My Private Boeing Whistleblower

A Carefully Concealed Re-Framing of What a Boeing Insider Told Me


Sometimes it pays to simply be in the right place at the right time, and to REALIZE IT.

I have learned to stay IN THE MOMENT – to REALIZE IT IS A MOMENT – and to REMEMBER IT.

The world is a weird place. Every day, whether you fully understand it or not, you come into contact with people who have EXTREMELY interesting stories. You simply don’t hear them, most of the time.

So that person whose parent worked on the Manhattan Project, or that survivor of a serial killer, or the person who baby-sat Bill Gates – you meet them, you talk to them, but unless they open up about it for some reason, you will never know it.

There was a local radio station I remember, which had a segment called “Brushes With Fame”, and it was amazing to hear the MANY stories – because everybody has a few. You do. I do. And every poster on this site does, too.

My most recent brush with fame, was somebody with the inside story on Boeing’s problems. And this isn’t just “hearsay” – meaning it wasn’t just an insider who HEARD the story – it was somebody who knows – with their own eyes – all the details. How the story came out – I cannot say – it’s too unique.

I was SHOCKED. The story makes sense. It matches what we suspect. But most importantly, it EXPLAINS EVERYTHING.

This really needs to be said – and every member of Boeing’s board of directors needs to know this stuff – but I have to be very careful not to give so many details that the “whistleblower” is found.

And you KNOW “they” will try, because it’s what “they” do.

But this is important, so WE will try to get the word out – safely.


TL;DR – The basic problem at Boeing is terrible craftsmanship.

OK – we suspected that. But….

Why???

Here’s why.

The building of planes is being OUTSOURCED to sloppy companies, where workplace practices, procedures, and personnel are more like the roofing and cheap housing construction industries, than they are like aircraft mechanics.

The workers are young, poorly trained, barely educated, and either ignore or are not given rigorous assembly procedures. Safety checks are not done. Turnover is high. The untrained have to train the unqualified. Opportunities for wrong tools, wrong parts, and wrong procedures are everywhere and omnipresent. Those who understand disciplined assembly practices are shocked by what they see happening.

If you can imagine “clean room” technology, this is the opposite.

Management has known about this, but ignored it until the accidents and crashes made the problem too visible. They are only now reacting, and have not even BEGUN to do what should have been done years ago. And they are STILL not addressing the full problem.


The whistleblower had first-hand knowledge of all of his. I use the word “whistleblower” with some caution. This person may or may not have told any of this to other people. They may or may not have told Boeing management. I am hiding many shocking and highly validating details to make sure that the person cannot be found. But I will say this.

Boeing is not the only place where outsourcing (both foreign and domestic) created more problems than it solved. I saw the exact same thing, first-hand, in the tech and science world. QUALITY was very frequently sacrificed because the top-down orders were “global or else”, and “global” was basically some connected Chinese or Indian company getting a “didn’t earn it” job. These bad decisions were the outcome of boardroom combat by highly-paid stiffs – often people who didn’t truly understand the business, but had finagled their way into power by connections and influence, or otherwise, themselves, “didn’t earn it”.

Who can be more “global” than the other person? Who can be more cunning, in negating any criticism of sloppy work as xenophobic or nativist? Who can denigrate American quality in the smartest way – and then sell us all out – for a BONUS?

I’m not saying that Boeing is using foreign companies for outsourcing, although perhaps they are. I am saying exactly what I heard – that whoever Boeing is outsourcing to, domestic or not, it’s not working.

I do have some suspicion that CHINA is involved here – that they are sabotaging Boeing’s domestic workforce so that the economics will favor a CHINESE SOLUTION, with a CHINESE WORKFORCE, much like Apple and other companies that are now addicted to Chinese labor. That would also explain whistleblower deaths. The ChiComs are ruthless, when they think they can get away with it.

Whatever – bottom line – Boeing needs to get its act together – and that will NOT happen with “China Joe” in the White House.

