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apodino
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Battle For Eastern Airlines

Wed Oct 17, 2012 5:56 pm

I just came across the following videos, which were aired on PBS in the late 80's. This is a very great look at what happened to lead to all the mess at Eastern Airlines, and in my opinion much of it is very relevant today.

Part 1 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSSPAM3vauw&feature=player_embedded
Part 2 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mya5HUDOWX0&feature=relmfu
 
crownvic
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 2:48 am

This is a great documentary of how a once great company, collapses. All airline employees on this forum, should take the time to watch it. OK, some aircraft misidentified, but still great clips and very interesting.
 
B757Forever
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 3:38 am

I too found the documentary quite interesting given that it was aired in the late 80's, 2 to 3 years before Eastern shut down. It gave me a better understanding of how the Texas Air / CO/ EA relationship worked (or didn't work as the case may be)
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uncgso
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 4:20 am

my Dad worked for EA for 25 years ... this brings back memories i had forgotten about since i was a kid ...thanks for posting...
 
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 4:23 am

Frank Borman originally brought Frank Lorenzo in just to threaten the employees. He didn't expect Lorenzo to actually buy the company.
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9252fly
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 5:24 am

In many ways history keeps repeating itself. Thanks for the link to the videos,they were great to watch 25+ years later.
 
thegoldenargosy
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 5:53 am

A certain AAirlne's employes should watch this video. The greatest crime is to forget history and repeat it.
 
B595
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 6:29 am

Fascinating story, albeit sort of bittersweet to watch a historic airline come apart at the seams....

The footage is great - including a rare video of an EA DC-10-30 departure.
 
Max Q
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 7:35 am

Very little of it is relevant today, in fact it was an entirely different situation.


Frank Borman may have been a competent astronaut but he was out of his depth as an Airline Ceo, Technical knowledge is only a small part of what is required for a person in that position. He spent a lot of money buying the very latest Aircraft from Boeing and Airbus betting that high fuel prices would make that gamble pay off and then fuel prices went down.


Other, less indebted airlines were able to capitalize on this error, with cheap fuel you don't need the most efficient aircraft. He went head to head with the unions and Charlie Bryan in particular which was a huge mistake. As a former military officer he just didn't understand you can't just give orders in the civilian world. The best managers in the Airline business lead by example, provide constant communication, encouragement and demonstration of their vision, like Bob Six and Gordon Bethune at Continental, Herb Kelleher at Southwest and Richard Anderson at Delta.



Borman was always a prickly character and was not well liked even within the Astronaut community, in fact on an early Gemini mission Gus Grissom, one of the most popular astronauts refused to fly with him. He had a well deserved reputation as a domineering and arrogant commander who didn't listen to others. This carried on into civilian life.



His gamble that the unions would back down with the threat of Lorenzo at the door was another poorly conceived idea that showed his lack of real world experience and poor judgement.


Of course once Frank Lorenzo was in the door at Eastern there was next to no hope, as incompetent as Borman was, Lorenzo was downright criminal. He was and is still the only Airline Ceo that has been banned by Congress for life from having any position in the Airline industry, the unions may have played a part in Ea's downfall and many on this site love to blame them for all the industry's problems, but an airlines success or failure lies with management at the end of the day.

[Edited 2012-10-18 00:37:20]
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


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GSPSPOT
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 12:05 pm

Quoting thegoldenargosy (Reply 6):
A certain AAirlne's employes should watch this video. The greatest crime is to forget history and repeat it.

...in this, and oh so many other things!
Great Lakes, great life.
 
B757Forever
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 1:50 pm

Quoting B595 (Reply 7):
The footage is great - including a rare video of an EA DC-10-30 departure.


