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Deb Foskey – Cat Hater

By johnboy 17 November 2005 27

Deb Foskey pushed out a horrified media release (below) this afternoon. The Liberals had mocked her anti-cat crusade!

Yes, a cat out at night is a killing machine, no question. But what sort of environment is it predating again? After we’ve bulldozed the trees, built roads, fences, houses, laid concrete all around and planted whatever we think looks pretty why exactly are we getting bent out of shape about what tiddles gets up to?

Steve Pratt rubbed salt in the wounds when he put out this mocking media release.

Interesting to see Steve standing up for the freedoms of cats considering his attitude towards the freedoms of his fellow Canberrans.

UPDATED: *THE* National Geographic have picked up on this story.

Thurs 17 Nov 2005

Roaming cats or native birds

ACT Greens MLA Deb Foskey expressed her shock today that the Liberal Party thought the destruction of native wildlife around Canberra was a trivial and laughable matter.

“Last year the ACT Greens argued for new suburbs abutting nature parks to be declared cat free” Dr Foskey said today.

“I supported the Government’s cat containment legislation today as the next best option, as it seeks to put some controls on cats near these vulnerable areas.”

“Liberal MLA’s mocked the Cat Containment Bill today, arguing that it was a waste of the Assembly’s time. Given that it seeks to limit the damage caused to small native animals by uncontrolled cats living in or near protected habitat, I can only presume that the Canberra Liberals consider the conservation of native animals and ecological systems a joke.”

“In supporting the Bill today I also argued for cat licensing and micro-chipping, and for mandatory de-sexing.”
“This is not about attacking responsible cat owners, it is about putting some controls in place to deal with very real environmental and animal welfare problems.”
“It is salutary to consider the RSPCA had to deal with 1600 unwanted kittens last year; clearly only a fraction of unplanned feline pregnancies around Canberra” Dr Foskey said.

Roland Manderson Media Advisor
ACT Greens MLA Deb Foskey Legislative Assembly for the ACT ph(02)62050551 m 0412241379
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Deb Foskey – Cat Hater
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Kerces 5:04 pm 21 Nov 05

Last comment on this string from me.

Thread, even, Roland.

Roland GRNS 4:55 pm 21 Nov 05

Last comment on this string from me.

I’m quite happy that Cwth funding is helping to remove invasive plants. I do think that’s a victory. The point was that we may not need currawong containment legislation as well.

I, we, have never argued that feral cats are OK and should be left alone. Clearly they are a problem and need to be removed. [Desexing domestic cats would assist.]

Suburbs right next to valuable ecological systems do bring more (domestic) cats with them. and so some control is better than none.

thanks for all the fish. or is that legless lizards?

Thumper 2:27 pm 21 Nov 05

Cat free suburbs are pointless unless cats have recently been issued with road maps.

How about looking at free de-sexing, compulsory bells, cat curfews and/ or trapping at night.

Keep them out of the bush by all means and keep them in at night if possible but given the nature of canberra with its greenbelts, you can never keep them from killing wildlife.

And yes, I do believe I first heard this proposal from the ALP.

However, as you say, urban landcare/ bushcare/ creekcare groups are removing noxious weeds from the urban interface and parklands yet surely this is a territory government responsibility?

The groups doing the clean up are generally funded through Commonwealth government grants through AFFA and DEH so its a little bit rich to claim this as a major victory in environmental care.

The Molonglo Valley is destined for development. The amount and diversity of fauna and flora in that area is exceptional. Development will destroy most of that. Why not lobby the government to look at other ways than destroying such an area and kicking people of the land?

Maelinar 2:25 pm 21 Nov 05

Roland, the greenies I know and respect generally wear brown pants and brown shirts, or similar colours. I was referring to those greenies who wear clothing that can only at best be described as ‘flowing’. They are the greenies that worry me. They get on their high horse, and rant for all to hear, but woe betide if it’s a problem outside their view from their cul-de-sac.

My point regarding wild cats was more aimed at them being just yet another introduced species when you rule out their domestic nature.

You are misled if you believe that a suburb will be cat-free by virtue of there being a cat containment area or cat-free zone, they will still be there, they just won’t be the type of cats that come in at night. They are an offspring of suburban development, and wherever there are cats, there will be feral cats on the streets. Last time I checked, cats still hadn’t developed the skill to read, so they won’t differentiate between one side of a street to another.

As I stated earlier, I hope that the greens aren’t trying to protect the weakest members of the herd to spite the lions, cause that’s going against the very nature you are trying to conserve.

Roland GRNS 1:29 pm 21 Nov 05

I din’t bother putting in all the details of policy – ie what to do about feral cats (make slippers out of them?), the fact that invasive plants are no longer sold by nurseries, and urban parkcare groups are actually removing them fro our nature parks etc etc.

I did mention that cat groups would like all people to control their cats at all times. Not just in suburbs near endangered ecosystems.

But let’s not let logic get in the way of a good rant.

Of course none of those arguments justify an attack on the Greens for their dress sense. Strangely, Greens tend to be diverse, as do most political and cultural groups. It’s worth remembering – in this day and age – that racism and bigotry flow from a similar simplification of people who do not share your world view or experience.

The endangered ecological system, a fraction of which is at mulligan’s flat, warrants protection from rural and urban land use.

How we do that, or how much we do that, is of course a question of degree.

By the way, it’s nice that ranters credit us with all the power in the world, but the cat containment idea was the government’s solution (they also talk to conservationists etc) – the Greens were advocates for those two new suburbs being cat free.

terubo 12:55 pm 21 Nov 05

“Only thing different about them is their wanky dress sense, and all that incence…”
-I am incenced by all of the above (not to mention incensed).

Maelinar 12:08 pm 21 Nov 05

Roland, Thumper and I discussed this topic on Friday at the discussion centre, and given that the both of us are heavily involved within the environmental fields that the federal government are doing, we still came to the conclusion that Johnboys initial comment is the most correct.

After we’ve bulldozed the trees, built roads, fences, houses, laid concrete all around and planted whatever we think looks pretty why exactly are we getting bent out of shape about what tiddles gets up to?

I for one am getting bloody sick and tired of urban greenies who whinge and carry on like ripe tomatoes about the latest problem to infect their back yard.

Yes a green, sustainable policy is good. However, let me run a hypothesy by you; If a wild cat in the wild kills birds etc to live, how is that different to a tame cat in the wild killing birds etc ?

Albeit domestic cats are (generally) fed by their owners, most of what is going on is nature taking it’s course.

I’d hate for the greens to start advocating a policy of protecting the weakest member of the herd, and therefore culling lions.

If these species are so highly protected, then development should not have been allowed to take place in the first place – I’m not about to argue that point, as there are further factors involved.

Are we so worried about the problem that we’re nationally protecting the habitat, not just from within suburbia, but within rural areas as well ?

Again, SUV based greenies are a waste of time and cloud otherwise good greens policy with their own individual ‘make-them-feel-good-about-themselves’ crap.

It’s just suburban wannabe hippies playing at being greenies, when in reality their garbage bin is as full as their neighbours on rubbish day, and their Subaru Forrester looks just like everybody elses in the carpark. Only thing different about them is their wanky dress sense, and all that incence…

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