Populist genius


Though perhaps not the most consequential of issues, a rookie MP looking to make a name for oneself could obviously do worse than to take on the scourge of modern air travel—see CTV, CBC, the Globe and Mail, Regina Leader-Post , Montreal Gazette, Saskatoon Star Phoenix, Edmonton Journal, Calgary Herald, Ottawa Citizen, Vancouver Sun and Vancouver Province.

Next up for human rights revolutionary Jim Maloway, a bill to outlaw that impossible-to-open plastic packaging.

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Populist genius

  1. It could make the world a better place!

    • Those twist ties on kids toys are my pet peeve. Hopefully that one’s next on his list!

  2. Okay, compensating passengers for being bumped? All in favour of it.

    But compensating passengers for bad weather? What, Air Canada is God now? I mean, they think they are but we know they’re not!

    And if this leads to Air Canada, realising they’ll owe two grand to each of four hundred passengers on a 747 if it doesn’t take off, sends it thundering down a slushy runway and something happens, it’ll be only their fault.

    • Fear not, Lord Bob. Any threat to profitability from the above measure will be more than offest by the 2.3 gazillion dollar subsidy the airline industry can expect in this coming weeks’ budget. All you need to do is say “We’re an industry! With employees and stuff!” and Bam! Here’s your cheque. You’ll need a second teller’s initials to deposit it, what with the “M”illions crossed off for a “B”, but please be patient.

  3. This is a HORRIBLE bill that does a number of awful things.

    1. It tips the balance between passenger safety and timeliness far too much towards timeliness. One of the reasons flights are delayed is weather, or a need for additional safety checks on planes, etc. This bill would create a strong monetary incentive for an airline to send out a plane with some slight safety risk, in order to avoid incurring massive legal fees.

    2. It would severely reduce airline profits – an industry that is already in the tank. They will respond by reducing available routes and raising fares to compensate for the risk of costly delays. Passengers may get to where they are going on time, but not with the shirts on their backs.

    The status quo offers reasonably fast travel at a reasonable price. There is a risk of delays, but one can (sometimes) get around that by paying more money for a more reliable, but more expensive airline. People have options. This bill would screw cheap fliers like me by forcing us to pay top dollar for flights.

    Todays socialists have decided to regulate that everybody drive a Rolls Royce, without providing the means to afford it. At least the commies of yesteryear had the decency to soak the rich a little. Champagne socialism is alive and well.

    • I love how exercised free marketers get over every hint of regulation.

  4. Next up for human rights revolutionary Jim Maloway, a bill to outlaw that impossible-to-open plastic packaging.

    Oh, pshaw. As the article in the NYT states, you can buy clever cutting apparatuses, such as the Pyranna that make short shrift of the problem. I myself bought the OpenX and I’ve been congratulating myself for my clever purchase. The accessories (wall mount, decorative silicon grip sheaths and quilted mylar cozy) provide a complete, sophisticated and attractive plastic-packaging opening solution.

    • How did our ancestors manage? Oh, they were heroes then, I tell you! They didn’t even have TV remote controls! I kid you not!

  5. Only a leftie wing nut could love this legislation. It will raise the cost of all airplane tickets to the stratosphere and likely wipe out many smaller competitotrs. This bill should be fought by everyone.

    As so well put by someone above, the socialists seem to believe that government regulations can now overrule god in determining the weather. If they really believe that, someone should tell the NDP to convince Parliament to pass a law making the Canadian winter more bearable to live in and I may decide to return to Canada.

  6. Populist genius? …more like craven socialist nut case. The trouble with Aaron is that he has never met a socialist idea he didn’t like.

  7. Look at the price of airline tickets 30 years ago and the price of airline tickets today. Factor in inflation, and we’re paying a fraction of what we used to pay. Tickets are massively underpriced, and people have been conditioned to expect and demand extremely low fares. High first class and business fares have partially subsidized low economy fares but it’s not enough, that’s why we’ve seen a continual decline in service levels, the end of meals, free headsets, introduction of checked bag fees, and so on. And still, airlines are losing money hand over fist. You want better service? Accept a doubling, or more, of fares.

    • BCer, obviously we don’t want better service, because (well, what’s left of) the free market has not pushed in that direction. Who’s making money? The low-cost no-frills airlines who don’t overbook, charge you for headsets and food and beer and placing golf clubs/skis in checked luggage, swallow your money if you cancel your reservation, offer low-cost corny jokes and smiles on board, use the same model of aircraft to simplify maintenance, only open up routes likely to make a profit, pay their employees a little less but have part-ownership incentives for profitability, and do their best to respect on-time performance. Works for me.

      • Indeed, part of the reason, but not the only reason, the legacy airlines are in deep trouble is they are being forced to compete on price with low fare, no frills airlines such as WestJet. Air Canada has a tough time competing here because of some of the reasons you mention, and some you don’t. Different aircraft types, union wages, and a statutory requirement to provide service to certain less that profitable communities. Unless Air Canada were

        The problems with the airline industry are deeper though, and until the LCC model can be shown to apply to long-haul transpac/atl flights, they’ll need to be addressed. Dido if you want to travel between more than a handful of major centres. I can fly WestJet to Vegas, but you can’t get a 737 to go Toronto to Frankfurt, so for that I still need the legacy carriers.

  8. Another aspect of this is who is to blame for the systemic delays when bad weather hits an airport? My guess is the airport authority who fails to have adequate snow-clearing equipment to handle bad weather must share the blame. Why should Canada’s airlines pay the highest rents in the world to poorly equipped airports.

    A bad idea from an out of touch politician