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A Call For Privatized TSA

November 28, 2011 by  

A Call For Privatized TSA

Representative John L. Mica (R-Fla.) in recent weeks has been leading a push to take airport security screenings out of the hands of the Federal government to free up the industry for private contractors.

Mica, who was instrumental in setting up the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), has made no secret of the hatred he has gained for the agency in recent years. He says it has become an out-of-control assault on privacy. Last March, speaking against the use of full-body scanners in security screenings, Mica disavowed the “little bastard child” he helped to create, according to ABC News.

A report he recently issued along with Representative Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, calls for moving “airport screening operations to private contractors under Federal supervision,” according to The Washington Post. Mica contends that the shift would further improve airport safety and put an end to many abuses within the TSA.

Mica believes that the United States lags behind other Western countries — many of which already have privatized airport security — because of the government-run TSA. He also said that the current hiring practices of the TSA allow for unqualified individuals to become Transportation Security Officers (TSO) and that TSOs should have no collective bargaining rights such as those granted by President Barack Obama earlier this year.

Opponents to Mica’s proposal say that a privatized TSA would weaken national security and cost the Federal government more money.

Sam Rolley

Staff writer Sam Rolley began a career in journalism working for a small town newspaper while seeking a B.A. in English. After learning about many of the biases present in most modern newsrooms, Rolley became determined to find a position in journalism that would allow him to combat the unsavory image that the news industry has gained. He is dedicated to seeking the truth and exposing the lies disseminated by the mainstream media at the behest of their corporate masters, special interest groups and information gatekeepers.

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  • Al Sieber

    This should make it better, why not get rid of it?

    • Bruce

      Wow Al, Man you hit the nail on the head!!

      But saddly the gaggle of Idiots will think this will make it all better somehow if this Nazi gang is run by whom again?

      This just goes to show how stupid the vast amount of Americans really are. The US Inc has all Privet run units like the BATF, DEA, CIA, DOE, and the list goes on and on.

      Al, I know you will get this so please take a moment today to contact your senate person and tell them to vote; NO on Bill S 1867.

    • wandamurline

      Absolutely…privatize it and then you can sue them for their illegal, unconstitutional searches and seizures at the airports…also, the airlines would be liable also. The next thing that needs to go is Patriot Act….it is totally unconstitutional. Forget the politically correct language….all of the bombers and the terrorists in the 9/11 event were middle aged, Muslim men….the shooter of our soldiers at Fort Hood was a middle aged Muslim man…and these are the people that need to be watched…I don’t care if they are a little disenfranchised….better them than the rest of ordinary American citizens trying to get on a plane.

      • Kate8

        You guys think this is a bad idea?

        Just get a load of the bill being voted on today or tomorrow (after having been crafted in a secret meeting of treasonous Senators):

        If this doesn’t curl your hair, nothing will.

        • Jeep

          Stop…stop…stop…The article you reference is NOT accurate. Read the ACTUAL SB.

          The claims about our military being authorized to arrest US citizens is incorrectly overstated. The ONLY citizens this bill authorizes the DoD to apprehend are those caught violating laws on DoD property, and it SPECIFICALLY states that anyone (other than those subject to UCMJ) are NOT to be held in military confinement facilities. These are the same restrictions placed in every military funding/troop strength authorization bill. There is nothing new here. And, it does NOT authorize “mass roundups”.

          Just read the bill, not what the doomsayers want it to say.

          • Old Henry

            Howdy Jeep:

            Noooooow I understand why NO BODY reads the bills…. I’m off to the Ophthalmologist to see if he can get my eyes uncrossed…

            Jeep, do you have an approximation of just where in the almost 700 pages the item you referenced is located?

          • Kate8

            Jeep – If the military is allowed to patrol on US soil, and they can detain indefinitely anyone without charging them, how are we protected in ANY capacity here?

            There was a reason for not allowing military authority on civilian America. Have you read much about the Cavalry? It is a dangerous road to go down, and can only lead to martial law.

            I can’t say whether your argument is accurate or not…I haven’t read the bill (have you?). In any case, it’s a frightening prospect.

