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RE: ?!? A New and Separate Palaeontological Community

Uh .. no.

The gist here is whether [mass production/ distribution/ differentiation/ 
as derived from industry could be applicable to a science such as 
I say this because the auto, motion picture and restaurant industries are not 
"pyramid schemes".
They absolutely work for the benefit of mankind [pollution and health concerns 

Palaeontology IS CURRENTLY deriving its funding from a "legalized ponzi scheme" 
which gov't 
certainly is [which is why palaeontology is currently in bad shape, 

The U.S. Federal Reserve is still printing out money with little to back it. So 
the question is
not which is more corrupt [government or industry] but which, corrupt or not, 
would bring us the
better deal.

> Date: Fri, 21 Mar 2014 11:41:32 -0700
> From: turtlecroc@yahoo.com
> To: dinosaur@usc.edu
> Subject: Re: ?!? A New and Separate Palaeontological Community
> Er, so you're suggesting we turn vertebrate paleontology into some 
> sort of pyramid scheme..? (sorry, I find it hard to read lengthy 
> emails punctuated entirely with " .. ")
> ------------------------------
> On Fri, Mar 21, 2014 12:46 PM CDT dale mcinnes wrote:
>>It's baaaaaaaaaaaaccckkkk !!!
>>Hey DMLers .. [ long .. longer .. longest]
>>I did promise to return to this thread didn't I ..
>>Sorry for the imposition but .. it's necessary [I find ..]
>>I would like us to re-review the seed of an idea ..that I believe .. would 
>>take us squarely into a new type of 21st C mode of operation here in 
>>So I'm going to attempt to bury this seed a little deeper in the hopes that 
>>something .. a little shoot .. will sprout this time around .. in our 
>>subconscious. I could be wrong .. but bare with me .. this goes a little 
>>deeper than the last couple of threads.I'm about to present a monologue on a 
>>topic that has absolutely nothingwhatsoever to do with dinosaur palaeontology 
>>.. BUT .. has the potential to turn this entire science completely on its 
>>You might just consider this a head's up .. if nothing more.
>>Now .. I know .. that in past threads .. this has elicited quite an emotional 
>>response.I am totally at fault with that. So .. at the extreme risk of 
>>eliciting a no holds barred flame fest .. again .. I am going to re-open this 
>>somewhat touchy subject.I need to nail this to the ground for 
>>everybody.Probably not a good way to start the New Year off .. but start it I 
>>Once again .. this has to do with opening THE MOST important window we can 
>>open in this science .. if we have the strength of courage to do so. I'm of 
>>course .. talking about that bugaboo .. FUNDING !!!
>>I find it somewhat discouraging .. even disheartening .. at what we're NOT 
>>doing with our science and it occurred to me that perhaps .. a better way of 
>>launching this .. in the near future .. is to break away completely from 
>>gov't palaeontology and commence designing and ultimately building a radical 
>>and completely new and quite separate palaeontological community.This would 
>>not just involve dinosaur palaeontology but all fields pertaining to the 
>>science while .. simultaneously .. discarding a lot of our 160 years of 
>>accumulated baggage. 
>>But first .. it is more important at this juncture to FULLY UNDERSTAND why 
>>this field is so impoverished. If we don't recognize this as a problem .. 
>>then we're never going to find a solution to our financial woes. 
>>So .. we 1st have to recognize .. we have a problem.
>>No one .. ever was so misquided .. as to enter this field for the $$$$. 
