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No more pilots?

You’d think everybody would want to fly. It’s been a universal
human dream since the first cave person saw the first pterodactyl. You’d think
better technology, greater demand, economic growth, and population growth would
mean more and more pilots. But the surprising, counterintuitive fact is that
fewer and fewer people are flying, and now Earth needs pilots, badly.

“Airline industry facing a massive shortfall of pilots.” “Yes, there is a
definite pilot shortage. It is true in all parts of aviation.” “The US Air Force
is short more than one-quarter of the fighter pilots it needs.” “Asian airlines
are running out of trained pilots.” “'Extraordinary' Pilot Shortage Threatens
Flights; 637,000 Needed.”

Meanwhile, the number of active pilots in the US has declined from over 800,000
in 1980 to barely 600,000 in 2017, a quarter of whom are student pilots, a
certificate for which you need no experience at all.
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