Ethiopian Airlines Crash; Another 737 Max

Discussion in 'Flight Following' started by Anymouse, Mar 10, 2019.

  1. Kurt Zierhut

    Kurt Zierhut Filing Flight Plan

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    I still see these pilots dealing with two things: (1) unusual attitude and (2) stabilizer trim runaway. Both of these are in the checklist and most of it is "memory items". AP disconnect, power back, speed-brakes, tri8m cutout switches, grab and hold trim wheel. From what is published, these pilots did not do all of that.
     
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  2. Sluggo63

    Sluggo63 Line Up and Wait

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  3. Bell206

    Bell206 Cleared for Takeoff

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    And now another chapter in the story. From several sites:
    On Apr 27th 2019 it became known, that four independent whistleblowers, current and former Boeing employees, had called the FAA hotline for whistleblowers regarding aviation safety concerns on Apr 5th 2019. The concerns reported were wiring damage to the AoA related wiring as result of foreign object damage as well as concerns with the TRIM CUTOUT switches. The FAA believes these reports may open completely new investigative angles into the causes of the two crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia.
     
  4. Kurt Zierhut

    Kurt Zierhut Filing Flight Plan

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    Well, it was a few days ago, but Boeing finally came out with what I have been saying for a while. Both crashed 737 MAX crews failed to follow procedures. If I don't follow memory items in a 61.58 check, they will fail my hiney. And these guys get checked every 6 months.
     
  5. ircphoenix

    ircphoenix En-Route

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    I'll wait for the official report instead of listening to the company that has everything to gain by blaming the pilots.
     
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  6. Sluggo63

    Sluggo63 Line Up and Wait

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    Not really. What he said was that crews failed to completely follow procedure.

    https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/29/investing/boeing-annual-meeting/index.html

    I wonder if that wording and the backtracking from his previous statement of "we own it" had anything to do with this...

    https://www.seattletimes.com/busine...ar-to-oversee-fallout-from-fatal-max-crashes/

    I also wonder if he mentioned the fact that the manuals for the Max were not even correct.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2019/04/28/boe...ty-feature-on-737-max-was-turned-off-wsj.html
     
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  7. Piperonca

    Piperonca Pre-takeoff checklist

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  8. Sluggo63

    Sluggo63 Line Up and Wait

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  9. Piperonca

    Piperonca Pre-takeoff checklist

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  10. PeterNSteinmetz

    PeterNSteinmetz Line Up and Wait

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  11. Sluggo63

    Sluggo63 Line Up and Wait

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    And the same thing is going on now. If the WSJ is to be believed, the AOA alerts were supposed to work on the Max, just like the 800s, even on fleets that didn't have the "optional" safety package installed. Boeing realized later (before Lion Air) that the alerts weren't working in the Max, and then decided... "meh, we'll just tell them that they're disabled because they didn't order the extras."

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/boeing...-year-before-telling-faa-airlines-11557087129

    For those behind the paywall:
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2019
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  12. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

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  13. midwestpa24

    midwestpa24 Cleared for Takeoff

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    The thing to realize is that Boeing is forced to cut costs, because the airlines are cutting costs, all because John C. Public demands cheap airline tickets. Everyone is fine with cutting corners to save a buck until the bodies start to pile up.
     
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  14. Kenny Phillips

    Kenny Phillips Pattern Altitude

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    Of course, "twice as safe", at any cost, is nearly impossible, especially in the US. Still, the amount saved by charging extra for this or that on an airplane of that price will turn out to have been negligible.
     
  15. LongRoadBob

    LongRoadBob Cleared for Takeoff

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    BS. It costs what it costs, and virtually no business should cut corners when it involves safety. Life and death.
    It doesn’t matter what John Q Public WANTS to pay, or what you think they want to pay. Profit is not the end all and be all.

    Boeing wanted to compete with Airbus,and tried to do it on the cheap, disregarding safety and their duty. We seem to have a classic management situation where they don’t know wha they are doing and are basically beam counters looking for most profit, instead of diligently making a superior product.
     
