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November 16 , 2007

Down To The Sea


For those who go down to sea in ships life has always been exciting but ever dangerous. Brutally treated, under paid and subjected to greed of the ship owners and misguided government policies that conspired to keep the seaman in a condition of poverty and near slavery. Change only came about with the advent of the of the Maritime Unions and World War II. But no sooner had the war ended conditions on American Merchant vessels began to revert the old ways. The ship owners, with Government acquiescence, began to register their fleets under foreign flags in an attempt to break the power of the maritime unions. This activity give rise to the continual, and bloody, labor disputes of the 60’s and 70’s. Those prolonged lockouts and strikes were finally responsible for the virtual demise of the Merchant Marine. So ended the dream for we who love the sea and had made it our lives.

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