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With Sales Down, Whale Meat Flogged As Source of Strength

timothy posted about a year ago | from the why-not-flog-whale-ice-cream-instead? dept.

Japan 311

beaverdownunder writes "From the Australian Broadcasting Corporation: 'Japan's peak whaling body has launched a new campaign to promote whale meat as a nutritious food that enhances physical strength and reduces fatigue. With about 5,000 tonnes of whale meat sitting unwanted in freezers around Japan, the country's Institute for Cetacean Research has decided to launch a new campaign to promote the by-product of its so-called scientific whaling program. Once popular in school lunches, younger generations of Japanese rarely, if ever, eat whale."

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311 comments

May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (5, Funny)

bruce_the_loon (856617) | about a year ago | (#43893993)

The bastards and their ships need to be pulled down to the deep dark ooze of the abyss where tentacled beasties will toy with their souls for eternity.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (-1, Flamebait)

DemoLiter3 (704469) | about a year ago | (#43894105)

The Japanese navy should finally stop playing games and start sinking the terrorist ships.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894133)

And maybe the Australians should start sinking whaling ships that breach Australia's exclusive economic zone or territorial waters to hunt whales illegally against international and local laws.... not that I care about the bloody whales, only that they think they should be exempt from international law.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (3, Interesting)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year ago | (#43894295)

And maybe the Australians should start sinking whaling ships that breach Australia's exclusive economic zone or territorial waters to hunt whales illegally against international and local laws.... not that I care about the bloody whales, only that they think they should be exempt from international law.

Do explain which international laws forbid whale hunting the way Japan practices it. It's a completely legal practice according to IWC.

Also kindly cite how Australia's EEZ has any relevance to this case. Be specific - do not cite unsubstantiated claims by interested parties as absolute evidence.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894463)

do not cite unsubstantiated claims by interested parties as absolute evidence.

Australia otherwise has good relationships with Japan these days, they have a security pact and were even exploring an alliance, I doubt they'd make such territorial complaints without any basis, serves little purpose but to damage the relationship especially over something like whales.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-02-01/government-orders-japanese-whalers-out/4495166 [abc.net.au]

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (5, Informative)

Ash Vince (602485) | about a year ago | (#43894741)

Do explain which international laws forbid whale hunting the way Japan practices it. It's a completely legal practice according to IWC.

Whaling for food is illegal. But Japan has come up with some bullshit excuse that they need to conduct scientific research which is why they need to kill whales, then selling the meat as byproduct just makes good sense.

The problem with this is that there is simply no need to kill so many whales for research it's just that Japan's (ruling) older generation view eating whale as such an essential part of their culture they refuse to contemplate change on this front. You might be able to make an argument that what Japan does it legal, but it is still against the spirit of the treaty.

I also think that the individual ships flout the law because they know their is no appetite to prosecute them back home. I certainly think that the average Japanese whaling ship captain will happily follow his prey into Australian waters then lie about it later if they Australian Navy is not around to stop them.

Finally, later this year or early next year the final word on whether what Japan does is legal or not will come down from the ICJ. That will be final and binding (no appeals allowed) but until then no one really knows either way.

Hold on a moment... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894323)

And maybe the Australians should start sinking whaling ships that breach Australia's exclusive economic zone or territorial waters to hunt whales illegally against international and local laws.... not that I care about the bloody whales, only that they think they should be exempt from international law.

Laying claim to an EEV in Antarctic waters is in breach of international law. (See ATS article 4.)

Re:Hold on a moment... (1)

SJ2000 (1128057) | about a year ago | (#43894611)

The area where is happened was north of the 60th parallel south, which is outside the jurisdiction of the ATS.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894453)

How the fuck is this bullshit Insightful? There is NO LEGAL EXCLUSION ZONE IN ANTARCTIC WATERS. There is NO Territorial waters in Antarctica. As much as whaling is pathetic, the Japanese are legally 100% in the clear. It's the pirates of Sea Shepard who are acting illegally.

