Wolf Hysteria And Moral Panics

Wolf Paranoia:

A typical wolf about to take your children and eat your job

April 6, 2012

It’s time to repost this powerful analysis of wolf persecution and scapegoating by rationalwiki.com.

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October 9, 2o11

I was doing research into the origins of wolf persecution and came across an excellent entry by Rational Wiki on the subject of wolf hysteria.  It outlines the major tenets of wolf persecution, describing how common sense and measured thinking are thrown out the window by those who seek to demonize wolves and blame them for all the world’s ills.

I’m presenting the Rational Wiki entry just as its written, it explains the roots of wolf  hysteria and how it’s used to persecute and scapegoat the wolf.

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From RationalWiki.com

Wolf hysteria

(also known as wolf persecution, or rarely, lupophobia) is the widespread public hatred of wolves, incorporating both their enduring role as folk devils, and societal attitudes favouring policies of active persecution of wolves, and opposition and resistance to policies aiming to protect existing wild populations, or reintroduce the species into former ranges where it has become extinct relatively recently.

The phenomenon shares much in common with moral panics,  including the use of scaremongering, unverifiable anecdotesdemonisation, exaggeration, moral highroading etc., to the extent the phenomenon could be considered a moral panic in and of itself, though it is not commonly referred to as such.

Hot-button issues

Fierce, and often aggressively negative perceptions of wolves have a long history in western (and many other) cultures. However, the main issues triggering a renewed outpouring of hysteria often stems from any proposal (real or simply made up) from a few major “hot button” issues:

Predation of livestock

Attempts to introduce/extend protections for wolves

Attempts to re-introduce wolves to areas where they had become locally extinct

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Manning Moral Barricades

The most shrill cries attesting to the apparently limitless evils of the wolf arise, unsurprisingly, from the livestock industry. It claims that predation of livestock by wolves is rampant, and that seeing the unending bloodbath caused by these “specialists in carnage” causes those who raise animals to slaughter en-masse for meat, to be emotionally distraught by, well, the killing of animals for meat.

In the USA an equally unsurprising alliance with hunting and game interest, numerous front organisations and astroturf operations has been established, including the Abundant Wildlife Society of North America (AWSNA) and the National Animal Interest Alliance (NAIA)[1]. They have been aided and abetted by the wider so-called “conservative conservationist” movement (itself usually astroturf or greenwashing for forestry, hunting and agriculture interests), such as Conservation Force, but perhaps best illustrated by Mike Dubrasich and his Western Institute for Study of the Environment (WISE) / SOSForests,who couches his arguments in terms of concern for the environment, though sometimes veers into extreme right-wing conspiracy theories about the federal government, in alliance with “eco-facists” deliberately introducing wolves (aka “blood-thirsty predators”)[2] to the mid-west (along with forest fires and various other things).

The arguments

Wolves cause significant losses to livestock producers

A common refrain is that attacks (predation) on livestock by wolves is a significant, or even one of the main, losses incurred by livestock producers.

In the USA emphasis is placed primarily on the financial side, and also often emphasises that the inclusion of the wolf within the Endangered Species Act violates “property rights” and “constitutional freedoms”. The “emotional trauma” suffered by livestock producers as a result of predation is also frequently mentioned.

“It may destroy our livelihood and our major lifestyle is in jeopardy.”

“Judging from their rapidly expanding populations across the West, it is obvious that wolf populations are healthy. Our concern is whether we’ll be able to say the same thing about the West’s ranchers in years to come.[4]“

Firstly, though these organisations are ready to give the numbers of livestock affected by predation, these are never given as percentages, or even stated in relation to total herd numbers. In most states the losses of livestock due to wolf predation was <1%. In the state of Wyoming, which lies entirely within the Yellowstone re-introduction area the number varied depending on year between 0.9% and 2% in the period 2000-2005, averaging under 1% over the period. This compares with 33.7% to 48.3% over the same period for losses due to coyotes, 4.1% to 10.9% due to eagles, and from 11.2% to 20.7% due to weather. Indeed, poison, often left by livestock producers to kill wolves and other predators, was often responsible for a greater proportion of losses than those due to wolf predation.[5]

Emotional trauma is of course impossible to either prove or disprove, but it is important to remember that livestock is ultimately reared for slaughter, either to directly obtain the primary products (meat and hides) or as means of profitably disposing of “spent” dairy or wool herds/flocks. Thus one would expect anyone working in the livestock industry to deal with the death and processing of animals into food and other end-products as part of the day to day running of their business. It is highly unlikely that any individual emotionally disturbed by the slaughter of animals for meat or other products would find livestock work tolerable as a long time career.

The inclusion of wolves in the ESA provides a mechanism for financial compensation to be paid for damages caused by wolves in partnership with the Wolf Compensation Trust,[6] and in the case of wolves found in the act of attacking livestock or other domesticated animals within private property, it is permissible for the owner to take measures necessary to protect them. Therefore it is hard to see how such an act can be a “violation” of rights.

Wolves decimate game herds

“All wolves must be eliminated to restore our big game herds.[7]“

The Canadian wolves have decimated our elk, mule deer and moose populations to lows not seen since the ’60s.[8]

There has been considerable hysteria over the impact of wolf populations on herds of elk. However the National Park Service studies indicate that wolf reintroduction to the park, a major reserve for elk herds, would have negligible affect on hunting activities, and that the effect of wolf predation on elk populations would not, in and of itself, have an impact sufficient to be the decisive factor in elk population management.[9]

Although the reasons behind fluctuating wild animal populations are complex, Drs. Doug Smith, Daniel Stahler and John Vucetich conducted a joint National Park Service-MTU study into elk population at Yellowstone. Their findings found that:[10]
Elk population remained stable from the re-introduction of wolves in 1995 through to 2000, at around 17,000

In the period 2000-2004 the population dropped 50% to 8,334. During this period the Yellowstone area experienced drought conditions, and increased hunting of Elk by humans.

Though hunting permits did not allow for a kill level equivalent to the total population drop, the researchers concluded that hunting, led to a “super-additive” effect, whereby a 1% direct loss rate due to hunting was magnified to significant degree due to knock-on effects, which were only exacerbated by drought conditions.[10] Although wolf predation was acknowledged to exist, it’s effect on the large population drops seen was regarded as a minor, largely insignificant factor:

“Our analysis indicates that there is greater justification for believing that the harvest rate and severe climate, together, account for at least much of the decline[10]“

Wolves attack humans all the time

Whilst it is known that wolf attacks on humans do occur, those engaged in wolf hysteria deliberately exaggerate the risk out of all proportion to implant the idea in their audience that all wolves routinely kill and eat humans.

“Wolves are blood-thirsty predators that attack and kill pets, livestock, children, and adults.[11]“

“Around here we shoot blood-thirsty predators before they kill our horses, cattle, sheep, or children.[11"

"258 Congressional Members Support Funding for Mexican Wolves Stalking Children and Wolves Terrorizing Rural Citizens[12]“

The facts in no way bear out such hysteria. Those involved in wolf hysteria often recount reports from the 18th and 19th centuries recanting real or imagined wolf attacks in Europe and Asia. Although European wolf subspecies are less wary of humans, and are able to live near higher-density human populations than their North American cousins there are no reports of attacks.

[13] As the map clearly shows, no wolf subspecies present on the Eurasian landmass is present on the North American landmass.

Statistics compiled by Norwegian Institute for Nature Research (NINA) on global wild (not captive) wolf attacks show that in the period 1950-2000, (50 years) there were only 13 confirmed cases of wolf attacks on humans in North America, none of which were fatal.[14].

In the United States alone (not the whole of North America), approximately 1 million reported instances of domestic dogs biting humans per year, with an average of 16 to 18 fatal attacks per annum.

(According to Wikimedia Commons,  It is estimated that two percent of the US population, 4.7 million people, are bitten (by dogs) each year.[3] In the 1980s and 1990s the US averaged 17 fatalities per year, while in the 2000s this has increased to 26.[4] 77% of dog bites are from the pet of family or friends, and 50% of attacks occur on the dog owner’s property.[4])

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Wolves spread disease

Groups and politicians opposed to wolf conservation often use the claim that wolves spread diseases to livestock and game populations. [15] Whilst wolf populations, like that of any wild animal, carry disease, as apex predators they are more often than not a “dead end” for transmission of disease, and are of little concern when it comes to disease management in most livestock and game populations.[15]

The most serious diseases affecting wolf populations are those which also affect domestic canines, parvo, mange and intestinal worms.[16]In all cases, transmission of the disease is driven infinitely more by domestic dogs than wolves, and it is believed that in most cases these diseases have been introduced to the wolf population by domestic dogs.  A notable exception is the presence of mange in North American wolf populations in the Rocky mountains. This population was deliberately infected by government veterinarians in 1909 as an attempt to “exterminate” the wolf population, spread to coyotes and other mammals, and eventually re-infected wolves upon their reintroduction to the area.

