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Old 03-01-2007, 22:43   #46
Kai Nui
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So, by that sort of logic, licenses INCREASE terrorism?
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Old 03-01-2007, 23:24   #47
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Originally Posted by Kai Nui
In all fairness coot, while I agree with your question, N.M.I.K.E. has presented some well thought out counter arguements to the popular opinin here. I think we all agree that regardless of the initial intentions, the idea of providing training for boaters is not a bad one.
I agree that training is a good idea, but the original proposal does not call for training. At best, we assume some kind of training requirement from the analogy with driver's licenses, though my reading of that analogy was only that the Coast Guard doesn't want to administer the licensing process.

( It is unclear to me why the CG would not issue the licenses. They already issue boating licenses. You just aren't required to have one for small recreational vessels. Why ask each state to individually duplicate that function? )

There are really two different discussions going on here:

1) What do you think of Admiral Allen's proposal?
2) Are the current state laws that require training inadequate?

This second discussion, unrelated to Admiral Allen's licensing proposal, is all about what is wrong with the current laws and whether we need to make them better. Given that people are in favor of licensing, I suppose there is a problem with the common practice of the state merely requiring boat operators to pass a boating safety course? Or maybe the problem is that some states don't require enough?
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Old 04-01-2007, 01:01   #48
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Guys - terrorism is NOT a very big problem. You are more likely to be hit by lightning, way more likely to die on the roads, Statistically you are probably more likely to be crushed a vending machine (13 Americans every year).
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Old 04-01-2007, 07:57   #49
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"Please explain how you think boating licenses are a good way to prevent terrorism."
Obviously, if we require the terrorists to identify themselves and obtain a boating license before they steal a boat, we'll be able to find them faster. And, if the license exam asks "Are you now, or have you ever been, a member of a terrorist organization?" we'll be able to arrest them on the spot.

(It's bogus logic like this, from top-level folks like Commandants, which is doing such a fine job of making America into an unsafe 3rd-world country.)
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Old 04-01-2007, 09:32   #50
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coot, you are correct. There are two seperate issues. Licenses to prevent terrorism are a joke, and a bad one at that.
As for training, I ca not speak for all states, but California requires no training. Any joker can get at the helm of a 100 ton mega yacht, and start playing Rodney Dangerfield. The main difference between what I am proposing, and what has been proposed so far is that while all boats should be required to have a trained person on board, not all boat operaters should be required to be trained, and licensed. This would go back to my comments about cruising families having their kids stand watch. Let's say the cut off age is 14, as it is in Maryland. If I was a family with an 11 year old who was raised on the boat, and he/she had been taught his/her whole life about the responsibilities of boat handling, I would certainly not hesitate to let that child stand day watches. The proposal to enact operaters license requirements might make it illegal for that child to stand a watch, or even be at the helm. I do not feel it is up to the Coast Guard to determine if my crew is up to the job of standing watch. Especially based on an arbitrary age requirement. If, in the interest of safety, the Coast Guard wants to make sure there is at least one person on the boat that is qualified to operate it safely, I would support that. Granted, the ideal would be for the government to stay out of my life completely, and let Darwinism take over to weed out the idiots, but even I realize this is not realistic.
To go one step further, I would not object to a requirement that all boats over a specific size, be required to have a licensed captain on board. I would support the idea that this recreational captains license be an abbreviated version of the 6 pack course.
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Old 04-01-2007, 10:03   #51
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I only really have one comment to add, and it's just a repeat:

Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Benjamin Franklin

We, as citizens of the US, cannot separate the boater licensing issue from the greater issue, which was so well put by one of our founding fathers above. It is another encroachment on what was supposed to be (essentially) a free country. The notion of freedom is draining out of here faster than the water in a jet powered public toilet bowl. All because the weak citizens of the USA are scared/coddled into thinking that laws are a great way to protect one's self.

I have an aunt who is all for profiling, licenses like this, random stops and searches, etc.. etc... because she thinks they will save her from the big, bad terrorists at large. Where does she live? NYC? LA? Chicago? Some other high-value target area? Nope. She lives in a 2000 person town in the middle of the woods in New Hampshire. She is a perfect example of what happens to people who take everything they hear from politicians and on the news too seriously. It's people like her who give things like this boater license (to prevent terrorism) momentum. Luckily, we have people like Kai Nui and others here who see it for what it is. Just another nail in the coffin of what was supposed to be freedom.

Safety issues aside (and there are some safety benefits), this is another bad idea that could get passed and crammed down our throats.

