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08-03-2012, 10:44 AM
Someone asked for this to be posted. I've already voted NO, not on emotion, but i've read the whole LBFO (last best final offer) i've listened to 2 of the 3 teleconferences and attended a roadshow.

Executive Summary: IF the American Airlines / APA Tentative Agreement were to be voted down by a close margin, American Airlines would immediately Re-negotiate to gain a speedy resolution with this key labor group.

Fellow APA Pilots,

We have less than a week before the final tabulation results of American Airlines Last Best Final Offer is revealed. I would be terribly remiss if I did NOT disclose to the membership a dialog session which transpired in Marina Del Rey, CA. The locale was the Warehouse, a restaurant, and I was accompanied by 15 fellow pilots of the LAX domicile, ranging from line pilots, check airmen, Flight Department Pilots who all dined with Captain John Hale and Senior VP of Operations, Mr. Jim Ream.

The meeting occurred on the eve of July 26th. Captain Hale was the financial host of the get together which was arranged specifically to give both Captain Hale and Mr. Ream a cross stratification from the most Junior in our base ranks to the most Senior, from managerial types to union advocates, for the sole purpose of edifying where the rank and file actually stand on this LBFO.

Once dinner was concluded, the small talk ceased as we moved to a more private setting in the restaurant where Captain Hale delivered some opening remarks then handed off the dialog to Mr. Ream who gave us a Macro Economic overview of American Airlines and the goals and Objectives he and others are trying to achieve.

After an opening question by one of our former negotiators was posed regarding the culture of distrust and apparent over reach of this TA, I followed on to ask Mr. Ream a multi faceted question relevant to his Macro vision, which is the heart of my post today.

I stated to Mr. Ream, since it is the public posture of APA for regime change with US AIR being the desired player, that the equity ploy (including F/As & mechanics) would still leave organized labor 15% short of a blocking vote. I felt the POR blocking strategy was indeed a long shot and would very possibly still find us working under a very draconian TA for the next 10 years.

I further stated, I feel American would pursue purchasing JetBlue. Therefore, the existing TA as it stands, leaves the American Airline pilot exposed.

In short, I explained that I felt manipulated and used by BOTH sides and he would not achieve labor peace with the pilots when the depth of deception was revealed. He appeared surprised by how much push back he was sensing from the pilots for he had been led to believe that this TA was a good deal for the pilots inside of bankruptcy.

My question was could He alter the TA before the vote was tabulated, if we could propose a viable argument for why such amendment was necessary.
Mr. Ream responded:

(Not exact quotes, but accurate content, vetted by three other pilots present.)

1) It is the desire of AAL to purchase JetBlue. This would be completed through a complex deal including debt, private equity and preferential shares. He explained that we are far along the road to negotiating this deal and the critical part is HAVING Contracts in place with LABOR. He further acknowledged that the same people that would be loaning us the money for Americans desired POR were consolidating Americans debt. By doing this, they are buying debt at a discounted rate, gaining power on the UCC and have little exposure for they know the financing is viable to emerge from BK.

2) IF the TA were to be voted down by a close margin, they would immediately RE-negotiate to gain a speedy solution with labor. Time being the critical factor to American Airlines due to the in place financing. He stated, the labor stress just ADDS to the Cost of Financing.

3) IF the TA passes, they have done their job for the creditors and have achieved the best deal possible for the debtors.

4) He indicated that changing the TA at this late stage was problematic. The money factor being locked and reported to the UCC. However, he wanted to hear what the pilots felt were the problem areas of the TA.

Dinner was concluded and some very valuable information was exchanged between all parties in attendance. The remainder of the eve was spent discussing the TA and how it affects the pilots. Mr. Ream asked those in attendance to send him 5 bullet points they would want to see in TA #2.

Friday / 27 July:

I was informed that a pilot who was present, had written a debrief and forwarded it to Negotiating Chairman Neil Roghair as well as both LAX Base Representatives.
The remainder of my day was spent sending the attendees 5 Bullet points to Captain Hale and Captain Smith.

Saturday / 28 July:

Captain Hale informed me he was going to be addressing MR. Horton, Ms. Denise Lynn (HR) and would be informing them of the pilots view of this TA from our dialog session.

I assured Captain Hale I would not disclose nor campaign the content of the Warehouse Revelations for five days to allow him to possibly get an internal solution to the very defective TA.

In Conclusion,

True to my word, I promised not to disclose nor discuss the events of 26 July 2012 in order to allow Captain Hale to affect an amendment. Nothing has transpired from either Captain Hales focused efforts, nor has the APA in any official capacity commented on these developments.
PLEASE, Understand this.

