Good: New United Airlines Pilot Union Boss Resigns

Good: New United Airlines Pilot Union Boss Resigns

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Earlier this week I wrote about United Airlines’ problematic new pilot union boss. There’s a major update, as he has now resigned.

Captain Neil Swindells resigns as head of United MEC

Captain Neil Swindells has resigned as head of the United Airlines Master Executive Council (MEC) of the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), just days after being voted to lead the 14,000+ member union. He wrote a resignation letter to members late Wednesday, which reads as follows:

There has been a significant negative response to things I posed on a pilot forum. While many of these things have been taken completely out of context and publicly weaponized against me, I cannot ignore their existence and the damaging effect it has had on many of my fellow pilots. For that, I am truly sorry and apologize unreservedly.

In accordance with personal and professional standards I have maintained throughout my entire career at United Airlines, and to avoid any damage to the reputation of the Company, my Union, and more importantly the 15,000 pilots I stepped forward to represent, I hereby resign from the position of Master Chair and the privilege of the UAL BOD seat with which it comes.

When I was asked to step forward, representing the United Airlines pilot group was the highest honor I could imagine and the pinnacle of my long and staunch union career. Out of respect for you, the 15,000 pilots of United Airlines, it became clear my position was untenable and a negative distraction to achieving what we all want… an Industry Leading Contract.

I want to thank the many, many people who know me personally and have supported me through the recent days, knowing this attack does not represent who I am as a person, a husband, a father, or a professional pilot at United Airlines. I have had a spotless record of service to the Association and the Company for over 27 years, but errors in judgment on a pilot forum may have damaged that reputation. I hope it has not.

I thank you for the privilege of serving you. I hope we can overcome the tribalism that has dominated UAL ALPA politics for far too long. As I said at the outset of the election, and I made clear to the MEC at the election, I had no political agenda, only service and the desire to serve your best interests. That is no longer possible.

It is time for me to go back to the Line and do what I have loved doing for over 27 years, which is flying with the best, most professional pilots in the aviation industry. You deserve the best contract in the industry to match and it is time for this distraction to end.

Well done, Captain Swindells!

While it took a couple of days, I’m happy to see Swindells decided to resign. Ultimately it would have said a lot about United pilots if someone with a record like this were able to keep their role, and even serve on the United Airlines Board of Directors to represent pilots.

Prior to resigning, Swindells had issued a half-hearted apology, apologizing to those who he may have offended (rather than apologizing for being offensive). Even in this resignation note he defends himself somewhat, saying the comments were “taken completely out of context and publicly weaponized against [him].”

I think that kind of misses the point. We’re talking about a 60ish year old man posting in forums and saying about some of his colleagues “I hope they all died slow painful deaths of a anal cancer requiring multiple surgeries, and copious amounts of seepage from weeping wounds.”

He seems to still not understand that the issue here isn’t context, it’s that this isn’t how an adult (and a father, no less) should be communicating. Or is there any context in which this kind of communication is appropriate?

Bottom line

Earlier this week, United Airlines pilots appointed a new leader by a 9-8 margin. As it turns out, this guy has recently been posting some pretty awful things online, and doesn’t seem like the person pilots should want representing them on the United Airlines Board of Directors. Fortunately he has stepped down now, so hopefully the union chooses more carefully next time…

What do you make of this resignation?

Conversations (57)
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  1. Terry Guest

    It’s about time the UAL MEC has been exposed for who they really are. The only reason he stepped down was because he was exposed on national news. ALPA will simply elect another Chairman, alter their image and continue on in the same manner.

    Look at the close vote. Nothing will change!

    1. Ed Guest

      Wrong - a close vote means this guy did not have the board with him. He was appointed with the narrowest margin possible 9-8.
      Your supposition that nothing will change would be more tenable if the vote was unanimous…

  2. Jim Guest

    Happy to see this. I hope the union suffers and eventually gets destroyed. I don't understand how someone would want to pay to be part of an organization that allows guys like this to get promoted based on their seniority rather than their qualifications. Give me free agency any day. I'd rather outwork and outearn the lazy drunks. #proudscab

    1. platy Guest

      @ Jim

      We'll let's have some fun and audit every social media post you've ever written and let the mob decide whether you are employable or not!

      (Clue - the outcome is predictable...somebody, somewhere will find something they don't like about you)

  3. Aviator Guest

    Union thug with little education and from a shallow gene pool.

    1. platy Guest

      @ Aviator

      Exactly......how anti-union and corporate executives seek to portray union reps to gain advantage.

      Which is why this public hatchet job is entirely unsurprising and perfectly follows the script.

      By way of example, Qantas broke the law (as determined by court ruling) when it sacked workers during the pandemic, but you won't be reading about the thug, criminal, CEO, Alan Joyce: you'll hear about the belligerence of the leader of the maintenance workers...

      @ Aviator

      Exactly......how anti-union and corporate executives seek to portray union reps to gain advantage.

      Which is why this public hatchet job is entirely unsurprising and perfectly follows the script.

      By way of example, Qantas broke the law (as determined by court ruling) when it sacked workers during the pandemic, but you won't be reading about the thug, criminal, CEO, Alan Joyce: you'll hear about the belligerence of the leader of the maintenance workers union instead (clue -the airline has better control of the media through its PR machine).

      Similarly, airlines like Qantas and United have a history of protracting contract negations when a workplace contract is due for renewal (delaying pay rises for years) - you don't call them corporate thugs for refusing to negotiate in good faith and in a timely manner.

      It's just too easy to stir up the gullible and gormless through a little confected outrage.

  4. Jim Guest

    As a 35 year captain at another airline, it was saddening to read his posts. I feel bad for the reputation destruction he has imparted on all airline pilots, across all airlines. I hope we never hear of him again. I can assure you, he is multiple standard deviations from the norm in our profession.

    1. platy Guest

      @ Jim

      If your argument is robust, then surely the travelling public should demand an audit of every pilot's lifetime's social media output, regardless of whether made in the public domain or in a closed group, and on any topic, whether relevant to the job of being pilot of not.

      We should be alert to ANY sentence that could be interpreted with the utmost latitude as being indicative of ANY position on ANY matter which...

      @ Jim

      If your argument is robust, then surely the travelling public should demand an audit of every pilot's lifetime's social media output, regardless of whether made in the public domain or in a closed group, and on any topic, whether relevant to the job of being pilot of not.

      We should be alert to ANY sentence that could be interpreted with the utmost latitude as being indicative of ANY position on ANY matter which could potentially inflame outrage in ANYBODY.

      If we find ANY suspect comment we must then condemn that pilot as:

      1) unsuitable to be a union rep
      2) impossible to work with
      3) incompetent to fly an aircraft

      We should disregard any evidence of competency recorded through mandated checks and training.

      We should disregard the outcome of the employing airline's own past investigations into any complaints about the individual's professional conduct.

      We should bypass the employing airline's HR processes for handling professional complaints.

      We should send the offending posts to any sympathetic blogs and publications (like OMAAT and VFTW) for immediate publication, so that the matter can be rightly resolved by the court of public outrage, and the offending pilot sacked entirely (per your demand above "never hear from hm again").

      We should disregard the risk of bias and balance and misplaced context.

      We should disregard the individual's legal rights and right to reply.

      We should disregard the ugliness of public denigration and character assassination and bullying - our quest for righteousness justifies completely trampling on that individual, right?

      If your argument is correct, the vast majority of pilots (I think that's what you're trying to say with your standard deviation nonsense) have NEVER EVER posted ANYTHING that could have remotely been taken as offensive to ANYBODY even if out of context and subject to misinterpretation.

      Pilots have nothing to fear from a public inquisition.

      In fact, let's not stop there, let's survey ALL of their colleagues to see if we can't dredge up at least somebody that they have ever worked with that doesn't like them for whatever reason.

      Again, by your logic the vast majority of pilots have nothing to fear by such process: they have never in their careers come across somebody they don't click with or like.

      There's one more step. And that step you've just taken yourself by commenting above. If any pilot is "outed", we should join the chorus demanding resignation and retribution, flushed with our outrage...that person is NOT one of us!

      To be honest, Jim, your readiness to judge a colleague is troubling to me as a member of the flying public. Welcome to mob rule, mate.

  5. platy Guest

    @ Lucky

    "He seems to still not understand that the issue here isn’t context, it’s that this isn’t how an adult (and a father, no less) should be communicating. Or is there any context in which this kind of communication is appropriate?"