Time to FIX IT. And getting Donald Trump back in the White House is a big part of MY proposal for how to do it.

W

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Valerie Curren

TY Wolf, this is disconcerting but sadly unsurprising 🙁

Valerie Curren

Truly horrifying, & clearly not an accident, more like planned destruction (yet again) 🙁

Valerie Curren

Plus, as Gail has outlined before, plus what I heard from a friend who used to work over there in China, the quality control is non-existent or basically fictitious. They’ll lie to get a job & then not make stuff to spec which clearly has life & death implications when that approach is taken to various types of infrastructure. Evil & greed are dangerous bedfellows 🙁

Deplorable Patriot

I suspect, that while all of this is very true, the airlines have known for a while, and have taken care of a lot of maintenance that just doesn’t get publicity. We’re still seeing headlines, so the incidents are fairly rare.

And…pilots aren’t walking off the job. When that starts happening, then we know Boeing and the airlines are in real trouble.

SteveInCO · Thermonuclear MAGA

pilots aren’t walking off the job

I find myself both surprised and unsurprised by this. Yes, they should be leaving. But where would they go? Fly for another airline? Presumably with different (non-Boeing) equipment. (Which is what they call the airliner, at least on schedules the public sees.) That would take a lot of re-training and re-qualification.

(A pilot’s license and past experience on a Boeing alone doesn’t qualify one to fly an Embraer (one kind of regional jet), though it does indicate you could be trained to do so fairly quickly [much more so than some guy who has never soloed], which is not an inconsiderable thing.)

I’m not at all sure what sorts of job opportunities there are for those who are ATPs (Air Transport Pilots) and now can no longer fly for whatever reason. It’s such specialized work that it doesn’t seem like much of the training would be useful outside of the industry. I’d love to hear from some of them about this.

Gail Combs

Wolfie I got BLACKBALLED when I went to the FAA! So the corruption is systemic.

Dr Deming tried to get US companies interested in good quality right after WWII. The were NOT interested so he went to Japan. Dr Deming is WHY the Japanese now have such good quality.

In the USA the corporations, instead of competing by making a BETTER product, competed by BUYING politicians.

Dwayne’s World (ADM) is an EXCELLENT EXAMPLE!
Want to know why there is High Fructose Corn syrup instead of sugar in soda? Want to know WHY Biofuel was mandated? ASK ADM!

Dwayne Andreas has made a fortune with the help of politicians from Hubert Humphrey to Bob Dole. But, he says, their talk of “free markets” is just wind.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>

I wrote this over a decade in 2009 ago:

Why did the Food Inspectors fail?

In a recent article, Food Problems Elude Private Inspectors, journalists speculated on how food safety auditors could give a “superior” rating to a production facility that a few months later would poison hundreds. Many people have noticed the increasing number of food-borne illnesses reported in the press, but no one has attempted to explain why it’s happening, how it can come about. Let me show you not only how it happens but how our present food safety system encourages similar situations.

To understand the problem it is necessary to look at the “Quality Revolution.”

In the 1970s when I first started working in the quality field, Military. Standard 105D (it became 105E later) was often used to determine incoming inspection levels. Mil Spec 105D was a common-sense, statistics-based standard, appropriate to the military sense of getting things done correctly, and it saw wide use in industry. It provided methods to categorize vendors as good, average or below average. The customer could adjust the level of incoming inspection accordingly.

Dr. W. Edwards Deming, a mathematician doing research into quality, had been ignored by US business. He took his expertise to postwar Japan where his methods revolutionized quality. After superior Japanese quality flattened American business in the market place, Americans started searching for the “Magic Wand” that would allow them to compete, Several experts cashed in on this mad search. Joseph Juran, Armand Feigenbaum and Philip Crosby emerged as the leaders of the pack.