>>That's a given. We're in this field because of our love of evolutionary 
>>history .. the science .. the art.I say $$$$ is a bugaboo because we have an 
>>aversion to it. We don't like to discuss it. We don'tfeel it has anything 
>>whatsoever to do with palaeontology or our reasons for entering the 
>>science.It's almost as if we feel that because some of us are not 
>>auto-mechanically inclined .. we shouldn't discuss the need for field 
>>vehicles despite the fact that they've revolutionized our ability to do field 
>>So .. I need to make what may sound to most of you as treasonous [once again] 
>>.. the acsertion that we need to design .. build .. and operate our future 
>>institutions on a "FOR PROFIT" basis as our PRIME MOTIVE [if it does not 
>>interfere with our projection of public science based education]. And it 
>>shouldn't. Most will consider this contradictory. I will attempt to show that 
>>there is absolutely no such contradiction .. that it is only percieved as a 
>>contradiction .. that any contradiction is pure myth.
>>How do we do that ??
>>Because this is in plain text .. I will forego any pretty pictures/ graphs. I 
>>implore you to use your imagination.I want you to imagine a multi-layered 
>>pyramid with a very simplistic stratigraphic sequence. 
>>Also .. imagine that there are only 2 types of individuals in this field [the 
>>Diggers and the dental Pickers]. The Diggers are the one's in search of a 
>>CAUSE but are still plowing through the SYMPTOMS to get to it. The Pickers 
>>have already located their CAUSE and are now dissecting it in the field. 
>>You'll understand once we get into this.
>>One other thing.
>>I want you to understand the difference between a SYMPTOM and a CAUSE .. 
>>because when it comes to FUNDING .. I feel .. many really don't .. and this 
>>can ultimately become very misleading.
>>Now .. I do take an enormous liberty here by asking a simple question of all 
>>of you and provide my own answeras if speaking for everybody. We have to 
>>start somewhere .. so .. bare with me ..
>>Q : What exactly is it that we are trying to achieve in this field ??
>>A : HD [Hi-Definition] = HR [Hi-Resolution] of the fossil record.
>>So lets place RESOLUTION at the top of the pyramid. That's our ultimate goal. 
>>It's a little like asking why .. instead of 50-60 partial T.rex specimens .. 
>>we don't have 5-600 partial specimens to play with. More to the point .. what 
>>would it take to increase the world's fossil collections some 10-fold in as 
>>little as 10 years ?? It's an oversimplification ..I know .. but .. it sets 
>>the tone for the next question.
>>Q : Why don't we have this RESOLUTION ??
>>If we want to find any answer .. we have to "dig" for it and hope there's 
>>another layer under and supporting that question. We're still "Diggers" here. 
>>So lets dig down to that next layer for that answer.
>>A : We don't possess the RESOURCES to achieve this level of RESOLUTION ..
>>So lets place RESOURCES as the 2nd layer of that pyramid .. under the term 
>>RESOLUTION. And further .. what do we mean by RESOURCES ?? In order to attain 
>>this magnitude of RESOURCES .. we would need to construct
>>institutions at the rate of one per week over the next 10 years .. minimum. 
>>We would also have to fully equip them. We would also have to set aside some 
>>40 years worth of budgets to run them. Sound easy so far ?? Now comes the 
>>tough part. We would also have to fully staff them with trained personel. 
>>There are none .. at least not that many. So pocket-universities/ colleges 
>>would have to be constructed as teaching fascilities devoted to 
>>multi-palaeontological fields within each array of institutes.
>>Now .. before anybody believes I've gone off the deep end with this .. I'll 
>>fully admit that we are looking at well in excess of$ billions .. easily. 
>>This does not even remotely bother me .. as I will explain later. It does 
>>however .. indicate why no one ever thinks about this .. not even for 5 
>>minutes. I do. I think about this 24/7 .. probably because I recognize its 
>>I am not frightened by large numbers.
>>Now this begs the question.
>>Q : Why don't we have those RESOURCES ??
>>Well .. we're still "Diggers". Lets see if there's another layer to this 
>>pyramid. So dig for that answer. It won't come any other way.
>>A : We lack $$$$ [MONEY] to purchase those RESOURCES.
