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2019-05-15 10:25 by Karl Denninger
in Company Specific , 136 references Ignore this thread
Grand Jury Eh?
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It's about damned time.

A report broke Friday that the unions representing American, United and Southwest pilots have all been hit with subpoenas from the criminal division of the US Department of Justice, requiring them to turn over 737 Max-related documents to a federal grand jury, according to Bloomberg. 

The unions confirmed for me Saturday that they'd been served. 


There are several reasons for a criminal investigation here.  First and foremost is what appears to be a deliberate attempt to mislead the FAA in that during flight testing the limit of authority for MCAS was quadrupled yet the FAA was not notified of this, nor was the fault analysis re-run and re-submitted despite testing disclosing that the original design for the system was off in its required limit of authority by a factor of four.

Then there is the apparent change in the stabilizer trim disconnect switch operation; the previous generations of the 737 all separated the disconnection of flight control computers and the "master" disconnect, which would also disable the manual trim switches on the control yoke.  The capability to deny automatic trim input separately from the master disconnect appears to have been removed from the MAX yet that appears to not be clearly disclosed in pilot training or system documentation differences.  The reason for that may have been to evade a type certificate difference but irrespective of the reason that's #2.

Next up, and perhaps the most damning, is that apparently Boeing had reports on failures of the sensors involved for months before the first crash along with knowledge that the system had failed to alert on same and did not initiate the process leading to an AD to correct it prior to the crashes.

Does any of this lead to criminal liability?  In my opinion if the facts bear out what appears to be the case it damn well should.

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Posts: 495
Incept: 2011-05-20

Northwest Florida
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Saw a sixty minutes piece about that the other day. It was scary to watch just in the Simulator. My money says this goes quiet pretty quick.
Posts: 71
Incept: 2010-04-12

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If there is proof of this, I agree, heads should roll. But I don't trust the press to give us the unvarnished truth. The left has had a target on Boeing since they moved some operations from Washington State to right to work state South Carolina. I was reading a Bloomberg article about the max issue and checked the author's other work. It showed a left wing bent, IMHO. Peter Robison was the author.
Posts: 157213
Incept: 2007-06-26
A True American Patriot!
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Well @Rawdawgs that may well be true in terms of bent by Bloomberg in particular, but I've looked at a lot of the available public evidence at this point, including the FDR logs from the second crash.

The evidence is very clear and in fact nearly irrefutable at this point that Boeing at minimum hid the change in control authority in MCAS from the FAA. That alone is enough to lock everyone involved in that up for manslaughter.

If it is proved up that Boeing knew of the problem's manifestation months or more before the first crash and did nothing then we get to depraved indifference.

That's the difference between Manslaughter and Murder 2, incidentally.

Winding it down.
Posts: 111162
Incept: 2007-08-26

East Tennessee Eastern Time
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Wow. Glimmer of rationality. Nice to see it can still happen from time to time.

It's justifiably immoral to deal morally with an immoral entity.

Festina lente.
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