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Author Topic: DUMP Pre Published Answers for the Extra  (Read 34588 times)
N2EY
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Posts: 3860




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« Reply #165 on: March 08, 2010, 03:14:28 AM »

K9AIM: "Streisand 1942, Maclaine 1934, I was born exactly one month earlier, and -- since we are name-dropping -- so was Houdini."

My birthday (and Barbra's and Shirley's) is sandwiched between Shakespeare's and Marconi's.  

- - - - - - - -

K9AIM: "His main guitar was a Guild (acoustic). He also played Banjo, Mandolin, etc. He could really play."

All those skills...

K9AIM: "He knew Les Paul, but I guess he was a Luddite because while he had electric pick-ups in his Guild for performing, he never went with a solid body electric. ;-)"

Old-school

K9AIM: "He used to be on the NBC radio National "Farm-Home Hour" -- must have been prior to television. He was born in 1909 and passed in January 1976. A few months later after his death, my uncle W9PUT SK (my father's older brother) got me a key and a code practice cassette. later that year, I passed the code test and the exam (proctored by my uncle) and got my Novice license."

Great story - thanks!

I am reminded of how Garrison Keillor revived the radio variety show. Something that was supposedly long gone when he started "A Prairie Home Companion".

K9AIM: "not sure how you can explain it except as bias"

The term you are looking for is "double standard".

There may be a lot of yelling about the test, but the fact is that all license classes were available with just a 5 wpm code test as far back as 1990 (with a doctor's note). And the test has been completely gone for more than three years.

K9AIM: "if we would only get our Luddite butts in gear we would all be driving George Jetson jet-packs!"

So much of the predicted future never happened. So much of what happened was never predicted. Where's my 400 mph flying car?

K9AIM: "paper, copiers, acoustic guitars, horse riding, bicycles, books, straight keys ... wow, humans have a lot of Luddite tendencies ... but, as you pointed out earlier -- change for change's sake is not necessarily good and can be detrimental."

If it's not broken, don't fix it.

The problem is that if something works, you can't sell people new ones. So some folks have to "discover" problems where there aren't any.

K9AIM: "maybe we should argue that it be increased -- and that some segments be relegated strictly for straight key CW (gasp, scream). Since we Luddites are so formidable we probably have a chance..."

I think each amateur band should have a band segment that is CW-only. Such as 6 and 2 meters have.  

K9AIM: "i hate to break it to you but they even sometimes do plays. that's right rather than spend mega-millions on pyro-technics, big-name actors, and other smoke and mirrors -- sometimes they do old-school Shakespeare... mind you however -- when that happens it is pretty egregious Luddite behavior."

Yup. But even the actors aren't immune. More than a few film and TV actors have done stage acting - even after becoming well-known on the screen. Real live performing - in front of people!

Show biz is the only game I know of where they make such a big deal about giving each other awards. Oscars, Emmys, Grammys, Golden Globes, etc. And they turn the awards presentations into shows of their own.
They turn out a few decent shows and a ton of absolute junk every year, then give out awards to distract us.

It's cute the way they use the word "industry" to describe show biz, as if they were making machinery or something essential like that.

Of course the awards are really just marketing tools and a way to jack up sales and prices.

I think every business should have its own televised awards ceremonies. Science, engineering, education, agriculture, transportation, real estate, for just a start.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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KB1SF
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« Reply #166 on: March 08, 2010, 06:13:42 AM »

Len, K6LHA wrote:  "LEGALLY, the FCC made some regulations which - in my opinion - were in a grey area of proper law, possibly violating some of it way back a half century ago. I could care less about that PAST. I'm still looking FORWARD to the future and NOT playing honcho to rule over 'lesser beings' in USA amateur radio like so many old-timers seem to demand."

----------------

Unfortunately, Len, the "gray area" legality of all that FCC nonsense from long ago has now become thoroughly entrenched in our Service.  

And it is killing the hobby.

Indeed, from the long list of remarks posted prior to this one, it is painfully apparent what what seems to be driving so many of the "Morse Testing and Incentive Licensing forever" clowns into such a tizzy over the FCC's decision to finally drop such things as the Morse testing requirement is the fact that the blatantly discriminatory US Government "lid filters" they have all been relying on for so many years to keep the "riff raff" out of the hobby (thereby institutionalizing their snobbery) are now, one by one, going by the wayside.

By ANY measure, the US Government has now…officially… debunked ALL of their completely bogus "lid filter" arguments.  

Thankfully, our US regulators ARE now (finally!) taking action to start undoing the mess their predecessors (and their willing ARRL co-conspirators) created years ago when they turned what was once a simple, basic competency test for a Ham Radio license into a semi-caste-like system of "rewards" based on an unneeded series of overly comprehensive "earned" achievement tests.  

In spite of all the vitriol and obstructionist blather that's now emanating from our Luddite contingent over these events, our regulators of today now appear to be WELL along in their own plans to dismantle the REST of the remaining "hazing rituals" in the licensing system for our Service so as to bring it back into line with the (far less achievement-oriented) ITU guidelines.

However, as I have said previously, progress toward that goal remains agonizingly slow.  That's probably because many of the obsessive proponents of incentive licensing who have been buying into that particularly bogus bill of goods over the years are STILL alive and are STILL pressuring our regulators (and lobby organizations like the ARRL) to indefinitely hang onto their dying dreams of regulated snobbery.  