Go on, look up the laws and then mod down the parent as -1 Bullshit

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894517)

One expert's view on the matter [bawp.org.au]

... Leaving aside the AAT’s status under Australian domestic law, it can be noted that sovereignty over Antarctica is a sensitive international topic and only the United Kingdom, France, Norway and New Zealand officially recognise Australian sovereignty over the AAT. Japan does not recognise Australian sovereignty, along with the United States of America, China, and Russia. Japan also renounced all claims to Antarctica at the end of World War II.

Recognition, however, is not the test of sovereignty under international law. General recognition by other states of a state’s sovereignty over a particular territory no doubt assists a state in establishing sovereignty but it is not determinative. Under customary international law acquisition of sovereignty over territory that does not already belong to another state is established by effective occupation of the territory. While some authors argue “Antarctica is not subject to the ordinary legal regime of land territory, and rather than res nullius it is res communis” and, therefore, unable to support a claim of sovereignty, there is little support for this in the principles established by courts and other bodies exercising international jurisdiction. The decision of the Permanent Court of International Justice in the Legal Status of Eastern Greenland (1933) PCIJ Series A/B No 53 is particularly significant in relation to sovereignty over inhospitable, thinly populated polar territories such as Antarctica...

... If Australian sovereignty over the AAT is established under the principles of international law, even to a smaller geographic area than claimed by Australia, why do so few nations recognise this sovereignty? One answer is that the recognition of sovereignty is a political process, not merely legal. By refusing to recognise Australian sovereignty, Japan and other nations keep alive their ability to us e resources in the AAT. This ability is fettered only by the practical difficulties in operating in the hostile and remote Antarctic environment, and by the Antarctic Treaty System. This approach is contrary to The Rule of Law but explained by the realpolitik of international relations...

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894145)

nuke the cunts again.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (4, Interesting)

Jarik C-Bol (894741) | about a year ago | (#43894417)

No no, thats what started this shit in the first place. By the end of world war 2, they had completely stopped whaling, but MacAurther told them to start again to 'revive their economy' and 'provide food' during reconstruction. We literally encouraged the establishment of Whale meat as a nation-wide food, where before it had pretty well been abandoned.
the reason they won't back down on it now is Japan is pretty tired of the west telling it what to do.

Sorry, you're wrong here. (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894543)

Well, not about the historicity, but about how this is going on ahead because "Japan is pretty tired of the west telling it what to do.".

If that were the case, then the whaling industry would not have 5000 tons sitting unwanted and have to start a completely bogus claim about the meat they can't sell, not even as pet food.

Japan themselves have decided that they really don't need to eat whale meat. The consumption is way down. However, the industry making money off this don't want to find out they're buggy whip manufacturers and are refusing to let the rest of Japan tell them they're not wanted any more (or at most, wanted at a very much reduced level).

This is about greedy corporations in Japan, not about Greedy Western Imperialism.

Re:Sorry, you're wrong here. (3, Insightful)

aurispector (530273) | about a year ago | (#43894837)

The "corporations" are not greedy. Saying they are is like saying guns kill people. The PEOPLE that run the corporations are responsible. Furthermore, their actions are entirely legal under Japanese law - laws set by their elected government.

It's really no different that that old "beef, it's what's for dinner!" ad campaign. Running an ad campaign is simply an effort to sell their product and maintain cash flow so everyone working for the corporation still has a job. The part you seem not to grasp is that if they go broke, they can't simply tax rich people for more money like a socialist government. Run out of money and everyone is out of a job.

In the end, if the Japanese decide they don't like whaling it they can vote for representatives who can change the laws. In the meantime it's simple supply and demand. Economic forces are what will ultimately stop whaling, not a bunch of whining hippies.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894701)

So you are encouraging someone to commit one of the biggest crimes against humanity over whales? Nukes should not have been used and should never be used to kill innocent people (and other creatures).

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year ago | (#43894795)

Considering how many humans are there and how many whales are left, I think the choice which should be slaughtered is kinda obvious.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year ago | (#43894779)

While I agree that whaling is an atrocity, calling for the sinking of whalers is maybe a tad bit overboard.

Just a tad bit, mind you.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (4, Funny)

Big Hairy Ian (1155547) | about a year ago | (#43894125)

So this research that they claim that the whaling is for would appear to be market research???