>>So what have we learned that we didn't already know ?? What we actually 
>>learned is really quite subtle. We've learned that the lack of RESOLUTION in 
>>the fossil record is a SYMPTOM of a lack of RESOURCES which in itself is 
>>SYMPTOMATIC of a lack of $$$$. The trick here is to NOT concentrate efforts 
>>on SYMPTOMS. That is a waste of time. SYMPTOMS almost always disappear when 
>>the root CAUSE of a problem is located and understood. It is at this juncture 
>>that I hear the clatter of so many shovels being thrown to the ground. It's 
>>back to our existing programs. When opening a new vista [window] on 
>>palaeontology .. most workers find themselves somewhat stranded and usually 
>>alone. Its quite natural. If it does hold promise .. great .. everyone will 
>>be part of it. If it doesn't .. then only one of us has blown a career.
>>It is what it is.
>>So now .. we cross a great threshold. 
>>For palaeontologists .. the $$$$ layer is the "ironstone" layer. Shovels 
>>bend. Picks bounce off.Chisels break. Field workers break down and cry in 
>>frustration sending them back to their former institutions. It has always 
>>been for all of us .. an intense headache. We need to think through this .. 
>>explosives .. brute force ..
>>Now supposing .. just supposing .. that this layer was never really a CAUSE 
>>for concern .. but a SYMPTOM instead. That would be crossing quite a 
>>threshold .. wouldn't it ?? Imagine never having to worry unjustly about it 
>>.. ever!! We need to find that next layer. Our Diggers are back. Is there 
>>really anything more crucial than $$$$ ?? 
>>Did we leave something out of the equation more valuable than MONEY ?? I 
>>think we did. 
>>And this is our problem.
>>Q : Why don't we possess a $ multi-billion Fund ??
>>A : As incredible as this sounds .. our field has existed for over 150 years 
>>without an .. INFRASTRUCTURE !!!
>>This is the 4th layer to our pyramid.
>>Definition of an INFRASTRUCTURE : 
>>A financial INFRASTRUCTURE is a mechanism tuned to an industry [or science] 
>>that is designed for the sole purpose of creating internal revenue for that 
>>industry. Each INFRASTRUCTURE is totally unique to each industry and allows 
>>that industry a fair leeway of independant operation from gov't. Few $ 
>>multi-billion industries can operate without one. It is at the very core of 
>>their structure which allows them to make prodigious amounts of $$$$. It's 
>>the core difference between $ multi-million businesses and those who achieve 
>>in the $ billions. 
>>So .. for the 1st time in our history .. we now realise that the lack of 
>>MONETARY Funding in our field turns out to be a SYMPTOM of a far more serious 
>>.. deeper rooted problem.
>>We have never possessed and continue to this day to operate without an 
>>O.K. So what are the examples ?? How does the lack of an INFRASTRUCTURE 
>>possibly affect us ??
>>Lets take for example 3 completely non-related leading industries.
>>1. Automobile Industry
>>2. Motion Picture Industry
>>3. Food Industry
>>I will now attempt to convince you of the need to design and construct 
>>palaeontological institutes based exclusively or near exclusively on the "FOR 
>>PROFIT" and "PROFIT" alone motive. NOT research .. NOT field collections .. 
>>NOT labs .. NOT anything that would be construed as very basic to our 
>>science. You'll see how this not only does NOT INTERFERE with research 
>>programs but .. on the contrary .. actually ENHANCES research programs.
>>For this .. we're going to require real world examples.
>>You'll discover .. as I have .. that we are all on the wrong side of the 
>>It's about time we crossed over.
>>1. The Automotive Industry
>>Before Henry Ford walked into the industry .. it was sailing along nicely for 
>>.. I believe .. some 17 years. Auto industries in those heady times were 
>>being assembled at the rate of 50 per year. Over 500 auto industries once 
>>existed in America. At the time .. no one thought anything of it. It was pure 
>>capitalism. Some actually made a living from it. Most required part-time jobs 
>>to see them through. Not unlike todays museum programs .. these autmotive 
>>programs were 2-man .. 3-man programs existing out of their respective 
>>garages [auto institutes] built as extensions to their homes. These programs 
>>all possessed their very own and separate if meagre budgets. The more massive 
>>programs were probably on ranches/ farms where entire barns may have been set 
>>aside for 5-10 man programs consisting of farmers and ranchers. 
