Cougar Extinct!

Big title and evening news announcement in the French media, followed by a torrent of popular emotion, of course. The cougar (exactly the same animal we call “mountain lion” in the west and “puma” in South America) is confirmed extinct, they say.

I guess it couldn’t have been  a cougar, a mountain lion, that stole two goats across an eight-foot fence about a year ago near Santa Cruz.  Some alley cat! You bet!

If the stupidity of  the North American eco-sensitive makes you ill, you are lucky not to know another European language. It’s much worse over-there.


About Jacques Delacroix

I am a sociologist, a short-story writer, and a blogger (Facts Matter and Notes On Liberty) in Santa Cruz, California.
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10 Responses to Cougar Extinct!

  1. David says:

    Of course the cougar is extinct! It ran out of younger men to prey upon! Though I think that they think calling something by a different name makes it something of a different nature. (i.e. Hurricanes/Typhoons) A budget cut is just a smaller increase in spending than was planned…etc. etc. Although, some alley cats are pretty damn aggressive…watch out for them squirrels too…

  2. Albert says:

    Did WSU get rid of their football team?

  3. David says:

    JD, perhaps you can give me a reasonable answer for my following question; with your experience in academia and being surrounded by “intelligent” liberals for extended periods of time I think you have the best capacity to answer it. Though I must say this question isn’t limited to just liberals, lots of well meaning and dense conservatives also fit into the category I’ll be asking about. The primary reason I’m commenting here is twofold, I suspect the very same people that are decrying the “extinct” cougar are the self same that are trying to save the panda from extinction, secondly, I’m too lazy search for a more appropriate venture/location.

    It is a question of evolution, extinction, human activity and human response. Evolution is the leading scientific theory regarding the origins of life on Earth. Evolution in a nut-shell is that species that are well adapted/ able to adapt survive, and those that aren’t adapted/don’t adapt die off, in other words, become extinct. The overwhelming number of life forms that have existed on planet Earth are presently extinct, so far as we know. So extinction is nothing new to Earth and life has survived the disappearance of species all throughout the lifespan of the Earth. Today, species are probably going extinct that we never knew existed. Humans have been on Earth for a very short period of time. Very short. Humans have hunted animals into extinction. Humans have survived species going extinct. Modern day Human activity has pushed a lot of species into new and unfamiliar habitats. Humans have probably caused the “endangerment” of dozens of species. Humans are also trying to save as many “endangered” species as possible. Even though a given population may never have had enough of a population to not be considered “endangered” in the last couple of centuries. (How do they take a census of these animals anyways? Representative sampling doesn’t cut it with me.) So, with the facts being that evolution is the best scientific explanation for life on Earth, extinction is an integral part of evolution, humans haven’t existed long enough to cause mass extinctions, and that humans are trying to save “endangered” animals, WHY are we trying to save extinct animals when they are unable to adapt to the changing world? BTW, not all animals have suffered from human expansion…I’m sure raccoons have a MUCH larger population due to a greater and more easily accessible source of food. Also, humans altering the face of the Earth doesn’t cut it with me either, we’ve had more rapid change on Earth before humans existed to cause “climate change.”

    • jacquesdelacroix says:

      Too many good questions for me to handle. Two remarks, not the most important, probably.
      1 The punishment for lying is not harsh enough; the punishment for being frivolous with facts is very mild; the punishment for merely being wrong is non-existent.

      I am not completely sure why this is. It was not like this when Darwin was working, for example. We have become misinformation-tolerant. I am doing my best t combat this in my own little nook. I hope you are doing the same.

      2 Some species go extinct as a result of behavior by humans that you and I would agree is irresponsible or callous. Look up the Great Dodo of Madagascar. Esthetically, I think a more diverse world is better than a less diverse world. That’s why I am willing to pay to create tiger habitat, for example. I would be sad for a world without tigers.

      The French annoucement I pointed to, about “cougars,” is a combination of willful ignorance, of anti-human viciousness, and of specifically and durably French pessimism. What I deplore is that the person who chose the announcement will suffer no consequences for his career or elsewhere. And no one will even say, “oops!”

  4. David says:

    You would be correct that I agree that senselessly killing off species is stupid. I’d love to have tigers around for many centuries, if only to see them eat people stupid enough to think they’re nice like Tigger. I remember a short time ago when someone was mauled by a Tiger at the San Francisco Zoo; I visited the zoo shortly thereafter and I saw the improved barricades, and I wondered why they even needed them. If you’re stupid enough to lean over into a Tiger containment area…you’re stupid enough to get mauled. That being said, killing Tigers to harvest their Penile Bone to “cure” impotence is just dumb. I wonder if they ever thought to observe whether or not it worked; I’d think not. The Tiger and The Dodo are two examples of extinction/near extinction attributable to human causes. Polar Bears are an example of an “endangered” species that isn’t really endangered. It’s a predator that lives in a desolate climate, where there isn’t enough prey to support a “non-endangered” predatory species. Though the population of Polar Bears has INCREASED over the last few decades, it is still considered “endangered” in spite of rational reasons why the population cannot be large enough to be “not endangered.” Regarding another kind of bear, the Panda, let the creatures die. They don’t wish to reproduce, no point in forcing them. I’d rather not see them extinct, but they have no desire to further their own species. Tigers at least will reproduce without needing “Tiger Porn.” (I once read an article describing “Panda Porn” that was supposed to get the Panda’s frisky enough to reproduce. The fact that they had to do that is just damn sad. I’ll look around to see if I can find it again. And yes, I know Humans also use Porn, but it usually isn’t for the purpose of reproduction, though it is often used in conjunction thereof.)

    I frequently hope and wish for those people to receive a Darwin Award, if only because it would be oh so fitting.

    • jacquesdelacroix says:

      David: You are a kind of harsh advocate of natural selection but I don’t disagree. I like the idea of Panda porn. I wonder what it looks like. Doe it involve unnatural postures, obscene dancing, simple nudity?

  5. David says:

    First off, the link to the Panda Porn story, courtesy of ABCNews:

    Panda porn is basically pandas having sex on camera. Similar to human porn; I presume that the female pandas haven’t been receiving Brazilian waxes either, but I haven’t been watching panda porn to find out; also without the variety of positions or length of film. Apparently, male pandas don’t have much stamina. Also, the article mentions the pandas having the occasional “threesome” (two males and a PILF, I suppose) “to get young male pandas curious about sex.” I’m almost wishing I was a panda…if only because that kind of behavior would be considered OK. Though if I were a male panda, I’d want it to be two PILF’s in the threesome, but I digress.

    Secondly, I don’t try to be harsh (the very concept of natural selection is inherently harsh, so I need not add to it) and, believe it or not, I don’t think Evolution, as currently theorized, is sufficient to explain life on Earth, but I find it pointless (and expensive) to try to force a species to survive (Pandas) when they have no desire to do so. In the case of Tigers, I find it to be reasonable to save the species because their lack of population has more to do with human efforts than them just being lazy or stupid. The primary reason I use natural selection, is because many people who advocate humans having a responsibility for all these “endangered” species (and the responsibility for caring for them) also firmly believe that life has no ultimate purpose and we’re here by random chance. Quite the contradiction, and I have yet to hear/read/see a reasonable explanation for this contradiction. It’s just hard for me to respect people who hold that view, yet don’t have reason to back them up. Though it has little to do with the ‘extinct’ cougar, the ‘extinct’ cougar reminded me of this contradiction.

  6. Carol says:

    I am in Michigan and where I live, I was told that this is not a habitat for cougars. Well, if they live here, it is habitat, wilderness, wooded areas spread between homes and farmland. I saw a cougar about 400 feet from my kitchen window. Thought it was a deer that may have a fawn and havent seen deer for quite some time. Used to be regular visitors. I got my binoculars and focused in close to the animal and I saw a cougar standing still, then it started the prowl, slow forward reach of the front legs and I knew that what I was seeing was not a deer, but maybe the deer was going to be the dinner menu. After talking to other people in the area, together we confirmed what we had been seeing was definately a cougar. Problem was basically, our brains didn’t want to believe what we were seeing with our eyes. It seemed like it was a Yetti or big foot to tell some people, but we are programmed that the biggest cats are barn cats…. Not so. This one probably weighed 350 pounds and was about the same distance from children playing nextdoor as it was from my window. I alerted my neighbor and she just laughed as her children were playing within easy reach of the animal should it have gone after one of them.

    • jacquesdelacroix says:

      Thanks, Carol. Great story! And you are lucky (if you are careful). I live in cougar country but I have seen one only once, at night, for five second.

      If you don’t mind, lease tell em how you came across my blog. I am just curious.

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