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Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

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Eduk
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Eduk » November 26th, 2018, 11:10 am

Not only are efficiency and environmental soundness not correlated
Are you sure? Just seems like common sense to me if you use less energy per kilo of meat then you cause less global warming because you are using less energy. You use less land because you are more efficient. You need less crops because you are more efficient and so on.
For example a lot of people erroneously believe organic farming to be good for the environment because... But if you switched all crop production to organic there wouldn't be enough room on the planet to grow the food we are currently eating. So I'm sure meat production does cause a host of problems but it might be that factory farming, whilst the cruellest and least humane, is actually the most environmentally sound.
By the way I'm not saying that it categorically is, it just seems to follow that if you do anything more efficiently you cause less of the problems associated with whatever you are doing. Can you think of other examples of greater efficiency which actually cause more harm?
By the way could you possibly cite some of the studies from the documentary? I'm not sure it is easily available to view without buying it?
By the way I'm all for eating less meat. Even the most efficient meat is still contributing to lots of problems. Well regarding traditional meats that is, cricket meat might be better. Not sure.
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h_k_s
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by h_k_s » November 26th, 2018, 1:19 pm

[quote=LuckyR post_id=324449 time=1543218492 user_id=44898]
[quote=h_k_s post_id=324431 time=1543197789 user_id=48582]


Animal slaughter bothers me, although when I go to a food store to buy a steak I do not readily think about it.

I feel the least guilt about killing and eating animals that I have hunted, because I know that my 300 RUM hunting rifle will kill them instantly and unexpectedly. Therefore they do not suffer. And the biology of herd management means that the excess males which do not mate as well as some of the females in a culling situation where the population of the herd has grown too large requires hunting. Hunting of herd animals is accomplished by wolves, mountain lions, coyotes, and human hunters. There is nothing unethical about it.

Q.E.D.
[/quote]

Well, as has been established earlier, the argument that domesticated animals who are bred specifically for their production value are reasonably culled for that product. What is unethical are certain specific techniques and practices, not the entirety of agriculture.
[/quote]

… "It has been established earlier …" is a populorum fallacy.

Eduk
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Eduk » November 26th, 2018, 2:03 pm

Pointing out fallacies as proof that X is incorrect is itself called the fallacy fallacy.
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h_k_s
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by h_k_s » November 26th, 2018, 2:54 pm

[quote=Eduk post_id=324497 time=1543255402 user_id=46986]
Pointing out fallacies as proof that X is incorrect is itself called the fallacy fallacy.
[/quote]

The so called fallacy-fallacy is an argument from ignorance fallacy.

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ktz
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by ktz » November 26th, 2018, 2:56 pm

Eduk wrote:
November 26th, 2018, 11:10 am
Not only are efficiency and environmental soundness not correlated
Are you sure? Just seems like common sense to me if you use less energy per kilo of meat then you cause less global warming because you are using less energy. You use less land because you are more efficient. You need less crops because you are more efficient and so on.
For example a lot of people erroneously believe organic farming to be good for the environment because... But if you switched all crop production to organic there wouldn't be enough room on the planet to grow the food we are currently eating. So I'm sure meat production does cause a host of problems but it might be that factory farming, whilst the cruellest and least humane, is actually the most environmentally sound.
By the way I'm not saying that it categorically is, it just seems to follow that if you do anything more efficiently you cause less of the problems associated with whatever you are doing. Can you think of other examples of greater efficiency which actually cause more harm?
By the way could you possibly cite some of the studies from the documentary? I'm not sure it is easily available to view without buying it?
By the way I'm all for eating less meat. Even the most efficient meat is still contributing to lots of problems. Well regarding traditional meats that is, cricket meat might be better. Not sure.
You can find some of the positions taken by the movie by visiting the movie website and clicking on resources. I'll try to link it here but I imagine I'll be blocked by forum rules: https://www.eatinganimalsmovie.com/resources

If you aren't opposed to using streaming sites of nebulous legality, the movie is available on go watch series dot co, one word.

For sure the antibiotic resistance phenomenon is unique to the conditions under which factory-farmed livestock occurs. Animals that are allowed to go outside and move around develop immunities naturally and aren't exposed to the petri dish-like conditions.

Some other cases where the efficiency of factory farming and environmental impact are not necessarily correlated have to do with the priorities of the major agriculture corporations in comparison to that of the average farmer. The average farmer is inclined to maintain the health of the surrounding ecosystem since he has to live in the community there, but corporate entities are perfectly willing to overproduce manure that pollutes the surrounding bodies of water in exchange for higher production and profits. Excess production concentrated in a small area corresponds to excess waste, which above certain ppm concentrations can do significant damage to the surrounding water supply and ecosystem. Industrial approaches like mono-crops and excess pesticide are also more efficient and profitable but worse for the environment in the long run, causing soil erosion, killing bees, and potentially affecting human health.

However, looking at some data that appears to be unbiased, you are correct that industrial farms use land more efficiently with potentially less environmental impact in terms of land use and carbon emissions. There is probably no substitute for reducing meat consumption like you mentioned.

