Thursday, February 26, 2009


More cheerleading from the clueless;

”“We don’t want to handle the problem by putting in caps,” said Mr. Coscia, referring to a proposal by the Federal Aviation Administration that would reduce congestion by limiting access to New York City’s air space.

“We want to enhance capacity,” he said. Mr. Coscia said the new system would allow airports to move planes in and out more quickly.“"

I’m told, people in Hell want ice water.

Mr. Coscia is the Chairman of the Port Authority of New York & New Jersey. Crain’s has the story.

I guess I ought to be used to saying the same thing over and over by now. But I’m not. I understand that air traffic control is rather difficult for outsiders to understand. Airport acceptance rates are not though. You can’t put a gallon and a half of milk in a gallon jug. No matter how bad you want it to fit, it won’t. To keep spilling the milk -- day after day -- isn’t a sign of dogged determination. It’s a sign of stupidity.

Let’s say I’m wrong. Let’s say the FAA is wrong too. LGA’s best arrival rate really isn’t 44 an hour. It’s 50. Does Mr. Coscia, the Port Authority, the airlines or anybody argue for a cap of 60 arrivals an hour ? No, they argue for none at all. Do they think LGA could handle 100 per hour ? 200 ? 500 ? There is a limit somewhere, right ?

Look at this from an air traffic control perspective. Let’s say the limit really is 44 arrivals per hour but due to political considerations, we can only get a cap installed of 45 per hour. That means we have to hold one airplane for a few minutes during every arrival push. (I know it’s a dumb scenario but work we me a minute.) Suppose the best cap we could get was 60 per hour. That means controllers would have to find the airspace to hold 16 airplanes. Do you see the difference ? Even a cap that is close to realistic is better than one that isn’t. But we have an entire segment of aviation (the Port Authority isn’t alone) that is arguing for no caps at all. What the heck, let’s hold 100 airplanes in the air. Make it 500. We’ll clog up the entire East coast.

As I’ve pointed out before, these people really aren’t stupid.

June 15, 2000

Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani and the Queens borough president, Claire Shulman, filed suit on Tuesday against the Department of Transportation in the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The suit contends that the government must conduct an environmental impact study before allowing the airlines to add what city officials say could be as many as 500 additional flights a day in and out of La Guardia by the end of the year.

They just think you’re stupid.

“Why certainly, we fly to LaGuardia at 8 AM, Mr. Smith. And at 9 AM, and 10 and 11 AM. We have flights there every hour of the day. “

“Yes sir. Our airplanes are always on time. Except for air traffic delays and weather of course. Because you’re booking 30 days in advance your ticket will only be $899. Would you like to put that on your Master Card, Mr. Smith ?”

“Yes sir, we do serve ice water. Why do you ask ?”

Don Brown
February 26, 2009

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