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Friday, August 14, 2009

The Transportation Security Administration began collecting additional data on airline passengers taking domestic flights this week to aid in catching terrorists. If a terrorist is clever enough to enter the United States, the terrorist is also clever enough not to get caught on a domestic flight.

Storing more data on innocent U.S. citizens may not reduce false positives as intended. It may actually increase the number of false positives caused by clerical errors and chance similarities.

This brings me to a point I touched upon yesterday when discussing a hypothetical libertarian airline. Passengers do not need to show ID before boarding an airplane. After all, there are countless stories of passengers who lost or had their ID stolen while on vacation. The government should not force airlines to turn these passengers away. If airlines turn passengers away of their own regard...hello, Libertarian Airways.

John Gilmore fought the government on the ID issue and lost to a secret government mandate. The text of the mandate is still not available to the public.

According to security expert Bruce Schneier:

The TSA focuses too much on specific tactics and targets. This makes sense politically, but is a bad use of security resources. Think about the last eight years. We take away guns and knives, and the terrorists use box cutters. We confiscate box cutters and knitting needles, and they put explosives in their shoes. We screen shoes, and they use liquids. We take away liquids, and they'll do something else. This is a dumb game; the TSA should stop playing....Oh, and stop the ID checking—the notion that there is this master list of terrorists that we can check people off against is just plain silly.

Posted by Eleutherian

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1 Responses to Airlines Do Not Need ID for Domestic Flights

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