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JUNE 19, 2009 8:40PM

Carrying $cash onto a jet... No law against it, right?

Rate: 28 Flag

  This is pretty wild folks, or maybe it's just normal these days but it struck me as wild. Or maybe wrong is the word I'm looking for.

   Should we be surprised that a guy named Steve Bierfeldt who tried to board a commercial airline flight in St. Louis Missouri March 29th was detained by the TSA (the ones who make us take our shoes off)  for having approximately $4700 in cash?

   I suppose not. No I'm not surprised one bit. The cool thing about this though is that the dude Steve had an iPhone. When he was taken into a closed backroom at Lambert International in St. Louis to be "questioned" he managed to hit the record button on the phone and got every bit of this quaint little interview. 

   Sorry for using a FOX news vid but it's all I could find. The segment is hosted by a guy named Napalitano who seems to actually be on our side (what's he doing on FOX? good question).

   The one and only problem they had with this guy who is 25, clean cut and employed by Ron Pauls campaign for liberty was that he had CASH. And what REALLY torqued their wingnuts was that when they asked him what he was doing with that much cash money (it was from book and t- shirt sales at a campaign for liberty event) he asked in return if he was required by law to answer that question....

   Listen up...


     Today the ACLU filed suit against the department of Homeland Security over this incident which I think is freaking great. Whenever I lose hope and faith in America there's always the ACLU. I for one will be watching closely to see where this all ends up (if anywhere). Might be... I HOPE... be interesting. 
    Last I heard cash is legal and doesn't pose a threat to homeland security.

    "I do not believe I should give up my constitutional rights each time I choose to travel by plane. I was doing nothing illegal or suspicious, yet I was treated like a potential criminal and harassed for no reason. Most Americans would be surprised to learn that TSA considers simply carrying cash to be a basis for detention and questioning. I hope the court makes clear that my detention by TSA agents was unconstitutional and stops TSA from engaging in these unlawful searches and arrests. I do not want another innocent American to have to endure what I went through."


    (Above quote by Steve Bierfeldt today... taken from the article provided in the above link)







     Other issues for today... Is corn on the cob REALLY digestible?

     Did Hillary Clinton REALLY order the burning of the compound of the Koreschites at Waco Texas in 93  like that Ayatullah supreme leader dude in Iran said today?


     One last thing. Happy Fathers day to every one. I've enjoyed reading many of your tributes and related posts. I did a rather long thing about our Dad a while back and if you want to look it up feel free. It was in two parts and as I remember the second one (which comes directly after the first) is titled "the shrew cunts from hell emerge"... curious as to why? GO LOOK)

    Have a great Friday night and weekend everyone.....




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a bump for liberty and for that bit of paper that used to be referred to respectfully as the constitution....

Trig on politics? Yep, I'm desperate..
Hmmm, I didn't know anyone even had that much cash to wonder. Just kidding, sort of.

According to my niece, the Vegan, corn is not digestible to cows under the age of 6 months....or people.
If the government wants to arrest, indict and imprison you, they will! Nothing will stop them, if they truly want you.

Being found innocent via a Federal crfiminal trial is almost unheard of in recent times.
Somehow americans have accepted that the Constitution is null and void as soon as you set foot in an airport. It's certainly ridiculous that the young man had to explain what he was doing with his cash. But is it any less ridiculous that he and all his belongings had to be subject to an x-ray full body inspection?
Maybe you should open your mind up and understand the reason FOX defeats all other cable news channels in the ratings by more than double is because of guys like the Judge Napalitano ....who is not to be confused with the head of Homeland Security Janet Naplitano... an Obama appointee. In fact if liberals were not so predisposed to bias as they are, you might learn something...There is no reason to be a liberal after the age of 25 unless you are just looking to be a freeloader or abused.
What's next? Door-to-door searches to peer under people's mattresses?

I think it's time to donate to the ACLU again...
In the heyday of civil forfeiture in the 90s, the FBI could have just taken the cash. Because it's civil, they did not have to have probable cause. Basically, flying with cash made you a drug dealer. Because it was considered civil, you did not have the constitutional protections that apply in criminal cases, even though you were in essence being accused of being a criminal. I don't think this happens as much now that the government is more concerned about terrorism than drug dealing.
Come on, Trig, having any amount of cash whatsoever these days is just downright un-American. What a bunch of idiots.
I loved the comment near the end by the talking head to the effect that where you have government-run capitalism, you have fascism. This happened because of government-run fascism?