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  16. kyleb

    kyleb En-Route PoA Supporter

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    It is easy to say that, but any value engineering can be characterized as corner cutting by some shrieking person with an agenda. There are always trade-offs. Your airplane, car, house, and everything else you own or use has been value engineered to some point and viable, but costly and limited benefit safety features have been omitted in the course of the hard decisions that must be made to bring products to market.

    This is why Cessna, Piper, and Beechcraft continue to sell piston engined aircraft while more reliable (safer) turbines are available to do to the job. The buyers (generally) can't afford the turbine upgrade.
     
  17. LongRoadBob

    LongRoadBob Cleared for Takeoff

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    It still isn’t up to the mythical John Q. Public. Trade offs, up to a point, but it isn’t like the public can demand under price. Or the airlines. Competitive, to a point but safety costs.

    We can all “demand” an automobile that costs 399.00 new, but it doesn’t mean it will happen. Or could.
     
  18. Kurt Zierhut

    Kurt Zierhut Filing Flight Plan

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    I still think we are missing some of the logic when it comes to designing reliable systems. Does anybody remember why we have twin engine airplanes? Or even 4 engine planes? Does anybody remember why we spend SO MUCH time in training with one-of-two engines failed? Everybody acknowledges that "at some point in time" one of those engines will fail. So we design systems and train pilots to deal with it. Is anybody here suggesting that we need to have aircraft systems with "many nines" of reliability? Such planes would be extremely expensive and probably wouldn't fly as there were so heavy.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2019
  19. Greg Bockelman

    Greg Bockelman Administrator Management Council Member

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    Exactly. A 100% safe airplane will never exist. Everything is a compromise.
     
  20. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I used to work for a small company owned and operated by a "salesman". We were arguing one day about a product we were getting ready to release. He said, "You engineers want everything perfect when it just has to be 'good enough'."

    He was right. But the art is all in calculating the limit for "good enough".

    Aircraft aren't autonomous yet. Until then they will need pilots to fly them. I would also suggest that the more automation we add to make them safer, the more likely there will be some sort of failure that's never been seen before. The more safety and automation we add, the more we will have to rely on pilots to be able to think on their feet. That's going to be a problem for some airlines or cultures that think pilots should be not much more than systems monitors.
     
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  21. WillFly4Food

    WillFly4Food Pre-Flight

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    One might be inclined to ask, however, in all this finger pointing between Boeing, investigative reporters, airlines and customers: Where was the regulator?

    They seem to be quite happy to remain out of the spotlight. Where were they when a safety system was designed with a single point failure mode? Or training materials were developed that barely discussed MCAS?

    I’m not advocating for over zealous FAA oversight of the industry. But I think it is a fair question whether the FAA even met their minimums on the Max.
     
  22. kyleb

    kyleb En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Just as when ValuJet crashed, the FAA will take some heat, and deservedly so. The challenge for them is they have a mandate, but will certainly tell you they don't have the resources (i.e. budget) to properly execute their mandate. I know how bureaucracies work - no matter what, they always need more funding, but I can certainly imagine an underfunded regulatory bureaucracy letting "trusted" partners in industry self govern to some extent.
     
  23. LongRoadBob

    LongRoadBob Cleared for Takeoff

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    This is a trend at the moment in the fight against basically all regulations. They eliminate regulations, and cut the funding and manpower, and this is the result, letting a profit driven entity “govern themselves” and it is totally wrong headed.

    Are there regulations that are too stringent, or just plain dumb, or that have the opposite or unintended consequences? Sure there are and they ought to be changed, reviewed, etc.

    But pretending any entity can regulate itself is doomed from the start. Besides being a conflict of interest (which used to be a thing we seemed to understand) which is in itself a bad thing, it is also failure on the part of the regulators to do their job. This seems to be intended, as if the governing body is now being sabatoged into being toothless and weak.

    Where I live, it seems this is also happening. Standing in an elevator noticing that the last time it’s been inspected was seven years ago is not very comforting. Restaurant inspections, all of it...seems to be down prioritized.
     
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  24. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    well....it could totally be the right thing to do, just like every other private company, if Boeing is up to owning their product. Let the legal system punish them. This happens everyday with most profit driven industries. They are driven to safety by fear....fear of being put outta bidness. The day the gummint stops coming to it's rescue is the day it will be stronger and safer. A US competitor could help also.....
     
