John Gruber points to an article about the “[‘Israelification’ of Airports](http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/744199—israelification-high-security-little-bother#)”, talking about how Tel Aviv airport managed to increase its security without turning it into a major inconvenience for the 99.9999% of us who are flying and who aren’t terrorists.
Here’s something that stood out for me:
> The first layer of actual security that greets travellers at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion International Airport is a roadside check. All drivers are stopped and asked two questions: How are you? Where are you coming from?
> “Two benign questions. The questions aren’t important. The way people act when they answer them is,” Sela said.
> “This is to see that you don’t have heavy metals on you or something that looks suspicious,” said Sela.
> You are now in the terminal. As you approach your airline check-in desk, a trained interviewer takes your passport and ticket. They ask a series of questions: Who packed your luggage? Has it left your side?
> “The whole time, they are looking into your eyes — which is very embarrassing. But this is one of the ways they figure out if you are suspicious or not. It takes 20, 25 seconds,”
> First, it’s fast — there’s almost no line. That’s because they’re not looking for liquids, they’re not looking at your shoes. They’re not looking for everything they look for in North America. They just look at you,” said Sela. “Even today with the heightened security in North America, they will check your items to death. But they will never look at you, at how you behave. They will never look into your eyes … and that’s how you figure out the bad guys from the good guys.”
What I find most interesting is that while the security checkpoint to get into the gates at Dublin airport has gotten more convoluted — hey, buy a little bag to put your liquids in; take your shoes off; take your belt off; take your laptop out of your bag; bend over and cough please — the actual physical interaction with people before then has been reduced. Traveling with Aer Lingus or Ryanair, the question “Who packed your luggage” has been reduced down to a check-box on a computer screen. It’s a ridiculous carry-over from when we used to be checked in by people instead of computers. Isn’t the point of the question to have a real person gauge your response?
If you’re wondering why your twitter/facebook feed has been exploding with cheese jokes, it’s because the Irish economy is so completely boned and the Irish government so completely bone-headed that they’ve decided that the best way to ease the burden is to [distribute free cheese to the poor](http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2010/nov/05/ireland-recession-let-them-eat-cheese)I’ve been saying for a while now about how much the economic and political background of Ireland in 2010 resembles the economic and political background of France in 1789, and I’ve been wondering if we aren’t going to see a similar bloody, violent revolution. But let’s just get this straight, once and for all: **[Marie Antoinette never said “let them eat cake”](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Let_them_eat_cake)**. Clear?.
53 tonnes of cheddar, to be exact.
This is a dreadful, badly thought-out plan. Worse, it’s just so unimaginative. The poor people in Ireland don’t want cheddar, they want jobs.
Know who wants cheddar? Expats.
Every time I go back to Dublin, someone in Rome asks me to bring back some cheddar. And tea. Because it’s impossible to get any kind of cheddar in this city. It’s like unicorn tears. And on those strange occasions when it can be found, it’s not strange to be charged more than €25 per kilo. And people pay it, because *it’s cheddar*. Even if you don’t eat it yourself, you can use it to barter favours from other people, like prison currency.
So, Irish government, here’s what I’m suggesting. Take the 53 tonnes of cheddar, divide it up and ship it out to your embassies around the world. Charge, say, €20 for a kilo. This will probably rake in about a million or so – a small chunk out of the €6 billion that needs to be saved in the next budget, but is now really a time to be turning your nose up to an easy million bucks?
Also, I’ll get some cheddar. It’s a win-win situation.
Cute video, but it always weirds me out the way that internet nerds romanticise/fetishise manual labour. My first job was in a printing company, and the monotony of it almost drove me insane. For example, that girl sending the bundles of notebooks through the plastic wrapper is a nice shot, but for weeks on end, she probably goes into work and does nothing but that one action. Keep that in mind when you’re watching the video.