Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Wildlife Abuse at the Hands of a Federal Agent - UPDATED

These photos are of [REMOVED], a self-identified (on Facebook) "wildlife specialist" for  USDA's Wildlife Services. The coyote was alive at the time he allowed his dogs to rip her to shreds.

Please, someone, get this man psychological counseling. Anyone who is entertained or amused by letting his dogs kill a trapped coyote has something very, very wrong with him.


Apparently, this is something of a hobby for this guy.

UPDATED 10/31: Let us be clear. We have no idea whether this person was on the job while these activities occurred. His self-identification as an Wildlife Services agent does not imply that he was working at the time he let his dogs torture the trapped coyote. All of these photos are public (from his Facebook and Twitter feed). Demarcated Landscapes appreciates that others are taking an interest in this activity, but it is not illegal under the law, and how it conforms to moral law depends on your morality.

It is our greatest hope that shining light on these actions will change them. If he was working for a federal agency, we hope to change the agency's tolerance of these behaviors, which the majority of Americans will surely find abhorrent. 

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Congratulations, Mr. Grijalva!

Representative Raúl Grijalva (CD7) from southern Arizona was recently named the "Greenest" Member of Congress by The Daily Beast.

@RepRaulGrijalva tweeted:
"Proud to be named the greenest Member of Congress in either chamber. #environment #climate #p2 #CleanWaterAct #green"
And we're proud of you, too, Sir, and only wish you had been given more power in the Obama Administration.  Inshallah, we'll get our wish in Obama's second term, because sometimes it's awfully hard to see the difference between a Romney presidency and Cowboy Ken Salazar.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

The race to ruin: Presidential debate recap

If only President Obama's energy policies were as anti-oil and gas as Mittens claims. A good fact check on the candidates' claims is posted today on Huffington Post.

And if only President Obama would frame what progressive policies he does have in terms of the core issue driving the rush towards renewables:
Not once was the term "climate change" uttered during the debate, despite the fact that Obama's energy policies don't make a lot of sense without reference to the carbon problem, and Romney's don't make any sense when one takes it into account. You'd think that would mean Obama, at least, would want to bring it up. Instead, he seemed to be twisting himself into knots trying to come up with other reasons for boosting renewable power and energy conservation.
Not talking about climate change is to ignore the elephant in the room. Most Americans believe in it, and believe it is having an effect on the weather. So why not speak to those folks, President Obama, and tell us you've got our back? It seems so obvious that people would respond to someone presenting solutions to what seems like an overwhelming death spiral, even if those solutions are actually lipstick on the pig of capitalism. (See link.)

This approach– a rational defense of renewables– wouldn't convince us that there's a way out, no matter how many miles per gallon we could drive in 40 years. But it might convince the undecided voters that you aren't a weasel. You know better. Do better.

Third time's a charm.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Gone but not forgotten: The Fox Mountain female

Dammit. Dammit. Dammit.  After months of evading her would-be captors, the alpha-female of the Fox Mountain pack of Mexican wolves was caught and moved into permanent captivity this week. She was targeted in retribution for a handful of incidents in which her family ate some cows, initially with a shoot-to-kill order and then, after public outcry, a permanent removal order was issued instead.

Still, same difference. Today, there is one less wolf in the wild, one less mother for a pack of pups, and one less adult helping this pack survive. Depressing.

For the last two months, as Mama Loba outran and outsmarted the government trappers, our hearts and hopes ran with her. Today, we sit with her in her certain despair, separated from her mate and her children, in the company of human strangers, caged and confused. We know she is suffering, and we suffer knowing this.

"We have doomed the Wolf not for what it is, but for what we have deliberately and mistakenly perceived it to be..the mythologized epitome of a savage, ruthless killer..which is, in reality no more than a reflexed images of ourself." -Farley Mowat
Indeed. We hate the wolf for her killing, for her hungers and instincts. We strip her of her powers so that we can be the ones who do the killing, eat the cows, and assert control over the landscape. At least the wolf does what she needs to do to survive; we do it simply for dominion and because we like the taste of beef. Who's the savage?

Mama Loba, we're so sorry. Unbearably sorry. 

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

The Plutocracy of Nope

The New York Times ran a very interesting blog post recently from Tim Egan in Salt Lake City, "The Geography of Nope." In it, Egan discusses the truly radical agenda of the Romney presidential bid, to give away federal public lands.
Romney, you may recall, made news in the West earlier this year when he told a Nevada newspaper that “I don’t know what the purpose is” of all this federal land in the West. It would be nice to think he just doesn’t get it, because he’s never spent any time in the free outdoors.
But Romney has since coupled the black hole of his knowledge with support for Republican efforts to end federal control over large sections of the West. The Utah legislature has passed a bill, signed by the governor, that demands that the federal government hand over almost 30 million acres to the state. Other states are looking to follow Utah’s lead, and Romney has cheered their efforts.
For those of us who follow federal lands issues, it seems like so much has already been given away, in the form of ridiculously cheap mining and grazing leases, timber sales, water diversions, etc. To imagine the actual privatization of the land itself through state sell-off and destruction. It's tragic to consider, really.
Handing over millions of acres of public land has long been a dream borne on the vapors of single-malt Scotch sipped inside trophy homes in the 1 percent ZIP codes of the West. Usually, the idea vanishes with the vapors. Not this year.
Not in the visions of the land barons who will vote for Mitt. Which is why, we suppose, reluctantly, we'll probably vote for President Obama.


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