KASSY: You make a very valid point but then you jump to an extreme when you introduce "kit building."
This isn't what I and others are trying to explain here. First of all, said executive/100hr per week business man has found the time to develop an interest in ham radio; found the time to study for the test; found time to go someplace to take the test; found time to research and accumulate station components; found time to put the all together to make it work and finally finds the time to set and talk.
I see your point, but I believe I disagree on valid grounds. First off, said executive didn't get there by being stupid. The time to study for the test, for a smart person, is nil. I read a book in an afternoon. And I'm not an EE. The test just isn't that difficult. Although, compared to the exec, I do have more interest in homebrewing. I did not find that it took much time to assemble a station. I bought a used K2, which took less than an hour. I had a local ham show me how to build a dipole and helped me string it, that was an afternoon. That's not much time.
I feel your point is now leaking. While nobody is advocating that everyone becomes an electronics technician, it seems to me that each ham should learn the basics, which includes assembling the station and making it work. This also includes reading their individual equipment manuals.
One of my favorite people learned to drive a car. She learned enough to pass her test and from that point on her learning curve flattened out and she was a hazard on the road. I found her parked at the side of the road late at night with her windshield fogged up because she had never learned to turn on the windshield defroster! She eventually had 3 wrecks and gave up her license.
We are talking about so called hams who can talk but "don't know how to turn on their defrosters!" They come to these forums asking extremely basic questions that could be answered by checking their manuals or a simple bit of research.
YOU might be talking about hams who can talk but "don't know how to turn on their defrosters" but that wasn't in my original posting. The fellow I know is certainly technically smart enough. But, he really doesn't want to spend the time required to assemble the test equipment required to "do homebrewing right". And that's who he is - he would never be interested in mere kit-building "paint by the numbers", he would assemble a lab with test equipment and spend loads of time truly understanding what he built. I have more test equipment than he does, and I'm not even really trying. As far as I know, he has an antenna analyzer and a DMM and that's that.
Sorry if I misled you. The guy I'm thinknig of is way ahead of "can't turn on a defroster", but chooses not to dive into home-brewing and home repair, and says he's getting flack for "not being a real ham" because he chooses to spend his sparse ham time "hamming" instead of building.
After all, if he has time to build, but not operate - then he didn't need the license anyway, did he?