>>The people in these particular programs saw the automotive industry as an 
>>artistic/ mechanized science research concept .. not unlike present day 
>>palaeontology. The very idea of being involved in this endeavour strictly for 
>>profit .. was probably quite laughable.
>>It was the science. It was the art that absobed them. They also had a 
>>tendency to build one of a kind [not unlike travelling museum exhibits 
>>today]. Again .. no one thought anything of it. They were certainly not going 
>>to have anything but a minimal impact on the world around them.
>>And herein lay the problem.
>>As the industry matured .. automobiles became complicated and more expensive 
>>to build. The customer base was shrinking precipitously to those wealthier 
>>individuals who could afford to pay more. Gov't subsidies and takeover wasn't 
>>very far off. From our perspective today .. we would conclude that the 1st 
>>experimental 17 years of the auto industry .. were impoverished years.
>>Enter Henry Ford.
>>With the backing of wealthy business people .. the Ford Motor Co. became a 
>>reality. It would continue to produce 1-of-a-kind automobiles. 
>>The brilliance of Henry Ford was that he recognised that the automotive 
>>industry was still without an INFRASTRUCTURE .. including his own company. 
>>Now .. he did introduce "mass production".. yes .. but it wouldn't have 
>>worked however .. without an INFRASTRUCTURE. 
>>There is nothing really "new" under the sun. What Ford did was implement the 
>>tools like [mass production/ mass distribution/ mass differentiation (not so 
>>much) / mass diversification] and merely introduce them to the auto industry. 
>>These tools had already been applied to many industries over millenia. It's 
>>just that nobody ever thought that they could be successfully applied to this 
>>type of industry. If it could be applied to this type of industry .. then it 
>>could probably be applied to any industry [or science].
>>In the auto industry .. the introduction of an INFRASTRUCTURE .. was through 
>>"mass distribution". What I mean by this .. is that Ford "split" the concept 
>>of car manufacturing. He began assembling "dealerships". The dealerships 
>>served as the financial workhorse for his fledgling company. They represented 
>>the showrooms. They showcased the end result of all the research and 
>>This is what brought in the $$$$. 
>>This is what defined the INFRASTRUCTURE for the auto industry.
>>All research and manufacturing was designed for efficiency .. not profit. 
>>The dealerships on the other hand .. were. They were all show .. all glamour 
>>.. all sales and marketing. The dealerships became the INFRASTRUCTURE 
>>completely separated from the actual ongoing research. Ford started off with 
>>a few $ million. Within 5 years .. the company had accumulated 7,000 
>>dealerships and pulled .. very quickly .. into the fledgling industry .. 
>>todays' equivalent of $ 100 billion.
>>Two separate entities under control of a single concept with little overlap 
>>between them.
>>If a dealership goes under .. it doesn't affect the industry as a whole.
>>Nobody cares.
>>2. Motion Picture Industry
>>Here again .. same concept .. different venue. The INFRASTRUCTURE is part of 
>>a split concept. The studios .. making of a film .. research carried out .. 
>>professional field staffT for on location shooting .. computer buffs .. this 
>>is the Art and Science of the industry.
>>The 1,000s of theatres form the distribution centres [dealerships or 
>>showrooms] of the film industry. It is these centres that actually bring in 
>>the $$$$. They are separate from the rest. If a theatre goes "belly-up" .. it 
>>doesn't affect the industry because a theatre belongs to the marketing and 
>>sales outlet.
>>Nobody cares.
>>3. Food Industry
>>Here again .. the differences are only to be found in the types of venue. 