Now I certainly understand such feelings (even if I don’t agree with them).  That's because, in many cases, incentive licensing is the only FCC licensing structure for our Service that many in the "50+ crowd" in the USA have ever known.  

I also know from my own experiences in the helping profession how terribly frightening basic, structural change in long-coveted institutions can be for some people…particularly for those whose only reason for getting up in the morning is a "hobby" like Amateur Radio.

As you I have already observed, for FAR too many of these people, ham radio has now become more like a fundamentalist religion than a hobby, complete with highly structured ranks and titles, as well as unwritten "rules" and "rituals", not to mention a whole plethora of sacred "rites of passage".

In the horrifically narrow minds of the "faithful" in our Service, unless someone holds a 13 or 20-WPM, FCC-administered Advanced or Extra Class license, genuflects daily at the altar of Hiram Percy Maxim, and forever pledges to strictly adhere to all the 1950s-era traditions and other "rites of passage" from THEIR Amateur Radio Service of long ago, one can never "enter into the Kingdom" and be deemed a "real ham".

Indeed, newcomers to our hobby who hail from the vast unwashed masses of that "other" radio service (CB) are particularly unwelcome. In the minds of our resident Mutawas, such low-life are absolutely NOT (and never will be) worthy enough to share the same radio spectrum with those who regard themselves as the keepers of the ancient and most holy rituals of our Service.  That's because such newcomers entered into the "Kingdom" without being properly "baptized".

Unfortunately, and as we have also seen by their postings here on E-ham, our hobby still boasts a highly vocal cadre of these crusty curmudgeons who firmly believe that only people who use Morse, AM and/or SSB (vice IRLP, Winlink PSK31 and/or Echolink) are "real hams". And then we wonder why the bulk of today's youth are now routinely looking elsewhere for ways to communicate with their peers!

The bottom line here is the requirement to successfully pass such things as a Morse test (and/or obtaining an ego-stroking, so-called "Extra" Class license) for full frequency privileges in our Service SHOULD have been completely removed DECADES ago!  

The primary reason removing the Morse test in 2007 didn't cause a large uptick in our ranks is probably because that action came WAY too late in the game to make any real difference.  Our potential "new blood" (along with all their fresh, new ideas) have LONG since "voted with their feet".  

And those people AREN'T coming back.

As a result, we no longer have the numbers in our ranks (nor can we point to any recently significant contributions to the advancement of communications technology) to continue justifying our free and unfettered access to the literally BILLIONS of dollars worth of internationally allocated frequency spectrum we are currently sitting on.  

The truth is that we haven't "pulled our weight" in the "advancing the state of the radio art" department for decades.  As a result, we've now become little more than unworthy squatters in highly valuable radio spectrum the well-monied commercial interests would just LOVE to get their grubby hands on.  

Unfortunately…. if we keep going the way we are now going…they soon will.  

So, to the "Morse Testing and Incentive Licensing Forever" crowd, I encourage you to now sit back and watch as your hobby continues its long, slow slide into irrelevant oblivion.  

Up until fairly recently, you and your like-thinking buddies have been (successfully) clamoring to keep everything just as it was when you were first licensed.   That's because, in your own narrow little minds, ANY progress in Amateur Radio…be it regulatory, sociological or technological…poses a dire threat to your systemically discriminatory "Good Old Boy's Radio Club" and is, therefore, to be passionately resisted at all costs.

But, unfortunately, as a DIRECT result of your being allowed to "rule the regulatory roost" over these last 50 years, Amateur Radio has since become an ever-aging, and ever more irrelevant technological backwater of your own making that is clearly now headed for the dustbin of history.

Keith
KB1SF / VA3KSF
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KB1SF
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« Reply #167 on: March 08, 2010, 06:34:44 AM »

N2EY wrote:  "One thing I find particularly amusing is when someone presents themselves as Being For Change, that they're always Looking Forward and not Stuck In The Past. Then you discover how much they opposed change they didn't like - such as a zoning ordinance change - because they were afraid of how it would affect them."
--------------------------
Once again, Jim, you've done ANOTHER wonderfully irrelevant kabuki dance around the issue under discussion.  

And you STILL haven't addressed my basic question.  

So, I'll ask it again:  How does knowing what's contained in a schematic diagram for a piece of electronic equipment make one UNIQUELY QUALIFIED (beyond the examination one has ALREADY successfully passed for their General Class license) to operate their equipment in the last few KHz of our HF Bands, or to apply for a so-called "exclusive" call sign?

I've always found it fascinating in their news release that reported their decision to completely eliminate Morse testing in our Service, the FCC noted that, "This change eliminates an unnecessary regulatory burden that may discourage current amateur radio operators from advancing their skills and participating more fully in the benefits of Amateur Radio."

But it seems the FCC conveniently FORGOT to mention what a blatant "unnecessary regulatory burden" our Extra Class license requirements pose to anyone seeking full access to the full "benefits of Amateur Radio".

It's not the "easiness" or "hardness" of the tests (or how "old" they are) that are at issue here, Jim!  Rather, it's the RELEVANCE of the content and comprehensiveness of what's on our license exams as compared to the operational privileges they grant.

Nobody (including you by your continued silence) has yet successfully challenged the fact that General Class licensees have ALREADY demonstrated to our FCC that they can safely and courteously operate in on our HF bands because they have ALREADY been given HF operating privileges.

That is, beyond knowing where a new set of band edges might be (or reading and following a set of directions on how to apply for a so-called "Extra Class" call sign) the operational knowledge and skill requirements for an Extra Class license are IDENTICAL to the operational knowledge and skill requirements needed for a General Class license.

