04/11/2017

How Basic Economics Could Have Helped United Avoid Its PR Disaster [Watch]

Mollie Hemingway, The Federalist

If there was one thing that 2016 taught me, it was Americans’ widespread ignorance of basic economics. Socialism fails all around the world, but people keep being attracted to it, no matter how many pictures of recently wealthy, now starving Venezuelans are passed around. Candidate Bernie Sanders rallied the troops with talk of free goods and services, as if there is any such a thing as a free good whose cost will not be borne somehow. The problem with non-market economies is that the costs end up being inefficiently set and non-responsive to people’s desires.

Over on the Republican side of the ledger, you had candidate Donald Trump, who liked to note his economic views weren’t all that different from those of the socialist Sanders. His haranguing about the trade deficit led people to cast aspersions on trade itself, despite the economic benefits it clearly provides. If you want proof of failing schools, just consider the widespread ignorance of this basic concept — known for a long time but beautifully laid out by Adam Smith in 1776’s “Wealth of Nations.”

Anyway, United Airlines, which has been deteriorating in quality for many years, is in a bit of social media trouble today for this:

United has confirmed that they overbooked the flight and dragged a passenger off when they didn’t get enough volunteers. United had previously offered money — up to $800 — for passengers to voluntarily get off the flight. The passengers who needed to be seated were United employees who needed to get to another destination in order to work a flight there, apparently. But when $800 wasn’t enough to get volunteers, they used a computer model to randomly select people for removal. A man seated on his flight with a ticket he paid for was then removed forcibly. Now they’re facing a social media backlash as a result. Here’s United’s response:

“Flight 3411 from Chicago to Louisville was overbooked. After our team looked for volunteers, one customer refused to leave the aircraft voluntarily and law enforcement was asked to come to the gate. We apologize for the overbook situation. Further details on the removed customer should be directed to authorities.”

People already are upset with how undignified air travel has become, even if it is relatively cheaper than air travel decades ago. United was also recently embroiled in a (frankly stupid) public relations problem for enforcing its employee dress code on girls who were flying on employee passes. Now this. Being dragged off a plane by brutish security guards for the crime of purchasing a ticket and taking your seat when the airline boarded is something that just doesn’t look good.

But why didn’t United just do the simple thing of understanding that the money it was offering was insufficient and needed to be raised? Laura Begley Broom just wrote in Forbes, “Why Delta Air Lines Paid Me $11,000 Not To Fly To Florida This Weekend.” She was caught up in the recent storm-caused travel delays. While Delta tried to take volunteers for lower amounts, she and her husband negotiated a better deal for their first flight delay. Then they did it again for a second delay. Then they negotiated an additional $1,000 per family member to cancel their trip altogether.

Read full article



You May Also Like:

The Alleged Kushner–Kislyak Meeting: Amateur Hour May Be Worse Than ‘Collusion’ Andrew C. McCathy, National Review

The Ivanka Entitlement Wall Street Journal

The Willful Murder Of Fox News [Watch] Dick Morris Reports

JFK's Surpassing Legacy: Economic Growth Brian Domitrovic, Forbes.com

Left-Wing Media Outlet Attacks Marines On Memorial Day Over ‘Toxic Masculinity’ Charlie Nash, Breitbart News

State High-Risk Pools For Health Insurance Could Play An Important Role After Obamacare Repeal Matthew Glans, Heartland Institute

Political Prisoner Freed Thanks To Trump Is Hoping He’ll Save Others Jackson Diehl, New York Post

Europe Fights Back With Candles And Teddy Bears Giulio Meotti, Gatestone Institute

Meet The Native American Indian Tribe That Helped Deliver Victory To Donald Trump [Watch] Daniel Allott, Washington Examiner

McCain Says Russia Poses Bigger Threat Than ISIS [Watch] Nick Givas, Daily Caller

In 3 Charts, The Biggest Revelations From New Obamacare Study Rachel del Guidice, Daily Signal

Liberals Teach Their Kids To Hate People Who Don't Think Like Them Joseph Curl, Daily Wire

Speaking With Health Care Policy Expert Avik Roy, Part III [Watch] Frank Camp, The Daily Wire

WSJ’s Strassel Destroys Stacked Anti-Trump Panel On ‘Meet The Press’ With Facts [Watch] Nicholas Fondacaro, mrcNewsBusters.org

Body-Slammed Reporter Fantasized About Punching Conservative Teenagers Ryan Girdusky, Red Alert Politics

Charity For The Homeless Refuses Federal Aid, Gets Hundreds Back On Their Feet [Watch] Kelsey Harkness, Foundation for Economic Education

I’m Not A Terrible Person, I Just Believe In Liberty Marianne March, Intellectual Takeout

Liberal Boycott Of Sean Hannity Backfires And Puts Multiple MSNBC Stars In Crosshairs Chris Enloe, TheBlaze

What About Health Insurance For The Poor? Learn Liberty

Liberals Are Shocked To Find We’re Starting To Hate Them Right Back Kurt Schlichter, Townhall

For More go to the Home Page >>>

Search

Bookshelf

FreeMarket Central

Some titles recent, all recommended -

Special Video Feature

FreeMarket Central

Voices From The 2017 International Students For Liberty Conference

In Search Of History

Cambodia's Deadly Experiment

In the 1950s, students started gathering in Paris. They were reading Karl Marx. They were forming book clubs. They were trying to come up with a better version of society. One that moved away from the division of labor. One that moved away from the capitalism in the big cities that they so despised. ... One of those students would change his name to Pol Pot. He and his colleagues formed a new political party, a takeover in Cambodia. They called themsevles the Khmer Rouge. ... Under Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge, one out of four people in that country died in less than four years. 

-- Matt Kibbe,

Shadow Stats Snapshot


FreeMarket Central

ShadowStats alternate economic indicators are based on the methodology of noted economist John Williams, specialist in government economic reporting.

  • Unemployment:
    FreeMarket Central BLS: 4.4%
    FreeMarket Central Shadow Stats: 22.1%
  • Inflation:
    FreeMarket Central April Year-to-Year: 2.20% (CPI-U*)
    FreeMarket Central Shadow Stats: 10.0%

*[cpi-u is the Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation rate for all urban consumers]