Monday, February 26, 2007

Michael S - My support system

From Michael S...Thanks bud!

I am very proud of your work. It is very important. This has never been about the weather. I think we all agree that we were happy not to take off during an ice storm. That was the right call. This was about the complete mismanagement on the part of the staff, crew and pilots to properly take care of their passengers. Most of you were just on Flight 351, which was somewhat and surprisingly calm. Rob and I got on Flight 357 right after 351 and that plane sat on the runway for 6 more hours. That plane's atmosphere was much more tense and hostile. The crew of 357 was beyond pathetic and undertrained.

I was not entirely surprised to hear one of your friends post on your blog the previous episodes of flight attendant, Robert Alvarez. He made the situation very tense and dangerous and should be terminated immediately. I do not know too much about this, but this could also be a union issue. I believe that Jet Blue is the only non-union airline and maybe their training procedures are less than those of a union airline. I am a big supporter of unions and that could be a major part of this problem.

Furthermore, I think the one thing that is quite troubling is the rhetoric that Mr. Neeleman is using in the press about how "expensive" this is going to be. That is quite bothersome. God forbid someone had a serious panic attack or a heart attack on one of those nine planes. It would cost Jet Blue and Mr. Neeleman a lot more than $30 million dollars.

So, this is not about free vouchers or $25/hour and more blue chips. I equate it to someone inviting you over their house for dinner, and they spit in your food (flight 351), and then they spit in your food again (flight 357). And as you are walking out the door, they say to you "Oh, please come over tomorrow night for dinner." Would you go? Of course not. The other thing I want their $238 voucher is to fly to Salt Lake City to see Mr. Neeleman myself and demand a public apology to every single one of those passengers on the nine flights at JFK. As well as the immediate termination of Mr. Alvarez and a commitment to the proper training of their staff to handle disasters. He can keep his blue chips and his $25/hour for being late. The only reason he is introducing a "passenger bill of rights" is so the public will forget about this and not push their local US representative to vote on a federal "passenger bill of rights" that will fine the airlines much more than $25/hour. Don't be fooled, Mr. Neeleman is just beating the politicians to the punch. This happened in 1999 when the American Airlines flight sat for six hours and it will happen again in 2007 if we fall for this ploy.

I applaud you efforts with a standing ovation. Anything I can do to help, let me know. Remember, power in numbers.

Best, Michael

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