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Snippets from around the traps
#31
From the Daily review blog.

Nothing to do with aviation......or does it?

Seems like K in the Sunday Brunch Gazette, alludes to much of what Mr Pigot is complaining about.

Aviation? Same same!.................. Same Shame!




THE MASTERS OF SPIN PLAY WITH THE FACTS, FROM MEXICAN WALLS TO VICTORIA’S CREATIVE INDUSTRIES

By Neil Pigot June 11, 2017

Over the course of the 20th century and into our current one, empirical advances have been made in the way we use words to sell goods and services. The result is that the impressionistic rhetoric of promotion has developed significant currency, so much so that ad speak has become in many ways the language of the 21st Century. And a great deal of it, is what the American moral philosopher Harry Frankfurt called “bullshit”.

I don’t have a television and so I rely on billboards and passing trams for my daily doses of bullshit, my fill of messages encouraging me to do what every self-respecting Australian should do. Buy more stuff. Like the billboard on the Tulla Freeway that tells me I need a new air purifier because Air pollution isn’t just a problem outside. It’s a problem inside too. Now that seems fair. It’s the same air isn’t it? Apparently not, because when I got home and checked the ad I was shocked to discover that according to the fine print the air inside my house could be as much as five times more polluted than the air outside.

The assertion made by the company that wants to flog me this machine had a reliable source, the Centre for Australian Weather and Climate Research, a partnership between the Bureau of Meteorology and CSIRO. Now this is a worry for a man who has a family history littered with untimely deaths from respiratory illnesses. So I found the report.

Forty dwellings located over an 800 km2 area in the south-east of Melbourne with a range of ages, materials and structures were tested over a three month period. The report found that some gases where detected in higher concentrations indoors and that ventilation and activities associated with combustion and cooking were the major influences on poor indoor air quality. In other words if you’re worried about the air quality in your place you can buy the gadget, or maybe open a window while you’re frying chips.

Some of the other current bullshit is just plain funny. Like the bank that is tempting me to sign up with the opportunity to “Pay the way you love”. Is that hard and fast, or slow and erotically? This is what Frankfurt would call classic bullshit. Neither false enough to risk litigation nor true enough to be a fact but something we nonetheless find strangely compelling.

Spin is created by communication specialists employed by politicians using advertising and market research techniques to maximise the impact of public messages while minimising scrutiny.
It is bullshit’s capacity to proffer simple solutions to pressing problems or make apparent light work of what would otherwise be complex decision making that has seen it embraced in the public space, so much so that scholars are now calling “Political Bullshit”, the language of “The New Public”.

In The New Public discourse is dominated by spin created by communication specialists employed by politicians who utilise advertising and market research techniques to maximise the impact of public messages while minimising the possibility of them being scrutinised. In The New Public political argument has almost entirely been displaced by political bullshit, language of the same pithiness, faux intensity and momentousness that we associate with the best marketing. The effect is that public discourse has been stripped of explanation, argumentative power and the facts.

“I’m only interested in what needs to get done.” said Donald Trump on his way to the White House. Trump’s own appeal depended more than anything on the electorate’s belief that he was a truth-teller untainted by the bullshitting ways of conventional politicians. “He tells it like it is, and we need that now in a president.” said half of America. What has become clear as Trump and his administration begin to unravel is that America, the home of the slogan, made the mistake of confusing advertising style truth-telling with actually telling the truth. Trump has become the most powerful man on the planet by noisily rejecting any notion of traditional rhetoric and in doing so taken political bullshit into the next dimension.

By using compelling sound bites Trump convinced people he wasn’t trying to deceive them like regular politicians. So they all switched off their critical faculties and bought the new political bullshit. Make America Great Again is a pithy, momentous, vacuous four word slogan that needs no explanation. Its meaning was self-evident, and, along with “We’re Gonna build a Wall” and other dazzling verbal imagery it allowed Trump to conceal what has now become blindingly obvious: he hadn’t actually thought anything through. What we are seeing across the Pacific is an example of how slogans are great for selling air purifiers but they don’t really cut the mustard when you’re running the most powerful country on the planet. A stunning piece of political bullshit that has now been replaced by a new, even pithier four word slogan. “We have no policy”.

In his book “On Bullshit” Professor Frankfurt describes the bull shitter as one for whom

… the truth-values of his statements are of no central interest to him; … [he] is neither on the side of the true nor on the side of the false. His eye is not on the facts at all…except insofar as they may be pertinent to his interest with getting away with what he says. He does not care whether the things he says describe reality correctly. He just picks them out, or makes them up, to suit his purpose.

It was in this way that the British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson used his characteristically idiosyncratic bullshit to ridicule the opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn’s security credentials following the Labor leader’s comment that there would be “no first use” of nuclear weapons on his watch because nuclear war would be “disastrous for the planet” and he “did not want to be responsible for the destruction of millions of people”.

After calling Corbyn a “mugwump” Johnson extrapolated the statement into bullshit we could all understand. “… it was really spine-chilling to hear Jeremy Corbyn announce that all Labour’s support for our nuclear deterrent, all Labour’s support for our Armed Forces was completely meaningless because when it came to the business of defending this country he wouldn’t do it.”

Corbyn’s rather sensible admission that he wouldn’t be inclined to just hit the button may well have been decisive in determining the outcome of a very close election, an election which, as a result of recent events, was fought in the last stages along national security lines. And if we were to we give a bit of thought to what Boris’s bullshit implies, Britons had a simple choice: to vote for someone who admitted he didn’t fancy blowing up the planet or someone who wouldn’t give it a second thought.

And bullshit happens here too. During the Northern Territory’s 2016 election the creation of an atmosphere of fear around juvenile crime resulted in a campaign of political bullshit that looked more like a Law and Order 50% off sale than any kind of politics I’ve seen before. Politicians on both sides competed to demonise youth delinquency and to drive a singular focus upon being as merciless as possible, with promises of tougher sentences, increased police powers and stricter bail laws. Despite all of us knowing that youth crime anywhere is caused by complex web of socio-economic factors, factors that point to a failure of public policy and to a large extent our communities, the electioneering instead remained myopically focused on retribution. Individual lives, children’s lives, became the bargaining chips for political gain as both sides talked about throwing these kids into what some bullshit genius decided to call a “big concrete hole”. A disgraceful example of firm handed, Hollywood action hero, divisive bullshit imagery that replaced the thought, time and effort that should have gone in to understanding why there was a problem and what policies were needed to fix it.

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We now have a Royal Commission into the treatment of kids in detention in the Territory following the revelations that children were being tortured in what looked like a throw back to the good old days of Saddam. And it is those lazy, elected representatives and desperately self-serving candidates who are morally culpable, who preferred to use simplistic sound bites masquerading as policy to engineer a delirium of public panic for their own gain rather than do what we elect politicians to do. Create policy. And the torture of children should not come as a surprise because, whichever way you look at it, the logical endpoint of political bullshit that talks about children like animals is the treating of children like animals.

It is for reasons like this that Frankfurt asserts in his book that bullshit is actually more pernicious than lying because it is unconnected with the truth. He goes on to propose that: It is this lack of connection to a concern with the truth…an indifference with how things really are and with consequence, that is morally and socially dangerous. It reveals a disregard for truth and accuracy much more profound than that displayed by the liar.

We in the arts are not inured from this kind of bullshit as last week’s press release from the Victorian Minister for Creative Industries Martin Foley demonstrates so admirably.

More than 1200 career opportunities will be created for artists and creative industries workers across the state through the Andrews Labor Government’s latest round of VicArts grants.

Sixty-two projects will share in more than $1 million in funding, which will create opportunities for almost 900 independent artists and 350 technical, administrative and other support roles in the independent arts sector.

A classic piece of political bullshit using the entire skill set of the bullshitter. First the tone which is theatrically epic, momentous in its claim of more than 1200 career opportunities alongside the more than a million which gives the impression of continuing government largesse. The claim isn’t a lie as such because 62 somethings are presumably going to happen somehow but when you do the maths you begin to see that at best it gives a false impression. Sixty-two  projects means they will all get about $15,000 each. Now, given it costs around $100,000 to make a four handed theatre show if you pay everyone and do it in a small venue, I can only assume we’re either not putting any shows on, we’re just doing developments, or we’re partly funding things that people don’t get properly paid for. Or each one of those projects is going to hire the Fairfax Studio in the government owned Arts Centre for a week.

Next is the exaggeration of the truth. 1200 career opportunities? Yes, 1200 people will get something but again, if you do the maths that’s $833 each. Provided there are no other expenses like room hire or coffee. So whilst it’s something it’s not really a career as such, I certainly wouldn’t be looking at real estate. Bullshit. A statement made without caring whether it is true or false that has no relation to the truth as truth or falseness as falseness. It’s really just acoustic pollution.

What would happen if we actually supported artists’ careers in this town? Heaven forbid, we may just end up with a genuinely creative and innovative economy.
It is a statement that manages to clearly demonstrate a complete indifference to how things really are. Tough. There has been no meaningful increase in discretionary funds for a decade. The Australia Council still hasn’t really worked out what it is doing since the Brandis debacle and in my own discipline, the theatre, we are faced with the fact that we live in a city of four million people, the Paris of the south, with just two full time theatre companies. Unlike Brisbane or Sydney we have no company in Melbourne dedicated to the production of new Australian work which means we are left to gaze on helplessly as a generation of mid-career playwrights, our primary producers, vanish before our eyes. How does the Minister expect us to have a theatre without plays?

