The catastrophe that allowed mammals to reign supreme

Humans are so comfortable with their self-declared dominance over the rest of life, appointing themselves titular head of an entire geological age in the ‘Anthropocene’, that we forget how we are party to a much wider evolutionary alliance: the mammals. Steve Brusatte announces that mammals reign supreme upon this planet. One thinks especially of their place as climax predators in almost all regions – the lions, tigers, wolves and bears for example – or the sheer weight of numbers of the megafauna in the African savanna, the herds of wildebeest, antelopes and zebras. Mammals are more widely spread over the planetary surface than all higher organisms, with the possible exception

Banning foie gras and fur was never really about animal suffering

Well, too bad Carrie and Zac. It looks like the government is going to drop its commitment to banning imports of foie gras and fur. A combination of Jacob Rees-Mogg objecting to the foie gras ban on the grounds of consumer choice and Ben Wallace, Defence Minister, agitating for the Guards to continue to have their bearskin hats, seems to have seen that off. Issues such as these are interesting in that they combine otherwise incompatible groups and individuals in opposition. In Tory terms, the kind of people who campaign about foie gras and fur tend to be posh Tories – it was no accident that Zac Goldsmith first promised