Don Hudson

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Everything posted by Don Hudson

  1. LTV; (Ling Temco Vought?) I posted the following on another forum and choose to use it in response to the story you've linked. I try to keep these kinds of discussions as free from "ideology" as possible, and instead examine trends and highlights. "What" happened is more important than "Why", although they are related. Even the "interpretive glasses" we put on can be "tinted"!, so caution is necessary! If we examine history, and not concentrate on the past ten years or so, the trend of forces marshalled against labour are easily traced, consistent, well-financed and by the numbers, successful in terms of reducing wages and benefits for employees. If you look on Amazon for a book called, "Taking the Risk Out of Democracy" by Alex Carey, you'll discover a text which examines (as no other does) the trends in labour versus business. The propaganda against labour began in earnest in the early 20's. Successful techniques for winning the hearts of the public as allies against "big labour" are discussed. Do a Google on "Edward Bernays" for example, who single-handedly created modern advertising...the same techniques which were used to fight labour. The book, Nickel and Dimed, by Barbara Eherenreich is another good one, discussing the very points made in this story, (and its not a Star story...I've heard the same StatsCan info here in Vancouver). Reducing "outlay" (wages) on "liabilities" (employees) has been the trend for some 30 years now. While the public certainly doesn't think so (the result of an effective, long-term propaganda campaign), unions have furthered the well-being of ordinary employees demonstrably. At the same time, while they may be the scapegoats, examples of businesses going bankrupt because of incessant excessive employee demands are rare. Take a look at films which deal with labour and see how unions are portrayed. We all remember, "On the Waterfront". Very few films extol the virtues of unions, even Norma Rae. This isn't an "organized" campaign against workers, but more of an attitude shared within a culture, which is in everyone's consciousness, much like sports, the stock market, the government etc. The language (metaphors) which are used to discuss labour are different (and pejorative) when compared to the metaphors of business. In fact, education (teachers, really) right now is (are) having an awful time keeping the language of business out of the classroom. Terms like "accountability", (well sure, isn't that a good thing?!), "end-product" or "output" etc. The language sneeks by our awareness and no flags go up. The attack on labour is now almost a century old, but labour has had its days. After WW II with so much productivity available and so many people [now] free to buy yet with little money to do so, industry made very good deals with unions as men returned from the war effort. Unions made very significant gains from about 1950 onwards, until about 1970. During the early '70's, those gains made by unions came under strong attack as the profit motive, reflected in the stock market, began to take on a life of its own. Soon, management was having to sustain spectacular double-digit improvements in company stock. The term, 'neoliberal' has been widely used to describe many things, but in terms of how governments and business treat ordinary people, perhaps the following might be a clarifying statement. When one views social or cultural trends in our society with some of the following understandings, seemingly disparate issues such as corporate governance and the fight against unions, the headlong rush to PPP's (private-public-partnerships) and the dismantling of societal infrastructures, (a clear case in point is the Ontario government's unilateral dismissal of the public health people who would have been able to control the SARS issue...there was no such body in place, and this was done right during the Walkerton inquiry!), and the increasingly unilateral dismantling of agreed-upon contracts, all come into clearer, relational focus, don't they?: "Neo-liberalism" is a set of economic policies that have become widespread during the last 25 years or so. Although the word is rarely heard in the United States, you can clearly see the effects of neo-liberalism here as the rich grow richer and the poor grow poorer." The main points of neo-liberalism include: 1) THE RULE OF THE MARKET. Liberating "free" enterprise or private enterprise from any bonds imposed by the government (the state) no matter how much social damage this causes. Greater openness to international trade and investment, as in NAFTA. Reduce wages by de-unionizing workers and eliminating workers' rights that had been won over many years of struggle. No more price controls. All in all, total freedom of movement for capital, goods and services. To convince us this is good for us, they say "an unregulated market is the best way to increase economic growth, which will ultimately benefit everyone." It's like Reagan's "supply-side" and "trickle-down" economics -- but somehow the wealth didn't trickle down very much. 2) CUTTING PUBLIC EXPENDITURE FOR SOCIAL SERVICES in areas like education and health care. REDUCING THE SAFETY-NET FOR THE POOR, and even maintenance of roads, bridges, water supply -- again in the name of reducing government's role. Of course, they don't oppose government subsidies and tax benefits for business. 