WIDLM: Security Lines

Everyone dislikes security lines, but I dislike them more than most. A lot of people look at them a necessary evil, or think that security needs to be even tighter, but I think that the security we do have is ineffectual as security, and a bane to the economy and life in general.

I know most people don’t think of it like this, but wasting time is like murdering someone a little. I mean, if someone locked me up in jail, wrongly, for the next 70 years of my life, people would think that that’s pretty terrible. About as bad as if they’d just killed me. Well, what about 35 years? 5? Well, obviously wasting 5 years is much worse than wasting an hour, but an hour is still an hour and I’m never gonna get it back.

2,819 people were killed in the terrorist attacks on 9/11. Let’s estimate that since then the average early arrival time at an airport has increased by half an hour. Using studies mentioned here as a guide. According to NumberOf.net, “there are 809,611,003 airline passengers who traveled in America for the year 2008”. Let’s round that to 800M and apply it to each of the 10 years since 2001. That’s 8B passengers each losing .5 hours for a total of 4B hours lost. Quick math puts that at 5,846 American lives. So in the 10 years since 9/11 we’ve more than doubled their damage for them, if you follow the logic.

Maybe you don’t agree with the logic exactly, but even if things are only 1/10th as bad as I think, that’s still awful. Is it worth the price? It’s not like they’ve actually stopped anyone. Every major terrorist plot that’s been subverted since 9/11 has been subverted after they already boarded the plane. And this analysis doesn’t include invasion of privacy, racial profiling, and inconvenience from other stupid security policies like taking off shoes and not allowing liquids.

Anyway, this rant has been part of WIDLM, or What I Don’t Like Monday’s. It something Mitch, Katie, and I kinda thought of to as a nice counter to Lauren‘s What I Like Wednesdays. Hopefully Lauren will join in.