DONATE NOW TO HELP UPGRADE LIBCOM.ORG

WSM and Animal Rights?

168 posts / 0 new
Last post
Lazy Riser's picture
Lazy Riser
Offline
Joined: 6-05-05
Dec 6 2006 23:15

Hi

Quote:
you remind me of the idiot

Personal invective. First shot.

Love

LR

JDMF's picture
JDMF
Offline
Joined: 21-05-04
Dec 6 2006 23:24
Lazy Riser wrote:
Hi

Quote:
you remind me of the idiot

Personal invective. First shot.

Love

LR

yeah i managed to call him an idiot and not stupid in one reply grin Though quoting those statistics is more than stupid, just plain dishonesty and manipulative behaviour.

But then again, that is to be expected from some anarchists when it comes to the just struggle against vegans and vegetarians!

gurrier
Offline
Joined: 30-01-04
Dec 6 2006 23:24
JDMF wrote:
gurrier, you are not stupid, so you will know from the outset that malnutrition is down to lack of diversity and calorie intake, and not down to a meta choice or a dietary habit of if there is animal protein included in the diet.

Outside of famines, which are pretty rare, there is almost no incidence of calorie deficiency in Africa. There is a lack of diversity and in particular a lack of certain types of protein which are not present in local foods and only available locally through meat, which is probably eaten at about 1 morsel per month on average.

JDMF wrote:
Of course intriducing animal protein to the diet in areas with very few resources would only cause more malnutrition and deaths

Total utter rubbish. There is virtually no such thing as an African vegetarian (there are a few hindi veggies in Uganda and on the East coast) and almost everybody does manage to get an occasional morsel.

JDMF wrote:
but thats only the poor ones who cant afford the higher price of food which is produced by using resources which could have been used for feeding humans directly.

Not true in any way in Africa. There is pretty much no plant resources that are used to rear meat which could also be used to feed humans. livestock lives off:
a) scraps and urban foraging (chickens, goats, sheep)
b) semi-arid pastoral lands (cattle, goats, camels)
c) jungle (bush meat)

JDMF wrote:
One would think you would be concerned about this? Again it seems like your hatred for the idea of toning down the use of animals in agriculture is stronger than your hatred of wasting resources to produce animal products even if it leads to malnutrition and death. :(

It's the fact that I think the whole endeavour is fundamentally wrong. It could only lead us to catastrophe if it were widely adopted and it rests upon a terrible alienation from the ecology in terms of how we perceive ourselves.

Lazy Riser's picture
Lazy Riser
Offline
Joined: 6-05-05
Dec 6 2006 23:38

Hi

Quote:
Though quoting those statistics is more than stupid, just plain dishonesty and manipulative behaviour.

The debate is bound to be sophistic, because at it’s heart is the unmovable adherence to personal value systems which position animal suffering at different preference levels. All the other arguments are just card houses built on a foundation of transcendental morality.

Love

LR

seaners
Offline
Joined: 30-08-06
Dec 7 2006 05:08
gurrier wrote:
My really big problem with political vegetarianism and veganism is the end-goal. I know that they are against animal suffering and against killing animals, but who isn't?

I hardly ever eat meat but I certainly not against killing animals for food, If they weren't meant to be eaten they wouldn't be made out of meat. I just think the way they're raised and treated like products to be consumed is fucked up. Not wrong or right or morally less than anything else, just weird and it makes me uncomfortable, so I don't buy farmed meat. That's all. Now stop poking around my kitchen.

JDMF's picture
JDMF
Offline
Joined: 21-05-04
Dec 7 2006 08:35
gurrier wrote:
Outside of famines, which are pretty rare, there is almost no incidence of calorie deficiency in Africa. There is a lack of diversity and in particular a lack of certain types of protein which are not present in local foods and only available locally through meat, which is probably eaten at about 1 morsel per month on average.

could you name the amino acid which is not present?

gurrier wrote:
Total utter rubbish. There is virtually no such thing as an African vegetarian (there are a few hindi veggies in Uganda and on the East coast) and almost everybody does manage to get an occasional morsel.

man, you are missing the point or dont even bother thinking about this. I was talking of increase in animal product consumption, not vegetarianism (not to mention you dont even know big hindu groups like south africa KZN population of over million).

