President Bush's TSA Nominee Is The Invisible Man
By ANN Senior Editor Pete Combs
We're beginning to doubt President Bush's new TSA
Administrator-Designate actually exists.
Normally, when someone is nominated for a high-profile position
in Washington, lobbyists, pundits and wanna-be's are out in front,
crowing about how well they know him and what a great guy he is.
Everyone's anxious to trot out a picture of themselves with the new
guy, showing just how buddy-buddy they really are.
But in the case of Edmund S. Hawley, there's nothing. Zip.
In trying to track down a picture of Mr. Hawley, we contacted
the TSA media office. No luck -- and they were rather surly about
it. We were bounced from the receptionist in Arlington to a media
specialist in Washington and immediately bounced back before being
curtly told no picture exists. Call back after he's confirmed.
We called the White House, figuring, after all, he IS the
president's nominee. We had to fax a written request for a picture,
along with information about our publication and an indication of
how the picture would be used. We eagerly complied. But when the
picture didn't show up more than 24 hours later, we called back,
only to be told that the White House doesn't have a picture of Mr.
Hawley serves on the FAA's Air Traffic Services Board. The
receptionist at the media office didn't even know who he is. When
we explained, we were directed to a very kind and usually very
helpful public relations specialist who has promised to call back
-- but didn't think the FAA has a picture of Mr. Hawley.
We even tried the "alphabet groups"
-- NBAA, AOPA, NATA and ATA. Nope. But if you get a picture, we
were asked, could you please send us a copy?
Now, conspiracy theory has never been a forte of THIS shop. But
at this point, we wonder if, perhaps, Mr. Hawley is indeed a
figment of someone's imagination. Is he like Ponsonby Britt, OBE?
If you'll recall, he was the fictitious executive producer of the
Bullwinkle Show, created by Jay Ward to handle all the mail that,
in these days, we'd call spam.
Or perhaps he's Alan Smithee. That's the name the Director's
Guild in Hollywood allows producers to tack on to a really bad
movie. He's usually named as the director after the real
responsible party pulls out because the project was a dud. He, too,
Could it be the position of TSA administrator is that kind of a
Mr. Hawley, if you're out there, please send us your picture.
Preferably with a copy of today's New York Times. It isn't that we
doubt you... but you are the president's nominee and we understand
Ponsonby Britt has already turned down the job.