GoDaddy CEO draws fire for killing an elephant, posing with carcass

Discuss

169 Responses to “GoDaddy CEO draws fire for killing an elephant, posing with carcass”

  1. mkultra says:

    Any CEO who would approve the marketing campaigns they have run over the years has already earned “asshole” status in my book.

    This is just the bloody topping on the cake.

  2. grikdog says:

    The difference, elephants have brains, and they were here before buck-nekkid apes.

    Yes, I’ve met (and worked for, a few brief months) Bob Parsons. He frowned at my baseball cap, of which the wearing was not allowed inside Parsons Tech, but he didn’t fly into a legendary anti-ballcap rage as I was lead to expect. I think was mellowing out just before he sold the company to Broderbund or whoever.

    Back then, his Papa Hemingway impersonation just extended to running with the bulls in Pamplona. The Kilimanjaro schtick has been overdone, so he’ll probably skip it; besides, he was a Marine, not a Spanish Civil War medic, and for all I know, still has all his hot dogs.

  3. GreenJello says:

    Who? The rogue elephant destorying crops, forcing people to starve to death, or the CEO killing said elephant, and letting the people eat it?

    • emmdeeaych says:

      Letting the people eat it? Letting? If it needs to be killed, they could kill it themselves. Great White Hunter not required.

      • Gawain Lavers says:

        Killing an elephant is a non-trivial activity, cf. George Orwell (http://orwell.ru/library/articles/elephant/english/e_eleph). African farmers who have trouble growing enough food to feed themselves are not going to have the funds for firearms and ammunition, much less the kind of firearms necessary to kill a bull elephant.

        While I’m sure Mr. Parsons is an asshole, and I’m sure he goes to Africa to kill elephants first and help villagers a distant second, it sounds like he has an understanding of the dynamics of the situation, which is a very difficult one. Having annihilated, in the Continental US, any animal large enough to cause human beings significant trouble, we don’t often understand the difficulty of humans and top predators (or in this case, top herbivores) living in close proximity.

        • emmdeeaych says:

          Without your kind words I might have continued to foolishly assume people were capable of solving their own problems. Thank you for setting me straight on my inability, as well as the inability of Africans, to comprehend or effectively manage African animals. It’s a good thing we have CEO’s with such a sense of noblesse obligé, truly his works should be immortalised.

          Three more seasons and the locals could make him an ivory throne. Go Daddy!!!

      • Anonymous says:

        If it needs to be killed, they could kill it themselves. Great White Hunter not required.

        Sure, but if it needs to be killed, then why not him? Why is an American hunting an elephant worse than a Zimbabwean? Is it worse simply because Parson wants to do it?

        Parson may indeed be an asshole whose primary motivation is simply to score a big kill, but if the culling was actually necessary, then I don’t know why people care so much about who actually does it.

    • Anonymous says:

      Destorying crops: the practice of removing books from potential foodstuffs.

    • genre slur says:

      If there’s an elephant forcing any Africans to starve to death, it’s USA’s GOP, bwahahahahahaha!

  4. Ito Kagehisa says:

    Deer are killed by automobiles on the road in front of my house once or twice a month, on average. More during the rut and fewer in the depths of winter. If they are unpleasantly close I drag them into the woods for the scavengers. Sometimes the deer are hard to drag because people keep running over the corpses, and pieces get scattered about.

    In contrast, most of the local hunters eat their kill. Those that do not, pay to have the meat butchered and delivered to the local soup kitchens and homeless shelters. This helps slightly reduce demand for cattle raised in gruesome feedlots.

    Sustainable hunting is one of the most morally, ethically, and pragmatically defensible things humans do. Without wolves, and only one or two catamounts in the area, humans are the only effective population control for our deer. Letting them overpopulate and starve would have devastating effects on the entire local ecosystem, particularly other herbivores who would also suffer after the deer stripped everything down to bare wood.

    Bob Parsons, however, reminds me of a difficult and ignorant child – please do not take this as a defense of Parsons!

  5. Anonymous says:

    [insert link to Reindeer Island bb entry here]

    [insert generic 'circle of life' platitude here]

    [insert 'DEER TOOK OUR CORNS' jerbs joke here]

    I think that about wraps the comments for this evening, thanks for coming and goodnight.

  6. Anonymous says:

    @GreenJello – ‘Cause an elephant knows what a crop is. Smrt.

  7. Jake0748 says:

    you said it sister.

    • jacques45 says:

      Fencing doesn’t deal with the overpopulation. The deer will continue to multiply until they can’t sustain themselves and starve en masse.

      There are “non-violent” methods, but they’re expensive when you’re talking big picture and not just some subdivision in the suburbs. Can you justify massive increases in a state budget for the $400-800 per deer it costs to relocate deer? Or the $300+ per deer for what’s essentially deer abortion pills? Or the $1000+ per deer for contraception? Or the $22,000 per deer for capture and sterilisation? I’d rather that $15 million to $50 million of the state’s budget going to things that can benefit humans instead of trying to appease a bunch of snarky animal-rights activists that drive up from cities to tell us how to live our lives.

      • travtastic says:

        The deer will continue to multiply until they can’t sustain themselves and starve en masse

        In all seriousness, what do you think happens to every other wild population? Every other wild population that has ever existed?

        So now it’s not your farms, it’s glorious humanity saving the deer by killing them? Should we cull every population of every species on earth, that’s not in perfect steady-state population levels?

        It’s not rhetorical. Does the global ecosystem only work with humanity pushing all the right buttons and pulling all the right levers.

        instead of trying to appease a bunch of snarky animal-rights activists that drive up from cities to tell us how to live our lives.

        I feel that you might possibly be betraying your actual feelings and motivations with this sentence.

        • Mister44 says:

          There are so many deer at one of our parks, they are doing culls. http://www.kctv5.com/news/22465599/detail.html

          What the article doesn’t mention is something like 75% of them have an STD. What sluts. Delicious as jerky sluts.

          Culls ARE part of nature because WE are part of nature. It is defiantly more humane to shoot them than let them starve to death or get hit by a car.

          When it gets snowy – and it was a lot of the time this year – we have deer in the yard looking for stuff. One really tore up my mimosa tree :o/

          • travtastic says:

            Culls ARE part of nature because WE are part of nature.

            Man, you can justify a lot of really nasty things with a ridiculously simplistic statement like that. Don’t just limit yourself to deer, dude!

            War? Natural! Domestic abuse? Part of the larger ecosystem, rock on!

            Now you try.

          • Mister44 says:

            re: “Culls ARE part of nature because WE are part of nature.”

            “Man, you can justify a lot of really nasty things with a ridiculously simplistic statement like that. Don’t just limit yourself to deer, dude!”

            Yes – let’s logically extrapolate controlling animal populations into controlling human populations. Give me a fucking break.

            How does nature control deer or rabbit population? They either starve to death when it gets too big, or are kept in check by predators. Who is the most bad ass predator? Well Predator, but the second most bad ass predator is man.

            So in the example of deer populations, unless we want to introduce wolves back into the equation, there is only one other predator up to the task.

            And then there is the problem that once the top predator gets the population back down, THEY starve because their numbers are now too high. Nature is a cold bitch.

          • travtastic says:

            Yes – let’s logically extrapolate controlling animal populations into controlling human populations. Give me a fucking break.

            But I thought we were all nature? What’s the difference, then? Seriously. Explain how your logic applies in one place but not the other.

            I though that you were implying that humans were natural animals, so our predation is natural. Is the predation the only natural part, then?

          • Mister44 says:

            OK, wismerimer.

            First off – it is ridiculous to apply this to humans, or to apply any line of thinking across unrelated areas. You generally shoot a horse who breaks a leg, but we oblivious don’t do that to humans. If a human needed thousands of dollars worth of medical care (for like a splinter), people will do what they can to make that happen. If it is your cat or dog, you are most likely going to put them down unless you have the extra funds.

            We are the top predator. Unless Predator comes down to cull us, we don’t cull ourselves. Wolves don’t eat one another. Hawks don’t hunt one another. The predators cull the prey, not one another.

          • Anonymous says:

            Ooh, a biology quiz! Which of the following is false?
            A) Predators never eat their own kind
            B) Humans never limit population through intra-species violence
            C) Prey species are never part of controlling the population of predators
            D) All of the above
            For two bonus points, explain in your own words the term “naturalistic fallacy”.

          • travtastic says:

            You generally shoot a horse who breaks a leg, but we oblivious don’t do that to humans. If a human needed thousands of dollars worth of medical care (for like a splinter), people will do what they can to make that happen. If it is your cat or dog, you are most likely going to put them down unless you have the extra funds.

            Which is going against the natural order of things, like predation. So let’s just stop.

        • jacques45 says:

          I feel that you might possibly be betraying your actual feelings and motivations with this sentence.

          I’m betraying my feelings that I think you view this in black and white terms without understanding the problems that people outside of your world experience. And I’m motivated because my area derives a large amount of their economy from milk, cheese, cows, goats, and other agriculture. And they depend on the availability of the crops in our short growing season which would be threatened by unchecked deer growth. You may be willing to sacrifice the well-being of an entire economy’s livelihood to save what are the rural equivalent of rats from a fate that’s no worse than their eventual end in the wild, but that’s not a reasonable proposition.