    I love your blog, but, buddy, IMHO you've way crossed the line on this issue.

    You don't seem to understand in that reporting events, or snippets thereof, that there is absolutely an issue...

    @ Lucky

    "He seems to still not understand that the issue here isn’t context, it’s that this isn’t how an adult (and a father, no less) should be communicating. Or is there any context in which this kind of communication is appropriate?"

    I love your blog, but, buddy, IMHO you've way crossed the line on this issue.

    You don't seem to understand in that reporting events, or snippets thereof, that there is absolutely an issue with context as well as spin. As a credible writer, you need to verify your position with representative evidence, not selectively derived and redacted and wantonly misinterpreted social media posts.

    Did you even attempt to reach out to this guy for counter comment or clarification, or is it all too easy to copy the work already published by other blogs, etc, without question, safe in the assumption that your triggered outrage will inflate a safety bubble of unquestionning confected outrage to bolster your ego and resolve?!

    The so-called sexist post can be interpreted in two ways - a dig at women or a dig at the airline - you wantonly choose the former.

    The so-called racist post was made in them context of supported union reps increasing diversity (not detracting from it) - but, hey, that context and reality check undermines the rampant narrative of your unbalanced and biased inquisition.

    If you have concrete example of this guy's professional actions disadvantaging the cause of merit-based employment of women, or other based on their race, orientation or religion, etc., in the workspace, then share it.

    "it’s that this isn’t how an adult (and a father, no less) should be communicating."

    I'm seeing a fair share of needlessly anti-gay and sexist commentary incited by your articles on this topic deliver their author high approval ratings - I'm not sure I'd regard encouraging (and failing to moderate or challenge) such to be the output of an "adult" (let's say professional and mature correspondent who wants to be taken seriously and adopt a self righteous position on social equity) - you, a father, no less yourself (since you needlessly made that personal quip, arguably it should served straight back at you).

    "Or is there any context in which this kind of communication is appropriate?"

    Apparently, yes, your own f--king blog!!! How ironic is that!

    Please consider that this has you have crossed the boundary to a free-for-all character assignation, which becomes a very very ugly case of internet bullying of an individual.

    Note that said individual is not a holder of pubic office and thereby subject to scrutiny as such, has a position that is not directly relevant to the majority of your readership, is involved in an issue not directly involved in the majority of your readership, and apparently has not been offered a right of reply by the likes of yourself, and other hysterical travel bloggers such as Gary Leff and Matthew Klint (the latter publishing non publicly available posts as part of his hatchet job) in the course of inciting public judgment and hatred based upon limited information taken entirely out of context.

    Crucially, (and echoing some commentary by @ Tim Dunn):

    If the guy is not suitable to hold executive office in the union, that is a matter for the union through their selective processes, and not the internet hounds baying for blood with virtually no background or information to base their opinion – yep, the uncritical mob you stirred up a treat.

    If the union makes an effective or ineffective choice - it's still their gig.

    If the guy is not competent to fly an aircraft after (was it 27 years of experience?) then that is a matter for his employer to resolve per their standard procedures to check competency.

    If the guy has transcended professional standards as a pilot then that is a matter for the employer to adjudicate against their prevailing code of conduct and HR processes.

    If the guy has transcended professional standards as a union a member then that is a matter for the union to resolve.

    If colleagues have professional issues (some of whom have been publicly vocal with no actual evidence, only hearsay) they have an appropriate forum to have them resolved - their employer's HR system.

    @ Tim Dunn has suggested that HR has indeed reviewed the offending posts - if, so, it ain't your job to presume you know better.

    Just remember, union reps are drawn from the membership - they are trained as pilots in this case - the executive is expected to champion the interests of their members in negotiation with highly skilled and trained and experienced corporate executives at the top of their game, including a CEO earning about USD10 million per annum.

    Now, I wouldn't mind a pugnacious person on my team taking on the likes of Kirkby playing hardball in n employment contract negotiation, rather than a shrinking violet scared to open their mouth for fear that they will be assassinated by an Internet mob vastly ignorant and largely devoid of relevant fact.

    I beg you to focus on your core strengths on this blog!!!

    Light that fifth candle and embrace and celebrate the love of that wonderful family...;)

  6. John W. Tucker, Captain (ret) Guest

    His behavior and total lack or professional is beyond overlooking and further discussion...except...he should be fired from UAL employment. What a disgusting individual!

