Trump: 'Airplanes Are Becoming Far Too Complex to Fly'

By Susan Jones | March 12, 2019 | 10:57 AM EDT

President Donald Trump arrives in Florida on Air Force One. (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

( - President Donald Trump, a frequent flier who owns his own plane, on Tuesday offered his opinion on the crash in Ethiopia two days ago. The jet, a new Boeing 737 Max 8, went down shortly after takeoff, killing all 157 people on board.

"Airplanes are becoming far too complex to fly," Trump tweeted. "Pilots are no longer needed, but rather computer scientists from MIT. I see it all the time in many products. Always seeking to go one unnecessary step further, when often old and simpler is far better. Split second decisions are needed, and the complexity creates danger. All of this for great cost yet very little gain. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want Albert Einstein to be my pilot. I want great flying professionals that are allowed to easily and quickly take control of a plane!"

Although the cause of the crash has not been determined -- and won't be for some time -- early speculation focused on an automated anti-stall system that might have caused the plane to go nose-down after takeoff. Press reports said turning off the auto-pilot would be the remedy for such a situation.

The Boeing Max 8 is still flying in the United States, but on Tuesday, Great Britain became the latest of several countries to suspend flights of that plane.

Advances in technology work only as well as the humans trained to use it, as the Navy discovered following the 2017 collision of the USS John S. McCain with a merchant ship near Singapore.

In its report, the Navy said the collision that left 10 sailors dead was "avoidable."

Investigators found that a "major contributing factor" to the collision was a "sub-standard level of knowledge regarding the operation of the ship control console."

The report said no one on the Bridge watch team, including the commanding officer and executive officer, "were properly trained on how to correctly operate the ship control console during a steering casualty."

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