August 25, 2019

A Stark Contrast

-A Letter to the WSJ- by James Beers

You unwittingly offered a dramatic comparison between Alyssia Finley’s juvenile and feminine fable about wolf myths in her Gray Wolf in the Silver State and Fahoum Fahoum’s The Arab Boy on the Israeli Tennis Team.  For the record, Miss Finley’s ridiculing wolf depredations on cattle (“”cow-ripping isn’t a crime”); wolf depredations on livestock (“was never proven beyond a reasonable doubt”); and making ranchers the villains regarding wolves (“evidence could have been planted by ranchers” and accusing ranchers of being “vigilantes”) only throws gasoline on an already red hot issue.  Her cutesy closure by “Tom Wolf”, AKA Thomas Wolfe no doubt, only confirms this bit of urban elite environmental tale meant for little more than propagandizing munchkins before they can evaluate what they are being told about an important matter.

Mr. Fahoum’s excellent piece about an Arab boy and Israeli governance is a stark contrast about a masculine view about sports as a significant remedy for at least some of the decades-old conflicts between Jews and Arabs in Israel as well as other such conflicts worldwide.  His explanation and example as a current member of the Quinnipiac University tennis team is a great archetype of what he calls “a shared, complex identity” and what psychologists call, “superordinate identity”.

Comparing these two Opinion pieces in one WSJ issue: I give a loud “Hurray” for Mr. Fahoum’s values, his writing and his handling of a very sensitive matter; as for Miss Finley, what were you thinking?

Jim Beers

6 April 2017

If you found this worthwhile, please share it with others.  Thanks.

Jim Beers is a retired US Fish & Wildlife Service Wildlife Biologist, Special Agent, Refuge Manager, Wetlands Biologist, and Congressional Fellow. He was stationed in North Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York City, and Washington DC.  He also served as a US Navy Line Officer in the western Pacific and on Adak, Alaska in the Aleutian Islands.  He has worked for the Utah Fish & Game, Minneapolis Police Department, and as a Security Supervisor in Washington, DC.  He testified three times before Congress; twice regarding the theft by the US Fish & Wildlife Service of $45 to 60 Million from State fish and wildlife funds and once in opposition to expanding Federal Invasive Species authority.  He resides in Eagan, Minnesota with his wife of many decades.

Jim Beers is available to speak or for consulting.

You can receive future articles by sending a request with your e-mail address to:   jimbeers7@comcast.net

 

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Another Anti Bear Hunting Commentary of Useless Proportions

Not that anybody really cares what this person has to say about anything:

TedWilliamsDrivel

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The Problem With Arguing Hunting Ethics, Name Calling and Ignorance

This nonsense is endless. Even the Bangor Daily News allows anybody to publish a bunch of rude nonsense about bears and bear hunting in order, I suppose, to promote their anti-hunting agenda. If not anti-hunting, certainly to support radical, corrupt organizations such as the Humane Society of the United States.

In an opinion piece in the Bangor Daily News, a mortgage broker, presenting himself as some authority on hunting and, being an “ethical” one at that, because he lived in Alaska for a handful of years, calls those who legally choose to use baiting as a means of harvesting a bear, lazy. To him they are lazy because all they have to do is carry a bucket of bait to a site, climb into a tree and wait for a bear to appear. Obviously the man knows nothing about baiting. However, he presents “his way” of hunting as ethical and the right way. Oh really?

Josh Phillips is a lazy hunter, if one at all. He is lazy because he hunts with a gun, maybe even a bow and arrow. He probably uses scent block or some kind of lure or a masking scent. Does he use a gps so he doesn’t get lost? How about a radio? Carry a cell phone? What a lazy hunter. Perhaps a real “ethical” hunter would venture into the woods with nothing but a loin cloth and bare hands. Who died and left Josh Phillips in charge of hunting ethics?