>>Burger King has 1,000s of outlets. These outlets serve as their 
>>INFRASTRUCTURE. The slaughtering plants .. packaging .. raising of animal 
>>products .. all this .. is never displayed to the public. Only the final 
>>product which is bought at the outlet is where the real $$$$ is exchanged.
>>If an "independent" outlet goes under .. there is always another to take its 
>>Nobody cares.
>>So .. how do we create an INFRASTRUCTURE for palaeontology ?? For that matter 
>>.. what exactly would suffice for an INFRASTRUCTURE in our science in the 1st 
>>place ?? In our field .. an INFRASTRUCTURE is what pulls in the customers .. 
>>the exhibits !! Because we can already recognise precisely what our 
>>infrastructure is composed of .. we now have the insight needed to "split" 
>>the field into 2 separate entities. We need to concentrate on developing 
>>exhibit institutes whose only purpose is to [highlight/ showroom] the 
>>research findings of our field. This in turn provides the $$$$ for the true 
>>research institutes that are designed NOT for profit but .. for scientific 
>>efficiency in the areas of [specimen storage/ prep labs/ collections/ 
>>research] .. just never for sales .. marketing .. $$$$.
>>The research institutes have absolutely nothing to do with business.The 
>>[P.R.I.s] Palaeontological Research Institutes themselves would require a 
>>radical new re-design. It's already worked out. That will be for a future 
>>thread entirely.
>>So .. each exhibit institute would act like a (P.R.F.S.) .. Palaeontologibal 
>>Research Funding Site. 
>>It is the "SITE" that brings in the revenue .. not simply what's standing on 
>>it. It doesn't matter what's actually standing on each site .. only that it 
>>brings revenue into the science. I say "exhibit institutes" because it is 
>>what we are more familiar with and is directly related to our science. 
>>The 2nd reason is that we should be wide open to any and all possible ways to 
>>milk as much funding from these sites as we can possibly imagine. These are 
>>NOT RESEARCH SITES but FUNDING SITES for the science. 
>>Once our 1st exhibit institute is constructed .. we are away. The goal here 
>>.. then .. would be to enhance the "funding rate of each site" by 
>>introduction of "mass differentiation" (to triple the funding rate) while at 
>>the same time honing the tool of mass distribution with extreme predjudice 
>>for these institutes.
>>"Mass Diversification" is a different matter which would seek to increase the 
>>"funding rate" another 10-fold on each established funding site. This is a 
>>whole different kettle-of-fish and would require the operation of a 
>>"Superstructure" with the underpinnings of a successful "Infrastructure" to 
>>launch it. Not for this thread. So don't even ask. Just ignore it for now.
>>So .. to continue with the original thread ..If some 200 exhibit institutes 
>>were constructed throughout North America and 13 went "Chapter 11" .. would 
>>we care ?? That is the concern of the business end only. Exhibit institutes 
>>go up .. exhibit institutes come down. Nature of the beast. No gov't net 
>>under us .. just our neural net. It would be work and a lot of panic .. but 
>>.. would gather us a large factor of independence. 
>>I say no more.
>>AAAAAAHH .. but all this begs a bigger question .. doesn't it ??
>>What good is an INFRASTRUCTURE .. if we don't actually control it completely 
>>Q : Why don't we have an INFRASTRUCTURE in place ??
>>A : Lack of OWNERSHIP 
>>OWNERSHIP serves as the 5th layer of our pyramid. In order to accomplish this 
>>.. we would have to break some rather strong taboos .. and this won't be 
>>easy. Public ownership is one thing. Private .. quite another matter. Even in 
>>private hands .. we would seek laws and controls to safeguard all research 
>>institutes and their collections. The exhibit institutes .. another matter 
>>completely. While scientific integrity is still extremely important within 
>>the confines of an exhibit institute .. the marketing and sales is a looser 
>>It may well be the nature of the beast .. but .. 
>>it would be OUR BEAST !!!