All of which now begs the obvious question that you and others seem to not want to address, let alone to answer:  "Does it REALLY require the mastery of the knowledge contained in a 600-page license manual along with the successful completion of yet ANOTHER written examination to verify one's fitness to operate in the last few KHz of our HF bands and/or to apply for a so-called "exclusive" call sign… particularly when the 50 questions on that exam bear little or no relationship to the additional privileges granted?

Indeed, if the ONLY established REGULATORY outcome possession of an Extra Class license in our Service grants is "exclusive" (that is, "ego-stroking") access to yet another portion of frequency spectrum that lower class licensees have ALREADY demonstrated their fitness to operate in, then it seems to me an excellent legal case could now be made that the requirement to even HAVE such an "Extra Class" license in the mix has absolutely NO regulatory basis under Article 25 (and the recommendations associated, thereto) of the ITU rules.

Indeed, how can forcing people to successfully complete yet ANOTHER examination in order for them to be allowed to exercise so-called "exclusive" privileges that are OPERATIONALLY IDENTICAL to those granted to a lower class licensee be anything BUT an "unnecessary regulatory burden"?  

The bottom line here, Jim, is that, under a federally-funded, US Government-administered program like Amateur Radio, stroking egos and making people feel "exclusive" can no longer be the SOLE regulatory outcome for arbitrarily withholding operational privileges in our Service from one otherwise qualified group of people over another.  

Indeed, that approach to regulating and licensing individuals in US Federal agencies was ruled illegal by a whole plethora of equal access legislation DECADES ago.  Today, there has to be some operationally based REASON for such discrimination.  

And simply stroking someone's ego doesn't cut it.

As I've said, the FCC got away with such regulatory foolishness in the 1950s and 1960s when they tried to turn Amateur Radio into a federally supported. "degree-granting" technical "university" by awarding higher and higher classes of licenses, ("degrees") each with its own ego-stroking set of mode and frequency-based operating privileges.  

But the fact remains that the FCC is a US federal REGULATORY agency.  It is NOT (and never has been) an institution of higher learning.  And the FCC has never had any underlying legal basis for setting themselves up as one.  They have even less today.  

That's because the ONLY legal basis the FCC has under the International Radio Regulations (and US equal access law) is to determine one's fitness to safely OPERATE on our Amateur Radio bands.  Period.

My hunch is that, just like you and your like-thinking buddies, the legal staff down at the FCC in Washington, are now finding it ever more difficult to justifry their 1950s-era, "No Budding RF Engineer Left Behind", achievement-based (as opposed to operationally-based) licensing system for our Service in the face of today's ever-more pervasive equal access legal requirements.

That's probably also why you and your buddies remain deathly afraid of answering the basic question I keep posing.  To do so truthfully would punch a HUGE hole in your argument.  So, you and your buddies just keep changing the subject.  

And THAT particular tactic speaks volumes!

Indeed, I (as well as numerous others) have already WELL established that the Extra Class license meets the criteria for being systemically discriminatory under today's federal equal-access laws.  

So, as I see it, you and your like-thinking buddies can continue your wonderful kabuki dances around the issue.  But, as far as I'm concerned, the ONLY remaining question going forward becomes what (if anything) our politicians and regulatory bureaucrats plan to DO about the blatantly obvious systemic discrimination that STILL pervades the licensing system for our Service.

And WHEN they plan to do it.

Keith
KB1SF / VA3KSF
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KB1SF
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« Reply #168 on: March 08, 2010, 06:49:05 AM »

Len (K6LHA) wrote:  "his (Jim's) conditioned thinking is so strong that I doubt he can really understand he IS deeply conditioned. His hobby emotions are so welded into the monthly output of ARRL publications that they are inseparable. He talks in extremes of boosterism or he arrogantly dismisses those who won't agree with him. Thirdly, you've already seen how he flies off into far, far realms of pure MISDIRECTION on subject matters having nothing at all to do with any subject under discussion."

----------------

Len, the simple fact that Jim continually refuses to even DISCUSS the basic question I keep putting to him…a question, which underlies the entire thread…speaks volumes.

Indeed, as Sigmund Freud once noted:  "A devout believers' acceptance of a universal neurosis spares them from the task of constructing a personal one."

'Nuff said.

Keith
KB1SF / VA3KSF
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K9AIM
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« Reply #169 on: March 08, 2010, 07:05:11 AM »

KB1SF: "How does knowing what's contained in a schematic diagram for a piece of electronic equipment make one UNIQUELY QUALIFIED (beyond the examination one has ALREADY successfully passed for their General Class license) to operate their equipment in the last few KHz of our HF Bands, or to apply for a so-called "exclusive" call sign?"

are you advocating then that the General be abandoned leaving only the Extra -- or that the Extra be abandoned leaving only the General? Or do you prefer the exam fall in the middle bewteen the two and a new license class replace the Extra and General and that access to all vanity callsigns be opened to all licensed amateurs?  

- - - - - - -

KB1SF: "Indeed, how can forcing people to successfully complete yet ANOTHER examination in order for them to be allowed to exercise so-called "exclusive" privileges that are OPERATIONALLY IDENTICAL to those granted to a lower class licensee be anything BUT an "unnecessary regulatory burden"?

because they enable access to segmnens where only operators who are deeemed to hold a given level of proficiency can comingle.  because it promotes scientific learning and innovation.