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A common refrain is that the only effective solution to any or all of the above is to drastically reduce the population of wolves. This inevitably entails lethal intervention on the part of humans. Such actions are proposed by many livestock producers as the panacea to all ills, and is, unsurprisingly, encouraged and guided by the hunting, trapping and fur lobby organisations, which naturally present themselves as the only viable way of going about any such lethal solution. Alas, many hunting methods are exceedingly inhumane, with methods such as leg traps being commonplace in North America, though are banned in the EU due to concerns over its inhumane nature.[19]

Other excessively cruel/inhumane methods used include hunting wolves using specially trained flocks of eagles, a method historically and currently used in Central Asia,[20] and recommended in proposals to open up the hunting of wolves in the lower 48 states of the US.[21]

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See Footnotes

http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Wolf_hysteria

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Meet The Wolf….Fact Not Fiction

http://howlingforjustice.wordpress.com/2010/11/06/meet-the-wolffacts-not-fiction/

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Tracking science: Biologist’s findings show forest diversity, health influenced by wolves

Written and photographed by MICHAEL JAMISON of the Missoulian | Posted: Sunday, October 25, 2009 9:00 am

POLEBRIDGE – A clinging mist quieted the morning meadow, the icy hem of its robes brushing silent against autumn’s crackling knee-high grass.

In the darkest shadows, the cold crunch of snow remained, criss-crossed with wolf tracks, bear tracks, elk and deer tracks. Scat and bone and hair and hide. These were the morning news reports written in muddied prints, each with a thin film of ice.

Cristina Eisenberg scanned the headlines, then waded into the meadow to read the particulars.

“It’s all here,” the researcher said. “You just have to know the language.”

To the west, ranging grasslands rose gently to an aspen knoll, the trees all tall white ghosts trembling in the dull gloom of fog. A low row of leafy 10-footers skirted the meadow, backed by a towering canopy now a week or more past fall’s golden height.

There were small young trees, and tall old trees, but no middle-aged aspens and that, combined with the frozen tracks, told Eisenberg something very important about this place.

Until about 1920, wolves patrolled these meadows, which have long been an important wintering ground for elk. Then humans hunted the predators into extinction here, and for 60 years or more the elk grazed in peace. By the mid-1980s, however, wolves were recolonizing the landscape, straying south from Canada to reclaim this western fringe of Glacier National Park.

The 100-year-old aspens grew up with wolves. So did the 20-year-olds. There are no middle-agers, Eisenberg said, because without wolves to run the elk, all the young aspen sprouts were browsed to death.

“It is,” she said, “clear and profound. The wolves leave an indelible mark on the entire ecosystem.”

READ MORE: http://missoulian.com/lifestyles/territory/article_3ec9fc54-c01f-11de-bf16-001cc4c002e0.html

Photo: Courtesy Rational Wiki

Posted in: Wolf  Wars, Wolf Myths

Tags: Wolf hysteria, moral panics, scaremongering, demonization of wolves, livestock industry, hunting lobbies

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32 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. All the things wolves are hated for are OUR failings. They are the natural order and belong much more than we do. It’s time we acted like human beings and start treating all nature with compassion and decency.

