DSN’s 7 Simple Rules for Marine Conservation Expedition Safety

Enter the Ady Gil (formerly the Earthrace).

wojdfnowrjfNo, this isn’t the Knight Rider of the harbor. This batmobile of conservation is now the newest member of the  Sea Shepherd team, also known as Team Sink-A-Boat-For-Whales. From Sea Shepherd’s press office:

Due to its speed capabilities, up to 50 knots, Captain Paul Watson (Sea Shepherd President and Founder) intends to use the Ady Gil to intercept and physically block the harpoon ships from illegally slaughtering whales.

Says Captain Watson, “We’re very excited that the Ady Gil will be joining the Steve Irwin in Antarctica this campaign. With these two ships, we will mount the most ambitious and aggressive effort to date to obstruct the slaughter of the whales in the Southern Ocean.”

Says Chuck Swift, Deputy CEO in charge of ship’s operations, “The Ady Gil gives us the speed necessary to catch and stay with the Japanese whaling fleet. We are very optimistic that with these two ships, and some other surprises, we will shut down whaling in the Antarctic Whale Sanctuary.”

Thats your hard earned donor’s dollars work. Saving whales and stuff man. But let us take a moment to reflect on the manner in which Sea Shepherd operates the “normal” ship they already mismanage.

(Below the fold)

Now, it is easy to hate on Sea Shepherd but it is important to constantly remind the philanthropic public how bad an organization this is. They are systematically removing valuable conservation dollars from organizations that might actually make a difference. Their incompetence knows no bounds, yet they continue to receive donations.

Take for example the above video. There are certain rules that one must abide when working at sea, especially in the Southern Ocean with water temperatures not quite in the summer Jamaican vacation range. Anyone with a captain’s license would know that. Oh wait, Paul Watson is not actually a commissioned captain, but is instead a liar, bullies critics with bogus legal action, mismanages donors funds, hinders real progress in conservation, exploits whale deaths for fame and fortune, has little to no respect in the conservation community, and seriously endangers the lives of other people in one of the most dangerous working environments!

So for any novice wannabe self-commissioned ship captains out there, we here at Deep Sea News would like to offer a little guidance. This is DSN’s 7 Simple Rules for Marine Conservation Expedition Safety

  1. 1) NEVER launch a zodiac when the ship is moving, i.e there should be NO WAKE off the bow
  2. 2) NEVER let go of a steady rope and best to hold that sucker taught
  3. 3) NEVER board a zodiac until the zodiac has reached a stationary position on the sea surface, secured in place with a taught steady rope
  4. 4) NEVER climb over the safety rail of a moving ship onto a zodiac that has not reached a state described in (3)
  5. 5) NEVER release the steady rope until the side crane’s hook has been released and the boat and  its passengers are safely situated in a state as described in (3)
  6. 6) NEVER put you hand between the safety rail of the ship and that of any heavy object being hoisted over the side
  7. 7) NEVER look on dumbly as the crew under your command do something obviously stupid and moronic

We hope you all will have a fun, safe marine conservation expedition this Antarctic summer season! And remember, if you follow our 7 Simple Rules, you might actually save a whale!

(Disclaimer: Saving whales does not stop actually the practice of whaling, it only makes you feel good about yourself and look heroic in front of a camera. To save whales you have to actually interact with government and industry officials to enact rules and legislature, change hearts and minds, have a decent enough argument that sways people, etc. It is not easy, that is why hundreds of marine scientists around the world work hard on this problem EVERY DAY.)

25 Replies to “DSN’s 7 Simple Rules for Marine Conservation Expedition Safety”

  1. Yeah sure, you and hundreds of marine scientists around the world working hard on this problem EVERY DAY are interacting with government and industry officials to enact rules and legislature, changing hearts and minds, having a decent enough argument that sways people, but what are you doing? Sea Shepherd’s out in the Southern Ocean DOING SOMETHING!

    Obviously you must be in favoring of murdering whales.

    There, I beat the Sea Sheep to their own petard.