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894233)

The Kappamaki, a whaling research ship, was currently researching the question: How many whales can you catch in one week?
                -- (Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman, Good Omens)

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (5, Insightful)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year ago | (#43894321)

They claim they want to prove that whales are numerous enough to again allow for commercial whaling, and that such proof would be impossible to gather without research. Assuming you see whales as just another resource, like fish, this is a reasonable stance to take.

The underlying issue is that many countries want a total moratorium on whaling for cultural reasons. Japan and several other countries with long culture of whaling view this as insanity and see whales as the same as any other nautical resource. In a way they are right, many of modern fish stocks are in much worse condition then many of the whale stocks, but because many of the countries that want total moratorium have severe vested interests in fishing but no whaling, they deflect attention from painful decisions that need to be taken in regards to fishery policy by focusing attention on whaling which is essentially free for them - as they do not have a whaling fleet or culture of whaling.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (1)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about a year ago | (#43894381)

What part of "sitting unwanted in freezers" and "killing whales" is part of your moronic idea of popluation study? Oh! The Bald Eagle is Endangered.... Guess What's For Dinner! Get bent you idiot.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (5, Insightful)

stoploss (2842505) | about a year ago | (#43894619)

What part of "sitting unwanted in freezers" and "killing whales" is part of your moronic idea of popluation study? Oh! The Bald Eagle is Endangered.... Guess What's For Dinner! Get bent you idiot.

Just an FYI: not all whale species are endangered. You can see some examples here (prepare to give your L type cones [wikipedia.org] a function test):
Humpback whale [iucnredlist.org] , Minke whale [iucnredlist.org] , Southern Right whale [iucnredlist.org] .

As you can see, those species are listed as "Least Concern" by the IUCN, which happens to be the same category that the sewer rat [wikipedia.org] receives. There have been allegations that endangered whales have been killed by the Japanese whaling industry, which is obviously reprehensible.

BTW, there have also been allegations that the "Least Concern" bald eagle [iucnredlist.org] (oh, also FYI: it's no longer endangered) have been killed by the Amish chicken farming industry. [lancasteronline.com]

I don't really have an opinion on the ethics of whaling "least concern" whale species. I consider that concept similar to the beef industry. Why is killing and eating cow acceptable if killing and eating non-threatened whale species is not? Of course, you will notice that the ethical consideration is orthogonal to the legality consideration.

I am vegetarian, so I am not faced with cognitive dissonance about the situation, but I don't care which animals that other people eat if it isn't actively promoting extinction of a species.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (1)

dywolf (2673597) | about a year ago | (#43894727)

the difference would be cows are currently maintained as a sustainable managed food source. whales are not; whales would only be able to provide food on the scale of cows for a year or two before being going from LC to EX.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (5, Interesting)

ZekeSpeak (947670) | about a year ago | (#43894557)

they deflect attention from painful decisions that need to be taken in regards to fishery policy by focusing attention on whaling which is essentially free for them - as they do not have a whaling fleet or culture of whaling.

This has nothing to do with fishing stocks. For a start, whales are mammals, not fish. The whale watching industry in Australia is worth more than 31 million dollars a year, worlwide the value is in billions.

The humpback whales now travelling up the East Coast of Australia once numbered 500 and now, due to the whaling ban now number over 18,000.

Do you think that the humpbacks would come anywhere near a boat if the Japanese whalers once again start harpooning them as they've been planning to do? You'd see a multi-billion dollar industry destroyed.

Actually, Australian fisheries are in a far better condition than many around the world. They do especially well when compared to Japanese fisheries, if there are any left.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (2)

Xenx (2211586) | about a year ago | (#43894605)

While I'm not siding with whaling, it's wrong to claim the failure of one industry as a valid reason to disallow another industry. That is, unless the "original" industry is of greater importance. From an academic standpoint, food production outweighs entertainment.

Re:May Bel-Shamharoth eat their souls (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894789)

Where are you getting these billions of dollars a year coming from? Whaling could have been this supposed billion dollar industry if there were no moratorium, so what is the point?

Based on your numbers over 18,000 whales sound like overcrowding rather than the extinction that they were worried about. Just imagine the amount of fish and krill that these monopolistic monsters eat.

so... (4, Insightful)

Pubstar (2525396) | about a year ago | (#43894001)

Why didn't the poster just include the last sentence so that the summary is just TFA? Also, I wonder how this is being covered on slashdot.jp.