- - - - - - -

KB1SF: " The bottom line here, Jim, is that, under a federally-funded, US Government-administered program like Amateur Radio, stroking egos and making people feel "exclusive" can no longer be the SOLE regulatory outcome for arbitrarily withholding operational privileges in our Service from one otherwise qualified group of people over another.
Indeed, that approach to regulating and licensing individuals in US Federal agencies was ruled illegal by a whole plethora of equal access legislation DECADES ago. Today, there has to be some operationally based REASON for such discrimination.

The Extra is not designed to make people feel "exclusive."  And   Discrimination based on race or ethnic  background or gender is illegal, but discrimination per se is not against the law.
We have de-regulated ourselves into a situation where we have given the fox control of the henhouse because govt. is propagandized to be de facto "bad." never mind that the government in America is the people though if you want to help the foxes stay in control.
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KE7RTV
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« Reply #170 on: March 08, 2010, 09:52:33 AM »

Keith,

Let's say for a second that there is no longer any
testing and all an applicant needs to do is demon-
strate his ability to operate a radio. Would you then
expect a large number of young people to pursue the
hobby? If not, then why not? What else has to change to make the hobby interesting to young people?
(please don't say the old guys have to die, because I'm one of those old guys) <gr>

I tend to agree with you about the relevance of the
material on the exams but I don't see how just the
elimination of testing will bring in a large influx
of new (young) people.

Jim and Len, I know you make a good case for a lot of
the material now being covered on the exams and I
respect that, but it seems to me that the question for
most of the material is, "is this absolutely necessary" for someone to know before he can operate
a ham radio and in many instances the answer seems to
be no.

Keith's point that the depth to which a person wishes
to involve himself in the hobby should be left
up to each person and not defined by someone else seems to be a good one, and difficult to refute.

Steve KE7RTV
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KE7RTV
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« Reply #171 on: March 08, 2010, 10:13:56 AM »

While I'm predisposed to do away with the exams I have
to say that the worry about amateur radio turning into
another CB is very legitimate and shouldn't be tossed
away as just another form of bigotry.

I haven't used a CB since the 70s so a couple of years
ago I bought one for my grandson. I thought it would
be a good way to interest him in the radio hobby.
Boy, was I wrong about that.. in fact, after hearing
some of the filthy language being used, seemingly on
every channel, I took it apart and used it for parts.

I don't know if the exams are what's keeping amateur
radio from devolving into CB or not, but I don't
think we should criticize those who worry about it
happening without offering some good ideas about how to prevent it.

Steve KE7RTV
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K6LHA
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Posts: 349




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« Reply #172 on: March 08, 2010, 01:03:27 PM »

KE7RTV posted on 8 March 2010:

"Keith, Let's say for a second that there is no longer any testing and all an applicant needs to do is demonstrate his ability to operate a radio."

That has NEVER been a requirement.

There was NEVER any "JOB PROFICIENCY" test in USA amateur radio licensing. The closest possible condition was in the old "morse code cognition tests" that is an old, old hangover from pre-World-War-2 days. Hint: AMATEUR radio is specifically defined as NOT being a "job" with monetary compensation.
.......................
KE7RTV: "Would you then expect a large number of young people to pursue the hobby?"

It is almost impossible to consider such a situation given ALL the OTHER competing interests for "young people's" time today.

Those who don't get out and about much - or just put themselves up as "role models of ideal people" in the usual narcisstic ego-centric way - just can't realize that "young people" have ALWAYS wanted to do their own thing.
.........................
KE7RTV: "What else has to change to make the hobby interesting to young people?"

If I knew the exact formula for that, I would be making money hand over fist and not sit here trying to argue license politics with a small group of hobbyists (who pretend to be great gurus of radio).
.........................
KE7RTV: "I tend to agree with you about the relevance of the material on the exams but I don't see how just the elimination of testing will bring in a large influx of new (young) people."

Neither Keith nor myself are advocating ABSOLUTE ABOLITION of license testing. What is expected to come about with time is RE-regulation. RE-regulation based on the (apparent) insistence of the FCC keeping the license concept as a tool for regulating US civil radio services. Since I was never given any gift of prescience, I can't foretell the EXACT nature of future RE-regulation (that is reserved for those who were code-tested forty years ago), a number of things have to be taken regulation by regulation as time goes on.
.........................
KE7RTV: "Jim and Len, I know you make a good case for a lot of the material now being covered on the exams and I respect that, but it seems to me that the question for most of the material is, "is this
absolutely necessary" for someone to know before he can operate a ham radio and in many instances the
answer seems to be no.

I won't speak for "Jim" (Miccolis) because he doesn't have as much experience in REAL radio as I do and none claimed in any other radio service (mine cover 7 different radio services), but this is a multi-part answer. First of all, the FCC is the agency granting USA amateur radio licenses. The FCC (apparently) desires that radio operator licensees should know applicable FCC radio regulations. That seems emminently reasonable to me. But, there is another fact: Privatized license testing.

Do ANY of us know the EXACT procedure for the FCC checking over ALL the VEC Question Pools? Or even the COLEM Question Pools (for commercial licensees)? I've seen lots of material written up many places on VECs, including their own website (www.ncvec.org), but NOTHING on the submittal of Question Pools for exact confirmation that the FCC "approves" them. Note that the FCC only specifies the total number of questions per class and does NOT specify the SUBJECT of question material in any detail.

