What the TSA Confiscated in 2011
We haven’t heard anything from the TSA about how many actual terrorist plots it prevented in 2011. In fact, we have no real report on how much safer it was to fly around the country in 2011 because of the efforts of our favorite, invasive security agency. What we do have, though, is a list of the ridiculous things they have taken from Americans who dare to forget what they’ve been carrying in their carry-ons.
While other government agencies have been reporting their successes and strides in 2011, the TSA has saved us from the boredom of reading what would surely be a long list of safety achievements by instead releasing a snarky, self-congratulatory list of those items some of us will never get back, even though we likely weren’t plotting to use them for nefarious purposes in the first place, but perhaps forgot about them or assumed they seemed innocent because we’ve never considered doing anything harmful with them.
Dangerous and threatening items that made the list of “Top 10 Good Catches” include: snakes, turtles and birds; a science project made of a mint tin, some pens and a 9 volt battery; a stun-gun disguised as a smart phone; a flare gun; and many legally carried firearms. Admittedly, it’s not a good idea to bring these things on a flight, but without any actual reporting on the prevention of attack, we don’t know if finding these things made us safer, or just slowed down the security lines and gave the TSA some blog fodder.
Of course, it’s possible this list was a just good way of distracting us from the news that the TSA filed a request to procure radiation-detection equipment for use with its scanners. The scanners that the TSA has repeatedly and adamantly touted as safer and less radioactive than flying itself.
Oh, TSA, let’s see if you can do any better in 2012. Maybe confiscate something fun like a tape gun, someone’s razor sharp wit or even an expensive antique you could sell for radiation-detection equipment money on Pawn Stars.