Friday, January 08, 2010


A favorite show of mine over the last two years or so has been Whale Wars. It's a tale of intrepid adventurers, the Sea Shepherds, set on stopping the Japanese whaling industry from killing more whales - by any means necessary!

Well, not exactly. Actually, it's a group of dreamy young volunteers being led by an incompetent old environmentalist whack-job and liar. (South Park brilliantly parodied the show.) Mostly these guys are a bunch of "ineffectual Vegan pussies", as Not-Really Larry King called them, and they seem clueless as to their best possible strategy to achieving their goals.

For example, last season they had an extended stretch in which the Japanese whaling fleet killed and butchered several whales while the Sea Shepherds watched helplessly. While they couldn't stop the Japanese from killing those particular whales, they got excellent footage of the slaughter. It was PR gold! Put those images on Japanese television and one might actually sway Japanese public opinion, which is what really matters. (Most people would probably be less inclined to eat meat if they saw what happened in an abattoir. We're so civilized now that most of us have little idea what it takes to create our food.) But the clueless dolts didn't even realize what they had.

Regardless, the show is more entertaining than not, as the Sea Shepherds are staggeringly incompetent. Bad decisions, bad strategy, and worse execution make the show seat-of-the-pants viewing - one never knows if the SS will manage to get one of their own killed. While I don't like the killing of whales, and the scenes I described in the last paragraph are disturbing, the Sea Shepherds are little more than idiots playing at piracy. In short, they're a bunch of wankers, as my wife first noted to me some time back, and it's fun to watch them try to improve the gene pool by deletion of defective specimens.

And it's looking like the new season will be even more entertaining! The Sea Shepherds got a new skiff with which to harass the whalers. The Japanese responded to the new provocation by running over the new skiff and leaving six SSs to die in the sea - Doh! For those looking to breed more stupid people, fret not: the crew were rescued by another ship, the Bob Barker. There's footage of the incident over at CNN. There's also outrage of the news anchor that the Japanese could be so callous. True enough, the Japanese didn't seem interested in saving the lives of the SSs in the water.

But it's also true that the Sea Shepherds have actually rammed Japanese ships with their own ship (not a skiff) on two other occasions. The man in charge of the Sea Shepherds seems even less concerned with human life than the Japanese. The Sea Shepherds have also engaged in piracy (assaulting and boarding ships on the high seas) and they're probably lucky the Japanese haven't actually sent a destroyer to sink their ship. Not to mention that the captain of the Sea Shepherds has regularly put his own crew in jeopardy by his own poor decision making.

So why no outrage from CNN about the Sea Shepherds ramming ships? Well, that's obvious. Since they're on the side of whales angels they can do no wrong. Just another sign of the decline of civilization, or at least the decline of critical thinking in the news media.

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