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Lynx-fur furor focuses on science role
Seattle Times ^ | 12/30/2001 | Lynda V. Mapes

Posted on 12/31/2001 9:30:22 PM PST by jennyp

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The biologists said they were testing the laboratory's capabilities. Sending in control samples is a common practice in lab testing. But the biologists, all working in Washington state, were acting outside the rules of this particular survey. And their actions were reported inaccurately in stories widely re-circulated by the media this month.

The Washington Times, for example, reported biologists planted lynx hair on posts at lynx survey stations in the Gifford Pinchot and Wenatchee National Forests. [thread here] The paper said that if a whistle-blower hadn't acted, the fake samples would have shut down public lands to protect lynx that weren't actually there.

Investigators say biologists mailed to a lab, in vials, unauthorized control samples from captive cats. Several told their supervisors about it, and one notified the lab itself.

So, is this a story of corruption by gov't scientists, or a case study of how bad reporting can create a scandal out of nothing?

I don't know yet, but the initial stories claimed the scientists had placed lynx hair on the scratching posts out in the wild. This would've clearly been an attempt at fraud. But now it looks like they simply put control samples into some of the sample containers they sent to the lab.

In fact, it sounds like the field biologists did this because they were skeptical of the labs in light of the discredited 1998 study that had claimed there were lynx as far south as Oregon. Unfortunately, all I've seen on every lynx thread here on FR is cynical riffing by the uninformed on the original claims of fraud. Doesn't anybody here have any hard facts about the biologists in question? Does anybody here know if sending a control sample to a lab is good procedure in a case like this? It sounds like it would be to me. (Apparently their only sin was to do this on their own, in violation of the protocol for the study. Discipline them for that, OK. But where's the fraud?)

Then somehow the story gets to the press & gets mutated from "skeptical scientists overstep bounds" to "SCIENTIST FRAUD!!!" Incredible sloppiness by Audrey Hudson (Wash. Times reporter) if this article's characterization of the incident is true.

I guess there's going to be Congressional hearings on this case. (Sheesh!) Well, at least the truth will come out, presumably.

1 posted on 12/31/2001 9:30:22 PM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp, Carry_Okie, redrock, kattracks, kitchen, lowbridge, backhoe, blackie, GrampaDave, SierraW
More than that, Jenny Dahling.

More like control of land by corrupt bureaucrats.

Following is a part of a FReepmail i just received that discusses the situation. one of the addressees on this post sent it. He has my profound gratitude. Read and learn, Jenny.

Mark, do you want to weigh in here?

Saw the thread, but I'll review for updates. It is a local issue because of the plan to turn the Routt NF into a lynx study area.

Several years ago, the FS and the CO Division of Wildlife studied the forests and determined that there was no chance of success here. The last lynx was trapped before WW I, and there haven't been any snowshoe rabbits for about as long. I saw a snowshoe rabbit in the White River NF about 20 years ago and almost fainted. Anyway, it seemed that the lynx issue was settled until last year. I lost my contact info, but the gist was that, at a public meeting, the FS announced that they were going to make the Routt a lynx study area. When the audience pointed out that there was nothing for them to eat, the FS replied, "Ya, so what?" It isn't really about lynx; it's about banning motorized vehicles, chainsaws, hunting, etc. I hope for a connection between the criminal/feds in WA and the local decisions, as a way to get them set aside.

Guess who hobnobs with the FS types and conducts rulemaking meetings behind closed doors and then offers them to the "public" via a consensus building technique (a la the "Delphi Technique")?

Do your homework lady. The "Scientific Method" (tm) hasn't a chance against envirofascism.

2 posted on 12/31/2001 9:46:40 PM PST by sauropod
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To: jennyp
This article from the Seattle P-I (Dec 18) doesn't specify scratching post vs. sample vial...
Scientists' 'wild hair' really wasn't

Fur from tame lynx was inserted in samples to test laboratory's ability

Tuesday, December 18, 2001

By LISA STIFFLER
SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER REPORTER

Snowmobilers and timber groups are wondering if government biologists have cried "lynx."

State and federal biologists recently admitted to planting fur samples in a survey to determine the distribution of Canadian lynx in national forests. Three samples taken from captive cats were added to samples reportedly found in the Wenatchee and Gifford Pinchot national forests.

But the biologists, who notified interested parties of what they did, said the samples were added to make sure the lab analyzing the fur was able to successfully detect lynx with its DNA analysis.

"It's a way of testing if a lab knows what it's doing," Doug Zimmer, spokesman for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Lacey, said yesterday. "It was not an attempt to put lynx where they're not."

Lynx were found in the Okanogan National Forest in the survey, but not the two forests to which the samples were added. The false samples were removed from the study and did not taint its outcome. Samples were collected again this year.

If lynx -- which have protection as a federally threatened species -- had been found in Wenatchee and Gifford Pinchot national forests some activities, including snowmobiling and tree cutting, could be curtailed.

The elusive cat, with its broad, furry paws, is well-adapted to hunting snowshoe hares through snowy drifts. The snowmobiles pack the drifts and give unfair advantage to other predators competing with lynx for prey. Thickets of lodgepole pine need to be maintained as habitat for the hares.

Even if the lynx were shown to reside elsewhere in Washington, changes in land use would come slowly and would not necessarily be severe.

"Nothing would change overnight," said Rex Holloway, spokesman with the U.S. Forest Service.

Chris West, vice president of the timber group the American Forest Resource Council, said he wasn't sure the government biologists were trying to falsify results, but was concerned about the study.

"There's already been some funny business going on with the lynx," he said.

A few years ago, an Oregon lynx study performed by a contractor hired by the Forest Service was called into question, West said. The contractor claimed to find lynx, but the results could not be validated and the contractor was not paid.

The seven biologists who were part of the government study included employees of the Forest Service, Fish and Wildlife Service and state Department of Fish and Wildlife. An investigation was conducted into the adding of the samples as soon as it was discovered, and the scientists involved were taken off the project, agency spokesmen said.

"This is a very, very isolated incident," Zimmer said.

The samples falsely added to the survey came from two lynx, one belonging to a federal scientist doing research and the other from a wild-animal park, he said. "If you were really going to skew something, you would use samples that you picked off the wild."

In experiments, "control" samples can be added to test techniques, but their addition was not included in the protocol for this particular survey.

The incident could undermine the integrity of the research.

"It jeopardizes the whole process of trying to protect the lynx in the first place," said Glenn Warren, president of the Washington State Snowmobile Association, a group of about 2,300 registered members and their families.

"We always like to see good science prevailing."

