The real story about United Airlines

I don’t like liars.

And I especially don’t like liars who use lies to cover their abuse of people.

So let’s talk about United Airlines.

Let’s also talk about the spineless, dishonest, lazy, Big Business ass-kissing US news media.

What actually happened and why it’s much worse than the news media reports

Unless you are blissfully (and wisely) disconnected from the news, you know that a few days ago a passenger was pulled off a United flight in Chicago bound for Louisville, Kentucky.

Several passengers filmed the event. The passenger was physically assaulted in a particularly brutal way.

In his first public statement about the episode United’s CEO Oscar Muñoz said: “I apologize for having to re-accommodate these customers.”

Before this, the Chicago Police Department – which was not involved in this case in any way and hadn’t even sent an officer to investigate – issued this statement which the idiot news media ran with as gospel:

“At approximately 6:00 p.m., A 69-year-old male Asian airline passenger became irate after he was asked to disembark from a flight that was oversold. The passenger in question began yelling to voice his displeasure at which point Aviation Police were summoned. Aviation Officers arrived on scene attempted to carry the individual off of the flight when he fell. His head subsequently struck an armrest causing injuries to his face. The man was taken to Lutheran General Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Ongoing investigation.”

United said the law allows them to bump passengers from overbooked flights and that they asked him to leave in order for the plane to depart and he was the only one of the four passengers asked to refuse.

Great story…but none of it is true.

Three whopping lies

Lie #1: The flight was overbooked with paying passengers

No it wasn’t. There were enough seats for paying passengers.

In reality, United wanted to shoehorn four employees at the last minute onto the plane for its own purposes.

In fact, it now appears these four weren’t even United employees. They may have been employees of a “partner airline” they wanted to extend a courtesy to.

Update: United finally admitted this fact. THREE days later.

Lie #2: The passenger had a legal obligation to leave the plane.

Wrong. Once you are boarded and seated that seat is yours. Period.

It is true that by law you can be denied boarding a flight you paid for because of “overbooking.”

However, the law does not allow a paying passenger to be removed from a flight after he has been allowed to board the plane.

Read the previous sentence again in case you missed it.

Here’s the law: http://lawnewz.com/high-profile/united-cites-wrong-rule-for-illegally-de-boarding-passenger/

United flat out lied.

First to its customers – and then to the public.

In fact when United went through the pantomime of “selecting” boarded passengers to leave the plane they were running a scam on their customers.

None of the boarded passengers had any obligation to leave the plane.

Lie #3: “…He fell. His head subsequently struck an armrest causing injuries to his face.”

This statement is from the highly suspect Chicago Police Department report.

It’s a well known principle among “violence professionals” that a sharp blow to the head will quiet many people down either by dazing them or knocking them out cold.

It’s a further principle that it’s infinitely better to use a handy immovable surface like a wall, the floor – or say the arm rest of an airline seat – to accomplish this. You won’t break your hand and when you slam someone’s head into an immovable object, the immovable object “hits” harder than you ever can.

Every bouncer knows this. Every police officer knows this. Every professional street thug knows this.

Now, there’s no way to tell for sure if Dao’s head striking the arm rest was an accident or not, but I’ve looked at the video very closely with a trained eye and if I were a betting man, I’d say the collision was no accident. It was tradecraft.

By the way – and this is grim and mostly unreported – there was so much blood on the plane, United had the passengers disembark so they could clean the plane before it flew to Lexington.

