Wednesday 27 October 2010

British Airways; Bastion of Common Sense and Slayers of Political Idiocy

Really pleased to see Martin Broughton (scourge of some Americans) come out today to rail against the excessive security checks we have to go through at airports. As a regular traveller, it is obvious that these have become far to onerous. In addition, the lack of profiling is a disgraceful give way to political correctness.

Having watched mothers clearly going on their hols with their brood having to throw away baby milk and open sealed packets of baby food to taste - something is clearly awry.

The key message too is that the US have their own demands (not made for domestic travellers, interesting as 9/11 targeted domestic flights because that was where security was low), then the EU and then the UK. Also more powerful scanners have been brought in - so in effect security has got tighter and tighter.

I don't want to see any more attacks, especially as I am a regular traveller, but clearly bureaucracy has had its normal field day in expanding beyond the necessary; So I applaud Broughton for standing up and saying the Emperor has no clothes.

Remember too that it was Willie Walsh last year who was so strident in saying the Ash Cloud was not as dangerous as the Governments would have us believe. Bravely he flew through it and although was ignored and castigated, until  he was proven right. Willie Walsh, now a Government adviser, is also quoted today as a keen proponent of growth and not worrying about socialist propaganda about a new recession.

We should celebrate having a company where the management are not frightened of the truth and are willing to challenge the vast Government machine consensus.


Old BE said...

Yes, but isn't it a pity that his firm provides such a poor service?

Your point about mothers with children is one thing, but Richard Reid didn't obviously meet your "profile" did he?

CityUnslicker said...

I did not say what my 'profile' was...single men travelling alone are always high on the list - been stopped myself plenty of times in the 1990's going to the US on an Irish passport. Inconvenient, but understandable.

roym said...

what is the profile? 9/11, shoe bombers, hiding explosives up you know where, all bring to mind a Martin Amis short story essentially about trying to guess the unthinkable.

also, do you fly much by BA CU?

ive only gone once in recent years and it was fine, but the volume of complaints against them is phenomenal.

i would suggest that Willie "hard man" Walsh get his customer facing staff smiling again quick smart.

CityUnslicker said...

BA is ok - much better than my recent Ryanair experience. But they are nto great I agree.

The staff are unhappy becuase Walsh wants to reduce their pay from double the industry average to the industry average.

There are no winners, it is a legacy of a privatisation in the 1980's which the management previous to Walsh ignored - they were able too until the rise of buddget airlines in the 2000's.

As for profiling - it is complex and i am not going to try and outline it - but there are people who are more likely and less likely to be a risk and you pick on them rather than everyone. it is still a wide net, but is contentious here becuase it would mean looking at religon and race - but hey, that is the threat we faced. it used to be irish people like myself; they also use it for football hooligans.

Old BE said...

My apologies, you didn't state any particular profile and therefore my "your" comment was incorrect. However, my point still stands that it is quite likely that profiling won't catch the person with the bomb because all the bombers have to do is persuade someone who doesn't fit the bill to take it on.

It's a bit like the silly backpackers who get stung taking someone else's drugs across borders.

hatfield girl said...

The torture manual outed by Wikileaks advises 'get them naked and keep them naked'. So far the US-instigated 'managed state-tension and threat' strategy against mass movements of people has got our shoes, belts, coats, scarves, hats, gloves, jackets, computers, watches, cash.

Lufthansa (ever courteous and efficient) has a set-aside seating area where there are boxes of plastic slip-ons for shoeless passengers and various sized containers for the clothes and possessions we must put through separate scanners. Everyone strips down in comfort and we don't have to walk on the dirty floor. But how long before we are all in changing rooms putting on paper boiler suits and carrying our possessions like prisoners?

Steven_L said...

...a disgraceful give way to political correctness

Too right, all these bleeding heart 'libertarians' I say pour water down their noses until they tell us everything then send 'em back to the axis of evil!

John Lancaster said...

I have no objection to effective security procedures, however, my anger is roused by the officious individuals implementing them. And to my shame the worst excesses can be found at UK airports. Profiling is certainly performed, unfortunately it is targeted at those least likely to conform to a terrorist profile; the young family, the elderly and the stupid. The shoe thing targets those wearing sensible shoes, and the laptop search is ridiculous as practiced. I was most impressed by the non-intrusive and practical manner in which the security at Istanbul airport is carried out. And at the time of the Haj. Let us speak out as one against this intolerable state of affairs and lobby the government, the EU and airlines. Forget about the USA, they do not understand the nature of the threat, It is fear itself.

Anonymous said...

The basic flaw is that those with the most to lose from a mussiecide bomber, the other passengers, are disenfranchised from the security process.

My solutions is put all plane's passengers & crew in a room and it's a free-for-all to undertake security checks as they deem necessary.

Once everyone is happy, they can board. If it requires a few 'up-'yer-burqa' checks, then so be it...

CityUnslicker said...

anon - brilliant!