TSA Uproar: That’s The Power of Drudge

posted at 12:07 pm on November 22, 2010 by Matt Lewis

As I recently noted at Politics Daily, the TSA showdown is healthy for America.  Here’s why:

The TSA passenger rebellion is merely the latest example of American exceptionalism and is perfectly in keeping with the nation’s ethos. As Ben Franklin declared, those “who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

But while this rebellion has long been bubbling below the surface, one wonders if it have ever come to the forefront without Matt Drudge.   My guess is, it would not have — at least, not yet.

Not long ago, of course, there was great debate as to whether or not Drudge even still had it.  As Barack Obama was besting John McCain in 2008, many observers wondered whether or not The Drudge Report — which a decade earlier had pushed the Monica Lewinsky scandal into the headlines — had lost a step.

At the Washington Post, Howard Kurtz debated whether or not Drudge still had the clout to drive media coverage.  And TPM’s Greg Sargent also argued that Drudge’s influence was over-stated.  He was not alone.

Of course, as the TSA rebellion illustrates, Drudge remains incredibly powerful and uniquely important.

As Project for Excellence in Journalism director Tom Rosenstiel previously told the Los Angeles Times, Drudge is “a gateway for conventional journalism.”

It think that’s the key.  The TSA story, of course, did not end with Drudge.  Do a Google News search for “TSA” and you’ll find all sorts of new information and investigative journalism that has been reported in the last week. (At the time of this writing, doing so yielded me a “Time” story called “Please remove your prosthetic breast,” and a Raw Story titled, “ABC producer says TSA agent felt inside her underwear“).

Now consider how many of these stories wouldn’t have seen the light of day had it not been for the blaring-siren of the Drudge Report …

By linking to that now-famous video — and sending it viral — Drudge helped spark a movement.  He may have also turned John Tyner into the business traveler’s “Rosa Parks”…


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I agree. We need to make sure people don’t know what’s going on. And if they do, that they can’t communicate with each other.

This type of “communication” is not good.

In fact, “communication” is not good unless we can control what’s being “communicated”.

We should ban the Internet. Or put a big Internet light switch in the White House.

Call it the ILS. Everyone will fear the ILS like they do the IRS. Obama could say, “Hey! If you don’t shut up and go to sleep, I’m gonna throw the ILS on you!”

And make it bright orange or pink so Obama doesn’t accidentally shut off the Internet when he goes to bed.

I think this is a good idea and I’m going to write that congressman Rockefeller fellow about it. I think he’ll like it too.

Rod on November 22, 2010 at 2:10 PM

Ernesto – you have some valid points that we as a nation should have been more vigilant about our fourth ad. rights long before now. But generally we tend to give our government the benefit of the doubt, which is a big mistake. Also there is the complacency factor involved.

Now we are reaching critical mass. With the events of the last two years, GM, TARP, Health care, and the rise of the Tea Party people are starting to get it. I say “starting” because this is going to be a long road to pull back the government on.

But that is beauty of the USA – we can pull back. We can get our selves organized and VOTE and make a difference locally, and nationally. Just because we were sheeples before doesn’t mean we have to continue to be! So thanks for pointing out the other areas where our 4th ad. rights have been enroached upon, but cut us some slack about letting that slide before. We get it – we didn’t do a good job about protesting those areas, but by damn we are gonna start it now!

And Gryphon222 will you cut out the personal attacks on ernesto?? I like your passion but man I get tired of you calling him names…

catlady on November 22, 2010 at 2:14 PM

Any sane president, even in times of terrorist threats, would say to the director of TSA…c’mon, you can’t treat the folks like that. Think of something else. Unfortunately, we don’t have a president who looks out for the citizens.

scalleywag on November 22, 2010 at 1:46 PM

scalleywag,

Cool monkier!

I disagree with your statement claiming that President Barack Hussein Obama (Peace be Unto Him, Lord, Savior, Messiah. Praise His Holy Name. Surrender to Him and He might give you Peace, Salvation, and buy you a car, a house, health insurance., etc.)

Although in spirit el Presidente del Estados Unidos, el Diablo del Mundo, has been, and is dimissive to many US citizens, and has repeatedly betrayed many of us to the rest of the world, The One does have his favorites, as he repeatedly massages and bribes, and pays off unions and special interest groups, including many leftist organizations, racists, bigots, Muslims, etc., while he digs the knife in deeper on the rest of us, painting us as demonic, deranged creatures who cling to our religion, our guns, etc., and who don’t like people who look different from us.

That claim he made is absurd on its face. The male portion of the population truly enjoy the female portion of the population, and vice versa, as sex and relationships are among the most common forms of behavior that human beings engage in, along with eating, sleeping, and a few other behaviors and tendencies. Many of us also enjoy the differences we have, as the entertainment industry has demonstrated, travel choices people make – visiting foreign lands, etc., and friendships and marriages have demonstrated – virtually every US citizen has friends of a different race and ethnicity, and many US citizens are involved in interracial marriages, with Caucasians marrying blacks, Hispanics, Asians-Orientals, etc., and with each of the aforementioned doing the same, and then reproducing from their interracial marriages, providing millions of interracial children.

No. Mister Hope and Change does have a few he caters to, but that is subject to his whim and cannot be trusted either, while the rest of us are betrayed, demonized, mocked, insulted, and targeted.

SEIU, other unions, Muslims, blacks, Hispanics, illegal invaders-illegal immigrants, etc., are on our Savior’s favorites list, while the rest of us aren’t even on his list, save to mock and denegrate, as his words and actions have revealed numerous times since even before he became US president.

William2006 on November 22, 2010 at 2:26 PM

Well I was thinking about this issue this AM. ( yes it hurt) And I was wondering , why is it that the TSA agents aren’t bitching about this. Didn’t we cover this situation back in the late 40′s with the Nuremburg trials?
That entire notion of ” I WAS JUST FOLLOWING ORDERS”.
WRONG IS WRONG.
Where did the spirit of individualism and liberty go to in America? Did some sell it out for simple security?
Didn’t Ben Franklyn say that ” Any one that would trade essential liberty for security deserves neither.”

ColdWarrior57 on November 22, 2010 at 2:37 PM

What also gets me is the TSA agents themselves. I don’t know where they get these employees but a lot are really creepy or dumb. I think the TSA really scraped the bottom of the barrel with some of these people! I would not allow some of them to pat me down or touch me in any way so I guess if I have to fly it’s gonna be the scanners for me until a sane POTUS stops this. Two more years…two more years… Is what I keep telling myself.

CCRWM on November 22, 2010 at 1:19 PM

If you take a hundred Americans selected at random and give them a badge and insulate them from responsibility for their own actions, about 20% of them will turn into thugs. You see that in any county or city police department, and it takes years to weed out the bad ones, as new ones join.

The TSA was thrown together so quickly that there’s been no time to weed out the bad ones, and because they are scraping the bottom of the barrel qualifications-wise, the figure is probably higher than 20% in the case of the TSA.

slickwillie2001 on November 22, 2010 at 2:51 PM

As a commenter from another thread had mentioned, this whole thing is based on stupid. But stupid is about the only thing the government is selling right now, and they’re not even close to running low on it. So now it seems like the folks are finally getting their fill. How many elections does it take to fix stupid?

Jeffster on November 22, 2010 at 2:53 PM

This TSA nightmare is just a prelude and metaphor for the future ObamaCare nightmare when the government is completely in charge of our healthcare. If people feel powerless when they are simply traveling and potential loss of a ticket is at stake, think how they will feel when they are truly vulnerable to bureaucratic decision making and their lives or health is at stake.

txmomof6 on November 22, 2010 at 2:56 PM

There’s right.
There’s wrong.
There’s politics.

mixplix on November 22, 2010 at 3:24 PM

TSA agents were all looking for a job when they were hired. None of these wannabe cops types were recruited. I equate them with the average security guard.
Some better than others but most were pulled from the ranks of the unemployed.
As such the people skills are not there. This is my summary fwiw.
If we want superior traveler security delivered professionally we will have to recruit, and pay for a better service.

FireBlogger on November 22, 2010 at 3:28 PM

@ gryphon202, 12:27 PM…

gryphon for president!!!

GGMac on November 22, 2010 at 3:47 PM

If we want superior traveler security delivered professionally we will have to recruit, and pay for a better service… profiling.

FireBlogger on November 22, 2010 at 3:28 PM

fify

jerrytbg on November 22, 2010 at 3:49 PM

gryphon202…

I’m thinking you’re Chris Christie. :)

GGMac on November 22, 2010 at 4:02 PM

And Gryphon222 will you cut out the personal attacks on ernesto?? I like your passion but man I get tired of you calling him names…

catlady on November 22, 2010 at 2:14 PM

Your request is duly noted and shall promptly be filed in my “ignore” bin.

gryphon202 on November 22, 2010 at 4:08 PM

gryphon202…

I’m thinking you’re Chris Christie. :)

GGMac on November 22, 2010 at 4:02 PM

I am a car wash attendant from the upper-midwest. Great plains, to be more precise. My greatest achievement was in casting one of the tens of thousands of votes that purged Tom Daschle from office in 2004 (big clue as to which state I live in). We are all Chris Christie now.

gryphon202 on November 22, 2010 at 4:11 PM

If we want superior traveler security delivered professionally we will have to recruit, and pay for a better service.

