I shall post videos, graphs, news stories, and other material. We shall use some of this material in class, and you may review the rest at your convenience. You will all receive invitations to post to the blog. I encourage you to use the blog in these ways:

· To post questions or comments;

· To follow up on class discussions;

· To post relevant news items or videos.

There are only two major limitations: no coarse language, and no derogatory comments about people at the Claremont Colleges.

The syllabus is at http://www1.cmc.edu/pages/faculty/JPitney/gov106-fall15.html


Wednesday, February 6, 2008

JetBlue and Passenger Bill of Rights

Both our readings and our discussion in class on Monday (about Wal Mart's aid for the fires) about corporations trying to get positive publicity reminded me about a situation at JetBlue awhile ago. A major snow storm hit the East Coast and Jetblue had to cancel many flights. But instead of simply canceling the flights they left the planes (loaded with passengers) on the runways and refused to let people off for hours. JetBlue received really bad publicity because of this event and tried to fix their image quickly. They introduced what they called a "passenger bill of rights" which seemed like a nice way to make it seem like JetBlue cared about their passengers. However, there were probably other motives too. After the incident there was talk about created a national passenger bill of rights in Congress and some state governments passed passenger bill of rights. JetBlue may have hoped that if they passed their own bill of rights it would not only make their image look better but might prevent the federal government (and other state governments) from passing possibly much tougher passenger bill of rights. JetBlue is another example of what the Wal Mart reading was talking about when it said that companies that get bad publicity have to fear government action and more regulation.

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