TSA's Long Lines Seemingly For Nothing

This column was written by CBS News Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.

You know I have nothing against the TSA screeners at our nation's airports. Like other people who travel quite a bit, they are part of the degrading, numbing, humbling ordeal that is modern air travel. The mantra I repeat over and over to myself is, "They're just doing their job. They're just doing their job." Well, as it turns out: Surprise! They are not.

USA Today got its hands on a classified report which says that at Los Angeles International Airport TSA employees smuggling simulated explosives got past screeners 75 percent of the time. The simulated explosives and bomb parts were hidden in carry on bags or clothing, nothing stealthy or really tricky.

They didn't fare much better at O'Hare either. Undercover agents there were successful in smuggling bomb stuff through 60 percent of the time.

We're continually told the reason the screening system is set up the way it is to insure that nothing that could hurt a lot of people could ever get through. Huh?

Harry's daily commentary can be heard on many CBS Radio News affiliates across the country.


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