I really have no idea which of the major US airlines will be the first to go under, but it appears that Delta might be in the running. The Atlanta based carrier is clearly on it's last legs and it's decision today to begin charging $50 for a second checked bag is the clearest sign yet that the airlines will soon be a thing of the past. They simply cannot be profitable in an era when oil is significantly above $100 a barrel. Oil of course is well over that mark, having gained over $4 a barrel today.
As Peak Oil becomes Past Peak Oil, the price of a barrel will begin a never ending upward surge, perhaps hitting $500 a barrel in the next two years. The airlines will be among the first industries to go under followed closely by all three Detroit automakers. In the meantime, air travel in most of the world, but especially in America, becomes more and more of a hassle as the airlines cut service, cut costs and cut safety. It's possible I might make one or two more flights but for the most part, my air travel experience, along with that of nearly everyone else, will soon come to an end. Just one of the first casualties of our dependence on fossil fuels but certainly not the last.