Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Current Mood

It's a little scary to me how content I am to be here more or less by myself accomplishing nothing, unless you count absorbing albums and making play money in online poker as things. Otherwise I'm athingmatic at the mo. It's possible I just needed downtime from the year, but the year wasn't particularly (obsessive) stressful, so it's more likely that the given situation has just allowed my hermitic tendencies to run free over my everyday activities.

There's a party at the E-bar tonight (reminds me of the H-bar, where things will commonly appear in different places - know why?), but the people I know there are second-rate friends at best; my friends had good times hooking up with them but I haven't, so I'll not go, instead I'll opt for staying here and ingesting Stereolab (it's fun to play 'spot the incredibly depressing lyric amidst the happy song with them) and others...but I'll note the invitation here, since we all know getting invited to a party is the second best part of the party, coming just after going to the party.

So as a handful of people who know me know, I've been giving vegetarianism significant thought recently, even so far as implementing phase 1 over the last month and a half (it's healthier anyway (eat way too much meat as a culture (omnivores people!))^2), and now my thought process has once again strayed to the cynical side. Here's a-why: Firstly, the only ethical dilemma that I face is one of treatment. Every animal in any way will either die of starvation, disease, or predation and it won't be entirely painless, so the act of killing itself is acceptable. There's significant sulci and gyri to the issue of whether the right to as long a life as possible should exist to animals. One on side, with a few exceptions natch, animals, unless we take an unfounded and fantastic leap of anthropomorphism, are not sentient. However, there's evidence that many of them can form emotional connections, especially pigs, which are much smarter than dogs (and better and detecting scent too - cops should use them - haha - ha). So let's ignore pigs and focus on chickens, which are stupider than my kitchen table. The ethical dilemma is treatment: debeaking and being in tiny cages and slaughtering processes that leave many chickens maimed and in pain but not yet dead. The wrongness seems obv to me, and since living creatures are in pain, why we should care seems equally obv. The pivotal question to myself right now is: does/would my vegetarianism make a fucking difference? The conventional idealistic response goes something like this: "If everyone who asked that question believed it did and went vegetarian, the world would change and everyone would stop mistreating animals! all you need is love!" I'm calling bullshit on that point of view. The problem is not lack of effort from those who do care, the problem is that the vast majority don't give a fuck. The people who respond with "nothing tastes like a steak!" to any vego-related inquiry. If you're a major meat-producing company, will losing 10% of your market convince you a) to change how you treat your livestock such that you're spending several times what you were previously, or will b) it result in you tightening up your current conditions, likely causing your animals to be mistreated even more viciously? The problem isn't one of motivation, it's in convcincing people a problem even exists. So my current plan's to stay in Phase 1 and when Yifei's a powerful politician, get him to designate China a vego state or else I'll reveal his darkest secrets.

A way to maintain my own morality without drastically changing my lifestyle? Absolutely. I'll keep my thinkbox going though.

In conclusion, Murder Ballads by Nick Cave gets 9/10 on the first listen, 8/10 on all subsequent listens.


Blogger A. D. said...

Funny, I was just thinking along the lines of forcing the issue on everybody (including myself). After the oil crash, natch, we'll need some iron-fisted discipline, (and Yifei. What's iron-hearted paternalistic cruelty without Yifei?) and part of that will involve not eathing animals and opting to feed 100 people with wheat instead of one person with meat. Or something like that. I'm making up the numbers as I go along. And we'll use that as an excuse to stick Ralph Klein into a chicken cage.

OK. I've made enough associative leaps to leave the topic with dignity.

7:25 PM  

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