  2. It’s interesting, the BBC screened a two part programme over Thursday and Friday evening, ‘Land of the lost Wolves’, mainly about the Lookout Mountain/Cascade (?) Pack and their migration into Washington State and beyond. It was wonderful, balanced and I think or hope showed that no matter what, given a chance, the wolf will flourish and Doug Smiths hope was that maybe 200 years from now, the wolf will have spread as far as New Mexico (in controllable numbers, he made that clear).
    What was revealing was exactly the attitudes we see above, some of the cattlemen were so full of hatred, inexplicable hatred and well, fear, a deep-seated fear inherited from time immemorial. They wouldn’t have been out of place in the 1870′s. I wonder how much they collect for shooting a wolf? Yet if I was a visitor to these States and one of these guys led me to a wolf or wolf pack, to observe, photograph etc.how much would I gladly pay him? 100 dollars, 200 dollars…more maybe? Has anyone ever thought of telling them this? I would guess not, although they agreed to be interviewed, you could tell by their manner and body language that their views are so entrenched that perhaps we can only wait until they pass away and their views slowly die with them. Its kind of like Nazi’s living on after the war, you get the feeling that some of them still didn’t realise that what they were doing was against the fundamental principles of Life…I think I may have used the quote here before….’evil is banal’…matter of fact.
    Listening to a travel programme this morning, eco travel experts who lead parties all over the world were talking of how much people were prepared to pay to travel say to Africa, trek for 12 hours and then view a Gorilla from a distance of 7 metres (that’s the Government regulation to avoid germs being swapped and to give you a head start in a race! Though you don’t have to run faster than the Gorilla to avoid it, just faster than the person next to you!!).
    Of course there are organisations out there doing this, but perhaps this really is one way forward, money talks whether we like it or not and perhaps if we cannot change the views of these guys or Mr Salazar and Mr Obama, then we can persuade them that the wolf is wanted not dead, but alive.
    Interesting to note just what we humans will find ‘acceptable’, approximately 3 million people have died on America’s highways since 1900, and though that has caused terrible trauma’s for many, we still jump in our cars, trucks and wagons and many of us drive crazily, we see it all the time. Sure we have legislation and enforcement, but somehow we have come to accept it….you would think a few people would accept a little loss here and there with the wolf.
    ps anyone, excuse my ignorance, but if there are thousands of wolves living in Canada, whats to stop them moving back down into the States of their own volition…apart from the fact that they are smart and they fear man so much….just curious…its a wonder some people haven’t given them a helping hand, with or without the consent of the required authorities.

    • “Auschwitz begins wherever someone looks at a slaughterhouse and thinks: they’re only animals.” Theodor W. Adorno, a Jewish philosopher, Frankfurt School, was one of an increasing number of Jewish people, the descendant’s of Holocaust victims, who openly, explicitly, compare the treatment of animals to the treatment and slaughter Jewish people during the rise of the Third Reich.

      PETA backed down on its Holocaust campaign. That was a mistake. For every famous Jewish person who cannot accept that the lives of the animals and our lives are joined, that our natures, our feelings and our fate, are equal, there is one just as famous who speaks as have Adorno, Bashevis Singer, Charles Patterson, author of Eternal Treblinka. I know others. Man and the animals are equal in suffering. Our fates are joined.

      There are causes to the phenomenon of wolf hatred and wolf hysteria, Devils, powerful vicious dangerous animals, wolves, people of another race who are deemed immoral, mentally weak, physically defective, on and on, are the projection of people who fear. They fear for all the usual reasons. This is the right wing paradigm. Every where there is an authoritarian society children are perverted to violence, made a victim into the bargain. We understand a fear biting dog. Children who are raised in criticism, punitively, by alcoholic parents, by parents addicted to rage, to the adrenalin rush that goes with dangerous or violent interaction, by parents who hate in order to feel power, make children who disassociate from weakness in themselves, who fear the appearance of inefficacy in themselves. So in others. By distancing from the supposed wrong doing of others, by strident accusative bullying brutal treatment of all who are near and helpless, first animals, later, wives children, the poor, the ‘others’ children and the adult children they become feel a false if tenuous security.

      The White Ribbon an award winning Austrian/German film by Michael Haneke is chilling. It’s about how children were made monsters, how Germany and Austria produced the seemingly ordinairy people who were the monsters that killed a million Jews. It’s not for nothing the U.S. has its Abu Graib.

      Every single hunter was a child. Hunters grow up out of their minds with fear. The man who cracks the tail vertebrae of a frightened cow so she’ll stand for the bolt is no different than the video people at Trapperman. Adorno knew that when one is tempered in violence, inured of violence wreaked on the weak, as on the fear filled 2 ton freaks that people thoughtlessly down in their burgers, one is already the man who’s turned in his neighbour.

      The shift from life in the wilderness to agriculture was a fall from grace. It is literally true. Man’s fate is tied to the fate of the animals. The wolves are a case in point. People at HFJ are lucky. They love. As it happens, they love wolves. Love is stronger than fear and hate. People here, together with members of the many other defender groups will win this fight.
      coriolis
      For the Wolves

      • Great words, great for their insight and wisdom coriolis.

        here is an interesting article that perhaps goes a little way to explaining our ways of thinking that have been imposed and
        sustained for many years. This guy has been ploughing a lonely furrow for years, but I think many people will actually agree with him and would gladly step off the treadmill of life we have erected.

        Its amazing to think that just 50 miles in one direction from where I live the Industrial Revolution began that has given us so much yet is now possibly degrading our Earth beyond repair. Just a few small villages that set the world on fire.
        In the other direction another 50 to 100 miles, lay the homes of the Pilgrim Fathers who set out to flee what they perceived as persecution of their religion and set out to live in a land they could ‘inherit’ for themselves. They could not have survived, the story goes without the help of Native Americans, (Squanto) yet we all know the story after that, not a happy one.

        So we are joined by these invisible forces that started out as nothing more than thoughts and imaginings, for better or for worse. The sins of the fathers. But who knows this, the children of today? Is this the history they are taught? I doubt it, too obsessed by the latest fads and foods they are sold, perhaps. Knowledge truly is power.

        http://www.alfiekohn.org/parenting/tcac.htm

      • kaufmans 123

        Thank you for your reply. After I posted I wondered if I should leave this idea alone. I keep plying it here. I believe it’s true, not just important, central, but it must seem beside the point to people who are trying to find the means, strategies and contacts to legislate sports hunting, trapping and specicide out of existence. I know that were I ever to find an animal of mine in a trap I’d be sick with rage and very disinterested in theories.

        I just read Alfie Kohn’s article. True. So far so good. I read Maria Montessori’s autobiography, A.S. Neill’s Summerhill. Montessori provided a rich environment, the children did the rest. She was there to assist the child directed process. She never criticized or interfered and she never never praised, not results, not methods, believing that, praise not only robbed the child of a vital experience, learning for learning’s sake but also diminished the child’s growing sense of self efficacy. She held that the single most important faculty is concentration. She helped children develop that power. No matter what the task she never interrupted a child at work. Her children loved her. Neill, a Scotsman, ran a rescue school. He provided the most forward thinking teachers who taught all manner of subjects. Summerhill was a boarding school for children who ‘failed’ at everything according to authorities and their usually rich parents. He had few rules. 1 No one had to learn anything.
        2 No one was allowed to interfere with children who were attending a class or engaged in study. 3. If you borrowed the tools available in a communal work shed you had to put them back. There were no punishments or reprisals for children who failed to return the tools they’d borrowed. He was guided by a who knows from where wisdom. When a child stole he took the offender into his office, chatted amiably. No lecture or meaningful parables. He attached no hidden meaning to his words. When it came time to say goodbye he reached into his purse and gave the child pocket money. He believed that when children stole they stole love (…obviously this doesn’t take into account the life and death situation of third world countries where an economy has been wiped out by the IMF. (Vincent Gallagher, The True Cost of Low Prices: The Violence of Globalization) That situation is however another expression of the western way, competitive markets, a few winners take all, urban ghettos, and child prostitution and death by starvation elsewhere…) Neill believed his charges stole the love they’d somehow never received. In a competitive world, at home, in school, especially love has a price tag. Neill won for his boarding students. There’s a growing movement towards home schooling that has arisen out of the need to protect and enhance creative self directed leaning. Paul Goodman, (1908 – 1959) wrote Growing Up Absurd. I haven’t seen this film but Paul Goodman Changed My Life, a film by Jonathan Lee but I’m going to find a copy. http://www.paulgoodmanfilm.com/
        Our pathetic drunken porn mag heroes of the woods missed out, and oh how they could have used a decent childhood. No caring caring community attuned to the wilds for them, instead dysfunctional homes in a country where every one’s armed to the teeth, planning a new war or suffering on relief. I’ve mentioned an article by Merrit Clifton in which he sites statistics comparing otherwise equal socio-economic groups indicating that where there is a higher per capita no. of sports hunters there are vastly greater numbers of successfully prosecuted childhood sexual abuse. He’s ANIMAL PEOPLE Editor, an award winning journalist and I find he’s been hard at work.
        Wow. The wolves have an ally. Visit this site, read his article.There are links to hunter utube, viewer discretion advised.
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TQslLff-7ns

