The Importance Of Open Skies Cannot Be Understated
EDITORIAL ARTICLE by Edgard Portela.
There’s an assault on your ability to fly happening right now – and it’s being led by top figures of the defeated Hillary Clinton campaign.
Any student of economics can tell you that in a truly competitive market, multiple suppliers trip over each other to give consumers the best product. When this happens, consumers win, because no one is charging them an arm or an eye to get what they want. People like Hilary Rosen, Jim Messina, and Philippe Reines want to shut down Open Skies and prevent competition, joined by their lobbyist pals and Democrat special interest groups.
Open sky agreements free up aviation markets and reduce government diktats on air transportation like passenger, cargo, and charter services. When these agreements are in effect, they expand the availability of passenger and cargo flights to and from the United States. If you want your Amazon shipping costs to be lower, Open Skies helps directly. If you want to fly to your favorite vacation destination, Open Skies gives you better options.
Over the last 16 years, the U.S airline market went from 10 major airlines to only four that control 80% of the market. What have we also seen these last 16 years? Fare increases, less comfortable space, more baggage fees and no real improvement in service for consumers.
I don’t have to remind you that they overbook a flight and assault customers out of cabins if they don’t “cooperate”. But maybe you didn’t know that they look down upon singing the national anthem in a flight.
American Airlines, Delta, and United each are the top three largest airlines in the world and they don’t want to lose their gravy train. These are the airlines, joined by labor unions, that are taking advantage of the wave of economic nationalism to put to work the very agents of the D.C swamp to lobby Congress to let them keep their monopolies.
They mask their real purpose with arguments about fairness, that competition should be blocked because they get subsidies from the countries they are based in. But they omit the truth by leaving out how it is that U.S taxpayers have contributed to subsidizing their own growth and consolidation. Not to mention the role the Department of Justice has played in past Republican and Democrat administrations in enabling them.
When airlines from around the world compete on a global market by allowing them to set their own routes and prices, consumers win. Consumers save money. Service improves. Under the Open Skies agreements in 2014, the ME3 brought 1.1 million international visitors to U.S. markets. These visitors contributed over $4.1 billion to our economy and supported nearly 50,000 American jobs. According to the U.S Travel Association, these agreements have generated approximately $4 billion in traveler benefits. President Trump, Gary Cohn, Peter Navarro, and members of the White House Domestic Policy Council need to stand with consumers and not with airlines if they really want to make America great again.
Rather than throw barrels of money at Clintonistas and Obama expats to run a facetious and inaccurate PR campaign to help them fleece consumers, American Airlines, Delta, and United ought to come back to this timeless adage if they want a fair fight: the customer is always right. End the subsidy war and open the skies.
***The opinions expressed in this article are that of the author. ForLiberty.News does not endorse the author or any of the expressed opinions.***
Edgard Portela is a freelance writer based in Arlington, VA who is passionate about open markets and freedom.
Image Credit: By xlibber (Another Airplane!) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons