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This Thread originates from this thread in the Gear Section and I didn't want to say these things there.http://www.mountainbuzz.com/forums/f44/new-research-cat-on-the-snake-54120.html#post367561

Not sure what your point is.

I build the boats and gear as a private contractor, then put on my cheapo hat and row the trips as a University employee, for chicken scratch. Worse than boatman wages, plus no tips. Guess I must love the work.

The money comes from the University of Wyoming, some small grants, and the Office of Naval Research. The purpose is to collect ground-level data on the characteristics of the river channel, water column, and the light spectra (absorption, scattering, reflectance, etc.) to enable the use of satellite images for mapping rivers, harbors, estuaries, and coastlines. Which, in the long run, will save a lot of taxpayer money.
My original point is in response to a different reply as to how "you get paid for that?" But I'll go ahead and reply to your comments as I see them. It's just me.

First, my comments aren't about you, they are about the system in general. "The system" is funding so many thousands of little projects that will "save the taxpayer money" that we are now 20 trillion dollars in debt. Everyone knows these aren't saving the taxpayers any money, but that is how they are all Pretended. I'm sure you've all seen this one by now; Treadmills for shrimp: $3 million - In Photos: Fifteen Silliest Uses Of Taxpayer Money - Forbes
That one was three million dollars, and that is just one of fifteen waste projects in that article. AND, is there anyone that really doubts that this was mostly just a scam and that someone pocketed a lot of money?

There is not ONE thing that they can tell me that truly justifies these projects in a day when we are in this kind of debt. Between Bush and now our current administration (I'm so sorry I voted that way) they are spending us into oblivion. Our debt has made us weak, insignificant and it will be one half of the end our country.

I'm sure all of the sources you listed are taxpayer funded. Even the Universities get grants from the government for these project and yes it fits into my category of projects that should be put on hold until we get our financial situation in control.

Chicken scratch? I love the river and rowing so much that I don't get a copper penny for it! I have to take vacation from my work to row, AND I pay a fortune for my boats, gear, and supplies to row. And, that is AFTER the gov takes what they want from me in order to fund all of these little projects that are going to "save me money".

Again, this isn't about you or any one project. It's about the system. I don't blame you for taking advantage of a system that comes to you with this project. In fact I'm not sure I would turn it down either. I doubt anyone would. That is the other half!

"And Men's hearts fail them".
 

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Merica!

There is not ONE thing that they can tell me that truly justifies these projects in a day when we are in this kind of debt. Between Bush and now our current administration (I'm so sorry I voted that way) they are spending us into oblivion. Our debt has made us weak, insignificant and it will be one half of the end our country.
Curious as to your opinion of what the other half of the end of our country will be???
 

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Me either. If your comments aren't about Chip then find a different forum. This ones mostly about boats and gear associated with them. Chips raft porn was interesting and informative. Cool to see some "outside the box" rigging ideas.


Jim
 

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Curious as to your opinion of what the other half of the end of our country will be???
Read it again. It's there. But just to be clear, That is just what I think. I hope with all of my heart that I'm wrong. I hope there is some way out of this mess and will be glad to eat my words. I simply don't see it.
 

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Me either. If your comments aren't about Chip then find a different forum. This ones mostly about boats and gear associated with them. Chips raft porn was interesting and informative. Cool to see some "outside the box" rigging ideas.


Jim
I get it folks. Chip is well liked and I just stepped on some peepee's.

Some things:

I began this topic because he said he didn't know what my point was.

1. Your right, the topic isn't about Chip. It is about the system, or in otherwords, Politics, so you don't have to get defensive for Chip

2. This forum is not about boats and gear. I respectfully got out of the gear forum for this political discussion. "The Eddie" by definition is for sports, politics, jokes, and Off Topic discussions. So if you can't handle the discussion, I would suggest that YOU find a different forum.

3. I don't think I'm wrong about anything I said above, but I'm willing to consider any other viewpoint. I don't mean to insult anyone. In fact I think I was even throwing myself under the same bus by the way I see the problem.
 

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No, your argument/statements are easy to make and I think you are right on about all of them. I do see government agencies floating on many of our rivers, often it's Law enforcement or a maintenance team to check camps. I never thought about the cost to the tax payer I did however think about how lucky these folks who get to do these trips are. I know you weren't picking on Chip and I apologize for coming across so defensively.


Jim
 

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I also wasn't trying to comment defensively. I was really curious. Didn't mind your political tangent. If it was the part about men's hearts failing them then I guess I was wondering what that meant? I'm tempted to say maybe it's time to give a woman a try, but in reality all those politicians are bought and paid for by the time they reach that level regardless of their sex. One thing I do believe in is science and the advancement of technology in our natural world. Financially we are in a world of shit. Where those cuts need to be made to tighten our belt... 3 million dollars is chump change. Ya know what I like about river people? Everything!
 

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Anti government/Obama sentiment from Oklahoma. Big surprise. There's a reason your state is the most poorly governed, backwards dump in this beautiful country. Economic policy is not as simple as your household credit card bill - and research projects help move science, and humanity, forward. Of course I don't expect you to understand this - your schools choose not to be funded.
 

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Rapid, I don't think you're accounting for a) the value of in-field geospatial data; and b) the cost to collect it by other means (LiDAR, radar, imagery, or deploying contracted ground crews). And yes, these types of data collection programs are essential for oil & gas development, agriculture, and other for-profit enterprises.

But hey - if you want to allow yourself to be completely distracted by Tom Coburn's overblown attack on science, I doubt any of us could stop you. Perhaps you should be focusing on the $21 BILLION in O&G subsidies he's preserving instead?
 

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Anti government/Obama sentiment from Oklahoma. Big surprise. There's a reason your state is the most poorly governed, backwards dump in this beautiful country. Economic policy is not as simple as your household credit card bill - and research projects help move science, and humanity, forward. Of course I don't expect you to understand this - your schools choose not to be funded.
Anti government/Obama sentiment from Oklahoma. Big surprise. There's a reason your state is the most poorly governed, backwards dump in this beautiful country. Economic policy is not as simple as your household credit card bill - and research projects help move science, and humanity, forward. Of course I don't expect you to understand this - your schools choose not to be funded.
What a surprise. A presumptuous, insulting reply from a liberal in Colorado.

I'm the one that does understand. I used to be a liberal, but I've shed the labels because politicians made them up and are used to keep us fighting each other instead of paying attention to what matters.

I'm not anti government or Obama. If you read my reply again you well see that I started my complaints with Bush and I actually voted for Obama. In fact I believe that Government in a free society is essential, but as such it is my right and even responsibility to watch and complain about gov over-reach and abuse. Would you be insulting me right now if I were complaining while Bush was president? Remember when Bush fans were tripping all over them selves to justify and explain away his overreaching and law breaking behavior? Why do we now do that for Our guy? When did politicians become celebrities? When did Celebrity become more important than principle?

Although the economy is more complex it is exactly the same principle! Spending more than you make and more than you can ever pay back IS WRONG especially when it is on the backs of others. When I max out my CC I have to reform the way I spend, until it is paid off and that means cutting back across the board. And that is to say nothing for how it makes us beholden to our debtors.

Of course science and research are helping to foreword humankind, Who would be against "forewording mankind". but that doesn't have to mean that we do it in an irresponsible manner. We could be doing it in a budgeted organized way that doesn't create 3/4 billion in interest EVERY DAY.

Let me repeat that, 3/4 Billion dollars, just in interest, just vanishing to our debtors, EEEEEVVVVEEEEERRRRRYYYYYYYY DAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAYYYY!

But I guess I'm the dumb one that lives in the dump that is Oklahoma. Your the smart one that doesn't realize that when you insult, you completely kill any chance of most people to truly considering what you say.

By the way. I'm in montana right now getting ready for a week on the river and a year ago I moved to Oklahoma from Colorado Springs where I have lived almost my whole life. But thanks for playing.
 

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Rapid, I don't think you're accounting for a) the value of in-field geospatial data; and b) the cost to collect it by other means (LiDAR, radar, imagery, or deploying contracted ground crews). And yes, these types of data collection programs are essential for oil & gas development, agriculture, and other for-profit enterprises.

But hey - if you want to allow yourself to be completely distracted by Tom Coburn's overblown attack on science, I doubt any of us could stop you. Perhaps you should be focusing on the $21 BILLION in O&G subsidies he's preserving instead?
Holy Cow! You are absolutely right! I hadn't taken GeoMetro and LiPoRadar Imagery costs into consideration. Those are some extremely educated and advanced terminalogical scientific methods so it's no wonder that I missed them since I'm in Oklahoma. Hold on for a few minuets while I factor those into my calculations......

OK, so here is what I did. I asked my six year old if it is alright to spend more money than I can possibly pay back, then increase that spending on sick shrimp and the water disperion patterns of rivers, so that she and her children will have to pay it back.

