Is our taste (make that former taste given the state of the economy) for cheap flights flying our species into extinction? Or is the demonisation of air travel just another shallow exercise in do-gooder social engineering by those who think this will save them from the dreaded middle seat on full flights?

An interesting discussion began some time back on Andrew Bartlett’s blog about some of the underlying claims and counter claims.

I’ve always been intrigued by the impulse to restrict innovations that add to social mobility and dilute privilege.

This impulse reached new extremes in the UK media in the past year and more, with The Daily Telegraph giving columns to frightened upper class Anglo-Saxons taking the position that low cost airlines were helping undermine British society by allowing Muslim hordes to freely commute between England and their home lands and thus not properly assimilate.

But then if you’ve stood under one of those surveillance poles in outer London, the ones with cameras and loud speakers, and listened to what sounds like a seriously repressed middle aged headmistress lecturing those within view about being untidy or disorderly or showing tendencies of possibly breaching decorum, you wouldn’t be surprised by the paranoia about air travel, or visibly different sections of society.

Britain has gone bonkers of late. Self important, frustrated, overrun by lager louts and uppity minorities getting above their station, increasingly looking like an island off to one side of Europe, and so forth.

But I digress. You might find Bartlett’s blog a good place to pick a fight, er, have a discussion, or even let the brawling spill over into here.

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