Sunday, October 5, 2008

Sarah Palin's Wolf Hunts

I've visited Alaska more than once and I find it harder to come back to the lower 48 every time I do; it's a spectacularly beautiful part of the world populated by cool, laid back people who enjoy and appreciate the wilderness they've made their home. Last time I visited I even got to pilot one of the little puddle jumpers featured in this video but as we were crossing mostly watered areas I failed to spot any wolves. If the sight of animals suffering makes you squeamish you might not want to watch this but I think that it's important that you do; I've already listed a myriad of reasons why Sarah Palin is unfit to possibly lead this country so one more shouldn't hurt:


Patrick Kelley said...

JBW. Thanks for posting that. I am going to float that video into email world. I know some people that need to see it.

JBW said...

Thanks for spreading the word, amigo.

BD said...

I'm not for Palin in any shape or form....

However this clip hits pretty high on my BS meter. I'm not actually too "colleged up" on aerial hunting wolves, but I do know a lot of it is to control an exploding population that continues to decimate caribou herds. I'm not saying we should all buy Super Cubs and buzz around the tundra this winter, but everyone needs to understand there are reasons behind the hunters' actions.

It's a big politcal battle in AK, and there are plenty of people that are well educated on the issue and are still against it, so I'm not saying we should let it happen, but this video is BS. It's one-sided and doesn't even feign an attempt to discuss the other side.

And what's this about people going to Alaska to see wolves? Give me a f'ing break. I've been host to many guests in my home state (even some bloggers) and I don't recall a single time I was asked to find a wolf. No disrespect, they are cool animals and not being sought after by tourists doesn't mean you should be shot by a 12-guage, but let's all understand the wolve's status. They fall behind grizzly bear, black bears, moose, bald eagles and my dad's cabin (it really is quite a draw).

JBW said...

I freely admit that the reason I posted this video in the first place was because I had a visceral reaction to it's content without any education on the matter but that has since been remedied.

Admittedly, the video is partisan and one-sided but I assume that that is on purpose and it never claims to be anything but. The main objection to this practice is that the kills are considerably less than "clean", i.e. the animal suffers for a prolonged period of time before dying. Whatever your feelings about hunting, most sportsmen will agree that this is unnecessarily cruel.

The stated reason for the culling program is to reduce wolf populations so that moose and caribou are plentiful enough for hunters, subsistence and otherwise, to have enough ungulates. Scientists and wildlife biologists have gone on record as saying that there is little evidence that the culling program substantially reduces the number of ungulates killed by wolves and that the majority of animals eaten by wolves are scavenged, not hunted down.

Given Palin's blatant disregard for good science (wanting to have creationism taught in public schools and denying the causes of global warming come to mind) it doesn't surprise me that she has taken such stances on this issue. She has just recently introduced state legislation to transfer authority over the culling program from the Dept. of Fish and Game to Alaska's Board of Game, which is populated by her own appointees and does not have to answer to any scientific body.

I'm not saying that I'm against sportsmanlike or subsistence hunting and I understand the need to balance the ratio of predators to prey but this practice of aerial hunting seems unduly cruel and not supported by scientific evidence but I do agree that your old man's cabin is pretty sweet.

one L bill said...

"Palin's blatant disregard for good science (wanting to have creationism taught in public schools)"

I'm no backer, but I've seen she IS in favor of evolution AND creationism in schools. While you may not think creationism is science, I wouldn't say she's completely disregarding science and advocating the removal of all evolution talk.

JBW said...

Teaching Creationism alongside evolution is disregard for good science; you might as well teach Tooth Fairy-ism alongside evolution, because that's the level of illegitimacy you're imparting on the science curriculum with that comparison. I'm not saying that it's impossible, just that it's bad science.

BD said...

Riiiight. Jesus & The Tooth Fairy.

You went from bad science to bad blogger comparison.

JBW said...

I disagree; teaching that religious beliefs are as valid as scientific fact in a science classroom is the same thing as teaching that magic is real. You're welcome to your beliefs about the nature and origins of the universe whatever they may be but any discussion along those lines should be confined to religious or philosophical study.

In fields of study that are strictly defined by unwavering rules that govern the existence and mechanics of the universe there is no place for personal beliefs or wishes; saying that God makes gravity reverse itself sometimes makes for a great story but the field of physics would be absolutely useless if we actually took that theory seriously in the classroom, and creationism has exactly as much scientific legitimacy.

And if you have any type of verifiable proof that Jesus's kung-fu was any better than the Tooth Fairy's then please share it because I would find evidence of that extremely compelling.

one L bill said...

Look, if you want to say she has a disregard for science, that's one thing. But to say she has a "blatant" disregard should be reserved for those who are much farther out than her.

JBW said...

"bla·tant –adjective
1. brazenly obvious; flagrant"

"The classic meaning of “blatant” is “noisily conspicuous,” but it has long been extended to any objectionable obviousness. A person engaging in blatant behavior is usually behaving in a highly objectionable manner, being brazen. Unfortunately, many people nowadays think that “blatant” simply means “obvious” and use it in a positive sense, as in “Kim wrote a blatantly brilliant paper.” Use “blatant” or “blatantly” only when you think the people you are talking about should be ashamed of themselves."

Your objection to my use of that adjective is a subjective judgement but I'd say teaching that God created all animals on Earth in their present forms a short time ago in a science class is a brazenly obvious attempt to subvert the teaching of good science.