          At $20 a quart, deer off would cost $217 an acre, and needed 2x a year. And the fencing would run $332 an acre. There’s 1.2 million acres dedicated to farms here. That may work to keep deer out on small farms, but you’re still ignoring the overpopulation issue and the economic feasibility.

          The deer population around me is a problem because we as humans caused the local mountain lion and wolf population to disappear, leading to huge growth. And it’s obviously not as simple as reimporting a bunch of those predators back here. Other animal populations have natural predators. It is also not unusual to cull other species that become invasive. Cullings involving fish, snakes, birds, and rabbits have been in the news recently.

          • travtastic says:

            Whether we’re talking about deer or elephants or stray cats, you’re making it seem like that 1.2 million acres makes a difference. 1.2 million acres is roughly 1.2 million times as productive as one acre.

            It’s like saying that you can’t afford new flooring because you live in a 50,000 square foot house. If you can afford the house, you can afford the flooring.

            So the question is, what do the non-violent means cost per acre, in relation to the financial yield of that acre? The Africans I’m sure are poor enough to have to worry about it. But there’s probably something low-tech they can make themselves. If not, I’m sure there’s also something more reliable than rich white dudes with rifles that we could ship over for a pittance.

            ———

            On a side-note, you’re wrong in your cost estimate anyway. Unless you plan to diligently mark off a bunch of 209ftx209ft squares and individually fence off each one, it would cost a fraction of what you quoted. The acres in the middle don’t need fenced, and none of the outer ones would need fenced on more than 3 sides. The majority on only one.

      • travtastic says:

        Low-cost fence keeps deer out: An inexpensive, slanted fence can stop deer from damaging fruit crops.

        The fence can be lifted from the bottom to mow underneath because the eight-foot long posts are just resting on the ground.

        “The cost of the fence beats anything I’ve ever seen in my life,” Wave said, adding that he put up a half-mile fence for 40 cents per foot.

        ————–

        Havahart Deer-Off Concentrate

        1 quart yields 8 quarts of ready to use spray application that lasts up to 3 months. Covers approx 4,000 sq ft.

        ————–

        And to guide this slightly back on topic, there are plenty of low-cost solution to keep elephants away from impoverished farmers’ crops. I’m not sure what’s going to happen the next time an elephant decides to munch on some crop land, unless Mr. GoDaddy is going to take up permanent residence.

      • Antinous / Moderator says:

        Why are we talking about deer? It doesn’t have anything to do with elephants. Deer are not threatened. They’re cute, but they’re basically rats big enough to get a roast off of.

        • jacques45 says:

          Elephant hunting is distasteful in places where their population is threatened. It is especially troubling when combined with an oppressive regime like Zimbabwe that directly benefits when people like this guy pay exorbitant fees to hunt elephants which are undoubtedly more endangered in the area than the government there is reporting. But nuisance animals can’t always be dealt with using “non-violent” methods (especially not an angry wild animal weighting 4 tons), and villagers in a literal life-and-death situation are probably happy for the food.

          My original point before I took the OT bait was that there are legitimate reasons for hunting, and discounting all those who hunt (and not just this jerk CEO) as “assholes” as the anon did is myopic.

          • travtastic says:

            If you would care to look here, we can see that you in fact took no bait. As there was no bait to take. You brought it up.

            But I have to stress that rich adventurers with big guns and their Youtube accounts does not a sustainable economy make.

            People this poor need our help with farming practices and proper equipment, they don’t need our violence.

          • Anonymous says:

            I think the fact people are describing Mr. Parsons as an asshole is not only because he killed an elephant, but because he is trying to spin this as some sort of humanitarian effort that feeds starving villagers. That he cynically adorns with his company’s logo in video footage. In an oppressed country who’s corrupt government he is supporting with these safari hunts.

            So basically, it’s not that he’s an asshole just for taking pleasure in killing an endangered animal, but for doing so with no apparent wildlife authority sanctioning it, in a country ravaged by a brutal despot, and then trying to paint the whole thing as some gallant effort on his part to provide for needy locals when the costs for his little safari would certainly have done orders of magnitude more good for the people there than killing a random elephant and letting them strip the carcass.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Can someone point to some info on registars and how to move my domains to them? Please and thanks.

    • glimmung says:

      I use http://joker.com/ and am very happy – that’s where I am moving my GoDaddy stuff to. easyDNS are good, but really a premium DNS provider, so maybe a bit pricey just for domain registration.

    • Anonymous says:

      why would you want to go there for I know of host that are only 10.00 per month give you a free domain for sign up and if you payed the fat daddy for all those extras that are free at a real host you would spend 90.00 a month

    • north says:

      Hover.com
      Give them your info and they do all the moving for you.

  9. jjsaul says:

    Any recommendations for hosts, or good review comparisons? It’s one of those topics that’s tough to filter in a search with all the SEO wharble-garble noising up the results.

  10. Anonymous says:

    I don’t know if this guy is an asshole because I don’t know him. From what I see Bob Parson is doing what America always does: going into other countries for a killing and defending this by saying it was a humanitarian action.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Rogue elephant destroying crops? By rogue elephant you mean wild? Give me a break.

  12. dculberson says:

    I actually thought his explanation seemed pretty reasonable. Any reason it isn’t?

    • grimc says:

      An alternative would be non-lethal methods combined with agricultural development assistance. ‘Course, that would reduce the possibility of assholes being able to get their John Huston on and play Great White Hunter.

  13. Xof says:

    When I think of a skany, ethically-dubious, technologically-incompotent North Las Vegas casino of a domain registrar, I immediately think, “There’s a CEO who really understands the detailed nuances of wildlife management policy in Zimbabwe!”

    I am sure that the absolutely most cost-effective way that Mr Parsons can help villages in Zimbabwe is to fly himself over there and stage a hunt to kill an elephant. The resemblance to a publicity stunt is, I am certainly, purely coincidental.

  14. washington says:

    OMG he fed starving villagers and helped farmers. What an asshole.

    • Anonymous says:

      He could’ve sent them food that didn’t require killing any elephants for the $ he spent on a safari. Plus they could stop pushing their farms into what little space is left for wildlife.

      I have a nagging suspicion his “charity act” was just an excuse to act like a tough guy instead of the soft pudgy executive he is.

  15. traalfaz says:

    I came in totally ready to move my domains, but honestly, I agree with him. This doesn’t seem like a trophy hunt, they were discouraging the herd from destroying cropland, and the animal was not wasted.

  16. Sayes says:

    The guy who killed my breakfast this morning might be an asshole, but I ate it anyway.

  17. tylerkaraszewski says:

    Yeah, these people were totally incapable of killing and eating an elephant themselves without having a ridiculously wealthy American fly halfway around the world to kill it for them.

    He’s obviously doing this to help the villagers, and not for the thrill of killing an elephant.

    • emmdeeaych says:

      Exactly.

      Tis ours, the dignity they give to grace / The first in valour, as the first in place; / That when with wondering eyes our martial bands / Behold our deeds transcending our commands, / Such, they may cry, deserve the sovereign state, / Whom those that envy dare not imitate!

  18. EH says:

    You know, this is quite the charitable view, but I figure if you’re famous and you want to hunt a large animal, people are going to find out when you do it. I imagine he wanted to do it first, then figured out the best-benefit way to do it, or maybe he read about this situation and it fit into his hunting dreams. “I’d like to hunt any of the huge animals…hey look, an elephant that needs shootin’!” It’s still got its negatives and time will tell what sticks, PR-wise, but there’s really no other way he could have done this without a shitstorm. Now, whether anybody should *want* to hunt a large animal is another argument.

  19. Anonymous says:

    Two points, elephant shit aside:

    1) Bob is not a ‘technical incompetent’. He created the program that eventually became Quicken.

    2) Bob is not a pasty pudgy office exec. He is ex-Marine and still in fighting shape.

    Having worked for him directly, I like the man. He is not an evil-hearted person, just on the megalomaniac side.

    disclaimer: I left the company early on, on bad terms due to managerial politics I didn’t see coming.

  20. Stonewalker says:

    While I find the whole situation a little strange, I don’t see anything wrong with what he did. If animals and humans are to exist in the same areas then there are going to be some casualties. From what I could gather, these elephants are not in any danger of dieing out and from his words it sounds as if he has studied elephant biology and culture at least a bit and tried to kill the elephant that would have the least effect on the herd.

    That being said, I think elephants are fascinating and they seem to be one of a few species that have some sort of “culture” and they certainly seem to have the closest thing to human feelings out of the animal kingdom.

    Life is rough.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Yes Parsons is an asshole but killing this elephant isn’t quite the terrible crime some of you are making this out to be. The villagers needed something to be done about these elephants. Many of you are chiming in that Parsons should have donated food, food is only temporary. They need to be able to grow food and sustain themselves. So yes I understand that to many of you killing cute elephants for population control and management is horrible terrible but for the people of the village it is a necessary evil. By the way the people saying the village should kill the elephant are crazy. This village doesn’t have the money for the fire ams needed for that task. Maybe you’d prefer a few villagers die while trying to scare them off or kill them with inadequate weapons.

