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airplane in the sky
A Federal Aviation Administration statement confirms that, yep, furloughs forced by sequestration are causing delays at major airports, and "Travelers can expect to see a wide range of delays that will change throughout the day depending on staffing and weather-related issues." For example:
Yesterday more than 1,200 delays in the system were attributable to staffing reductions resulting from the furlough. There were more than 1,400 additional delays as a result of weather and other factors.
That means the sequester is nearly doubling delays; if you're a traveler, you can't like those odds. Republican outrage once again boiled up at this cut to a service that Republican politicians personally value, but sadly they continue directing that outrage at President Obama, who tried to avert the sequester, rather than at themselves for forcing it to go into effect. Yes, it would be weird for Republicans to blame themselves, but arguably no weirder and a lot more reality-based than insisting that austerity is fantastic while complaining loudly every time they notice that austerity is happening.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Labor on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 10:59 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  So undo the sequester, Republicans (12+ / 0-)

    It's very simple!

    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:16:03 AM PDT

  •  GOP 3-year olds. Nothing was THEIR fault. /nt (9+ / 0-)

    Happy little moron, Lucky little man.
    I wish I was a moron, MY GOD, Perhaps I am!
    —Spike Milligan

    by polecat on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:16:33 AM PDT

  •  Small-government aviation. So efficient! (15+ / 0-)

    Smells like liberty!

    Democracy is a habit, not a circumstance.

    by Troubadour on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:17:03 AM PDT

  •  What percentage of the US population (8+ / 0-)

    gets on a plane at least once a year?

    I bet it's less than a third.  So I'm wondering if the other 200 million people give half a shit that flights were delayed.  It's far more likely that they are wondering when they'll get a job, or even what they're going to eat today.

    •  OK, I looked it up. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mungley, FloridaSNMOM, Egalitare

      It's 17%.  One fucking sixth.

    •  But part of the part who does fly is influential. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eXtina

      Taking nothing away from your comment, the privileged who are dispossessed do know who to talk to and how, to get attention to what can change the situation they are confronted with.

      Why should this give us hope, since the media is so oriented to a "balanced" approach that makes both the White house and Congress both culpable and equally capable of "getting together"?

      (1) Because the Republican House is not going to yield on the sequester. At all. The media may not be able to tell the difference, but influentials are, and will. And ...

      (2) Because the White House needs to be shown ways to leverage the Hill into action that goes in the right direction, without promising to compromise more.

      Our core problem is that much of the sequester's impact happens to people who are persistently below the radar. Who do not have podiums or loud voices to tell their stories. The sequester has to hurt - it is so sad to acknowledge - people who feel the pain and can do something about it.

      2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

      by TRPChicago on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:40:21 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  this is what I was thinking (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ET3117

      I fly 0-4 times a year, depending.  I can't imagine complaining about flight delays given the number of other cuts that are really going to hurt people.  After all, a delayed flight is not a big thing.  Sure, as long I stay in away from Eastern seaboard, and stay on southwest, I usually don't see any flight delays, but they still happen.  A lot.  Given the number of times I have been delayed in New England, I am not even sure if 1200 is significant.

      The point being that this is definitely a first world upper middle class problem.  The solution is to raise taxes on those first world upper middle class and upper class people who need this service, instead of externalizing costs to those who don't have enough money to fly.

      And I will mention this again.  The airports that are losing control tower staff in my area are all servicing people who could afford to pay etra fees and taxes if they wanted to.  It is their choice to put those controllers out of work and to make it more difficult for them to use the airport.  There is no way that the average person should have to pay higher taxes just so a person can have a private jet or take a puddle jumpt to save an hour.

      The greatest hypocrisy of the conservatives right now is that we should subsidize the upper class luxury travel while giving up basic services that over half the population relies upon.

    •  That's stupid (0+ / 0-)

      Using your logic only a few percent of the population get cancer every year so therefore we should stop cancer research.  98% don't give a shit because they're cancer free?

      The overall economy will suffer because of this and it can adversely affect many who don't fly or who never will.  Not to be condescending but use your brain.

  •  Republicans were saying that the Sequester (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    shoeless, DontTaseMeBro, eXtina

    was a victory for the Tea Party.  I am surprised that the GOP are no longer cheerleading the Sequester as they were a few weeks ago.

    President Obama, January 9, 2012: "Change is hard, but it is possible. I've Seen it. I've Lived it."

    by Drdemocrat on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:19:45 AM PDT

  •  Totally in favor of these (4+ / 0-)

    Restore the FAA staffing levels after HeadStart and all the other programs.

