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Food ethics: How do you choose what species are morally wrong to eat?

 
 
Eorl
 
  5  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 05:44 pm
@farmerman,
You seem be suggesting that humanity, even in plague proportions, is somehow not part of the natural ecosystem.
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 05:47 pm
@Eorl,
I regret that I have only one upvote to give. So to make up for it I got a running start and upvoted that as hard as I could.

It's a recurring theme to exclude man from nature. A good friend once remarked to me, after watching a video I sent him of a lion being killed after attacking a human, that he felt no pity for the lion, who was just being a lion as it is wont to in nature. It struck me that the humans were just being humans too and acting naturally as well.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 05:49 pm
@OmSigDAVID,
Quote:
What is the "overall qweb of life" ?
WEven the most menial acolyte of Mensa should be able to work that out .
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 05:53 pm
@Eorl,
Quote:
You seem be suggesting that humanity, even in plague proportions, is somehow not part of the natural ecosystem
Youre reading things into things . I was merely responding to your question of me as to what was my criterion for killing or not killing animals.

We would only appreciate our own position in the planets ecosystem were we to kill all the animals NO? So how can we deny our position within it?

farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 06:14 pm
@Robert Gentel,
Quote:
It's a recurring theme to exclude man from nature.

NOW youre just peddling backwards

Hell, Ive been totally consistent throughout.
1Its not a moral issue with me, never had been, Thats youre issue

2its an issue of conservation and substitutions of species, Ive been consistent about the position of humans in the ecosystem, why am I therefore loudly attacking youre recent position defending the killing of whales as justified from an ecological point? You aint fishin with a baited hook Robbie.



3We shouldnt remove vast herds from the ecosystem because we dont understand the ramifications of what we do.

(IVE been totally constant with that last point and back on the other thread you pooh poohed that as not a valid reason for NOT killing whales) You, instead have pleaded some point that the Japanese have a "right" to kill whales, even when they have no fuckin idea about what their actions will do to the stock. YOU are the one whose being inconsistent, no? Youre just tacking and looking for a convenient wind .

PUH LEEZE

Eorl
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 06:19 pm
@farmerman,
Understood.

You say "we're better than that", and I really want that to be so, but I think we already go far beyond what any other species can do in terms of understanding and managing our environment for our own interests. We even go beyond that, some of the time in some places, attempting to protect biodiversity for it's own sake. I think, though, it's going to be increasingly difficult as our plague continues, and our more fundamental needs take priority.

(The only people who have attempted to stem the pop. growth in a real way have been China, and I don't like that much either. Viruses will be called in by mother nature when she's had enough, I reckon, long before the planet is bare.)

I've had similar discussions about cats, that "don't belong" in some ecosystems. Of course they belong. They traveled on the back of a migrating species, and deserve to take their Darwinian chances thanks to that symbiosis. On the other hand, if some humans want to wipe them out for their nasty habits, that's natural too.

So yes, I think we can be way better, but I don't feel guilt on behalf of my entire species for it's incredible destructive success. I think getting over that guilt and accusation is the way to get more "buy in" about the best way to minimize the impact.

Getting off this frikkin' rock would solve the whole problem of course.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 06:31 pm
@Eorl,
Quote:
So yes, I think we can be way better, but I don't feel guilt on behalf of my entire species for it's incredible destructive success.
BUT dont you get good and angry at the perps who continue killing black rhinos, ocelots, snow leopards, chilean "sea bass" red corals, whales, and mountain gorillas.? and criticize those whod try to stop the murder?
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 06:35 pm
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:
NOW youre just peddling backwards

Hell, Ive been totally consistent throughout.
1Its not a moral issue with me, never had been, Thats youre issue


I think you protest too much farmerman. My point wasn't even directed at you, but at the widespread tendency to exclude humans from nature and define nature as that which occurs without man.

Quote:
2its an issue of conservation and substitutions of species, Ive been consistent about the position of humans in the ecosystem, why am I therefore loudly attacking youre recent position defending the killing of whales as justified from an ecological point? You aint fishin with a baited hook Robbie.


Now that you bring this up, I certainly don't think you are very consistent with your logic at all. For example, you alternate between charismatic defenses of whales and ecological ones but you haven't consistently applied your charismatic ones and you can't articulate an objective way to apply criteria that would result in the proscriptions you support.

But that's fine, it's not like anyone else here has.

Quote:
(IVE been totally constant with that last point and back on the other thread you pooh poohed that as not a valid reason for NOT killing whales)


This is just not true farmerman. You are making things up about my position and the one part of my food ethics that I have no doubts about is that species conservation is justifiable reason to prohibit the killing of specific animals.

We may disagree on what constitutes sustainability, but I've deliberately avoided quibbling over that with you because fundamentally we agree on the bottom line: if the activity threatens the existence of the species it is not ethical to deliberately continue.

I believe I've said this at least 10 times now and I can't be any clearer than that. You've already erroneously decided what I'd intended to be the premise of this thread, and I'd prefer to decide what my positions are instead of having you make them up for me.

Quote:
You, instead have pleaded some point that the Japanese have a "right" to kill whales, even when they have no fuckin idea about what their actions will do to the stock.


