A must read about Seniority and what East pilots think

MCDU

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Seniority is More Than a Snapshot
August 4, 2009

Fellow Pilots,
The following information regarding seniority has been discussed many times over, and we are presenting it to you only in response to an apparent effort to downplay the negative impact of the Nicolau list on a huge segment of the entire pilot group. USAPA will comply with all court orders, and as a result, the following discussion does not represent USAPA’s current bargaining position concerning Section 22 (Seniority). It is designed to educate the pilots on the fallacies of simplistic assumptions applied to complicated situations, and it will shed light on the equities of USAPA’s original proposal and why we expect to prevail on appeal.
The recent update from the LAS representative illustrates some of the fundamental disagreements and misunderstanding that exist within our pilot group. One area of disconnect in understanding stems from the basic definition of seniority. Some would say it is equivalent to a simple snapshot in time of relative position. Others reject that notion and believe that seniority and longevity go hand-in-hand, just as it works absent any merger. The snapshot approach is filled with traps, and while it may seem acceptable to some pilots under today’s circumstances, the potential is there for that approach to destroy the careers of those same pilots when the tide changes down the road.

Redefining seniority as a simple snapshot of relative position is problematic in other ways as well. This approach does not recognize the time in service that an individual has accrued working at a craft and replaces it instead with a value dependent upon business cycles, management and other factors outside the scope and control of labor. There is more to seniority integration than simply taking a snapshot view of two lists and a snapshot view of a combined list. This approach ignores seniority in the classic sense and may deem many years of work as a pilot as worthless. Just as important, the aging of the seniority list going forward is ignored, which may have a considerable positive or negative impact on career profiles. The impact may include changes in percentage position at retirement and possible changes in advancement rates, as well as incongruent initial list placement, such as inserting probationary pilots ahead of pilots with more than 16 years of seniority. While it may appear on the surface that relative position integration would be initially minimally disruptive, the effects become magnified with the passage of time until disparities become increasingly apparent.

Straight Date of Hire (DOH) with no conditions or restrictions would not be
an appropriate method of integrating the two pilot groups involved in the US Airways/AWA merger due to the large disparity in seniority and, from that perspective only, we agree with the LAS update. That is precisely why conditions and restrictions were developed in USAPA’s original bargaining proposal. It is important to understand that conditions and restrictions would exist due to the fact that straight DOH integration would not be fair to the entire pilot group. Conditions and restrictions serve to eliminate the negative impact of discrepancies in seniority until those discrepancies are mitigated with the passage of time.
The LAS update mentioned certain East pilots gaining 20-30% in relative position with a combined DOH list. That is true and expected on a pure relative position basis. An East pilot with many more years of service would be at a higher position on a DOH list, which is simply a reflection of the much greater seniority which that pilot has accrued. However, with conditions and restrictions applied, the East pilot would be restricted from using his or her seniority to harm a West pilot. Generally speaking, a West pilot’s relative position would be protected unless the West pilot chose to bid to an East base or until the West pilot’s relative position would be better with an integrated DOH list. This would occur for the majority of West pilots with the passage of time due to the high attrition rate in the East. What the LAS update failed to mention is that, under the relative position arrangement, the majority of West pilots advance at a much greater rate and finish their careers at a more senior percentage position than would have occurred absent the merger. Because seniority is a zero sum game, this windfall comes only to the detriment of East pilots.
On average, West pilots are over 2,100 numbers higher on the Nicolau list than the East pilot below them with the same date of hire. The average West pilot retires 5% higher on that list that now includes widebody aircraft, while at the same time, the average East pilot retires 5.9% lower on the list. These are only percentages at retirement. Pre-retirement disparity is typically much greater at mid-career. For example, the author of the LAS update was hired in October 2003 and was placed on the Nicolau list just ahead of an East pilot hired in July 1987. If the Nicolau list were put in place today, the LAS update author would have already demonstrated some of the career acceleration effect that the relative positioning methodology provides for most West pilots. Right now, he would be approximately at the 74% level on the Nicolau list vs approximately 86% on the West list alone (12% difference). A significant cause of this leap in seniority is the East retirements that occurred prior to the age 65 rule change.

For an example of what happens between the initial list positioning and retirement positioning, consider the following. When the LAS update author reaches age 50, he will be approximately 29% from the top on the Nicolau list, as compared to 55% from the top on the West-only list (26% difference). Additionally, just over six years from now, the author would begin to do better with an integrated date of hire list than with a separate operation list, and it would remain as such for the remainder of his career until his retirement in 2035.

The above statistics reflect a small segment of the data that was available prior to the Addington trial and, importantly, deemed inadmissible by the court. (Note that it is exactly this type of excluded but relevant information that will be reviewed during the appeal process.)
The LAS update also made a reference to attrition. One thing that will never change is that we will all get older and eventually must retire. That fact is constant and has nothing to do with “probabilities and history” as mentioned in the LAS update. For example, by the year 2020, over 2,500 pilots will be forced to retire, with more than 2,000 of that number coming from the East pilot group. (This assumes an average age at retirement of 64, which, based upon available statistics, may be too high.) By the year 2015, the number of age-64 retirements is more than 950.
Other issues raised in the LAS update concerning low wages, lost pensions, work rule changes, etc. have nothing to do with seniority integration. The East pilots do not blame the West pilots for the failed leadership of ALPA in the past.
Seniority integration is a complex matter, which requires the utmost empathy from everyone involved in the process. Hopefully the information stated above will help provide West pilots with additional insight as to why USAPA is appealing Judge Wake’s order.
 