In 1987 the methods used by Deming and the other leaders were quantified as a set of quality manufacturing standards called ISO 9000. I was one of the first to get training in ISO 9000 here in the USA. I was impressed by the first half of the presentation and during break started discussing what I had learned with my seat-mate. He was not at all impressed. He was originally from Russia, and he told me that the Soviet Union had used the same kind of system for years, and that and it generated paperwork, not quality. Twenty years later I, along with other quality professionals, agree with him.

…”I’m wondering if there might be a silent majority of Quality [magazine] readers out there on the topic of ISO 9000. The response to my July editorial, “Eliminate ISO 9000?,” was the heaviest that we have received in some time…What surprised me is that the July editorial elicited no ardent rebuttals in defense of ISO 9000…” http://www.qualitymag.com/Articles/Letters_From_the_Editor/65730ee7f4c38010VgnVCM100000f932a8c0

Bean counters, looking only for immediate additional profit, found some of the concepts of ISO 9000 very attractive:

  1. Do not duplicate effort by repeating testing that’s already been done. This means that incoming inspection can be eliminated, saving some labor.
  2. Develop a relationship with a single source instead of wasting resources on qualifying several sources
  3. Use “Just In Time.” Since the source is prequalified, the raw materials can arrive on the same day as needed, eliminating warehouses and jobs.

The third item is particularly interesting. If the method fails, that is, if the supposedly prequalified material is no good, there might be no choice but to use it anyway! The result can be anywhere from a minor inconvenience to a total disaster.

So what does this have to do with the peanut fiasco? First, because of the “Quality Revolution” a version of ISO was developed for the food industry. It was called HACCP and was published as an international standard in 1993 by Codex Alimentarius. In 1995 Mil Std 105E was declared obsolete and in 1996 HACCP was adopted by the USDA.

Pathogen Reduction/Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) Systems rule, on July 25, 1996: Under the HACCP rule, industry is responsible for assessing potential food safety hazards and systematically preventing and controlling those hazards. FSIS [Food Safety Inspection Service] is responsible for verifying that establishments’ HACCP systems are working ..www.fsis.usda.gov/PDF/Evolution_of_RBI_022007.pdf

Notice how this ruling has shifted the focus of audits, both government and private, from testing for contamination to the paperwork documenting the “Quality Management System”. Secondly, rigorous incoming inspection has been drastically cut‒if not eliminated‒by the companies that receive raw materials. In buying peanuts from the vendor Kellog relied only on a third-party auditor who reported on the integrity of the suppler. Twenty or thirty years earlier Kellog would have sent their own quality professional to work at the vendor’s facility.

If the “Quality Revolution” worked so well for the Japanese, why isn’t it working in the USA? There are several reasons. First is the Japanese sense of honor, ethics and integrity. Deceitfulness is frowned upon and results in a loss of face and disgrace to the family.. Secondly, Japan is a small country so word of deceitfulness spreads easily.. In the USA a slick salesmen who lies to get sales is likely to be praised and held up as an example to new salesmen. The US has a very mobile population, there are always new suckers moving into the community . A scoundrel can relocate to any of forty nine other states.

Another problem, according to quality expert Kaoru Ishikawa, is America’s regulations of business that give tremendous importance to each company’s quarterly results. He claims that the result is short-sightedness.

SteveInCO · Thermonuclear MAGA

Interesting that you should mention Deming.

One of the most prestigious awards in Japanese industry is the…you guessed it…the Deming award.

I did take a class on quality control in college (and Deming was prominent in it), though it has been of little use to me since it mostly covers industrial processes. It should be a requirement, however, in engineering and business schools. (Though the math would likely have to be dumbed down for most business majors.)

Last edited 1 month ago by SteveInCO · Thermonuclear MAGA
Gail Combs

I had the honor of actually attending a seminar by Deming. He is one of my HEROES!

He was in his eighties at the time (Born 1900) sharp as a tack and still open to new ideas.

The USA was foolish not to follow his lead.

SteveInCO · Thermonuclear MAGA

Understatement of the year.

But then the auto manufacturers were run by the style over substance mindset. Gee if we just keep putting new features in people will continue buying our crap.

