Former TSA Head Kip Hawley to Chat Live on Milepoint, May 2nd at 9pm Eastern

Kip Hawley, former Director of the TSA, will chat live on Milepoint Wednesday, May 2 at 9pm Eastern. Mark your calendars!

A couple of weeks ago he dropped a bombshell editorial in the Wall Street Journal where he basically repudiated just about everything that the TSA did under his watch. He protests effectively “sure I was in charge and spoke up publicly in favor of it all, but it wasn’t really my fault!”

I arrived in 2005 with naive notions of wrangling the organization into shape, only to discover the power of the TSA’s bureaucratic momentum and political pressures.

He makes some silly suggestions, like improving security by removing checked bag fees so fewer bags get carried on, forgetting that pre-9/11 passengers were allowed two carryons and a personal item through security, so it’s not really plausible that each passenger bringing through one carryon is really the root cause of bottlenecks.

But his ultimate message is at least close to right — that airport security is a “national embarrassment” and that the liquid ban (aka war on water) is stupid.

It’s very strange to see this about face, not just from his time in charge of airport security but even from his public statements last month. For example, he came out guns blazing for the overwhelming success of current approaches to airport security in an Economist debate on the topic against Bruce Schneier:

More than 6 billion consecutive safe arrivals of airline passengers since the 9/11 attacks mean that whatever the annoying and seemingly obtuse airport-security measures may have been, they have been ultimately successful.

Will the real Kip Hawley, please stand up?

I can’t wait to hear from him — and challenge him — live, online, at Milepoint! Hope you can join, too.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. It’s been a busy week for TSA. They molested three children, a ten year old with a diabetes pump, a four year old who hugged her grandma and a seven year old with cerebral palsy. They also sexually assaulted a Congressman and four TSA screeners were arrested for smuggling drugs through LAX.

    Let’s hear it from the TSA apologists who continue to say that this crime and abuse by TSA is somehow improving airline security.

    There were a total of 91 TSA workers arrested in the last 16 months including 12 arrested for child sex crimes, over 25 for theft, ten for smuggling and even one for murder. Crime, abuse and incompetence is so widespread in TSA that even Kip Hawley, the last TSA Director, has called for its overhaul.

    This just demonstrates how stupid and sick the whole TSA approach is and why it needs to be overhauled. TSA has done more damage to our liberty, way of life and morality than Al Qaeda could have ever hoped to do.

    It’s long past time to replace this agency with a sensible and effective system.

  2. Gary–thanks for the post. I believe all of us mileage junkies have some sort of quarrel with the TSA and it’s illegitimate mission statement. Will defly check this out!

  3. This Kip Hawley bag of shit should be arrested and jailed for his complicit actions in making Americans less free. Fuck this douchebag and his cowardly admissions after the fact that the TSA is a joke.

  4. Why bother? The terrorists have already won. Yesterday’s Land of the Free is nothing more than the Land of the Fearful today. Truly Pathetic.

  5. I always refer to the quart-sized zip-top bags full of 3 oz toiletries as “kippy bags” since they were introduced during Kip Hawley’s days at the TSA.

  6. EVERYTHING the TSA does is only for show. Of the flying millions hassled, how many terrorists has the TSA caught? ZERO! Theirs is the same theory as I use to keep away pink elephants. A glass, just one, of wine a day keeps you healthy and keeps the pink elephants away. Must work as I’ve yet to see a pink elephant! TSA’s procedures must be working as they have yet to find a terrorist. Sure does make the traveling sheep feel safer. To steal a solgan, “Live free or die”. You can pass this on to Kip ——

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