Sunday, January 8, 2012

Another Government Agency Gone Crazy

Many of my liberal friends like regulations. And in their intended form and with practical implementation I would agree that some regulations are important. But most regulations have gone way too far and have become a way for government to remind us that they run things. A way to impose their will even if it is not for the general good.

There is a conservation group trying to save the whooping crane by raising chicks and teaching them their traditional (but now extinct) migration routes. Thousands of volunteer hours go into this effort. They hope to re-establish a wild population. Who could be against this goal and the ethical way they go about trying to reach it? Apparently the FAA is.

The pilots who "teach" the young cranes the ancient migration routes by leading them in small aircraft have been grounded by the FAA because they are paid by the conservation group. These are pilots who fly over 1000 miles in an ultra light leading birds. The FAA objects to them being PAID for this effort as apparently it is against the regulations of their pilot's license.

If they did the job for free there would be no violation. That leads me to believe there is no safety issue because whether they are paid or not makes no difference on the type of aircraft they fly, their route, their credentials, etc. Its just a technicality - they are being paid. The FAA does not like that.

From the article:

"Now the birds and the plane are grounded in Alabama while the Federal Aviation Administration investigates whether the journey violates regulations because the pilot was being paid by a conservation group to lead the cranes on their first migration instead of working for free."

Aside from being totally absurd this is a waste of my tax dollars by the FAA. Do they have such a surplus that they can regulate ultralight pilots leading birds around? Wouldn't their time be better spent investigating the abuses of offshore maintenance facilities utilized by the major commercial air carriers? Where are their priorities?

When talking abour regulations some people say "but they would never enforce the regulation in THAT way". Unfortunately yes, they would.

Read the whole article here.