January 11, 2015 at 11:08 am #106280Quote:We must avoid associating socialism with one particular lifestyle choice, especially as most humans have always been meat-eaters and always will be.
i actually disagree with that statement.We associate ourselves witht the steady state, zero growth model of economy for a socialist society, explaining that we envisage an anti-consumerism trend to prevail and expect a drop in consumption levels…with caveats of an initial phase of higher production to raise people to a decent standard of living. We explain this for various reasons such as little need for conspicuous consumption and public ostentatiousness to show status.If you want to cite Morris as an authority, then perhaps i can add his call to return to handicraft production which is a lifestyle decision, is it not? Maybe i want mass-produced MDF IKEA furniture and flat pack cabinets rather than cut down some oak tree. But to keep to the topic, this article seems to be part of the debate that took part in Commonweal and a reply to Morris. http://www.henrysalt.co.uk/bibliography/essays/socialists-and-vegetariansQuote:The truth is that Vegetarians do not pretend that their system can offer a complete solution of the social difficulty, but only that it is an important accessory consideration…When a Socialist sets aside the plea for humanity to the lower animals as a mere fad and crotchet, a Vegetarian might well retort that if the promptings of gentleness and mercy are deliberately disregarded in the case of the animals, it cannot surprise us if they are also excluded from consideration in those social questions where the welfare of human beings is concerned…. No community possessed of true refinement will tolerate such degrading and disgusting institutions as the slaughter-house and the butcher’s shop, both of them a disgrace to civilization and decency.
Humankind has always been scavengers and gatherers and very much less hunters.http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/2012/07/23/human-ancestors-were-nearly-all-vegetarians/I suppose we can get into a debate on the evolution of our canine teeth versus our grinding molars. But the qualification i would make of your statement that most humans have been meat eaters is …"If and when they could", which was historically a lot less common than the customary non-meat diet, for only special occasions and particular feast days. In the last few months i have seen people eating dog and rat…nothing unusual, just a sign of poverty since both are free to obtain. I'm sure that culinary choice will disappear…but the assortment of grubs and creepy-crawlies i see being eaten everyday may take a bit longer as many find those a delicacy rather than a necessity. "and always will be"…OK, I'll use my crystal ball, in that case, as well, then…Hamburgers will be replaced by beetle-burgers…man-made, lab-grown meat will replace animal flesh…algae slime fortified with extra vitamins and minerals will be the dessert…and Soylent-type concoctions will be our main meal of the day..http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soylent_%28drink%29And we'll return to home-brewed real ales to wash it all down with. I'm not on some crusade to proselytise for vegetarianism or veganism…i'm not one myself…more a eat what's put on the table in front of me person…but as a socialist i envisage a rational well-planned society that will endeavour to be sustainable as far as possible which leads me to reach certain conclusions …that there will be a change of tastes and menu in socialism …We will be what we eat, to paraphrase Feurbach,…i see socialism as a world of humane humans not one catering for carnivores with carving knives.January 11, 2015 at 11:16 am #106281AnonymousInactive
I think this thread is a waste of time. It is not a class issue. Nor has it anything to do with socialism. There are more important issues. end of rantJanuary 11, 2015 at 11:43 am #106282ALBParticipant
That's not long enough for a rant.January 11, 2015 at 11:45 am #106283
This, to me, at least, is an issue about the environment, methods of food production and the type of society we seek to see in socialism…so i beg to differ in your reasoning that it is an irrelevant topic to discuss.As not being directly about working class issues? …perhaps you think the food adulteration industry as described in the 19th century slums and later by Upton Sinclair in the Jungle …which btw was originally meant to be about the dire straits of migrant workers in Chicagos meat industry but quickly became a public health issue once the propertied class discovered what went into their sausages…Red meat, trans fat… obesity, heart disease…a host of other health problems inflicted upon workers can be directly attributed to the food production system…cheap nasty fare for the working class…big high profits for the corporations…so it is, imho, a class issue…i could go on citing the risks with meat-eating but ALB will interject with beansprout poisoning…and overdosing on horse-radishJanuary 11, 2015 at 11:57 am #106284AnonymousInactive
Capitalism has developed technology to such an extent that we can – given a revolution tomorrow – feed all the hungry within a week.If I were one of the starving I would be begging the revolutionary movement not throw the bathwater out with baby.January 11, 2015 at 11:58 am #106285
Who will perform such dirty work in a Socialist world? Could you slaughyer animals on a regular basis and prepare them for consumption?January 11, 2015 at 12:00 pm #106286AnonymousInactive
As I said above, I cant see socialism as the 'tyranny of the majority'. Like some sort of nanny state. I love a beef and horse radish sandwich with onionsJanuary 11, 2015 at 12:05 pm #106287AnonymousInactivehallblithe wrote:Who will perform such dirty work in a Socialist world? Could you slaughyer animals on a regular basis and prepare them for consumption?
