Years of heavy losses taught US airlines that given the up-and-down nature of the business and the number of factors (such as energy prices) beyond their control, they simply had to manage what could be managed. That meant rigorous cost-cutting and adopting a strict discipline concerning capacity growth and nonfuel expenses. While the post-9/11 restructuring of the US industry may have been "brutal," as recently characterized by Senate aviation subcommittee Chairman Jay Rockefeller ...

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