Uh oh, obama administration coming to save us next

johnpeace

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http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5g6BZTgnY8I3pwYunoUu7Wl1LOe3wD9BTI1UO0

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration is taking its first step toward trying to fix the ailing airline industry, mired in a severe economic slump and facing safety worries.
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood is holding a forum Thursday to discuss the state of the industry and ways government can help provide economic stability for air carriers. The industry has been rocked by repeated crises in recent years, including the 9/11 terror attacks, the SARS virus and the current economic downturn.
"U.S. aviation is facing severe economic uncertainty and an open and frank conversation will help begin a continuing dialogue about the industry's future," transportation spokeswoman Sasha Johnson said.
The Air Transport Association, which represents major carriers, says airlines are offering the fewest seats to passengers as measured by available seats and distance traveled in over a decade. Airlines have shed more than 130,000 full-time jobs since 2000, and lost an estimated $33 billion over the same period. Thirteen airlines have filed for bankruptcy in the past two years.
LaHood's invitation to aviation stakeholders says the forum, which is closed to the public and the media, was organized at the request of the AFL-CIO's Transportation Trades Department.
Ed Wytkind, the trades department's president, said the industry has become dysfunctional, and all involved are suffering.
He said he is hopeful the administration or Congress will create a blue-ribbon commission to recommend solutions.
"We can't keep doing things the exact same way and expect a better outcome," Wytkind said, adding that there "probably" should be consideration of new regulatory authority for the industry.
Pat Friend, president of the Association of Flight Attendants, said she doesn't favor returning to the type of government supervision that existed before airline deregulation in 1978.
"But, there are some areas where we think you can tweak the deregulation," she said.
Airlines are extremely wary of any discussion of a return to economic regulation. They contend they are already heavily regulated and taxed.
Airline deregulation has been regarded as a success for consumers because airfares have declined. But other trends have raised concerns about whether airlines are offsetting low fares at the expense of safety.
A report last year by a government watchdog said nine large U.S. airlines farm out 70 percent of major maintenance. Overseas repair shops handled one-quarter of the work, challenging the ability of U.S. inspectors to determine whether it is done properly, the report said.
Major airlines have also farmed out short-haul trips to regional carriers, which now account for half of all domestic flights. Regional airlines often hire pilots with significantly less experience and pay lower wages than major airlines. Both issues have been raised in the National Transportation Safety Board's investigation of the crash of Continental Connection Flight 3407, which crashed near Buffalo, N.Y., in February, killing 50 people. The flight was operated for Continental by regional carrier Colgan Air Inc. of Manassas, Va.
 

Rerouted

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Great, everyone will now be paid to stay home and do nothing. I'm in.
 

andyd

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That's great news, I would welcome full and complete re-regulation including pay rates set back to 1977 and adjusted for inflation. Who cares if it would cost $2500 for a round trip coast to coast ticket...that's what it SHOULD cost, and all the better if our load factors plummet to 60%....if we are turning a profit then it's all good. Cheap air travel is NOT a constitutional right and the only reason it is as cheap as it is is because you and I are currently subsidizing it with our wages and retirement. 60% load factors would be great for commuting as well! Bring it on!
 

LearLove

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so basically jobs lost at the major while regionals double in size - whats he going to do about that?
 

acaTerry

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Maybe he'll make regional captains "spread the wealth"....$56,000 can go SUCH a long way.
Maybe he'll just give mgt billions, oops, a trillion dollars so they can go bankrupt anyway and keep the coin.
Maybe he'll force regional FOs to pay for abortions.
Maybe he'll bow to JO when shaking his hand.
Or maybe he'll just butt out and let the free market dictate what happens...LIKE HE SHOULD HAVE WITH EVERYTHING ELSE.
 