    • Anonymous says:

      Many of you are chiming in that Parsons should have donated food, food is only temporary.

      But killing one elephant will fix problems for all time?

    • travtastic says:

      Some of us would prefer that we not be faced with false moral choices.

      See above. Killing an elephant or 12 is just as temporary as food aid. No one needs to be shooting anything.

      These people need:
      1) Interest-free loans
      2) Free access to our huge knowledge base of sustainable farming techniques
      3) To be treated like human beings with quality-of-life issues, not broken machines that we can fix with bullets and pity.

      They do not need:
      1) Idiots destroying a vital part of the ecosystem that they make a living off of, and live inside of.
      2) More violence: there is no shortage of it.
      3) Reliance on previously-cited idiots as a primary source of income and food, when that can and will dry up completely, leaving them worse off than they were before.

      • Kieran O'Neill says:

        I’d certainly agree that it’s far from the most ideal way of supporting impoverished communities in Zimbabwe, and you’re absolutely right on what people need locally (I would add research into marginalised diseases as well as low-cost healthcare solutions as “4″).

        But for the “not need”, well:

        1. Zimbabwe has a *lot* of elephants (~100,000?), while hunting permits are expensive and few. Also, the ecosystem around an agrarian village is far from natural, and may have no place for elephants. Even in “natural” habitat, it can happen that elephants breed out of control and start to damage the habitat for other species, necessitating culls.

        2. In much of sub-Saharan African, ritually sacrificing a goat or other animal on special occasions is an integral part of people’s cultural heritage. I don’t think shooting an elephant is any more violent than the cultural norm.

        3. Zimbabwe is not in the best place right now, and a lot of people are in a very non-ideal situation. If a few people can get by from exploiting some rich first-worlder, I don’t grudge them that. It’s not the best way to help them, but really, on the scale of problems facing Zimbabweans right now, this is pretty minor.

        • travtastic says:

          1) 100,000 is a large number, I’ll grant, but not in terms of an entire country’s land area. There’s no reason whatsoever that elephants and people can’t coexist. Killing a thousand elephants will no nothing to control population, unless they start exclusively killing females.
          2) Well, that’s kind of fucked up too. I’m not going to grant them a pass in my book for that, while saying that the culture of stupid white dudes is wrong for killing elephants.
          3) The scale of a problem doesn’t negate the problem’s existence. This is much the same argument as when people say to not worry about the nuke plants in Japan, because of the tsunami. Or that “we have bigger issues to handle!” elsewhere. It doesn’t matter. A problem is a problem. And it’s another problem if we’re going to pretend that this is 100% a villager issue, and none of it to do with the elephants. One doesn’t have to be a treehugger to think that the elephant probably doesn’t want to be shot, and his death will have an effect on the rest of the herd.

  22. emmdeeaych says:

    The short happy career of Francis Macomber?

  23. Anonymous says:

    @selfsimilar You are so right. I’m not sure where everyone gets the idea that these elephants are endangered, but reserves in Southern Africa (where I currently live) are often forced to come up with creative solutions to overpopulation. Sometimes they can move a herd, sometimes they can’t. It’s always sad when elephants need to be culled, but it is a necessary action to prevent damage not only to human crops and settlements, but the ecosystem in general. An overpopulation of elephants will decimate the local flora, and they will often hurt each other when there is not enough terrain.

    I don’t like the idea of killing for sport, but if this elephant was indeed a problem and endangering local villagers I understand their actions. Sure, Bob Parsons may be an asshole, but let’s have the facts before we condemn (in this instance) him for anything other than blowing his own horn rather annoyingly.

  24. Dave Rattigan says:

    I wasn’t sure what to think when I first investigated this and saw what appeared to be reasonable arguments why this kind of thing is ethical. I still don’t know what to think.

    On the other hand, I knew straight away what to think when rival companies started cashing in on the controversy by spamming Twitter with “Save the elephants by transferring your domains to us.” Tasteless. And the activists on my Following list were actually aiding this cynical BS by retweeting it.

  25. tylerkaraszewski says:

    Moving my domains off of them now. This is just the straw that broke the camel’s back, I was tired of their ridiculous constant upselling bullshit anyway.

  26. Antinous / Moderator says:

    The predators cull the prey, not one another.

    You might want to do a little more research on that one.

  27. Shart Tsung says:

    I liked the Elephantmen post much more than this one.

  28. Robert says:

    My own two cents. I’m a vegetarian (not a vegan), and I’m capable of seeing shades of moral grey with everything. I don’t claim to be a saint myself.

    That said, I do view hunting of large, social mammals like elephants and whales to be particularly problematic. These are highly-intelligent animals that can live longer than us and have high-developed social networks. E.g., elephants show express signs of grief when a “friend” is killed, and will continue to visit the body for a long time.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elephant_intelligence

    I don’t condone killing fish, cows or chickens for food, but at least they aren’t likely to be too concerned if Betsy is there one day, and gone the next.

    I’m not an expert on supposed elephant overpopulation in Africa, but this guy is the last person I’d trust to give a nuanced view of the situation or pick the optimal way to resolve it. He’s just looking for a justification to kill big things. As others have noted, there are likely other ways to maintain peace between people and the elephants. Also, the money that he probably spent on first-class airfare to get there could have done a lot better being spent on feeing a number of orphans or digging a lot of wells. (Insert your Sally Struthers joke here…)

  29. Gawain Lavers says:

    To wit:

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2011/03/30/state/n054543D83.DTL

    Christ, what an asshole!

    We don’t even tolerate the presence of animals that might eat our pets.

  30. ackpht says:

    “(deer hunting)is more than just rich white guys getting off on small-arms explosions and animal blood.”

    The state requires permits to hunt deer in your state, yes? And these permits cost money, yes? And people pay this money, yes? So obviously they enjoy shooting deer.

    Heaven forbid that deer be allowed to put a dent in corn production- the US certainly has a hard time growing enough corn to meet demand…

    • travtastic says:

      Hey! We need that corn for our futuristic biofuels!

    • Mister44 says:

      I can understand peoples hesitancy towards hunting elephants. I like elephants and I personally wouldn’t shoot one.

      But when it comes to deer, it isn’t all about saving corn supplies.

      Deer populations have exploded in nearly every state. This leads to over population which leads to starvation, disease, and urban encroachment. It also means more deer on the roads killing themselves and sometimes drivers.

      FYI – deer hunting permits are NOT very expensive. IIRC they start at under $25 (at last in my state). If you are OUT of state and want a permit they are considerably more.

      I know more than one person who depend on deer season to keep their freezer stocked and their family fed through the year. Trophy hunting is out there, but it is dwarfed compared to the number who are doing it for food. (Not that all of them depend on deer for food, but most of them hunt for that purpose.)

      Anon asked if I was an expert on African Wildlife management. I am not, but I do know a decent amount about animals in the midwest.

      • travtastic says:

        I know more than one person who depend on deer season to keep their freezer stocked and their family fed through the year. Trophy hunting is out there, but it is dwarfed compared to the number who are doing it for food.

        That statement is absurd. This isn’t the 1800s. Mama and Papa and the dozen chilluns aren’t going to starve to death if they don’t get their frozen deer jerky before the snow rolls in.

        Let’s please not go down the road of casting American deer hunting in the light of basic human rights and starvation.

        • Mister44 says:

          You don’t know what you’re talking about. Maybe climb down from your ivory tower.

          re: “I submit to your overpowering inability to grasp logical thoughts, dude.”

          People – am I fucking nuts to think it is absurd to extrapolate culling animals to culling humans?

          re: “Mama and Papa and the dozen chilluns aren’t going to starve to death…”

          They absolutely depend on deer for meat in their diet. If they were forced to buy beef at the store, they would not be able to afford nearly as much of it. Would they starve? No, they would just substitute less nutritious, but cheap foods. Do all hunters need to hunt to survive? No. But there certainly are people in poorer areas that most certainly do rely on it for meat.

          I know several hunters who don’t need the meat, or only need some of it, who give the rest to charity for food for the homeless.

          There is no reason in the world to not hunt deer at this point in history. As of yet, I haven’t heard a good argument to the contrary.

          • travtastic says:

            My ivory tower is a $600, one-bedroom apartment with two people in it. This is where I pass judgment on the seething hordes of the proletariat.

          • travtastic says:

            First off, you quite literally just negated your previous statements by saying they now don’t technically neeeeed the meat.

            No, I’m not copying and pasting your own comments for you. That’s plebeian work. One of my assistants will do it for you later.

            You’re talking about needing meat, and substituting cheaper meats so you don’t wither away, to a healthy person who hasn’t eaten meat in years.

            Seriously, nothing you say makes sense, and nothing anyone else can ever say will make sense to you. Just consider the whole thing over. You win. Move on.

          • Mister44 says:

            I you really that dense, or am I taking the troll bait. Or you could be an idiot… I dunno…

            Of course you don’t NEED meat like you need air to breath. But IS part of a good diet, and the protein is an important part of nutrition.

