Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Whale Wars - Some Thoughts

(Artist credit: Jeff Wilkie)

It sucks to be sick. I had another much more grueling round of bronchitis to suffer through and it took over three weeks to get over that. :: sigh :: It's hard to get anything done when you have to cough like a crazy woman every few minutes. Plus it exhausts you.

In addition, my partner went in for a heart catheter procedure a little less than two weeks ago. So that was surreal and provided some tense moments for awhile. Fortunately, all is okay on that front.

At least I was able to get out for a nice dinner for my birthday on the 15th, so that was nice!

With the Whale Wars season now concluded on the Animal Planet, I wanted to share some thoughts / observations I had.

It is unfortunate, in my opinion, that so much was focused on the group politics/drama ...

Some observations I've made about the Sea Shepherd ..

(1) While it is known that the volunteers who come on board do not necessarily have experience with being out to sea and what to do, etc ... seems to me that there should be some training provided or to have it be a prerequisite to being on the team, to have either the training or some experience beforehand. So many incidents that happened could have had very different, disastrous, and potentially fatal results.

(2) While I admire Paul Watson's passion for what he does and given he's spent pretty much his entire life dedicated to this issue., I have to wonder sometimes if he's not grandstanding for the media or creating situations that are manipulating the media to give the Sea Shepherd more attention.

(3) The top of the crew seem to have a hard core attitude that runs along the lines of "You're either with us, or against us." That may be a little too extreme of me to say, but it does kinda push towards that general direction and I find that turns me off a little bit. Without having provided any training or having screened people before boarding (to my knowledge anyway) it seems the management on the crew expect people to know right off the bat what to do, how to act, etc ...there's little to no room for mistakes out there and yet they continue to bring newbies and rookies out there and expect the world from them.

(4) An example of possible media manipulation on the part of Captain Watson (and this is just my opinion and observation and I am the first to admit I could be way off base) is when he was allegedly shot and a bullet was found in his vest. What did he do immediately after announcing that this happened? He went back inside the ship and starting talking to various media outlets about what happened and wrote about it online. I dunno. I smell a rat here ...

Maybe I'm being too hard on them ... I support the Sea Shepherd organization and have a great deal of respect for what they do because so far, they are the ONLY organization that continues to be out there consistently, year in and year out, dedicating themselves to saving the whales and bringing to the public light, how very serious this issue is and how apathetic and inhumane the Japanese whale hunters are on this matter.

So those are my thoughts at this time, based on having watched the entire Whale Wars season.

I welcome other observations and opinions on this. Please feel free to leave a comment and share your thoughts.

Now that I'm not coughing anymore and finally have my energy back, I'll be here with regular updates. Please accept my apologies for the long absence. Every day I would tell myself I need to go to my computer and write something, but I just didn't have the energy to focus on it. I appreciate those of you who have sent me messages inquiring about how I'm doing and when I would be back, etc ... your kind thoughts and get well wishes are very much appreciated!




  1. Hi Dolphin,
    I agree with everything you said about Paul Watson and Sea Shepherd needing to better prepare their crew for their Antartic adventure to help the whales. Scott

  2. Hi Scott!

    Thanks for dropping by and sharing your thoughts :-)

    Hopefully this is something the Sea Shepherd will implement .. I think if they did that, things would not only go more smoothly (hopefully) but would obviously reduce some of the dangers and make for more effective and productive missions.

    But it's easy to say that from the warmth and comfort of our homes, eh?

    I do continue to applaud them though for what they do ...

  3. Your instincts are right on in my opinion. He is the master of media and public manipulation. He was never shot he would have done more than reach inside his mustang suit wondering what happened. Even the smallest bullet a 22cal that round has a velocity of 1700ft per second that equals a big owie even with a ballistic vest on. Unfortunately I can not admire him like you do, not that I agree with whaling at all it is his arrogant attitude and how he values whales over the life of his crew. I am a professional captain of 25 years and haveing been in the captains chair your crews life and safety is priority one. A sure way to help with that is to teach them seamanship whatever happened to mariners pride. I always have thought the crew is the reflection of the captain fill them with knowledge. I see more of an attitude of crew expendability more like a tool not a person. Environmental activism is almost becoming a mob rules mentality and people are quick to jump onboard. Kind of scary humans can too easily be influenced by men with agendas. I just hope and pray that Watson does not kill some naive young crew members. You should look up some of his talks on YouTube he has some messed up views.

    Aloha Nui Loa
    Captain G

  4. Hi Captain G ..

    Very sorry for the delay in approving your comment. Thank you for taking time out to share your thoughts here - I really appreciate it :-)

    I haven't updated in awhile and have been debating whether or not to continue this blog ... But it's comments like yours that make me lean back in the direction of continuing :-)