In summary: Here’s what really happened – and note how it differs from the news media version

1. United wanted four of its employees on that plane and there were no seats for them

2. A United employee entered the plane and falsely stated that four people had to leave the plane

3. Four passengers – already boarded and seated – were supposedly selected at random

4. Contrary to inaccurate press reports, no one volunteered to leave the plane until after the assault

5.  One man, David Dao MD, a doctor with an active medical practice in Kentucky was singled out for forcible removal

He said he was a doctor and had patients to see the following day and therefore had a compelling reasons to get to his destination. He also objected to being the only person singled out for harassment

6. To repeat the fundamental in this case: United had ZERO legal authority to ask him or anyone else to leave the plane

7. United employees might well have misrepresented the situation to airport security by claiming – as the Chicago Police Department claimed with ZERO knowledge – that the man was unruly

8. In the process of removing Dao from the plane his head and face either accidentally hit the arm rest – or the “closer” who they brought in after the first attempt to remove Dao failed deliberately slammed his head into the arm rest to shut him up

And then United lied and lied and lied…

In a private email to his employees, the CEO of United Oscar Muñoz called the man assaulted “disruptive and belligerent.”

He then told his employees:

“I emphatically stand behind all of you, and I want to commend you for continuing to go above and beyond to ensure we fly right.”

In his first message to the public, here’s how he described the situation: “I apologize for having to re-accommodate these customers.”

Re-accomodating?

United also managed to get some unflattering information about Dao about an unrelated event in his life over ten years ago into the news.

Apparently, it wasn’t enough to be involved in an assault on a customer and then lie about it. United and a “journalist” and “editor” in Kentucky needed to smear him as well.

What are the lessons here?

As always, there are life lessons to be learned.

Lesson #1: Don’t be that guy

Back your employees, yes, but that doesn’t mean automatically back them all the time in everything they do.

Without any independent verification of what happened, United’s CEO Oscar Muñoz was ready, willing, and able to lie about what actually happened.

Also, don’t be the head of a company that treats its customers like s*** as a matter of policy.

No one who flies United was surprised by this event. It’s just an extreme example of how United employees treat customers every day of the week.

Lesson #2: Don’t believe anything you read in the news media or hear from an official source unless it is verified ten different ways

I’m not going to say every word out of the mouths of the news media and official sources is a lie – just 80% of it. (Sometimes they just get too tired to try to think up a good lie.)

Look how the news media botched the reporting of this story – with every point in favor of their advertiser and bill payer United Airlines.

They do this with everything.

They “report” in the interests of their advertisers. Not you.

Financial advice that if actually followed would bankrupt you. Medical advice that all but insures you stay sick forever while the medical monopoly grows ever more oppressive.

Lesson #3: The Internet needs to continue to fry people like Oscar Muñoz and companies like United – and that’s a good thing

Most small business people I know are good, hard working people who strive to do the right thing every day, every minute of the day.

They – you – are truly the backbone of the nation and sometimes I think the only thing that keeps the country together.

Most business people don’t like to criticize other business people, but there’s an important distinction here:

Big Business is not business as we know it.  Many industries enjoy monopolistic power and with that power comes abuse.

The airline industry routinely abuses customers.

Big banks routinely abuse customers.

Big medicine routinely abuses customers.

And, most of the time, they get away with it. And even when they don’t, the consequences are nothing.

Wells Fargo – Warren Buffet’s favorite bank – used customer data to create 2 million fraudulent accounts and then billed people for “services” they didn’t agree to. Other than a small fine and some of the crooks at the top having to give back some of the millions they stole, there were no consequences.

Imagine what would happen to you if you did that to just one customer?

Your customers know this stuff is going on and unfortunately, you are going to pay the price in terms of  a general and growing societal lack of trust in business.

So what can you do?

Back to Lesson #1: Don’t be that guy

And don’t hang around with “that guy” in your own industry, don’t make excuses for him, and don’t support his business with your hard earned money.

Fly United again?

No way – until CEO Oscar Muñoz and the employees who ran this scam and incited this violence are fired and/or are in orange jumpsuits.

– Ken McCarthy

P.S. For over 20 years I’ve sharing the simple but powerful things that matter in business with my marketing students.

If you’d like direction for your marketing that will work today, tomorrow and twenty years from now, visit us at the System Club.

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The problem of having too much money

41 Responses to The real story about United Airlines

  1. Conni Eversull April 12, 2017 at 4:08 pm #

    Great advice and refreshing honesty. I also was upset with the smearing of this man. His past has nothing to do with the treatment he received.

