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Thursday, June 24

Just say no

Just say no to corporate bailouts by tax payer dollars! This is an issue that has been festering in my head since United Airlines started begging for our money years ago, then filed for bankruptcy protection when they didn't get it. Here is why I am so callous about the issue: United Airlines sucks. Their service sucks, their prices are beyond laughable, and their management drove the company into the ground. Give me one reason to subsidize that kind of behavior! Reference Qwest here. Just about every union alive has struck from United since I moved here about 7 years ago. The stewardesses, the pilots, the desk help, even the machinists struck! I don't even know what a machinist does, but I am guessing it is pretty important to an airplane. How can we subsidize a business that had high cost alternative Ted as a brainchild? (it is about the third story down).

This is the second part about bailouts. Remember when things were really great about five years ago? Everything was great, the economy was roaring, we were at peace, crime was down... did a single one of these greedy companies ever say during these heydays "Hey, IRS... we are making a fortune over here. We really should be paying more taxes, because our profit is obscene!".

They did not, so I do not feel too obligated to help them now as a taxpayer. Lemme make an analogy: every Saturday Lenny comes over and mows your lawn. You pay him $20 every time. Every time Lenny spends the $20 on hookers. You have noticed that the lawnmower isn't being maintained very well, so your grass isn't cut properly. Also, though Lenny fights it, there are other mowers in the neighborhood offering the same service. You tell Lenny, maybe he should do some maintenance on the lawn mower with all the money he makes mowing lawns (He is the second biggest lawnmower guy in the nation) and he keeps spending his money on hookers and blow. So , after your lawn looks like crap for five weeks in a row, you go to another lawnmower person. Let's call him Frontier. He is nice, does a comparable job (if not better), and charges LESS.

After about a year of this new relationship, Lenny comes to you and says his mower is broke. You tell Lenny you don't really care. Lenny explains that YOU should buy him a new mower, and also cover the millions of dollars he owes to his bookies and dealers back in Chicago. You explain to him that if he invested the money he was making and worked a little harder to maintain a good relationship with you... this would not have happened. Lenny says "dude, if you don't buy me a new lawnmower, I'll go out of business". So, you say to Lenny "you know what, Lenny, we are doing just fine with Frontier... do what you need. Leave me out of it."

Here then is my advice to United: trim your overhead and offer reasonable and competitive flight prices. Everything else will come in time. To the rest of you, fly Frontier like the rest of us in Denver do.


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