Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Transportation Government Security United States News

TSA Moving X-ray Body Scanners To Smaller Airports 168

Posted by Soulskill
from the shuffle-it-around-so-it-looks-like-we're-doing-something dept.
OverTheGeicoE writes "If you're concerned about possible health effects from TSA's X-ray body scanners, you might be pleased to learn that TSA is making changes. TSA is removing X-ray body scanners from major airports including Los Angeles International, Boston's Logan, Chicago's O'Hare, and New York City's JFK. Then again, these changes might not please you at all, because they are not mothballing the offending devices. No, they are instead moving them to smaller airports like the one in Mesa, AZ. Is this progress, or is TSA just moving potentially dangerous scanners from 'Blue' areas to 'Red' ones right before a presidential election?"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

TSA Moving X-ray Body Scanners To Smaller Airports

Comments Filter:
  • by Ukab the Great (87152) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:08PM (#41708793)

    Are vastly underrepresented in the mutant superhero business and the government has finally decided to do something about it.

  • And... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Revotron (1115029) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:10PM (#41708819)
    ...politics has what to do with this, now? Just felt like throwing out blind accusations that the TSA is trying to give Republicans cancer?
    • Re:And... (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:23PM (#41708953)

      I think the implication is that Obama is moving the scanners to red states in an effort to increase his votes in those states and (possibly) flip one of them to blue. You would do this by impressing red voters with the "security technology" of the TSA and appearing to address the supposed security concerns of red voters. That's just my interpretation of the comment, I'm not saying I agree.

      As far as I know, you'd have to be pretty delusional to think that anyone will be impressed with the scanners... but I guess it's possible.

      I suspect the real reason is that TSA wishes to roll out something newer and more expensive to the country's major airports and needs to create space and need for them (by eliminating the older body scanners).

      • I'm pretty sure the implication was that moving them to areas that were absolutely red would make people happier in areas that are more undecided.
        • by scot4875 (542869)

          Except if that's their goal, why bother moving them? Just disable them and store them wherever they are to make the undecided areas "happier", then bring them back after the elections.

          The whole implication is fucking stupid. The TSA is already fucking stupid enough without trumped up political implications. Article submission deserves to be modded troll.

          --Jeremy

      • If that implication were to have any merit:
        1. Obama would have had to have done this earlier.
        2. We'd need evidence conservative voters respond to evidence rather than affiliation.
        3. Voters would have to believe Obama was against the scanners - as far as I know he hasn't done anything to fight them. If anything, he's been yet another proponent. This is one thing that isn't likely to change at all based on who is in the oval office.
    • by rrohbeck (944847)

      It's very obvious that people in red states are more tolerant of environmental degradation so this makes perfect sense. If it's intentional is a different question. It might just be that airport managers in other places push back more.

      • by Firehed (942385)

        Also, they tend to believe more in the idea that our security theater is effective. Hypothetically it makes both sides happier.

    • I think it's simpler than that.

      Statistically speaking, people who live in big cities are more against TSA than people who live in smaller cities in fly-over states (who are pro-TSA because it protects their barn from getting rammed by a 737). They are simply moving their equipment to serve the "customers" who are demanding it.

      I hope this results in the small-town and rural population becoming anti-TSA.
    • No, the TSA is above even the President ordering them around... They are their own special beastie now. Congress never had control of them.

      Their mandate is TOTAL SECURITY. They pull old machines off the busy airports and move them to smaller, slower airports... Then they'll need to cover Trains (have you serm Galaxy Railways) and Busses (think of Speed) too.

  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:10PM (#41708827) Journal

    The last sentence suggests that I should come up with a frothing political conspiracy theory; but I don't know which one I'm supposed to latch on to...

    Are the jackbooted Obamunist gestapo making a last-ditch move to irradiate freedom loving Real Americans in order to ensure their demographic victory even in the event of electoral defeat? Or are the jackbooted Rethuglicans of the police state amping up the fear machine in order to increase the effectiveness of traditional 'democrats are weak on terror, especially ones that are secretly kenyan muslims' messages?

    Help me out here, Slashdot!