        coriolis
        For the Wolves

  3. Excellent article and I believe the same way the above poster does but would like to add one more thought , as far as to why people are so entrnched in their ways its about money I believe , there are so many Welfare Ranchers out there that are getting over on the american people by having massive amounts of federal land at their disposial and these so called Hunter/Guides that don’t even own more than an acre, who just have to complain a little and the Wildlife Services will come in and wipe out all the predators within 200 miles all at the taxpayers expense and also without them knowing it , if it would get out to school children how and by what means the american gov is killing wildlife on federal land there would be a outcry like never heard before,and on our dime to boot,I mean why should the ranchers or hunters change its very profitable at the taxpayers expense

    • Thanks Coriolis for all that stimulating information and it goes to the heart of what we seem to be up against, a disconnectedness with reality. Here’s Robert Macfarlane,

      “There does seem to be a resurgent sense of wonder – tinged with elegy – at what remains of nature in Britain and Ireland. And wonder is, potentially, an impulse which brings with it a sense of good environmental practice. The American farmer and essayist Wendell Berry (a writer who is admirably immune to eco-romanticism) once remarked that without a “fascination” for the natural world, “the energy needed for its preservation will never be developed”. “There must,” he observed during the acid rain years, “be a mystique of the rain if we are ever to restore the purity of the rainfall.”

      Berry is right, of course. But it is important to note that wonder is not an automatic guarantor of care. Consider, for instance, John James Audubon, the 19th-century American bird artist whose paintings are miracles of close attention – and who shot and killed more than 20,000 birds in his lifetime. Wonder can, too, become an easy substitute for care. This is why any suggestion that we are “returning to nature”, or becoming “wild at heart” again, must be carefully scrutinised.

      For the British have long specialised in a disconnect between their nature romance and their behaviour as consumers. Many of those people who coo over back-garden woodpigeons happily eat battery-farmed chicken. Many of those who hurrah at the vernal spawning of the natterjack toad order Thai king prawns in restaurants. Many of those who diligently fill their bird-feeders drive to work in a 4×4.

      The problem is a failure of connection. King prawns – those thick pink commas of antibiotical muscle – are intensively farmed in vast PVC-lined prawn-pools in south-east Asia, and millions of hectares of fabulously biodiverse mangrove swamp have been gouged out to make way for these pools. A profligacy of carbon emission has led to climate change which may cause future screenings of Springwatch to fall in March, then February, then January – until finally spring is abolished altogether as an event.

      A massive discrepancy, in other words, exists between perception and practice. British parochialism – its strong tradition of interest in the local – leads too often only to general conclusions: to a comfortable sentimentalism.

      What is required, therefore (and what is difficult to effect), is the translation of these impulses of wonder and joy at nature, into ecologically valuable patterns of behaviour. Into changed patterns of purchase, consumption, disposal, and travel. Into a shifted sense of the universal. We need, for instance, to retire our medieval vision of the skies, seas, rivers and soil as sinks of infinite capacity; free in what they give, and limitless in their capacity to absorb what we discard into them. We need drastically to heighten our sense of the first principle of ecology: that “everything is connected to everything else”.

      Such a heightening is more necessary now than ever before in human history. Partly because we are approaching – have possibly crossed – an environmental rubicon concerning global warming, and partly because we are placing global ecosystems under such unprecedented stress that they are collapsing.

      In 2003, the first report from the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MEA) – an inquiry board consisting of 1,300 experts from 95 countries – was released. Its dark conclusion was that 60% of the ecosystem services that support life on Earth are being degraded or used unsustainably. If these trends are not reversed, the report observed, the consequences will include “the emergence of new diseases, sudden changes in water quality, creation of ‘dead zones’ along the coasts, the collapse of fisheries, and shifts in regional climate”.