    1. Richard Simon Guest

      You are absolutely right about being fired. His judgement for ever posting such comments is deeply flawed. More importantly the wide spread knowledge across the UAL pilot community of his comments against gays and women have now created an awkward, uncomfortable and potentially contentious environment in the cockpit should he be pared with anyone from one of the many communities he is hostile against. I have no problem with women or an LBGT as my...

      You are absolutely right about being fired. His judgement for ever posting such comments is deeply flawed. More importantly the wide spread knowledge across the UAL pilot community of his comments against gays and women have now created an awkward, uncomfortable and potentially contentious environment in the cockpit should he be pared with anyone from one of the many communities he is hostile against. I have no problem with women or an LBGT as my pilot, as long as this guy is not in there with them!

  7. Mark Guest

    Let's not forget we need pilots to be extremely self confident , sometimes (well actually often) to the point of obnoxiousness . I was responsible for operational planning for a fleet basically the more unpleasant they were the better they flew.

    They are there to fly the plane not to be your friend .

    1. Jackie O Guest

      You have obviously never heard of Crew Resource Management.Obnoxious pilots , in particularly Captains that are too “confident “ to be challenged in the cockpit ,have been responsible for some of the greatest tragedies in aviation history.

  8. cjenkins Guest

    "I can pay half the middle class to destroy the other half." attributed to Industrial Era robber baron Jay Gould

    It doesn't take much to destroy a union, does it? Just put a few dollars in the hands of key individuals. Are any of you ashamed of your own role in personal destruction? Or are you too happy with the paltry crumbs your corporate masters allowed you?

  9. Eskimo Guest

    The problem of unions in America is most of the time is blue collar trying to be a politician, aka not your profession. These people barely knows how to play politics.

    Most pilots are not trained on in an environment to lie, cheat, steal, bully, or racketeer.

    It's like little Greta with the ideology before her parents got the windfall.
    That's why actors or actresses thrive in politics and can even twist a royal...

    The problem of unions in America is most of the time is blue collar trying to be a politician, aka not your profession. These people barely knows how to play politics.

    Most pilots are not trained on in an environment to lie, cheat, steal, bully, or racketeer.

    It's like little Greta with the ideology before her parents got the windfall.
    That's why actors or actresses thrive in politics and can even twist a royal family up side down.
    That's why a comedian puppet can convince innocents to die(fight) for his personal (national freedom) cause, but Elon Musk can't convince liberals to run Twitter.
    That's why Jimmy Hoffa was a strong union leader but probably never drove trucks.

    ALPA should hire a professional politician or actors not wannabe pilots.

    1. Eskimo Guest

      Idiots will always get brainwashed.

  10. Rudy Guest

    Remember that everybody has a glass roof.. Looking deep enough, anyone has skeletons in their closets.
    But I still don’t see the point that this website has anything to do with United’s union election.
    Anyone nowadays weaponize their reach, if they have any, to expose and try to force their opinions which everybody should be keeping for themselves

    1. TravelinWilly Diamond

      “…opinions which everybody should be keeping for themselves.”

      Hi Rudy!

      This is a comment section on a blog, where people, you know, COMMENT and express, you know, OPINIONS, you know?

      Happy to have explained it for you. :)

      Have a nice day!

  11. Vincent Guest

    United HR should take a very close look at this individual from a corporate/employee standpoint with such reprehensible words and comments. I also question his mental fitness with those comments. Not a pilot I’d want to have flying my aircraft.

    1. Tim Dunn Diamond

      reportedly, UA HR has looked at him because of the comments that were made online and found there was nothing worthy of internal disciplinary action.
      Not's not to say that more people might come forward but there isn't a shred of evidence - at least what has been publicly stated and this case has drawn an enormous amount of public attention - that he in any way failed to do his job as a...

      reportedly, UA HR has looked at him because of the comments that were made online and found there was nothing worthy of internal disciplinary action.
      Not's not to say that more people might come forward but there isn't a shred of evidence - at least what has been publicly stated and this case has drawn an enormous amount of public attention - that he in any way failed to do his job as a pilot professionally.

      YOU are the problem if you think that people should lose their job because you don't like what they believe.