3) DEREGULATION Reduce government regulation of everything that could diminish profits, including protecting the environment and safety on the job. 4) PRIVATIZATION Sell state-owned enterprises, goods and services to private investors. This includes banks, key industries, railroads, toll highways, electricity, schools, hospitals and even fresh water. Although usually done in the name of greater efficiency, which is often needed, privatization has mainly had the effect of concentrating wealth even more in a few hands and making the public pay even more for its needs. 5) ELIMINATING THE CONCEPT OF "THE PUBLIC GOOD" or "COMMUNITY" and replacing it with "individual responsibility." Pressuring the poorest people in a society to find solutions to their lack of health care, education and social security all by themselves -- then blaming them, if they fail, as "lazy." See something familiar in the above? Two trends: ordinary people don't count, and the few are getting richer. Check out the latest StatsCan figures...those very words made the news yesterday and today. There are strong reasons why this is so, and it began 30 years ago. Those who know my thoughts on this will also appreciate the notion of the 3-legged stool and how one leg cannot be longer than the other, longer being more powerful. Owners, managers and workers rewards and responsibilities all need to be in balance. Very difficult, if not impossible, but an ideal is a goal or a yardstick, not an achievment. To be sure as well, some unions and some times have far too much power. Sometimes it gets personal as it did at Eastern Airlines between Borman/Lorenzo and Charlie Bryant. But the image of the "goon" union is a Hollywood creation (among others...) and has little relationship to the way most unions work. Just my opinion, but if anyone wants the bibliography... Don Hudson
  2. Hello Beth...remember you from past posts. donandfran_hudson@telus.net Don
  3. Hello Wizard; Re "Will a lot of pilots be on reserve with 40 aircraft parked and 17% less flying that's a lot of money sitting at home can AC let that happen?" It is no longer up to AC. It is in the hands of Judge Winkler and the CCAA Monitor. "I would think a few would get laid-off." The ACPA LOUs provide enormous flexibility for the company to schedule their crews. LOU52 was to prevent the layoff of 171 pilots and so far, expires June 30th. The question that needs to be asked, (and I am sure it will by the Monitor), is, with flexibility to fly crews as high as 85 hours and 90 hours voluntarily, how far can blocks be reduced under shrink-flex before the "cross-over" point is reached and reduced hours is no longer viable? Work-sharing is now out of our hands. It is an exceptionally unpleasant consideration, but must be addressed face on. We are in uncharted territory. Don
  4. donandfran_hudson@telus.net Mom had a terrific day...cooked and cleaned all day for her! Send us a note! Donald
  5. Boomer; Thank you. Agree...its partly image, partly truth. The role of whipping boy is difficult to get rid of in a small community where others are perceived to be "struggling against all odds and against the Juggernaut", (far from the truth, but good copy). Our task is to make our customers feel as though they were smart in spending their money at Air Canada. Its a thousand tiny acts of consideration and thought. Can't be done 100% of the time as we all know. Also though, we need a little back-up from the media, who sell papers on negative stories about AC. While they won't print positive stuff, at least they can get off our backs as we change, (and change we will I think, depending upon how we view this filing). Also, Air Canada needs to broaden its gaze and actually leave Quebec and Ontario for a bit and acknowledge the west. I'll leave that little steamer right there. Cheers, BP, Don
  6. Hello Mitch; No flame from here...we have to consider all ideas and examine them on their merit and bring what history we can to bear on the relative wisdom of one course of action or another. On individual/group wage "give-backs" not negotiated/requested by a union leadership: First, and above all, the one aspect which must remain to guide everyone in this process is discipline and rationality. A "voluntary" roll-back would be the antithesis of such goals. Hypothetically however, the first requirement for any such roll-back would be "how", and "how much". In any mature, rational negotiating process, such change without information and the commitment which follows on decisions based upon that information, is likely to disadvantage one group or the other. We don't want, and likely the company doesn't either, to roll wages/benefits back so harshly that little is left of the original contract. Nor do we want to place the greater good in jeopardy by not coming to the table with realistic understandings. Its about balance. Second and following very closely on the above, if the company is in such "dire" need of help that "immediate" assistance is required, and one's own union leadership appears to be balking, I think, given the observations of the CCAA process to date and the short history we have witnessed so far and given the words of Justice Farley on Friday, I strongly suspect the membership would not have a chance to "give voluntarily" before Justice Winkler acted unilaterally. We need to keep in mind that there were strong signals in Justice Farley's actions last week which need to be "read" by all leaderships, management and union alike. As well, embedded in those signals is a statement of rationality. Maintaining a disciplined course of action where at least the approach is seen by all concerned parties to be predictable, (we know events and outcomes are not), the success of the filing is increased. Third, the understanding that such a rational process is in place, tends to keep the irrational (emotions) in check. We cannot now run in the dark, because we only have a penlight and there are a lot of rocks in our way. There has never been a greater need for trust and belief in those who are doing the work, including those who are in charge of this process. This likely doesn't help much Mitch, but perhaps it puts a perspective on things. One way or another, your leadership will be at the table, but even though we're miles away now from "pattern bargaining" and into a roll-back mode, it takes time to learn how to do it appropriately. I think Justice Winkler is there to "help" the process along. We'll see at the end of the day today. Don