FireBlogger on November 22, 2010 at 3:28 PM

But Ern has assured us that it’s just not practical. It’s just not possible. I guess if a liberal troll says it, it must be true.

This one’s for you, Catlady. ;)

gryphon202 on November 22, 2010 at 4:12 PM

Reality check for anyone who doesn’t like the way TSA agents conduct security scans: Don’t fly.

Reality check for anyone who doesn’t like me slinging epithets at liberal douchebags: Don’t read my posts.

gryphon202 on November 22, 2010 at 4:17 PM

Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton know the power of Drudge.

Wade on November 22, 2010 at 4:30 PM

gryphon202 on November 22, 2010 at 4:17 PM

Reality check: you’re a poo-flinging baboon who has no problem with groping Granny in the name of ‘security’.

Dark-Star on November 22, 2010 at 4:37 PM

I suspect the outrage is that we expect our government (and military, used punitively and not to staff a Maginot line) to insure we can have a generally civil society without worrying about our neighbor, co-worker or folks with which I share a plane (or train or movie theater).
.
Which doesn’t mean collecting our guns and denying us the ability to defend ourselves, but killing off the mad-dogs capable of approaching us and any other animals they may have infected, canine or otherwise.
.
And be so awesomely terrible in doing it that a clear message is left with others that would consider it – and when those who would commit these atrocities have a societal death-wish and welcome the apocalypse, give it to them (sadly including their innocents) until such time as they surrender unconditionally. (Bye-Bye Yusuf Islam, you picked the wrong friends and belief-system).

aritai on November 22, 2010 at 4:37 PM

Reality check: you’re a poo-flinging baboon who has no problem with groping Granny in the name of ‘security’.

Dark-Star on November 22, 2010 at 4:37 PM

WTF are you talking about? I’ve been pushing the idea of these gropers violating our forth amendment rights. I am NOT in favor of these so-called security measures, and I wasn’t aware I said anything that made you think otherwise.

gryphon202 on November 22, 2010 at 4:40 PM

“who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.”

I am so glad you decided to provide us with this quote. I am always glad to point out to all Americans and any others that our Constitution provides for our ‘unalienable’ right to Liberty. No one, not even horny old Ben, gets to decide who deserves liberty.
NO ONE.

Observation on November 22, 2010 at 4:44 PM

Is it time to boycott Flying? Take the poll!

upinak on November 22, 2010 at 5:04 PM

Is it time to boycott Flying? Take the poll!

upinak on November 22, 2010 at 5:04 PM

There was no “Oh HELL yeah” choice, so I went with the next closest.

gryphon202 on November 22, 2010 at 5:06 PM

There was no “Oh HELL yeah” choice, so I went with the next closest.

gryphon202 on November 22, 2010 at 5:06 PM

heh I thought about it, but decided against it. :)

upinak on November 22, 2010 at 5:07 PM

According to the TSA’s own website, we can request a gown in a private area and ask the agent to change gloves prior to pat down”
That will speed things up.

Col.John Wm. Reed on November 22, 2010 at 5:39 PM

According to the TSA’s own website, we can request a gown in a private area and ask the agent to change gloves prior ro pat down

ConservativePartyNow on November 22, 2010 at 5:28 PM

If that gets around, they’ll change it quick. The first rule of TSA is that there are no rules.

slickwillie2001 on November 22, 2010 at 5:49 PM

According to the TSA’s own website, we can request a gown in a private area and ask the agent to change gloves prior ro pat down

ConservativePartyNow on November 22, 2010 at 5:28 PM

I feel so much better now.

/sarcasm

gryphon202 on November 22, 2010 at 5:52 PM

Drudge is my homeboy home page, and has been since the ’99 when I got my first computer. That’s staying power…

Buy Danish on November 22, 2010 at 5:53 PM

To paraphrase the cartoon strip Pogo,
Obama has met the enemy and the enemy is us.

albill on November 22, 2010 at 5:54 PM

Have you seen that Janet Napolitano has unveiled a new TSA public relations campaign? It’s pretty convincing, and I’m one of the biggest skeptics of these search methods. Check it out, you might be swayed to agree with her after seeing all the info she has, if you scroll all the way down the page, too! :)

NTWR on November 22, 2010 at 6:10 PM

You want fireworks?

Wait’ll one of these union parasite gropers is discovered to be a level 3 sex-offender.

franksalterego on November 22, 2010 at 6:11 PM

Patriots are not in short supply. Matt Drudge is but the current messenger. Tremendous, valuable service to his country. And just doing his part.

Developing.

