Saturday, February 02, 2008

FAA History Lesson -- February 2



From the FAA Historical Chronology, 1926-1996...

”Feb 2, 1994: FAA announced that 25 low activity towers (Level 1) would be converted to contract towers, beginning in September 1994. The agency had been contracting the operation of such towers since 1982, and 30 were run on this basis as of the end of 1993. On Nov 28, 1995, FAA announced that it would discontinue funding for 7 low-activity towers, including three contract towers and four FAA-operated facilities. “

It all started long before you ever heard of Blackwater or any of the other contractors in Iraq. And slowly but surely, it is creeping into all segments of our society. I was sitting in a local eatery and reading the signs of the work trucks pulling in and out of the parking lot. They were each bearing the sign of “No-Name Company” and in little letters underneath “A Contractor of Big-Name Company.”

Big-Name Company still needed employees to do the job but they didn’t want to pay the salaries and benefits expected, much less accept the liability that is part of the business. So they contract it out. Any problems ? Blame the contractor and let him go bankrupt. Big-Name Company didn’t cut that corner. No sir. That was the contractor. Big-Name Company didn’t hire those illegal immigrants. No sir. That was the contractor. The fact that no one expects No-Name Company to pay a decent wage is just a little extra perk for the Big-Name Company that accepts billions of taxpayer dollars in various forms (like tax breaks or the use of FAA equipment to run a Tower.)

You might expect this behavior from a private company but your government is engaged in it also. As a matter of fact, your government may be one of the worst offenders. You can read more about the FAA version in a previous post, here on Get the Flick, or you can read the long, sordid history in the form of Congressional testimony from some guy named John Carr.

Don Brown
February 2, 2008

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