  7. Barney; First, the questions you've asked are on everyone's mind, but they're impossible to answer meaningfully. However, if you really want to face that question seriously and without illusions, take a look at some of the forces at play and the figures publicly available: 1. Average # of passengers boarded each day this week - about 39,000. This time three years ago, AC was boarding around 55,000 and CAI probably another 28,000 or so. Temporary certainly, but how temporary? Will this "teach" passengers that they don't have to travel? 2. Hong Kong, once the money-maker for AC at two full flights per day (284 psgrs on the 340) seven days a week now carrying 90+/- psgrs each way on one flight/day. 3. ACPA flexibility has allowed the company to schedule its crews down to 65-67hrs from a high of 95 hrs in 2000. But with such contractual flexibility to go to 90-95hrs, even given simultaneous wage reductions, how long will it be before the Monitor (or the Justices) forces AC to use crews to maximize the productivity already available in the collective agreement, (or even further) thereby reducing need? How far can hours be reduced before the "cross-over", including the significant down-then-up training costs which you mention. I do not know!, but this is a factor which ought to be considered in the questions you ask. 4. We have the Kellar issue "in process" (to use an Airbus term) as well, and the requirement to hold a bid, soon, I think, (won't happen, but if equipment goes, a bid is necessary). How much will the Monitor (or Justice Farley or Justice Winkler?) involve himself in this specific issue? Apropos this, these gentleman know how a contract historically comes about...by solving hundreds of issues as they arise between management and labour. Would they cancel it unilaterally and advocate an entirely new approach, or would they keep certain aspects of the present agreement, which really would be to both sides' advantage? Who knows. These are some of the thoughts I have had (more times than not and like everyone else, at 2AM or so), since April 1rst. Don
  8. IFG; Re "did you guys in Lotusland hear about our "Rae Days" back when?" Absolutely we did...we watched Rae with a lot of interest. He was the one who said to a reporter that, although slightly left wing, , he resented the impression that he was born with a silver spoon in his mouth, and what's more, the upstairs maid, cook and nannies also resented it. dh
  9. Duke; I get the very strong sense that AC will have changed radically by the time a year has gone by. The result may worth the price of admission... One sense will be that aspect of community and common cause which, through forces largely beyond our control, have prevented us all from aiming our gaze outwards instead of in. Don
  10. Mr Frustrated; Re "Wages are a very small part of the overall cost equation but takes the most focus as it appears the easiest solution." With this, I agree. In direct costs (no benefits/pensions/sick days etc added in), on a full A340 with 284 passengers, each passenger will pay about $28CAD for their flight crew on a 13hr flight to Hong Kong, and perhaps $30 if there's a fourth. That's about the same as the security fee and the Airport Improvement Fee combined. Think about that for a moment. On domestic flights, the amount is smaller. On corporate culture... I have seen dagger's opinions that it doesn't matter. I believe there is something more to the opinion because frankly the depth of the opinions this member offers is out of sync with the shallow view that people's sense of community and well-being don't matter to a business. So I suspend judgement on that. One thing I do believe: This CCAA filing will unite Air Canada's employees like the proverbial hanging in the morning. There's nothing like a common cause... I have seen many, many comments expressing how "poorly" Air Canada employees treat their customers. However, I have yet to actually hear enough stories to make that a truism. It seems to me just another band-wagon approach, begun by those who don't fly much or who have an interest in washing our face with snow. The experiences I have had and have witnessed on every, (not just some) AC flight I have been on, has been uniformly excellent, and concerned with the customer. No one from any other airline will be able to claim a 100% passenger satisfaction rate either. I am sure our competitors have their share of "problems". They just don't make good reading, especially in the present environment... Fire the "old and slow" employees? Pretty simple-minded pedantic approach, making it easy to brush off such a "suggestion". Good, solid and dedicated work comes from all levels...experienced and old, well-trained and young...the spectrum is very wide. Even from your own experience, you must admit that there are duffers and hard-workers at all levels. In your world, who would you get rid of, how, and why? Just asking. Don
