May 09, 2011
So, You Say Your Name is "Thomas the Tank Engine?" I’m Afraid I’m Going to Have to See Some Picture ID
One of the more disturbing developments to come from the cache of intelligence material seized from Osama bin Laden’s compound were some “ramblings,” that were “nothing new” about an “aspirational” plan to maybe attack trains that travel 500 MPH, a speed no train on earth can achieve.
What should we do in the face of an unspecified threat we’ve known about for years that may not be real against trains that don’t exist?
According to New York Senator Chuck Schumer, crack down on those few Americans who choose to travel by rail by creating a “no ride” list, patterned after the “no fly” list used to screen airline passengers.
According to the Senator:
“Anyone, even a member of al-Qaeda could purchase a train ticket and board an Amtrak train without so much as a question asked.”
The Senator makes an excellent point. Even today, Americans throughout our great nation are permitted to go about their daily business without having to explain themselves to the authorities. And trains are hardly the only place where large numbers of people tend to gather, making many other situations equally vulnerable to terrorist attacks.
In that light, you should expect the following expansions to Senator Schumer’s plan:
“No Drive List”
Let’s face it, at any given moment in time tens of millions of people are driving what amount to two-ton GPS-guided cruise missiles on wheels, including members of Al Qaeda! Yes, Al Qaeda members are driving cars. What’s to stop them? ID checks on every American before they can start the car, that’s what.
“No Segway List”
What Al Qaeda member wouldn’t like to strap a bomb to a Segway and lean his way awkwardly into martyrdom?
“No Annoy List”
Jet Ski rentals will be limited to those who pass a strict background check. Special attention will be paid to individuals originating from Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and New Jersey.
“No Pretensions List”
A valid picture ID will be necessary to gain entrance into Starbucks. Any attempt to order a low-foam half-caf skinny chai latte with a quarter shot of toffee nut syrup while 15 customers are behind you will result in your immediate expulsion no matter what kind of ID you have.
“No Warm Bud Light List”
Super Bowl Party attendees will be checked against a list of known Dallas Cowboys fans.
“No Bad Platform Music List”
New York City subways will be subject to ID checks at station entrances.
“No Macarena List”
No ID checks will be involved. It’s just that no one should be doing the Macarena anymore. It’s embarrassing, okay? And no, it doesn’t matter who’s getting married or that your sister thinks it’s retro campy. It’s not. It’s just bad.
“No Blog Lists”
Blog authors will be required to show fealty to the government and refrain from juvenile snark and poor attempts at satire that may cast state officials in a poor light.
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