Privatizing Air Traffic Control Won't Solve All the Problems With Air Travel, But It's a Start

If you think about the businesses you really hate, you'll notice that many of them have something in common: They are in industries with a big federal footprint -- banks, cable companies, health-insurance providers, and, bane of my personal existence, airlines.Air travel in the U.S. is terrible, both in absolute terms and relative to air travel in other parts of the world. President Donald Trump has proposed trying to fix one of its defects, air-traffic control, by privatizing the activity and entrusting it to a new nonprofit corporation. The model here isn't some hypercapitalist city-state such as Singapore, but our nice neighbor to the north, Canada, which keeps out-scoring the U.S. on the Heritage Foundation's economic-liberty rankings in spite of its commie health-care system. Canada's air-traffic control is managed by a truly private corporation, Nav Canada, which receives no government funding but instead operates on fees charged to airlines and other flight operators and raises capital in the private markets the same as any other business. It seems to work pretty well, and Nav Canada recently -- get this -- lowered its fees. The Trump administration, taking up legislation authored by Rep. Bill Schuster (R., Pa.), wants to emulate that model.  Continue reading...

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