      United has an HR department. Let it do its job just as their ALPA MEC was able to help this guy figure out he wasn't a good fit as a pilot union leader.

    2. Vince Guest

      I am the problem? Comical. As an fyi my wife is a labor attorney for a Fortune 500 corporation and said what’s already been shown could easily be a terminable offense. I’d be personally embarrassed to be professionally associated with him . Maybe you have lower standards.

    3. Tim Dunn Diamond

      No, my standards are not lower.
      I am simply comfortable letting United's HR to deal w/ any issues they or their employees have had w/ this guy. And if he really has been able to separate his personal comments and beliefs from the way he pilots aircraft, then accept that plenty of people can segregate their lives.
      And let the pilot union deal w/ the mechanisms that allowed this guy to get to...

      No, my standards are not lower.
      I am simply comfortable letting United's HR to deal w/ any issues they or their employees have had w/ this guy. And if he really has been able to separate his personal comments and beliefs from the way he pilots aircraft, then accept that plenty of people can segregate their lives.
      And let the pilot union deal w/ the mechanisms that allowed this guy to get to the chairman position.
      And then recognize that frontline UAL pilots and ultimately all United employees pay the price for the dysfunctionality of UAL ALPA.

      Live with the reality that the internet allows you to know a whole lot of things that do not directly impact. Trying to gin up a reason to think this affects you is hypocrisy at its finest.

      Lots of people would do well to learn to re-establish the lines between their own lives and the rest of the world which the internet has blurred.

    4. Vince Guest

      It does affect me because when I spend $10k to $15k booking 1st class travel my first thought is I don’t want a sophomoric juvenile flying as the Captain let alone any position. There is zero defense for his divisive patently disgusting rhetoric and it’s frankly appalling. To keep defending this guy is burying your head deep in the sand and not a blurring from the internet. The dysfunctional union that allowed this pathetic choice...

      It does affect me because when I spend $10k to $15k booking 1st class travel my first thought is I don’t want a sophomoric juvenile flying as the Captain let alone any position. There is zero defense for his divisive patently disgusting rhetoric and it’s frankly appalling. To keep defending this guy is burying your head deep in the sand and not a blurring from the internet. The dysfunctional union that allowed this pathetic choice to be elected and not foresee his bloviating insulting and disgusting diatribes would not see the light of day is incredulous and reaches a level of union incompetence that’s breathtaking. You’re a fool if you believe otherwise. United is a wonderful airline and they do not need this stain of an employee.

    5. Tim Dunn Diamond

      Nowhere have I ever defended what he said or did.

      I have said that you have no business whatsoever dictating what a company should do its own employees.

      If you don't like it, write a letter to them and then have the guts to either walk away if you don't get your way or realize, wait, wait, you are just a customer.

    6. Vince Guest

      “Just a customer”. The ….wait wait wait ignorance of that comment says it all. You seem very triggered by all of this and it’s comical but please do go on. As far as having the guts to “walk away” I’m booking two FC round trips to Tokyo next month and unfortunately will look elsewhere. That’s about 42,000 reasons I guess to have the guts to walk away. Btw….do you know who pays your salary slick?

    7. Hokieboy Guest

      @Vince

      And yet yes you are JUST a customer….a very triggered customer. And Please walk away!

    8. Tim Dunn Diamond

      As a customer, you purchase the goods and services of the company - or you do not.
      You do not get to choose how it is managed.
      If you don't like the way a company operates. You do have the power to withhold your money from the company for any reason you choose and w/o explanation.

    9. platy Guest

      @ Vince

      If you’re paying to fly in a premium cabin (business or first) between the USA and Japan, please may I respectfully recommend that both JAL and ANA offer excellent first-class products, which you may well find superior in quality to your current (apparently now former) supplier of United Airlines.

      Just to temper your expectations, I’m not sure whether the Salon 2007 champagne is back in JAL first class or not.

      Anyway, you...

      @ Vince

      If you’re paying to fly in a premium cabin (business or first) between the USA and Japan, please may I respectfully recommend that both JAL and ANA offer excellent first-class products, which you may well find superior in quality to your current (apparently now former) supplier of United Airlines.

      Just to temper your expectations, I’m not sure whether the Salon 2007 champagne is back in JAL first class or not.

