May_June_2022 - 22

An Inconvenient Truth
Bernie Madoff, in 2008 the New York Post called him " The Most Hated Man
in New York. " Why? Because Bernie Madoff organized and directed a $50 billion
financial investment empire which was found out, after many decades of
operation, to be the largest Ponzi scheme the world had ever seen.
But how did Bernie get away with his schemes
More often than not, paper records do not become a
By Larry Hinebaugh
Larry Hinebaugh
is the executive
director of the nonprofit
The Foundation for
Business Aircraft
Records Excellence. He
is a 40-year veteran of
the business aviation
for so long in an industry as regulated as the financial
investment industry? This answer is simple: No
one, not the individual small investors, nor the large
banks and investment firms, not even the SEC itself,
wanted to change the fact that Madoff Investments
was paying steady and reliable returns, even when
the volatile stock market would go through its many
ups and downs.
The reason? Bernie Madoff being a crook and running
a Ponzi scheme was an inconvenient truth that no
one wanted to face when all the investment firms using
Bernard L. Madoff Investment Securities were paying
reliable returns to their own investors thanks to their
investment with Bernie. Everyone, it seemed, was making
money when they invested with Madoff Securities.
Today, in business aviation, single aircraft operators,
large multi-aircraft flight departments, even FAR Part
135 certificate holders and aircraft sales and management
companies continue to profit despite having to
use, and rely on, dysfunctional paper records for an
aircraft's history and proof of its Airworthiness.
This is aviation's inconvenient truth.
Maintenance, of course, is most negatively affected
by paper records. But, at the same time, maintenance
is also its biggest beneficiary. Millions of dollars are
spent every year by aircraft brokers, accountants, legal
departments and the operators themselves for skilled
maintenance personnel to seemingly and somewhat
magically, glean information needed from an aircraft's
chaotic paper record in order to prove the aircraft's
Airworthiness. Aircraft whose records can't pass
the muster are simply destined to be sold at reduced
prices. Many times, these same aircraft resurface as
FAR 135 candidates whose value is then restored once
the aircraft passes through the gauntlet of FAR 135
configuration and is on certificate. Again, it is maintenance
that requires the enormous amount of money
and manpower needed to make this happen. This not
only equates to job security of skilled maintenance personnel,
but in a somewhat disquieting manner seems
to justify employment and salaries in the minds of
these skilled merchants of Airworthiness.
22 MAY/JUNE 2022
factor in an aircraft's daily flight readiness. Every operator
uses its dysfunctional paper recordkeeping system
in the same manner, with company ordained coping
mechanisms. Often this means the records are locked
away in an office or cabinet, not to be consulted for the
all-important flights the aircraft will make. In this way,
the paper recordkeeping system does not interfere with,
or disqualify an aircraft in its day-to-day operations.
The reality is that most aircraft owners are unaware,
and are never made aware, that so much of their money
is spent accomplishing the business of their aircraft's
administration because of our use of such a grossly
obsolete and dysfunctional recordkeeping system.
But just the same as with the Bernie Madoff syndrome;
when so many are benefitting in spite of an
inconvenient truth, that truth is often minimized in
order to keep the status quo. Acknowledging the truth
and doing something about it frequently means disruption
on a grand scale. More often than not, only
eminent disaster is enough to get the attention the
truth deserves.
And so, it is in business aviation; we continue to
use paper records to buy, sell, operate, and prove the
Airworthiness of an aircraft, despite the cost to the
aircraft's owner and the hardship it places on everyone
involved. Why? Because it's working. And everyone it
seems, is making money in our industry with a paper
recordkeeping system in place. So why change?
As an industry, we need to ask ourselves, is this the
best we can do? Are we willing to continue to accept
this inconvenient truth? Or are we ready to disrupt
the status quo and move from paper records to digital
before eminent disaster appears on the horizon and
forces us to change.
That shouldn't even be a question in an industry
responsible for creating and operating aircraft that fly
faster, travel farther, and operate more efficiently than
ever before. Technology helped us get these aircraft to
where they are today. Isn't it about time we apply this
same technology to recording the important maintenance
history and airworthiness of these amazing


Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of May_June_2022

So What?
Industry Inspection
Your Mobile Home
The Hunt for Parts
An Inconvenient Truth
Getting Aircraft on Ground Flying Again
In the Post-Pandemic World, General Aviation is Taking Off
The Dos and Don'ts of Communication System Maintenance
Basler Turbo Conversions Makes the Old New Again
A Promising Outlook for General Aviation
How Naval Aviation is Combatting Its Billion- Dollar Corrosion Problem
Advertiser’s Index
May_June_2022 - 1
May_June_2022 - 2
May_June_2022 - 3
May_June_2022 - So What?
May_June_2022 - 5
May_June_2022 - Industry Inspection
May_June_2022 - 7
May_June_2022 - 8
May_June_2022 - 9
May_June_2022 - 10
May_June_2022 - 11
May_June_2022 - Your Mobile Home
May_June_2022 - 13
May_June_2022 - The Hunt for Parts
May_June_2022 - 15
May_June_2022 - 16
May_June_2022 - 17
May_June_2022 - 18
May_June_2022 - 19
May_June_2022 - 20
May_June_2022 - 21
May_June_2022 - An Inconvenient Truth
May_June_2022 - 23
May_June_2022 - Getting Aircraft on Ground Flying Again
May_June_2022 - 25
May_June_2022 - In the Post-Pandemic World, General Aviation is Taking Off
May_June_2022 - 27
May_June_2022 - The Dos and Don'ts of Communication System Maintenance
May_June_2022 - 29
May_June_2022 - 30
May_June_2022 - 31
May_June_2022 - Basler Turbo Conversions Makes the Old New Again
May_June_2022 - 33
May_June_2022 - 34
May_June_2022 - 35
May_June_2022 - A Promising Outlook for General Aviation
May_June_2022 - 37
May_June_2022 - How Naval Aviation is Combatting Its Billion- Dollar Corrosion Problem
May_June_2022 - 39
May_June_2022 - 40
May_June_2022 - 41
May_June_2022 - Advertiser’s Index
May_June_2022 - 43
May_June_2022 - 44