Note that isn't any negative critique on either the NCVEC nor FCC, just a missing piece of the puzzle. For USA amateur radio, the NCVEC Question Pool Committee is made up of already-licensed USA radio amateurs, by regulation in Title 47 C.F.R. FCC staffers are NOT required to hold amateur radio licenses, not even Commissioners. That would seem a good thing, except the regulations themselves do not specify the QPC approval system (if there is one).

As to "what is really needed to operate a radio" (as if by practical test), I can only offer some anecdotal evidence by tens of thousands of military servicemen being able to operate complex radio, radar, computer, video systems WITHOUT ANY LICENSE WHATSOEVER on the basis of very limited "schooling." As a U.S. Army veteran, my own experience of training as a microwave radio relay repairman and operator, my first posting was to an HF communications station transmitter site in Tokyo, Japan. Microwave radio relay equipment would not arrive for a year and a half so we were taught on-the-job what was needed to operate and maintain no less than 36 HF transmitters whose power output ranged from 1 to 15 KW (40 KW added later). As far as I know over three years, none of us failed to learn proper care around greater RF power than is allowed amateurs then or now...nobody was kicked out to a lesser occupational specialty.

When Class D Citizen Band Radio Service opened in 1958, there was a slow swelling of users, NONE of whom had to take any formal test for the initial Restricted 3rd Class operator license, there was NO operational test necessary on the former 11m amateur band. Neither was there any formal test to legally operate Class C CB (for radio control) or Class A or B (UHF) transceivers. At one time the EIA (Electronic Industries Association) estimated that about 5 MILLION CB transceivers were operating on highways or in fixed locations in the USA. Some of those CB users were "young people" and they were apparently attracted to that radio service on their own.

Jumping ahead a couple decades plus, the NO-CODE-TEST Technician class amateur radio license was an unqualified success.  That class jumped from Zero in 1990 to 347,236 at midnight on 7 March 2010, or 48.48 percent of ALL USA amateur licensees. More astounding is the those Technician class licensees STILL in their 10-year term numbering 336,228 or 49.04 percent of all individual licensees. Before the ARRL sactified it, Technician became THE entry-point to USA amateur radio. Novice class was already showing decreases in numbers by 1997 (no longer issued as New by mid-2000 and Restructuring).  
.........................
KE7RTV: "Keith's point that the depth to which a person wishes to involve himself in the hobby should be left up to each person and not defined by someone else seems to be a good one, and difficult to refute."

That is also MY opinion. The ARRL is a group of would-be "leaders" in a suburb of Hartford who are really running a publishing house...they aren't going to TELL me what to do. Neither is any other group of would-be "leaders" who want to tell me what to do. There is only ONE civil radio regulator in the USA and that is the FCC. The FCC offers numerous OPTIONS for all licensees and I think that is a wonderful thing. However, some old-before-their-time ancients insist that all should operate as these ancients do. I just give those a rude Italian gesture and continue my hobby.  :-)

73, Len K6LHA
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K6LHA
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« Reply #173 on: March 08, 2010, 01:08:43 PM »

K9AIM beligerantly posted on 8 March 2010:

"The Extra is not designed to make people feel "exclusive.""

BS. It got all those perquisites and recognition-status and special EM playground area put into law because all those Extras were some kind of Divine Beings from Heaven?!?  :-)
......................
K9AIM: "And   Discrimination based on race or ethnic  background or gender is illegal, but discrimination per se is not against the law."

Tsk, tsk. Better take a remedial retake of Basic Law 101.
......................
K9AIM: "We have de-regulated ourselves into a situation where we have given the fox control of the henhouse because govt. is propagandized to be de facto "bad." never mind that the government in America is the people though if you want to help the foxes stay in control."

You might think you are saying something profound but it got all mixed up.

You've been ABSENT from USA amateur radio for 33 years and you expect EVERYTHING TO BE THE SAME AS WHEN YOU LEFT IT?!?

Here's a quick recap:  NO-CODE-TEST Technician becomes law in 1991.  Restructuring in USA amateur radio becomes law in 2000.  All code testing for any license eliminated in 2007.

You have a choice.  Believe in those three events or go off to some Neverland buried in old copies of QST for your ham radio 'action.'
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K6LHA
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« Reply #174 on: March 08, 2010, 01:12:39 PM »

KB1SF posted on 8 March 2010:

"Len (K6LHA) wrote:  "his (Jim's) conditioned thinking is so strong that I doubt he can really understand he IS deeply conditioned. His hobby emotions are so welded into the monthly output of ARRL publications that they are inseparable. He talks in extremes of boosterism or he arrogantly dismisses those who won't agree with him. Thirdly, you've already seen how he flies off into far, far realms of pure MISDIRECTION on subject matters having nothing at all to do with any subject under discussion."

"Len, the simple fact that Jim continually refuses to even DISCUSS the basic question I keep putting to him…a question, which underlies the entire thread…speaks volumes."

Keith, that is Miccolis entire behavior on any discussion venue. He HATES being corrected. When confronted with irrefutable evidence contrary to his view points, he tries to MISDIRECT the subject or becomes quiet as the grave on it. I've seen over a dozen years of that behavior and it is psychologically classic.

KB1SF: "Indeed, as Sigmund Freud once noted:  "A devout believers' acceptance of a universal neurosis spares them from the task of constructing a personal one."