Lets go to basics so we at least talk from the same page. Consumption of animal protein is very low among the african working class. Lets take an example working class of south africa so the discussion gets some reality. In south africa the black working class staple is the local white corn (millie) and other vegetables because of the price. As the income increases the consumption of animal products increase as well. This causes the increase of corn price which directly hurts those who cannot afford eating animal products. Currently over 60% of the SA corn is fed to animals which in turn feed relatively small number of wealthier population.

Now your approach is that the whole population should move to increase their consumption of animal products, and you would be categorically against the decrease of the use of animal products among the richer section of the population. Do you understand the practical consequences of your position? This is what i meant that your hatred of the idea of decreasing animal product consumption is greater than your hatred of issues such as food security and feeding people with diverse sources of foods.

gurrier wrote:
Not true in any way in Africa. There is pretty much no plant resources that are used to rear meat which could also be used to feed humans. livestock lives off:
a) scraps and urban foraging (chickens, goats, sheep)
b) semi-arid pastoral lands (cattle, goats, camels)
c) jungle (bush meat)

plain wrong. There is plenty of plant sources fed to animals, i gave you the example of the south african staple which is fed to animals. And also, dont be deliberately ignorrant about agriculture mate, it is about arable land that we talk about, not what is grown on it. If you are using 10 units of arable land to produce a pound of animal protein, and could produce 10 pounds of vegetable protein on the same area, then of course it is contributing to the lack of calorie, protein and food diversity.

Also, the best land areas are often in the use of export production, such as sugar, tobacco, cocoa, coffee and other export items.

Have to say that we are of course talking of capitalis production - its not like they would produce more food for local poor if these export or animal feed items were not produced on that land. But in terms of talking about efficiency of food production and food security the economics are pretty clear.

gurrier wrote:
It's the fact that I think the whole endeavour is fundamentally wrong. It could only lead us to catastrophe if it were widely adopted and it rests upon a terrible alienation from the ecology in terms of how we perceive ourselves.

yeah i guess you think that is the case in india with 60% of population vegetarian and up to 80% pretty damn close of being vegetarian.

You simply have no idea of evidence of how it would lead to a catastrophe in terms of public health or ecology where the opposite is cllearly evidenced and it is the intensive use of animal products which had caused and is causing ecological damage locally and globally (even the damn rainforrests which you dont want to mention understadably because it would kill your aim of increasing animal product consumption).

Since around 60% of worlds population consume very little animal products to aim to increase it to western levels just because of your localised hatred of vegan crusty punks is just plain idiotic mate. I mean that is what i have to assume since you think it is catastriphic to suggest that we would be decreasing animal product consumption here. Just think what you are suggesting here for a second and try not to let the emotions to get in the way.

knightrose
Offline
Joined: 8-11-03
Dec 7 2006 10:19
Quote:
Gurrier there are much better justifications for eating meat.

For example?

knightrose
Offline
Joined: 8-11-03
Dec 7 2006 10:27

I figured that would be your reason.

Isn't it amazing how these threads are always the longest ones on libcom?

Lazy Riser's picture
Lazy Riser
Offline
Joined: 6-05-05
Dec 7 2006 11:38

Hi

Quote:
Isn't it amazing how these threads are always the longest ones on libcom?

Debate built on private value systems gives rise to circular arguments. The victim-led philosophical flaw within Anarchism continues to attract the pro-animal lobby.

Love

LR

georgestapleton's picture
georgestapleton
Offline
Joined: 4-08-05
Dec 7 2006 14:22
dara wrote:
Quote:
"Animals have the right to be yummy"

i think i'll put forward a motion to the next Delegate Council to amend our position paper to include exactly that.

I think it'd pass. I'd vote for it anyway.

Animals DO have the the right to be yummy. Who are you to deny them that right.

JDMF's picture
JDMF
Offline
Joined: 21-05-04
Dec 7 2006 16:14

i guess another issue to consider (and Lazy Riser will love this) is the attitude of "comrades" to something their comrades and people in same orgs hold very dear.

Sounds like very disrespectful, insulting and belittling attitude with not much empathy. You should leave that to Lazy and revol, rather than attack people from your own group like Dara has been subjected to. After all, its not like people are (usually) vegan or vegetarian, or more generally against animal industry and cruelty to animals for willy nilly reasons. Also, before the internet and having the opportunity to converse with other anarchists, i have never seen so much abuse and insults against vegans/vegetarians. And thats after my experiences of me using a lot of powerlifting and strongman training message boards which seem to be much more friendly on this topic against all stereotypes.

georgestapleton's picture
georgestapleton
Offline
Joined: 4-08-05
Dec 7 2006 16:23

Yeah I normally don't give a shit about veganism and what people eat. In fact looking at it from an economic point of view I think that in a post revolutionary society when we are producing food to satisfy our needs while minimising our negative impact on the enviroment and minimising the amount of work people have to do I'd imagine that we'd greatly reduce the amount of animal farming we do because the continual expansion of the beef trade in particular is really fucking up the enivroment.