So when Foley says;

The latest round of Vic Arts grants will provide crucial support to Victoria’s independent artists, the driving force of our creative industries.

What does he mean? He seems to acknowledge the importance of independent artists, he seems to realise that in any creative ecosystem the independent sector does most of the heavy lifting, nurturing talent, educating, mentoring. Yet of the $108 million  in grants to Creative Industries announced by this government in the past weeks, $100,000 has been doled out to independent theatre. Bullshit.

The Andrews’ government says it acknowledges the value of the creative arts as part of our state’s identity. That creativity and innovation are what is going to drive our state’s future. I know this because it’s on a billboard on the Tulla. But instead of supporting it properly they are doing exactly what successive governments have done in this state ever since I’ve been here. Displaying an almost pathological fear of giving money to artists and throwing it instead at infrastructure and more bureaucracy, at programs that encourage capacity building to presumably grow audiences for art we don’t have the money to make. What would happen if we actually supported artists’ careers in this town? Heaven forbid, we may just end up with a genuinely creative and innovative economy.

But perhaps what’s most disappointing about this bullshit is that a lot of the time it looks and sounds deceptively like they might actually do something and clearly those in the ministry don’t think about how devastating that kind of bullshit is to a community struggling to survive. And when a Minister releases a statement like that, presumably intended for the general public to reassure them that we’re being looked after, to see that he has such a disregard for truth and accuracy and is prepared to mislead people in that way… well.

It’s just more of the same sort of bullshit that saw me recently involved in an email exchange with a member of the Minister’s staff. That conversation followed my last article for Daily Review in which I was critical of the announcement that $107 million of the government’s near $2 billion surplus was finding its way to the creative industries, but not one cent was going to artists in spite of its own strategic taskforce recommending “investing in people and capabilities as much as physical infrastructure and assets”.

I explained to my keyboard interlocutor that the recent premature death of one of my colleagues could in part be attributed to this type of arts policy, policy that constantly talks of the value of artists while failing to give them any financial support. Policy that is continually searching for the new whilst caring little for continuity of experience. Policy that asks artists to routinely re-invent their practice to suit whatever the flavour of the day is, so that they might be relevant enough to scramble a living.

I explained that we were all just plain tired of pleading with governments that continue to find new money for the arts to give a little of it to artists. That, in part, my friend’s demise could be attributed to his inability to come to terms with this ongoing disregard for the reality of the life of the artist. Their direct response was simply; “So we haven’t lost 10 million. Just want to be sure you know that.” No we hadn’t. Just a person. Bullshit. A complete collapse of meaning and consequence.
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#32
A very interesting article from BCA magazine regarding CRM


When Pilots Become Passengers

May 24, 2017 James Albright | Business & Commercial Aviation


During my first-ever opportunity to lead a formation of two T-37 jet trainers as a solo pilot, my wingman, also a student pilot, failed the ride. I asked the instructor why the other lieutenant busted.

“He forgot to fly the airplane,” the instructor said. My wingman was tucked into position, a few feet off my left wing. When I began a gentle right turn, he fell low and outside the turn. “Why is he moving out of position?” the hapless student asked the instructor. Of course, that was a ridiculous question; the wingman’s responsibility is to fly his or her aircraft to maintain position. “Who is flying your airplane?” the instructor responded. “You or him?”


The first lesson in U.S. Air Force pilot training begins: “Fly the airplane!” Credit: U.S. Air Force

Even when flying “single ship” without another airplane a few feet from you, the imperative remains. It is you, the pilot, who must always fly the airplane. It is a lesson hammered into us early in our careers, but it is a lesson many of us soon forget, even regarding the most basic tasks every pilot must complete. At other times, we cede control of our aircraft to others who may not even be pilots. And, in a paradox of our crew resource management (CRM) training, we sometimes give up control of the aircraft to a crewmember who isn’t aware, leaving the airplane in no one’s control. How do professionally competent pilots find themselves in these out-of-control situations?

Never Forget Basic Pilot Duties

When is the last time you did an “ARROW” check? You know, the need to ensure you don’t leave the ground without first confirming the aircraft’s airworthiness certificate, registration, radio station license and pilot operating handbook are on board and you’re within the proper weight and balance limits. As the level of sophistication of our aircraft grows, we tend to forget the very basics needed to get an airplane safely off the ground.

On Feb. 5, 2005, two Bombardier Challenger 600 pilots set out to depart Teterboro Airport (KTEB) in New Jersey with a cabin aide and eight passengers in back. Evidence indicates the pilots asked for a “top off” of their fuel, even though a check of the weight and balance data on board would have shown this placed the airplane’s center of gravity well forward of the limit. The pilot was unable to rotate during takeoff, even with full aft control column input. He had to abort, but he was unable to stop within the confines of the airport. The 41,000-lb. aircraft ran off the end of the runway at 110 kt., went through an airport perimeter fence and across a six-lane highway, struck a vehicle, and came to rest halfway inside a building.

Both pilots and two occupants of the vehicle were seriously injured, and the cabin aide, eight passengers and one person in the building sustained minor injuries. The aircraft was destroyed. It was a perfectly flyable airplane until the pilots failed to realize that the amount of misery and tragedy from exceeding limitations in a large aircraft is far greater than the grief such an oversight would produce in the small ones they first learned to fly.

The Challenger 600, with its supercritical wing and lower thrust Lycoming engines, is in many ways an unforgiving aircraft and requires a high level of attention to detail from its pilots. But even a more forgiving aircraft can bite pilots who forget the first rule of aviation: Fly the aircraft. On Feb. 14, 2002, mechanics at a maintenance facility at Florida’s Palm Beach International Airport (KPBI) inadvertently left wooden sticks in the main landing gear weight-on-wheel switches of a Gulfstream V. The sticks were needed to accomplish several maintenance tasks while the aircraft was on jacks, causing the electronics to believe the aircraft was still on the ground. After the aircraft was released for flight, the pilots missed the wooden sticks during preflight and took off for a flight home.

After takeoff, the wooden sticks fooled the aircraft’s systems to believing the aircraft still had weight on its wheels and the landing gear would not retract as a result. The only danger facing the crew was if the throttles were brought to idle with the aircraft’s ground spoiler system armed. In that condition, the ground spoilers would deploy even with the airplane in flight.

But the pilots then failed to run the correct checklists, which would have deactivated the ground spoiler system. In fact, the pilots made sure the ground spoilers were armed, as habit pattern dictated. They didn’t realize that with the weight-on-wheels system fault warning (which they acknowledged), the ground spoilers would deploy as soon as the throttles came to idle. The pilot “chopped” the throttles while the aircraft was still 57 ft. in the air; at that point, the airplane came crashing down. Both pilots were unharmed but the aircraft has never flown again.

Most experienced Gulfstream pilots obsess over the danger posed by the ground spoilers and are paranoid about the many safety systems used to keep these spoilers from deploying while airborne. But even without the complications of a weight-on-wheels system, pilots need to keep in mind the basic stick and rudder skills needed to keep an aircraft flying.

On Feb. 19, 1985, a China Airlines Boeing 747 encountered turbulence over the Pacific Ocean, causing all four engines to retard to a very low thrust setting and then again to a higher setting. The No. 4 engine “hung” near idle, causing the other three to go to maximum thrust and shed their bleed load to the hung engine, which degraded to below idle speed. The autopilot maintained altitude and directional control with elevators and ailerons only; the human pilot never corrected yaw with rudder. The pilot only disengaged the autopilot after deciding to descend for an engine relight.

At that point, the control wheel was deflected 22 deg. left while the aircraft was in a 23-deg. right bank. In just 33 sec., the aircraft rolled 64 deg. and pitched to 68 deg. nose down. The airplane then rolled on its back. The pilot disregarded what all three attitude indicators were reporting and was unable to recover until they popped out of the clouds at 10,000 ft. These pilots turned a minor malfunction into what could have been a catastrophe with 274 people on board. They failed to keep the aircraft in coordinated flight and then failed to execute a proper upset recovery. In other words, they ceased being pilots.

Never Cede Control of the Aircraft to Someone Not in One of Your Pilot Seats

A pilot is responsible for much more than stick and rudder skills or systems management. The coin of the realm for professional pilots is the decision-making that goes with the four stripes. Even a highly experienced airline pilot can be guilty of giving up control of the aircraft to someone on the other side of the microphone. We are well practiced at following “orders” from air traffic control (ATC), if for no other reason than to preserve our licenses. But we should never forget that we pilots are in command.


Some aircraft cannot continue to add fuel without serious center of gravity problems in some configurations. Source: NTSB

The classic case for ceding control to ATC might be that of Avianca Flight 52. On Jan. 25, 1990, the Boeing 707 was flying from José María Córdova International Airport, Medellin, Colombia (SKRG) to New York City’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (KJFK). By the time it reached New York airspace, the Boeing had been assigned three holding patterns that totaled 1 hr., 17 min.