Nice erudite way of putting it. I would state is simply as a spoiled kid who is too ego-centric for his own good. <shrug>

73, Len K6LHA
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K6LHA
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« Reply #175 on: March 08, 2010, 01:28:08 PM »

KB1SF posted on 8 March 2010:

"N2EY wrote:  "One thing I find particularly amusing is when someone presents themselves as Being For change, that they're always Looking Forward and not Stuck In The Past. Then you discover how much they opposed change they didn't like - such as a zoning ordinance change - because they were afraid of how it would affect them.""
--------------------------
"Once again, Jim, you've done ANOTHER wonderfully irrelevant kabuki dance around the issue under Discussion."

Point of explanation: Back on newsgroup rec.radio.amaeteur.policy I made a remark to another about speaking before a Los Angeles Zoning Commission. This was NOT about amateur radio, not even about ANY radio, just about appearing before any audience. The year was probably 1998.

Miccolis seized on that and hasn't let go since. He tried to impress everyone on his REAL ESTATE SMARTS and making claims of "knowing so much about Los Angeles real estate" that it became ludicrous quickly. That was mostly a big Con Job.

The CHANCE to make it BIG in real estate has come and is GOING. Any "expert" in real estate (there are very few, just a lot of salesmen) would have made lots of money and QUIT continually squawking about their OWN real estate...mostly LACK of it.

Me, I went through the procedure on Zoning Changes and lost. My meighborhood did "get the word out" and the first developer went bankrupt. A SECOND developer came in after the Zoning change from all-private residences to private residences with apartments and built ONLY provate residences. Took the second developer a year to finish everything for only 44 homes in a walled community. :-)
.....................
KB1SF: "And you STILL haven't addressed my basic question."

He never will, Keith. :-)  
.....................
KB1SF: "So, I'll ask it again:  How does knowing what's contained in a schematic diagram for a piece of electronic equipment make one UNIQUELY QUALIFIED (beyond the examination one has ALREADY successfully passed for their General Class license) to operate their equipment in the last few KHz of our HF Bands, or to apply for a so-called "exclusive" call sign?"

Miccolis will come back with some ancient QST editorial quote or he and K9AIM will get into another
"amateur radio licensing discussion" about guitars and show business illuminaries...:-)
........................
KB1SF: "That is, beyond knowing where a new set of band edges might be (or reading and following a set of directions on how to apply for a so-called "Extra Class" call sign) the operational knowledge and skill requirements for an Extra Class license are IDENTICAL to the operational knowledge and skill requirements needed for a General Class license."

Irrelevant to the Mighty, Keith. They once took an old code test and made it to the top of the amateur food chain. They are ROYAL and need not answer to anyone else. "Exhaulted" might be an apropriate word for their Supreme Majesties.

Heh heh heh...My very first amateur radio license anywhere was Amateur Extra at age 74. What must REALLY bug their Majesties is that I have *ALL* the perquisites of class-distinction that they have.

:-)
..............................
KB1SF: "All of which now begs the obvious question that you and others seem to not want to address, let alone to answer:  "Does it REALLY require the mastery of the knowledge contained in a 600-page license manual along with the successful completion of yet ANOTHER written examination to verify one's fitness to operate in the last few KHz of our HF bands and/or to apply for a so-called "exclusive" call sign… particularly when the 50 questions on that exam bear little or no relationship to the additional privileges granted?"

No. We must all get Time Machines and go Back in Time to take a code test (just like they did), preferrably beginning in teen years (just like they did), and swear fealty to Old Man Morse for their entire life, plus giving tithe to the League "for making it all possible (and printing that 600 page manual for profit)." :-) :-) :-)

Keith, we have to QRT to allow this "amateur radio licensing discussion" to return to its regular subject of guitars and high school musicals and SHOW BUSINESS!

73, Len K6LHA
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« Reply #176 on: March 08, 2010, 01:53:56 PM »

K9AIM:  "Are you advocating then that the General be abandoned leaving only the Extra -- or that the Extra be abandoned leaving only the General? Or do you prefer the exam fall in the middle between the two and a new license class replace the Extra and General and that access to all vanity callsigns be opened to all licensed amateurs?"
-----------------
Once again, Robert, ALL I'm advocating here is that the content and comprehensiveness of our exam structure match the various privileges it grants.

Clearly, in its present form, the exam for the Technician license is NOT comprehensive ENOUGH.  It routinely grants high power and "from scratch" construction privileges to people who have not (yet) demonstrated they have enough knowledge and/or experience to know how to do those things safely, courteously and without also causing harmful interference to other hams or other services.

On the other hand, our Extra Class exam goes WELL BEYOND what the ITU (and common sense) dictates is needed for someone to operate his or her stations in such a safe and courteous manner.  As a result, THAT license class (and indeed the Advanced Class as well) serves NO useful regulatory purpose.

That's because such higher-class licenses simply grant "exclusive" access to frequency spectrum (as well as high power construction and operating activities) that have supposedly ALREADY been examined on the General Class exam.

As for our "vanity" system, that, too, is simply part of the ego stroking, artificially concocted "exclusivity" that still permeates our licensing system.  If someone is willing to wait for a so-called "exclusive" call sign to become available (and they are also willing to pay the requisite fee), they should be able to get it, REGARDLESS of their license class.

As I see it, the glaringly apparent legal flaw in our current licensing system is that those operating privileges that have been specifically reserved for higher-class licenses (i.e. those privileges that have been artificially withheld from today's Technicians, Generals and Advanced Class licensees) bear absolutely NO relationship to their potential to cause serious harm to ourselves or others, or to cause harmful interference to other hams (or other services).  