General Lee

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You EASTIES are gaywad wheenies. What a bunch of ducks. Can't you read Judge Wake's decision? IDIOTS. You will all run your airline into the ground, literally and figuratively. Good. You keep saying "in the year 2015, we will have this many retirements....." Guess what jackholes? You won't be around flying planes then, more likely dumping their lavs. You and Dougwiser are ruining your airline, together. As Sulley loves to say "get some integrity."


Bye Bye--General Lee
 
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gutshotdraw

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Seniority is More Than a Snapshot
August 4, 2009
Hopefully the information stated above will help provide West pilots with additional insight as to why USAPA is appealing Judge Wake’s order.
And intelligence, common sense, and industry experience will provide additional insight as the why USAPA will LOSE.

AGAIN
.
 

Flybywire44

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You EASTIES are gaywad wheenies. What a bunch of ducks. Can't you read Judge Wake's decision? IDIOTS. You will all run your airline into the ground, literally and figuratively. Good. You keep saying "in the year 2015, we will have this many retirements....." Guess what jackholes? You won't be around flying planes then, more likely dumping their lavs. You and Dougwiser are ruining your airline, together. As Sulley loves to say "get some integrity."


Bye Bye--General Lee
Your wife left you and now you take it out on these boards?
 

General Lee

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Your wife left you and now you take it out on these boards?
Say what? She and I are doing great. Thanks for caring, dipwad.

Bye Bye--General Lee
 

MCDU

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Say what? She and I are doing great. Thanks for caring, dipwad.

Bye Bye--General Lee
Yeah right. Good one Genital Lee. You are a PFT loser that spends 24 hours a day on stupid message boards. You are as sorry as they get. You and your type is why this profession is on par with being a truck driver. Thanks for selling out Genital Lee. Your day will come. Trust me.

M
 

Scope out RJ's

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Careful responding to this doosh bag! He runs and tells the moderators when someone calls him a name.
What's the matter crybaby mcdoosh, your man in a bad mood again tonight?
Get back to your hole little boy!
 

Deadalus

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Your wife left you and now you take it out on these boards?
If there were more generals out there and less McDudds this industry would be in an entirely different/better place.
 

eaglesview

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You EASTIES are gaywad wheenies. What a bunch of ducks. Can't you read Judge Wake's decision? IDIOTS. You will all run your airline into the ground, literally and figuratively. Good. You keep saying "in the year 2015, we will have this many retirements....." Guess what jackholes? You won't be around flying planes then, more likely dumping their lavs. You and Dougwiser are ruining your airline, together. As Sulley loves to say "get some integrity."


Bye Bye--General Lee
Try a little less starch in the boxers, you may find that will leave you a little less irritated.
 

JoeMerchant

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This issue will never be resolved...There is too much disparity between the senior and junior folks in this business. The issue is magnified when you combine a junior post de-regulation carrier with a senior pre-deregulation carrier...it was doomed from the start....No other industry places so much value in a seniority number, and it is our downfall....20+ year USAir pilots make $85 an hour as reserve FOs...No other industry would allow this...
 

C Festerpuss

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I dunno, it seems like that feller is makin sum sense to me.
 

General Lee

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Yeah right. Good one Genital Lee. You are a PFT loser that spends 24 hours a day on stupid message boards. You are as sorry as they get. You and your type is why this profession is on par with being a truck driver. Thanks for selling out Genital Lee. Your day will come. Trust me.

M
PFT? HUH? Where in the world did you come up with that? I paid my dues flying dorniers and brasilias in the krap out of MDW a long time ago, and I then got on with DL. I love it. I enjoy my life. I enjoy this board. YOU SUCK. Go suck it with the rest of the Easties. And, my day will come, when I deny you a jumpseat, since Lav dumpers can't jump anyway.


Bye Bye--General Lee
 

General Lee

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Try a little less starch in the boxers, you may find that will leave you a little less irritated.
Freeballing it is more likely. Feels great.


Bye Bye---General Lee
 

Raoul Duke

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Who wrote that POS? Talk about crying over spilt milk. What a joke - why bother explaining the logic behind a losing argument.
 

Bringupthebird

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And so again we get a re-hash of the east failed negotiating stance circa 2005
 

FoxHunter

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I've been two mergers, both times on the side that wanted DOH. In both cases it went in relative seniority. In the second case the arbitrator(Nicolau) actually used numbers for a future date based on aircraft on order which resulted in a worse outcome. Looks to me like the US Air East group is totally out of touch with reality.
 

gutshotdraw

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Ya think?
 

Cheeta

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This message sounds like it was crafted by someone in regional airline managment. Sounds like something JO would say.....cloud the issue.

Putting this sh!t out.....

Easties are no better than JO!
 

TWA Dude

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What a joke - why bother explaining the logic behind a losing argument.
Thank you! Since you wrote that I don't have to.

For the record, the USAPA missive was in response to a message the LAS rep put out trying to explain how the Nicolau list doesn't affect the Easties as bad as they think. Though well-intentioned it's futile. The sense of entitlement of the Easties will only be broken down over time when reality finally breaks through their defense mechanisms.
 

NuGuy

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Heyas,

FWIW, the 9th circuit is TOTALLY unpredictable in their rulings. While unlikely, they could produce a ruling that resets the whole thing to zero.

Nu
 
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