Saturday, January 9, 2010

Are We Being Manipulated by the Whale Wars?

Artist credit: Eva M Sakmar

Are we, the public, being exploited, distracted and manipulated by the events surrounding Sea Shepherd and the Japanese whalers?  Is the Animal Planet's Whale Wars a "reality fraud?"   Jeff Phillips has a lot to say about this at his blog:  Bad Actors, Sea Shepherd, Animal Planet

He certainly does offer a very different perspective on all of this.  One thing he wrote that bothers me is when he met with the Sea Shepherd crew and captain, he states he felt "bad energy" and he basically got shut down when asking some interesting questions that Paul Watson refused to answer.


Watson and crew were my biggest heroes for a while...until I met them in person and felt what bad energy they have; then, when I offered to help them with an “expanded media vision”, as they still to this day have never produced any 'media' of their own...AND, most interestingly, started asking questions about why Watson fails to address the truly global threats to whales that FAR outweigh whaling...threats coming from oil exploration, shipping, whale “watching”, marine toxicity, and U.S. Navy lfa-sonar...THEN they cut me off! See, I was stupid...I somehow actually believed that they really CARED about the well-being of the whales!
Now this is just one man's experience, but all we know is what we are fed to by the media whether that is via online journalism or personal blogs, or  the news on TV or the Animal Planet.

Mr. Phillips does share an interesting perspective and as with anything I hear, read, or see, I tend to try to keep an open mind while ultimately going with whatever feels right to me. His blog entry is long and covers a lot of ground.  You might find it interesting as well and worth your while to read for a radically different perspective on these "Whale Wars."

How much going on out there in the Antarctic is fact or fiction?  Are both the Sea Shepherd and the Whalers pawns in a game to distract us from other things going on in the world?  Sounds all conspiracy theory-like doesn't it?  Who knows?

What I do know is that preserving and respecting our oceans and all the species that make it their home, is personally important to me.  It's vital to me to see that our oceans be kept clean, remain sustainable, and to see that our marine mammals receive far better respect and treatment than humanity has ever given to them.  Our earth is 70% water, and our bodies are mostly water as well.  It should then be no surprise how water affects all of us, whether we realize it or not.  Without the oceans, we'd be a pretty barren planet wouldn't you agree?

Whales, dolphins, etc are sentient beings.  I'm not putting them up on a pedestal and stating they are to be worshipped.  But I do believe they are spiritual and intelligent beings in a way that humanity is oblivious or ignorant to. As I've stated before in my blog here,  I also believe they have unspoken lessons for all of humanity if people will simply quiet their minds and tune in.   Sounds new agey or something like that, but that is what I believe.  Everyone has their "go to" thing or places where they find their peace.  Nature has that effect on people.  A walk in the forest or on the beach, a hike through a meadow or kayaking through the surf, playing with your dog at the park or riding a horse on a trail.

Nature and our wildlife are connected to each of us whether we admit it or appreciate it or not.  That's where I'm coming from.

Back to Mr. Phillips .. he certainly has a very strong opinion about all of this.  And whether or not his perspective on Paul Watson and his Sea Shepherd crew is true, remains to be seen.  Nevertheless, they are fighting for a cause they believe in and are passionate about.  We all have that.  No one particular cause is any more or less important than another and like we are connected to nature and animals, we are also connected together in our varying passions, beliefs, and causes we stand up and fight for.  At whatever level we choose to fight for these causes, it makes a difference.  One area of the planet being focused on in saving the whales and/or bringing awareness to their plight can and does encourage another area of the planet doing something similar for the whales in their area.  Saving the dolphins from the Japan drive hunts can and does inspire people to do the same in say, the Bahamas .. or makes people much more aware if they see wild dolphins and to keep their distance and show respect for the pods.  These are just a couple of examples but you get my drift.  Again, it's all about how we are interconnected with one another.  

