Archive for the ‘voluntary-compulsory’ Category


BTC – Welcome. The TSA is embarking on a body content capture of what’s on your hands. The rest is up to you. If you don’t care – they won’t either. However, just remember you don’t actually have to be a criminal anymore to be treated like one in America. The litmus test for any organic test that arbitrarily collects body samples in a body content capture campaign is a simple question: WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO WITH THAT INFORMATION?

Wash your hands before you went to the airport? You may want to. This week, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is beginning new, extra security measures at our nation’s airports: hand swabs.

Have you ever had a bag “randomly” selected for supplemental screening after pushing it through the X-ray? In addition to the manual search, agents often swipe your bag with a clean cloth and put the material into a shoebox-sized detector. They’re checking for the residue of bomb-making material — potentially undetectable by eye but sniffable by the robot.

That same residue will stick to your hands if you’re not careful, which is what the TSA is hoping to identify in their random hand swabs. It’s just speculation, but our guess is that the underwear bomber had traces of PETN on his hands, so the TSA now thinks that they can foil plots better by checking those members.

Provided, that is, that they swab the right person’s hands. As with many of the TSA’s initiatives, this new hand-swabbing effort is a random operation, so if the perpetrator gets lucky and doesn’t get swabbed — well, then the problem moves onward.

Advertisements

c/o No2ID

The biggest cheer that Brown got at the Labour Party Conference was when delegates thought he had announced that the ID scheme had been cancelled. He did not. He only repeated the same misleading things that every Home Secretary has said about the scheme since it was first mooted. But he did so with a flourish, as if announcing something new.

This seems to have fooled a lot of people to judge from newspaper reports and our own mailbag. All Brown said was that the scheme would be ‘voluntary’ to start and would not be compulsory for a while. As ever he focused public attention on the cards and said nothing about the database.

Remember that the Home Office’s idea of “voluntary” is probably different from yours. It means a scheme you cannot ever leave (unless it dies before you do) once you “agree” to be included. And it is a scheme that you will be compelled to “volunteer” for if you ever wish to apply for any official document “designated” by the Home Secretary, the first of which is planned to be a passport – from some point in 2011.


More explanation of the Home Office’s clever plan here.