Also a rare shot of a Texas International Convair 600.
The Rolls Royce Dart. Noise = Shaft Horsepower.
 
eastern747
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 4:25 pm

Frank Borman was brought to EA to be a piece of PR. He wormed his way up to the top and was so arrogant and so out of his element. His military training of giving orders was so out of the corporate world. His famous speech to top manage that "he was the conductor and they played the instrument to his tune". He insisted we start trans con in competition with TWA UA and AA even though all of top management, with years of airline experience told him it was wrong. Nobody wanted to move to CA because it was too expensive and their pay wouldn't cover cost. We had to rent gate space and ground handling from TWA. If a TW and EA plane landed at the same time, guess with flight got unloaded first. Our passengers cooled their heals in baggage claim. I think this was a great video and everybody at AA should be forced to watch it. I still have my EA stock in a drawer with my Confederate money. LOL
 
Bobloblaw
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 6:06 pm

The question I have is this:

It was clear from watching this that by 1986, it was interest on the debt not labor costs that were killing them. Why was there never any attempt to reduce debt or interest payments either thru ch 11 or negotiations. They clearly say in the video eal had the lowest labor costs and even if the IAM worked for free, eastern would still lose money. So make the creditors take less thru chpt11.
 
PMUA787
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 7:17 pm

Interesting insights on how Frank Borman and his style of leadership helped bring down EA. Seems like he was similar to Eddie Rickenbacker when he was running the show back in the 40's and 50's.
 
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 7:51 pm

Quoting Bobloblaw (Reply 12):
was there never any attempt to reduce debt or interest payments either thru ch 11 or negotiations.

Keep in mind, Chapter 11 was a far bigger stigma back then than it is today. The prevailing thought was that Ch11 would drive customers away and ultimately result in Ch7 liquidation, so it was never considered a viable option, whereas today it's strategic in nature and consumers hardly bat an eye over it.

I believe taking EA into Chapter 11 back in 1986 would have been the best outcome for the company. Yes, it only fixes your balance sheet, but had that been fixed they could have much more easily competed with other carriers.
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dcann40
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:19 pm

Great find - I hadn't seen these but watching them answered a lot of questions I had.
 
avek00
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:28 pm

Quoting Max Q (Reply 8):
Lorenzo was downright criminal.

...and yet the World's Leading Airline is basically his dream realized, but for the fact that the employees opted to unionize.
Live life to the fullest.
 
skycub
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:35 pm

Is it just me, or is there something strange-looking about that 727 at the 12:40 point of the second video?

Did Eastern have window-less freighter versions of the 727?
My opinions are my own. They are not representative of my employer, my union or my co-workers. They are all mine.
 
Viscount724
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:52 pm

Quoting skycub (Reply 17):
Is it just me, or is there something strange-looking about that 727 at the 12:40 point of the second video?

Did Eastern have window-less freighter versions of the 727?

None that I'm aware of. It's just the poor video quality. You can see the windows if you look closely.

EA did have 25 727-100QCs, the convertible model of the 727-100 with main deck cargo door, but those had windows.
 
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 8:55 pm

Awesome video - seems like Eastern was written off as going out of business about 1.5 - 2 years before they actually did. I feel sorry for the staff that had to endure that. But it is obvious to the interviewees that Lorenzo was raiding Eastern assets for his enrichment and the enrichment of CO.

All that aside - the images of EA (et. al) aircraft in the video are a welcome sight. I glad stuff like this is showing up on the interwebs.
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skycub
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 9:06 pm

Quoting FlyPIJets (Reply 19):
I glad stuff like this is showing up on the interwebs.

        
My opinions are my own. They are not representative of my employer, my union or my co-workers. They are all mine.
 
eastern747
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 9:29 pm

To PMUA787 Capt Eddie bought a small airline and turned it into the largest airline in the free world. Yes, he wasn't a warm and fuzzy grandfather type, but he was respected. He wasn't liked in DC and as a result we lost routes. However. he worked to build EA and was on top of everything...AND listen to those around him, whether they agreed or not. Yes, it is true, Borman used to drive to work in a crappy old car. He had spot number by the front door of BLDG 16. Headquarters! As to the military thing ....most senior management were in the military in WW2, or Korea, and even Viet Nam.(especially pilots). So they all knew how to separate the military stuff from business. Borman must have missed that memo when he was trying to find the moon. Oh,one other ,tidbit...Borman drove a beater to work but he had no shame at using the Lockheed business jet,(we bought L1011s) to fly off to his ranch out west somewhere. The DC-10 pix was probably the MIA-Gatwick flight. As to the 727, I wondered about that to.But we never had freighter. As a footnote, when the Capt. passed away in Switzerland, we sent a DC8-62 to bring him home.
 
