Another Anti-Jones Act Article


#1

Here is another Article attacking the Jones Act.


#2

Hold on to your hats boys, we’re about to become the next industry to fall victim to Chinese price gouging. The downfall of the Jones Act is inevitable and when it happens, we’ll just be another of the formerly great American industries that the American people were too lazy and stupid to back up. We have become a nation of couch-potatoes and industry after industry will continue to fall against the rushing tide of liberal-arts majors, iPhones, Facebook, potato chips, cellulite and a whole bunch of other things I don’t have time to mention. The nation is just too cool for dirty jobs like ours now and the armchair quarterbacks who call the shots are all too happy to sell our infrastructure wholesale to the Chinese and the Koreans. Our industry is part of the expansive American infrastructure in exactly the same way as power lines, bridges, dams, and all the rest. Some of that infrastructure is crumbling under time and its own weight while the rest is being sold off. We are both crumbling and being sold off.

A major part of this country’s infrastructure, security, economy, and general well-being is being sold out from underneath us for the price of a cheaper gallon of milk or loaf of bread in Hawaii. Good for the Hawaiian people for not wanting to have to pay a premium for living in such a beautiful but remote location, but what will the citizens of Hawaii, Alaska and Puerto Rico say when there are no American ships to bring them their bread and milk and the Chinese have stopped shipping because they’re mad at us or because we owe them too much money? What too will the citizens of New England say when they can’t heat their homes in the winter because of the same? And the citizens of Florida for whom driving has become impossible because there is no one to bring them gas and diesel? The American people will one day feel the cost of losing the Jones Act, I have no doubt about that, but it will happen nonetheless. We will slaughter this lamb on the alter of corporate freedom and cheaper prices, but head the warning, not long thereafter the temple itself will crumble to the ground.


#3

You might wanna sign and date that so you can say “I told you so”, when the time comes.


#4

[QUOTE=PaddyWest2012;133634]Hold on to your hats boys, we’re about to become the next industry to fall victim to Chinese price gouging. The downfall of the Jones Act is inevitable and when it happens, we’ll just be another of the formerly great American industries that the American people were too lazy and stupid to back up. We have become a nation of couch-potatoes and industry after industry will continue to fall against the rushing tide of liberal-arts majors, iPhones, Facebook, potato chips, cellulite and a whole bunch of other things I don’t have time to mention. The nation is just too cool for dirty jobs like ours now and the armchair quarterbacks who call the shots are all too happy to sell our infrastructure wholesale to the Chinese and the Koreans. Our industry is part of the expansive American infrastructure in exactly the same way as power lines, bridges, dams, and all the rest. Some of that infrastructure is crumbling under time and its own weight while the rest is being sold off. We are both crumbling and being sold off. A major part of this country’s infrastructure, security, economy, and general well-being is being sold out from underneath us for the price of a cheaper gallon of milk or loaf of bread in Hawaii. Good for the Hawaiian people for not wanting to have to pay a premium for living in such a beautiful but remote location, but what will the citizens of Hawaii, Alaska and Puerto Rico say when there are no American ships to bring them their bread and milk and the Chinese have stopped shipping because they’re mad at us or because we owe them too much money? What too will the citizens of New England say when they can’t heat their homes in the winter because of the same? And the citizens of Florida for whom driving has become impossible because there is no one to bring them gas and diesel? The American people will one day feel the cost of losing the Jones Act, I have no doubt about that, but it will happen nonetheless. We will slaughter this lamb on the alter of corporate freedom and cheaper prices, but head the warning, not long thereafter the temple itself will crumble to the ground.[/QUOTE]

These attacks on the Jones Act were going on before you were born. They were going on before I was born. They’ll still be going on 50 years from now.


