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The MCAS software was apparently used earlier on an (unidentified) military tanker -possibly the KC-10 USAF tanker or the KC-135.  

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7 hours ago, Don Mansfield said:

Watched this over the weekend. Thanks for the recommendation.

The one problem I have with the criticism of Boeing and the FAA is that they are being judged on the result of their decision to not ground the 737 MAX. At the time of the decision, it may have been reasonable to believe that the risk of catastrophe was very low. Perhaps the probability of another crash within the time it would take to fix the problem was the same as a non-737 MAX crash. Yes, a second crash happened, but was it reasonable to believe that a second crash would happen based on the data available at the time?

Glad you watched it! 😀 Though you must have taken a break at some key parts of the documentary because there is plenty of information in the documentary to show that there were fair process criticisms and not just results focused Monday morning quarterbacking. For instance, the FAA analysis after the first crash that estimated the 737 MAX would have 15 fatal crashes over it's life span or Boeing's own communications, both to the FAA which was outright deception ("jedi mind trick") and internally which showed that financials and absolutely no simulator training were the clear priorities over safety. There was enough information internally that leaders of Boeing were aware of that indicated a fair chance the aircraft might be responsible (single point of failure sensor, new software, no simulator training with only 10 seconds to respond...)

All that aside, what confirms in my mind that Boeing had a process problem (and not just a results issue) is that at no point, even after the second crash, did Boeing willingly ground their own airplanes. Instead, it still took governments around the world to stop the 737 MAX from flying until it was fixed/recertified. I have to believe that someone in the senior leadership at Boeing attended a top business school which routinely use the famous Tylenol recall case study; however, whoever it was must have slept through that lesson...Companies cannot purchase credibility, it has to be earned - and when it is lost, it can be difficult (if not impossible) to earn it back. More broadly, situations like this one only further erode trust in our society, it's tragic.

P.S. For anyone interested in another example see "Dopesick" (the series on Hulu - Michael Keaton puts on an excellent performance - and the book the show is based on) along with "Empire of Pain" which highlight a similar tragic tale about the opioid epidemic. In this case the regulators were both deceived and coopted (along with many doctors and patients). It helped me understand some of the vaccine hesitancy throughout the country, which is higher in communities that were/are impacted by the opioid epidemic.

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12 hours ago, bob7947 said:

This is from NPR.  It is from the author of Flying Blind and is about 36 minutes.

'Flying Blind' author says Boeing put profit ahead of safety.

Thanks, Bob. I can understand the Boeing predicament associated with the economics of the Seattle based union manufacturing workforce. I’m sure that their quality was unbeatable but must be very expensive. 


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On 6/27/2022 at 10:12 AM, Vern Edwards said:

And just think: Boeing filed a protest to win that contract.

And someone went to jail as well.   Let's not forget how this whole saga started.

How a mature commercial product married to a mature, proven technology/process (mid air refueling) could get so FUBAR'd is mind-boggling. The notion that Airbus was going to win such a large US military contract was absurd from the start and only got more absurd with every passing day. And now this.

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Quote: “Already two years behind schedule, Boeing has lost $1.1 billion during the complicated process of converting a pair of passenger 747 airliners into a high-tech flying White House.” 
The contract’s original price was for about $ 3.8-4 Billion…

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