Salukipilot4590

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"And I, for one, welcome our new insect overlords" - KB
 

JumpersAway

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The airline industry is one of the heaviest taxed entities in the US anyway- second only to the tobacco industry. Given the highlights from 3407 and the limelight our industry wage/compensation has been in, I don't forsee this being a bad thing. If you are anti Obama, then fine and I can't blame ya, but at least be open minded enough to see what is proposed. Regardless of which administration does it, one of them needs to do something. I think we've aptly demonstrated time, and time again, that most airline managements are incapable of running an airline the way it should be run, while compensating pilots in a manner befitting our education, dedication, and sacrifice..........
 

WayBack

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Or maybe he'll just butt out and let the free market dictate what happens...LIKE HE SHOULD HAVE WITH EVERYTHING ELSE.
No way, let him screw this one up as well! It will teach all those ALPA goons who pushed for him as President. He's got the "Brown Touch". Everything he touches turns to poop!
 

crj567

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As with all things Obama:

Pay attention to what he DOES, not what he SAYS!!!! This guy has absolutely no conscience-he will say anything he thinks will gain him a point of two in the polls.

Unfortunately, recent history has confirmed the fact that he is completely full of poop!

-I expect no improvement-people sure as hell want/demand their $59 each way fares, it impossible to have things like this both ways.
 

stall022

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The title should read more like “Obama plans to bail out and line the pockets of his United Airlines buddies in Chicago”
 

pdub20s

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This thread reeks of Right-wing boobery
 

Skywest Pylot

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Or maybe he'll just butt out and let the free market dictate what happens...LIKE HE SHOULD HAVE WITH EVERYTHING ELSE.
Do you mean the "Free Market" that won't let employees strike or take work action to fight for better pay and work rules? A true "Free Market" has never existed for employees of the airline industry. Your "Free Market" has been the equivalent of stealing money from my pocket while holding a gun to my head to make sure I don't fight back. If you want a "Free Market" then let us Strike!
 

Smarta$$

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Do you mean the "Free Market" that won't let employees strike or take work action to fight for better pay and work rules? A true "Free Market" has never existed for employees of the airline industry. Your "Free Market" has been the equivalent of stealing money from my pocket while holding a gun to my head to make sure I don't fight back. If you want a "Free Market" then let us Strike!
Exactly. They don't get that, because hanity never tells them about it.
 

enuffalready

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Exactly. They don't get that, because hanity never tells them about it.
No free market.... I agree... but to our benefit! From an employee side.... if you get the sniffles, you can take 3 months off and not get fired...Your pay is entirely determined by when you got hired and not what you produce..... only places where that exists is college professors and union jokes like Chrysler and they only way those exist is to be completely dependent on subsidies.......try that in the normal work world and any employer would tell you get the F out and not let the door hit you on the way out...

always cracks me up when pilots say.... " yeah, lets go back to the 70's when we were regulated and.......... flying is not a right.... every person should pay $2500 for a ticket to san antonio"

the main reason pilots always take cuts and undercut each other is that if they had to earn a living in the real world and actually compete with a 25 yo kid from india... they would fold in a heartbeat...

we all knew what we signed up for when we showed up the first day of indoc
 
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Jar Jar

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From an employee side.... if you get the sniffles, you can take 3 months off and not get fired...
What airline do you work for?! Mine says I can only miss 1 day a month before they begin taking punitive action against me. 14 days in a year, and they start firing people.

Ever heard of the IMSAFE checklist? Check the AIM if you haven't. That's how the feds say we're supposed to do our job, but my company says otherwise. Sure I could go out on medical for maybe about two months (because i've got a couple years seniority, with unused sick time from not following the IMSAFE checklist), but that would mean making minimum pay without perdiem. Thats a stiff financial penalty if I decide to actually get really sick, not exactly the 'without-consequences' picture you are painting.