3 posted on 12/31/2001 9:54:55 PM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp
This was all a big mistake. It was supposed to read "Linux are rare, inconspicuous and primarily nocturnal."

I hope that clears things up.

4 posted on 12/31/2001 9:55:12 PM PST by PoorMuttly
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To: sauropod
If this description were true, this case should have been written up in advance as a single-blind test to validate the lab. Where is a dated document detailing the experimental design? Without that document, (and they surely would present it if they had it), this looks to me like a piece of crooked spin. As long as the supervisor agrees it was sent from a vial and not collected from the post we can't know the origin of the sample. Does the supervisor have a complicit motive?

How did they get the samples? Where are the requisitions? Fax records? Trip reports? Milage records? Where is the chain-of-custody document so common in such studies? Has anyone locked the files and sealed the computers?

It stinks of a coverup and may be a case of obstruction of justice.

5 posted on 12/31/2001 10:04:12 PM PST by Carry_Okie
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To: jennyp
This is spin. These people are criminals that have been caught in the act. Their purpose is to create "facts" or "science" that supports their agenda and to supress any information that would not support same. whether or not they actually were trying to "test" the lab, the fact that they didn't make it known to proper authorities indicates that they wanted to control the resultant information (by being the only ones privvy to it). Then they would release or supress according to their agenda. Thus fraud by premeditation, just like when you don't tell the local storekeep that there is no money in your checking account as you hand him the check.
6 posted on 12/31/2001 10:05:11 PM PST by Navy Patriot
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To: jennyp
Agencies need to restore credibility

Thursday, December 20, 2001

SEATTLE POST-INTELLIGENCER EDITORIAL BOARD

It hardly matters whether it was simply a well-meant attempt to test the accuracy of laboratory DNA analysis or a dishonest attempt to place the Canadian lynx into forests where it has not been found.

The damage is the same. The perception that something dishonest was afoot is hard to counter even if that perception is wrong.

Efforts to manage wildlife under the already controversial Endangered Species Act have been hurt by the seven federal and state scientists who sent bogus lynx-hair samples to a lab. This stunt plays into the hands of those who oppose the ESA.

Even if, as claimed, the bogus hairs were not counted in the final reports on lynx presence in the Wenatchee and Gifford Pinchot national forests, it casts a discrediting shadow over legitimate scientific efforts to figure out where the animals live.

If the threatened animals do live in those two forests, it potentially could restrict some human activities in the lynx habitat, such as, say, snowmobiling or logging. But the hairs purported to have been found in those two forests instead came from captive lynx.

One Forest Service scientist, who claimed the planted hair had been clearly labeled and the lab informed, said two years of conflicting lab results prompted the move.

Just as ill advised as the scientists' submitting the bogus hairs without clearance from their supervisors is their supervisors' behavior in dealing with the hoax perpetrated by the perps: two U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service employees, two Washington state Department of Fish and Wildlife employees and three employees of the Gifford Pinchot National Forest.

They were "counseled" and removed from the lynx project and won't work on a lynx project again. But will they work on, say, a wolf or grizzly project?

The agencies plead that it's a "personnel matter" and thus names and punishments must be kept from the public. Au contraire.

Wrist-slapping is not how to restore public confidence in these agencies' efforts to learn where endangered wildlife lives. Some members of Congress want an investigation, and a full public airing may be the only way to restore confidence in the validity of the agencies' scientific data collection.


One Forest Service scientist, who claimed the planted hair had been clearly labeled and the lab informed, said two years of conflicting lab results prompted the move.

This seems to be the earliest mention that the biologists in question told their superiors and that the lab had also been told. Also it implies that they were put into the sample vials ("had been clearly labeled") and not placed on the scratching posts in the wild.

7 posted on 12/31/2001 10:05:22 PM PST by jennyp
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To: Carry_Okie
How did they get the samples? Where are the requisitions? Fax records? Trip reports? Milage records? Where is the chain-of-custody document so common in such studies? Has anyone locked the files and sealed the computers?

If the FS people's story is true, this was a pigheaded, unauthorized action by the field biologists who simply wanted to show up the lab.

Stories have mentioned an investigation. Do you know if it's available online somewhere?

8 posted on 12/31/2001 10:08:32 PM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp
(Oops, hit Reply too soon) Since it was a reckless unauthorized act done by the skeptical low level researchers, there was no good chain of custody or documentation.
9 posted on 12/31/2001 10:10:39 PM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp
There's an acronym for what's happening here - CYA. With each new article their stories become even more preposterous. After all these years of watching the professional liar from Hope, the amateurs are easy to spot.
10 posted on 12/31/2001 10:10:42 PM PST by kitchen
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To: sauropod
but the gist was that, at a public meeting, the FS announced that they were going to make the Routt a lynx study area. When the audience pointed out that there was nothing for them to eat, the FS replied, "Ya, so what?" It isn't really about lynx; it's about banning motorized vehicles, chainsaws, hunting, etc.

Perhaps. Please understand, I'm not denying that it could be a fraud by the FS people. But after reading the Seattle Times story, the original story from the Wash. Times - where the claim of hair placed on the scratching posts first appeared - suddenly set off my BS detectors.

Do you think the hair was placed on the scratching posts, or was it put into sample vials?

11 posted on 12/31/2001 10:14:09 PM PST by jennyp
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To: kitchen
Yep, your right, and it's sad to see that cancer spreading ever more rapidly through the government and its bureaucrats. I attribute the increase to Slick and Slickette.
12 posted on 12/31/2001 10:20:40 PM PST by Navy Patriot
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To: jennyp
The problem is that, as a scientist, you can't have it both ways. These people know that. To claim that one is so diligent, so careful, that one is willing to take the extraordinary step of spending precious project dollars to validate the lab before ANY field samples are acquired and at the same time be unable to produce documents describing the planned validation procedure strains credulity. If it was a lab certification or screening effort, in advance of the study, there would be internal USFS memos to that effect. One cannot justify the PO without it as there would have to be grounds for either terminating the contract or refusing payment for bad analytical work.

The goal of validating the lab is to verify accurate identification at the time the accuracy of the analytical data must be unquestionable. The usual procedure would be to combine actual samples from the forest along with the "controls." Instead they chose to proceed in this ad hoc manner that leaves them the option to claim that the samples were found in situ (if they don't get caught by the lab). If the lab does detect the discrepancy, our USFS deep ecologists can claim that they were being really "diligent" by "testing" the lab. Yet to so proceed without a write-up casts doubt on the entire study. Why would they risk that if they were so determined to be "careful"?

