9:21 PM

[FAA] Change We
Can Believe In


From the way Barack Obama ran the table on Tuesday, I obviously am not the only one that is thrilled with the outcome of this presidential election. His team ran a flawless, strategically beautiful campaign, and if he surrounds himself with the same kind of tech-savvy forward thinkers in the White House, I have every reason to believe he will help this country out of the quagmire left by eight years of Bush's form of good ol' [white] boy, screw-the-middle-class governance.

The election was more then a rebuke of the GOP, it was the end of their hate-filled, do nothing brand of fear mongering politics. Only the remaining few of W's base that thought Palin was as qualified as she was "hot" will remain robots to Rush Limbaugh and Faux News. The rest of the country has moved on in a new direction, away from smears, away from bigotry and away from the tattered remains of the Republican party.

President Obama – man that feels good to type – said last night, he knows we all have work to do cleaning up Bushie's mess:

"The road ahead will be long. Our climb will be steep. We may not get there in one year or even one term, but America - I have never been more hopeful than I am tonight that we will get there. I promise you - we as a people will get there."
One organization that is over the moon about the new President-elect is the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA). Just a few hours after the networks started calling this thing for Obama, NATCA was busy writing this:
"The nation’s air traffic controllers and aviation safety professionals, represented by NATCA, are joining today in the exuberant celebration of the historic election of Barack Obama and extend their congratulations to him on this special day of restored hope for the United States of America."
NATCA President Patrick Forrey released the following statement as the organization now looks forward to the bright future of the National Airspace System:
“President-elect Obama supported NATCA from the beginning in our long struggle for fair collective bargaining rights with the Federal Aviation Administration. We were proud to support him and join with working men and women across the country to win this campaign. We’re in a new horizon. Our nation’s aviation system will be restored to provide the traveling public the highest level of safety and efficiency to give our economy a stimulus through renewed focus on our infrastructure."
When you start thinking about the future of aviation in this country, and the wrong path it was heading down under Bushie, it is refreshing to hear NATCA saying things like this:
“For more than two years now our workforce has been one in crisis, attacked and disrespected by an anti-union administration. But change is coming. It is imminent. And NATCA will be there to welcome, embrace and escort it as we work together for a safer, more efficient system. No longer will the employees at the FAA be treated like the enemy. There will be a culture change. We greatly look forward to working together with President-elect Obama’s administration to modernize our infrastructure while enhancing safety in a spirit of mutual respect and collaboration."
The reason NATCA has good reason to believe Obama will deliver on his promises is that he has been on their side for a while. This is from an Obama press release on his support of NATCA:
"I want to thank the highly skilled and dedicated men and women who ensure that Americans are safe when they're on board an aircraft and I am grateful for their support," said Senator Obama. "As President, NATCA will have a partner in the White House. Together, we can fix our nation's aviation system and tackle the challenges we face – from the damaging effect flight delays have on our lives and our economy to recent safety concerns. I applaud the work that NATCA does day in and day out to strengthen our aviation system and keep Americans safe, and I look forward to working with its members going forward."
So onward, forward we all go, into this big unknown. We all know the world is overjoyed with President Obama, they are literally dancing in the streets from London to Egypt to Kenya to Hel-freakin'-sinki. So if he does nothing else, he has at least shown the planet that maybe it was Bush the world really REALLY hated, and not all the rest of us other Americans.

Yes, the new President-elect has a very big and very full plate. Fixing the labor mess between NATCA and FAA is but one tiny issue that faces him. But one thing we know is this: At least now we have a chance at getting the ship righted at FAA. Under Bushie, it was as if the administration had been loaded onto the Titanic and Capt'n Brownie was trying to steer straight into another iceberg. With Obama, things will get better at FAA – they have to – because there really isn't anywhere else to go but up.

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