published Saturday, August 17th, 2013

Pam’s Points: The goose problem, tea party terror and champion kids

Bird eradication lays a goose egg

What a shock! Chattanooga State Community College has geese again. It could have something to do with the pond/water feature in the center of campus, don't you think? Without that fine geese-magnet, the not-easily-frightened birds might think Chattanooga State's big front yard would be entirely too hot and dry and cluttered with useless vehicles and people. They might decide to stay near the river at the back of the school, and leave the driveway to the perpetually late students who need to speed to parking places.

But now, after last month's debacle of about 100 geese being rounded up by the U.S. Department of Agriculture at the school's behest and killed to the public's horror, some 25 new geese have flown in to the newly vacated Promised Land.

School officials said they hope the birds don't bring in more friends or, worse still, reproduce.

"We try to make them uncomfortable," said Eva Lewis, associate vice president of the college.

But in addition to using strobe lights in the pond, dummy coyotes and mesh wire around the pond that geese don't like to waddle on, campus workers also want to oil the eggs to prevent them from hatching.

Wait, is that not a bit like geese abortion? Coating a young goose egg with food-grade corn oil prevents oxygen from passing through the surface of the egg and keeps the embryo from developing. Eewwww.

Guys, instead of paying an egg oiler, why not just put those birds to work? Then sell your students and faculty some scrambled eggs or egg salad.

Hixson football champs!

If you want to gain renewed faith in education, good sportsmanship and today's young people, look for Friday's Chattanooga Times Free Press and read the front page, centerpiece story about the Hixson High School football team and its down-syndrome teammate Austin Clark.

Clark has only abilities, not disabilities, as he constantly, smilingly encourages a team that already is champion in its acceptance, respect and friendship for the 4-foot-2, 135-pound freshman lineman that Times Free Press staff writer Stephen Hargis dubs "the heart and soul of this year's Wildcats."

They all already are champions. Go Wildcats!

Tea party logic and other myths

It's a tough day when a liberal feels compelled to defend Republican Tennessee Sen. Lamar Alexander from his fellow conservatives.

Matt Collins, who describes himself as a Republican activist and was a Hamilton County Ron Paul organizer in 2012, authored an open letter to Alexander that is signed by 20 political groups in the state, mostly tea parties.

The ultra-right's total and complete disconnect is exemplified by this one paragraph from the letter:

"Our great nation can no longer afford compromise and bipartisanship, two traits for which you have become famous," Collins wrote to Alexander.

In a nation of 314 million very diverse people, compromise is the only way a government can operate. The tea party thinks government shouldn't operate at all. We see what that ultra-right induced gridlock already is bringing us -- the slowdown of an economy that was, for the first time since 2007, on the rebound.

Throwing the tea overboard in Boston to launch America's Revolutionary War in 1773 was a statement. Bringing American leaders to agreement years later on what this country's Constitution would embody to provide our bedrock required compromise -- and, no doubt, lots of it. Keeping that bedrock will require more, not less.

But all the tea party seems capable of doing is throwing dynamite onto that bedrock.

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AndrewLohr said...

There are worse Senators than Lamar Alexander, though I'm sure the Tea candidates against him and Senator Corker would be improvements.

But if the Constitution is bedrock, the Tea Party reads it and takes it seriously. A lot of the political establishment seems to ignore it. Really, it took the trouble to say Congress can regulate private warships; does it really give Congress any power whatsover over health care or health insurance? Not that I can see. So Mark Levine (whom I can't stand for more than a few minutes at a time) thinks the Bill of Rights needs to be beefed up to protect citizens from the government, and I've had the same idea myself. Right to use gold, silver, and foreign currencies...Right to opt out of any government program for individuals (e.g. public schools, Obamacare) and take half the money you save the taxpayers...Right to spend no more than 1 hour a day and 9% of income complying with regulations...Right to claim a regulation is stupid and get a fair hearing...Right to state exceptions to regulations and proceed with business (e.g. say "I'm an unlicensed barber/plumber/...), except for regulations involving severe threat to life (drive on the right or else)...

August 17, 2013 at 12:45 a.m.
nucanuck said...

Today's thought stimulator is geese. Most days it's local issues with an occasional national issue with a local connection. Rarely do we read opinion about national/international issues.

Does the TFP have Pam on a local leash or is it possible that this very bright editorialist doesn't even think beyond local affairs.

A leash law seems the most probable. Maybe it's a marketing strategy, do what you do best, kind of thing, but we rarely get an open forum on the biggest world happenings of the day.

So go for it fellas, dissect the goose problem.

August 17, 2013 at 12:53 a.m.
soakya said...

If a liberal is defending Corker and Alexander that tells me all I need to know about them.

August 17, 2013 at 12:59 a.m.
nucanuck said...


We have an ongoing example of what happens when compromise and bi-partisanship fail. The people of Egypt have failed at political compromise, each party wants full control, with the result that the divide leads to conflict.

The Republican Party is cleaving apart because the far-right will not all. The end result may well be a relatively small faction of angry white people against the rest of the country. If you drive the Corkers and the Alexanders out of your party, you may just have a smaller party. They are hardly left leaning, whatever that is.

August 17, 2013 at 1:32 a.m.
conservative said...

