Richard Duxbury (Dux)
(Top Gun)
12/05/11 04:26 PM
FAA Administrator DUI

Just heard that my old ALPA friend and FAA Administrator, Randy Babbit got picked up for a DUI last Saturday in Northern Virginia (Falls Church?).

Don't know what this event will have on his immediate future.

So far I thought that he was doing a good job as FAA Administrator -if anyone can do a good job at that position.

I think it was about 10;30pm and he was alone in the car.

30 years ago this would not even be a significant news story? Times have changed and I think we have made a lot of progress with getting drunk drivers off the street.

Sad news for Dux,

Regards,

Dux in Tucson -but back to Minnesota and DCA for Christmas


Ralph Jones
(Top Gun)
12/05/11 04:49 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

30 years ago this would not even be a significant news story?




Times do change. Early in Twelve O'Clock High, Gen. Savage arrives at his new command, finds his adjutant drunk on duty, and just grumbles a little...;-)


Rick Cremer
(AVSIG Member)
12/05/11 04:56 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

Don't know what this event will have on his immediate future.




Probably a little rehab, back to work, and all will be OK. Obama can't afford to alienate yet another union (ALPA) by firing an old union guy like Babbitt.

Best

Rick Cremer
NRA Life Member
Second Amendment Right Activist
Airplane Pilot


Jerry Kurata [KLVK]
(Top Gun)
12/05/11 10:45 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

He has been placed on administrative leave.

Gil Buettner [KAUW]
(Top Gun)
12/06/11 06:15 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

He resigned.

Joe Budge (W29)
(Top Gun)
12/06/11 09:04 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Dux, sorry for your friend.

Regards,
Joe


nehoC hctiM
(Top Gun)
12/08/11 08:56 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

I hope the new guy can push the rest rules through.

Good luck to him in his new career.


Tony Williams [MYF]
(Public Guest)
12/09/11 03:23 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Anybody heard about the effort to get Sully as FAA-1 ?

Scott Dunham (RDU)
(Top Gun)
12/09/11 04:44 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

I'm pretty sure he wouldn't want to take the pay cut - I'll bet he makes a lot more giving occasional speeches than the Administrator makes for putting up with %&^^$ all year.

Ralph Jones
(Top Gun)
12/09/11 04:50 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

I've seen a petition floated on Usenet.

Bill Bridges - 9S1
(Top Gun)
12/09/11 05:58 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

I'm pretty sure he wouldn't want to take the pay cut - I'll bet he makes a lot more giving occasional speeches than the Administrator makes for putting up with %&^^$ all year.




I can't imagine anyone wanting to get involved with some of the political hot bed issues coming up?

the other bill


B. Butler (Oregonian)
(Top Gun)
12/09/11 06:42 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

I've seen a petition floated on Usenet.




What a thoroughly silly idea. Heroism has very little to do with organizational effectiveness.

I was once on the selection panel for a managerial position; one of the candidates was a former airline captain. When asked about his management experience, he asserted cluelessly: "I've spent many years managing the airplane."

<d&r, no g>


Ralph Jones
(Top Gun)
12/09/11 07:16 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

What a thoroughly silly idea.




You did notice I said "Usenet"...;-)


Joe Budge (W29)
(Top Gun)
12/09/11 07:20 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

Anybody heard about the effort to get Sully as FAA-1 ?




What has Sully done to deserve that punishment?

Regards,
Joe


Ray Tackett
(Top Gun)
12/09/11 07:53 PM
FAA Administrator DUI

Bill,

>>> Heroism has very little to do with organizational effectiveness.

True as far as it goes, and Sully might well not have the political skill or
the will for the job. However, as PIC in The Situation, a substantial
component of what we call "heroism" was, indeed, organizational
effectiveness, a/k/a CRM.

That said, the CRM in that case was a short "sprint", not years in office. A
sprinter and a marathon runner are seldom the same person.

