We finally joined NAR

I've always intended to join the NAR but for whatever reason, just never got around to it. Then about 2 weeks ago, as we were planning to finally begin
the 3 stage Saturn V, Verna and I were discussing the current situation with the hobby. As I tend to do, I began way back when were in elementary school (62-70) and I related to her a brief history of the hobby and the way things have gotten to where we are today. The one thing that kept coming up, was where would the hobby be without the NAR? What if the NAR had never existed? I thought about that for a while.
No matter how anyone may feel about the NAR at present, it's for sure that without the organization, the hobby would not have enjoyed the fantastic flight / safety record it has, for so very long. IMHO, the hobby would not have grown to the level it has, at least not for the average enthusiasts and most likely, HPR may have never come about, since most of the HPR people I've talked to, started as Centuri / Estes hobbyists.
My wife has a way of looking at things that tends to make you really think, and the one thing I discovered after talking to her about this, is that since 1968, I've benefited from the tireless and I'm sure at times, thankless efforts, of an organization that I've never really fully appreciated or contributed to. I never stopped to think of how many ways the NAR has fostered a hobby, that we all love so much and how much I have enjoyed the fruits of the laborers, of the past and the present. To give credit, where credit is due.
I can remember when the only place to purchase rocketry items, was the only local mom and pop hobby shop in town and most people didn't have one of those. You had to be in a relatively large town to have a hobby shop back then. Most people, if they were lucky, had to order from a Centuri catalog, IF, you could find one. The kid with a catalog in our neighborhood was KING! There is no doubt in my mind, that the reason you can go almost anywhere today (Wal-Mart, Hobby Lobby, Michaels, etc.) and easily find some form of rocketry, is related to the success and standing of the NAR.
So, last Tuesday I decided I would be a freeloader no more and we faxed in our applications. Friday, we got our numbers and reply packet in the mail. Pretty fast service in my opinion. Even got consecutive numbers.We also joined HARA at the same time and hope to be (work schedule permitting) at several HARA launches this season. I was able to attend a HARA launch back in 1999 and saw George fly his X-1. It was really impressive, the people were great and they're only 90 minutes away. I don't think we'll be able to make it to the SEARS launch this month but we've got the March launch on the calendar. Come on, good weather!
The NAR and HARA grew by 2 members last week. That may be insignificant in numbers but it was important to us that we try to do something more than just talk and complain about the way things are at the moment.
Can't wait to order our tags next week to help restore the Saturn V in Huntsville. : )
Randy Verna
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I will be renewing two members for two years each especially at the higher prices. Support the NAR. Do NOT tolerate bad policies!
Jerry
--
Jerry Irvine, Box 1242, Claremont, California 91711 USA
Opinion, the whole thing. <mail to: snipped-for-privacy@gte.net>
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Randy wrote:

Randy,
I don't believe that any of us would challenge the merits of NAR [or TRA] in principal
what I and others have issues with are specific policies TRA and NAR became committed to by specific individuals on their respective boards
so when we say "TRA/NAR obstructed the legislative effort", or "TRA/NAR enforces regulations they themselves represent are inapplicable to rocket motors", what we mean is the leadership responsible for those policies
I am a member in good standing of both TRA and NAR, in part because my membership helps finance site insurance for local clubs around the country. I have great admiration and respect (and often downright awe) for the abilities and accomplishments of rocketeers (who more often than not are also members).
but I believe that we have been led down the garden path WRT their 'good intentions' on our behalf, when the evidence is that they consistently act as regulatory surrogates rather than rocketry advocacies, they have in the past represented that they actually performed services to rocketry that they in fact did not (e.g.; motor certs), and they have acted suspiciously regarding support of a free market for rocketry.
their conduct during the SJC/DoJ debacle was the last straw.
I am determined to expose the conditions that allowed for such inept handling of our affairs in an effort to forestall future damage done ostensibly in our 'best interests'
- iz
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You go girl.
--
Jerry Irvine, Box 1242, Claremont, California 91711 USA
Opinion, the whole thing. <mail to: snipped-for-privacy@gte.net>
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Jerry Irvine wrote:

