TSA saga: What's wrong with this story?



Czar-At-Large Brian Sack takes a look at the new TSA guidelines. Czar-At-Large is a weekly production made exclusively for the Insider Extreme. Not an Extreme member? Learn more...

GLENN: I'm glad to see that Obama did not divert Air Force One to see Chavez on his way home.

PAT: Yeah.

GLENN: Yeah.

PAT: Yeah.

GLENN: I wonder if he got the pat-down. I don't think he --

PAT: I don't think so.

GLENN: I don't think he did. I don't think he did. He knows that it's an inconvenience -- 276. He knows that it's an inconvenience for --

PAT: All of us.

GLENN: Us. Not him.

PAT: For all of us.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: You with respect to the TSA.

GLENN: Mmm-hmmm, mmm-hmmm.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Let me first of all make a confession. I don't go through security checks to get on planes these days. So I haven't personally experienced some of the procedures that have been put in place by TSA.

GLENN: I don't think that's a confession.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: One of the most frustrating aspects of this fight against terrorism is that it has created --

GLENN: Yes.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: -- a whole security apparatus around us.

GLENN: Yes.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: -- that causes huge inconvenience --

GLENN: That he has to do.

PRESIDENT OBAMA: -- for all of us.

GLENN: For all of us.

PAT: For all Of us.

GLENN: Well, not for him.

PAT: Well, not for him.

GLENN: Not for him, and let's be fair. Not for John Boehner, either. Did you know that?

PAT: No.

GLENN: Yeah, John Boehner doesn't have to go through this, either.

PAT: Why?

GLENN: Because, and I'm quoting, the speaker of the House is not considered a threat. Did you meet our last speaker of the House?

STU: I would say that there are security, actual terrorists that have higher approval ratings than congress. So I would say it's possible.

GLENN: I would say yes. I mean, I think a locality of people would consider congress a terrorist. I think John Boehner should go through. I think everyone should have to go through this. You're an American citizen, aren't you?

PAT: They should not get special treatment.

GLENN: They should not get special treatment.

PAT: But they do.

GLENN: Well, I mean, I don't mind the president not getting it because it's his plane.

STU: Right. And Boehner, you know, can fly privately as well. He has the right to do that when he takes over, but he's not, right?

GLENN: Correct.

PAT: He says he's not.

GLENN: Everyone should, everyone in congress -- you don't get a special pass. If you are -- you know, that's the problem with healthcare. You know why they don't care about healthcare? Because they don't have to live by it. Everything they do they should have to live by, period.

PAT: I thought it was interesting what Hillary said, too.

GLENN: Oh, yeah, I love the Hillary quote. Listen to this.

VOICE: Final question, my time is up. But would you submit to one of these pat-downs?

HILLARY CLINTON: Not if I -- not if I could avoid it, no. I mean, who would?

GLENN: (Laughing).

PAT: (Laughing).

GLENN: Oh, man.

PAT: Oh, man.

GLENN: She is so great.

PAT: Oh, that's great.

GLENN: No, I mean, not if I have to, and I don't have to.

PAT: Let me tell you something. Let me tell you something. I avoided patting her down at all costs as well.

GLENN: (Laughing).

PAT: (Laughing).

GLENN: Oh, man.

PAT: You don't know how hard that was. (Laughing).

GLENN: (Laughing). Lucy! Oh, man. The worst.

PAT: Ah.

GLENN: The worst.

PAT: The elitism. Of course, none of them have to do it.

STU: Well, no one has to do it. I mean --

PAT: You really do. You really do.

STU: You don't have to do it.

PAT: You really do.

GLENN: You have to go through the scanner, yeah.

STU: Right. She said the pat-down. So she is saying if she could avoid it, she would go through the scanner I think was the --

GLENN: Well, would she go through the scanner?

STU: Well, no one asked her that but that's an interesting followup.

GLENN: Here's the thing. Here's the thing. Let's look at a couple of examples. Did you hear about the guy who, I guess is no longer a guy and now is a woman? Or was a woman and is a guy? I don't know how it worked, but somebody went through one of the scanners and apparently all the people, you know, looking at the scan, all the TSA people were laughing at him or her, whichever.

PAT: I didn't hear about that.

GLENN: Yeah, happened this weekend. I mean, how do you, how do you think he feels?

STU: I mean, I don't -- is that in the TSA policy or is that just some of the --

GLENN: No, no.

STU: -- employees acting like they do in every profession when they see something they don't like? Unprofessional, but --

GLENN: It's very, very good.

STU: I didn't say it was good. I just said it happens in every line of work with every person and every employee.