            But since they don’t NEED it, I guess the poor can just eat spaghetti and cheese sandwiches. If you note, poor people are more likely to be overweight because they buy the cheapest food that fills you up, but that often times isn’t good for you.

            I guess I missed it – what is with the deer love that you are against hunting deer?

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            You do know that about 40% of people in India don’t eat meat for philosophical reasons? That’s more than the population of the US.

          • Mister44 says:

            Soo… we shouldn’t worry about poor people eating meat because other cultures don’t and they are just fine? Poor nutrition is still nutrition so it’s “good enough”.

            Everyone is for the poor people and against Mr. Moneybags, unless there are deer involved and then its, to quote Mel Brooks HOTWP1 – “Fuck the poor!”

            I just don’t get it. The deer are going to die one way or another. If not from hunting from starvation, get hit by cars (killing people), or disease (fun fact, in one of our parks they have deer culls now, around 70% of them have deer STDs).

            So – I guess they could die slowly, and rot into the ground and feed scavengers. Or they could feed people.

            Deer are not rare or endangered, so I guess I can’t think of a good reason to not hunt them if possible.

  31. glimmung says:

    GoDaddy are a total nightmare to deal with – spam, up-selling, cross-selling, hideous process, and *EXTREMELY* limited support for UK domains, which you don’t find out about until it is too late.

    Every time I get a mail or visit their site, I curse my own stupidity and idelness for not moving away form them.

    Today, I have written to all my clients and explained that I am closing my Godaddy account ASAP.

    Arsehole.

  32. caitifty says:

    This is the same guy who mounted a spirited defense of torture at Gitmo on his corporate blog back in 2005 (although he issued a partial retraction a few days later when it attracted attention, and both the original post and the retraction were later deleted. The text is till all over the interwebs though). I moved all my domains to Namecheap shortly afterwards.

  33. mordicai says:

    I’d follow his logic…if he weren’t using “problems” as an excuse to sport hunt a vulnerable species, that jerk. Also…your company is terrible & your ads are misogynistic. So.

  34. Anonymous says:

    Hey, one of the people quoted in the article is Alan Dean Foster. How interestingly random.

  35. yrarbil cilbup says:

    to all the dillwads that defend this action. Killing for sport is just plain wrong. Maybe a few thousand years ago it was a legitimate method of putting food on the table, but that day is long past. happyness is a warm gun eh…

  36. James says:

    Namecheap, a GoDaddy competitor (who I like to use but do not work for or anything) apparently knows how to market better than GoDaddy does:

    – — – — –
    We’ve decided to throw our support behind our Elephant friends by offering domain transfers at a price where we actually lose money.

    Show your protest by saying BYEBYEGD again and transfer your domains to Namecheap for $4.99 for the next 24 hours through 11:59pm EST on 3/31/11 (limit 10 per user, valid for all com/net/org domains).

    On top of that, we’ll donate $1 for each transfer to Save The Elephants at http://www. savetheelephants.org/

    Use coupon code BYEBYEGD and let’s help the Elephants together!
    – — – — –

    If mentioning a commercial offer is against policy, BoingBoing, feel free to delete. I just found this kind of inspiring, in an upright (and conversation-with-the-customers) way.

  37. Anonymous says:

    If he really cared for the villagers he should stay home and donate all the money he’d otherwise spend on airtravel, rifles and so on towards solution for peaceful coexistance between villagers and elephants.

    I’d be very pleased if he gets trampled by an elephant, or any other animal for that matter.

  38. Jeff says:

    I just got off the phone with a nice person @ Hover.com. I’m transferring all of my domains from GoDaddy to Hover, and they are doing all the work for me. Painless! They normally charge $25 for the concierge service, but right now it’s free.
    I’m not a big customer, only 5 domains, so Unca Bob won’t even miss me, but still…
    (Don’t work for Hover, just a new satisfied customer)

  39. Anonymous says:

    While I’m sure he’s an asshole, somehow, I’m not seeing it for this here. This is fairly sound wildlife management. This is close to the cradle of humanity (The San have one of the oldest haplogroups of mDNA), so this is *our* natural habitat too.

    It makes sense to have an outsider pay to come in and perform the culls to reduce the chance of local corruption. As long as there is no fungible trophy like ivory or elephant foot umbrella stands, the numbers can be controlled to the least necessary.

  40. Ugly Canuck says:

    Cette histoire barbare me rend triste.

    Ici une chanson, pour ce pauvre elephant mort:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zS4XlNW9JRE

    Quel dommage!

  41. erinelizabeth11 says:

    Not saying that I agree with anything else he does, but unless you are a vegan, no one can say “what an asshole” about this. He killed something and it was eaten. Everyone who is not a vegan does this every single day. Who cares? You can’t prioritize the importance of any species, and arguing that an elephant > chicken/cow/fish/etc is ridiculous.

    That being said, I’m kind of disturbed that “the hunts & helping the starving villages” by killing an elephant “is the most rewarding thing he does”. With that much money, I can think of a few food kitchens he could donate too, or you could just donate some fences (or find another solution) to elephants stampeding Zimbabwean farms. I’d recommend spreading some of that wealth with some charities if THIS is the most rewarding thing you do with your time/money. *eyeroll*

    • travtastic says:

      What an asshole!

      • erinelizabeth11 says:

        Whoa, whoa, whoa…I think his misogynistic ads make him an asshole. I think he LOOKS like an asshole standing next to a “wife” that looks like she’s his granddaughter. I think his political beliefs make him an idiot, if not an asshole. I think trophy hunting makes ANYONE an asshole, but hunting an animal that people are utilizing for food, does not make him anymore of an asshole than anyone that eats meat. I will never forget accidentally turning on some Outdoors station (that I must have mistaken with having an “Animal Planet” vibe to it, and seeing some women sport-shoot a large bull rhino with absolutely no intention of eating it. The image haunts me to this day.

        My comment was designed to make people who think “this guys an asshole” examine their own everyday consumption choices. I eat caveman-style. I don’t eat meat unless I (or my husband) kills it. Maybe I should call this American Indian style? Anyways, I do not hunt, but I do fish, so if I eat meat, I know EXACTLY where it is coming from, and exactly the terms under which it is getting there. No, dragging a fish up to me with a hook in it’s mouth does not sound pleasant and I wouldn’t want to undergo the experience, but coming to terms with the fact that I was the one involved in the process makes it acceptable to me and something I alone live with.

        The fact that he killed something, that I DOUBT he ate, and he clearly didn’t need to be the one to kill probably means he has small-man-syndrome, or little d*&^ problems, but I don’t think he was an asshole to kill something that people ate for food and that he claims was eradicating their other optional food source. Are there likely FAR better solutions? In the words of Sheen “Duh”. Maybe there’s a little devil’s advocate in me, but I can find FAR better things to make fun of him about than this. Now if this was a researched article on how his own blog-explanation for this shooting was wrong, then I would call him an asshole. So someone get on that please.

        • travtastic says:

          No, dragging a fish up to me with a hook in it’s mouth does not sound pleasant and I wouldn’t want to undergo the experience, but coming to terms with the fact that I was the one involved in the process makes it acceptable to me and something I alone live with.

          Well, that’s really romantic and all, but if you’re empathizing with the fish enough to think you know how it feels being hooked and killed, maybe you should try not eating it, too. There is no moral difference between you doing something, and someone doing it for you.

          Let’s look at it this way. I assume that you would not “live with” killing a cute little kitty and eating it for supper, even though you are the one who did the deed. That means that it is not an issue of practicality. It’s a matter of you liking fish. That’s the point that you need to ‘live with’. If you were starving to death, then it would be practical. If you were really concerned about antibiotics and killed a wild steer, that would be practical. The fish doesn’t care who kills it, I’m sure.

          • erinelizabeth11 says:

            1. I didn’t share my eating habits to be romantic.
            2. The way I eat is specifically because I don’t like animals being raised in small pens/enclosures for food (I haven’t watched any PETA videos or any of the popular documentaries on conditions of how animals are raised, and while I know that many are injected with hormones/antibiotics, that is not my specific issue). I like the fact that the animals that I am eating live their lives as a wild animal the way I would want to and then their lives end. If a predator was to eat me, that is how I would like it to go. This is how I came to the conclusion of how I eat.
            3. I NEVER said I wouldn’t eat a cat or any other food. Despite Americans living under the assumption that cow/fish/chicken/pork are the socially acceptable meats, there is not any animal on earth I wouldn’t consider eating under the right circumstances. I’m neither a food sissy nor a food snob.
            4. I am sure that you are right that the fish does not care who killed it, nor does the fish care how it lives as it doesn’t realize that there are other fish out there living in pens & eating liver pellets strictly to be someone’s food. I care, which is why I eat this way. I eat the way I would want to be eaten if I was a food.
            5. I have fished my entire life, and being an adult and realizing that it’s a pretty cruel thing to do no matter how you look at it (even if you throw the fish back you still dragged him around by his mouth with a hook for a while), I decided that I would eat the fish I caught. I could have decided to stop fishing, but since it is an activity my husband and I do together frequently (and I would not ask him to stop doing because of me), I chose to continue doing so and eating the fish that I catch. Trust me, I like rare steak & bacon WAY more than I like fish. I am not claiming to be morally superior.
            6. I never once said that I think I know how a fish feels? I have no idea how it feels but I know that I would not like being dragged around that way.
            7. I never claimed there was a MORAL difference, the difference to me is that I am in touch with the way I eat and know where the things I eat come from. I live on a farm, I have chickens, I eat their eggs, I don’t eat the chickens.