Re:so... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894031)

Unfortunately Slashdot Japan has a strict policy against allowing product placements pass as articles, so this story will not features.
They also lag behind the english one as currently they are showing the top article as the hospital had washing camera.

Re:so... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894033)

It isn't covered at all.

And just as well, because (as the Japanese themselves like to joke) the only way to provoke the docile Japanese population into rioting these days is by withholding food.

Tell me it's a source of strength for my... (1, Troll)

dohzer (867770) | about a year ago | (#43894003)

... rod. Then the whole of Asia will want it.

Re:Tell me it's a source of strength for my... (1, Offtopic)

serviscope_minor (664417) | about a year ago | (#43894007)

Quite.

It's delicious with a side of tiger penis and topped with grated rhino horn.

I know it sounds unpalatable, but trust me, it beats the hell out of Fr.3E--+1vi1a:grAA.

Re:Tell me it's a source of strength for my... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894085)

Yuck! But I would go for some Panda Steak!

Re:Tell me it's a source of strength for my... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894221)

Why settle for almost extinct when you can go all the way.

Gimme some mammoth meat now!

Re:Tell me it's a source of strength for my... (1)

lxs (131946) | about a year ago | (#43894537)

We're all out of fresh mammoth I'm afraid, but I'm sure that the chef can dig up some frozen mammoth if that's ok with you.

Re:Tell me it's a source of strength for my... (1, Funny)

smitty_one_each (243267) | about a year ago | (#43894407)

"Flogged" being a synonym for "beat", there seems to be some hint of autoeroticism about this one. . .

What's next? (-1, Flamebait)

michelcolman (1208008) | about a year ago | (#43894025)

A campaign promoting the many benefits of child pornography? With about 5000 tonnes of magazines sitting unwanted in warehouses...

Re:What's next? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894091)

This is about the stupidest, most idiotic comparison I've ever seen. Congratulations, you fail at the internet.

Re:What's next? (0)

michelcolman (1208008) | about a year ago | (#43894229)

Wait a minute... Is whale hunting considered to be a good thing nowadays? It's so hard to keep up.

Re:What's next? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894247)

It's so hard to keep up.

You should try rhino horn - it's supposed to help with that problem.

Re:What's next? (1)

king neckbeard (1801738) | about a year ago | (#43894563)

Well, whales are kind of like fat, stupid dolphins, and dolphins are the biggest fucking assholes in the sea, so it can't really be that bad, can it?

Europeans (1)

flyingfsck (986395) | about a year ago | (#43894027)

Well, duh - Europeans also used to eat whale and now rarely if ever.

Re:Europeans (4, Insightful)

Teun (17872) | about a year ago | (#43894083)

Yes so?

When extinction became an issue civilised nations agreed to stop whaling.
The exceptions are for indigenous populations like those living in polar regions and some scientific work.
As a result in the short term whales are no longer threatened by extinction but in the long term they still face threats.
Japan's excuse would be laughable if it weren't for the fact when all previous whaling nations would do the same the problem of extinction would surface again.

Where a great nation shows child-like behaviour.

Re:Europeans (1)

FaxeTheCat (1394763) | about a year ago | (#43894099)

When extinction became an issue civilised nations agreed to stop whaling.

Only that the whale species which are now hunted (in very limited quantities) are not threathened by extinction.

Not that I really care. Whale meat is not something I will ever miss. It used to be the real cheap meat around here. For a reason.

Re:Europeans (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894149)

Not true. Both Japan and Iceland catch Fin Whales which are classified as 'Endangered'

Re:Europeans (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894165)

But not because they are endangered. Its politics. Minke whale number at least a million and do not belong on that list.

Re:Europeans (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894287)

Not sure about competition for food/habit among whales. But the Minke success may come on the backs of other species declines. For the other species it may even be a good thing to scale back the minke population.

Re:Europeans (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year ago | (#43894627)

may come on the backs of other species declines. .

You mean some of the other stuff that we're also overfishing...?

