Sunday, September 06, 2009

Hawaii Smell Test - it stinks!

Bit-by-bit, the Shark Task Force in Hawaii is being outed as what it really is: a fraud.

Run directly out of the offices of the rep. Gene Ward, it operates the anti-Industry hate site Safe Waters for Hawaii and propagates, among other stupidities, the myth that two operators conducting Shark tours miles offshore constitute a public safety hazard.

Ward has so far failed to distance himself from the hate group.
In what is increasingly looking like a huge political embarrassment, his persistent silence risks making him a de-facto supporter.

He has been handed the unique chance of being able to step up and claim to have solved the "problem" consensually and to look like a statesman in the process. The flip side, siding with the anti-Shark lynch mob would be to look anti-business, anti-tourism and anti-science.
Well, as I said, that's really his choice isn't it.

Others are ensuring that their reputation is not being tainted.
Both the UNEP and TIES have asked that their names and quotes on the SWFH website be rescinded. I hear that more such requests are about to follow.

I had a look and the quotes are still there.
Hardly surprising considering the affiliation of the Shark Task Force with the infamous anti-Industry CDNN and the persona of their president Makani Christensen, a notorious xenophobic Shark hater and Fish killer. As long as they can promote their hypocritical agendas, they just don't care who says what and whether what they do and claim is truthful or even legal.

Here's what our wise and anonymous Hawaiian has to say about the contribution to the safety of Hawaii's beaches by the fishermen and the spearos like Makani and about the hypocrisy of those who single out the Shark viewing industry.

BAN LOGIC #2: Shark tourism must be banned because it creates a public safety hazard.

SMELL TEST A: Many fishing activities put bait in the water, often greatly in excess of the amount of bait used by shark viewing operations.
These fishing activities attract sharks, and in many cases attract them to nearshore areas where recreational activities such as snorkeling and surfing occur. Fishermen often dump excess bait, cleaned fish carcasses, etc. at harbor entrances as they return to port.
  • Has this government body banned or regulated use of bait or dumping of bait and carcasses by fishermen?
  • Is there enforcement of the laws and regulations that apply to these practices?

SMELL TEST B: Shark cage tours have never been associated with a shark attack in Hawaii.
On the other hand, surfing, spearfishing, and offshore swimming have all led to shark attacks in Hawaii. Spearfishing has been known to precipitate attacks on persons nearby who were not participating in the spearfishing activity. Surfing is statistically the activity most likely to produce a shark attack in Hawaii.
  • Does the proposed legislation include surfing, spearfishing, and offshore swimming among the activities to be banned?

SMELL TEST C: The shark species viewed at Hawaii cage diving operations (Sandbar and Galapagos sharks) have NEVER been implicated in attacks on humans in Hawaii.
Furthermore, reports by University of Hawaii shark researchers and NOAA shark specialists conclude that there is no public safety hazard created by these tours and that the sharks do not follow boats to inshore areas or otherwise interact with recreational ocean users as a result of the tours.
On the other hand, pit bulls attack and maim or kill someone in Hawaii at least every year.
  • Has this government body acted to ban or require sterilization of pit bulls, which are probably the most dangerous animals in Hawaii?

Once again: It stinks - and sadly, I'm not surprised!
Is this really the foundation upon which Ward wants to enact a Law?

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