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DELTA furloughs

Old 4th Nov 2001, 06:31
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So, MikeM,

Hope we don't see you're arrogant self on the dole line with your bud Brad737...
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Old 4th Nov 2001, 07:09
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FFpax

Driving is an option you should consider if you don't like flying!
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Old 4th Nov 2001, 07:29
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....well then vmommo, many ARE now driving (instead of flying), and that is certainly part of the problem. Who wants to spend 60 minutes plus in the security line only to be hassled by a minimum wage drop-out?
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Old 4th Nov 2001, 08:36
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May the "sick" companies die! If people don’t fly by stock in GM and Ford.

I am 100% for pure capitalism and that is the beautiful part about America. If companies can't make it they sink. Pilots should make whatever they are able to negotiate, which happens to be the case for most other employee groups, including CEO’s and baseball players. Unions just happen to be an unnecessary evil and a part of capitalism.

Long live profits, high pilot salaries, lean mean companies, excellent CEO’s, employee empowerment and pilsner beer!
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Old 4th Nov 2001, 17:12
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Are the pilots really that arrogant? No respect for their airline's real long time customers!? Do the company executives read this site...

I have done a lot of driving lately. And then there are trains. The reason is not the airline (in)safety, but rather the economy itself. Less money, less travel (by air).
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Old 4th Nov 2001, 18:32
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What you'll find, sir, is that major airline pilots learned a long time ago that they don't get what they deserve - they get what they negotiate. I'll wager you use that philosophy youself in running a business.

Now when times get tough things can be renegotiated. Or in Delta's case, they invoke "force majeure" to claim inability to comply with the contract. The pilots are fighting this, of course - you telling me you wouldn't? Pay cuts will come either way, it just takes some bluster on both sides. This is business - the "Delta Family" perished at the hands of Allen in the early nineties.

Amd a word about customer service: don't let the neat commercials playing during the world series, or the sugary PA announcements of the captains fool you - pilots are most certainly NOT in the service business. They are in the SAFETY business. They are proud, arrogant, and full of themselves - and believe it or not, some dark nights you need all that ego, and more. Imagine holding up 400 people on an intercontinental flight because you don't like the forecast, or something in the paperwork doesn't look right. You don't expect a "customer-oriented" attitude of your surgeon, your policeman, or your lawyer - best not to look for it from your cockpit, either.
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Old 4th Nov 2001, 19:05
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Did anybody realise that over 11000 others had at DAL will have to leave. Haven`t seen any mentioning of sympathy for them.
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 01:50
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I am sorry to harp on but there will have to be an air of realism here - particularly from pilots and cabin crew. My heart goes out to all those pilots and others who have lost their jobs in the industry, and indeed to the many others who are about to. I am a simple soul, however, and see businesses like my own finances. The bottom line is this - MONEY IN MUST EXCEED MONEY OUT! If your wages prevent your business from achieving this then you must lower them. It really is that simple. This is not some political statement - just plain common sense.

I am an ordinary pilot and am not in management and have no axe to grind. I look in utter astonishment at what some of my colleagues, spurred on by head-in-the-sand union greed, are demanding from their employers at a time like this. It is like people rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Just wake up people - you are about to price yourselves out of your liveliehoods! How much clearer can I say it? It really is that simple.

[ 04 November 2001: Message edited by: Norman Stanley Fletcher ]
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 02:34
  #29 (permalink)  
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I think we're in bigger trouble than most realize...fuel is cheap, cheap, cheap now–what's going to happen if fuel prices spike because of all this international turmoil? When the war drums are being beaten, a rise in commodity prices often follows.

It looks to me like 411A was one of the only folks who had a good feeling for the fundamental economic situation faced by the industry; even without the terrorism stuff the economy was slowing and the airlines were facing a "cyclical" downturn that they weren't nimble enough to successfully confront. I'm not talking about everyone's perpetual contention over pilot salaries and union stuff, I'm just talking about the bigger, basic economic picture.

