds of years ago, and many have died defending. I'd much rather we build a world where people DON'T WANT TO BRING DOWN PLANES. That is completely possible, and if we spent our energies there instead of the current track, we would all have happier, healthier lives.

    The debate is not "should we have watch lists or not". The debate is, "who came up with this ridiculous crap and how soon can we remove them from power?"

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