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Thursday, 11 March 2010 01:00

NatGeo's "Wolf Wars" Flacks for Radical Greens

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wolf"Wolf Wars," the cover story for the March 2010 issue of National Geographic, may seem, at first read, to be a "balanced" report on the ongoing battle pitting ranchers, hunters, recreationists, and conservationists of the Rocky Mountain states against Big Green environmentalists and Big Government (federal and state) bureaucrats. Author Douglas Chadwick does, after all, seem to report sympathetically on the plight of ranchers like John and Rae Herman of Montana's Hot Springs area, whose 800-head Angus cattle operation has been hard-hit by wolf predation. However, like most media reporting on wolves, his article hymns the supposed overall benefits of the reintroduction of Canis lupus to the ecosystem.

Chadwick's National Geographic piece also follows the typical media route of uncritically accepting the numbers provided by government agencies that have a history of fudging the facts and a concentrated interest in continuing to cook the books. "During 2008, wildlife agents confirmed 569 cattle and sheep deaths from wolves throughout the West," he reports. "That amounted to less than one percent of livestock deaths in the region." However, there is abundant anecdotal evidence that the aforementioned "wildlife agents" often go to great lengths to minimize and drastically undercount the predation by wolves. This writer has interviewed ranchers in Idaho and Washington over the years who have recounted many instances in which state and federal wildlife personnel have disputed and dismissed livestock losses that were indisputably due to wolves.

A rancher who comes upon the half-eaten carcass of what was shortly before a prize Angus knows that he is not automatically going to be compensated by the state/federal wolf compensation fund, even if the carcass is surrounded by wolf tracks and wolf scat, and even if he or another person earlier witnessed a wolf or wolves attacking or harassing cattle in the area. The wildlife agents are likely to claim that the evidence points to wild dogs, a bear, or a cougar as the culprits, rather than wolves.

Chadwick halfway acknowledges this problem, noting: "Many say in some areas the actual kills by wolves may average as high as seven for every one that can be proved, but no confirmation, no compensation." Of course, if the totals were seven times the reported number, we'd be talking about 4,000 cattle, not 569, and considerably more than one percent of cattle deaths. The same goes for sheep, as well as the wild ungulates — deer, elk, moose, sheep, caribou — whose populations are being devastated by the wolf packs that are rapidly multiplying throughout the West.

Chadwick also accepts without question the official wolf count for the Idaho-Washington-Montana region, even though some game biologists assert that the actual wolf population is double the official census. According to Chadwick, the wolf population has "now grown to around 1,600, roaming the region in more than 200 packs." However, as we pointed out last November in an extensive article on wolves ("Wolves Will Thrive Despite Recent Hunts"), there is reason to believe the real number is 3,000 — or more. We reported on the work of Professor Charles Kay, a renowned wildlife biologist, and linked to several of his articles exposing the fraudulent data and manipulative methods used by government bureaucrats and enviro-extremists posing as scientists to justify increasing restriction on human access to, and use of, both public and private lands.

In our November 10 online article, The New American reported on the unconscionable efforts employed by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service's wolf biologist to get Dr. Kay fired from his university position for exposing the wolf restoration fraud. And we compared this "academic terrorism" to the similarly vicious attacks on many esteemed scientists who have been challenging the alleged science behind "anthropogenic global warming" (or AGW, human-caused global warming). Only a week after our report, the infamous "Climategate" scandal broke (see here and here), exposing the fact that many of the world's top climate change "experts" at the United Nations' IPCC and prestigious academic institutions have been engaged for years in a massive and systematic campaign of fraud and public deception, as well as career sabotage and character assassination of scientists who dissent from the AGW "consensus." 

Unfortunately, climate "science" is not the only area of government activity tainted by statistical chicanery. In fact, government officials and agencies regularly deceive with statistical sleight-of-hand. This has become widely recognized, for instance, in the case of the federal government's unemployment smoke and mirrors (see here and here). The government engages in similar deception with regard to inflation and the Consumer Price Index (CPI).

And, of course, there is the powerful and secretive Federal Reserve, which regularly issues deceptive data and statements about our economy, while withholding other vital information from Congress and the public. In March 2006, the Fed simply stopped publishing information on the M3 money supply,
making it much more difficult for members of Congress and/or interested citizens to track inflation.

Predictably, Chadwick winds up his National Geographic piece quoting wolf advocates who claim the proliferating predator is actually a huge boon to the ecosystem. "From a single new predatory force on the landscape, a rebalancing effect ripples all the way to microbes in the soil," says Chadwick. "Biologists define the series of top-down changes as a trophic cascade."  Although Chadwick doesn't mention it, the wolf program he extols is an integral part of the Wildlands Project (see here and here), a radical plan to "re-wild" much of North America by creating a "biocentrist" system of ever-expanding wilderness reserves and interconnecting buffer zones and corridors. The system would, if completed, wipe out millions of acres of private property and displace millions of people, to make room for the deer and the antelope — and the wolves and their wealthy Wildlands/Sierra Club patrons — to play.

Launched in the early 1980s by Dave Foreman, the eco-anarchist founder of Earth First!, the Wildlands Project has more recently changed its name to the Wildlands Network, but it continues to pursue the same extreme "deep ecology" agenda of reverting as much as 50 percent of the continental U.S. to pre-Columbian condition, absent roads, towns, cities, farms, and human habitation. Foreman's rabidly anti-human and anti-capitalist Wild Earth journal (which folded in 1997) published articles that opined, for instance, in favor of "voluntary human extinction." One Wild Earth article claimed: "Phasing out the human race will solve every problem on earth, social and environmental." Foreman, famous for ending his public speeches with a wolf howl, wrote in his manifesto, Confessions of an Eco-Warrior: "We must make this an insecure and inhospitable place for capitalists and their projects.... We must reclaim the roads and plowed land, halt dam construction, tear down existing dams, free shackled rivers and return to wilderness tens of millions of acres of presently settled land."

Foreman still sits on the science advisory board of the Wildlands Network, one of the principal drivers of the wolf programs in the western states. Sitting on the organization's board of directors is John Davis, an old eco-warrior comrade of Foreman's who helped him found Earth First and Wild Earth. While most environmentalist leaders pretend that their extravagant "endangered species" efforts are about saving this or that critter, Davis, who is no less radical than Foreman, has candidly stated: "Does all the foregoing mean that Wild Earth and The Wildlands Project advocate the end of industrialized civilization? Most assuredly. Everything civilized must go."

For many of the radical greens pushing the "re-wilding" agenda, the wolves, cougars, grizzlies, spotted owls, bull-nosed trout and other finned, furry, or feathered critters are merely means to an end — "the end of industrialized civilization."

Related articles:

Wolves Will Thrive Despite Recent Hunts

IPCC Researchers Admit Global Warming Fraud

Climategate: George Monbiot's Lament

Climate Scientist Admits No Warming in 15 Years

Global Warming Murder-Suicide: Why Didn't Al Gore Save Them?

Scientist's Climate Change Dissent Vindicated

Are the Polar Ice Caps Melting?

Global Warming Update

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