      Anyway, you can exercise your choice as a customer and feel all warm and fuzzy about how you have translated your confected outrage at one UA pilot into affirmative action against the other 14,000 pilots on the UA payroll. Cool moves, man!

      Please may I recommend that you communicate your concerns about Capt. Swindell’s mental fitness to pilot an aircraft to the HR department at United Airlines?

      No doubt, your assessment is professionally informed and well considered and you have some evidence which UA’s HR department has overlooked or incorrectly analysed or didn’t come to light in the mandated repeated checks and training performed by the airline to ensure medical fitness and professional competency.

      Perhaps your wife can help you craft the letter – her acumen as a labour attorney for a Fortune 500 corporation may help – no doubt they are needy of her professional guidance.

      In the meantime, please do tell us the name of the company that you work for – taking inspiration from your posts, I question your own mental fitness to do whatever it is that you do (despite having no knowledge of such) based solely on your social media output - then we can forward copies of your commentary herein for due professional consideration by the HR department – they may appreciate the evidence in assessing your fitness for work.

  12. Tim Dunn Diamond

    I truly wish the people that are advocating that this pilot should lose his license and job could provide a single shred of evidence that his ability to pilot an aircraft is affected by his personal views which he openly expressed.
    Unless you have access to United's HR records, you can't. And if there is a case for them to fire him for violating THEIR, not your, HR standards, they would have done it...

    I truly wish the people that are advocating that this pilot should lose his license and job could provide a single shred of evidence that his ability to pilot an aircraft is affected by his personal views which he openly expressed.
    Unless you have access to United's HR records, you can't. And if there is a case for them to fire him for violating THEIR, not your, HR standards, they would have done it - or would be looking at.
    Turning one ideologically warped viewpoint into a weapon to harm people is as dangerous as those that advocate for taking people's jobs away because you don't agree with him.
    As hard as it is for some short-sighted people to grasp, people who live by the sword often die by it - and that includes having someone else do the same thing to you that you advocate doing to him.

    1. Donna Diamond

      Tim, Would you agree that character matters? These pilots don’t fly alone. As retired female Army Colonel, I often faced the same crap this guy posted about us all being affirmative action appointments, token and incompetent. This type of attitude is poison in an Army unit where teamwork and morale matter in a big way. I can’t imagine it’s any different on the flight deck. There are, after all, females, persons of color and members...

      Tim, Would you agree that character matters? These pilots don’t fly alone. As retired female Army Colonel, I often faced the same crap this guy posted about us all being affirmative action appointments, token and incompetent. This type of attitude is poison in an Army unit where teamwork and morale matter in a big way. I can’t imagine it’s any different on the flight deck. There are, after all, females, persons of color and members of the LGBT community piloting aircraft for UA. It was made worse by issuing a non-apology apology to those.

    2. Tim Dunn Diamond

      Donna,
      I have never excused what this guy did.
      I have repeatedly said that it is United's responsibility to discipline their own employees if there is evidence that he violated their requirements onboard the aircraft.
      I have repeatedly said that it is ALPA's responsibliity to deal w/ the processes that allowed this guy to get in the position he was in - even for a very short period of time.
      I...

      Donna,
      I have never excused what this guy did.
      I have repeatedly said that it is United's responsibility to discipline their own employees if there is evidence that he violated their requirements onboard the aircraft.
      I have repeatedly said that it is ALPA's responsibliity to deal w/ the processes that allowed this guy to get in the position he was in - even for a very short period of time.
      I have also repeatedly said that line United pilots pay the price for yet another chapter of the dysfuncionality among UAL ALPA leadership. They didn't vote for this guy directly - it was a case of representative democracy.

      And, finally, I said that the internet has created a mindset that everyone that hears of or sees something which they find offensive - regardless of whether they were personally impacted - believes they need to call for someone's head.

      If you were negatively impacted by sexist or racist behavior which was not considered acceptable by the organization in which you participated as a customer or employee or in any other capacity, then take action.
      But too many people think that they should be the jury, judge and executioner about stuff which simply does not affect them personally.

      Playing on the internet exposes a person to all kinds of stuff that happens in life. People need to learn to re-establish appropriate barriers between their lives and what happens outside of their own personal lives.

    3. Tim Dunn Diamond

      and, Donna,
      thank you for your service, presumably to the USA. I am grateful.

