It’s no secret America’s airports are a nightmare. Many are overcrowded logistical disasters built before TSA was tasked with invading everyone’s rights in the name of safety. Our airports are functional failures and stylistically an embarrassment.
Soon to be President Trump campaigned on many things, but one thing he brought home was a message of taking America’s airports to a new level. Dare we say, Make America’s Airports Great Again?
Aside from launching a beatification campaign let’s not dismiss the horrific treatment people are subjected to daily in our airports. Citizens are routinely interrogated and then subjected to scrutiny that often involves intimate touching. Watch this as a CNN reporter Angela Rye gets more than a pat down. Anywhere else, this would be sexual assault! Oh, but not in our airports.
For a country that was outraged by water-boarding it’s outrageous that we allow torture to continue at our airports on a daily basis.
How can we fix this debacle? Choice, that’s how. Choice is the bedrock of freedom. Currently, the airports gotcha and they know it. Combine that with poorly run airlines and it’s a perfect storm. No use complaining about bad service at the counter, or your lost bag, or the horrible layout of that airport making it virtually impossible to make your connecting flight. You might as well step into the airport bar and slam back a couple ridiculously overpriced beers, because it’s obvious that the airlines priorities do not line up with the traveler’s desires.
Trump has claimed America’s airports are substandard. Is he right? Do America’s airports suck? Yes, yes, they do. Guess how many American airports rank in the top 25 of the world? ZERO!
Both parties agree there is trouble right here in River City. What to do about it is the challenge. Liberals would raise taxes and increase spending. Conservatives would rent a private plane and avoid the entire fiasco. Neither one fixes the problem. To fix our airport woes and create an inviting experience for the air travelers of the world we need a radical approach. Basically, we must get government out of it. Our solutions rest in creating opportunities that will result in more competition between the airports of America and the world.
That competition will work it’s magic like it has forever. Like any business, if an airport is known as a beautiful architectural marvel providing smooth transitions from gate-to-gate, they will be popular and profitable. Happy customers with a choice will choose to fly through a fantastic airport, leaving behind the dilapidated airports full of anxiety ridden people wishing they had simply driven to their destination.
Michael Sargent wrote a piece for the Heritage Foundation titled – Building on Victory: An Infrastructure Agenda for the New Administration. His article is a blueprint to a thriving air community. Sargent lays out how “User Fees” can fund the renaissance in air travel that would spark growth in every sector. More government funding is not the answer, it never has been.
“Aviation. The current system of federal airport funding is woefully inefficient. Instead, airport funding should be localized by eliminating the burdensome Airport Improvement Program and its related taxes while empowering airports to generate and spend their own revenues through airport user fees. This will allow the nation’s airports to run like businesses with minimal interference from the federal government,” says Sargent.
Most people agree we are in dire need of a revitalization in aviation. How to pay for it is the dilemma. Tax and spend will fail to deliver. Allowing our airports to operate like businesses with only minimal interference from federal government would revolutionize how we fly in a short time. Attempting to fund infrastructure improvements with the ailing Airport Improvement Program will end in disappointment.
It’s time for a paradigm shift.
When airports had to truly compete for business with other airports, we would start to see great improvement across the board. What if Trump owned an airport? That thing would be “Trumped Up” and out of this world. What if he charged a slight user fee to actually enjoy everything about your time flying? You know if something did go wrong there would be an entire customer service department dedicated to your happiness.
Privatization of America’s airports would usher in a new era in air travel. Settling for the status quo is hurting our economy. Time to dump aviation taxes lining the pockets of all the wrong people and never translating into anything meaningful on the ground.
Hopefully, Trump will make good on his promise to put America’s airports on a new heading. One that will lead to a boom in air travel and encourage the entire world to come visit America.
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