It's actually surprisingly cheap... (5, Interesting)

antifoidulus (807088) | about a year ago | (#43894051)

one of the more popular places in Tokyo [kujiraya.co.jp] only charges 5,000 yen(about $50) per person for parties of 2 or more, complete with an all-you-can drink(alcohol, not that soft drink crap they have in the US :P). Doesn't sound very cheap, but there aren't a lot of places you can get an all-you-can-drink with food for less than 5,000 yen. Just FYI, you get fried whale, whale sashimi, whale soup, and some udon noodles for your cash. I actually had it before, not bad.

Re:It's actually surprisingly cheap... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894077)

>there aren't a lot of places you can get an all-you-can-drink with food for less than 5,000 yen

Except just about every izakaya and restaurant in the city.

Re:It's actually surprisingly cheap... (1)

HalfFlat (121672) | about a year ago | (#43894437)

Things may well have changed in the last 7 years or so, but I don't recall many izakaya offering nomihodai courses back then.

Re:It's actually surprisingly cheap... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894201)

Are you actually under the impression that you can only get soft-drinks, not alcohol, in the US?

Christ you people are retards.

Re:It's actually surprisingly cheap... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894235)

I know slashdot.jp is behind but I thought it was by days, not a whole entire century

Re:It's actually surprisingly cheap... (0)

antifoidulus (807088) | about a year ago | (#43894507)

Did you read the fucking comment, or are you just mouthing off to feel self-righteous, how many "all you can drink" courses are there in the US? Go on, I can wait...moron.

Re:It's actually surprisingly cheap... (1, Offtopic)

TheRaven64 (641858) | about a year ago | (#43894533)

I've only spent a few months in the USA, but I don't remember any restaurants I saw offering all-you-can-drink including alcoholic beverages along with a fixed price meal, and yet I recall this being fairly common in Tokyo. Or are you deliberately misreading the grandparent so that you can call him a retard?

Re:It's actually surprisingly cheap... (1)

Ash Vince (602485) | about a year ago | (#43894803)

I've only spent a few months in the USA, but I don't remember any restaurants I saw offering all-you-can-drink including alcoholic beverages along with a fixed price meal, and yet I recall this being fairly common in Tokyo. Or are you deliberately misreading the grandparent so that you can call him a retard?

This is just because many japanese people lack the gene to process alcohol efficiently so can't drink for shit.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/2262318.stm [bbc.co.uk]

This makes excessive drinking more of a cultural taboo than it is in Europe and America where it was essential to drink in order to get the nutrition you needed to survive from seasonal crops that only came once a year in our climate. Japan and the far east had the ability to grow crops that could be harvested throughout the year unlike grain.

Re:It's actually surprisingly cheap... (3, Funny)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about a year ago | (#43894539)

. . . fried whale, whale sashimi, whale soup, and some udon noodles . . .

"But I don't like whale . . . do you have something without whale . . . ?

"You mean . . . udon noodles, without whale . . . ? Uck!"

"Can I have spam, instead of whale . . . ?"

A bit small scale (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894059)

As part of the campaign, about 7,000 brochures will be distributed that feature recipes such as whale meat sashimi and whale cooked with Chinese chives.

In a nation with a population just shy of 127 million that's not many. Why such a modest amount of advertising in such a large country when there is allegedly 5,000 tonnes to go around?

Re:A bit small scale (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894079)

Note to self, drink more coffee before trying to handle quotes on /. .

Maybe some of that fatigue-reducing whale meat would do...

!!!

5000 tons (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894163)

Nice little bundle of meat to research! Now fuck off out of the souther oceans - not even your "traditional" hunting grounds - and do some research on it before it all rots.

Not just for food (1)

El Puerco Loco (31491) | about a year ago | (#43894187)

I'm thinking of converting my Hummer to run on whale oil.

Re:Not just for food (1)

Sooner Boomer (96864) | about a year ago | (#43894351)

I'm thinking of converting my Hummer to run on whale oil.

Seems like a hand job would work better with whale oil than a hummer...

Re:Not just for food (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894357)

Hummer is Swedish for lobster, you should make it run on lobsters instead.

Re:Not just for food (3, Informative)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year ago | (#43894759)

I'm thinking of converting my Hummer to run on whale oil.