Unfortunately, there are more problems with these claims as I suggested earlier. How did they obtain the "dummy" samples of known lynx hair from so far away without records of the request? If they submitted the samples as controls, where is the documentation of that fact? Something, anything... Nubers on the vials? Notes in a lab notebook? A PO?

As I understand it, some of the individuals involved in this case were also involved in the corrupt farce that is the "science" underlying a clear taking of private property in the Klamath Basin. If that is true, there are motive, means, opportunity, and a pattern of behavior that would be concurrent with fraudulent act. Such would benefit an economic interest on the part of (surprise!) the timber industry (such as International Paper, Georgia Pacific, and Weyerhauser). These companies do not want timber from National Forests depressing the prices from their private forests, which is one reason that they have been so generous to environmental NGOs. Has there been a grant from the foundations of any major stockholders in these companies for this study or to "volunteer" advocates of the lynx?

13 posted on 12/31/2001 10:47:51 PM PST by Carry_Okie
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To: Carry_Okie
We're off to drink in the New Year. Whether I'll be able to read your post afterwards is anybody's guess. =:-)

Talk to you next year...

14 posted on 12/31/2001 10:53:36 PM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp
Most of your enviro experts are either incompetent or lazy. In my state, a press release in our state's leading paper, heralded the hatching of the first bald eagle since 1915. The chick was banded by some buffoons from the state wildlife agency.

A couple of months later, a report was made that the skeletal remains of the chick was found at the bottom of the tree supporting the nest. The reason for the chick's demise was unknown.

To make a long story short, we had eagles nesting in our area in the 1930's and we used to climb up on an overlooking hill and watch the mothers take care of their chicks.

We were warned by our parents not to go near the nests because our scent would cause the eagles to abandon the nest and cause the death of the chicks.

Since, I have learned that this rule governs most animals in the wild for the preservation of the parents is more important than the single litter or hatch. We see banding and harassing of wild species by wildlife experts and reports of the fragile balance of nature. Most of it is caused by stupidity on the part of these experts that do not know their animals.

15 posted on 12/31/2001 11:31:42 PM PST by meenie
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To: jennyp
If I were to put my cynical hat on, I'd say that there must have been some hanky-panky in the 1998 survey that was thrown out. I don't understand how the results could have been ruined at the lab as is claimed in the article. Did they misidentify bear hair as lynx? Below an article from 1999 that describes the procedure used in Oregon.

In search of the elusive lynx

It sounds to me that someone was seeding these traps with lynx hair in 1998. They just overdid it.

16 posted on 01/01/2002 12:04:38 AM PST by Dan Cooper
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To: jennyp
Surprisingly lucid after 2 glasses of champaigneee...

Jere's tje tacoma news Tribune article. Whoa, room spinnnninggggg

Um, I'm looking for a newspaper that isn't just going off the Wash. Times and/or AP stories & adding their own commentary...


December 23, 2001

The News Tribune

Lynxgate this is not.

Critics of efforts to protect the Canada lynx gleefully pounced on last week's disclosure that a handful of wildlife biologists planted captive fur samples in a federal survey of the cat's historic range. But the news hardly discredits the science being done to document the lynx' current habitat in the northern United States. At worst, it exposes the dishonesty of those seven biologists. At best, it exposes their unbelievable foolishness.

Right now, foolishness would seem to be the likely explanation. The survey in question is an annual affair that involves collecting fur samples from the wild and sending them to a laboratory for DNA analysis. According to the official story, the biologists were doubtful about the laboratory's ability to identify lynx fur; they decided to test the analysis by submitting samples from captive lynxes, including fur gathered from the lynx exhibit at Northwest Trek. The captive samples were included with batches of fur collected in Washington's Wenatchee and Gifford Pinchot national forests.

In support of this version, the agencies involved - the U.S. Forest Service, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the state Department of Fish and Wildlife -Êsay that the bogus samples were not counted in the survey, which reportedly showed no lynx presence in either national forest. If true - and a new investigation should get to the bottom of the story - the episode is something less than a scandal. No harm, no foul.

Even so, the foolishness remains. Jeff Koenings, the director of the state Department of Fish and Wildlife, announced on Thursday that he had barred the two state biologists involved from further research, noting that their actions were "extremely embarrassing" and "unprofessional."

Based on the evidence, Koenings' response seems about right. Threatened species research has real consequences: Habitat findings can lead to restrictions on logging and other activities that support human life. In the political realm, such restrictions can only be justified with rock-solid science. Blunders or deceptions that undermine the public's faith in that science do no favor to the Canada lynx and other wild creatures.

17 posted on 01/01/2002 12:30:33 AM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp
Here's an AP article I didn't see posted here before. This was from 12/22/2001...
Two state biologists barred from research over lynx hoax


Associated Press

OLYMPIA -- Two state Department of Fish and Wildlife biologists who sent misleading lynx hair samples for DNA testing will be barred from further research work, their boss said.

Fish and Wildlife director Jeff Koenings said Thursday he was "angry and dismayed" that biologists Tom McCall and Jeff Bernatowiez breached proper scientific protocol while working with federal agencies to survey lynx populations.

"I spent many years training to become a biologist and consider this a slap in the face to myself and other biologists," Koenings said. "Our integrity and professionalism is now being questioned because of the arrogant actions of a few."

Seven state and federal biologists admitted that fur from captive Canadian lynx was added about a year ago to samples from the Wenatchee and Gifford Pinchot national forests, which are not known to have populations of the reclusive cats.

The scientists said they wanted only to ensure the accuracy of the lab's DNA analyses.

The U.S. Forest Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have refused to release the names of the five federal biologists who submitted samples.

Fish and Wildlife Service spokesman Doug Zimmer said his agency has no plans to further discipline the federal biologists involved, though that could change if new information comes out during an investigation by the Interior Department's inspector general.

The Forest Service investigation recommended counseling, and that was done, he said.

"In terms of discipline, it's not that huge an issue internally," Zimmer said.

Koenings' three chief scientists said an independent Forest Service investigation determined that one biologist submitted hair samples from a tanned bobcat pelt for DNA testing in 1999, making up a site number that did not correlate with the national survey numbers.

In 2000, a second biologist submitted a sample from a captive lynx, using a site number from the study but keeping personal records noting the hairs were collected from a captive lynx.

The scientists said the two biologists questioned the accuracy of DNA analyses after the 1998 lynx survey identified lynx in portions of Western Washington and in Oregon using DNA testing.

"It's a way of testing if a lab knows what it's doing," Zimmer said Monday from his office in Lacey. "It was not an attempt to put lynx where they're not."

