The real struggle between cow and wolves. Courtesy Patrick Cat Whisperer

The real struggle between cow and wolves. Courtesy Patrick Cat Whisperer

 
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About The Author

Ralph Maughan

Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University with specialties in natural resource politics, public opinion, interest groups, political parties, voting and elections. Aside from academic publications, he is author or co-author of three hiking/backpacking guides.

61 Responses to Editorial Cartoon. The real wolf and cattle fight

  1. avatar Kristi says:

    PERFECT!!!! Great cartoon!!! This really sums it up.

  2. avatar ramses09 says:

    Sums it up in a nutshell.
    Wolves Belong!!

  3. avatar jon says:

    Wolves are much more important than cows.

  4. avatar Ida Lupine says:

    I don’t know, I find this disturbing to view. F&W is the one most viciously attacking, and has joined the usual pack of haters! Myths are no longer as much of a threat.

    Wildlife Services and Congress & Legislature seem to have a separate battle going on for dominance. At least that’s hopeful I guess! 🙂

    • avatar Ralph Maughan says:

      Ida Lupine,

      Yes. As late as the early 1990s, Charles Kay was telling people Yellowstone was terribly overpopulated by elk. Their impacts were said to be so severe that carnivores and direct elk reduction schemes were immediately needed to save the herbivory. People who knew Kay said, however, they suspected that the liked the idea of public hunting in the Park a lot more than an increase or reintroduction of the extinct wolf. I noticed his web photo at Utah State University, where he was an adjunct professor, showed him in the field with his rifle.

      • avatar Robert R says:

        Ralph There is one thing missing from the cartoon, pro wolf or anti hunting/trapping, lets be fair.

        • avatar Mark L says:

          Interesting read Jon. Usually when somebody tells you there’s only 2 solutions to a problem, they are probably dreading a third one, which will work with effort.

        • avatar Robert R says:

          jon you cannot have it one way there has to compromise on both sides. Sherif Cook said Kay’s statement long before the wolves were ever released into YNP.

          • avatar jon says:

            Who is sheriff cook? Charles Kay seems to think there are only two solutions, get rid of the livestock or wolves.

          • avatar Immer Treue says:

            Sheriff Cook?

              • avatar Immer Treue says:

                As a dog newly introduced to the woods,
                “It’s time for the people to stand up for what is right and quit letting the special interest groups walk all over us. It’s time to use force if necessary to show the government that they work for us not the other way around. We don’t want wolves in Oregon or any other state in the lower forty eight.”

                So many trees, so little time.

              • avatar Immer Treue says:

                And now we have an evolutionary biologist to boot. I hope to see some more of his stab at evolution/ natural selection.

                “The problem is that elk, deer, and moose have lived for generations without predation by the wolf so they don’t know how to protect themselves from this big old gray wolf that isn’t native to this part of the country any more. They are about a defenseless as a child on the streets…”

                With that logic, if natural selection works both ways, they (elk, moose, deer) should by now be developing some of that self protection, eh?

          • avatar SaveBears says:

            Robert, I am not familiar with Sheriff Cook either?

            • avatar Jake says:

              Gotta be sheriff Kook.

              • avatar SaveBears says:

                Why? Because he has a different opinion that you do?

              • avatar Jeff N. says:

                SB,

                I’m pretty sure it’s not because of his opinion.

                It’s because he’s, obviously, an idiot. Anybody who is still falling back on the “non-native” excuse is a blatant moron.

                Why are you defending him?

              • avatar Jake says:

                This is why;

                “It’s time to use force if necessary to show the government that they work for us not the other way around.”

              • avatar Jake says:

                SB;
                What kind of force do you think that dude means? Sounds like rebellion.

              • avatar Jeff N. says:

                SB in a nutshell…..gets called out on his contradictions and takes his little bally and goes home.

              • avatar SaveBears says:

                He is a jerk off, just as many on this blog are Jake, he is adovating illegal activity, in my book, he belongs in the ground, but he has a different opinion than you or I do, but he still has the RIGHT to have that opinion as you and I do,

                Jeff, you don’t like me, I don’t like you, please forget me.

              • avatar Jeff N. says:

                SB,

                Ok….so initially you took offense at Jake calling Sheriif Cook a kook, and scolded Jake for it because Cook had a “different” opinion than Jake. And now you are calling the Sheriff a jerk-off, and you are also now advocating putting a bullet in his head due to his advocating of poaching.

                Christ SB, you are all over the place. Let me make a recommendation to you. Before having a knee-jerk reaction to someone calling someone else a Kook. You may want to find out why someone is calling someone else a Kook, before defending the Kook in your posts.

              • avatar jon says:

                sb, you are all over the place, but I think many on here share your views about poachers though they would never admit it on here. LOL

              • avatar cobackcountry says:

                Geez fellas, felt like high school for a minute.

