Outsourcing and your career

Toonces

Well-Known Member
So I was reflecting on the direction that the airline industry has been headed for the last 7 years. It doesn't appear to be getting better ever. I would say it has probably been going downhill for much longer than 7 years; I wasn't paying attention to it before then though. Management continues to find new and creative ways to screw us, and like a bunch of buffoons (to include myself) we whine and complain but keep showing up to work every week.

I was thinking about what is going on at Midwest. I could totally see outsourcing being the norm for the majors in the not too distant future. I see no reason for management to not peruse this. We have already proven time and time again that we are willing to work for less. I was not shocked by the fact that Midwest management did what they did. I am only shocked that it didn't happen sooner. ALPA has again proven to be completely impotent in this matter. Parading a few pilots with their little signs in front of HQ probably only causes the big wigs to piss themselves with laughter as those poor bastards freeze their cans off walking in circles. I realize they are doing all they can to save their jobs and I truly feel sorry for them, however it's a lost cause. There are literally thousands of people lined up to do their jobs for less. The same is true for the rest of us.

Now to the point of the thread. What is it going to take for you personally to walk away from this profession? When will the pay be too low for you to justify being gone half the year? How can you stand knowing that you are one furlough, or bankruptcy from being back to day one FO pay and seniority? I love my job. I am proud of what I have accomplished in this profession. I am however embarrassed by our pay. I am sickened to know that a friend of mine who dropped out of high school and has smoked more pot than Cheech and Chong makes more money as an electrician than I do flying jets. I can think of several people whom I grew up with that either didn't go to college or only have an associate’s degree from a community college and they all make more than me. It's f***ing embarrassing to be just barely scraping by while people who either spent nothing or next to nothing in regards to higher education excell. To top it all off we have a never ending supply of student pilots and CFI's who think 40k a year is a lot of money. To all of you who think 40k is a ton of money for flying a jet, please never tell me that to my face if you meet me. I will be in jail for sure for ripping your arm off and beating you to death with it.

No friends, (both of you) the laws of supply and demand for pilots will never be in our favor. I have come to terms with that. I know for a fact I will not be doing this til 65. It's so not worth it. Of course nothing I say will change anyone’s minds. The guys who want to fly for peanuts always will and the starry eyed wannabes who will eventually be where I am at won't realize the realities of this business until long after the flight academy owners have taken your money and bought a new boat. For those of you who have managed to "make it" in this business; you are the minority.I know that minority is just loves to chime in and try and convince us it's all worth it and if we just try hard enough we will be just like them. Bullocks. Most of will never be a 777 captain. Most of us will never be a Doug Taylor or DE727UPS whatever his name is. More than likely, most of us will be furloughed a few times and have to start all over again at a s***ty airline. Most of us will spend a significant portion of their career making sub par wages at or near the bottom of a seniority list.

I can't wait until the day I can afford to start my own business and get out of this lost cause some call a profession. Unfortunately I only make just enough to make my loan payments and keep myself off food stamps. That is 3rd year FO pay, I can't believe I wasn't on welfare during first year pay. When the time comes that I can afford to get out, the guys junior to me can enjoy the bump.

Rant over
 

Derg

New Arizona, Il Duce/Warlord
Staff member
Seriously man, been there, done that in a bad economy back in the early 1990s.

It really depends on what you want and how hard you're willing to work to get it. And by work I don't mean going to airlineapps and shotgunning out a bunch of applications or checking an aviation job site to see what's new because by the time openings hit the internet, it's too late.

By work, I mean, networking, staying positive (in a crap-balls environment), shaking hands, meeting people and surrounding yourself with people with similar aspirations.

There were times that I wanted to hang it up because, like you said, a lot of my friends without degrees seemed to roll into these (at the time) high paying jobs, with no responsibility with buttloads of commas and integers on their paychecks.

Ask yourself "Where do I want to be in five years?" and aim for that. If you want to work for say, Fedex, start meeting folks that work for Fedex. Find out what they did to get to where they are. Bug the living crap out of them with questions. The ones that aren't willing to answer your questions will block your telephone calls. Those that have the heart of a teacher that want to help you succeed will be there for you.

A LOT, hell A LOT of people at some levels of professional aviation had it very easy... Rolling out of college into a job burning Jet-A, a fast upgrade to captain and they figured that's the way the profession worked. The last six or seven years in this profession was a very unique period of time and that was yesterday. Today is pretty bad, but the status quo of the profession is more like mid 2007 to early 2008.

