How the Airlines Stymied Aviation Security

In the wake of the government's multi-billion-dollar bailout of the airline industry, Public Citizen has compiled a report showing how airlines used aggressive lobbying and campaign contributions to turn the Federal Aviation Administration into its accomplice as it fought for years to stall, scale back and ignore specific security recommendations made by a 1996 presidential commission. In testimony before Congress, Public Citizen President Joan Claybrook noted that the rest of the nation's transportation system has similar vulnerabilities. The current system, she said, makes it alarmingly easy to get a license to truck hazardous materials, enables truck drivers to mask a criminal record, requires little training before they step into a large rig, and makes it far too easy for dangerous cargo to be trucked across U.S. borders.