After being assigned a fourth hold with a 30-min. expect further clearance time, the pilot said “. . . ah well, I think we need priority we’re passing [unintelligible].” Twenty-nine minutes later the aircraft ran out of fuel and crashed, killing 73 of the 158 people on board. The accident report cited the crew’s failure to communicate an emergency fuel situation as well as traffic flow management.

The pilot’s primary responsibility once airborne is to get back on the ground safely, even if that means telling air traffic control you cannot obey their instructions any longer. Transmitting the word “MAYDAY,” repeated three times, is the universally accepted way to say, “I am declaring an emergency.” It sets into motion special procedures on the other side of the microphone and theoretically gives you the sky. There is no penalty for overusing the phrase. The lesson for all pilots to understand here is that this is the polite way to declare an emergency and let air traffic control know you need their assistance.

There is another, albeit impolite, way and it comes from my experience as a U.S. Air Force pilot during an era when we had more than our share of crashes. We were well-schooled in the art of informing air traffic control what we were going to do, as opposed to what they wanted us to do. “I’m not asking,” we would practice saying, “I’m telling you.” That language, used when needed, ensured we never ceded control of our aircraft to someone who wasn’t in it with us.

Of course, ATC is not our adversary; the controllers are on our side. Their mission also concludes with your aircraft safely again on the ground. It is up to you to communicate and up to them to offer any help they can. Perhaps we get too much well-intentioned help from within the airplane and without.


Even a sophisticated Gulfstream V needs a thorough preflight, as the crew of N777TY found out. Credit: Matt Birch

An airline pilot must frequently battle decisions from dispatchers with the authority to change routing or even divert aircraft. Business aviation pilots have a more insidious pressure from within the cabin. Often, they battle decisions from the person who signs their paycheck or pays for the charter flight. Pilots need to set the ground rules early or this relationship can end badly.

On March 29, 2001, a Gulfstream III operating under FAR Part 135 was scheduled to fly from Los Angeles International Airport (KLAX) to Aspen-Pitkin County, Colorado, Airport (KASE), with the arrival planned before a nighttime landing restriction took effect. Both pilots were aware of the night restriction and the captain had some Aspen experience.

The instrument approach aligns the aircraft just about on the extended runway centerline but is classified as a circling approach because a descent from the minimum descent altitude (10,200 ft.) to the runway (7,815 ft.) at visibility minimums (3 sm for a Category C aircraft) would require more than an 8-deg. descent.

Unfortunately, the charter customer and his passengers arrived late to the airplane in Los Angeles, which delayed the Gulfstream’s arrival at Aspen a few minutes later than allowed by the nighttime restriction. The charter customer stressed the importance of landing at Aspen before and during the flight. As they began the approach, a passenger occupied the jump seat and they learned the previous two arrivals had gone missed approach.


Gulfstream III N303GA approach path. Credit: NTSB

After passing the final approach fix with a descent rate of 2,200 feet per minute, the pilot briefly leveled off 300 ft. below the next minimum altitude, and then resumed his descent, still too early to have sighted the runway. The alert tower controller asked if they had the runway visually, to which the first officer responded, “runway in sight.” But it probably was not. And even if they did see the runway visually, they were still 2,200 ft. above the field with barely 3.5 mi. to go. So, getting it on to the pavement would have required a whopping 6-deg. descent angle. We instrument pilots must constantly be on guard against seeing what we want to see, versus what we do see.

Passing the missed approach point the captain asked, “Where’s it at?” The airplane crashed 2,400 ft. short of the runway threshold, killing all on board.

While the accident provides many lessons about instrument procedures and how “official sunset” affects arrivals to airports in mountainous terrain, perhaps the most important lesson to be learned regards pilot decision-making. You should never let the desires of those wanting to get there usurp your decision to go someplace else.

CRM Isn’t an Absolute

We pilots not only have a need to be in control but also have a need to appear in control to those around us. This often manifests itself as a cool, calm demeanor that could be captioned with, “Everyone else may be freaking out, but I’m not fazed at all. I’m in control.” The problem, of course, is that sometimes we convince ourselves everything is OK when it really isn’t. As I’ve been told a few times: “When all about you have lost their heads and you remain calm, perhaps you don’t understand the problem.”

On Dec. 29, 1972, Eastern Air Lines Flight 401 had what amounted to a simple gear indication problem. The Lockheed L-1011’s green “down and locked” light failed to illuminate. The captain directed the first officer to engage the autopilot and replace what might have been a faulty light bulb. As the situation unfolded, the captain, the first officer, the second officer and a maintenance specialist who came along were all consumed with addressing the malfunction.

At some point, it is hypothesized, a 15-lb. force caused the autopilot pitch mode to disengage without an audible warning. The aircraft had two autopilots and in this aircraft the autopilot computers were mismatched. It was possible for such a force to disengage the first officer’s autopilot without an indication on the F/O’s instrument panel. The aircraft gradually descended from its 2,000-ft. assigned altitude without anyone in the cockpit noticing. Six minutes after the troubleshooting effort started, the airplane crashed into the Everglades, killing 101 of the 126 persons on board. In this incident four crewmembers were focused on troubleshooting, and none were focused on flying the airplane.


The pilots of Eastern Air Lines Flight 401 prioritized systems repair over flying the airplane before crashing into the Everglades. Credit: Creative Commons

Six years later, on Dec. 28, 1978, the errors of Flight 401 were replayed by United Airlines Flight 173 on approach to Portland, Oregon, International Airport (KPDX). The arriving McDonnell Douglas DC-8 did not provide a clear indication that the landing gear was down. The captain consulted with his flight crew and all available company resources on the ground. He concluded that the gear was probably extended, but he wanted to make sure the cabin crew had enough time to prepare the passengers for a possible gear collapse upon landing.

Meanwhile, the F/O became concerned with the aircraft’s low fuel state and spoke up a few times, expressing his apprehension to the captain. However, the captain did not share concern about the decreasing fuel and returned his attention to consulting with company maintenance resources and the cabin crew. He remained worried about rushing the cabin preparation, saying at one point, “I’m not gonna hurry the girls.”

Nearly 1 hr. after first discovering the problem, the aircraft ran out of fuel and crashed. Of the 197 persons on board, 12 were killed.

In both of these landing gear incidents, the pilots thought they had time on their side because they were so near to their destinations. They forgot that airplane time is paid for with fuel.

Time and keeping track of time is part and parcel to flying your airplane. With a cabin fire, we now know time is fleeting. But back in 1998 that wasn’t the case; most operators believed the imperative to any cabin fire was to fight the fire. On Sept. 2, 1998, Swissair Flight 111, a McDonnell Douglas MD-11, departed KJFK for Switzerland’s Genèva-Cointrin Airport (LSGG) only to have an arcing power cable cause smoke and fire in cabin insulation near the cockpit.

In less than 6 min. the pilot decided to return to Boston-Logan International Airport (KBOS) to facilitate passenger handling. But the Massachusetts airport was 30 min. away. As the situation deteriorated, the air traffic controller offered and the pilot accepted vectors to Halifax Stanfield International Airport, Halifax, Canada (CYHZ), which was considerably closer.


The last lesson in U.S. Air Force pilot training and every lesson that follows is the same: “Fly the airplane!”

But as they neared the airport, the crew indicated they would need more time to run checklists and then to get approval to dump fuel. Fifteen minutes after first detecting the smoke, the aircraft crashed into the Atlantic Ocean.

In its investigation, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada concluded that even if the crew had commenced an immediate diversion to Halifax as soon as they knew they had a problem, they would not have been able to maintain control to make a safe landing. According to the common practices of the time, the crew acted prudently. But given what we know about cabin fires today, at the first sign of trouble the crew should have pointed the airplane to the first landable surface, flown as fast as possible, and landed overweight.

Reviewing each of these accidents with the benefit of hindsight involves a great deal of second-guessing, and I am certainly guilty of “Monday morning quarterbacking.” The point, however, is to understand that we pilots must never forget to fly the airplane first, to make our decisions based on the safety of the airplane and not the pressure brought to bear by outside forces. Taking care of the crew and passengers begins with taking care of the airplane.

Who’s Flying the Airplane?

Over my Air Force career, I flew formation in four aircraft types and found “form” to be one of the most rewarding things we did in military aviation. But in each case, the risk was not taken lightly; the formation was advantageous to the operation. The same can be said of any act of aviation. There is a reason you have been entrusted with harnessing tens of thousands of pounds of thrust during a takeoff that could require split-second decision-making if something goes wrong. There is a reason you are the one manipulating the controls of a high-speed aircraft approaching a slab of asphalt with a load of passengers oblivious to the dangers you are so skillfully avoiding.

After you become comfortable defying gravity for a living, you might let your guard down to these risks because you’ve successfully defied them for so long. But you can never become complacent to the risks. You should always remember the basic pilot skills needed to keep things under control. You cannot cede control of an aircraft you have been charged with flying, and you cannot become blind to committee-think when CRM attempts to take over. It is up to you to never become a passenger in Row 1 of any aircraft. You are, after all, the pilot.
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#33
From the magazine "flying".

Amazing difference between the US and Australia.

In the US legislating to guarantee aviation growth.

In Australia legislating to guarantee Aviations decline.


