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Fri, Dec 31, 2004

2004 Year In Review: Top Ten Quotes of the Day

They Said It, We Quoted It

By ANN Correspondent Rose Dorcey

Aviation in all its forms saw many changes, achievements, and let's admit it, frustrations throughout the year. While we glimpsed the fascinating future of aviation and space travel in the beginning of our second century of flight, we saw many challenges and disappointments as well. Airlines are struggling, Mother Nature turned on Florida residents, and our friends at the TSA provided trials to travelers.

There are crystal-clear bright spots -- Burt Rutan and his team at Scaled Composites are accomplishing awe-inspiring feats for the development of commercial space travel. Rutan's KISS method is a lesson other administrations can learn by. Advancements in space exploration are providing answers to the mysteries of the final frontier. Bills are underway to provide relief from TFR legislation that adversely affects airports and the businesses based there.

The top ten quotes of the day represent the news events and headlines regarding aviation and space from throughout 2004. In no particular order, here then, is the highly anticipated, top ten quotes of the day gathered from your daily aviation news source... Aero-News Network.



"She was unaware of a great amount of hijacking threat information from her own intelligence unit, which, in turn, was not deeply involved in the agency's policy making process."

Source: The 9/11 Commission's final report, indicating former FAA Administrator Jane Garvey was anything but in the loop about possible hijacking threats prior to the terror attacks on New York and Washington.

FMI: www.faa.gov

"We make the point that these costs are related to the removal of airport infrastructure and environmental remediation. It's not in the public interest to leave behind an abandoned airport.... We used the revenue carefully. It was not used for redevelopment or urban renewal."

Source: Chicago Law Department spokeswoman Jenny Hoyle, as quoted in the Chicago Sun-Times, after her bosses filed a 43-page brief with the FAA admitting Chicago used FAA airport funds to destroy Meigs Field. Chicago faces a $33,000 fine for not giving the FAA 30-days notice before the midnight destruction of the airport on Northerly Island. But, if found to have misappropriated FAA funds, the city could be liable for up to $4.5 million in fines.

FMI: www.faa.gov

"We won't see the whole puzzle, only pieces, but what we are seeing is dramatic. The images are mind-boggling, just mind-boggling. I've been working on this mission for 14 years and I shouldn't be surprised, but it is remarkable how startling it is to see these images for the first time."

Source:  Dr. Carolyn Porco, Cassini imaging team leader, Space Science Institute, Boulder (CO), upon seeing some of the first startling images of Saturn. Cassini threaded it's way between those rings and established a safe orbit around the gas giant, where it will remain for the next four years, studying both Saturn and its moons.

FMI: www.saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/home/index.cfm

"I have my doubts the September/October time frame will be met. We will determine that next week."

Source:  NASA Administrator Sean O'Keefe, who says the shuttle program's return to flight may be delayed will into 2005. The space agency faces problems meeting recommendations from the Columbia Accident Investigation Board -- recommendations O'Keefe has personally promised to put into practice before the shuttle flies again.

FMI: www.nasa.gov/news/highlights/returntoflight.html

"EAA has always maintained that the TFR legislation was an ill-considered policy based on the economic dominance of professional sports leagues rather than security. That's why EAA and other aviation organizations stepped in to assist the Cleveland air show organizers in any way possible. What happened there showed how the inflexibility of this legislation hurt a long-standing air show tradition in that city, while not enhancing security one bit."

Source:  Doug Macnair, EAA's vice president of government relations, backing a federal bill that would grant waivers to air shows in restricted airspace or near major sporting events. Case in point: The Cleveland National Air Show, which, because of a ballgame at Jacobs Field, had to curtail the first night of its Labor Day weekend program.

FMI: www.eaa.org

"Burt (Rutan) tends to couch everything in terms of fun. After Mike's flight, Burt said, 'Okay, that's enough fun.' It wasn't as much fun as Mike's, but we went a little higher, and it was a joy."

Source:  SpaceShipOne pilot Brian Binnie, after returning from the flight that won Burt Rutan and company the coveted X Prize and the $10 million that went with it. While his predecessor in the cockpit, Mike Melvill, seemed happy to enjoy the 29 or so rolls the spacecraft rather mysteriously performed during the boost phase a week ago. Binnie was just happy to climb all the way to the top.

FMI - www.scaled.com

"GA aircraft are a lousy terrorist weapon. Maybe that's why no one has yet used a small aircraft for a terrorist attack anywhere in the world."

Source:  AOPA President Phil Boyer, debunking the errant nonsense broadcast by CBS in an anti-GA story that asserted that GA airports were a terrorist target of opportunity.

FMI: www.aopa.org

"She said if anyone was going to touch her, she was going to touch them. [She was] just an average middle-aged person who got upset."

Source:  Lt. Tod Dahle of the Fargo (ND) airport police department, commenting on the actions of an unidentified woman who smacked a TSA agent with her boarding pass when he attempted to frisk her prior to allowing her to board a flight.

FMI: www.tsa.gov

"We will see more cuts across the board, all workers, in the months ahead. Were it not for Exxon getting most of our money this year, we would have been able to make some progress."

Source:  American Airlines CEO Gerald Arpy in a statement on the pending layoff of a thousand workers - including 450 pilots. Arpy says American will pay $500 million more for fuel in the fourth quarter of this year than it did during the same time last year.

FMI: www.aa.com

"During Charley, more than 700 of these transmitters were activated on boats and planes that were damaged by the storm. It was important to locate and deactivate these transmitters so emergency officials could differentiate between genuine distress signals."

Source:  CAP Southeast Region Commander Col. Matt Sharkey, commenting on one task that the CAP will undertake after Hurricane Frances passes through Florida - finding and deactivating the hundreds of ELT's that are likely to go off during the storm, so organizations like the Coast Guard can concentrate on true emergencies.

FMI: www.cap.gov

Okay -- so here's number 11. We just had to include this one. In one sentence, ANN Editor-in-Chief Jim Campbell succinctly captures what people around the world feel about the accomplishments of Burt Rutan and his crew at Scaled Composites.


"As a close observer to Scaled Composites' amazing and historic victory in the quest to make space accessible to the common man, I simply have to admit that I am in awe of these people; of their professionalism, camaraderie and spirit."

Source:  ANN Publisher Jim Campbell, after reflecting on Scaled Composites' achievement in sending SpaceShipOne to an altitude of more than 328,000 feet.

FMI: www.scaled.com


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