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 9:33 pm

Quoting EASTERN747 (Reply 21):
s a footnote, when the Capt. passed away in Switzerland, we sent a DC8-62 to bring him home.

I think you may mean DC-8-63. Don't believe EA operated any -62s.
 
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 9:33 pm

Quoting Max Q (Reply 8):
Borman was always a prickly character and was not well liked even within the Astronaut community, in fact on an early Gemini mission Gus Grissom, one of the most popular astronauts refused to fly with him.

This kind of thing even happens with regular airline pilots. Eventually this type gets a reputation then other guys don't want to fly with him/her and after awhile the Chief Pilot gets involved and calls in the person and asks them why others don't want to fly with them. It's sort of a shape up or ship out type of conversation. From then on they are watched very closely and eventually either move to another airline or are booted. I knew a guy at a major airline that was "professional smart ass". Sure enough nobody wanted to fly with him and a few months after the "conversation", he was gone.
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 9:53 pm

Quoting FlyPIJets (Reply 19):
All that aside - the images of EA (et. al) aircraft in the video are a welcome sight. I glad stuff like this is showing up on the interwebs.

Just wait - I recently uncovered a long-lost VHS tape I have of about 10-15 mid-80s commercials from EA's ad agency, Lintas. I'll get 'em online as soon as I can figure out how to convert them to digital.
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 10:14 pm

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 22):

Quoting EASTERN747 (Reply 21):
s a footnote, when the Capt. passed away in Switzerland, we sent a DC8-62 to bring him home.

I think you may mean DC-8-63. Don't believe EA operated any -62s.

-61 or -63, when Eddie died in 73 those were the only options with the range in the EA fleet. The -51s were gone and the few remaining -21s wouldn't of had the range.
Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
 
Max Q
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 10:27 pm

Quoting avek00 (Reply 16):

Lorenzo was downright criminal.

...and yet the World's Leading Airline is basically his dream realized

That was never his dream, all Lorenzo knew how to do was enrich himself, he was a hopelessly inept leader

Quoting type-rated (Reply 23):

This kind of thing even happens with regular airline pilots. Eventually this type gets a reputation then other guys don't want to fly with him/her and after awhile the Chief Pilot gets involved and calls in the person and asks them why others don't want to fly with them. It's sort of a shape up or ship out type of conversation. From then on they are watched very closely and eventually either move to another airline or are booted. I knew a guy at a major airline that was "professional smart ass". Sure enough nobody wanted to fly with him and a few months after the "conversation", he was gone.

Your comparison is irrelevant. Borman was not hired as a Pilot, but to manage one of the biggest Airlines in the world. His personal shortcomings in this position assisted in the downfall of Eastern, inexcusable.
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Thu Oct 18, 2012 11:40 pm

The airplane porn is great, but I think the most telling part of the documentary is when they discuss the actual empowerment employees had for a short while, and it's almost immediate positive effect on operational performance. Let people lead, and they usually do a fine job. Treat them like they're stupid, and they'll go out of their way to prove you right... Shame Lorenzo & co. were to blinded by their hubris to see it...
"Nothing ever happens here, " I said. "I just wait."
 
jetjeanes
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Fri Oct 19, 2012 2:46 am

Eastern did infact have 727 qc freighter it was called the quick change because they could load seats already mounted to a floor they would raise up and slide down the fuselage,, i dont think they lasted long,
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Fri Oct 19, 2012 2:56 am

I am a bit confused about the ultimate end of Eastern.