  11. Hello Greg; Lovely day on the coast... Re "This then all fits with what you have said in your post, and also seems to be consistent with the actions that Judge Farley has taken, particularly in regard to his appointing of Judge Winkler." Yes, I think so. That is the sense I have of it. I believe for those with the antennae, the signals are very strong indeed. "What I'm trying to sort out in my own mind is this. It appears to me that the courts are taking a very activist position in all of the proceedings and they are not going to allow anyone to put AC into liquidation. Would you agree with that Don?" As per the above observation, yes, I would agree. In fact, Farley, in his direction to Winkler made succinct observations regarding the "social" factor of an AC "failure". That means to me, that a very wide view is being taken on this filing. At the same time, and I believe you would agree, I think that such a determination of the filing's outcome (that AC will survive) should not be relied upon to "extract" the maximum from the process. We must rely upon those who's senses are very finely tuned by experience and in-depth knowledge. In our own case, I believe we have those people in place. The reason I think we collectively must now act is that it is plain that all other stakeholders are appearing at the table and not just the employees. While we cannot hope for complete fairness at all times or in all quarters and appropriate sunshine on the entire process, there is enough there that the employees should act accordingly. Don
  12. Hello Phil; Always good to see your thoughts. If recent jurisprudence indicates that collective agreements have the same level of legal authority and protection as business contracts, (in other words, if a company breaks a collective agreement, its breaking the law and can be prosecuted), then I think that is a good thing. In BC however, we are not as enlightened, and the Liberals are still doing as they wish....A rabbit trail I will pursue here no further. Re "This is a more than strong enough incentive in my book." Agreed. Completely... Don
  13. Greg; I strongly suspect the judge has the power to unilaterally "create" an agreement. Labour law does not consider Collective Agreements "sacrosanct" in the same sense that a business contract is. We only need to take a look at our own Liberals here in BC and their unilateral cancellation of the BC Nurses Union contract last year to know that this is possible. In Negots 2000, Federal Minister Bradshaw indicated to us during our work with Mr Outhouse that it would be in our best interests to settle. While we may value the results in different ways, there was little doubt that an "agreement" was on its way. I suggest that this is even more the case today for union representatives which do not come to the table. Don
  14. Hello John; Great day on the west coast, eh? Re " ... what are your thoughts as to moving the scope line?" They've changed over the years and with circumstances. "Scope" after all, is your issue as well with the 3rd tier carriers and its not a simple answer regardless of which part of AC one flies for. On scope, really, there's no percentage in setting up a stationary target from an old ACPA guy, simply so others can shoot at will. I suppose I don't mind having my thoughts shot at, but that specific exercise is pointless and I don't have the time, nor do I want to engage in the scope debate. Opinions on the matter are essentially irrelevant anyway, as we're all along for this ride, with the wheelhouse locked and largely inaccessible except for the "opportunities" to give on command. Who knows what will be on the table or what our work will look like when this is over. We both know that a great deal is going on in the background. One thing I know would be a factor in any such discussion is our mutual histories. I have close friends who thought that one seniority list was the only way to go even before Picher. We know of other opinions only too well. We should know a lot more however, by August or so. And yes, when I refer to "Air Canada employees", of course I include Jazz. And Zip etc. We collectively have a very strong interest here. It behooves every one of us to at least consider those two goals. Off to kill some weeds again... Don
  15. (Posted as a new topic to bring the thread forward) JakeYYZ; Don't disagree with a thing you've written in your message to Mitch, especially about CCAA not being an accident, (May 11). Re "A gentlemen’s agreement not to poach one another’s business, is not what free enterprise and competition are all about." ... and competition for all. All except for the "former" Air Canada. This industry has never been fully de-regulated. Its free market for only a few. If AC had been free of government interference, government policies and government/ministerial politics like other major companies in Canada like Bombardier*, GE, Thompson etc etc, we might have had a chance to fix whatever was specifically broken with our model, (to use a hackneyed phrase). But part of what was "broken" in the past model was the constant and persistant invigilation by Minister after Minister after Minister, done with a level of ignorance and blunt stupidity bordering on negligence or at least dereliction. If its to be free market "de-regulation", let's have at it. But its been special rules for Air Canada since 1988. The ACPPA needs to be repealed and AC needs to be set free in the same manner as all other real private enterprise