It's not easy, it's demanding, will make you want to pull your hair out. It's hard professionally, it can be absolutely disastrous on your personal life and you really have to want to do this or it will eat you a live, poop you out and eat you again.

All that starry-eyed wannabe crap is an ever-present part of this profession because we really haven't developed a brotherhood amongst aviators.

I'm trying but it's hard work man.

How many guys do you know that were students with you that would sit around, talk shop and support one another that got their first job, decided they were "too cool" to pass down any knowledge to the next generation and sequestered themselves to only professional pilot circles? I know plenty.

Figure out where YOU want to go, screw everything else. Find folks who are where you want to be and bug the hell out of 'em. Help folks that are down when you're up because they'll help you when you're down yourself.

Me? I'm having a lot of freaking fun. I meet a lot of interesting people, fly loads of interesting places and even after the paycuts (voted no twice, because it wasn't a labor problem either time and we let ourselves get scape-goated), I'm doing pretty good.
 

Firebird2XC

Well-Known Member
I had the privilege to talk to a 27 year ALPA national guy the other day.

I asked him how he thought the rise and fall of the trends in the industry looked to him given his perspective.

He told me that there had been four really grim times he'd seen in the airline biz:

1. The Continental Strike of '83
2. The fall of Eastern Airlines ('89?)
3. 9/11.
4. Right now.

He said with the multitude of airlines that folded this year, the numbers of pilots and other labor groups on the street from airlines, right here and now makes the list.

That's something positive, though, in a way. If you've read about or experienced the first three times on the list, you know how bad they were. Guys were committing suicide during the Continental strike.

It makes me hopeful. Times are hard.. very hard.. but we're living them. Many of us are adapting and rolling with the punches. Those of us unfortunate to wind up on furlough are getting by for the most part and biding their time. We also have numerous assets.... like Jetcareers, for example, to help ease the pain and grease the gears of moving through this period of history.

Seriously now. Consider some alternatives. This could be WWII, and we could be all getting soaked up to fly bombers in the European theater.

I've heard that while some may say Marines in the Pacific had the worst loss stats... that the truth was that bomber crews in Europe had it the worst.

I've been in a B-17. Pass.


Life is hard right now. It could still be worse.
 

BajtheJino

I'm looking at you.
So I was reflecting on the direction that the airline industry has been headed for the last 7 years. It doesn't appear to be getting better ever. I would say it has probably been going downhill for much longer than 7 years; I wasn't paying attention to it before then though. Management continues to find new and creative ways to screw us, and like a bunch of buffoons (to include myself) we whine and complain but keep showing up to work every week.

I was thinking about what is going on at Midwest. I could totally see outsourcing being the norm for the majors in the not too distant future. I see no reason for management to not peruse this. We have already proven time and time again that we are willing to work for less. I was not shocked by the fact that Midwest management did what they did. I am only shocked that it didn't happen sooner. ALPA has again proven to be completely impotent in this matter. Parading a few pilots with their little signs in front of HQ probably only causes the big wigs to piss themselves with laughter as those poor bastards freeze their cans off walking in circles. I realize they are doing all they can to save their jobs and I truly feel sorry for them, however it's a lost cause. There are literally thousands of people lined up to do their jobs for less. The same is true for the rest of us.

Now to the point of the thread. What is it going to take for you personally to walk away from this profession? When will the pay be too low for you to justify being gone half the year? How can you stand knowing that you are one furlough, or bankruptcy from being back to day one FO pay and seniority? I love my job. I am proud of what I have accomplished in this profession. I am however embarrassed by our pay. I am sickened to know that a friend of mine who dropped out of high school and has smoked more pot than Cheech and Chong makes more money as an electrician than I do flying jets. I can think of several people whom I grew up with that either didn't go to college or only have an associate’s degree from a community college and they all make more than me. It's f***ing embarrassing to be just barely scraping by while people who either spent nothing or next to nothing in regards to higher education excell. To top it all off we have a never ending supply of student pilots and CFI's who think 40k a year is a lot of money. To all of you who think 40k is a ton of money for flying a jet, please never tell me that to my face if you meet me. I will be in jail for sure for ripping your arm off and beating you to death with it.