Nonsense. You are still just making stuff up about my position. I don't think the Japanese have any "right" to kill whales beyond whatever rights humans have to kill any animal and it's precisely the nature of such a "right" that I'm asking people to explore in this thread.

Quote:
YOU are the one whose being inconsistent, no? Youre just tacking and looking for a convenient wind .

PUH LEEZE


Then why can't you point out the logical inconsistencies instead of just being hyper-sensitive and generating fishing metaphors? Without simply making up my position for me you have no basis for this claim of inconsistency.
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 06:41 pm
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:
Quote:
What is the "overall qweb of life" ?
WEven the most menial acolyte of Mensa should be able to work that out .


This is a cop out. Yes, the typo is clear enough and you meant "web" but not it is not at all clear what you meant when you said "Im against killing any animal that has a place in the planets overall qweb of life."

This gets right to the problem that Eorl pointed out about excluding man from the ecosystem (e.g it seems like you see the relationship between man and the animals he raises as being outside of what you define as the "web of life").

So clarifying what this means would actually help. Ultimately every animal is part of the "web of life" so what distinction are you trying to draw with this label? What criteria makes an animal part of your "web of life"?
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 06:46 pm
I have a simpler question: What species do you not want other humans to eat?
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 06:46 pm
@Eorl,
Eorl wrote:
Getting off this frikkin' rock would solve the whole problem of course.


Don't look for that any time soon. And it would solve nothing. To put a few thousand people into interstellar space in the hope of most of them surviving to colonize a distant planet would beggar the resources of every government on earth for generations. Such an effort, while laudable for a variety of reasons would do nothing to solve the population problem--there are billions of us, and no such effort would remove even a small significant fraction of the current population.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 06:52 pm
@Robert Gentel,
Quote:
This gets right to the problem that Eorl pointed out about excluding man from the ecosystem


I dont need to restate my position which was quite clear from post 1. Of course we are all part of an ecosystem, I really didnt think that had to be stated. My response was supra that since it was in response to eorls question .

You say Tomaahhto.
0 Replies
 
Eorl
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 06:52 pm
@Setanta,
I don't necessarily disagree, but I can only compare it to colonization of new continents, surely just a matter of degree? I guess the UK is no less populated now than it was 500 years ago. But if the UK population is wiped out, their diaspora survives.
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 07:02 pm
@Robert Gentel,
Quote:
you alternate between charismatic defenses of whales and ecological ones but you haven't consistently applied your charismatic ones and you can't articulate an objective way to apply criteria that would result in the proscriptions you support.
Apparently you didnt get my points too well. I only stated that whales are unique (ONCE) and only as a result of RG's baiting. Ive been consistent about why whales (MINKE specifically) SHOULD NOT be killed becasue
once again with feeling

THE IWC doesnt even agree that the catch proposed by Japan in the SOuthern herd alone is SUSTAINABLE. They are only now looking at reserqch into the carryi ng capacity of Minkes. I have not deviated from that point at all, so again your just tryting to bait and Im getting a little annoyed at how, as Msolga stated, and I paraphrase,
"you have an annoying habit of trying to make this sound like a deposition rather than a debate, In a depo, one attorney will try to "mine" a minor point and then use it throughout, just so it appears continually on the record. Im wise to the trick and I remind you that Ive been cosnistent about my views on whale killing.THEY are primarily ecological but since whales are cute , I will stipulate that I did say that IN ONE SMALL CORNER OF ONE SMALL POST.

AS far as the rest of your seriate points, Im gonna go watch an old EW-Street concert on Palladia
Eorl
 
  2  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 07:04 pm
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:

Quote:
So yes, I think we can be way better, but I don't feel guilt on behalf of my entire species for it's incredible destructive success.
BUT dont you get good and angry at the perps who continue killing black rhinos, ocelots, snow leopards, chilean "sea bass" red corals, whales, and mountain gorillas.? and criticize those whod try to stop the murder?


Well, yeah. Sorta. But I suspect people killed more people than black rhinos last year and with even less justifiability from my perspective, and I think that's worse. Don't get me wrong, I think it's ethical to protect biodiversity. I think I probably place "destroying intellect" and "ability-to-suffer" just as highly, which is what made me ask you in the first place whether endangeredness was your proirity. (and I asked because I respect your opinion, and wish to understand your position better.)
0 Replies
 
Robert Gentel
 
  1  
Reply Mon 18 Jan, 2010 10:00 pm
@farmerman,
farmerman wrote:
Apparently you didnt get my points too well. I only stated that whales are unique (ONCE) and only as a result of RG's baiting.


You agreed with the position that regardless of conservation issues whales should not be killed. You can try to blame my "baiting" for it but I don't see how that could possibly be responsible for your position. If you'd like to disown it then do so, people can change their minds without needing a pretext like having been "baited" into it in the first place.

Quote:
Ive been consistent about why whales (MINKE specifically) SHOULD NOT be killed becasue
once again with feeling

THE IWC doesnt even agree that the catch proposed by Japan in the SOuthern herd alone is SUSTAINABLE. They are only now looking at reserqch into the carryi ng capacity of Minkes.


