"The best domestic carrier in the world is AN, a partner in which UA would be best advised to take some notes from in terms of service"
--Well hey, bucko. If you're going to compare onboard service, at least compare it where the airline environments are the same! AN may have wonderful service, but in reality, they only compete with one other airline, and if the prices are the same as the other airline, then AN will use food as a GIMMICK! Examine the US market where there are about 15 different airlines flying [primarily] the same routes, most of those airlines being super low-fare, and THEN come back and tell me about onboard service.
"You try flying from Chicago to Los Angeles. What real choice is there?"
--Besides UA and AA flying that route, both with MANY flights a day, one could try AA via DFW, DL via DFW, TW via STL, DL via SLC, F9 via DEN, CO via IAH. The possibilities are almost limitless, and the travel times are close enough to being the same as ORD-LAX nonstop.
"Why does not UA take on SWA?"
--Umm...been there done that [still doing that, really]. That's exactly what United Shuttle was formed for about 5 years ago--to compete with SW on the short West Coast flights, and they're doing a mighty fine job at it, too!
"Lets say for a minute that SQ competed head on with UA over domestic US services, far fetched I know, but people's preferences in terms of service, reliability and overall happiness, would leave SQ so far out in front..."
--Yea, it would leave SQ so far out infront until they ended up pulling out of the US Domestic market for lack of profitability. I would love to see SQ come into the US, put nice service on flights, and then find out that the service that they provide puts too high of a price on tickets, and that the passengers would rather save a few bucks by flying another **CHEAPER** carrier.
"the customer would not CHOOSE UA over WN on very few occasions..."
--OH!!! So THAT's the reason why UA carries more passengers than SW on their comparable flights, and the number is growing larger every day!