1) Americans Stand Alone Plan is fictitious JetBlue is their goal.
2) The APA is so myopic on management change that we are continuing a course of action, so shaky and anemic in terms of substantiation to the failed logic of you wont have to fly under it.
3) If you Vote YES / In favor of this LBFO, you will likely suffer under its compromised content for a minimum of six years.
4) If you elect to REJECT this TA, American will renegotiate to gain a labor agreement.
5) Last, but certainly not least, I am staking my own personal reputation behind stating these facts of the evenings dialog. My passionate pursuit of doing what is right has led me to revealing these details to you today.

Ladies and Gentlemen of the APA, look within your soul and please find the strength to vote with your dignity intact and overcome your fear.

Respectfully and In Unity,
name deleted by 7576FO
LAX 767 FO International

08-03-2012, 10:46 AM
from a following post

I spoke with Captain Hale in JFK ops last week. After some questioning, he basically told me the same thing. It explains completely the reason for USAirways being in the year 3 pay comparator.

Management knows USAirways isn't happening. By placing USAirways in the pay comparator they keep wages down for years. One of many onerous aspects of this POS.

Guys, this thing is collapsing under its own weight. Vote no.

08-03-2012, 10:48 AM
another post

Had lunch with John Hale back in January. ( by default, in the cafeteria alone.)

At one point he asked me for my thoughts. I responded that AA holds it cards in close but when we bought the Airbus we played some aces. He asked, in what way?

I said, that the Airbus was common to another airline and therefor we would be using the purchase to streamline with more than likely Jetblue. I also said, that the retreat from the caribbean was no mistake or the withdraw from BOS. I stated that my belief, was the removal of these markets had to do with expediting the regulatory review( overlap) and that the slots at JFK were the main objective.

His response, one big smile. I thought I nailed it. You just proved me right.

08-03-2012, 11:00 AM
On 8/2/2012 2:36:32 PM NAME wrote:

In order for this to have legs, all those attending should confirm this publicly. Hate to be a sceptic but good luck with that...If this is true then every pilot should immediately and without question vote 'NO', get off the fence or change their 'YES' vote. We are getting out-maneuvered AGAIN. ----------------

I, too, attended the dinner. I received the invite via one of the administrative assistants in the Flight Office. I was puzzled as to why I, a 20+ year First Officer, would be invited to such an event. I later found out via NAME that I was included in an effort to get a cross section of the LAX base line pilot and that, being a NO voter, they wanted my perspective. Why would a known NO voter be of any good to this group? It became crystal clear to me at the latter part of the meeting and the subsequent drive home. The senior management folks were on a hunting expedition. They had been to numerous other bases and had conducted similar dinner-meetings. Mister's Ream and Hale wanted to find out where the pilots stood and why so many of us took great umbrage with the TA. The discussion was candid to say the least. Numerous pilots from a broad cross section representing many different views were given the opportunity to address specific and key issues. Mr. Ream, in turn, seemed to be offering his own personal candidness with regard to the many issues discussed in NAME OF OP note above.

He spent time providing his background having worked here before and why he was back. He was quick to draw parallels between what is happening here now at AA to what had happened during his tenure under Bethune at Continental. He was espousing the notion that Horton wasnt going anywhere.

Mr. Ream did state the company needed an agreement with the pilots before exiting BK. You can read this any way you want but at the end of the meeting I had no doubt there was more on the table to be had. How much more? I have no idea but I believe the company now has a much better idea of some of the issues seriously grating this pilot group. Mr. Ream also stated that JetBlue was in play. I missed a portion of this conversation (sidebars with Hale and Tucker) but suffice it to say I did not blink twice when he made this statement.

BLUF whomever we merge with or don't merge with is rather irrelevant from a line pilot perspective. What was obvious to me before, but even more so post the Wherehouse dinner meeting...there was more to be had when this TA is voted down.

Blue Skies,


08-03-2012, 11:02 AM
Here's what Tramahawk58 wrote on our message board:

Wishful thinking, and we're apparently at the last ditch "pull-a-rabbit-out-of-the-hat" phase with the dreamers and the deluded still fighting the ghost of AMR past.

The realistic among us realize that rejecting the LBFO guarantees only one thing: an imposed contract and a few more years of pain trying to climb out of the hole we'd dig for ourselves by rejecting the improvements to the term sheet negotiated by APA, demanding less from AMR instead of more.

