How Could You Ignore the Telltale Signs?
What’s the worst thing that a captain of a commercial plane can say to passengers over the intercom system other than “ladies and gentlemen, this is the captain speaking, and we seem to have a small problem with our engine?” When the captain says “small,” you bet it’s not small or the pilot wouldn’t bother announcing it on the mic, scaring passengers for no reason.
As a pilot, you’re responsible for keeping people calm; you don’t give them the truth if you can help it. This is a well-documented human psychology defense mechanism, and when Cathay Pacific’s flight 780 saw the type of malfunction that’s not even in the flight manual or the emergency standard procedures, the pilots were out of words.
Believe me, if you’re a pilot with hundreds or thousands of logged flights and countless hours on the simulators training for any and all emergencies and the system is telling you there’s a problem with the thrust of the engine, you take it seriously.
The problem is that those that are on the ground in the operations center can’t really help you that much when you explain the issue to them.
It’s uncomfortable to ground the plane, go back to the departing field, and change planes when you have 300 paying clients on board, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
This pilot and copilot didn’t go back, though.
They asked if it was safe to carry on, to which the operations center at Cathay Pacific replied “YES” and that the plane would be checked after landing, so the flight carried on.
For the next two hours, even with the engines not operating at capacity, the flight went on, but as they began their descent to Hong Kong (from Indonesia), one of the engines stalled. No longer was this something you could brush off, but when you have two engines, it’s still possible to land it.
The problem was that the second engine was stuck at a high level of thrust and wouldn’t budge or throttle back.
If you’ve been to Hong Kong or any island airport, you know the runway ends at sea, so if you’re coming into the approach at double the speed, you may not be able to brake before going into the water (if the tires even remain intact).
They managed to land and stop the plane some three meters from the edge of the tarmac, and it could have all been avoided when the pilot first learned of the issue at the initial climb near the home port.
Powell could have also easily raised rates in late 2020 when prices were clearly getting out of hand or in early 2021 when the whole world saw hyperinflation in many items.
Nobody wants to be the bearer of bad news or scare the public, but bad news is better than dire outcomes.
After chasing inflation for the entirety of 2022, it looks like central banks are painted into a corner. Silver and gold are smelling a pivot and are beginning to soar.
Don’t be surprised if the FED continues to be erring on the side of caution with rate hikes if the political pressure on them persists, which is what gold and silver need in order to break out again.
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