            I’m really not sure what you are getting at? Are you a vegan? Would you like me to eat vegan? Do you agree or disagree with the animals that are killed during the harvesting of soy (and everything else)? Do you want me to make a lower environmental impact and if so how? Please offer some advice for your way of life if you find it morally or globally superior to mine. I do have the ability to listen to arguments that others make, comprehend and learn. Look someone has already pointed out to me that elephants are endangered :)

          • travtastic says:

            Do you agree or disagree with the animals that are killed during the harvesting of soy (and everything else)?

            God, I am so not going down this road. I don’t consume animals, that doesn’t mean I’m a new soy-based life form.

            Look, my point is, you talk about how what you do to this fish is unpleasant, and you wouldn’t want it to happen to you…and then you do it anyway.

            And the fact that you call it a ‘caveman diet’ is unto itself a romantic notion. It implies a connection to one’s roots.

    • Anonymous says:

      “Not saying that I agree with anything else he does, but unless you are a vegan, no one can say “what an asshole” about this.”

      Even if you’re a vegan, it’s pretty hard to claim that no animals were harmed in the farming of all the vegetables you eat. When you cultivate farmland, you drive out the indigenous animal populations, which are then forced into outlying areas to compete with the animals already there, resulting in starvation and die back. Then there’s the indirect casualties caused by the whole agricultural infrastructure (roads and transportation networks; manufacturing of farming equipment; processing, distribution, and retail networks; and land use in general) as well as the incidental deaths (mice chewed up by combine harvesters; racoons run over by transport trucks filled with all-natural organic granola, etc.) Finally, humans themselves don’t exactly have a small natural footprint; your disappearance could free up space and resources for many, many smaller animals to live and thrive. You use far more space and resources than your small apartment might lead you to believe.

      For you to live, other things must die. We are, after all, animals and the laws of nature apply to us just as much as they do to lions and gazelles. Our one advantage is that we can choose to be humane about how we kill (or allow things to die) and we can choose to be conservation-minded when deciding how much to take from where, but in order to do either of those things, we need to face up to the fact that all of us, whether directly or indirectly, cause death to other animals.

      • Loraan says:

        Even if you’re a vegan, it’s pretty hard to claim that no animals were harmed in the farming of all the vegetables you eat.

        As a friend of mine once said, “Do you think the immigrant farm worker who picked your lettuce gets treated any better than the chickens you refuse to eat on moral grounds?”

        Ouch.

        • travtastic says:

          Relentless negativity wins as always!

          • Loraan says:

            Way to completely ignore any substance of my comments. Stay Cheerful, Citizen!

          • travtastic says:

            Perhaps you should try writing some relentless negativity that requires more than one sentence to summarize.

            I can quite easily sum up what you said in what I was responding to, with “haHAAA vegans, take that!”

            So I did.

          • Antinous / Moderator says:

            I should probably try to break up this squabbling, but in honor of April Fools Day, I’m just giving up and declaring shenanigans.

          • travtastic says:

            The joke’s on you, boss. I just got back from safari, and I’m beat.

      • travtastic says:

        racoons run over by transport trucks filled with all-natural organic granola, etc.

        Congratulations, you’ve just defeated veganism.

      • travtastic says:

        But all kidding aside, this is my exact rationale for only eating boulders.

    • Xof says:

      He killed something and it was eaten. Everyone who is not a vegan does this every single day.

      If, every single day, I flew to Africa, found a conveniently inconvenient elephant to shoot, and then blogged about it to promote my domain registrar, I’m sure I’d remember.

      In any event, the implication that the only thing that is keeping rogue elephants from turning Zimbabwe into a post-apocalypic wasteland is the selfless determination of well-armed tech CEOs seems to be unproven, at best.

    • jonw says:

      “Everyone who is not a vegan does this every single day”

      This made me lol. Do you have any concept how many animals are killed to keep them off your vegan soy, wheat, gujiberries, or whatever? We’re talking little mites and spiders all the way up to deer. Not to mention the ecocide that was necessary to clear the field and plow it under. Hell, the villagers could have been vegan farmers, and they still would have needed that elephant to be dead.

    • Anonymous says:

      You can’t prioritize the importance of any species, and arguing that an elephant > chicken/cow/fish/etc is ridiculous.

      Why can’t you? People do all the time, evaluating for instance humans and gorillas as more important than cows, or at least fish as more important than worms. Some of the main criteria they use are intelligence and ability to appreciate pain, and there’s a good case an elephant has an emotional depth that is lacking in chickens.

      • erinelizabeth11 says:

        Again, playing devil’s advocate here, but there is an extremely fragile balance in our ecosystem that people don’t seem to understand. The only species that really seems to be destroying it are humans. While invasive, non-native species often wreak havoc, humans are the reason most of them arrive.

        I hate mosquitoes, but every single animal out there serves some kind of purpose (Mosquitoes: Pollenation & food for predators), and the fact is, who are we to prioritize?

        Disclaimer: Had the elephant been an endangered species, I would have agreed with the “What an asshole” statement. Whether or not that’s hypocritical, I’m not sure.

        • Anonymous says:

          African elephant: Endangered

          http://www.ifaw.org/ifaw_international/save_animals/elephants/african_elephant.php

          Which is why it’s not appropriate to kill them for recreation under any circumstances. If a problem animal exists that can not be controlled by any other means, then an appropriate official should do the deed, not a wealthy businessman.

          Now look, I’m not trying to prioritize the elephants over the people, I realize there are significant issues faced by the locals that have to interact with these animals and I’m not trying to minimize that. It’s easy to get high and mighty about saving rare species when you aren’t impacted by any of the compromises that have to be made to do so.

          That said, actions like those taken by Mr. Parsons are not the path to a practicable balance. Indiscriminately killing elephants in the dark after they range into increasingly encroaching farmland is not contributing to either the advancement of the living standards of local peoples or the conservation of African wildlife. In only further limits the options of wildlife, making them more desperate and more likely to enter human settlements, and it only serves to encourage the continuing haphazard advancement of such settlements into territory occupied by wildlife.

          The end result of a strategy like that espoused by Parsons and his supporters would almost certainly result in small pockets of wildlife confined to undesirable swaths of land, surrounded by poverty stricken settlements. The animals that survived would be broken from their natural patterns, species like elephants would no longer be able to range, the environments that survived would be hollow shells of what existed before.

          It’s not like this is that hard to imagine, it’s basically happened everywhere else already. Tens of millions of bison used to range the American West, now you’re lucky to see a few scattered in a park. I realize it’s asking quite a bit of Africa to manage their growth to work around their wildlife, but I don’t think it’s impossible that, with international cooperation, and funds from tourism, African can develop to a healthy living standard and maintain their magnificent wildlife. Look at places like Costa Rica that exhibit significantly better living standards than their neighbors, and have achieved such not only while protecting their wildlife, but largely because of doing so.

          • erinelizabeth11 says:

            Wait, according to the link:

            “Status
            The African elephant is listed as Endangered under the U.S. Endangered Species Act (ESA) and by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN). It is listed on Appendix I of the Convention on the Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora except for populations in those countries (Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia) which were reclassified to Appendix II. ”

            How can they be endangered somewhere but not somewhere else? I’m so confused.

  42. Loraan says:

    It’s notable to see people express outrage over him flying to Africa to hunt elephant, when those same people probably commute 30-60 miles a day in a car. Those two things are, IMO, morally equivalent. You might argue that an individual’s car use consumes much less fuel and creates much less carbon than flying to Africa, and you’d be right, but ultimately, both of those things are so far off one end of the scale that I don’t think it matters. It’s like you’re saying that driving a car is a 2 and flying to Africa is a 10, and I’m saying that driving a car is a 92 and flying to Africa is a 100. Same distance between them, but in the latter case, they’re hardly distinguishable from each other.

    Same thing with the killing the elephant. So he killed his animal personally instead of having someone else do it for him. Kudos to him. And so it was an exotic animal. Big deal. You want exotic? How about plane-load after plane-load of mangoes, papayas, and other tropical fruit brought right to your doorstep? How about strawberries from Chile in the middle of winter? Somehow, that’s less exotic and wasteful than a person going to Africa to kill an elephant, just because it shows up in your grocery store?

    Finally, the disdain over him posing with the carcass. Lemme clue you in on something: people take pictures of things they do. Suggesting that hunters shouldn’t pose with their kill implies that there is something particularly shameful about hunting that makes it the exception to that rule. There isn’t.

  43. MrsP says:

    Well, let’s see – poor villagers in Zimbabwe. Yeah, they frequently have large elephant guns hanging over their fireplaces. I guess they were just being lazy as many Zimbabweans tend to be. (sarcasm off).