  25. LongRoadBob

    LongRoadBob Cleared for Takeoff

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    I don’t agree. For one thing it is too late by the time any correction via lawsuits kicks in. For another the evidence is in and has been for over a century. You cannot depend on even big companies not fudging. In today’s world more than ever, because of stockholders expectations and the nature of it, companies are more short sighted than ever.

    Conflict of interest is the bottom line. It’s always been a powerful temptation. It’s the get-there-itis for corporations.
     
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  26. Lindberg

    Lindberg En-Route

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    Sure it is. There is a margin below which airlines will not be able to secure capital to buy planes. And there is a price above which consumers will not buy sufficient tickets to drive that margin. These are market constraints on how much "everything" Boeing can put in planes. There's bo such thing as perfect safety, and beyond a certain point the costs likely rise logarithmicly.
     
  27. Checkout_my_Six

    Checkout_my_Six Final Approach

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    well...how much of the Fortune 500 is regulated like Boeing?
     
  28. Bell206

    Bell206 Cleared for Takeoff

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    But it is. In a true capitalist, free-market economy it is the consumption of these services and goods by John Q. Public that solely drives it. There are hundreds of examples of this. Take aviation. Up until the Deregulation Act in the late 70s which removed direct federal oversight, mainline aviation was very closed, somewhat profitable, and only available to those with means. The rest of the public could only afford trains and buses. After Dereg aviation took off. It became safer and more widespread where even those John Publics at the lower economy levels could afford a plane ticket now. And just look at Spirit or JetBlue. The public flies them because they offer a service at a cheap price vs. the flag ops. Are they any less safe? No.

    But don't confuse regulation with risk-management/mitigation either. Regulations provide only minimum standards. The rest of how an industry operates is managed by them and at a profit. In my opinion, the increased use of automation over the past decade has caused the risk-management side of most industries to back off previous principals. Unfortunately, as automation becomes mainstream the human side does not follow and becomes complacent and at times can't not handle the situation when the automation fails. Just look at this accident, or the Deepwater Horizon spill.

    However, if you think more regulation will "solve" this problem you are mistaken in a free-market economy. Just look what happened after the Deepwater Horizon where the oversight regulatory burden of the offshore industry increased 10-fold and decimated it as it was no longer profitable--which in turn decimated the support service companies to include the 3 major offshore helicopter companies to go Ch 11. So now 1 million people globally are without work or working in very distressed surroundings. Maybe ask them if they think more regulation made them safer?

    Bottomline, in a free-economy, allowing entities to self-govern works. But as with anything where humans are directly involved in the end result you can have incidents and accidents. Nothing is 100% safe. But just as John Q Public makes the decision to fly SW or JetBlue or Delta, SW/JetBlue/Delta make a decision which aircraft to buy: Airbus or Boeing. If the Airbus doesn't provide a product which the airlines want or can afford they buy Boeing and visa versa.

    So in your opinion, where should we start with the new regulations? If you start at the airlines, like back before Dereg, then most likely SW and JetBlue won't be around much longer and John Public is not happy. If you start at the manufacturer, then you create a more expensive aircraft which causes the airlines to up their prices or drop services and once again John Q Public is not happy.

    Even as something simple as requiring every Part 121 pilot to receive 5 hours of manual flying every year as recurrent training would probably bankrupt a number of airlines or rise tickets prices and once again make John Q Public unhappy. However, of all the options out there, I personally believe this is the route most prudent to take.

    While you might not agree with this explanation, there are tons of data/studies/articles on how regulation and risk-management affect a free-market to the point where risk-management/mitigation has become its own industry in the last 20 years. It's not regulation that has driven the global economy to its present level but self-governing risk-management.
     
  29. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Another thing about regulations - who does it? Boeing sells to many airlines in many countries. FAA and US Federal regulations stop at either our border or wherever a US flagged aircraft happens to be (I think that's how it works). Other countries set their own. The example above, "Even as something simple as requiring every Part 121 pilot to receive 5 hours of manual flying every year...", would only apply the US.
     