The rest of his story is old, worn out, unsubstantiated, nonsense about how other states have magically done this and done that while at the same time increased the number of bear hunters, blah, blah, blah. Probably Mr. Phillips is a lazy writer because he didn’t “ethically” do his research to vet that misinformation being used to promote his cause. If he had he would know this repeated information is false.

Some might think that calling Mr. Phillips lazy is an insult. I say it’s calling a duck(quack) a duck(quack).

Now that we know that Mr. Phillips is better than other hunters, well, you know, those that are ” finding a bear to kill and stuff or turn into a rug,” it still doesn’t solve the problem of how the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife is going to control bear populations.

It is nonsense to think that Maine’s bear population has increased in the amounts indicated by Phillips because of baiting bears. His analogy of relationships between bears and humans and bait stations is wrong on every account. He knows little, if anything, about baiting bears, nor the differences between “feeding” bears in back yards and carefully and strategically placing “bait” in remote areas.

I see the issue as one of the Humane Society of the United States wishing to steal the necessary tools away from the Maine wildlife management department in order to promote their bigger agenda of ending hunting. I wonder if Mr. Phillips has considered that his support of the Humane Society to end bear baiting, trapping and hounding, drives one more nail in the coffin of his beloved hunting experiences? For this reason, I doubt that he is much of a hunter at all. He appears as the typical person who condemns other choices of sport believing his own choice is THE ONLY one.

To compare bears and bear hunting in Maine to that of Colorado, Oregon or any other state further exemplifies the ignorance of the subject matter being discussed. Do your homework. Know your subject matter.

If Mr. Phillips really is a hunter and if Mr. Phillips chooses, because he is allowed legally to have a choice, to be nothing more than a stocker of game in the woods, that is his choice and I certainly respect that. His wish to steal choices from others is no different than should I campaign to make hunter an matter of loin cloths and bare hands. I doubt Phillips would like that much.

Ethics while hunting, as guided by hunting regulations devised for game management and public safety, is a subjective matter driven by personal choice. I don’t want to take away Mr. Phillips choices why does he want to take away mine?

The real issue here is the ability to be able to manage bears to provide a healthy bear population. How can that be done with the wildlife manager’s hands bound behind their backs?

Old Hunter says:

ScarboroughHunter

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The Problem With Wildlife Commentary

BearsLotsA recent study showed that a recent study isn’t really a recent study at all. A scientific study, one that happens to be recent, showed that recent studies aren’t really recent studies at all but instead are non scientific, romance editorials designed to provide the public with recent study information so that they can write letters to the editor. Make any sense? I didn’t think so.

But don’t get me wrong. First amendment right to free speech is cherished and as much as I dislike reading fiction I wouldn’t ask that it be changed.

Everyone wishing, according to newspaper submission guidelines, can submit their opinions about issues that concern them. Take the spring bear hunting issue in Ontario, Canada. At least two sides exist and according to one side, the other side is wrong, blah, blah, blah.

If you are writing to a credible audience then I would suggest being credible. Accusing the other side of not relying on “scientific studies” and playing on people’s emotions, while you fail to use “scientific studies,” or name your resources and play on people’s emotions, just isn’t going to get the job done.

To explain about “science,” “recent studies,” and “data suggests,” one has to understand what those talking points mean. Science, unfortunately is not science any more. It’s what I call new science that is part of what a friend of mine calls “scientism.” Part of the process to promote agendas is to convince the public that you have the right “science” and everyone else is wrong. After all, there’s a lot of money in being able to do that successfully.

For the very clever person, they utilize the term “peer-reviewed” science or a “peer-reviewed” recent study. Peer reviewed today means some person with abbreviations after their name lied and another person with abbreviations after their name swore to it. This has become a very bad situation for the real and respected science community.

My favorite term is “recent data suggests.” I remember once, several years ago, a man suggested I take a long walk on a short pier. His suggestion meant nothing and more times than not neither does “recent data suggest.”