Meanwhile, we'll have to see pissheads like FFPax aiming his frustrations at us by gloating at our collective woes. FFPax is obviously one of those losers who doesn't have the "right stuff" to become a pilot, and has been seething in envy and stewing in the ennui of his worthless little life for decades. His badge of courage, "small business owner," means, in his context, "miserable, grubby little merchant." Don't let this delicate little cupcake of a man get under your skin...while he frustrates himself leering at the Flight Attendants, we're the ones who enjoy their company on the RON's.
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 05:15
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Here's the real story. I talked to a Delta 767 Capt two days ago--Fri-Night---who said he was a "Management Pilot" who had just
had a meeting with the Delta VP of Flt Ops.
He said The big wigs over at the Delta
headquarters really don't know "exactly"
what will happen. He said things are changing daily. He went on to say the speech by Leo Mullin was largely for the "investors". According to this Capt
three major points will happen in the near future-- 1: a displacement bid on Nov 10-12
2: On Feb 1st management will decide if they need to furlough additional pilots---if they need to-- 100-150 could be furloughed----and he did not say whether that was 150 a month or just 150 on Feb 1st 3: The next important date will be June 1st----I guess they make their schedules 3 or so months in advance. He said all 1700 COULD be furloughed , but it would be unlikely that
it would go that deep. Delta has 400 or so retirements in 2002. If all 1700 were furloughed--at a rate of 100 a month-- it would take until the end of next year. Since it was said that it is uneconomical to furlough a pilot for less than 1 year----and assuming Delta recalled pilots at a rate of 100 a month----Delta would have it's pilots back by 2005. Give me a break!!! Airlines can't think forward more than 2 weeks in advance---let alone from now to 2005!

Guvnor----you sound like someone who is a whee bit jealous! Keep playing the Lotto and you too might get a boost in salary. The Delta pilots have something you maybe have never heard of: a "Contract"---which was agreed upon by Management---who declared after signing it--"We now have the highest
paid pilots in the industry--" They were happy when the pilots agreed to that contract. Believe it!

FFPAX----Let me guess, you aren't a pilot.
Hmmm----do you have any say in your pay?
Do you get bonuses? Or do you accept anything your employer offers you? IF you had a chance to up your pay and maybe increase your lifestyle and "hit the jackpot"
would you try? Ofcourse you would! Especially if you knew your company could afford it. Times are bad now, and Delta MNGMT and pilots haven't discussed any change in pay---unlikely lower $ per hour---just lowering of cap hours would do it.
FFPAX-----get off your high horse.

MikeM727---you are right on. Delta ALPA
hopefully would win the arbitration--they say
they have the numbers and the No Furlough Clause which states "Even under a bad economy--no Furloughs"--But even if they don't win---atleast there will be a better understanding of "Force Mejeur"---how long it would last etc....

Groupwatcher----Most of those 11,000 who have a 1 year leave can be called back within 2 weeks notice. Hmmmmmmm

We'll see what happens. There was a Wall Street Journal article 2 weeks ago that said Delta might be in the position to cherry pick another airline. (with stocks so low now) Let's hope everything recovers soon.

God Bless! Donkey Duke
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 06:31
  #31 (permalink)  
 
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Donkey Duke and "Gang": Interesting dialogue. Let's hear those laymen complaints about contracted (which means signed by both parties) industry-level, or 20% less, pilot pay and benefits immediately after landing at 130+ miles per hour on a slippery runway in gusty crosswinds-and stopping within the runway edges, following a rough instrument approach in snowy conditions or between thunderstorms...with 10,000 lbs of Jet A/JP-5 kerosene sloshing in wings with the tips only four feet above the blurring concrete, at the end of a 12-hour (no rest) duty day. Quite simple. Never mind having a red "master warning" light illuminate on the same final approach or during the next gusty, turbulent takeoff at over 100 knots.

Right, Mr/Mrs Mahogany Desk Jockey (highly qualified in aviation as an F-14 ace at the home computer-four 'Backfire bombers' destroyed with an 'ok 3-wire' carrier landing after the first approach!): no sweat.

