Re: NOAA To Stop Printing Nautical Charts
Yes, I agree that we are spoiled, BUT, without getting into a political discustion, who made us this way?
We are a government of the people, FOR, the people. The government is not supposed to be a money making process for the benefit of a few at the top or to support the rest of the world, it is supposted to be for the benifit of WE, all the people under this government.
We the people work, pay our taxes, and elect people to run this country for the benefit of we, the people.
I, as a sailor, know that when I take my boat out that I have acknowaged that I must be competent in my abillities, knowledgable of the laws and rules governing my actions while sailing, and shall at all times manage my craft for the safety and enjoyment of ALL who share the waters with me.
I will be the first to step up a pay a few dollars extra to cover the "printing" cost for up-to-date charts IF i know that that is what it takes, but to simply take that ability out of my hands is a rather thoughless action of certain 'gubment' officials. To say that you can go down to your 'local' chart maker and get your charts is a step back in time to the 1500 and 'here be dragons'. When did he last update his data? How sharp is his printer, how smear proof his ink?
Oh, you say, print your own. I don't have a printer that will print over 8 1/2 x 14, do you? I don't carry an onboard computer, laptop, or surface, and while a chart plotter system would be wonderful it isn't in my budget this year or next or even the forseable future, the GPS was a major buy. I, like most of my sailing buddies, are NOT in the 2% or even the 10% bracket.
We sail the rivers, lakes, bays and coastal waters of the Gulf for our own pleasure and to fullfill our dreams of exploration, find new places and have fun doing it. We use our charts to resonablly, safely, go into waters unknown to us.
I guess we had better practice up using lead lines, range finders, and set dragon watches on the bow.