businesses. Rovinescu has characterized it himself: this is the true separation point...the true severing from the real Mom Corp - the Canadian Government, the moment beyond which AC truly becomes its own company. Air Canada must have the freedom to compete in the marketplace, unfettered by the worn-out apron strings of Ministerial whims, backroom politics and intransigent bureacracies. If the new, leaner AC that emerges from this process will be allowed to compete under fair (read "unfettered" ) rules that are the same for everyone, then I hold out hope for the draconian measures which are about to unfold for all of us, managers and line employees alike. If its going to be the same, broken model where government "policy", (read "severe competitive restrictions" ) applies to Air Canada only, and we have to stick to the old broken-model rules that hobble Air Canada only, (which in the end, really means serving government policy through employee job loss and wage reductions), then we'll be back here again starting over, only with wages and benefits somewhere between 25 and 40% lower. While I don't know the players (Texas Partners/GE Capital) and thus I remain aloof as far as cheering too loudly about their participation, I was cheering very loudly when Collenette and Co. were shut out of "helping" , and instead AC sought private funding and investment. While we employees are going to arrive at an agreement sooner or later, much of the future success of these very significant roll-backs will be under a cloud until the Canadian government simply butts out of our private business and lets us compete under true free-market rules. After offering the best service we can for our customers, our singular goal for Air Canada employees should be to wipe the smirk off of Clive Beddoe's face, just like his goal is to embarrass us and wash our face in snow every chance he gets. That's what its all about. (nothing personal here Wj'ers...on the flight safety level, we all talk...). Don *Maybe with the welfare granted Bombardier in terms of billions in taxpayer grants, loans, forgiven debts, and subsidies to buyers of Bombardier's products in other countries this may be a poor example...
  16. (Posted as a new topic to bring the thread forward) JakeYYZ; Don't disagree with a thing you've written in your message to Mitch, especially about CCAA not being an accident, (May 11). Re "A gentlemen’s agreement not to poach one another’s business, is not what free enterprise and competition are all about." ... and competition for all. All except for the "former" Air Canada. This industry has never been fully de-regulated. Its free market for only a few. If AC had been free of government interference, government policies and government/ministerial politics like other major companies in Canada like Bombardier*, GE, Thompson etc etc, we might have had a chance to fix whatever was specifically broken with our model, (to use a hackneyed phrase). But part of what was "broken" in the past model was the constant and persistant invigilation by Minister after Minister after Minister, done with a level of ignorance and blunt stupidity bordering on negligence or at least dereliction. If its to be free market "de-regulation", let's have at it. But its been special rules for Air Canada since 1988. The ACPPA needs to be repealed and AC needs to be set free in the same manner as all other real private enterprise businesses. Rovinescu has characterized it himself: this is the true separation point...the true severing from the real Mom Corp - the Canadian Government, the moment beyond which AC truly becomes its own company. Air Canada must have the freedom to compete in the marketplace, unfettered by the worn-out apron strings of Ministerial whims, backroom politics and instransigent bureacracies. If the new, leaner AC that emerges from this process will be allowed to compete under fair (read "unfettered" ) rules that are the same for everyone, then I hold out hope for the draconian measures which are about to unfold for all of us, managers and line employees alike. If its going to be the same, broken model where government "policy", (read "severe competitive restrictions" ) applies to Air Canada only, and we have to stick to the old broken-model rules that hobble Air Canada only, (which in the end, really means serving government policy through employee job loss and wage reductions), then we'll be back here again starting over, only with wages and benefits somewhere between 25 and 40% lower. While I don't know the players (Texas Partners/GE Capital) and thus I remain aloof as far as cheering too loudly about their participation, I was cheering very loudly when Collenette and Co. were shut out of "helping" , and instead AC sought private funding and investment. While we employees are going to arrive at an agreement sooner or later, much of the future success of these very significant roll-backs will be under a cloud until the Canadian government simply butts out of our private business and lets us compete under true free-market rules. After offering the best service we can for our customers, our singular goal for Air Canada employees should be to wipe the smirk off of Clive Beddoe's face, just like his goal is to embarrass us and wash our face in snow every chance he gets. That's what its all about. (nothing personal here Wj'ers...on the flight safety level, we all talk...). Don *Maybe with the welfare granted Bombardier in terms of billions in taxpayer grants, loans, forgiven debts, and subsidies to buyers of Bombardier's products in other countries this may be a poor example...
