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Meat?

Discussion in 'Anarchism and radical activism' started by ChaosUK, Apr 17, 2011.

  1. punkpenguin

    punkpenguinMember Forum Member


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    Apr 14, 2011
     
    'Ethical meat' is an oxymoron, just like saying you want to eat meat but think the animals should be treated humanely is an oxymoron. Eating animals is an inhumane act in itself.
     
  2. vAsSiLy77

    vAsSiLy77Experienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Jun 21, 2010
     
    we can't - the local veterans are almost fused with their ol'leather jackets and boots - and I have to admit that I wear leather working boots since last week - but i swear i will do everything to ensure that they outlast even me at the end:
    Lay Me Down With My Boots On (Bob Dylan).

    i don't go so far that i regard eating meat as "inhuman" - cannibalism would be inhuman - but the animals are animals, nothing more and nothing less - and they deserve the respect we should pay to all higher living beings/species.

    our species wouln't have evolved if some of our humanoid predecessors wouldn't have started to eat carrion they found on the steppes of northeast Africa some millions of years ago, don't remember right now what species the culprits were.
    later they learned to cook and hunt - archaeobiology/paleontology describe an inter-relation between the development of bigger and more complex brains with a high energy demand and the utilization of food resources with a high energy/protein potential.
    we are omnivores - but we must not be omnivore - thanks to our intelligence and the invention of agriculture and farming.
    how we feel about the consequences of the food chain is a personal thing - each one decides ethics for him/herself.

    i share the disgust about how animals are treated in general - especially in the food production and so i support our vegetarian future, we keep on discussing veganism and maybe we end up vegan, the vets get rid of their leathers and i hide my boots in shame... :'(
     
  3. antihuman

    antihumanActive Member Forum Member


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    Dec 15, 2010
     
    forgoing a discussion of what makes something "ethical," I would say any discussion of "humane treatment of animals" is highly ironic. humans themselves are animals, albeit highly intelligent ones. the term "humane" implies that mankind is somehow above the natural laws that govern all living things; it's saying that we're "too good" to eat animals, which is a prime example of hubris, or the arrogant assumption that man knows better than the (rhetorical rather than literal) gods how this world should be governed. if we're really too good to kill an animal to survive, shouldn't we be too good to sacrifice any life for our own, including plants? what makes a plant inherently less valuable than an animal? sure, as far as we can tell they don't suffer, but all animals die and almost all animal deaths include suffering. either all life is sacred, including plant life, or none is. if we therefore assume that all life is sacred, we must accept that life must end for life to continue. if we don't, the logical extension of your argument that mankind should absolutely avoid destroying animal life is that we should end absolutely every activity that puts other animals at risk of dying. by eating plants, we consume the herbivores' food, so that must end, lest some rabbit or deer starve. consuming plants is just murder one step removed by your logic. also, carnivores have much smaller populations than herbivores as a result of the huge loss of energy on each trophic level; therefore, we should kill all carnivores for the greater good. we will remove all the murderers from the ecosystem, never mind the fact that herbivorous populations will explode and experience mass famine without predators. we should also destroy all human settlements because they take up land that could be used by animals; our very existence harms their habitat, which is, once again, just murder one step removed by this line of thinking.

    humans are part of the ecosystem, just like every other living thing. other living things must die so that we can live. pretending that we are "morally above" nature is a foolish tendency of man. as stated in my previous post, i believe animals deserve respect, freedom, and a natural existence. we owe them that much, but no more, because we have as much right to live as anything else. we should exercise our consumption of meat in a manner that is in line with the ecosystem and natural selection, but absolute veganism is hubristic and physically impossible unless you want to wipe out the entire human race.
     
  4. PhantomMentalis

    PhantomMentalisMember New Member


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    Apr 20, 2011
     
    My viewpoint exactly.
     
  5. persona-non-grata

    persona-non-grataExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Mar 9, 2010
     
    http://www.vegetarian-shoes.co.uk/
    :p they even have pretty colors ;)
     
  6. JackNegativity

    JackNegativityExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Nov 9, 2010
     
    http://www.vegetarian-shoes.co.uk/airse ... 533_p.html

    Dude, I want these so fucking bad. Not sure how much they would be in USD, but I'm pretty sure i don't have that kind of cash sitting around.

    My Gf and I have been talking about going vegan soon. Right now we're reading about it and deciding whether or not it's a good idea to include our 16-month-old son (in the diet, not as a food source :p ).
     
  7. PhantomMentalis

    PhantomMentalisMember New Member


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    Apr 20, 2011
     
    Would be about $200 usd. Or you could go and grab some clearance Timberland's for $40
     
  8. snookams

    snookamsExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Feb 7, 2010
     
    okay i'll go for this one as i've been active in animal liberation lately.

    first off eating meat has been around for a very long time. however in the geography of this, certain groups of people eat certain animals based on where they are living. the ability for a Californian to eat/use cow or its biproducts, for example, is directly based on the Spanish conquistadores bringing them to there. the cows eventually destoryed the Los Angeles grasslands that once existed and have now been replaced by concrete and gridlock. these cows were grassfed and killed "humanely."

    the Piaute people native to the California/ Arizona biospheres would, for example, eat rabbit about once a year in a rabbit hunt before winter. they would use the fur for extremely warm coats that would protect them from snow dusting in the great basin area during the winter. however, they had what we now call a vegan diet other than that rare occassion.

    the Celtic people also had a similar situation. they would consume meat rarely and some sects would use animals for sacrafice.

    the idea of husbandry and meat consumption is directly related to early forms of capitalism and colonization. he who had many animals and alot of meat to consume was seen as "wealthy" and "successful" whereas the commoners, who rarely at meat or used animal products, were, well, common.

    the ideas of anarchy (anti-heirarchical and anti-capitalistic as well as other ideas) are directly in confilct with the origins and modern continuation of animal product use. now i'm not trying to blame people for their liking of meat or other animal products, but i am saying you should consider the source. animals (including humans mind you) have been hunted and eaten for a very long time in homo sapien history, but the interference with natural ecology for the ideas of wealth, heirarchy and dominion theology are farily new and obviously dangerous to the well being of all animals, including us and to the environment.
     
  9. antihuman

    antihumanActive Member Forum Member


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    Dec 15, 2010
     
    this is essentially the point i was making, although we went at it from different angles. put simply, i view domestication/husbandry as exploitative and harmful to the environment. in modern society, veganism is morally sound in most circumstances, but only because the animals consumed are almost always exploited. meat in and of itself is not "evil," the degradation of entire species and the environment is the real problem. to paraphrase Chief Seattle, the earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth. the earth, obviously, includes all living things. animals are not commodities to be owned, they are part of the ecosystem, and should be respected as such. however, we also belong to the ecosystem, and have as much right to eat as anything else, provided we grant others the same consideration.
     
  10. vAsSiLy77

    vAsSiLy77Experienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Jun 21, 2010
     
    unemployed and pretty as i am(the four following pages were deleted by vanity control...)
    i'm looking for a new job and plan to return to gardening/farming - or to do something completely new and learn carpentry at building/construction sites. for both opportunities i need protective footwear - now my toes are steel armoured...
    during our recent balkan adventure we did many long across-all-terrain marches, walking the mile, climbing up and down mountains and crossing rivers - and finally my air seal boots gave up and fell apart - the synthetics above the foot's arch broke and ripped further and further, c'est fini, we had to patch them up with bandages and 1st aid stuff, giving me the look of a severly wounded partisan on the way home.
    my favorite veteran and record holder wears his leather boots since 14 years, greasing them regularly and doing the odd open-seam-repair himself with needle and yarn, every 4 years he gets new soles from the shoemaker... and finally i agree:
    if you care for leather and keep it flexible with vegetable fat, it's almost indestructible by tear and wear and far more resilient and tough than any synthetic.
    the choice to ruin the collective treasures and buy those import boots for a fortune was just pragmatic - but i still feel the sting that i wear a part of an once living buffalo on my feet.

    times running out, but i like to say a word or two about this good/evil/ethics in general/humans are animals thing too, especially about what's left of the hunters favorite "the natural balance"...
     
  11. vAsSiLy77

    vAsSiLy77Experienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Jun 21, 2010
     
    ... and some local butts and shinbones should get armor too? :ecouteurs:

    that's the "economic" view promoted by marxists and most leftwing sociologists - but I think it's not sufficient to explain the change that happened in the neolithics and resulted inevitably (big ???) in capitalism.
    Some "sociobiologists" - a relatively new breed of very questionable academic conservatives, explain the development of property and power as an evolutionary need/advantage:
    A male can increase his chances to spread his genes by accumulating riches to attract females...
    So capitalism is the final stage of human nature - and anti-capitalists are a dying breed?

    Both theories are completely ignorant about the fact that the end of the last ice age and the resulting climatic change forced the prehistoric population to find alternatives to hunting and gathering because the flora and fauna changed dramatically.
    I think there was no other way than husbandry - and even if the consequence was the current capitalistic stage - that doesn't mean that the story is over and we are determinated to kill ourselves because of the greed and power of a parasitic minority.
    Besides the need to end capitalism we have to deal with the damage done to our very own basis of existence - the little nature thats left around us.
    Nature gives a shit about morals and ethics - who killed bambi is an obsolet question and the fact that somebody did it doesn't mean anything except that lots of species vanished along with the natural balance and the respect for life.
    I think we have to hurry up and decrease our impact on the world as fast and effective as possible - and careful agriculture and a vegetarian way of life are effective means to support the necessary change.
    Raising cattle is a waste of resources and the abandonment of fodder production would help to decrease the area under cultivation - so we could give some space back to nature and increase the chance of its recovery.
    In europe the last predating animals vanished around 200 years ago - there is no natural balance left, the overpopulation of huntable game is kept for a trophy hungry minority, ruins the forests due to deer browsing, hunting has no relevance in the food production - so why not give it up, and allow the odd immigrating wolf or bear to take residence again?
    Maybe we would have a chance to get some "natural balance" back in an act of responsible abdiction.
     
  12. snookams

    snookamsExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Feb 7, 2010
     
    true. it's a tragedy of the commons really. i'm sure there were poor farmers who consumed meat via husbandry in response to the new climate change, but only at a very small scale... at least not at a scale enough to destroy megafauna/ top predators as well as destroy the balance of the rest of the ecology. the ideas and attitudes of wealth and competition surged people in wanting more and more (in this case, livestock) until the point of enviornmental disaster we are at today. now many people are "dependent" on husbandry for consumption as well as job markets. nature is a very neutral entity, and humans have upset the balance of it severly.
     
  13. vAsSiLy77

    vAsSiLy77Experienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Jun 21, 2010
     
    After thousands of years it's hard to define any kind of tendency or temporary status quo - there was a multitude of different cultures and the whole process of change took a long time to end up like it did.
    Some rare acheological findings give some reflection of the neolithic change (i wouldn't call it "revolution") and it's dramatic consequences - my favorite: A group of people living on the coast, fishing and eating crustaceans for hundreds of years, burying their dead in huge heaps of fish bones and empty mussel- and crab shells and finally dying out - they obviously never got the idea to leave their traditional area and change their life.
    The early animal breeders tried every species within reach, bones of foxes show evidence of captivity over whole generations, but instead of them, finally wolves were the ancestors of todays dogs, there are examples of half-nomadic slash-and-burn agriculture and continued hunting/gathering - it's a multitude of possibilities and we have still only a little knowledge about what happened.

    For the Anarchist's view this one might be of interest:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pierre_Clastres - at the end of the article is a linke to some excerpts

    In my opinion there is no alternative left - the primitivists will starve or die due to the unwanted heritage of abandoned nuclear power plants/-arsenals or the aftermath effects of the chemical-/ the oil industry coming from the decaying production and storage plants.
    To achive an egalitarian food production we would have to increase the meat production and thus waste more space and efford instead of using the more effective way and produce food directly via agriculture.
    How far we step back and give room for ol'mom nature - thats the other question, I think we have enough reasons to make us as small as possible - out of shame/or not is secondary...
     
  14. antihuman

    antihumanActive Member Forum Member


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    Dec 15, 2010
     
    I have to disagree with Clastres on this point. While religion certainly played a role in creation of inequality, it is not the base cause of inequality. Before I get to that, I also want to point out that there were never any people who decided "you know, I'd really like to give up my freedom for agriculture and husbandry." The change from a "primitive" to "civilized" society was much more gradual than many people imagine. At its beginning, the neolithic revolution took literally thousands of years to develop from the origins of our form of agriculture and husbandry to a true state. The first people to begin domesticating animals or practicing neolithic agriculture almost certainly did not realize what consequences their actions would have because it took generations for hierarchy to develop to a concrete social structure. The first farmers did not decide to give up their freedom; however, as a consequence of their actions, later generations suffered the consequences of the social changes caused by the neolithic revolution. By the time this happened, the memory of alternate methods of survival had been lost. Consequently, these later generations either had to accept hierarchy or starve.

