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NFC: Re: Re: Rankorous debate

Mike Whitfield said:
> Perhaps, while we're asking what's being done with our money, we should
> be asking what should we be doing?  In other words, take ideas for some
> projects on which we can work together.  What are our goals?  Where do we
> ourselves in five years?  In ten years?

That was my original motivation for asking.  I wanted to know where are we
currently spending money, and what has the effectiveness of that spending
been.  If the Widget Measuring Program (obviously a made up name) has been a
black hole, from which everything goes in and nothing comes out, then it is
a simple deduction that funding of that program needs to be examined more
closely before more money is spent on that program.  If another program is
effective but underfunded, we obviously need to divert funds from stagnant
programs to the fruitful ones.  Reward good work.  Also I think that if
there are regular reports of success from a funded program, it may encourage
more people to participate in that program as people have a natural desire
to taste success.

> I think the Exotics Removal Program is great, but it's inherently limited
> warm places.

I agree, but I would like to add that the ERP has potentially found a way to
be financially independent from the membership dues through sales of exotics
to pet wholesalers.  Again, this was part of my original motives for asking
to have a breakdown of club finances, to get an idea of the cost of running
this operation and if it was ever successful in becoming financially
independent.  I'm also wondering if it is currently contributing any surplus
funds back into the general pool or not.

> Will the NFC ever put out a magazine?  Seems to me that's a great reason
> join NANFA (and I miss it).  Maybe a yearly?  It's hard to ask people to
> $10 bucks when there's no tangible benefit.

There was talk of this, but unfortunately the newsletter seems to be a one
to three man show.  The people who work on it try hard to make it
worthwhile, but without contributions from the membership (and I'm as guilty
as anyone else here) they can only work with what they have themselves.

> Do you ever see the NFC and NANFA joining forces?

Not until certain personalities there are no longer significant influences
in club business.  There are some real personality issues between some NANFA
people and NFC people.  I have HEARD about what originally set it off, and I
am in no position to really know what happened.  All I know is where all of
the people involved went from there.  On the NFC side I have seen
professional conduct with regards to NANFA and the people in question.  From
the NANFA side I have seen first hand some shenanigans to defame NFC and its
influential members.  I choose to not support NANFA because of this, but
will gladly join if there is ever a major change in management over there.

Believe it or not, I have been and remain a supporter of the work our own
Robert Rice has done.  This discussion has gone wrong in so many ways, part
of which I'm willing to humbly accept responsibility for in not approaching
these issues more sensitively.  But if you read my messages, everything I've
had to say about Robert has been POSITIVE and I have held him up as an
example of the kind of volunteers we need to be.  After this thread, I may
have some criticisms about his personality (nyah!) but I have no question
about his dedication to native fish issues, especially in his own locale.

> Are our missions really so
> different?  If we could partner on some projects, it might bring more
> attention than working separately.

Again, I think personalities are going to get in the way of any significant
partnering.  This may pass with time and change of the guard.

> About the Adopt-A-tank program - I'm working on a high school renovation
> right now.  It's Howard High in Chattanooga, a fine old high school
> originally a blacks-only school but now part of our unified county system.
> This is a school that is mostly black and all inner city, so I'm thinking
> these kids have probably never seen most of our native fish.  Is this the
> type of school we're targeting, or mostly elementary schools?

In my limited experience, high school kids are the most rewarding to work
with.  They ask the best questions, and they are more adept at finding their
own answers.  Younger children have a firey curiosity, but it is often
shallow.  High school kids often pursue such interests to a much deeper
level.  I encourage you to pursue this great opportunity, and take advantage
of any equipment the Marineland grant can give you to facilitate this.

> Anyway, congrats, Chris, on your ordainment, and thanks, Robert, for all
> work.

Thanks, Mike, for being objective in this thread.  The timing was great for
me, personally.

Pastor Chris