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75 percent of the big fish populations worldwide are "fished out".

when I was a teenager, I can remember, I read cheery books on deep-sea fishing asserting confidently that the oceans were an infinite reservoir of protein, and if we just ramped up our fishing efforts with the latest technology, hunger would become a thing of the past.  [infinite, oh gawd there's that word again.  "Djou keep using that worrd.  I do not tink it means, what djou tink it means."  IMHO any planner or economist who uses the word "infinite" should have his/her mouth washed out with pine tar soap.]

thanks to deep sea fishing with "efficient" technologies (that throw aside up to 50 percent of the biotic tonnage stripmined from the sea as "bycatch," mangled and dying), we have introduced hunger to Southern Hemi coastal villages with millenium-old fisheries, as vandalism of the marine food chain has devastated coastal as well as deep sea stocks.

the sentence I want to highlight in the article cited above is this one:  Today a 70 pound swordfish-which is too young to have even reproduced-is considered "a good sized fish" and can be legally landed in the US.

consider this sentence carefully.  we are catching top-of-food-chain species, long-lived species, so young that they have not had time to reproduce.  this is called extermination, not harvesting or even rational predation.  in a more agrarian metaphor it is eating the seed corn;  in my favourite analogy it is chopping down the orchard to get at the apples.  it is eating the future in one greedy gulp.  when you devour your food source before it has time to reproduce, this gives a whole new meaning to the word "stupid."

this is what I call looting.  smashing whatever gets in the way to grab what's grabbable and run, the hell with the consequences.

The difference between theory and practise in practise ...

by DeAnander (de_at_daclarke_dot_org) on Tue Apr 11th, 2006 at 05:26:01 PM EST
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