Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The Reason for Congressional dysfunction - July 26, 2016

Dysfunctional Relationship
The Reason for Congressional dysfunction
July 26, 2016

To put it briefly, it's minority rule. 
In the House, under the Hastert Rule -named for a disgraced  former Speaker - legislation cannot be voted on unless a majority of the majority approve
So, as little as 26% can block votes. In the Senate, as explained to me by former Senate Republican Leader Bob Dole, unanimous consent is required for most votes. Any one senator can place an indefinite and anonymous hold on legislation and the mere threat of a filibuster normally stops the Senate cold.
These congressional rules used by both parties thwart majority rule and popular will in a way never imagined by the Founding Fathers and not supported by anything in the Constitution.

They enable partisan factions, or even a single member of Congress, to block legislation and even shut down the government. When approval of a governing legislature sinks to single digits in other countries it often leads to revolution or a coup.

Short of that, or a state-called constitutional convention, both parties and both presidential candidates should make restoration of majority rule in Congress a cornerstone of reform for 2017.  
Otherwise it will be SOS going forward, as practical, popular and needed legislation is continually smashed, needed compromises cannot happen and American government will continue as by and for entrenched special interests. 
Paul Hudson
President, FlyersRights.org
Sarasota, Florida

The Newsletter couldn't miss a chance to take advantage of the Brexit-devalued Pound Sterling, so it''ll be touring the UK until mid-August, and experiencing several flights as a refresher of passenger rights abuses, albeit, nothing like in the US. Until then, we'll be bringing you some Timeless Greatest Hits from older editions. Stay tuned...
Pie In The Sky!
Orig. published Feb. 3, 2016 

Will the Earth still turn if we all stayed home and didn't fly? That's one of the many many suggestions you've proposed to FlyersRights. The letters-to-the-editor we receive show a deep well of anger among air travelers. 

So, in this newsletter we highlight some of the gems you've sent in:

- Let's make a statement to the airlines, just to get their attention, and pick a day or week where we'll agree not to fly anywhere. 

- After 15 minutes, an airline would be penalized $10 for every minute a passenger stood in line at check in.

- If anyone on board a flight finds that another passenger paid less for a ticket, everyone who paid more will get a refund.
- No plane would leave the gate and taxi to the runway until it was cleared for flight, saving the airline gas and the passengers time.

- The overhead compartment would be for the exclusive use of the passengers sitting underneath it. No one else could put anything in it without written permission.

- Every plane would have an aisle wide enough to permit a passenger to maneuver past a drink cart to the bathroom. 

- Prohibit irritating announcements. For example, no crew member would be allowed to thank everyone for their patience after a two hour delay, when passengers aren't patient, but mad as hell.

- Passengers would get to judge the In-Flight Entertainment as 'Good', 'Acceptable', 'Poor' or 'Nonworking.' If the vote averaged less than 'Acceptable,' then the airline would provide free in-flight WiFi to affected passengers for a year.

- If your baggage went to the wrong city, the passenger would be entitled to a free flight to that city after he got his bag back.

- The flight schedules would be based on the average time it took to get from one city to another, from the moment the aircraft door was closed to the moment it was opened at its destination.

- If an airline faked a repair problem and cancelled a lightly booked flight to save money, it would be penalized $100 per passenger. (Airlines are notorious for this, and American Airlines has been fined heavily in recent years for getting caught by the FAA.). Same applies to faked mechanicals, fictitious weather, etc.
- There will be a cash inconvenience refund of $10 per passenger when the plane being boarded is at the gate farthest from the terminal, which is almost always. 

- Banish announcements saying, 'If there is anything flight attendants can do for you to make your flight more comfortable, please don't hesitate to ask.' We know flight attendants have their hands full and are far too busy to help anyone.

- There will be a $10 cash refund for each passenger for every minute the pilot is wrong on his estimate of when the plane will reach the gate. The cash will be handed out as passengers deplane instead of "Thank you for flying with us." 

- The price of a ticket will not be arbitrary but based on the distance between the two cities spanned by the flight. 

- Airlines that raise fares when the price of fuel goes up must lower them when the price of fuel declines.

- When there are more than 10 persons in any line at a check in counter, the airline must open another position. 

- No passenger will wait more than 15 minutes to have his or her baggage delivered at the luggage carousel after landing.

- We put a man on the moon. We built the pyramids. We discovered and mapped DNA. But we can't figure out how to hire personable, well-motivated TSA staff given their obscene budget, and make security check-in a pleasant and efficient experience?

In summary, it's death by a thousand cuts that makes flying such an awful experience. So let's channel this negative energy into motivation and power. 

We're sick and tired and not going to take it anymore!

Getting on a Plane? 
Put This Number in Your Phone:
1 (877) Flyers6
  1 (877) 359-3776

The FlyersRights HOTLINE!

Thank you...

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