  30. Bell206

    Bell206 Cleared for Takeoff

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    When an aircraft is certified and the host country is part of a bi-lateral aviation agreement--like the US, France, UK, Germany, Canada, and others--the other countries accept the host country certification as their own and in some cases will issue a separate type certificate document within their native CAA system. But on the operations side, it is usually dependent on the country of registration's CAA regs how that aircraft is operated/maintained except in some cases of aircraft operating in foreign countries like an N reg operating in Bolivia which would have to follow some of their rules also. This is also demonstrated by the 361 hr SIC in this case who wouldn't have been allowed to fly in other countries aircraft like the US where it had been 500 hrs, then was moved up to 1500 hrs after the Colgan accident.
     
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  31. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    OK, thanks. I know there are lots of State Department treaties and rules that get involved in regulatory things like this.

    Your point to the operations side is important - 1500 hrs vs any(?) The SIC in Ethiopia had roughly 100 737 hrs, that leaves 200 or so for everything else - like maybe a beat up PA28 for initial training. How does Boeing control any of that?
     
  32. Bell206

    Bell206 Cleared for Takeoff

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    They can't. The only ones who "may" come close on a global scale would be ICAO.
     
  33. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    That was the point I was trying to make - eventually, there is a point where the manufacturer is out of the loop. The claim that Boeing is cutting corners to save a buck runs out of steam when a country, or an airline, allows (arguably) unqualified flight crews to operate the equipment.
     
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  34. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    How did deregulation make air travel safer? Correlation, not causation.

    Deregulation didn't do anything to make air travel safer. Around the time of deregulation, the two things that were causing trouble with airliners were hijackings and wind shear. Deregulation did nothing for those - We beefed up security and we eventually learned what microbursts were and what caused them and how to avoid them, and we haven't had nearly as many crashes since. But that had nothing to do with deregulation.

    Right... Regulations provide minimum standards. So should we get rid of them, and have no standards, and go purely free-market?

    I believe if we did that, it would bring down the entire industry eventually. Corporations' sole reason for existing is to make money, and they will do anything that they think will cut costs or increase revenue. I know, my job for nearly the past decade has been finding those things and shining a light on them.

    Profits will never increase safety. You may think that people would be more likely to buy tickets from a "safer" airline... But let's say there were no regulatory bodies involved in aviation. Boeing does their thing, and Lion and Ethiopian crashes still happen. Everyone will hear about the accidents, nobody will hear about the fix, and nobody will fly on a 737. Southwest is forced to pickle their entire fleet and buy A320s in an attempt to remain in business, but the massive capital cost means they're unable to remain competitive - They have to cut wages to their employees, their legendary service begins to crumble, and a million press releases and ads don't reach the number of people that bad news does. Within two years, they're out of business, along with any other airlines that used 737s exclusively.

    The biggest airlines absorb the hit initially, but eventually another crash happens in another type, and all of air travel begins to be seen as unsafe. Ticket sales tank. Airlines cancel routes. Only a few of the largest cities have enough people left who are willing to fly, and it either becomes only "available to those with means" or it goes away entirely in favor of bullet trains, hyperloops, or just today's technology and a resignation to travel being slow like it used to be.

    "Minimum standards" are enough, if the standard is set in the right place and adhered to. Instead of the doom from above, what's likely to actually happen is that Boeing will develop a fix, the FAA will bless it, the airplanes will be brought up to "minimum standards", people will accept that they are now safe because the government is now doing its job, and life will go on with very little change except the Max will be safer.

    I don't think anyone is asking for more regulation. They want existing regulations to actually be enforced.

    Well, we could instead have a pure "free market economy" where the Deepwater Horizon folks would have just said "Oops!" and moved the rig and drilled another hole. Meanwhile, oil would continue to leak and coat all the beaches in the Gulf, decimating the tourism industry and leaving a lot more than a million people out of work.

    Minimum standards matter.
     
  35. Bell206

    Bell206 Cleared for Takeoff

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    It opened up monies that were used to upgrade fleets, technology, and their subsequent support infrastructure that were not there before.

    Instead of each airline being the "same" under regulation now each airline could develop and market their own identity to the flying public. And in order remain on top each airline would look for and buy larger and faster aircraft. It took the human skill set side a little bit longer to catch on but if you look a any number of studies or safety data, airline level flight ops began their turn around on the safety side due to these corporate investments into the flying market that were not possible prior to Dereg. The OEMs followed with more reliable and modern aircraft and they continued to upgrade these aircraft in meet the ever growing need of the airlines and the public. And safety got better.

