Wednesday, September 10, 2008

American Airlines condemns the Bolivian government

I got stuck in Miami. I seem to be the representative barometer for political tensions in Bolivia. When I travel, somebody will take over an airport. (or forget to buy jet fuel, but that's another story).

So I wasn't that surprised my flight to Bolivia was canceled due to civil unrest - we'll use the neutral term rather than say because "armed protesters took over the Bolivian airport." But I was a little surprised that the airline took an overtly political position on it.

Three separate employees told me (and I heard another tell another customer) that it was the fault of the Bolivian government. Now four people in three separate locations on two different shifts did not make that up on their own. Somebody told them to say "It's the government's fault."

Now, I wish I could remember what they said when the cruceƱos took over the airport, installed their own manager and the manager promptly tried to charge American Airlines an extra $2,000 airport fee in cash that morning (American, properly, pays through bank transfers), but they can't possibly prefer that kind of treatment to Evo's treatment.

And I was pretty damned annoyed that they would insult my political perspectives out of the gate as a company policy.