As I was attempting to buy gas last week, I was somewhat startled to read this error message:

Invalid Loyalty

You may recall a few years back, the Defense Department had a Total Information Awareness plan to data-mine credit cards for suspicious activity. And the FBI had its own Carnivore program to survey online activity. Put these two programs together, and the government could shut off my credit card after discovering I didn’t support the war. INVALID LOYALTY.

Thankfully we’re not there quite yet. I was using a gas station affiliated with the local grocery store, and apaprently I pressed the wrong button to indicate I wanted to use my discount card to get a discount on gas (in exchange, apparently, for my loyalty). So when prompted to scan my card, I scanned my credit card. And the result was this, I think, funny error message: INVALID LOYALTY.

I was in a bit of a hurry on my way out of town, but I thought it was worth repeating the process to get a picture of the gas machine apparently questioning my patriotism.