But getting back to Ontario’s spring bear hunt – which by the way a court tossed out the lawsuit to stop the hunt – in an opinion letter, a person states that a spring bear hunt will do nothing for public safety issues and suggests it might make it worse. The author accuses one side of failing to use science in making its decisions about the spring bear hunt while failing to use any science to argue against a bear hunt……well other than “recent studies,” and “science suggests.”

It is important as well, that is when writing to a credible audience, to be realistic. The writer says that he is, “saddened by the failure of residents in bear country to take responsibility for educating themselves on this issue and on the powerful tools we already have for achieving the goals the spring bear hunt cannot.”

Of course the writer has every right to be sad, but it doesn’t change reality. I might be sad that people who fail to obey traffic laws kill thousands of people a year, regardless of the education and laws that exist, but the reality is people break traffic laws. I may be saddened that criminals illegally own guns and use them to kill innocent people, regardless of how much education and laws are put on the books, but criminals exist and they keep getting guns and killing people. I may be saddened that politicians are crooks and are allowed to be, but the truth is stupid people keep electing stupid crooks.

Once intelligent people understand that concept then instead of practicing insanity and repeating the same process over and over and achieving the same results, perhaps something ought to change. The truth is people are not going to take responsibility about living with bears. The truth is, does anybody have to be forced to live in danger of wild animals because someone who studies Agenda 21 wants you to change your lifestyle for bears, wolves or rats? People today have been brainwashed against taking responsibility and thinking for themselves about anything. The programming of the minds has left us with reliability on government to do things for us. Government says kill the bears, we kill the bears.

And on the other hand, we have another writer who is on “the other side” evidently and presents his case:

Annual birthrate is extremely high. Given aproximately 30,000 sows of cub-bearing age with an average birthrate of 2.4 cubs annually – even with a 50% cub survival rate – this still suggests increased population annually is 36,000.

Recorded harvest mortality is merely 5,000. Despite the low harvest, the Ministry of Natural Resources claims the black bear population is not growing out-of-control in Ontario. Therefore, when you think about it, 31,000 bears must die annually as unrecorded mortality (road kills, rail kills, and those killed to protect livestock and humans).

This sounds a bit less whiny than the other writer who can’t seem to address reality but yet the failure of this editorial is that we have no idea where he got these numbers. People aren’t going to try to verify these numbers and maybe that’s the point of not providing a source. If they aren’t fabricated then wouldn’t a short note of resource have made the letter much more effective?

A quick Google search for “Ontario Black Bear Facts” produces quite the array of nothingness and I’m suggesting therein probably lies many of the problems people who care about truth face. Even the Ministry of Natural Resources provides nothing, that is that I can easily find, about facts on bears except how to learn to live with bears.

And so, it remains the same ole, same ole. Somebody with a platform spouts off and pretends to be presenting “facts,” “truth,” “recent studies,” “peer-viewed studies,” and “recent data,” and people are willing to accept what they read if it sounds good. Truth always seems to get in the way.In conclusion, I would like to say that a recent, peer-reviewed study showed that everything that Tom Remington writes is excellent writing and never wrong. Please tell everyone you know.

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Protecting the Fish and Game Biologist Brotherhood

Once again, Outcome Based Education, political bias and perpetuated myths are on display in Maine. A retired U.S. Fish and Wildlife biologist and a Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife biologist, says that politicians are the cause of Maine’s depleted(ing) deer herd, not coyotes.

Politicians are to blame for many things and readers know I would be the last in line to stand up for one unless I knew them personally and could trust them. As far as whether politicians are the sole blame for Maine’s vanishing deer herd, I don’t think, as much as I would like to, I could put all the blame on them.

The author was a wildlife biologist and worked for the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW), so I doubt he would dare place any of the blame for a terrible deer management execution on his “brotherhood” at MDIFW.

Getting beyond the political bias and nonsense, let’s examine a few things that the retired biologist had to say.

Since the early 1900s, expensive and barbaric coyote bounties have failed miserably in western states, but that knowledge carries no weight in Augusta.