    • by j-beda (85386)

      The last sentence suggests that I should come up with a frothing political conspiracy theory; but I don't know which one I'm supposed to latch on to...

      Are the jackbooted Obamunist gestapo making a last-ditch move to irradiate freedom loving Real Americans in order to ensure their demographic victory even in the event of electoral defeat? Or are the jackbooted Rethuglicans of the police state amping up the fear machine in order to increase the effectiveness of traditional 'democrats are weak on terror, especially ones that are secretly kenyan muslims' messages?

      Help me out here, Slashdot!

      Maybe both?

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by killmenow (184444)
      After Obama wins the election, the most likely terrorist threat will come from these areas. They're just thinking...Forward.
    • They joined forces, and are menacing us with their X-ray weapons of mass destruction! WE AMS TEH DOOMED!

      Oh, no, wait. It's just more of Slashdot's slide into the World Net Daily sinkhole. Never mind.

    • by dkleinsc (563838) on Friday October 19, 2012 @03:04PM (#41709367) Homepage

      Actually, what's happening is that the Bavarian Illuminati are using their control of Barack Obama, the NRA, the Ice-Capades, Mel Gibson, and the TSA to seize control of the Moral Majority from the opposing Adepts of Hermes.

      Of course, everything I needed to learn about politics, I gleaned from playing Illuminati: New World Order [sjgames.com].

    • Yes
    • Are the jackbooted Obamunist gestapo making a last-ditch move to irradiate freedom loving Real Americans in order to ensure their demographic victory even in the event of electoral defeat? Or are the jackbooted Rethuglicans of the police state amping up the fear machine in order to increase the effectiveness of traditional 'democrats are weak on terror, especially ones that are secretly kenyan muslims' messages?

      It's the work of subversive poor people who have realized the wealthy tend to travel a lot, so they made a device that'll slowly give frequent fliers cancer but not pose any risk to occasional users such as people going to see the family for christmas, etc. They used their fear of the poor uprising to institute draconian security policies that are now slowly irradiating them to an early grave. Unfortunately, after some of the screeners started karking, they realized the plot, and are now moving to put the s

    • by guises (2423402)
      Conspiracy? Sure - the TSA spends billions on useless scanners that kill more people than they save and then rather then just getting rid of the scanners they hustle them off to smaller airports where fewer people will be paying attention. Getting rid of the scanners entirely would be tantamount to admitting to either a mistake or corruption, depending on who you ask. Equally bad from the TSA's perspective, so better to just sweep them under the rug.

      The red/blue thing is stupid and submitter should feel b
  • by GodfatherofSoul (174979) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:10PM (#41708829)

    Obamanation is moving TSA scanners to affect the election? Haven't seen the morning show recently to get my monthly dose of crazy.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Haven't seen the morning show recently to get my monthly dose of crazy.

      In a couple of hours, you will see that this "article" will have hundreds of comments. Most of those comments will be two bit opinions; comments with "libtard", "bible thumping moron" and such; and plenty of poo flinging (purposeful reference to monkeys). Ad revenue for this "article" will be wonderful.

      Fox News has shown that "crazy" sells. Getting people emotional, irrational and giving them an avenue for their two bit-opinions makes money. Allowing people to spout off and abuse the "other side" also sell

    • by Mashiki (184564)

      Obamanation is moving TSA scanners to affect the election? Haven't seen the morning show recently to get my monthly dose of crazy.

      I guess you haven't watched NBC in the last month. If you want crazy, you only need to see what their flappy headed talkshow hosts are going on about.

      • I guess you haven't watched NBC in the last month. If you want crazy, you only need to see what their flappy headed talkshow hosts are going on about.

        I watched one show last Tuesday night with some crazy old, rich, straight, white guy that still uses binders, of all things, for something. He was talking about trusting him to fix something or another with *magic* - I'm not sure, 47% of me wasn't really listening to him... Just one of the wacky things you see on TV these days.

        • by Mashiki (184564)

          That's pretty good. I saw one where various people went on about if you don't vote for Obama you're automatically a racist. Then there was some other stuff about how if you're questioning the president it's unpatriotic. Then there was the black commentator who went on, and on, and on about how the tea party was full of racists.