And what about the new hire? He can't call out sick. He's on probation for a year, so he'll just tough it out (fly with that head cold Joey, you'll be making the big bucks one day). It doesn't even matter what his illness is, it could even be an emotional issue that he's having, but he can't call out sick but maybe 3 times at the absolute most that year because he wants to retain his job. Do the citizens on his plane deserve a less healthy pilot?

the main reason pilots always take cuts and undercut each other is that if they had to earn a living in the real world and actually compete with a 25 yo kid from india... they would fold in a heartbeat...
If the public decides they would rather have 25 year olds from India flying them from SAN-MCO for $29 then that'd be it for us. Cabotage would decimate our careers, you are absolutely correct. I will say, that knowing what I know and seeing what I've seen on the line, I will NEVER trust my family to outsourced labor. The caliber of some people that we have flying today is already scary enough.
 

crj567

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Ever heard of the IMSAFE checklist? Check the AIM if you haven't. That's how the feds say we're supposed to do our job, but my company says otherwise. Sure I could go out on medical for maybe about two months (because i've got a couple years seniority, with unused sick time from not following the IMSAFE checklist), but that would mean making minimum pay without perdiem. Thats a stiff financial penalty if I decide to actually get really sick, not exactly the 'without-consequences' picture you are painting.


If the public decides they would rather have 25 year olds from India flying them from SAN-MCO for $29 then that'd be it for us. Cabotage would decimate our careers, you are absolutely correct. I will say, that knowing what I know and seeing what I've seen on the line, I will NEVER trust my family to outsourced labor. The caliber of some people that we have flying today is already scary enough.
-As far as the sick time-check out this site:

http://www.dol.gov/whd/fmla/index.htm

-This is a federal law-they cannot discipline you for being sick... Just follow the guidelines, get the right paperwork filed, and you are set.

-The second point-about cabotage, is very valid, and is 100% correct. I will never, ever fly on any airplane with those clowns at the controls.
 

enuffalready

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-As far as the sick time-check out this site:

http://www.dol.gov/whd/fmla/index.htm

-This is a federal law-they cannot discipline you for being sick... Just follow the guidelines, get the right paperwork filed, and you are set.

-The second point-about cabotage, is very valid, and is 100% correct. I will never, ever fly on any airplane with those clowns at the controls.
My point was that pilots only see free market as their ability to strike... unions are NOT free market...just as bombardier is not free market and is subsidozed by the canadian government.

As far as safety, I agree, and have said from the beginning that as money and QOL goes down, the pilots with options will leave and those most qualified will never come to airlines. Just like medical and other fields. The best already have their income diversified and when the time comes they walk away.... then you are left with either Genital Lees and/or spiky hair ipods that all complain about the good old days in the 70's with orgies on every overnight
 

414Flyer

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the main reason pilots always take cuts and undercut each other is that if they had to earn a living in the real world and actually compete with a 25 yo kid from india... they would fold in a heartbeat...

we all knew what we signed up for when we showed up the first day of indoc
I wonder if I am the only one who thinks the rest of the world has more to fear from 25 year old American pilots willing to fly for free or pay to fly, than we have to fear from foreign pilots coming over here?

Pilots here in the US have been undercutting each other for years, we cant just pretend the threat to wages comes from pilots coming here from other countries.
 

Jar Jar

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You're right 414 - i think some of the guys flying today don't belong up there. Its scary to think what could happen if you pair them up with an equally incompetent partner, and a bad situation.

The longer this 'race to the bottom' continues, the more incompetent pilots we'll have in our industry and the greater the odds of them being paired up together are. Most of the folks I work with are good at what they do, but there's certainly some that don't have a clue. Two of them together, and a bad situation - well that just gives me chills.

If Aero Khazakstan could come over here and operate with world-class aviators and somehow manage to compete, well that'd be a different story. But we all know how airlines work, and the only way a foreign owned airline would be able to push a domestic carrier out of a market would be if they were to offer their product cheaper. It just stands to reason that labor/schedules/training/maintenance would all be sacrificed in order to create that cheaper fare.
 
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