    4. Donna Diamond

      Tim, I never said he should lose his license or his job. Resigning as head of a labor group was the correct action.

      Even in command in the Army, one weighs the situation and uses discipline to prevent future violations if possible. And, it was USA.

    5. Tim Dunn Diamond

      I agree that he was not the right person for a leadership role in the union.
      A company does not have the right to discipline union leaders for union activities.
      If an employee violated company policies, then they could terminate him but ask yourself if the company would be doing the best thing for everyone if they take action against someone that HALF of the MEC elected.
      Given how tenuous pilot relations...

      I agree that he was not the right person for a leadership role in the union.
      A company does not have the right to discipline union leaders for union activities.
      If an employee violated company policies, then they could terminate him but ask yourself if the company would be doing the best thing for everyone if they take action against someone that HALF of the MEC elected.
      Given how tenuous pilot relations are at United right now because of the failed contract vote, I submit that United would be skating on incredibly thin ice to discipline this guy right now.
      Kirby needs a contract - not yet another distraction and union failure that keeps him from achieving what he needs while making a whole bunch of his pilots mad.

      Sometimes the best discipline is recognizing that the guy screwed up his own life and reputation.

      Many thanks for your service to our country. All the best this season and always, Donna!

    6. SMH Guest

      What he wrote on a “private forum” is more than enough evidence. There are people who got terminated for less than that because what they wrote in a private group chat was deemed offensive. I don’t see why there should be an exception for the likes of this man.

    7. Tim Dunn Diamond

      why can't you just leave it UA HR to do what they choose to do?

      And why can't you realize that in the midst of United's very messy pilot situation that canning him might only make a currently very bad situation even worse?

      Not everyone that should be arrested get caught and not all of the people that are even convicted of a crime do time.

      Get past the idea that it is your (collective)...

      why can't you just leave it UA HR to do what they choose to do?

      And why can't you realize that in the midst of United's very messy pilot situation that canning him might only make a currently very bad situation even worse?

      Not everyone that should be arrested get caught and not all of the people that are even convicted of a crime do time.

      Get past the idea that it is your (collective) right or requirement to play judge, jury and executioner just because you read something on the internet.

    8. Donna Diamond

      @Tim - Same to you, enjoy your holidays!

  13. JS Guest

    This guy just needs to retire and move on with his life in retirement.

  14. SEASFO Guest

    Glad to see someone so irresponsible and immature is not heading the union, but I also question whether someone who displays such a victim mentality and questionable judgement should continue to be employed as a pilot. If this is how he "apologizes" for being cavalier enough to behave like this without even hiding his name on a forum, how can we expect him to behave in the cockpit? Someone with this temperament does not lend themselves well to effective CRM.

    1. Emily Guest

      Hmm…. More worrying that someone of this character actually made it to that position.

  15. Jim Guest

    "While many of these things have been taken completely out of context..."
    This is always the excuse.

  16. Weed them out Guest

    The fact that he wrote a full statement on a forum that he is now half a&% apologizing for and still has a job speaks volumes. Had it been any other work group they surely would’ve been fired!
    United if you know what we know about this man, he should not be representing your company.

  17. TravelinWilly Diamond

    As UAL First Officer said on the original post: “We are handling it internally and am confident he will not have the title much longer. We don’t understand either how this person was not vetted.”

    Props for calling it.

    Glad this guy is out - he’s exhibited too much poor judgment to be trusted to suddenly grow good judgment.

  18. Windspeed1k Guest

    “He seems to still not understand that the issue here isn’t context, it’s that this isn’t how an adult (and a father, no less) should be communicating.”

    If a 60 year old cannot control their typing fingers and comments, I’d question their ability to fly? How would he react if is FO tried to correct him from making a mistake while flying? If you can’t control you comments in an online forums, can you trust...

    “He seems to still not understand that the issue here isn’t context, it’s that this isn’t how an adult (and a father, no less) should be communicating.”

    If a 60 year old cannot control their typing fingers and comments, I’d question their ability to fly? How would he react if is FO tried to correct him from making a mistake while flying? If you can’t control you comments in an online forums, can you trust him with 200+ souls????

    The FAA should ground him for a psychological examination.