According to this [google.com] , contemporary sperm whale oil production peaked at almost 39 barrels/whale in 1952. At current US daily consumption of ~19 million barrels(and assuming that whale squeezin's are equivalent to inorganic oils), a mere ~488,000 whales per day could entirely eliminate our wasteful demand for oil!

That would exhaust the estimated pre-hunting wild population in about two days; but I'm sure that bold advances in aquaculture will step in to fill the gap.

Re:Not just for food (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894835)

Indeed the laws of capitalism say that as the population of whales falls and the price increases, production will definitely increase as it becomes more profitable to produce whales.

Everything will be fine. Harpoon away!

Again? (4, Funny)

Smivs (1197859) | about a year ago | (#43894193)

Whale meat again,
Don't know where,
don't know when.
But I'll know whale meat again,
some sunnyyyyyyy day!

Re:Again? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894267)

Riding the whale... Woohoo!

Re:Again? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894553)

All Eskimos do is eat Whale meat and blubbler.

But then again, so would you if all you had to eat was Whale meat.

Health benefits ? (3, Interesting)

Coeurderoy (717228) | about a year ago | (#43894203)

Their claim for health benefits depends on focusing on Balenine and ignoring the high level of polutions the whale process. "Unfortunatelly" Balenine is also present in Chicken (and humans, but that might need "a lot" of advertizing to convince people...) So the "smart" action would be to really think about how to retrain the people involved into something that is not threatening a specie that is in danger of extinction, and that just might be sentient...

Food from the ocean is now thoughly abusrd (3, Funny)

Jonah Hex (651948) | about a year ago | (#43894223)

From whales to sea kittens [peta.org] , eating stuff from the ocean is now completely absurd. I'm sticking with cows.. yummy, yummy dead cow. Surely no one could object to eating a cow! - HEX

Re:Food from the ocean is now thoughly abusrd (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894659)

"Surely no one could object to eating a cow!"

FYI,
In India, cow slaughter and consuming cows are banned by law in several states purely due to religious reasons.
Weird it may seem, but few foreigners and locals got attacked in north India consuming holy cow.

Right wing hindu guys here slams Christians, Muslims and foreigners here as 'Cow eaters' as an ugly term.

As for me, I am an avid consumer of Water Buffalo, cow it not masochistic enough for me :)

Domestic Politics (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894239)

Trusting the Aussies reporting on whaling is like trusting FOX news reporting on Democrats. The Aussies are flat out against whaling and have no problem telling other countries how they should behave, and spewing BS and harboring pirates (per a US court ruling) when it suits them. It is a complicated mess of international law as to who is technically right, but most of the noise is for pure domestic political reasons. For Japan, it is standing up to the foreigners who want to impose their rules on Japan; for Australia, it is to show that your for conservation, the environment and all that stuff. politics

Re:Domestic Politics (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year ago | (#43894339)

Not so much a "mess" as a "no man's land". Essentially the territory in question is seas in the middle of nowhere and under no jurisdiction. Australia claims that having its EEZ gives it jurisdiction, claim so dubious that no one takes it seriously.

It's basically Japan vs Australia measuring who has the biggest and fastest ships. Or dicks.

Re:Domestic Politics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894391)

Japan wins on ships, Australia on dicks. Americans would win on both if they weren't in the habit of trimming the dicks of their babies.

Source of Mercury (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894251)

Tests have shown that whale and dolphin meat has enough mercury to be practically toxic waste. Japanese would be crazy to start eating it, especially in large amounts.

Re:Source of Mercury (1)

Luckyo (1726890) | about a year ago | (#43894345)

Same goes for pretty much any fish that is on top of the food chain, such as various tuna species.

Re:Source of Mercury (1)

GloomE (695185) | about a year ago | (#43894511)

But mercury is a metal.
And metals are strong.
And mercury doesn't fatigue.
So all their claims must be true.

Little known fact about whaling (5, Interesting)

Hans Adler (2446464) | about a year ago | (#43894347)

It's not really about whales or their meat. It's about oil and similar resources.

