Tuesday, September 24, 2002
This is just silly: From a letter writer to National Review Online's "The Corner:"
I thought you might enjoy hearing about an example of the environmental craziness unleashed in the Clinton military. As a military engineer, I was involved in an F-16 test program at Edwards AFB, CA. Evidently there was some endangered desert tortoise that was indigenous to the area. Before we could fly over that portion of the range, the base wildlife personnel had to comb the area and remove any tortoises, noting their location for subsequent return. This was required to lessen the impact upon them. Being first an engineer and second a smart aleck, I pointed out that important data was missing. To truly lessen the impact to the tortoise, their heading and speed should be taken at the time of pickup, then the tortoise could be placed in the projected position he would have reached if undisturbed. While this was a joke (and perhaps only funny to another engineer), the civil servant I mentioned it to thought it was a good idea. Hopefully, I didn't inadvertantly set base environmental policy.
I've got a friend who flies F-16s for the Air Force, and though I don't think he's been stationed at Edwards AFB, I'll have to ask him if he's heard anything about this.
The sad part about it is, didn't anyone think to figure out what is more stressful on the tortosie -- a few seconds of noise or having some funny-looking environmentalists pick them up and cart them off?