Of cours I would. Rather than watch my little grandaughter starve to death. Wouldn't you?January 11, 2015 at 12:09 pm #106288ALBParticipant
Party members who are vegetarians should not advocate this in the name of the Party. That's the danger. That they are trying to convince the rest of us to become vegetarians is one reason why we cannot let religious people in. They would do the same and we'd be side-tracked into arguing amongst ourselves about that too.January 11, 2015 at 12:21 pm #106289
Why would your granddaughter or anyone else be starving in a Socialist world?January 11, 2015 at 1:02 pm #106290AnonymousInactivehallblithe wrote:Why would your granddaughter or anyone else be starving in a Socialist world?
That is avoiding my question.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=grnrx7JeDhg Would you kill an animal to feed these children?January 11, 2015 at 1:08 pm #106291AnonymousInactiveALB wrote:They would do the same and we'd be side-tracked into arguing amongst ourselves about that too.
Which was the point of my 'rant'January 11, 2015 at 1:12 pm #106292
Hopefully, ALB, i have always included the proper caveats and nuances and get-out phrases when i have blogged on the topic. In #28 i hopefully used the right quotes to present the party case. And i seemed to have anticipated Species and Class article too by saying when i looked back at this thread.Quote:Politically and economically there is little an individual can really do, just in the case of the impotence of what an individual person can do to combat climate change and global warming. Change has to be social and systemic to succeed. Plus it is not for a small group of propagandists, as we are presently, to determine what the character of a socialist society should be.
And in #26 i did make it clear that i agreeQuote:We try not to make life-style decisions for our members
and then repeatedQuote:Although we cannot and should not make vegetarianism/veganism a condition of membership,
But i did make a point of saying we should include it in our vision of a future socialist society …and that, Vin, is why there exists this thread…to debate and discuss possibilities and potentialities of socialism. We can speculate, surely but as i have stated , imo, we can go further…we can include in our literature aspirations for a better future.But you all know i have previously argued on various threads we should be more detailed in our descriptions of socialist society, that i have counselled to present a clearer blueprint. When we describe food production in socialism and protecting the environment in socialism, i see no reason not to include vegetarianism/veganism as part of a solution option. Scientific evidence backs it up. Other aspects has been raised …The health concerns of meat-eating…we eat too much of it…so perhaps not fully vegetarian but our well-being benefits from a low meat diet…and there is the humanitarian reason been offered and that too links with our case that the environment influences behaviour…we want respect for life…it will begin with our own species but spread to other life-formsWe won't ban smoking in socialism or stop anybody from doing it…but i am sure the tobacco plantations of Ol' Virginy' will be transformed into growing much more beneficial crops and as Hallbithe said, Vin, … if you want flesh, you'll need to raise the animals by yourself, slaughter and butcher it yourself…and then explain to your daughter as she watches Babe the Pig having its throat cut and listens to its squealing…it is so Daddy can have his rasher of bacon and a pork sausage.January 11, 2015 at 1:14 pm #106293AnonymousInactivealanjjohnstone wrote:Vin, … if you want flesh, you'll need to raise the animals by yourself, slaughter and butcher it yourself…and then explain to your daughter as she watches Babe the Pig having its throat cut and listens to its squealing…it is so Daddy can have his rasher of bacon and a pork sausage.
I take it your granddaughter wouldn't be so lucky.January 11, 2015 at 1:19 pm #106294
We know such activity would be of no more worth than a band aid. My original questions were: who will perform such dirty work in a Socialist world and could you slaughter animals on a regular basis and prepare them for consumption?
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