John M. White (aka JetAviator7) has written a thought provoking post to ask if corporate jets are a thing of the past thanks to their demonizing as “being toys of the rich” or examples of “corporate greed.” Specifically, White pointed out calls for the reduction or elimination of tax benefits for companies acquiring corporate jets despite the fact that:
- Business aviation and aircraft manufacturing account for thousands of jobs along with a healthy portion of the USA’s international trade and exports.
- The manufacturers of corporate jets will account for approximately $23 billion in sales each year for the next decade.
- Most of these business jet manufacturers are (still…) located in the United States.
White then noted an article by Joe Sharkey for the New York Times that described the mood at the recent NBAA (National Business Aircraft Association) convention in Las Vegas as “looking as grave as an assembly of undertakers who had just checked their 401(k)s.”
White then included the following quote from Sharkey’s article:
Now, whenever I write that corporate aircraft, including charters, can make sense in many business situations, I get furious e-mails accusing me of going to the dark side. So let me hasten to say that I’m leaving Las Vegas in a middle seat on a commercial plane, in a row back by the restrooms, for a trip to New York that will take 12 hours, with connections.
Hence, we want to ask you our readers what you think: Are corporate jets soon to be a thing of the past thanks to all of the recent criticism of them? Moreover, have you noticed any rise in negative commentary or chatter about corporate jets or corporate jet use in the UK or Europe or is this just American politics or the politics of class gone wild (again…)?
I'm a part 135 pilot in Chicagoland. I can tell all the demonization of corporate jets has resulted in less overall business. Every time the President has scapegoated aviation we've seen a noticeable drop in business usually within a few days of a given speech.
On a personal level I get it from my "friends" that are Obama supporters. They know what I do and they look at me as if I was a murderer or something.
Honestly, I'm ok with taking the hits personally. I've worked hard to get here but it's sad to see corporate aviation be a scapegoat. It really hurts the people that build the airplanes the most, they very same people POTUS claims to "care" about. This is what happens when we have economic illiterates in the White House. They NO CLUE at all as to how things work in the real world. (stepping off soapbox now).
Rick Holland says
Depends on whether Obama gets reelected in 2012.
Jamie Beckett says
I can only speak to my own experience in the US, but it occurs to me that the benefits of corporate aviation far outweigh the myopic criticisms of it. While the president’s persistent negative attitude towards the industry appears to be genuine, his influence will be temporary, as is the case with all presidents. The technology will outlast the individual’s time in office. Certainly the road for corporate providers will be bumpy between now and then, but the world does not stop turning when a political leader wishes it to. It just keeps on spinning without taking heed of the nonsense.
Corporate aviation is too important to our way of life to be vanquished entirely. It will ebb and flow as it always has, but the upswings will be larger and longer lasting in the years to come – because technology learned and adapted to can only be lost again through an upheaval on a par with the onset of the dark ages. A small group of nay-sayers will only have a temporary effect. At least that’s my view.