  2. Shannon April 12, 2017 at 4:24 pm #

    Excellent piece. Thanks for clearing up the murky facts. United? Never again.

  3. Dave P April 12, 2017 at 4:28 pm #

    So much for flying the friendly skies! Too bad that United trashed its own image and damaged its reputation with the one thing that keeps it in business – loyal customers. (Not any more.)

  4. Steve Leibson April 12, 2017 at 4:32 pm #

    Hi Ken,

    Your message is right on, except that there’s too much media bashing for me. First, I did get all of this info from the media, just not from one or even initial reports. With no reporters on scene, media will report what United said and will attribute it correctly. The story unfolded appropriately in the media, in my opinion. Second, United’s lying should have consequences and it is. I’ve just read this morning about a similar abuse of a first-class passenger flying from Hawaii to California. I think it’s now open season for these stories to come out. The more the merrier in my opinion. Finally, I’m with you. United is now on my personal no-fly list for the foreseeable future.

  5. Mike Gormley April 12, 2017 at 4:38 pm #

    You nailed it Ken.

    Good on you!

  6. Ken McCarthy April 12, 2017 at 4:40 pm #

    I am a little heated on the subject of media – but they are clearly shaping the story to let the United narrative prevail. “The system failed. We will fix the system.”

    Baloney.

    The cabin was so blood soaked they had to take the passengers off to clean the plane. How do you leave “little details” like that out?

    Also unless I’m missing it NO ONE has looked into the actual law of the matter. You can refuse to board someone in an overbook, but you cannot legally remove them after you have boarded them. How can they – with all their resources and full time reporters – fail to get to the essence of the story.

    But moderation in all things is a good thing and I am listening to what you’re saying.

  7. Pam Dodd April 12, 2017 at 4:43 pm #

    Gulp! And it was already a horrendous story before your clarifications. Thanks, Ken, for sticking your neck out on this. Although I shouldn’t be surprised, man of integrity that you are.

  8. Anonymous April 12, 2017 at 4:48 pm #

    well done Ken, I like it that the right critical independant thinking attitude be stimulated, greetings Jorke

  9. Donna M April 12, 2017 at 5:45 pm #

    Bravo, Ken! Thanks for clearing this issue up for loads of us who don’t have “insider info” like you do. So sad that so many billionaire companies and CEOs are so dishonest and hateful. I still believe you can run a business in a compassionate and spiritual manner and do no harm to anyone… the Golden Rule rules, IMHO.

  10. Rusty Robson April 12, 2017 at 6:09 pm #

    Clear, thorough, and candid. It’s amazing to me that with a smart phone in every hand and the social media bull horn on at all times, that people (especially leaders) think they can just do crazy things like this without repercussion. It’s either enormous ego that blinds them or they’re just plain ignorant and out of touch. Either way, I’m not giving that company my money or my attention.

  11. Keith Sims April 12, 2017 at 6:20 pm #

    Thanks for telling the truth about this disgraceful and inexcusable crime perpetrated by United on its customers. Everyone involved in this should–at the very least–be out of a job, and those directly involved, should be in jail. Bet you ten bucks they all voted Democrat.

  12. Ken McCarthy April 12, 2017 at 7:06 pm #

    Three things might have been obscured in this long piece, so let me cut to the chase.

    1. Once an airline assigns you a seat and boards you, all the “overbooked” nonsense goes out the window. There is no law that permits United to do what it did.

    2. The ONLY way to get police on a plane is to claim that there is a public safety issue, for example a disorderly passenger. The assaulted person was not being disorderly. To put it charitably, he was in the midst of a civil dispute. To put it more accurately, he was objecting to being scammed by United’s employees.

    Here’s the lawsuit – and I’d also like to see jail time for the United employees responsible:

    They LIED to the police about what was actually going on. They claimed he was disorderly when he was not.

