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Old 01-07-2010, 11:15 PM
 
Location: Eretz Yisrael
21,364 posts, read 24,104,739 times
Reputation: 8869

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I'm a baby boomer and I remember when flying was a fairly easy affair. You checked in at the
Quote:
counter, got your ticket, family walked you to the gate and you chatted with them until they called your flight.

Once on the flight, you had a decent snack and then grabbed a pillow and a blanket, turned on your walkman and had a little nap to pass the time.
Flying in the US only this had basically been true. Outside the US there has always been security. The US has always been numerous steps behind the rest of the world in security. I rememeber as far back as the late 60's that outside the US there were pat downs and luggage searches. I had one time in Amsterdam in the early 70's when they unloaded the entire airplane onto the tarmac (people and luggage). Then each person had to go locate their luggage and carry it to an area to be verified and then be allowed to get back on the plane. Looking at your location, do you really feel safe driving on I64 during the summer?? The air is much safer. We as Americans need to be proactive and go with the flow and stop being so reactive. We need our gov't to put in place what is currently in use outside of the US for numerous years and not wait until something occurs to do it.
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Old 01-08-2010, 04:49 AM
 
195 posts, read 212,776 times
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We can still have great airline security and keep everyone safe while still doing it efficently. Just open up more lines and hire more staff. I get frustrated with the long lines where only half the necessary TSA staff is working and most of the machines are not working.
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Old 01-08-2010, 04:59 AM
 
1,780 posts, read 2,166,874 times
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Just a note about Amtrak. Their most recent statistics show on-time arrivals for more than 80% of their trains.

As to security for the airports, I think El Al has it right. What Israeli security could teach us - The Boston Globe

That's the model we should emulate. I flew a LOT in 2002-2006 and speaking as someone who flew a lot, TSA was a joke. I won't bore you with all the inane comments I heard from these "security" folks, but it was an eye-opener.

As to the time differences of flying vs. other modes of transport, it's not a matter of "sitting on an airplane for two or three hours." There's getting to the airport (sometimes two or three hours), getting to the airport two or three hours early for your full body cavity search, hoping your plane is on time, hoping your connection is on time, hoping the next flight is not delayed, and then getting from the airport to your destination.

Like every frequent flier in America, I've watched the hours pass as I sit helplessly on a tarmac, waiting for my flight to leave the ground.

As to getting to your city of choice, airports aren't that close together in parts of the midwest. For me, it was not unusual to rent a car and drive two or three hours from an airport to my destination. My point is, there's a lot more to airline travel than "sitting on an airplane for two or three hours."

These days, if it's under 10 hours, I'll drive it. If it's over 10 hours, I'll find a way to take a train.

But in comparing flying with anything else, let's be honest in the time invested.
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Old 01-08-2010, 06:11 AM
 
11,938 posts, read 21,528,320 times
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Most people I know get to the airport 1 hour early. And if you have to drive 2-3 hours to the airport or from the airport at your destination you're going to have to drive just as long if not longer to find an Amtrak station...

The smaller airports are the best, you can get there 30 min - 45 min prior and park for free right outside the door.
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Old 01-08-2010, 07:30 AM
 
Location: Portland, OR
951 posts, read 1,780,675 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mongoslade223 View Post
So your problem with them is their not hassling the right people.....okay now I get it
No, my problem is the blanket application of a security theatre to the vast majority of the flying populous who pose no threat, as opposed to extra scrutiny to those people who do pose a threat. It's time to end the PC BS and start profiling. I avoided agreeing with you as you used the word "hassle". No one needs to be hassled. If you used the words "applying the correct level of attention" I'd agree 100%
- Tim
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Old 01-08-2010, 07:32 AM
 
Location: Beautiful New England
2,412 posts, read 6,467,408 times
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Originally Posted by jlawrence01 View Post
Do you want SERIOUS security check procedures? Try those from El Al Airlines:BW Online | August 25, 2003 | El Al's Security Vs. the U.S. Approach.
This is nonsense. There are exponentially more airports and flight in the U.S. than Israel -- such security precautions in the U.S. would be ridiculously expensive and would grind our air travel system to a crawl, severely impacting our economy and standard of living. And the resulting increase in security would be virtually zilch.

The public needs to get realistic and realize that there is no system anywhere -- nor any technology -- that can make anything 100% safe and foolproof.