No friends, (both of you) the laws of supply and demand for pilots will never be in our favor. I have come to terms with that. I know for a fact I will not be doing this til 65. It's so not worth it. Of course nothing I say will change anyone’s minds. The guys who want to fly for peanuts always will and the starry eyed wannabes who will eventually be where I am at won't realize the realities of this business until long after the flight academy owners have taken your money and bought a new boat. For those of you who have managed to "make it" in this business; you are the minority.I know that minority is just loves to chime in and try and convince us it's all worth it and if we just try hard enough we will be just like them. Bullocks. Most of will never be a 777 captain. Most of us will never be a Doug Taylor or DE727UPS whatever his name is. More than likely, most of us will be furloughed a few times and have to start all over again at a s***ty airline. Most of us will spend a significant portion of their career making sub par wages at or near the bottom of a seniority list.

I can't wait until the day I can afford to start my own business and get out of this lost cause some call a profession. Unfortunately I only make just enough to make my loan payments and keep myself off food stamps. That is 3rd year FO pay, I can't believe I wasn't on welfare during first year pay. When the time comes that I can afford to get out, the guys junior to me can enjoy the bump.

Rant over

Like I told you on the phone: If you're ever going to improve your attitude you've got to start drinking.
 

Cptnchia

Dissatisfied Customer
Time's suck. I remember back after 9/11 and all the turmoil in the industry, when the legacies were taking it in the shorts and the regionals were growing like gangbusters, there were some who predicted that in the next downturn, that the regionals would be going through this. It's all a function of the restructuring the legacies did in 2005-2006. But it's also more than that. If you don't control the flying, then you will always be at the mercy of management.

People keep saying that ALPA is responsible for this mess, and should do something about it. Well, yes, ALPA was responsible for the rise of regional partners. Not much we can do about that. But really, the only way ALPA could fix it, most if not all regional pilots won't like. In order to recover the flying, mainline pilots, along with ALPA would basically be championing the demise of the regionals.

Think about it. If the Delta pilots were successful in recapturing even the majority of the flying done by DCI, where do you think those pilots will end up? Most will be out of a job and on the street. Is that right or ethical? Will we hear calls of "They stole my flying," when, instead of the staple the furlough letter arrives

The industry has changed irreversibly over the years, and more change is coming, whether we like it or not. Cabotage is only a matter of time. Management will continue to whipsaw pilots and the mill will continue to eat up and churn out younger pilots. A whole generation of disillusioned pilots who bought the regional BS of SJS and quick upgrades will leave to be replaced by a new generation who will refuse to believe the survivors.

The only way to stop it requires sacrifices that no one is willing to make.

Of course I could also be totally wrong, YMMV. :bandit:
 

Goonie

Never say die
Never go into a profession where people do it as a hobby.
That's a good point Mark. As obvious as it is I've never thought of it that way.

I had a student one time in his late 40's that had been flying for hobby for 15 years. I was giving him an IPC so he could go do the right seat program at Simuflite. So about 6 months later he walks in and tells me he got a right seat job in a Citation and he is doing it for FREE! The best part is he still works full time as a mechanic at American and he calls in sick when he is flying the Citation. He works graveyard and said most of the time they dont even know if he shows up or not. :laff:

I avoid him like poop on the ground now.
 

surreal1221

Well-Known Member
Never go into a profession where people do it as a hobby.
Amen brother Seggy.

Not much I can do right now except shake my head in shame at the condition of the profession, and also the condition of the industry.

Makes me simply sick to see the pain being felt by a lot of people right now and unfortunately there really isn't one single individual or group of people to blame.

Times are tough, and they're only going to get worse.

Nevertheless, to Toonce's post:

Ultimately right now may be the time I just say forget it to flying for a living. You're right. Too many people are willing to do this job for damn near close to nothing. I on the other hand have just a tad bit of professional self-worth that I will not continue to just ride the sinking ship that is flying for a living. Now that means though, that I will work my ass off to make an attempt to improve the profession but if I am told not to show up to work by my management, the last flight I did very well may indeed be the last one I do ever.

The ability to earn a respectable wage, to have some stability is ultimately null and void considering the numerous factors that are stacked against us. Union or not, it doesn't matter.

In regards to people walking around holding signs and management getting a good laugh out of it. . .what would you suggest people do? Sit along idle while conditions continue to get worse?

I'm sorry, I might be passive aggressive, but I'm not passive. I heard a great deal of stories and realized the sadness coming out of numerous MEA flight crew members in my one day up in MKE. The pain that they are feeling right now, after giving so many years to such a great company is not even quantifiable. Yeah yeah - don't have emotion, rah rah rah. . .but really - those guys and girls are hurting, and bad, and ultimately at the cost of management's tactics to reduce costs and improve the balance sheet.

