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Posted by mtwinkle on June 17, 2007
THE Paris Air Show, the aviation industry’s big annual jamboree, begins on Monday June 18th. Commercial and military aircraft will jostle, wing to wing on the ground and in the air, to attract buyers. The most important dogfight, as always, pits America’s Boeing against Europe’s Airbus. The rival jetmakers should each announce a raft of big deals before and during the show. Airbus needs to show renewed confidence after production troubles delayed the delivery of its A380 superjumbos and will hope for more orders for its proposed A350. The firm needs to make up ground on Boeing, whose competing model, the 787 Dreamliner, is set to enter service next year.
EUROPEAN UNION leaders meet in Brussels for a two-day summit beginning on Thursday June 21st to salvage what they can of the European constitutional treaty, two years after its rejection by French and Dutch voters. They want the new treaty to be ratified by national parliaments, avoiding referendums. But the 27 countries are deeply split over which parts are useful and which will cause uproar.
AN IRAQI court is expected to deliver verdicts on Sunday June 24th in the trial of Ali Hassan al-Majid, also known as “Chemical Ali”, and five other former officials of Saddam Hussein’s regime, for attacks on the country’s Kurds. He was once a leading figure in Iraq (Saddam was his cousin) and is accused of launching gas attacks on northern Iraq in 1988. The prosecution claims that some 180,000 people, mainly civilians, were killed. He denies the use of chemical weapons and all the defendants say they were acting on orders in a campaign aimed at rebels. If convicted they face the death penalty.
After years of war, budget deficits, and middle-class wage stagnation, Democrats are promising a return to the sunny Clinton years, when peace prevailed and a rising tide lifted all boats.
Polls show that voters no longer regard the Republicans as the party of solid fiscal responsibility.
The implicit promise, echoed by various presidential hopefuls, is that more frugal fiscal policy, and a more balanced budget, will produce the same rapid growth in GDP, employment and tax revenue that graced the Clinton economy.
The lull in the market, coupled with sops, is good news for prospective buyers,
THIS looks like being another miserable summer for air travellers. Delays in America last year were the worst ever and could this year break even that grim record. America’s air-transport system is facing gridlock. Airports will only become more congested and aircraft fuller.
The harm could be amplified by the effects of other emissions from jet-engines at high altitude.
Airlines are starting to face up to their environmental responsibilities. Air transport should strive to become a zero-emissions industry. That is a vision for 50 years or more ahead. A more efficient industry would make flying less of a hassle.