If you thought only people who want to work on oil rigs in the Gulf have faced job loss because of administration policies, it's because you haven't talked recently with a fisherman.
To set the stage, here is an item from a fishing blog:
What's the probability of a federal agency becoming involved in an attempt to wrest control of a public resource-based industry away from the communities that have built up around it since colonial times – an industry with a Congressionally mandated role in the management of the resources it depends on – and turn it over to private "charitable" foundations and the business entities they are linked to? If your answer is "pretty low," give some serious consideration to the following.
The post describes how a well-financed green foundation proposed new sustainability rules–unfortunately, the rules don't sustain the fishermen, who, it should be noted have no interest in killing the very resource on which they depend. (More on this in a second.)
When President Obama vacationed on Martha's Vineyard in 2009, Russell Sherman, a life-long New England fisherman, summed up the problem in a full-page ad in a local newspaper:
At a time when we should be hopeful about the future of our businesses, we are desperate instead. We are being driven from our work and the fishery we have helped to rebuild. Ironically, what's putting us out of work are the rules to rebuild the fishery.
The most recent version of these rules – effective on May 1, 2010 -impose very low annual catch limits on stocks for the next three years, and at the same time institute a"catch share" system.
Take my case. Under the 2010 rules, my permit allows an annual catch of only 60,000 lbs of groundfish. At an average price of $1.50 a pound, that's an annual gross of $90,000, or about one-quarter of my business' gross income last year. I simply cannot run my business and support my crew of four – each with a family -on only $90,000 a year.
An excellent article on the American Thinker sums up some of the job-destroying features of the catch shares policy. Author Mike Johnson notes that the popular term consolidation is a euphemism for "most of the fleet has been driven out of business."
Captain Sherman invited Johnson to his house, where he admitted, "We need regulation in the worst way." But the government has come up with regulation that kills jobs. Sherman said that a promnent expert recently said that overfishing, which led to the regs, is now under control. Captain Sherman also said that fishermen could work with "catch share" if the government were willing to be reasonable.
For this administration, killing jobs is like shooting fish in a barrel.