Now that I've ranted, they will probably look up my 100 Ton Master's License and run that database to find me. ha ha ha Kidding of course.
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Old 04-01-2007, 13:11   #52
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Sean:
Your comments could go a long way towards answering your querry regarding American's proclivity for gun ownership.
A national passion for individual liberty, ahead of personal responsibility.
Like other admirable attributes, taken to an extreme, a virtue transitions towards a vice.
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Old 04-01-2007, 14:05   #53
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"individual liberty, ahead of personal responsibility."

Unlike you to make such a rash mis-assumption that one is ahead of the other, much less related at all.
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Old 04-01-2007, 20:08   #54
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I think your evaluation is unjustified. There were guys on watch, but they were not authorized to kill civilians in a friendly nation on their own initiative.

Now we have the formally defined exclusion zones around navy ships. I expect that they have changed the rules of engagement so that the somebody on watch IS authorized to kill civilians on approaching vessels under some circumstances.
So are you saying all it took to wake up the brass was 17 KIA?
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Old 04-01-2007, 20:24   #55
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Safe boating

Seems to me I keep reading that the principle ingredient in boating "accidents", as in automobile "accidents" is alcohol in the operator.

Any ideas on how to fix that?
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Old 04-01-2007, 20:29   #56
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Encourage heavy drinking offshore. Darwinism will handle the rest
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Old 04-01-2007, 22:18   #57
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I'll drink to that! But I do all MY drinking firmly attached to my dock!
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Old 04-01-2007, 22:22   #58
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Kai Nui-
Darwinism? Heck, and here for all these years I've never mixed drinking with motor vehicles, simply because they tend to spill the booze! Damn crime to let good booze slop around in a car or boat, when you can find a nice stable chair instead.<G>
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Old 04-01-2007, 23:20   #59
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Originally Posted by thefantasea
So are you saying all it took to wake up the brass was 17 KIA?
I seem to recall from reports at the time that the guys on watch were authorized to return fire, but not to fire the first shot. That required approval from a senior officer. The attack was fast enough that the chain of command could not respond effectively.

The investigation found that the procedures in place could not have prevented the attack even if everybody implemented the procedures perfectly. In other words, it was not crew negligence that allowed the attack to succeed. They were following orders (rules of engagement) that were not good enough for the circumstances.
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Old 05-01-2007, 12:42   #60
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personal vs public

"He who defends everything, defends nothing."
Frederick The Great

In Orwell’s, unpublished preface to Animal Farm he asked, how is it that in free England the outcomes in the media are not all that different to what I’m satirizing in this account of a totalitarian monster? He mentioned two reasons. One reason the outcomes are similar is that the press is owned by wealthy men who have every reason not to want certain ideas to be expressed, so you get self-censorship. The second reason is just a good education. If you’re properly educated at the elite schools, you internalize the understanding that there are certain things it wouldn’t do to say. That’s the effect of a "proper education." This doesn’t mean just schools, but the whole system. The higher the education you receive, the more internalized the values are, and this leads to voluntary censorship.

If as the Admiral suggests this is about making the country less likely to suffer attack, how about tracking the most likely localities, methods, and scenarios that a terrorist could use to do the most damage to the USA and concentrating our resources at those junctures. Seems logical to me….
But it’s not happening is it?

I repeat, we track vessels by ID already, this thread has gone off on the "protecting the citizen from his own folly" tack. This dialogue, like the national twenty-four news cycle dialogue it mirrors belies the twisted logic of the national debate. We here in the US balance personal responsibility with relatively harsh criminal sanctions for those who break the rules. That is the price for your folly. Gun ownership easy, crime committed with a weapon, harsh.

I was in Basel Switzerland two years summers ago, it was oppressively hot, I noticed a lot of people were floating down the Rhine with little dry bags for flotation (and to keep their clothes dry), it looked delightful. I noted the fast moving barge traffic, the four or five knot current, the bridge abutments and thought, that looks dangerous, someone could easily get swept under one of those suckers, in the US you wouldn’t be allowed to that….too dangerous! Sure enough that afternoon a Swiss rescue helicopter was swooping around a bridge abutment, looking for some unfortunate. I found the sport shop that rented the dry bags and spent the next day floating down the Rhine, hopping on a streetcar to take me back upriver and repeating the folly perhaps a dozen times.

Was I being irresponsible? If I got in a jam and had to be rescued (or worse) would it be my responsibility if the helicopter crew that came to my aid had an accident? If I were killed would I be guilty of giving my mother a heart attach on hearing of my untimely demise? At what point does my decision making become criminal and not merely folly? At what point does the "state" protect me from myself? If it were a more reasoned debate in the USA we’d be putting the "state" to work providing health care for all…..that’s the twisted logic that causes me to shake my head in disbelief…. We have here in the US a voluntary subordination, not just of the media, but of the articulate intellectual community generally.

Yep there are going to be times when people die before their time, it is fate, it is statistical, but to use that argument to protect those from themselves gives me a headache
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