While the underwear and shoe bombers may have been unsuccessful in their attempts to bring down a jetliner in flight, they were successful in inducing other manifestations of terror. The US has been installing whole body scanners capable of penetrating clothing so that nameless and faceless citizens employed by TSA or whomever may inspect our body topography. In addition to this radiological peepshow during check-in at the airport, TSA security has been authorized to pat down our private parts.
Cause: Two imbeciles board airplanes and attempt to initiate their explosives. They failed. Effect: The USA, the most powerful military-industrial complex for maybe hundreds of parsecs in all directions, is so freaked out by the presence of a mouse on the kitchen floor that it contrives to supply absolute security. History is full of many examples of foolish attempts by states to provide absolute security. The impulse to attain absolute security becomes the lever by which authoritarian states pry liberty from the hands of its people.
The members of the booboisie who promulgate this foolish notion are not automatically bad people. As viewed from lunar orbit, their intentions are superficially honorable. The gaping flaw is that they accept the premise that trading in the protection against unreasonable search and seizure for what can only be a miniscule uptick in security, is a fair trade.
It is most assuredly not a fair trade, but it seems to have already been made for us. I strenuously object.
Update: A friend advises that there are already countermeasures available f0r the scanners. I would recommend a screen printed lead-based paint with an appropriately artful design that would hide, or perhaps exaggerate the body part to be shielded. Alternatively, a witty slogan may be printed. Perhaps we can source the lead-based paint in China?