#5

[QUOTE=tugsailor;133637]These attacks on the Jones Act were going on before you were born. They were going on before I was born. They’ll still be going on 50 years from now.[/QUOTE]

While I want to believe you about the last part, we weren’t competing with the Chinese and Koreans 50 yrs ago. Hell, we were just starting to compete with the Chinese 30 yrs ago. We’d be a lot better off if Chairman Mao had lived a whole lot longer (unfortunately not so for the Chinese people). Things have changed very quickly. A quick look at American wealth divide shows as much. Just compare CEO pay vs avg worker pay of today vs 1980 let alone 1960. It’s like a punch in the gut.

10 yrs ago it seemed inconceivable that Nokia would quickly become a minor player in the cell phone arena. Less than 5 yrs ago nobody could imagine that Samsung would be a top 3 player in the same market.


#6

[QUOTE=Tugs;133631]Here is another Article attacking the Jones Act.

That is an interesting article, gave some specifics about changes in demand for ships because of changes in the U.S. oil and gas industry. Might be time to consider some temporary waivers till the U.S. gets some ships built. Better to bend the Jones Act then to break it.


#7

That article fron an investment newsletter contains a few interesting assertions of “fact.” First, we are importing 7 million barrels a day of crude oil, or 45 percent of US oil consumption. Second, there are only three dozen, that would be 36, Jones Act tankers with a capacity over 235,000 barrels, most of which have long term contracts. The rest of the article is superficial bullshit and outright falsehoods.

For example, the article claims that repealing the Jones Act would increase "tight oil"production in the Bakken. The author obviously does not know that tankers cannot call on “ports” in North Dakota. The oil companies are doing everything they can to increase production in the Bakken. North Dakota had very little oil 7 years ago, but now it’s the second largest oil producing state.

The Eagle Ford Shale, in Southeastern Texas is creating increased demand for Jones Act tankers. That’s why Aker Philadelphia is building 10 new Jones Act tankers for Crowley and other customers. But don’t worry, all of the recoverable oil in the Eagle Ford will be produced to meet America’s energy needs, but just a couple years slower than if there were hundreds more tankers available.

Repealing the Jones Act might reduce the cost of gas a the pump by a couple pennies, but I doubt that there would be any measure able difference. Any serious talk about repealing the Jones Act would kill all plans to build new Jones Act tankers.

How many companies make tires in the US? One? Have tires gotten any cheaper in the stores?

As for exporting crude, why? We are going to need all of it right here. We are still importing 7 million barrels a day. The most optimistic projections for increased oil production fall far short of seven million barrels a day. Why should the US bear the environmental risks of oil production for export? Allowing the export of crude would probably kill any prospects we might have for opening the Arctic, the East Coast, and West Coast to offshore drilling.

That article Is superficial bullshit.


#8

^ There was a lot of BS in the article but people who defend the Jones Act should be careful to differentiate between situations where using Jones Act tankers are adding a few cents per due to unavoidable higher costs and cases were tankers are needed and are not available.

I am not knowledgeable about the details of oil transportation in the U.S. but it might lower the risk to the Jones Act if temporary waivers were granted to meet immediate demand until U.S. tankers are ready.


#9

That’s the whole circular dilemma part of it. If they generally grant waivers because they’re not available, the market won’t have any incentive to make more available. That’s why the US needs to work to shape an environment where there is adequate tonnage available in the fleet to absorb any ups or downs in demand. With such a weakened MM though there’s not enough surplus tonnage floating around out there.


#10

I agree with you in principle about the waivers but I’m afraid in practice it wouldn’t be that simple. If I thought it would be easy to just go off the waivers when the American ships were complete then I would say go ahead, but anyone who benefits from one of those waivers is going to raise bloody hell when it comes time to switch back to an American ship at a much higher cost. The simple fact is that waivers are a slippery slope. Once we grant a few until the Aker tankers can be finished everyone will want one and then people will start to think “Well, why not just waive the whole damn thing permanently?”


#11

[QUOTE=LI_Domer;133665]That’s the whole circular dilemma part of it. If they generally grant waivers because they’re not available, the market won’t have any incentive to make more available. That’s why the US needs to work to shape an environment where there is adequate tonnage available in the fleet to absorb any ups or downs in demand. With such a weakened MM though there’s not enough surplus tonnage floating around out there.[/QUOTE]

I don’ t think this is a routine up and down in demand. It a sudden, unexpected and presumably long-term increase in demand due to recent changes in the oil and gas industry. A true temporary waiver is not going remove the incentive to build U.S. ships.


