I Can’t Imagine Why the TSA Wouldn’t Want Public Input
August 4, 2012
So, a year ago the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia determined that the TSA’s nude body scanners are permissible, just as long as the TSA retroactively followed federal rulemaking requirements and got public input.
However, the appellate court, which is one stop from the Supreme Court, said that the Transportation Security Administration breached federal law in 2009 when it formally adopted the airport scanners as the “primary” method of screening. The judges said the TSA violated the Administrative Procedures Act for failing to have a 90-day public comment period, and ordered the agency to undertake one.
In other words, we’re not going to make you dump the rule that you put in place (the one that you expect the little people to follow) merely because you didn’t follow the laws that apply to federal agencies. However, you need to at least pretend to follow the rules, so you will have to hold public hearings very soon. Go forth, listen to the public, nod gravely, and then write a report whilst continuing to do what you damned well please. If you do that, the court will magically deem you to be nice and legal and might even put a happy face stamp on the final judgement.
Seems the TSA doesn’t even want to do this.
A federal appeals court Wednesday ordered the Transportation Security Administration to explain why it hasn’t complied with the court’s year-old decision demanding the agency hold public hearings concerning the rules and regulations pertaining to the so-called nude body scanners installed in U.S. airport security checkpoints.
I’m not surprised that the TSA is ignoring the court’s ruling. After all, they violate their own rules on a regular basis. I do, however, find it highly ironic that an agency that makes its living doing security theater is balking at doing compliance theater. I’d think it right up their alley. Hot Air jokes that the TSA is having trouble fitting their response into 3 oz bottles, but I’m not so sure. I’m wondering if, like many prima donnas, the TSA can only work under conditions of absolute love and adoration of their fans. Knowing the low esteem in which the TSA is held by a good chunk of the citizenry, the precious feelings of the agency might be hurt by having to listen to actual citizen input.
Can’t have that.