    Those who tried to consider how one could use natural farming methods and classes to each the poor zimbabweans to use more sustainable agriculture to be able to co-exist with the creatures who frequent the area, you obviously don’t live in the ‘hood’. There’s no reasoning with a mad elephant. But there is a good local recipe for it.

    As for the insinuation that this guys was being ‘wasteful’ and that he could have spent his money on other charitable efforts, maybe you should find out what GoDaddy does to ‘spread their wealth’ – simple Google or BING search using the term “GoDaddy donates to…” will uncover a plethora of wonderful and worthy projects and charities they have donated to. Flood victims, earthquake victims in Haiti (and I’ll bet to Japan as well), HIV/AIDS victims (the list included a donation to a women’s health clinic for women who are at high risk of contracting HIV/AIDS, including women who have been victims of domestic violence)… the list goes on.

    I find it hard to fault them as ‘greedy capitalists’ no matter how he may get to the elephants he kills to feed starving villagers.

    So before anyone starts attacking company CEOs or whoever (as if they are greedy or wasteful) for something they thought was helpful to a poor village simply because it involves the killing of a (violent and dangerous) animal, please do some research first.

    (below is simply the results I got with a BING search:)

    http://www.bing.com/search?q=godaddy+donates+to&form=APMCS1

  44. Anonymous says:

    Many people in Zambia and other parts of Africa are living in terror of elephants, which are becoming increasingly aggressive. Scientists believe they may be seeking revenge for the culling of their parents.
    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/africa/article2076009.ece

  45. Mark Temporis says:

    Sounds like the elephant needed killin’ and if so, who cares who gets to do it?

    That said, GoDaddy has always kinda sucked, and used such misogynistic imagery that their commercials always made me embarrassed to have a dick.

  46. Stonewalker says:

    There goes the neighborhood…

  47. El Mariachi says:

    You can’t prioritize the importance of any species

    Why not? “Puppy > piglet” may be somewhat fatuous but it’s hard to argue against “Endangered Giant Panda > mosquito.”

  48. Mister44 says:

    re: “A) Predators never eat their own kind
    B) Humans never limit population through intra-species violence
    C) Prey species are never part of controlling the population of predators
    D) All of the above”

    Oh jesus, I guess should have put little asterisks by all my statements. Or just say, “Extrapolating to humans is ridiculousness.” and leave it at that.

    Predators kill one another over food, territory, and mates/offspring. I don’t think of this as culling, but I guess under a broader definition it is.

    • travtastic says:

      Yeah, your original comment was literally about extrapolating to humans.

      • Mister44 says:

        It was about it being absurd to extrapolate to humans.

        T: “Man, you can justify a lot of really nasty things with a ridiculously simplistic statement like that. Don’t just limit yourself to deer, dude!”

        M: “Yes – let’s logically extrapolate controlling animal populations into controlling human populations. Give me a fucking break.”

        That ‘yes’ part was sarcasm, Sheldon.

        • travtastic says:

          Culls ARE part of nature because WE are part of nature.

          You also have access to your previous comments, you know. For reference.

          • Mister44 says:

            OMG – so reread it. Yeah, I stand by that statement, and I stand by the statement that it is absurd to take animal culls and apply them to humans.

          • travtastic says:

            I submit to your overpowering inability to grasp logical thoughts, dude.

            Let’s just call it a day.

  49. Mister44 says:

    If elephants aren’t culled and their population controlled, they destroy their limited resources and end up bringing more harm upon themselves.

    • glimmung says:

      “If elephants aren’t culled and their population controlled, they destroy their limited resources and end up bringing more harm upon themselves.”

      You could say the same about people.

  50. Loraan says:

    Loraan: people need to work for a living, and they commute to work. A bigshot flies to Africa to get a powerrush from killing innocent animals for fun.

    “People” don’t “need” to drive cars to work. Americans do. First-worlders do. My point is that, just as this guy is incredibly privileged to be able to afford to fly to Africa on vacation and hunt an elephant, we all (first-worlders) are incredibly privileged to be able to drive cars and have iPhones and etc… It is hypocritical for us to criticize him for being just slightly further out on the scale of privilege than we are, without also being equally critical of our own privilege.

  51. Anonymous says:

    Several of the supporters don’t seem to understand that there can be a range of how ok hunting is. Imagine a hunter posing with a duck, and one posing with a dodo. An elephant is somewhere between those two.

  52. Shart Tsung says:

    Yeah, I’m confused as to why this makes him an asshole.

    I know killing for ivory is wrong and I know judging people is wrong, but I didn’t know there was anything wrong with hunting elephant in general.

    Am I missing something?

    • GreenJello says:

      Am I missing something?
      A liberal agenda and an axe to grind? :)

      • Shart Tsung says:

        I don’t call it a liberal agenda, I call it a bitter anti-human agenda. Without hunting animals not a single human would be here today, and all these PETA freaks would probably be a lot happier with that outcome.

    • Anonymous says:

      Are you familiar with the term “vulnerable species”? African elephants are not in the same situation as cows or deer, and hunting them is regarded differently in accord wit hthat.

  53. aldasin says:

    We should praise the great white hunter for saving those poor savages.

  54. Anonymous says:

    How ironic, a bloated aging white elephant shooting another one.

  55. Kieran O'Neill says:

    1. Read my previous post about what’s involved in an actual elephant cull in Zimbabwe (and likely in other countries too), and why it is the sole preserve of game rangers who know what they’re doing. Through the cynical language (it is a hunting website), you can see that it is quite a horrifying thing, which I am quite happy to have handled by experts who know what they are doing and whose job is to care for wildlife (so who will undertake the task with an appropriate level of grimness).

    Anyway, my point was that killing one elephant, likely an old one doing disproportionate damage to farmland due to worn tusks, is not going to affect the country’s overall elephant population, but may make life easier for villagers (and may even net them some money).

    I should add that there really are very good reasons why humans and elephants cannot coexist, at least where humans are trying to make a living from farming. There are similar good reasons for most large mammals indigenous to Sub-Saharan Africa.

    And that’s not to say that we cannot come up with better ways of coexisting, or that that would not be a good topic of research and development, but that right now we do not have such a thing.

    Put in a North American context, can you imagine herds of bison stampeding down an interstate?

    2. That’s just people’s culture. It’s not really a good thing to judge it, although it is productive to try to ensure that, for instance, the slaughter of animals in that way is done humanely. In South Africa, that forms a big part of the SPCA’s work. There’s a nice set of slides dealing with the issues here. They make a good point that it is in many ways comparable to Halal or Kosher methods of slaughter.

    3. It’s a question of emphasis, not of ignoring one completely. Yes, the nukes are potentially a great concern, and bear watching. But have they been blown completely out of proportion relative to the effects of the tsunami? I would say so. I would even venture that they have deflected and dissipated attention from the plight of people genuinely in need of help. I believe the same is happening here.

  56. Katz says:

    I am appalled by the lack of response about this. I posted on Facebook with over 400 friends, most of them Yogis, very very poor response (one vegan guy, one old high school friend and a close friend/client). I sent an email to my entire client base of my web hosting company that also does domain registrations btw simplicityhosting.com anyone coming I will create a FromGodaddy coupon, and only received a few negative responses, I am tacky and unprofessional for mentioning it.

    Some guy banged on me about my servers being green enough for him a month ago, he is using godaddy now as well. Why do people not think that the companies they support that are owned by certain individuals does not have an overall impact on things? If you don’t think it matters or affects anything then what do you think actually does?

  57. Anonymous says:

    I’d like to hunt elephants but the damn decoys are hard to carry.

  58. Anonymous says:

    Do people really not get the conflict of interest here?

    If the (endangered) animal was a legitimate problem and there was literally no humane method feasible to prevent it from hurting the livelihood of the villagers, then it should have been killed by a ranger or some other impartial party.

    Parsons and hunters like him are solely motivated by the hunt, he is not trying to improve the lives of villagers. If he was, the money he spent on his trip and safari could have easily provided them with means to dissuade encroachment by elephants AND feed them for a significant period of time, maybe even build a school if he were so inclined.

    Is that really so hard to understand?

    Maybe all you people that support his actions think that perhaps that say we in the US should allow wealthy foreigners to come and hunt “problem” bald eagles and grizzly bears. I’m sure they would be willing to provide the feathers and pelts to native Americans for use in traditional ceremonies. And I’m sure they would never kill an animal that could have been controlled through non-lethal means, especially after flying across the planet, spending thousands of dollars and day after day in the wilderness. I mean, it’s not like they are interested in posting their hunt videos on Youtube or anything to show off to all their rich friends.

    Wait….

  59. Anonymous says:

    It’s a Bob Parsons Fanclub all up in hurr.
    Whether or not it was right or wrong to kill the elephant given the circumstances, the fact remains that killing something for sport makes you an asshole. Any argument you can make against that will deteriorate under scrutiny.

    • jacques45 says:

      the fact remains that killing something for sport makes you an asshole. Any argument you can make against that will deteriorate under scrutiny.

