The Peasants May Now Ask
Unarguably, Fantasy’s Come True! The new AOPA CEO & President, Mark Baker has granted interviews to AvWeb & ANN. One published in textual form, one as a podcast. Astonished, this peasant read and then listened to the chosen one’s words of wisdom on resuscitating our death bed ridden general aviation world in the country of busted dreams and limited opportunity. While China cynically smiles and ramps up to take the United States over, piece by piece, dollar by dollar, airplane by airplane, we are busy trying to find a balance between financial greed and lust for power. Make no mistake about it, our throne is shaking in the world of first class aircraft production (with many manufacturers already relying on China), but also with our last bastion, which is, or at least used to be high quality pilot training. The old days are gone, we’re being schooled, no question about it.
AOPA’s Baker has a tough job of taking the associations blunders and oopsy daisy’s out of the public spotlight and stop the ever lasting critique and challenges by the membership, which has clearly suffered under Fullers revenue driven arrogance and ignorance. Not an easy job for someone who doesn’t know how to live on less than a million dollars in salary per year and suddenly finds himself asked questions by lesser people, the general aviation pilot. Fuller had created an entourage of followers around him, shielding him from peasants and little people, his emails filtered and pre-chewed with an array of canned responses to select from. You don’t talk to the boss. End of story. It hurts to read the truth, I know.
So, Here We Are!
Wherever you go, there you are! Grandma taught us that and only a healthy chicken will lay a healthy egg. We know about garbage in –> garbage out, so… no need to regurgitate. But, where do we go from here? What are the questions the members and committed non-members of any pilot advocacy association should be asking? Here’s a sample and this writer and declared association enemy is waiting on the sidelines, money bundles on hold, until those questions are answered…
- Every single aviation business should be a strategic partner to AOPA, independent of it’s Fortune 500 Status. When will AOPA start to work hand in hand with all of us?
- Members want fiscal and administrative transparency. When will AOPA change from its secretive Board Of Directors selection to a democratically driven system and when will members and prospective members learn what EXACTLY happens with their membership fees. Itemized, you are reporting to members and owners of the association, not to idiots who can be confused by clumping and insidious accounting practices.
- When will AOPA stop to compete with aviation industry members?
- Other than being a party and event clown, how will AOPA change from being an invisible force, to a grassroots based aviation association. Mr. Pelton may provide guidance on such subjects, but when exactly will AOPA become a BOOTS ON THE GROUND association? We need soldiers to go to battle, not lawyers constipated with technicalities.
- What will AOPA do to win back disgruntled and highly annoyed former members?
- When will the salary of the President & CEO as well as the top ten earners in the association be adjusted to actual market conditions? We’re struggling down here, you know?
- When will AOPA (and any other advocacy group, for that matter) stop to treat advocacy issues like privileged, members only information?
- When will the jets currently flown by AOPA be sold? (We’re struggling down here, you know?)
- When will AOPA management and public relations fulfill its legal duty to release its financial statements in such fashion that members and non members alike can gain an insight into how all these millions of dollars are being put to use for the # 1 purpose of the association? ADVOCACY!
- When will AOPA stop to raise funds half a year early, by pressuring early renewals and sending stupid final notices?
- When will AOPA’s Legal & Medical Plan become what it ought to be, a member benefit, not a revenue creating option?
- When will AOPA stop catering stupid and senseless rental car discounts and fake insurance offers to members?
I could keep on going, but who gives a flying rats ass, right? Its never going to happen, and we know it.
Good Luck, Baker! You’ll need it.
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