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July 14, 2008

Terrorist Watchlist Hits One Million Names

I feel safer already:

The nation’s terrorist watch list has hit one million names, according to a tally maintained by the American Civil Liberties Union based upon the government’s own reported numbers for the size of the list.

Members of Congress, nuns, war heroes and other `suspicious characters,’ with names like Robert Johnson and Gary Smith, have become trapped in the Kafkaesque clutches of this list, with little hope of escape,” said Caroline Fredrickson, director of the ACLU Washington Legislative Office. “Congress needs to fix it, the Terrorist Screening Center needs to fix it, or the next president needs to fix it, but it has to be done soon.”

Fredrickson and Barry Steinhardt, director of the ACLU’s Technology and Liberty Program, spoke today along with two victims of the watch list: Jim Robinson, former assistant attorney general for the Civil Division who flies frequently and is often delayed for hours despite possessing a governmental security clearance and Akif Rahman, an American citizen who has been detained and interrogated extensively at the U.S.-Canada border when traveling for business. [ACLU]

I wrote about the massively dysfunctional TSA watch list two years ago. The authorities have been promising to work out the same "kinks" for years, with no appreciable improvement. The fundamental structural problem is that several low-quality lists were thrown together after 9/11 to create one big list full of misspellings, duplications, and other defects.

No one's going to make a silk purse out of that sow's ear.


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Well, somehow, I seem to have been dropped from the list. I used to have a little extra hassle every time I checked in, but now I don't, even when flying on airlines I haven't flown before.

Isn't it funny how the government will award a $300 million dollar arms contract to AEY Inc. without checking to see if they're on the State Department watchlist, but everyone called Robert Johnson gets checked every damn time they fly?

Well, we don't need any hell hounds running loose through our airport terminals.

Well Robert Johnson DID sell his sol to the Devil so ... Jesus, this is just the latest innumerable example of how this country keeps screwing up.


it's an internet tradition and stuff.

I'm told if they see you doing a terrorist fist bump in an Airport, you're Toast.

Hm. That means an average of 1 out of every 300 American's a terrorist? By that logic, there's over 4000 terrorists living here in San Antonio. Gee, I didn't realize we were living in such dangerous times.

When I ran against Jim Davis (a pro-PATRIOT Act pro-war Democrat) for Congress as a Libertarian, one of the small comforts I had in getting constantly stopped at airports is that the same thing happened to my opponent, at least according to a retired military Republican guy who was very active in Tampa's ACLU.

So, there are one million people that want to blow them selves up, just to kill us? In other words, the number of America's enemies have grown from a few hundreds in Afghanistan on 9/11/2001, to one million on June 2008? Thank you President Bush. Thank you.

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