>>If the lack of an INFRASTRUCTURE is symptomatic of a lack of OWNERSHIP .. 
>>then how exactly do we get around to owning 1 or more institutes ?? For that 
>>matter .. what does it mean to .. OWN an institute ??
>>The answer is to ** FRANCHISE THE SCIENCE **. 
>>Sentimental fluff aside .. it's the ONLY WAY to go BIG !!! Take FULL 
>>advantage and ADAPT to these new concepts. Why not be the 1st out of the gate 
>>.. for once .. rather than constantly bringing up the rear ?? Those in the 
>>rear almost always have to split $$$$ crumbs and we've been in the rear now 
>>.. for nearly 2 centuries. A franchise isn't just building one institute 
>>after another. It is NOT that simplified. It requires breaking long 
>>established taboos. For instance [this is a real oversimplification of the 
>>process but .. it'll serve the purpose that I'm about to expound upon].
>>We'll take an imaginary exhibit-institute that will cost .. say .. $ 10 
>>million to build. 
>>Using simple math .. how much $$$$ would the gov't have to raise .. if the 
>>taxpayer wanted to have 10 more built in a particular Eastern State ?? This 
>>will seem redundant but .. nevertheless .. just follow me on this one.
>>A : It's the cost of the 1st institute [$ 10 million] X the number [10] to be 
>>built = $ 100 million.
>>Q : Suppose the U.S. gov't wanted to build 100 of these institutes throughout 
>>the nation
>>A : Again .. it's the cost of the 1st institute [$ 10 million] X the number 
>>[100] to be built = $ 1 billion 
>> would have to be raised.
>>NO PALAEONTOLOGICAL FRANCHISE would or could ever work this way.
>>In fact .. NO FRANCHISE .. works this way.
>>If .. in our future franchise .. [10] institutes were to be constructed .. 
>>how much would we .. in palaeontology .. have to raise ??
>>A : It's the costs of the 1st institute [$ 10 million] "divided" by the 
>>number [10] to be built = 
>> $ 1 million. per institute would have to be raised to build all 10 of them 
>> [it's quite counter-intuitve 
>> for a very basic reason].
>>Q : And what if we choose to construct 100 institutes ??
>>A : Costs inherent in the 1st institute [$ 10 million] "divided" by the 
>>number [100] to be built = $ 100,000. 
>> per institute would have to be raised in order to build at least 100 of them.
>>The point is this ..
>>It is not a question of $$$$. 
>>It is a question of MANAGEMENT of an INFRASTRUCTURE.
>>In this science .. it's not that we have poor management of funds .. but 
>>rather .. zero management. We never had it at any time in our history because 
>>the science itself was never at any time under our complete control. State 
>>and Federal gov'ts. design institutes as 1-of-a-kind. So .. they have to 
>>raise $ 10 million for each type.
>>FRANCHISES on the other hand design a single "FLAGSHIP" institute designed 
>>exclusively to be MASS-PRODUCED/ MASS-DISTRIBUTED .. thus never raising more 
>>$$$$ than necessary to build just the 1st one. All the other collective 
>>institutes are absolutely FREE .. ZERO costs to us .. provided .. we do our 
>>homework .. by making the "FLAGSHIP" as profitable as possible .. since it's 
>>the one that will ultimately be mass produced. It's strictly a MANAGEMENT 
>>decision on how much we want each institute to cost us. The smaller the 
>>number [of institutes] we construct .. the higher their initial costs to us.
>>So .. after the 1st one .. who pays for all the others ??
>>Well .. we sure as hell don't.
>>If we do our homework efficiently enough .. the "FLAGSHIP" should pull in 
>>enough customers [voluntary taxpayers] to pay for a 2nd one over time. Two 
>>then pays for 4 .. Four for 8 .. Eight for 16.
>>You get the drift ..