    3. What the United employees did is paramount to screaming fire in a crowded theater when you know there is none.

    I don’t know the specific law in Illinois, but if you call emergency personnel in New York State knowingly on false pretenses and serious injury results, it’s NY PL 240.60 “Falsely Reporting an Incident the First Degree” and you’re subject to SEVEN years in prison.

    I’m sure their union is going to spend a fortune to save their jobs, but there is nothing the union can do to prevent these miscreants from facing criminal charges and jail time.

  13. Steve Leibson April 12, 2017 at 7:47 pm #

    Well, I have read about the blood on the plane in quotes from other passengers in at least two media reports. I have also read at least two published opinions in the media from attorneys who specialize in this sort of law about United’s many transgressions: Misquoting the law as you have pointed out (either intentionally by the gate agent or because the United employee manual is just plain wrong and illegal), failing to provide a written explanation, failing to provide appropriate compensation for the bump (even though the bump was illegal in the first place), attempting to smear the victim’s character as a defense for the airline’s indefensible actions, a second passenger with similar experiences in Hawaii (again on United) minus the beating plus the threat of handcuffs (Google “Geoff Fearns”), and the recent stories explaining that the Louisville-bound victim’s attorney is getting his ducks in line for the lawsuit by asking that the evidence be preserved. The media is making the case for the victim but perhaps not as quickly as you or I might like. On the other hand, the victim isn’t talking much yet, due to being incapacitated by the abuse, so the media hasn’t got as much to go on from the victim’s perspective. Witness accounts however are pretty damning as is the video. There are really at least two issues here. One is United’s clear intent to abuse the law. The other is law enforcement acting like the old union busters of the 1930s and giving law-abiding citizens a beating at the direction of big business.

  14. Ken McCarthy April 12, 2017 at 8:10 pm #

    Here’s a reference on United doing this before:

    Boarding and seating a passenger and then demanding he give up his seat.

    In this case, they only threatened violence.

    http://www.latimes.com/business/lazarus/la-fi-lazarus-united-low-priority-passenger-20170412-story.html

  15. Will April 12, 2017 at 10:03 pm #

    Overall good analysis Ken, though you go too far when you say that “80 percent” of everything tbe media says is a “lie”. That’s just a random unscientific potshot that makes you sound like one of the relentlessly overzealous Conpiracy-Theorists on BOTH the Far Right and the Far Left— instead of the facts–based non-ideological Independent Thinker that I’ve always admired you for being. But Cheers anyway, thanks for your opinions as always

  16. russfnz April 12, 2017 at 11:04 pm #

    Let’s make America great again! Nice one United, the Pd and media. Greatness demands truth in order to be good. Lies, Deceit, violence, illegal grounds, corruption and cover ups are never good, but outright evil. Until Americans enforce their excellent constitutional rights within their criminal and commercial laws and cultural attitude, it will never be great again. Sad but true!

  17. Sandra Berthene April 12, 2017 at 11:54 pm #

    Wish there were more people like you, Ken. Guess you’ll have to run the Systems Club Seminar again, so another generation can get the word, and behave like rational, caring human beings instead of being jerks.

  18. Carl Juneau, PhD April 13, 2017 at 4:48 am #

    Good one Ken. Appreciate you doing that. I’m never flying United again.

  19. David Rothwell April 13, 2017 at 5:53 am #

    Well said Ken!

  20. Elizabeth Campbell April 13, 2017 at 6:34 am #

    Ken,

    Good of you to point out the legalities of this horrendous situation. Although I agree with a previous commenter that most of this was indeed reported in various media outlets. Admittedly after having a very rude experience with a United gate agent back in 1984, missing my flight, I vowed never to fly United again. Never have. Even when the United flight was the most convenient I would take another airline, to this day. Needless to say I am feeling a bit smug although sad for this passenger and his obvious mistreatment and subsequent distress. One question I keep asking myself is “what would I have done if I had been an observing passenger?”