                Jeff, I have been reading here for years. SB came on the scene a while back. He has been pretty stead-fast in his posts as far as I have read. He does not support corruption, he would like to adhere to science and common sense, he has respect for people who have a historical way of life and has empathy for the struggle they face though he doesn’t agree with their strong hold on our system, he is conservative yet shows compassion, he is insightful and can honestly boast years of service under an arm of the government which routinely takes an ass kicking on here, he is frank, but he is far from undecided on things he KNOWS. You can expect him to give it to you like he sees it. I personally find it refreshing to have someone who I can count on to be forthcoming on here. He often disagrees with people, but he concedes to points proven. He is an excellent resource if you learn to listen with an open mind. You’d do well to see that while you may not agree with his opinion, the information he offers to support it is worth hearing.

                As far as poaching, prosecute!

              • avatar SaveBears says:

                Posting it is Gotta be sheriff Kook, tells nobody anything, I live and work here and didn’t know who Sheriff Cook was. So if you are going to call someone a derogatory name, no mater what, you need to state your reasons. It is obvious Jake had knowledge of this individual, but offered no reason for his post.

              • avatar Jake says:

                Honestly when I see people talking rebellion such as I pointed out I just have to laugh. In my opinion fomenting rebellion against the federal government would be kooky because it would be suicide. Deer rifles against cruise missiles. And I’m down on the sovereign citizen nuttery. That dude sounds like them. And then the poaching thing ticks me off.

              • avatar SaveBears says:

                Jake,

                My first career was with the military(26 years), if there were to be a rebellion, it would not involve cruise missiles, in fact you would be quite surprised at how many in the military would disobey orders and not fire upon their own people.

                That is one of the myths that are so prevalent these days, that the government is actually stronger than it really is, if there were an actual uprising, you might be surprised at how difficult it would be for the central government to maintain itself.

            • avatar Jeff N. says:

              Also SB, he seems to be comparing poachers to Robin Hood. Did you even read the link Jon put up. Assuming it’s the same guy that Robert R. is referring to (and based on Robert R’s enlightening posts, I’m certain it is) this Sheriff Cook is a complete moron.

              Why are you defending his opinion? He’s basically advocating poaching.

              SB, your post is quite revealing.

              • avatar SaveBears says:

                Jeff,

                I am not defending anyone, I simply asked a question, you really need to get off of it, and stop with the BS, please forget me.

              • avatar SaveBears says:

                Jake, as we pay the bills, the government does work for us, I have spent most of my life working for the government and have never forgot who I worked for.

                Jeff, I am not advocating poaching, If I could every single poacher I could catch, I would put a bullet in their head, I DON’T condone illegal activity, and when it comes to poachers, I could kill them and have no remorse at all!

              • avatar Jeff N. says:

                Nonsense SB…..you defended his opinion. Leading me to believe one of three things:

                1) you agree with Sheriff Cook’s opinion.

                2) you didn’t read Jon’s link and just wanted to be a smarta$$ to Jake.

                3) you read the link, agree with Sheriff Cook’s opinion, and just wanted to be a smarta$$ to Jake anyway.

                Which one is it SB. And regardless of how you answer the result is that you come across as an imbecile.

                Thank you.

              • avatar SaveBears says:

                Jeff, I don’t like you, and you don’t like me, so leave it at that.

              • avatar Jeff N. says:

                SB,

                And let me clarify that I’m not saying you are an imbecile…..you are just making yourself look like one.

                Must remain politically correct at all times.

                Thank you.

              • avatar SaveBears says:

                Jeff, I don’t like you, you don’t like me, so please use your common sense and forget me.

              • avatar Jeff N. says:

                SB in a nutshell…..gets called out on his contradictions and takes his little bally and goes home.

              • avatar SaveBears says:

                Jeff,

                I have not gone anywhere, I am still here responding to your bullshit.

              • avatar Robert R says:

                Jeff N why do you get so defensive ??

              • avatar cobackcountry says:

                Geez fellas, felt like high school for a minute.

                Jeff, I have been reading here for years. SB came on the scene a while back. He has been pretty stead-fast in his posts as far as I have read. He does not support corruption, he would like to adhere to science and common sense, he has respect for people who have a historical way of life and has empathy for the struggle they face though he doesn’t agree with their strong hold on our system, he is conservative yet shows compassion, he is insightful and can honestly boast years of service under an arm of the government which routinely takes an ass kicking on here, he is frank, but he is far from undecided on things he KNOWS. You can expect him to give it to you like he sees it. I personally find it refreshing to have someone who I can count on to be forthcoming on here. He often disagrees with people, but he concedes to points proven. He is an excellent resource if you learn to listen with an open mind. You’d do well to see that while you may not agree with his opinion, the information he offers to support it is worth hearing.

                As far as poaching, prosecute!

              • avatar Harley says:

                Actually, I don’t think I’ve ever read SB supporting poaching, ever.

