"When the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) completed their successful campaign to convince the Ontario government to end one of the best scientifically managed big game hunts in North America (spring bear), the results of their agenda had severe economic impacts on small family businesses and the tourism economy of communities across northern and central Ontario," said Phil Morlock, director of environmental affairs for Shimano.This underscores something that has been bothering me for a long time: the power of NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations). They're not elected by anybody, they're not answerable to anybody (except themselves), yet they sometimes wield tremendous influence and can shape laws and policy at both the national and international levels. It is another thing I occasionally encounter at my federal agency - most recently in connection with the formulation of carbon policy ("The NGOs don't like the wording", says an engineer. "Why should unelected private organizations have anything to say about it?", I ask. "Because they've got this or that congressman in their pocket" says he.) I'm sure there are many that do good, but there are many that have established themselves as self-appointed arbiters of policy alternatives, and there are too many people in government who are perfectly willing to let them call the shots (either out of ideological sympathy or fear or even simple laziness).
"Now we see NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) and the administration planning the future of recreational fishing access in America based on a similar agenda of these same groups and other Big Green anti-use organizations, through an Executive Order by the President. The current U.S. direction with fishing is a direct parallel to what happened in Canada with hunting: The negative economic impacts on hard working American families and small businesses are being ignored.
"In spite of what we hear daily in the press about the President's concern for jobs and the economy and contrary to what he stated in the June order creating this process, we have seen no evidence from NOAA or the task force that recreational fishing and related jobs are receiving any priority."
Anyhow, maybe I'll have one last outing with the ol' Zebco rod and reel, bait the hook with money and go trolling for congressmen.