  21. Steven cfo April 13, 2017 at 7:58 am #

    Thanks for this account
    Well researched
    Well founded
    And shows just how much stick there is in this story.

  22. Ken McCarthy April 13, 2017 at 8:50 am #

    I think Will has a good point. Let me clarify.

    1. If it’s a big story and in the headlines…

    2. If the interests of players with major resources are involved…

    3. 99% of that appears in the media is prefabrication

    The rest of it – cats rescued from trees etc. – is pretty accurate (if sloppily researched.)

  23. Ken McCarthy April 13, 2017 at 9:06 am #

    Well, look at the situation:

    1. A plane is a very crowded space (prison cells have more room)
    2. You can only see what’s going on directly ahead of you
    3. People are already terrorized by the “security theater” of the TSA
    4. Three armed guys came in supposedly carrying out a legal order

    I did hear – and I need to confirm this – that the three passengers who “volunteered” to surrender their seats left only AFTER the assault and it was a father with his two teenaged children.

    Apparently many people got up and left the plane after the assault and as I mentioned earlier, United cleared the entire plane so the maintenance crew could come in and clean up all the blood.

    My prediction: There will be an out-of-court settlement and it will be HUGE. Eight, maybe even nine figures. United cannot afford to let the facts of this case get to the public. This is already a billion dollar blow to what’s left of their “brand” as it is.

    And it could get much worse.

    69 year old man gets a severe blow to the head, probably at least concussion, because United employees made a false claim to the police in the process of running a scam against passengers (a scam they’ve apparently they’ve run before). What if this man doesn’t recover or has a permanent disability as the result of this?

    This is a bottomless pit for United. The CEO needs to go and Illinois needs to charge the United employees who called the police in under false pretenses and put them in handcuffs with matching orange jump suits.

  24. George April 13, 2017 at 10:40 am #

    Hello Ken –
    I can’t understand how people don’t even bother voting with their “wallets’ and decide never to use an airline or a service when companies and media abuse their powers
    People have short memories and 2 weeks later – they will forget and continue spending money with these “rogue” companies

    People – Remember – in a world dominated by monetary systems – you can take the power in your own hands- stop spending money with these people – stop watching “rogue” programmed media that is also controlled by the same people and corporations

    We hand over “power” to those few people who can crumble at the mere thought of everyone taking back that power if they want/.

  25. Shirley Alquist April 13, 2017 at 10:57 am #

    Thank you, Ken. It is good to hear a sound reality check in the midst of the “mire” out there in media news. I don’t trust the media to get facts straight any more.

  26. Peace April 13, 2017 at 2:23 pm #

    Perhaps the Dr’s past did have something to do with why he was “randomly selected.”

  27. Ken McCarthy April 13, 2017 at 2:51 pm #

    Apparently, it’s even weirder than that. At the boarding desk, he initially volunteered, but when he heard that here were no planes until the next day, he told them he was a doctor and had to see patients the next day. I think that was their “random selection” process!

  28. Wow! I hadn’t even heard about the passengers leaving the plane so they could clean up the blood.

    I agree with your point about this costing their brand a huge amount of money. I think that will be far worse than the settlement payout.

  29. Angela April 14, 2017 at 1:20 am #

    I’m pretty sure the David dao with a record is a different guy who lives 60 miles from dr dao

  30. Ken McCarthy April 14, 2017 at 9:25 am #

    I’ve heard this too, but that part of the story appears to be a hoax. What’s disturbing is how the local news media found it necessary to dredge up an incident from 10 years in Dao’s past, never mentioning that his entire childhood from birth to teenage years was spent in an active war zone and he was one of the people who had to flee Vietnam to save their lives and then resettle in the US.

  31. Ken McCarthy April 14, 2017 at 9:34 am #

    A few disturbing things about this:

    1. Anyone seeing the video knows it was an act of savagery, but Unite’s CEO’s first response was to congratulate his employees.

    2. Instead of acknowledging the sheer senseless brutality of this event, the news media for the most part has gotten involved in side issues including a continuous misrepresentation of the details of the episode and the specific regulations and laws involved.

