Friday, October 30, 2009

Sea Shepherd Crushing Dissent?

We have been critics of Sea Shepherd for the past year at this blog. Along with a growing number of others we have been hammering away at what appears to be a conservation org based on media fabrications, distortions, and an ongoing complete lack of credibility.

SSCS manages a 1970's direct action eco strategy that has all but failed to effect real conservation change. This strategy has been wildly successful in attracting millions in conservation donor dollars and a reality television show.

Dissent and Conservation

It is important that dissent is kept alive and well within the conservation community. Dissent and critique are the twin guides by which the conservation world polices itself. Or should be.

Global strategies and conservation efforts should be guided by clear and definable metrics for success. This is the basis of conservation. Choose targets well and roll out a careful and successful strategy to effect conservation change.

When conservation orgs fail to deliver conservation change they, as public entities, should be held to account. The money they accept is public money.

Sea Shepherd Conservation Society does not like dissent, or opposition to any of it's ongoing and very public conservation antics. We have discovered this first hand.

This blog is re posted on a series of blog aggregators and other sites. Over the past year SSCS has been quietly emailing and demanding these sites take our critiques of SSCS down.

The implied threat is one of legal action by SSCS.

Using vague and varied legal terms, SSCS has accused this blog of falsely reporting "facts" and basic muckraking against SSCS.

These are counter accusations coming a conservation group featuring Paul Watsons ongoing claims and faked video that he was "shot by Japanese whalers." A media "fact" that has all but been completely discredited including most recently by popular media's South Park.

When conservation critique is quashed, we lose the ability to guide the overall direction of conservation efforts. The very efforts that the public funds through donations.

We are all in the business of real and lasting conservation change - or should be.

This blog will continue to point out failed eco strategy in the hopes that change will happen. The fact SSCS chooses to deflect dissent is one indication that we are on the right track.

Faked hostage events, faked attempted assassinations, and made for television vessel rammings do nothing to save whales, sharks, seals or change eco policy in any country. Recently SSCS suffered a multi million dollar loss when the Canadian Government sized their sister vessel the Farley Mowat and sold it at auction. Seals will be slaughtered again this spring and the entire SSCS seal campaign was a loss, both monetarily and to the conservation movement.

To those few who support SSCS the world has changed since the 1970's. We need new strategy, new conservation goals, and new direction, not hyper inflated eco media.

Consider what you are doing, what you have been doing, and ask yourself...has anything really changed? Where are the solid, lasting metrics for conservation change?

Mossel Bay Shark Death Confirmed

Images like these serve as reminders that big sharks are not safe anywhere.

Rumors of a large shark caught in Mossel Bay, S.A home to several commercial shark diving companies have been floating around the industry for weeks:

"Commenting on the shark in the photographs, Geremy Cliff, head of research at the KwaZulu-Natal Sharks Board, confirmed that the 4,3-metre shark was caught in the shark nets off Zinkwazi beach on August 31."

We have been posting about how the death of just "one shark" can become the instrument for shark conservation change. Perhaps this shark will be that animal. For the many commercial shark diving companies in that region the loss of such a big animal will be felt. In the end it will be up to them with a coalition of NGO's to seek the regional changes necessary to save these magnificent animals from further catches.

S.A newspaper, The Witness, has the complete story.

Editors Note: See surprising update.