  2. Yeah, c’mon, Sea Shepherd, why can’t you just make a PETITION or hold a WORKSHOP like everybody else?

  3. you are so right ! it is so obvious how effective talking to the japanese goverment has been, They have been kind enough to paint RESEARCH on their ships in english to better communicate with us, and to hold up sign is english about the important research they are doing. THAT is where my charitible money should be going, to buy lattes and power lunches so the conservation lobby can discuss this nicely over sushi…….

    I support action where governments have failed to act. evil happens when good men stand and do nothing.

  4. What? You want to have SS sit around holding hands talking about their feelings while the whales are being slaughtered in front of them?

    At least they are out there doing something instead of talking and talking and doing nothing more than talking some more. If you talk to the thief instead of hitting him in the head he’ll empty your pockets with one hand while chatting you up. Better to knock him out first.

  5. On another note, surely this new ‘stealth’ Sea Shepherd boat is going to fall to pieces the first time they try their usual tactics with it? It might be fast but one accidental (sic) knock from a whaling ship and it’s going to break in two.

  6. Re. Stuart and Patrick:

    Oh please, in 31 years Sea Shepherd has achieved exactly none of it’s goals. Whales are still being hunted in the Arctic, Seals are still being clubbed in Canada, and sharks are still being finned around the world. Sea Shepherd’s methods have consistently failed to bring about real or lasting change, and in many cases have actually hurt the cause of conservation by making it more difficult to get the job done. They in fact ARE sitting around holding hands talking about their feelings while the whales are being slaughtered in front of them. They aren’t doing anything.

    Look at the success of “The Cove”, which used methods Paul Watson himself actively mocked on Whale Wars AND successfully shut down the Taiji dolphin harvest. Then look at how quickly Sea Shepherd jumped onto that bandwagon and took credit for the success.

    You want to support Sea Shepherd because you like the idea of someone blundering around the Southern Ocean acting like a pirate, fine, but I’d rather affect real, lasting conservation of our world.

  7. I think the cove was a great success, but to win any war you have to have a multitude of tactics, I would agree with the author that they lack proper training and knowledge to do a lot of the things that they try to do. however the US navy seals seem to be able to launch zodiaks from moving ships, helicopters, and submarines. I was in the navy and I would absolutly love to see some training and procedures setup with sea shepherd. they should be out to sea the weeks previous to setting sail getting proficient at the manuevers and operations they want to execute in the southern ocean.

    Whether you think they are effective or not, The annimal planet series has brought the eyes of millions to part of the world where most things would normally never be seen.

  8. I agree with all the posts giving praise to the VOLUNTEERS who are actually out there doing something regardless of all the blunders and arrogance. I love how the rest of you twits sit behind your computer screens and criticize others for not saving the whales the proper way. Unfortunately it has taken 31 years to make some progress because only now are people starting to clue in about global warming, extinction, and damage to the planet. It’s unfortunate it took so long but thanks to Paul for helping to educate the ignorant masses.

  9. Very good post. One good thing about really far-left organizations like SS is that they redefine the “middle”; but I totally agree about them sucking conservation dollars from useful orgs that could affect better/lasting change. That, and the IWC needs some actual teeth for enforcement.

  10. Well I agree safety protocols arent followed but then again these guys arent in the safty busines they are in the funk off the Japs business and they have all agreed to take risks to save the whales. Safety is not the paramount concern, causing as much distraction and delay for the whalers is what it is all about. These people have pledged their lives to put at risk to save whales. If safety was the concern then ramming boats and nearly breaching the hull and sinking and dying souldnt be on the cards either. if you can get that this is what Whale Wars and sea shepherd is a all about then you shouldnt be watching. Its like taking LSD only to complain that your tripping balls. Hehe. Its their war, watch it and enjoy. I contirnuted £100 too because i think any people who care that much and GET OFF THEIR ARSES deserves my cash.

  11. I TAWT I taw a puddy tat – tweety
    A TAUT line is a straight line, a ground-drawn line is an arc – archimedes
    A TAUGHT child is never wild – ugg the caveman tutor

    Sea Shephard got a new costly toy, big deal. Its all PR.

  12. When the Jap economy implodes under a tidal wave of debt they wont be able to afford to kill whales. But in the mean time, only hard direct action will have any effect. The Sea Shepard people should try to raise funds for a second hand icebreaker, then use that to ram and sink the Jap whaling boats.

  13. Does there only have to be one method? I believe change happens from awareness ( generated by spectacular events such as the SS), political action, and public pressure . Need all 3 really and everyone can play a part. I am a desk jockie and write letters and foster awareness of issues with friends and such. It is nothing big but it is something, everyone can do what they do best as long as they do SOMETHING!

  14. The activities of SS have not resulted in political action nor public pressure after 31 years of work. While Whale Wars might result in more awareness in the American public, their actions have more or less nationalized the issue of whaling in Japan creating the opposite reaction. Instead of getting the Japanese public and government to side with them against whaling, as Japan’s prime minister was reported on:

    “He admitted in the Diet that there were cultural differences over whaling, and in the way that Japan hunted, and conducted its science.

    But he said it was unforgivable to illegally interfere with whaling, referring to the stand-off over the detention of two Sea Shepherd activists who boarded a Japanese catcher vessel last week.”

    It is not always good to do something if that something is illegal, irresponsibly dangers lives, irresponsibly uses donor’s money, ignores national and international maritime laws, and has not over an extended trial period resulted in accomplishing any stated goals. When something doesn’t work repeatedly, do you keep doing the same thing over and over again for 30 years or do you find another innovative way to solve a problem? The record is skipping and no one is moving the needle at Sea Shepherd.

  15. Whether their methods actually work or whether they endanger other people’s lives are irrelevant to Watson and his organization because their enterprise is a self-perpetuating narcissistic pose, not a pragmatic undertaking with an end goal in mind. The purpose of groups like his is to exploit the cheap appeal of self-righteous indignation to stir up controversy and drive more donations their way. Their cheesy and utterly useless new toy, the Ady Gil, fits precisely that attention-seeking purpose and no other. It’s a gimmick.

    The worst thing that could happen to Watson is for whaling to suddenly end.

    As his luck would have it, that is not likely to happen anytime soon, because as Kevin Zelnio points out people like SS has done more, not less, to entrench opinion in whaling countries.

    I’ll posit my theory (tape down the caps lock key and commence flaming): Arguments against whaling fail because they overwhelmingly tend to take the form of a moral dictum, which comes across as patronizing at best and insulting at worst when levelled against people — e.g., the Japanese, Norwegians, Icelanders, or for that matter native Greenlanders — for whom whaling is utilitarian.

    Let me put that another way. You (not you but a generic anti-whaling you) are talking to Norwegians or Japanese from the point of view, which seems self-evident to you, that killing whales and seals is morally wrong. Therefore, they are behaving immorally and would stop if you could only succeed in making them understand that. What they’re hearing you make, on the other hand, is an emotional argument to the effect that some mammals are morally distinct from other mammals, e.g. cattle, because they live in the ocean and don’t have legs, therefore eating them is wrong. Oh, and also they sing. Pass the ham, please. Any hope of mutual understanding ends right there.

    The only way to have a productive discussion with people in other countries who consider marine mammals a resource — and I’ll stand up and say I’m one of those people — is to present resource conservation arguments and discuss whaling in those terms. That’s not glamorous, it doesn’t feel like “action,” and it doesn’t fire up the righteous indignation that brings in the bucks to buy boats. It doesn’t come with the instant gratification of feeling like you’re fighting a “war” on the “good” side. It certainly doesn’t get you your own TV show. What it does do is get both sides back out of the trenches to actually achieve something.

  16. Sea Shepherd has more sea time than all of you. Any of your readers who have as much salt as Paul, sure the hell ain’t reading you website. Why would they? Even the new sea shepherd wog volunteers come back with more sea time than most of you sitting there in your arm chairs.

  17. @Red Lead

    I think most of those criticizing Sea Shepherd here have substantial amount of time at sea. Also most of us are active in conservation efforts, research, and outreach. I think none of us here could be considered “sitting in our arm chairs”.

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