          Yeah, very funny stuff you see on TV. I guess bias is highly subjective within the reality distortion field.

    • Political Slurs (Score:3, Insightful)

      Obamination! Now that's a good one. Here I thought that the kind of trolls who made up slurs were just incapable of doing anything clever with the man's name: Obummer, Odumba are clearly failures.

      I did think "Mittens" was kinda cute.

      But overall, if you aren't pandering to senseless frothing morons, you may want to refrain from turning a person's name into some sort of slur. Given that this is a national election, it's politic to pander to the undecided voters, not the base. Didn't you get the memo?

      • by dkleinsc (563838)

        Given that this is a national election, it's politic to pander to the undecided voters, not the base. Didn't you get the memo?

        The alternate theory is that the election turns on getting your base to show up and vote while actively discouraging the other guy's base from voting. So in that kind of environment, you'd pander to the frothing morons in your party, and disenfranchise the other party's voters by:
        - passing laws [ohio.com] requiring them to travel hundreds of miles and pay a fee to get an ID needed to vote,
        - putting up billboards [motherjones.com] in neighborhoods that tend to vote for the other guy reminding them that attempted voter fraud will result

      • by jkflying (2190798)

        I did think "Mittens" was kinda cute.

        Not nearly as plausibly deniable as Rmoney.

      • by operagost (62405)
        You must only hang out with leftists if this is the first time you've heard "Obamanation".
  • by Anonymous Coward

    ...or is TSA just moving potentially dangerous scanners from 'Blue' areas to 'Red' ones right before a presidential election?"

    Yeah, it's a conspiracy to radiate the "Red" states and keep all the "Blue" states healthy and eventually we'll have this Socialist TSA run Utopia with Democrat Presidents for all eternity.

    I guess Slashdot is going the way of Fox News ....

    • by operagost (62405)
      Wait-- did you just say Slashdot has a right-wing bias? Before you know it, Slate will be pushing prayer in schools.
  • by geekoid (135745)

    " 100 million people would develop 40 million cancers over the course of their lifetimes. "

    what does that even mean?

    And what the hell is with the politics? Here is how to know Obama is doing a pretty good job: Almost all major accusations against him are factually wrong, or nonsense.

    • Re:What? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Hatta (162192) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:23PM (#41708963) Journal

      Here is how to know Obama is doing a pretty good job: Almost all major accusations against him are factually wrong, or nonsense.

      Bullshit. Obama has failed to faithfully enforce the laws of the United States by failing to prosecute anyone for the well documented torture under the Bush administration, or any of the well documented fraud that lead to the 2008 financial crisis. He continues to engage in warrantless wiretapping. He signed the unconstitutional NDAA. He has prosecuted government whistleblowers under the espionage act at a rate that exceeds all previous administrations combined.

      No, Obama is not doing a pretty good job, unless you thought Bush was doing a pretty good job. In that case, Obama is doing a fantastic job by embracing and extending virtually all of Bush's abuses of power.

      • Re:What? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Nethemas the Great (909900) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:41PM (#41709157)
        To the best of my recollection there has been no US president in history, regardless of affiliation, that has prosecuted past administrations for their actions. It's been traditionally viewed as a political landmine both with the citizenry and fellow politicians alike.
        • by dkleinsc (563838)

          It seems equally likely that the goal is to create an implicit deal between the 2 US ruling parties: We won't prosecute your past crimes if you don't prosecute ours.

          I blame Gerald Ford, although it's quite possible it started earlier than that.

          • Well, I know that Lincoln pardoned Robert E. Lee...
            • by dkleinsc (563838)

              Robert E Lee was never president of the United States. He wasn't even president of the Confederacy.

              • If you wish to be pedantic then no the example isn't a good fit. However, if you allow for a slightly less precise brush stroke then you can see illustrated the same kind of political damage control that I was originally describing. He was a very prominent face in the Confederacy and arm of its administration. The people of which came from and returned to the US.
                • Lincoln was attempting to repair a massively fractured nation; pardoning one of their heroes (who was, by the way, a major figure in the US prior to the war) was pretty logical. Beyond that, making nice with the opposing nation's military is pretty typical after a war, assuming no massive war crimes on their part. This doesn't require a degree in history or politics to understand.
        • by Hatta (162192)

          No, it's been viewed as a gentlemen's agreement between aristocrats that they will consider each other above the law.

