07
Jan
12

Meat Wheat is murder

Strange thing about the internet: Despite the fact that damn near every vegetarian I know in (heh heh) meatspace is almost aggressively apathetic about the carnassial tendencies of the rest of the table, I still tend to pigeon-hole vegetarians — that is, shadows on the cave wall cast by the Platonic Vegetarian — as confrontational passive-aggressive judgemental holier-than-thou jerks who’re more interested in signaling than in the health of their bodies, other mammals, or the planet.  I imagine this is because it’s easier for me to stereotype them by one narrow aspect that marks them as out-group, and for them to stereotype meat-eaters by one narrow aspect that &c.  Either way, on with the show!

Michael Archer writes a wonderful polemic against… well, not vegetarianism necessarily, but large-scale agriculture:

Briefly: farming wheat kills more highly-social creatures than grazing cattle.  (I presume that farming massively-subsidized corn and wheat crops and pumping the result into feed-lot herds gives us the worst of both worlds from an animal-welfare perspective, but now that I have a real job I can afford to get snobbish about grass-fed beef.)

Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal got there first:

Of course, none of this addresses the human welfare costs of switching to more expensive farming methods and thus increasing the cost of food.

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2 Responses to “Meat Wheat is murder”


  1. January 8, 2012 at 14:37

    The article does mention grain fed meat, but it mostly ignores it since as it also mentioned most Australian beef is primarily or entirely grass-fed, so it’s mostly a non-issue for Australians.

    As an added bonus with eating the Koalas you can grow them on native Australian timber, so there is minimal ecological disruption. Of course that’s not very space efficient; a better way to go would be what one of the local Zoos does which is where they have a fenced off area about the size of a suburban backyard with around thirty tree trunks cut of about two metres up. They have about one adult koala (about half have babies) per a trunk, and they tie a bunch of gum branches onto the trunk for them to eat. You’d need a largish tree lot to provide enough branches, but that could double as a timber lot. Admit-ably they claim that the koalas are one of their most expensive animals to keep (http://www.cws.org.au/getcloser/visitors_information/faqs/#link13), so maybe it wouldn’t be financially viable.

    • January 8, 2012 at 20:42

      The article does mention grain fed meat, but it mostly ignores it since as it also mentioned most Australian beef is primarily or entirely grass-fed, so it’s mostly a non-issue for Australians.

      This is me seething with envy. Fucking supply management, man.


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