Valerie Curren

There was a time my dad, who was pretty high up at Ford, a couple steps below a VP, was heavily involved in Japanese info exchange or something for Ford. This was probably the late 70’s or early 80’s. He early retired in the mid 90’s & the culture of Ford was Very Different from when he’d started there 30 years bac,. There were many factors in these changes & since he Rarely would discuss work I don’t have much inside baseball info, though I could ask him specific questions. I think, for a season, that Ford was attempting to learn stuff from the Japanese but it appears that much of it didn’t stick. Perhaps the cultural differences are just too great. I think Dad did mention the Japanese generational approach to things, which was so very different from “I want it yesterday” America!

TradeBait2

Gail and I discussed Dr. Deming awhile back because I briefly met him over 30 years ago. The ghostwriter who also proofread before the publishing of his authorized autobiography, The Deming Dimension, introduced me. The book was published here in east TN. She was a good friend who also worked as a consultant in the Quality control/products industry. I have an autographed copy in my office. I banked several companies that used the Deming methods back then.

The steel company my father worked for converted to Deming methods when a Japanese company bought controlling interest and formed AK Steel not long after he retired in the early 1990s. The predecessor had already incorporated a Swiss invented, but Japanese refined and implemented process of volume steel making prior to the merger in the early 1980’s. They used what was called Blast Oxygen Furnaces (BOF).

During shut downs for repairs and maintenance my sorry college aged butt got to work down in the furnace containers that the molten pig iron was poured into called ladles. They were lined with steel encased fire brick that we would have to jackhammer and remove. The pay was good those summers and the work was hot and nasty. I learned I needed to do something else with my life.

gil00

My dad was a lifer w McDonnell douglas. Family members at northrop and fof at hughes. Everyone was there for good jobs, good benefits, but had to work hard and not slack. No 3rd world anyone there, at that time. Once the globalists started coming and clinton royally f’d over the industry (about the same time i think?) Is when it really began to change and die.

singingsoul1

My husband worked for McDonnell Douglas 🙂

gil00

Small world!

Barb Meier

My uncle worked for McDonnell Douglas too in STL. He handled inventory and loved his job. Once he retired, he was always looking for items at the best price. My older brother broke Mom and Dad’s toilet seat. Mom said, “call your Uncle Richard.” I did. Uncle Richard asked: “What color?” hahaha… Apparently, he had a stock in his basement of various colors. Richard was a very good man, always helping others. I miss his good humor, making us laugh.

gil00

Nice story in our small world. 🙂

singingsoul1

yes it is 🙂

gil00

He decimated CA aerospace. And our bases and sold long beah port yo china all around his presidency.

Deplorable Patriot

My dad was career McAir. Boeing made a mess off it. Although, the company almost went bankrupt before Boeing bought it. Between the Air Force playing games and Lockheed being in Newt Gingrich’s district, contracts were hard to get.

gil00

👍

gil00

Yes i understand that about mcd. Very close to bankrupcty. I remember the changes right before my dad was no longer there.

Deplorable Patriot

I worked up there for a summer. We called it MDAC, the MAC and DAC being the pieces.

Gosh, that was a long time ago.

TheseTruths

Thank you for this thought-provoking account.

Management has known about this, but ignored it until the accidents and crashes made the problem too visible. They are only now reacting, and have not even BEGUN to do what should have been done years ago. And they are STILL not addressing the full problem.

This makes sense because I think there have been four incidents in the last week. If they had fixed the problems, that should not be happening.

What strikes me is that the only alerts to the public that I see are news reports of incidents happening. The public is not being told that Boeing planes could very likely have issues, nor is the public being told that Boeing is taking major steps to overhaul their operations to fix the problems, so people stay complacent and think it won’t happen to them.

Who is in charge of issues like these? Pete Buttigieg? We’ll likely have to wait until a sane person gets back in office.

