All the applause and hero worship aside, I think what we really owe Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger for his amazing “splash landing” in the Hudson is the courtesy of listening to him. Here’s what he told the Subcommittee on Aviation of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee this morning:
… while I love my profession, I do not like what has happened to it. I would not be doing my duty if I did not report to you that I’m deeply troubled about its future. Americans have been experiencing huge economic difficulties in recent months, but airline employees have been experiencing those challenges and more for eight years. We’ve been hit by an economic tsunami. September 11th, bankrupcties, fluctuating fuel prices, mergers, loss of pensions and revolving-door management teams who have used airlines employees as an ATM have left the people who work for the airlines in the United States with extreme economic difficulties. It is an incredible testament to the collective character, professionalism and dedication of my colleagues in the industry that they are still able to function at such a high level.