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Delta Air Lines, Inc. Message Board

  • h39291 h39291 Sep 14, 2005 8:31 PM Flag

    Don't blame the pilots...

    I've read a lot of posts blaming those greedy pilots for DAL ills.

    Pilots greedy, I think not. Each of those pilots worked 25 years or more for that retirement lump sum. The amount of money they're receiving (500K - 1.2 million in some cases) is justifiable for that amount of time invested in DAL. They're still getting screwed because they will never receive their promised and negotiated annuity checks after bk just like the USAIR guys. That's why all the DAL pilots who are eligible are leaving, they know they will get screwed in bk.


    DAL is entering bk for only ONE reason MISMANAGEMENT. DAL is NON-UNION except for the pilots. POST 9/11 we could/should have been the most nimble competitor out there. DAL could have morphed itself into whatever type of airline it needed to be, to survive in the new post 9/11 airline-environment. AMR made money last quarter, and there every employee group is unionized. Why have they succeeded, one word, leadership. They had a plan they implemented THREE YEARS ago.

    WHAT DID DAL MANAGEMENT DO post 9/11? NOTHING until the fall of 2004!!! They never even asked for pilot concessions until three years after 9/11. They never cut any pay for other employee groups for that matter until after the pilots pay was cut. WHY THE DELAY?

    I'll tell you why. Because Leo Mullin and Fred Reid didn't want to give the "appearance" of a need to do anything. Their compensation packages were heavily weighted in stock options. They wanted to keep the stock price up... period. They did not want to make it "seem" like DAL needed to do anything. So they did NOTHING but continue the business as usual appearance to the public and DAL employees. In order to fund this charade, Michelle Burns (former CFO) borrowed close to 20 Billion dollars. Then like the thieves they were they left within months of negotiating millions of dollars in bonuses that they termed "retention bonuses"!!!! GIVE ME A @%$%$@%$# break, retention bonus. Doesn't that mean the person would be retained? EVERY single person in management that received a retention bonus took it and ran to the nearest door and left DAL. The result MILLIONS of dollars flushed down the management toilet and a CEO that is not up to speed with the post 9/11 airline environment.

    Sooooo Gerry G. comes along in Jan. 2004 and what did he do? He wasted 10 months doing a corporate assessment of DAL finances. Gerry was on the DAL board since 1987, shouldn't he have known what kind of shape DAL is in??? If he wasn't familiar with DAL financial shape then why were we paying him to be on the board??? GERRY is quoted as saying he was shocked at the sad shape DAL was in in spring of 2004. "I had no idea Delta was in this condition? As a matter of fact I heard him say that personally at a roadshow at the PTC Wyndam. Gerry said he was shocked that the former DAL CFO M. BURNs had borrowed 20 billion dollars to keep DAL solvent. The truth is DAL borrowed the bulk of DAL debt 12-13 billion just to buy RJ's. the rest was to pay other bills. Gerry claims the RJ's are self-financing??? Oh yeah, well the CASM for legs under two hours are twice that of a 757, if the leg is longer than two hours than the CASM for an RJ is still 50% higher than the 757. THE NUMBERS COMING FROM MANAGEMENT DON'T MAKE SENSE.

    btw...former DAL CFO M.Burns has since left DAL to go to bankrupt MIRANT here in ATL. Where she has had great success negotiating more "retention bonuses" for those executives.

    I lay the blame of DAL's fall from profitability at the feet of LEO MULLIN, FRED REID, Michelle Burns and the rest of the DAL executives who failed to lead...If you want the full list I can post all the executives who received retention bonuses. I've posted it before but it's been awhile.

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    • i guess your ego prvents you from reading. visual processing problem?

    • i think you need to put your ego back in your shorts and read some of my prior post

    • if you are asking about gas he was not correct

    • I too have read a lot of posts blaming those greedy pilots for DAL ills. And this is just one more post for you to read.

      Everyone is very emotional at this moment in the history of Delta Air Lines. This is a very sad moment and I wish everybody good luck.

      As sad as it is, some of us may want to know the most important factor that led Delta to this historic moment. Is it the speculative fuel cost environment? Speculative fuel cost is one of many factors, but it is not the most important factor. Is it the mismanagement? Yes, it is. But it is the mismanagement by both Delta Airlines AND the DALPA. You discussed, rightly or wrongly, Delta mismanagement in details, so it is not necessary to repeat it here. But you did not discuss the DALPA mismanagement in details. However, you did mention the mismanagement by the DALPA in your original post. Surprised? Let me begin this discussion by using your own words:

      "WHAT DID DAL MANAGEMENT DO post 9/11? NOTHING until the fall of 2004!!! They never even asked for pilot concessions until three years after 9/11. They never cut any pay for other employee groups for that matter until after the pilots pay was cut. WHY THE DELAY?"

