walkitout (walkitout) wrote,

About that carry on rumor that NPR started

I blogged about a very irresponsible, shoddy piece of reporting that NPR put out a few days ago:


It really pushed me over the edge on my Hey, I Should Ignore the News From T-Weekend through New Year's addendum to the avoid the news July 4-Labor Day. I figured that TSA was going to have a lot of trouble crushing this rumor, given that NPR (NPR!) put it out and at least as near as I can tell, NPR has not seen fit to retract it.

As you will note in my original post, the original journo used a misleading summary of UK reporting along with anonymous/unnamed sources in the US to start a rumor that TSA might ban carry on bags and/or electronics in the cabin, with no time frame or likelihood attached, nor whether it would be domestic or international or wtf. With no details, no names, and a future "maybe", the only sensible way to interpret the report is to eye roll and say, yeah, sure, somebody did some contingency planning. But the surface reading of the piece is that TSA is about to ban carry on bags and/or electronics in the cabin on all domestic flights in the US. Soonish. Because chatter.

The rumor has enough legs that Jeh Johnson -- head of Homeland -- has felt compelled to squash it, because the TSA head quote wasn't enough.


"Johnson responded: "There's no ban on carry-on luggage at this time.""

Conspiracy minded folk will of course interpret this as further support for the original paranoid ramblings. Gah.

Slightly different wording here:


This thing has developed some real legs, where the failure to outright deny that there is such a ban under consideration right now for application in the next few days is treated as evidence that it's about to happen. I feel like whoever is in charge of messaging over at DHS/TSA is on vacation or something, however, it is possible that I have underestimated their sophistication in managing the Republican threat to their funding. I do that. Frequently.

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