November 22, 2010

Flying with Points

It seems to me that the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) could easily come up with a point system that would take a major step in eliminating the long lines and the public unrest at airports.  They wouldn't even have to publish it, they could keep it secret so the terrorists don't know exactly what is being used to identify them.  The data would come from a combination of security databases, answering standard questions or even providing your Social Security Number for the purchase of tickets. Every ticket would end up having a point value and if the value exceeded a certain amount, the traveler would have to go through the strip-search x-ray machine or be patted down.

Something like this: 

A US citizen:  0 points 
Male:  10 points
Female: 5 points
Current Military: free pass
Veteran over 65: free pass
US Citizen over 70: take away 20 points
A non-US citizen:  20 points
A non-US citizen from terror-list country: 40 points
Been to a terror-list country in last ten years?:  40 points
A frequent flier:  0 points
Flying with Family:  0 points
Round-trip ticket:  0 points
One way ticket: 20 points
Small airplane:  0 points
Medium sized airplane: 10 points
Large airplane: 20 points
Destination New York: 25 points
Destination LA:  20 points
Destination Chicago: 15 points
Random:  Add 40 points to every 500th person.

You get the idea... once a certain point level is reached, you go through a different scanner.  You're from a terror-list country, on a one way ticket to New York on a large airliner?  You bet you're over the point count.  You're from Fort Wayne, IN flying with your family on round trip ticket to Orlando?  Pass on through.  The vast, vast majority of travelers would not need to be examined.  I believe they are doing the random thing now... you can ask when you get your tickets if any of them are going to be scanned and you can opt out your kids under 12 before you even get to the security area.

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