Opinion: New England fishermen flotilla protests today off Obama’s vacation island over more fed regulations


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Recovery Summer Update:

Having successfully shut down an estimated 23,000 American oil drilling jobs off the Gulf Coast, citing possible environmental concerns, the Obama administration is now moving on New England fishermen.


It’s rained during much of Obama’s latest vacation there. And now the Democratic president is scheduled to be confronted with a flotilla of protesters today off his private estate on the souvenir-laden island of Martha’s Vineyard.

The immediate boating protest is about their claim the feds are using bad science to set extremely limited area fishing allotments, certain to wipe out many traditional private family businesses.

The fishermen -- possibly involving as many as two dozen vessels -- will be traveling from as far away as New Jersey and all along the Northeastern coastline. Wednesday the noon protest earned the support of the Greater Boston Tea Party.

The fishermen maintain that once-threatened stocks have returned naturally under existing regulations and don’t require the newly shaped government-run market system favored by President Obama. Elizabeth Scalia calls it: ‘So Soviet.’

As explained by the ever-thoughtful Ed Morrissey, the move by Obama appointee Jane Lubchenco, the head of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, is designed to replace private fishing with new government-regulated operations:

‘They want to close the fisheries into ‘commodities markets’ where the government essentially licenses fishermen and then allocates the catch based on a predetermined distribution plan. The ‘commodities markets’ will kill many fishing-based jobs and essentially turn fishermen into government employees, and they’re not happy about it.’


Lubchenco, a former official with the Environmental Defense Fund, has said that her policy goal is to eliminate ‘a significant fraction of the vessels.’

Negotiations between Lubchenco and congressional delegations from New England, an important region within Obama’s political base, have broken down. Vice President Joe ‘I Still Have a Job, At Least’ Biden will visit New England today too. But he’ll be onshore in New Hampshire to claim more progress on stimulus spending.

This non-stimulus plan is part of a larger private sector job-killing pattern detected by Michelle Malkin involving the elimination of thousands of private sector car dealerships and their employees, thousands of deep-water drilling job losses due to Obama’s controversial drilling moratorium, more jobs lost when Interior Department officials pulled Bush-era oil and gas leases, and more.

Next week Obama returns to the stricken Gulf Coast but not about offshore drilling. His cited reason is to observe the fifth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, which provides another opportunity to talk about eight years of you-know-who.

-- Andrew Malcolm

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