Tuesday, July 25, 2006

How the no fly list works?


Air Marshal training. This is supposed to be serious business.

Several years ago, when told we were on the "FBI no fly list," my partner and I sued to try to find out how the TSA puts people on the list and how people could get their names removed. After a lot of litigation, the judge ruled that "national security" prevented disclosure of these rather important facts. Perhaps now we are finding out.

In comments here, Nell has pointed to a report that federal air marshals add names to the list in order to meet a quota.

The air marshals, whose identities are being concealed, told 7NEWS that they're required to submit at least one report a month. If they don't, there's no raise, no bonus, no awards and no special assignments.

"Innocent passengers are being entered into an international intelligence database as suspicious persons, acting in a suspicious manner on an aircraft ... and they did nothing wrong," said one federal air marshal.

As the story goes on to explain, being put on a federal list could have serious consequences. These lists seem to circulate widely without ever being cleaned up; currently Canadian reports say the lists have mushroomed to some 70,000 names.

The Denver 7NEWS story gives a chilling glimpse into the bureaucratic jungle where these things are compiled.

... several air marshals object to a July 2004 memo from top management in the Las Vegas office, a memo that reminded air marshals of the Surveillance Detection Report requirement.

The body of the memo said, "Each federal air marshal is now expected to generate at least one SDR per month."...

Las Vegas-based air marshals say the quota system remains in force, now more than two years after managers sent the original memos, and that it's a mandate from management that impacts annual raises, bonuses, awards and special assignments.

Great. The Feds are watching travelers because some poor smuck had to make sure he got the vacation dates he wanted? And probably the other bureaucrats, if any, whose job is to check the reports to see whether they are justified are also subjected to a quota system. You'd think the U.S. government wanted to find "terrorists" around every corner.... Oh, it does?

1 comment:

dusty said...

god..what asshats..quotas for something that should be serious. When will this group of nimrods see Alex and buy a clue?

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