As for Dara, he's silly we always make fun of him. Just like GDID is silly and we always make fun of him for being a gothic and then a punk and now an anarchist we think he's acting out against his parents.

All that said... Animals do have the right to be yummy. And neither you nor an other AR person or any person at all has the right to deny animals their right to be yummy. And I stand by that.

Tacks's picture
Tacks
Offline
Joined: 8-11-05
Dec 7 2006 16:42

Hmm.

This is treating vegetarianism like its religion when it more like agnosticism. I think being purposely provocative and insulting towards veggies is treating them like they are actually counter-productive to your cause, rather than just irrelevant; i.e. you cannot prove that its not a good idea to eat meat, and there is nothing gained trying to. You'll just have to give it the benefit of the doubt.

Putting 'animals have the right to be yummy' or 'we support animal testing' through at you AGM would simply be an expression of your desire to escape or distance yourselves from stereotype.

It would be like passing a ban on members having dreadlocks* - everything to do with attacking the lifestyle and Super Furry Animals to do with politics.

*which i would vote for, admittedly.

Tacks's picture
Tacks
Offline
Joined: 8-11-05
Dec 7 2006 16:46

that was a veery even handed comment, so if anyone would like to kick off at me, i give you the following:

I don't really oppose any of the ALF actions listed in the OP!

Fuck it, if someone wants to attack a circus or a bookies cos they breed and use animals for entertainment, thats their look out. Better than fucking with innoccent scientists.

Thora
Offline
Joined: 17-06-04
Dec 7 2006 16:50
Tacks wrote:
Better than fucking with innoccent scientists.

Innocent?

JDMF's picture
JDMF
Offline
Joined: 21-05-04
Dec 7 2006 16:50
revol68 wrote:
I love how even when i'm nice to JDMF he always me as some sort of evil reference point, seriously I'm up there with the fucking holocaust in the moral compass, can't we introduce a revised Goodwins law for revol references?

Also Dara didn't get stick for being a vegan, he got stick when he spouted half digested lifestylist about diet and identity.

sorry man, but you are stuck with it wink

we should start a thread about dietary choices as political choise at some point actually, because i of course think it is, otherwise i would not be vegan (not interested in individualist ethical handwashing or meaningless symbolic actions).

Shorty's picture
Shorty
Offline
Joined: 13-06-05
Dec 7 2006 17:26
gurrier wrote:
I've thought about this and, depending on how it was done, it gives us either:
a) environmental and ecological catastrophe with a high probability of a massive reduction in the human population.
b) environmental and ecological catastrophe with a certainty of a massive reduction in the human population.

Eh, could you explain this a little? confused

gurrier wrote:
Therefore, I think that eating animals is just one of those things that comes with the world. We evolved in a world where there are food chains and we sit on the top of the heap. There is no such thing as a paradise of nature and there never was. There's a messy, dirty world where things eat other things, populations explode and collapse, species go extinct and so on. We're part of this and we can't escape it.

So either way we're fucked, yeah? confused

also

Que Simpson's quote; You see, your crazy friend never heard about "The Food Chain" smile

Tacks's picture
Tacks
Offline
Joined: 8-11-05
Dec 7 2006 17:44
Thora wrote:
Tacks wrote:
Better than fucking with innoccent scientists.

Innocent?

right; they may cut animals up, they may even do it with gross prejudice and malice - but they are cutting em up for research. Whats bobo the clown's excuse for dropping a horse into a pool, or lord cunty's for hunting? Well, I suppose animals have the right to amuse us? I used to love kicking the shit out of stray cats as a kid.*

*not true, JDMF!

Tacks's picture
Tacks
Offline
Joined: 8-11-05
Dec 7 2006 17:51

what if it was your job to murder little children huh? HUH?! angry

wink

Tacks's picture
Tacks
Offline
Joined: 8-11-05
Dec 7 2006 18:08

Independent Syndicate of Child Murderers...

yeah man. I dig.