EconomicNeocon on November 22, 2010 at 6:20 PM

jerrytbg on November 22, 2010 at 3:49 PM

Profiling is too obvious, never happen with Barry and Michelle in our White House.
Holder and his gang would rather walk over hot coals than commit to doing the right thing.

FireBlogger on November 22, 2010 at 7:59 PM

TSA agents will be going to hell for their criminal sexual assault of fellow human beings. They are despicable perverts, G*d will have a special place in hell for them.

ray on November 22, 2010 at 9:27 PM

The solution to this crap is obvious to those of us who aren’t cowering under the cloud of political correctness.

PROFILE ALL MUSLIMS. Period! Natural born American citizens who are NOT muslim should be left alone. All muslim-Americans and every person from a predominantly muslim country (Saudi Arabia, Indonesia, Yemen, etc.) MUST be subject to the enhanced screening protocols because THEY’RE THE ONES TRYING TO DESTROY HUMAN CIVILIZATION.

Cut the goddamn PC crap and leave elderly white Christian grandmothers and three year old children alone.

Profile the psychopaths who are trying to kill us, stupid!

bannedbyhuffpo on November 23, 2010 at 12:01 AM

Profile the psychopaths who are trying to kill us, stupid!

bannedbyhuffpo on November 23, 2010 at 12:01 AM

The way to do it properly would be with behavioral profiling, of the sort that the BAU of the FBI already engages in when investigating suspected serial killings. It doesn’t matter if you’re Arab or a hot leggy blonde from Sweden — there are ways to tell irrespective of someone’s race or even religion, if someone enters an airport with the intent to kill.

And if the boys and girls at Quantico can teach it to their agents, then they can teach it to anyone who’s qualified to learn that sort of stuff. We just need to have the stomach for it. “Profiling” isn’t a dirty word. Maybe “behavioral analysis” would be a better way to describe it?

gryphon202 on November 23, 2010 at 12:22 AM

You have to love how Rush is force-feeding this to be symbolic of the socialist Obama administration. And from the Left? Crickets.

John the Libertarian on November 23, 2010 at 12:41 AM

You have to love how Rush is force-feeding this to be symbolic of the socialist Obama administration. And from the Left? Crickets.

John the Libertarian on November 23, 2010 at 12:41 AM

The closest I’ve ever heard a leftist come to defending sexual assault in the name of security is, “Well we can’t do what works, cause that’s what Israel does and it would be unconstitutional here.” No alternatives, mind you.

gryphon202 on November 23, 2010 at 12:44 AM

Okay,

If I must fly, can’t the TSA at least hire people like Amy Adams, or Rachel McAdams, or Kajol, or Ming Na Wen, or Gabrielle Union, and, as long as my wife approves, I’ll take off all my clothes and they can frisk me from head to toe.

At least I won’t feel as bad, and I might even enjoy it.

Why do we have to have same-sex groping, anyway? Is this government coercion to accept homosexuality and homosexual behavior, child molestation, pedophilia, and so on?

It is certainly looking more and more like it.

For cryin’ out loud! Has our nation really come to the point at which the government mandates that if you are told to subject yourself to radiation poisoning or unwanted groping from a stranger of the same sex as you, then you must submit, or you get arrested, fined, and you cannot proceed to your destination, but, at the same time, that lady covered form heat to toe in Muslim garb is affored special consideration so as not to offend her, or her fellow Muslims, even though she is a Muslim, like the offenders on 9/11, the underwear bomber, the Spain bombings, the London bombings, the Saudi Arabia attacks against oil workers, the attacks in Mumbai, the attacks in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Lebanon, Russia, Argentina, and on and on and on and on ad nauseum for 1400 years?

The very idea of another male, especially a stranger, groping me against my will, is terribly offensive, and the very idea of submitting to radiation and nude photographs in a public place, via government coersion, is terribly offensive and repulsive!

The possibility that my 2 3/4 year old child, 6 year old daughter, 10 year old son, 13 year old daughter, or wife could be forced to undergo this, and that I am supposed to shut up and do nothing, and if I do something I can be arrested, prohibited from flying, imprisoned, and fined, is absurd, but it is actually happening!

William2006 on November 23, 2010 at 1:13 AM

At the Washington Post, Howard Kurtz debated whether or not Drudge still had the clout to drive media coverage. And TPM’s Greg Sargent also argued that Drudge’s influence was over-stated.

Ahhh….the wishful thinking of unabashed liberals. Isn’t it cute?

olesparkie on November 23, 2010 at 7:25 AM

In other news today, Nancy Pelosi will now be flying coach. And, in a stunning setback for the airline industry, most people flying out of Washington have canceled their reservations and booked train tickets instead, reportedly due to the new TSA screening techniques, according to CNN News.

unclesmrgol on November 23, 2010 at 6:23 PM

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