The action has raised suspicion by timber and recreation groups about the government's intentions in a study of the rare animal's range.

Koenings said even though the samples were never used as part of the study and didn't affect land-use restrictions, the biologists' actions cannot be tolerated.

"What they did will undoubtedly cause many to question the integrity of other important research being conducted by our department and other natural resource agencies," he said. "And that's a shame."


Koenings' three chief scientists said an independent Forest Service investigation determined that one biologist submitted hair samples from a tanned bobcat pelt for DNA testing in 1999, making up a site number that did not correlate with the national survey numbers.

See? It's this kind of detail that tells me it was simply a stupid move by a skeptical researcher. If he wanted to skew the results, he'd have used a real site number.

This sounds like this incident mentioned in the Seattle Times article:

A state fish and wildlife biologist also sent in a hunk of a bobcat pelt in his office.

When the results for the bobcat pelt came back as unidentifiable, the biologist, Tom McCall, didn't try to keep its origin a secret. He laughed and said, "Those samples were taken from old Harry."

Now the other incident, by the Federal biologists, is problematic:

In 2000, a second biologist submitted a sample from a captive lynx, using a site number from the study but keeping personal records noting the hairs were collected from a captive lynx.

18 posted on 01/01/2002 12:48:07 AM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp
" there was no good chain of custody or documentation."

All activities show up in notebooks, field logs, or whatever they use. If the details don't show up there then it's fraud.

This story reads like pure spin. Control samples are always known only by the sender. All samples are labeled so as to ID them, but not reveal details to the lab they are sent to for analysis. There's no point to hanging control samples out for someone else to find them and turn them in as real, unless it's done by an outside agency that documents their actions.

"The unauthorized samples sent to the lab were segregated from valid field samples, so the survey was not skewed, according to the Forest Service."

Pure spin! Control samples are never handled this way.

"The first the lab learned of the unauthorized samples was in September 2000. A Forest Service biologist on his last day on the job before retirement phoned the lab to say biologists were concerned about how the survey was going, and were sending in fur from captive lynx as a control sample. Workers at the lab called the Forest Service, which launched an investigation last February that was completed in June, and determined that the survey was not skewed. The biologists were counseled, but not disciplined. "

This tidbit smells. It sounds like the lab is covering up the fact that they can't distinguish red from green. No one ever tells a lab they are sending control samples like this and folks that send controls are never counseled.

19 posted on 01/01/2002 1:14:15 AM PST by spunkets
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To: sauropod
envirofascism

Humm... that might be a keeper.

20 posted on 01/01/2002 1:58:48 AM PST by backhoe
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Screw the lynx.

Trap these fed f!ck biologists in some inhumane trap and skin them alive. Their Pelts will not be too warm, but the world will be a little less sick and evil.

21 posted on 01/01/2002 2:25:04 AM PST by James Mabry
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To: jennyp
IT MAKES YOU WONDER HOW MANY PAST "STUDIES" WERE MANIPULATED. A KANGAROO RAT HERE, A SPOTTED OWL THERE, A SNAIL DARTER HERE, A LYNX THERE, A SUCKER FISH HERE AND A "SCIENTIST" THERE. NOW WE WONDER HOW MANY "ENDANGERED SPECIES" WERE "PLANTED" IN AN AREA THAT THE ECO-WHACKOS WANTED TO BE WITHOUT PEOPLE. I SEE ARTICLES EVERY DAY THAT START OUT WITH "MANY SCIENTISTS SAY" OR SIMPLY "SCIENTISTS SAY" WITHOUT ANY IDENTIFICATION OF THE "SCIENTISTS". FIND OUT WHO WRITES THE SCIENTIST'S PAY CHECK AND YOU WILL FIND OUT IF HE OR SHE IS NEUTRAL OR HAS A HIDDEN AGENDA WITHOUT SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE. IF THE RADICAL ENVIRONMENTALISTS WANT A WORLD WITHOUT MAN WHY DON'T THEY VOLUNTEER TO BE FIRST TO VACATE A SPACE ON EARTH. THEY WILL NOT...THEY FEEL ONLY THE INFORMED ELITE SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO LIVE.
22 posted on 01/01/2002 4:31:44 AM PST by bobg
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To: backhoe
It is. Consider the dictionary definition of "fascism" and link it with "enviro".

Use of the term is a conscious decision on my part to drive home the point.

'Pod

23 posted on 01/01/2002 5:16:08 AM PST by sauropod
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To: jennyp, kitchen, Carry_Okie, backhoe, AuntB, marsh2, forest, farmfriend
re: Post # 11.

The Hudson piece includes confessions from USFS insiders that they planted the evidence. Smoking gun.

I had the opportunity to exhaustively review and take apart the USFS DEIS for the "Roadless Area Conservation" initiative that His Slickness (in concert w/ the greens) implemented through executive order in the closing days of Term 2.

In that document, Reed Noss (the guy who cooriginated the idea of island biogeography and ecosystems [read "fragmented" "core areas" "Zones of cooperation", etc.]) was quoted extensively.

This was presented as an authoritative source, regardless of the fact of how Noss is funded to do his "research" nor how flaky and arrogant he is.

How can the general public have faith in land management agencies when the EISs produced are so skewed and that the conclusions that people like Noss present are suspect because of who pays them???

My point Jenny, is that this is not about the "scientific method." It is about corruption and the control of land. Our freedom is inextricably linked to the land.

That's what i am trying to get across. When one has seen case after case of this kind of crap going on, i kinda lose a sense of wonder at the particular mechanics of a particular scandal. That is just a slice of the cow paddy pie.

24 posted on 01/01/2002 5:25:49 AM PST by sauropod
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To: sauropod
The paper said that if a whistle-blower hadn't acted, the fake samples would have shut down public lands to protect lynx that weren't actually there.

And give the government biologists exclusive control over their very own private woods. Here's a little something that depicts what's going on with state wildlife biologists, college honors programs, and some of the people involved:
On a related note, last summer’s Phi Theta Kappa’s Campus Honor’s Program held on the SPJC Tarpon Springs Campus did a marvelous job of raising the participants’ consciousness for this year’s honors topic: Our Complex World: Balancing Unity with Diversity. The guest speaker was M. J. M., a columnist for the St. Petersburg Times. She gave us all valuable insights into the necessity of what she called contrarian journalism and its duty to shock a complacent public into seeing that the world really is not as nice a place as people would like to believe.