#12

I just thought of something else anyway that would complicate it further. Don’t both DOT and DHS have to sign off on it and show that it’s a national security emergency.


#13

Who signs off I do not know, but it is customs/border patrol (DHS) that is the main agency that administers it.


#14

[QUOTE=Kennebec Captain;133667]I don’ t think this is a routine up and down in demand. It a sudden, unexpected and presumably long-term increase in demand due to recent changes in the oil and gas industry. A true temporary waiver is not going remove the incentive to build U.S. ships.[/QUOTE]

What we are seeing is anti Jones Act lobby using the recent increase in domestic O & G production, Ukraine, salt crisis, you name it … to create a “story” supporting their baseline position. ALL the nonsense and throwaway “facts” can be traced right back to that.

They must be encouraged because recent events have given them new oil industry based allies PLUS laid so many opportunities for distortion at their feet.

This is the reason every journalist in the [I]News Media Yellow Book[/I] (look it up - we used to use it) is running a story on how “awful” the Jones Act is.

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What is clear is only this. Using US registered and crewed ships to carry cargo or people between 2 points within the US is absolutely, positively no different than using a US truck driver driving a US registered truck to make the same trip.

Make no mistake - if those that stand to benefit financially can make any case, no matter how distorted, to replace the truck driver with a lower paid and more pliable non-US person… and they have they have the time and money to make the case…they will make it.

Now think about that. With one little law, it is possible to eliminate the burdensome need for US persons to drive school busses, deliver bread, gasoline, drive FedEx & UPS trucks, deliver the goods to WalMart and Kroger. Let’s nicely eliminate a huge swath of what many consider over paid, benefit bloated American jobs, ($12-$14 / hr ??) neatly and quietly, by just this one little change. Legally. And by the way, this exact case is being lobbied for right now.

Be reasonable my friends. There ARE lower cost alternatives out there to serve our markets.

Why should “our” nation punish ourselves with outdated practices when easy foreign-based solutions are at hand and will save “us” money. And better yet if American shareholders (banks/hedge funds) actually own the foreign service providers employing third world nationals. Oh yeah !!! BINGO. PAYOLA !!! Ya HOOO. Get the contracts IN the domestic US market, pay low wages, no employer taxes AND 100% of the profits offshored !!!

Nothin’ better my friends, nothing better. And the milk shows up on the shelf and little Johnny gets to school just the same. We think … but hey, it was a little thing.

Go ahead, you rage against the machine. Your feeble cries are meaningless noise against the “truths” of those selling the benefits of “progress” and “free” markets.

==============

For my part, now that opportunity to sell a great story is at hand, and big money has an absolutely unobstructed free run in politics … I predict a slow slide into Serfdom for millions.

By God, I never thought we would sink this low in A’murca, but you can bet you bottom peso that those few that stand to “benefit” will not rest until we Serfs get our act together, speak up for ourselves and OUR neighbors, and stop them.

Read. Research. Be Genuinely informed. Think. Vote.

It is way Friggin’ Important to You, and Your kids.


#15

The real trouble is that this is nothing but another Jones Act circle-jerk. Everyone on here knows how important the Jones Act is and why we need to keep it, but it doesn’t matter because nothing we say on here, however true and sensational it may be, goes to help change the opinions of the American public. gCaptain as a media outlet is the closest thing we have to reaching a broad audience and sending a strong pro-Jones Act message, but even that isn’t enough. How many non-industry people read gCaptain? Some, I’m sure, but not enough to turn the tide. Unless the mainstream media changes their mind about the pros and cons of the Jones Act, which they won’t, then the general public will never get any other message than the one they have now. This is why I say what I have been saying all along: the end of the Jones Act is coming. Maybe not tomorrow, maybe not next year, I have no idea when so I won’t put any kind of a timeline on it, but repeal is in the air and it will happen eventually. The only question is when.