Was EA eventually merged with CO, or was EA simply shut down?
Did any of its assets, such as routes or aircraft, go to CO?

Where were EA's hubs? Obviously MIA, and I know that they were big in ATL. Anywhere else?


My mother still has her original OnePass card from 1988 with both the Continental and Eastern logos on it. She became a status flyer in 2009, and is now 1K, but until then she diligently continued to use that 20 year old piece of history!
Worked Hard, Flew Right
 
Max Q
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Fri Oct 19, 2012 4:11 am

Quoting nwaesc (Reply 27):
but I think the most telling part of the documentary is when they discuss the actual empowerment employees had for a short while, and it's almost immediate positive effect on operational performance. Let people lead, and they usually do a fine job. Treat them like they're stupid, and they'll go out of their way to prove you right... Shame Lorenzo & co. were to blinded by their hubris to see it...

Very well said nwa

Quoting RyanairGuru (Reply 29):
I am a bit confused about the ultimate end of Eastern.

Was EA eventually merged with CO,

No, it although it was part of Texas Air, the holding company that encompassed Continental, Frontier, Muse Air, People Express etc it was never merged into the combined operation and was eventually shut down.

Quoting RyanairGuru (Reply 29):
Did any of its assets, such as routes or aircraft, go to CO?

Oh yes, DC9'S, A300'S, DC10's their MIA-LGW route which CAL took over with ex 'PE B747's, I think even their reservation system was 'transferred' In fact if AA had not taken advantage of the gaping hole left in MIA's air service with their visionary hub Continental would have set up a hub there, as usual Lorenzo was too busy screwing everybody and everything up to notice what an opportunity he had missed in Miami.


Most of these assets were basically moved over to Continental with no compensation to Eastern, just another part of Lorenzo's rape of the company.
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


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zippyjet
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Fri Oct 19, 2012 4:42 am

Quoting Max Q (Reply 8):
Frank Borman may have been a competent astronaut but he was out of his depth as an Airline Ceo, Technical knowledge is only a small part of what is required for a person in that position. He spent a lot of money buying the very latest Aircraft from Boeing and Airbus betting that high fuel prices would make that gamble pay off and then fuel prices went down.



Not to play armchair COO/CEO but actually, had Eastern updated during the Rickenbacker era many of these problems could have been avoided or at least delayed. Some of Eastern's undoing actually started to take seed during the advent of the jet age. Rickenbacker felt jets were a fool's indulgence at first and got behind National and Delta to name a few. Eastern put it's late 50's eggs in the basket that was the Electra. Though it's a classic and great looking plane Eastern took a bit of a blow when the flying public felt anything with a propeller was old school and fuddy duddy. Though the Electra had very good performance for the times the public was fickle and again eschewed propellers. Though off topic this was also in hindsight a big mistake for Lockheed back then. Had they gone with a first generation pure jet who knows, their design may have been the benchmark instead of the 8 or 707 we will never know. I know a lot of us here would say that the pure jet market was saturated but maybe Lockheed's first entry could have been an advanced better performing bird to overtake the caravelle. The Electra was a medium range plane imagine had Lockheed rolled out an efficient pure jet that could economically serve Eastern's mid range flights? Back to Eastern I digress:
Eastern was known as the vacation airline. This was great during the nifty go go 1950's and early through middle 1960's when the United States was at it's economic and growth zenith.

Another nail in Eastern's coffin (pre-Borman) were the times. Nixon, the economy and those gouging OPEC scoundrels put a lid on speedy jets, and for that matter muscle American cars. Eastern did not fare well as we went into the austere 70's.
Also, it was sad about the whole Lockheed Rolls Royce engine cluster fu*k. This guaranteed the L1011 was finite. And Eastern went with the L1011 instead of the DC-10. Then of course all the labor strife and the evil New Yorker Darth Vader killjoy to our industry Frank Lorenzo and you then could stick a fork in Eastern and call them done.
Had the economy and life in general were not so miserable in the 70's Borman's fleet modernization campaign would have paid off and who knows the Wings of Man could be still taking to the skies today. I can't wait to view these videos thanks for sharing!
  
