When President Donald Trump proposed privatizing air traffic control, liberal media outlets like Slate and The Los Angeles Times only told half the story.
“Trump has picked a rather thorny subject on which to wage his first infrastructure battle,” Slate staff writer Henry Grabar declared on June 5. The Los Angeles Times meanwhile hyped “[o]pponnents were quick to shoot down the idea,” and only cited one privatization supporter. The idea had more support, including from the employee union. But the newspaper ignored that point.
The Associated Press reported the National Air Traffic Controllers Association union endorsed a 2016 bill proposing to follow Canada’s example of privatization. The bill never made it to the House floor.
While Slate and LA Times mentioned that bill, they failed to note that it was endorsed by the very workers it would impact. Furthermore, the LA Times quoted five times as many opponents to privatization as proponents (5 to 1).
Slate summarized the arguments for privatizing, but declared Trump was wrong to think privatizing was a “No-Brainer.”
“A more profit-driven ATC [Air Traffic Control] system, would likely favor the largest, more profitable flights …. That’s a trade-off that even a Republican Congress friendly to privatization in principle is constituted to avoid,” Grabar wrote.
The New York Times also covered the news and quoted two liberals opposed to privatization: Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.
According to Pelosi, Trump’s proposal was a “Trojan horse for undermining workers’ wages and handing massive tax breaks to billionaires and corporations.”
But unlike Slate and LA Times, the NY Times admitted, “The aviation proposal has support from the association representing air traffic controllers and other industry players, including pilots.”