  17. (Posted as a new topic to bring the thread forward) JakeYYZ; Don't disagree with a thing you've written in your message to Mitch, especially about CCAA not being an accident, (May 11). Re "A gentlemen’s agreement not to poach one another’s business, is not what free enterprise and competition are all about." ... and competition for all. All except for the "former" Air Canada. This industry has never been fully de-regulated. Its free market for only a few. If AC had been free of government interference, government policies and government/ministerial politics like other major companies in Canada like Bombardier*, GE, Thompson etc etc, we might have had a chance to fix whatever was specifically broken with our model, (to use a hackneyed phrase). But part of what was "broken" in the past model was the constant and persistant invigilation by Minister after Minister after Minister, done with a level of ignorance and blunt stupidity bordering on negligence or at least dereliction. If its to be free market "de-regulation", let's have at it. But its been special rules for Air Canada since 1988. The ACPPA needs to be repealed and AC needs to be set free in the same manner as all other real private enterprise businesses. Rovinescu has characterized it himself: this is the true separation point...the true severing from the real Mom Corp - the Canadian Government, the moment beyond which AC truly becomes its own company. Air Canada must have the freedom to compete in the marketplace, unfettered by the worn-out apron strings of Ministerial whims, backroom politics and instransigent bureacracies. If the new, leaner AC that emerges from this process will be allowed to compete under fair (read "unfettered") rules that are the same for everyone, then I hold out hope for the draconian measures which are about to unfold for all of us, managers and line employees alike. If its going to be the same, broken model where government "policy", (read "severe competitive restrictions") applies to Air Canada only, and we have to stick to the old broken-model rules that hobble Air Canada only, (which in the end, really means serving government policy through employee job loss and wage reductions), then we'll be back here again starting over, only with wages and benefits somewhere between 25 and 40% lower. While I don't know the players (Texas Partners/GE Capital) and thus I remain aloof as far as cheering too loudly about their participation, I was cheering very loudly when Collenette and Co. were shut out of "helping" , and instead AC sought private funding and investment. While we employees are going to arrive at an agreement sooner or later, much of the future success of these very significant roll-backs will be under a cloud until the Canadian government simply butts out of our private business and lets us compete under true free-market rules. After offering the best service we can for our customers, our singular goal for Air Canada employees should be to wipe the smirk off of Clive Beddoe's face, just like his goal is to embarrass us and wash our face in snow every chance he gets. That's what its all about. (nothing personal here Wj'ers...on the flight safety level, we all talk...). Don *Maybe with the welfare granted Bombardier in terms of billions in taxpayer grants, loans, forgiven debts, and subsidies to buyers of Bombardier's products in other countries this may be a poor example...
  18. (Posted as a new topic to bring the thread forward) JakeYYZ; Don't disagree with a thing you've written in your message to Mitch, especially about CCAA not being an accident, (May 11). Re "A gentlemen’s agreement not to poach one another’s business, is not what free enterprise and competition are all about." All except for the "former" Air Canada. This industry has never been fully de-regulated. Its free market for only a few. If AC had been free of government interference, government policies and government/ministerial politics like other major companies in Canada like Bombardier*, GE, Thompson etc etc, we might have had a chance to fix whatever was specifically broken with our model, (to use a hackneyed phrase). But part of what was "broken" in the past model was the constant and persistant invigilation by Minister after Minister after Minister, done with a level of ignorance and blunt stupidity bordering on negligence or at least dereliction. If its to be free market "de-regulation", let's have at it. But its been special rules for Air Canada since 1988. The ACPPA needs to be repealed and AC needs to be set free in the same manner as all other real private enterprise businesses. Rovinescu has characterized it himself: this is the true separation point...the true severing from the real Mom Corp - the Canadian Government, the moment beyond which AC truly becomes its own company, to compete in the marketplace, unfettered by the worn-out apron strings of Ministerial whims, backroom politics and instransigent bureacracies. If the new, leaner AC that emerges from this process will be allowed to compete under fair (read "unfettered" ) rules that are the same for everyone, then I hold out hope for the draconian measures which are about to unfold for all of us, managers and line employees alike. If its going to be the same, broken model where government "policy", (read "severe competitive restrictions" ) applies to Air Canada only, and we have to stick to the old broken-model rules that hobble Air Canada only, (which in the end, really means serving government policy through employee job loss and wage reductions), then we'll be back here again starting over, only with wages and benefits somewhere between 25 and 40% lower. While I don't know the players (Texas Partners/GE Capital) and thus I remain aloof as far as cheering too loudly about their participation, I was cheering very loudly when Collenette and Co. were shut out of "helping" , and instead AC sought private funding and investment. While we employees are going to arrive at an agreement sooner or later, much of the future success of these very significant roll-backs will be under a cloud until the Canadian government simply butts out of our private business and lets us compete under true free-market rules. After offering the best service we can for our customers, our singular goal for Air Canada employees should be to wipe the smirk off of Clive Beddoe's face, just like his goal is to embarrass us and wash our face in snow every chance he gets. That's what its all about. (nothing personal here Wj'ers...on the flight safety level, we all talk...). Don *Maybe with the welfare granted Bombardier in terms of billions in taxpayer grants, loans, forgiven debts, and subsidies to buyers of Bombardier's products in other countries this may be a poor example...
