Ricky Harpole column

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Farmed-out plane maintenance courting disaster, alternative recommended

Well, I’m just sick about the state of our nation. Apparently the menu is more war, more taxes, less groceries, for less profit, more layoffs, more pay cuts and more foreclosures.

We have also been blessed with a fuel hike unmatched since the ‘70s (a scam itself) while the very fools in Washington that we elected to ruin us, collect their millions, snub their constituents and tell us to contribute our “shares of sacrifice,” presumably so we can luxuriate in poverty and debt, and be in harm’s way as not only a nation, but as a world power.

And most importantly, as individuals.

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What has happened to us? Not long ago I took a jab at the airline industry and I have been vindicated. I said, “Them old boys and girls that work on them commercial airliners don’t have to fly  ‘em — and they don’t, as a general rule.

Well, even as much of a doomsayer I’d thought myself to be, I didn’t know the half of it. One of our major carriers (at least one) is “farmin’ out” their maintenance work on commercial planes to a foreign based company.

Neither the technicians nor the CEO are responsible to the FAA. The thought that a Third World dropout mechanic has been turning bolts on a machine with computers and me riding in it at the same time scares life out of me.

That’s why the the air traffic controllers can sleep on the job. The problems will take care of themselves before their E.T.A.  So why worry about it. Let the next shift do the clean up.

The point is that there is no individual we can hold responsible for the probable catastrophe that will come from this slipshod approach to public transportation safety.

Great unmitigated grief!  When one of these unregulated airplanes does not land safely at great cost, who do we lynch?

I recommend not the foreign unskilled unregistered laborer who owes no allegiance to the USA but the honchos at the airline that hired him because he would do a job for half price as long as the quality of work did not come into question.

This is capitalism at its finest, as long as your daughter or brother or mother chose to take the train that day.

Of course this is just a Redneck point of view. I still enjoy flying in light aircraft that I personally inspect. The Delta is amazingly geometric when gazed upon from 5,000 feet. In some spots it resembles a Picasso and a small plane can land in a wheatfield or on a gravel road in an emergency.

Plus them big ol’ carrier planes use up a lot of gas and one would think that would be the next corner they cut with one of them front office directives.

Take my advice and catch a bus or a real old, tired mule. You might not get there on time, or maybe not at all, but you won’t have as far to fall.



 P.S. One company hired to keep your carrier plane flyable is S.T. Mobile, a foreign -owned company. However they have maintenance stations here in the states and the FAA has responded to numerous safety complaints (in the hundreds) but S.T. Mobile has only paid limited fines. The pilots and crews have filed complaints and don’t have to fly in them wrecks neither except for the fact that they have mortgages to pay and company insurance their heirs can collect if they don’t manage to land rubber side down.

Good night,