The "Mariusha" did not go down alone. During the Seventies and Eigthies, many, many fisherman lost their boats to the Bankruptcy courts. There were countless hard working, honest fisherman, who watched in bitter disbelief as their livliehoods were taken away and the industry was handed over to Big Business.
Throughout the last few decades, the habitat in which Salmon can survive has been steadily shrinking. Timber harvesting methods, pollution, run-off from manufacturing, power plants & dams; all these are responsible.
Then, as the supply of timber was exhausted, Big Business realized they could farm Salmon on the very ground they had made so inhospitable to wild fish. Fingerlings could be released and nature could be counted on to guide the fish back home to be harvested, having grown fat in the Ocean wilds. There was just one problem: Commercial Fisherman might catch them before they came back.
Throughout the twilight of the Reagan years, pressure was applied, and, under the banner of "conservation" (a truly Orwellian usage of the language, if ever I have seen one) the commercial fishing industry was essentially shut down as far as Salmon were concerned.
Commercial Fishing attracts independent, iconoclastic individuals, anyway, and under the impending changes an atmosphere like that of the Wild West prevailed. Salmon fisherman were now in the same position as the last of the Buffalo Hunters.
And they lived each day far out on a limb...