And the TSA bashing is simply ridiculous: millions of people fly evey day and each and everyone of them is checked by the TSA. The TSA guards over 100 major airports and countless thousands of doors and entry/exit points. As a result of their good work, the amount of terrorism in the U.S. is minuscule; you have a 10x, 20x, perhaps 50x more chance of being struck by lightning than being a victim of terrorism. One loser in B.F.E sneaks through a small pouch of junk strapped under his cajones and millions of people in the U.S. go berserk, losing sight of the big picture. That is mass madness.

Get over your irrational fear, people! Yes, precautions must be taken. Yes, security improvements can be made (clearly the Crotch Bomber's name should have been flagged on a list of people who should not be able to get on a U.S. bound plane). But to bash the TSA as a "joke" is a joke itself.

Folks need to get real and get over their child-like attitude that somehow the government is always gong to protect us from every possible bad guy in the world, and if the government does this effectively 99.9999% of the time, but .0001 times it fails, then government is worthless and that somehow, somewhere there is a magic bullet that will let us reach 100%. This is just stupid, people! Nothing -- no institution, no person, no technology, no process, no business, no thing -- is always going to work. And to disparage the people and processes that work effectively 99.9999% of the time is not only ignorant, it is counterproductive.

So we should be smart, be aware, take precautions, and make reasonable and rational improvements when necessary. But most of of all, don't lose your wits. Sadly, too many people are irrationally hysterical (which is, of course, one of the primary goals of terrorism).

Last edited by professorsenator; 01-08-2010 at 07:41 AM..
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Old 01-08-2010, 08:20 AM
 
26,590 posts, read 54,595,142 times
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As far as I'm concerned, Amtrak is ripe pickings for terrorism due to the utter lack of security.
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Old 01-08-2010, 09:08 AM
 
Location: Eretz Yisrael
21,364 posts, read 24,104,739 times
Reputation: 8869
Quote:
Just open up more lines and hire more staff. I get frustrated with the long lines where only half the necessary TSA staff is working and most of the machines are not working.
This is a small part of the issue. For those of us who fly more often, how many times do you see people standing in the scanning area being turned around and told to take off a coat, take off shoes, empty pockets,etc.? Then you get to the other side and TSA is opening luggage and searching and then you watch things being thrown out that you know have been banned since 2001. This is what backs up the lines.

I was at JFK a few months back and SIX lanes were open. This was an entrance for ONE airline. The lines were backed up to the glass entrance. Got up to the scanning area and watched all the stuff mentioned above plus more. Add standard luggage that doesn't fit into the scanner, multiple carry-ons for a single person, not taking out the baggies and it all adds up after awhile.
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Old 01-08-2010, 12:04 PM
 
14,260 posts, read 23,991,339 times
Reputation: 20072
Quote:
Originally Posted by professorsenator View Post
This is nonsense. There are exponentially more airports and flight in the U.S. than Israel -- such security precautions in the U.S. would be ridiculously expensive and would grind our air travel system to a crawl, severely impacting our economy and standard of living. And the resulting increase in security would be virtually zilch.

The public needs to get realistic and realize that there is no system anywhere -- nor any technology -- that can make anything 100% safe and foolproof.

In your rush to respond, you missed my point completely.

I have no objection to the TSA procedures EVEN THOUGH I am patted down on every flight I take. I think that it is necessary. It certainly done very efficiently and takes very little time.

The people who call for more drastic measures do not understand how much it is going to impact the system. Or maybe they do and they would like to see the flying public decrease by 40-50% is some misguided notion that there would be a return to the mythical "golden age of flying" where only the wealthy could afford a flight and where the elite do not have to share a flight with the "unwashed masses."

Personally, I am tired of all the TSA bashing that does on this thread. They have an unpleasant job to do and in general do it pretty well.
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Old 01-08-2010, 12:11 PM
 
26,590 posts, read 54,595,142 times
Reputation: 13019
This is why CLEAR was such a great opportunity. Want to fly and get through security in under two hours? Submit to a background check in advance. Don't want your "privacy" invaded? Get to the airport early and be prepared for a thorough search of your person and bags.

That said, I've run into some fantastic TSA, and I've run into some that were on such a riduculous power trip that they needed to be beaten senseless with a 2x4. I've also run into some that were as stupid as a moose and others that were sharp and on the ball. I think the key is to weed out the bad apples, and do so on a very regular basis.
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