          • Robert Smith

            Kate 8 says: “it’s a frightening prospect.”

            Only if it’s real. Looks pretty hysterical to me.

            Perhaps if you weren’t in your extreme far right perspective you just might understand.


          • Kate8

            R S – You know, the majority of people in NAZI Germany said the same thing as you just did, including the Jews.

            What’s really sad is that many, many of our younger folk don’t even know who Hitler was, or disbelieve he killed millions, or even think that he was justified in commiting genocide.

            How little we learn from history. Of course, communists (and tyrants of all stripes) just wait a couple of generations until people forget, rewrite history, and get to start with a new crop of clueless, entitlement-minded morons.

  • Brenda Choate

    A privatized TSA will not insure against abuse. For one, private contractors are more likely to be abusive. Two, unionized workers will only make it harder to get rid of those who abuse their power. Three, screening applicants and training will be ineffective. A cursory background check will fail to weed out those who would be most likely to abuse their power. Four, government supervision–HA!

    • s c

      Brenda, please re-read your comments. You didn’t exactly take a stand. Half your remarks lean ‘this way,’ and the other remarks lean ‘that way.’
      For my money, private business CAN’T do any worse than Uncle Scam. When Uncle Scam does something, it tends to turn into ^*#+ in a hurry. For starters, WHAT percentage of that easy money goes to ADMINISTRATIVE costs?
      I suspect that TSA acts much like certain ‘charitable’ causes, where the “administrators” rake off huge chunks at the top, and not that much money gets where it’s supposed to go (we call that THEFT or FRAUD). Washington amounts to THEFT/FRAUD on steroids, that’s why they rarely investigate ANYTHING – let alone their own behavior.
      Unless someone is younger than 25, he or she should know by now that Uncle Scam is NOT to be trusted with matches, money or trust. PRIVATIZE airport security. SCREW what America’s trained parrots might say. They get PAID to be braindead. And they NEVER get smarter.

    • Old Henry

      Brenda, sounds like it might be a viable employment opportunity for Sandusky.

      Maybe Paterno could start his own security company.

      • Joe H.

        Old Henry,
        got just the name for em’! feelemup inc.!!! Good???

  • CP

    I suppose you would rather be patted down by some minimum wage flunky who may or may not have a GED, let alone a high school diploma? Take a good look at the private security agencies who take care of so many of our shopping malls and bus and train depots. If these are the kind of people you want taking care of our airline security, fine. As for me, I would prefer to have someone who has at least a minimal amount of training and a bit more education in how to deal with people.

    • USPatriot

      One: Privatizing is more efficient. And who says they need a union?
      Two: Set standards of training. Companies that irritate customers for no reason get fired.
      Three: Currently they are missing items while checking Grannie’s diaper
      Four: Use results oriented standards and ethics. Don’t check the captain who is given a gun and a fire ax before starting the engines. That is stupid. Bomb sniffing dogs are a better deal. Currently, besides sexual assault, TSA is stealing money et al and making fun of passengers discomfort. The object is to harass Americans, women in particular.

      • Joe H.

        Theyre government sanctioned, OF COURSE THEY’LL BE UNIONIZED!!!

  • eddie47d

    Since terrorism can be a real threat and soft targets will be used to prove a countries venerability then airport security will never go away. Should the airlines have pooled their own money and set up their own security system years ago? Maybe so but that would still cost a bundle and even higher ticket prices to pay for private security. Will those flying be happier? Not necessarily because a private company will still make you stand in line and be checked. Will the “old” TSA agents be rehired by the private companies and give you the same complaints? The good thing is that they would be more accountable to the airline industry and the airlines reputation would be on the line. It could also open up lawsuits and that could “take down” an airline in the courtroom. Maybe that is why the airlines didn’t want the responsibility in the first place. I suspect we can all agree that some TSA agents are little more than wanna a be Barney Fife’s wielding as much power as they can get away with. So their is room for improvement.

