Pontifications: Boeing focuses on design, production vs airplane development–for now

By Scott Hamilton

By Scott Hamilton

May 11, 2020, © Leeham News: Boeing killed development of its alphabet soup of airplane concepts for now.

“For now” is a relative term. When Boeing will be ready to show concepts to customers as a prelude to a program launch depends on how quickly the industry recovers from the COVID crisis.

But research and development of a streamlined production system, once key to new airplane projects, continues.

CEO David Calhoun said on the 1Q2020 earnings call that the New Midmarket Airplane (NMA) is essentially dead. He said in the following media call that the “differentiators” for the next new airplane from Boeing or Airbus will be manufacturing and engineering.

“We’re not out of development business”

“We’re not out of the product development business,” Calhoun said on the earnings call. “We are invested in capabilities with respect to manufacturing and engineering that we believe will offer a very differentiated product in whatever strategy we choose. We’re fast at work at that stuff. We continue to be at work on it.

“It will probably not be applied to an NMA, and I think we’ve conveyed that to the marketplace,” Calhoun said. Boeing’s pursuit of advanced design and manufacturing processes are well known in aviation and supplier circles and on these pages. Elements of advance production techniques were implemented long ago across the 7-Series products. Advanced wings for the 777X. New wing production for the 737 MAX. Various processes on the 787 and even the 767.

Boeing Defense combined advanced design and production into the T-X trainer project and the unmanned MQ-25 aerial vehicle.

The NMA was to be the first 7-Series airplane where all these would converge into one commercial airplane for the first time.

“We’re going to continue to invest in it, and I believe at the moment that’s probably our biggest priority,” Calhoun said on the earnings call.

Not just Boeing; Airbus, too

On the follow-up media call for the 1Q earnings, Calhoun made it clear this direction wasn’t just at Boeing.

“I believe that the true differentiators on the next airplane for either one of the parties who does that is going to be largely built around the way we manufacture and the way we engineer, as opposed to the point design of the airplane itself,” he said.

“We have not let up on the investments that we’re putting into those capabilities. We’re going to continue forward with those. It might take us a little more time and in light of this major market event that has occurred to get to the next point design. We’re still in the development business and we continue to invest in it. Yes, it’s the right question because it’s exactly the thing we focus on the most during these difficult moments. I think we’re going to get to the other side and we’re going to have our engineering intact, our capabilities intact. We’re going to have some real weapons with which to work on the next point design of an airplane.”

Restarting 737 production

Boeing plans to restart 737 production this month, despite the COVID crisis upending demand.

But it won’t be smooth sailing.

Spirit Aerosystems makes the fuselages. It announced in its earnings call last week a revised agreement with Boeing. Last February, Spirit said it would deliver 216 fuselages to Boeing this year. Last week, this was trimmed to 125. This includes 18 delivered in January before production shut down at Boeing’s Renton plant.

This is new production. Spirit previously built more than 120 fuselages that are now in storage near its plant in Wichita (KS). Inventory will increase to an unspecified peak in July and August before returning to current levels by the end of the year.

Spirit said it will be about two years before the inventory is burned off.

Boeing plans to reach a rate of 21/mo by year-end and 31/mo next year, but this may be a challenge. Already under strain from the production shutdown, suppliers—especially smaller ones—face added pressure on survival due to COVID.

Achieving rate 31

It’s unclear how this will impact Boeing’s 31/mo goal. One lessor predicts there is “no way” Boeing will achieve this.

AerCap, one of the world’s largest lessors, noted in its 1Q2020 federal filing that recertification of the MAX is uncertain.

“Boeing currently expects that the necessary regulatory approvals will be obtained in time to support resumption of the Boeing 737 MAX deliveries during the third quarter of 2020,” AerCap said in its federal filing. “It is uncertain, however, when and under what conditions our Boeing 737 MAX aircraft will return to service and when Boeing will resume making deliveries of our…MAX aircraft on order. As a result, we expect to incur future delays on our scheduled…MAX deliveries….

“Certain of our…leases have now been cancelled, and we expect additional leases to be cancelled in the future. In cases where leases have been cancelled, we have the right to cancel our corresponding orders for delivery of those aircraft,” AerCap said. An industry source said 30 MAXes are subject to lease cancellations at AerCap.

On the earnings call, AerCap CEO Angus Kelly said, “However, I do think it is likely that there will be additional delivery delays due to the challenges that the OEMs will have in their supply chains as they restart production.”

Air Lease Corp, another major lessor, also said some of its MAX orders can be canceled because these passed the 12-month trigger point.

68 Comments on “Pontifications: Boeing focuses on design, production vs airplane development–for now

  1. I think Boeing communication, Yes we investing in R&D, we did great in the past but have nothing specific is on the table, is little encouraging.

    On the Airbus site they are probably keeping low too, focussing on medium term incremental improvements, an XLR based A322, Qantas spec A35M and maybe A220-500 modeling / simulations in Canada. Existing teams, scopes, tools, new data sets.

  2. It does not look bright for Boeing, that’s very unfortunate to see the prédiction materializing.

    This whole situation may be an interesting opportunity for Airbus.
    They suddenly have available slots for Boeing unhappy customers!

    Have you heard any news of that?

    • Are there really unhappy Boeing customers that want their planes “right now” ( and potentially looking at Airbus?

      This is the GFC squared.
      Boeing at the time botched the 787 delivery horizon
      but the GFC downturn defanged that nicely.
      ( which let me tentatively assume that Boeing “worked” the upcoming GFC ( open timing but a sure thing to come.)

  3. “ resumption of the Boeing 737 MAX deliveries during the third quarter of 2020”

    They also predicted the third quarter in 2019, don’t hold your breath.

  4. I keep looking for any sign Boeing hasn’t completely lost their way, and every time I read what they said I still think “this is a company that doesn’t get it”. Production techniques may make an aircraft more affordable, but it won’t close holes in their lineup or make them competitive performance wise. You essentially have the 787 and nothing else, it’s time to realize their house is on fire and do something about it.

  5. Clearly Calhoun has the PR spinning at about 125,000 RPM. He know more believes that clap trap than I believe in Santa Clause, Mother Goose or the Easter Bunny.

    Remember when Boeing claimed they had Airbus boxed in?

    So in Single Aisle, they have zero answer to the A220 and a lame answer to the A321. Talk about boxed in.

    What shoots this duck down in flames is he clearly has no technical knowledge what so ever.

    The T-7 is an all new designed for new production methods as is the MQ-25, and we have not seen they can deliver, let alone at those costs the bid on (KC-46 anyone?)

    You can’t retrofit a production system to an old design . You can tweak around the edges, but the benefits are small.

    All he is doing is blowing smoke.

    He just wants his golden retirement, nothing more and nothing less.

    • I feel salary packages of Boeing leadership should be made stock value independent as soon as possible. High salaries, but not driven by short term stock options.

      Fixed (market conform) salaries. Company performance will determine how you will be looked at by your social environment for the rest of you life.

      (Limited) bonusses could be created with KPI’s for company financial robustness, employee relations, medium term portfolio strength & innovation.

      Don’t expect any cooperation from the current (supervisory) Board or stock holders. But they brought the company where they are now. Government should enforce change with their next direct or many indirect cash injections.

  6. Boeing is doing the sensible thing here, as was predictable. There is no market for a new aircraft right now, or financing available to support it, for either carrier or manufacturer. The 737 is right-sized for the re-emerging market. There may be some cancellations or deferrals, but they are still useful & needed aircraft.

    Some have suggested that route consolidation may re-occur now, which would partially bring back demand for larger aircraft. There may be less reliance on direct routes. We’ll have to see how things develop.

    In a market that doesn’t support new products, the focus will be on reducing costs and improving manufacturing. Boeing already had issues there so this will be an opportunity to work on those.

    The military aircraft side is still strong. The KC-46 continues to rack up certifications for the large variety of aircraft it must refuel (both boom and drogue). The vision system was a setback but will be fixed, and is not holding up other development. There is also the T-7 trainer program, the F-18 Super Hornet, and the advanced F-15.

    • @Rob thank you for your calm corrections to the many overheated with the bad boeing bug

      Anyone who claims they have any secure idea of any long term industrial development can not be given any credence

      You say there’s nothing much to be said – exactly

      • Boeing also has contracts for twin Air Force One’s, drone tankers for Navy, helicopters for Air Force and Army, and potentially the Canadian fighter this summer (Super Hornet is the middle choice among 3).

        • Rob:

          As a Boeing PR department you do a very nice job. Randy T could use some help these days I am sure.

          As a realistic commentator, rose tinted glasses is not close, I would call its having a welders helmet over the head.

          737 Right Sized? Wee heee. You do remember er the year this went into production don’t you? Shades of Rumsfeld (for those who don’t follow/remember, basically he told the troops to suck it up and die with the wrong tools to fight in insurgency).

          Rob politely ignores the fact that the market is shifting to the A321 (for which the 737 is a bit like a Hummer with an IED going off under it).

          Or the fact the A220 (formally BBD C series) is a killer aircraft that can take out and on the current bottom 737s with ease)

          KC-46: Yeee hah:. Lets see, 5 billion in arrears, another billion to be spent on the new visions system (to replace the old visions system).
          Yes siree, that thar program is just wracking up wins left, right and center. 5 years in and they still won’t let it into a combat zone, damn its a great rear area tanker when its not mucking up the aircraft its supposed to fuel (or FOD isn’t drifting around in places you don’t want it)

          F-15 and F-18 they got from McDonald Douglas (and like STD the management with it) – much like Airbus and the A350 and the Boeing incredible 787 production failure ) (remember that?) the only reasons Boeing has those aged jets is , still has those is a equally massive failure on LM part on the F-35 program.

          Boeing has many years to show us how badly then can do the T-7 program. SAAB may save them there though.

          Who was it that said “Another victory like this and we have lost?”

        • Lets see.

          AF 1: The same USAF that requires a 4 engine aircrat? Chinese make one now! Lattest is 80 million for the documentation (gold plated hammers) . Really?

          Canada F-18: Yep, the same lovely folks that sued BBD into Airbus arms. Another success story.

        • TW, I’ve responded to some of these points in the past so won’t rehash those arguments here. But I stand by my comments as to Boeing’s business viability and ability to contribute to the industry. Your views are consistently negative and we’ve discussed that before as well. I addressed that issue more specifically in a post below.

    • If there is a new design that is a quantum leap in cost reduction of purchase and ownership it will sell.
      Today most airliners require 1 manhr of mechanic for 1hr of operation on average. In trucking that is maybe 500:1. Two pilots instead of one driver. So there are possibilities for cost reduction in production and operations on a new aircraft design.
      If robots build it in 0.001″ tolerance why cannot robots uploaded with the build information serve it for routine tasks?

  7. If they had it, there probably would be a market for a MoM prodcut – problem is that by the time Boeing gets it to market, the moment will have passed and airbus will have filled any newly freed up slots with orders for A321XLR from carriers looking for low capacity mid-haul to replace 767’s and A330’s that are now too big for those routes.

  8. As a manufacturer in good times you don’t need to invest, because all is fine. Invest in cost reductions to improve shareholder value.

    In bad times reduce cost and move out investment to survive.

    Question is when what would drive investment that shows ROI in 10 years and after.

    Certainly not stockmarkets and the current executive payment packages.

    Maybe less docile, all believing, short term oriented stock and stake holders would be a blessing.

    • Normally you would replace your current models according to a plan with aircrafts slightly bigger, better wings and engines (higher, further, faster) and updated systems with better economics for airlines, more comfort for pax and better working places for cabin and pilots.
      Like 727 to 757 to 797 or 747-100 to -200 to -400 or to 777-300ER. Any car brand where VW Golf is a good example of continuous growth and improvements. For airliners 20-25 years intervals is logical so when the launch customer is starting to phase out the current model the new one is just certified.
      Some Airbus customers went from A319 to A320 winglet to A321neo, for Boeing it was 737-300 to 737-700 to 737MAX8 with a hickup..

  9. While not surprising, I think it’s the wrong strategy. Boeing needs to face the music and realize, that the longer they wait with a new development, the bigger their problems become. Apart from the 787, the company has no other competitive product.

    If they started a new single aisle development now, it would be ready once air travel picks up again and would get right into a “hot” period. 2027-28 could be the EIS for a family that covers a range from the 737-8 to the NMA. I believe that’s where the new sweet spot will be.

    Basically, act anti-cyclic cos then you’ll have at least a product when demand picks up again. Right now, Boeing is drifting into a situation where they have no offer when the economy is back.

    • Reuters published a story late April that Boeing still has ongoing concept development work for possible new 757 or 767-ish models, with updated cockpit, avionics and engines. Some of that could be borrowed from the KC-46. So I think work has not completely ceased, although this project is embryonic at this point.

      Obviously the 737 is the main priority right now, along with other existing orders.

      If they can adapt an existing model, that would be a less expensive path forward under the present circumstances, provided there is customer interest, projected a number of years down the road.

      Some leasing companies have expressed interest, although also emphasized the need to fill existing orders in an expedient fashion.

      If this proposal doesn’t pan out, I suspect they will at least have a better idea of customer preferences for a new design. Although that would carry a lot more risk right now.

      • Less expensive development because of what, grandfathering rights? That’s a wonderful idea. Let’s just repeat the MAX mess with the 757 and 767. I’m sure airlines around the world will order those like crazy.

        There is no doubt any more that Boeing is going down the McDonnell path. Survive on the military business and keep making the 787 as the only product. Just hanging in there.

        It appears there are no dreamers left in that company, no people with a vision, nobody who has an idea of how to make the world a better place and your customers happier. And Robs cozy words will do nothing to alter this.

        • The world did order the 737 MAX like crazy, so the concept of renewing a earlier design is not without merit. Airbus has capitalized on this method as well. Especially now, with the disincentive to invest in new aircraft, until the airlines can recover.

          Obviously execution is important, and Boeing had a major failure in the execution of the MAX. Given the extreme cost of failure in the face of unrelenting criticism (much of it piling on, as we see in the commentary here), they have a strong incentive now to not repeat that mistake.

          I think the industry knows Boeing is capable of producing good products (as it does also on the military side), wants that to happen, and for Boeing to succeed and contribute to the industry as it always has. So opportunities likely will continue to exist for Boeing in the future.

          • The world did order the “promised” 737 MAX. Had they known what they would get they would not have ordered a single one.

            The MAX did not suffer from failures in execution, but from was a completely failed concept. My take is that there must have been some brave engineers at Boeing who told that management that, but they were dismissed. Similar to the Diesel engine story at the German car makers. The engineers were ordered to execute the impossible. And they did. Now you think it a clever idea to repeat exactly that stupid exercise? Really?

            I think the industry has now learned not to trust Boeing any more and not to take it for granted that anything they promise would be true. The industry has learned that Boeing is does not shy from lying and betraying when they have the chance to make some money. That’s apparently the only thing that counts, no matter how many lives are lost.

            Boeing would have to prove a change in culture by not only changing the management, but also by scrapping the worst plane that has ever entered mass production and immediately start development of a replacement that they would deliver free of charge as a replacement for that monstrosity.

            Would they do that? Of course not. And that is one reason why Boeing will never come back even near what they have once been. It’s a shame.

          • Rob:

            When you hose up one thing after another and can’t get anything right then to call it piling on is beyond absurd. That is s fine Johnny, don’t worry about that nasty teacher that gave you an F because you didn’t even try. You will be a great success by keeping on failing.

            (when was the last successful Boeing program?)

            737MAX is being investigated as a criminal charge, we are not talking a mfg failure, we are talking two aircraft crashes due to a deliberate design defect that killed close to 350 people.

            You need to note that other Boeing aircraft have the same issue as the MAX did and they used a completely different software design to deal with it.

            You also ignore the fact that Boeing put into the Sim data set that changed the manual trim into an easy to turn system despite the fact it had the same problems that the original had (impossible to crank at certain airspeed and impossible breakout of a seized motor)

            That too is criminal. A level D sim is required to be 100% fidelity to the actual aircraft.

            How anyone can be a Boeing apologist with the incredible amount or failures is unfathomable.

            Boeing clearly has descended from incompetent to criminal and no amount of spin is going to change that.

          • Guys, the 737 MAX arguments have been made previously (both sides) and there’s no point in rehashing them here again. I expressed a view that is widely held outside of the commentary here, and is consistent with business decisions being made in the industry and by the market.

            You have both persistently expressed negative views, there is some truth in them, and I accept them as such, but don’t think they completely represent the reality. I wrote more on this in a comment below.

          • Remember… Boeing’s last two Best Selling Aircraft in its 100yr history (first the 787, and then the 737MAX) have proven to be massive financial burdens on Boeing Commercial Aircraft.

            787 gave them $30B deferred production costs and will never turn a profit.

            737MAX FULL impacts are yet to seen, but as the cost of production continues to go up (last quarterly earning stated +$2M per airframe) if and when they are delivered, alot will be at cost or a loss.

            A company with no vision and does not invest in new products has no future.

          • For the 787, large leaps forward and technical advancement often result in unexpectedly high costs. The cost overrun does not detract from the fact that the aircraft itself is very good. Also the losses have some value to offset income in profitable years. The loss will be absorbed and much of the 787 technology incorporated into other products.

            The 747 was in a similar situation, but turned out to be both profitable and iconic in the end. Things are different now in that Airbus, with significant state sponsorship, was able to quickly counter with the A350. So competitive pressures are higher, as well as downsizing of the market, and now the collapse of air travel.

            The 737 MAX is a different story, its appeal was mostly cost-based rather than advancement. The debacle that has unfolded doesn’t have a silver lining. I believe the MAX could have been back in the air long ago, with the accident-related modifications fully in place and the other things implemented with AD’s over time.

            That has been the traditional route of aircraft improvement. A grounding of this duration is unprecedented, with the MCAS solution being available for about a year now. But the optics and politics are such that it just can’t happen.

            The lesson to Boeing is extremely harsh. One has to hope that they take it to heart and vastly improve quality control. The current slowdown would be an excellent opportunity to do so.

            That said, I don’t think these are fatal blows to a company the size of Boeing. The MAX and 787 will continue to sell and the losses written off (many already have been). The current crisis has allowed them to finally stop the stable dividend policy, so that is around $4B a year in savings. They will use other cost-cutting measures as well, as most business will now. They still have access to financing and market confidence, as we’ve seen.

            The next aircraft design will be crucial for Boeing. As things stand now, it may be an advancement of the 757 model, which might fit into their current cost constraints, as well as the market. Difficult to tell anything for sure right now.

          • Hello Rob, when you are not familiar with certain terms, don’t use them. If you know their meaning, use them correctly. All else is telling “alternative facts” as we have leaned to despised with good reason. So let’s have a look at”Sponsorship”. Here is what the Cambridge Dictionary says:

            https://dictionary.cambridge.org/de/worterbuch/englisch/sponsorship

            Now, as you certainly know, Airbus has received a refundable loan of about 1/3 of the development costs. Refundable means it will be paid back. Sponsorship is giving away money. Do you see the difference?

            Great.

            ” I believe the MAX could have been back in the air long ago, with the accident-related modifications fully in place and the other things implemented with AD’s over time.”

            Now this looks like you know something that nobody else knows: The MAX has all “accident-related modifications in place”. Wow. Would you care to explain that to us? My understanding is that those modifications are hanging somewhere in limbo and major issues are not solved. My last information is that the MAX is not ready for re-certification. New problems seem to be popping up right and left:

            “Boeing identified two problems in the flight-control computer of the 737 MAX, according to Reuters. One is reportedly due to “hypothetical faults” in the computer’s input of the plane’s pitch. It is, however, unrelated to the MCAS, which caused the two crashes by forcing the nose of the aircraft down. The other could potentially disengage the autopilot during the landing phase.”

            https://www.aerotime.aero/clement.charpentreau/24786-boeing-737-max-certification-postponed-as-new-flaws-found

            So maybe we will see MAX being ready for re-certification in late summer. Maybe not. And there is still the big question if a certification flight with EASA with MCAS switched off will bring in the desired results. Which means that it is possible that the MAX will fly only in the US.

            “The MAX and 787 will continue to sell…” I agree on the 787, but regarding the MAX I would be very surprised if deliveries will get even near the number of orders they had on their books last year.

          • Gundolf, the WTO disagrees with you on the impact of funding that was provided to Airbus. The ruling was that it amounts to a subsidy, that was sponsored by a number of states. If as you claim, it is just a business arrangement, then Airbus could have obtained the same funding from the credit markets. They didn’t because the subsidy was more favorable to them.

            On the MAX, we know that the MCAS system played a major role in the accidents, as well as the cockpit AoA display and disagree indication. Boeing had fixes ready for those by last June. But at that time, the newly stringent cosmic ray tests forced the rewrite of the entire flight control software.

            Cosmic rays had nothing to do with the accidents. The probability of 5 simultaneous strikes within specific circuits, is remote in the astronomical sense. So I believe that was done intentionally, out of concern for the age of the software, and the possibility of other lurking problems similar to the MCAS issues. Forcing the rewrite also allowed for a full audit, which helps assure the regulators of quality control.

            I get why this was done, and don’t disagree with it or the changes it mandated. However the existing flight software was well-proven over some 300 million flight hours. It didn’t represent a substantial risk, and so this could have been done as a parallel effort after RTS.

            However once it became a condition of RTS. the dam was open. It’s very likely that a newly written system will have bugs that will require extensive testing, discovery, and resolution. That has indeed been the case, and each issue found will delay RTS. But the development and debugging could have happened in the background without RTS pressure, which is how it normally would occur, in a more rational process.

            As far as the EASA MCAS-off tests, I don’t believe that has any basis or will cause a delay. It’s another of the things that you don’t see expressed outside of this forum, and reflects back to my comments about reality.

            The 737 orders have stood throughout this process, so the idea that it’s a bad aircraft is again not represented in reality. The order status may change due to the COVID crisis. Even if it does, I wouldn’t chalk it up to the quality of the 737 MAX.

            It’s clear from your comments that you are rooting for a failure of RTS, and Boeing in general, as that would allow you to feel you were right all along. And that’s the most important thing, isn’t it?

            But your advocation of failure, in reality would be a calamity for all those impacted by it. The demise of Boeing (or even just the 737) would be extremely damaging to the US and the entire supply chain, including overseas. Hundreds of thousands of jobs at risk.

            Why would you wish or hope for such a thing, or insist that it should/will happen? I couldn’t understand this until your Wormtongue comment, but then I saw that for you, being right is everything. Even insults will suffice if they achieve that goal.

            The more sane perspective is to be concerned about Boeing, to look for positive solutions instead of focusing on negativity and non-constructive criticism. To look for the opportunities and improvements that are needed for success, not failure.

            Yet when those opportunities and improvements are listed here, even as simple facts, they are attacked. Again, why? What does that achieve, what purpose does it serve? It serves the purpose of being right, and that feels good, doesn’t it?

  10. Looks like same old Boeing game called “RTS date of 737 MAX is very soon, and now will be a true one, wait for us, again” to entertain Wall Street guys, some airlines CEOs and commenters.

    Well some of them will take this game mortally serious, or already did.

    • You have to remember, even a really bad rifle will hit the Bullseye out of statistical error probability eventually.

      Granted with an aircraft mfg you only have so many shots and Boeing has wasted all them.

      The P-8 is the only program that is remotely successful. How? They put P-3 electronics in it!

      The fellow Wedgetail was a disaster for many years. Now where have we heard that before? Can you say KC-46?

      The Navy in its rare wisdom just slid the guts of a P-3 over to a P-8, and then started a slow spiral development (kind of like feeding a baby, you can’t ask to much of Boeing too fast)

      And it worked. Boeing and baby bights worked!

      While you have to delve into details, the F-18 had one of the worst cockpits for pilots they have made in the modern era. Granted it was an MD inherited, Boeing only has moved to fix it when they saw the contracts dying out.

      They acualy got a wash from the Navy as the F-18 E/F is a whole new aircraft Boeing did not have to bid on to develop.

      When they got a program of their own like the KC-46, they royally hosed it up and its not that high tech. 80% of it has been flying for 70 years.

      They could not even get wiring separation right. That is aircrat 001 level course (Kindergarten or pre school maybe)

      And the passengers were incredibly lucky the 787 battery failure occurred on the ground not in the air. In the air, at least two hull losses (that is how many it takes for the AHJ to ground them, not Boeing doing so)

  11. What’s this, criticism of Boeing by Leeham commentary? Say it ain’t so, Joe!!!

    Seriously, any post that is positive with regard to Boeing is going to attract virulent criticism here. It will also invite personal attack of the poster. That’s just the mindset that exists here, it’s become an echo chamber for anti-Boeing sentiment.

    Any positive note sounded about Boeing interrupts the resonance of the same endless negative views bouncing back and forth. Truth or facts or positive developments presented make no difference, what matters is that the negative opinion be reinforced and uninterrupted, because that makes the holders of those views feel better about themselves. Those with different views must be driven out. Did you ever wonder why there are so few positive comments about Boeing? Must be because your views are correct, right? That’s the self-reinforcement as successfully executed.

    The only thing that would make you guys happy is the complete annihilation of Boeing, which you have predicted endlessly, but incorrectly as it turns out.

    As I’ve pointed out many times, unfortunately the world does not agree with those views, at least not with the virulence that they are presented here. Boeing has many problems and I have discussed them honestly and in detail. But they have many merits as well, and a balanced view would consider both.

    But the goal here is not balance, or to listen to other views and possibly learn something. The goal is to eliminate views other than your own. I get that it’s probably difficult for you to understand how incredibly negatively biased you are. But the personal attacks pretty well cinch it for any objective observer.

    If I say something positive about Boeing, then my motivation could only be Boeing PR, right? Couldn’t be anything else. Facts? Balance? Understanding? Insight? But your own negative views, why they aren’t the same in reverse, are they, they’re just truth and justice!!!

    Even this post is a waste of my time, because you will not understand or learn or change. But at least I can offer some balance here, for those who are interested in hearing both sides. I will continue to do so to the best of my ability, or until Scott kicks me out.

    • >Even this post is a waste of my time, because you will not understand or learn or change.

      Ah, so all the people here who don’t accept your pollyanna
      views on Boeing are doing it to feel good about ourselves,
      are we? And you’re the Lone Crusader here speaking the truth, right?

      Good to know.

      One last thing: Boeing better get their
      head out of the clouds, and pronto;
      they can’t sponge off of gov’t contracts and handouts forever..

      • Bill, your post proves my point. There is only the negative view and the positive view must be treated as a threat and put down. Thank you for illustrating it so clearly.

        • There is a word for what you do here, Rob: “Gaslighting”.

          • Gaslighting would be to intentionally misrepresent and/or invent facts so as to cause the other party to doubt their position. Also to suppress or diminish or fail to acknowledge the points and contributions made by others, so as to enhance your own.

            That’s not the same as rational debate. I’ve tried to be as factual as possible, and also to be clear about what is fact and what is my opinion. If my facts are wrong, I’m happy to be corrected. No one is infallible.

            I also have tried to acknowledge when others present factual and valid points that are beyond argument. I’m actually encouraged by that because it means their process is similar to mine.

            It’s generally possible to achieve concurrence when both sides have the same process, even if their conclusions are different. You can agree to disagree, and also establish the test/data that would resolve the difference.

            For what it’s worth, I don’t feel that people here have gaslighted me. They’ve expressed strong opinions and given their reasoning as well. The vast majority of their facts are correct, although interpretation obviously differs. The objection was to the overwhelming negativity, dismissal and ridicule that is sometimes attempted in response.

          • Gaslighting fully applies. You fully meet the definition. Randy T could not do a better job.

            What you do is take reality and spin it around, the old adage of repeat a lie often enough and it becomes the truth (other than fact is that we are Radio Free Europe types and don’t buy it).

            Why you are a Boeing apologist is unknown, but clearly that is exactly what you are.

            We don’t hate Boeing, we hate what Boeing has become management wise.

            I don’t think there is a person here that would not love to see Boeing succeed. I grew up with Boeing as an iconic success. What its fallen to is beyond pathetic.

            The people who work for Boeing are not being dissed here, Boeing management. You do those hard working people an injustice by trying to smoke people.

            What you are attempt to do is claim Pearl Harbor Dec 7, 1941 was a victory.

            You just make yourself look foolish.

          • “Gaslighting fully applies. You fully meet the definition. Randy T could not do a better job.”

            By style they could well be the same person.
            Accomplished polished rhetoric floating the bigoted world view of a Pharisee.
            All the Schopenhauer strings pulled.

            Interesting to note: Schopenhauer did not write down a “How To” but more of a “what not to do”
            in a fruitful discussion.

          • TW, this is just another personal attack, like the one that precipitated this discussion. I don’t know what else to say. I don’t want you to be put on probation or get kicked out because I value your contributions, and the idea of the forum is to be inclusive, not exclusive. So I’ll leave it at that, but perhaps it’s clearer now why I felt that to object would be a waste of time.

    • Hello Rob,

      I understand that you are either a 100% fan of Boeing. a staff member of their marketing team of a freelancer paid to smooth down this highly qualified forum. You are obviously trained very well in rhetoric, but you must understand that other people here are too and see through your brave effort.

      But to the point: Speaking for myself I have never been a Boeing hater. I have never hated any company. That would be just as stupid as kicking a wall. I’m not that type of person, and many other contributors here are neither. Still, that don’t keep me from criticizing the management of a company harshly, when appropriate. I have been running several companies and also been working as a business consultant with more than 20 companies all around the world. I have often seen the results of good and bad strategies, the effects of a strong or weak management team. It has taught me to tell from the outside what’s going on inside a company.

      What we all experience here happening with Boeing is nothing “we” rejoice, but rather cringe for pain while watching this icon of a company/brand/product line going down the drain because of a completely failed company culture and strategy.

      You should not try to disqualify this kind of well based judgement as “virulent” or “biased”. It is very hard, yes, and for you maybe hard to take.

      Now, if you find your posting being a waste of time, you are free to stay away from this forum. On the other hand, I can assure you that I’m always interested in learning facts from you or hearing your analysis. What I don’t care much for is your unsubstantiated silky smooth commentary about what a fantastic company Boeing is and how well the handle everything. If you’d care to substantiate such claims we can have a much more useful discussion.

      • Gubdolf, I think when you say things like I’m welcome to stay away, that my motivation is Boeing marketing, that your success in life (which I’m happy to learn) makes your view more correct or important, then like Bill, you confirm my points.

        Note that I have never said similar things to you, nor implied that my view must have precedence over others. I understand that from your perspective, which is well to the critical side of Boeing, my more centric view appears to be a complete whitewash or absolution of Boeing. I assure you it is not, I have been critical here of Boeing as well. But I try to look for positives as well as negatives, in order to evaluate fairly and in an objective and balanced way.

        Unlike you, I don’t view the problems at Boeing as meaning they are beyond redemption, or that the mistakes are fatal. I look at the positives as being evidence that redemption is possible.

        Most of your comments preclude the possibility of correction. They are highly centered on criticism rather than solution. The solution you do offer is eliminating the management. The likelihood of that is remote at best.

        Perhaps by being the boss in many of your business endeavors, you have forgotten this, but for those of us without that advantage, we have to learn to persuade people by building a good case for the improvements we wish to make. If you eviscerate the people you are trying to persuade, there is a good chance they won’t consider your position at all. This is how two sides break down and stop listening to each other. I refer you to almost any aspect of public discourse today.

        As far as consistently pointing out the positives, I do that because much of the other commentary here is so overwhelmingly negative. It’s not very representative of reality outside of this forum, or the business community in general. As such it represents a distortion, so I try to present the opposite view so as to provide some balance.

        You might ask yourself why my exposition of the positive aspects makes you and others here so upset. If I am so overwhelmingly and obviously wrong, why would it matter for me to express those views here? I’d just be the village idiot, right? I’d submit that it bothers you to the point of attack, because there is value in what I’m saying, which is uncomfortable to consider. Things are then not so simple, apparent, obvious, or resolved.

        As far as substantiating things, in this thread I listed the business contracts that Boeing has, as factual evidence of their viability. You can’t get more substantive than that. The result was an attack on me and on Boeing, trying to reduce the value of those facts to zero. Why? What is so wrong with acknowledging that Boeing has some successes along with the failures? I refer you to the paragraph above for the answer.

        • Hello Rob, you don’t need to tell anyone on this board that Boeing has been one of the greatest companies ever on this planet. There is plenty of respect for their great achievements in aviation. We are also aware of the amazing commercial success this corporation has had.

          Still, this company has lost its bearing and has fallen victim to a culture of shareholder-value that has destroyed much of the standing and reputation they had once enjoyed. In the name of profit too many people have died, too many lies were spread, too much trust was destroyed.

          You pride yourself being neutral among so many malignant people but I have to admit I just can’t see that. What I see is somebody who puts a sugar topping on everything related to Boeing without giving us a deeper insight into your reasoning. All you ever state here is superficial and lacks any analytic qualities.

          Again, I’ll be very happy to discuss with you in an open and factual way. And most other people here certainly just as well.

          All that said, Boeing is racking up cancellations, in case you have not noticed. They have also crashed every deadline regarding re-certification they have set up. Their cash-flow is deep red and will not recover any time soon. If not now, when do you think would be a proper time for a complete overhaul of their business? Like moving their headquarters back to Seattle. Like developing planes their customers will actually love to fly (passengers, pilots and airline manager).

          What you don’t seem to understand is that there are a lot of people here who would wish Boeing to returning to the great company they once were. Still I don’t know where you stand, but you probably won’t tell.

          • Rob:

            By throwing out the lies, you do indeed convey exactly what you accuse others of.

            You can keep saying the Sun revolves around the Earth, but all the data says otherwise.

            At that point your credibility is zero. Facts are facts and Boeing management has executed a series of failures since the 777, culminating in the end logical result of two crashes of the 737MAX that killed 349 people (one diver on the Indonesian wreck included)

            Your defense of Boeing who borrowed 13 billion so they could pay a share dividend in the MAX/Covd era is so beyond believe as to stun the most jaded.

          • Gundolf, I think my position has been very clear. I’ve given my reasoning on all those points. You don’t accept my reasoning and that’s perfectly fine, but please don’t imply that none exists.

            I don’t share your view that everything that once made Boeing great is now gone, and that they are now this awful company that nobody wants to do business with, which will imminently collapse. I believe that is pessimistic in the extreme. But I realize you have the same view of my optimism.

            I see evidence of failures, yes, decline, yes, but not irreversible decline. Neither the cancellations, nor the large drop in orders from last year, have been matched by correspondingly increased orders to Airbus. There has not been a mass exodus and migration, either from Boeing customers or investors.

            Most observers, including FAA, expect the MAX to return to service as a good aircraft. It’s been a long haul and not all of the delay is on Boeing, nor are all the things being modified related to the accidents, nor were the accidents entirely the fault of Boeing.

            This is what I meant about the negativity not being reflective of reality. Nor do I think that the Chicago-Seattle argument has any significant bearing on the business. That’s been repeated endlessly, but without rational basis that I can see.

            However it isn’t necessary for us to agree on any of these things. Time will tell which of us is right, and neither of us can significantly affect the outcome. In all likelihood, unforeseen events (such as COVID-19) will develop such that neither of us is going to be totally right.

            What is necessary is not to be attacked for having a differing view. Your defense of your behavior continues to be “but I’m right and you’re not”. That’s really not the point.

            There is room for differing opinion here, and there is no precondition that one opinion has to be proved wrong before the opposing one can have legitimacy. That would be an incredibly arrogant position to adopt.

  12. Boeing has taken decisions / not taken decisions over the last decade, that made many wonder why, or how they got away with it.

    – Decide the 737 MAX is good enough & rush it
    – Decide on 777X aggresive grandfathering of (self)certification
    – Actively work with congress to “Streamline” (control) the FAA
    – Refuse to invest in & have US government fight the CSeries
    – Push out cost, pull forward income & brag free cash flow (accounting)
    – Pay executive explosive salary packages based on short term stock value
    – Buy stock with borrowed / public money draining the company
    – Always find another reason to push out investment when it’s due
    – Believe 787-10/777-8 match A350’s
    – Promote an SUV like MOM/NMA to fight a 50t empty A321 for 6 yrs
    – Convince themselves AKH cargo options for NB’s are overrated
    – Outcommunicating / dimissing the LionAir crash
    – Dug / twist arms in Washington to not ground 737MAX after 2nd crash
    – Assume Embraer won’t find another partner
    – Assume loyal customers will wait & forgive forever
    – Assume Airbus waits for what Boeing does

    I’m not saying all could have been foreseen or won’t be solved, but some bluntly honest self reflection and management / strategy fresh up could help.

    • Call it weight of inertia.

      Its amazing once you get big enough how much you can hose up and survive.

      Kicking the airplane down the road has seen 3 Boeing execs into lovely retirements now.

      I saw a big corporation blow millions of bucks, they were big enough they never even missed it.

      I saw $150,000 failure because I could not get permission to fix one failure I saw coming. Afterwards? Yep, I was allowed to fix it for all of $150 and they got a backup safety on it that the local manager had been pleading for.

      Eventually they started to realize they if they did not start to change, they would loose billions.

      Boeing has not the board nor the management to see or care, it all is about that golden paycheck and who cares what happens if we get ours.

  13. Anybody around here read Lord of the Rings? Wormtongue just came to my mind, no idea why.

    • Like I said, the positive view, or anyone who expresses it, has to be put down. It’s the negative way to reinforce the negative view, which is the true goal. This just further proves my point, so thank you and please take as many shots as you wish.

      • Actually it does not.

        When you reward failure you then go beyond encouraging failure, you make it part of your Cultural DNA.

        That is now the Boeing Culture, along with fear, cowering workers and the rest.

        Attempting to Deflection is the classic political response to an issue. But facts and politics (or PR) have nothing to do with reality.

        Go ahead and try to calculate orbital mechanics when your basis is that the Sun revolves around the earth. No different than say Pie is 4.56.

        Your rocket will crash and your machine will be lumpy.

        • TW, I don’t expect either of you to stop the attacks. Like I said, to raise the issue at all was a waste of time. I apologize to Scott for filling this thread with a useless argument.

      • Rob = discourse-policer. Well paid one, I’m guessing..

        Hey, whatever happened to that fine and apposite comment by Howard Miller, that showed up in my inbox but somehow not in this thread? Here’s the last para, for those interested:

        “..Our negativity for McBoeing is NOT driven by “hate” – but rather the opposite, a deeply held, even passionate, desire to see this deeply troubled company restructured in a meaningful way that allows it to resurrect the best aspects of its storied past, than the raping, pillaging and fleecing seen as having taken root in the post-1997 merger “McBoeing” era where in facing virtually no meaningful competitor to replace it, and in believing itself as now being “too big to fail” instead of representing American ingenuity at its best as it once did, it instead has become a grotesque caricature of our country at its absolute worst.”

  14. Listen up, everyone: The comments are getting personal by a number of writers. This violates Reader Comment rules.

    Knock it off.

    Hamilton

  15. It will be interesting to see if this is widespread or not

    https://simpleflying.com/delta-boeing-777-retirement/

    Paid for and all new seating in a very popular configuration.

    And downstream, with 777 retirements come the Freighter conversions and further hits on Boeing current 777F.

    FedEx and UPS will be looking to replace the very much aging MD-11 and that is virtually a one to one replacement capacity and range wise.

    FedEx has a huge investment in the 777F and a 777BCF would be a natural (and at one time was almost a go) for FedEx.

    The 777F has the capability to served a different market than a 777BCF, but FedEx has mixed the two with some used in the same current MD-11 routes and some high value/faster bypass runs.

  16. Here is the rest of Howard Miller’s comment that I excerpted above, which somehow did not appear (at least on my machine)
    here:

    Howard Miller commented on Pontifications: Boeing focuses on design, production vs airplane development–for now.

    in response to leehamnet:

    By Scott Hamilton May 11, 2020, © Leeham News: Boeing killed development of its alphabet soup of airplane concepts for now. “For now” is a relative term. When Boeing will be ready to show concepts to customers as a prelude to a program launch depends on how quickly the industry recovers from the COVID crisis. […]

    @Rob,

    I feel your pain, and even admire, your relentless efforts seeking to take on those of us who no longer share your devotion and admiration for what you, or perhaps managers and its Board members over the past 20 of so years, insist is a company still worthy of being called “Boeing”.

    But, it’s nothing more than indisputable facts, based on not one, not two, not even three, but rather the actual outcomes/current status, and the underlying decision-making and execution for several of its biggest, highest profile, “Marquee” projects across most/all of its biggest divisions (commercial aircraft, military/defense, space) that’s behind most of our overwhelmingly negative commentaries and analysis posted here (and in my case, elsewhere) regarding what many of us view as McDonnell Douglas 2.0, or “McBoeing” for short.

    I could cite a lengthy list (and in fact, have in a great many of my reader comments here in LNA’s forum, and elsewhere dating back several years) as to why so many of us don’t view McBoeing with the same fondness and affection as you have for what many of us view as McDonnell Douglas (flailing) as it attempts to impersonate the company we knew and fondly recall as the Boeing of yore.

    And although I would never presume to speak for others, and of course, nobody designated me to be a “group spokesperson”, what I can offer as a perspective behind such overwhelming “negativity” being expressed is NOT so much as “bashing” or “hating” Boeing while “favoring” Airbus, but rather is a profound disappointment (even sadness for avgeeks) AND responsible concern for a company that long ago lost its way and was long beset with/mired in crisis before Corona Virus was even a thought, let alone a plague of near “Biblical proportions” that has brought aviation as we knew it to its knees as swiftly as it has.

    As noted above, I could list, accompanied by a litany of provable facts/academic style citations the many problems afflicting McBoeing, so I’ll just cite the basics most experts agree are indisputable facts since time is short today, and besides we all know the nitty gritty of:

    – the 737 Max debacle;

    – quality control problems for 787s rolling off the final assembly lines in South Carolina;

    – the still unusable KC46 tanker transport; Starliner PR fiasco;

    – the full-on stupidity of seeking to instigate a trade war with Canada to kill Bombardier’s C-Series that instead resulted in one of the most spectacular and epic fails with Airbus acquiring the C-Series for lower than a fire sale price;

    – countless C-suite scandals, heck even jailing for some for the KC46 back in the day;

    -Embraer;

    -profligate spending on tens of billions of dollars on obscenely generous stock buybacks and dividends;
    – a revolving door of CEOs in the McBoeing era;

    – an obsequious Board packed with bold faced names with ZERO relevant industry knowledge and experience, or others who though successful in other industries, also had little or no knowledge or useful experience for making decisions about airlines and aerospace.

    Nothing more and nothing less.

    In fact, I’m pretty sure that nothing would make most of us happier than to see Boeing successful and prosperous since, at
    least for me, watching Boeing – or again, McBoeing – flailing for as long as it has with the only changes being the parade of CEOs coming and going through those ever spinning revolving doors to the C-suite without much else being done to root out and eliminate the underlying toxic corporate culture has become tedious and tiresome since, to most of us, it seems like the only objective is to change pilots for a an aircraft that’s not only way off course, but also is beginning to break apart before our very eyes, instead of putting the soon to crash and burn aircraft (in a manner of speaking) down at the nearest airport, and not just replacing one captain after another and asking them to fly the same broken plane along on same wayward course that seems to be more like nothing more than coming up with someone who can better execute the fleecing and looting mob bust out depicted in the movie “Goodfellas” for themselves and Boeing’s shareholders, than actually fixing what’s clearly broken, and has long been broken at a company that’s only Boeing in name – but otherwise reminds so many of us as the painful, slow death we watched take place at McDonnell Douglas.

    If that makes us “wrong” – then, as the expression goes, “I don’t want to be right”.

    Because, the facts, perhaps best expressed by the heretofore inconceivable grounding of an aircraft model for more than a year that had there NOT been the dearth of competitors and the current OEM duopoly that has otherwise kept McBoeing alive, any company with products so bad they’re banned from use for this long, actually would’ve been finished long before Covid19 emerged.

    Just look at the long list of formerly great names in aviation history who’s aircraft, many of which actually were considerably better products than McBoeing’s 737 MAX jalopies are, who’s fates were doomed by aircraft with much lesser “sins” than Boeing is with its longtime/still grounded 737 MAX if anyone still doubts the “luck” Boeing has from there being no other company around with products that would’ve been sold in place of its faulty/defective 737s after they were grounded this long.

    Just sayin’ on that last point…”

    Thank you, Howard Miller; you certainly do speak for me (and I’m guessing many others), in this case. What a worthy comment..

    • Bill, I know you and others here perhaps will not understand these points. If you want to label me the discourse police for presenting them, that’s fine, and also valid. I have no jurisdiction here but I think the fights could be avoided with these practices.

      So for what it’s worth:

      1. when the criticisms of Boeing begin with “McBoeing” and statements such as “raping and pillaging” that are meant to ridicule or be derisive, that’s a strong indicator that the conclusion is formed first and then the facts are marshalled to support it. You don’t see Bjorn or Scott using language like that. It isn’t necessary to be derisive to use the facts to make your point. In fact your points are stronger without that attitude on display.

      It also flies in the face of the assertion of devotion to Boeing, or only wanting the best for a company that you love. It’s difficult to believe that in the presence of derision and ridicule. You don’ t behave that way towards the things you truly care about.

      2. I pointed out to Gundolf that if you eviscerate the people you wish to persuade, they have an excuse to discard your views as bias or piling on, and not listen. They may also rise to the unfairness of it, as I do.

      This is not to say that there are not a wealth of negative facts about Boeing that can be argued. Believe me, I am aware of them as well. If used in an objective and unbiased way, they will be very effective to build the case for change at Boeing. But the goal is to repair the damage and set Boeing on a good course again, not to tear it down or destroy it.

      3. when facts are used subjectively, with the negative conclusion built into the presentation, that is suspect. Howard’s post contains many examples of this. An objective presentation of the facts allows them to be agreed upon, then your arguments can build on that, using the facts to justify your conclusion. The advantage is that by establishing the facts first, there is the possibility of discussion of interpretation, even in the face of disagreement, and without descending into vitriol, because the facts create a common basis of understanding.

      A classic illustration of this is Trump. He’ll make a statement that contains both an embedded objective fact and his subjective conclusion. Often one is not supported by the other, or they are in contradiction.

      That kind of speech is divisive by its very nature, because it depends on which part the listener latches onto. The division is built into the statement itself. Some writers call it “truth by association”, you hope the truth of the fact will wash over onto the conclusion. Whether or not that is the intended purpose, it’s a poor way to communicate, as it will almost certainly result in an argument. Good communication tries to establishes commonality for agreement by rational persuasion. It doesn’t foster disagreement.

      4. when building a critical case, it can be made stronger by also giving the opposing view, and showing why it may not be applicable or valid, or comparing the merits of the two. Again this helps to eliminate the perception of bias and creates instead the perception of balance and fairness. The reader then does not have to respond with opposing facts because you have already given them. At best they may present a different interpretation.

      Another benefit of this, is that in considering the opposing view, you may rethink your own, and condense it into a stronger position. This fact is known to all professional journalists and editors. It’s why they are taught to examine both sides. Its why the Seattle Times won the Pulitzer.

      5. while facts can be established as truth, interpretations can vary, and often we don’t know for sure whether they are correct or not, only time can tell. So limiting the confidence of your conclusions is a good practice, acknowledging that they could be wrong. This also leaves breathing room for the discussion. When absolute certainty is expressed in the conclusion, then again the perception is that the conclusion is driving the facts. TW is perhaps the master of this.

      6. above all else, it is not necessary to personally attack an opposing poster, to deride or ridicule them. The same rules apply here for language as apply to Boeing. You can let the members here decide for themselves whether they agree or disagree with the expressed viewpoint.

      7. the notion that defense of Boeing implies criticism of Airbus, is false (or vice-versa). The two are separate issues. Airbus is a great organization whose value to the world is evident in their attaining an equal (or perhaps better) standing to Boeing. They have made some missteps too (bribery scandal), but nothing like the flurry of errors we have seen recently from Boeing. In my mind, the Airbus vs Boeing argument should not even be on the table, they are both capable of being exceptional, and we should root for that outcome with both.

      • Wondering to whom exactly Rob is pitching his comments, since none here are apparently qualified to parse or (heaven forfend!) criticize them..

        Almost like that [paid?] commenter must *always* have the last word..

        -Bill7

      • Rob: I’m going to help you: Explaining is Losing, and you’re
        doing a whole lot of explaining here; likely for money.

        OTOH- I’m rather dull, so maybe my comment can be safely
        dismissed.

  17. Rob: I see that you recently commented RE: the Howard Miller post- I got it in my email- but your comment has so far not appeared here.

    A question, and I think a pertinent one: are you paid for the very polished comments you post here, or definitively not?

    -Bill7

    • Just for the record: I do not receive *any compensation of any kind* for my comments here, or anywhere else.

      -Bill7

    • Definitely not. I came to Leeham because of Bjorn. I had done extensive reading trying to understand the 737 MAX issues, which apart from a few sources like Leeham, had been poorly reported in the press (at least from a technical perspective). I ran across his name and opinions in several places.

      Unlike many of the talking heads, his statements were very fact-oriented and I could easily trace his reasoning from fact to conclusion. He had the conciseness and clarity that comes from deep knowledge and experience. He didn’t need to use hyperbole or exaggeration to make his case.

      At first I expected to find that same technical acuity in the commentary, and while that does exist, I also saw there was an overwhelmingly negative tilt. So much so, that I was very surprised to see commenters attacking Bjorn (and other technically astute posters such as Mike Bohnet), as apologists for Boeing, even when their positions were pretty neutral, although still very direct and honest. There didn’t seem to be much tolerance for the pro-Boeing view at all, or any view that didn’t have an anti-Boeing conclusion.

      So then I began to research the negative comments, to see if they had a factual basis, or if the facts were being misconstrued. Many of them are factual, but some are not, so I began to post myself, trying to give the balancing view. That then drew the attack to me as well. The rest you already know.

      No one here will agree, but I think the idea that I am somehow a representative of Boeing, is evidence of the degree of bias that exists here. I don’t think that those who disagree with me, must work for Airbus.

      I also think that people who might have a pro-Boeing opinion, are driven away, and that is a real loss. Mike doesn’t post here any more. Bjorn got frustrated with us and told us to move on. It’s hard to face down the group when you know you are resented. But balance is important too, so maybe that is the price that must be paid.

  18. Rob
    May 15, 2020

    Bill, I know you and others here perhaps will not understand these points.

    You sound reely smart Rob; much smarter than me. I again ask: are you paid for what you write?

  19. Rob: humbly asking once more- are you paid for your finely-honed comments? Mine are (verily!) unpaid, FWTW.

    let us know.

  20. In response to Rob, who says he is not paid or compensated for his comments:

    Poor, beleagured Boeing- no one around at all (Regulators, Lobbyists, Congresspersons, Senators, et al) to defend their diminished selves…

    yeesh

    See again Howard Miller’s comment, above; and as I said before that: Boeing better get their act together in s big hurry, because
    grift-mills like the KC-46™ are not going to keep them in business.

  21. ROB … thanks for all the hints on how to convince others
    I suggest you are paid…because you owns Boeing shares and Wall Street do not agree with your position at this time
    Please start trying to convince them First !!! :=))

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