I have written around 1,500 articles about the cruise industry on this blog.
I’ve covered the issues which are important to me, like the negative environmental impact caused by cruise ships which dump raw sewage into the water and belch toxic high-sulfur smoke into the air. Like the exploitation of vulnerable citizens of India and the Caribbean islands who work over over 360 hours to earn less than $600 a month. Like the fact that cruise lines avoid all U.S. federal taxes, U.S. wage and labor laws, and U.S. safety regulations by incorporating their companies and registering their ships overseas in countries like Panama, Liberia and the Bahamas.
But do Americans really care about these issues?
An article the other day from the Plain Dealer struck a strange chord with me. The article was entitled Cruise Industry’s Recent Troubles Could Mean Bargains on the Horizon. The newspaper writes that although the cruise industry is floundering again with images of stranded ships with over-flowing toilets (Image above courtesy Adweek), cruise lines will "fight back by throwing money at the image problem, lowering their prices until customers start buying again."
The newspaper’s bottom line is that the recent spate of pseudo disasters may be a good thing for consumers – "this may be the time to find a bargain."
Americans love bargains. They want affordable and fun vacations. That’s what Carnival offers.
Americans don’t want to think about 400,000,000 people in India living below the poverty line many of whom are easily exploitable on cruise ships. Or the burning of toxic bunker fuel. Or the fouling of the waters in Alaska with a billion gallons of cruise ship waste water. Or the cruise line’s non-payment of U.S. taxes.
Americans want to enjoy a cheap vacation on a "fun ship." The cruise lines provide that. If fair treatment of Indian crew members, clean air and water, and the payment of taxes by the cruise lines will make cruising more expensive, most cruisers will choose the cheaper cruise.
Today I saw a tweet by the IrixGuy on Twitter. Seems like a nice fellow. His YouTube video (below) explains why you should continue to cruise on Carnival. His basic points:
1. Carnival is "great;"
2. Carnival cruises have the "best prices;" and
3. With all of the "disasters" and negative press, it’s a "really good time to get a really good deal."
I suppose that’s basically what most cruisers want, right?