We need an MOU of truth
For some 500 years, this province’s fishery was the stimulating engine that drove our economy and built the social infrastructure which molded a character of people who were the salt of the earth. In the 60 years of our union with Canada, the federal government has completely mismanaged this great resource and ignored the magnificent culture it spawned.
Since the moratorium in 1992, the federal government has done nothing to change their ‘politically circumscribed’ fisheries attitude, one of manipulation and bartering away of the resource and its economic value to big concerns and foreign countries. Policies which are not sensitive to the health of the resource, based on good science or the welfare of Canadian citizens in the industry, but ones geared instead by bureaucratic controls, insensitive to the livelihood of our people, dictatorial to scientists and which have destroyed the resource.
Now the issue at hand with our provincial government and union is a MOU/rationalization process, which is nothing more then a capitulation of all that has been — and is being — done wrong to our fishery by failed federal policies.
Rather, the rationality of the matter is that the MOU should be about the truth, which is that there is, in general , no resource left and we are giving away to much of what is left to foreigners.
Foreign influence on our fishery must be controlled and eliminated. The real rationality of the situation in our fishery is that these truths should be addressed in an MOU and presented by our provincial government to the government in Ottawa. It is the only possible way to successfully protect and restore our industry.
Acceptance of the present brewing MOU process, and it’s philosophy, will lead us into a future fishery which will have 10 tonnes of fish to catch, instead of 10,000 hundred tonnes, chased by 10 boats instead of 10,000.
It will eventually mean 10’s of plantworkers instead of 10,000, and 10’s of fishers instead of 10,000; 10 coastal communities where once there was 10,000; and 10 graveyards where our forefathers are respected … leaving the other 10,000 to be visited only by the lonely winds.
If we give up the 10,000’s of these things for 10, the story of our great fishery and our beautiful coastal existence will be finally told by dreams that have ended, instead of surviving the nights, and doors that have been closed instead of being held ajar in storms! Thank you. Phil Earle Carbonear