If a surgeon makes a tragic mistake, it only injures/kills one person at a time. Maybe our US medical groups should suddenly recruit only surgeons from overseas who will work for one-third the going rates, or less. Let's just put the beancounters completely in charge of your healthcare and pharmaceutical decisions , much more than they are now.
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 08:21
  #32 (permalink)  
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Ignition...

Well put. Too bad this forum is now a venue of attempted antagonism by some frustrated, Prozac-sucking office dweebs who are leading lives of not-so-quiet desperation. These wretched clerks just want to get a reaction out of professional pilots, since they feel flattered that we'd give them any attention at all. Then they'll slink back to their cubicles, look at the photos on their desks of their fat and ugly wives, and resume their boring, soulless, and stale toil. Sounds like hell to me, dude. Not even the hounds of hell could drag us to that fate.
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 09:28
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Norman Stanley Fletcher wrote:
The bottom line is this - MONEY IN MUST EXCEED MONEY OUT! If your wages prevent your business from achieving this then you must lower them.
Can you please quote ONE SINGLE member of Delta managment who has stated the need to lower pilot salaries? Delta has not asked the pilots to lower our pay. Managment and the pilot group came to a mutual agreement (contract) on our compensation that was touted as a win-win scenario.

I am an ordinary pilot and am not in management and have no axe to grind. I look in utter astonishment at what some of my colleagues, spurred on by head-in-the-sand union greed...
First, there is no way in hell that you're an airline pilot. Second, since when is barely keeping up with inflation defined as "greed"?

...are demanding from their employers at a time like this. Just wake up people - you are about to price yourselves out of your liveliehoods!
Where are you getting this BS? We are not seeking raises! We have a contract!

Let me explain something to you anti-union morons. The pilot group has much more of a vested interest in the long-term success of the company than any member of management. We have 30-year careers to think about. Management types come and go with their golden parachutes, often leaving companies in ruin. The Delta pilot group will ensure our share of the pie, but will never do something to kill our company. We are not suicidal.
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 10:11
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MikeM727 is correct. The Delta pilots would never try to ruin their own company. Management signed the contract and proclaimed
victory themselves. As the Chairman Leo
Mullin said, "A contract is a contract." Too
bad the No Furlough clause in that contract
is supposedly Null in void. Whatever! The load factors are gradually increasing. And yes, the yields are lower, but the higher the loads over a sustained period of time means eventually fare increase. Delta has
the time and the money----$2.8 Billion or so,
and it will survive. God Bless! Donkey Duke
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 18:08
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I'm SLF with a few thousand miles shy of DAL's Million Miles baggage tag.

First- what people earn is their own damn business- between themselves and their employer. Period. If one of my competitors came to my boss and said , "OldAg makes $20,000 too much.." I'd drag out back and pound him.

If they "put themselves out of business" because of "greed" - then they have no one to complain to. Period.

Pilots make good money- they work hard- they have a lot of responsiblity. They can't move for more money in a free market fashion. What they negotiate (for better or worse-right or wrong) belongs to them.

Maybe a strategy might be I'll make as much as I can today because I might not be here tomorrow.

In the great sport of capitalism- companies either make it or don't- and how they do it is their business.
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 21:10
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Thanks Dad....
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 21:45
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All of you pilot want to be doomsayers that think that pilot salaries are going to force their employers to file for chapter 11 don't know anything about the history of this business. I think Mikem727 said it best and I will add a few points it.
1. When APA signed the infamous B scale contract with AA in 1983 the union bought into the doom and gloom of Bob Crandell and signed one of the most damaging contracts in history. AA pilots were flying at 40% below their counterparts at Delta and United. Did AA make more money because their pilot costs were that much lower? Did they expand that much more? Certainly not! All it did was force the pilots of UAL to strike in order not to prostitute themselfs in the same way. They did sign a limited B scale but not nerely as deep as AA and their airline did fine.
2.In the early nineties NWA management took the company private and saddled the company up with so much debt it nearly failed. The pilots agreed to concessions. They were forced to strike in 98 to get back to industry standards even though the airline had made promises to them regarding snapbacks. NWA is doing fine.
3. SWA is often quoted as being a low cost competitor even though their pilot salaries are quite respectable. They are behind after the DAl contract but you can bet that their salaries will rise substantially in their next contract and it will have nothing to do with SWA's future viability.

