Michael Boyd is well known for making colourful - sometimes hilarious - comments about the aviation industry. I'm here in Aspen covering Boyd's annual aviation forecast conference and let me tell you, Boyd has not disappointed.
Would Congressman James Oberstar make a good Transportation Secretary?
"If Jim Oberstar knew half as much about the industry as he thinks he does, he'd be a great ramp agent."
How important is NextGen to current presidential hopefuls?
"Barack Obama wouldn't know ATC from an ATM machine."
How can you get the FAA's attention on NextGen?
"Why doesn't someone grab the FAA by the trachea and say 'fix this'."
How do you classify all the delays in deploying NextGen?
"NextGen is a no gen."
Will the Delta/Northwest merger have a big impact on the US aviation industry?
Delta and Northwest "are like two people who have shacked up for four years and have decided to get married".
What do you think of ATA CEO James May's statement that he would "take Norm Mineta over Mary Peters any day" in the role of Transportation Secretary?
"Maybe as a date."
What are your thoughts on China's ARJ regional jet?
"The Chinese are very creative. They've recreated the DC-9."
Other quotable quotes emerged from the conference. Here are some of the finest:
"When we launched the [A350] programme we thought it would be behind the 787 [delivery timeline], but we're catching up in our own little way" - Airbus director market forecasting Simon Pickup.
"We are vested emotionally and financially in that hub [Memphis]. We won't give it up easy." - Northwest Airlines VP of international marketing and sales Fred Deschamps.
"... sitting in front of 100 mayors on Friday, all of them [were] yelling and screaming about how we're cutting down capacity. But the short-term and long term solution is finding some sort of level playing field when it comes to the jet fuel price." - AMR VP, state and community affairs Kevin Cox.
(Photo above of James Oberstar)