There are many reasons why debt is bad.

One is that if you are not a deadbeat and intend to pay it back then interest must be paid.

Our nation pays interest on our debt. That interest in effect adds to the repayment cost of our debt.

Owebama and the Demoncrats refuse to compromise on spending and borrowing. They are the obstacles to debt reduction.

August 17, 2013 at 7:20 a.m.
soakya said...

Oh the horror of the Tea Party. They want limited government, smaller debt, less taxes, personal responsibility and accountability. They also have the audacity to want to secure the border, the nerve. They are trying to destroy this country and we are not gonna take it anymore.

I know I like a bloated, inefficient out of control government, and the more debt the better, you can never have too much debt. I love paying taxes also, again the more the better and it doesn't matter if it's being spent wisely. As a matter of fact I am running up my personal debt and enjoying myself right here and now, I deserve it. I will leave my debt for my kids. And I never lock my doors just in case someone wants to take up residence in my home.

August 17, 2013 at 9:35 a.m.
klifnotes said...

soakya, referring to your Aug. 17 @ 12:59 a.m. post, with conservatives gathering up their pitchforks, scythes and burning torches turning against Alexander and Corker, that indicates they've regained their moral compass and scruples.

August 17, 2013 at 9:49 a.m.
aae1049 said...

Goose eggs are great for baking. I had a pond of many years. Chattanooga State are a pack of idiots for slaughtering 100 Canada Geese like rodents, and doing nothing with the meat. Fill your ponds you idiots, Geese problem resolved.

August 17, 2013 at 9:53 a.m.
conservative said...


Many ponds are government mandated retention ponds. Try filling them up and you go to jail.

Environmentalists are largely responsible for the goose problem.

I have a friend who gets goose eggs from someone who has a pond and goose problem. He says they are quite good.

I have to wonder though if those eggs or nest are protected.

He told me his fried has started shooting them with a pellet gun.

They are problem in Florida.

August 17, 2013 at 10:35 a.m.
Hunter_Bluff said...

Why not sell bow licenses or trapping permits for the capture of the geese? Take the captured geese and the revenue from the licensing and donate as meals at one of the shelter? Roast goose for lunch. Or have a greater vision and organize a fund raiser where the centerpiece is locally raised, organic goose served up 7 ways by our local master chefs? It's foolish to kill the geese for no higher purpose.

August 17, 2013 at 10:45 a.m.
lkeithlu said...

Environmentalists are largely responsible for the goose problem.

Based on what? The retention ponds? They are for flood control. The geese were here before us. We either learn to live with them or eat them. They are not endangered, so I say eat them.

August 17, 2013 at 3:07 p.m.
jjmez said...

^5 Ike. It's the understanding that in exchange for being allowed to build on and develop what's considered wetlands or marshland where nature and wildlife have always inhabited, a portion of that land was suppose to be set aside for just that purpose. Allowing the natural inhabitants to remain there or migrate back and forth as they always have. That means, Chattanooga State are the trespassers who illegally killed off the natural inhabitants. Sort of like what settlers did to the original Native-American peoples.

Why do civilize man still seek to destroy and kill that which he feels he can't control, or must control? It would be interesting to know what methods were used to euthanize those helpless birds.

August 17, 2013 at 3:33 p.m.
aae1049 said...

Baked Goose is great, tastes like chicken :-)

As an NPDES regulator for TDEC, storm water just happens to be my area. I can tell you that the ponds are too low in the watershed to have any measurable impact on the receiving water heights. In fact, in time of concentration calculations the standard in engineering for pond size and design, CSTCC should only be treating storm water first flush. CSTCC needs a civil engineer to develop run off calculation for their imperious area. I guarantee you, CSTCC is too low in the watershed to need a detention or a retention area. Their only regulatory requirement is treat the first 1 inch or so of rain over their impervious area. Please know that retention only has storage of the free board available between the pond spillway and top of water, and full ponds do not provide storage. They can fill the ponds and use green technology for first flush and satisfy their NPDES requirement. Time of concentration dictates that we don't want them to hold back runoff.

Why would you think a full pond provides any flood control?

So, you think that anything that is not an endangered species should be gobbled up. Gross.

August 17, 2013 at 10:53 p.m.
joneses said...

"In a nation of 314 million very diverse people, compromise is the only way a government can operate."

Hussein obama has never compromised and actually he thinks just because he occupies the White House everyone in congress should do as he says.

August 18, 2013 at 12:27 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

No aae, just those that taste good. Goose, even wild goose, is great if prepared correctly. So what would you do? Just kill them?

August 18, 2013 at 3:46 p.m.
conservative said...

I have seen scores of Canadian Geese hanging around man made water retention ponds at Florida shopping centers and strip malls.

Also there is a reason why they are so plentiful.

"Canada Geese are protected under the Federal Migratory Bird Act of 1918 . This Act makes it illegal to harm or injure a goose and damage or move its eggs and nest, without a Federal permit. Not complying with the Federal Act can result in fines ranging from $5,000 to $10,000 and this also applies to an untrained dog’s actions."

August 18, 2013 at 6:38 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

Well, there is a species that should be removed from the list. They appear to be doing fine.

August 18, 2013 at 6:40 p.m.
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