Here we are again. Times are bad. People are bringing up the same old argument regarding labor costs. If any of us agree to concessions it will not make the slightest bit of difference as to the future viabilty of our airlines, but it will take years to erase. It took APA 20 YEARS to get rid of B scale. I would caution ALPA at both UAL and DAL to tread very carefully before they agree to any concessions. I know that Delta and AA havn't aked for any yet but I think UAL management has.

Keep the faith.
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Old 5th Nov 2001, 22:39
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Huck,

You're welcome.

BTW I'm probably old enough to be your son.
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Old 6th Nov 2001, 15:31
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Thank you MikeM727 and others for your comments. First of all, I will have to disappoint you - I am an airline pilot (A320/1) and have no part whatsoever in Airline management.

Let me explain something to you anti-union morons. The pilot group has much more of a vested interest in the long-term success of the company than any member of management. We have 30-year careers to think about.
We are agreed then as we all claim we want to look after our future careers. I come back, however, to my original statement that money-in must exceed money-out in order to ensure long-term success. That is not the case in most US majors, particularly Delta. Someone has pointed out that the management was saying what a good deal had been achieved in the last pay round. They could hardly say anything else, but external analysts have all said it was over-generous. Frankly, though, that is irrelevant if the money is there to pay for it. Good luck to you if you have found a golden goose laying golden eggs. The problem is that the goose is having a heart attack!

The Delta pilot group will ensure our share of the pie, but will never do something to kill our company. We are not suicidal.
The pie does not exist - you are losing money hand over fist, and you have to recognise it. Sadly, I believe you are suicidal because you have forced a deal that is unsupportable. You are paid too much because your business cannot pay your wages. That is a straight statement of fact. It may be that there are many others including your management who also must cut their salaries, but if you do not act soon you will be finished.

I started life at the bottom as a bus driver (no, not an Airbus - a double decker bus) and was forced to join what was then the biggest union in the UK (TGWU) and I saw the unions at first hand. To you guys in the States, these were the days when unions ruled the country and were almost impossible to challenge. I was very pro-union then (and to an extent still am, subject to the common sense requirement that I have argued here). I saw union leaders go and demand all sorts of things, and have all kinds of restrictive work practices. For example a bus driver could not change a bulb in the bus, and the bus would be taken out of service for a day with all the lost revenue that would entail, until an electrician could be found. - only certain people could do certain things. Then surprise, surprise -one day the bus depot closed and all the drivers were unemployed because the revenue from the fare-paying public would not support the wages paid to the staff. It was a genunie surprise to everyone there, and none more so than the union leaders. They talked of management conspiricies etc, etc but the bottom line was the money was not there to pay the wages.

So, guys, where does that lead to? It is very simple - your companies are essentially insolvent. Your passengers are not providing enough revenue to pay your wages. Added to that you have restrictive practices (scope clauses etc. which, although well-meaning, limit the freedom of the company to operate the best business it can. There can only be one end to this - bankruptcy.

The US is more advanced than the UK in many areas, but this is one where we have been there before you. (I am a big fan of the USA by the way). We had our years of union madness and we are way past it now. Unions play a vital part in protecting the workforce from the worst excesses of management, but they must have a degree of wisdom. If anything we have gone too far back to the days of management power at employee expense, but the situation in US airlines is very unhealthy. The unions have not acted wisely on your behalf and need to get real.

I realise this is deeply offensive to many of you, and particularly to my colleagues in the States, and no doubt a tirade of abuse will appear. But the proof of the pudding is in the eating. If you do not act now to assist in making your companies solvent then you will have no jobs. It is just that simple.
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Old 6th Nov 2001, 17:54
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Norman Stanley Fletcher!

BRAVO!!!!

Exactly how I see the things at Delta. The DL management didn't have any choice than to approve the contract. I strike would have been a disaster. Projections showed a better future and constant growth in pax numbers. But then everything changed.

I like the airline of my choice and would hate to see it die.
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