Airports to install giant security mood rings
In March 2004 I was in a silly mood (yes, a euphemism) and dreamed up the idea of airports installing giant mood rings as security devices. Prospective passengers would be made to walk through the mood ring. If it showed a happy and peaceful color, you could get on the flight. You could carry a gun or even a bomb, no problem. But if the mood ring indicated anger, you’d be denied entry or forced to fly in a special Angry Class. In Angry Class the service is shit. The airline knows the passengers are angry before they get on the plane, so why bother?
I started to write the news:
Today the US Department of Homeland Security announced that the US is insisting that countries install the new Passenger Mood Assessment Security Screening (PMASS) in all airports with direct or connecting flights to the US. The system, developed by Kellogg Brown & Root (a wholly-owned subsidiary of Halliburton, an oil-services company), is based on techniques borrowed from functional magnetic resonance imaging and, most controversially, the mood ring industry.
Ashcroft, Bush and Rumsfeld flanked Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge today as he announced the new measures. "People have no right to turn up at the airport with a bad attitude."
Halliburton wins a no-bid contract, shortly after moving to buy up all known mood ring manufacturers, mystifying investors (stock falls sharply, then rises sharply on news of contract). To fly people to the US, other countries are forced install giant mood rings and to hand over the mood data of all embarking passengers to US authorities.
You get the picture. I sent an outline of this to the folks at The Onion, but never heard back.
It’s a joke, of course. Couldn’t possibly happen. Right? Think again.