But again, you said that even if conservation is not an issue you oppose killing whales right?

This thread is about articulating the logic behind such a position. Instead you've chosen to portray your position as the result of my "baiting". Why not try to explain the logic behind prohibiting killing whales beyond the conservation argument that we agree about. I think you are getting defensive about this because you don't have a good answer.

Quote:
I have not deviated from that point at all, so again your just tryting to bait and Im getting a little annoyed at how, as Msolga stated, and I paraphrase,
"you have an annoying habit of trying to make this sound like a deposition rather than a debate, In a depo, one attorney will try to "mine" a minor point and then use it throughout, just so it appears continually on the record.


You have an annoying habit of resorting to ad hominems when you feel criticized. So instead of defending your position, you criticize my style. I already let you guys run me off the whaling thread with that nonsense but here I'm going to call it out.

1) This is a thread asking you to explain your ethics on food.
2) You have expressed an ethic about whales that goes beyond conservation.
3) Asking you what it is based on is not trying to "mine" a minor point. In case you haven't noticed that is the very subject of the thread. This whole thread is about that.

So if you object so much to trying to articulate why you object to whales being killed even if conservation is not an issue, then why are you on a thread explicitly asking you to explain such reasoning?

On the whaling thread I let you portray these ethical questions as a distraction to an ecological thread, so I made my own specifically to discuss these ethical questions.

Quote:
Im wise to the trick and I remind you that Ive been cosnistent about my views on whale killing. THEY are primarily ecological but since whales are cute , I will stipulate that I did say that IN ONE SMALL CORNER OF ONE SMALL POST.


And I'm interested in knowing if you have developed logically consistent criteria for the "cute" part of your position. But instead of answering you prefer to pretend that this is a minor point and a distraction and that I'm "baiting" you and "mining" minor points.

But this just happens to be the whole subject of this thread. We agree on species conservation and what I'd like to understand is the logic behind the part of your position that goes beyond it.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 19 Jan, 2010 07:23 am
@Robert Gentel,
Quote:
We agree on species conservation and what I'd like to understand is the logic behind the part of your position that goes beyond
This was your thread and in that respect Ive been consistent in reminding you that YOUVE chosen the phrase "morally right" You seem to ignore your own bandstanding an issue based on one criteria (yours). Ive said that I reject the moral issue and want to get back to sustainability as the criteria. (Youve backed off from the sustainability issue by claiming that someone "ran you off" from another thread. Of that Im not aware and Ive never seen anyone (except Frank APisa) dip to such an excuse.Ive said that I WOULD RELUCTANTLY sccept that animals could be hunted for food if and only if they were hunted ina sustainable fashion. That means that several dozen species are off the list for now. THAT includes whales and Minkes sinceIWC needs better data on carrying capacity.

As far as mixing the "cute factor" with sustainability, Rabbits and quail are very cute, and very delicious. I will refrain from killing quail because their populations have crashed all over their range.
THE main issue is that unless decent data is acquired re: a species "crash and bottleneck potential" They should not be hunted at all, be it food, shamanana, decoration or folk meds.
Morality got nothing to do with it. thats your choice of words chosen (IMHO) to raise your soapbox a little higher than the rest of us.

WHen we raise and domesticate animals, weve already re defined carrying capacity and transferred it into an artificial network of sustenance. (we cluster anmimals and , by intensive agriculture, grow their food on the suppot acres) Thats sorta like saying that electric cars are less polluting than gas cars (When actually coal fired power plants are intensely polluting so that there really is no net gain)

However, since weve chosen and husbanded these species, we should exploit them by virtue of a well run industry. Japanese Whaling , on the other hand, is rife with deceit, mismanagement, lies and fraud in the international community. Besides, they dont even understand well enough, the stable size of the target population. Its all WAG and estimates based on CATCH.
The animals targeted arent even part of a stable population that we know of. There are 4 Minke populations and two are really decimated and only one, The SOuthern is relatively large. We need to understand why the several other populations have gotten so small before we really target the SOuthern herds.



farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Tue 19 Jan, 2010 07:33 am
@Robert Gentel,
Quote:

You agreed with the position that regardless of conservation issues whales should not be killed.
BULLSHIT. My thesis has been that I may RELUCTANTLY have to accept whaling if we ever find out how sustainable the catch needs to be. Ive said throughout that the Innuit have cultural rights to kill whales but even these whale targets have shown major decline in genetic diversity and numbers. The Greenland Minkes are especially low in numbers. The Japanese IMHO have no cultural imperative that they can foist on the rest of the world.

dlowan
 
  1  
Reply Tue 19 Jan, 2010 08:02 am
@farmerman,
If it is not a moral or ethical imperative, I am not sure how you support your criterion (which I agree with) that no species should be hunted to extinction?
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  2  
Reply Tue 19 Jan, 2010 09:04 am
Farmerman can answer for himself, of course. However, i would note that species diversity has its benefits for humans, in that the study of diverse species aids us in understanding our own physical systems. In the case of plants, there have been so many chemical and medical advances which humans have made from the study of diverse plants that it would be folly to extinguish any of them if it can be avoided.
0 Replies
 
 

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