Fox is still Fox.

Of course, the point was that he might be a drug dealer, carrying all that cash, which is why they threatened him with the DEA. I'm sure drug enforcement is part of the TSA's mandate. What a handy excuse for illegal searches.
It's great that this Bierfeldt guy decided not to take this shit, and that the ACLU is stepping up to the plate on it.

On a more somber note, not only did Hilary order the burning of the compound in Waco, she personally hurled the first incendiary grenade herself while disguised as a DEA agent.
deepcleavs're shocked huh? me too!

buffy reporting from hawaii doesn't carry cash and am I surprised? No. As far as the corn that's pretty much what I suspected.

sg2292 says "If the government wants to arrest, indict and imprison you, they will! Nothing will stop them, if they truly want you." Trig says.... they'll kill you too in a heartbeat if you don't act right. Huh? No.....Yeah!

icemilkcoffee (my favorite morning drink) yeah it seems the constitution changes at the airport. but like Judge Napalitano said....... you have a bomb? no getty on the plane.....gun? same thing...... THIS ALL MAKES SENSE . You have some cash? That is NOT A THREAT to anyone and no reason to keep you off the plane.
ablonde your tit's are looking greenish in my monitor tonight, but no matter. "motherfuckers"...I think that's fairly appropriate.

T.S. uhhh what you talking bout? We're (ME) wondering about being hassled for carrying cash on a plane.

NWYE geez let's hope not
Da da da dant da da! CHARGE!!!
What? You haven't heard that the new terrorist tactic is to buy the US by loading up sleeper cells with the good ol' dollar bill? Hell, at the value of the dollar bill and what’s left, they damned near succeeded. All they needed was another 75 cents.

Why just the other day, I was at a grocery store and an 80 year old woman pulled 75 cents out of her purse (I immediately thought about the group’s shortfall of 75 cents). I knew damned well she shouldn't have that kind of money, being on Social Security and all.

So! I asked her where she got all that money. She stammered and stuttered. She called me all kinds of unspeakable things, things that an 80 year old woman shouldn't say.

I called the FBI and the CIA. Fortunately, the CIA arrived first and waterboarded the wrinkly old bag right in front of all the store's customers. I mean, they waterboraded the hell out of her, until she caughed up the names of those who provided her with the 75cents.

GOOD! Set an example. Let the world know that we're onto those god-forsaken terror groups. They can't hide their nefarious activities in the purse of 80 year old women any longer.

Thank King George II and his ol’ shooting pal, Dickless Cheney for the Patriot Act. Thank us all for our patriotism!

I mean, where would we all be if we selfishly failed to give up our liberties in the name of peace and safety?
Sirenita, yes I remember many a story like you describe. Cash being "confiscated" which I interpret to mean fucking stolen. Interesting, as you note that the focus has changed from drug dealing to terrorism. Always something isn't it? Whatever it takes to keep us distracted.

publicflogger if it was I I I I I ME ME ME ME on that plane I would NEVER have been detained for having too much cash, and when I say IF... that's assuming I could afford a ticket in the first place.

Cap'n I'm glad you picked up on that too, and of course you get 10,000 points for actually watching the whole vid! Fascism...yep
Thanks for sharing this trig, it's rather infuriating. I'd like to think I'd have been as principled and fearless when it comes to confronting injustice in any and all of it's forms.
nanatehay I'm diggin' the look you have going on tonight. you are indeedy a comment master/mistress... depending on the time of day.

mawb charge over here.. I'm lonely... HA I'm so slow I had a hard time picking up on the dadadantdada.......DUH

Boomer Bob the patriotic act robbed us all... we took it up the collective ass that day, and from most peoples point of view, happily so.
Well sold by those who would control us...but then again for the most part people are so fucking stupid..... Jeez
kellylark thanks for coming by my blog for the very first time.

