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| | |-+  I need to vent.
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Author Topic: I need to vent.  (Read 6783 times)
tyketto
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« on: November 13, 2006, 03:01:52 PM »

Please allow me this. I don't know whether to feel livid, or cocky and chalk one up for our freedoms. Let me explain, and why I feel that the state of affairs in commercial aviation is a crock and pathetic to say the least.

I just dropped my fiance off at KSMF for her flight to KPDX. Fine, no problem. Security line is through to the back of the parking garage because people flying out decided it would be wonderful to save money by putting their liquids in gallon sized bags. crazy as that is, I can't complain about the lines as I'm going through the handicapped aisle, as my fiance is blind and I'm escorting her to her gate.

She goes through the checkpoint, being escorted through by a TSA lady at the checkpoint. Another TSA guy waves me through. As I'm waiting for our stuff to come back from being scanned, the lady looks at me sternly and asks where I came from. the lady saw me being my fiance!!! I told her that that guy waved me through, pointing towards the TSA man behind her. she then asks "Where is your property then!?" I reply "It's being scanned, it's coming out, I'm with the blind lady you escorted, here's my pass." She waves me through, muttering under her breath. Lovely TSA. They were already on my low list; they're even less now.

Rest of my time in the terminal is uneventful. She gets on her flight, and I head back to my car. Note: whenever I go out anywhere, my scanner is with me. I'm 2DME north of NCT, and I'm at the field. So I go back to my car, pull out my scanner, and watch the last few planes take off, including my fiance's. As it leaves, I get into my car, and then get surrounded by airport police and the county sheriff. they ask me what the radio is for, and I tell them. I am an aviation enthusiast, I listen to ATC comms, and I'm working on getting into ground school.. I get questioned by the sheriff (pull out ID, which I give him my license and US passport (note: I'm American Indian), asked why I have a scanner, what my job is, etc.). I tell them all they need to know, as they're doing a background check of me (which all comes through clean).

They then tell me that they stopped me because people getting on the unloading saw me with a radio and thought I was a terrorist looking to see what I was doing and reported me. I laughed at it, because there was nothing I was doing wrong, including doing something that is legal, and that it's pathetic what this country has become, and that people are paranoid. Funnily enough, the sheriff and airport police believed me, they even laughed with me as I told them that not even 5 months ago, I was on a tour of SMF Tower, so they knew I had to be legit to even be able to step foot in there!

Anyway, they left without any further confrontation, but gave me a card to contact airport security/police in case I want to go planespotting or listening to ATC comms on their garage, so they are forewarned in case someone else decides to call me a terrorist and cause a scene, leading to my eventual 'arrest'.

So like I said.. I can chalk it up as one for the aviation enthusiast expressing his freedoms, or bitterness towards the flying public for their government instilled paranoia.  rolleyes

What say you?

BL.
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Brad
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« Reply #1 on: November 13, 2006, 05:32:55 PM »

Well look at the bright side, at least the didn't shoot you on sight and pin you up as an anti-terror trophy for homeland security.  grin

I'm joking of course. It always surprises me that more people don't get hounded by policy or airport security while planespotting these days. I suppose those on the security force who have been around a while recognize the activity and realize it hasn't been a problem for decades of history, but the younger guys looking to flex muscle probably see it as a good opportunity.

I guess the positive here is that they are listening to calls/reports from the general public and checking them out at least. The TSA isn't going to be responsible for stopping the next terrorist attack, good intelligence and an aware public will be.

Just my 2.

Brad
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cactushp
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« Reply #2 on: November 13, 2006, 05:37:32 PM »

Where were you listening to the scanner from? If its not an airport police "approved" spot, then people might get a little antsy.
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Scott Mulhollan
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tyketto
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« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2006, 07:08:59 PM »

Where were you listening to the scanner from? If its not an airport police "approved" spot, then people might get a little antsy.

top floor, Terminal A parking garage. Police approved or not, it is still legal in the US to monitor ATC communications. Ask a question here or there, I can understand but 3 patrol units, plus airport police on foot surrounding you? rolleyes

What I find assassanine about this, is that at KLAS and KVGT, not only do they not mind, but they encourage it! They have the sitting areas there for you to sit, planespot, and listen to ATC comms. There isn't a such place at SMF, and the closest to Norcal is a park that you have to pay $4 per visit. I figure that if I'm already paying hourly or daily fees there, I should be able to planespot. you can't do it in the terminal anymore (except for Pittsburgh)..