I give Sully high marks for getting it right in a pinch within the area of
his expertise. Other skills come into play as FAA Administrator.

One place I worked for more than a decade thought (as many did then) that the
way to reward a great techie was to make him a manager. It was a career
killer. Fortunately, I had done a short, nasty stretch as a fast food
restaurant manager and knew I should avoid that trap.

I'll bet Sully is smart enough to know and respect his limitations.

Ray


Mase Taylor
(Top Gun)
12/09/11 10:02 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Yep, I will testify that being a top-notch ticket agent, bag smasher, A&P, lav servicer, or airplane cleaner is a poor predictor of management performance.

One great difficulty that I recognized in myself and that would have really handicapped my management career was my tendency to want to "do it myself." No one will ever learn the job if you do it for them, they won't grow, and you won't have enough time to do it all and your own job too. I had to learn to teach, observe, monitor, delegate, and follow up. IMO THOSE are the things that make a good start at being a good manager.


Ray Tackett
(Top Gun)
12/10/11 04:06 AM
FAA Administrator DUI

Mase,

That was as far as I ever got as a manager. IMO all the things you mentioned
are leadership. I can do those with most anyone more mature than a teenage
burger flipper. Where I fail completely is budgeting, forecasting, needless
paperwork, and corporate politics.

Ray


Scott Dunham (RDU)
(Top Gun)
12/10/11 07:15 AM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

>> political hot-bed issues...

That's the thing - an airline pilot is kind of used to having people like their friendly FO do what they're told. Put that same person in charge of the FAA and it gets a little more difficult because there are constraints in all directions. Your overseers (Congress, DOT, the general public, and indirectly, the aviation industry...operators, manufacturers, etc) are ALWAYS on your case about something or other, and the rest of your organization has its own constraints and limitations to deal with. Just issuing direction doesn't necessarily make it happen, and that can be frustrating. For example, the FAA occasionally hires General Somebody-or-Other out of the military to come in as a high-level manager. They don't have an easy time making the transition, and may not even last more than a short time before seeking greener pastures.

So yeah - "Draft Sully" seems like an appealing idea, but without the skills to navigate the Bureaucratic School of Hard Knocks I don't think he would enjoy the experience. As Mr. Babbitt has shown, it's easy to go from hero to zero quite quickly. (And speaking of bureaucratic skills, letting LaHood find out about the DUI bust from the cops two days after it occurred was a career-limiting move all by itself. Having that occur while Mr. Babbitt was out flying an FAA airplane was just frosting...)


Bill Bridges - 9S1
(Top Gun)
12/10/11 11:10 AM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Ray,

The hardest thing for me as a manager was having to terminate employees. I always tried to run my staffs a little lean to avoid such things, but sometimes there are things that a manager can not control. I always handled it myself. :(

the other bill


Terry Carraway
(Top Gun)
12/10/11 12:48 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Yeah, I think a high level gov job is worse than a high level civilian job.

Too many masters. And the inability to get rid of those who do not perform or are even opening hostile/obstrutive.


Mase Taylor
(Top Gun)
12/10/11 01:27 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

Ray,

The hardest thing for me as a manager was having to terminate employees. I always tried to run my staffs a little lean to avoid such things, but sometimes there are things that a manager can not control. I always handled it myself. :(

the other bill




Yep. me too, hated that, whether it was due to performance issues or staffing levels. In fact, IMO if one enjoys that sort of thing they are not good management material. I always tried to run one head short of authorized levels and cover the shortage with overtime. Unfortunately it was often a "use it or lose it" proposition and if a job went unfilled for an extended time the authorization sometimes would disappear.

Unfortunately, the way things were in the business, I got quite good at handling out layoff letters.

One thing that surprised me, although it shouldn't have, was the way people watched what I did and followed my lead. I got transferred to one city, got a temporary apartment and started house-hunting. One guy said, "You aren't going to buy house, are you?" I said sure, why not.