PAT: The guy with bladder cancer.

GLENN: How about the guy with bladder cancer that wet himself and left in tears because of this, okay? How about the --

STU: That was very sad. I mean --

GLENN: At least I can give stories, you know, they are not like, "You know, let me tell you something in this nation about our doctors that are cutting feet off of patients." I mean, these are actually happening.

PAT: Yeah.

GLENN: These are --

STU: Examples?

GLENN: These are happening.

STU: Yeah. The question, though, is more, is it systemic, is it happening all the time

GLENN: No.

STU: There are anecdotal stories.

GLENN: No, it's not happening all the time. But I mean, when's the last time we made somebody wet themselves? Let me ask you this: When's the assist time we made a terrorist wet themselves?

STU: Yeah. Well --

PAT: Probably never.

STU: That's true.

GLENN: Well, no. No, no. I think we have.

PAT: Maybe a few times. Maybe a few times.

GLENN: I think we have. I think we have. Oh, let's relish that for a minute. Okay, now back to the real world. I mean, we're making American citizens wet themselves.

PAT: Then there's that weird story with the little boy who's got a shirt off and they are patting him down.

GLENN: Something's wrong with this story.

PAT: There's something weird about that, but -- because you don't know the story behind it.

GLENN: Well, here's the thing about this TSA thing. There's something wrong here. I don't know what it is. Is anybody with me on this? There's something wrong.

STU: I'm definitely with you on this.

PAT: Oh, yeah.

GLENN: NBC is reporting this story as if Obama were a Republican.

STU: Yeah.

GLENN: It's everywhere on NBC. The latest poll shows 81% don't really care. That's a problem. That's a problem.

PAT: I find that hard to believe. If you've ever flown and you have to go through one or the other, uh, it's going to be a problem for most Americans, I would think. I mean, even you have a problem with it, Stu, and you usually don't have a problem with this kind of stuff, right?

GLENN: No, he's going to go through -- no, he's going to go through the scanner.

PAT: But you still have a problem with the scanner, right? I mean, you're not excited about being --

STU: I'm not excited about it.

GLENN: Are you fine with your -- you're fine with your wife --

PAT: Being exposed like that.

GLENN: -- being exposed. Now, remember the things that you are seeing -- according to Jason Chaffetz, he says that this is not -- what you are seeing is not real. He's seen the -- he's seen the actual classified photos. Because it's all classified because they are -- you know, they're citizens.

PAT: Yes.

GLENN: So he's seen the classified photos. He says it's absolute pornography. He said you can see absolutely everything. And they can save it and they can send it from the machine.

PAT: Didn't he say you could see the sweat on their back?

GLENN: Oh, yeah. He said it is so crystal clear, if somebody's sweating, you can see the sweat come down their back.

STU: And I know, and he's very against it. I haven't seen the photos. It's hard to judge from that perspective.

GLENN: Just take him at his word. I mean, he is an honest guy.

STU: Yeah.

GLENN: If that is the way it is, you're fine with your wife getting something like that?

STU: It doesn't seem like something I'd like. I mean, you know, I -- no, I'm not fine with it. Also --

GLENN: If you think Facebook is a problem. Try my wife. Try my wife. Try me. Glenn Beck going through one of those scanners. Do you think my photo is going to be deleted?

STU: Right, exactly.

GLENN: Do you think my wife's photo is going to be deleted?

PAT: Nope.

GLENN: Nope. Do you think my children's photos are going to be deleted?

PAT: Nope.

GLENN: Nope.

STU: Look, no one wants to deal with it but I mean, the question, of course, was on the pictures that we have seen for these people and the question was, do you want this added level security and it was 81-15. I think there's a problem with the poll because, you know, you're talking about --

GLENN: It's a false choice.

STU: It's out of context and it's sort of --

GLENN: It's a false choice. Do you want added security? Yes.

STU: Yeah.

GLENN: Yes,

PAT: I think that's how most people --

GLENN: I want to be the safest they can be on a plane.

PAT: Everybody wants smart security, though. They keep talking about this Smart Grid. Let's have some smart security, can't we? One day in this, in America? Wouldn't it be nice?

GLENN: No, I don't think we're going to get that, no.

PAT: We're not going to get it.

GLENN: No.

PAT: We're not going to get it.

STU: But you're right, Glenn, I think there is something weird going on with the story. NBC's reporting it like crazy. You know, it's odd the way it's being reported. Then there's example after example after example of these stories that we documented on the blaze of stories that came up that were not true or were old.

PAT: Which was weird.