    3. There surely are hundreds of lawyers who can speak articulately about the simple fact that United employees violated United’s own rules and airline regulations and then committed a criminal offense when they called the police and said the man was disruptive and thus a threat. In spite of this not one attorney who has this information has been invited on TV t explain it. Instead they feature softball United apologists muddying the waters.

    The net result is this message to the public: “Hey, it’s unfortunate, but United (the multi-million dollar a year advertiser), did nothing wrong. It’s just one of those things. Get used to it.”

  32. Larry April 14, 2017 at 10:08 am #

    Get prepared for the media shaming of Dr. Dao when he is awarded some huge sum of money. We’ll probably see fake news like “$10 million is too much to pay” next week, or something similar to suggest he does not deserve “so much” money.

    Agreed the United will try to settle out of court and force a gag order.

    Will this in any way change the law? Will Congress actually do something other than meetings?

    United will recover monetarily almost immediately because they control dozens of markets and the Industry simply lacks capacity. A lot of regular people will just not have a choice; hope the First Class and full price people abandon United.

  33. Ken McCarthy April 14, 2017 at 10:28 am #

    It could one of those “undisclosed amounts” deals in exchange for him shutting up forever about the whole thing. If anyone at United knows how to use a calculator, the amount they need to afford to shut this down is astronomical.

    That said, the video is not going away and even though not 1 out of 20,000 people realizes United engaged in a CRIMINAL act when they misrepresented a civil dispute as an “unruly passenger”, the substantial damage has been done.

    This is a bit like BP’s negligence in the Gulf with a HUGE difference. This is a global thing. Think of what this has done to United’s image in the all-important China market in which they have invested billions. Also, sane people are probably asking: If United got away with THIS, what can they do to me if I fly with them.

    The media hacks say this will “blow over” and people will fly with United for convenience and/or to save a few bucks.

    Maybe in the long run, but I’m sure that United is now the LAST choice for anyone booking tickets now.

    I’m sure not going to flying with them. Not only that I will never host an event in a city where United in the main carrier.

  34. Robert April 14, 2017 at 11:23 am #

    Chicago PD??? Not surprised. They’re the biggest bunch of thugs in the city…no wonder the crime rate is so high.

  35. Lawrence Bernstein April 14, 2017 at 12:56 pm #

    “The CEO needs to go and Illinois needs to charge the United employees who called the police in under false pretenses and put them in handcuffs with matching orange jump suits.”

    Betting money on the CEO being ousted by Wednesday but more important is prosecuting the United employees who were the initial perpetrators of this crime.

    Seems hard to exorcise the “I was only following orders” demon from the human condition.

  36. Direct Direct April 14, 2017 at 4:02 pm #

    Most police departments with City of Attorneys departments and some businesses with there monopolized and corrupted minds, creates an game time plan of lies. They trick juries and customers everyday.

    Un f…king real–unreal.

  37. Ken McCarthy April 14, 2017 at 6:06 pm #

    Maybe we need to boycott Chicago until whatever passes for law enforcement there goes after the United employees who called the cops with a false report (“disruptive passenger.”)

    As I’ve said earlier, in case some readers missed it, doing such a thing is literally a criminal act. In New York State it’s a FELONY if a serious injury results and conviction can bring up to seven years in prison. The United employees need criminal charges.

    As for the cop who literally broke this man’s face (see the medical report), he needs to face some legal unpleasantness too, but I think it needs to be made crystal clear that the employees at United to ran this scam and then called the police when Dr. Dao didn’t agree to go along with it engaged in a criminal act.

  38. Ken McCarthy April 15, 2017 at 9:13 am #

    I’m going out on a limb here with a speculation, but it’s a speculation based on years of experience battling big corrupt organizations – the Mob/local government nexus of San Francisco, a Swiss cement company that used slave labor during World War II, and the US Army Crops of Engineers.