Barb Meier

Pete does nothing. Expand this hiring process across all the three-letter agencies and you probably have our present reality. I blame communist hiring directives straight from Obama.

scott467

“The public is not being told that Boeing planes could very likely have issues, nor is the public being told that Boeing is taking major steps to overhaul their operations to fix the problems, so people stay complacent and think it won’t happen to them.”

______________

Nor is the public going to be told that Boeing is unsafe, because the moment anyone at Boeing or in the corrupt government does so, Boeing collapses as a company.

Their stock drops 50% in one day, and flights are canceled all over the world.

Revenue tanks, stock drops to zero in weeks.

Then all the finger pointing begins, Boeing points at the government, and the government points at Boeing.

It’s a financial disaster for Boeing and a PR disaster for Brandon in the middle of a presidential campaign he’s sleeping through.

So nobody’s sayin’ nuthin’ to nobody about any of this.

They’ll let 50 passenger jets crash before any of these $%#ers break silence.

Government and industry have no protective function.

The only function government and industry have is CYA.

Last edited 1 month ago by scott467
kalbokalbs

Boeing collapses.

Wonder what the impact will be on foreign exchange rates where dollars are in play.

barkerjim

Thanks, Wolf Moon!

PAVACA

Wolf Moon
Thank you so much for this.

“The untrained have to train the unqualified ”

And there, in one sentence, is the reality that happens when a company hires, shall it he said, “migrants” for jobs that educated and experienced American workers should be doing.
Except that the effects of the COVID-19 “vaccines” on American workers leave gaping holes in the job ranks, as competent employees retire early / leave the job due to disability / “died suddenly and unexpectedly”, after being “vaccinated.”
This is aside from American workers who are unprepared to get the job done correctly due to the “education” they received.

litenmaus

Organizational Implosion…..it’s by design.

singingsoul1

Interesting 🙂 My husband could have a lot to say he knows the Aircraft company in and out. He worked twenty six years in it in St Louise McDonnell Douglas before Grumman
He has seen the failurers . The accountants got hold of it.Company used to be run by engineers. Quality assurance department was don away with. The old guys who knew how to build a plane and quality assurance department produced quality airplane retired.

Last edited 1 month ago by singingsoul1
singingsoul1

There was a time when companies did new things and focus was on money not quality. Eventually they realize their mistake but to late.
Just as countries get destroyed so do companies by misguided people.

Deplorable Patriot

It was more like Sandy McDonnell retired and his son John, he of the beady eyes (didn’t care for him when I met him), is a bean counter. He had no real interest in the company and running it. It happened here with the third generation in almost every big hometown corporation. McDonnell, Anheuser-Busch, Ralston-Purina – all of them the same story. All were sold out by the IIIs. The only one that was a hostile takeover was A.G. Edwards, which was a brokerage house.

Barb Meier

Interesting. I also knew a machinist who I believe was very good at his job. He is very likely retired now and perhaps that is a blessing. It would be hard to watch a great engineering-led company turned into a marketing/HR led company. So sad. The machinist told me that their tools were automated and he had to know how to program them to exact standards. I would not be surprised if much, or all, of this has been outsourced since I knew him in the 1990s.

singingsoul1

yes it is unfortunatley

Gail Combs

We used to say the company had been Harvard Business Schooled.

Those SOBs would come in, SLASH necessary procedures and personnel. This allowed them to show they had made a LARGE profit for the company and then they moved on. In the mean time all the hidden time bombs go off and the company finds itself in the red.

In once case we had plastics extruders. Each screw was made to order to FIT that particular machine. (Think fixing an old engine by doing a specialty build of the pistons)

Any way each extruder had a spare because it took MONTHS to get a replacement. What this SOB did was NOT authorize purchasing a new screw when a spare was put into service. He left and then the spares wore out and we had NO BACKUPS so the extruders went down for MONTHS.

Valerie Curren

I wonder if you can get your husband to read Wolf’s post, AND the comments, & then see what he might be willing to add? It would be great to get his perspective!

SteveInCO · Thermonuclear MAGA

Donald Trump won’t be sufficient; these companies have to decide to change their behavior.

DJT will be helpful, though, by not pushing back like FJB would, IF and WHEN they do so.

SteveInCO · Thermonuclear MAGA

This is definitely a cultural issue at this point. Wokeism wouldn’t be so pervasive in politics if huge numbers of people didn’t believe it.

Barb Meier

When people can be convinced to be awarded a job title, without regard to merit and their only focus is on the salary and benefits and a firm belief in their own entitlement, we are in deep trouble.

Gail Combs

The rot started in the late 1800s. It has had over a century to hollow out the USA.

scott467

“Wokeism wouldn’t be so pervasive in politics if huge numbers of people didn’t believe it.”

_____________

Like most anything else, I suspect the only people who ‘believe’ in it are those who directly benefit from it.

And useful idiot college students, but they don’t move or shake anything.

SteveInCO · Thermonuclear MAGA

One thing that nudged airlines (and similar industries) to outsource were unions that behaved as though they had the employers by the balls. And busting a union that was being unreasonable is damned near illegal.

I’m sure we can recall unions that went on strike even after they were shown that their demands would bankrupt the employer.

I’m sure that wasn’t the only reason.

GA/FL

Great work, Wolf Moon! This is right up there with your Buffalo Jump series and the Nattokinase posts!

You have pin-pointed exactly what has been going on in air plane manufacturing!

Will anything be done about it?

Gail Combs

That was a really worth while video.

Valerie Curren

Yes, I went to it via Nitter, to check out the conversation after some sleep!

kalbokalbs

Already at least two Boeing whistle blowers died…Arkincide Boeing style?

Hope this person is careful.

If this person opened to one, likely opened to other(s).

kalbokalbs

Good. Do not want to know more than you already shared.

TradeBait2

Thank you for this post, Wolf. I suspected as much but you have nailed it down. Great work!

Short story to show what was previously, compared to what is now with Boeing.

Back in a BIMD story, recall a coworker who was integral to our operations processes and assigned to shepherd our related software development. He was the one who went with our group to the Biloxi area for Project Katrina relief work. He left a skeptic and came home a follower of Christ.

This man was a former project engineer team leader for Boeing in Seattle and his wife was a highly accomplished engineer at the same company. They worked there for 15 years or so. His elderly parents retired to our area and he was their only child. His father developed dementia. He and his wife had to leave their jobs and moved here with their child to take care of them.

Per him, back then (late 1990s) Boeing’s business had grown so fast they could not staff the positions quickly enough with experienced engineers and techs to keep up. They were hiring foreign employees even then. However, he spoke highly of their quality control processes. He stated the company leadership always emphasized it was totally unacceptable to have a product failure, big or small. Mess something up and you would be fired on the spot and unemployable in the industry.

Sadly, it looks like that approach was abandoned to chase the dollar over human safety.

Last edited 1 month ago by TradeBait2
Aubergine

Well, that settles it. I’m not flying anymore. At least until there is a major overhaul of aircraft manufacturing.

Aubergine

Makes sense.

kalbokalbs

Right on target information.

Rather sure it applies to numerous industries.

While certainly contributes to Boeing AC problems over the past several months, more is going on.

For the past several months, Boeing issues have become frequent. As IF techs or some with access are tinkering with AC, parts, something.

But, absolutely outsourcing and unqualified techs along with inferior parts, Boeing is screwed. As are, everyone that flies on those AC.

kalbokalbs

Too many odd ball issues in such a short time frame. No coincidences.

jamcooker

Pretty much spot on. My dad was a stress engineer and held the FAA certification to give approval to Boeing plans. He took that VERY seriously and wouldn’t bend over for the higher ups. My brother was a chem engineer and saw the bean counters taking over as he was retiring (early too because the bean counters wanted him and some others gone). I’m glad my Dad isn’t alive to see what has happened to Boeing.