    Now, as for the source of inequality, religion strengthened the power of the upper class, but by the time the first "organized religions" began to take form, inequality was already a reality. I know I've said this on this forum several times, and I'll probably say it again, but the "revolutionary" part of the neolithic revolution was not agriculture in itself. Many tribal societies practiced agriculture in one form or another prior to this, often in combination with hunting, gathering, etc. One aspect of what was truly revolutionary about the neolithic revolution is the idea to put food under lock and key, i.e. granting certain people ownership of the food supply. Prior to this, even in societies that practiced agriculture, true hierarchy could not develop because if anyone felt exploited, they had the skills necessary to find food in the wild and survive on their own. The fact that the neolithic revolutionaries forgot these skills after several generations, as mentioned above, in addition to the fact that certain members of society were given ownership of the food supply is the true root of inequality. The ability to decide who eats and who doesn't is the ultimate source of all hierarchical power, even today. Most people still lack the skills to survive on their own, forcing the lower classes to work for the benefit of the upper class, i.e. those who control the food supply. The specifics have changed drastically over the past 10000 years, but power is still ultimately derived from the same place.
    We definitely need to decrease our population. We are already at a level too high to sustain indefinitely, and it will only get worse. The only truly practical and bloodless way to achieve this that I have heard was proposed by Daniel Quinn, who is, by the way, an amazing author. Before I get to the proposal itself, some background information:

    Science has proved that when a species' food supply increases, the population will increase, always. This is as true of rats and deer as of people. Every year, man increases food production to feed a growing population, which ultimately causes the population to increase even more. Science has also proved that if a food supply is kept constant, the species' population will fluctuate slightly, but ultimately will remain near a balanced average, always. A third truth is that if a food supply is gradually decreased, a population will gradually decrease over each succeeding generation, always. Therefore, the only real solution to our population problem is to bite the bullet and accept that growing more food to feed the starving peoples of the world will only prolong famine, even making it worse as the population continues to grow. Instead of increasing food production, we need to slowly decrease it, and our global population will follow suit. The famines will end within a couple years, and the population will begin decreasing over the coming generations. Consequently, we could obviously decrease and eventually end husbandry, to the benefit of our population and the world.

    Some people argue against the scientific truths I have outlined above. The reason those statements are true is very simple: every animal alive is literally made of food. Every cell in your body was at one time food, which was broken down and processed into living tissue. Without food, our bodies would literally be nothing. Therefore, when there is a surplus of food, it enable more bodies to be produced than there could be otherwise. Conversely, when the food supply decreases, it is impossible to create as many bodies as in the previous generation.
     
  15. vAsSiLy77

    vAsSiLy77Experienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Jun 21, 2010
     
    I agree that the growing world population may become a real problem in the future, but it's not the demand for food that is the problem - it's the demand for energy and this question is much more complicated to answer.
    But even with our current opportunities we could deal with the world hunger just by giving away the surplus production without regard to the "market" and with some increased efficiency especially in the distribution we could abolish not only the starving but also the consequences of malnourishment which claim more victims.
    There is enough food avaliable - the problem is that the people don't receive it.
    I disagree with the reasons for overpopulation - in nature an increased birthrate is a stress reaction in times of food shortage - more descendants raise the chance that the genes of their parents survive the crisis and continue to spead in less stressed times - it's a game of risk and sometimes it doesn't work, but the "egoistic" gene will always attempt everything to be one of the "chosen few"...
    but in human societies?
    Population rates in industrial countries are decreasing despite the factual surplus production - and:
    Medicine and the general betterment of life condition are responsible - not the increased food production, overpopulation is a problem of the modern era and the consequences of unequal distribution of the achievements we gained.
    And I think before "we have to decrease our population" we should secure their survival, raise their living conditions and then: have some patience and wait for the same effect that works in the industrial regions today...
    You can't order people to execute birth control, enforced sterilisation is just unacceptable and I wonder "who" should organize the means to "decrease" the world population via food distribution and decide who gets to eat and who has to bite the bullet...
    Maybe it was the wish to be part of a "strong" community - like the fellowship of some religious cult, comparable to the modern cults that grow right in the middle of the main society?
    Why do people join scientology or the manson family? And remember, both gangs planned to "take over"...

