Last Thursday I said that

Last Thursday I said that United would file by bankrupty by the following Thursday. It took only until Monday. I flew the airline this morning, and the pilot sought to reassure passengers that the crew would not be distracted. Now begins the flurry of activity — also known as business as usual — to restructure the airlines. Most of the news stories report on pro-forma activity, such as this piece from Crain’s Chicago Business which describes United’s request for the bankruptcy court to approve agreements with legal counsel, financial advisors, auditors, and public relations advisors.

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Here are answers

Here are answers to your questions about United’s future. The government rejected United’s application for a government-backed loan. (They were seeking $2 billion with $1.8 billion guaranteed by the government.) The vote was 2-1 against with the Treasury and Fed representatives voting against and the Transportation Department voting for. As a result of the government’s rejection, the IAM (machinists’ union) cancelled their vote on contract concessions. Without those concessions and without the government loan, United has said it would file for bankruptcy. United has about $1.6 billion cash on hand and its net assets are positive, but it is losing about $7 million per day and is on track to lose $2 billion this year. They are in the midst of a ten-day grace period (which runs out December 12th) on a $350 million debt…

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A phone card which offers

A phone card which offers 2,500 Mexicana miles for signup. Mexicana is a member of the Star Alliance, so miles can be redeemed for United flights. Also, while United doesn’t participate with American Express Membership Rewards, Mexicana does — so Mexicana’s program can be a useful way to redeeming your AmEx points on United.

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An Elk on the runway

An Elk on the runway caused a jet crash in Oregon. I wonder if some terroist cells are training animals to throw themselfs in front of airplanes? These so-called Suicide Elk must be stopped. The TSA folks could walk the runways looking for specially trained suicide animals intent on terrorizing the nation.

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WTIC-AM NewsRadio is reporting that

WTIC-AM NewsRadio is reporting that a federal (TSA) security screener has been charged with threatening to blow up a security checkpoint. (Note that the link works as of posting, but is likely to change / link thanks to the comedian) STATE POLICE HAVE CHARGED A FEDERAL TRANSPORTATION SECURITY SCREENER AT BRADLEY AIRPORT WITH THREATENING TO BLOW UP A SECURITY CHECKPOINT IN TERMINAL A. WAYNE SALVADOR, 50, OF SPRINGFIELD MASSACHUSETTS IS CHARGED WITH THREATENING AND BREACH OF PEACE. STATE POLICE SAY SALVADOR GOT INTO AN ARGUMENT WITH ANOTHER SCREENER MONDAY, THREATENED TO HARM OTHER EMPLOYEES AND BLOW UP THE CHECKPOINT. SALVADOR WAS ARRESTED EARLY WEDNESDAY WHEN HE SHOWED UP FOR WORK AT THE AIRPORT AND WILL BE ARRAIGNED AT ENFIELD SUPERIOR COURT. Federalizing security workers was an important step in making us safer, wasn’t it?

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