#16

Public opinion doesn’t mean shit in Washington DC. Business interests mean everything and there is still a very strong pro Jones Act lobby there!


#17

You’re not looking far enough down the road. What happens when candidates start running on anti-jones act platforms because it’s the popular thing to do as a result of public opinion generated by a mass-media barrage? As much as I believe in our system, just doesn’t always get served.


#18

[QUOTE=PaddyWest2012;133745]You’re not looking far enough down the road. What happens when candidates start running on anti-jones act platforms because it’s the popular thing to do as a result of public opinion generated by a mass-media barrage? As much as I believe in our system, just doesn’t always get served.[/QUOTE]

NO FUCKING WAY IN HELL THAT GARY CHOUEST IS EVER GOING TO ALLOW HIS EMPIRE TO BE BROUGHT DOWN BY SOMETHING AS RIDICULOUS as PUBLIC OPINION!

Remember there are more than a couple of US billionaires who’s fortunes are all based on the protections the Act gives them.

MONEY TALKS & BULLSHIT WALKS!


#19

[QUOTE=+A465B;133727]What we are seeing is anti Jones Act lobby using the recent increase in domestic O & G production, Ukraine, salt crisis, you name it … to create a “story” supporting their baseline position. ALL the nonsense and throwaway “facts” can be traced right back to that.

They must be encouraged because recent events have given them new oil industry based allies PLUS laid so many opportunities for distortion at their feet.

This is the reason every journalist in the [I]News Media Yellow Book[/I] (look it up - we used to use it) is running a story on how “awful” the Jones Act is.

=============
.[/QUOTE]

Agreed looks like nonsense.

[QUOTE=PaddyWest2012;133666]I agree with you in principle about the waivers but I’m afraid in practice it wouldn’t be that simple. If I thought it would be easy to just go off the waivers when the American ships were complete then I would say go ahead, but anyone who benefits from one of those waivers is going to raise bloody hell when it comes time to switch back to an American ship at a much higher cost. The simple fact is that waivers are a slippery slope. Once we grant a few until the Aker tankers can be finished everyone will want one and then people will start to think “Well, why not just waive the whole damn thing permanently?”[/QUOTE]

I think for mariners generally government economic and political policy is similar to a black box. We all have ideas about how things work but nobody can be sure. Its a question of tactics, hold fast or open the safeties to prevent catastrophic failure? I’m not very knowledgeable about oil transportation, it’s plausible that hold fast is the best tactic.


#20

[QUOTE=c.captain;133749]NO FUCKING WAY IN HELL THAT GARY CHOUEST IS EVER GOING TO ALLOW HIS EMPIRE TO BE BROUGHT DOWN BY SOMETHING AS RIDICULOUS as PUBLIC OPINION!

Remember there are more than a couple of US billionaires who’s fortunes are all based on the protections the Act gives them.

MONEY TALKS & BULLSHIT WALKS![/QUOTE]

Can’t speak to Mr. Chouest’s ideas, but Wall Street (“The REAL Money”) funded companies will flick your dead US of A ass off the boat (or land job) the first day they can legally get a flip flop to fill your spot and fly him there…

Sorry - it is not personal, but it is just the way it is. Guaranteed.

We seen a thousand “captains” in our travels, and hardly any of 'em Amur-kin. And somehow they got the job done just fine.

Sorry my friends, we have to protect “share holder value” you know.

Besides, we gotta ‘splain to a room full of 27 year old hedge fund and bank financial analysts earning $500k a year (of course their salary is a fund management cost passed on to the “investors”) why we’re payin’ YOU a $1000 a day to “drive a boat” and run up costs, when we could just pay a world market rate for “boat drivers” that will be 30 to 60% of that … and we WILL staff the boat just fine.

All the other shit captains do is just a “detail” not on the balance sheet, so do not trouble us with it.

THAT is the REAL MONEY talking.

Take your big talk and start packing.

Pal.