      I disagree. I’m a long-time vegetarian, but living in the farm country, we have a big problem with deer eating plants. Since there are no large-scale natural predators for these deer near here, they need to be culled somehow or we’d be overrun by them. If the deer are going to be killed anyhow, I don’t particularly care about who is going to take care of it, be it an “impartial” ranger (of which we’d sure need a lot – at taxpayer expense), a car hitting them at 65 mph, a freak mountain lion making its way here and attacking, or a guy getting his jollies shooting at things. The game wardens come down hard on anyone breaking the laws and there are protections to keep people from setting up ambushes or taking too many deer (which is determined by a impartial scientist).

      At the same time, the state gets a decent amount in hunting license fees, people get a local source of food without nasty factory-farm issues, and there’s fewer deer the next year to eat the livelihood of my neighbors. It also brings in some tourist money from out-of-towners who come for the hunt but spend their money elsewhere while they’re here. In an area dealing with 12% unemployment, we’ll take it.

      • travtastic says:

        I’d hate to see what happens when the neighborhood kids trample through your vegetable beds.

        • jacques45 says:

          We’re not talking about kids, and we’re not talking about small gardens.

          A deer can easily eat 3 lbs of corn a day. An acre planted of corn can produce 8,400 lbs fully matured over a growing season. There were 15,500 deer harvested last hunting season in my state. That’s over 5.5 acres of corn a day, not even taking into account the corn that doesn’t reach maturity. And then add in the amount that their offspring would eat the next year.

          Do you have a better solution to avoid being overrun by an animal with no real predators?

          • housewarmer says:

            A free condom program for deer? Deer family planing? Deer abstinence contracts?

          • travtastic says:

            No. Guns are always the first and best solution.

          • travtastic says:

            There were 15,500 deer harvested last hunting season in my state.

            I’m not sure how far I’m going to get here, since you apparently think that deer are crops, and a gun is a miniature combine.

          • jacques45 says:

            “Harvest” is the term officially used by my state. You can see last year’s report (PDF) to see for yourself. If you do happen to click through, you can read about both the regulations they have and the statistics they keep to maintain a balanced herd. I don’t personally engage in it, but hunting is something that is important to the this area and a lot of other places and is more than just rich white guys getting off on small-arms explosions and animal blood.

          • travtastic says:

            So what non-violent means have you tried, that failed miserably?

  60. Anonymous says:

    Loraan, anonymous: Number of Animals Killed to Produce One Million Calories in Eight Food Categories , http://www.animalvisuals.org/data/1mc/

    BTW, your objection makes about as much sense as replying “o yeah? But people can die from traffic and you drive a car so STFU” to someone who condemns intentionally murdering someone for fun and then taking photos posing over their dead body.

  61. Anonymous says:

    Loraan: people need to work for a living, and they commute to work. A bigshot flies to Africa to get a powerrush from killing innocent animals for fun.

  62. Anonymous says:

    yeah, poor starving humanity. Only 6.7 billion of us, so lets kill an endangered animal when there were so many, just as easy non-lethal options. Good choice dick head.

    • Mister44 says:

      Actually, often times there are not.

      Elephants and other large game on reserves MUST be hunted and managed. Not doing so leads to over taxation of the resources, starvation, and more hostile interactions with humans.

      As for the idea only a ranger should cull the herd, that is absurd. People pay good money for the privilege, and that money goes to fund the reserves, hire rangers, and fight poachers.

      I am against hunting for ivory or illegally, but if it is a sanctioned, approved hunt, go for it.

      @Gawain Lavers – Orwell’s stories of India are some of my favorite.

      • Anonymous says:

        Mister44,

        I see you kind of breezed over the conflict of interest thing there.

        As long as their is a financial motivation for hunts, there will be unnecessary hunts. I think that’s pretty obvious. The amount paid by people like Mr. Parsons to kill endangered animals, that, again are endangered specifically BECAUSE of people like Mr. Parsons, is a fantastically large sum of money to the people in Africa, and the temptation to sanction an unnecessary hunt is not to be underestimated. Such temptations are why the ivory trade is now illegal, regardless of whether or not the elephant was killed with justification.

        And really, I fail to see how asserting that it is more appropriate for a ranger to perform necessary kills is absurd. Really? Hyperbolic much?

        While of course populations need to be managed in certain situations, we have no idea of the circumstances of this kill other than what the video shows. So to presume that this hunt has anything to do with population control is not really appropriate. For all we know some farmer encroached on park land and the herd wandered in, or perhaps the weather has been bad and the herd has been forced to wander from their established territory.

        Nor, if this hunt even has anything to do with a park, do you know that Mr. Parsons paid the park for the privilege of the hunt or a local guide or an internationally owned safari company. You have no idea. Sure some parks allow trophy hunts, but I think it’s a pretty reasonable argument to be made that it is not in their best interests to do so. Perhaps it is a necessary evil to maintain adequate patrols against poachers and the like, but I think it’s pretty reasonable to posit that if parks are dependent on funds from hunting, that in the long run the parks will become more oriented towards that end than conservation itself.

        Point is, we have no idea of what the full circumstance is, and it’s likely that this generally true for most hunts of this sort. I wager they are rarely, if ever really scrutinized, which is part of why they are not a good idea. Mr. Moneybags comes in wanting his elephant hunt, and someone is going to find a way to justify it. In this case all we know is that the video claims an elephant is a problem for farmers (a rogue elephant is entirely inaccurate as the video clearly says it was part of a herd), but whether it was this elephant or not is not really clear.

        • Mister44 says:

          re: “As long as their is a financial motivation for hunts, there will be unnecessary hunts. I think that’s pretty obvious. ”

          I am sorry, but that makes no damn sense. It would be like saying, “A farmer is going to kill all of his cows because people keep paying money for them.”

          Game preserves host hunts and tourism. Tourism is the big money maker. If they killed all of the elephants, then the tourism goes too. So they aren’t so short sighted that they are going to jeopardize their population for the sake of hunting dollars. You can cull a number of bull elephants with out hurting the overall strength of the herd.

          Tourism is important in non-reserve areas as well.

          We may not know all of the details, but I believe it is safe to assume that it was a sanctioned hunt. Poachers are punished if caught and some end up shot and he looks smart enough to not post felonies up on the web.

          If it was shot not purely for population control, but because of its aggressiveness with the village, then that too is a legit reason and it’s number will come out of the same lottery of licenses. So the same number of elephants will be culled either way.

          If he poached it – I say hang ‘em high. If it was approved, then more power to him. Not something I would want to do, but it’s something they have to do.

          • Anonymous says:

            Seriously?

            OK, you really don’t see how allowing high priced trophy hunts might encourage more kills than are necessary?

            You, uh, you really don’t get that?

            It “makes no damn sense” that a destitute village, contacted by a wealthy foreign hunter promising a handsome sum in return for identifying “problem” animals that he can hunt, might be incentivized to invent or exaggerate a problem where none exists?

            Really?

            Honestly Mister, it seems like you’re pontificating pretty confidently about something you really don’t seem to know much of anything about. Now I’m not saying that I do or anything, but I can follow a logical progression regarding motivations, and that’s all I’m trying to highlight here. That allowing hunts like this is not responsible wildlife management, nor is it philanthropy. It is basically a case study in corruptive temptation.

            Dude, these hunts are taking place in Zimbabwe. Zimbabwe. Land of Mugabe. I’m sure the man had a permit from someone, but that hardly means that the hunt was legitimate or responsible. He could probably make a hot air balloon out of cheetah skins if he lined enough pockets over there.

            Reading some more about his trip it appears he had permission from “local authorities” to hunt elephant, which, given the circumstances, is not exactly what I should think you would imagine to be motivated by a responsible conservationist perpective. In fact from the info available, it appears there is no game preserve or wildlife facilities involved here whatsoever.

            Apparently Mr. Parsons just goes over to Zimbabwe for a few weeks, makes it known he wants to hunt and is willing to pay to do so and, surprisingly enough, some problem elephants turn up.

            You seriously don’t get why that might be a little sketchy?

          • Mister44 says:

            You know what, I don’t know the nuances to the details with this godaddy cat. I guess it doesn’t matter that much to me.

            Elephant populations aren’t going to collapse because of hunters (poachers are another issue). Zimbabwe has several large national parks and even now they make a lot of money with tourism. Killing their goose that lays golden eggs makes no sense. Currently elephant populations are stable, and rising in some places. These aren’t California Condors that are one egg fight from extinction.

            Elephants and other large game have to be kept in check. Even assuming this godaddy guy was one step above poaching and, it doesn’t change the fact that hunting like this is required. If you don’t get that, read a book on wildlife management and get back to me.

          • Anonymous says:

            So are you well read with regards to African wildlife management or something?

            It certainly seems like you aren’t.

            Again, I’m not saying I am, but I think it’s pretty reasonable to declare that allowing trophy hunters to cull herds with no input from wildlife authorities is not a responsible way to manage wildlife.

            Maybe you’re still arguing that point, I dunno. Are you?

            Look, African elephants are endangered. No, not critically like California condors, but there are only a few hundred condors left. Is that the point you think recreational “management” should be disallowed? But the elephants and their environments are increasingly threatened by human civilization, these are not animals that evolved for confined spaces. If we value the continued ability of vulnerable species like elephants to be able to exist in some semblance of their natural state, then we should respect and support the official channels that have that goal in mind in their efforts to manage how that will be done.