Lazy Riser's picture
Lazy Riser
Offline
Joined: 6-05-05
Dec 7 2006 18:47

Hi

Quote:
Sounds like very disrespectful, insulting and belittling attitude with not much empathy. You should leave that to Lazy

And yet the personal invective remains from one direction only, demonstrating how political veganism connects to the disordered psychologies of its adherents. It shows how a particular philosophical disposition, ideological preference and character traits (such as an inclination to take remarks personally and to spitefully reciprocate) are linked.

Love

LR

madashell's picture
madashell
Offline
Joined: 19-06-06
Dec 8 2006 00:04

Just spotted this thread, don't know if treeofjudas is still reading it or not, but:

tojiah wrote:
they won't be setting up a new society...but neither will quadriplegics.

What the fucking fuck? angry

seaners
Offline
Joined: 30-08-06
Dec 8 2006 01:26
Tacks wrote:
Putting 'we support animal testing' through at you AGM would simply be an expression of your desire to escape or distance yourselves from stereotype.

It would be like passing a ban on members having dreadlocks* - everything to do with attacking the lifestyle and Super Furry Animals to do with politics.

Done and done...

WSM position paper on vivisection
15. Under capitalism most animal experimentation carried out is unnecessary, we oppose all experimentation for military and cosmetic purposes. Where animal experimentation is vital for medical research it should be reduced to the minimum necessary levels.

Tacks's picture
Tacks
Offline
Joined: 8-11-05
Dec 8 2006 05:26

well i'll be fucked.

Fair play to you then, i wondered when somebody would. My points from earlier still stand. Desperately trying to distance urself from ur stereotype, and in fact enforcing irrelevance by addressing an irrelevance.

I'm sure the AR movement is glad you deemed it neccessary to have position on AR; after all, the ALF might 'liberate' but it also about putting AR on the agenda, which you have.

Its 5am and i'm drunk, but i think i'll stand by these points later today.

Tojiah's picture
Tojiah
Offline
Joined: 2-10-06
Dec 8 2006 09:13
madashell wrote:
Just spotted this thread, don't know if treeofjudas is still reading it or not, but:

tojiah wrote:
they won't be setting up a new society...but neither will quadriplegics.

What the fucking fuck? angry

Yes, I'm still following the thread. I understand that you disapprove of my comment. Care to elaborate?

gurrier
Offline
Joined: 30-01-04
Dec 8 2006 11:10
JDMF wrote:
could you name the amino acid which is not present?

It's not as simple as that. proteins can't just be reduced to their constituent amino acids. Depending on the exact sequence of amino acids, they adopt all sorts of cool and crazy shapes. The shapes mean that they react differently with the acids and enzymes in the tummy. Unsurprisingly, animal proteins are several times easier to break down and absorb than plant proteins (which incidentally invalidates all of the simplistic comparisons about the amount of protein that can be produced per acre). Animal products are broken down to provide the body with pretty much all of the 9 essential amino acids in suitable quantities. Natural plant proteins are all limited in certain amino acids, which means that you need to consume several different sources of plant protein in larger quantities to achieve the same effect. This means that your diet has to be based upon fairly substantial quantities of, say, beans, pulses and lentils (none of which are available together in most of sub-saharan africa). Since the vast majority of the calories consumed in most African diets is starchy carbohydrate rich foods, very low in protein (especially cassava - virtually protein free), the only way you are going to get enough protein is either by:
a) having an odd bit of meat
b) completely re-engineering the diet, agriculture and cooking culture.

The first is easy. The second is completely pie-in-the-sky stuff, especially bearing in mind the fact that it's proved very difficult to even introduce a culture of rotating the ingredients used in the soups that accompany the starchy staples (the WHO and WFP have a campaign to persuade women to vary their recipes).

JDMF wrote:
man, you are missing the point or dont even bother thinking about this. I was talking of increase in animal product consumption, not vegetarianism (not to mention you dont even know big hindu groups like south africa KZN population of over million).

Lets go to basics so we at least talk from the same page. Consumption of animal protein is very low among the african working class. Lets take an example working class of south africa so the discussion gets some reality. In south africa the black working class staple is the local white corn (millie) and other vegetables because of the price. As the income increases the consumption of animal products increase as well. This causes the increase of corn price which directly hurts those who cannot afford eating animal products. Currently over 60% of the SA corn is fed to animals which in turn feed relatively small number of wealthier population.

