ATA shows its chameleon tendencies at its May leadership meeting

March 20, 2018

Wendy Parker


Reincarnated, or “chameleon” trucking companies have been a problem in the industry for many years. Carriers with unsatisfactory ratings often shut down, then re-open as “new” companies. New names, new DOT numbers, fresh safety records.

Unfortunately, these re-imagined, renamed businesses rarely do more than put lipstick on a pig. Changing names won’t fix janky equipment, nor does it compel operators to act any different than they did before.

I think we’re all familiar with the phrase, “Same stuff, different day.”

While the ATA is definitely not a trucking company, they’ve adopted the chameleon-like posture of “re branding and re-imagining” their annual May leadership-management meeting.

Described as “a more inclusive experience,” the 2018 May meeting has been moved from Orlando, Fla., to Marco Island, Fla. Because tons of real truckers hang out at the Marriott Resorts in Marco Island.

Wait. No they don’t.

So now I’m confused. Especially when Chris Spear tells the plethora of real truckers he claims to have involved in his organization, “An important part of being an ATA member is being involved and coming together to get important advocacy updates.”

Psst … Chris … not sure if you’ve heard yet, but owner operators manage businesses. And they don’t hang out on Marco Island, for anything other than deliveries. Oh – and they’re not the people ATA advocates for, even though small business O/O’s make up close to 80 percent of the truckers in the industry.

You can call the meeting whatever, and have it on the moon if you’d like. You’re still not going to convince anyone ATA advocates for, or even considers,the rights of all truckers.

Would you like some lip stick for that pig?