Home / General / They got paid, so there ain’t nothin’ else to think about

They got paid, so there ain’t nothin’ else to think about

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Yet another triumph for the “nothing but this quarter’s stock price and this year’s executive compensation package matters” school of management:

Boeing violated an agreement that allowed it to avoid criminal charges following two fatal 737 MAX crashes, U.S. Justice Department attorneys announced Tuesday as they moved to revive a prosecution paused three years ago.

That prosecution has been on hold since 2021, when Boeing and federal prosecutors struck a contentious agreement that required the airplane manufacturer to meet certain conditions related to safety for three years. Had Boeing been found to have complied with the agreement, it would have avoided the possibility of a criminal conviction in the two MAX crashes that killed more than 300 people.

The deferred prosecution agreement expired in January, days after a panel blew off an Alaska Airlines Boeing 737 MAX airliner, reigniting scrutiny of whether Boeing changed its culture, quality assurance and compliance programs as required following the fatal crashes in 2018 and 2019. 

On Tuesday, the Justice Department announced it determined Boeing had not complied with the terms of the agreement, opening the door for federal prosecutors to once again pursue criminal claims against the company. 

You’d think that “avoiding criminal prosecution” would be a powerful incentive to emphasize best manufacturing precedents over maximizing short term share value, but if you’re planning on taking your golden parachute soon the former ain’t going to help ensure that your sixth generation of grandchildren will never have to work for a living!

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