    • firefight

      Even for a leftie, you make some good points here Eddie. Can we imagine a “unionized” private company handling our airport security? What happens to the flow of passengers and security when they decide to go on strike? Can you imagine the cost of your next ticket with the union costs added to your airfare? It’s bad enough we have to pay for every politician’s retirement at full pay and full benefits when they retire but with a union company running security all over the country, and you can bet that would happen, flying would yet be another benefit for the very wealthy. This could well be another step in eliminating the middle class in America. Still, having a TSA in the first place violates every kind of Constitutional right we have and all “for our own good.” No matter who runs the TSA, we will always have agents with IQ’s slightly above a carrot, manhandling and groping our citizenry and Boy Scouts, Generals, and sweet little old ladies in their 80′s will have to take off their shoes, line up for the pat downs or scanners while Middle Easterners enjoy a much less invasive process because of the ACLU. Does any of this make sense to you?

      • Capitalist at Birth

        We are paying for the TSA now, through airport security fees. Look at your next ticket. It should be privatized immediately. That is a no brainer. K.C. has a private security firm in place now, or at least they did last time I flew through there. They were 10 times more efficient than the TSA in St. Louis and Denver, and more polite and considerate to boot.

        • firefight

          Thanks for that bit of information. I’ll check it out.

      • Joe H.

        your arguement about lawsuits is worthless. The government will pass legislation protecting them from prosecution! They’ll still be the same child molesting, feel-up artists they are right now!!

    • Old Henry

      The simplest and most straightforward way (and that is why it will not be done) to deal with airport security is to do as the Isrealies do. We should in fact hire the Isrealies.

      • Joe H.

        works for me!!! THEY know what they’re doing!!

  • Dreamerdick

    Just abandon the whole operation and turn it over to the airlines, competition will insure safety of passengers, not government.

  • SMSgt Z (ret) Nam 68

    Mica believes “that the United States lags behind other Western countries — many of which already have privatized airport security”
    So this Republican want the US to emulate other western countries. Which are European countries in security but not health care;something the US is also behind in.Could the reason be that privatization would create opportunities for some of his friends to become millionaires?The screening to be hired for the TSA is quite throw screening for private security less then throw.Better training and better management is what the TSA needs.Collective barging means nothing with the federal government as the air traffic controllers during Reagan’s administration found out

    • Old Henry

      There is no health care problem in the U.S. Everyone, even the criminal illegals, can get health care.

      The problem in the AFFORDABILITY of health care. Little Barry, the Congress and “ObummerCare” have done NOTHING to improve the affordability of health care – reining in the trial lawyers & government regulations – and with Little Barry and most of Congress in the pockets of the trial lawyers nothing will be done.

  • Peaceful Warrior

    The usual, they create the problem, and when people are so fed-up, they give you their solution, which is less than desirable; consequently, that results in greater gains for the privileged ones. This was a well orchestrated and quite brilliantly executed plan, and people do not see it. Oh well.

    SMSgt, I agree, certain friends will become quite wealthy from this clever endeavor, and Dreamerdick, you are right, let competition develop innovation and less invasion, while ensuring safety!

  • Sirian

    Perhaps they should follow the line that Israel has for many, many years in this area. Needless to say, Israel has to deal with terrorists on a daily basis, literally. All in all, it sure seems to work real well there without near the idiotic headaches that the TSA has created here.

    • Old Henry


      You are correct, the Isrealies must deal with terrorism on a daily basis. We, however, are a little more fortunate in that we only have to deal with terrorism when Congress is in session.

  • http://liberyalearts john p.


  • firefight

    Perhaps having the individual airlines responsible for their own security would work if we don’t mind doubling the price of our next airline ticket. We all pay collectively right now for the security that is in place. Yes, even if you don’t ever fly, you are paying through your tax dollars, assuming you pay taxes. This is just like your local school taxes. You might not have kids in school any longer, but you still pay local school taxes. Now remove TSA from the government’s clutches and place it into a private company. You will NOT get a reduction in your present taxes but you will get an increase in your airfares due to the cost to the airlines to pay for the private company’s security costs. Any time you remove something from the government pile to privatize it, you have to pay somewhere else to maintain it. Now, the burden will fall upon those who fly as opposed to the masses under the present program. Folks, funding has to come from somewhere if we are going to keep having airport security. As for me, I can remember when everyone could walk to the gate to send off or greet their travelers and there was no need for security because we had not yet developed governments full of people who made policies that made the world fear and hate everyone. Why can’t we just “turn back the clock?”

