Way back when I attended high school in West LA, all seniors had to take a course called “Contemporary American Problems.” I’m pleased to report that this course stands among the few truly relevant classes I ever took, since there certainly still are contemporary American problems, decades later.
Even if you don’t care about the delays and trouble inherent in the present non-profiling system, two huge deficiencies are that dangerous items carried by passengers can still slip through, and ground personnel can introduce weapons onboard. In fact, I am convinced that the latter scenario energized the 9/11 hijackings.
The best protection—and the government agrees with me—is to deploy air marshals aboard the flight. Indeed, thousands of air marshals are already on thousands of flights. Of course, no one will say which flights.
Since there is an apparently unlimited budget for homeland security, it should be possible to put one or more on every single flight, and at the same time, remove some of the absurd restrictions pertaining to carry-on luggage, stop the shoe removal charade, and end the computer show-and-tell.
The rules of engagement of the marshals would be to use deadly force if the perp did not immediately surrender, and to aggressively pursue all suspicious activity, including trips to the head with little bottles.
Public support for this proposal would be overwhelming.
Rotten Career Politicians
Wow, this one is easy. I propose a constitutional amendment to impose term limits on all federal officeholders. Naturally, there would be a provision permitting them to seek other office, but two terms in a given post is all that would be allowed.
Note that I did not include state and local offices in the amendment, thus paving the way for the state legislators to ratify it.
Here again, there should be widespread public support.
Some years ago, the now defunct North American Soccer League brought in mega-superstar Pelé to jump-start interest in the sport in the US. Although interest in soccer increased during this period, the league folded.
Now, Major League Soccer (MLS) has awarded a huge contract to past-his-prime midfielder David Beckham. Let there be no doubt that if Beckham thought he still had a career in Euro soccer, he would have stayed there, but bully for him to get all those millions.
While soccer has more continuous action than American football, it is devastated by the incessant calls of fouls, many of which are awarded to players who take a dive, to fake injury. Free kicks are awarded for these infractions, and Beckham is best known—not for normal play—but rather for his spectacular free kicks that seem to “bend” their way around defenders.
Much of Beckham’s stardom is based on his appearance and his trophy wife, Victoria, formerly Posh Spice of the Spice Girls. Mrs. Beckham is renowned on many celebrity websites as having one of the worst boob jobs of all time.
Given that a good deal of MLS’ audience is composed of Hispanic immigrants who may not have been avid followers of Euro soccer, as well as youth soccer players, who might tend to favor existing MLS stars—such as they are—the Beckham gambit will produce only one sure thing: millions of dollars in David Beckham’s pocket.
Finally, some sportswriters are attempting to make the analogy to when Joe Namath was drafted by the American Football League, but this misses the mark. Namath was being drafted out of college, and was one of the top prospects that year. That description hardly fits David Beckham.
To this observer, MLS gains nothing but short term flash on this deal.