      • Here is how to know Obama is doing a pretty good job: Almost all major accusations against him are factually wrong, or nonsense.

        Obama had an American killed without trial.

        Care to explain the inaccuracy in that statement?

        (Note: I don't care about "killed", we kill people all the time for good reason. The "without trial" part is illegal on its face.)

        • by dkleinsc (563838)

          The "without trial" part is illegal on its face.

          Not quite correct: The police are allowed to kill somebody who is resisting arrest with deadly force, for instance. The key is that there was no indictment, and no chance for the American citizens in question (Anwar Al-Awlaki's son was killed a couple of weeks later, also by a drone strike, and there's no evidence publicly available linking him to any crime other than being the wrong guy's son) to surrender himself peacefully to stand trial.

          Not that the courts have been helping on this: Al-Awlaki's father s

      • Obama has failed... at a rate that exceeds all previous administrations combined.

        Well there you go. At least he does something better than anybody else.

      • by FatSean (18753)

        He's doing a pretty good job of not doing what John McCain wanted to do WRT wars and torture.

      • Re:What? (Score:4, Informative)

        by dkleinsc (563838) on Friday October 19, 2012 @03:07PM (#41709393) Homepage

        The interesting thing about all that is that this argument has not once come up in the presidential debates. Why? Because it's safe to say that Mitt Romney and the Republican political establishment agrees wholeheartedly with all of those decisions.

        And people wonder why I'm voting for a minor party this year in what everyone thinks is a critical swing state.

      • Re:What? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by gorzek (647352) <gorzekNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Friday October 19, 2012 @03:36PM (#41709663) Homepage Journal

        I despised Bush. Obama is smarter but carries on most of the same policies, especially when it comes to foreign policy and economic intervention. About the only place where he really differs is on social issues and the role of government aid programs.

        All this has done is make his opposition even more insane. So, now I get to choose between a guy who is mostly like Bush and a guy who seems to have no beliefs of his own, but is beholden to a base made up of lunatics. Awesome choice there.

        I voted for Obama, again, because I could not in good conscience vote to further empower the deranged hysterics of the Republican Party.

        • by Hatta (162192)

          You did the wrong thing. What you should be afraid of is not a bad president. What you should be afraid of is a never ending sequence of bad presidents that we can't do anything about because our electoral system is broken. By voting either D or R, you are casting a vote in favor of lack of choice. That has far worse consequences than just one bad president. Take the long view next time.

        • by ganjadude (952775)
          obama sounds smarter, but he is not smarter. As shown during the first debate, if he does not have the words in front of him, he does not know anything.

          bush was a horrible president, I think most can agree there. but with obama there is no excuse, the only promise he made that he kept was passing obamacare, which over 1/2 the country didnt even want. He continues to claim that the Rs will defund medicare when he took 3/4 of a TRILLION from medicare.
          If you planned on voting for obama this time, because y
  • I think... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Antipater (2053064) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:17PM (#41708881)
    I think that OverTheGeicoE's tinfoil hat reflected a few too many x-rays into his brain.
  • you cannot sell naked scanners if you don't get rid of the ones you have. What a waste of resources and more importantly a huge violation of our rights.
  • Makes perfect sense! (Score:4, Interesting)

    by frobbie (2756533) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:35PM (#41709077)
    This makes perfect sense. These machines are slower than the new one, so they are moving them to smaller airports where there are less people, and shorter lines for security.
    • by Mitreya (579078)

      This makes perfect sense. These machines are slower than the new one, so they are moving them to smaller airports where there are less people, and shorter lines for security.

      These machines were also banned in Europe
      So it makes perfect sense that they'd move it to smaller airports, instead of maybe a warehouse while they are running a health study?

      The conspiracy is only the fact that these machines were purchased and are/were deployed to begin with.