    • USPatriot

      You are a union guy, aren’t you? Privatizing is ALWAYS cheaper, especially if unions are not involved. Every gov’t program is in the red. Social security, medicaid, gov’t run healthcare that isn’t even started yet!

      • Old Henry

        You are correct USPatriot, but the ONLY reason that SS is in the red is because of the massive theft / fraud of Congress and presidents over the last 45 years. They should all be in prison awaiting the gallows.

      • eddie47d

        Not sure why Patriot and Henry brought up health care but since you did I’ll point out a glaring error in your comment. For the last 3 years conservatives have been saying that health care costs have risen dramatically because of this new health care plan. Which is a falsehood and Patriot actually got it right. “it’s not even in effect yet”,well only a few months old and not the 3 years. The real cost increases came from private insurers and big pharma who had scammed the American people. Maybe some tort reform is needed but that is only about 1 1/2% of the costs. On top of that lawyers are part of the private system in this country not the government. How about a little reform on hospitals and drug costs since that is where the biggest problems lie.

        • Jeep

          eddie, puhleez. Let’s just start with the rise of insuring a family of four. That’s up 9% from last year:

          Maybe it was Obamacare, maybe not. Pretty coincidental though…wouldn’t you say?

          • Old Henry


            My health insurance for 2012 is going up 15% year over year and it has been for last 7 years – at aminimum.

        • Old Henry


          I don’t think I mentioned health care, but Patriot was simply making comparisons as to how well the “guvment” does not do anything efficiently.

          Regarding ObummerCare, I read over the week end that the theft has already begun. Congress is already stealing the funds to spend on other things in the budget. Where’s that rope….??

          • eddie47d

            At 11:00am.

        • Robert Smith

          Posted: “The real cost increases came from private insurers and big pharma who had scammed the American people.”

          True and George Bush insisted that Americans pay list price while other countries like Canada, England, etc. could still make them bid. THEY get lower prices while Bush gave away our money.

          NO wonder it’s less expensive to get drugs cheaper (exactly the same drugs) from Canada.


        • Joe H.

          you wouldn’t be in favor of cutting WAGES on those UNION nurses and other hospital employees, now would you????

      • firefight

        USPatriot, Nope, hate the unions. They’e the reason, in my estimation, that everything is being outsourced today. What I do know is that nothing gets done right by the government and nothing is cheap with the unions.

    • Old Henry

      Good idea firefight. Let the airlines handle the security and probably increase air fares, but that would have the people benefiting paying for it not those who are not benefiting. Much like toll roads.

  • Robert Smith

    Part of the article: “He also said that the current hiring practices of the TSA allow for unqualified individuals to become Transportation Security Officers (TSO)”

    Just what we need… Rent-A-Cops dealing with National security.



    • SMSgt Z (ret) Nam 68

      In 2008 I was thinking about going to the TSA. The background check was through and being retired military with a top secret security clearance meant nothing.Think I’ll apply again and see how true the statement was

      • Old Henry

        SM, maybe you simply need an arrest or two for child molestation. You would probably be a shew-in. Who knows you might even get to work with Sandusky and Paterno.

        • SMSgt Z (ret) Nam 68

          I’ll leave the child molestation to you, since you brought it up it must be on your mind ;it’s not something I would post

          • Old Henry

            It has been in the news a lot, or do you not listen to the news? Have you not seen the abuse by TSA goons that has been recorded? Most likely just the tip of the iceberg. Ever hear of PU? (More commonly known as Penn State)

            You sound a little pro-TSA and government thuggery. The TSA, Homeland Security, the un-Patriot Act have little to do with safety and everything to do with softening up the American public to government thuggery and the stealing of our freedom and God-given rights.

