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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Sept. 17, 2007 / 5 Tishrei 5768

Turbulence Ahead: Think flying is bad now? It'll get much worse if America doesn't upgrade its air traffic control system

By John H. Fund


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | If you think there are more airport delays and cancellations than ever, you're right. The percentage of late flights has doubled since 2002. And as bad as things are now, they're about to get worse. The Federal Aviation Administration predicts there will be 36% more people flying by 2015. If the U.S. doesn't dramatically expand the capacity of its overburdened air traffic control system, the airlines won't be able to keep up with demand and ticket prices will skyrocket.


It ought to be an issue in the presidential campaign that the FAA isn't equipped to clean up this mess. "The FAA as currently structured is impossible to run efficiently," says Langhorne Bond, who ran the agency from 1977 to 1981. BusinessWeek reports the air traffic control network runs on software that is so outdated that there are only six programmers left in the U.S. who are able to update the code. The FAA's efforts to move to a satellite-based system have been plagued by cost overruns and performance shortfalls.


The U.S. Chamber of Commerce warns that if the U.S. doesn't do something dramatic to upgrade its aviation infrastructure, the results will be "devastating." Rationing is already rearing its head as airlines deal with capacity limits by eliminating marginal routes in order to focus on more-profitable ones.


In July, American Airlines announced it was pulling out of Stewart International Airport, a converted Air Force base north of New York City, which local residents once hoped would give them the option of avoiding crowded LaGuardia or JFK. The airline's two flights to Chicago were often full, but running them was uneconomical because of the limited number of landing slots at O'Hare International Airport and the congested airspace around Chicago. "The number of slots at Chicago is not a law of nature," says Robert Poole of the Reason Foundation, who has published a study on commercial aviation reform. "It too is a function of how good — or bad — our air traffic control technology is."


Aviation consultant Mike Boyd says that we can expect airlines to pick up the pace of de facto rationing in the near future: "A lot of small and midsize communities are going to get unpleasant news in the months ahead. . . . Places like Binghamton [in upstate New York]? Forget it. They're going to be doomed."


Some 40 nations, including Australia, Germany, Switzerland, Ireland and Fiji, have taken their air traffic control systems out of their calcified government bureaucracies and created public-private partnerships or self-supporting public-sector corporations that can move more quickly and nimbly to meet challenges. A 2005 report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office concluded that under the new entities have made it possible "to implement modernization projects more efficiently," while "safety of air navigation systems has remained the same or improved."


Since 1996, planes in Canada have been controlled by Nav Canada, an independent user-owned corporation that has unsnarled Canadian airspace. Nav Canada pays for itself through user fees and has thus been able to invest vast sums in new technology while cutting overhead, increasing staffing and raising the salaries of controllers. Airline-related delays have declined and customer service improved.


Even air traffic controllers supported Canada's shift to a privatized system, agreeing that having a government agency ensuring safety while also promoting expansion of air travel was a conflict of interest. In the U.S., privatization isn't popular with the turf-protective Congress, but the alternative — building more runways — faces fierce environmental resistance, and even if overcome would take a decade to implement.


This month I ran into Sir Richard Branson while he was on a PR tour for his new Virgin America airline. He agreed that while customers may rave about Virgin's mood lighting and high-tech entertainment systems, it faces real obstacles if it can't deliver people to their destination on time. "It's one of our biggest challenges, and out of our control," he told me. But it doesn't have to be. Mr. Branson and other airline executives should get together and lobby Congress for a more rational system.


America went to the moon and is on the cutting-edge of much new technology. It's ironic that the U.S. is now a world laggard in adapting its air traffic control systems to a 21st Century economy.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor John H. Fund is author, most recently, of "Stealing Elections: How Voter Fraud Threatens Our Democracy". (Click HERE to purchase. Sales help fund JWR.)

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