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Jamake1
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Fri Oct 19, 2012 5:07 am

Eastern's three major unions went on strike against Frank Lorenzo in 1989. Eastern was forced to shut down and filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. Eastern's most prized assets were sold in addition to the Air Shuttle. The Latin American routes that were inherited from Braniff in 1982 were sold to American Airlines. Eastern hired scabs to operate throughout a prolonged strike, but was unable to secure financing to exit from Chapter 11 proceedings and permanently ceased operations in January 1991.
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Fri Oct 19, 2012 5:16 am

Quoting Max Q (Reply 30):

No, it although it was part of Texas Air, the holding company that encompassed Continental, Frontier, Muse Air, People Express etc it was never merged into the combined operation and was eventually shut down.

Muse Air was not owned at any time by Texas Air Corp. Texas Air Corp started a non-union subsidiary airline by the name of New York Air to compete against Eastern's Air Shuttle routes (LGA-BOS-DCA). Muse Air in fact, was started by a former Southwest executive, Lamar Muse, to compete against Southwest in the DAL-HOU market. In a great twist of irony, Muse Air was forced to sell itself to Southwest. Southwest renamed the carrier TranStar Airlines before jettisoning the entire airline a short time later...

While still under Frank Lorenzo's control, the assets of bankrupt Frontier, People Express and New York Air were officially merged into Continental's operations on February 1, 1987.
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Fri Oct 19, 2012 5:57 am

Quoting jamake1 (Reply 33):
Muse Air in fact, was started by a former Southwest executive, Lamar Muse, to compete against Southwest in the DAL-HOU market. In a great twist of irony, Muse Air was forced to sell itself to Southwest. Southwest renamed the carrier TranStar Airlines before jettisoning the entire airline a short time later...

Exactly right. Southwest employees called it the "Flying purple profit eater" due to the fact that the Transtar planes were painted purple. Southwest really tried to make it work, but couldn't. So they sold most of the planes to CO and a few other airlines.

It didn't help that CO swooped into HOU and matched TranStar fares route by route and in most cases even undercut TranStar.
Within a month or two after TranStar's end, CO retreated back to IAH.
Fly North Central Airlines..The route of the Northliners!
 
Max Q
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Fri Oct 19, 2012 8:08 am

Quoting jamake1 (Reply 33):

Muse Air was not owned at any time by Texas Air Corp. Texas Air Corp started a non-union subsidiary airline by the name of New York Air to compete against Eastern's Air Shuttle routes (LGA-BOS-DCA). Muse Air in fact, was started by a former Southwest executive, Lamar Muse, to compete against Southwest in the DAL-HOU market. In a great twist of irony, Muse Air was forced to sell itself to Southwest. Southwest renamed the carrier TranStar Airlines before jettisoning the entire airline a short time later...

While still under Frank Lorenzo's control, the assets of bankrupt Frontier, People Express and New York Air were officially merged into Continental's operations on February 1, 1987.

Good points jamake, I have my history wrong. I thought we picked up some Muse MD80's and I know some of their Pilots came to Cal.


My memory is failing me but I can tell you what I had for dinner !

Quoting zippyjet (Reply 31):


Not to play armchair COO/CEO but actually, had Eastern updated during the Rickenbacker era many of these problems could have been avoided or at least delayed. Some of Eastern's undoing actually started to take seed during the advent of the jet age. Rickenbacker felt jets were a fool's indulgence at first and got behind National and Delta to name a few. Eastern put it's late 50's eggs in the basket that was the Electra. Though it's a classic and great looking plane Eastern took a bit of a blow when the flying public felt anything with a propeller was old school and fuddy duddy. Though the Electra had very good performance for the times the public was fickle and again eschewed propellers. Though off topic this was also in hindsight a big mistake for Lockheed back then. Had they gone with a first generation pure jet who knows, their design may have been the benchmark instead of the 8 or 707 we will never know. I know a lot of us here would say that the pure jet market was saturated but maybe Lockheed's first entry could have been an advanced better performing bird to overtake the caravelle. The Electra was a medium range plane imagine had Lockheed rolled out an efficient pure jet that could economically serve Eastern's mid range flights? Back to Eastern I digress:
Eastern was known as the vacation airline. This was great during the nifty go go 1950's and early through middle 1960's when the United States was at it's economic and growth zenith.