          • APN

            Well put Henry, the fact is, all of this, TSA, Patriot Act, etc etc etc, is nothing more than foolishness, period. Just another failed nanny-state PC attempt to make us all feel “Secure” from the mean ole terrorists. The fact is, we know who the enemy is, “ISLAM” and those who support it. Given that fact, let’s deal with it and get on about being FREE BRAVE AMERICANS. Again, anyone who would believe that Washington has our best interests at heart are just plain FOOLISH and anyone who would give up an ounce of FREEDOM for a pound of “Security” is even MORE foolish.

    • firefight

      Robert Smith, Sounds like his statement is an admission of guilt. He’s stating, basically, that the current hiring practices are inadequate and that he has known this all along and has done nothing to correct the problem. WOW! That makes me feel really warm and fuzzy all over. As a frequent air traveler, I have seen just about every breach of individual rights perpetrated upon travelers by these monkeys and know that many of them are less than “adequate.” Why don’t we just defund the damn TSA and allow the people with concealed carry permits to be our security? We already have air marshals on just about every flight and this move would be just giving them some backup. Provide a school to qualify these individuals with some training in airline protective procedures and allow them to carry their own firearms on the planes. In every state where concealed carry has been adopted, violent crimes, rapes and domestic abuse has gone down. If we allow our own to protect us, it won’t cost us a penny and it would surely put an end to anyone wanting to hijack your next flight.

      Now, for many of you, this thought is scary because it is foreign. We have been “deeducated” “reeducated” by an anti gun government so intent on taking away our guns and second amendment rights that to even think about someone you do not know sitting beside you on an airplane with a firearm tucked away is virtually unimaginable. Yet, we are in stores, restaurants and even churches all the time with individuals who have those same guns nicely tucked away. The person sitting next to you at the barber shop or the nail salon could well be carrying their concealed handgun and you would never know it. The only thing is, you don’t know that this individual is packing a gun because they don’t advertise it. We just need to rethink what really makes us safe as opposed to what the government wants us to think makes us safe. But remember, that does require us to think for ourselves. FIREFIGHT SAYS, defund the TSA and legalize concealed carry on all domestic flights……….and perhaps International flights as well. As Americans, we should be able to defend ourselves wherever we travel. After all, it is a God give right that should not be legislated away by anyone anywhere.

      • Old Henry


        Better stay out of the “Land of Stincoln”.

      • Robert Smith

        From Bob: “After all, it is a God give right that should not be legislated away by anyone anywhere.”

        Nope, second Ammendment. Remember? It’s part of he document that begins, “WE THE PEOPLE.”

        BTW, I was an NRA instructor for over 20 years in 5 catigories. I quit two years before George Bush Sr. did because I saw how the right wing had taken the NRA over. It really was crappy for awhile but I hear it might be improving as they focus more on the second ammendment and less for the right wing.

        BTW, I’ve had a permit to carry most of my adult life, including years in VA and MA. Some folks are convinced I moved to MA just to vote aainst Teddy some years ago.

        So, in self defense I’m pro-choice.

        Just as I am in many other things.

        I think in a free America we have no business abusing government to tell us how to defend ourselves, weather or not to have an abortion, how to die, what recreational drugs might be chosen… You know, freedom in America.


        • Joe H.

          yeah robbie, you believe in killing acorns, we know!

  • Old Henry

    Sounds to me like Mica and Issa are engaging in some massive CYA. These two jerks are part of the problem, not part of the solution as evidenced by the fact that they were complicit in the creation of the facsist TSA.

    They put me in mind of the little dirt-bag gang banger appologizing to the judge for his mis-deeds. In reality he is not sorry for doing what he did, he is sorry for getting caught.

    House Oversight and Government Reform Committee -
    What an absolute contradiction in terms – the ultimate oxymoron.

  • Phil

    I do not agree with Rep John Mica because giving TSA would not make efficient at all. We tried it during President Bush and all contractors had were criminal, sex offenders, and felons. If we go contact, the American people loses while politician like Mr Mica win.

    • bob wire

      True, I think that we are looking at the pay scale a little above a WalMart greeter. They didn’t want to pay these people much is what I heard.