ROF!
- iz
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Translated from Iz-talk:
<< I don't believe that any of us would challenge the merits of NAR [or TRA] in principal>>
"But I do it anyway, on a daily basis."
<<what I and others have issues with are specific policies TRA and NAR became committed to by specific individuals on their respective boards>>
"Me and one or two other guys are whining about TRA/NAR's refusal to let Jerry do whatever the hell he wants, and to crown Wickman King of Capitol Hill and myself as Savior of Rocketry."
<< so when we say "TRA/NAR obstructed the legislative effort", or "TRA/NAR enforces regulations they themselves represent are inapplicable to rocket motors", what we mean is the leadership responsible for those policies."
"So when I make up a bunch of bogus accusations against TRA/NAR, it's because I have these delusions about conspiracies and can't grasp the concept that any of the members really support the leadership's actions."
<<I am a member in good standing of both TRA and NAR, in part because my membership helps finance site insurance for local clubs around the country. >>
"I joined these groups mostly because it gives me a chance to try to destroy them from within."
<<I have great admiration and respect (and often downright awe) for the abilities and accomplishments of rocketeers >>
"I believe the members at large are a bunch of brainless sheep who can't think for themselves and need me to save them from their Evil Overlords. But I gotta throw 'em a compliment now and then in an attempt to make them accept me as their savior."
<< but I believe that we have been led down the garden path WRT their 'good intentions' on our behalf, when the evidence is that they consistently act as regulatory surrogates rather than rocketry advocacies...>>
"Part One of my plan to rule rocketry is to convince everyone that they are dim-witted saps who blindly elected Evil Vermin Scum as their leaders."
<< ...they have in the past represented that they actually performed services to rocketry that they in fact did not (e.g.; motor certs), and they have acted suspiciously regarding support of a free market for rocketry.>>
"They pissed off an anal-retentive control freak over a decade ago, and I've bought into the guy's red hot vendetta. Oh, and they won't let Jerry do whatever the hell he wants, any way he wants."
<< their conduct during the SJC/DoJ debacle was the last straw.>>
"I need a scapegoat for the failure of Wickman's senate bill."
<< I am determined to expose the conditions that allowed for such inept handling of our affairs in an effort to forestall future damage done ostensibly in our 'best interests'>>
"I'm determined to ignore reality and history, while constantly denigrating the efforts of the dedicated hobbyist-volunteers who have worked hard on our behalf for so many years. If I keep this up long enough, maybe eventually you dumb clucks will realize that I alone know what's best for you and you'll finally start obeying my every command. (But don't expect me to actually run for BOD or anything, that might involve real work.)"
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RayDunakin wrote:

<all of Ray's B.S. snipped>
- iz
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Ismaeel Abdur-Rasheed wrote:

<relevant passage follows>

Maybe I can help you. At
http://www.space-rockets.com/congress.html
the article, "Regulatory Relief Progress Report", says in paragraphs four and five that the opposition to S724 was underestimated by those who introduced the Bill, and also that the President's opposition to the Bill was unexpected. It seems, from what the article says, that it was a poorly planned and analyzed legislative attempt in the first place and S724 had no real hope of ever becoming law at all.
A mirror might be a useful tool in your determined effort to expose the conditions you speak of.
Just trying to help.
--
Gary Bolles
NAR 82636
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nice wit, Gary :)
I responded privately
Gary wrote:

yes, the DoJ's representations to the SJC that hobby rockets could knock down planes flying at 30,000 feet and destroy tanks at 5 miles was not the kind of fanciful lies we expected