  19. (Posted as a new topic to bring the thread forward) JakeYYZ; Don't disagree with a thing you've written in your message to Mitch, especially about CCAA not being an accident, (May 11). Re "A gentlemen’s agreement not to poach one another’s business, is not what free enterprise and competition are all about." All except for the "former" Air Canada. This industry has never been fully de-regulated. Its free market for only a few. If AC had been free of government interference, government policies and government/ministerial politics like other major companies in Canada like Bombardier*, GE, Thompson etc etc, we might have had a chance to fix whatever was specifically broken with our model, (to use a hackneyed phrase). But part of what was "broken" in the past model was the constant and persistant invigilation by Minister after Minister after Minister, done with a level of ignorance and blunt stupidity bordering on negligence or at least dereliction. If its to be free market "de-regulation", let's have at it. But its been special rules for Air Canada since 1988. The ACPPA needs to be repealed and AC needs to be set free in the same manner as all other real private enterprise businesses. Rovinescu has characterized it himself: this is the true separation point...the true severing from the real Mom Corp - the Canadian Government, the moment beyond which AC truly becomes its own company, to compete in the marketplace, unfettered by the worn-out apron strings of Ministerial whims, backroom politics and instransigent bureacracies. If the new, leaner AC that emerges from this process will be allowed to compete under fair (read "unfettered") rules that are the same for everyone, then I hold out hope for the draconian measures which are about to unfold for all of us, managers and line employees alike. If its going to be the same, broken model where government "policy", (read "severe competitive restrictions") applies to Air Canada only, and we have to stick to the old broken-model rules that hobble Air Canada only, (which in the end, really means serving government policy through employee job loss and wage reductions), then we'll be back here again starting over, only with wages and benefits somewhere between 25 and 40% lower. While I don't know the players (Texas Partners/GE Capital) and thus I remain aloof as far as cheering too loudly about their participation, I was cheering very loudly when Collenette and Co. were shut out of "helping" , and instead AC sought private funding and investment. While we employees are going to arrive at an agreement sooner or later, much of the future success of these very significant roll-backs will be under a cloud until the Canadian government simply butts out of our private business and lets us compete under true free-market rules. After offering the best service we can for our customers, our singular goal for Air Canada employees should be to wipe the smirk off of Clive Beddoe's face, just like his goal is to embarrass us and wash our face in snow every chance he gets. That's what its all about. (nothing personal here Wj'ers...on the flight safety level, we all talk...). Don *Maybe with the welfare granted Bombardier in terms of billions in taxpayer grants, loans, forgiven debts, and subsidies to buyers of Bombardier's products in other countries this may be a poor example...
