Is the no-fly list intentionally bad?


I have suspected for some time that there was an alterior motive afoot with the sloppy no-fly list, but there are more direct signs of this today in an article from the Washington Post.

The article details faults in the no fly list, but those are well known. The part I found interesting was the quote by Department of Homeland Security spokesman Brian Roehrkasse who said the the false matches "underscore the need we have to get more information on passengers to adjudicate those that are not a risk".

To my mind, it's another example of somebody intentionally choosing the wrong tool (vague name matching) in order to show that the tool doesn't work and justify the use of another tool which is also inappropriate, but in a different way.

In this case, the DHS is apparently attempting to show that mechanisms such as the much-maligned (and correctly, I believe) CAPPS II passenger information gathering system would cause fewer false matches and therefore justify gathering all manner of information about air travelers, including (according to an EFF report) information scattered in government and private databases, potentially including credit and financial information.