Senate Introduces Flight Act of 2017
Sen. James Inhofe spearheads the GA-friendly bill as experts point to $100 billion in needed airport infrastructure improvements in the next five years.
By Jake Lamb  9 hours ago

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Jim Inhofe
Sen. Jim Inhofe (pictured in 2016) spearheaded the Flight Act of 2017 in support of general aviation airports and other aviation factors.
James Inhofe/Facebook
Infrastructure investments at U.S. general aviation airports may become a lot more flexible thanks to a bipartisan bill introduced by Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) and Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.).
S.1320, the Forward Looking Investment in General Aviation, Hangars, and Tarmacs (Flight) Act of 2017, among other things, moves to reform Non-Primary Entitlement (NPE) funding, cut red tape for environmental reviews for GA airport projects, and designates certain airports across the country as “Disaster Relief Airports.”
Inhofe, a member of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee and a certified pilot with over 11,000 hours, boasted many positive reasons for the legislation.
“Our general aviation airports are vital to aviation safety and positively impact the efficiency of large commercial airports, emergency medical operations, law enforcement activities and agriculture and small businesses activities throughout the United States,” Inhofe said in an announcement on his website. “These airports also manage military-related air operations, which directly supports the readiness of our armed services. To enjoy these benefits, it is vital that our GA airports are equipped to handle their day-to-day demands.
“Oklahoma is home to 96 GA airports, which will need $303 million in critical infrastructure updates over the next five years. As a pilot myself, I know first-hand the needs of the GA community and the Flight Act makes a number of needed reforms to facilitate GA airport infrastructure investment. The Flight Act allows GA airports more FAA funding flexibility, expedites the environmental review process and incentivizes public private partnerships. This legislation builds upon past Congressional efforts to support GA airports and will ultimately grow the positive impact GA airports have on the larger airport ecosystem.”
Duckworth, who is also a pilot, said he also understands why small airports are a benefit.
“As a general aviation pilot, I know how important small and rural airports are to communities across the state of Illinois,” said Duckworth. “That’s why I’m proud to help introduce this bipartisan legislation with Sen. Inhofe to ensure these airports have the resources they need to support local job growth and economic development.”
Most see it as a step in the right direction because of how crucial infrastructure improvement is at GA airports.
"With U.S. airports in need of $100 billion in infrastructure improvements in the next five years, the Flight Act is a positive step forward in helping general aviation airports better serve their communities,” said Kevin Burke, president and CEO of Airports Council International-North America (ACI-NA).
The bill also received positive feedback from AOPA President and CEO Mark Baker and others.
“The Flight Act addresses the growing needs of our nation’s system of airports by providing the FAA with long overdue flexibility it needs to fund important projects,” said Baker. “Maintaining and upgrading runways, taxiways, and aprons and meeting the need for new hangars, helps keep airports and communities vibrant and competitive. This bill also takes a critically important step in recognizing the vital role that reliever airports play in natural disaster relief efforts.”
“We commend Sen. Inhofe’s unwavering commitment to general aviation as the Flight Act — among other things — will reinvest much-needed funding into non-primary airports across the country,” said Mark Kimberling, president and CEO of National Association of State Aviation Officials. “We look forward to continuing our work with the Senator and his colleagues throughout the legislative process and beyond to ensure that our national network of general aviation airports remains the envy of the world.”
Details of S. 1320, the Flight Act:
Reforms Non-Primary Entitlement (NPE) funding by giving GA airports more time to accumulate FAA funding for projects and ensures available discretionary funding originally set aside for GA airports remains available for projects at GA airports through a nationally competitive process.
Improves Project Delivery by extending to GA airport projects the same expedited and coordinated environmental review process used for projects at large congested airports. These reforms would empower GA airports with flexibility to devote needed resources to improving their infrastructure.
Establishes a pilot program for Public Private Partnerships at GA Airports to attract private sector investment for the construction of private hangars, business hangars or investments in other facilities so general aviation airports can grow as hubs of economic activity and job growth.
Designates certain airports across the country as “Disaster Relief Airports”At the rate its going, Australia's disaster relief airports will be Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide,Perth,Darwin and Hobart. With a very large fleet of trucks! and provides access to funding set aside for airports to use for required emergency planning activities, equipment, or facilities. This provision would help designated airports that lack the resources and personnel to adequately prepare for responding to disasters.
Clarifies Aeronautical Activity at Airports by ensuring that the construction of recreational aircraft is an aeronautical activity at airports.
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#34
(06-14-2017, 11:26 AM)thorn bird Wrote: From the magazine "flying".

Amazing difference between the US and Australia.

In the US legislating to guarantee aviation growth.

In Australia legislating to guarantee Aviations decline.

Quote:Senate Introduces Flight Act of 2017

Sen. James Inhofe spearheads the GA-friendly bill as experts point to $100 billion in needed airport infrastructure improvements in the next five years.

By Jake Lamb 17 hours ago
 

[Image: jim-inhofe.jpg?itok=mNq682Oa&fc=50,50]Sen. Jim Inhofe (pictured in 2016) spearheaded the Flight Act of 2017 in support of general aviation airports and other aviation factors.
James Inhofe/Facebook

Infrastructure investments at U.S. general aviation airports may become a lot more flexible thanks to a bipartisan bill introduced by Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) and Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.).

S.1320, the Forward Looking Investment in General Aviation, Hangars, and Tarmacs (Flight) Act of 2017, among other things, moves to reform Non-Primary Entitlement (NPE) funding, cut red tape for environmental reviews for GA airport projects, and designates certain airports across the country as “Disaster Relief Airports.”

Inhofe, a member of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee and a certified pilot with over 11,000 hours, boasted many positive reasons for the legislation.

“Our general aviation airports are vital to aviation safety and positively impact the efficiency of large commercial airports, emergency medical operations, law enforcement activities and agriculture and small businesses activities throughout the United States,” Inhofe said in an announcement on his website. “These airports also manage military-related air operations, which directly supports the readiness of our armed services. To enjoy these benefits, it is vital that our GA airports are equipped to handle their day-to-day demands.

“Oklahoma is home to 96 GA airports, which will need $303 million in critical infrastructure updates over the next five years. As a pilot myself, I know first-hand the needs of the GA community and the Flight Act makes a number of needed reforms to facilitate GA airport infrastructure investment. The Flight Act allows GA airports more FAA funding flexibility, expedites the environmental review process and incentivizes public private partnerships. This legislation builds upon past Congressional efforts to support GA airports and will ultimately grow the positive impact GA airports have on the larger airport ecosystem.”

Duckworth, who is also a pilot, said he also understands why small airports are a benefit.

“As a general aviation pilot, I know how important small and rural airports are to communities across the state of Illinois,” said Duckworth. “That’s why I’m proud to help introduce this bipartisan legislation with Sen. Inhofe to ensure these airports have the resources they need to support local job growth and economic development.”

Most see it as a step in the right direction because of how crucial infrastructure improvement is at GA airports.

"With U.S. airports in need of $100 billion in infrastructure improvements in the next five years, the Flight Act is a positive step forward in helping general aviation airports better serve their communities,” said Kevin Burke, president and CEO of Airports Council International-North America (ACI-NA).

The bill also received positive feedback from AOPA President and CEO Mark Baker and others.

“The Flight Act addresses the growing needs of our nation’s system of airports by providing the FAA with long overdue flexibility it needs to fund important projects,” said Baker. “Maintaining and upgrading runways, taxiways, and aprons and meeting the need for new hangars, helps keep airports and communities vibrant and competitive. This bill also takes a critically important step in recognizing the vital role that reliever airports play in natural disaster relief efforts.”

“We commend Sen. Inhofe’s unwavering commitment to general aviation as the Flight Act — among other things — will reinvest much-needed funding into non-primary airports across the country,” said Mark Kimberling, president and CEO of National Association of State Aviation Officials. “We look forward to continuing our work with the Senator and his colleagues throughout the legislative process and beyond to ensure that our national network of general aviation airports remains the envy of the world.”

[b]Details of S. 1320, the Flight Act:[/b]
  • Reforms Non-Primary Entitlement (NPE) funding by giving GA airports more time to accumulate FAA funding for projects and ensures available discretionary funding originally set aside for GA airports remains available for projects at GA airports through a nationally competitive process.
  • Improves Project Delivery by extending to GA airport projects the same expedited and coordinated environmental review process used for projects at large congested airports. These reforms would empower GA airports with flexibility to devote needed resources to improving their infrastructure.
  • Establishes a pilot program for Public Private Partnerships at GA Airports to attract private sector investment for the construction of private hangars, business hangars or investments in other facilities so general aviation airports can grow as hubs of economic activity and job growth.
  • Designates certain airports across the country as “Disaster Relief Airports” and provides access to funding set aside for airports to use for required emergency planning activities, equipment, or facilities. This provision would help designated airports that lack the resources and personnel to adequately prepare for responding to disasters.
  • Clarifies Aeronautical Activity at Airports by ensuring that the construction of recreational aircraft is an aeronautical activity at airports.
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P2 - Excellent catch Thorny how about we share it around... Wink
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#35
Can we (the Government) build it??