  19. Tim Dunn Diamond

    Getting a new contract for United pilots just got pushed into the second half of 2023 at the earliest.
    The frustration among United employees will be palpable this coming summer.
    United's grandiose plans for expansion are looking riskier and riskier.

    1. CallScheduling Guest

      Yeah, well, making sure a person with such views and poor judgement isn't representing a 15,000 member pilot work group is a little more important. Imagine someone with that kind of attitude at a negotiating table- I'm of the opinion nothing would get done anyway with such a hot head. Also, this doesn't change United's hiring strategy, which is what is needed for expansion.

    2. Tim Dunn Diamond

      I don't disagree that he has not shown the leadership characteristics that are needed to represent a group of 15k employees.
      As for his ability to negotiate with the company, I don't know - but the MEC Chair is usually not part of the negotiating committee anyway.
      As for UA's pilot hiring strategy, that is dependent on UA being seen as a competitive alternative to other airlines - which is heavily dependent on...

      I don't disagree that he has not shown the leadership characteristics that are needed to represent a group of 15k employees.
      As for his ability to negotiate with the company, I don't know - but the MEC Chair is usually not part of the negotiating committee anyway.
      As for UA's pilot hiring strategy, that is dependent on UA being seen as a competitive alternative to other airlines - which is heavily dependent on what they pay their people. Given that this move just further focuses on the internal chaos at UAL ALPA instead of negotiating a new contract, UAL's competitiveness as a pilot destination is harmed in light of DAL's AIP which is far richer than what UAL pilots rejected, the and the proposed pay raises by AAL. Even AS got a contract which makes their pilots higher paid than UA pilots on the 737 which the two have in common; B6 and NK have AIPs.
      Internal politics hurt the negotiation process and UA pilots ability to get pay raises on top of UA's ability to grow.

    3. Stuart Guest

      @Tim Dunn No, the UA pilots union hurt the negotiation process by not properly vetting and securing a responsible adult in the process of filling this post. It's on them and their complete ineptness.

    4. Dan777 Guest

      Stuart, that’s exactly what Tim meant in his last sentence “internal (union) politics hurt the negotiating process”…..you are disagreeing JUST to disagree when in fact your comment is echoing what he closed with.

  20. Endre Guest

    The cancel-culture mob strikes again

    1. LEGALIZE ALL DRUGS Guest

      It’s not a cancel culture mob, it’s a 60 year old man in a position of leadership should not be posting juvenile insults on the internet mob.

      If your 60 year old boss is cyber-indistinguishable from a 12 year old troll in the school’s computer lab, you have a problem and it’s not cancel culture.

    2. Ben L. Diamond

      Complaining about "cancel culture" = surefire sign of a shallow thinker

    3. Julie Guest

      Yawn --- such a pathetic attempt to pivot from the matter at hand.

  21. NSS Guest

    So yesterday he made sure we knew the comments were posted on a private forum. Today he says they were taken out of context.

    Pro tip: When you pretend to apologize for something at this level, make it sound real.

    Also, if I did stuff like this at my company, I'd be in violation of the code of conduct and I'd be fired. Pretty sure he'll still be flying.

    1. LEGALIZE ALL DRUGS Guest

      He’ll be flying because we have a pilot shortage and he is presumably qualified to get us safely from one airport to the next. Boeing jets don’t exactly crack up and roll over laughing at anus jokes.

  22. LEGALIZE ALL DRUGS Guest

    This guy resigns. SBF extradited. Ellison and Wang pled guilty. Trump taxes revealed. More is right with the world. Now I just need my future wife to text me back. (Babe, if you’re reading this, I’ll take you to the Maldives for our honeymoon.)

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LEGALIZE ALL DRUGS Guest

It’s not a cancel culture mob, it’s a 60 year old man in a position of leadership should not be posting juvenile insults on the internet mob. If your 60 year old boss is cyber-indistinguishable from a 12 year old troll in the school’s computer lab, you have a problem and it’s not cancel culture.

10
TravelinWilly Diamond

As UAL First Officer said on the original post: “We are handling it internally and am confident he will not have the title much longer. We don’t understand either how this person was not vetted.” Props for calling it. Glad this guy is out - he’s exhibited too much poor judgment to be trusted to suddenly grow good judgment.

7
TravelinWilly Diamond

You seem insane.

5
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