The US government is starting off 2010 the way it has so often in the past – with a knee-jerk reaction to something that occurred the previous year. This time around, it’s the response to the not-so-bright Nigerian would-be terrorist who ignited himself instead of explosives hidden in his underwear aboard a Detroit-bound airliner on Christmas Day.
The reaction thus far by the federales involves plans to purchase and install hundreds of supposedly high-tech full-body scanning machines at airports. Everyone from Capitol Hill to former and current secretaries of Homeland Security is calling for hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars to be spent on not-yet proven “back-scatter” x-ray machines. Despite legitimate questions about the privacy-invasive nature of these all-revealing machines, the pressure for their purchase and installation is likely to be irresistible.
Yet serious questions remain unanswered regarding the capability of these back-scatter x-ray machines