Fly the Clueless Skies

The latest issue of Airways magazine, the 100th, reports the following tidbit about a Harris Poll ranking 60 major American companies by reputation and perception:

‘United was 52nd, putting it in the bottom ten. That was lower than both American Airlines and Halliburton, the alleged Iraq War profiteer. But United was not dead last. It beat MCi-Worldcom and Enron, as well as two cigarette manufacturers and Martha Stewart Living.’

Meanwhile, the still-bankrupt United unveiled a new paint scheme for its planes and Robert Redford voiceovers for its advertising, even as it continued its completely clueless and nasty behavior towards its customers and employees, even as it can’t figure out why it can’t make money.

One would think this Harris poll, which puts United below much-reviled-and-in-the-news Halliburton would wake up some folks in Elk Grove, but one would be wrong.

Speaking of Halliburton, the Duncan Banner reports that the company laid off 38 workers in Duncan this week.

I say that the Banner reports it, but in fact the rag just pretty much ran verbatim a company press release. It’s called lazy small-town journalism. Excerpts from the Halliburton PR:

‘Personnel reductions are under way at its technology center in Duncan to align research and development operations with current market conditions. A total of 38 people was part of the reduction in force at the Duncan Technology Center, which supports the production optimization and fluids divisions.

“The economic outlook of the industry has changed since we committed to our 2004 budget targets last year,” said Joe Sandy, director of technology. “The first quarter of 2004 has remained relatively flat compared to the same period last year.” Of the 38 employees leaving the company, 18 are contract. The remaining employee population at the Duncan Technology Center is 323. The total employee count for Duncan is 1,972, and statewide it is 2,354.’

Isn’t it great when American corporations which exist thanks to taxpayer largesse, like Halliburton, destroy 38 taxpayers’ lives and talk about it in such dry, divorced-from-reality PR language?

The press release continues:

’”We are a service-oriented company, and our customers continue to challenge us to provide low-cost, innovative solutions,” said Sandy. “As our customers and others in the industry adjust to the changing economic times, we must do the same to remain competitive. It is always difficult to face these issues, but we have to run a cost-effective technology organization. That means right-sizing our business to the market that is anticipated by our product service lines.”’

‘Right-sizing our business to the market …’ How disgusting.

Personally, I think the government of we the people need to right-size our business and cut out all corporate socialism/welfare to companies like Halliburton.