the operative word being "seems"
with more cooperation from the TRA/NAR machine we would have made the issues more visible, and brought some scrutiny to bear on the disinformation
it is true that for the most part politicians posture for the press. But with the enough facts properly presented I don't think many Senators would care to be associated with outright lies like those we saw in the SJC
you know, Bunny said he offered to help JW, but was rebuffed on several occassions. Let me tell you what really happened.
John launched the legislative initiative with Senator Enzi. He asked both TRA and NAR to assist WRT communications to the memberships so that strategically timed letter/fax/phone campaigns would be well coordinated. This is what was needed.
instead the TRA/NAR machine said they had their own political consultant and their position was that they and John Kyte determine what actions and timing were needed. This despite the fact that (a) Senator Enzi and staff were already productively strategizing with JW as to the most effective courses to take, and (b) TRA/NARs own agendas could very possibly be in conflict should considered actions be seen to have implications for the lawsuit or for their control over commercial rocketry.
John said, 'thanks, but no thanks'. This is the 'rebuff' than Bunny described.
JW then appealed to members directly
as the history shows, TRA/NAR second-guessed every call for action that JW made, and repeatedly (via ROL and elsewhere) directed the members to disregard JW's announcements of campaigns. Their excuse was that they were "confirming with Senator Enzi's office", when it should be clear to any 12 year old that a Senator is constrained in what he can 'officially and publically' direct regarding lobbying activity. JW and Sen. Enzi communications exist at a level that could never be achieved by John Kyte, but TRA/NAR insisted that every action be explicitly recommended by Sen. Enzi's office.
if you want to talk about egos, talk about Mark Bundick, Dick Embry, and John Kyte
since the materials used in JW's amateur rocketry activities did not include APCP at all, the impact of APCP on the explosives list had no bearing on his business. It was JW's genuine concern for the state of rocketry in general that moved him to step up and address the issues looming on the horizon head-on.
the naysayers have NO CLUE what a sincere and generous person JW is
use your brain and THINK
read S.724 as introduced and see if you can grasp what he and Sen. Enzi were fighting for
it is bigger than hobby rocketry as you know it, MUCH bigger
personally I think the obstructionists should be ashamed to posture themselves as advocates of rocketry after the damage they have done. At a minimum, they should get the hell out of the way, and let the people who are committed to its future do what it takes to get the job done
I know that JW shares my sentiment when I say "thank you!" to the many hundreds of individuals who used their own judgement and took quick and decisive actions when needed throughout the various campaigns. It is knowing that you are out there, sharing the vision and the commitment that encourages us when the odds seem insurmountable
no one has given up the fight on this end, and I suspect that neither have most of you
may God bless our efforts to preserve our freedoms, and strengthen us against those who strive to destroy our way of life - here, as well as abroad.
amen! amen! amen!
- iz
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<< nice wit, Gary :) I responded privately >>
Gee, you must have really hit a nerve there Gary.
<< it is true that for the most part politicians posture for the press. But with the enough facts properly presented I don't think many Senators would care to be associated with outright lies like those we saw in the SJC >>
All it takes to stop a bill dead in its tracks is ONE senator, and there are already two who were more than willing and able to do so.
<< instead the TRA/NAR machine said they had their own political consultant and their position was that they and John Kyte determine what actions and timing were needed. This despite the fact that (a) Senator Enzi and staff were already productively strategizing with JW as to the most effective courses to take, >>
And obviously the Wickman/Enzi strategy was NOT effective, nor did it take into consideration the fact that once a bill is out of their hands, they lose all control over its contents.
<<and (b) TRA/NARs own agendas could very possibly be in conflict should considered actions be seen to have implications for the lawsuit >>
And you think damaging the lawsuit is a good thing??? In what way was it a good idea to ignore any possible implications the bill might have on the suit??
<<...or for their control over commercial rocketry. >>
"Control" had nothing to do with it. What is relevant is that they do have a responsibility to protect model and high power rocketry and to represent the interests of hobbyists in those fields.
<< since the materials used in JW's amateur rocketry activities did not include APCP at all, the impact of APCP on the explosives list had no bearing on his business. >>
That's NOT what he was saying at the time. He was convinced that ANCP would be next on the ATF's agenda, if it wasn't already on it.
Oh, and if it wasn't going to affect him directly, and he was supposedly only doing it for our benefit, why would he be so adamant about refusing any direction from us??
<< the naysayers have NO CLUE what a sincere and generous person JW is >>
I'm sure he is. Unfortunately he also seems to have an inability to listen to others, and would rather blame a scapegoat than admit that it failed and move on to the next battle.
<< read S.724 as introduced and see if you can grasp what he and Sen. Enzi were fighting for >>
None of which matters one whit. What matters is whether or not the bill ever had a chance of getting passed into law. It did not. I don't blame John Wickman for that. I do blame him for his divisive, destructive scapegoating. And I blame you for turning it into the neverending story -- at least Wickman eventually shut up.
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Ismaeel Abdur-Rasheed wrote:
<responses in-line>

I received the PDF file.

Welcome to the world of Federal Law. (I am not an expert, just a veteran gun rights advocate and volunteer. Been here before.)

Its a sad comment on the System, but this naivete is precisely the problem.

Iz... in this context, Mark posts "from-the-horses-mouth", authoritative information, and he does so in a public forum. He is the official President of a national rocketry organization. In the absence of any other considerations, this level of information must be granted considerable relative weight.
Quite frankly, I am not interested in your opinion of events. Your self-professed "position" at ARSA is that of a "communications facilitator" and you have provided no information as to your official involvement in the legislative effort itself nor the actual level of access you had to meetings, discussions, etc, etc, etc, There is no basis from which I can assign a relative weight to your information, nor the level of authority with which you speak on these issues. Actually, there's no publicly available way I know of to verify an official ARSA "position" even exists at all. If you were involved on a private, non-ARSA level, you have still not provided any information in what capacity you acted.
Compared to Mark's input, your's is simply heresay. And this is not personal, Iz, it is a simple matter of credibility. As it stands, Bunny wins the credibility race hands down. If JW would like to personally post in this forum, I would grant that information equal weight to Bunny's. If you can show that you were a principal in the effort, I would be inclined to allow more weight to your information, as well.