  • by CanHasDIY (1672858) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:35PM (#41709079) Homepage Journal
    Fixed:

    No, they are instead moving them to smaller airports [azcentral.com]

  • Eventually you will find the at the entrance of every burgerdoodle and street corner.

    Welcome to the 'new world', hope you enjoy your stay.

    • by isorox (205688)

      Eventually you will find the at the entrance of every burgerdoodle and street corner.

      Welcome to the 'new world', hope you enjoy your stay.

      The only place I've seen metal detectors on every "street corner" (well, every mall), is Israel. Israel don't even bother with these detectors at their major airport TLV. They do have a MMW scanner at Erez for people coming from gaza, but that's the only non-metal detector device I've seen.

  • Risk Mitigation (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Nethemas the Great (909900) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:45PM (#41709189)
    This sounds to me to be a case of risk mitigation. Take the more dangerous (medically and/or politically) devices out of heavily traveled airports and place them in less traveled ones. In so doing they are not throwing away the capital investment and at the same time reducing exposure to the general population.
  • Gota upgrade this x-ray porn!
  • Who's the criminal (Score:3, Insightful)

    by SnarfQuest (469614) on Friday October 19, 2012 @02:59PM (#41709313)

    I find it interesting that the TSA has caught more thieves (within their own ranks) than terrorists.

    It seems like you hear about "airport personnel" (i.e. TSA employees) who would use their searches to locate and remove valuables from passenger luggage.

    However, I have yet to hear about a single terrorist caught by the TSA.

    It looks to me like the TSA is committing more criminal activity than they are preventing.

    • I find it interesting that the TSA has caught more thieves (within their own ranks) than terrorists.

      It seems like you hear about "airport personnel" (i.e. TSA employees) who would use their searches to locate and remove valuables from passenger luggage.

      However, I have yet to hear about a single terrorist caught by the TSA.

      It looks to me like the TSA is committing more criminal activity than they are preventing.

      I blame this whole thing more on Napolitano than on Obama, and I am no fan of Obama. I also think the parent (quoted) has been unfairly modded down -- it was the closest thing to a discussion item so far in this thread.

    • by HappyDrgn (142428)

      I find it interesting that the TSA has caught more thieves (within their own ranks) than terrorists.

      Citation needed

    • It looks to me like the TSA is committing more criminal activity than they are preventing.

      Their job requires them to violate people's rights to begin with. I'd say that's criminal in and of itself.

    • by Solandri (704621)

      However, I have yet to hear about a single terrorist caught by the TSA.

      It looks to me like the TSA is committing more criminal activity than they are preventing.

      Far be it from me to defend the TSA - I think it represents a ridiculous misprioritization of security theater over civil rights. However, your criticism here is misguided. You're assuming the only success case for the TSA is if they catch a terrorist red-handed. It's not.

      As you say in your last sentence, a success case for the TSA is when

    • by chrismcb (983081)

      However, I have yet to hear about a single terrorist caught by the TSA.

      By their own admission they haven't caught any, yet they've let several through. But don't worry, they did find about 1000 guns that law enforcement officers forgot they had with them.
      And they've managed to stop most (but not all) people from carrying a bottle of water into the airport!

  • I always opt out (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Thagg (9904) <thadbeier@gmail.com> on Friday October 19, 2012 @03:00PM (#41709321) Journal

    Yesterday, for example, I opted out of the microwave scanner at Burbank airport. I do this every time I encounter a machine like this, and have the time to still make my flight. I don't do it because I feel they are unsafe (this particular machine is a ambient-microwave imager, it emits no radiation whatsoever) but as a (albiet incredibly weak) political statement -- I feel that if nobody opted out, soon enough nobody would be able to.

    • I can relate to this. The first time I encountered one of these machines, I had no idea what was happening (this was a good while ago). Now I always opt out even if I'm running late. I've had people behind me in line follow me in opting out because they did not know they could. I've never missed a flight because of it and have even gotten through faster than the person behind me at least twice (they had a long line going through). I think that opting out is a small statement but the people who see you do no
    • by houghi (78078)

      You, sir, are a hero.

