An accidentally published, unredacted document from a lawsuit against the TSA reveals that the Taking Shoes Away people believe that "terrorist threat groups present in the Homeland are not known to be actively plotting against civil aviation targets or airports." That is to say, there is no identifiable risk to America's skies -- and all of business with shoes and pornoscanners and horrible, abusive incidents involving toddlers, people with mental disabilities, cancer survivors, rape survivors, and the whole business of treating travellers like presumptive terrorists is all to prevent a problem that, to all intents and purposes, doesn't exist.
...The Court actually failed to seal the unredacted brief, and they have published in full the leaked document. The document — as of yet still available to the public through the PACER court records system — is properly labeled as “sealed” by the clerk’s office, meaning they received and understood my instructions that the document was not to be public, but neglected to hide the attachment from public view.
The information revealed, which I may now comment on since a third party has made it publicly available, is devastating to the TSA’s argument that virtually strip-searching the public using its $1B nude body scanner fleet, as well as literally putting their hands in the pants of travelers during full-body pat-downs, is necessary to prevent airplanes from dropping out of the sky at the hands of terrorists. In 2011, the year after the scanners became primary screening, TSA intelligence officials concluded that “terrorist threat groups present in the Homeland are not known to be actively plotting against civil aviation targets or airports.”
The TSA has a lot of explaining to do, both to members of Congress and to the general public, all of whom were misled as to the threat we face and the justification for the most intrusive searches ever performed on the public at large in the United States in the history of this great nation. The terrorists that the TSA has made the country fear, it admits, do not actually exist.