'The bigger airlines get, the worse they become'

Opinion, comment and editorials of the day

Spirit and JetBlue planes at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) in Fort Lauderdale, Florida
The US crackdown on airline consolidation faces a new test with the trial of a government lawsuit claiming the $3.8 billion takeover of Spirit Airlines by JetBlue would reduce competition and boost fares for passengers
(Image credit: Eva Marie Uzcategui / Bloomberg via Getty Images)

'Price-fixing without going to jail for it'

Tim Wu in The New York Times

Airline mergers "have not done Americans any favors," says Tim Wu in The New York Times. "The prices get higher, the seats smaller, the service ever snarkier." We learned that from the acquisitions that created "the 'big three'" — United Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and American Airlines — while eliminating Continental, Northwest, and US Airways. JetBlue's plan to buy budget carrier Spirit Airlines will "further reduce competition," if courts reject the Justice Department's attempt to stop it.

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'There is a lot about growing old in America that needs to change'

LZ Granderson in the Los Angeles Times

America's suicide rate has reached the highest since "the tail end of the Great Depression," says LZ Granderson in the Los Angeles Times. Older adults and men are especially vulnerable. We should "foster a culture" in which older men know they can express "concerns about growing older or being left behind by change" without shame. Let's "acknowledge the effects of graying demographics on the federal budget and the labor force, but also on the human soul."

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'The for-profit model of journalism shows signs of being broken'

George Packer in The Atlantic

The "hostility" between Donald Trump and the news media "is real," but their constant jousting "benefits both sides," says George Packer in The Atlantic. The former president "claims to despise the journalists who cover him," but "his narcissism craves their constant attention." Media outlets warn Trump threatens democracy, but his "vile words and scandalous deeds" bring them revenue. The press risks irrelevancy if it can't do better in the event of a second Trump presidency.

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'Republicans cannot be caught flat-footed once again on the issue of health care'

National Review editorial board

Donald Trump just "revived the dormant debate over repealing Obamacare," says the National Review editorial board, promising to replace it with something "much better" if he wins back the presidency next year. But Republicans "failed to deliver" on promises to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act when they controlled Washington after Trump's 2016 election. It's "now entrenched." Republicans should focus on making the system "more decentralized, patient-centered, and efficient," with "more room for market innovation" and coverage choices.

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