              • avatar cobackcountry says:

                Harley,

                Nor do I.

    • avatar BobMc says:

      Ida, I find your interpretation of the ‘pack’ interesting, but I suspect that the artist’s intention is that all of the pack is involved in taking down ESA protections or slowing recovery, as opposed to which pack-member is most responsible. Myths still play a major role as they avoid science and allow other anti-wolf players to play out their roles without raising hackles of the general population that wants wolves, but not if “wolves are killing all the other animals, wild and domestic, and hanging around the School Bus Stops waiting to eat our innocent children.” Outreach and facts about wolves can help to overcome the myths, but funds are hard to come by, and many F&W agencies afford minimal amounts for outreach.

      • avatar Ida Lupine says:

        Yes, it struck me that ‘Myth’ is very much there in the foreground, but in the background there is a lot going on too. The political struggles and poaching seem to be more active than either legititmate ‘hunting’ or ‘myth’.

  5. avatar Joseph C. Allen says:

    Making the land safe for cows etc, what a joke…

  6. avatar WyoWolfFan says:

    This really sums it up.

  7. avatar Bob Ostler says:

    I am at a loss and find this neither amusing nor informative. Will someone please explain what I am missing.

    I am not a wildlife biologist and don’t play one on the Internet. I have noticed that Charles Kay was thoroughly derided for his assertions that there were too many elk on the Northern Range and that they were degrading the resource.

    Now we hear from scientists that one of the great achievements of reintroduction and griz recovery is that it has moved the Northern Range’s ecology back towards a more healthy balance with elk numbers down, vegetation (willows) recovering and a re-balancing of the predator population. I am not in a position to evaluate these claims, but they do appear inconsistent and much influenced by the theology of whichever group talking at the time.

    • avatar Robert R says:

      Bob that is the best and most honest observation on here I’ve herd.

    • avatar jon says:

      I wonder what Bob Fanning and others that are anti-wolf have to say about Kay’s remarks about there being too many elk in yellowstone. There are 4 so called wolf experts that the antis like to bring up and quote a lot. They are Charles Kay, Will Graves, Jim Beers, and Dr. Val Geist.

    • avatar SAP says:

      Bob, you don’t have to be a wildlife biologist. Just find me one person who in the early 1990s thought Northern Range elk numbers were acceptable, who today is celebrating that elk numbers have been cut to about 1/3 of what they were.

      I can find you people who complained about high elk numbers in YNP and elsewhere, then turned right around and complained that wolves were killing all the elk. Some of them (politicians) will change their tune regularly depending on what’s happening or who they’re talking to.

    • avatar Immer Treue says:

      Bob,

      ” I have noticed that Charles Kay was thoroughly derided for his assertions that there were too many elk on the Northern Range and that they were degrading the resource.

      Not at all. Dr. Kay was very descriptive, especially in his writing for deriding the park system for allowing elk numbers to rise from
      The 3K’s in the 60’s to 20K in the nineties.

      He actually referred to Yellowstone as a place that should be managed by Disney if that many elk were required on the northern range. He even suggested wolves be brought in.

      Now for the irony, Disney and sanitized are metaphors the anti wolf folks throw around at us pro wolf folks. Dr Kay is often quoted by the anti wolf faction, but they are selective with what they choose. Ralph was correct.

  8. avatar Snaildarter says:

    Elk in YNP in the early 1990’s had pot bellies, and laid around the river banks. It didn’t take a biologist to know the park was degraded. Now they look like Elk, they are fit and smart.
    I can look to the horizon in the Lamar Valley and if I ignore that dam road that goes to Cooke City it looks just like it did in 1805 when Lewis and Clark came through the area. Hunters and Ranchers need to grow up and respect their heritage.

  9. avatar WM says:

    Normally I do pretty well understanding the humor (sometimes sardonic), sarcasm, metaphorical context and all the other stuff that goes on within several levels of a political cartoon.

    I am having trouble understanding parts (actually most) of this one – imagery and labeling. Anyone want to take a crack at explaining it all?

    [And I had a thought of my own – a more simple cartoon really. Mine has a partly eaten cow(or cow elk either species works), on its side, expression of terror on its face, mired in quicksand slowly being engulfed (the animal is labeled Endangered Species Act -sacred cow). Four wolves, jaws desperately locked on a hind quarter, neck and belly of the prey, are shown at the edge of the quicksand, but importantly, also being engulfed (as they won’t let go). One wolf is labeled “Conservation Groups,” another “PEER,” another, “Wolf Advocates.”

    In the background is Kieren Suckling from CBD, speaking to Jamie Rappaport-Clark of Defenders. Caption – “I’m not sure I have the stomach to watch this?” ]

  10. avatar Ida Lupine says:

    I love too that the cattlemen seem to be standing back and smiling, the hunters are howling, all under the Purple Mountain’s Majesty. 🙂

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‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey

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