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1worker1vote.org and Mondragon International North America are building a national network of unionized worker-owned cooperative businesses to overcome inequality of opportunity, mobility, and income.

Commoditized Passengers

In support of a global boycott of United Airlines and in solidarity with the passenger who was disrespected, mauled and manhandled by United Airlines – “United Airlines is facing a public-relations nightmare, after a man on an overbooked flight was dragged off the plane.”

Way too many times, commercial airline passengers come to the conclusion they are nothing but disposable chattel, cogs in the corporate airline operations wheel, there to service the pay scales of airline senior management and major shareholders as flight-path-road-kill for quarterly profit reports, there to pay the operational freight but clearly less privileged than the freight itself. Meanwhile, off-duty airline personnel traveling like passengers get primary consideration such as preferred seats, upgrades, and other available perks while their paying clients are humiliated and shoved into torture seats at the back of the bus. The corporate agendas of traveling airline personnel are judged more important, more essential, and more deserving then the agendas of paying customers – a classic case of misplaced priorities which begs brutal rectification in the unforgiving commercial marketplace.

There is no difference between overbooking and global labor arbitraging – in each case the human being, the worker and passenger, is commoditized beyond any sense and sensibility. United Airlines stands as the latest example of how predatory capitalism works against the working class, the traveling class, the professional class, the tourism class, and the underserved class. United Airlines should self-ground until it gets its corporate mission and values straightened out and repurposed into a framework that puts its actual customers first in fact and deed,  no banal advertising clichés need apply.  Otherwise, those who are masochistic enough to continue flying on United will continue to see their tickets morph into licenses to passenger-shame without any moral or legal recourse. “Fly the Friendly Skies” is the newest global oxymoron.

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