My question is, when do we as employees decide that reducing costs and improving balance sheet ultimately mean our sad destruction? Do we continue to be pawns in the executive's game?
 

beechpilot

Well-Known Member
Never go into a profession where people do it as a hobby.
I've had students who usually fly for fun express interest in flying part time as a side job to their main income. I tell them I'll encourage whatever decision they make but if they want to really enjoy themselves when they fly, they should keep it as a hobby. Now, don't get me wrong, I really love flying but there are days when it is nothing more than a job and the point I try to make is that flying is often times best enjoyed when it is strictly for fun.
 

DenverPilot8

Well-Known Member
The underlying problem is that the job is a "Dream" for most people. As someone who is in training I can tell you first hand that the lure of an airline job no mater the cost and sacrifice you hear about is still very VERY strong. It's one of those things that you have to experience yourself before you can really "see the light" with that said I have tried to prepare for the worst and put myself in a situation where I can survive the ups ad downs. But I read the frustrations of the people that are currently there and it always makes me question whether or not I should continue to make this huge monetary investment in something that absolutely has no guarantees. I keep feeling that good or bad I have to find out for myslef and if it didn't work out then I could always return to sales no problem. But I read these boards all the time trying to re-adjust my thinking and adjust my bearing in this crazy pursuit of my childhood dream. I am determined to find some better route. I am determined save money, plan ahead, work hard, and hoepfully just make it and survive. But am I just a wannabe professional pilot? I hope not. I hope that I can bring something to the table. I hope that I can make wise choices and not just settle for the first job offer.
 

ZapBrannigan

Old School
These are all very motivational stories and words of wisdom, but none of them have answered the very important questions that Denverpilot8 posted.

Allow me to quote:
What is it going to take for you personally to walk away from this profession? When will the pay be too low for you to justify being gone half the year? How can you stand knowing that you are one furlough, or bankruptcy from being back to day one FO pay and seniority?
These are legitimate questions and ones we need to take a good hard look in the mirror to answer. We have all either reached a point in our careers -- or are enroute to such a point -- where we are in a good place. Grabbed the brass ring for lack of a better term. If the brass ring is taken from you, how much will you endure to get it back? Or will you set it aside and look elsewhere for a profession?

I intend to answer the question -- so here goes.

1. The first time I was furloughed, I was a freight dog flying a Cessna 402 for about $90 per night. I was willing to hang in there, so I did. I went back to flight instructing and bagged groceries on the side.

2. The second time I was furloughed was from an LCC as a DC9 copilot. I wasn't there very long and had next to no money (this was the sleeping in a parking garage story for those of you who have heard it). So when offered the opportunity to go back to the turboprop commuter -- even to the bottom of the list, I took it. After all, an overnight meant a clean place to sleep and a shower.

3. The third time I was furloughed I had saved about six months expenses. It was post- 9/11 so most majors had furloughed. I tried to get on with SWA, Jetblue, and even Vanguard and ATA. Without much luck I elected to try another commuter. Now, in this case, even though I would be making a FRACTION of the money I made at the major, I took the job because the domicile was in my home city. I already had a home, my wife had a good job, and it seemed like the easiest way to pass the time and remain current. I fully intended to keep on looking for a more permanent gig (and I did).

4. The fourth time I just got the furlough letter. Didn't actually wait around for it to happen before I jumped ship to another commuter. This was chicken-little stuff and was one of my most foolish career mistakes.

What would it take for me to pack it all in today?

One more furlough. That's it. I love flying and have loved it for my entire life. But a person can not continuously start over again in the right seat and the bottom of the seniority list. It's emotionally fatiguing for one, and bad for the ol' self esteem. More importantly though at SOME point you have to start looking at retirement and college for the kids. If you can not remain employed for a pretty significant period of time it is difficult to stay on track towards these big financial goals.

I agree with those who said that flying for a career is a dream. I agree. And as with most dreams, the reality is not as good as you may have imagined. After a while it just becomes a job...and the luster wears off as you deal with lousy schedules, missing family occasions, holidays, birthdays, medicals, checkrides, grumpy passengers, grumpy gate agents, union/management acrimony... etc. It's still fun -- don't get me wrong.

But this is it. If this job should take a turn for the worse i'm done. My wife is an educated professional and it would be time to allow her to spread her wings in her field. Me? I'd try to find a part time job flight instructing, do my best at being a parent, and maybe start pursuing an education not for necessity but for enjoyment.

So there you go. It's an honest answer. Maybe not the one you wanted to hear. I'm sure many on this board will accuse me of being one of those grumpy old guys who is trying ruin their dream. Or maybe they'll tell me I just didn't want it enough.

