Did the CEO of AA really say mergers 'allow us to better look after customers?'

Discussion in 'American Airlines | AAdvantage' started by ahappyelite, Jul 1, 2016.  |  Print Topic

  1. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    Yes he did. Of course his pilots have said they are tired of apologizing to their passengers for the product the post merger airline has become. In a rare aerial foray, took to the skies one day this week and was shocked to see the unholy hell air travel is, especially around holidays First class is less comfortable than coach years ago. Coach is shockingly and dangerously overcrowded, tensions sky high-it's like flying with a couple of hundred people strapped into dental chairs awaiting root canal. The 1:30 flight took an appalling 2 1/2 hours with various delays including no available gates. Listened to passengers being treated with the savage disdain an industry can roll out when people are choiceless. Post merger flying in America is one incredible ordeal. Weren't mergers great? Hope to not repeat this uber hassle more than a couple of times before the new year.

    See consumerist.com June 14th
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016
  2. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Complaining about mergers that have already completed is shutting the barn door after the horses have left.

    We need more competition. The easiest way to get that is to eliminate laws that forbid airlines from competing, like restrictions on foreign ownership of US airlines. Let Ryanair and Singapore Airlines operate in the US domestic market and compete against United and Delta.

    Quit protecting the airlines from competition. Not only are there fewer airlines they keep asking for more government privilege, shutting out the Gulf carriers or forbiding from offering low prices.

    The major US airlines have a strangehold on the House Transportation Committee, and they've got regulatory capture at DOT as it is.

    Free the planes!
     
  3. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    Personally would prefer an antitrust style breakup into 8 or 10 airlines. Problem with foreign carriers is the loss of American jobs and gutting of labor standards. Of course Wall Street dba as airlines has as little regard for the employees as the passengers. The pilots to their credit candidly said post merger AA is an embarrassment. The dream of Wall Street/the aircartel is pilotless planes (and the hedge funds and private equity folks who own both political parties) all ideally would like passengerless planes where they could take your money without you needing to even go the airport.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2016
  4. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Why would foreign-owned airlines operating in the US not be subject to all relevant US laws?
     
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  5. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    Doubt some are complying with age, race, sex harassment laws for starters. Seems unlikely that some would be paying decent wages as well. See for example the abysmal, slave like wages and working conditions in the cruise industry that serves US ports.
     
  6. gleff
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    Airlines doing business in the US have to follow US laws regardless of the location of their beneficial owners.
     
  7. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    Simply absurd to suggest that some foreign airlines are assembling and keeping the types of workforces they have while complying with US labor and anti discrimination standards.
     
  8. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    You're conflating airlines operating outside the US following the laws of their home countries with an airline operating inside the US simply being OWNED BY interests outside the US.

    The Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee follows US labor laws even though Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft is primarily listed on the Frankfurt stock exchange.
     
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  9. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    The Gulf carriers which you suggest as competitors would be somewhere between non compliant and super non compliant with US labor standards.
     
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  10. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    No. The Gulf carriers (which I have not mentioned above) or any other non-US based investor would follow US laws or face penalties for their failure to do so.

    Etihad owns significant stakes and exercises control over airlines such as Alitalia, airberlin, and Air Serbia -- and in each case those airlines comply with local laws.

    I think you are confusing the idea of a foreign airline sending its planes to the US and continuing to operate how it always versus owners outside the US being permitted to own an airline operating within its borders. That error causes you to think in terms of status quo operations for that airline, which wouldn't be the case anyway but it's likely the source of your mistake.
     
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  11. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    No confusion on my part. As much as competition from foreign carriers such as the Gulf would de cartel the cartel, the concern is their disregard for labor standards and indeed human dignity. Allowing them a foothold in the domestic market would almost surely lead to lowered standards here as well.
     
  12. gleff
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    You brought up "the Gulf carriers" not me, but you're not engaging with what I'm writing here. We're talking about ownership structures. Gulf-based investment groups already own plenty of things in the US and there's no indication of what you're suggesting.
     
  13. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    You hinted that the airlines should drop their opposition to the Gulf carriers coming in. US labor standards are pretty low already and there is little chance they will get better if foreign carriers come here from places like the Gulf.
     
  14. gleff
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    That's a different issue from foreign ownership. My point there was simply that US carriers seek special protections from the federal government and are in that way at war with their customers.
     
  15. ahappyelite

    ahappyelite Silver Member

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    Certainly need reintroduction of competition to end the current system of each airline getting worse everyday. Certainly the airlines and those who control them on Wall Street have nothing but disdain for their workforces. Interesting how Ryanair has gotten better and better while its one time imitator Southwest is now tied with Spirit in my opinion for dead last place. Hate to think we can't have decent air travel and humane treatment of workers.
     
  16. Counsellor
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    Counsellor Gold Member

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    And don't forget the anti-subsidy rules. Many of the "foreign" airlines receive subsidies in one form or another from their home nations.

    If they had to forego those for their US operations, I suspect quality would decline, and prices rise.
     
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  17. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    That's quite likely, since many of those foreign air carriers are their nation's flagship airlines, and are heavily subsidized by their home nation.

    But, let's not forget to mention the many ways that major US air carriers have received different types of subsidies from the US government.
    Here's a link to an old post describing the $15 billion US government bailout of the airlines:
    http://www.taxpayer.net/library/weekly-wastebasket/article/big-airlines-benefit-from-bailout-bill
    Both AA and UA have also filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the past, evidently they've financially recovered quite well as a result.
     
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  18. Pizzaman
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    Pizzaman Co-founder

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    While it's utopian to say it, I do believe that now that those same airlines are making billions, it'd be nice if they re-assumed those pension obligations they unloaded on the general public.
     
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  19. Counsellor
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    Dream on.
     
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  20. Pizzaman
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    Oh, I know it's wishful thinking. Better chance of seeing someone from a reality show elected President. Oh, wait.
     
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  21. KenInEscazu

    KenInEscazu Gold Member

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    So far that's just a nomination, albeit equally unbelievable. The fat lady (in a pantsuit) has yet to sing, however. ;)

    If only we frequent flyers alone were allowed to vote. The candidates' focus on position would surely be something that either of them might realistically accomplish. :D

    That gives birth to an idea. Make the leadership positions of FAA, DOT, TSA and DOJ into elected positions limited to two 4 year terms. Bet we'd finally see changes we would like!
     
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