      Green politics are sometimes described as unconcerned with “real-world” problems of poverty and hunger: the lynx and the blue whale are loved over the starving child. The MEA report proves the nonsense of such a description. It shows the deep interconnection of environmental and human well-being. “Any progress achieved in addressing the goals of poverty, hunger eradication, and improved health,” the report stated, in an admirably forthright conclusion, “is unlikely to be sustained if most of the ecosystem services on which humanity relies continue to be degraded … The pressures on ecosystems will increase … unless human attitudes and actions change. Achieving this [change], however, will require radical alterations in the way nature is treated at every level of decision-making, and new ways of cooperation between government, business and civil society. The warning signs are there for all of us to see. The future lies in our hands.”

      Hmm…food for thought, many know this but its rather like E F Schumacher in Small is Beautiful, ‘where is the country that says we have enough?’, and where is the human being who will take what he needs not what he wants?

      I don’t know what Nabeki and others at the forefront of this particular ‘crusade’ for wolves thinks, but it seems to me that all positive actions are required, on many fronts, particularly to raise the conciousness of the ordinary joe, once they are on your side, there is an unstoppable wave, and waves are what count. All methods and means are waves breaking on rocks, small waves, breakers, long drawn waves, shallow waves, all break down rocks no matter how stubborn they appear, at least over time……….now if only we can start a tsunami !!

  4. …..and just as an after thought I have had a 12yr relationship with my senator and always had communication back and forth on issues over the years butwhen I contacted them about the pinching and the delisting and the budget rider no one replies in any way shape or form.

    • That says quite a bit. I’ve had similar experience: they’ll talk about anything, except laws to reduce killing and suffering.

  5. it is interesting to note that the EU has declared traps inhumane. America is far behind in animal cruelty laws and regulations. the wildlife here in the states suffers while ranchers, hunters, trappers stubbornly insist on clinging to outdated (and wrong!) beliefs that the wolf is evil, undesirable, livestock and elk/deer killers. the wolf is an apex predator – nothing more and certainly nothing less.

  6. DANICH, thank. Jeg er 1000000 % imod læsestof- om dyrs fortids-fordomme- mystik + mere, der gør mennesker hjernedøde om synet på min ven ulven— vi er i 2012, — tragisk for det analfabetiske menneske, at man ikke kan slippe disse vanvigtige historier om ulven, — Som barn, var rødhætte og ulven min ynglings-historie, og jeg elsker ulven lige så højt, idag, — Lad forældre- skoler gennem-gå, — FORDOMME- om ulvens myter, så ulven igen kan leve – UDEN forkert syn på den, — Det er kun mennesket, der har ødelagt alt for dyrene, MENNESKET idag, er buldåser for naturen, kæmpe ego- Vi skulle kun føde 1-2 børn, så var der mere plads, end , et frimærke til dyrene. Farme har jo ØDELAGT ALT, for ulven, men løse hunde er de værste for dyrene i naturen, de er jo ikke opvokset der—- SOM ULVEN.

  7. ignorance, which is voluntary stupidity, has been the great destroyer of our earth, all of its inhabitants, and if we do not stop it, our future

  8. In the northwestern US there are two major cities, Seattle and Portland. Then there’s “the rest,” a vast piece of land where ignorance prevails. In all of the posts I see evidence of this. Legislation, not communication, is the only answer.

  9. This kind of thinking is probably the most dangerous thing for wolves there is – and it is even more puzzling when you consider that the dog, descendant of wolf, is considered man’s trusted friend. Animals cannot speak to defend themselves, and it makes me sad and angry when duplicitous people try to use them to their own advantage. There’s a guy who was recently convicted for elk poaching himself who has a lurid website full of the worst propaganda about fear of wolves.

    http://saveelk.com/

    There’s a case where a husky dog may be put down because of an injury to a child – and the DAs defense is that the dog is “part wolf” trying to use ignorance and fear to persuade. She must have gotten her law degree out of a Crackerjack box, because all dogs desdend from the wolf. :(

    • I agree with you totally, and believe that the saying, “there are no bad dogs, only bad people” applies to the wolf as well.

      We have had injuries and deaths in the Kruger National Park, which were the result of ignorant, egotistical people trying to get wild animals to react, by throwing bottles at them (elephants and rhinoceroses), baiting them with food (monkeys and baboons) and even getting out of their vehicles and attempting to growl at a male lion while walking towards him and his pride”!

