An Experiment In Scotch

I write to discover what I believe

Month: February 2005

American Airlines has jumped into the current Wright Amendment fray. Apparently, American is threatening to split their current hub operations at D/FW and send large numbers of planes to Love if the Wright Amendment is lifted. This is of course a not so subtle ploy to threaten and cajole lawmakers and policy makers into leaving the Wright Amendment in place. It”s little more than blackmail, if you ask me. Lots and lots of juicy tidbits and sound bites in the article but here are some of my favorite.

This one:

    “Were the Wright amendment to be repealed, we would have to build an operation at Love Field because that”s where the customers are going to want to go,” he told the Dallas Morning News editorial board.”

kills me. They say this like it”s a bad thing, this wanting to go to an airport close to home. God forbid we have consumer choice in the airlines we fly. Right now, if you want to go much of anywhere, Southwest is not an option because of the Wright Amendment. So customers are forced to fly out of DFW and by association, on one of the bigger carriers. This is ridiculous. Houston successfully handles two airports, one where Southwest originates out of, and another where larger carriers work. There”s no reason why that couldn”t happen here.

More good stuff:

    “But splitting American”s North Texas operations would hurt local travelers, he said, because D/FW would be a vastly less efficient hub if it had to compete against Love Field for passengers.”

Umm, how does more choice and an airport that is closer to most people”s homes involve hurting local travelers? It doesn”t. This is propaganda. Immediately before, Arpley was saying most customers would want to go to Love and now he”s claiming that it would hurt them? How? Oh wait, it wouldn”t.

This is a huge case of histrionics. American, like most major carriers, is having serious trouble making money. The last thing they need is competition from a smaller, short-haul type carrier like Southwest. And yet, they are the ones complaining about monopolies. It really doesn”t follow. In fact, little of their logic does. I can”t see how repealing the Wright Amendment can do anything but help consumers in North Texas. Even people in Fort Worth will benefit because American will be forced to cut fares to anywhere Southwest flies. I see nothing but good out of repealing the amendment. It doesn”t surprise me that American wants to fight this, but that doesn”t mean they ought to win.

The Dallas Museum of Art grows in stature and endowments. Several local long-time benefactors of the Dallas art scene have agreed to donate their collections to the museum upon their death. This is excellent news for the museum specifically and the cultural scene of Dallas in general. Here’s a DMN story on the same topic with a lot more local information though with the crappy registration they make you go through. The downtown arts scene is really booming now and that is great news for Dallas as a whole.

So you're a reasonably successful local dentist in Dallas with a practice in Lakewood and a nice home in the same area and you think to yourself “I think I'll head down to Mexico and have some margaritas and some dancing and maybe I'll have a little sex with boys. I know there's this whole innocent until proven guilty thing but when you're nabbed in San Diego by the FBI, things tend to look grim. How messed up to you have to be to recklessly jeopardize your whole career for sex with minors? Or maybe this is a case of “I'm too smart and powerful to ever get caught.” Either way, what a disaster this must be for his family. What a gruesomely selfish thing to do.

On the upside, some really prime real estate near Lakewood Country Club is about to open up, if you're thinking about starting a new business.

UPDATE: More information here and apparently, the dentistry office will remain open once they find a replacement for the good doctor.

Dallas’ strong mayor campaign is starting to make major news sources. It fun to watch all the disparate groups line up against the strong mayor initiative. From your expected city council members (they have the most power to lose) to local pit bulls to the former mayor above, lots of people have a vested interest in not upsetting the apple cart right now.

All the separate interests are going to struggle against something like this, but what it boils down to is what’s good for Dallas. Because I foresee us moving back to Dallas at some point (we love the city, we love the life, though I’m hoping to install a little small-town in Kat), I have an interest in this as well.

Right now, we have a mayor, elected by a citywide vote, who is really nothing other than a glorified council member. While I can understand the fears and concerns of people who are normally represented by their council members, I have to wonder at the reasoning behind having a mayor with little power of his or her own.

That said, it’s hard for me to understand the racial history of Dallas and if you relegate the city council to a real true backburner, how do you protect the minorites and little people? How is it possible to have a strong mayor, one who can override the council, hire the city manager, et. cetera, et. ceteral and protect against the entirely possible issue of the mayor becoming corrupted? I don’t have an answer for that. What is this going to come down to? Shutze thinks it will be Miller’s personality and her ability to sell the idea that the system we have now is irrepairably (Ed> Is that a word? Depends on the bourbon intake) broken. I’m not sure she can sell that, but the next few months ought to be fun to watch as the DMN and Blackwood line up behind Miller while the Council, Dallas Citizen Council and Kirk line up to defeat her. I can’t wait for the fireworks to start.