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Ted Kennedy also on the US Government “No Fly List”

Kennedy, a Senior Senator, found, much to his chagrin that he too was on the US Government’s “No Fly List”.
Kennedy was trying to board a plane to take him from Washington to Boston and the ticket agent would not let him on the plane. His name was on ‘the list’. 

Kennedy complained to the Senate Judiciary Committee and handed them quite a speech about the problems with the airline "no fly" watch lists.  And, it took several weeks to get his name off the list.  Meanwhile, the Homeland Security Secretary maintains that it was a clerical error that caused Kennedy’s name to be put on the list of persons who cannot board an airplane in the US.  Bush is not on Kennedy’s most favorite list and Kennedy has made negative comments about Bush. 

An example of the ‘no fly list’ mind set, a student Jacob Laden, had a name too close for comfort to the name Osama bin Laden.  Sergeant Chuck Coughlin of the Milwaukee sheriff's department said "The computer checks for exact matches, similar spellings, and aliases. 

Even if you are cleared for flight after interrogation by law enforcement, your ticket will be stamped with a bold-faced S with little asterisks on both sides, circled with an ink marker. This means that you will have to undergo additional screening before you can board the plane.  The process takes so long; you will miss your flight.  Ergo, it doesn’t matter – even if you are cleared, you still will not get on an airplane. 

Sarah Backus, a coordinator for SOA [School of the Americas] Watch, was told by law enforcement, "You're probably being stopped because you are a peace group and you're protesting against your country." 

"The list is a compilation from intelligence agencies and is shared with the airlines," says Paul Turk, a spokesperson for the TSA. "But as to how you get on it, or how it's maintained, or who maintains it, I can't help you with that." 

The American Civil Liberties Union has documented at least 339 passengers stopped and questioned.  The passengers, every one of them, were "false positives". 

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) acknowledges if a passenger is chronically misidentified as a watch list suspect, the agency will put the person on a "fly list," said TSA spokeswoman Heather Rosenker.  She did not offer an explanation as to why a persons name would be misidentified. 

The software that is presently used for the ‘No fly list’ is so flawed that a new program called CAPPS II is being deployed – this program goes through the credit reporting agencies to determine your passenger-worthiness.  This is not a good thing because a study by the Consumer Federation of America and the National Credit Reporting Association found errors in names and other identifying information in 1 out of 10 credit reports.  

Jan Adams and Rebecca Gordon found themselves targeted last August.  ACLU sued the TSA and the FBI for more information as to why the couple had been stopped.  Not surprisingly, The FBI's response letter stated it had "no records" for the women - or about any watch lists -- and the TSA didn't respond to the records request.  Both Adams and Gordon are peace activists.  

The ‘no fly list’ is another Bush pet project – on paper, the program is supposed to stop terrorists.  Considering the word ‘terrorist’ can be a subjective term it appears the real terrorists are people who are opposed to Bush – a real terrorist did slip through and managed to kill several CIA agents.

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