Bizav Industry Rebuts Wall Street Journal Article

Business Jet Traveler » August 2011
Monday, August 1, 2011 - 6:00am

The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) has responded to a Wall Street Journal article that criticized corporate jet use. In a letter to the editor that the Journal published June 23, NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen wrote, "Your front-page story detailing the movements of 'general aviation' airplanes by businesses unfortunately neglected to mention that the personal use of a company's airplane typically accounts for only a tiny fraction of the aircraft's flights."

NBAA members and other companies in the business aviation community sent letters to the Journal echoing Bolen's comments. For example, Gary Dempsey, president of Teterboro, N.J.-based Jet Aviation Holdings USA, wrote in a June 23 letter, "The executive's life today requires round-the-clock communications with all 24 time zones. The only time key executives are out of touch is when they fly commercially, from the time they enter the boarding line until they deplane hours later. With the pace of business today, key executives cannot afford to be incommunicado for that length of time. And that dictates the use of business jets."

Another response came from Wilson S. Leach, owner and managing director of AIN Publications, which publishes BJT, Aviation International News and other aviation trade magazines. "Contrary to the portrayal in your article," wrote Leach, "business aircraft are used mainly for legitimate business transportation. In addition to providing security, time savings and efficiency to businesspeople, private individuals and government leaders, including President Obama, business aviation offers an invaluable benefit to the companies, institutions and other entities these people represent."

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““When I made the film The Invention of Lying, they gave me a private jet for getting back and forth between New York and London. I thought, ‘I will never use it’ but I ended up using it every weekend. You turn up, right, and the airport is completely empty. I mean, there’s just someone at the desk and then the pilot, who says, ‘Are you ready to go?’ and you say, ‘Don’t you want to see my passport?’ and he goes, ‘Oh yeah, I suppose I’d better.’” ”

-—actor and comedian Ricky Gervais