>>The total number of institutes can not exceed our total base customer support 
>>in any one demographic area. What determines the holding capacity of each 
>>institute in each pop. centre is .. DESIGN EFFICIENCY. This takes a lot of 
>>skill to work out. Does it take a pop. centre of 5 million or 1 million 
>>customers to profitably support 1 institute ?? It took me years to get it to 
>>the dynamics of a 1 million base centre [on paper]. It also required the 
>>introduction of an extraordinary idea to be coupled with this concept. I 
>>designed it in 1979 but never completely realised its full potential until 
>>just very recently.
>>Further .. it is our customers .. and our customers alone .. that always 
>>raise the capital. We simply MANAGE it .. spending it where needed.
>>Discipline would certainly be required here. What kind of discipline ?? The 
>>discipline NOT TO INTERFERE with the $$$$ brought into the exhibit 
>>institutes. This $$$$ should be spent primarily on an aggressive expansion of 
>>the [P.R.F.S.s]. As these expand across North America .. the FUNDING for 
>>palaeontology RISES EXPONENTIALLY. Sure .. we will find it difficult to wait 
>>4-5 years .. but we've already blown the past 150 .. so what's 4 or 5 ??
>>Again .. as the funding of the exhibit institutes increase as a whole .. one 
>>could always siphon off .. say .. 10 % to the research component as well. But 
>>maintenance and operations costs to cover the exhibit institutes MUST BE the 
>>1st priority. The 2nd priority is expansion [differentiation and 
>>distribution] with 10% going to research.
>>Funding to research is gradually ENHANCED.
>>Basically .. we're talking about setting up an old fashion FISSION REACTION. 
>>Welcome to the Atomic Age of 21st C Palaeontological Financing. 
>>Now .. why should this work ??
>>Our current funding into palaeontology is from the U.S. gov't and gov't of 
>>Canada. What we seem to have lost track of .. is a group that makes 5 times 
>>what the U.S. gov't makes. In fact .. 1/5 of what this group makes .. 
>>completely underwrites the entire U.S. gov't. They're called the "American 
>>We have an aversion to asking them to "voluntarily" underwrite us ?!? Maybe 
>>we're on the wrong side .. asking all the wrong people ?!?
>>More than likely .. we have also never really understood the real costs .. to 
>>us .. inherent in setting up institutes.
>>O.K. .. 
>>This is going to be really touchy .. very delicate to handle .. and 
>>unfortunately somewhat personal. I wish it didn't have to be but .. I know 
>>its probably going to come across that way. I really don't know how else to 
>>handle this .. so .. here goes.
>>Apologises to everyone concerned in advance.
>>I call this "BUNKERING" or the "BUNKER MENTALITY"
>>When the ancient Egyptians designed their sarcophagus' .. they built 
>>underground burial chambers to hold them. Think of these burial chambers as 
>>research programs and the saurcophagus' as the itinerant collections. 
>>I'm using an analogy here.
>>Over top all of this .. was built a 10 million ton stone pyramid. Think of 
>>the pyramid as a political BUNKER [institute building] designed to stand the 
>>test of time .. representing the gov't that built it .. a costly undertaking 
>>.. an ediface to political ego. 
>>While the ancient Egyptians gave up "bunkering" .. the museum world did not. 
>>The buildings have become as priceless as what they encompass. This "bunker 
>>mentality" is precisely what stands in our way of low maintenance .. low 
>>construction costs .. making this whole thing somewhat unfeasible. The way 
>>museums are constructed has been established nearly unchanged for well over 2 
>>Today .. if one were to duplicate the construction of the Tyrrell museum in 
>>Alberta .. I can't for the life of me imagine doing it for less than $ 100 
>>million. That is a $ 100 million institute covering some 120,000 sq.ft.
>>Where am I going with this ??
>>Some might think .. for what I'm about to say that .. I'm about to purchase a 
>>1-way ticket straight to Hell ..
>>I have been there before. However .. since I've already bought my ticket ..