STU: Or were completely out of context, which is really weird in the reporting of it.

GLENN: There are news sources that I trust. There are news sources that I trust that I don't trust on this story.

STU: Yeah.

GLENN: I have read stories on credible websites that you look at them and you say, wait, why are they linking here? What is that? Why -- this story is, this is three years old.

STU: Yeah.

GLENN: And no reference to this is a three--year-old part of this story that doesn't -- it doesn't make any sense.

PAT: Yeah --

GLENN: It doesn't make any sense. If you want to show these videos and say here's a child that was in line and they're crying and, you know, so you know, this is a 4-year-old videotape. It's still relevant because it shows that this was happening and this is happening.

STU: And it's only getting tougher as far as screening.

GLENN: Yeah, it's only getting tougher and it's only getting worse, but you identify that. And these websites are not doing that and I don't understand. There's something wrong.

STU: Yeah.

GLENN: Something wrong here.

STU: Yeah. I can't tell if it's just, you know, this desire to come up with a new story because everyone's bored of talking about the old ones.

GLENN: No.

STU: Because there are really important things going on and we keep talking about, you know, a small percentage of travelers who are a small percentage of Americans in airport. I mean, it just seems bizarre.



TheBlaze: New ‘Fig Leaf’ Underwear Hides Your Nether Regions From TSA Machines

GLENN: Right now you have the scanner-proof underwear that you can see at TheBlaze.com that has the fig leaf over all of the strategic points. I don't want pictures of me in the fig leaf underwear, either.

STU: That's capitalism winning again right there, though.

GLENN: It is. It is. May I give you my theory real quick on what this could possibly be? The left is wanting a fight but so does the -- the uber left wants a fight. Not the average citizen. Not the, you know, the Democrat, the average Democrat that hasn't woken up yet and doesn't understand that the Democrats are over. It is the Democratic Socialists of America now. So the average Democrat doesn't want to fight, but the socialist and the Marxists and the revolutionaries, they do. And so they want to ramp this up. So I would understand how you can ramp that up because you want the government -- remember, who's -- gosh, whose plan was it? I can't -- was it Saul Alinsky, was it Soros? Whose was it? It was Soros' plan, I think it was, that, you know, wants the disconnect and the distrust of government. Well, this makes you do it. But also the uber right wants it as well. The anarchists, the ones who want to reset everything. So you have to be very careful because those of us who are in the middle -- and what I mean is those of us who do not want to see the destruction of the United States would like to find a way to ease it back into the right place, we're not -- I don't think we're being represented in this story. And that's just a theory. I could be wrong on that, but there are too many websites on the right that are getting this story radically, radically wrong. And I just don't believe they're all, what, they're all taking drugs? They're all drunk? They're all, "This is okay, just run this story." It doesn't make sense. It doesn't make sense. So watch yourself on this story.


 

It's never too early to start your Christmas, Hanukah, or Kwanzaa shopping. Or even birthday gift shopping. Especially if that special someone in your life is a Democrat. Because at last count, pretty much all the Democrats are now running for president. And that means there has never been a wider selection of official candidate merchandise to choose from. Whether you're into environmentalism, feminism, classism, socialism, or just plain love, there is a smorgasbord of classy items that you and yours will treasure forever... or at least until the next presidential election.

We have browsed each of the candidates' online stores, so you don't have to (it only took us three months). We have curated only the finest items from each of the Democrats running for president of the United States of America. Without further ado, here is your handy progressive gift guide – or maybe your what-not-to-gift guide.

First, the bargain basement options. Hurry! Time is running out to grab your Beto bandana, or your Delaney pack of golf balls, because at this point Stu has as much of a chance as these guys of getting the nomination.

Tom Steyer, for example – is he still in the race?


https://shop.tomsteyer.com/collections/frontpage/products/tom-2020-pattern-tee


There's way too much Tom here. That shirt's got more Toms than a Caucasian dentists' convention.

For the slightly more moderate Democrat in your life, perhaps they'd like to join the "Yang Gang"…

https://shop.yang2020.com/collections/bumper-stickers/products/yanggang-decal


Andrew Yang is a lock for Math Club president…


https://shop.yang2020.com/collections/apparel/products/math-hat


But for actual president? Well, I wouldn't make plans for how you're going to spend your $1,000-per-month Yang allowance just yet.

If you happen to be shopping for your dog, may I suggest this lovely "Dogs for Delaney" dog collar…


https://store.johndelaney.com/products/dogs-for-delaney-collar


John Delaney's definitely going to secure the canine vote with this kind of outreach. As for any human votes, that's another question entirely.

How 'bout this tastefully understated "Natural Canvas" Michael Bennet tote to remind you he's also still here?...


https://store.michaelbennet.com/michael-bennet-for-america-natural-canvas-tote/


Then again, it's a tote. So, it'll end up on the floor of your closet and you won't have it with you until that one random moment when you're out somewhere and you really need a tote bag. Just like Democrats will really wish they had a moderate when we're in the middle of the socialist nightmare of their creation.

Captain Planet himself, Jay Inslee recently dropped out of the race, but don't let that stop you from picking up what may be the greatest single item sold by anyone in this race…


https://store.jayinslee.com/elvis-the-elves-the-mystery-of-the-melting-snow-by-jay-inslee/


A children's book called Elvis & the Elves: the Mystery of the Melting Snow. Written and illustrated by Governor Jay Inslee. Talk about a whodunnit – how could that snow possibly be melting? Spoiler alert: it's because of evil, white, patriarchal capitalism. And Donald Trump.

Then there's the candidate who thinks you're a moron that can't pronounce his last name: Steve Bullock...


https://shop.stevebullock.com/collections/apparel/products/emoji-t-shirt


Get it? Bull. Lock. Oh, so that's how you say the name that sounds exactly how it's spelled.

There's another candidate who also thinks you need help pronouncing his last name…


https://store.peteforamerica.com/collections/apparel/products/boot-edge-edge-t-shirt


And he is definitely right about that. So, thank you, Pete "Boot Edge Edge." That helps.

Just outside the bargain bin section, but just barely, are candidates like Julian Castro and his "El Presidente" t-shirt…


https://store.julianforthefuture.com/julian-castro-loteria-card-white-tee/


When your last name's Castro, do you really want to go with a weird drawing of yourself as if you're a classic Latin American dictator on a postage stamp?

If you prefer a little "dark psychic forces" battling in your candidates, you'll love Marianne Williamson's "Turn Love Into a Political Force" rally sign…


https://store.marianne2020.com/collections/signs/products/love-rally-sign


"Turn Love Into a Political Force" would be an even better title for a Marianne Williamson album of 80s cover songs. And if you think I'm joking, then you haven't heard Bernie Sanders' classic 1987 folk album, We Shall Overcome. That's not a joke. Well, it is a joke, but it's also a very real thing.

Now, just a quick pause to consider the peculiar baby-wear that way too many candidates are selling…

…including Elizabeth Warren's trans-pride flag onesie. Let me get this straight – we can't force any gender on a child, because that's just cruel. But we can force a political advertisement on a baby? How do we know that baby is actually a Biden or Warren fan? The child may not even be a Democrat or a Socialist at all. That baby might self-identify as a Libertarian, or Republican, or even worse – a moderate Democrat.

Now to the premium items from the premium candidates. Elizabeth Warren – the candidate with the most honesty in her advertising…


https://shop.elizabethwarren.com/collections/apparel/products/impolite-arrogant-women-make-history-unisex-t-shirt

-AND-

https://shop.elizabethwarren.com/collections/drinkware/products/strong-american-unions-mug


Warren's merchandise reflects the woman herself – cold and humorless (watch her "This isn't funny" clip from the last debate here at the 4:27 mark). I'm sure she's really fun once you get to know her. Then again, maybe not.

Speaking of serious women, Kamala Harris wants to be president very badly for you, the people, as you can tell from her "For the People" poster…


https://store.kamalaharris.org/poster-for-the-people/


At $29.99 though, she's sure not charging "people's" prices. Of course, she might be having to pay royalties to a certain someone for riffing on their poster. Just saying.

For the race's number one socialist, there's a whole lot of capitalism going on in Bernie Sanders' campaign. He sells so many delightful items that it's hard to choose. But we did anyway. The most random item is this hundred-dollar, black, "Art of a Political Revolution – Artists for Bernie Sanders Coaches Jacket"…


https://store.berniesanders.com/collections/apparel/products/artists-for-bernie-coaches-jacket


Coaches across the land will be clamoring for this one. You know, since coaches are such a strong Bernie-socialist demographic.

If that's a little over your budget you might consider a "Feel the Bern" fanny pack, to help store all those government freebies you'll get from Bernie…


https://store.berniesanders.com/collections/apparel/products/feel-the-bern-fanny-pack


This is the only context in which you'll ever want to hear "feel the burn" and "fanny" in the same sentence.

And finally, from front-runner Joe Biden, we have this fine "Women's Fitted Biden Polo." Which is just about the best polo description ever…


https://store.joebiden.com/collections/apparel/products/biden-polo-womens-fit


It promises the kind of snug approach that Biden loves to provide women. Even when they don't ask.

This was one of the first homesteads in the area in the 1880's and was just begging to be brought back to its original glory — with a touch of modern. When we first purchased the property, it was full of old stuff without any running water, central heat or AC, so needless to say, we had a huge project ahead of us. It took some vision and a whole lot of trust, but the mess we started with seven years ago is now a place we hope the original owners would be proud of.

To restore something like this is really does take a village. It doesn't take much money to make it cozy inside, if like me you are willing to take time and gather things here and there from thrift shops and little antique shops in the middle of nowhere.

But finding the right craftsman is a different story.

Matt Jensen and his assistant Rob did this entire job from sketches I made. Because he built this in his off hours it took just over a year, but so worth the wait. It wasn't easy as it was 18"out of square. He had to build around that as the entire thing we felt would collapse. Matt just reinforced the structure and we love its imperfections.

Here are a few pictures of the process and the transformation from where we started to where we are now:

​How it was

It doesn't look like much yet, but just you wait and see!

By request a photo tour of the restored cabin. I start doing the interior design in earnest tomorrow after the show, but all of the construction guys are now done. So I mopped the floors, washed the sheets, some friends helped by washing the windows. And now the unofficial / official tour.

The Property

The views are absolutely stunning and completely peaceful.

The Hong Kong protesters flocking to the streets in opposition to the Chinese government have a new symbol to display their defiance: the Stars and Stripes. Upset over the looming threat to their freedom, the American flag symbolizes everything they cherish and are fighting to preserve.

But it seems our president isn't returning the love.

Trump recently doubled down on the United States' indifference to the conflict, after initially commenting that whatever happens is between Hong Kong and China alone. But he's wrong — what happens is crucial in spreading the liberal values that America wants to accompany us on the world stage. After all, "America First" doesn't mean merely focusing on our own domestic problems. It means supporting liberal democracy everywhere.

The protests have been raging on the streets since April, when the government of Hong Kong proposed an extradition bill that would have allowed them to send accused criminals to be tried in mainland China. Of course, when dealing with a communist regime, that's a terrifying prospect — and one that threatens the judicial independence of the city. Thankfully, the protesters succeeded in getting Hong Kong's leaders to suspend the bill from consideration. But everyone knew that the bill was a blatant attempt by the Chinese government to encroach on Hong Kong's autonomy. And now Hong Kong's people are demanding full-on democratic reforms to halt any similar moves in the future.

After a generation under the "one country, two systems" policy, the people of Hong Kong are accustomed to much greater political and economic freedom relative to the rest of China. For the protesters, it's about more than a single bill. Resisting Xi Jinping and the Communist Party means the survival of a liberal democracy within distance of China's totalitarian grasp — a goal that should be shared by the United States. Instead, President Trump has retreated to his administration's flawed "America First" mindset.

This is an ideal opportunity for the United States to assert our strength by supporting democratic values abroad. In his inaugural address, Trump said he wanted "friendship and goodwill with the nations of the world" while "understanding that it is the right of all nations to put their interests first." But at what point is respecting sovereignty enabling dictatorships? American interests are shaped by the principles of our founding: political freedom, free markets, and human rights. Conversely, the interests of China's Communist Party are the exact opposite. When these values come into conflict, as they have in Hong Kong, it's our responsibility to take a stand for freedom — even if those who need it aren't within our country's borders.

Of course, that's not a call for military action. Putting pressure on Hong Kong is a matter of rhetoric and positioning — vital tenets of effective diplomacy. When it comes to heavy-handed world powers, it's an approach that can really work. When the Solidarity movement began organizing against communism in Poland, President Reagan openly condemned the Soviet military's imposition of martial law. His administration's support for the pro-democracy movement helped the Polish people gain liberal reforms from the Soviet regime. Similarly, President Trump doesn't need to be overly cautious about retribution from Xi Jinping and the Chinese government. Open, strong support for democracy in Hong Kong not only advances America's governing principles, but also weakens China's brand of authoritarianism.

After creating a commission to study the role of human rights in U.S. foreign policy, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo wrote last month that the principles of our Constitution are central "not only to Americans," but to the rest of the world. He was right — putting "America First" means being the first advocate for freedom across the globe. Nothing shows the strength of our country more than when, in crucial moments of their own history, other nations find inspiration in our flag.

Let's join the people of Hong Kong in their defiance of tyranny.

Matt Liles is a writer and Young Voices contributor from Austin, Texas.