She said "no".

She's six and even she gets it. I'm guessing that you are a well educated scientist or someone hoping to get those grants and when I make the point that we need to control our spending, all you come up with is "attack on science" and to lump me in with the O&G community? That was a poor assumption by someone who probably should have been well enough educated to not make. I don't defend the O&G folks or their subsidies. That is just more taxpayer waste.

I'll use your own argument because I agree with anyone that express how important science and research are. How much can you or anyone do with 3/4 of a billion dollars a day? That is just what we're paying in interest to say nothing of the actual debt. And to make it all worse, that 3/4 billlion is worth 40 percent less than it would be (deflation of currency) because of our actual debt.
 

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Look folks. Anyone is stretching to make me against science. My point is that we need to seriously cut back (on every drop that goes in the bucket small and large) until we can afford the research better. Right now it is not advancing us. it is putting us in a whole that we may not be able to get out of.

One of the biggest problems is that there are too many people that will justify it, explain it and blow it off as no big deal. Many of these will be in self interest. "and men's hearts fail them" means we've lost our honor. Honestly how many of us would turn down a fat government grant right now even though we can't afford it and even though it is on the taxpayers back?

Gotta go. This will be my last reply. I'm not wrong ;)
 

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Look folks. Anyone is stretching to make me against science. My point is that we need to seriously cut back (on every drop that goes in the bucket small and large) until we can afford the research better. Right now it is not advancing us. it is putting us in a whole that we may not be able to get out of.
IMHO your rant is definitely anti-science. The government funds science, if you take away the funding we loose not only the benefits of that research, you also loose the scientist because now he must find another job. This is short sighted thinking, that is leading this country into the toilet.

Science is definitely under attack from the right. Let's close the EPA, space flight is too expensive, global warming is the greatest hoax ever, the earth is 6000 years old, etc. Although I agree we have problems, and our government funding is far from perfect, it isn't science that is the problem. It is wealthy and corrupt politicians and a corrupt system that are not looking out for the common good. This corruption joins hands with the ignorant and uneducated populace through their well conceived lies.

And having said this, your agenda is actually occurring now. If you look at federal science funding it has been on a steep decline since 2010. Scientists are loosing their jobs, we are being outpaced scientifically by most other industrial nations. We are loosing the technical competition that the US has traditionally led, and has resulted in all of our economic gains. Congratulations, you are winning.
 

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OK, so here is what I did. I asked my six year old if it is alright to spend more money than I can possibly pay back, then increase that spending on sick shrimp and the water disperion patterns of rivers, so that she and her children will have to pay it back.

She said "no".

She's six and even she gets it.
Talk about a loaded question, and one that's not even accurately phrased. There's any number of ways the spending would make sense. The most basic one is if spending causes the economy to grow enough to offset the cost. I haven't read anything about the sick shrimp, but I can easily picture where spending money on a "shrimp treadmill" could make sense if the cost of the treadmill is less than the cost of doing nothing (in decreased tax revenue from the shrimp industry as well as a potential reduction in the workforce leading to more unemployment claims as well as reduced spending from those workers impacting their community). I'm not saying this is the case, but I'm not going to discount it out of hand.

I don't fault your goals of either reducing waste or decreasing our debt, but I think you're over-simplifying the situation. I also think we should start with the biggest problems (healthcare spending and defense) rather than the small fry. Heck, if you're worried about the economic burden on your children you should be fired up against fossil fuels instead of this rinky dink stuff.
 

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I would like to see a small percentage of our war mongering defense budget spent on science that futhers our interest in working with nature to thrive as opposed to destroying our natural world trying to survive unsustainablely.
 

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I would like to see a small percentage of our war mongering defense budget spent on science that futhers our interest in working with nature to thrive as opposed to destroying our natural world trying to survive unsustainablely.
Believe it or not they actually do. There is an environmental R&D program called the Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP, its military so it has to be an acronym) that is a collaborative organization between DoD, DoE, and EPA, but the lion's share of the funding comes from DoD. They provide research grants to look at a variety of environmental and sustainability issues, ranging from energy and water conservation, environmental restoration, resource conservation and climate change, and other areas focused on waste minimization and military system sustainability. It may be "small" in comparison to the overall DoD budget, but its big on impact especially in the environmental engineering field as it provides one of the best revenue streams for looking at real environmental problems and coming up with solutions. Its a good program, though I may be biased, as my PhD work at Colorado School of Mines was funded by SERDP ;).
 
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