Hard to say they're not right. I remember wanting it enough when I was in my twenties. Today, I just dont feel the same.
 

MikeFavinger

Hubschrauber Flieger
These are all very motivational stories and words of wisdom, but none of them have answered the very important questions that Denverpilot8 posted.
Actually, it was toonces. :D

Now to the point of the thread. What is it going to take for you personally to walk away from this profession?
I think that was a great answer Zap, and you're right - people need to hear the flip side of the coin.

I had *much less* experience in civilian aviation than Zap, so take my answer with that in mind.

I walked away already - I gave it a year and was dissatisfied with the profession. To me, flying for a living was a very boring, very dissatisfying way to earn a living. I probably could have sucked up that bored feeling if I could instantly fly 8 days a month as an international airline guy for a nice paycheck, but it wasn't worth it to me to suck up years of poor pay in an unstable field to maybe get there.

I would advise those who are willing to make huge monetary sacrifices to follow their dream of flying to really think hard about how the thrill of doing a certain activity can fade dramatically over time if you do it routinely, on someone else's schedule, and for a small paycheck.
 

Trip7

Well-Known Member
Never go into a profession where people do it as a hobby.
Better tell those UT basketball players to run like hell if they get drafted...:rolleyes:

BTW, I disagree with your statement.

JUST LIVE YOUR LIFE

I highly recommend for many of you to watch this video, maybe even watch it a couple times...

[YT]VGoTu-mCcB4[/YT]
 

MikeFavinger

Hubschrauber Flieger
Better tell those UT basketball players to run like hell if they get drafted...:rolleyes:

BTW, I disagree with your statement.

JUST LIVE YOUR LIFE

I highly recommend for many of you to watch this video, maybe even watch it a couple times...

[YT]VGoTu-mCcB4[/YT]
Apparently to him "living your life" entails being a career criminal since 1998? Yes kids, watch the video and model your lives off of a common crook.
 

ppragman

FLIPY FLAPS!
And people get upset when I tell them that the bush is a career.

Look, from what I've seen (and I've only been flying professionally for a year and a half) its what you make it. I've seen guys get burned out in 6 months and quit, I've seen guys who've been doing it for 40 years. As far as I can see, if you want to enjoy this career, then you'd better have a hobby, if flying is your hobby, you're ####ed, because six months into you realize its just a job, and just a pay check. If you're a regional FO, you're realizing that this paycheck is less than you made fueling the airplanes your flying around in. That's a hard pill to swallow, and many people don't realize that there are alternatives to flying for the airlines. If I was in Zap's shoes, I'd probably have quit the airlines at furlough three and have gone on to a different type of flying. The airlines aren't the only option, and as long as people don't understand that, or are unwilling to fly other things, or are too good (not that you are zap, its just I've seen a lot of that out there) to fly the more "odd jobs," of aviation, airline pay will remain low, freight/bush/ag/etc pay will remain high.

As for forloughs, you never (never) have to go back to square one. Ok, so lets say that expressjetter who just got furloughed a couple months back with 1000TT or so wants to move on to bigger and better things perfect, time build (CFI/Traffic Watch/pipeline patrol/skydivers) until you hit 135 mins then go wherever you can find a job. And there are plenty of places for it. At least you'll be building PIC, which will be valuable in your future career.

If you've been doing it for awhile, and you're sitting at 6000TT or so, 1000MTPIC, etc. you're in an even better position, leave your airline job making $75/hr and go fly medevac in alaska or someplace else. I know places up here that are flying medevac making $80,000/year working two on two off, and flying 300hrs per year. If that doesn't sound up your alley, go fly for a fractional, or if all of those jobs are eaten up by massive furloughs elsewhere go fly freight, because a freight paycheck beats a regional FOs salary every day of the week. Really, find a company you're going to like working at, because as soon as your number comes back up, you're company will take you back (provided that they haven't gone under) and you can get back to business.

There are a million options. Feel bad about the way things are? Fly in africa, do missionary work, or work for AirServ. Looking for adventure? Call up Kenn Borek Air, and fly twin otters on floats in the maldives, and DC-3s in africa. Looking for a stable job to so you can stay home with your wife and kids? Go down to your local airport and CFI/135 for every little outfit on the field, because what's more important? The money or your family? No brainer. Just don't think that the airlines are the only option, and you have to go back to square one, because you don't. Life will throw curveballs, and really, this industry is no more stable than any other, just be ready to roll with the punches.