12 year olds will also make decisions in a vacuum. I will not.

I don't. You brought it up, not me.

Actually, I have no doubt whatsoever that Mr. Wickman has a sincere desire to promote rocketry. I've posted several times that I admire his technological competence and his AM/EX contributions.
But, as they say, the road to hell is paved with good intentions.
724 failed on its own in an adverse political climate. The NAR didn't kill it, nor did the TRA. It was doomed from the start. All it succeeded in doing was giving a couple self=serving politicians free advertising and prompting the DOJ/BATFE to bolster their position against us at a time when "fanciful lies" would be accepted with no questions asked. The negative impact will be with us for a long while.
And you are desperately trying to shift the blame for those results onto someone else. Its not the intent of 724, Iz, its the method and timing and lack of foresight in proposing it that I have a problem with. And the devisive way you pursue your so-called solutions on this forum. You, sir, are a detriment to the hobby at this point in time. And we have more than enough detriment to go around right now. You are paving another road.
Take your own advice on the line below. You don't have to try and make others look bad to make yourself look good. In my opinion, its a self-defeating tactic anyways, common use notwithstanding.

Ummmmm....ahhhhhh....eeeeeeeee....ahhhhh. Okay. I did.

It is? How big is it? How do you know how I perceive hobby rocketry?
Do a Google on my sig. It was carefully chosen to express a particular viewpoint and attitude. See if you can determine my opinion of the actual exemption legislation itself.

Well said. Now, use that mirror to identify the obstructionists.

--
Gary Bolles
NAR 82636
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Gary wrote:

<snip>
we will have to agree to disagree, Gary
BTW, I enjoyed your piece "My dialog with the AAG's letter" at http://home.comcast.net/~bollesg/rockets/doj.html
I can see that your heart is in the right place :)
- iz
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<< And you are desperately trying to shift the blame for those results onto someone else. Its not the intent of 724, Iz, its the method and timing and lack of foresight in proposing it that I have a problem with. And the devisive way you pursue your so-called solutions on this forum. You, sir, are a detriment to the hobby at this point in time. And we have more than enough detriment to go around right now. >>
Well said, Gary!
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RayDunakin wrote:

Ray's endorsement .. the kiss of death
- iz
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Yep....and carries more weight.
Kooch
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Yep....and carries more weight.
Kooch
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com (RayDunakin) wrote:

At what point is truth telling NOT mere blame shifting?
--
Jerry Irvine, Box 1242, Claremont, California 91711 USA
Opinion, the whole thing. <mail to: snipped-for-privacy@gte.net>
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wrote:

This position puts fear in my bones. It is clear that even at the level of the rocketry industry itself the position of power greatly exceeds the position of truth or fact, and power covers fact.
We are doomed.
And we have already seen the results.
ATF
NFPA
Legislation
Lobbying
Membership
Product access
ALL on negative trends. ALL contributing to NAR power (overan ever decreasong zealot base) and to loss of rocketry freedoms and participation.
We are doomed.
All proposals to correct it are DOA at both NAR and TRA. I know. I have tried. And I am the guy who successfully got the ball rolling on LMR and HPR.
Jerry
--
Jerry Irvine, Box 1242, Claremont, California 91711 USA
Opinion, the whole thing. <mail to: snipped-for-privacy@gte.net>
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Came along of their own accord and "decided" APCP was an explosive.

Legalized an otherwise illegal activity in the majority of States.

At first, this avenue was not promoted by the NAR. Only when the gun (ARSA) went off half cocked did the NAR join the battle to try to throw some weight to an ill founded effort.

Testing the waters before jumping in.

(whisper) Jerry's a member. Membership allows authorities a feeling of comfort when seeing rockets take off from school fields and public parks.

All the motors you'd want (except for a minor shortage caused by a manufacturing facility fire) from a variety of manufacturers. What's your point?
steve

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Their own law saves us fromthem.

How matters. The EXEMPTION that was replaced by REGULATION means your premise is and was always false. It was legal before.

Rewriting history.

Then don't jump! The water is COLD!

Membership has DECLIINED.
Access to HPR is greatly more difficult than even 5 short years ago.

Except erases everything that preceeds it.
No longer 20 suppliers to choose from.
http://www.v-serv.com/usr/images/NARcerts.11-97.640.jpg

--
Jerry Irvine, Box 1242, Claremont, California 91711 USA
Opinion, the whole thing. <mail to: snipped-for-privacy@gte.net>
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