"Well the rumor is they are going to close this city, and after all, you are the "Closer" are you not?"

I bought a nice house, everyone relaxed with the knowledge that the boss had some confidence in our longevity, and it took two years to close that particular city. I wasn't as lucky in Milwaukee. I was in the house from July 4th to Christmas.

I had a guy who was waiting on buying a new car until he was sure the company was going to survive. One of the other guys asked how he would know when that was true. A week later he bought the car. He had it paid off by the time anything bad happened to the company.

My general advice to folks was to live their life, be prudent in their decisions, be flexible and open to the possibilities. Some of life's best opportunities are disguised as problems.


B. Butler (Oregonian)
(Top Gun)
12/10/11 05:37 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

As Mr. Babbitt has shown, it's easy to go from hero to zero quite quickly. (And speaking of bureaucratic skills, letting LaHood find out about the DUI bust from the cops two days after it occurred was a career-limiting move all by itself. Having that occur while Mr. Babbitt was out flying an FAA airplane was just frosting...)




Does the name Duane Freer mean anything to you?


Ray Tackett
(Top Gun)
12/10/11 06:16 PM
FAA Administrator DUI

Fortunately, the only two firings I've done were absolutely clear-cut cases.
It was still difficult, but the lack of ambiguity helped.

The nagging question for me was always why the person behaved the way he did
and whether there was anything I could have done to head it off earlier.


Richard Duxbury (Dux)
(Top Gun)
12/13/11 10:07 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Yep,

Management of a few B-747's or even being Air Safety Chairman for the pilot union is not enough for a position as FAA Administrator.

Well, I should also note that Randy was President of a pilot union with (then) 72,000 pilots and a country wide staff of over 900 full time folks-attorneys, engineers, etc.

I'm sorry to see him leave -but it is a terrible job for sure.

He was a good friend -and as I originally noted, this would have been page 5 in the papers 30-40 years ago.

Today, I doubt if any major airline Chief Pilot could stay on his/her job with a public DUI. Hey, they's the stuff today, and the crashes and deaths from DUI drivers has gone down drastically -I think.

Regards,

Dux


Ken Korshin KMIA
(Top Gun)
12/19/11 11:37 AM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI



Dux,
Quote:

I'm sorry to see him leave -but it is a terrible job for sure.


Enough to drive him to drink. A thankless and difficult job even in with funding.

Richard Duxbury (Dux)
(Top Gun)
12/19/11 10:25 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Hi Ken

Looked at a recent article about the AA Chapter 11 (different thread).

They still have a bunch of MD-80's (or are they "Super 80"?

My son flew them for many years as 1st Officer and Captain. Now it looks like the B-737 (he is an instructor on that) will sorta replace them. Before 9/11 he was an instructor Captain on the 757/767. With the Chapter 11, he will be happy to just stay as an instructor and in the left seat I think.

Perhaps even Airbus A-321's.

The FAA will not be much into the future of AA, except for reviewing their maintenance when they fourlough 1,000-3,000 mechanics in the next two years. Hell, it could be 4,000.

Oh yes, and drop that scope clause, which will allow a potential AA LCC to fly the A-319's or other 100 passenger jets with non mainline AA pilots and crew.

I'm sorry that the FAA has lost Randy. He was a safety oriented ALPA president, and the only ALPA official that really gave credit to the APA, American, and FAA for the original ASAP program.

I expect you could write a book about the MD-80 birds. Tell me again why they need that strip under the cockpit -perhaps to keep the nose straight with an engine out?

Regards,

Dux -soon off to DCA for a few days -and coming back to Tucson in January on a Delta -90 with 160 seats? Is that just a Delta version of an MD-80?


Tony Williams [MYF]
(Public Guest)
12/24/11 10:57 AM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

Hi Ken

Looked at a recent article about the AA Chapter 11 (different thread).

They still have a bunch of MD-80's (or are they "Super 80"?