I've been wondering here, since I posted this, how much this may have been contrived. Steve was bent on being detained and getting to ask them why/if they had the authority to ask those questions.
Still (even if that's true) I'm glad he/they did.
I have an extremely good memory but even I don't know if this is really the very first time trig. But I tend to get the boys of the boyz club confused so you could be right. But you're quite welcome, either way.
wow, Trig. coercion, conspiracy, corn, and crispy critters all in one post. Happy weekend to you, too.

This gave me a vision of some mid level managers, deep in their conference room at Homeland Security, brainstorming on how to convince the higher ups that they have some improved crap to do to people in airports.
thanks for sharing this! our airports seem more like some kind of social experiment these days, but i think sirenita makes a good point about the way these tactics have evolved.

Trig doing a political post?! THE HUMANITY!!


Yeah, flying nowadays is fun!! TAKE OFF YOUR SHOES SIR OR WE'LL SHOOT YOU!! By the way, they do have authorization to shoot you. Anything to make us feel safe.

I feel safe knowing some guy who got about fifteen minutes worth of training is sitting behind that machine looking for bombs and stuff in my carry on.

True story, the one year, I was flying back home to Butte, Montana using Cinncy as my city of departure. I had a carryon bag, with some stuff in it, and I guess with how everything looked on the Xray, it looked like I was carrying a thermal nuclear device, so I was surrounded by TSA guys in black body armor and AK47s and the 98 year old lady behind the machine opened my bag and pulled out all my stuff, mostly my double year end issue of MILF Hunter Monthly and two candy bars I was saving for later on the flight. The real terrorists are the executives who decided to cut the meals on flights to the point you're lucky you get a glass of flat hot soda and a pretzel nowadays.

After a five minute search through my bag, my shoes, up my rump(I discovered a new fetish for myself, being gang searched by a bunch of men in black and carrying AK47s which they point at my hiney!!), they decided I wasn't a threat to the security of the U.S. of fucking A!!!! And I was let go to catch my flight.

This was the same flight I was trapped in Salt Lake City, Utah for 12 hours because I missed my connecting flight to Butte because my arriving flight was late due to the fact that the pilot was called up to go to Irag.

Of course, Corporations being as they are, pilot was on the airline's list to be offed to Iraq for weeks, they just didn't decide to get a replacement pilot till THE GOD DAMN DAY OF THE FLIGHT FORCING ME TO SPEND 12 HOURS IN SLC AIRPORT!!! Nothing against SLC I actually like the city, but have you ever been in an airport for 12 hours? You can only walk around and look at the stores they have there for so long before you lose it.

Oops, sorry for the long comment, I should have just said, RATED.

What a bunch of dicks!! (sorry for the language)

But I'm not surprised.

TSA---"Thousands of Shitheads and Assholes"
Crazy! It's about as much fun to fly now as it is to have a root canal. That's a lot of cash but, there could be a lot of reasons for having it and whose business is it? I thought you could carry up to $10,000. Happy Father's Day, trig!
yes zuma the 5 C's!

bstrangely yw and ty for stopping by

raman 11 that kellylark is being very friendly and sociable so you just be nice too.

Tink they pulled out your MILF Hunter monthly in front of everyone? and molested your candy bars? bastards!!!!

Luis G not surprised? I don't think anyone is and that's what's sad, ya know...

Just Pamela thanks for the happy fathers day... and yes, kind of like a root canal these days isn't it.

JK Brady, crazy what we go thru down here ain't it
Can we say "goon squad"?
Jeez louise, being a supporter of the Libertarian party (what can I say, I love the Constitution) this chews my hide. But it is not unexpected considering the "Patriot" Act is still "legal". I have a friend who, because of a misdemeanor when he was 17, cannot fly in the US. So though he served his time both in and out of jail, and has not had another offense since, he is still being punished 14 years later. Maybe its just another way to try and save the automobile industry..
the govt has long been subtly criminalizing the use of untraceable cash via laws about "structuring" etc & a massive orwellian agency called FinCen that is in charge of tracing "illegal" transactions-- its illegal to transfer amts in increments less than $10k etcetera. more details in my blog. see sectn of links "economic warfare"
how about the story of e-gold?? excellent article in wired recently. secret service basically almost completely financially destroyed a very visionary entrepreneur
ppl might also be interested in the story of BCCI bank from years ago. literally billions of dollars of money laundering cash vanished into it without trace. investigators said the trail just stopped into nowhere. uh huh. the Powers that Be are the greatest money launderers of all.
Looks like AAutumn will have to update his/her post "Summer Travel Tips or 8 Ways to Avoid Flight Attendant Rage"

9. Don't Attempt to Bring More Cash On Board Than a TSA Agent Makes in a Month.
Unbelievable! Especially the attitude of the TSA agents, calling Steve a smartass and saying he was "playing games". Wow.