From the Oz today:

Quote:Badgerys Creek: building Western Sydney Airport tough for government

[Image: f9b60161a148a7830c3cf9074bb5979c?width=650]Business Council of Australia’s Jennifer Westacott and Infrastructure Partnerships Australia’s John Lyon.
  • Brendan Lyon, Jennifer Westacott
  • The Australian
  • 12:00AM June 16, 2017
[url=http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/aviation/badgerys-creek-building-western-sydney-airport-tough-for-government/news-story/996f7f0739020caf7773bce23383b03b#comments][/url]
Sydney is getting its long-overdue second airport and that is very good news for western Sydney — and the whole country. The federal government and the responsible minister Paul Fletcher deserve credit for pressing the ‘‘go’’ button on an airport that’s been paused since the 1980s.

In choosing to build and operate the airport itself, Canberra will need to overturn recent history and demonstrate that it can deliver major projects as well as the private sector. The recent track record suggests considerable room for improvement.

The NBN could now cost well over $50 billion — and it’s not even half-done; pink batts were the subject of a royal commission; and defence projects have an unrivalled heritage of magnificent cost overruns and project failures.

Airport projects are much more complex than a strip of concrete for planes to land on. It’s been 47 years since the federal government’s last airport, meaning Canberra is exposing itself to unusual risks. The last time it opened an airport, John Gorton was prime minister and the Snowy Mountains Hydroelectric Scheme (Snowy 1.0) was still four years from being finished.

In the intervening four decades, governments have largely moved away from directly owning, designing and operating complex assets like airports. This has been deliberate, not an accident.

Instead, both major parties routinely used public-private partnerships and other mechanisms to get the taxpayer out of the hot seat, having learnt the hard way that government delivery usually sees projects take much longer and be more costly.

Australian studies find that government-procured major projects routinely cost about 30 per cent more than privately financed ones. That’s because privately fin­anced project delivery models see a competition to provide the best asset at the least cost. Investors, not taxpayers, bear the risk.

These same incentives don’t exist in traditional direct government procurement, where taxpayers pick up the tab.

The commonwealth needs to be very awake to the many complex engineering, construction, design, operational, revenue and other business risks it’s taking on, and will need outstanding performance from the corporation it is creating to deliver the airport.

That will cost real money; the commonwealth will need to pay commercial rates to attract the best commercial skills into the public airport delivery company.

Highly skilled personnel will be needed to manage complex risks for everything from the design of the runway and aprons, the construction of pipelines to get fuel to the facility, right through to hi-tech systems to manage aircraft movements. Skilled personnel will be needed to do the commercial design of the passenger and freight terminals, which will dictate the cost and future value of the airport.

Protecting taxpayers will require good models to synthesise commercial disciplines. The government should sell the airport as soon as possible, to make sure it is operationally efficient and to avoid government being aviation regulator and investor.

The airport will also need the NSW and local governments not just involved but in lock-step. While Canberra controls everything inside the airport perimeter, it has no power over land-use planning, transport systems or other matters outside the fence.

Perhaps most of all, the airport company needs a board of deeply experienced and properly independent directors, with the strength to focus on commercial, not political, realities.

The Western Sydney Airport can be a great outcome for the country, but only if the federal government has its eyes wide open to the realities, risks and costs of major project delivery.

Brendan Lyon is the chief executive of Infrastructure Partnerships Australia.
Jennifer Westacott is the chief executive of the Business Council of Australia.
 
MTF...P2 Cool
Reply
#36
Simple answer to the conundrum P2, find someone who has some experience in recently building a major, successful airport. Someone who built an airport on time and under budget. Someone who successfully promoted their airport into a major economic power house for their community, proving that airports are a major benefit for the community, rather than a development sharks wet dream.

Now who could that someone be??
Reply
#37
Business council of Australia;

"The NBN could now cost well over $50 billion — and it’s not even half-done; pink batts were the subject of a royal commission; and defence projects have an unrivalled heritage of magnificent cost overruns and project failures".

Interesting article, not sure I agree entirely though and if these two numpty's are the best of the best then god help is. Yes, anything the Governments touch turns to shit, true. However you don't make money from pink batts sitting in roofs, cables below the ground or military aircraft or Defence force submarines. You do make money from airports. Lots of money.

If the Government had any brains it would set up its own separate aviation business with Directors, and that business is then separated from mainstream government, kept at arms length. That way all the red tape, time wasting, money burning procurement processes can be avoided. Contract the building of the airport to Wagners and a few other private companies. That cuts back the costs by a third. Then own it and start charging landing fees, car park fees and tenant lease fees. It's a licence to print money. Pay off the costs of the build over a period of 10 years and then either keep earning a quid forever and a day from it or flog the asset for a premium price to the sharks and vultures waiting in the wings, and then piss the profits away in a manner that only Governments know best!

Just sayin.......
Reply
#38
(06-16-2017, 05:48 PM)Gobbledock Wrote: Business council of Australia;

"The NBN could now cost well over $50 billion — and it’s not even half-done; pink batts were the subject of a royal commission; and defence projects have an unrivalled heritage of magnificent cost overruns and project failures".

Interesting article, not sure I agree entirely though and if these two numpty's are the best of the best then god help is. Yes, anything the Government touched turns to shit, true. However you don't make money from pink batts sitting in roofs, cables below the ground or military aircraft or Defence force submarines. You do make money from airports. Lots of money.

If the Government had any brain it would set up its own separate aviation business with Directors, and that business is the separated from mainstream government, kept at arms length. That way all the red tape, time wasting, money burning procurement processes can be avoided. Contract  the build to Wagners and a few other private companies. That cuts back the costs by a third. Then own it and start charging landing fees, car park fees and tenant leases. It's a licence to print money. Pay off the costs of the build over a period of 10 years and then either keep earning a quid forever and a day or flog the asset for a premium price to the sharks and cultures waiting in the wings, and then piss the profits away in a manner that only Governments know best!

Just sayin.......

Along the same lines in another hemisphere and on a decaying ATC system with the advantages of possible privatisation (ala the Canuck system)... Rolleyes

Quote:Government bureaucracies slow air travel
John Stossel Published 8:38 p.m. ET June 16, 2017 | Updated 6:49 a.m. ET June 17, 2017

Wonder why your flight is late?

Why planes keep circling?

Why even after you’ve landed, you sometimes can’t deplane?

Bad weather plays a role, but flying is also nastier because American airports use 50-year-old technology.

This shouldn’t surprise us. Government bureaucracies are always slow. That’s as true on the tarmac as everywhere else.

It’s not Federal Aviation Administration workers’ fault. They’re just following the government rulebook that says you must not change something without getting permission first. You must not buy anything without going through cumbersome acquisitions regulations.

The FAA’s new NextGen system was designed to make the system more efficient by using satellites instead of ground-based radar. It would let planes fly closer to each other, speeding up everything. This technology has existed for two decades, but because of the bureaucracy, it’s still being rolled out.

”By the time the government gets the equipment, many times it’s no longer state-of-the-art,” complains Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.

Outside government, progress happens. Uber replaces taxis because Uber is better and safer. Waze is better than paper maps. My laptop, on which I write this, is better than my typewriter.

Outside government, people constantly invent better computers, phones, foods, music…

Within government, people follow the old rules.

So President Trump did the right thing when he said he wants to privatize air-traffic control.

”Our air traffic control system is stuck, painfully, in the past,” said the president. “Billions of tax dollars spent and the many years of delays, we’re still stuck with an ancient, broken, antiquated, horrible system that doesn’t work.”

Trump is right. “Antiquated, horrible” are common descriptions of government monopolies everywhere.

The usual crowd of statists condemned privatization. “Fees will go up, seat size will go down,” complained Sen. Chuck Schumer.

He reminds me of the senators who warned that natural gas prices would “skyrocket” if Ronald Reagan lifted price controls. The opposite happened — prices dropped. Deregulation brought private-sector competition. Competition made all of us better off. I wish Sen. Schumer understood that.

The private plane industry worries about paying higher landing fees. But that’d probably be fair. We small plane users freeload off commercial aviation. Hundreds of passengers on a big jet sometimes wait for a Cessna to land. Everyone should pay user fees to cover costs we impose.

Some resisters of change claim skies will become “chaos” because rival air-traffic control services won’t talk to each other.

This is absurd. Privatization is not a risky libertarian experiment. Canada privatized 20 years ago. There’s no “chaos.” There are fewer delays.
Sixty countries now have forms of user-fee-supported air-traffic control.

Some are developing ways for each plane to use computers keep track of its proximity to other planes and change flight plans to avoid getting too close.

”These countries already use advanced tracking and communications technology that our controllers can only dream about,” says the Reason Foundation’s Bob Poole.

Poole has researched transportation alternatives for decades. He says, “Upgraded air traffic control technology would mean shorter lines for planes waiting to take off, more direct routes between cities and fewer delays for planes waiting to land. That would result in shorter trip times, less fuel used and fewer emissions.”

In the 1980s and ‘90s, both Democrats and Republicans talked about privatizing air-traffic control. But that stopped after Sept. 11, 2001. When people are scared, they want government in control.

But government control means centralized control that avoids disaster by operating slowly, hyper-cautiously checking routes and runways one at a time instead of adjusting instantaneously as weather or landing conditions change.