    I'm not sure if i get your "locked up food" argument right - who should decide to lock up food that doesn't belongs to him because it was produced by others - It only works if they already have given up their freedom and agreed that the food will be locked up and that somebody else has to decide about it's distribution... in other words: This baby has already fallen into the water...
    I don't believe in the "economic" explanation - the very same thing could have happened in foraging societies: if there's a leader demanding all food as his property, enforcing his will with a well fed elite upon the less well fed majority - it's not the cultural stage but more probable the social relation, corrupted and failing badly.
    There is nothing like "scientific truth" - sciences constantly improve and todays insight might be wrong tomorrow... and it's still only a little what we know.
     
  16. Bakica

    BakicaExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Feb 21, 2010
     
     
  17. antihuman

    antihumanActive Member Forum Member


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    Dec 15, 2010
     
    I have no doubt that it is physically possible to feed everyone who is currently alive. the problem is that if we do, the problem will only get worse. this is an extremely unpopular position because it sounds cruel, but famine is caused by overpopulation, and the solution for overpopulation is not sending them food so they can reproduce more. it's ecology 101; when a species' population grows beyond what its habitat can provide food for, a famine occurs to balance the population. by sending aid, all that happens is that the famine continues far longer than would otherwise be necessary. sending more food allows more people to survive than the habitat can naturally support, and those people go on to have more kids. and, as you pointed out, they have a LOT of kids, which makes the situation exponentially worse. this isn't about ethics, it's about reality. the problems faced by third world countries will continue to spread around the world unless their ecosystem is allowed to balance itself.
    i point to my previous argument, "people are made of food." this is literally true. without a food increase, population increase is impossible in the long term. i don't understand what point you're trying to make with that last question. mankind is subject to the laws of nature, just like every other species. we are no more exempt to the laws of ecology than we are to the law of gravity.

    I remember reading an excellent counter-argument to the "industrialization will save the world" argument, but unfortunately, it has escaped me for the moment. I'll go find it and get back to you on that.
    As for the second part of this argument, i wasn't promoting forced sterilization or birth control. if the planet followed the plan i outlined, the famines in third world countries would end in a year or two once their population was allowed to stabilize naturally. after this, there would be no need for forcing sterilization or violence of any kind to decrease the population. by slowly decreasing food production, each succeeding generation will decrease slightly, without any need for the rapid depopulation caused by famine or war. birth rates will naturally decline; they would have to, because, as i previously stated, there would be less food, which is what people are made of. less food means less people.
    sorry, you caught me. it's a scientific theory with substantial evidence backing it. like the theory of evolution.
     
  18. antihuman

    antihumanActive Member Forum Member


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    Dec 15, 2010
     
    OK I've found a response to
    the populations in first world countries are relatively stable, even though food production continues to increase in these countries. this is because much of the extra food is shipped around the world to sustain population growth in countries that cannot supply their own food because they are already overpopulated. when food production increases as a whole, the population will increase as a whole, always. Daniel Quinn likened this to an experiment that has been run 10,000 times, every year since the beginning of the neolithic revolution. if the experiment is testing how food production affects population growth, every year mankind has increased food production, and every year our population has grown. don't expect a different result the 10001st time if you continue to increase food production, regardless of what living conditions are like.

    In the USA, 500 years ago the non-native population was 0. 500 years later, the population is approaching 500 million. The reason for this is not a decrease in standard of living, it's an increase in food production around the world.
     
  19. JackNegativity

    JackNegativityExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Nov 9, 2010
     
    I don't think I buy this. You're saying the non-native population went from 0 to 500 million solely due to food production, leaving out more than half a millenium of immigration, genocides, wars etc. that have occured and obviously had an impact.

    The whole increased food production/population is a pretty new theory for me, and I'm not ruling out that it may have had some impact, but I'm just not digging on whoever your source is right now.
     
  20. antihuman

    antihumanActive Member Forum Member


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    Dec 15, 2010
     
    the population increased as a result of worldwide food production. it's not the only factor at play obviously, but without it, this continent would still be largely populated by tribal peoples. the point is that over the past 10000 years, standards of living have fluctuated, but our population has always continued to grow along with food production.
     
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