Ultimately, it's about how we treat not just our planet and all that lives on and in it, but ourselves as well.  It's about love and respect for life, love and respect for our earth, and love and respect for humanity.

I mentioned a few entries back that I read an article that stated military sonar now MAY NOT be impacting the whales and dolphins as we've been led to believe.  There is much conflicting information out there on this and it continues to remain quite controversial.  

Articles related:  Whales Still Largely Threatened

EarthJustice has a video showing the affects of sonar on a pod of whales:  Navy Sonar & Whales

Personally, I would rather err on the side of caution and see greater restrictions being placed on the use of sonar in our oceans.   Now I realize there are folks out there who believe our safety is paramount and therefore the use of military sonar has it's role in keeping nations safe or has it's use in war.  But since I'm a liberal leaning tree hugging hippie wannabe whale saving fanatic, I don't believe in war.    I believe in peace.  I believe in the power of humanity's positive and loving energy that can reverberate throughout the planet having the ability to be far more powerful than any weapons of any kind.    And I believe if we would all stop fighting about who is right or wrong, who has weapons of mass destruction and who doesn't, who has more natural resources than we do, and who is more or less inferior or superior to us .. if we'd just all stop this bullshit and focus on sustainable and cooperative living in unison with our planet and all species, well as utopian and as naive as that may sound, the world just might end up being a better place.  But is it realistic?  Humans are, by nature, driven by ego and greed.  Can ego and greed ever be tempered for the greater good of the world?  Can the power and the energy of love ever replace that worn out refrain of "in the interests of national security?"    Maybe it is only after death that we will experience such nirvana.  But in the meantime, one can hope .. one can dream .. and one can try to live their lives in accordance to this goal and hope that one day, it just might be possible to have peace on earth and goodwill towards all.

Latest news from the Save the Dolphins blog:  What is happening in Taiji now?

Help Me Support This Cause

Thank you for listening to my rant today .. sometimes my passion gets away from me :-)  




  1. Wow. Just read Jeff's post. He raises some very valid points, and then he wanders off into global conspiracy rants which don't really help his credibility to me. He is right that there are other serious threats against whales, and he makes solid points about the money being made in the TV series, but the rest feels like a leap (I could be wrong but that's how it feels).

    Makes me wonder HOW he asked these questions of Paul Watson and SSCS. IF he brought that attitude, like nothing they could have said would change his mind, I'd have shut him down too. No conversation like that will be fruitful if the parties involved come with minds made up.

    Have you ever read "Whale Warriors.." by Peter Heller? He's a journalist who went on an Antarctic campaign with SSCS in the season prior to when the TV show started filming. Not a rah rah guy, he approached it very pragmatically, and presented a very interesting view point on the passion of the people on the ship. I came away from the book with deep respect for those passionns - I don't think I could do that - but with a realistic sense, too, of what goes on down there.

    I'm working up my own blog post in response to the Ady Gil on Hoping to have it up tonight or tomorrow. I've found some very good links to stories which are not all rah rah SSCS and offering other perspectives, too.

    I sincerely hope this is NOT all for some big banker's show; I do feel like that is a bit of a stretch. I don't condone some of the actions on either side of this - real danger is at play. Going to be interesting to see what happens next.


  2. Hi Amy!

    Great commentary post by you!

    Yeah, I was feeling like that too as I went into ready Jeff's entry more and more .. I was thinking like "Umm .. what does all this have to do with the whales?" I dunno. Maybe he found connections but I'd like to see evidence or proof on that .... it was certainly a very different post :-)

    Yes I have read P. Heller's Whale Warriors! A most excellent book!

    I look forward to reading your update later!

    Thank you so much for stopping by and taking time to comment here Amy .. I was wondering if I had lost my readers given my sabbatical for awhile :-)

    Have a great day!

  3. I finally got my post done. Would love to know what you think:


  4. Will take a look! Thanks for the heads up Amy :-)