ALASKANS SUE FEDS OVER CAPPS II

Alaskans depend on planes to go just about anywhere. Mess with their ability to fly, and they tend to get pretty pissed off.So maybe it was only a matter of time before a bunch of Alaskans got together to sue the Transportation Security Administration over CAPPS II, the feds' controversial airline passenger screening program."Outside government bureaucrats think we need their permission before we can get on a plane. We think they're wrong, so we're turning to the US District Court for help," the plaintiffs say on their website.CAPPS II ran into a brick wall of bad press after it came out that JetBlue and other airlines turned passenger information over to the government. That ended a fairly cozy relationship between the TSA and the carriers. Now, "the airline industry has made it clear that it will not participate in CAPPS II unless ordered to do so," reports Defense Tech homie Ryan Singel in today's Wired News."Out of frustration, Adm. James Loy, then head of the Transportation Security Administration, threatened in September to issue a secret directive to force hesitant airlines to share the data," Singel continues. "If it follows through, the TSA would require airlines to forward all passenger information to the system, including date of birth, home phone numbers and addresses.""We think the Feds need to tell us what they're planning before they start turning every flight we take into an excuse to snoop," the Alaskans respond. "The TSA didn't bother responding to a letter we sent, so we're asking the US District Court in Anchorage to help us find out the truth."

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