BL.
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Blue Yonder
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« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2006, 07:15:50 PM »

Where you sitting in your car or standing in the parking lot?

Slightly off topic: Did you guys know that the twin towers collapsed at freefall speed. More than 100 floors came down in less than 10 seconds. The only explanation to that is that explosives were strategically placed throughout each building.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6708190071483512003&q=9%2F11&hl=en

Sadly, we are becoming a police state.

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Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall
tyketto
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« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2006, 08:19:54 PM »

Where you sitting in your car or standing in the parking lot?

Slightly off topic: Did you guys know that the twin towers collapsed at freefall speed. More than 100 floors came down in less than 10 seconds. The only explanation to that is that explosives were strategically placed throughout each building.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6708190071483512003&q=9%2F11&hl=en

Sadly, we are becoming a police state.



Both. I was in my car listening until I heard the pilot call in to GND for the taxi out. When it got to 16L, I stepped out to have a clear view of the runway and takeoff. I get back into my car, start it up, and then I'm surrounded.

BL.
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digger
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« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2006, 09:33:07 PM »

Quote
Slightly off topic: Did you guys know that the twin towers collapsed at freefall speed. More than 100 floors came down in less than 10 seconds. The only explanation to that is that explosives were strategically placed throughout each building.
i

It would be slightly off topic if there were any truth to it. Since it's total BS, it's way off topic.
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RayZor
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« Reply #7 on: November 13, 2006, 10:27:33 PM »

My opinion:  I'm glad I'm getting my P.P. license!  It always bothers me when my 85 year old grandma who can hardly walk has to take off her shoes, get out of her wheelchair and be searched as if she could overpower a pilot with a box cutter.  Oh well, the general public would be pretty upset if it wasn't obvious that the gov. is at least trying to do something about terrorism. 
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Blue Yonder
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« Reply #8 on: November 14, 2006, 12:26:39 AM »

Quote
Slightly off topic: Did you guys know that the twin towers collapsed at freefall speed. More than 100 floors came down in less than 10 seconds. The only explanation to that is that explosives were strategically placed throughout each building.
i

It would be slightly off topic if there were any truth to it. Since it's total BS, it's way off topic.

Hard facts show that the official version is full of holes. It only takes an educated person to consider the evidence, think for themselves and decide.

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Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall
frantzy
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« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2006, 12:38:36 AM »

gave me a card to contact airport security/police in case I want to go planespotting or listening to ATC comms on their garage, so they are forewarned in case someone else decides to call me a terrorist and cause a scene

I totally understand your frustration but I was glad to hear in the end they essentially condoned your hobby and provided a practical means to keep doing it...even though it's a bit of a hassle and somewhat degrading.

Oh, and Blue Yonder, just my opinion...you're nuts smiley.  Any time someone writes "the only possible explanation is...strategically placed explosives",  I'd say maybe they haven't considered every possible explanation...
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digger
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« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2006, 06:08:55 AM »

Quote
It only takes an educated person to consider the evidence, think for themselves and decide.


I'm glad we agree on that. No further discussion of it will be necessary here.
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Biff
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« Reply #11 on: November 14, 2006, 11:56:12 AM »

Ask a question here or there, I can understand but 3 patrol units, plus airport police on foot surrounding you? rolleyes

Those guys are probably bored out of their skulls.  When something exciting happens, they all want to get in on it.
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w0x0f
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« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2006, 12:22:13 PM »

TSA Training Video

http://www.dailyomg.com/view.php?id=46
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Robin Rebhan
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« Reply #13 on: November 14, 2006, 05:41:05 PM »

>>>TSA Training Video<<<

     Thanx! You answered all my security questions.
     I feel a lot safer now   wink
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WILL WORK FOR FLIGHT TIME!
w0x0f
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« Reply #14 on: November 15, 2006, 02:09:03 PM »

I apologize in advance for such a long post.  This article includes not only the ridiculous nature of airport security, but also the demeaning treatment of air traffic contollers under the FAA's illegally imposed work rules which became effective 9/3/06.