  20. Snowshoes; Re "Since we lost our own forum last year, I find it very difficult to sense on a timely basis what my ACPA representatives frame of mind is." The AC Pilots Private Forum is an excellent "commons" where everyone meets electronically. Try, http://pub15.ezboard.com/baircanadapilotsprivateforum and get signed on. I'm sure the moderator will help out. In my opinion, the mini-WAWCON survey, (which is the way they should all be, but many wouldn't agree) is the right thing to do and gives the MEC/Negots/LRD a good basis upon which to take action. Like motions at meetings, such surveys do not imply that specific action follows, but grassroots is about trends and rarely about specific results based upon individual (or small-group) cases. If you're wanting to know more, simply call your LEC Chair, or one of the Vices. They'll be glad to spend the time to update you...give them time to get back to you however. kind regards, Don
  21. Hi Snowshoes; Re "I wonder why I have to get the latest ACPA perspective from you on this forum instead of our MEC chair..." Hear you: silence isn't always golden when you're looking for info on how things are going. However, in my opinion and for me as a member, the ACPA communications have been timely, informative and appropriate. Let me make an observation on why I think this is so and why I think we should accept the level of communication we have as sufficient, at least for the time being: There is a difference between the communications offered informally as an opinion by an ex-executive member who may understand the process and wish to offer one man's thoughts, and the official (legal, in the end) issuings from the Association's Executive. The first has no import but may help flesh out details for those who may not know the process well. The second form the official record of public communications of the union. So the union is faced with the need to communicate effectively, but at the same time not send unintentional "signals" through "clarifications", especially in these hair-trigger times. So the message is always kept as succinct, (clinical) as possible, sticking to what is happening, rarely going into why, or who etc. There is also the matter of time...to construct a message well which fulfills these needs, it sometimes demands more time than is physically available by the time meetings, emails, phone calls etc etc are completed by all concerned. That's a matter of fact, and not an excuse I realize, but its a pretty bouncy world out there right now... As I have said publicly many times, I trust the ACPA leadership completely, to make appropriate judgements on matters which affect the viability of the airline and the future of the profession. I do not expect wholesale yielding, for that serves no one's purpose and plants seeds for later trouble. Nor do I expect a "whites-of-their-eyes" approach. I know very well, that our MEC, Negots Team and Labour Relations people have a very clear grasp of affairs and a great deal of experience. Our Negots Team has been together since we constituted it in early 2000. Hope this helps, Snowshoes... Cheers, Don
  22. Oh, okay CA...thanks too, for the clarification. I just thought folks would like to know how ACPA did their voting. We actually vote via the web or by phone. Very slick and efficient. Cheers, Don
  23. Dagger, and others following this initiative: A great deal has, and is going on underneath this kind of initiative. It is not, as some may perceive, "about time"... ACPA has been in serious discussion about serious matters for a long time, and intends, as the press release states, to do its part. For those who think that voting will take too much time, please remember two things: 1. Voting will not take much time. For those not in ACPA, we do it electronically and it can be done very quickly. The time being taken is not to accomodate the voting process, but to accomodate flight schedules which sometimes have crews away for a week. To be fair to all, as much as possible everyone must be given the opportunity to vote. and, 2. The ACPA Constitution requires that the membership vote on all money matters. Circumstances are not so dire as to force an abrogation of the democratic process. Unlike the Canucks, we must maintain a focussed discipline throughout this entire very difficult process and not "run in the dark" precisely when we need clear, measured thinking that balances time pressures with procedure. That is, after all, what being an airline pilot is all about. The MEC already has made some accomodations to the company on matters which might properly have been put before the membership. I for one, support such action in that case, but a 10% cut does need to come to the membership. That said, and given the 30% reduction in hours and therefore in the pilot payroll already in place made possible by the flexibility granted by various LOUs (further reduced by a 412-pilot decrease in the roster through attrition in the last year and a half), I think the pilots will still come to the table. We are and always have been a long, long way from the folly of demanding "full pay to the last day". Our LOU and voting record proves this. At the same time, we see others bellying up as well. I think that's good to see and it will bring others on board to get this company back on its feet and making money. (I'll stick my neck out and say that I think double-digit profits are not an unrealistic outcome within two years ... a long time in this business!). In August, as the release says, we'll have a clearer picture of where this is all going. Don Hudson
  24. b52er; Look...its bad enough for the security of our entire industry that someone tried to sell this document for money. And its even worse when the dumb newspapers make money broadcasting exactly what's in the manual to even more people than its reached already by this fiasco. But posts that reproduce the newspaper story once again for the entire anonymous world to see and perhaps use is irresponsible and I think the post should be deleted. Nobody here needs to know that information and it is now freely given to those who might now try to obtain information in other ways. Don't we get it, folks? Why hand our enemies - those who used our industry as weapons of terror - the very information which can help those enemies?