It turns out that TSA-style security is not just invasive, it's expensive. The $2.50 security fee air passengers in the US pay for every flight covers less than half of TSA's aviation security costs. So far the government has been paying the difference, but that may not continue much longer. The White House is proposing a plan to double the security fee immediately, then add $0.50 per year from 2013 to 2017. Ultimately fliers will pay $15 extra per round trip. The Feds will pocket any excess revenue generated by the fees.
The Air Transport Association is not happy about the proposal and is campaigning to stop it. They argue that a typical flier in the US already pays over 20% of their ticket cost to Federal taxes and fees, and that the proposed fee increases will ultimately cost the economy 329,000 jobs. In other words, if the true costs of security are passed on to fliers, many of them will stop flying. Are American travelers really more likely to protect their pocketbooks than their dignity or their health?