  • Joe

    I saw a news report on this on FOX and it was said that even if the airports ditch the TSA and go with private security firms, that the same rules and regulations would be in force meaning that the backscatter scanners and invasive pat downs would still happen, they would just be done by different people. What needs to be changed is the law or laws which authorize these obscenities in our airports.

    • bob wire

      Well Joe, it sounds like this Representative John L. Mica (R-Fla. is wanting to do more of what so many in government does so well, “pass the buck” and separate themselves from the responsibility of their action and still enjoy their 1st and 15th salaries while they pretend to work!

      Heaven forbid, they might actually correct anything!

      • Old Henry

        I don’t think they want to correct it Bob. It was all done by design and will continue to expand. TN has already allowed TSA VIPERS to conduct roadside searches.

        Your papers please…

  • bob wire

    To take on such a responsibility as security, there needs some accountability. So a “for profit” identity is seen as a better choice?

    Sounds like conflict of interest and oversight would be at loggerheads at some point with such an arrangement.


    Between the TSA and the Senate who condones them I am not sure which one is more abusive of liberty and rights, now the Congress is giving the military the right to arrest and detain Americans on their own soils, so say good-bye to habeus corpus if this is true.
    The need to change the the way our elected officials hold office is now more of a imperative, their elite incumbency has poisoned our representation, walks on our Constitution and our rights as citizens who are supposed to be able to speak up when we are unhappy but even freedom of speech is being impaired by these self aggrandizing law makers and I would not be supprised if elections are stopped. next.
    Term limits salary only and a moratorium between elected office for both elected and appointed officials, let the voters decide if you merit a continued career. End all government unions to stop conflict of interest and extortion. Remove the IRS and the progressive tax for a fair tax and make it a ballot issue every ten years, this will command a budget and give a concensus to the governed and put the civil back into public service…..or you can simply lose this Republic.

    • Jeep

      ONTIME, if you are referring to SB 1867, this bill does not authorize the military to arrest or detain US citizens “en masse”. Habeus Corpus is still alive and well, even if this bill passes.

      Although, elimination of the IRS and a fair tax that EVERYONE contributes to would be a nice change.

      • fit17

        Jeep, Habeus Corpus is not well at all. The FBI has been using the threat of the designation of ‘combatant’ to compel people to give testimony(false or true testimony) and to force confessions. Designation as a ‘combatant’allows the feds to send one to Guantanamo up to life without ever having benefit of counsel or hearing. They can actually be denied ANY outside contact. How would one fight a false designation without right to counsel? Who wouldn’t falsely confess or give wrongful testimony under that kind of duress?

    • Old Henry

      Lincoln’s Martial Law never ended as he was killed before ending it.

  • fit17

    As far as privatization goes, I fear the “contractors” will be the same “contractors” that we now use in Iraq, Afganistan,etc. No bid contracts to Halliburton and Blackwater all over again. No thanks. Why don’t we keep it simple. Let the airlines provide the security. They own the airplanes and certainly want to keep their customers safe. I propose putting sky marshals back on the planes,simple metal detectors and bomb sniffing dogs which are trained to sniff out even the components of explosives.

    • Old Henry

      Hire the Isrealies and let them earn the billions we give them every year.

  • Bob from SoCal

    Privatize? I think Palin said it best, “That’s like putting lipstick on a pig!”.

  • simian pete

    Mica’s “little bastard child” is getting too expensive moneywise ($$$).

    He feels the TSA workers should be paid a low salary under private contractor control.

    The Private Contractor (aka Crony Capitalist) will profit financially …….

    Congressman Mica’s PAC money will have new contributors …. ???

  • Frank Zappa


    The Patriot Act? So IF you disagree with the Gubbament then YOU are NOT a “Patriot.”? Why how cleaver, wish I would have conceived such a Title for a Gubbament Mandate.

    Now lets trust “The Gubbament” would like for us to believe that “IF” we “Privatize” this entity everything will be just fine…..Hummmmm do YOU really believe This? If you believe this then you need a “BRAIN TRANSPLANT.”



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