Another nail in Eastern's coffin (pre-Borman) were the times. Nixon, the economy and those gouging OPEC scoundrels put a lid on speedy jets, and for that matter muscle American cars. Eastern did not fare well as we went into the austere 70's.
Also, it was sad about the whole Lockheed Rolls Royce engine cluster fu*k. This guaranteed the L1011 was finite. And Eastern went with the L1011 instead of the DC-10. Then of course all the labor strife and the evil New Yorker Darth Vader killjoy to our industry Frank Lorenzo and you then could stick a fork in Eastern and call them done.
Had the economy and life in general were not so miserable in the 70's Borman's fleet modernization campaign would have paid off and who knows the Wings of Man could be still taking to the skies today. I can't wait to view these videos thanks for sharing!

Very good points Zjet
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


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beau222
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Fri Oct 19, 2012 1:47 pm

I am still confused how Lorenzo had Eastern obtain Texas Air's financing for their Eastern's purchase. And later on allowed Eastern to loan Texas Holdings 200million at low interest but knowing that EA had to borrow that same amount at a much higher interest rate. That part is what seems criminal to me.
 
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northstardc4m
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Fri Oct 19, 2012 3:03 pm

Quoting beau222 (Reply 36):
I am still confused how Lorenzo had Eastern obtain Texas Air's financing for their Eastern's purchase. And later on allowed Eastern to loan Texas Holdings 200million at low interest but knowing that EA had to borrow that same amount at a much higher interest rate. That part is what seems criminal to me.

It would be considered criminal now, but in the 80s it was considered "clever financing". It's all based on the parent company staying just far enough separated to be considered an investor and not the owner/operator. The rules were greatly tightened after EA went bust. The way Texas Air built it's relationships with both CO and EA was intended to be JUST within the law to allow that kind of financial slight of hand.
Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
 
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zippyjet
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Sat Oct 20, 2012 5:28 am

I caught part 1 on You Tube last night. Excellent video. Hope part 2 is as good or better! I didn't realize that Eastern and IAM had a short but happy marriage before the evil Lorenzo came in. Could Eastern have sustained the culture and compatible relationship with the union had Lorenzo been banned or never allowed to get his paws on Eastern?
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Sat Oct 20, 2012 5:44 am

Quoting zippyjet (Reply 38):
I didn't realize that Eastern and IAM had a short but happy marriage before the evil Lorenzo came in.

Technically, Lorenzo didn't end that 'short but happy marriage' - competition from the first-generation LCCs (PeoplExpress, New York Air, etc) brought that to an end as losses mounted and creditors were itching to call in EA's debt. That's what ultimately forced the Charlie Bryan/Frank Borman showdown at Building 16, ending in the sale to Texas Air.
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Comments made here are my own and are not intended to represent the official position of Alaska Air Group
 
deltal1011man
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RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Sat Oct 20, 2012 5:53 am

Quoting thegoldenargosy (Reply 6):

A certain AAirlne's employes should watch this video. The greatest crime is to forget history and repeat it.

Maybe you should watch it. Its clear by this comment that you A) didn't B) have no real idea what happened to EA. I think you need to read this post a few times.....

