After 9/11 we heard 100 times every day that the federal government must take over airport security. The airports would not be safe until the airlines were relieved of the security duties. The skies could not possibly be safe until airport security was federalized. Only the federal government could bring the expertise and professionalism required for proper security. I can still see the face of Tom Daschle and his buddies yammering endlessly about the subject.
Never mind that the 9/11 hijackers were carrying box cutters which were legal to bring on onboard at the time. Who set the rules about box cutters being safe enough to bring on board? The feds, of course.
Well, Daschle and the boys got their way. The feds took over airport security. Thousands of unionized affirmative action employees who can not be fired or even forced to perform their jobs well, were hired.
Passing through airport security has become a nightmare. Every few days there is a story about a breach of some kind. The incident at Newark last Sunday was only the latest in a very long string of screw ups. The federal professional responsible for the screw-up was reassigned, not fired. Thousands of travelers were delayed. Many thousands, if not millions, of dollars were lost.
Today we learned that despite being run by the professional feds, the the security cameras in the Newark airport were not even working.
So are we safer now than we would have been without the federal takeover of airport security? That is impossible to know.
Are we more hassled, inconvenienced, and even humiliated by airport security? Without a doubt, the answer is yes.