Shills for the TSA

by: Becky Akers

Oh, if only the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) were a lowly serf lying to the Feds rather than to taxpayers forced to fund its assaults on them: given all the whoppers it’s told, a judge would imprison it for so many centuries it could never molest any of us again.

“You’re nothing but a chalky alien to TSA [whole-body] scanners,” purrs a headline in the San Diego Union Tribune. The article’s author is either as big a liar as the TSA or the most ignorant naïf ever to disgrace journalism, but at least he discloses that he’s retailing propaganda: “The TSA invited the San Diego media out to the airport Tuesday to get an up-close and behind-the-scenes look at how the scanners will work,” he writes. Not surprisingly, that “look” convinced him that these pornographic X-rays are a passenger’s best friend. The poor slob never seems to realize that the TSA fields an entire department of professional prevaricators to flatter and fool the corporate media. Nor does the agency’s lengthy list of certified lies dent newshounds’ absolute faith in its credibility. They swallow all the baloney the TSA’s spinners feed them, then regurgitate it for us.

Indeed, Our Intrepid Reporter and his buddies at the TSA blame our lack of a “comfort level” while government’s agents denude us on “negative publicity” from those doggone “civil liberties and privacy organizations” that “question [the scanners’] use as overly intrusive and a ‘virtual strip search’ and even filed suit to halt their installation.” The gall!

But readers’ comments put the kibosh on that little fantasy: many protest as vehemently and vociferously as any “civil liberty or privacy organization” at the TSA’s compulsory strip-tease. (They also castigate Our Intrepid Reporter: “What are you, Hawkins? An unbiased reporter doggedly pursuing truth in the public interest or some TSA apologist?” “I wish Mr. Hawkins had been a little more of an investigative journalist instead of just PR for the TSA.”) This heartening phenomenon replays itself constantly across the internet: the more the media’s patsies praise the TSA, the more readers blast it.

No matter: The Hawk shamelessly whitewashes the TSA’s nationwide strip-tease.

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