I would have told them it was to buy a round of drinks for everyone on the plane--including the pilot. Wonder how that would have escalated...

Great article, trig!
Joseph Napolitano is the youngest life-tenured Superior Court judge in the history of the State of New Jersey and spent eleven years as an adjunct professor of law at Seton Hall Law School, where he taught constitutional law and jurisprudence.

He has been the Senior Judicial Analyst for the Fox News Channel since 1998 and has written a book called "Constitutional Chaos: What Happens When The Government Breaks Its Own Laws." So you can see how this TSA story might well have touched a nerve with him.

And unless I'm mistaken, the guy on the left in the video clip is ABC commentator John Stossel, a staunch libertarian if there ever was one.

Although the stereotype of Fox News may be the Bill O'Reillys and Sean Hannitys of the world, they actually have quite a few regular contributors (I think Napolitano is on daily) who are arguably less entertaining and rack up lower ratings but who offer a much more libertarian perspective.

Try it sometime, you might like it ;-) (just stay away from O'Reilly and his ilk).
I got questioned last fall because I had about $800 in my carryon. Nothing serious, definitely not as bad as this, but the agents running the Xray machine stopped, looked at the screen for a while, then asked some "casual" questions about where I was going, where I was coming from, etc. Then they patted the heck out of me, and now I get patted down every time I fly.

Yet another reason to ride the train!
Gordon Wagoner... Yes, yes we can.

Corynthe LOL yeah they figure if they make your friend drive that he'll prop up GM. Yeah, that's the ticket.

vzn (vision?) thanks for the info I'll follow up after while.

Joe Cantwell no kidding. Don't make the poor fucks jealous. Rule #9
tried to follow your link. didn't work but could just as well be me. I'll try again

Spotted I know! They were assholes about the whole deal. Threatened with the "DEA". I mean why? He had no drugs.

Montanarose thanks for that little bit of history. I like the judge. Fox has such a bad rep though. WE tend to stay away from there completely unless we just want a few laughs.

Jessica thanks for coming by. Do you think they frisk you every time you fly now because of this one incident? Like they kept track and every time you try to board a plane a red flag pops up?
Now you've gone and done it. Thwwp, thwwp, thwwp (black helicopters).

Answer #1 - the corn more so than the cob.
Answer #2 - don't go to holocaust deniers for history lessons.

And happy father's day if you are one or have one.
Can you cause an airplane to crash when carrying large amounts of cash? These questions need asking.
This sort of thing happens all of the time. We just don't get to record it. Strip searches, detaining passengers, missed flights, illegal car searches, you name it. I know, let's go taser granny!
The shit makes me sick.
2500 laws are passed each year and every one of them whittles away at our freedom. I think we are a lot closer to a police state than many realize.
stacey y thanks for that..

Deborah Young no you can't

Michael I know... I'm really really glad that these libertarians are out there challenging this system. I think they pretty much set up the TSA and once again, I'm glad they did.
Fuckers (not just the TSA, the whole government. USA and NWO)
Ticket counter agents are given bird dog fees by the DEA types if you buy a plane ticket with cash at the airport. Even if it turns out you are "clean" your name will go on a list, and it will always be on a "list." And not just a list in this country, your name will pop up on all sorts of lists.

Thirty odd years ago a friend of mine had a few pot plants on their balcony and a shitty neighbor turned them in. They got off with a small fine but years later when she was entering New Zealand she was pulled aside and interrogated for hours, then given a very limited visa. And this was before big time computer use.
Well, I don't really know much about the organization he was working for so I will not comment on that - and it doesn't really matter much considering the main idea here was the $4700 cash.