I think only the factory (Douglas) and AA called the planes by their proper name, DC9-Super 80, instead of the McDonnell monicker, MD-80. The blueprints and production certificate also used the proper terms.

I built engine wiring harnesses, in Long Beach, on the Super 80.


Randy Sohn
(Gradn Exlated Ordre of teh Fyling Fingres)
12/30/11 09:22 AM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

[quote (or are they "Super 80"?

Tell me again why they need that strip under the cockpit -perhaps to keep the nose straight with an engine out?




The dash 50s also had that strake, an aerodynamic deal. Nosewheel tires on the -50s and subsequent had a sidewall chine, that was for diverting water flow.

We always just called them "crash 10"s , "dash 30"s, "dash 50"s, "dash 80"s, the type rating on your certificate just says DC-9. I think saying MD80 or Super 80 was sorta an affectation.

best, randy


sreyoB yrraL
(AVSIG Member)
12/30/11 10:31 AM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

They still have a bunch of MD-80's (or are they "Super 80"?




Douglas initially called the MD80 the "DC9 Super 80". AAL was the only airline that I know that stuck with the "Super 80" name after McD rebranded it the MD80.

Quote:

Tell me again why they need that strip under the cockpit -perhaps to keep the nose straight with an engine out?




I never flew a DC9 larger than than DC9-41, which doesn't have the strakes, but did hear the answer to this once. If I remember correctly, it had to due with longitudinal stability at high angles of attack and was needed when they stretched the -41 into the much longer -50 series.

Quote:

coming back to Tucson in January on a Delta -90 with 160 seats? Is that just a Delta version of an MD-80?




The big difference in the MD90, other than a newer generation avionics, is the engine. The IAE V2500 replaced the JT8D family of engines that had powered the DC9 line all the pay back to the -7 in the 10-series. It's also about 5' longer than the MD88.

Looks like my Douglas days may be nearing an end. The continued reduction in the DC8 fleet is going to bump me over to the B767. I guess it was inevitable, and I'm sure I'll like the airplane, but I'd stay in the old Douglasouras a bit longer if I could.

"Boeing builds airplanes. Douglas builds character."


Anne Umphrey (KBED)
(Top Gun)
12/30/11 12:16 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Apropos of nothing. I flew DL 2288 from Atlanta to Boston yesterday. It was listed as being on a 737-800, but was actually an MD-90.

Anne


sreyoB yrraL
(AVSIG Member)
12/30/11 12:40 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

I flew DL 2288 from Atlanta to Boston yesterday. It was listed as being on a 737-800, but was actually an MD-90.




Not sure where the 737 came from. That flight was a 757 until mid-December when it switched to the MD90. Since the switch, it was flown as a 757 only once.

Of course, half the passengers wouldn't have known the difference. The Medallions only because the upgrade is harder to get on the 737!

Delta's schedule is constantly changing. Lots of small time changes, flight number changes, or equipment changes.


Mase Taylor
(Top Gun)
12/30/11 01:47 PM
Attachment
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

According to DELTA they have 16 MD-90 airraft.







The engines are really something. I rode in one of TWA's and taking off from STL lightly loaded I think we were at 3000' before we got to the far end of the runway.


Anne Umphrey (KBED)
(Top Gun)
12/30/11 05:15 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

On Delta's website, Showing a booking from Atlanta to Boston on 2/10/12

Aircraft Type
DL 2288:Boeing 737-800


sreyoB yrraL
(AVSIG Member)
12/30/11 05:48 PM
Re: FAA Administrator DUI

Quote:

On Delta's website, Showing a booking from Atlanta to Boston on 2/10/12




Yep. Changes all the time. I just looked at the past two weeks. 757's changed to MD90s. No 737s.

I've seen the same BNA-ATL flight change from a DC9 to a CRJ-700 to an A319 over the span of about six weeks.

I'll take the DC9/MD88/MD90 over the 737/A319. The ratio of first class seats to economy seats is too low making the upgrades a lot harder to get.



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