      • Kieran O'Neill says:

        Here’s an article (from a hunting website) about why they only allow rangers to do culls. Note the title: “Elephant Cull Hunts Offered In Zimbabwe National Parks Are Illegal”. A brief quote:

        “Also, hunters need to understand that the shooting of one or two elephants does not constitute a cull. When elephants are culled, entire family groups must be eliminated – cows, calves, young bulls, everything must go! It is a grim business to conduct an elephant cull, and it is also a dangerous situation for a paying client. Once the shooting begins it cannot stop until all the elephants are down. Jumbo of all sizes start running, and the shooters must be in the thick of it. Getting trampled or tusked is a real possibility.”

        What worries me about this is that hunting is a polarising issue in the US, so many of the responses are kneejerk and along partisan lines.

        But whether you support hunting or not, it seems almost certain that what Parsons did was highly illegal, as well as stupid/unjustifiable even from the point of view of a responsible hunter.

        That is the issue.

        • Kieran O'Neill says:

          Doesn’t look like this posted.

          I just wanted to add that Parsons has claimed he had a permit, though without seeing more details, it might be impossible to know whether this was actually the case.

  63. Anonymous says:

    Sentimental European and American knee-jerk nonsense. Faced with hunger, you’d take a more pragmatic approach to animals. Here in Africa we cannot afford the luxury of treating animals like pets. I doubt whether any of the people shown in this video have any criticisms of Bob Parsons’ killing of elephants. “Let them eat cake (or elephants)” lolz.

    • Antinous / Moderator says:

      Here in Africa we cannot afford the luxury of treating animals like pets.

      You’re commenting from the UK. April Fools to you, too.

    • travtastic says:

      Starving Africans are well-known for their great internet connections, and free time to comment on boingboing.

  64. Loraan says:

    Also, the money that he probably spent on first-class airfare to get there could have done a lot better being spent on feeing a number of orphans or digging a lot of wells. (Insert your Sally Struthers joke here…)

    I think there’s a lot of contradictions in statements like this, and I hope I’m not beating the drum too much by continuing to point it out. The money you and I spend on our cable or Internet or cell phone bill could also be “better spent” on charity. Criticizing him for being able to afford a trip to Africa is special pleading and nothing more.

    • travtastic says:

      You know, just maybe, that’s because different situations call for different value judgments. Mull that over.

  65. selfsimilar says:

    I’m not a fan of GoDaddy’s business practices or advertising, but southern Africa has a real elephant overpopulation problem. I was in Zimbabwe, Botswana, and S. Africa almost 20 years ago and it was a problem then, as it continues to be to today. There are tradeoffs with every manner of elephant population control, but to say that Bob Parsons did something with no redeeming merits is disingenuous. Are there less violent methods? Of course, but there’s costs involved. Did Parsons grease some palms to get an elephant kill? I don’t know. But if I were a Zimbawean who had to worry about avoiding Mugabe’s thugs, dealing with hyperinflation, in general living in one of the poorest and unhappiest countries in the world, AND and elephants were eating my food/livelihood… I sure as hell wouldn’t care what ulterior or superior motives Bob Parsons had for killing the elephant that was destroying my food. He’s no saint, but this is far less objectionable to me than the objectification of women in the ad campaigns.

  66. jonathanpeterson says:

    My dad was an anthropologist who helped develop and document the successes of a Zimbabwean elephant hunting program, called Campfire.

    Big game hunting in Zimbabwe is in the national parks and “communal lands”, rural subsistence farming/hearding areas run by tribal elders. Traditionally Africa, the money for big game hunting goes straight into the national treasury, and in Africa, that is money that never tends to leave the capital.

    An elephant is TREMENDOUSLY destructive to fences and farms, and a farmer just wants it to be gone – whether killed by a legal hunter or a poacher. But the poacher will happily kill pregnant females and mothers with calves, will get into shootouts with park rangers or people who disturb their ivory stashes and the money will fund other illegal activities.

    In the Campfire program 1/2 of the license fees for an elephant (a couple thousand US dollars) stays in the hands of tribal area where the elephant is killed. That money pays for schools, granaries, water treatment and other self determined improvements, and is pretty well the only source of hard currency other than sending your children to do low paying labor jobs in the cities.

    Since my Dad’s death, and the near collapse of Zimbabwe’s government, I don’t know the status of that program. But 15 years ago, the parks that had CampIn areas under Campfire, the number of elephants killed by poachers approached zero, the overall size and health of elephant herds INCREASED and local villages improved their quality of life and the program was being studied for replication all over Africa.

    Just because Crazy Bob sells domain registration with boobies, doesn’t mean that responsible game management practices are evil.

    • travtastic says:

      Since my Dad’s death, and the near collapse of Zimbabwe’s government, I don’t know the status of that program. But 15 years ago, the parks that had CampIn areas under Campfire, the number of elephants killed by poachers approached zero, the overall size and health of elephant herds INCREASED and local villages improved their quality of life and the program was being studied for replication all over Africa.

      Just an apolitical thought: if your highly-organized killing results in making more of what you’re killing, you might not be killing it right.

      • Kieran O'Neill says:

        I think your thought is political but in other ways.

        But more to the point, your reasoning assumes that culling animals for management has the goal of wiping out herds — usually the goal is indeed to maintain numbers and health of populations. Sometimes that requires that imbalances within or between populations be corrected.

        I would be very surprised if culling were never practised in the park where you just went on safari, for that matter.

        • travtastic says:

          I think your thought is political but in other ways.

          I was actually specifically trying to avoid a drawn-out dispute with that one…but alright. Explain to me how I’m politicizing it.

          I offhandedly mention that killing things shouldn’t make more of them, I have a secret agenda and an engagement ring from Dumbo, alright, cool, case closed.

          I am familiar with culling, for the record. If I wasn’t, I would look it up in a new tab. I disagree with it on account of not being able to remember when the world revolved around human actions, and nothing worked right without us.

          Can we go back to talking about how the deus ex rich white man came and saved the helpless brown people?

          • Kieran O'Neill says:

            Sorry – the political bit was tangential, and I’ll withdraw it.

            “I am familiar with culling, for the record. If I wasn’t, I would look it up in a new tab. I disagree with it on account of not being able to remember when the world revolved around human actions, and nothing worked right without us.”

            The issue is that culling is necessary to maintain the wellbeing of populations (and ultimately entire species) being preserved in conservation areas. The fact that many species are almost entirely confined to dedicated conservation areas is, indeed a function of world revolving around human actions — the land they would naturally range in (and naturally have their population levels controlled in due to predation), has been converted to farmland, which is now essential to the wellbeing of humans living on and around it. This is true in most parts of the world.

            It’s not the best course of action that we as a species could have taken, but we are now left with the problem that we cannot just give all the farmland back to animals, since that would result in mass starvation of humans. So we cull animals to control their populations in the semi-artificial environment we leave them with, as the next-best thing.

            ==============

            Re the deus ex rich white man — well, that’s not all that uncommon a story. It’s a bit sickening that this guy is trying to make hay out of it, especially since it’s almost certain he did it for fun / penis substitution value rather than altruism.

            But if the locals get a schoolteacher’s salary (or something) out of the hunting license, they probably won’t care much where the money came from.

          • travtastic says:

            That’s fair enough. But it’s a problem if we’re expecting these people to make a living off of vacationeers killing elephants.

            The elephants and other species problematic to human agriculture need to be disincentivized, not killed. I’m fairly certain the elephant ate their crops because it was hungry, not because it was an outlier that would have driven these people to the brink of starvation. It was hungry, so it ate. That goes for all animals, including humans. Killing one won’t get rid of the problem. Killing a bunch won’t get rid of the problem.

            Any kind of hunting of this nature is nothing more than a stopgap measure. There will come a time when desk jockeys don’t feel a need to come to this specific village and shoot things, and when that time comes, it would be a good idea to have a non-violent backup plan.

            I just don’t see how we can (all of us) tie hunting to the economic problems in poor regions. Africa suffers from a lack of investment that guns won’t solve. And I’m going to go ahead and assume that the elephant problem is at it’s origin caused by human encroachment. Give them better techniques and access to better gear, and they won’t have to farm on marginal land that brings them dangerously close to areas occupied by endangered species. No shooting necessary, no culling required.

  67. Shart Tsung says:

    I would like to try Elephant steak, although it would probably pretty tough and gamy. Maybe it would be better in a stew. Animals are just so good to eat, I don’t care it that makes me an asshole, it’s the way I choose to live my life.

  68. MrsP says:

    May I ask why my comments were deleted even though I did NOT violate the commenting policies?

    • Antinous / Moderator says:

      You jammed a highly controversial and completely unrelated topic into the thread. If you want to repost minus that topic, go ahead.

  69. mercator says:

    Leaving aside the elephant murder issue, the fact that the villagers are starving is primarily due to the corrupt governance of Robert Mugabe, who this asshole is supporting.

Leave a Reply