FROM Mike Boyd
Turbulent Times for America's Airlines Since deregulation, America's airlines have expanded by a factor of ten and there has not been a major crash since 2001. But the recent grounding of thousands of flights, which stranded hundreds of thousands of passengers, and evidence that the Federal Aviation Administration is too cozy with the companies it regulates have raised concerns about safety. Whistle-blowing FAA inspectors told Congress that Southwest Airlines had been allowed to skip inspections for fuselage cracks for as long as nine months. Southwest was fined $10 million, and the FAA began an "industry-wide audit." Meantime, smaller airlines have gone under or filed for bankruptcy, and big ones are talking about mergers. Is the agency trying to reassert itself and reassure the flying public that all is well? Were passengers really at risk? With airlines folding, going bankrupt and looking at mergers, are the industry and its passengers in for a troubled future?
Two FAA Whistleblowers Accuse Their Agency of Being Too Cozy with Southwest Airlines More bad news for Southwest Airlines today- ATA which has a codeshare agreement with Southwest, went out of business, stranding hundreds of customers at LAX. They were told to contact Southwest. Meantime in Washington, a whistle-blower who says the FAA is too cozy with Southwest testified before Congress.
Whistle-blowers Accuse FAA of Being Too Cozy with Airlines In recent weeks, airlines have canceled flights and pulled planes out of service to make sure safety checks are being properly performed. This comes in the aftermath of reports by two FAA inspectors who say their supervisors were "too cozy" with Southwest Airlines. Those whistle-blowers testified today before a committee chaired by Congressman James Oberstar. The Minnesota Democrat accused the FAA of "complacency, cozy relations with airlines and inappropriate reliance on voluntary disclosure." Mike Boyd is president of the Boyd Group, an aviation consulting research firm based in Evergreen, Colorado.
The Trump agenda: where's the beef? President Trump says big things are happening. After celebrating a House bill on health care, he doesn’t yet have Senate agreement. With James Comey’s public testimony scheduled tomorrow, the President today tweeted his selection of a new FBI Director. Is the Chief Executive all style and no substance? Later, terror attacks in Iran and conflicting claims about who’s behind them.
What happens when America retreats from the world? Is President Trump taking his "America First" agenda to extremes, withdrawing the country from the international stage on trade and climate change, distancing America from its traditional allies across the Atlantic and even threatening to physically isolate the country through the building of a wall along its southern border? León Krauze guest hosts.
Who's to blame for the opioid crisis? Some of the lawyers who took on Big Tobacco are now going after Big Pharma. It’s all about the deadly epidemic of opioid use. Are the drug companies to blame? What about the users? Later, on today’s Talking Point: making sense of Britain’s upset election.