Screamapillars & Sea Lions

Did you ever see that episode of the Simpsons that featured the “screamapillar”? Homer built Marge a Koi Pond as a gift and this incredibly irritating howling worm called the screamapillar moved in. Because it was so loud and grating, Homer couldn’t wait to kill it. But, right as he was about to squash the little monster, an EPA worker shows up, says it’s endangered, and threatens him with jail time if anything happens to the screeching bug.

The whole point being that you have this annoying little insect who’s making life miserable for the Simpsons by making awful noises and keeping them up all night, but because of dumb government regulations, they’re not able to get rid of the worm.

Could that sort of thing happen in real life? Absolutely. In fact, it has. Meet the real life version of the screamapillar, the sea lion:

“Think of them as amphibious sumo wrestlers. A pack of rowdy sea lions has invaded Newport Harbor, sinking boats, thrashing docks and, with their nonstop barking, turning residents into sleepless zombies.

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In a scene that has played out up and down the West Coast, the whiskered creatures are charming tourists but exasperating local officials, who are considering a bizarre array of methods to thwart the federally protected mammals.

Tonight, the Harbor Commission will discuss the situation, which took on added urgency after 18 sea lions piled onto a 37-foot sailboat this month and sank it.

The sheriff’s harbor patrol has been fielding at least two noise complaints a day, Sgt. David Ginther said.

“A barking dog doesn’t hold a candle to this. It’s like 40 barking dogs — in SurroundSound,” grumbled Balboa Peninsula resident Darci Schriber.

…Sea lions have also tormented Monterey, trapping people aboard boats, attacking city workers and defecating and vomiting on docks.

Elsewhere, the animals have attacked swimmers, chomped boogie boards and even yanked people off boats.

Once hunted to the brink of extinction, California sea lions now number 300,000 to 400,000 off U.S. shores, thanks largely to the 1972 Marine Mammal Protection Act, which made it illegal to kill, injure or harass the creatures.”

If you want an example of what’s wrong with the Federal government, this will do.

Maybe it made sense back in 1972 to protect sea lions since they were on the “brink of extinction.” But, when you have 300,000-400,000 of the ugly, noisome beasts roaming around, it’s a whole different ball game. Yet, you still have the federal government gravely inconveniencing human beings today based on conditions that existed 33 years ago.

You think FEMA should be a first responder after a hurricane? You want the Feds to take over our healthcare system? Heck, the Federal government can’t even properly deal with sea lions!

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