Airlines Want Billions More From the Federal Government
Article from For Liberty by Norm Leahy.
Major U.S. airlines got $50 billion in federal aid to sustain operations – and employment – through the end of September. But without additional billions of taxpayer money, airlines are threatening to layoff tens of thousands of employees and dramatically reducing service.
Congress and the White House seem open to the idea of giving airlines an additional $25 billion to avoid the cutbacks and job losses.
They should resist the temptation to keep airlines on the dole. As the Mercatus Center’s Veronique de Rugy writes:
Let’s remind everyone why we shouldn’t bail out airlines. Yes, the coronavirus crisis is both a public-health and an economic tragedy. But this doesn’t justify the government granting special privileges to private firms, at least not without those firms first taking other available steps to potentially avoid the need for a bailout.
Among those steps are securing private capital to support business operations, and if that fails, declaring bankruptcy.
The U.S. government has a checkered history of bailing out companies facing rough economic times. Taxpayers have already put billions of (borrowed) dollars into the major air carriers. Before we do it again, we should demand the carriers seek market solutions for their needs.
And then we should demand government stop trying to pick winners and losers in the business world.
Image Credit: By xlibber (Another Airplane!) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons