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Airline security idiocy of the day: Milblogger Michael Yon handcuffed, Joan Rivers blocked

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By Michelle Malkin  •  January 5, 2010 12:38 PM

File under “Homeland Security is a Joke.”

Milblogger/independent war correspondent extraordinaire Michael Yon reports that he was stopped at Sea-Tac airport and handcuffed by TSA agents (*update* – several readers write in that it may have been CBP agents, not TSA):

Got arrested at the Seattle airport for refusing to say how much money I make. (The uniformed ones say I was not “arrested”, but they definitely handcuffed me.) Their videos and audios should show that I was polite, but simply refused questions that had nothing to do with national security. Port authority police eventually came — they were professionals — and rescued me from the border bullies.

I’ve met Michael and have blogged about his enterprising war coverage as an embed in Iraq and Afghanistan for years. The idea of him being treated as a national security threat and handcuffed is as ridiculous as anything we’ve seen from Janet Clown-itano and her cadre.

Speaking of ridiculous airline security episodes:

Joan Rivers is many things: Funny lady. Jewelry mogul. Red carpet mercenary. But a terrorist?

Can we talk?

Rivers, 76, was deemed a danger to national security and booted from a Newark-bound flight in Costa Rica on Sunday by a jittery Continental Airlines gate agent who found the two names on her passport fishy.

Her passport reads: Joan Rosenberg AKA Joan Rivers. Rosenberg was her late husband’s last name.

The “nasty and cruel” Continental gate agent bumped Rivers from the last flight out Sunday and the comedian found herself alone (her daughter, Melissa, flew out to Los Angeles earlier in the day) and with no ATM card and just $100 cash, she said.

Rivers’ tale of woe put a famous face on travel’s new reality – one that leaves many feeling like common criminals.

“If I were going to make up an alias, I wouldn’t pick Rosenberg. I’d pick Jolie or Pitt,” said Rivers, back home Monday in New York with her sense of humor intact. “Do terrorists wear Manolo Blahniks? I can tell you Donna Karan does not make anything that hides a bomb,” she said.

We’re at Code Red Elmo on the Homeland Insecurity Scale:

1elmo.jpg

***

Related: TSA Allegedly Waited 80 Minutes Before Reporting Breach at N.J. Airport

The Transportation Security Administration waited more than an hour to alert law enforcement about a security breach at New Jersey’s Newark Liberty International Airport on Sunday, MyFoxNY.com reported.

An unidentified man, who may have just been lost, confused or simply mistaken about which way to go, was able to bypass security and enter the airport through an exit door.

MyFoxNY.com was reportedly able to see a computer dispatch log that indicated the breach had occurred at 5:20 p.m. Sunday. But it wasn’t until 80 minutes later, at 6:40 p.m. that the Port Authority Police Department was notified about the incident, MyFoxNY.com reported.

The TSA said they needed time to investigate the traveler’s claims before they could request a shutdown of the terminal, which required several calls up the chain of command and viewing surveillance tape, according to the station.

“We have security officers stationed at the exit,” the TSA reportedly said in a statement.

“We’re investigating the circumstances surrounding the breach and will make an assessment as to what level of disciplinary action is necessary… we did the right thing.”

Related: Have you seen TSA’s “20 Layers of Security” chart? (h/t Patriot Room & Yid with Lid)

The only thing protecting you from layers and layers of bureaucratic incompetence is…you.

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