    This is the one place the Congress creeps will feel the sequester.

    "Don't be defeatist, dear. It's very middle class." - Violet Crawley

    by nightsweat on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:20:40 AM PDT

  •  Good! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FloridaSNMOM, ferg, eXtina

    The Republicans have spent decades whining about "big-spending liberals" and "big government". Let them explain how this random, ill-conceived cut is the fault of the big spending liberal in the White House. They can't do it without lying, of course, and they're never shy about resorting to lies. Obama should easily be able to cut them to ribbons in any debate on this point. We think government is necessary. Let John Galt be their air traffic controller.

    The Bush Family: 0 for 4 in Wisconsin

    by Korkenzieher on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:22:32 AM PDT

    •  I don't think we'll get such a debate. Instead ... (0+ / 0-)

      ... unfortunately, the pain needs to start being real to people who are in a position to cause change.

      Government contractors, for example. People back home, constituents who are furloughed. The privileged and titled who have to wait longer for their airplane connections, even though they fly in the front of the plane.

      Obama will win debates on this hands down, but there won't be much of a meaningful dialog until the media covers the issues a heckuva lot more accurately than the 18-second he-says/they-say, now-to-the-weather kin of coverage. Or until movers and shakers feel the inconvenience, the pain, the cost of the sequester, and convince their elected officials that they must change the situation.

      The White House can't make Congress change. As in the old joke about the psychiatrist and the light bulb ... like the broken bulb, Congress has to want to change.

      2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

      by TRPChicago on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:48:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  The only hope here... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Faito, Korkenzieher

        ...and it's a thin reed to cling to - is that this will inconvenience the villagers a bit.  When David Brooks and Candy Crowley find that half their day is now spent waiting for ATC delays, maybe eventually they will come to appreciate that we all depend on basic government services, and that might get translated into their spin.

        Right wingers everywhere are already howling about this as some sort of a trick by Obama.  What a difficult thing it must be to admit that the guvmint actually does stuff you want, and when you basically defund those things, you can't get them anymore.

        Who could ever have imagined such a thing?

        What we're going to see next is a move to restore funding just for air traffic control - sequester for you, not so much for those that matter.

        •  Actually, I think ALL sides imagine that ... (0+ / 0-)

          ... and work it for all it's worth.

          I don't know of anyone - except one desperate Presidential candidate last year - who does not take every tax advantage they can. And then some. (Like the guy who used to brag that if the IRS doesn't audit you every year, you're overpaying.) Who passes up subsidies or - with enough money and political swagger - who doesn't hire lobbyists to create subsidies and other guvmint advantages through legislation and IRS rulings.

          I.e. legislate a requirement to use a safety device that you have patented. Create or alter a rule to slip in your business practice but not others similar but not identical to you (unless you need them politically and are willing to forgo the market advantage). Craft an exculpatory provision in a regulation as the price for not tying it up in years of litigation. Contracts that exploit the propensity of government departments  - Pentagon, anyone? - to change specs, thereby causing opportunities for rebids which only particular suppliers can meet in the time frame.

          Face it. Those who criticize government the most are a heckuva lot more adept than the rest of us in using government to their advantage.

          2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

          by TRPChicago on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 01:12:07 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Look on the bright side (6+ / 0-)

    The flight delays because of the controller furloughs might offset the long lines from the TSA furloughs.  Maybe your flight will still be at the gate when you get through security!

  •  So long as the Republicans blame Obama (4+ / 0-)

    for the sequester and the White House remains silent, Obama loses public opinion on the sequester.  Can't explain what the White House doesn't get about this.

    "And now we know that government by organized money is just as dangerous as government by organized mob." -- FDR

    by Mogolori on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:26:03 AM PDT

  •  GOP can't be allowed to get away with blaming (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FloridaSNMOM, eXtina

    Obama and complaining only about the parts of the sequester they don't like.  What's missing is the argument Obama made all last year and into the fiscal cliff about reasonable compromise.  The sequester is indiscriminate; if you want to fix it, you have to fix all of it, not just the parts you don't like.

    I also disliked GMA's report this morning which was somewhat dismissive of the impact of the flight delays.  What I wanted was a report about the impact to programs that help educate kids, feed and house the working poor, and take care of the sick and disabled.  Media do not care about those very real impacts of the sequester.