Who says AMR "has to renegotiate?" Would you? The question before the court is "abrogate" or "don't abrogate." Renegotiate ain't on the table: that's Section-6; this is Chapter 11.

The wishful thinkers and the angry foot-stompers have gone lost wingman. It's up to the rational to save the day.

08-03-2012, 11:03 AM
On 8/2/2012 3:31:05 PM INSERT NAME wrote:

I attended the Hale Ream show in MIA. It's sounds very similar to the dinner in LA.

JetBlue was mentioned in the same manner, also Mr Ream said that if the TA is voted down it would open up all sorts of merger possibilities! ( the only time he looked uncomfortable)

Let's make them uncomfortable!

I also spoke with captains Hale and Smith the morning after the LA dinner.

Captain Hale asked me what one thing do the pilots have the most trouble with?

I said trust!

He said you don't trust?

I said no,I trust completely that each and every opportunity this company will make decisions that go against the pilot group!


08-03-2012, 11:06 AM
United Continental Reaches Deal With Pilots


United Continental Holdings Inc. UAL -0.06% on Friday said it has reached an agreement in principle on a new labor contract with the Air Line Pilots Association union, which represents pilots at the company's United and Continental subsidiaries.

The agreement is subject to approval by the leadership councils of both union branches and ratification by the 11,000 pilots.

"This agreement follows intense negotiations with our pilot group and is an important step forward for our company," said Fred Abbott, senior vice president of flight operations for United Continental, formed in 2010 through the merger of the two carriers. Chicago-based United Continental is the world's largest carrier by traffic, and this is the first joint labor accord it has reached since the combination.

"The National Mediation Board played a crucial role in our negotiations," said Mike Bonds, executive vice president of human resources and labor relations at United Continental. The NMB, a federal agency that oversees labor relations in the airline and railroad industries, has been mediating the negotiations for months.

In a bulletin to the combined pilot group late Thursday, union leaders said the pilots association and the company had reached accord on "all major economic and scope provisions" after two years of bargaining. Scope is the language that covers the tricky topic of how many and what sizes of regional jets the carrier can contract out to regional affiliates employing other pilots.

Capt. Jay Pierce, chairman of the Continental group representing 4,500 aviators, and his counterpart, Capt. Jay Heppner, leader of the 6,500-member United ALPA branch, said in the bulletin that ALPA officers and negotiators "are as anxious as you to end this rollercoaster ride of contract negotiations." They pledge to get the final language shaped up as soon as possible so the accord can go to their leadership councils for approval.

08-03-2012, 11:28 AM
I like how this gent puts it below.

I am just a pawn in this game like everyone else. But to me it's evident that AMR wants a YES vote. They sense that it's in trouble, so they send out feelers (dinners, etc) to gauge the tenor of the membership to see exactly what they need to improve in LBFO2 to get it passed (and I do feel strongly that there WILL be an LBFO2). Their battle plan is multi-pronged, and they will continue to attack on all fronts. They persist in sowing the seeds of fear (terms sheet), and in case that doesn't provide enough of an edge to get the desired result, they're seeking information about exactly what will.

A term sheet implementation will have disastrous results. While there are those who doubt the will of this membership to fight, I believe that you can only push a meek person so far before they snap (think Ralphy in "A Christmas Story").

I'm not going to walk willingly to the gallows (by voting YES) and hang for a crime I didn't commit (sham bankruptcy). If they want what's left of my career, they're going to have to take it forcefully. This is an AIRLINE... Without the pilots to fly the airplanes, it's just company that has a lot of very expensive unusable tools.

This is not bravado, it's my heartfelt stance and I'm not going to waver from it. Delta and United have set the bar, and I work for a company that has over $6B in cash and just had its record quarter (revenue). I'll take the term sheet if they wish, and I'll be ready to immediately fight the day we exit this farcical bankruptcy.


08-03-2012, 11:35 AM
One of the best quotes I read on our message board was:

"I voted NO, so I can look my Chihuahua dog in the eye and say Hey, i'm not the reason we're eating at Taco Bell!"

08-08-2012, 05:43 AM
It's being circulated in your camp the supposed details of the United AIP at being Delta minus a buck.

This was a forum post rumor from somebody claiming to have it from a CAL LAX rep.

Numerous people have gotten identical responses from LEC reps. The details have not been released even from the JNC level and the NMB has it tight as a drum. Rumors are likely to be false seems to be the general consensus.

Good luck on your vote today, we are hoping for the best for you all!