Now the rumor circuit is really flying on United and Continental.  The name will be United, the headquarters will be in Chicago, and Mr. Smisek from Continental will run the place.  Swell.  And now US Airways is back where it started, too small, and all alone.  US Airways could certainly benefit from a stronger alliance partner in a fortified United, but I just don’t get the feeling that there’s a lot of love left for US in this deal.

I speculated a while back that the idea of some sort of link between American and US Airways was a possibility.  I continue to think that American cannot just sit back and watch while the rest of the industry leaves it behind.  While management has its hands full with labor negotiations at the moment, I still wonder if US Airways might not be too tempting of a target.  This could begin with something short of a full merger, perhaps luring US into Oneworld and a closer domestic relationship, realizing many benefits of a merger without the hassle of combining disparate fleets of aircraft and labor groups.  Then perhaps a little further down the road, when both managements have successfully gotten themselves through labor talks, a bigger deal can be done.  Doug Parker, like so many other airline managers, got started at American so I don’t think the idea of him doing a deal with them is the most far fetched idea on earth.

This is all anyone’s guess at the moment, and let’s face it, I’m just some random guy who likes to talk about airlines.  Gonna be really fun watching things unfold in the next few months I think.