Home' Ausmarine : February 2010 Contents The southern bluefin tuna (SBT) industry is reeling under the
joke of quota cuts introduced not by the necessity of a faltering
tuna industry, but a non-caring political system that didn't
understand our industry or the consequences arising from the
ill thought-out actions by the negotiators from Canberra in the
recent tuna management talks in South Korea.
Environment Minister Peter Garrett needed a win to look good
in the eyes of the environmental movement and the tuna industry
was a good opportunity to show everybody who was boss. The fact
is, the consequences of those actions have yet to hit home -- they
will hit those who voted Labor hardest.
The Copenhagen fiasco was exactly the same. It could have cost
Australians billions of dollars if Tony Abbott had caved in. The
Australian contingent, plus Prime Minister, went along like a
bunch of school kids, all starry eyed with big hopes but little
substance, trying to convert the world to our way of thinking. The
cynical world press labelled it as the largest ever talkfest, no
substance, wasteful and just a sham.
Political lobbyist Tim Wilson of the Institute of Public
Affairs said: "I was shocked at the waste being created by the
conference. I have never seen anything like it; it was just a poor
excuse for a whole bunch of bureaucrats to have a free trip to
Europe before Christmas."
He is just one of the many critics bagging this get-together as
hopelessly out of touch with the realities of life.
Tony Abbott judged the mood of the Australian electorate
correctly and said, "Let's see what the rest of the world is doing
first before we take the next step."
The nonsense in Copenhagen has given him the right answer.
Many of us are acutely aware that the environmental lobby in
Canberra is becoming stronger by the minute and if we are not
careful it will make it difficult for many industries including
fishing and aquaculture to survive in the future.
I have written a number of times about the emotional nonsense
associated with global warming and have read about the positives
and negatives -- as in the book by Danish Associate Professor of
Statistics, Bjorn Lomborg, titled The Skeptical Environmentalist.
The professor goes into great detail about the mischievous
half-truths bandied about by the fanatics of global warming and
the misunderstanding it has created around the world.
Now Copenhagen! Every Tom, Dick and Harry was in the
Danish capital trying to get his five minutes in the Scandinavian
sunshine. I dare say, many of those so-called delegates cluttering
the venues of the city didn't even look for their five minutes but
are quite happy to play in the shadows, concerned only with how
to waste government money and have a European holiday.
Parasites on the public purse, I call them! I can't, for the life of me,
understand how such rorting is condoned by governments.
Take, for example, the Australian delegation, which reportedly
had 114 members for a country with a population of 21 million
people. A tad excessive, I would have thought. On the other hand,
Great Britain, with a population nearly three times that of Australia,
had a delegation of reportedly just 71 people. The village idiot can
see that something is just not right. Or is it that I just don't get it?
The department heads that are responsible for such waste
need to be questioned. So far our opposition is failing in the
attempt to hold our government responsible. As a typical
example of the lunacy, at the time of writing this article
(December 18, 2009) the G77 spokesman and Sudanese
negotiator Lumumba Stanislaus-Kaw Di-Aping demanded that
the US sign the Kyoto Protocol and cough up 200 billion USD in
financing for developing countries to cope with climate change.
Words fail me. Such ignorance. This gentleman made a number
of other outlandish accusations which make me believe he has
an IQ below room temperature.
In the Australian press, a journalist wrote, "most negotiators
are hard-working public servants doing their best." I beg to differ!
I have been in and out of Canberra for some 40 years and let me
tell you the town is beset with people who would not be able to
hold down a job in the private sector. Even politicians are telling
me the same.
I spoke recently with a number of Americans about global
warming and detected strong scepticism, if only for the mere fact
that at present the United States is experiencing a cold snap with
temperatures the coldest ever recorded with over 50 percent of the
US under a white blanket.
The same is the case in Paris; the snow has been piling up on
the Champs-Élysée and the Eiffel Tower. Somehow those
environmental warriors have a lot to answer for with their
outrageous demands, scare-mongering tactics and unsubstantiated
claims that the world is coming to an end. I freely admit we should
not take matters of global warming too flippantly, but right now
the debates are still in fairyland.
Both sides, no doubt have employed a certain amount of "spin"
to make us sit up and take notice and opinions change from day to
day. I freely admit that I don't understand the ETS (Emissions
Trading Scheme) at all; everyone I ask gives me a different
interpretation. Tony Abbott is right! The time has come that the
Australian people should be involved in the debate around global
warming. Not just a few dunderheads in Canberra.
In a survey in our offices in Port Lincoln we found that of 54
participants only three had a real understanding of what our
Federal government was trying to achieve to burden us (the
voters of Australia) with a tax that would cost billions of dollars
in the future. Thank God for the "Mad Monk", opposition
leader Tony Abbott. Maybe he was sent by God to stop the
madness of our Prime Minister's global warming ideas; that tax
he is attempting to burden us with. Make no mistake this is just
going to be another tax or wealth distribution in disguise.
The result from Copenhagen: Positive outcomes? There
were none! Lots of talk, good cocktail parties, little action, no
binding agreements -- except with the ladies of the night, who were
in the capital city by the thousands. As one Scandinavian paper
concluded, night clubs and good-time women were the only ones
benefiting from the expense accounts of many delegates.
Disclosure: Member of the Baird family or companies in the Baird
Publications group own shares in Clean Seas.
A column of personal opinion by one of Australia's leading
fishing industry entrepreneurs. Hagen Stehr AO of Port Lincoln.
Not even politics can help
February 2010 AUSMARINE
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