      And I mean that not in how the media calls everybody a hero. I mean that as a man admired for his achievements and noble qualities [merriam-webster.com]

    • by Pulzar (81031)

      (this particular machine is a ambient-microwave imager, it emits no radiation whatsoever) but as a (albiet incredibly weak) political statement -- I feel that if nobody opted out, soon enough nobody would be able to.

      I don't think I understand what statement are you making? You are worried that we will never be able to choose to be hand-searched instead of machine-searched?

      If you turned around and refused to be searched altogether, that would be a political statement. Choosing to be searched one way instead

    • by turp182 (1020263)

      If 5% opted out the system could come to a halt. I always ask to be manually searched and they also search my bag (large foot powder, I wear the finger shoes, they drug test it...).

      Never submit to the machines. Make the people work.

      And if they get close to your junk just say "Oh yeah" or groan a little. The search goes much more quickly after that.

      I'm a guy by the way, I can understand a woman not wanting to do this, but they can ask for a woman to do the frisking, then it's game on.

  • I, for one, welcome our new... oh fuck it.
  • by Genda (560240) <mariet.got@net> on Friday October 19, 2012 @03:33PM (#41709625) Journal

    MMMmmmmmm, I love the smell of roasting fundies at the airport. It smells like the second coming!

    This was a parody, this is only a parody, had it been a real malapropism, there would have been no disclaimer, only a pithy insult, once again, this was only a parody... for those too young to get the reference, please look up "Apocalypse Now" associated with the phrase "I love the smell"

    Though folks willing to be nuked for "Security" reasons can't be surprised when successive generation get smaller and smaller, and more and more mutant... just saying life is full of trade-offs.

    • by jpschaaf (313847)

      For an online community that largely values a scientific way of looking at things, I'm rather disappointed in slashdot every time the topic of airport scanners comes up. Unless my understanding of these scanners is dramatically incorrect, using the word "X-rays" is a misnomer. So far as I know, these scanners are using non-ionizing radiation. Nothing is getting 'nuked'. Even using these words in jest contribute to public fear of anything involving radiation.

      Now, if you have objections to the TSA seeing

      • by Anonymous Coward

        I am rather disappointed in you also, there are two types of scanners, MMW (millimeter wave aka microwaves) and X-Ray scanners, the X-Ray scanners are the two blue boxes you walk in between the MMW are the big round grey cylinders.

        So people are getting irradiated with ionizing radiation. I always opt-out.

  • I would say a more likely reason would be, they are moving scanners from larger airports were the staff is most likely a little bit more well trained (and funded) to filter a flood of passengers that are most likely constantly monitored when the enter the secure zone. To areas where security may not be taken quite so seriously, regional airports may have one plane coming in every 3 hours, maybe once a day. At that point the price of the 5 employees required to compensate for the absence of a scanner likely
  • *Everything* the TSA does is political theatre.

  • by WaffleMonster (969671) on Friday October 19, 2012 @04:51PM (#41710365)

    It would be soo awesome to have some internal memos detailing evidence of TSA playing security games for *political* reasons right now before the elections.

  • In the town of Belgrade Montana, population 7300. Beautiful log beam airport and with no security line wait. They have two of the machines there. Surprised the fuck out of me. But considering that, at least per capita, a red neck from the high country is more likely to forget to check his side arm, I can kind of see the reasoning.

    Also consider it's not that far, at least in Montana miles, from where the Unibomber was found.

  • I formerly flew for a living and got patted down atleast once or twice a week because I won't use the Rapidscan 1000 which is installed at Phoenix Airport. I have no idea whether 10 uRems of ionizing radiation is bad for me, but all the Rapidscan techs all wear radiation dosimeters. Clearly, someone is concerned. Alas, I get enough radiation as is - so why risk it? I don't have the same concerns about the Thz non-ionizing radiation units made by L3. However, I don't have that job anymore and won't get

    • by chrismcb (983081)

      How long before Al Qaeda has people terrorists board with Ebola or Hemoraggic Fever or some other horrendous disease that you can't treat?

      Basically never. WHY bother? There are much juicer targets.
      This isn't about Al Qaeda, this isn't about Muslims, this isn't about terrorism. This is about control, and money, and finding drug smugglers.

You might have mail.

Working...