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Qantas should end special pleading says former media executive

Writing as a friend, former Qantas communications head David Epstein, has given a fierce perspective on the messaging mistakes made by embattled Qantas group CEO Alan Joyce.

Writing as a friend, former Qantas communications head David Epstein, has given a fierce perspective on the messaging mistakes made by embattled Qantas group CEO Alan Joyce.

The article, which appears in the Financial Review, and without paywall in the Sydney Morning Herald, is recommended reading before Joyce addresses a Sydney business luncheon today and later meets with its key unions.

Here is a taste.

Anyone who believes Qantas is the victim of a concerted conspiracy of three foreign governments should be ready for a call from someone selling the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Singapore and the Emirate states are in intense competition to be global aviation hubs, while Wellington was selling down Air New Zealand shares on the day Qantas launched its latest political crusade. All encourage Qantas traffic or investment.

Qantas is not essential to the integrity of the national financial system and the 1989 pilots’ strike showed the nation wouldn’t grind to a halt if a major airline restructures. Nor is it true Qantas has unique “national carrier” obligations to provide airlift capacity in times of need. Qantas has made great contributions in the past, but its status is no different to that of Virgin Australia.

And later:

Governments don’t like special interest monstering at the best of times, but it’s even worse when they can’t be sure of what you’re really asking for other than to hamstring competitors by any means fair or foul.

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7 comments

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7 thoughts on “Qantas should end special pleading says former media executive

  1. whiskeyalphalimalimadashecho

    ‘I’m sorry Mr Epstein, it appears you are no longer a member’, says the Concierge of the Chairman’s Club.

    David stammers, struggling to comprehend ‘b-b-b-b-but….I’m a guest of Tony Webber?’

  2. Ken Borough

    What kind of ‘friend’ is it who writes a critical message via the mainstream media?

  3. comet

    Everything Alan Joyce touches is a disaster.

    The common thread is ineptness, and not understanding the business he is in. Whether it be RedQ or Jetstar Hong Kong or splitting the airline and organising operating certificates. The list just goes on and on.

    Now he has put his foot in it again, this time with his messages to the government. The effects are clearly seen, as the government went from a warm reception to a cold reception, and in the end, Hockey’s response to Joyce could be described as hostile.

    Clifford says to Joyce:
    “This is another fine mess you’ve got us into, Ally.”

  4. Ben Sandilands

    Ken,

    What sort of a fool puts his correspondence with the Minister on page one of the press before the Minister has opened the envelope?

  5. Boston the Dog

    If any readers are thinking of writing “The Idiots Guide to Airline Management”, now is the time to start the draft manuscript.

  6. Ken Borough

    Ben

    Fear of defamation precludes an honest response!! OK?

  7. comet

    See the farcical stoush going on between Joyce and Hockey.

    Last week Joyce issued a statement that said carbon pricing was not a big issue for Qantas.

    Hockey was outraged, and said that’s no way to go about getting a debt guarantee (hours before the government announced there’d be no debt guarantee).

    This afternoon, Joyce has done an about face, and issued another statement to say that carbon pricing is a significant issue for Qantas.

    Utter fiasco. Clowns are in charge at Qantas.