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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)

June 2004 Poll:

Do you support wolf reintroduction?

Please use this area to post comments or questions about this poll.

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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)

I support wolf reintroduction as long as locals eventually get to manage the populations like any other game species and ranchers get paid a good premium for the damage wolves inflict.

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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)

Okay, call me thick, but I can't figure out how to vote in this poll. I follow the link and it just shows me the results with no chance to post my vote.

Just for the record, I generally support wolf re-introduction, as long as they are properly managed. As for reimbursement to ranchers, I don't disagree with you often, bitmasher, but I will on this issue. I think wolf predation is a natural "cost of doing business" that ranchers need to accept. They will then, quite naturally, pass the cost along to consumers. So, instead of paying the ranchers with tax money we should pay them with a higher cost of beef.

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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)
donmillion wrote:
Okay, call me thick, but I can't figure out how to vote in this poll.

There are basically two types of polls here since the forum upgrade. One that is created by a board member and just runs in the forum, then there are the older style polls that we have been doing for awhile (the monthly polls). These older style polls just rotate through the main site and they always run on our home page.

To vote you can visit the home page. This is a bit confusing, so in the future we'll give a link to the home page to vote.

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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)

Donmillion, sounds like you ate my macro-economics book and then regurgitated it on this thread....

It's an elementary approach to the agricultural market to state, "A simple increase in the cost of production should naturally be passed onto the consumer..."

Sounds great but you're ignoring a long string of significant variables!

The U.S. lamb and beef market is already operating at a higher cost production due to the nature of feed, strict quality regulations, and increasing operating costs.

Lamb and Beef products are extremely price sensitive. Lamb more so than beef, but it's safe to assume, that an increase in the price of lamb or beef will shift consumers to purchase more of a subsitute good, like chicken or fish.

This is great for U.S. chicken and fish producers but the more likely event is, consumer will seek lamb and beef at a lower price from U.S. competitors, like Australia and New Zealand.

If the inflated cost of production of lamb and beef last long enough without the aid of tariffs or farm subsidies, Australia and New Zealand will flood the market with cheap meat, and we can all say BYE, BYE, BYE to the American ranchers!

As far as the wolves go, if the public or federal government feels the need to dabble in the re-introduction of wolves, fine, but don't pass the financial burden of loss revenue onto the U.S. Rancher!

"Natural cost of doing business...." eye roll

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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)

No, I'm not ignoring any variables. I realize they exist. I just don't think they're significant enough to justify shifting the costs to taxpayers.

Look, you're making exactly the same argument that the American auto industry made 30 years ago. "The government has to protect us from the costs of doing our business or else all of our jobs are going to be taken away by the Japanese!!! Won't that be horrible for the American auto industry!!!" (Multiple exclamation points are a requirement, since these arguments are always offered in a hysterical tone of voice.)

Guess what? The Japanese invasion has resulted in BETTER cars at LOWER costs being available to the American consumer! Not only that, but the American auto manufacturers who were able to adapt and compete are now STRONGER than they were in the 60s. Did some auto workers lose their jobs? Yes, of course. But the American economy as a whole is healthier and better off than it would be if the government were to charge us all 90% income taxes so that they could protect every industry that faces some foreign threat.

Could some ranchers be hurt by being forced to bear the cost of dealing with wolves? Yes, of course. In the long run, though, it will be better for the American consumer--which means each and every one of us--if the government doesn't once again rob Peter to pay Paul by taking our taxes to protect ranchers from what is, after all, a natural predator.

Okay, here's an idea. Let's have the government setup a voluntary fund that will be used to pay wolf predation costs. You can check a box on your income tax and pay in whatever you think is fair. Colorado already does this with state income taxes for about a half dozen different programs. Make it voluntary and I have no arguments against it. Fair enough?

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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)

Ranchers already receive reimbursement for predator damage to their livestock. I don't see why wolves wouldn't be included, since they're obviously a predator.

BTW most predators that cause damage to livestock aren't your run-of-the-mill wild lions & bears, they are mostly relocated problem animals. Yup, the very same ones that cause problems on the front range, are ear tagged and end up on the western slopes and they don't just eat a few animals, they tear up livestock herds. If they just ate what they killed it wouldn't be such a large hardship to the rancher, but having bear(s), lion(s) or coyote(s) simply destroy animals for what appears entertainment, is not something that's easy for a rancher to stomach. Sure the livestock are their livelihood, but they also don't like to see their animals suffer & die a needless death.

That being said, I still believe that wolves are an important management tool, but as bitmasher stated, the local population must be allowed in making management decisions. I also believe certain locations just are not suitable for the introduction (or relocating) of any predator. There needs to be enough appropriate habitat to for the predator.

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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)
bitmasher wrote:
I support wolf reintroduction as long as locals eventually get to manage the populations like any other game species and ranchers get paid a good premium for the damage wolves inflict.

ditto

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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)

I say the ranchers should be compensated for the wolf kills for a few reasons in no particular order.

1.) It is a political necessity. Ranchers are usually the strongest opponents to reintroduction and by saying they will get no compensation to bear the cost of something the "public" wants to put back virtually assures they will fight reintroduction tooth and nail. Usually the only way to get them on board is the assurance that they will not have bear the costs of the beasts.

2.) I'm guessing it cuts down on S.S.S. (shoot, shovel, and shutup). If reintroductions are done w/o compensation, rural ranchers and their supports will illegally kill wolves, especially if they get zero compensation for their loses. Yes this is illegal, yes it is a reality.

3.) It is the status quo. As cowgal said, they are already compensated for other predator kills, although many say the compensation rate is not fair market value. This isn't the case of runaway fiscal irresponsibility.

I don't see this as a competitive economic issue. Beef, lamb is a commodity and the costs of wolves will be unequally spread among suppliers (I.E. a WY, MT, CO rancher has to bear the cost of wolf kills, but not a TX,AU,NZ rancher) this means that effected ranchers will not be able to raise prices, simply because upon a WY,CO,MT price increase, the beef/lamb bulk buyers will simply switch suppliers. Commodities have no pricing power.

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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)

Well, you make some good arguments, bitmasher. Much better than Quicksilver's. In my view #2 is probably the strongest argument, with #1 coming in a close second. #3 is kind of weak, if you ask me. "That's how it's been done in the past" isn't something that I find very persuasive.

I'll add that I'd be a lot more agreeable to compensation if it was on some decreasing timetable. That is, make it clear to them that they're going to have to find a way to wean themselves of the public teat within 5-10 years.

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Do you support wolf reintroduction? (June 2004 Poll)

Donmillion, once again, you've taken the elementary approach to the agricultural market, by reading tariffs and farm subsidies, and then trying to make a bogus analogy between ranchers and the car manufacturing industry...

When you state, "The Japanese invasion has resulted in BETTER cars at LOWER costs being available to the American consumer! Not only that, but the American auto manufacturers who were able to adapt and compete are now STRONGER than they were in the 60s."

It's safe to assume that, after this so called "Japanese invasion" occured, U.S. car manufatures started adobting foreign manufactures trends, like increasing technology, implementing new standards, and importing components from Mexico, China, Japan, and other Cheap Labor Countries...

As a result, you stated that the cars are better today, which is questionable, but they are definitely lower in price, and that drop in price helps satisfy the American need to consume! In essences, the japanese, increased U.S. efficiency at producing vehicles, but at the cost of U.S. employment.

Now I ask, What does the Japanese Invasion and the U.S. Auto Industry have to do with U.S. Ranching, other than the simple fact that each sector asked for domestic protection of tariffs to save their industry, absolutely nothing!

Last time I checked, U.S. ranching industry is extremely efficient and un-like cars, when dealing with either lamb or beef, you're dealing with a raw product... Raw product being a simple good, which can not be broken down into components like cars, assembled by machines, or decrease the quality of inputs to lower the overall price.

When it comes to food, ie lamb, beef, corn, etc, the inputs are exactly the same whether it's grown in New Zealand, Australia, or U.S. but some places are more apt to raising Sheep or Cattle due to the vast resources available. U.S. Ranchers, while some range feed, most rely on feed, i.e. alfalfa, corn, and grains, to be grown by a farmer, where the rancher purchases the feed from the farmer to raise their flock or herd. This one simple input, surrounding feed, is where the massive ranges of Australia and New Zealand will dominate the ranching market, and allow them to offer meat at a lower price.

The Lambing industry in the U.S. has been on the decline since the early 50's. This new trend with importing cheap meat from Australia and New Zealand has accelerated this downward trend... What little protection the Lambing industry received in the late 80's and early 90's has been lifted and left the market to run it's dieing course.

It's a simple answer of efficiency which you have been preaching that helps the American consumer and strengthens the economy. But is it efficient to place the sole food producers in the hands of large industrial farming & ranching corporations and on the shoulders of a foreign market for the sake of the American consumer?

Basically, Americans can either, subsidize, and support programs that help compensate ranchers and farmers for loss revenue to insure that the U.S. Lamb and Cattle market will not have to rely on foreign meat imports to satisfy the U.S. consumer needs, or people like you, Donmillion, can have the option to pay a voluntary fund for wolf predation cost so you can keep, one hand, stuffing your fat face with cheap food, your voice, preaching about the how tariffs and subsidies are a hindrance to the economy, while your other hand, gives the small town U.S. farmer & rancher the finger!

Wolves maybe natural to the area, but if we're going for efficiency in the economy and support for the American consumer, then it would be more cost efficient not to have wolves at all! U.S. would save money on re-introduction costs, labor maintence of the pack, and ranchers compensation. Fair Enough?

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