Quoting Bobloblaw (Reply 12):
It was clear from watching this that by 1986, it was interest on the debt not labor costs that were killing them. Why was there never any attempt to reduce debt or interest payments either thru ch 11 or negotiations. THEY CLEARLY SAY IN THE VIDEO EAL HAD THE LOWEST LABOR COST AND EVEN IF THE IAM WORKED FOR FREE, EASTERN WOULD STILL LOSE MONEY. So make the creditors take less thru chpt11.

I caped the important part.

Eastern shut down because of mismanagement ....terrible mismanagement.....not unions. Please don't be like Frank.....  
Quoting Max Q (Reply 26):
That was never his dream, all Lorenzo knew how to do was enrich himself, he was a hopelessly inept leader

and break/screw as many employees as he could. I personally think he should be on death row....right next to old Icahn....for the things he did.

Quoting nwaesc (Reply 27):
The airplane porn is great, but I think the most telling part of the documentary is when they discuss the actual empowerment employees had for a short while, and it's almost immediate positive effect on operational performance. Let people lead, and they usually do a fine job. Treat them like they're stupid, and they'll go out of their way to prove you right... Shame Lorenzo & co. were to blinded by their hubris to see it...

this. If a lead or some foremen gets into my stuff and tells me how to do my job....well lets just say if the work card says it can take up to 10 hours.....it will take 10 hours. Even if its *really* a two/three hour job.

of course the old..."lets just go to HR" seems to work most of the time.  

I can't say i have ever ran across an employee that wanted the company to lose money. 99% of the time pissed off employees become pissed when management starts getting into things for no reason......(and here is a hint for all your future management people....if a A&P mechanic is doing a job....and you have never done it or have no real mechanical
ability...then don't tell the AMT how to do his job. The same goes for a pilot/FA/Ramper or GA/TA. Its a quick way to...well become "that guy" and/or never have anyone get anything done quickly.....I promise...I wont be in your office telling you how to cut my budget even more than you have or go from 10 guys on a crew to 5....even though you have work for 40....so don't tell me how to do my job) Just a little note/rant....  
Quoting beau222 (Reply 36):

I am still confused how Lorenzo had Eastern obtain Texas Air's financing for their Eastern's purchase. And later on allowed Eastern to loan Texas Holdings 200million at low interest but knowing that EA had to borrow that same amount at a much higher interest rate. That part is what seems criminal to me.

because it wasn't illegal yet....IIRC it would be now.
 
User avatar
zippyjet
Posts: 5169
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2001 3:32 pm

RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Sat Oct 20, 2012 6:17 am

Quoting Deltal1011man (Reply 40):

and break/screw as many employees as he could. I personally think he should be on death row....right next to old Icahn....for the things he did.

Maybe not death row but how about an all expense trip to Gittmo? Or better yet Lorenzo, Ichan and Jerry Sandusky can all room together in a nice cozy cell. Ichan and Lorenzo can tell tales from yore about how they screwed aviation, and the spirits of their employees and of course Sandusky can share his stories about shagging young boys in lockerooms and got carte blanche from old poppa screw loose Paterno and the pshycotic denizens of State College, Pa./Penn State. Leveraged buyouts, and leveraged "insertion." How to screw au natural!
I'm Zippyjet & I approve this message!
 
737tdi
Posts: 1116
Joined: Sun Sep 02, 2007 10:05 am

RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Sat Oct 20, 2012 6:26 am

Quoting beau222 (Reply 36):
I am still confused how Lorenzo had Eastern obtain Texas Air's financing for their Eastern's purchase. And later on allowed Eastern to loan Texas Holdings 200million at low interest but knowing that EA had to borrow that same amount at a much higher interest rate. That part is what seems criminal to me.




It was and is criminal/illegal. Lorenzo did under a very clever ruse, which of course he said he did not,. Everyone/body says it was the unions fault that Eastern failed. Absolute crap. I never worked for Eastern but I did work with alot of drinking buddies who ended up at Dalfort Aviation and Dee Howard Co.. I'm talking management and mechs.. These guys took paycut after paycut and no other majors were doing this. Lorenzo wanted the routes, PERIOD. Sell them off make a huge profit for himself and his company and bail. Period. What a piece of crap. Blow up a decent airline because he wanted to buy "something". Who knows what, how much money does one really need? Enough to screw 35,000 employees??? I guess so. Keep blaming the unions and you will be working for $1.00 an hour. Work as an AMT for $8.00/hour when Pizza Hut employees were making $6.75.. I made 4.95/hr when I was working there in 1976.

