Thursday, June 11, 2009

No News



Sometimes, no news isn’t good news...it’s just no news. The FAA and NATCA are in double-secret semi-negotiations over a non-contract and Congress is trying to make out like they don’t know that regional carriers aren’t main-line airlines. Or, to put it another way, Congress wants you to believe you get what you don’t pay for. You’ll get the same level of safety from a $20,000 -a-year pilot as you will from a $200,000-a-year pilot. That’s almost as good as those telling America’s uninsured that they’ll be better off with no health care than they would with government health care.

But I digress. Today’s no-news is buried in Aviation Daily and the Federal Register. According to Aviation Daily,

”In separate Federal Register notices published June 5, the FAA invited comment on its proposed extension, which extends peak-hour caps that otherwise would expire on Oct. 24 of this year. “

The peak-hour caps are (of course) at New York’s airports. I’d quote more from the story but I assume Aviation Daily would rather you pay for it. And at $1,725 a subscription (I don’t know if that is for a year or what. You tell me.), I assume they take the copyright laws seriously. If you have the time, you can teach yourself how to use the Federal Register. You might learn why businesses pay Aviation Daily so much to read it for them.

Back in the day, I taught myself to read FAA documents that were just as complicated. I’m just not that motivated anymore. I mean, I already know the FAA sets the number of slots at New York’s airports too high. I also know that, at $500,000 per slot, the pressure to keep the number of slots too high will ensure they continue to stay too high. (I’m just picking that statistic to make a point. The economic impact of each slot is huge -- however you measure it.) If you need to prove it to yourself, I’m just pointing out the tools you can use.

Me ? I’m going back to planting flowers. And when I visit New York this summer, I’ll drive. Does anybody know where I can pick up some yellow Torenia on the south side of Atlanta ? I think they would look good in some pots on my freshly-painted deck.

Don Brown
June 11, 2009

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