Re “Boeing Moves to Close Plant,” Aug. 19
The looming closure of Boeing in Long Beach is more evidence of why Wall Street is bad for business. There was a time when Boeing was the best at what it did: making new airplanes that were better than anyone else’s. That all changed with deregulation and management’s new concern with short-term profits. Wall Street did not approve of Boeing’s deep investment in research and development, nor of its deep reliance on government. Now, companies can be dismantled and cannibalized in a moment just to make shareholders and stock analysts happy. American statistician W. Edwards Deming once wrote that the purpose of a business was to survive and make jobs for its workers. Those were the good old days.
Re “Sacred flying cows,” editorial, Aug. 19
Your editorial on Virgin America shows a complete lack of knowledge about the airline industry. Airlines abroad are not deregulated, free-market businesses, unlike the U.S. airlines. You only have to look to Ryan Air of Ireland to see the results of foreign ownership on consumers in other countries. Ryan Air has a history of thumbing its nose at regulations while back home in Ireland it has a lapdog regulatory body that declines to enforce even the most basic rules. Is this what The Times would want for the U.S. market? And just who is supposed to benefit from the offshore ownership of American airline companies? Certainly not the rank-and-file workers, whose jobs are not of concern to corporate directors in Bonn, London, Hong Kong or Beijing. When will we learn that the experiment in globalization is a failure?