      There are a number of passive methods which can and have been used to keep the wolves away from livestock, but some ranchers would rather use a high powered rifle or steel traps.

      Man has destroyed large tracks of land where wildlife once wandered in peace and I would like to know who gives the ranches the right to graze their cattle or sheep on State owned land? Can the ordinary American citizen hike across these lands and camp on them, or will they also be “chased” away by the ranchers?

      Stewart Udall, who was Secretary of the Interior during the John F. Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson administrations said:

      “A wilderness, in contrast with those areas where man and his own works dominate the landscape, is hereby recognized as an area where the earth and community of life are untrammeled by man, where man himself is a visitor who does not remain.”

      Perhaps President Obama should get another “Stewart Udall” in to protect the magnificent and majestic animals and country side that the United States has.

  10. while wolf attacks on humans do occur, they are not as widespread as wolf haters would have us believe. this is another example of using mas panic and ignorance to drum support for a cause.

  11. Reblogged this on Wisconsin Wildlife Ethic-Vote Our Wildlife and commented:
    Excellent commentary from Howling for Justice. We are seeing this paranoia and hysteria take hold here in Wisconsin as well.

  12. Very accurate reporting as usual. It’s too bad some people just see their mindless talking points as truth

    • Judge not lest ye be judged.

      But ask yourself why the torture and killings have increased.

  13. I cross-referenced the names of the loudest anti-wolf attendees at The Washington Dept of Fish and Wildlife’s public input meetings, and found that the family members of a large ranch in Stevens County who told the worst lies, and postured the most disinformation, and even threats to win their way in demanding 0 wolves in the state have collected over TWO MILLION DOLLARS IN US GOVERNMENT SUBSIDIES SINCE 2005. This information can be found regarding ANY so called rancher or farmer on the EWG website. On the web, I also found a posting re: an extreme anti-wolf politician who was found to have also been collecting millions off the backs the poor. These are the same criminals who favor cutting food assistance to starving families and housing or medical assistance to the very poor. They want to cut the pennies the poor desperately need, as they collect millions for themselves, from those very poor people each time they purchase anything with sales tax on it! The poor contribute more to these well off freeloaders, than they get in their pitiful social security checks, and these greedy welfare ranchers likely are screaming so loud against the wolf, because they are pursuing even fatter handouts from WA, by “crying wolf!”

    • cimarronwind
      Can you write this up in detail?
      coriolis

  14. Ignorance creates monsters. Wolves do not.

  15. Has anyone read ” Lone Wolf”? It’s #1 on the best seller list. I’m going to get it.

  16. The SH&* is about to hit the fan folks

  17. Do tell! :)

  18. over here in the UK, we only have “captive” wolves, but i for one would love to see them introduced and controlled, where possible, back into the wild,
    I too watched the documentary mentioned in an earlier post,, and just could not believe what i was hearing or seeing! the cattleman, who obviously was very mis informed about wolf,, killing his and the WHOLE cattle lifestock in his part of the world, surely one pack of wolves cannot do the damage he refers too, or thinks it can do.. how long would it take him to firstly find the wolf, i believe they are very rarely seen by humans, then manage to shoot everyone of them, as he thinks they would do to hundreds or more of his cattle.. just dont seem feasable to me..
    ok, if you have to control the packs, or LONE WOLF then put your heads together and find a decent way to do this, NOT with barbaric traps, and guns,
    all animals have the occasional rogue, that hurts, kills humans, no one denies that fact, but persecution is ignorance in this case..
    that “cowboy” with the mouth on the tv documantary needs to learn about his so called enemy, then maybe with a little knowledge on his so called mass killer, he can find a way to protect his bovine friends, which incidentally taste rather nice with mash and gravy..
    nuff said for now,

  19. [...] Wolf Hysteria And Moral Panic (howlingforjustice.wordpress.com) [...]

  20. Excellent article. I wish those who want to kill wolves would read this and learn the truth

  21. [...] Wolf Hysteria And Moral Panic (howlingforjustice.wordpress.com) [...]

  22. [...] Wolf Hysteria And Moral Panic (howlingforjustice.wordpress.com) [...]

  23. [...] Wolf Hysteria And Moral Panic (howlingforjustice.wordpress.com) [...]


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