Fly away! Bags or sweeps?
It’s a flighty situation with the bags at the airport and those who keep them in line.
Those baggage guys: the ones who can make or break your vacation by simply tossing it in this pile instead of that.
Always felt it paid to keep them on your side.
United Airlines has decided to reward 400 of their ramp workers (average pay about $16.00 an hour with health benefits) at Houston International Airport. In order to cut costs, United is outsourcing some IAH ramp work to contract companies who plan to pay about $8.00 an hour. (Click here for article)
Just $8.00 an hour to toss bags in all weather: 100 degree Texas heat or sleet depending on the season. Only $8.00 an hour to punish the body with continuous heavy lifting – always rushed – in potentially hazardous locations.
Risk and danger. Worth a little extra money?
A little irony: Houston office janitorial unions just completed negotiations that gave workers a raise. So they now make more per hour than the outsourced ramp employees at IAH – and they get to work indoors. (Click here for article.)
But loading bags, it’s just physical labor.
Doesn’t require any special skills like thinking, being observant, or analyzing stuff.
Just pitch the bags on. Toss the bags off.
Don’t worry about what’s in them.
Anyone could do this job.
Except it’s at an airport.
Except the job gives easy access to secure buildings, runways, and planes.
No security concerns here.
Besides, those outsourced security firms work really well.
Just as good.
Well, there was that recent Detroit incident with the private security company employees guarding that skyscraper that housed federal agencies - the one that had an “incendiary device” in a box sitting under a guard’s desk for a month?
A real bomb. Yep, sitting there for weeks. (Click here: “Bag with bomb was at Detroit building guard desk for weeks” CNN)
It had been x-rayed, shaken, and slipped in an easy to ignore spot.
There were nice tools inside – along with the metal box containing the bomb.
Conclusion was that certain private security guards looked at the box and decide if no one claimed it, well…..
At least they did fire some of them.
So, repeat loudly and with confidence:
“Private security firms, outsourced vendors, and low paid employees are not a security risk at airports.”
Now. doesn’t that make you feel better?
You can just keep repeating it.
OK. Move along.
Nothing to see here. No need to look out that window.
Please stay in line.
(A little music by Emma Townshend while you wait?)
Shoes in a separate tray.
Carry-on bag flat.
Open the computer case.
Hey, it’s the jewelry. Take it off. Who wears that stuffy to the airport any more? Seriously, bimbo.
Granny. Granny! Get out of that wheel chair and walk over there.
Oh, you’ve got to be kidding. Shoes that lace up and tie?
Can someone get that kid to shut up and go on through the scanner?
Holding things up.
Time is money.
Fly away. Fly away.
Safely sweeping up thoughts,
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge