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Ryanair CEO Wants to Rid Flights of Co-Pilots

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Discount airline Ryanair makes headlines every few months with its wealth of budget-boosting ideas that throw comfort and safety completely out the emergency exit. Coin-operated lavatories? Sure. Standing-room only cabins? Why not?

But maybe the company's most controversial experiment was employing a CEO who absolutely, positively hates his customers.

Michael O'Leary, Ryanair chief and 49-year-old sociopath, recently gave an interview with Bloomberg BusinessWeek where he voiced his wish to ditch a designated co-pilot from the cockpit. He asked, "Why does every plane have two pilots?" Adding, "Really, you only need one pilot. Let's take out the second pilot. Let the bloody computer fly it."

Naturally, anyone who hasn't just watched Disney's 1986 film Flight of the Navigator realizes the risk of allowing a robot take control of a manned craft -- especially should an emergency occur. But in an industry constantly pushing the limits of customer aggravation and injury, O'Leary's one step ahead. Every flight will have at least one flight-trained member of the cabin crew.

Cementing the gender roles of pilot and flight attendant, O'Leary said, "If the pilot has an emergency, he rings the bell, he calls her in. She could take over."

At a time when the airlines are choked with customer fees, delays, and an overall lack of professionalism, there's at least one company looking toward the future to save a buck.

But perhaps a more popular cost-effective tip would be an airline run without a CEO.
POSITION:  No positions in stocks mentioned.