    Alternative rock with something to say: http://www.myspace.com/globalshakedown

    by khyber900 on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:27:48 AM PDT

  •  I'll keep saying it (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    leftyboy666

    The sequester was the administration's idea.

  •  But the sequester isn't supposed to affect *them*! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina, mungley

    Gasp!

    The Horror!

    It's only supposed to affect the little people!

    It can't be allowed if it affects people with money to travel! Think about the poor job creators! How are they going to get to their 'business meetings' and vacations, and  and and....

    ROFLOL

    "Madness! Total and complete madness! This never would've happened if the humans hadn't started fighting one another!" Londo Mollari

    by FloridaSNMOM on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:30:06 AM PDT

  •  This is why the sequester is a good thing. (0+ / 0-)

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:35:38 AM PDT

  •  Already affected our life (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mchestnutjr, eXtina

    My wife had to fly from here in Los Angeles to DC for a two-day conference.  The two legs of her flight were so delayed that she would not get there until the following day, which meant she would miss much of the first day of the event.  She ended up staying home.

    I can only imagine the cost this will incur to business.

  •  Free market solution (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SMWalt, DontTaseMeBro, eXtina

    Shouldn't air travel be self-supporting and not subsidized by the taxpayer in the first place?

    At least that's the argument made against rail when rail travel seeks federal funding.

    •  It's Not air travel, but air SAFETY... (0+ / 0-)

      that is the public good, which should be subsidized.  When you board a plane you should have a reasonable expectation the plane won't collide with another plane.

      FAA provides air safety with air traffic control.  It's not cheap, but it's incredibly effective.  

  •  Sitting at BTV right now (0+ / 0-)

    going home to MSP via DTW instead of my massively delayed flight via LGA.  

    On the positive side - due to interrupted operations, I got the last upgrade on the DTW to MSP leg.  So all in all, I'm a fan of sequestration today.

  •  They should all be clapping. (5+ / 0-)

    This is what "small government" looks like afterall.

    "Give to every other human being every right that you claim for yourself." - Robert G. Ingersoll

    by Apost8 on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:45:09 AM PDT

  •  This is good - insofar as the sequester (0+ / 0-)

    disproportionately has an effect on the privileged classes.

    Similarly, has there been any reports on the the processing times to get through immigration/customs for international travelers to get into the USA?

    Again, that would  disproportionally inconvenience the upper echelon of society and might provide some impetus to get the sequester resolved . . .. . .

  •  Like the drag queens say, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eXtina

    Democrats and Barack Obama should be making the Republicans "eat it and gag."  But they're squandering a great opportunity, to show the American people what total buffoons these tea-publicans are and why austerity doesn't freaking work.

    Spray tons of carcinogens into the ocean to hide petroleum spewed from a hastily-drilled hole from a greedy corporation, but don't smoke pot. -xxdr zombiexx

    by DontTaseMeBro on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:49:07 AM PDT

  •  Obvious solution: Privatize air traffic control (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Faito

    I mean, who needs that gummint meddling? If your airplane crashes, why, the free market will simply adjust as you make your next decision about which airline to fly, or rather, your heirs will make as they decide which airline to fly your remains home on, assuming they find anything of you.

    Seriously, we should have a special airline just for Republican lawmakers that's run without safety regulations of any sort, so they can live their free market regulation-free paradise every moment of their days.

    Some people are intolerant, and I CAN'T STAND people like that. -- Tom Lehrer

    by TheCrank on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:53:39 AM PDT

    •  And they (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Forest Deva

      should all be allowed to have unlimited numbers of guns with live ammo on the airplanes, and no baggage screening, and no pilot training, and no maintenance requirements, and no air traffic control.  Oh and they don't get to fly in and out of socialist airports.  They should have to take off and land from stubbly cornfields, dirt roads, and abandoned factory parking lots, and wait for their flights in tent terminals.

      The upside is that they can all smoke on flights.

    •  Common comment (0+ / 0-)

      Righties are citing Canada as a privatized air control system.

  •  What's with that photo? (0+ / 0-)

    Clearly an American Airlines plane, but with the tail logo 'shopped out, and, stranger, with the landing gear photoshopped out.

  •  Hard to imagine (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Major Kong

    Flying could become even less enjoyable.  But here we are.

  •  If you're going to visit your mom (0+ / 0-)

    is one thing. Anybody else deserves a temporary hitch in their lifestyles of the rich and famous. Why? 1) Take your honeymoon/vacation within the bounds of ground transportation and keep your "hard earned" dollars within the US economy; or 2) get a grip and do virtual meetings.

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