</rant>
 

ZapBrannigan

Old School
If I was in Zap's shoes, I'd probably have quit the airlines at furlough three and have gone on to a different type of flying.
If you've been doing it for awhile, and you're sitting at 6000TT or so, 1000MTPIC, etc. you're in an even better position, leave your airline job making $75/hr and go:


  1. fly medevac in alaska or someplace else.
  2. go fly for a fractional
  3. go fly freight
  4. Fly in africa
  5. do missionary work
  6. work for AirServ
  7. fly twin otters on floats in the maldives
  8. fly DC-3s in africa
Looking for a stable job to so you can stay home with your wife and kids? Go down to your local airport and CFI/135 for every little outfit on the field, because what's more important? The money or your family?
I simplified what you wrote a little bit so we could break it down and more easily digest it. I left the airlines and found a job where I could do both the family thing (home most nights) and still make a sustainable salary.

The difficult part of what you suggested is that once you get older and begin to build a family, you also build ties to a community. Once you have a house and the kids are in school and your wife has her friends and her activities or her job, it becomes more and more difficult just to pack up and head to the Maldives, Alaska, or Africa. That's not to say that doesn't sound like fun -- but it's really not realistic for most adults. (And the commute sounds like a real pain!)

I'm not dismissing everything that you've said -- your intentions are good. But the fact is that not only are the jobs you suggested difficult to come by (you can't just walk in and start Monday), but for many of us they aren't viable alternatives anyway. (Try feeding the family and paying the mortgage on local FBO CFI pay!)
 

ppragman

FLIPY FLAPS!
I simplified what you wrote a little bit so we could break it down and more easily digest it. I left the airlines and found a job where I could do both the family thing (home most nights) and still make a sustainable salary.

The difficult part of what you suggested is that once you get older and begin to build a family, you also build ties to a community. Once you have a house and the kids are in school and your wife has her friends and her activities or her job, it becomes more and more difficult just to pack up and head to the Maldives, Alaska, or Africa. That's not to say that doesn't sound like fun -- but it's really not realistic for most adults. (And the commute sounds like a real pain!)

I'm not dismissing everything that you've said -- your intentions are good. But the fact is that not only are the jobs you suggested difficult to come by (you can't just walk in and start Monday), but for many of us they aren't viable alternatives anyway. (Try feeding the family and paying the mortgage on local FBO CFI pay!)
I completely understand, uprooting your life isn't easy, fun, or in anyway normal or manageable. And taking kids to Africa, probably a bad call, what I'm saying is, your not as hosed as you think you are if all you know is flying. The regionals their pay, etc. suck. So do all of the alternatives (especially most CFI pay, though I did see a place that was paying $40/hr in california) however the ultimate question is how many times will you throw yourself under the bus before you realize that airlines suck for a stable career. How many career guys at Aloha just got screwed, they've probably been there for ever (ever). How many guys are going to get the sausage at NorthWest because of the merger? How many guys are getting screwed everyday working 121? Then compare that to the myriad of other possibilities, I'll take my chances with freight/bush etc. for now, until I've put away enough cash to survive for a couple years on regional pay.

Maybe I'm starting on the wrong end of it. And not that your a culprit, but so many are. Maybe the real problem is that guys are going into this career before they have the money to. Everything is on credit, ATP is $50k in loans from Sallie Mae. Then they go to a regional where they make $18,000 for a year, then $30,000. If they saved every penny, they still wouldn't make enough to pay off their debt in two years. Then the american dream comes along, and you buy a house (which is now worth a quarter of what you paid for it) and a car, on slavery wages a few years down the line, so that when you're furloughed you're really screwed? Ehh. I dunno, I'm just trying to tell people who are starting out that maybe they should reconsider the instant-airline route.

As for you Zap, I've got nothin' for ya. I'm glad you're doing alright now, but I don't know what to say, you're just as aware of the jobs and the risks out there as anyone, probably more so. To me, it just seems like really there's no good answer other than things like a "national seniority list," but then HR would turn you down for a job anyway because who wants to hire a guy that has to be paid at 7 year FO wages when you can hire a 250TT idiot to sit in the left seat for minimum wage. The only advice I can offer is stay away from the airlines until you have the time built to go to a legacy, then hopefully, you've invested enough to have a fall back if you do get F-ed in the A (furlouhed in the Airline), but as for when does it stop, and when do you quit getting bent over, I dunno. I haven't been doing this long enough to give an answer other than "#### it."

-pat
 
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