This makes a similar point to Revol's point below:

revol wrote:
I'm especially shocked that gurrier is blind to the issues of land usage for meat production considering it played a considerable role in the Irish famine as the peasantry were forced to parcel off smaller and smaller pieces of land as landlords moved into commercial meat export.

Both points are fairly amazing ones for anarchists to make. I thought we were supposed to know that economic inequality and capitalist land ownership was the underlying problem and not what they chose to produce. Besides, it is fairly clear that world food production is adequate to feed the planet, but distribution in a capitalist economy is the problem.

As if the South African ranchers are going to change their production to drive down prices and feed the poor! As if the Irish landlords would have grown corn to feed the peasantry if they weren't rearing meat for export!

In fact, in both cases it's trivial to show that they wouldn't have and that the problems would not be any different if they were all vegan farmers.

In Ireland, it was not just meat that was exported. The big landowners produced produce for the export trade:

wikipedia wrote:
in 1845, a famine year in Ireland, 3,251,907 quarters (8 bushels = 1 quarter)) of corn were exported from Ireland to Britain.

...

During the first nine months of "Black '47" the export of grain-derived alcohol from Ireland to England included the following: 874,170 gallons of porter, 278,658 gallons of Guinness, and 183,392 gallons of whiskey.

A wide variety of commodities left Ireland during 1847, including peas,beans, onions, rabbits, salmon, oysters, herring, lard, honey, tongues,animal skins, rags, shoes, soap, glue and seed.

In Africa, north of the Limpopo, commercial animal husbandry is virtually unknown. The best land is almost exclusively devoted to the production of cash crops. In fact, some of the most disasterous effects of the economic inequality stem from the cultivation of "out of season" vegetables for the European market. The inland delta of the Niger is by far the most fertile area in the Sahel. Today it has become a giant vegetable farm to feed the demands of the West for seasonal vegetables and it monopolises the region's water - the most scarce resource of them all.

In short, explaining issues of food shortage through the fact that meat is cultivated is liberal nonsense. Land usage patterns and market realities are the underlying problem. Incidentally, the same arguments about increasing crop production were used as propaganda for Monsanto et al during the so-called "green revolution" - the move to intensive use of petroleum derived fertilisers and pesticides. And it certainly doesn't seem to have fixed the problem.

JDMF wrote:
Now your approach is that the whole population should move to increase their consumption of animal products, and you would be categorically against the decrease of the use of animal products among the richer section of the population. Do you understand the practical consequences of your position? This is what i meant that your hatred of the idea of decreasing animal product consumption is greater than your hatred of issues such as food security and feeding people with diverse sources of foods.

That's not accurate. I think that most people in the West should reduce their animal product consumption. As with most things, it's distribution that's the problem, not absolute production. As I said above, I don't think that it's anything to do with food security one way or the other.

gurrier
Offline
Joined: 30-01-04
Dec 8 2006 11:26
Shorty wrote:
gurrier wrote:
I've thought about this and, depending on how it was done, it gives us either:
a) environmental and ecological catastrophe with a high probability of a massive reduction in the human population.
b) environmental and ecological catastrophe with a certainty of a massive reduction in the human population.

Eh, could you explain this a little? confused

Sure. Let's imagine the world has a sudden rush of blood to the head and everybody goes vegan tomorrow. Option b) would have this move coming from an "animal rights" point of view, and option a would be just from a "food security" point of view. Here's how it goes.

In option a), the world would decide to switch entirely to crop cultivation for nourishment and eliminate animal husbandry. This would require, at the very least, the transformation of all current pasture-land into tillage. In semi-arid areas, in order to replace pastoralism, you'd need major irrigation works. The whole thing would see huge rises in fertiliser and pesticide usage and desertification (as water is sucked out of semi-arid lands for irrigation, it leaves parched land behind). In addition to that, all of our domesticated animals would go extinct in quick smart time. The non-domesticated animals and birds would also come under huge strain since animal husbandry can co-exist much more easily with wildlife than can crops. If you grow crops for humans to eat, you have to make sure that the animals don't eat them - war against rodents, birds, etc. You also need to ensure that bigger animals don't trample them (e.g. in Africa much elephant killing is prompted by crop-trampling). If you are raising animals, you only really have to care about the big predators (hence the fact that lions haven't existed in Europe since Roman times and all the other animals that compete with us for the top spot in the food chain are on the edge of extinction).

I reckon that given the fact that our ecosystem is already looking decidely shaky, such a massive shock to it would probably cause the extinction of the species.

The second option, where worldwide veganism came about through animal rights would be much more certain to lead to disaster. If we were to consider it wrong to harm animals in any way, our cities would quickly fill up with lions, tigers, bears and so on and we'd all be lunch.

Lazy Riser's picture
Lazy Riser
Offline
Joined: 6-05-05
Dec 8 2006 14:20

Hi

There's no moral difference between killing something for food and killing something for fun. Taking a position on vivisection and not on "eating meat" is totally wet liberalism. The idea that this-or-that is essential or justifiable, and this-or-that isn't, is just a matter of private religious belief.

Love

LR

JDMF's picture
JDMF
Offline
Joined: 21-05-04
Dec 8 2006 14:26
gurrier wrote:
It's not as simple as that. proteins can't just be reduced to their constituent amino acids. Depending on the exact sequence of amino acids, they adopt all sorts of cool and crazy shapes. The shapes mean that they react differently with the acids and enzymes in the tummy. Unsurprisingly, animal proteins are several times easier to break down and absorb than plant proteins (which incidentally invalidates all of the simplistic comparisons about the amount of protein that can be produced per acre). Animal products are broken down to provide the body with pretty much all of the 9 essential amino acids in suitable quantities. Natural plant proteins are all limited in certain amino acids, which means that you need to consume several different sources of plant protein in larger quantities to achieve the same effect.

wrong in so many ways this is like trying to explain evolution to a christian fundamentalist.

protein absorption rates vary greatly within plant based foods, and even if you would take this into account when calculating land area usage the difference would range in between 30 - 0%, which is why you need to talk of averages.

Elementary mistake about amino acids: in most plant proteins all essential amoni acids (as in the ones not produced by the body) are present but in various levels. The cut off point which determines a full protein is an artificial one, based on proteins in egg as far as i know so it stands to reason animal proteins will be closer to that. But at the same time many plant proteins such as soya and hemp meet these levels as well.

Your body stores amino acids and uses them as needed, and the requirements for amino acid levels vary from individual to another. Because i do powerlifting i use more l-glutamine for instance (lucky that i use soya products then because they are very high in that, whereas many in powerlifting supplement with extra glutamine). This is why you dont need to build full proteins (what ever that would be) in every sitting, and it is your overall diet that counts.

So in summary: you dont need to consume several different sources of plant proteins (two will do), and not larger quantities either - but of course more varied the diet is the better.

Quote:
This means that your diet has to be based upon fairly substantial quantities of, say, beans, pulses and lentils (none of which are available together in most of sub-saharan africa).

right, must have dreamed the many native bean based foods in south africa then, also been eating bean based ghanese ethnic foods, sudanese, kenyan etc. All makes me think you just sucked that out of your thumb, please provide the reference where you got that from.

Quote:
Since the vast majority of the calories consumed in most African diets is starchy carbohydrate rich foods, very low in protein (especially cassava - virtually protein free), the only way you are going to get enough protein is either by:
a) having an odd bit of meat
b) completely re-engineering the diet, agriculture and cooking culture.

The first is easy. The second is completely pie-in-the-sky stuff, especially bearing in mind the fact that it's proved very difficult to even introduce a culture of rotating the ingredients used in the soups that accompany the starchy staples (the WHO and WFP have a campaign to persuade women to vary their recipes).

both require changes in dietary culture, and one would have cvatastrophic environmental and food security implications, so of course you just choose the one with negative implications and say that the other one is impossible.

Thats ok though, you have some friends with that attitude. The agri capitalists have long wanted people to move towards animal product consumption due to bigger capital involvement and greater returns than in primary production.

Quote:
Besides, it is fairly clear that world food production is adequate to feed the planet, but distribution in a capitalist economy is the problem.

distribution is of course the problem, but even with global communism (which is just around the corner, so we shouldnt worry about these things within capitalist framework right?) the current food production methods are already unsustainable - and that is with a small minority of people consumin daily intake of animal products. When you are suggesting a global increase in animal production, you may as well say that worlds 6 billion people could all have their own oil using car - pure fantasy land stuff which is not supported by any statistical evidence of how animal feed is produced at the moment and what is its impact on producing food directly to people.

Quote:
In fact, in both cases it's trivial to show that they wouldn't have and that the problems would not be any different if they were all vegan farmers.

Actually if there was no animal production then according to the capitalist logic the direct production of food would be cheaper, rather than prices of staples such as corn fluctuating according to the demand for dairy and beef which is eaten by a rich minority of the population.

Also, plant based diet is a necessary precondition of sustainable food production in all but marginal situations, unless you figure out how to increase animal feed production from the current level of 60% of arable land already used for it rather than producing food directly to people, especially in a situation where we will soon have no oil based fertilisation systems in use and the output of arable land will decrease one way or another. Throw in the climate change and erosion figures and you are actually working with a decreasing land areas for food production. Add the fact that population levels are still climbing, and you can see that what you are suggesting is not only stupid, but irresponsible, which explains why I am so suprised to hear this from someone calling themselves communist...

Quote:
In Africa, north of the Limpopo, commercial animal husbandry is virtually unknown.

i have travelled both in limpopo area and a bit north as well, and commercial animal farming does exist. Your argument is that it should be increased, and with already such devastating results from small scale farming that is just plain irresponsible and siding with the rich.

Quote:
In short, explaining issues of food shortage through the fact that meat is cultivated is liberal nonsense. Land usage patterns and market realities are the underlying problem.

yes, and i have already recognised that - you are missing the point. here we try to discuss the impact of animal agriculture, and you are keen on trying to talk about all other types of agriculture. We can talk about those as well (though we would probably be in agreement), but how about trying to stick to the subject?

I mean i could rant on about impact of erosion (incidentally grazing is one big factor in erosion), but how would that be relevant to the discussion. Just stick to the impact of the animal agrigulture and spare us with some googled irrelevant little details.

JDMF's picture
JDMF
Offline
Joined: 21-05-04
Dec 8 2006 14:36
gurrier wrote:
Sure. Let's imagine the world has a sudden rush of blood to the head and everybody goes vegan tomorrow. Option b) would have this move coming from an "animal rights" point of view, and option a would be just from a "food security" point of view. Here's how it goes.

In option a), the world would decide to switch entirely to crop cultivation for nourishment and eliminate animal husbandry. This would require, at the very least, the transformation of all current pasture-land into tillage. In semi-arid areas, in order to replace pastoralism, you'd need major irrigation works. The whole thing would see huge rises in fertiliser and pesticide usage and desertification (as water is sucked out of semi-arid lands for irrigation, it leaves parched land behind). In addition to that, all of our domesticated animals would go extinct in quick smart time. The non-domesticated animals and birds would also come under huge strain since animal husbandry can co-exist much more easily with wildlife than can crops. If you grow crops for humans to eat, you have to make sure that the animals don't eat them - war against rodents, birds, etc. You also need to ensure that bigger animals don't trample them (e.g. in Africa much elephant killing is prompted by crop-trampling). If you are raising animals, you only really have to care about the big predators (hence the fact that lions haven't existed in Europe since Roman times and all the other animals that compete with us for the top spot in the food chain are on the edge of extinction).

I reckon that given the fact that our ecosystem is already looking decidely shaky, such a massive shock to it would probably cause the extinction of the species.

that could be the case, but fortunately you have no idea what you are talking about. As i mentioned above, currently about 60% if arable land is used to produce animal feed, as in is being fed to animals which are the so called reverse protein factories, you have to feed them more than they produce.

This stands to reason because the animals do not store every calorie that is being fed to them, but consume a lot by moving (the little space they have in modern factory farming), producing heat, general functioning. Animals will also produce bits which are not utilised and that is a waste of stored energy. This is the reason why it is calculated that it takes 4 - 12 times more land area to produce animal based food than plant based food, and it is calculated in protein or calories to make it comparable both in terms of rough nutrition and energy.

So let me offer alternative view: if we would stop consuming animal products in UK we would stop the demand for imported feed from countries such as Brazil where rainforrests are felled to produce soya and corn for feed. nearly 90% of UK arable land is in feed production which would mean that it is likely there would be space to allow return of forrestation after stopping the import of calories from countries which hardly can afford sending it out in the first place.

anyways, dont have loads of time to explain all the details, but here is a good article by monbiot on the issue, and he is in no way a vegan anyway:
http://www.monbiot.com/archives/2002/12/24/the-poor-get-stuffed/

Quote:
The second option, where worldwide veganism came about through animal rights would be much more certain to lead to disaster. If we were to consider it wrong to harm animals in any way, our cities would quickly fill up with lions, tigers, bears and so on and we'd all be lunch.

lol, ok mate, i think you are just taking the piss now grin That could explain the absurd line of argumentation grin