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Harper Sanctions Polar Bear Slaughter for Inuit and Asian Votes/Bucks

March 14th, 2013 · 14 Comments

It has become THIS BAD under Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s majority power: the United States (!!!!) and Russia (!!!!!) have shown Canada up in the fight to protect endangered species!  Specifically, the dwindling polar bear.

Experts estimate (according to the environmental group Care 2 Make a Difference) 800 polar bears are killed by hunters annually …. their hides selling for $2,000 to $5,000 each … in one case $12,000 on international markets; with more than 3,000 other polar bear parts also sold … including their skulls, teeth,paws and other parts.

And with prices rising, the lucrative market demand is placing added stresses on the magnificent beast’s numbers.

The losses through slaughtering, of course, are on top of other challenges facing the species:  loss of habitat, global warming and other natural phenomenon … to the point the polar bear’s worldwide numbers are now estimated at  20,000 to 25,000, classifying the animal as “vulnerable” by some scientists and naturalists, “endangered” by others.

You know that’s serious when the U.S. , with support from Russia,  called on the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species to raise the polar bear status to the highest level a species possible … banning international trading of polar bear parts.

At a meeting in Bangkok a few days ago, 38 countries backed the US ban proposal, but 42 others … led by Canada where two-thirds of the polar bear population reside … rejected the higher protection status for the species.

“Unfortunately, politics seem to have overtaken science,” concluded Dan Ashe, head of the US delegation.

You bet!

Who really needs polar bear paws, claws and other parts internationally!  This is NOT about Canada’s Inuit hunting for food: it’s about CASH …selling off body parts of these magnificent animals to collectors or those who care less about any species’ survival than getting their “fix” for some mythical health or sexual prowess potion.

But they’ll pay BIG bucks for it …and many of them vote.

It frankly looks to me like Harper and his Tory government sacrificed the polar bear on the altar of Inuit and Asian votes and bucks.

How ironic!  This is the same federal government that had announced a $150 million commitment to fund 44 International Polar Year (not Polar Bear) research projects.  Nothing wrong with that… there is a lot we can and should do to understand, respect and protect the polar regions. BUT the polar bears are part of that region and deserve protection too.

How hypocritical that Harper’s government tries to put forward a world-wide face of support for the polar regions …while refusing to curb the slaughter of the region’s most formidable animals.

The US and Russia exposed Canada’s duplicity.

But the polar bear still lost.

Harv Oberfeld

Tags: British Columbia · National

14 responses so far ↓

  • 1 r // Mar 14, 2013 at 6:25 pm

    Meanwhile at Coke and WWF

    http://www.coca-colacompany.com/our-company/coke-raises-over-2-million-to-save-polar-bears

    http://worldwildlife.org/projects/wwf-and-the-coca-cola-company-team-up-to-protect-polar-bears

  • 2 SunWuKong // Mar 14, 2013 at 7:53 pm

    Apparently Coke doesn’t siphon enough of those donations to the Conservative Party …

    Who knew that not having enough federal lobbyists is a terminal condition?

  • 3 Larry Bennett // Mar 14, 2013 at 8:55 pm

    Though I can’t cite them, my understanding is that many experts have said that the Polar bear is doing just fine. On the other hand I have heard (though we are not in danger of disappearing) that aborted human fetal tissues are worth a lot of money too. Human babies may not be as cute as baby polar bears, but some of us think them just as precious. And it sounds to me that 42 beats 38 every time.

    (Response: The numbers can always be challenged by some (like Global warming), but the consensus of most is that they are vulnerable or endangered, as I stated. As for cuteness, i agree that affects many’s perceptions… BUT I am not one of those: my father was a furrier (I helped “block” skins of foxes and beavers and minks) and I support the seal hunt for food and for controlled culling to protect fisheries IF done humanely. And I have no problem with the Inuit hunt of polar bears for food …BUT there is really no justifiable reason to just kill for body parts to satiate demand for collectors items (yech!) or mystery potions. h.o)

  • 4 13 // Mar 14, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    I am by no stretch of the imagination a tree hugger. Nor do I champion the cause of seals bears etc. If what you say is true that this is to buy Asian votes then it seems that it fall into the shark fin dilema.
    Ahh good old mulitculturalism. I cant argue that if this is true Harper is dispicable. So are the Asians that consume this disgusting crap.

  • 5 Gordie // Mar 15, 2013 at 8:07 am

    With right-wing governments, it’s all about the money, all the time. The environment, the elderly, the poor, honesty, integrity, compassion, you name it, it’s out the window….except for money.

  • 6 kootcoot // Mar 15, 2013 at 8:43 am

    Leave it to Larry to bring fetuses into the discussion!

  • 7 SunWuKong // Mar 15, 2013 at 11:17 am

    As usual, for those inclined to actually find it, the data speaks for itself:

    http://pbsg.npolar.no/en/status/status-table.html

    (Response: Many, many thanks. Great info! h.o.)

  • 8 GeeBee // Mar 15, 2013 at 11:55 am

    Harv – your Harper Hate-On is showing again…….

    Personally my Hate-On is for the consumers of polar bear parts, rhino horns, Ivory and shark fins and other assorted animal parts. I’m no vegan but these consumers are useless turds that care only about themselves. Killing a magnificant creature for its teeth, or fins – really…?

    I’m all for a flash mob at chinese restaurants that still serve shark fin. Have a hundred people arrive on Saturday night, take a chair, dont order anything and sit there for a few hours. Do it every week till they stop serving shark fin – then move onto the next one. After four or five, I think all the restaurants will cave. Because remember, its all about the money. …..

    (Response: Tell me …why didn’t Harper speak out and vote to stop it?? Instead of making the likes of the US and Russia look so much better than us when it comes to stopping the NEEDLESS slaughter of these animals???? h.o)

  • 9 Larry Bennett // Mar 15, 2013 at 5:05 pm

    Leave it to kootcoot to show his callous disregard for the unborn, especially if they are human.

  • 10 Larry Bennett // Mar 15, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    Ah yes, The Polar Bear Specialist Group – That famous group! (Never heard of ‘em) SWK uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp posts – for support rather than illumination.

  • 11 Henri // Mar 16, 2013 at 9:43 am

    What about the poor little Double breasted pussy willow sap sucker, who is looking after them?

    (Response: No one. They’re now extinct. h.o)

  • 12 kootcoot // Mar 16, 2013 at 11:04 am

    Larry, we already have TOO MANY born foetuses, unless we reduce the population we’ll have to find a couple more planets. I know the Pope, this one, the last one and the one before ad infinitum don’t agree, I guess the clergy need every child to keep up the supply for diddling!

  • 13 SunWuKong // Mar 16, 2013 at 12:17 pm

    @Larry Bennett
    “Though I can’t cite them, my understanding is that many experts have said that the Polar bear is doing just fine.”

    ” SWK uses statistics as a drunken man uses lamp posts – for support rather than illumination.”

    Fine — provide your own, more reputable and definitive, sources.

    You seem to hold many opinions but few facts.

  • 14 Larry Bennett // Mar 16, 2013 at 4:42 pm

    Well tomorrow being St. Patrick’s day, and hoping to have the luck of the Irish …. well actually their politics are worse than our own. To wit: Here is a statement from the Republican politician, Liam Cosgrave – “The Jews and the Muslims should settle their differences in a Christian manner.” Yeah right!
    Then there was the Tyrone newspaper that carried this unlikely headline, “Catholics and Protestants unite against ecumenism!” And not to be outdone there was the statement to the media in one of the more Orange districts of Belfast, from a lady expressing her distaste for a united Ireland, – “Dublin would have us practicing celibacy in the streets!”
    Finally we have this bemused visitor to Ireland who asked an old buffer about the friction between Catholics and Protestants – and whether there were no atheists in all of Ireland. He was told by the local, “Well, you see; you have your Protestant atheists, and you have your Catholic atheists!”
    They do though, have a sense of humour, if not always politically correct. They call the statue to Molly Malone – The tart with the cart; and another statue of Oscar Wilde – The quare in the square – Before getting all excited, see Brendan Behan’s “The Quare Fellow”.

    (Response: We MUST have a sense of humour: anyone who does not and follows the ups and downs of politics closely, will become a disenchanted, bitter, unhappy soul. And that’s the word for St.Patrick’s Day. Harv O’Berfeld. )