Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Admiral Thomas Collins For Transportation Secretary!

US Coast Guard Admiral Thomas Collins says that America's recreational boaters hamper "its ability to safeguard thousands of miles of coastline against terrorist attack," according to Fox News.
Listen to this, "'How do we include recreational boats - some 58 million in this country - into our security regime without infringing upon the liberty of boaters?' Admiral Thomas Collins, commandant of the Coast Guard, said Tuesday." The Admiral has it exactly correct. How do you protect America without infringing on our rights? Although we are at war, the Constitution still applies. We didn't give up any rights in the prosecution of this war. The story continues, "The Coast Guard has identified 50 areas in which the maritime system is vulnerable to a terrorist attack, Collins said. It is working on solutions to blend everyone's needs: to close the gaps and mitigate the risks while not impinging on boaters' rights or interfering with the flow of commerce." He understands the whole problem. What insight! He actually wants to solve the problem without strangling freedom! Where has this man been? Why haven't we heard more about him?
The Admiral made these comments at the U.S. Maritime Security Expo. The group will present President Bush with a list of ideas to help solve the problem. Here are some more gems from Admiral Collins. "'How do we screen for explosive devices on a ferry system that moves millions of people, particularly commuters, without constipating the whole system?' Collins asked. Better technology for detection of explosives on ferries and cargo ships is needed, he said. 'Right now the most capable technology we have,' Collins said, 'is dogs.'" Wow, not very encouraging is it?
And what does he suggest? "At least 95 percent of the goods coming into the country arrive on ships, according to Collins, and cargo security is crucial. But Collins said he believes it is 'illogical' to screen each cargo container, and inspecting millions of containers would be impossible. 'The issue is inspecting the right one,' he said. That goal can be reached by targeting those ships that have been identified through intelligence reports as having anomalies in the crews, cargo or containers, he said. 'You want to inspect the highest risk,' he said, 'not every ship that comes into our port.'"
Are you listening Secretary Mineta? Have you ever thought of implementing any of this? Sadly, the answer appears to be No. You believe we should do this. We should follow the Admiral's advice instead and "inspect the highest risk." How in good conscience Secretary Mineta can remain at his post is mind boggling. His policies endanger us for foolish political reasons. We need Admiral Collins in this post. To paraphrase President Lincoln, Mr Bush, we can't spare this man, he thinks! I urge you to ask Secretary Mineta to resign and nominate Admiral Thomas Collins as the new Transportation Secretary. Write you Congressmen and Senators and let's support Admiral Collins.
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