According to international treaties, under certain conditions a country has the right to drill for oil in a certain area if it has traditionally and recently been exploiting the area economically in other ways. This explains a few things about the Japanese whaling programme that would make no sense otherwise. Why they are doing this even though they have no need for the meat, as the article makes clear. But also why they are not making a better effort to disguise the whaling as scientific. Sure, they are arguing before the IWC that it's primarily scientific. But sooner or later they will have to argue before a different body that it's primarily economic, and has always been so. The more obviously economic the programme is, the better it is for their purpose, so long as they can get away with it before the IWC.

in my honest opinion (2)

houbou (1097327) | about a year ago | (#43894473)

we are coming to a point where we can literally grow our foods and we can get our proteins and amino acids from any food source without the process of killing. We really need to encourage these techniques and technologies.

Re:in my honest opinion (5, Funny)

lxs (131946) | about a year ago | (#43894573)

we are coming to a point where we can literally grow our foods

Oh dear, have I accidentally set my time machine 10000 years too far into the past? I was supposed to end up in 2013.

Ok, so if no-one is eating it, why bother with it? (4, Insightful)

jonwil (467024) | about a year ago | (#43894581)

If people aren't interested in eating whale meat, why not just give up on the hunt and stop killing the things?
Continuing to produce a product no-one is interested in (and that large swathes of the rest of the world would rather you didn't produce) seems stupid to me, especially if they have to divert money from tsunami relief to pay for it.

Is it because of lobbying by the whale fishermen? Concerns from the government about where all the people involved in the industry are gonna get jobs if the industry is shut down? National pride? (i.e. "we have been catching whales for decades, why should we stop now just because someone else tells us to") Something else?

It has become a matter of pride in some (4, Interesting)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | about a year ago | (#43894765)

The funny thing is that whaling is a western thing but post WW2 the Japanese were encouraged to start whaling to augment their diet. And it sorta stuck. When the article claims "once popular in school meals" what they really mean is: once the only meat in school meals. It is like claiming "levertraan" (fishoil) was popular in Holland... it was given to lots of kids to boost their vitamin intake but it sure as hell wasn't popular.

Whaling in Japan is mostly an issue that most don't care about but for a small group it has become an identity issue. It is the same group who claim mass child rape was essential to the Japanese psyche during WW2. (See Yokohama's mayor recent claims). To most Japanese it is an embarrassment but they have trouble not getting accused of being non-japanese the same as everyone has when they are confronting those wrapping themselves in their nations flag.

You might as well post about the NRA and their antics and ask Americans how they feel about it. You get the same kind of "oh gosh, I am embarrassed but they are waving my flag so if I attack them I am a traitor".

Re:Ok, so if no-one is eating it, why bother with (1)

hxnwix (652290) | about a year ago | (#43894811)

It's a nationalism thing. Even if no Japanese person would eat a single mouthful of whale, the Japanese nationalists would still want whales hunted solely to stick a finger in the eye of the gaijins.

Re:Ok, so if no-one is eating it, why bother with (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year ago | (#43894845)

Continuing to produce a product no-one is interested in (and that large swathes of the rest of the world would rather you didn't produce) seems stupid to me

Maybe they had some RIAA consultants advising?

Does it taste like chicken? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894603)

Seriously, what does whale meat taste like?
Fish? Lobster?
I don't like rubbery meat.
If they sold it locally I'd try it.

What's up with Japs and the Chinks? Food != Magic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43894625)

Mod down for racism... But you know I'm right.

It kinda boggles the mind, doesn't it? (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year ago | (#43894827)

Hunting whales is at the very least morally questionable. You know, with them being kinda endangered and all that. Now, one could have argued that it's traditional for Japanese to hunt and eat them, and that tradition plays a big role in their culture, so it's kinda hard to get that out of their system and that's why they need to come up with so many reasons to tiptoe around the whaling bans. Ok. We can understand that. I mean, we kill human beings to protect our way of life, so who are we to judge them for killing whales for it?

But now we get to hear that it's not really the case and the only ones that actually WANT this slaughtering to continue is the whaling industry, not the consumers. That's a bit like... well, imagine everyone in the US suddenly abandoning their gas guzzlers and going hybrid and e-car while at the same time our leaders keep waging wars for the "strategic control" of oil and ... ummmm...

Ok, guess we're all the same, all over the planet.

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