Flying over Thanksgiving? Listen to the cautionary tale of blogger "Johnny Edge," who was sent home from the airport after refusing both the TSA nudie x-ray machine and the groin-grabbing "pat-down"—and was threatened with a $10,000 fine.

In case you haven't heard, the Transportation Security Administration has thankfully instituted a new set of security enhancements, to protect us all against international terrorism. First, several airports now have "backscatter" x-ray machines that, well, basically look through your clothes and create 3-D nudie silhouettes, so the TSA agents can check out your boobs/junk. For weapons, of course. Or, if you refuse the nudie picture machines (prude!), you get an "enhanced" pat-down. That's right! A pat-down "enhanced" by the hassled TSA agent's hands touching all up on your secret, crotch parts.

What happens if you refuse to undergo either the nudie shoot or the security grope? This weekend, a libertarian blogger (I know, I know) found out, and videotaped most of what happened. After refusing to go through the backscatter machine, and then telling the TSA agent assigned to pat him down that he wasn't giving consent, our blogger is taken out of the line and speaks to two supervisors in succession. Despite offering to go through the regular metal detectors (as opposed to the x-ray machines)—"as over 80% of the rest of the people were doing"—he's eventually escorted out. After getting his ticket refunded and heading to the door, he's once again confronted by the TSA:

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I began to make my way to the stairs to exit the airport, when I was approached by another man in slacks and a sport coat. He was accompanied by the officer that had escorted me to the ticketing area and Mr. Silva. He informed me that I could not leave the airport. He said that once I start the screening in the secure area, I could not leave until it was completed. Having left the area, he stated, I would be subject to a civil suit and a $10,000 fine... He again asserted the necessity that I return to the screening area. When I asked why, he explained that I may have an incendiary device and whether or not that was true needed to be determined... He told me that their procedures are on their website, and therefore, I was fully informed before I entered the airport; I had implicitly agreed to whatever screening they deemed appropriate. I told him that San Diego was not listed on the TSA's website as an airport using Advanced Imaging Technology, and I believed that I would only be subject to the metal detector. He replied that he was not a webmaster, and I asked then why he was referring me to the TSA's website if he didn't know anything about it. I again refused to re-enter the screening area.

The man asked me to stay put while he walked off to confer with the officer and Mr. Silva... After another minute or so, he returned and asked for my name. I asked why he needed it, and reminded him that the female supervisor/agent had already taken a report. He said that he was trying to be friendly and help me out. I asked to what end. He reminded me that I could be sued civilly and face a $10,000 fine and that my cooperation could help mitigate the penalties I was facing... He again said that no one was forcing me to stay. I looked him in the eye, and said, "then I'm leaving". He replied, "then we'll bring a civil suit against you", to which I said, "you bring that suit" and walked out of the airport.

Our blogger isn't the first person to refuse consent in situations like this, but the long videos he recorded during his confrontations provide a pretty good look at how disorganized, incoherent and inconsistent the TSA's rules and regulations—and the enforcement thereof—are. The video above is from the end of his ordeal, when he's told he'll face "a civil suit"; the first two parts are here:

You can read the whole story here. (Disclaimer: The guy is a libertarian blogger, so, you know, just avoid the bits about "Obamacare.")

[Johnny Edge; thanks, Joe and Ally]