Air Transport World

Blind spot. (Editorial).(condition of U.S. airline industry )(Editorial)

Our ability to describe adequately what is going on in the airline industry, particularly the US industry, has been taxed severely. We've used all the classic metaphors for disaster--train wreck, Titanic, meltdown, etc.--and things just keep getting worse. We're tempted to move onto images of great finality--apocalyptic, for example--but it might be good to hold onto that just in case.

Only a few weeks ago, ATA and others were predicting that US losses this year would be around $5.5 billion, up sharply from December's best guess. As this is written, the new estimate is that without the effects of war, 2003 losses will be $6.7 billion. Let's restate one phrase: Without the effects of war. …

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