Her talk was followed by a lively question and answer session. In it she demonstrated just how integrated our society has become by characterizing as two ethnic groups—white and black-- a group comprised of African-Americans, Anglos, Greeks, Hispanics, Indians, Iranians, and Italians. It’s great progress that ethnicity is seen entirely in terms of skin color and that national origin and language are no longer distinguishing characteristics, such as when her Italian grandfather suffered discrimination in the earlier part of the century. I asked her if she didn’t think that a change from when “Italian” was considered a distinct race to now when it was just a last name wasn’t an indication of how much things had improved in a so-called racist nation. No, she said. Things are just as bad as they ever were except that now it's even more insidious because it's not as obvious. One wondered, though, looking at the gradation of skin tone present just how she was assigning whom to which category or why that was even necessary. One participant rose to his feet and declaimed loud and long on how what we really need is love, you know, like what people were saying in the 60's; if we only had that, he said, racial hatred and inter-ethnic misunderstanding would then just disappear.

Before breaking for lunch, we formed groups that represented herds of deer. We alternately decimated and populated our herds by rolling dice and selecting fate or fortune cards. Our Tau Zeta chapter triumphed as Most Viable Deer Herd by remaining equidistant from extinction and overpopulation by the end of our stack of cards. This taught us that survival depends entirely upon a roll of the dice and whatever happens to be in the cards and that reason, learning, and foresight through experience are completely irrelevant.

During lunch I overheard the all-you-need-is-love advocate discussing his passion for the environment with the afternoon speaker, a biologist for the state of Florida. He told her that if he ever saw anyone kill an endangered _____ fill in the blank (I had not heard the name of the species in peril), he would not hesitate to put that person to death or at least knock him out, lock him in the trunk (whether his own trunk or that of the perpetrator of eco-cide was not clear), and then call the authorities. The biologist nodded her head gravely and agreed that man’s abuse of nature was a serious problem. It’s a good thing to know that there are still issues of life and death whose importance transcends the trivialities involved in inter-ethnic relationships and trans-cultural understanding.

After lunch, the honors topic was further reinforced by the aforementioned state biologist of Florida. Before her slide presentation of Florida’s varied and fragile ecosystems and the effects on them of human depredation, she prefaced her remarks by telling us that “like most biologists” she was leery of technology. One exciting slide showed state biologists burning off large sections of forest in an attempt to duplicate what they thought nature would have done had humans not been around. The technology used was impressive.

We then took part in a role playing game—the nutritional struggle of the black bear. Three participants were designated as blind bear, crippled bear, and mother-with-dependents bear. Going outside, we found a section of lawn covered with cards of colored construction paper bearing letters and numbers. Our task was to collect these with the following provisos: we couldn’t run or take more than one card at a time, we had to return each one separately to our den before getting another, we couldn’t take cards from some other bear’s den because, according to the state biologist, “bears wouldn’t do that” (but we could shove another 'bear' out of the way), and we had to wait until all of the cards were collected to find out what their coding meant. The letters stood for types of food and the numbers for pounds of it. We totaled our caloric intake to see whether or not we survived. Of course, the crippled bear, the blind bear, and the single female bear handicapped by dependents failed to survive—thus closely paralleling the Drama of Nature. This role playing taught us that bears are altruistic (though competitive, misogynistic, and insensitive to other bears with disabilities), are incapable of distinguishing one food from another, and always wait till they get home before eating what they have gathered. The exercise was used to underscore the necessity for government programs that would address inquities and preserve diversity.

Though I was initially a little unsure of just what Phi Theta Kappa would entail, this past summer’s Campus Honors Program has allayed my fears and showed me what a great time still lies ahead.

25 posted on 01/01/2002 6:00:14 AM PST by aruanan
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To: jennyp
I guess it would do nothing for your sense of skepticism to read the writings of deep ecologists justifying precisely such fraud in defense of the environment? They're all over the web.
26 posted on 01/01/2002 7:15:30 AM PST by Carry_Okie
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To: jennyp
I guess there's going to be Congressional hearings on this case.

I hope John Dingell has been notified!

27 posted on 01/01/2002 8:11:47 AM PST by Nebullis
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To: jennyp
Sience? What science? Here is a critique of the typical "science" used for managment decisions, such as the Sierra Nevada Frame:

From "Preliminary Report Assessment of Scientific Basis of Management Recommendations regarding Willow Flycatcher Conservation in the Sierra Nevada Framework DEIS" by Fred Dahm, Professor of Statistics, Texas A&M and Wolfgang Pittroff, Asst. Prof. of Range Animal Science UC Davis.

Literature used as a basis of assessment - A "relatively high number of reports on surveys, management activities, observations, and management recommendations which are NOT peer-reviewed. This work is not the result of planned scientific research, and generally not published in widely accessible sources. Such material lacks all aspects of properly verifiable information and is not acceptable as a basis for management decisions."

"The second segment of literature on WF in the Sierra Nevada, peer reviewed publications, is extrmely small. It is noted that none of the studies on which the key allegations contained in the SNF DEIS are based appeared in a premier ornithology, zoology or wildlife management journal."

..."None of the papers listed in Table 1 was free of problems in research design, statistical analysis and appropriateness of conclusions. A clear pattern of improper citations emerged, which eventually led to the impression created by later publications that certain livestock effects on WF had been scientifically proven, while in fact they were never described as anything but speculation in the original publication."

In the conclusion, the authors state: "We could not find any scientific support for any of the statements implicating cattle grazing as the key threat to WF in the Sierra Nevada contained in the DEIS."

Note: The Sierra Nevada Frame has just recently gone through, regardless.

At least some people have gotten wise to this, as in the recent case of the California tiger salamander. (We should all send the Commissioners a note commending them on their sanity in upholding standards of science.) article Salamander kept off endangered species list - Lack of population figures dooms petition before Fish and Game, to landowners' relief By Paul Payne The Press Democrat

State Fish and Game commissioners Friday rejected a bid to list the California tiger salamander as a state endangered species, saying petitioners did not supply sufficient evidence to show the amphibian is at risk in Sonoma and 22 other counties.

The decision was lauded by farming, wine industry and development advocates who feared such a listing would place burdensome restrictions on land use in Sonoma County and bring financial hardship in the millions of dollars.

"We're extremely pleased the commission found weaknesses in the case," said Pam Giacomini of the California Farm Bureau Federation. "It had us worried."

Commissioners voted 2-1 to reject the petition brought by the Center for Biological Diversity to list the salamander after the group failed to provide population estimates.

The vote ran contrary to recommendations by the agency's staff and attorney, a rarity in Fish and Game Commission proceedings.