      Read your own words again and then look at yourself in the mirror. What do you see? What do you feel? Perhaps you don't see an image of a selfish and mislead pilot because you are so bias toward the DALPA. I can't see you and I don't know who you are. However, your own words above and the sequence of the post 9/11 events that led to Delta's historic moment on 14 September 2005 create an image of a selfish and a mislead pilot. (It is unfair for anyone to blame other employee groups because they are non-union, and they have no power and no representation).

      You may be right that Delta management did nothing in order to benefit their compensation packages. "WHY THE DELAY?" you asked. Perhaps Delta management did nothing because your union DALPA is VERY POWERFUL, and because Delta management feared that by just mentioning the dirty words "labor concession" to a very powerful union would create chaos among investors. If your theory of Delta management manipulating the stock price is correct, then you should be fully AWARE that any mention of STRIKE or "HIGHEST PAID TILL BK" by the DALPA would cause the stock to nose dive and thus would not benefit Delta management compensation packages. DALPA knew that it was a very powerful union and it also knew that Delta management was AFRAID of them.


      • 2 Replies to bush_shi_t
      • Finally some hit the nail on the head. DL mgt has been asleep at the switch for the last 15 years. They need to get lean and mean, cut some of the usless layers of mgt and push the responsibility down to the people who know the job best, the ones that do it.
        I've been through this twice and know your pain. You have a choice to make, you can feel sorry for yourselves and watch your company fail or you can leave and watch from a distance, or you can decide that you want your company to survive and that you're part of the solution and do everything you can to make that happen. Which ever you choose, I wish you luck.

      • You told us why Delta management delayed. But you intentionally didn't tell us why DALPA delayed. WHY THE DELAY? I asked.

        Sure, it is the duty of Delta management to ask the employees for concessions. But they didn't and failed miserably because of their weakness and/or greedy attitude. So why didn't DALPA send a signal to Delta management to tell them don't be afraid, and tell them that doing nothing or delaying the negotiation is not the right thing? DALPA DID NOTHING. Why? Because by DALPA WANTED ITS PILOTS TO BE THE HIGHEST PAID FOR MANY YEARS while Delta Air Lines continued facing huge losses. Do the "see no evil, hear no evil," and "you scratch my back, I scratch yours" phrases sound familiar to you? It is perfectly acceptable for Delta management to do nothing and to delay the negotiation as long as DALPA PILOTS ARE THE HIGHEST PAID PILOTS.

        DALPA knew that Delta Air Lines was not profitable. DALPA knew that Delta pilots were the highest paid. DALPA knew that 9/11 event severely hurt the travel industry. DALPA knew that Delta's competitors posed serious threat to Delta's profitability. And DALPA knew that Delta management did nothing. Your survival, you union's survival, other employees' survival, and Delta's survival were at stakes. Despite all these, the DALPA did nothing. Why? And if your answer is it is NONE OF THE DALPA BUSINESS to engage Delta's weak management in the discussion that could have saved Delta from bankruptcy, then I have this to say to you, and only you: If you lost your job, you deserve it. If you lost your pension, you deserve it. If your house is foreclosed, you deserve it. And if your wife left you, god bless you, man!

        DALPA took advantage of Delta's weak management and decided doing nothing to encourage/engage negotiation because of greed and self interest. And what is the outcome of the delaying and doing nothing attitudes from Delta management and the DALPA? Well, the outcome is a bankrupted Delta Airlines, where jobs will be lost, salaries will be severely cut, and pensions will be drastically reduced. Furthermore, many employees and investors also lost money investing in Delta.

        And I won't be surprised that you see will more posts blaming those greedy pilots and Delta management for DAL ills.

    • A F.....g men brother.

    • I couldn't agree with you more......I hope everyone reads this and truly understands what happened to us at this once great Airline!

    • Really, nobody wants to hear it. Now go get a real job. How many hours do you work a week? 12....15....20?

    • Nice try. Your points were very well made with facts and emotion.

      I believe, however, there's enough blame to go around in the DAL case. Poor management, over-paid pilots (in comparison to other airlines)and an organization far too big to sustain in these times. Sorry. JMHO

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