Special Iran Report

By John A. C. Cartner

Special Iran Report

The situation in the Persian Gulf seems to have become more complicated. Recently the Maersk Kensington was “harassed” by apparent warships flying the Iranian flag. Now the Maersk Tigris has been boarded and directed to anchor after Iranian forces fired across her bow. Here are my thoughts about this situation. One must carefully separate the political from the legal here. Clearly there are substantial political implications with this matter going on and the negotiations the US government and the Iranian government are having as to the Iranian nuclear capability. However, we also must be careful not to equate the two matters. What is happening with the vessels seems on one hand to be a minor matter when compared to the negotiations. On the other hand it is a window into the Iranian state and the Iranian government which if viewed in certain ways is unsettling.

Read more and watch the video after the jump.

Is Automation a Panacea or Is It Doomed to Fail in the Current Approach?

By John A. C. Cartner

Is Automation a Panacea or Is It Doomed to Fail in the Current Approach?

It seems as if the pace of automation is increasing in the industry. For example, the notion of an autonomous ship has yet again reared its head. ECDIS is now becoming institutionalized. Is this going to cause problems in and of itself – the pace of automation? I believe it will and it is causing problems now.

The age-old way of shipping has been cost containment. After all a ton mile is a ton mile no matter what carries it. In an industry where there are few distinguishing features which may be exploited one may expect fierce cost competition and very little price elasticity. That is what we have in many trades such as in the container trades. Hence, automation is seen as a way to reduce costs by engineering out the people who operate ships which in some perceptions are the expensive causes of many costs and more costly problems. This is flawed thinking on many counts.

Read more and watch the video after the jump.

The Jones Act and Senator McCain – a Bad Mix

By John A. C. Cartner

The Jones Act and Senator McCain – a Bad Mix
Recently, Senator John McCain lost his bid to attach an amendment to the Keystone Pipeline bill wherein the amendment would change the cabotage parts of the Jones Act objectionable to the Senator and his party. I have several thoughts.

Read more and watch the video after the jump.

The Complex Dynamics Behind the Current U.S. West Coast Port Congestion

The Complex Dynamics Behind the Current U.S. West Coast Port Congestion

Maritime TV is pleased to present another program in the Internet TV series known as “Conversations with Cartner”, a weekly video and blog discussion on maritime industry issues of the day with Shipmaster and Maritime Lawyer, Dr. John A.C. Cartner.
In this 6th program in the series, Dr. Cartner addresses the complex dynamics surrounding port delays and congestion on the U.S. west coast including the dependence on “Just-in-Time’ (JIT) inventory. Dr. Cartner will shortly be providing subsequent thoughts based on this issue through an updated “Conversations with Cartner” Watch the video after the jump.

Should a Shipmaster be Punished for Cowardice?

Should a Shipmaster be Punished for Cowardice?

The question has been debated and has arisen again as to whether or not a shipmaster should be punished for cowardice. I am of two minds about the question. On the one hand, if the master is paid by his employer to be courageous, then by all means -- if a law can be found to punish him lawfully. If he is not paid to be courageous, then no.
Let me explain before the knee-jerk uproar such statements will inevitably make among some.
View entire article and the interview after the jump.

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Maritime TV 'Conversations with Cartner'
A weekly discussion on maritime industry issues of the day with Shipmaster and Maritime Lawyer, Dr. John A.C. Cartner.


The opinions expressed by Dr. John A.C. Cartner in the ‘Conversations with Cartner’ Video Series and accompanying blogs are the opinions of Dr. Cartner and do not necessarily reflect the views of the staff and management of Maritime TV, or its parent network, TV Worldwide, Inc.

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