    I’ve successfully helped bloody their noses in each case:

    So I know A LOT about how they work.

    http://www.brasscheck.com/stadium/

    http://www.dmnews.com/marketing-strategy/david-cements-goliath/article/87518/

    http://levees.org/ken-mccarthy/

    I don’t think there was a “computer program” that picked Dr. Dao.

    I think they picked a small, elderly, Asian man because they thought he would be the easiest to bully and he drew attention to himself by originally inquiring about the deal and if there was a later flight later that day BEFORE he boarded the flight.

    The fact when everything was confused and the story was brand new United had a very detailed, yet ultimately very vague, story about how he came to be picked makes me think the whole explanation was fabricated.

    I have been to this rodeo before.

    When Willie Brown literally stuffed ballot boxes on behalf of the Mafia connected DeBartolo family and no one could understand how a losing proposition won without any evidence of voter support, he had an elaborate explanatory tale of total BS ready and waiting for the local press and they swallowed it lock, stock and barrel.

    When the city of New Orleans was devastated by flooding, the US Army Corps of Engineers got to the media first with a story about “Katrina” and “below sea level” and all sorts of other BS which the media accepted without research,

    In fact, the city flooded with $100 billion in damages because the levees failed due to poor design and construction in over 50 places.

    This fact – later validated by forensic engineers – didn’t stop the crooks at the Corps and their 8 million dollar PR campaign from lying around the clock to try to cover their ass. (It included at least one Corps employee posing in sock puppet fashion on news blogs all over the world saying New Orleaneans got what they deserved – a theme many of America’s more sleazy politicians were happy to embrace.)

    The ONLY parts of the United story that hit the news media in the early hours were: 1) Dao was unruly (now known to be a lie) and 2) he was picked by a computer program.

    Both “facts” (one now a known lie) are attempts to shift responsibility from the people actually responsible for what I’ve pointed out was a criminal act.

    How do you know a big organization is lying when it’s in trouble?

    Because its lips are moving.

  39. Lawrence Bernstein April 15, 2017 at 5:40 pm #

    “I think they picked a small, elderly, Asian man because they thought he would be the easiest to bully and he drew attention to himself by originally inquiring about the deal and if there was a later flight later that day BEFORE he boarded the flight.”

    I had the same thought — the United staff assumed he’d cave in and he did anything but.

    If it makes it to court, it will be interesting to see how Dr. Dao was selected to be bumped in the discovery.

  40. Ken McCarthy April 17, 2017 at 8:22 pm #

    Here’s the deal:

    Idiots – and they are idiots – who don’t sign their comments and write that the facts I’ve stated and referenced are wrong, but offer absolutely nothing in the way of specific counter evidence will have their comments blocked.

    This comment area is for people with minimum IQ of 80. The Internet is a big place. I’m sure you can find other places to troll and other people’s time to waste.

  41. Ken McCarthy April 18, 2017 at 8:18 am #

    It’s inevitable.

    As soon as a public discussion gets any kind of traction critical of an organization big enough to have a multimillion dollar PR budget, the trolls and sock puppets (are they paid or just volunteer idiots?) come out of the woodwork to try to disrupt it with off-topic comments, attacks on the messenger and unsubstantiated statements.

    That’s why blogs are moderated.

    True story:

    When New Orleans was still underwater a campaign of New Orleans bashing hit the blogosphere. “They deserved what they got.” “It’s such a corrupt place” “The shouldn’t be living under sea level.””It’s the local levee boards fault” “The place should be bulldozed”

    HUNDREDS of those comments were traced back to an IP address in the New Orleans office of the US Amy Corps of Engineers, the organization whose ineptitude and corruption was responsible for the levee failures in that city in over 50 places thus devastating the city.

    That kind of dynamic is what is behind a lot of the seemingly “random” random jack asses who hijack online discussions.
    Anyway, lacking the time or motivation to babysit this thread, I’m closing the comments section.

    Thanks to the intelligent people who participated.

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