Give me a break Union bashers. Get over yourselves because you are still a Pizza Hut employee. OK maybe Taco Bell. I have been in this business for 30+ years and think you need to research.. I have to know things, be qualified about things, and be certified on other things that you have no clue about. Plus I qualify other guys on those same things. Did I overdo things.????

beau222: I may have quoted you but this is for all of the above. Sorry.
 
deltal1011man
Posts: 5392
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2005 9:17 am

RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Sat Oct 20, 2012 7:26 am

Quoting zippyjet (Reply 41):
Maybe not death row but how about an all expense trip to Gittmo? Or better yet Lorenzo, Ichan and Jerry Sandusky can all room together in a nice cozy cell. Ichan and Lorenzo can tell tales from yore about how they screwed aviation, and the spirits of their employees and of course Sandusky can share his stories about shagging young boys in lockerooms and got carte blanche from old poppa screw loose Paterno and the pshycotic denizens of State College, Pa./Penn State. Leveraged buyouts, and leveraged "insertion." How to screw au natural!

eh i think they should all be on death row.
but that would be getting way to OT.

Quoting thegoldenargosy (Reply 6):

and i forgot to say....some employees at AA should watch it....right next to employees at DL/UA/US etc. I say the CEOs should cancel the next gold trip and gather round.... cause it damn sure isn't on labor.....


The way they ran the airline....with the employees control 25% and having mostly leads control the employees....is the way they should all do it.
 
rampart
Posts: 1800
Joined: Sun Aug 07, 2005 5:58 am

RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Sat Oct 20, 2012 1:04 pm

Quoting Deltal1011man (Reply 40):
.then don't tell the AMT how to do his job. The same goes for a pilot/FA/Ramper or GA/TA. Its a quick way to...well become "that guy" and/or never have anyone get anything done quickly.....I promise...I wont be in your office telling you how to cut my budget even more than you have or go from 10 guys on a crew to 5....even though you have work for 40....so don't tell me how to do my job) Just a little note/rant..

Just to point out the devil's advocate here...
Everyone thinks they have a better idea, and would like to make those ideas known, don't fool yourself into thinking otherwise. Why would a CEO be any different than you or I in thinking that way? The difference is that a CEO can tell a lower employee what to do on the job, but there is very little chance a lower employee can tell a CEO what to do, on the job. Behind closed doors, on the ramp, in the cockpit, all over the internet via anonymous screen names, EVERYONE tells the CEO what to do. I don't know that having ideas is the path to upward mobility and management, since everyone has ideas, and I base that on experience. The upward path to management is more leadership.

-Rampart
 
deltal1011man
Posts: 5392
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2005 9:17 am

RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Sat Oct 20, 2012 2:53 pm

Quoting rampart (Reply 44):
Everyone thinks they have a better idea, and would like to make those ideas known, don't fool yourself into thinking otherwise.

......just because someone has a better idea....or they thing doesn't mean they can do the job. Again...I don't want some foreman telling me how to do my job.

Quoting rampart (Reply 44):
Why would a CEO be any different than you or I in thinking that way? The difference is that a CEO can tell a lower employee what to do on the job, but there is very little chance a lower employee can tell a CEO what to do, on the job.

and the CEO can then get people fallowing the book and slowing things down and costing the company money.
 
asiantourist
Posts: 8
Joined: Sun Jul 29, 2012 3:07 pm

RE: Battle For Eastern Airlines

Sat Oct 20, 2012 7:52 pm

Thanks to the OP for posting the link. I enjoyed watching that and learned more about EAL as well.

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