About 7 years ago SH and I climbed into a handbasket and took the express route to hell. I bought a T-shirt with cash because they closed all our bank accounts and canceled all our credit cards, and I swore on my life I'd never go hungry again!

About a year later SH had hit the jackpot with his new commission salaried job. Were risen from the fiery pits of hell but still not allowed to have a bank account or credit card. On his first payday I drove him to the bank b/c we only had one car. He had to cash his checks which were $22K and $18K. They took him in a back room where several employees counted out $40K and wrapped them in paper bands of $2K and $5K each. It took a while. They put it in a paper sack and we went home and dumped it out on the bed and rolled in it. But after that.... We carried large amounts of money on us on a regular basis - because we had to. Paying the bills day - that's $4K. Going out of town and knowing if something goes wrong you can't simply use an ATM... that's $5K. Buying 2 wks worth of groceries and clothes shopping for the ever growing SavageClan ... that's $2K. On any of these days, had I been pulled over or otherwise made the authorities aware of my large amount f cash, might the same BS have happened to me? Prolly not b/c I am free and easy with information and hardly ever meet a stranger. I have a way of talking my way out of and even into things SH had previously tried and failed at. So if the authorities had become aware of *his* large amount of cash, yeah, I'd be bailing him out jail or detainment.

My thoughts are: with the economy in the state that it's in and getting worse almost weekly with foreclosures, bankruptcies, lost jobs and lost consumer confidence, more and more people will be climbing into the same handbasket SH and I did (we made a recent return visit ourselves). At that point they will be stripped of their plastic or somewhat virtual money access, and be forced to rely on cash. And if cash becomes a "crime" or an indication of "criminal intent" or an earmark for suspicion, well, us poor folks are going to face something harder than a drop in our socioeconomic class or poverty. Survival will take on a whole new meaning, to include running and hiding and avoiding. Another example of this government control of the unsavory poor, is let's say your piece of shit car won't pass the government mandate for passing an emission's inspection. You've already lost your job and are about to lose your house so a new or newer car is out of the question. The repairs to bring your car up to gov't standards is way too high for you to even consider b/c you have to eat. But you are not allowed to buy a car tag without a passed emissions inspection. You are not allowed to drive the car without a current tag. But you land a new job! How in the hell are you going to get there? You drive the damned car anyway. You get caught and the cop is required to impound your only piece of shit vehicle. Effectively making the poor poorer and now without a car, any hope to claw one's way out of the pit with that new job is annihilated.
ablonde thanks again... God I hate lists. I hate participating in anything to do with.... well you know. I wanna drop off.

AS thanks for chiming in here. Bottom line is cash draws suspicion it seems. Yet that's how we're punished. I mean taking away bank accounts and credit cards therefore pushing us towards that fringe.
And yeah, the vehicle thing. And it gets harder and harder.
I get pissed every time I see those TSA people hanging around repeating "no liquids!" "remove your shoes!" "ma'am, can you take your coat off?" "computers must be removed from cases!"

we're not safer for all this, just vastly more annoyed.
How funny we've let them search us in airports when the people who've terrorized this country were sitting cozy in bank offices and boardrooms!
I know Sandra. So we have to buy toothpaste and shampoo when we arrive before we can shower. And I hate the shoe thing! I'd rather die from a possible shoe bombing than have to take my sneakers off. I mean if someone has a six inch heel then... maybe. Little bit of common sense is all.

The cash thing though. Wow

Without a paddle. The key thing you said is "we've let them". Damnet I'm getting angry the more I comment here.
Nah, I was just shittin ya. People in power will always be inclined to abuse it, and gov't power has the greatest capacity for abuse, because the gov't is backed up by law and the threat of force. The more laws there are, the more power people in gov't have over the rest of us. .....this is an illustration of why it is so important to have as little gov't as possible.
Finally, an EXCELLENT use for the IPHONE!

We can only hope that airport security is listening when they see this on the news. I am tired of throwing away my face cream, mouthwash, and taking off my shoes only to be eyed supiciously.

Sometimes you just want to say,"That's right. I'm dropping off my 15 year old so she can fly to NC to see dad- and we are carrying loads of drugs because that's just the thing to do."

Or, "Would you treat your grandma like this?"