By contrast, and as I have said, Canada's simple "two-tiered" system DOES withhold specific OPERATOINAL privileges from their lower-class licensees based on criteria that DO revolve around operational NEED, as well as safety and non-interference considerations.

As I've said, the current Canadian "Basic" exam (the exam for their Basic Certificate) is equivalent in content and comprehensiveness to our Technician and General Class exams put together.  And although that fairly comprehensive exam consists of 100 questions, once applicants pass that whopper of an exam (with a score of 80 percent or better,) Canadian hams are then allowed to operate ANYWHERE on our bands with that one Basic license.

The kicker, however, is that these so-called "Basic with Honours" Certificate holders, are STILL restricted to running 250 watts of power or less.  They also can't hold the license of a repeater or club station, construct transmitters "from scratch", or give exams.  

That is, unlike our US exam structure, which currently allows even "wet-behind-the-ears" Technicians to do all these inherently dangerous things right from day one, under the Canadian system, each of those potentially more dangerous or interference-prone privileges are SPECIFICALLY reserved for those who successfully pass yet another, FAR more technically comprehensive, 50 question,  "Advanced" exam.

But, even so, the Canadian Advanced exam is NOT a broad, education-based "achievement test" like our Extra Class license purports to be. It's also NOT a test of "knowledge for knowledge's sake, either…something that is better left to a college or university degree program.  Indeed, Industry Canada believes that such "education" is a private matter best left up to we hams to decide for ourselves how much (or how little) we want of it.  

In that sense, Industry Canada well recognizes that a ham license is simply a lifetime "license to learn" after candidates demonstrate the requisite MINIMUM skills and knowledges required to keep themselves and their neighbors safe (and their signals from causing harmful interference) with the privileges granted.  It's NOT a bunch of Boy Scout "Merit Badges" obtained only after completing an irrelevant series of ever more difficult "hazing rituals".

As a result, the Canadian Advanced test covers ONLY that technical and other material that is SPECIFICALLY RELATED to that small handful of added (primarily OPERATIONAL) privileges granted exclusively to Advanced Certificate holders. This makes BOTH the Canadian Basic AND Advanced exams FAR more legally supportable as valid examination and licensing tools under Canada's equal access statutes because they are DIRECTLY tied to specific operational NEEDS.

This also means that, for Canadian hams, a so-called "Basic with Honours" Certificate (granted by a mark of 80 percent or more on the Basic exam) offers all the mainstream privileges most people will ever need or want in our Service.   So, it should come as no surprise that most Canadian hams hold just a Basic Certificate in one form or another…and are happy as clams with it.

Usually, the ONLY people who feel the urge to take the test for an Advanced Certificate in Canada are those who want to do that very small handful of VERY SPECIFIC and FAR more potentially hazardous, interference-prone, or legally contentious things in our Service.

Oh…and there's one other thing.  While Canada also has a so-called "vanity" call sign system, the most coveted call signs in Canada are based on availability and the mailing address of your license rather than on license class.  

In fact, call signs in Canada are NOT tied…in ANY way…to your license class.  This means that, unlike in the States, ANYONE with a valid Basic OR Advanced certificate may apply for a so-called "vanity" call (if it is available in your province) by paying a one-time fee.  Currently, that fee is $60.

The ONLY restrictions to this program occur in the more populated Canadian provinces (like Ontario and Quebec) where the most coveted calls (the 2 X 2s) have already been assigned and the only ones that are now coming available are from Silent Keys.  So, in those provinces, Industry Canada has imposed a 5-year waiting period from the time you first obtain ANY class of Canadian Amateur Radio Certificate (including Basic) before you can apply for one.    

However, other than these (quite logical) restrictions, if ANY call sign becomes available in the Canadian call sign database for the province where you live (and you want to pay the requisite fee to get it) its usually yours for the asking.  Peirod.

This may also explain why all of our "badge of honor" and "my license is better than your license" snobbery that seems to run rampant in our Service in the USA is (refreshingly) absent in Canada.

Now, clearly UNDOING all our "incentive licensing" nonsense in the USA and again underpinning our licensing and regulatory system with operational considerations (vice simply ego-stroking "exclusivity") won't be easy.  

Indeed, when (not if) the FCC is finally forced into finally ditching the last vestiges of incentive licensing, I suspect the first thing we'll see is a switch to regulating us all by emission BANDWIDTH rather than by license class and emission mode.  The REST of the amateur serives of the world have been doing it this way for decades.  It's only here in the United States that our frequency bands remain hacked up in to smaller and smaller slivers of artificially "exclusive" bandwidth.

This means ALL of that artificially walled-off sub band (and sub-sub bands) nonsense based on such increasingly irrelevant (and legally unsupportable) criteria as one's license class and operating mode will be history.

Next, I suspect we'll probably see a MORE comprehensive exam for beginners (possibly a combined Tech and General written test) with a handful of specific, operationally based privileges withheld from those Tech/General operators.

Those withheld privileges might include such things as restrictions on high power operation, and building transmitters and/or amplifiers "from scratch". Those SPECIFIC privileges would require a more advanced license...with an equally more comprehensive test to match. But those advanced exams would ONLY test candidates on the SPECIFIC knowledges and skills that are related and relevant to those added privileges…and nothing more.

Clearly, this approach will also require a lot of "grandfathering" of current licensees, very much like what is now being done for Advanced and Novice class license holders.  Canada did much the same thing by "drawing a line in the sand" when they made their Morse exam optional.  