In today’s world of satellite navigation and digital communications, pilots across America radio the same air-traffic controller to ask for permission to switch flight plans one by one.

Controllers still put paper flight strips in little plastic holders and pass them from one controller to another, much like a bartender sliding a beer down a bar. All this human interaction sends ripples of delay through the crowded skies.

Private is better. It’s already working elsewhere. There’s no reason to keep customers -- and exhausted air-traffic controllers — trapped in a primitive monopoly.
  


MTF...P2 Cool
Reply
#39
 Albo on potential for Badgerys as an 'aerotropolis' - Rolleyes

In a surprising turn of events Albo writes for the Tory paper the Australian and makes a lot of sense in the process... Shy :

Quote:Western Sydney Airport will be an ‘aerotropolis’ of jobs, opportunity
  • Anthony Albanese
  • The Australian
  • 12:00AM June 22, 2017
Since its birth a century ago, air travel has revolutionised the way we live our lives and do business.

It has helped to create a world that’s more interconnected than ever before. It has brought us closer to family and friends. It has broadened our horizons and given us the opportunity to explore our nation and the world beyond. And it has facilitated trade and commerce on an unprecedented scale.

Today, aviation is a $3 trillion a year global industry employing 29 million people.
And at its heart are airports.

But this infrastructure is more than just places where you catch planes, hold in-transit meetings with business associates, or do a bit of duty-free shopping.

Indeed, to fully appreciate the potential of airports you need to look beyond their runways and terminals.

Increasingly, they are being acknowledged as powerful drivers of regional economic development.

Just as in the past economic and employment activities sprang up around sea ports, railway hubs and highways, they are now springing up around airports, drawn by the fast, efficient connections they offer to markets domestically and internationally.

As world-renowned academic from the University of North Carolina, John Kasarda, has written: “Airports continue to transform from primarily air transport infrastructure to multimodal, multifunctional enterprises generating considerable commercial development within and well beyond their boundaries.”

Kasarda has described this worldwide phenomenon as the rise of what he has termed the “aerotropolis”.

Airports are sought-after neighbours by a growing number of organisations and industries. They include manufacturers, aerospace companies, health and education providers, logistics and transport firms, retailers, as well as the operators of hotels, conference facilities, exhibition centres and entertainment complexes.

They also include corporations engaged in international commerce that simply want to base their globetrotting executives and professionals within a short commute of the flights they regularly need to catch in order to meet clients, suppliers and business partners.

For example, the trailblazing Amsterdam Aertropolis is home to more than 1000 firms, including the global headquarters of ABN Amro, and financial giant ING.

Meanwhile, 2000 companies and four Fortune 500 HQs are ­located in the Las Colinas precinct near the Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport in Texas.

Furthermore, consider this: right now there are 450,000 jobs within an 8km radius of O’Hare International Airport, which is located some distance from Chicago’s CBD. And research by Kasarda and his colleague Stephen Appold found that those jobs are relatively well paid.

In short, airports are proven investment and job magnets.

Our ambition for the Western Sydney Airport must be nothing less than this.

Given Sydney’s Kingsford Smith Airport — the country’s busiest, most important hub — is near capacity, building Badgerys Creek is in the national interest. But it also has the potential to transform western Sydney’s economy and address its biggest challenge: a lack of local jobs.

At present there are only 0.75 jobs for every local worker. As a result, hundreds of thousands of western Sydney residents must travel daily to other parts of the city for work, with many having to commute for up to two hours each way on increasingly congested roads.

But the airport’s potential to attract new high-value industries and tens of thousands of new jobs to western Sydney will only be realised if we get the planning right.

A successful aerotropolis doesn’t just happen. And that planning must be accompanied with a guarantee that the airport will be connected to Sydney’s passenger rail network from the day it opens.

Again, modern, reliable public transport is critical to the development of the aerotropolis model.

What’s more, laying the rail line at the same time the airport is being built would maximise opportunities to access value capture to help pay for the construction of both.

Further, this construction activity is an opportunity to skill new apprentices recruited from the western Sydney community.

Lastly, if you want a glimpse of what the future of western Sydney could look like if the planning is right, you need look no further than what is springing up just north of the airport site.

Sydney Science Park is an ambitious $5bn project that promises to turn 280 hectares of paddocks into an epicentre of research, innovation and education. All up, it will bring more than 12,000 “knowledge” jobs to the region.

It will also have the highest number of green-star-rated buildings in the country, host Australia’s first kindergarten to year 12 science, technology, engineering and mathematics school, and house more than 10,000 residents.

In the words of the park’s western Sydney-based proponent Celestino: “This is not a science park as much as it is a new science city.”

In 1949, then prime minister Ben Chifley observed that: “Civil aviation has revolutionised life in the outback. Every community is within a day’s flying of a capital city and medical help is never more than a few hours away. Distant places are no more.”

More than 60 years later, aviation is not only connecting Australians to each other and with the rest of the world, it is also revolutionising the development of our cities and regions.

If we get it right, the Western Sydney Airport will be much more than a runway and a terminal.

It will be a fully fledged aerotropolis, and western Sydney will be at the forefront of the industries and jobs of the future.

Anthony Albanese is the federal opposition’s Transport and Infrastructure spokesman.
 
Dare I say maybe Albo is due a choccy frog from the IOS after showing a greater understanding of the important benefits to the greater economy through promotion of aviation in this country... Big Grin


MTF...P2 Cool
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#40
Old Pilot and Chili.
A young, newly anointed instructor struts into the Aeroclub bar. He sits at the bar and notices a grizzled old grey beard with his arms folded around and staring blankly at a full bowl of steaming chili.

After fifteen minutes, with his stomach growling and noticing the kitchen was already closed, the newby pilot, now ravenously hungry, bravely asks the old flyer, "If you're not gonna eat that, mind if I do?"

The old veteran of tens of thousands of flying hours slowly turns his head toward the young pup and says, "Nah, you go ahead." Eagerly, the young fighter pilot, wearing a crisp new uniform shirt, with shiny new epaulets in contrast with the veterans tarnished ragged set sagging off his shoulders, reaches over and slides the bowl into place and starts spooning it in with delight.

He gets nearly down to the bottom of the bowl and notices a maggot infested dead mouse in the chili. The sight was very shocking and he immediately barfed up the chili back into the bowl.

The instructor pilot quietly says, "Yep, that's as far as I got, too."

Not much to snippet this week, but this little story sort of reminds me how I felt reading wing nuts missive in the friday OZ.
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#41
From News.com.au

THE argument for city folk to relocate to Australia’s regional towns and cities is not a completely ridiculous one.
Compared to the capitals their property prices look almost affordable, land blocks are huge and the health and mental benefits of that clean country air go alright as well.
But there’s one crucial element that’s always left out of this discussion — access.
Getting in and out of Australia’s smaller cities is not only a time-consuming pain, it’s bloody expensive.
A Q & A audience members gained a round of applause when he pointed this out at an Alice Springs filming of the ABC program last night.
The man said he and his wife had booked their honeymoon next month and it was costing more to fly from Alice Springs to Adelaide, return, that it was to get from Adelaide to Croatia and back.
“Tourism would be higher and more people would live in Alice Springs if the prices weren’t so expensive,” he said.
At the time of publishing, the cost of the next available flight from Sydney to Alice Springs was at $711, whereas Sydney to Adelaide was as cheap as $158.
If you were to plan ahead, as the airlines recommend, flights to Adelaide were similarly priced, about $175 to $250, but the trip to Alice Springs was just below the $700 mark.
The Hilltop Hoods at Alice Springs Airport ahead of their gig this weekend ... Picture: PHIL WILLIAMS
The Hilltop Hoods at Alice Springs Airport ahead of their gig this weekend ... Picture: PHIL WILLIAMSSource:News Corp Australia
Chair of Tourism Central Australia Dale McIver didn’t argue with the questioner, saying she had sat down with the two major airlines that fly to the remote Northern Territory town, and said their explanations didn’t suitably justify the high prices.
“We have locals here in Alice Springs that will drive 450km from Alice Springs to Uluru to get a cheaper flight.”
Territorian MP Warren Snowdon said the explanation was “pretty simple”.
“Price gouging” he said. “We don’t have control over those airlines. They make their choices. They make the decisions. They know they’ve got a captive market. So they milk us.”
In Western Australia, the high costs of flights to regional airports has made such an impact a parliamentary inquiry has recently committed to investigate the issue.
WA Tourism Minister Paul Papalia said the committee had the power to “get to the bottom of why these fares are so expensive and give airlines the opportunity to provide solutions”.
The question over the huge cost of flying to regional Australia also captured the attention of One Nation leader Pauline Hanson earlier this year.
Pauline Hanson said local landing fees where to blame when she tried to explain "regional aviation economics" to her Facebook followers in April. Picture: Pauline Hanson's Please Explain/Facebook
Pauline Hanson said local landing fees where to blame when she tried to explain "regional aviation economics" to her Facebook followers in April. Picture: Pauline Hanson's Please Explain/FacebookSource:Facebook
In a lengthy Facebook post and accompanying video, Senator Hanson’s explainer of “regional aviation economics” said costs were driven by demand, competition and the cost of operation, and that council-set landing costs were the highest drivers of flight costs.
It’s not that we want to second-guess Ms Hanson, but we thought we should straight to authorities to find out for ourselves.
According to experts, it’s a combination of landing fees, fuel costs, aircraft and crew costs, as well levels of demand and the volume of traffic on any route.
A spokesman for Qantas told news.com.au the airline was aware of community frustration about pricing.
“We’ve been in discussions with regional communities for some time about their concerns on pricing,” the spokesman said in a statement.
“We can understand it’s frustrating when sale fares on longer routes are cheaper than some regional fares, but this has a lot to do with economies of scale.”
Qantas explained the per-kilometre cost for smaller aircraft in smaller markets was “significantly higher”.
“These dynamics are true to regional routes across Australia as well as domestic markets overseas,” the spokesman said.
While acknowledging costs were high, the airline said it was still possible to get a bargain in an out-of-the-way destination.
“We have regular sales to and from destinations across regional Australia.”
Qantas chose not to respond questions from news.com.au about Mr Snowdon’s claims of “price gouging”.
A Virgin Australia spokeswoman said the company is “committed to providing competitive airfares on regional routes.
“Airfares on these routes are driven by a combination of factors, including demand, competition, operating costs and airport pricing and taxes.
“Virgin always encourages people to book as early as possible to access cheapest flights.”
Regional carrier Regional Express Airlines (REX) has previously said it couldn’t compete with major carriers servicing big city destinations.
“Unfortunately the cost of doing business in a regional marketplace isn’t conducive to producing those types of fare levels,” a spokesman said.