>>I have been watching with some interest .. over the past 2 years .. of a 
>>group in Northern Alberta .. that put together some $25 million and even got 
>>the gov't to top it up with another $ 10 million. What this group has just 
>>accomplished is the construction of a $ 35 million .. 40,000 sq.ft. 
>>institute. Based loosely on this .. their construction costs work out to 
>>approximately $ 875.oo per sq.ft. Their institute .. I believe .. stands over 
>>30' in height .. judging from what I can see of their artistic renditions. 
>>The RTMP has a similar height .. which is standard for the construction 
>>industry. This is .. however .. another bunkerized museum. The people 
>>involved had worked very long and hard to accomplish this feat. 
>>Kudos to them. 
>>But the world is about to change .. at least for palaeontological funding. 
>>Hopefully .. their type institute was the last of an old breed .. an old way 
>>of doing things.
>>Today .. sitting down with architects and a construction company .. we 
>>realised that we could probably get the construction costs down to $ 15.oo 
>>sq.ft. by simply [counterintuitively] going big .. very big. It would be 
>>possible to build a 1 million sq.ft. institute .. not for $ 15 million .. but 
>>for as little as 1/5 of that amount .. IF .. it were further enhanced as an 
>>I'll explain this in a later thread.
>>For $ 35 million .. it would have been possible to commence construction of 
>>12 [1 million sq.ft.] institutes across North America .. and these institutes 
>>would today be serving as the building blocks of our very 1st 
>>palaeontological INFRASTRUCTURE.
>>Such continued missed oportunities.
>>Again .. my apologises for being so blunt. 
>>It is what it is.
>>Haven't gone into any detail as yet. That'll be another thread if we can 
>>launch one of these. $3 million is still a shit pile of $$$$ to raise from a 
>>standing position .. even for a 1 million sq.ft. institute standing nearly 
>>150' in height. In sheer size .. this partially represents an institute some 
>>60 times the size of the new Northern Alberta institute .. 20 times the size 
>>of the RTMP .. and at a tiny .. tiny fraction of their costs.
>>To be fair .. this Alberta group had completely opposite goals to what I'm 
>>proposing .. and they still accomplished them. I have little doubt of their 
>>future success in this endeavour. This tells me at the very least that .. 
>>there is $$$$ out there .. lots of it.
>>Finally .. all we've been doing is Digging through SYMPTOMS. We need to get 
>>to the real cause of our impoverishment.
>>Q : Why don't we have any OWNERSHIP of such institutes today ??
>>A : ATTITUDE .. the 6th and final layer of our pyramid.
>>An ATTITUDE towards funding change means nothing less than taking complete 
>>responsibility for the funding of our science. They say ATTITUDE is 
>>absolutely free and one of the hardest things of all to acquire. I've been 
>>through the mud to know how true that is. Time to throw down the shovel. We 
>>have no further need to Dig. As Pickers .. we now have our quarry. We have 
>>travelled down this pyramid only to discover the real reason for our 
>>science's funding impoverishment. 
>>This is only the starting point. 
>>Now .. we have to climb back up and eliminate the SYMPTOMS as we go. 
>>That is for a much later thread AND it's where all the details are.
>>To summerise : RESOLUTION 
>> MONEY [$$$$] 
>>I won't be back on the computer for a couple days. Got too much to do. So 
>>take your time if you want to respond. I'm always looking for any new twist 
>>or new perspectives .. even at this late date. There's always time for 
>>retrospection. I'll try and answer what I can. No flaming labels please. If 
>>you feel you must .. "imperial-capitalist-running-pig-dog" is fine.
>>I leave you with this :
>>"If we don't find the courage and initiative within ourselves to do this .. 
>>someone else .. outside palaeontology .. inevitably .. will do it for us .. 
>>So .. am I crazy ?? 
>>Was Ford crazy when he introduced a new way of independent funding to the 
>>auto industry ?? 
>>Think deeply upon this. 
>>Thanks for bearing with me.