A vote to apply the listing would have launched a yearlong process to determine whether to permanently list the species. To comply with the endangered species law, landowners and developers in Sonoma County would have had to get permits from Fish and Game before building homes, converting pasture land to vineyards or doing any other activity that might disrupt salamander habitat.

But a string of scientists could not convince Commissioners Mike Chrisman and Michael Flores that studying development and farming on land that is believed to be home to the amphibian is an accurate way to determine its numbers.

Commissioner Sam Schuchat supported the proposed listing.

Preservationists strongly criticized the commission's decision, saying the vanishing salamander, which makes its home in wetlands and grassy plains, is on the way to becoming extinct.

"It's a huge blow," said Sonoma State University biologist Phil Northen, who urged the commission to list the salamander. "An enormously important piece of biodiversity will be lost."

Kassie Siegel, a lawyer for the Center for Biodiversity, said her group would return with a new petition or file a judicial appeal to reverse what she said was an illegal decision.

"The Commission ignored the advice of its legal counsel and its expert staff," Siegel. "It's extremely likely we'll seek judicial review."

The petition to list the salamander was brought in July by the group, which has warned for years that the 8-inch-long, black-and-ivory-striped creature is facing extinction.

After reviewing the petition, Fish and Game staff recommended that the commission consider the salamander for the California Endangered Species List, which includes 287 species including the bald eagle and the California condor.

Sandra Morey, chief of Fish and Game's habitat planning branch, said her findings were based on the Center for Biological Diversity's report, which said salamander habitat across the state had decreased by about 65 percent thanks to urban sprawl.

But biologists admit there have been no studies that precisely pinpoint the locations or populations of the elusive creature, which comes out only at night.

Morey said getting a reliable population estimate would be a difficult task.

Morey's conclusion was backed by commission Assistant Attorney General William Cunningham, who said the lack of specific population figures does not invalidate the petition. Petitioners merely had to prove the possibility that a trend exists, he said.

Commissioners Chrisman and Flores refused to make the salamander a candidate for the endangered species list without the numbers.

"For me to be comfortable, I'm going to need some population data," Chrisman said. "The petition falls short."

Last year, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service listed the tiger salamander as endangered in Santa Barbara County. Landowners and county officials there have since been dealing with a new regulation by the federal agency that they say has resulted in expensive mitigation demands and sometimes outright roadblocks for developers, farmers and grape growers.

In our own local case of California coho, we have not been as lucky. The petition for listing as a California Endangered Species has been accepted and is under further review. This is despite state agency statements that "Historical figures of statewide coho salmon abundance were essentially guesses made by fisheries managers, based on limited catch statistics, hatchery records, and personal observations of runs in various streams."

Of course, the same paucity of data existed at the time of the federal listing of the same coho. That didn't seem to phase federal scientists at the National Marine Fisheries Service: Article by Christine Souza Ag Alert

Donald Reck, a fisheries biologist for NMFS, spoke of coho salmon population estimates and the difficulty that comes with attempting to catch and therefore count adult coho during their spawning migration. During his presentation he was questioned by one [National Academy of Science]committee member.

"That (overhead of data projected on the screen) says to me, you don't know how many salmon there are, you don't know what would constitute a viable population, you don't know the relationship between salmon populations and the flow in the Klamath River, which then says to me you have no idea what is going on with [or] how to make any decisions on flow in the river based on what's going on with the salmon. Have I misunderstood or have you left something out?," the committee member said.

Reck replied by pointing out the amount of effort that the NMFS science center spent developing a status review of coho salmon populations.

"It was peer reviewed and they came up with a determination that basically said 'the fish are threatened' and I am taking that at its value," Reck said. "Do we know exactly how many coho return to the Klamath River every year? No. Do we know how many coho salmon return to each tributary? No. Am I comfortable with the amount of information we have on all of this? Absolutely not. But that is sometimes where we live as we implement the Endangered Species Act."

This was the science that was the basis for taking water from our Klamath Basin farmers last year and is now being used by the state to take water from the remaining downriver farmers. more information

28 posted on 01/01/2002 11:50:06 AM PST by marsh2
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To: sauropod
Close the EPA !!

Stop enviro-nazis terrorism, now !!

Freedom Is Worth Fighting For !!

The Right Of The People To Keep And Bear Arms Shall Not Be Infringed !!

An Armed Citizen, Is A Safe Citizen !!

No Guns, No Rights !!

Molon Labe !!

Happy New Year !!

29 posted on 01/01/2002 12:23:07 PM PST by blackie
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To: spunkets
Thanx for the insight into how these things are done. It's that kind of contextual information I was looking for.
30 posted on 01/01/2002 12:37:31 PM PST by jennyp
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To: Carry_Okie
I guess it would do nothing for your sense of skepticism to read the writings of deep ecologists justifying precisely such fraud in defense of the environment? They're all over the web.

Here's one example (the only one I read so far). I can see why deep ecology is an evil ideology. However, that just makes me skeptical of environmentalists in general terms. Are all biologists "deep ecologists"? Perhaps. Perhaps all Muslims are untrustworthy murderers. Perhaps all Christians are unthinking creationists...

But I just can't forget the original Wash. Times article, which got the whole story rolling of the biologists planting lynx hair on the scratching posts in the wild. It basically put that claim out, said the biologists were "counseled", and the rest of the article was just quotes by antienvironmentalists about how bad enviros are in general. Then other articles came out that seem to get their facts straigh out of the Wash. Times article.

But after reading the Seattle Times article, which says they actually put them into sample vials & (in at least one instance) labeled them in a way that they could never have gotten added to the overall statistics, the original Wash. Times story suddenly looks a lot like its own spin vehicle! Do you still believe they put the lynx hair on the scratching posts?

Again, I want to find out what the actual internal investigation (that several of these articles imply that they have seen) actually says.

A couple months ago, Pericles posted a WSJ article claiming that al-Qaeda had tested uranium in Hilat Koko, a small village in Turkish-held N. Cyprus. But after researching this claim, I & another freeper discovered the author of this widely-quoted WSJ article had misread the Kenyan Embassy bombing trial transcript! In fact there is no Cypriot village called "Hilat Koko". Hilat Koko is a neighborhood in Khartoum, Sudan, where al-Qaeda had a laboratory before they got kicked out of Sudan. They did get uranium from a black market dealer in Khartoum, and they apparently tested it in their lab in Hilat Koko, in Khartoum. Then in the next paragraph the questioning turned to al-Qaeda business interests in Cyprus. The WSJ reporter got her facts mixed up!

Now, in the process of researching this story, I learned about the story of the division of Cyprus for the first time, and as a result I do blame the Turks, which should make certain Greek freepers happy. But the claim that a dirty nuke bomb was tested in Turkish Cyprus is just plain flat out false.

Is the truth important, even if the false version would have made it easier to defend a wider truth? Of course it is.

31 posted on 01/01/2002 1:38:07 PM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp;sauropod;brityank;SierraWasp;snopercod
Are all biologists "deep ecologists"?

No, not all biologists are deep ecologists, but increasing numbers of them are. It is a religion being infused into public schools as a matter of Department of Education policy originating at the UN. Most resource biology and environmental studies departments are now dominated by the philosophy. It is because most such departments are now nearly 50% social scientists (sometimes a majority), and many of them are avowed socialists spouting that very philosophy. Don't believe me, go look. In the not-too-distant future it won't be possible to earn an advanced degree without proper obeiscance to deep ecology. I have watched Bruce Babbit mouth such blather to a roomful of Stanford law students and the lap it up.

Not only does that philosophy dominate universities, it is ubiquitous at the UN and the IUCN. The Earth Charter echoes precisely the central tenets of the philosophy as originally articulated by Mssrs. Naess and Sessions. So, I don't think it quite fits the model of "paranoid theory" as neatly as you intimated. Didn't you?

Oh yes, you did: Perhaps all Muslims are untrustworthy murderers. Perhaps all Christians are unthinking creationists...

Give me a break. If you are going to argue that way, this is the last post I will address to you. You owe me an apology for that kind of crap.

I have personlly investigated false listings of endangered species. I have seen the faked data. I personally know the actors. I have the documentation from the original sources. I have published that documentation. The scientists who produced other papers, falsely cited in the decision to list, have endorsed my book and agreed that both the process and the data were fraudulent.

Is that good enough for you?

So, when I have seen AT LEAST a half-dozen similar fraudulent listings, it starts to develop into a pattern. Upon seeing this case and its flimsy claims to an unsubstantiated interest in scientific rigor, its obvious ideological and professional motives to commit such a fraud (a profit interest), the manner in which it fits the pattern of similar actions elsewhere, the lack of a professional alternative for these employees, and the prior record of the individuals involved and their associations, then the predisposition in the conclusion and the burden of proof starts to shift.

Now, consider how hard it is to get a story like this one publicized and that the USFS is both conducting its own investigation and resisting any oversight. Sorry, it's going to take one heck of an iron-clad case to get me to agree that our lynx biologists deserve anything less than a prompt termination (if nothing else for incompetence) and possibly prosecution under racketeering laws.

Finally, I want you to consider the massively destructive environmental impacts of such listings, the real reason I wrote my book. Fire conflagration, followed by massive weed infestations, destruction of animal habitat, and enormous secondary consequences to both, especially erosion. Note the export of environmental problems to unregulated countries elsewhere and the social consequences to the destruction of a way of life for people with few options. Consider also that the political and financial sponsors of such listings have both a profit interest and the desire to control every aspect of your life and have said as much in writing.

Perhaps jennyp is too willing to believe the Seattle Times.

32 posted on 01/01/2002 2:37:09 PM PST by Carry_Okie
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To: jennyp
You need to realize that there were 3 groups involved. It appears that the 3 groups planned their activities but acted independently.

The Official Version from WDFW states that they can't speak for FS or FWS but their people got their samples from a pelt and a captive linx.

33 posted on 01/01/2002 3:52:13 PM PST by Ben Ficklin
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To: jennyp
"I guess there's going to be Congressional hearings on this case. (Sheesh!) Well, at least the truth will come out, presumably."

JP, LOL!!! Thanks! I needed that. Happy nw year. Peace and love, George.

34 posted on 01/01/2002 4:03:01 PM PST by George Frm Br00klyn Park
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To: Ben Ficklin
Thanks! That was very interesting.
35 posted on 01/01/2002 5:36:27 PM PST by jennyp
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To: Carry_Okie
CO, I'm sorry if my post offended you. You're obviously knowledgable about the general issue, and I wasn't trying to pick a fight with you. I trust your characterization about environmentalism in general. I'm on your side!

It's just that in this particular news item, there are two distinctly different versions of what happened: 1) Biologists planted lynx fur on trapping posts in the wild, which would obviously be a fraudulent attempt to skew the numbers, or 2) biologists put lynx fur samples into sample vials & labeled them in such a way that they never could have been included in the report's numbers, which does not strike me as inherently fraudulent at all.

This is not just a matter of 2 different characterizations of the same story - it's not just 2 competing spins. These are two mutually contradictory sets of specific, hard, factual claims! One of them has to be factually wrong. This is what interests me about the story.

Maybe the confusion comes from this: The 2 WA State biologists were the ones who put them in sample vials with the bogus ID #s - reckless perhaps, but otherwise innocent - which leaves the 5 federal biologists. Maybe they were the ones who put lynx fur on the scratching posts themselves - which would explain where the Wash. Times reporter got that claim from.

CO, IMO all of these stories suffer from a common flaw: None of them completely make clear which set of biologists did which specific act, and so we get 2 conflicting factual claims about what "they" did. But there is no single "they", is there?

These lynx threads have been long on blanket condemnation of envirofascists, which is fine & true. But I saw precious little analysis of the actual facts of the story. Which is why I started this thread in the first place. OK?

36 posted on 01/01/2002 6:25:45 PM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp
Workers at the lab called the Forest Service, which launched an investigation last February that was completed in June, and determined that the survey was not skewed

If a researcher put 16 ounces of lead in a gallon of latex paint, would these "Forest Service" types claim that the survey was not skewed?

It has to be skewed by intrusive data.

37 posted on 01/01/2002 7:58:16 PM PST by zip
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To: jennyp
This was not ONE malcontent. There were seven, count 'em, seven scientists in two (or more) locations. This is a typical tree hugger coverup. period.

Get these evil humans out of my forests.Animals have more rights than them.

38 posted on 01/01/2002 8:04:52 PM PST by zip
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To: jennyp
CO, IMO all of these stories suffer from a common flaw: None of them completely make clear which set of biologists did which specific act, and so we get 2 conflicting factual claims about what "they" did. But there is no single "they", is there?

Which should make you more suspicious of the agency than anyone else. They could have fixed it all with a detailed press release and a show of documentation. As it is, they claim to have acted in a manner that would have required such documents to exist. If they aren't there, cry foul until they do or hang themselves further. In that respect, the WT article was part of the process. Do you think we would ever find out the truth without the publicity?

These lynx threads have been long on blanket condemnation of envirofascists, which is fine & true. But I saw precious little analysis of the actual facts of the story. Which is why I started this thread in the first place. OK?

My concern with your posts has been that they betrayed too much of a propensity to give the agencies the benefit of the doubt (much less the Seattle Times). The tone you assumed seemed more likely to suppress exposure of facts than reveal them.

It also seems as if you hold the belief that it is possible to reconstruct an objective truth. I doubt that it is. I understand your interest in obtaining facts, but now that so much time has expired with these people still at work, still having the opportunity to alter, produce, or destroy evidence, would you trust the documents they produce now?

The problem is, the agency probably isn't trustworthy (at least, that is my experience). So how do you get facts when that agency is conducting their own investigation while obstructing any independent verification? How do you force that oversight without shining the light of publicity on them? How does one do that without either speculating or going with what little one has? Lacking hard facts, probability is all we do have and maybe all we will ever get.

Some may call that unethical as a standard by which to impugn these biologists, and in an isolated case it surely would be. Please note however, that ALL the requirements (and then some) for a case of circumstantial evidence appear to be in hand: motive, means, and opportunity, to which we can add prior record (on the part of agency personnel) and the resistance to external examination of the witnesses and evidence. Under such circumstances as those, taking immediate action to suspend the employees is not only appropriate, it shoud be mandatory. Once it was a criminal investgation, the agency would have to submit the evidence to an independent party. The USFS certainly hasn't made a practice of giving landowners that benefit of the doubt before assessing fines!

39 posted on 01/01/2002 8:26:22 PM PST by Carry_Okie
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To: Carry_Okie
I hear ya.

I'd just be happy to find out who it was Audrey Hudson meant put the hair on the scratching posts vs. who put them in the vials. Presumably what paperwork there was originally still exists, and the WA people's claim that the planted fur was labeled with a "safe" ID could be verified. That would be something.

Meanwhile, on the other thread, No More Gore Anymore pointed out that if they were suspicious of false positives coming from the lab, they should've planted a bobcat sample to see if the lab would score that as a lynx. That makes perfect sense! (& therefore hurts badly the biologists' claim, especially since it was 3 different groups of people supposedly making the same logical error.)

Thanks for your thorough responses. It's been a fascinating discussion. I have faith the truth will pretty much get shaken out of the mix eventually.

40 posted on 01/01/2002 9:50:33 PM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp
No More Gore Anymore pointed out that if they were suspicious of false positives coming from the lab, they should've planted a bobcat sample to see if the lab would score that as a lynx. That makes perfect sense!

It should. I said the same thing in post #8 on this thread.

41 posted on 01/01/2002 10:16:05 PM PST by Carry_Okie
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To: jennyp
Richard Pryor, when caught in the act: "Who you gonna believe, woman; ME or your lying eyes?"
42 posted on 01/02/2002 8:26:01 AM PST by meadsjn
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To: jennyp
"I don't know yet, but the initial stories claimed the scientists had placed lynx hair on the scratching posts out in the wild. This would've clearly been an attempt at fraud. But now it looks like they simply put control samples into some of the sample containers they sent to the lab."

Let's get the order straight:

The "salting" on scratching posts was done in the 1998 'study'.

The 'control samples' were sent later, to cover their a$$ after they got wind down the grapevine that they had been snitched off by some of their cohorts.

43 posted on 01/02/2002 9:39:45 AM PST by editor-surveyor
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To: Carry_Okie
"If this description were true, this case should have been written up in advance as a single-blind test to validate the lab. Where is a dated document detailing the experimental design? Without that document, (and they surely would present it if they had it), this looks to me like a piece of crooked spin"

Right. Exactly my point.

44 posted on 01/02/2002 9:44:49 AM PST by cake_crumb
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To: jennyp
"Perhaps all Christians are unthinking creationists... "

Thanks for coming out for all here to see.

You just have no intellectual honesty, do you?

45 posted on 01/02/2002 10:06:25 AM PST by editor-surveyor
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To: editor-surveyor
Let's get the order straight:

The "salting" on scratching posts was done in the 1998 'study'.

The 'control samples' were sent later, to cover their a$$ after they got wind down the grapevine that they had been snitched off by some of their cohorts.

Where do you get that from? None of the articles say that, do they? The 1998 study was discredited because the lab screwed up. Nobody has claimed fur was planted in the 1998 study. If you think otherwise, then please point me to the article that says so. The hairs were sent in in 1999 & 2000.

46 posted on 01/02/2002 11:22:55 AM PST by jennyp
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To: Carry_Okie

No More Gore Anymore pointed out that if they were suspicious of false positives coming from the lab, they should've planted a bobcat sample to see if the lab would score that as a lynx. That makes perfect sense!

It should. I said the same thing in post #8 on this thread.

No, I understand your point that these guys were recklessly acting on their own & not following a good protocol in any sense. I was referring to where NMGA pointed out that if their story was true, they should've been salting the data with bobcat hair instead of lynx hair, to smoke out false positives. Salting the data with lynx hair, as they did, would only smoke out false negatives - which contradicts their story.
47 posted on 01/02/2002 11:26:59 AM PST by jennyp
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To: jennyp;ALL

Efforts to manage wildlife under the already controversial Endangered Species Act have been hurt by the seven federal and state scientists who sent bogus lynx-hair samples to a lab.

The incident wounded the scientific credibility of state and federal agencies that turn to science to defend politically unpopular decisions, from turning off irrigation ditches for salmon to silencing chain saws for spotted owls.

It sure does. IMO, this faltering or fraud (call it what you will) is just one more reason why the government should own as little land as possible. Let private sector business utilize it. How about a network of FreeRepublic Patriot's Parks all across the country. 

If a person or group of people want to protect a species let them buy the land and preserve it for that purpose.

48 posted on 01/02/2002 12:11:04 PM PST by Zon
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To: jennyp
"Where do you get that from? None of the articles say that, do they?"

You are right, the articles that you have inserted do not say that, but it is the only logical conclusion that is supported by all of the facts available.

When a jury deliberates, it is usually what pertinant facts they were NOT told that they have to figure out, is it not?

49 posted on 01/02/2002 12:36:30 PM PST by editor-surveyor
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To: jennyp
Here is what I said in #6: this case should have been written up in advance as a single-blind test to validate the lab.

Jenny, what one does in a single-blind test is submit test samples to the lab from two populations, known and unknown. In this case they would have been captive samples and field samples. Whether the known samples were lynx or bobcat is immaterial to the point.

50 posted on 01/02/2002 1:22:48 PM PST by Carry_Okie
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