Contract Thuggery

By violently removing a paying passenger from one of its planes, United Airlines has exposed a danger that every member of the flying public should be aware of and that is Public Private Partnerships (PPP.) Anytime, your taxes pay for a facility like an airport or a sports stadium where a private business is going to be operation out of — it is a PPP.

O’Hare International Airport in Chicago, Illinois, is such a facility. Aside from subjecting an individual to physical assault, kidnapping and the blatant disregard for his civil liberties, both the carrier and the city, which operates the facility, engaged in ‘contract thuggery.’

Let’s take the same situation, but move it to a different venue, say a new grocery store, built using federal, state and local taxes. You go in a get the last loaf of bread on the shelf ahead of closing and pay for it.

You walk towards the exit only to be stopped by an employee who tells you that you cannot have the loaf because another employee needs it. Instead of surrendering the loaf, you make a fuss and the police are called.

Once they’re are on scene, they demand you hand it over — even though you paid for it — and when you don’t, you get hauled off to jail. If you are like me, you know this is wrong.

It’s unlawful for the City of Chicago to enforce United Airlines’ contract. Furthermore, the passenger who was forcibly removed from the plane, lost his right to due process since he held a valid contract for services being rendered between himself and the carrier.

This is where the danger comes in for anyone who uses such a facility: while this incident occurred in Illinois, by using City of Chicago employees to do its dirty work, United has established an example that gives other carriers and other governmental entities permission to uphold contract law through force for private corporations. This exposes PPP’s for what they are – a Soviet-style business plan.

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