Essentially, Industry Canada said anyone who held a "no-code Basic" Certificate prior to April, 2000 had ALREADY demonstrated (by their "time in grade") that they were capable of operating with "Basic with Honours" privileges and were therefore granted immediate, full access to HF.

73,

Keith
KB1SF / VA3KSF
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« Reply #177 on: March 08, 2010, 02:33:15 PM »

Steve (KE7RTV) wrote:  " I tend to agree with you about the relevance of the material on the exams but I don't see how just the elimination of testing will bring in a large influx of new (young) people."
-----------------
It very well may not.  However, as I've said, in many ways that "train" has now already left the "station".

But, that's really NOT the central issue here!  Rather, the REAL issue is that the 1950s-era testing and regulatory approach our FCC is STILL using for our Service is no longer in compliance with applicable federal equal access law.  That's because the content and comprehensiveness of our exams DO NOT MATCH the privileges granted.  

As I noted in my post above, by "matching" I mean that, in some cases (as with our Tech License) the exam for it is not comprehensive ENOUGH for the privileges it grants.  On the other hand, our Extra Class exam goes WELL BEYOND what is reasonably needed for safe and courteous operation on our bands.  That's because our General Class exam has (supposedly) already tested us for those knowledges and skills!  So, once again, what regulatory NEED does our Extra Class license now fulfill?.

What's more, and as I've also noted, "eliminating all testing" in our Service is a non-starter.  

That's because unless and until Article 25 of the ITU's Radio Regulations is changed by a consensus of the US as well as MANY OTHER countries in the world, the FCC has NO CHOICE but to follow the those regulations for the Amateur Service in the matter.  

And, as I explained, even a cursory reading of those regulations leaves absolutely NO DOUBT that we Amateurs are to be both tested AND licensed before being granted access to our bands.

Rather, the FCC has both a moral (and now a legal) responsibility to bring OUR OWN licensing and regulatory system for our Service in the United States out of the social and technological "dark ages" and back into compliance with the rest of the Federal Code, particularly as it relates to licensing persons with disabilities.  

Right now, and as I have repeatedly shown, NEITHER our licensing system NOR the license-class-and-mode-based way we are currently licensed and regulated is in compliance with those other, equally binding federal laws.

73,

Keith
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« Reply #178 on: March 08, 2010, 03:52:16 PM »

KE7RTV: "What else has to change to make the hobby interesting to young people?"

As someone who has been a ham since he was a teenager,
and who deals with teenagers on a personal level every day, I can tell you this:

1) They have to know it exists
2) There has to be a challenge
3) There have to be resources
4) There has to be something unique

KE7RTV: "I don't see how just the
elimination of testing will bring in a large influx
of new (young) people."

That's because it won't.

KE7RTV: "it seems to me that the question for
most of the material is, "is this absolutely necessary" for someone to know before he can operate
a ham radio and in many instances the answer seems to
be no."

That depends on what kind of radio the ham will be operating.

A US amateur license isn't just a permission to use a modern, manufactured transceiver that has been rendered almost foolproof, with few or no operating adjustments. It's a license to do a wide range of things, many of which require knowledge beyond that of an "appliance operator".

If you look at the Basis and Purpose of the ARS in Part 97, you'll see that among the reasons for the ARS to exist is technical education in various ways. IOW, more than just knowing how to use manufactured radios.

For more on all this, I refer you to posts I made earlier in this thread:

#21, page 3, posted December 30
#53, page 6, posted February 15
#74, page 8, posted February 20
#91, page 10, posted February 23
#101, page 11, posted February 27
#107, page 11, posted February 28

73 de Jim, N2EY
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« Reply #179 on: March 08, 2010, 04:04:35 PM »

K6LHA writes: "K9AIM beligerantly posted on 8 March 2010:

i was not being belligerent I was simply pointing out that your suggestion (that the intent behind the creation of the Extra class was to make people feel exclusive) is false.  

- - - -

'The Extra is not designed to make people feel exclusive.'

K6LHA: "BS. It got all those perquisites and recognition-status and special EM playground area put into law because all those Extras were some kind of Divine Beings from Heaven?!? :-)

your personal take on it is noted.  I always took it to be some extra segments where Extras could co-mingle with other American Extras. it created a class of Hams who were capable of passing a more rigorous theory and a more difficult Morse code fluency test. it incentivized scientific learning and thus encouraged the innovation that often accompanies learning.  i know as a 14 year old I studied my butt off to learn in order to pass the General and Advanced exams.  

......................

K9AIM: "And Discrimination based on race or ethnic background or gender is illegal, but discrimination per se is not against the law."

K6LHA: Tsk, tsk. Better take a remedial retake of Basic Law 101.

discriminate -- the act of discerning between two different things.  as in those qualified to be issued a motor-vehicle license and those not qualified. they even discriminate on those motor-vehicle license exams between those who can see and those who cannot.

......................

K6LHA: "You've been ABSENT from USA amateur radio for 33 years and you expect EVERYTHING TO BE THE SAME AS WHEN YOU LEFT IT?!?"

I don't expect anything.  I do have certain inclinations which i sometime seek to advocate.

K6LHA: "Here's a quick recap: NO-CODE-TEST Technician becomes law in 1991. Restructuring in USA amateur radio becomes law in 2000. All code testing for any license eliminated in 2007.
You have a choice. Believe in those three events or go off to some Neverland buried in old copies of QST for your ham radio 'action.'"

LOL.  nice to see you have a sense of humor about all this :-)
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