Airlines to Recall Thousands of Workers: What For?


The Covid package carved out a niche for the airline industry. In response. the airlines will recall workers.

What's In the Deal?

Two days ago I noted Congress Reaches a Virus Deal.

The bill is a monstrous 5593 pages long so no one really knows all the details of what in the bill except perhaps for the lobbyists who wrote it.


I did list 20 things in the bill and one of them was point four: $15 billion for airline payroll support.

Airlines to Bring Back Thousands of Workers 

The Wall Street Journal reports Airlines to Bring Back Thousands of Workers After Passage of Covid-19 Aid Bill.

Airlines are preparing to call back tens of thousands of workers they let go in October now that Congress has approved government assistance to cover carriers’ payroll through the end of March. The question is how long employees will be able to keep their jobs.

The $900 billion relief package for households and businesses battered by the coronavirus pandemic includes $15 billion for airlines to pay all their workers. Carriers are hoping—for the second time—that the government assistance will serve as a bridge through a rocky period.

The funding bill, which President Trump is expected to sign, covers airline employees’ wages and benefits retroactively from Dec. 1 through the end of March, and bars airlines from furloughing or laying people off again during that period.

The Truth

United Airlines Chief Executive Scott Kirby and President Brett Hart shared a message with employees and the media on Monday.

The truth is, we just don’t see anything in the data that shows a huge difference in bookings over the next few months. 

Easy Recall Not

Tracking down all the furloughed workers could be a daunting task. The employees have relinquished their corporate email addresses and mailed back company-provided phones and ID badges. Some may have moved. In many cases, workers will need training before they can return to their jobs.

Selective Favoritism 

This undoubtedly is just the start of peculiarities and selected favoritism in the bill.

Airline workers will be recalled, with difficulty, and paid between December 1 and March 1 to do nothing. 

That aspect was only $15 billion.

Questions arose yesterday on Twitter regarding small business loans.

Train Wreck Thesis

The PPP Program

No Medal for Nobility

Essentially, at least as best as I can tell, we renewed the $325 billion slush fund for those first in line to apply,

But no, I am not going to do it this time either but millions did. 

Here's a curious one that surfaced recently: Joel Osteen’s Houston megachurch defends getting $4.4 million in federal PPP loans

Slush Fund Revived

Please recall that Congress has been bickering over this since September. 

Yet, the best they could do is revive the blanket, untargeted checks and the slush fund in the original program dating back to March. 

At least this time it's smaller. 

The ramifications, however, are unknown. Something in those 5593 pages is certain to bite in a big way. 


Comments (14)
No. 1-10

So the execs can cackle as the workers infect each other with covid for no reason whatsoever? Or maybe the execs are just idiots that failed upwards into a position where they could do some real damage?


Brace for it....brace for it....."KEYNES"

IMO, there's no singular correct economic school, each cites components of the whole and a government beholden to the highest bidding campaign donors will gradually concoct marketing schemes to convince the public of outright ridiculous schemes.

I'll never forget how the Tea Party was formed to protest TBF bank bailouts, and within months the Koch brothers converted it to a protest of tax increases on the wealthy, conflating that as "Socialism".

My point, I'd rather see these airline workers have money in their pockets to maintain consumption, even if it means the risk that a corporate CEO may have to hold off on purchasing his 6th luxury vacation home in the Swiss Alps to afford his increase in taxes to almost what a waitress pays.

For the record, I prefer Friedman's monetarist views, but let's face it - the Fed has shown us that it has limits, "Trickle-down" had 40 years to yield a middle class swamped in debt with wage growth that failed to increase with inflation.

Mr. Purple
Mr. Purple

"You may as well do it. No prize for nobility, just a lighter bank account. That's the cold hard truth."


My last day of doing my job was March 12, 2020. I remain employed.

I work for a small business. My employer is amazing. Best I've ever had by far. They continued paying me in full until September 1, 2020. They received a PPP loan and the entire balance has been forgiven.

I was reduced to half-pay since September. I have been awaiting Congress to get their shit together. They kind of did, so I discussed with my employer re-applying for more PPP, reinstating me to full pay AND making me whole for the last four months. DONE DEAL!!!

Through mortgage refinance and turning in a leased vehicle along with spending reductions, my family has limped along so far, but time for us would have run out with property tax and other debts now due. For us, PPP is an economic salvation.

When something happens to prevent you from doing the job you trained for, dedicated years of your life to mastering, through NO FAULT OF YOUR OWN, federal aid is nothing but insurance that I have paid for in the form of my taxes. There is no moral question here AT ALL.

Not only are my family and me entitled to these funds, but the reality is that we are just pass-throughs for our creditors (the bank, the county, etc.)

Far be it for me to tell anyone what they should do, but Patrick Bateman nailed it. Now is the time for self-preservation. My industry may not be up and running until Q4 2020, I can't believe I have to rely on Washington to keep doing the right thing. This is no way to live, and there are millions way worse off than me.


I suppose they are being recalled on the belief things are going to get better. I have to believe they are not. Getting better, does not include more of these massive bailouts. They should have let the whole shithouse go down back in 2008, we would be so much better off. They keep rearranging the chairs on this fiscal titanic on the hopes this time will be so much better...I don't see anything good coming out of all this. Now, we have the godfather of the biden crime family, at the head of the table of the feast that will be turning into a famine...


The PPP loan I applied for in March didn’t come until late May or early June. I applied the second week I could apply. The EIDL loan, which I applied for the 1st day I was eligible.....also took months......and we were way behind all the Joel Osteens and the Trump hotels in getting funded.

We were also promised 10K free money up front on the PPP even if we were turned down for it....and that never came. We were just flat out lied to.

It was welcome. It really did help me keep most of my employees...and so far I have not applied for forgiveness.. I don’t think they make that easy. You have to prove you used the money as it was intended.

If not forgiven, the terms on the PP really suck.....on my 84K, I pay back $3500.month for 36 months......pretty shitty terms if you ask me.

The EIDL loan has better terms, but no hope of forgiveness. That’s on 15 year payback....of course that will be beyond my working could become a debt that has to be paid off when I sell off the top if I see my practice....If I can get PPP forgiveness, I hope to expedite the EIDL.

Right not more debt is the last thing I need. I will apply for the new PPP money if it can be forgiven..if not I won’t.


All the PPP does is lower the official unemployment numbers while running up the national debt. The least the "money for nothing" people could do is sign up for jury duty.


This is how Socialism works in the US. Borrow from everyone's grandchildren and give to the wealthy and connected.


Travel is going to spike in spring and summer. I have little doubt that Covid will just turn into a normal flu in 2021 rather than killing 10x the number the Flu kills each year. I don't want to say life is going to be normal because it never is after a crisis but people aren't going to be scared of dying as much as they were in 2020.

I was fiscal conservative until the last two crises. After seeing how other emerging markets print money and get away with it, I see no reason why we can't do it bigger and better than anyone else. We will be Japan at some point economically speaking but that may be the best we can do.


It is high time we quit blaming in America. A lot of people are suffering and the only way out is through hard work and a helping hand. If Mitt Romney's grandparents lived off food stamps, then no one should be ashamed to be helped in a time of crisis and until life gets back to normal.

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