Passing strange??
Did a bit of a trawl overseas to see how things stack up around the place in comparison with Australia. Regional travel in the USA is significantly cheaper than Australia. Similar aircraft used, similar route distances.
For sure economy of scale has an effect, given the higher population, but I don't think this can adequately explain why things are just so expensive here. I got to pondering, way back when, a company I worked for, calculated the cost of "Compliance" added around 10% to operating costs.Given the incredible growth of regulation in Australia, and the big R's interference in the way a business is managed, would you believe down to dictating who an operator can employ and who they can't, just what percentage of turnover has the cost of "Compliance" reached in todays Australian regulatory environment?
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#42
Also from news.com.au

DO YOU ever get the feeling we Aussies pay a lot more for air travel than other people?
Well, you’re spot on.
Australians are among those who typically fork out the most money for their airfares, according to the latest price flight index by online travel agent Kiwi.com.
The index takes into account the price of domestic and international air travel for customers in 80 of the world’s most-visited countries, looking both at budget airlines and full-service flights.
It calculates the average ticket cost for every 100km of travel, using high and low season flight costs for more than a million journeys.
And then it ranks each country from the cheapest average flight price through to the most expensive.
Australia was ranked at 69 of the 80 countries listed. New Zealand was at number 17, the United Kingdom at 27 and the United States at 30.
Malaysia was identified as the least expensive overall for airfares, with an average cost of $5.63 per 100km. Romania came out on top for the cheapest domestic flights ($4.09 per 100km) while Sweden was found to have the cheapest international fares ($1.76 per 100km).
Kiwi.com chief executive Oliver Dlouhy said ticket prices fluctuated constantly, based on a number of factors.
“Year on year changes can partly be attributed to fuel prices, sociopolitical shifts such as Brexit, recent elections and fluctuations in foreign exchange rates,” he said.
“The UK, for example, is seeing a larger number of Americans visit due to the weakening of the pound, whereas Egypt and Turkey saw a drop in ticket prices due to a decrease in demand due to regional turmoil.”
The index found the average cost of flights overall for flying out of Australia was $39.61 per 100km.
Short-haul low-cost flights cost $56.31 per 100km, and short-haul full-service flights cost $70.50 per 100km.
For every 100km on a long-haul flights, Aussie passengers typically paid $13.05 with budget services and $18.68 on full services.
Mr Dlouhy said the index could be useful to customers looking to travel further on their budget.
Last month, news.com.au reported that Aussies travelling to the UK were forking out up to a third more to pay for the same seat on Qantas’ Perth to London service than our British counterparts were paying to fly here.
Qantas said apparent price hike for Aussies — of about 29 per cent in economy, and 33 per cent in business class — was due to a number of factors.
“Like all airlines, our fares at either end of a route can be different for a variety of reasons. These include seasonal market demand, currency strength and exchange, and the general aviation market in each country,” a Qantas representative told news.com.au.

Interesting to see the Kiwi position on the table. Then again, considering they have regulations modelled on the US FAR's not surprising. Their regulatory suite being adopted throughout the Pacific, Australia's home grown gobbledygook making us stand out like a pimple on the bum of the world completely out of touch with everywhere and that costs a premium.
Are we safer than anywhere else? Statistics would say nope...just a hell of a lot more expensive. We really are turning into a dumb country.
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#43
Bugger all in the aviation section of the Friday OZ. But this article caught my eye. With a few key words subsituted it paints an almost perfect picture of why general aviation is in such a mess in Australia.  


DANIEL WILD The Australian12:00AM July 7, 2017

A popular myth is that Australia survived the 2007-08 global financial crisis because our major banks didn’t collapse and a tech­nic­al recessi­on was never called, but closer inspection reveals we didn’t survive the GFC. Indeed, the prospects for many workers and businesses have never been worse.

Nonetheless, we should be optimisti­c about our future­. Here are five steps the government should follow to turn the economy around and restore prosperity.

Step one is to stop living in denial­. The economy is in bad shape Our whole industry is in very bad shape). Private sector real wages went backwards by 0.3 per cent over the past year. Business investment is expected to reach a record­ low 9 per cent of GDP in just three years. And the unemployment rate is closer to 15 per cent when those marginally attached­ to the labour force are counted, as Adam Creighton showed on this page on May 22.

Meanwhile, annual income growth has been 65 per cent slower since the GFC than in the years between the Keating recession and the GFC. And to top it off, ­government debt will reach $725 billion by 2027-28. All this after 26 years of unbroken econo­mic growth.

Step two is to understand we can do something about it. The Grattan Institute recently found that two-thirds of the decline in non-mining business investment is due to “benign long-term structural changes in the economy”. in other words, sit back and watch decline unfold.Exactly what our political and bureaucratic elite has been doing for the past thirty years) But decline is a choice. Their choice. certainly not the GA industries

Bad policy has caused economic decay. Good policy delivers recovery.

Bad policy has brought a whole industry to its knees.

Step three is to acknowledge that we do not have a deficiency in aggregate demand. We have a collapse­ in the capacity of the economy to generate wealth. This is why productivity growth and investmen­t are low. When there are fewer things of value being produced, there is less income being generated.

Calls for more government interve­ntion to support aggregate demand are wrongheaded. We have had a decade of deficits, monetary easement and public infrastructur­e spending. Yet, instead of productivity and growth, all we managed was more debt.

Step four is to stop listening to the usual suspects. Especially the self appointed experts at the regulator. The experts reside in the industry.

We were told by the Treasury, the Reserve Bank of Australia and numerous private­ sector economists not to worry about the end of the mining investment boom. Non-mining investment would pick up once the exchange rate depreciates and interest rates and wages drop.

Well, the exchange rate is down 25 per cent since 2011, interest rates have been at record lows since 2013, and many Australians haven’t had a pay rise in years. Yet non-mining business investment is missing. The usual suspects have long been forecasting that busi­nes­s investment and growth would come back. But how?

Which brings us to the last step: eliminate bad policies.Yep, scrap the crap CAsA has already produced and adopt US FAR's There are many to choose from, from high corporate and personal income tax rates to an overbearing regulatory state. One area often talked about but seldom acted upon in earnest is red tape.

Most people think of it as a few pesky forms that must be filled in, Mate you should see what aviation has to fill in, CAsA by itself generates enough paperwork to soak up half the worlds rain forests or a couple of hours on the phone to the local council.

However, what most people don’t know is that it can take up to 5000 licences, approvals, and permits to set up a new mine, as was the case with the Tad’s Corner Project in central Queensland’s Galilee Basin. not much different in Aviation, but a whole lot more expensive

Meanwhile, starting a new restaurant in NSW requires filling out 48 different forms and obtaining 72 licences.

Red tape could well be the biggest­ impediment to growth in Australia. That has certainly been the case in Aviation

Recent IPA research found that red tape costs Australia $176bn a year in lost econo­mic output. This makes red tape Australia’s biggest industry. The good news is that there is a lot of low-hanging fruit.

Here is where the government should start. Implement a one-in, two-out policy, meaning that for every new rule or restriction implemented, two must be repealed. Thats what CAsA does only in reverse. ICAO mandates ONE. CAsA brings in FIVE.

Of course it is a crude approach, but it is easy to implement and worked wonders in the Canadian province of British Columbia. Abolish the energy efficiency equipment program that mandates minimum energy efficiency levels for commercial and residential equipment and appliances, and which adds to the cost of products without making a difference to the environment.

Eliminate section 487 of the federal environmental law, which allows green groups to sabotage development without incurring the costs of their actions.

Remove domestic regulation of product safety standards and instead­ permit market entry of all products cleared by overseas regul­ators of good standing.

Domestic regulations add to compli­ance costs without improving safety outcomes. In the case of CAsA very true. No better safety outcomes having spent half a billion dollars and counting. They are only half finished with the so called "reform" program. Tens of thousands of pages of regulation, with not a shred of evidence that they have had any affect whatsoever on what they are intended to do, other than decimate a complete industry

There is no shortage of red tape. The government should start cutting. It will make a bigger difference­ than most people think.

Daniel Wild is a research fellow with the Institute of Public Affairs and previously advised on macroeconomics at the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.
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#44
Interesting article thorny... Wink

Much like aviation, these economic experts and commentators continue to provide free of charge good factual analysis with simple solutions for the problems that are currently inhibiting growth in the Australian economy. Yet the fat cat bureaucrats and pollywaffles in Can'tberra continue to ignore all the free advice while slurping from the taxpayer trough and squabbling amongst themselves - meanwhile the same mistakes get made over and over again... Undecided

Here's another interesting article thorny, on airports and airport development, this time from the other Aunty... Wink

Quote:What Australia can learn from the world's best airports
RN
By Annabelle Quince for Rear Vision

Posted earlier today at 7:00amSat 8 Jul 2017, 7:00am
[Image: 8688314-3x2-700x467.jpg] Photo: Successful airports are built with future capacity increases in mind. (Getty Images: Zgr-pro)


Airports were once nothing more than grassy strips suited for biplanes, with only rudimentary forms of infrastructure.

But after the Second World War, aircraft became bigger and heavier. Accordingly, airports began to pave their runways to handle heavier planes and expand their terminals. They ended up with buildings that looked recognisably like the airports we see today: cities in their own right.

So, what makes a good airport, and are there things we can learn from the world's best?

Privatisation vs government control

Before the Second World War — and for a long time after — most airports were owned and operated by the state. The largest airport in the Netherlands, Schiphol Airport, was owned by the city of Amsterdam until the 1950s.

When it became clear that the city was not willing or able to finance a Schiphol upgrade, the national government of the Netherlands took ownership of three-quarters of the newly upgraded aerodrome.

But governmental control comes with challenges, particularly when the interests of different levels of government come into conflict. This problem, according Douglas Baker, head of property and planning at Queensland University of Technology, is particularly true in Australia.

Listen to the episode
[Image: teaser-to-episode-data.jpg]
Annabelle Quince looks at the best airports in the world.

"On one hand we have airports controlled by national governments expanding, and then we have state planning and city planning expanding around that," he says.

Professor Baker says that the layering of governments can lead to "silences" between the two. "That occurred worldwide, I think — certainly in the United States and certainly Australia."

In the 1980s, under Margaret Thatcher, the British government began to experiment with airport privatisation. Portions of London's Gatwick were sold off, and in Australia airport privatisation accelerated under the Howard government.

Today, Professor Baker says, Australia has the most privatised airport system in the world.

'A shopping mall near a runway'

You can divide the real estate of airports into two categories: air side (runways, hangars) and land side (food courts, duty free stores). Today, Australia's largely privatised airports are among the most profitable businesses in the country — and a large chunk of that profit is not related to aviation.

According to Professor Baker, some 30 to 40 per cent of Australian airports' revenue comes from the land side.

"One of the most lucrative revenue streams is parking," he says.

"They are now businesses. They have shareholders, and the airports have got a turnover to shareholders — and fair enough."

[Image: 8688312-3x2-700x467.jpg] Photo: Airports are major pieces of infrastructure, and a variety of factors can contribute to their success or failure. (Unsplash.com: Skyler Smith, CC-0)

For Antonin Kazda, professor of airport design and operation at the University of Žilina in Slovakia, this throws up something of an existential question for airport operators.

Quote:"Is it still an airport, or is it a shopping mall somewhere near a runway?" he asks.

Professor Kazda argues that the rush to create new revenue streams through commercial development has an impact on what is termed, in the business, passenger experience.
(Intuitively, this makes sense: navigating crowded shops en route to a boarding gate is hardly an enjoyable experience.)

Interestingly, Professor Kazda sees variety by country. In the UK and Ireland, he says airports have become like big shopping malls. "On the other hand, if you go to the US, it's quite the opposite."

Capacity to build

In the 1970s, Singapore's aviation industry faced something of a conundrum. Global air travel was a booming industry, and its existing two airports were struggling to keep up.

These forces led to the development of Changi airport — now consistently voted one of the best airports in the world. For Alan Chong, associate professor at the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies in Singapore, Singaporean governments were right to target aviation as a growth industry.

Quote:"Flights to and from Australia, of course, had to stop over in Singapore at some point," he says.

The new Changi airport, Professor Chong says, was deliberately situated by the sea: with land reclamation techniques ensuring it would have little impact on residential dwellings (at least in theory).

The world's successful airports

For Professor Baker, the world's best airports are Changi, Hong Kong, Amsterdam's Schiphol and Vancouver.

[Image: 8688308-3x2-340x227.jpg]
Photo: Sydney's Kingsford Smith airport is built unusually close to the CBD for a major airport. (Flickr.com: Paula Funnell, CC-BY-NC-SA)

"What makes all these airports a joy to move through is the passenger experience in terms of moving through customs and then moving into the terminals and transferring," he says.

According to Professor Chong, what makes a good airport is government control. "Aviation is a political goal which should not be impeded in any way."

Government ownership ensures that, in the likely event of expansion, airports have an easier time negotiating land acquisition and resettlement processes, he says.

Sydney's new airport

Airport constructions are, like any major work of infrastructure, relatively thin on the ground. So where does the above leave Badgerys Creek, Sydney's long-awaited second airport?

Professor Baker says the first thing to be decided has to be the role of the new aerodrome.

"Do we want an airport that does all the regional hubbing? Do we want an airport that competes directly with Sydney? What type of second airport are we developing?" he asks.

Professor Alan Chong, for his part, is excited. "Building a second airport from scratch is one of the most wonderful things in anyone's national development plan," he says.

"An airport is no longer just a bricks and mortar facility for aviation transit, it has to be a destination in itself."
MTF...P2 Cool
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#45
IA chief believes airport privatisation the way to go... Rolleyes

While on the airport development and ownership theme I note the following article from IA Chair Mark Birrell, via the Oz:

Quote:Mark Birrell: Privatisation paves the way to prosperity
  • Mark Birrell
  • The Australian
  • 12:00AM July 21, 2017
[url=http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/aviation/mark-birrell-privatisation-paves-the-way-to-prosperity/news-story/a516f6acac9fdc67e3d5b8ce1eb75615#comments][/url]
Airport privatisation has a great deal to teach us. We know from Australia’s experience that private sector ownership of economic infrastructure has delivered better outcomes for customers and — with the right goals and regulatory structures — we are getting more efficient and responsive services.

As Caroline Wilkie rightly pointed out in her article on airport ownership last week, the privatisation of aviation operations and assets more than two decades ago has more than doubled the passenger capacity at our nation’s major airports and supported the growth of our tourism and freight export industries.

Contrast this with the system up until the mid-1990s where Australia’s main airports were government-owned and run.

Prior to privatisation, airports failed to keep pace with demand, investment lagged and there were few incentives for service improvements. As the Productivity Commission found, this led to productivity at Australian airports’ falling significantly short of international best practice standards.

Under private ownership and an independent regulatory framework, the aviation sector has performed remarkably well. With effective oversight of prices and service quality across our aviation services, there is a higher level of certainty for industry players, and more room for innovation and competition to thrive. There will be legitimate questions by travellers about ancillary services like car parking costs at major airports, but the overall consumer and user experience is vastly improved.

Unfortunately, we have not seen the same success replicated in a number of other infrastructure sectors. There is still a significant task ahead for governments to further reform our energy sector, and commit to a new round of policy and regulatory reforms in water and transport.

Infrastructure Australia has always held the view that markets are the best mechanism at our disposal for delivering effective, efficient and high-quality infrastructure services.
But in the past, our infrastructure sectors — energy, telecommunications, water and transport — have been dominated by public monopolies. This ownership and management structure offers limited incentives to deliver infrastructure successfully and fairly, as governments have conflicting goals when they are simultaneously the user, owner, operator and regulator of services.

The default role of government in the delivery of services from economic infrastructure should be to set the right conditions to ensure the efficient use of the infrastructure. Governments must have the best planning, regulatory and market structures.

In areas where competition within a market is possible, such as electricity generation and retailing, the direct role of government as a market participant distorts outcomes and reduces customer benefits. In these circumstances, governments are better off taking a regulatory role and ensure that at all times the market operates in the long-term best interests of customers.

In the coming decades there will be a need for the Australian economy to harness new technology and service innovations that will also disrupt traditional models of supply.
Under private ownership, the aviation sector is well positioned to take advantage of the coming technological changes — and respond with the right investment decisions.

We should therefore hold up airport privatisation as a model that can be followed in other sectors. And in doing so we should never forget that the original moves to turn the centralised Federal Airports Corporation into a set of locally run, modern private airports were not free of challenges or critics. Some will continue to argue that privatisation is a failed experiment, but I would encourage them to look to our aviation sector for an example of how targeted reform has delivered a better system that facilitates the movement of people and goods quickly, safely and at low cost.

Mark Birrell is the chairman of Infrastructure Australia.
  
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