Still, part of the difficulty in finding data to evaluate these claims accurately is the passage of "Ag Gag" laws in many states, which disallow whistleblowers and investigative journalism to occur on factory-farm locations.
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Eduk
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Eduk » November 26th, 2018, 3:14 pm

Well the problem that perhaps the most unscrupulous who would cut the most corners and take short term gains over the environment might be attracted to factory farming. But that's not an inherent problem with factory farming.
The antibiotic resistance looks like a valid point.
I don't want to give the wrong impression by the way. I'm for humane treatment of animals. If that means no factory farming then so be it. But the upshot of that shouldn't be more less efficient farming it should be less meat consumption.
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Greta
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Greta » November 26th, 2018, 7:12 pm

I would think that intensive factory farming of chickens and pigs would measure strongly in terms of calories v land used.

However, pigs are so intelligent that, in terms of suffering and deprivation, what we are doing seems roughly equivalent to keeping small children in those conditions in cages. I don't eat pig at all, even free range, because my disgust with factory farming has spoiled it all for me. It also should be said that the hormone infused, unhealthy meats being sold from these producers will keep people alive but will be less healthy than meats from animals that are not chronically sick and depressed.

I find the whole situation very sad, as I find the entire schema of life needed to destroy other life to survive for that matter (if a little less so). If we are "born into sin" then this is the fault line.

Eduk
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Eduk » November 27th, 2018, 3:12 am

I don't think the meat is unhealthy either. People seem well fed to me.
Taste does get deprioritised though.
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Greta
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Greta » November 27th, 2018, 3:26 am

Look at the hormones and crap that they feed the animals. I don't want that stuff in me and I have little faith that caging producers are ethical enough to care what happens as long as they make money.

The ethics are the biggest issue, though, yes.

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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Steve3007 » November 27th, 2018, 3:28 am

Eduk wrote:I don't want to give the wrong impression by the way. I'm for humane treatment of animals. If that means no factory farming then so be it. But the upshot of that shouldn't be more less efficient farming it should be less meat consumption.
I think the ideal situation would be that governments around the world coordinate with each other to universally raise the legally binding animal welfare standards to such a level that meat production does, in fact, become less efficient again, that the cost of meat therefore rises, and that it goes back to being a luxury in countries, like ours, where it has become an everyday staple. In poorer countries that is already the case (as it was in our countries in the recent past) and the protein intake from small quantities of meat is supplemented by cheaper, more reliably available vegetable sources of protein.

The international coordination would be necessary because we live in a world of global markets, so if one country raises animal welfare standard it simply creates a commercial pressure to import meat from other countries where the welfare standards are lower and the meat is therefore cheaper.

The trouble is, international coordination on this and other issues (like climate change) is difficult and, recently, has started to go even more out of fashion than it was, particularly in the Trump era. It is depicted as the evil socialism - big governments doing evil big government stuff.

Eduk
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Eduk » November 27th, 2018, 5:06 am

Greta they don't have to be ethical to care about being sued or imprisoned. We have food standards which are independent. Like I say if you are concerned that everyone is poisioning themselves I recommend you simply look. People have better nutrition now than they have ever had.
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Eduk
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Eduk » November 27th, 2018, 5:13 am

Steve I agree. So many problems can only be tackled globally. I guess people are scared of getting a world dictator though, which seems quite possible.
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Greta
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Greta » November 27th, 2018, 6:03 am

Eduk, it's not just me saying it: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3834504/

Antibiotic resistance is one issue. There are more: https://www.independent.co.uk/life-styl ... 13746.html
The piglets compete with one another for teats that aren’t providing enough milk for them all, so they have their teeth painfully clipped to minimise damage when fighting to suckle.

The growing pigs live on hard slatted floors so their excrement can conveniently be washed away conveniently.

Unstimulated, their tails will have already been docked (without anaesthetic if they were under seven days old) to stop them causing serious damage when they bite each other as boredom turns to aggression.

Tail docking is technically illegal. The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) reported that “the largest risk for being tail bitten is the lack of appropriate enrichment”, which can be rectified by giving pigs access to the likes of straw, hay, wood, and peat to root around in.

At three weeks old they are transferred to pens where they are fattened up on cereals and fed routine antibiotics because diseases spread quickly in tightly packed conditions and they haven’t fed from their mother for long enough to build up immunity.

However, a recent investigation by CIWF estimates that 81 per cent of UK piglets have their tails docked as mutilating them is a quicker and cheaper solution.

Bred to grow quickly and fed growth hormones they are ready for slaughter from five months old, twice as fast as higher welfare breeds. At the abattoir they are likely to be gassed in groups, because it’s efficient and cost saving.

“Gas is very aversive, it’s not pleasant at all,” says Marc Cooper, head of farm animals at RSPCA Assured. “We’re pushing for work on better gas killing systems that can use gases that are more humane.”

These are yet to be developed because of other priorities – namely producing more meat for cheaper cost.

Eduk
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Eduk » November 27th, 2018, 6:14 am

Greta if you read what I wrote I never said there were no ethical issues, indeed I said the opposite. Just because I don't 100% degree with one point you make doesn't mean I don't agree with any points you are making.
The article you linked is good. The conclusion appears to be that hormones pose no risk so long as they are administered competently?
The microbial resistance concern is a different issue. Again their conclusion was that it might be risky and that more science needs to be done. As a consumer I am mostly trusting that the science will get done and risks minimised, or at least made explicit. That has been my experience with life thus far.
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Re: Animal Ethics - Is it wrong to eat animals?

Post by Greta » November 27th, 2018, 6:34 am

I'm mostly okay with that, Eduk, but I think such trust may well be been better placed in the past than today. There's ever more toothless regulators, politicians focused on reducing regulations, stacked courts and overseas products not subject to the same (un)ethical standards complicate the issue.

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