    Not at all. My reply was to a comment that implied more regulation was the answer to fixing these problems. I disagree. Every industry need a minimum standard to keep things on a level field. Raising the field does not work. As I mentioned above, it didn't fix the offshore oil industry, it hasn't fixed the medical industry, nor helped the environment. In most cases it had the complete opposite effect.

    The gist of my comments was to reply that John Q Public does rule in a free market economy. Not to remove or lessen regulations. But using regulations to correct issues in a free economy can have severe complications especially if those regulations are not directed at the true core issues.

    FYI: The oil was contained a number of miles offshore for weeks by oil company crews and contractors and would have remained offshore for the duration of the event. That was until the EPA showed up with their rules and regulations book and took control of the operation. Within 72 hrs oil started to hit the marsh and beaches under their control. Remember the government works on a lowest bidder principal whereas private entities do not as every day it can't work is lost revenue. While there was fault on the industry side for the blowout, had the government followed the the industry's playbook vs their antiqued rule book the vessel probably would not have sunk nor oil make it to shore.
     
  36. Eric Stoltz

    Eric Stoltz Line Up and Wait

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    As the thread drifts...

    I, too, am under the distinct impression that Dereg and increased airline safety are mutually exclusive. And, my opinion, say what you will about Unions (a four letter word to some), they seemed to be the greatest driver of safety after dereg. Yes, yes, companies want to be safe, but risk is acceptable, too. Unions fought with both fists to change what is acceptable risk. (So did self regulating companies) Thankfully, culture has changed, and I tend to believe that a welcoming regard towards safety is the corporate norm. To whom to give credit, however, another thread on another board.

    https://library.cqpress.com/cqresearcher/document.php?id=cqresrre1993100800 a quick read for those who are interested.
     
  37. flyingcheesehead

    flyingcheesehead Touchdown! Greaser!

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    There, we are in complete agreement. Since my expertise is in data, I see a lot of data and how it is used, and I see behaviors driven as a result of that data.

    For example: If you ever go through a chain fast food drive through and they ask you to pull forward and they'll bring your food out to you - It's likely because "corporate" is measuring (and rewarding) the speed of service at the drive-through, often with a sensor in the pavement. They get you to pull forward, and the system logs the transaction as complete in a short amount of time. Meanwhile, the store in the next town over might have a more honest manager, and might actually be serving people faster, but guess which one gets the reward at the end of the year?

    Another example is the rewards cards that you see at retail outlets, restaurants, etc. Management is using the data from those cards to learn your buying patterns and try to sell you more stuff. But if you don't use a card, they can't track you and it's much harder to sell you more stuff! So they tend to incentivize cashiers for swiping a rewards card. What do the cashiers do? Get a rewards card for themselves, or use one that was left behind by a customer. Then they have 100% on their swiped rewards cards, but they've not only not bothered to get more customers to sign up for a rewards card, they've introduced a bunch of terrible data into the system.

    It's not easy to design a system to measure what you really want measured. It takes smart people and a lot of work. That means $$$... And all too often, it gets half-assed and the company ends up with a completely different outcome than they were really looking for. Sadly, those messages generally don't get to the right people. The person behind the project would rather take credit for saving $40,000 by half-assing it than the $25 million in monthly revenue they could have picked up by whole-assing it. And that's why I'm not a huge proponent of a purely free-market economy as we have it right now. Our larger corporations are often even less efficient than the government, and there's just as much politics involved. Our version of a free market (which really isn't) rewards consolidation and ever-larger corporations, and chokes out the small businesses that really do tend towards helping both the economy and the citizens in it. :(
     
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  38. Hank S

    Hank S En-Route

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    All of them involved in food production. The medical device and pharmaceutical manufacturers andndistributors are regulated much more so.

    --Hank
    (former) medical device engineer
    it's easier here in industrial manufacturing . . . .
     
  39. LongRoadBob

    LongRoadBob Cleared for Takeoff

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  40. Palmpilot

    Palmpilot Touchdown! Greaser!

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2007
    Messages:
    15,671
    Location:
    PUDBY
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    Display name:
    Richard Palm