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2013-02-02 Economy
New England fishermen say new regulations may lead to collapse of the industry
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Posted by Fred 2013-02-02 00:00|| E-Mail|| Front Page|| [6460 views ]  Top

#1 That's because fishermen can't pull up the healthier groundfish without catching too much of the cod that swim among them.

Just follow the White House model, automate. Send out drone fishing craft, then collateral damage is OK.
Posted by Procopius2k 2013-02-02 00:16||   2013-02-02 00:16|| Front Page Top

#2 These cuts have nothing to do with science and nothing to do with "saving the industry".

What is happening here is a concerted effort by government fisheries managers, to go down the European path of a de facto takeover of the groundfish industry in New England, by using their script as follows:

-Use questionable "science" and friends in the MSM to gin up public notions of a collapse in the numbers of fish that is way out of proportion with any population fluctuations

-Switch from open fishing to quotas based upon previous fishing experience, making it difficult for boats to enter the industry

-Switch from overall quotas to "days at sea" quotas, making the profession even more dangerous and less able to respond to market prices

-Switch from "days at sea" quotas to sector-type catch share management, which allows large operators to buy up other operators' catch shares and drive even more boats out of the industry

-Finally, shut down the quota again one more time to drive the remaining small boats out of the business, leaving a few large boats from one or two ports in any given state to catch all the fish.

The intent of the government fishing managers has never been to maintain the fish populations in a way which is sustainable and has never taken into account wider economic effects on communities. It has always been a crony mercantilist effort to destroy the small-business model of fishing and consolidate the industry into a few large players. Every step the government has taken has had as its purpose not concern about the long term survival of the fishermen or the fish, about which the vast bulk of fisheries management public sector workers care very little, but takeover of the fishing industry by the government to make their own jobs more secure and much less difficult.

Every country in Euroland did exactly this same thing. Outgoing NMFS boss Lubchenko was overt in her support for this progression. The end result is a de facto government owned fishing industry, with lots of smaller coastal fishing towns devastated financially and the infrastructure needed to maintain it (ice houses, trucking routes, etc.) allowed to wither on the vine.

Of course, even as the number of boats "needing" regulation plummets, the number of fisheries personnel at NMFS and the various state agencies has not been cut and they have been getting paid the same or more. Think about that. The actual work load of the agency has declined (and will hugely decline under these new regs as the number of boats is cut by as much as half) and the number of people working at NMFS will stay the same. As it stands right now NMFS has almost three employees and grant recipients for every groundfish license in the north Atlantic. That may jump to five or more. Five public functionaries and rent-seeking grant recipients for every boat out there fishing. The word "parasite" leaps to mind.

In essence, the government has killed off the groundfish industry while feasting on its economic carcass, all based upon lies and bureacratic sleight-of-hand. We are rapidly approaching a time when there will be almost nobody fishing and all the people at NMFS still have their "paychecks" without having a speck of work to do. Most of the "science" used to justify these cuts is junk, but even if it were true, the moral and ethical thing for the government agency to do would be to cut its own workforce and pay grade in proportion to the size of the job they were tasked with doing. Instead they continue to stay at their sinecures even though the actual work they were hired to do no longer exists.

Posted by no mo uro 2013-02-02 06:46||   2013-02-02 06:46|| Front Page Top

#3 Trust the Gorton's Fisherman to look absurd standing in the line at the unemployment office in that slicker and hat...
Posted by M. Murcek 2013-02-02 08:54||   2013-02-02 08:54|| Front Page Top

#4 No worries. So long as Peru and China have fish, we'll have fish too! And without all those grubby fishermen!

Posted by AzCat 2013-02-02 12:36||   2013-02-02 12:36|| Front Page Top

#5 Who did the New England area vote for?

Posted by Injun Snoling3722 2013-02-02 13:25||   2013-02-02 13:25|| Front Page Top

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