F R O M   T H E   C R O W E ’ S   N E S T


Show Us Their Tax Returns

The Carlos Rafael conviction has entered the Monday morning quarterbacking phase. The big question is, where will his boats and quota go following the recent civil penalties by NOAA? If they leave New Bedford, economic catastrophe is being predicted there. The biggest big question is how to stop the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) from upending the entire American fishing industry. Through commodification and fleet consolidation they have wedged investors between fishermen and the fish with transferable quota they call catch shares.

Maine lobstermen were under federal restrictions for more than 50 years for tying up their boats because it was not worth fishing at the price being paid for their catch. The federal government declared it interference of trade. How is jacking fishing rights from U.S. fishermen and selling them on international markets not an interference of trade?

An EDF spokesman wrote in their media outlet that the director of the fishing documentary Rotten “got it all wrong.” He disputes the directors questioning EDF funding sources. Claiming that the “non profit” EDF does not take money from “far-right libertarian” groups. The G&B Moore Foundation is a libertarian group that all but personally wrote the federal Northeast Ocean Policy and it’s implications for the industrial development of the EEZ. Moore is another extremely wealthy tax-deferred foundation. They didn’t have to write a check directly to EDF to lay the ground work for an EDF fisheries agenda.

EDF’s lawyers have been working the lobbies of federal fisheries management council meetings, on which they have hand picked members, for decades. What they say they do and what hundreds, if not thousands, of fishermen say EDF has done, could not be more opposite.

Is Maine lobster, having entered the billion dollar valuation club, a target of the EDFs out there? EDF has one of their own on the Maine Eel Harvesters Association board in Maine. That EDF rep said in 2016 that they, EDF, are very interested in elver quota. Part of their “save the elvers” campaign? Investors in high value eel grow-out facilities want a controlled glass eel supply. Under consolidated glass eel quota ownership independent harvesters would become sharecroppers.

Didn’t we already go through this in the American Revolution? If EDF is not taking money from the enemies of free enterprise for all, then they will show us their tax returns.