DENVER POST: TSA socks controllers in the gut

By Jim Spencer

A can of Hormel chili. A piece of pumpkin pie. These are the kinds of deadly items Transportation Security Administration screeners have seized from air-traffic controllers at Denver International Airport .

Need a definition of bureaucratic insanity? First, the Federal Aviation Administration refuses to let controllers leave the DIA control tower to eat lunch. Then, because of rules restricting liquids and gels on airplanes, the TSA confiscates parts of lunches that some controllers try to bring through security checkpoints.

Not all lunch items are seized, a TSA spokeswoman assured me - just stuff like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, cans of soup and yogurt.

And, the spokeswoman added, controllers can bring cereal through the TSA checkpoint, then buy milk from a restaurant inside the secure area.

They better buy it on the way to work, however, because the FAA has decreed that controllers must take vacation or personal leave to go to lunch.

FAA and TSA spokespeople insist that DIA's controllers can still get anything they want for lunch through non-TSA checkpoints. They can - but only if they give up parking spots near the air-control tower and are bused into the airport from a remote parking lot several miles away.

The Looney Tunes lunchcapades at DIA have trapped some of the airport's most important employees in a dietary Catch-22. They can't go out to lunch and can't bring in certain foods and drink.

The TSA says it applies security rules equally. But FAA and union officials say flight crews can carry liquids through checkpoints that controllers cannot.

Bringing an unrestricted bag lunch to a workplace where you're not allowed out for a midday meal seems like a no-brainer for folks who have already undergone background checks and whose jobs run a close second to pilots.

Deadlocked labor talks and a control tower located inside a secure area helped create DIA's lunchtime lockdown. The National Air Traffic Controllers Association and the FAA stopped negotiations in April. Congress refused to order talks to continue. By law, the FAA got to implement its "last, best offer." That offer does not pay controllers across the country if they go out for lunch.

"I did some measuring last week," said controller Mike Coulter, DIA's union chief. "It's 82 paces from the base of the tower to Villa Pizza. It took three minutes and 22 seconds to buy a slice."

FAA's Denver tower boss, Robert Fletcher, called Coulter's numbers "misleading." Whatever the distance, Fletcher said, controllers are paid for lunch and are obliged to stay in the tower so they can be "recalled" to duty if needed.

Fletcher also insisted that "bringing food in (for lunch) is not an issue."

You just have to abide by TSA liquid and gel restrictions. Or there's always the remote parking lot bus.

So far, solutions to this stupidity have gone from dumb to dumber.

TSA limits on carrying gels and liquids on planes arose from a foiled terrorist plot that would have turned those substances into in-flight explosives.

How that applies to a can of chili or a slice of pie headed for the air-control tower in the lunch box of an employee with a security clearance strains the brain.

"All airport and TSA employees who go through the security checkpoint are subject to appropriate screening measures," is the TSA's official explanation.

A TSA spokeswoman refused to say how the TSA treats flight crews at checkpoints. But flight crews are not airport or TSA employees. Unless that magically makes them less of a security threat, cracking down on controllers becomes absurd.

Fletcher said he asked the TSA to treat FAA personnel at DIA as they treat pilots and flight attendants. The TSA, he said, told him no. Fletcher said he has asked superiors to intervene with TSA higher- ups.

So has Scott Farrow, an air controllers union vice president. Farrow still thinks controllers should be able to grab a quick bite on the DIA concourse.

Failing that, he said, the powers that be can at least stop treating mayonnaise like a lethal weapon.


 

 

 

 
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