Open the Gates…Please

May 7, 2017


Image from Laurent the Walrus: working on Revolver with the other George in 1966

1966. It was a good year. Flash forward to May 2017. Not good: I’m so pissed off at Air Canada I can’t speak. So I’ll use my opposable thumbs here on my tiny Android Qwerty.

AC uses Toronto Pearson as a hub. They should rethink that decision. Everytime it rains or the wind kicks up or it snows or there’s ice or there’s lightning within 1000 kms or there is a labor strike or there is construction or their employees are cranky or the 401 is backed up….in other words ‘any time’ … then all hell breaks loose and it upsets their whole damn schedule from BC to NL.

When all the planes are off schedule they start doing things like giving gates to other planes (meaning paying passengers have to sit and wait on the tarmac). Planes get later and later. Flights are cancelled. Paying passengers miss connections. Paying passengers have to wait in huge lineups to discover there IS no connection that day and will have to sit in the airport or go to a hotel. People get pissed. Employees get cranky. More flights are delayed or cancelled. And on and on. Flights from Edmonton to Vancouver get delayed or cancelled because the plane the airline planned to use is stuck in Pearson. And on and on…and who are the losers? Not the airline.

Air Canada sees fit to funnel all paying passengers through Pearson to get the airport’s numbers and subsequent airline revenue and the all-important  airport tax revenue up. Collusion. It’s kickback of the highest order. Someone is getting rich at the paying passengers’ expense.

Getting Pearson’s numbers up (airline and passangers traffic) and fixing the terminals, runways and assorted airport infrastructure up also helps in another way. It generates more interest to potential buyers. (The feds are thinking about selling off the country’s eight busiest airports). And why not get the taxpayers to pay for major improvements. They then sell off to friends. That’s not real capitalism. That’s direct government intervention of the market. Selective capitalism. Cronyism.

Back in the 1950s the government built new infrastructure at Dorval and then subaequently hired some friends to do a “third party study” and recommend to Air Canada (as AC desired to appease political friends) that they move their operations headquarters from ywg to yul. Intervention.

They do the same things today.

So, because of all that, they’d rather have paying passangers connect (with the inevitable screw ups at Pearson) than have nonstop flights from say…Halifax to Winnipeg. Nope. Everyone funnels through that nightmare known as Pearson. Try the same yhz/ywg excursion with Westjet…that’s a joy too. Their connections at Toronto will see you land late and after you wait for a gate, your 2 hour layover has now shrunk to 5 minutes. They use the old terminal which means you’ll have to grab your luggage and jog about 4 kms to the other side to catch your plane with a few hundred other angry, out-of-breath paying passangers.

But who cares about us. Pearson’s numbers are way up. (I think that place is not worthy of being a hub…I hate Air Canada).

Canadian airlines are protected by government legislation and given a monopoly to fly Canadian skies. There is basically little to no competition. No choice for the paying customer.

I think Air Canada is in the wrong business. And so is the Government of Canada.

By the way. Guess what happened to me this weekend. A 4 hour non-stop (doesn’t exist) has turned into a 3 day fiasco because of rain and construction. 3 freaking days!!! Vs 4 hours if the airline saw fit to offer a non-stop and fly over the mess at Pearson they created.

Time to rethink everything. We have to begin asking the right questions: Why isn’t there more competition in the Canadian airline industry? Why did International air carriers Canadian Pacific and Air Canada move their bases and operations and head offices out of Winnipeg (hint: the answer isn’t the commonly spun “Panama Canal” excuse or Mulroney’s  ‘in the best interests of Canada’ – it was direct government intervention benefitting friends – which begs the sub-question: why do we allow government intervention and kickbacks for influential friends?). Why is there so much crony capitalism in Canada?  Why is Pearson a hub if it so often screws up airline scheduling and ultimately disrupts the plans and hard work of paying customers. Why does the government try to control industries it has no business being in? Why do they forget who pays the bills?


So by now you’re wondering what The Beatles and Revolver have to do with my problems today. Well, in desperate times like this I like to spin the old classics. Makes me feel better.
Got To Get You Into My Life (but I’m stuck in Pearson without you)

Yt post by Lyrics for music’s

(Remastered) I’m Only Sleeping (but it’s so damn difficult in an airport chair)

Yt post by Bill Goosegg

Options. We need more options.


Above: Below, a Porter flight landing this afternoon at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. (Likely on time and filled with mostly satisfied paying customers). Imagine that.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: