My favorite quote of the day came from aviation consultant Michael Boyd. After President Bush announced he would open up some east-coast military-only fly zones for use by commercial flights to ease some of the Christmas crush — as he did at Thanksgiving — Boyd pointed out what a useless, pandering move that is, because the congestion isn’t in the air, it’s at the airports:
It’s meaningless, because over a holiday period, there are no more airplanes in the sky than any other day. You’re opening up a couple of routes north and south. Well, last time I checked, the United States goes from Maine to California, and a couple of routes north and south don’t have a major effect upon the air transportation system. It looks good, it sounds good, but it plays to that argument that we’ll have many more planes in the sky, many more people flying, and a lot of congestion. It’s just as congested as any other day. It’s crowded today at Denver, it’s crowded today at Kennedy, but the demographics are different over a holiday because there are more people traveling who have the baby in the stroller and people going through security that don’t understand a bottle of Old Spice is a national threat.