Tuesday, December 07, 2004

You cannot be serious!

Fish was on the brain when I got up this morning. Blame Radio 4’s Today. Its lead story was about a new government expert report arguing for ‘no-fishing zones’ off parts of the British (read Scottish) coast to help boost stocks. It would be coupled with a reduction in fishing capacity as well.

The logic behind this idea is that by stopping fishing would not increase fish in those parts but presumably tempt them into other areas where fewer boats would snaffle them.

You can’t really fault it – except for the minor fact of the fishermen themselves. They were on the radio grumbling about what this would mean to fishing communities in Scotland. As if the current situation, whereby annual quotas are decided upon every December, giving rise to the same predictable headlines about destroying communities, etc, etc – and just before Christmas.

Life in a fisherman’s home can’t be fun.

Having spent a couple of years at the helm (pardon the pun) on the subject for the Lib Dems in Parliament, I think it would be great to get a resolution to this crisis. And it would also mean stopping the Lib Dem spokesman, Andrew George, from his ridiculous posturing on the last day of the Parliamentary session and six days before Christmas, two years ago:

“Will the Minister consider the recall of Parliament next week to ensure that we have the chance to discuss… the fishing industry?”

The short answer: no. What odds for the same this year?

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