History is full of accounts of how “barbaric bounties” very effectively controlled predator populations. Maybe the author needed to rewind his history clock a few more years to discover that….or maybe the seeming failure was intentional.

One has to simply reread many of the journals and accounts from years ago in the West to learn what actually happened. A favorite account of mine is that of C. Gordon Hewitt.

It always amazes me how that the evils of hunting swing in both directions, when convenient. While wolves and coyotes were virtually wiped out in the West as the settlers moved in, hunters were blamed. When there is talk of killing predators, such as coyotes and wolves, those same people who blamed the destruction of coyotes and wolves on hunters, swing the door in the other direction and tell us as did the opinion piece in question:

It seems counterintuitive, but the war on coyotes has actually increased their numbers and breeding range. The Colorado Division of Wildlife reports that coyotes are more numerous today than when the state was first settled by trappers. Colorado and other western states no longer waste taxpayer money on futile coyote control programs.

There exists no scientific evidence that killing coyotes causes them to automatically breed more of themselves. There are just too many factors that come into play when examining reproductive habits of any wild animal. And is the author of this opinion piece actually suggesting here that all those coyotes now in Colorado are solely to blame on hunters and trappers? Once again, a reading and studying of the history of settling the West shows that aside from certain pockets, this nirvana of the West was not so Disneyesque as many would like to believe. Man’s expansion created a vast habitat to support coyotes and all other wildlife. In time, the implementation of the North American Model for Wildlife Conservation allowed for the growth and health of our wildlife systems.

The retired biologist intimates that Maine plans to implement a one year program to kill coyotes, saying it wouldn’t be effective. Agreed, and I know of no honest person who has indicated that it would. I happen to know explicitly that both MDIFW Commissioner Woodcock and Governor LePage have been told and I believe understand that predator control is an ongoing part of wildlife management and this should have been taking place years ago. The MDIFW fell flat on their faces in this regard.

The article shows us the author’s real colors when he begins his rant about how the Maine politicians failed because they did not steal land rights away from American taxpayers. The crying and gnashing of teeth is about the State Legislature failing to tell landowners they can’t use the resources on their own land; an unconstitutional land grab straight from the pages of the United Nations Agenda 21 program, whose goal it is to take all land and resources worldwide and forbid you and I from owning or having access to any of it, saving it instead for them. I’m all for protecting our wildlife, but never at the expense of man’s life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. There are better ways than forceful takeovers.

We are then treated to what appears to be an expert on the deer management in Minnesota and Michigan stating:

If you remain unconvinced that lack of winter shelter is the primary reason northern Maine supports few deer, please consider this: Minnesota and Michigan deer herds are much healthier than Maine’s. Minnesota and Michigan winters are as difficult as Maine’s. Deer in both of those states must also avoid being eaten by coyotes and wolves.

So the logical question LePage, Woodcock, Martin and deer hunters should ask is this: What are Minnesota and Michigan doing differently to maintain healthy deer populations? The answer: Both states prioritize protecting deer wintering areas through land purchases, conservation easements and regulating excessive timber harvests.

The proof is in the pudding they say, and with the help of a reader, we have been able to provide a couple of graphs that show that since the late 1990s and early 2000s, both Minnesota and Michigan have seriously reduced deer harvest numbers, dropping over 30% and more.

You don’t suppose that one of the reasons that Minnesota and Michigan have a declining harvest of deer, an indication of a declining deer population, has anything at all to do with the years of over protecting predators and now the results of that over protection are showing up? In addition, I have yet to get anyone that pretends to have all the answers explain to me why, if there are no more deer wintering areas left in Maine to support more deer, the ones we have are not being used?

It appears that the basis for the author’s opinion piece in the paper is mostly wrapped around his dislike of Gov. LePage and his republican administration, while at the same time blaming politicians in general for a deer demise, the fate of which was left in the hands of the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife; a department that the biologist was an employee of. Surely we couldn’t expect someone to point a finger at their brotherhood of hoodwinked biologists….or even perhaps at themselves.

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